Saturday, January 30, 2010

fun with drills, part I

on a good day, my and jacky's apartment is simply 'cozy'. on a bad day, it feels like joe and francis (our cats) are under your every step and our combined over-abundance of craft supplies is coming out of your ears. throw three bikes into the mix and our living room starts to resemble my parents' garage: packed to the brim. i recently got fed up with the bike roulette we'd gotten into the habit of playing, and decided to put up bike hooks. i borrowed a friends' drill and tried my skills putting in a fancy new toilet paper holder, then stepped it up a notch and went stud-hunting in the living room. the hooks have held up so far, we keep the lighter two of the three bikes hanging on them, and the space is so much better to hang out in. check it out!

i've got a couple more tricks up my sleeve before keenan gets his drill back, just wait!

Monday, January 18, 2010

adventures on the internet

a couple of weeks ago i found myself spending WAY too much time on ebay in an attempt to win a new saddle for my bike. after being narrowly outbid too many times to count, i became so upset with losing that i bid on the next thing that popped into my head. that thing was 'silver and gold buttons' and i easily won a lot of 200.

for about three seconds i was elated to have FINALLY won something, but then reality hit and i forked up the eight bucks paypal was hounding me for and got to work brainstorming just how i was going to put the buttons to use. this is what i came up with:

i've made about a million of these little matchbook notebooks, and now there's an entire series with silver and gold buttons! what more could you ask for!?!? anyhow.

i bought this coat before i went to the east coast two winters ago. i though i was over it, but the button swap has extended its' appeal for a little longer.

stay tuned for a sneak peek at the most EPIC project i'm working on. top secret till then.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

field trip: maple rock farm

or, how i spent my summer vacation.

last month i said 'see ya' to portland and took the train up to bellingham. i spent a strange day/ night there before hopping aboard a little five-seater plane to orcas island to see my nicole. i was in the plane for fourteen minutes, how efficient.

nicole is a 'hippie'. this is her cabin. it's all you need, really.

she is an intern at a wonderful place called maple rock farm. whenever we wanted to eat, we'd just walk out the door and harvest whatever we pleased. it was amazing.

we're so in love.

tim and john came too.

this is brett and dana b. brett is terribly manly, and dana is a crack-up who calls me 'caitlin lomen' exclusively.

we spent some time on a dock drinking pbr.
we made dinner at brett's solar-powered cabin, nicole played bartender.

we ate so well. as a result of this meal, john has given up yellow cheddar for the sharp white stuff. yay.

this is the treasure i took home to portland. i ate like a king with a substantial garden for a whole week.

Monday, September 14, 2009

flog fail

i made this zucchini-goat cheese pizza thing intending to do a legit flog about it, but to be perfectly honest, i didn't really like it and wouldn't recommend making it. it was pretty though so i'll post a photo.

looks can be deceiving. ick.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

the month in review. kind of.

i've been feeling bad lately about not blogging, but looking back at these pictures makes me realize that it was quite the busy month-ish so hopefully i can be forgiven for ignoring my computer. july/ august was full of record-breaking heat, mini-trips outside of portland, and lots and lots of biking. see for yourself.
john and i had no plans for the fourth of july, but we both had the day off so we decided to take up a friends' offer of camping at rockaway beach. we spent the night prior in mcminnville where the davies' family dogs put on quite the show; tinsley humped the hell out of an ambivalent jackson, but only after jackson painted every knee-level surface in john's childhood home with blood from her too-excited tail. john cleaned up the damage the next morning while i read books in the backyard and picked berries. the beach provided friends, food, bonfires, and a burning pineapple effigy from a daytime parade.
we drove home way too early the next morning, smelling of campfire smoke but content with our holiday spent iconically oregon.
i took the second weekend of july off from work to head home to seattle, conveniently also the starting line for cascade bicycling club's seattle to portland classic. charlotte was super gung-ho about an early morning ride so dad took the obligatory 'sisterly outing' pictures and we rode leisurely along the lake to seward park and back.
friday afternoon i stopped by bluebird homemade ice cream and tea room, a new business venture on capital hill started by my friend josh and summer employer of the one and only mark leporati. their stumptown coffee ice cream is wonderful and the space is a true labor of love. seattleites, stop by and say hi the next time you're at 13th and pike, right next door to the elysian!
that weekend found me in the wonderful company of emily and bill affolter whom i had the pleasure of riding all 202 miles of STP with. we joined 9,997 other cyclists riding en masse from seattle's university of washington all the way to portland's halladay park. there was sun, there was rain, there was lightning right over our heads. i had an incredible time and i love that i got to spend it with one of my best friends and her incomparable father. and thank you whole foods, for paying my entry fee, you're the best.
this is my friend haircut. his band, still time, played their first ever portland show at the candlelight downtown. their set was awesome and i was honored to have them play my favorite song unplugged in the parking lot of the venue at 3am. hopefully they'll be playing my backyard next summer.
in an effort to beat the 103 degree heat, my dear visiting friend kristen and i took the portland city bus out to the sandy river. that evening, as we walked NE alberta and mingled with other last thursday attendees, i felt safe saying "i'm cold" and donning a sweatshirt.
post-heat wave hasan and i took a mini day-trip to salem's enchanted forest, a fairytale-inspired theme park that played a significant role in hasan's childhood. we walked storybook trail, rode bobsleds up ice mountain, and took pictures with the nicest abe lincoln impersonator ever. hasan got to wear a funny hat. we were back in portland in time for lunch.
my carrie visited not once, but TWICE. the second time around she brought her little sister erin and we drank sparks after an amazing breakfast at gravy. pretty par-for-the-course for she and i.
hasan and i participated in portland's bridge pedal, joining nearly 20,000 other cyclists in crossing eight of the city's bridges over the course of 37 miles. i'll never do it again due to the multiple bottlenecks created at various points along the route and the general shit-show-ness of it all, but it was a great one-time thing.

