Sunday, February 21, 2010

Not huge... but it's progress (for me, if not for the publishing industry)

I'm up to about a 17" square... and I'm liking it so far. I'm alternating the number of rows of each color, though I need to keep larger stripes of the tan multi since I have so many more of those than the others. 
A nice, easy, mindless project to work on while watching more sports these two weeks than I have in the past year! heh Yep, I'm a total sucker for the Olympics.

It's a nice balance for my techy side.
Thankfully, I had a gift card from hotel points and downloaded a few books to my nook soon after I got it... and I'm not a super-fast reader so most are still unread. Publishers are in an uproar over ebook pricing, thinking they're losing a lot of money on hardcover book sales. Apple did their part to screw up pricing with the iPad as well by agreeing to higher prices with the publishers. Ebook prices on B&N have jumped significantly over the past week... and many I've seen continue to rise even after the initial increase. Two books I splurged on (whew) and purchased for just under $10 apiece... are now $18-19 each! Ridiculous. I don't know about others, but I can't even recall the last time I purchased a new hardcover book so they're certainly coming out way ahead on me. I refuse to pay those prices for something I'll read once and give away. I already thought many ebook prices were too high since the publisher/bookseller is already saving in printing and shipping/packaging costs on these electronic files, but now? I'll definitely be watching the mark-downs and occasional freebies offered on B&N... aking with the large number of always-free ebooks available online from various sources. Raising the prices just means fewer sales... from my end at least. The majority of my prior book purchases were either inexpensive paperbacks... or more often, used paperbacks. The only books I'll buy soon after release are occasional must-have cookbooks, but even those are most often paperbacks. We'll see how long this lasts. I have to think that at some point, the publishers will wake up and realize they need to embrace the new technology and cater to their customer base rather than trying to hold onto the past. Times change, businesses need to change too. Have book publishers learned nothing from the music industry?

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

First shot at granny

Tried my hand at my first granny square last night. I brought along some Lion Suede with the intention of crocheting up a blanket while watching the Olympics. I liked this square and once I figured out that the pattern was using UK abbreviations and not US ones (heh), it wasn't hard at all! This one's still a bit messy since I didn't trim/weave in ends yet. I wanted to be sure I liked the end results before committing with the scissors. =) 
I'm thinking about using this as a center and working out from there. What do you think? I'm thinking some sort of striping in these colors. I have way more of the variegated than anything else.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Chocolate-y Love

Happy Valentine's Day all! Since I was heading back on the road today, I decided to whip up a couple of recipes to bring along. I pulled out my recently-aquired copy of Vegan Cookies Invade Your Cookie Jar and flipped through until something caught my eye. It didn't take long...

First up... Peanut Butter Oatmeal Cookies:
Yum! I added a couple of handfuls of vegan chocolate chips. Next time, I'll probably cut back on the oil and sub with some applesauce. These are a little on the crunchy side for my preference, but yummy all the same. Would be great with a scoop of vegan ice cream!

I also had to try the Deluxe Cocoa Brownies:
It's always hard finding a good vegan brownie recipe, but these are pretty darn good! They're not too cake-y and not too gooey so they hold together well. Added a handful of choc chips to these as well. Wow, they're rich, but yum! Just cut 'em small. =)

Tuesday, February 09, 2010

How could I forget

our quest to try a good veggie restaurant in Portland?! Trying to be prepared, I went to and printed a list of veg-friendly restaurants, nicely organized by region, and off we went, planning to pick a restaurant depending on where we were when lunchtime rolled around. We first decided to try the Blue Moose Cafe since it sounded like it had a wide enough variety to please me as well as the omnivores I was dining with. We got there only to discover it was closed up and apparently being remodeled into a different restaurant. Dang. So then, we picked a pizza place, Dove Vivi, and discovered they didn't open until 4p - it was Sunday... and only 1-2p. Running out of nearby options, we decided to check out LaurelThirst Public House since it said they served breakfast 9-3 daily. It had to be open! It was! One of the three of us voiced reservations about going in - it's next to a tattoo shop. She referred to it as a "biker bar." heh Okay, it was super dark inside and the staff was a bit, well, odd... and not so good at math... but the food was great! I got the vegan breakfast burrito. It came with these yummy potatoes and was easily enough for two meals. That and a drink for under $10! I left happy... even if it was so dark in there I could barely read the menu... =)

Monday, February 08, 2010

OR and SoCal Revisited

Yeah, I finally uploaded the rest of my pics from January so there are several new pics from Oregon and a few from SoCal on my flickr pages (the links will take you there). =) Here are few highlights...

My last weekend in Portland, we not only hit the falls that I posted previously, but we also went off in search of Pittock Mansion which we'd heard provided a gorgeous view of downtown PDX and Mt Hood. We were not disappointed...

even if there was a pesky cloud hovering over Mt Hood. haha Being winter, the grounds were not at their best, but I can't wait to see this place in the Spring/Summer! It promises to be absolutely beautiful.

Even in winter though, I love the PNW. I love how everything is covered in a blanket of cushy, vibrant moss and ivy, making everything seem so soft and inviting.

I really can't wait until I can call this are "home" permanently. It's just a matter of time...

With the pouring rain nearly every day the first week I was there, I didn't do a lot of shooting in SoCal. It figures I'd get there just in time for the ONE rainy week of the whole year! heh Though, when it wasn't pouring down rain with solid grey skies, the passing storms did make for dramatic skies.

It was a week before I knew these snow-capped mountains were even there!

What a nice surprise! It really is a pretty area, but definitely not somewhere I could live.

At times, I take for granted the places I get to go, the things I get to see with my current job. I feel my time on the road is coming to an end. I'm not sure I'm truly ready to put down firm roots anywhere quite yet (will I ever grow up?), but having a bit more control over where I am is sounding better and better lately. Having a life/friends I see on a regular basis. It all sounds so good. And I feel a pull toward school again. It's time to move forward...