Thursday, December 22, 2011

Sometimes It Lands the Way You Want it To

 There are two parts to this story, but they both involve the same person/same blog:  Kate Davies of Needled - a favourite blog of mine.

Last year I sent a "get well soon card" to Kate who had recently suffered a stroke.  I was, and still am, moved by her struggle and how well she seems to manage.  I'm such a crank that I'm sure I'd alienate all but those with the strongest intestinal fortitude.  I'm sure Kate has her days, but she actually communicates her struggles (rather than internalizes them as yours truly would do).

Checking in with her blog, I saw that she'd archived the correspondence she's received, and I found the card I sent her.* Yes, I'm a dork (what?); it was so gratifying to know that my card actually got to her.  Snail mail still has its merits.

The second part is related to yesterday's covetable dress.  I found out about Cabbages & Roses from her blog; she'd interviewed their designer as she is often asked about her wardrobe (much of which is Cabbages & Roses) so I went to their website where I fell in love with the red wool dress, which - by the way - is on its way to me (via a friend) right now (yay!).**

Visit her blog, buy her patterns, make something covetable.

*Thanks to my mother-in-law who I believe gave me those cards.
**Quite the compound/complex sentence.  I wonder if I'd let my students get away with that one.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Just When I'd Thought I Might Be Over It

I fall in love with a new dress.
However, it may be unrequited love (not the first, nor the last) because Cabbages & Roses (the company) doesn't seem to ship to Canada (hey, we're a former colony!) or the United States (ditto but we've managed to ditch the Queen (please see Canadian currency) as well).  Yes, I have sent a somewhat plaintive and amusing message to them.  We'll see whether this cheery, cherry red wool dress will cross the pond.

Three Pigs and a Cow

walk into a bar...

Not really.  There were three organic pigs and a cow (carcasses, mind you) at the sausage making weekend I got to participate in a couple of weekends ago.  I missed the first day where they broke down the cow (not used for sausage) and only got a few hours in on Saturday when we were cutting away all the meat from the pigs.  However, I did learn, on the last day, how to twist sausages.  Next year I just plan on living with the hosts so I can be there for every single minute of it.

I have to say, it was a great experience.  Even though I wasn't there for the whole thing, I learned a lot.  (Of course whether I retain this info is up for debate.)  But I also got to take part in a great moment of community.  I entered the weekend just wanting to learn what goes into the process as well as to "meet my meat," so to say.  I was there to help the primaries (the three guys, including the farmer whose animals we were using, who do this every year) put up their sausages and salamis (okay, that sounds like a sexual innuendo, which is totally unintentional but amusing considering the source).  Not only did I get to meet new people (I'm learning that Hamilton and its environs has some very cool characters), but they shared some of the results of the weekend with me.  Seriously, I was not expecting my own little portion.

One of the hosts said that the weekend felt like what the holidays should be about, and I have to say, I couldn't agree more.
We worked in the garage.  It kept both the meat and us cold.

Working on a side of beef.

 I hadn't arrived yet so I have no idea what that guy (whose name I don't recall) is looking at, but look!  there's salami on the table.

I just love this photo because it's got both glamour and pork.  What more could you ask for?  Oh yeah, the pig's feet - they all came home with me.   Yay!  I'm going to make trotter gear and The Breslin Pig's Foot - a kind of pig's foot sausage, which I believe was inspired by musette, a sausage that I got to sample at dinner on Sunday night.  Oh my beautiful musette.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly

The good: making progress; getting out of the deep, deep abyss that's sucked me up for the past month or so
The bad:  still grading; the house is a mess; scampering to be ready for the holidays
The ugly:  answering the door at 12:40pm still in my pajamas and robe because I haven't stopped working since I woke up