Monthly Archives: November 2008

Too Much Ravelry?

I think I’m looking at too many patterns on Ravelry.

You’re probably wondering if there can be such a thing.

But last night I dreamt I ruined a bag of yarn belonging to Ysolda Teague, whose patterns I often mark as a favorite.

Weird.

Chocolate Gravy for the Curious

Here’s a recipe for the Best Thing Ever:

Chocolate Gravy
2 c milk
3/4 c sugar
2 T cocoa
2 heaping T flour
1/2 t salt
2 T butter
1 t vanilla

Heat milk in a saucepan. While heating, mix together sugar, cocoa, flour and salt; stir in enough milk to make a smooth paste. Next, pour this mixture into the warm milk and stir over moderate heat until thickened. Add butter and vanilla. Serve over biscuits.

It’s like brownie batter for breakfast – how can you not love it!

There’s an interesting little bit about the possible origins of chocolate gravy at the bottom of this webpage. What I know about chocolate gravy is the following:

  • It’s yummy.
  • My grandmother made it every Christmas and sometimes during the summer when we visited her in Sasakwa, Oklahoma. In later years, my uncle Johnny made the gravy.
  • There’s a diner in Big Flat, Arkansas, that serves chocolate gravy once a year. This “once a year” always falls during the Freeman Family reunion, so everyone goes there for breakfast on that morning. [Note that I’ve never been to said reunion, but my parents have.] [Other note: Beth Ditto talks about eating chocolate gravy in this interview.]

Things Cut Close

It’s Sunday night, and I don’t want the weekend to end. This is the first Sunday we’ve had at home together in a long time. Instead of packing the day full, we left plenty of time to hang out in our pajamas and fix a brunch of waffles and sausages. Then we went for a walk in Carondelet Park, did a little shopping, and made dinner (this chicken over rice instead of noodles).

I spoke to my mom earlier today, and she told me that all of my brother’s work buddies were laid off last week. His company laid off 500 people nationwide, including 60 people at their headquarters where my brother works. All 60 people were in the IT department (my brother’s department). My brother is super worried that he will be in the next inevitable round of lay offs.

I know of a few other people who are being directly affected by this recession. It’s really quite scary.

Most of the projects at my center are funded through the next two years, but I’m still worried. It doesn’t help when the Chancellor sends out an email announcing that the university’s endowment has shrunk by 25% and that we probably won’t receive raises this year and so forth.

But, meanwhile….

I’ve been knitting!

The February Lady Sweater is coming along well:


I also made the Star-crossed Slouchy beret for a coworker’s birthday:


I made the beret last weekend. I casted on Friday night and finished it Saturday after our trip to the Laura Ingalls Wilder house in Mansfield. While it was a fun little trip, it was freaking cold. On the way down to Mansfield, we went through a bit of snow! After visiting the museum and the houses (Rocky Ridge and Rock House), we spent the night at Porkchop’s parents’ house.

This week, we’ll see my parents and siblings. For Thanksgiving, we’re going to my brother’s apartment in Little Rock. No, my brother isn’t cooking – I think everything will come from Honeybaked Ham or a similar place. However, we will make chocolate gravy for breakfast on Friday! While making waffles this morning, Porkchop actually said something like, “chocolate gravy is what I really want.” Music to my ears! Chocolate gravy is one of the Best Things Ever!

So, that’s it! Have a great week! I hope you’re not laid off!

Grumbles

You know what causes me great chagrin?

People who create “tables” in Word by using only tabs. And maybe some line art.

People, use the real Table function!! And maybe real Borders!!

Microsoft has made this easy, so please stop inventing your own crazy-ass “tables”!!!!

I am Just a Speck of Dust

This is the song currently stuck in my head. I am very much in love with it, and happy that Pandora plays it nearly every time I tune in.

My center is hosting a conference this week, so I’ve been dealing with some people who apparently don’t share the belief that they are just specks of dust inside a giant’s eye. I find these people quite difficult.

To stay sane, I’ve been working on my February Lady Sweater. Here it is Friday night off the needles for trying on.


And here it is today after a few lace repeats:


I’m trusting the designer and other knitters’ posts on Ravelry about the sizing. Because the size I’m making sounds insanely small.

