Monday, September 22, 2008

Pod Cast Awards

If you'd like to vote for your favorite podcasts to recieve a Pod Cast Award this year, you can do so at You can nominate podcasts in about a dozen different categories, as well as a "people's choice" best of show type category. So whether you are listening to knitting shows, political commentary, or podsafe music, show your support and let the podcasters know that their work is being appreciated! 

Monday, September 15, 2008

To Be a Better Wife

I've only been married a little under 2 months but its already clear that I'm a pretty crummy wife, at least when it comes to traditional wifely duties. I'm not a slob, but I also don't clean as much as I probably could. But in my defense its just not practical to try to keep our little apartment neat. I wouldn't be able to get anything else done if that was my goal. But more significantly, I don't cook. At all. When Chris goes out of town or gets sick I pretty much just survive on oreos and peanut butter and jelly. Its embarassing. And unfair, because though hes very good at it he really doesn't have time to cook every single night, especially now that hes spending so much time studying. So its time I learn at least a few dishes so that I can take on the dinner responsability once in a while. Tonight while he was napping (he had a test this morning and was up all night studying) I snuck out to the grocery store and came back prepared to actually do it. Thats right. Laura cooked something. I can't take credit for the "recipe", as it was my moms idea. Skinless/boneless chicken breasts beaten flat, coated on one side with bread crumbs and on the other covered with slices of feta cheese, then rolled up and placed in a dish with some white wine and a tiny bit of butter. Then baked at 400degrees for about half an hour or so. Served with brown rice and green peas. And a salad from the grocery salad bar. Its in the oven now. I hope its edible. If so, I'll be on the hunt for other recipes that are a) not just easy, but nearly fool-proof b) only take a few ingredients and c) healthy, we don't like to use a lot of butter or simple/white carbs. Any suggestions?  

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Rainy Day

I don't know if its from hurricanes or what, but its been raining buckets all morning. Not even the dog wanted to go out in it. So I can't put yarn out on the porch to dry, so today's line up of reskeining isn't going to happen. I guess that means I'm just going to have to drink tea and knit. I just don't see any way around it. What a shame.

Friday, September 5, 2008

New Laptop!

Guess what arrived yesterday--- my new laptop! I finally gave in and replaced my poor old laptop, and just in time, too. While I was waiting for this one to arrive the old one's USB ports completely stopped working (they had been working off and on for months) meaning that I couldn't back it up to my external harddrive anymore. And for me thats the last straw. But now this one is here and its all new and shiny (actually shiny!) and its getting to know me and I'm getting to know it. The screen is wider and a lot easier to read, so I think its going to be much easier on my eyes. Plus its not missing keys like the old one (I blame it on the dog jumping onto my keyboard) so its easier to type on. Oh and the USB ports work, so I can connect it to my computer and the printer and the external harddrive. And, unlike the old one, it doesn't have to have the back left corner propped up at just the right angle to work. Plus it runs a lot faster and is all around better. I've just about got all my files transfered from the old laptop (made harder by the fact that the USB ports don't work) and most of the programs I frequently use installed. I've upgraded to a different version of photoshop and dreamweaver and some things are different, so it may take me a bit to adjust.  Now I just need to be extra careful not to destroy this one like I did the last one. Thankfully I won't be hauling around with me nearly as much since I'm not a student anymore (I used to take my laptop to class with me). And the dog is no longer a puppy and not as likely to pounce on my laptop while I'm not looking. And I promise not to use the laptop with wet dye-y or soapy gloves on anymore. Apparently thats not good for it. Who knew? 

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Rising Meadows Farm Fest

Just a reminder for those of you in North Carolina- the Rising Meadows Annual Farm Fest is coming up soon! Its scheduled for Saturday, Sept 13th from 10am-4pm. Last year there were great vendors, yummy food, beautiful celtic music and cute animals. Hopefully this year it won't be quite as hot as last, but even if it's hot you can always eat local Homeland Creamery icecream, sip on girlscout-made lemonade and listen to the music in the shade. A list of vendors, map and other info can be found here. Admission is $5. Please come as it might take a large number of people to prevent me from smuggling livestock off the farm. I'd really like a sheep.

Monday, September 1, 2008

Tea Update

Since my last tea post, I've tried several more of the SerendipiTea teas.

Bolivian Black Tea: decent black tea, nothing objectionable but also nothing particularly exciting. I think that this is one I might appreciate if I were more of a tea connoisseur. I enjoyed it with cream and sugar. I'd say I preferred Namaste for a slightly more interesting black tea.

Earl Grey: Very good and unique. I don't think I've ever really had a good Earl Grey before, just the Twinings Tea Bag variety. And this was very different. I was surprised by the fairly strong citrus notes, but it was very good and the lemony flavor was refreshing. I preferred it with cream and sugar, though it was ok without the cream too. I'd definitely recommend this one.

Razzle Dazzle 'Em (Raspberry and Green Tea): This tea was very, very raspberry-y. Thats neither a good thing or a bad thing, but it wasn't really "my" thing. It tasted a bit too much like the herbal teas I'm accustomed to getting in tea bags from the grocery store. Nothing wrong with that, it just wasn't particularly excting. The raspberry flavor overwhelmed the much more delicate flavors of the green tea. It might be interesting to try this one iced.

So far my favorite is still Buccaneer. I think that Chris's favorite is the Earl Grey.

I'm thinking about going to A Southern Season sometime this week to see if I can find some BiscotTea to try. Ever heard about this company? Apparently its shortbread biscotti made to be eaten with tea, using tea as an ingredient. I heard about it on the TV program "Unwrapped"

Something Fishy

Admittedly, I probably have one of the worst diets possible. I know. I'm going to go directly to the grocery store tomorrow and get a bag of baby carrots . See, I'm trying. Anyway, one GOOD thing that Chris and I have been doing more of lately has been eating more fish. We have fish at least once a week, if not more. It helps that a Trader Joes moved in nearby and they have really decent frozen fish for low prices, so a) we can afford it and b) we can keep it in the freezer to have it convenient anytime. But all fish are not created equal. The world of seafood can be a bit overwhelming because some fish are harvested in a manner that damages the environment, are over fished or are dangerous due to lead levels. To make it more confusing, some types of fish can be good or bad depending on where they are from. For example, US farmed Tilapia are great, but Tilapia from China or Tiwain should be avoided because of the harmful farming practicies. Its too complicated to remember, so we have a handy little pocket booklet that we can pull out while standing in front of the fish counter. You can download and print out your own here. The Monterey Bay Aquarium is well known for being the authority on this type of thing. Its also important to remember that in almost all cases, local is better. So, keeping in mind the recommendations of the Seafood Watch Guide, we also try to purchase fish (and other foods) that have travelled a short distance to get to us.