Saturday, April 30


I've been riding my bike to pick up CSA veggies and down to WF for smaller trips. I love riding my bike. It's a big, heavy Murray Cruiser. It squeaks. It's rusty. I hum the Wizard of Oz wicked witch theme song.

Today, I also had the pleasure of exploring more of Oakland. I walked around a wee bit of Lake Merrit. Discovered there's a Fairy Land. Adults allowed only if accompanied by kids. Me on the phone with Badger, "Um, so can I borrow your kid?" Then her telling me all about this place. She's been. It's twisted as I knew it would be. I can't wait to check it out!

I baked two different cake recipes today. Testing for Minnie's wedding. Tasting begins tomorrow as I turn the scraps into a trifle. But the two cakes were very similar. Minimum 1/2 lb butter in each, 6 eggs, 3 cups sugar (which is 1.25 lbs, if you're keeping track). That's why they call them pound cakes, right? The main difference being that one had baking soda (though only 1/2 t) and sour cream while the other added an extra 1/4 of butter and replaced the sour cream with cream cheese. So far the differences - height. Boy did the baking soda make a difference. Cake doubled in height where as #2 rose only maybe 1/5 of it's original height. And color, #2 ended up lighter, though maybe I should have pulled #1 out earlier. I've got them wrapped in foil on the counter. I'll cut out small rounds of each tomorrow, then use the scraps for the trifle. Depending on when I get home from hiking, I'll assemble the rounds into layer cakes tomorrow. Which reminds me, I need more chocolate and cream. Everything a healthy body needs. ;-)

Wednesday, April 27

I like dogs and art and I vote

I passed that bumper sticker yesterday as I was walking. I don't know that I really have much to say about it. Seems to me like saying "I like babies and I vote" Who is going to say "I hate art and dogs and I vote"?

Pain or Pleasure?

I had my tattoo finished yesterday, finally. It was started way back in October with a 3 hour session, then 3 more in November, scheduled to be finished in December. Well, December ended up being really busy. Then I was gone. So I just now had it finished. 8 hours worth of art on my back in total. For those keeping track, that means a scant 2 hours yesterday. And this was the least painful yet. I think because my lovely artist, Paco, had me cracking up. Kept trying to convince me that my moans of pain (especially over the shoulder blade and way low back) were actually moans of pleasure. That really I was getting turned on by the tattooing. I'm sure this may be true for some people. But it is not for me. The sensations are so far separated that I can't even pretend to be aroused by it. But that's just me. I'm going to throw in Paco's website, because really, I love my tattoo and it was costume designed and colored so beautifully, that I want to give Paco as much credit as I can, so go check out Graven Image!

Monday, April 25


I feel as though life is spinning around me. I am propelling it in part with my constant travels and never sitting still. I'm afraid to sit still. Afraid of the boredom that surrounds me without having a job. I spend a lot of my time sitting here at this small machine, looking at jobs I don't want or worse yet, jobs I really do want along with loads of other people with better resumes than mine.

I had a wonderful weekend up in wine country. Full of sun (to contradict the sucky forecast) and wonderful people in costume! I went to a super prom! Villians and heroes abounded. Capes fluttered everywhere. It was up at Roshambo Winery. A hip, almost too hip, winery, with a beautiful view and decent wines. They're fun! Not stuffy, no not at all! They throw super hero proms and host an annual Rock Paper Scissors pro-am. I'm not kidding, check out their website.

What to do? What to do? Today, I'm going for a long walk. Getting my Oakland library card. Mopping the floor and making some roasted onion stock. Maybe I'll ride my bike down to Berkeley bowl to see what they have on sale. I'd like to get some more grains for our bulk drawer. Barley especially. I have a hankering for a mushroom and barley soup. It's so pretty outside though, maybe I should turn that into a salad of sorts. Yeah, that's it.

I'm disappointed in my CSA, Full Belly Farms. We're already out of veggies for the week and then next box doesn't appear until Wednesday. I think when our subscription ends in June it'll be time to try out a new one.

