ru: (fandom)
I keep meaning to link to this, and DARN IT I'm gonna do it now!

We went to Animazement this year, and as always, we went to Anime Hell, and as always, it was quite a trip. XD They've posted the lineup of videos here in case anyone wants to have a personal look into the depths of hell!

It was a mixed bag of things this year. Since it's the 20th anniversary of Animazement, they also included some old favorites, which was interesting to see, as some of them were from before I started attending hell (either because I hadn't started attending Animazement yet, or because I didn't drive and had to leave early so my parents could pick me up).

I think some of my favorites were Death Metal (because I appreciate that the artifacts of Satan would come with an aptitude test), the Orange Range music video for "Sushi" (because SUSHI, and also it's a fun bouncy song), and Double King (easily my second favorite thing of the night. My final review of it after it finished was "Oh my god. It's the life and times of the world's biggest asshole."). Easily my most favorite thing was the Hebocon update. I enjoyed the first Hebocon installment when it was shown a couple of years ago, and it was nice to see that it's still going. It also has SUCH a good message, in that it encourages people to try something new, even when those first few tries are going to suck, because, you know, you're a beginner.

Overall, not a bad showing!
ru: (kingdom)
You know, I realized that I should probably post the one thing I managed to finish this past year!

I'm HELLA RUSTY, and I had to do some hard thinking and some diving into old forums in my attempt to get the characters right, but hopefully I didn't mangle anyone too badly. This is something that's been knocking around in my head for a while, and I have to admit it's a bit of a relief to finally have it written down.

NOW MAYBE I SHOULD DO THAT FOR THE REST OF THE THINGS KNOCKING AROUND IN MY HEAD HINT HINT SELF.

Kingdom Bandom AU: Knight in a Fluorescent Orange Jacket: Space Monkey's drummer finds herself in over her head. Luckily, she has someone watching out for her.
ru: (knitting)
Remember last year when I was in the midst of the baby knitting marathon and I was knitting baby things at lightning speed (and I managed to finish everything before the babies themselves arrived YES I am so proud of myself for that)? Well, as satisfying as that was, the aftermath was that I was left with a crapton of leftover cotton ease yarn, which is what I used to make all the baby things. Ever since then I've been trying to find ways to use it. It's a great yarn for babies - soft, washable, and it comes in funky colors, as opposed to the standard baby pastel. I've done a few things with it, but I've still got a whole bag of the stuff staring at me, JUDGING. WHY HAVEN'T YOU USED US UP YET. WE WILL HAUNT YOOOOOOOOU!

I found out recently that there's a wildlife hospital in CA which is running a crafting drive to make knitted nests for orphaned baby birds. So they need nests that are soft and washable? I'M ALL OVER THAT YES. Especially since the pattern calls for two strands of yarn held together to make a tighter weave, which means the cotton ease will be used up a whole lot sooner. I thought I would pass the link on to you guys, though, as I know there are some crafters amongst you that might be looking for a good way to use up leftover yarn.

I've knit for human babies, so I think it's time for me to change it up a bit, and I'll knit for bird babies! <3
ru: (fandom)
If you're looking for a little pick me up, I discovered Movies in Real Life, which appears to be a comedy troupe's reenactments of famous movie scenes around NYC. It's utterly adorable and fun.

Poor Gandalf, everybody passes him. <3

(Also, while not part of the movie series, this group apparently also did a treatment of Ghostbusters at the New York Public Library. For that alone, they are infinitely awesome for tickling my geeky bone. <3
ru: (science geek)
As some of you already know, herbaria hold a special place in my heart for their general awesomeness. I think, however, that this video made by the New York Botanical Garden says it all as to why I find herbaria so fascinating.
ru: (food)
The verdict on the cheese:

It's DEFINITELY cheese, so that's at least a starting place! The texture seems like it works, but the taste is...not quite mozzarella. It's extremely mild, and I realized after a few nibbles that it tasted amazingly like Babybel cheese.

I'm not entirely sure what to do to make it more mozzarella-tasting. I'm thinking a fattier milk, definitely, like 2% or whole. I think adding more salt will help too. I used a coarse sea salt, and using a finer sea salt might up the salt content. I also think I need to give the cheese one more drain before sprinkling the salt on and beginning the stretching.

Hopefully next week I'll be able to initiate cheese mark II. <3
ru: (food)
So. I made cheese. I think.

Thanks to a certain Sage, I was pointed in the direction of a website on how to make mozzarella. Now, I am a bona fide cheese lover, and mozzarella is my favorite. I quickly realized that at least ATTEMPTING this recipe was in my near future.

First was gathering all the things. I needed a proper pot, which required going to the local not-quite-kitcshy-but-kinda-is housewares store, where they had oodles of graniteware (including a 32qt pot!), and I was able to find a suitable nonreactive pot. Also tricksy was finding a candy thermometer (really harder than it should have been. I should have just gone to the grocery store in the first place instead of running all over the place) and rennet. I found Junket rennet tablets at the local Whole Foods, and only after consulting the recipe again did I realize that it's actually subprime for making cheese. However, that can be compensated by adding 1-2 tablets (I added 2 in the end, just to be safe).

