Fairytale Forest Print Skirt with Hansel and Gretel, Snow White, and Red Riding Hood in the Woods. This is a whimsical skirt depicting woods and fairy tale stories, from Made With Love By Hannah. Thanks to Ellen for pointing me to the shop over at this post.
Shoe clips, at Style on Trial. I’m looking specifically at the add-on boot chain things.
How can I give my boots better traction in snowy weather? | Ask MetaFilter. A female asking about a pair of Nine West boots.
· comments  · 02-25-2010 · categories:links · shopping ·
· comments  · 02-24-2010 · categories:links · misc ·
· comments  · 02-23-2010 · categories:beauty · links ·
Secret Decoder Cookies · Edible Crafts. These are so incredibly cool!
best cocoa brownies | smitten kitchen.
Crispy Kale Recipe – baked — Recipes Steamy Kitchen. Take note of the tip on when to add salt.
Taste Test: Delivery Pepperoni Pizza | Slice Pizza Blog.
Strange utensil | Ask MetaFilter. There is such a thing as asparagus tongs?
Best vermouth for a classic martini? | Ask MetaFilter.
Print James Bond Walks Into a Bar… and orders a Vesper, a cocktail that hasn’t aged too well. Here, a remake. At Esquire.
Vesper (cocktail) – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Very detailed history with substitutions to get an approximation of what the cocktail would have tasted like in 1953. Apparently a lot of ingredients have been reformulated over the years to be less bitter and more sweet. Is this why classic cocktails often don’t appeal to us? It’s not a shift in palette as a shift in the actual taste of the specific ingredients?
Raw to Sweet: How to Change the Intensity of Onions | The Kitchn.
Corn Starch Candy Molds, at Instructables. Via Craftzine.
Serious Eats asks Where’s the Love for Chestnuts? and gets some great answers in the comments. One commenter points us towards this story in the WSJ: Marron Made In Heaven, and another wrote this article on the blight that took out the chestnut trees that used to cover huge parts of the US: Long forgotten, chestnuts are coming back with a vengeance. My own father has always keenly loved chestnuts and has planted a few chestnut trees in his yard, he also gives talks about the current state of Chestnut trees in the US.
Confections of a (Closet) Master Baker: P.S., I Cake You. A message written out right in the cake itself, awesome, and a very clever technique. Sent by Maggi, thanks!!
quinoa FAIL. Help? | Ask MetaFilter. Plain quinoa topped with an over easy or poached egg is still my favorite breakfast, and my regular breakfast during the whole process of losing weight last year. I buy it bulk, and cook by simmering, covered, in 2x water for about 10 minutes or until translucent.
The Paupered Chef’s Guide to $3 Homemade Pizza Stones | Slice Pizza Blog.
· comments  · 02-22-2010 · categories:food · links ·
Here is the view from the apartment we’ve rented, complete with the
horn players who were playing when we arrived.
· comments  · 02-20-2010 · categories:uncategorized ·
· comments  · 02-18-2010 · categories:iphone · links · technology ·
· comments  · 02-16-2010 · categories:craft · links ·
The other week I came across this recipe for Sausage Balls in a thread about Bisquick over at Ask Metafilter. The recipe goes like this: Mix together one pound of spicy sausage, on pound of finely shredded cheddar cheese and three cups of Bisquick. Form into quarter sized balls and cook on a baking sheet at 350 for 20 minutes. People insisted they were delicious and I was very curious about how they would turn out, so we made some.
It took a while for the dough to come together, and it takes a bit of strength.
They puffed a bit while baking.
Inside you couldn’t really see the sausage.
They tasted ok, interesting for a breakfast item. But they weren’t the breakfast crack we’d been expecting. They had some heat from the spicy sausage, but the cheese flavor was pretty mild. We figure that if we’d used a really good extra sharp cheddar instead of simply sharp cheddar it might be more alluring. And they are fairly close to scones, so I might make a cheddar scone with breakfast sausage substituted for some of the butter instead. That said it was fun to pop little balls of cheesy bread into you mouth first thing in the morning.
