Tuesday, April 19, 2011

san francisco

{lunch at tartine}

{watching people ice skate at union square}


{ferry building}

{cupcake and macarons from miette}

And an even shorter (but great) stay in SF.

new york

{central park}

{empire state building}

{brooklyn flea}

Some really old photos from our short stay in New York, on our way home. Awesome.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

halloween, pt 1

Had a fantastic Halloween weekend in New Orleans. (I took my Pentax, so have been waiting to get my film processed before posting about it, and still have another roll to finish.)

We had weekend passes to the Voodoo festival. We saw Jonsi (who was wonderful!), a bit of Weezer, Muse, Florence and the Machine, White Rabbits, Janelle Monae (had a stage and time change, then started 45 minutes late, but was still good), Interpol (one of our favourite bands, always good live) and MGMT.

The venue, City Park, was great. Although the main stages were out in the open and got quite hot in the middle of the day, there were lots of nice big trees and shaded areas to sit. Pretty good food stalls too, lots of local food.

We also fit in a visit to the aquarium, and a couple of very tasty meals in the French Quarter at Deanie's Seafood (incredible charbroiled oysters and BBQ shrimp) and Crescent City Brewhouse (nice beers brewed in-house, and good food to match –
we had a deli platter, more baked oysters and hot wings. Yum).

Hope you had an enjoyable Halloween. And if you want to see, there are more photos on Flickr.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

top no. 3

For this one, I had an idea of what I wanted to make, but no existing pattern, so decided to customise/draft it myself. I used this pattern to get the basic shape, but changed the neckline, made the armholes bigger and took out the darts. I made a muslin to test the shape and fit, making notes of more changes. I re-traced the final pattern, then cut it from my fabric.

I followed this online tutorial for the button placket (my first buttons and button holes!) I drafted it on my computer, and used the print out as my pattern for cutting the fabric, and as a guide for the button placement. Once the placket was done, I sewed the top together, and finished the armholes and neckline with bias tape. Last step was sewing in the buttons by hand.

BAM! Top no. 3 finished! Feels great to learn and make new things.

back online!

We went to pick up my computer last night, after it had spent two weeks at the Apple store getting assessed/repaired. When the girl came back out with a computer that wasn't mine, we were a bit confused... She checked with someone else, and they told us that because the repair costs were so high, they decided to replace it.

Now I have a slick new MacBook Pro, AND all the data from my old one (really relieved about this). So very thankful I spent the extra money on an extended warranty when I bought my computer. I will recommend to anyone buying a mac: get AppleCare too, if you can. It's worth it if something goes really wrong.

Thank you Apple, I love you.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

a pictureless post

My computer died on me the other week. I opened the lid to wake it up and about
10 seconds later, the screen went black, and it wouldn't boot up again. It's off now getting a new logic board. Fingers crossed it comes back to me ok. I'm hoping I haven't lost anything from my hard drive, as I haven't backed it up for... ever.
For now I'm using Jon's old, slow computer, so I'm not going to upload any new photos (sorry!).

Anyway, hope you had a nice weekend. Ours started early on Saturday morning
with a phone call from a friend's bucks party (in Melbourne). The phone got passed around, so Jon got a quick catch up with a few friends. Afterwards, we headed in
to LSU for an all-you-can-eat pancakes fundraiser, and stopped by Mike the tiger's enclosure (LSU has a live mascot!). We went out to BJ's for dinner (burger and pizza, good beer and a very excellent cookies 'n cream pizookie for dessert). The restaurant is part of the Mall of Louisiana, so after dinner, we went for a walk round the shops. Yesterday, we drove out to Gonzales for some more (outlet) shopping, and stopped in at Latte e Miele on the way home for some delicious gelato. Fun!

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

RECIPE : butter pecan ice cream

I love ice cream. It's one of my absolute favourite things to eat. Strangely though (and despite the fact I enjoy cooking/baking), I'd never really considered making
my own. After spotting these groovy ice cream makers on special at Sur la table,
we decided to buy one (in blue. The colour is really nice in person, quite purpley).
I searched the interweb, and we picked butter pecan for our first batch, though I bookmarked quite a few other recipes I'd also like to try.

Recipe from here and the video here (mostly for the directions)
Makes about 1.5 litres

1 stick (approx 115g) butter
1 cup chopped pecans
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup whole milk
2 cups heavy cream
2 eggs
3/4 cup granulated sugar (we found the end result pretty sweet, so might try 1/2 or 2/3 cup next time)
1 tsp vanilla extract

Melt the butter in a pan, add pecans. Cook until lightly browned. Remove from heat and strain, reserving the butter. Allow pecans to cool completely before use.

Heat milk and cream in a saucepan. In a large bowl, whisk eggs and sugar together until light and fluffy. Pour cream and milk into egg mix slowly while whisking (a tea towel or damp paper towel under the bowl helps keep it from slipping around on your bench). Once combined, add cream and egg mix back into saucepan and continue heating. At this point, I added a few spoonfuls of the pecan infused butter. Once this is thick enough to coat the back of a wooden spoon, strain into a bowl and add the vanilla. Cover with cling film (with the cling film sitting on the surface of the mix, this will prevent it from developing a skin), and refrigerate until chilled.

Assemble ice cream maker and switch on. Slowly pour in ice cream mix and churn for 20-25 minutes. Add pecans and churn for further 5 minutes. Transfer to a container and freeze 3-4 hours until firm.

Great on its own, even better in a waffle cone :)

Thursday, September 23, 2010

geaux* tigers!

Last week we were lucky to be given a pair of tickets to Saturday's LSU v Mississippi State game. It was the third game of the college football season, and first home game (at Tiger Stadium).

We tailgated from around midday, which for us, involved hanging out with friends, drinking beer, eating burgers and hot dogs for lunch, and trying not to melt in the heat (while some keen people played volleyball).

The game was great, exciting to watch, and the Tigers won 29-7.

One of the things I like most about going to the football here (aside from the tailgating, because that's also fun) is the enthusiasm of the supporters (92,538 of them at this game, minus some for the MSU supporters). The crowd wear the team colours, so the stadium is a sea of purple and gold. They know all the chants, and make LOTS of noise with the marching band to support their team. It's crazy (in a good way, of course), and quite unlike anything we've experienced, but definitely something we'll remember.

It was an enjoyable day, but also a long one – we sat down to dinner (gyoza and sushi) at 10 pm. Looking forward to getting along to more tailgating and games before we head back to Australia.

(*geaux = go. We were a bit confused by this at first, but it's a thing here)

PS. Coming up : a post about our new ice cream machine, and my first attempt at home made ice cream!

Thursday, September 9, 2010

another new hobby

I decided recently that I wanted to learn to crochet. I bought a few supplies and followed these online tutorials. Now I have a slowly growing pile of colourful granny squares, the beginnings of a blanket. I'm using some soft cotton yarn – Peaches & Creme and Sugar'n Cream (check out the groovy retro labels) – purchased for only around $2 a ball from Walmart and Hobby Lobby. The weather's still pretty hot here, so I've been happy to stay in and watch episodes of Futurama or 30 Rock on Netflix, while I crochet my squares and drink cups of tea.

Monday, September 6, 2010

• • •

We recently drove down to New Orleans to meet up with one of my cousins, who's two-thirds through a 93 day tour across the States. Spent our day in the French Quarter, and did pretty much what we usually do there – lots of eating and lots of walking. We caught up on what's been happening here and back home in the year we've been away, and heard about the things she's been up to on her trip. It was stinking hot, but a fun day. Such a treat spending time with friends or family
who visit.

(Tried some Lomo film this time. More photos from this roll here.)