Tuesday, March 29, 2011

cooking quinoa

Happy Birthday to Chelsea! So if you happen upon this page today, roll on over and give her some love. In fact give her some love anyway - she's one of my favorite blogs!

In my effort to have interesting things to eat, during my week alone, I did some cooking tonight. I've been playing around with quinoa, and tonight toasted it up in a skillet, then cooked it in the rice cooker with broth. I stir fried some onions, shitake mushrooms, red pepper and yellow squash up and mixed them in. Added a shot or 2 of Bragg's liquid aminos for umami purposes, and voila! A nice pilaf for lunches, to go with my borscht and salads.
The pot o' grain, cooked in the broth:

Frying up the veggies

The finished product, ready for packing into Mr. Bento.

I also have my completed sock #1 to share. I did a contrasting heel n' toe on these because I was afraid of running out of yarn. I'm not sure it was necessary, but I think it looks nice. The yarn is a little pooly, but it isn't that noticeable in person - and I like its mossy, underwatery colors. The contrast is Knitpicks Stroll sock yarn in the Basalt heather colorway.

Next up, but not tonight, an update on my Amelia progress, which can resume progressing on, as I've found the pattern again. It had fallen under the bed, right at a crucial juncture, and so I quit knitting it for a couple o' weeks til I found it again. My goal is to knit HARD on this over spring break, and maybe come close to finishing it. We'll see.

Monday, March 28, 2011

blink and you'll miss it

Spring, that is. I can't possibly hope to catch up with the past 2 1/2 months in which I haven't written a single word that I didn't have to, not even a damn grocery list, so all I'll say is I hope that I'm back. And spring, too. Because it's turned cold and rainy here in North Georgia, and somehow, the cold of spring feels much worse than the warm of winter, even though, truth be told, the cold of spring is warmer than the warm of winter. Somehow, chill temperatures on still cherry blossoms just make me want to huddle for a few more weeks.

So I'm huddling now. In bed, or rather on bed, nursing a sore ankle, from an unfortunate stumble of the parking lot of my workplace this afternoon. Nursing a bowl of borscht, and a huge glass of water. Swatching some crazy Rowan Cork for my knitting group's KAL of the Shalom sweater. I'm in love with this yarn, which I got in a trade from Blogless Michelle. It's been marinating in stash for a year and a half, because I didn't know what to do with bulky weight acid-green soft fluffiness. Enter Shalom, and the KAL. Can't decide between needle sizes, though and I think I'm over thinking it, as the sweater isn't that fitted, and I am notorious for knitting things too big. So I'm just trying to find a fabric that pleases me.

When I'm not swatching, I'm closing in on finishing a pair of socks, the second of which I will share here: It's Lavender Sheep Superwash Merino, in a color called The Cascades. Gorgeous. My classic plain vanilla sock recipe; 60 stitches, top-down, stockinette, roll top, #2 needles. The sock I knit most often, the most utilitarian ones. This yarn is yummy to knit with, and the combination of divine yarn and lovable needles (the Kollage square DPN's again) may yet make me a sock knitter.

In other news, I did not renew my contract with my school district for next year. I have disliked this job since day 1, really, and figured that getting out was a smart thing to do. Too much paperwork, too much stress, not enough love for my top-down admin (hey, I like my socks top-down, not my bosses!!) or the lack of a positive, thoughtful work environment for anyone. I have about 8 more weeks of school to go, one of them being Spring Break, and one of them being Big Over-Emphasized State Test, and then I'll be free, free, free. Free to scramble around and hunt for a job, but this time, I resolve to try harder not to fall into the desperate spin of angst and fretting that the job hunt always triggers in me. Resolve to savor my down time, and do my research properly, so that I may feel love, not hatred of my life's calling.

P is traveling, to Mississippi and Alabama this week, and I'm holding down the fort at home. Life is good.