We had so much dough left over we decided to make something like Scotch Eggs. I steamed some eggs for 11 minutes, which I find is just right to set the egg without overcooking it, then cooled and peeled them. We wrapped them in the mixture and baked for about 30 minutes. It turned out ok but ultimately didn’t work, as the cheese mixture puffs in the oven the egg settled to the bottom so it was more blanketed than wrapped at the end. Pretty good, but at this point we were full of sausage balls and couldn’t finish them. Overall? Probably won’t make again but it’s given me some ideas for cheese breakfast biscuit treats of some sort in the future.
(p.s. The pictures above were all taken with my S90 on a darkly overcast morning. Most of the pictures used only the light from the window. I had the camera set to automatic and I think they turned out really well, I didn’t lighten them in Photoshop.)
· comments  · 02-15-2010 · categories:food ·
Valentine’s Day is tomorrow, how did that happen? We’re mostly focused on other things (travel! yay!) but it didn’t quite stop my desire for a day spent making heart shaped foods.
first column, top to bottom
Beet ravioli, at Epicurious. (via).
Calimyrna Fig Hearts at Martha Stewart, also see the whole gallery, wow.
Heart shaped cherry tomatoes at Eye Candy, (via).
second column, top to bottom
Papa John’s heart shaped pizza, at Serious Eats.
Heart Shaped dumpling, at Chow.
Heart cookie cutters for the edge of a cup (inspiration for my gingerbread houses), at Kitchen Critic.
third column, top to bottom
Cinnamon Heart Lollipops at Women’s Day, (via).
Heart Shaped Whoopie Pies at Annie’s Eats, (via).
· comments  · 02-13-2010 · categories:holidays ·
Postcards from Penguin: One Hundred Book Covers in One Box. Oh boy do I want these to frame all together. Via Anh-Minh.
take a seat… – Oh Joy!. I’m looking at the coat hooks here to use in our upcoming (we’ll get to it, I swear) bathroom redo.
Design*Sponge » going places: modern world map + prints.
Potentially Amazing Technology: Is Spray-On Liquid Glass About to Make Everything Greener? : TreeHugger. I hope this gets made really soon so I can spray it on my floors and walls so I won’t have to worry about scratching them. (Kidding. But I hate the the surfaces in my home can be damaged by the act of living.) Via Shelterrific.
How To Swap a Two-Prong for a Three-Prong Outlet | Apartment Therapy Unplggd.
· comments  · 02-12-2010 · categories:links · the home ·
· comments  · 02-11-2010 · categories:food · links ·
These Academy Award cookies from Bakerella are genius. She uses slotted bases to hold up the statue. Recipes and complete instructions here.
(Photos by Bakerella.)
· comments  · 02-10-2010 · categories:food ·
A few weeks ago I bought some Teva Montecito boots and I like them! I am a scardy cat when it comes to breaking in new shoes. I haaate it. I always go through a I Never Should Have Bought These What Was I Thinking phase. And the The Other Size Would Have Better phase. And the Why Didn’t I See Those Similar Shoes From Another Company Before I Bought These phase. I went through all those with these boots but the other day I realized that they are the most comfortable shoes I own right now. I’m not aware of them when I’m wearing them. So, thank you to everybody who wrote to let me know that they love these as well, I’m glad you did.
To break these in I decided to wear them to the Alt Summit. I was being bold here, I wore them to the airport and risked regretting that half way down a hallway. They were wonderful though, and half way through a day of sessions I found myself returning to my hotel room to change out of my “comfy” shoes and back into the boots.
They have not given me blisters, everything gives me blisters, and I’ve been wearing them as much as I can to determine if they are worthy of packing into some luggage for a long trip. I was a bit worried that the toe area was going to be too small but trusted a review left at Zappos, and sure enough the area across the toes stretched to accommodate the room I needed. The recycled cork soles seem almost bouncy and easy on my feet when I’m walking, and whatever they make the interior soles of is soft enough that it hasn’t bothered my picky feet. I usually require a certain amount of arch support but the moderate support here hasn’t affected me at all. Compared to some other boots I tried on the these soles are nice and grippy. I’ve worn them in rain and they have shown no signs of being affected (they are waterproof). They keep my feet warm when I’m outdoors, but not too warm when I’m indoors.
