Friday, August 31, 2007

Learning ... a review

I joined the Vegan Pal 2 Swap because I was curious about vegan fiber choices and the people involved seemed very nice. After answering the questionnaire, I also became more curious about vegan food choices. Since I was vegetarian for a good portion of my younger adulthood, I didn't feel like a total stranger. But because I'm me, I wanted to know more.

I do not respond well to groups that sensationalize their causes. So when I went surfing for online vegan resources, I found several to which I will not return. I was looking for information, not graphic photos of tortured animals flashing across my screen.

One site that met my need is NW Veg. The site is informative, intelligent and didn't slap me in the face. Because it's locally run, I will be more likely to use the links and maybe even participate in the events. Their mission statement reads: We educate and empower people to make vegetarian choices for a healthy, sustainable, and compassionate world.

NW Veg offers monthly potlucks along with guest speakers, presentations and additional local resources. There are volunteer opportunities, recipes, walks and bike rides, reading lists, a restaurant guide, and a forum to discuss issues with others from my own community.

Here's their invitation: Portland vegetarians and vegans — and others wishing to reduce meat and dairy in your diet — welcome to Northwest VEG. We are a vegetarian educational group in Portland, Oregon, and Vancouver, Washington. Our vegetarian potlucks and events explore delicious vegetarian and vegan foods — and meeting other vegetarians and vegans. If our potluck happens to be your only vegetarian meal of the month, you'll be welcome, and sure to go home well fed, possibly inspired to try a new recipe.

Pretty good deal!

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Vegan Swap 2

Vegan Swap 2 Questionnaire

1. Are you a vegan, vegetarian, veg-curious, veg-friendly or other?
I am not vegan, but definitely veg-friendly. I would love to learn more about veganism.

2. Is this your first swap, or have you done previous swaps before? What makes a swap enjoyable for you?
I've participated in several swaps. I love getting to know new people across the world, and this is a more personal way to do it. I also love surprises. You are never quite sure what you'll get with a swap. The best swaps are those where EVERYONE participates and keeps their promises!

3. What is/are your favorite color(s)? Do you particularly dislike any color(s)?
I wear lots of cool colors, black and dark brown. I'm not big on orange or yellow/gold, but I do enjoy a touch with other autumn colors.

4. Do you have any allergies (such as pets, foods, fibers or cigarette smoke)?
Allergic to tobacco, dog dander and perfumes.

5. Do you have any companion animals? If so, name(s) and type(s)?
I have a cat - Ashes, a poodle - Latte, and a 3-Toed Box Turtle - Tom -- or do they have me?

6. Do you collect anything?
Does yarn count? In addition to all things fiber, I love hands. I'm a sign language interpreter, so most of my life involves hands.

7. Do you have a favorite vegan food, snack or dish? If no fav that's vegan (for those who aren't vegan), what's your favorite food? (Hopefully your pal can find a vegan version!)
I love oatmeal cookies! But I also love surprises (did I already mention that?) I would love my pal to use their own creativity and expand my snacking horizons!

8. What are some of your favorite/least favorite tastes/flavors? (e.g. sweet, salty, chocolate, crunchy, smooth, tart, sour, spicy, thai, whatever - Help your pal get a feel for what kind of recipes you might like and/or never ever make.)
I'm pretty easy to please. I don't like mayonnaise or caraway seed.

9. What tools/supplies/accessories for your craft(s) are you wishing you had but don't? Also, what do you have TOO many of? (basically a wish and anti-wish list)
I would love to try some of the new banana, corn, or soy fibers. I also LOVE linen. I have bamboo and lots of cotton. I really don't care for most synthetic fibers.

I have PLENTY needles and hooks. Since I knit, crochet, spin and embroider, I love bits of fibers and ribbons that can be used in different ways. New patterns and ideas are fun. And I love buttons and beads.

10. Are you on Ravelry? What's your handle?
JanKnit here, JanKnit there, JanKnit everywhere!

11. Is there anything else you would like your pal to know about you?
I'm in the process of moving and I'm a new empty-nester so I'm feeling a bit disorganized. My whole life is in the process of big change right now!

12. What scents do you like/dislike?
I like natural smells, but am allergic to most perfumes.

13. Do you prefer fall or Halloween or some other Autumn theme?
I don't really celebrate Halloween, so would prefer more Autumn-related items and colors. Thank you.

14. Just for fun - tell your favorite Halloween or Autumn related memory.
My son was born on October 30th. Since I had to be in the hospital over Halloween, all the nurses and care staff shared their goodies with us new moms. I was awake in the middle of the night, unable to sleep because of the excitement of just having given birth, and because I was ravenous! As if she could read my mind, my nurse brought in the biggest, juiciest caramel apple I've ever seen! As I munched on that treat, listening to my new baby sleep, and watching an old monster movie on TV, I proclaimed this "The Best Halloween EVER!"

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Last Chance -- Half-Price!!

I still have lots of great books in my stash that are now HALF-PRICE!! Take a look!

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

The Man Blankie

I mentioned before that Zak has moved into his first apartment. He seems to be doing fine with it so far. He was ready and so was mom. :o}

I've been wanting to make him something special to mark this milestone. He's never been big on wearing knitted clothing, scarves, etc. He has only a couple of favorite hats, and has proclaimed he does not want any new ones. (How did I miss passing on the "love of knitted garments-gene" to my only son?! Ah, well.) Since I'd rather my handiwork not just be pushed into a closet or sold for a quarter at a garage sale, he hasn't been the recipient of any new knitted treasures for a while now.

But a new home deserves something special. I've had this wonderful slubby/tweedy wool yarn for some time waiting for it to "speak to me." It was a sweater with large stripes of color. It raveled very nicely and has a great texture. After flipping through many of my books, magazines and web links looking for inspiration, I came up with a great solution. Using the diagram of Mason-Dixon's modified knitted log-cabin blanket as a starting point, I'm crocheting the "Man Blankie!" With a large hook, it's going quickly. The masculine colors and the simple styling will be great in his place.

And his mom can only hope that he'll think of her occasionally while he's warmed up with it this winter in his own place!

Zak with his roommate, Chloe.

Monday, August 13, 2007

Poor Neglected Blog

I have been a pitiful excuse for a blogger. So sad.

But here's a bit of what's been up this summer...

I got set up on Ravelry. Yay!!

I got Simpsonized. Does it even look like me?!

I've been spinning...

...and knitting...

...and crocheting...

...and dyeing...

...and recycling...

...and moving Zak!

Am I forgiven?
I hope you are having a fun and productive summer, too!