thanks, summer, let's do it again next year!

Monday, June 29, 2009

flog: amazing buckwheat dinner crepes

this recipe comes to you via restaurant Balthazar's wonderfully accessible french cookbook. Balthazar is an iconic manhattan restaurant that serves traditional french brasserie food, and though i've never been, i have oggled it from the outside and, as this flog evidences, can whip up their recipes with more than satisfactory results.

john approves.

the book's recipe wants you to fill the crepes with eggs and ham and gruyere, but i was in the mood for something more savory and dinner-like so i've altered the following. caramelized onions, mushrooms, and spinach are one of the best easy, yummy combos that has ever existed. enjoy!

1/2 cup buckwheat flour
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 tsp salt
2 eggs
1 3/4 cups milk
1 stick butter plus
4 Tbls butter, melted
1 medium onion, diced
2 cups button mushroom, de-stemmed and sliced
2 cups spinach, tightly packed
6 ounces gruyere, finely shredded
olive oil
salt and pepper to taste

sift the flours and 1/2 tsp of the salt into a medium bowl. whisk in 2 of the eggs, 1 1/2 cups of the milk, and then 2 Tbls of the melted butter. whisk until smooth. cover the bowl with plastic wrap or a clean towel and refridgerate for 30 minutes or as long as overnight.

heat a 12-inch pan over a medium-to-high flame. toss in your olive oil and allow to warm. add the diced onion and saute until tranluscent. add the mushrooms and saute until soft. add the spinach at the very end and saute until reduced by about half. set aside this pan.

remove the batter from the refridgerator and whisk in the remaining 1/4 cup of milk.

heat an 8-inch pan over a medium flame. add 1/2 tsp of the melted butter, making sure it is spread evenly over the pan's surface. ladle in a 1/4 cup of batter. quickly tilt the pan to completely cover the surface with a thin and even circle of batter. cook the first side for one minute, until the edges are brown and the center is dotted with air bubbles. use your fingers or a spatula to turn the crepe onto the other side and cook for 15 seconds more. you can either keep the finished crepes warm in a 200 degree over and roll them all at once, or roll them as you go. add a new 1/2 tsp of butter for the pan for each crepe.

spoon as much of the onion, mushroom, and spinach saute as you'd like into each crepe, topping with a healthy sprinkle of gruyere before rolling them up.

i paired these with a mixed greens salad topped with thinly sliced apple, blue cheese, and a plain vinaigrette. the whole meal was suprisingly easy to put together, produced leftovers (bonus), and was good enough that i'd make it again in a heartbeat. eat up!

Friday, June 19, 2009

the month in review

i'm just over a month into training for the upcoming Seattle to Portland ride. my favorite part of riding nearly a hundred miles a week is exploring the far reaches of the city. one of my favorite shorter rides takes me north on route 30 which runs along the west side of the willamette, and then over the st. john's bridge, pictured here.

john and i took the train up to seattle to rendezvous with ethan and visit assorted friends from western for the weekend. the train ride was relaxing and beautiful and was made more so by the accompaniment of smuggled gin and tonics.

this is the view of the st. johns from the train.

our first night in seattle was supposed to end with a late trip to dick's, but instead we went to the ER where i got ten stitches. it's chill, i was about due in for my half-yearly-terrible-bike-fall.

mark and i went to first thursday in the pearl mostly to drink free beer, but ended up seeing some legit art. i don't know the story behind this hand-written typography exhibit, but it was awesome. our favorite art of the night was pretty much everything at PNCA.

on wednesday nights mt. tabor hosts road races where it's chill to drink beer, barbecue, and gawk at the terribly good-looking men who partake in the riding. i did most of the gawking, john did most of the heckling.
mark had never been to montage so after randomly running into each other on belmont one night last week we made plans for a late dinner. our waiter turned my leftovers into an alien from 'alien'. i was impressed.

we've re-named the fire escape 'the porch' and try to eat all our meals, drink all our beers, and read all our publications on it. summer in portland is nice.

finally, i ordered this sweet typography-nerd t-shirt from my design idol, nubby twiglet. nubby is a local graphic designer and fashion fanatic who runs an awesome blog that i read semi-religiously and i was elated to receive my t-shirt with all the accompanying nubby accoutrement. summer's the best.