Monday, 27 October 2008

It feels like Wednesday, Feist was Friday and the days ahead look good

The Rainbow was waiting for me after work tonight. A golden sun, a misty rain and this ....

Tonight was a "hump" day. I finished a project for my night class, the big fund-raiser is done at work for the year, what happens with the house appraisal is waiting and out of my hands, the cool damp weather is setting in, Fall is in full force and now I can think of what project to work at next.

I have a short list to sew:
The Black and White and Blue
The Red and Purple
The Amy Butler
Shakespeare in the Park

These blocks are ready to be assembled into a quilt:
Precincts of Japan
1930's reproduction

I am okay to pack away the other RR's and QIW's until (fingers crossed) I unpack them in a new sewing room. I am getting pretty hopeful now.

I still am considering my want to do`s:
Make new Christmas stockings for the family
Make the sort-of-started Tree Skirt
...and buying the kit for the "Remembrance Day - Poppy Quilt" by Pam Bono. I am so tempted to get it, then next year (or 2010) I would donate it as a fundraiser for returning veterans. It is beautiful but, ouch, another $149 + tax.

Last Friday night (October 24th) we were so lucky to see Feist in concert. It was such a warm, fun positive feel good time. Feist is a treasure who so deftly plays her voice like a delicate instrument. Her voice gently dances through her vocal range so that her audience is all loved up! The ever-changing stage graphics are amazing, simply hypnotic, beautiful and such a bonus for the night. If you ever have the opportunity to attend her concert, don`t miss it.

Thursday, 23 October 2008

One Million Acts of Green

One Million Acts of Green every little thing you can do helps. Just like the million points of light.

Think about it, what else can you do?

....What is One Million Acts of Green?
This season, CBC and The Hour with George Stroumboulopoulos want
to mobilize Canadians to do One Million Acts of Green. In partnership with
Cisco, the idea behind the campaign is that one small act can make a big
difference.
It’s not about overhauling your life; it’s about one act from
each individual amassing to a million. It can be as simple as switching to
compact fluorescent lightbulbs, starting a recycling program, or walking to
work. You can do one act – or you can do all one million! It’s up to
you.
What do I do now? I do the easy stuff: composting, recycling as many things as possible, reusing anything I can find another use for, find someone who is needing something that I no longer use so I don't have to toss it away and they don't have to buy it, removing zippers that are still usable from bags or other things that no longer are usable, cutting off buttons, mending clothes, cloth shopping bags, using toxic-free home cleaning methods, turn off lights when I am not in the room, choose lighting options carefully, plan my errands for the most efficient route, try to think about how my Grammy would have done something since she was one of the most resourceful people I know, make as many gifts for people I care about as I can, take my daily home brewed coffee to work, take a thermos of tea for my afternoon libations, most lunches are left-overs, hanging as much laundry as I can for air drying, ...

There always is more that can be done and we have great plans to set up our life going forward in as resource-responsible way that we can.

Check the website out, think about what you can do for your part.

As an aside, my nightly TV fix: first Peter (The National), then Strombo (The Hour)- he's my boyfriend, you know; then maybe H if I can stand a third hour of TV while I fold laundry, quilt or browse around my virtual neighbourhood.

Sock Monkeys and Monkey Clowns



I quilted this for the local guild's Tooney table. This is where they raise money to purchase batting for quilts given to the local Children's Aid. The guild members work on quilts that are given to kids taken into care.

Mibsie is one of the most prolific contibutors. She cuts, pieces and assembles tops by the 100's of metres of fabric. This is her standard pattern; her colour blending is absolutely FUN! She cuts enough fabric for perhaps 10 quilts at a time.

The Clown Monky fabric in this top inspired another idea; finish it up, add a cute sock monkey and add it to the tooney raffle table. I promised her I would do that and so I have:



I have also made this especially for a dear friend for her Christmas gift. It is a pattern from Originellies

Thursday, 16 October 2008

Lists and minutia

Kay has counted up her list of books now too. Very much fun!

Tonight's chocolate, ahhhh. Scharffen Berger Bittersweet.

Now looking towards the end of 2008 it is time to put together a "by the end of the year" list.