Today has been nice, even though Porkchop isn’t here. I’ve been sitting around in my slippers and knitting and listening to music. The only thing that would improve this scene would be a hot chocolate.

Last night, I was craving a spicy hot chocolate from Bailey’s Chocolate Bar. Such a bad craving! This hot chocolate is seriously one of the best things St. Louis has in its favor. However, we went over to Suzi’s last night after dinner, which meant Bailey’s was a bit out of the way. Instead, I stopped for a salted caramel hot chocolate from Starbucks. I’m usually not a big fan of Starbucks, but I have heard good things about this particular hot chocolate. And they are true! It is quite good!

So, the point is, I would take either a spicy hot chocolate or a salted caramel hot chocolate at this moment.

To switch topics, in yoga news, I am still working on my tripod headstand. This is from earlier this week:


I can now hold my bent knees straight up above my hips. I hear the rest – unbending my knees – is just “icing on the cake.” However, this icing distracts me and I fall out. So close! Someday!

I think headstands are particularly difficult for me because I have to learn a couple of things: 1) to trust myself and 2) to concentrate when I’m worried about falling.

So…have a good week! I will be super busy with the aforementioned conference, which makes me quite sad. Have fun without me.

Another BOOOO Update

The County voters defeated Proposition M.

Had the County voters passed the proposition, a half-cent sales tax would have gone into effect in the County, and it would have triggered a quarter-cent sales tax in the City (which was passed in freaking 1997, but was conditional on a County sales tax). All in all, the cost to County residents would be around $50 a year.

All of this would have allowed Metro to operate on its current schedule, merrily ferrying thousands of people to and from work on an effective schedule.

Now, bus routes will be cut, Call-A-Ride services slashed (can’t drive yourself?, can’t walk to a bus stop?, too bad for you now!), and waits for trains lengthened.

Because of this, I have two choice words for certain County voters.

The first one starts with F, and the second one starts with Y. Fill in the blanks.

YAYAYAYAYAYAYAYAYAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Awesome!

But BOOOOO that Missourians made English the official language at public meetings. WTF??!! Stupid Amendment 1…how do these things even make it to the ballot?

Election Day Fever

Last night was filled with restless voting dreams and Keetah woke us up at 5:20 with puking noises, so we went out to vote in the morning instead of after work. We got to the polling place at 6:20 and had what we thought was a short line:

But it still took a little over an hour (well, 45 minutes for Porkchop because of the stupid line system and preference given to people with last names J-R and S-Z…us A-I people nearly lost our collective shit at one point).

I was still very nervous before voting:


My anxiety was not released until I had my ballot in hand and had filled in the Obama/Biden circle.

Whew!!

After voting, I took Porkchop to work and then picked up a co-worker to work at a poll in North County (Pine Lawn). Our supervisor had recruited us to help, and although that sounds unethical, we were willing volunteers.

Said co-worker and I helped with curbside voting. If someone had a physical condition that prevented them from standing in line (3+ hours at one point), we would represent them by taking their ID inside and signing their name in the roll book. Then we would take a ballot to them outside and then turn it in for them.

I had to leave to pick up Porkchop at 3:00, and now we’re home. While I felt like I should return to the polls, I also feel like I need a nap. So that’s what we’re doing now.

We have a long night ahead of us.

A Weekend of Good Things


Porkchop and I biked over to Tower Grove Park this morning and rode around the entire park, enjoying the trees in their autumn glory. As you can see, I’m in short sleeves. This weekend was unseasonably warm and led to a nice bike ride (yay!), but also to bad sinus headaches (murrrr!).

In addition to bike riding, we partook of the following this weekend:

  • The wedding of one of Porkchop’s cousins.
  • A Hallowe’en party.
  • Dinner at Suzi’s.
  • The time change.

For the Hallowe’en party, I was a severed head, and Porkchop was my UPS delivery person:


Ale and Mark hosted the party. They always have awesome costumes (see here for photos of past costumes), and this year they were ghosts…very dapper ghosts. Here’s Ale and me:


Have a great Monday! Remember to vote on Tuesday!