Thursday, April 21

Here, there, everywhere

As always, I can't sit still. Especially since I still don't have a job. Shall I talk about that first? I've been sending my resume out to a variety of places and have had an (singular) interview with a company I would really enjoy working at that would have me being a tech geek again. Global Footprint Network makes a tool that measures the ecological footprint countries are leaving. Basically, are you using more than you are replenishing. Yeah, it would be cool. I should know in another two weeks or so whether I'll actually get that job. In the meantime, I've also been sending my resume out to other non-profits, a few pastry places that I'd be willing to work at (Whole Foods and Bittersweet ~ the Chocolate Cafe) and also to The Edible Schoolyard, a program started by Alice Waters of Chez Pannise, it's a middle school with a garden and they teach kids about living and eating sustainably. Hello, I'm perfect for this job!

Ok, now back to the not sitting still. Last weekend found me up at Bruinslair where I helped to build some outdoor kitchen flooring and a cabinet. Also, I had the opprotunity to spend the weekend with some wonderful folks :) Almost immediately upon returning, I headed down to Santa Cruz to spend more time with my friends Adam and Juli before they embark on a road trip across the United States. Who knows how long they'll be gone, so I'm trying to get in as much time with them as I can. Yesterday, I headed down to Monterey while they were working and finally made it to the aquarium. WOW! That place is amazing. Jelly fish are amazing. They pulse and are creepy but cool at the same time. And tuna are freakin' fast fish. And huge with shiny bellies. The Monterey Bay Aquarium also works hard at saving our oceans. Go there, support them, use their Seafood Watch cards (now available regionally) to know that you're eating sustainably harvested fish.

Thursday, April 7

Scary Sleep

My lovely housemate has been working like crazy. I've hardly seen her these past two weeks. Thus, I've been waking up when she does, so that we can hang out for a bit while she gets ready for work. This morning we shared a delightful smoothy, chatted and then she left. I was so sleepy, staying awake wasn't an option. I crawled back into my sun soaked bed and fall asleep. Sometime later, I wake up, but not really. I see that my door is open, and I don't remember whether I'd closed it. It sounds like there is someone in the house and I think maybe it's the housemate who's recently moved out, but then I realize she'd be a lot louder. The scary thing is that I can't actually get myself to move. The covers feel too heavy and my eyelids won't stay open. In my dream state I'm slapping myself on the face, trying to wake myself up, but I just can't do it. I'm going to assume that if anyone had actually been in my house that I'd have been able to get myself up, but it was scary how fatigued and unable to move I was.

Tuesday, April 5


Something to consider, conventional cherries are sprayed with chemicals 3 times a week to help prevent the pesky cherry fruit fly from destroying the crop. The fruit you eat has been sprayed 3 times a week from the time it appeared as a bud. A simple rinse under the sink isn't going to get rid of those chemicals that have been layered on. Just something to consider. And to all you conventional cherry farmers, something for you to consider might be getting some chickens who will eat the fruit fly larva.

Grapes are another big one. Sigh, it's a constant battle inside me, my love of wine and hatred of pesticides.

For further reading, start with this list of produce to buy organic.

Friday, April 1

Nothing like a visitor

I've had a glorious few days visiting with my oldest friend (I mean oldest in that we've known each other since we were five), Karla. It's wonderful having someone come out to your town, it reminded me of all the reasons I love living out here. It is stunningly, achingly gorgeous. Especially driving down the Pacific Coast Highway (PCH, also called 1) from San Francisco down to Santa Cruz. Continuing down to Monterey you can see what artichoke plants look like - crazy - and strawberry fields.

The pacific ocean is massive and driving along it for hours, dreaming into it's vastness is a good reminder of that. I love that the beaches are often too cold to be in bathing suits on. You have people sitting, huddled together under blankets.

We went to Monterey and rather than visit the aquarium as intended, we got side tracked by newly opened tasting rooms. Yes, more wine for me. Thankfully my antibiotic series has ended. There are some glorious Monterey wines, though most of the grapes are coming from further inland near Pasa Robles. I actually think I'm beginning to understand and appreciate white wines