We have a lot to look forward to and a very lot to get done at the same time that I still want to keep having fun.

To do:
-Finish quilting a kid's quilt for the guild (must do by Oct. 22)
-Decide which of my WIP to work on... I really want to get one more quilt completed before the year end
-Keep on top of my night class, presentation is due Oct 27
-A big house cleaning, this busy last few weeks are very evident; good job that my honey did a major vacuuming for us this past weekend
-Triage, purge, prioritize and otherwise start the clean out of "stuff" (There may be news coming on this front.....big decisions to be made)
-Oh yes, Christmas is coming. I do have one gift already made for a special friend


...and look after the important people in my life, my family


How did he get to Miami from here?

And the very best thought of the day, it is only one more day to the weekend.

Wednesday, 15 October 2008

I think I have read about 55% of this list

From Deb R's reading post, a challenge to see how many of these "top 100" books that you have read. The idea is to "bold" the titles of which you have read. The Big Read suggests that most adults will have read only six....

1 Pride and Prejudice - Jane Austen
2 The Lord of the Rings - JRR Tolkien
3 Jane Eyre - Charlotte Bronte
4 Harry Potter series - JK Rowling
5 To Kill a Mockingbird - Harper Lee
6 The Bible (a lot of this but not all)
7 Wuthering Heights - Emily Bronte
8 Nineteen Eighty Four - George Orwell
9 His Dark Materials -Philip Pullman
10 Great Expectations - Charles Dickens
11 Little Women - Louisa M Alcott
12 Tess of the D’Urbervilles - Thomas Hardy
13 Catch 22 - Joseph Heller
14 Complete Works of Shakespeare -(a lot of this but not all)
15 Rebecca - Daphne Du Maurier
16 The Hobbit - JRR Tolkien
17 Birdsong - Sebastian Faulks
18 Catcher in the Rye - JD Salinger
19 The Time Traveler’s Wife - Audrey Niffenegger
20 Middlemarch - George Eliot
21 Gone With The Wind - Margaret Mitchell
22 The Great Gatsby - F Scott Fitzgerald
23 Bleak House - Charles Dickens
24 War and Peace - Leo Tolstoy
25 The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy - Douglas Adams
26 Brideshead Revisited - Evelyn Waugh
27 Crime and Punishment - Fyodor Dostoyevsky
28 Grapes of Wrath - John Steinbeck (one of my favourites, read so often I can't count)
29 Alice in Wonderland - Lewis Carroll
30 The Wind in the Willows - Kenneth Grahame
31 Anna Karenina - Leo Tolstoy
32 David Copperfield - Charles Dickens
33 Chronicles of Narnia - CS Lewis
34 Emma - Jane Austen
35 Persuasion - Jane Austen
36 The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe - CS Lewis
37 The Kite Runner - Khaled Hosseini
38 Captain Corelli’s Mandolin - Louis De Bernieres
39 Memoirs of a Geisha - Arthur Golden
40 Winnie the Pooh - AA Milne
41 Animal Farm - George Orwell
42 The Da Vinci Code - Dan Brown
43 One Hundred Years of Solitude - Gabriel Garcia Marquez
44 A Prayer for Owen Meaney - John Irving
45 The Woman in White - Wilkie Collins
46 Anne of Green Gables - LM Montgomery
47 Far From The Madding Crowd - Thomas Hardy
48 The Handmaid’s Tale - Margaret Atwood
49 Lord of the Flies - William Golding
50 Atonement - Ian McEwan
51 Life of Pi - Yann Martel
52 Dune - Frank Herbert
53 Cold Comfort Farm - Stella Gibbons
54 Sense and Sensibility - Jane Austen
55 A Suitable Boy - Vikram Seth
56 The Shadow of the Wind - Carlos Ruiz Zafon
57 A Tale Of Two Cities - Charles Dickens
58 Brave New World - Aldous Huxley
59 The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time - Mark Haddon
60 Love In The Time Of Cholera - Gabriel Garcia Marquez
61 Of Mice and Men - John Steinbeck
62 Lolita - Vladimir Nabokov
63 The Secret History - Donna Tartt
4 The Lovely Bones - Alice Sebold
65 Count of Monte Cristo - Alexandre Dumas
66 On The Road - Jack Kerouac
67 Jude the Obscure - Thomas Hardy
68 Bridget Jones’s Diary - Helen Fielding
69 Midnight’s Children - Salman Rushdie
70 Moby Dick - Herman Melville
71 Oliver Twist - Charles Dickens
72 Dracula - Bram Stoker
73 The Secret Garden - Frances Hodgson Burnett
74 Notes From A Small Island - Bill Bryson
75 Ulysses - James Joyce
76 The Bell Jar - Sylvia Plath
77 Swallows and Amazons - Arthur Ransome
78 Germinal - Emile Zola
79 Vanity Fair - William Makepeace Thackeray
80 Possession - AS Byatt
81 A Christmas Carol - Charles Dickens
82 Cloud Atlas - David Mitchell
83 The Color Purple - Alice Walker
84 The Remains of the Day - Kazuo Ishiguro
85 Madame Bovary - Gustave Flaubert
86 A Fine Balance - Rohinton Mistry
87 Charlotte’s Web - EB White
88 The Five People You Meet In Heaven - Mitch Albom
89 Adventures of Sherlock Holmes - Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
90 The Faraway Tree Collection - Enid Blyton
91 Heart of Darkness - Joseph Conrad
92 The Little Prince - Antoine De Saint-Exupery
93 The Wasp Factory - Iain Banks
94 Watership Down - Richard Adams
95 A Confederacy of Dunces - John Kennedy Toole
96 A Town Like Alice - Nevil Shute (I thought I have read all of his but I don"t recall this one)
97 The Three Musketeers - Alexandre Dumas
98 Hamlet - William Shakespeare
99 Charlie and the Chocolate Factory - Roald Dahl
100 Les Miserables - Victor Hugo