There is an elastic cord that wraps around the back of the boot and attaches to a button on the other side. On the way around the boot they hold down the zipper pulls so they don’t jingle when I walk. The cords also pass over this feature at the top that I like, there are two, um flaps? parts? that overlap and allow the top of the boot to open up a bit wider if needed and will avoid having a wider calf being hugged too tightly. I tried on two sizes, 7.5 and 8, and can tell you that the calf circumference of the size 8 was noticeably larger.
The things I don’t quite love as much are the non-removable soles. I would like having the option to slip in my heat moldable Sole insoles. Despite the fact that the toe box stretched quite well these boots are still slim fitting and if you’re used to wearing Keens and Danskos I suspect these would feel restrictive.
I also tried on some Lassen boots which where a bit sturdier, or stompier. The soles were a wee bit slippery but the construction felt strong, and they were comfortable enough that I wold have been happy with those. In the comment on this previous post CZL and Suswhit highly recommended trying out a pair of Merrell boots. The only Merrells I had found at that point were knee-high but I found the mid-height Merrell Tetra Launch boots at REI (link there is to Amazon, they are currently showing unavailable on REI’s site but they were available in the store). They looked very nice, though I didn’t stop to try them on, and I really liked the faux button detail. And note that in CZL’s comment she says they are so waterproof she’s walked through puddles and been fine. The styling on the Merrell’s is a bit less crunchy than my Montecitos, the soles are black
and the heel looks a bit higher, maybe (upon comparing specs the heel is comparable, if not shorter than!). They seem well worth a look if you’re shopping for boots.
· comments  · 02-9-2010 · categories:shopping ·
Here are some pictures of the Cortona Cafe on a happy Saturday morning spent knitting with friends. These were taken with the S90 set on automatic (as I have not read through the manual yet).
I love the menu wall.
They have a guitar you can use if you’d like.
On auto the pictures seem a bit dark to me. (And perhaps that means they are true to life whereas I’m used to seeing photos online being cheerily bright – ?) I’ll just have to learn how to use the camera properly I suppose.
· comments  · 02-8-2010 · categories:misc ·
Please allow me to be dramatic for a moment. I just found out that the Petrie sofa from Crate & Barrel is no longer available (sort of) and I’m upset. It was perfect, soft fabric, just firm enough, deep enough. Scott and I sat in a lot of sofas and it was clearly the winner for us both. People, I love this sofa and we’ve been saving up to buy one for two years. Just last week we talked about finally getting to place the order for it. We were excited, a milestone! We would finally ditch our futon and sit on actual furniture like real adults! (We can pretend to be real adults.)
Today I was cutting through the store and decided to visit the couch (I do this a lot, I’m embarrassed to admit that) and found a “Limited Stock” sign hanging on it. I asked about this and was told that the company that makes the fabric (the nice, soft, not scratchy at all fabric) is no longer manufacturing it, I think they might be going out of business. So now the Petrie is only being sold in the natural and brown fabric, and only what they have left in stock (we only really wanted gray, with my clumsiness white would last about ten minutes in our house, oh look I just dropped pizza sauce on the futon* and I just don’t get excited over brown). They are looking for a replacement fabric, so there is a faint glimmer of hope, but with my luck the replacement fabric will be something durable but scratchy. It looks like I’m stuck sitting on this futon (which I bought in 1998 (!!!) when I had my very first solo apartment in Cleveland, that’s like two thousand internet years ago) until I find new couch love.
While I’m wallowing let me also mention how sad I was to discover that Teva is no longer making the Kena style flip flops. These had the squishy rubber flip flop sole but didn’t have straps that went between the toes and were the answer to my prayers. I showed restraint in not buying dozens of pairs and now I wish I hadn’t shown said restraint. I have one pair and I’ll have to make sure I use them well. In the mean time EileenSideways on Twitter has encouraged me to try the Olowahu style. As a fellow nothing-between-the-toes person she says she can tolerate them. I trust you Eileen.
Ok, my pointless pity party is over.
* Not kidding about the pizza sauce. Ok, so maybe I should be eating in the dining room instead.
· comments  · 02-7-2010 · categories:mumbling ·