Tuesday, May 30, 2006

The Best Kind of Prize is a Surprise!

We got a real prize on Freecycle this weekend - a play structure! In my day we called them swing sets, so that is what I'm calling this one. We had to disassemble it, which wasn't terribly hard, just took a while. The thing was freakin' heavy though! We got it home in our truck and trailer, and assembled it the next day. With the addition of some cedar deck slats to keep the kid from falling to his death from the upper deck, it was good to go. Big win all around.

We got a surprise while building it... MIL was poking around our dilapidated charming shed for an errant tool, when she came out and proclaimed "there are kittens in the shed!!" My thoughts always lead to the dark side, so my first question was "are they dead or alive?" Fortunately the answer was "alive", and their eyes are already open. The mama is a cute little feral black kitty that has been hanging around. Many of the neighborhood cats have a hiding place in our yard, so it isn't unusual to see a strange cat romping around. This little cat seems friendly and is quite talkative, but has always been too shy to let us approach her. She does appear to be a proud mama, and purrs and lets us pet her when she is with her kittens. There are two tiny black ones, and a giant gray and white one. We are currently in the "letting them adjust to us" stage, so sorry, no pictures. It is dark in the shed and they are hard to see, but they look kind of like this and this.

Saturday, May 27, 2006

Bubble Bubble Toil and Trouble

We went to Bob's Red Mill yesterday, and on a whim bought some small tapioca pearls. We've had some Bubble Tea cafe's pop up in the area, and D thought he could try to make some at home. For those of you that don't know, Bubble Tea originated in Taiwan, and is a milky sweet tea that has pearls of tapioca in the bottom. They usually make it with really big black tapioca pearls, and you drink it with wide straws that can suck up the pearls while you drink. They usually come in a variety flavors and styles: fruity, yogurt, etc. The tapioca pearls start out kind of small, and when you cook them they puff up and become kind of like a gummy treat.

After looking online, Derek adapted some recipes to make some for us. Unfortunately, it takes an hour to make the tapioca pearls, and they don't last so you need to use them right away. It appears that many places use specific flavor powders and such, so Derek had to do some adjusting to use what we had. When he was cooking the first batch of tapioca, the bottom of our pan broke off and stuck to the burner - a bummer as it was the pan we use the most in cooking. The next pan worked just fine, and while the tapioca was cooking he made a simple syrup with both white and brown sugar, and brewed some green tea. To assemble, he put ice, tea, soymilk and the syrup in a cocktail shaker and shook it up. Then he scooped some tapioca pearls in to a glass, and poured the tea mix on top. It was delicious, and tasted like the real thing. We actually like the small tapioca balls better than the big ones you get at a cafe, seemed like less to have to chew on while you are trying to drink... Derek said they are "less intrusive".

I had to throw in a pic of what I made yesterday: vegan brownies!! From the Vive le Vegan cookbook, and man, they were delicious.

Friday, May 26, 2006

Puh Nah Nuh Nuh Nuh Nah Daily Show

We could have made this post months ago, had I given in to D's desire to own Guitar Hero after it came out. Fortunately for him, I went with him to Best Buy last weekend, and O and I played the demo. After that it was pretty easy to get me to give in to buying it.

D and I play after O goes to bed, and are working our way through the medium levels of play. O and I play head to head (otherwise he'd never get through a song), and he is getting better and better. He looks like a natural playing that guitar, it is hilarious. He also loves the first two songs on the game, I Love Rock and Roll and I Wanna Be Sedated. It took him a while to get the lyrics right to I Love Rock and Roll - it started out as "I Love Rock and Roll, Puh Nah Nuh Nuh Nuh Nah Daily Show". Now he proclaims that I Wanna Be Sedated is his favorite song, and it is pretty hilarious to here him around the house singing "can't control my fingers, can't control my toes, oh no oh oh oh oooooooooooh!"

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Vancouver BC Getting Cooler All the Time

Vancouver's City Council voted in May "to prohibit a number of inhumane rodeo activities, which, in effect, will prevent rodeos from ever taking place in Vancouver."


A glimmer of humanity in an inhumane world.

Saturday, May 20, 2006

For Mythbusters Fans

Or for Mythbuster fans with kids... I found (and bought) a pint size "I do all my own stunts" shirt like the one Adam Savage wears on the show. Fitting for O, as he has taken great interest in trying to break his neck lately. Shirts found at Target. Happy shopping!

Friday, May 12, 2006

World Fair Trade Day - May 13th

Make the most of it, even if it is just with renewed awareness. Make Trade Fair!

The Police remind you:
"Lines are drawn upon the world, Before we get our flags unfurled,
Whichever one we pick, It's just a self deluding trick,

One world is enough for all of us

I don't want to bring a sour note, Remember this before you vote,
We can all sink or we all float, 'Cos we're all in the same big boat,

One world is enough for all of us

Friday, May 05, 2006


Salvia pointed me to this truly excellent site. Etsy.com sells arts and crafts of all types. That isn't the truly inspired part though... these guys have created a variety of ways to search through the art. Try it by color, time, geographic location, random samplings... One could waste spend a lot of time looking around. Artisans can even tag their product in a variety of ways for searching... one piece of art I was looking at was tagged as such: "secret, yellow, colorful, bold, outsider, modern, wings, black, green, blue, red, orange, abstract". Don't forget to check out the blog and forums.

Monday, May 01, 2006

Monday Musings

Are you always wondering if the upcoming episode of Lost is a rerun? Fret no more!

Stephen Colbert rocks my socks off. Read or watch his speech at the White House Correspondent's dinner. Oh Snap.

Like that new correspondent on The Daily Show? Yes, it was the ever hilarious Dave Gorman (not to be confused with Dave Gorman). We love him!

Thought we had rats, but it looks like we have Pacific Jumping Mice. Did you know the y can jump 3-5 feet?

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