Max stop at 122nd

Shiny new knee-high black Converse

Polka-dot madness. Was a maxi-dress six sizes too big for me, cut down and tailored to be an asymmetrical mini-dress.

Embroidered tea book for my twin sister.

Some hand-made socks.

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And that’s that.

Potato Leek Soup

Wow, it’s been a a while since I posted a recipe! I actually made this soup almost four weeks ago– right after the Saturday Farmer’s Market reopened. Everything in this soup was from the farmers market, except for the bacon. Sad to say, that piggy was factory-raised. (I’m currently trying to cut down on my non-organic meat consumption, which has lead to an almost vegetarian state. It’s kind of interesting! Good for my karma and my carbon footprint.)

:Ingredients:

  • .25 lb bacon, cut into 1″ strips
  • 1 whole leek, sliced thinly (feel free to use the green leaves– they take more washing, but I think they’re tasty!)
  • 4 2-3″ diameter new potatoes, cut into .25″ slices
  • 2-4 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp ground dried thyme, or 1 sprig stripped and minced
  • .5 tsp paprika
  • 3 cups water
  • 1 cup yogurt
  • salt and white pepper to taste

In a large saucepan over medium heat, saute the bacon until it starts looking crispy and it has given up most of its fat. Add the leeks and garlic, and allow them to start caramelizing– once they start to look golden around the edges, remove the bacon, leeks and garlic from the pan, retaining the grease. Lightly fry the potatoes in the grease. Once the potatoes start to soften, pour off excess grease and return the bacon and the allium (the leeks and garlic!) to the pan. Allow to cook together for another minute or so, then add the water, seasonings, and the yogurt. Stir to combine. Cover and drop heat to a low simmer. Allow to cook for another 20 minutes or so, until the potatoes are quite soft. Lightly mash potatoes with a fork until they are broken into small pieces throughout the soup. Taste test for salt and pepper.

Serve hot on a cold day, or cold on a hot day. A satisfying soup– the yogurt keeps it from becoming too heavy.

Clock Runs Slow

In a thousand years

people will stare at the sun

and wonder who made it.

Watercolor Blossoms

Cherry petals float

in a lake of piss and rain;

city nights come slow.

Last Sunday my aunt was in town visiting, so my second cousin and I showed her around the city. We went all sorts of places– there was an awesome 24-hour music festival going on at Weidan+Kennedy, a large advertising firm here in town. We also schmoozed around in Cargo, a totally awesome import store down on 13th Ave. But my favorite thing, by far, was visiting the Chinese Classical Garden, which is just starting it’s spring blooms.

I’ve been in love with the Chinese Classical since the first time I came to Portland– in fact, it was one of the first places my mom took me and I immediately fell and fell hard. It takes up a bare city block, and yet I could spend the entire day in it, wandering through each separate area, enjoying the blooms and beautiful ponds. Last sunday was breath-taking, with the plums, the camelias, and all of the trees starting to leaf out.

Graceful

The water bridge, through the branches of a tree whose name I can’t remember…

Trinity Pink

I’m passionately in love with fruit tree blossoms. They smell pretty, they look pretty, and they make tasty things appear like magic! Here are some of the ornamental plums from the “plum blossoms on cracked ice” side garden.

Wizened Ancient

In the same side garden are a lot of sweet penjing, Chinese bonsai trees. I love this old fellow with all of the plum petals around his roots.

Duck

DUCK! The only one there– he looked a bit lonely.

Hairbrush

I harbor deep-seated fears that, some dark night, a witch-doctor will sneak my discarded hair from the trash and use it to turn me into a voodoo-zombie-puppet a la Scooby Doo.

Noooooooo, Alton Brown what did they do to yoooooooou?!?!?!

((PS: I saw The Watchman. Very bloody. Very graphic. Very awkward to have four fourteen year old boys sitting right behind me. IT’S RATED “R” FOR A REASON, YA KNOW!))

At the start of summer term I’m moving ship from the shared dorm I have right now to a super tiny single in a different building on campus. I’ve been totally addicted to the awesome design communities of Apartment Therapy and Design*Sponge recently, and consequently I’ve been planning out every last detail of how I’m going to use that little personal space.

The dorms are 14′x7′ (I said it was tiny!) and so space will be at a premium. I’m hoping to be able to fit in a little kitchen– mini fridge, toaster oven, two-burner hotplate– as well as a little folding table and chairs, a desk, a bed, some shelves…. How would this all fit? I drew a floor plan.

room floorplan

Crappy scan, sorry. Anyway the things fit, but just barely; the dimensions are sort of like a travel-trailer.

For a loft bed I found this listed on IKEA’s website:

It’s the TROMSO loft bed, and it is available with a desk fitted under it. The frame+desk= roughly $300, and a matress form IKEA is around $80

I also really liked the BOLLO folding table from IKEA

(Image at right) It’s dimensions are 23″x23″x28″, so it’s just about right.

For a color scheme I was really inspired by this post over on Apartment Therapy, talking about how well robin’s egg blue opens up a small space. I love the idea of pairing light blues with browns, reds and whites for this area! Inspirations:

This print from CrashingWave on Deviantart.

This coral print caneback chair from SouthernFlair on Etsy.

This vintage fabric from fleaParlor on Etsy.

And this warning sign from tippleandsnack on Etsy.

I also really love the Decor it Yourself section of the ThreadBanger website. Meg’s design ideas are so fresh and cute!

Banana Pancakes“Can’t you see that it’s just rainin’,

ain’t no need to go outside…”

The song “Banana Pancakes” has been stuck in my head all day long. How do I combat it? I make some, of course! But, since it’s Jack Johnson, I added a little twist to make it more interesting.

:Ingredients:

  • 2 cups AP flour (1 cup mochiko rice flour, .5 cup tapioca flour, .5 cup potato flour)
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 very ripe bananas, well mashed
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tbsp brown sugar
  • .5 tsp ground ginger (if you have fresh ginger, grate in a few swipes– careful though, it’s strong!)

Combine wet and dry ingredients in seperate bowls, and then combine by adding wet to dry, and then mixing thoroughly.

Heat a frying pan/ griddle over medium heat. Grease with a little butter (for flavor); dishing out about .33 cups of batter at a time, cook pancakes on the first side until bubbles towards the center of the cakes pop and stay open. Flip and cook side two for about a minute to a minute and a half.

Serve with your favorite fruit, jam, or syrup.

My Little Town

Don’t worry, the sharks didn’t get me. I’m still alive and kicking.

Or being kicked? College is tough, but I enjoy it– most of the time.

I’m building a website using Google’s “Sites” function.  I’ve got most of my recipes compiled over there if you want to check it out: The Fine Art of Being Me

Other than that, I’m currently addicted to these websites:

ThreadBanger

Apartment Therapy

Design*Sponge

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So, that’s what’s up with me.

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