And after getting some citric acid and a GALLON of milk, I was ready to make me some cheese!

Cut! )
ru: (victory)
This is very exciting, you guys! I am writing this post on my brand new laptop! As some of you have heard (some multiple times before), I have had a dinosaur of a laptop for some time now. It was clunky and the battery is basically a corpse and it had nightly spazzes and was kind of senile and took FOREVER to do anything useful. I finally bit the bullet and got a new laptop. Uruz is shiny and a little bit smaller than kenaz, but is FAST and omg it is lovely to be able to actually DO stuff on it. We're still trying to figure each other out, and it means I have to convert to Windows 7 (as I am crotchety and I like XP better), but yay for productivity! And it has a webcam, so I can actually videochat with people if anyone is interested! :D

HOPEFULLY, this is all a good thing!
ru: (space)
A few months ago, Eien-chan roped me into my first tabletop RPG campaign with some friends of ours. I've been kinda learning as I go and having plenty of awkward beginner's moments, but I've really started getting into it.

It turns out a side effect of really starting to enjoy it is that it's prompted my writing brain to sit up and take notice. As a result, there are scenes that show up during RP that make me think in the back of my head, "Gee, that could make an interesting story or a cute little drabble." And, well, I've let my brain run with it a little. I still feel a little dopey for doing it, but, well, it is kinda fun to flesh things out and take what happens during RP and turn into something more resembling a story. There's also one portion of one of the missions that I think could be turned into something less of a drabble and more of a short story. I'll see if I run with that or not.

So, for the innately curious, here are the three that have emerged so far, arranged in chronological order according to the campaign:

1 )

2 )

3 )
ru: (food)
[personal profile] impersona was in need of a story. So I wrote her one on the spot. <3 And then she double scoop dared me to post it, AND WHO AM I TO TURN DOWN A DOUBLE SCOOP DARE.

So here it is, for your enjoyment, in its off-the-cuff format (which basically means I copied it directly from gchat):

Once upon a time, there was a banana! It was a very green banana, and all the other bananas made fun of him, because they were all pretty and yellow.

Banana was very sad, and cried a lot. But then one day his fairy bananamother came, and gave him hope! "DO NOT WORRY, BANANA," she said "ONE DAY YOU WILL BE A GREAT AND WONDERFUL BANANA AND ALL THE OTHER BANANAS WILL LOVE YOU." And Banana said, "That's great! Would you stop screaming?"

So Banana went on his fruity way, and tried to keep his spirits up. One by one all the other bananas were eaten, as befitting bananas. Our friend Banana willed and willed and willed with all his might to turn yellow, for surely it would soon be his turn!

AND THEN. One day, he looked in the reflection of the kitchen window, and to his surprise, he found he wasn't quite so green as before!

THIS WAS VERY EXCITING. He willed some more, and he became more yellow! And more yellow! And even more yellow!

"HOORAY!" thought Banana, "Soon I will be as yellow as the other bananas and then I will be eaten!"

And so Banana waited for the day when he would be eaten. At that point he was the only banana left. But tragically, the person who had bought the bunch had grown tired of bananas every day, and missed out on that perfect point at which Banana was perfect to be eaten.

Banana started to grow spots, at which point the person that bought the bunch wanted nothing to do with him anymore. He sat on the counter, alone and forgotten, turning browner and browner.

Banana started to cry. "Oh why," he lamented, "Why did I have to be the last one? I'm so lonely now!" That's when his fairy bananamother came back again.

"WELL THIS IS SOMEWHAT UNEXPECTED," she said, "BUT TAKE HEART, BANANA. I STILL SEE A GOOD FUTURE FOR YOU." Banana cried again. "How?" he asked, "How can you?" "IT'S A MYSTERY" Banana godmother said, and disappeared in a cloud of ethylene.

And so Banana sat and sat. And then one day, he found himself getting picked up! He got very excited. Maybe now was when he was going to be eaten! He was peeled! This made him even more excited!

And then he was put in a bowl. Well this was very disconcerting, he thought. And then others were put into the bowl with him. "Who are you all?" he asked as he swirled about with the others, mingling as the spoon turned. "We're sugar!" some little white creatures said as they whizzed by, "I'm an egg!" another said before it mingled with Banana.

"What are you all doing here?" he asked, "I'm a banana. I was peeled. I was supposed to be eaten!"

"You will be!" a chorus of raisins said joyously, "You were perfect to join us! You'll be our friend, won't you? You seem very sweet." "Oh yes!" a cloud of baking soda said, "Very sweet indeed! We like you very much!" "Really?" Banana said, "Gosh, how nice!"

"We're all going to be eaten together!" The milk said, "And you're the whole reason behind it, Banana!" Banana would have blushed, if bananas could, and if he wasn't already incorporated with all the other ingredients. Still, he was deliriously happy, "This is like a dream come true!" he said as they were all popped into the oven. And it truly was, for it is the dream of every forgotten banana to become banana bread.
ru: (Default)
Anyone who ever feels that desire to create, be it pictures or words or anything else, ought to take a look at this, linked to me from Eien-chan via [personal profile] broccoman. Sometimes, it's really helpful to be reminded that there really is nothing truly limiting us. We've just gotta reach our hand out and do it.
ru: (space)
Yeah, it's been a while since a GIP. Let's do that!

