Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Once a year...

...it's your birthday. Mine is on Thursday. I'm totally breaking free from the diet and D is taking me to Belly for dinner. I mad this for my twin (it went along with Mark Bittman's How to Cook Everything Vegetarian)

I guess I'm really into striped garter stitch right now, because I just finished this and the part that goes around your neck is the only part that is too big (gauge is such a weird thing). I'm going to rip out the one seam, run the long part through my sewing machine, take scissors to it and reseam. I hope that will work - it's all I can think of except ripping the whole thing.

Off to make burgers with sheep's milk cheese, baked sweet potato fries and a salad...

Sunday, April 19, 2009


I love the smell of spring in the Pacific Northwest. It's a relatively new smell to me. Growing up in Arizona, spring doesn't have this earthy, sweet smell. I was able to go for a long run this afternoon in the sun along a creek that wafts that spring aroma.

On the fiber front: I'm hoping to be done with a few large knitting projects soon and will post pictures.

I've been on this new diet, which has made me much more energized than during the dark, rainy days of winter. No wheat (I can have sprouted wheat, though), no dairy (but I get this amazing local raw goat milk instead), no sugar and no caffeine. After 4 weeks, I've now changed the "nos" to "stay away from" - this makes going out with friends and going to conferences (just got back from one in Portland) much easier. On the weekends, I let loose a little and it feels good. I still really miss pizza. I'm going to have to try a spelt pizza dough recipe to see if it's similar. Besides the higher levels of energy, it's helped me go back to something I have seen rarely since college - a flat stomach. Cutting out basically all majorly processed foods seems to really work (who would've thought...). Tonight, we're making homemade corn tortillas with sauteed italian greens, caramelized onions and sheep's milk farmer's cheese. I can't wait.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

men knitting

these made me happy to see today. knitting has been a therapeutic activity for quite some time:

Both from the National Museum of Health and Medicine flickr site

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

diet - the first three days

I decided to try the blood type diet for a month. After three days, my commitment has shrunk down to a week. I am an O, so to match this "ancient" blood type, I am supposed to eat like a hunter gatherer (my interpretation) - think foods before agriculture set in. I'm supposed to focus on lean meats, nuts, vegetables and grains. I'm not allowed to eat dairy, wheat or distilled liquids (vinegars, liquor, etc.). The almost deal-breaker was no avocado and only sprouted wheat bread (or spelt bread).

This weekend, no matter how much I ate, I still felt hungry. I was not happy without my carbs. It's getting better, but it's not easy. If I was still in the restaurant business, I would definitely start a bakery that focused on gluten free and wheat free backed goods that retain their moisture. I can't find a bread that I can eat that isn't closer to cardboard than bread.

I had a business lunch on Monday (this was a big test as I refused to make a big deal about this new diet). Thankfully, my colleague suggested a Vietnamese restaurant. It worked out beautifully (I love pho and it's generally okay on this diet).

My next visit to the acupuncturist who suggested this is on Friday. His main reason for suggesting this diet was because he saw that my spirit was blocked and not coming out. I think this diet is a great experience, but my spirit will be crushed without a relationship to nouveau-French food (I've realized how much my identity is still wrapped up in my cooking background). I'll probably end up using this diet in spirit, but staying very flexible. I'll keep posting as the week progresses...

Sunday, March 1, 2009


Anyone who knows me, even those who don't know me that well, know that I am in the "live to eat" category, as opposed to the "eat to live" one. I am obsessed with food and have been for a long time. It became official when my mom would find me when she got home from work in the kitchen with a big dinner project started (think pumpkin ravioli or chess pie). I cooked at fine dining restaurants through college and loved it. I didn't love the drama that sometimes surrounded the professional kitchen, though.

I have been fortunate enough to never have all this good food wreak havoc on my body. I've never been on a diet (the closest has been when I found out I was lactose intolerant, but that's just a minor modification in diet). Well, this past Friday, I decided to try a new diet. As a new years' resolution, I promised to try to get to the bottom of my long standing fatigue (I'm an extremely active person, but I've always battled through a level of fatigue that has prevented me from going to the next level like a triathlon). I went to the acupuncturist for the first time and I'm hopeful that the acupuncture will be a good approach. He also suggested trying the blood type diet. I said I would try it for a few weeks. I'm an O, so my blood type diet is very "hunter gatherer" - lean meats and no refined foods. I got home and realized what that would entail and have second thoughts. No dairy, no wheat, no avocado, etc. I think I can approach this diet in spirit, but not methodically. I just don't live in such a black and white world with food. Not being able to eat avocados and vinegars were almost a deal breaker in themselves. So, I'll use this blog as a journal for how the diet is progressing. I already have a post ready about this weekend and my struggle with the diet...

Thursday, February 5, 2009


So...after two official sales, I can now announce say it's official - I have an Etsy shop! It's diplomatica.etsy.com. I'm primarily selling vintage clothing, but hope to also sell knit items. I'm working on a group of balaclavas like this one for the shop...stay tuned.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Niche factor

Recently, I've been thinking a lot about crafting ones own image and how that image grows. One of my co-worker's student employees referred to this as "being your own brand manager." How do we do that and where does it get us? I was lucky to start on my professional brand early. I was put into the niche world of electronic records preservation. It helped me earn a permanent position right out of graduate school and has kept me gainfully employed since. But did it steer me in the direction that I wanted to go? I hope so - it seems to work and I seem to get a lot out of it. I think the hiccups are more situational and day-to-day work grumpiness that most young professionals feel. And I feel that reflexivity on where your brand is heading is a good thing. I don't want my brand to end up washed up or being reinstalled at an inaccessible price point (see post on Woolrich re-launch).

Why am I talking about work on an exercise and yarn blog? Well, this link to crazy Swedish clogs made me think about this. It was posted on the "I love clogs" group on Ravelry. I am so amazed that this group exists on a social networking site for knitters, but yet it makes sense. A niche that is filled nicely, and I had the pleasure of a great laugh while perusing this Swedish website. I prefer my Skane Toeffln clogs over these, though.

Mine are like this thumbnail, but blue with hand-painted flowers on them. They've made me happy these past few weeks and brought color during several boring meetings and cold bicycle commutes.