Tuesday, 14 October 2008

After Thanksgiving Day-Magic Soup

The stock is simmering on the stove for soup. I love making soup almost as much as I love eating soup.

Many years ago I heard Martha Stewart suggest to roast your bones in the oven before you use them for stock.

It adds amazing richness to the flavour of the broth so I have been doing it ever since.

So...

After the carcass is cleaned of as much meat as you want it to be, place it back in the roasting pan, set the oven at a low 250-275 F and let it brown for a few hours, I try to remember to turn the bones at least once but that is not super important.

Next I cover the roasted carcass with my saved* vegetable cooking water and an extra water. I turn it up till it starts to boil, then I turn it down to a simmer.

I let the broth simmer overnight and then set it to cool.

When it is cool I strain the broth, separate any meat from the bones and freeze it for soup making another day. I cut up a selection of vegetables, add diced potatoes or rice, some meat if there is any, and let this simmer for the day.

This magic soup is so rich tasting. It is magic because no matter what may be wrong, you will always feel better after you have some.

*I always save my vegetable cooking water. I keep large tupperware containers in the freezer and after cooking vegetables I add the water to the container. When it is full I save it for soup making.

Saturday, 11 October 2008

Where am I?










... from the beach -ocean side, just before sunrise..










Sunrise










and then there is sunset from Mallory Square










Who is chaining up the Great Rondini?









....writing from a cute little cottage, "an island oasis". It is absolutely lovely here and so not Miami Beach. This cozy place is captivating... do I really need to go home?











Key West is a fun party happening is a little, old-fashioned, luscious garden kind of town.









But what is it with all the chickens trying to figure out what they should be doing about the road?

Wednesday, 1 October 2008

bloggers: on-line opinionaters

...political bloggers, consumer activists, quiet bloggers, lonely bloggers, popular bloggers, chatty bloggers; scientists, philosphers, poker players, nationalists, students, anarchists, farm-wives, artisans, grandmothers, fathers, photographers, marketers, specialists, sales people, lobbyists, pet lovers, educators...

There are endless topics to write about and countless bloggers to do the writing. It is wonderful, a bit crazy and liberating.

Everyone has something to say. Many take the time to say it. Not everything is worth the time to read though.

Thanks, for stopping to read, even if this post had nothing to say.