<3 Space sphere.
ru: (Default)
For those of you in more northern climates who are still fighting out of winter, I PROMISE spring is coming. It's definitely warming itself up here. Usually it's heralded around here by the smell of dead fish, thanks to the twelve BILLION Bradford pears planted by all the landscaping companies, but there are also other, quieter little heralds.

While walking to where I get picked up in the evening, a rather shocking bit of color caught my eye. I looked up, and saw a redbud tree full of closed flower buds that were the most intense shade of magenta I think I've ever seen, particularly when placed against the grey the sky had taken on this afternoon. The tree was also sporting some leftover pods from last year, small, delicate, and almost silver. If I ever got a free trip to Fairy Land, I imagine there would be trees like this everywhere. And chocolate rivers. Gotta have chocolate rivers in a fairy land.

And there are subtler signs too. I took a walk around the yard this evening to see how things were doing. The mint is fixing to make a busting comeback, putting out little tiny rosettes all through the herb bed. The tulips are still breaking through the soil, thick and smooth and a lovely sea green. The Japanese magnolia has put out dark purple flower buds that should open very soon. The sinocalycalycanthus (no, I didn't make that up) is putting out thick black buds that I had to brush my hand against to make sure they were an actual sign of life. In a few weeks they should start putting out tiny, delicate leaves that look like they're carved out of bright green crystal.

I really love this time of year. Everything has so much potential, and I love watching everything gear up for another season.

On that note, LETTUCES. I want to do some sort of leafy green this year. I don't know why. But darn it, I want lettuces. I should look into that.
ru: (book and flower)
And now, some random updates and tidbits. <3

While I am still, of course, still all about the knitting, lately I feel like I've been having an affair with my spindle. I got ahold of multiple samples of different blends of yarn, and I have been a spinning fool as a result. In the evening I would want to rush home so I could pull out the spindle and try a new fiber out. It's been great practice, and I have lots of teeny selections of yarn that I could use on little projects. I do wish, however, that I could spin a yarn with an even weight. Maybe that will come with more practice. Don't worry, knitting, it all comes back to you, you'll have lots of new yarns to play with soon. <3

When I have been knitting, I have been all about the hats. I'm expecting something of a minor baby tsunami later this year, due to my parents' coworkers apparently all feeling the need to procreate all at once, so I've been using this as a good excuse to make baby hats. It's actually kind of fun, and nice for instant gratification. I've made a stripey hat, a milk hat that came out WAY too big and will probably go to my cousin, and an eggplant hat. Yep, an eggplant hat. It's a hat that looks like an eggplant. I'm going to need to make the recipients aware of the fact that I'm going to want pictures of babies in hats. I demand to see eggplant hat in action. I've also still been working on the Citron shawl. I'm hoping I'll have enough yarn to make it the size I want it to be, as I think the yardage is starting to get low, but I'll need to get a bit further into it before I can be sure.

On the cooking front, yesterday Eien-chan and I got experimental and we made what basically amounts to avocado pudding. To those of you in Kingdom, amazingly, this is not something Alice dreamed up (although I wouldn't put it past her XD). It's actually Brazilian, and it's surprisingly good. Basically it involves taking avocados, mashing them up, mixing in lime juice, and letting the mixture sit in the fridge for at least half an hour. During that time, the acid in the lime juice breaks down the avocado, making it smoother and creamier. You serve it up with sugar so people can adjust the sweetness accordingly. It really doesn't taste all that avocado-y, and comes off more like a lime pudding. I think the next time, I should try adding some whipped cream. Mmm, whipped cream.

In the realm of the garden, we're starting to gear up for the growing season. The tulips I planted last fall are coming up, and we've got some new plants to go into the front yard, including some daisies, a lilac, and a couple rosemary plants to replace our huge rosemary bush, which tragically up and died over the winter. I'm still not entirely sure what caused it. I've started thinking about what to put in the beds for growing. I still want us to construct a fourth box for pumpkins and cucumbers so that they can fight it out, gladiator-style, and we can have delicious cucumbers and pie pumpkins. I'd love to add dill and lavender to the herb box, the former because I like it, the latter because I could use it in soaps and the like. I also really want to try out growing some edible flowers. I got a cookbook a couple months ago that has lots of recipes that use flowers and other more peripheral edible plants, which I would love to try out. We'll see how that goes.
ru: (book and flower)
Oooooof, well, we've returned from the magical land of Ikea, with lighter wallets and aching feet. We did, however, get a lot of happy fun organizational things, from shelves to spice racks to baskets (and I finally got ahold of a mortar and pestle, which I've been wanting for a while). Some of it we took home, although a lot of it is going to be delivered on Saturday, so that'll be even more fun!

Some of my thoughts/impressions on the whole experience:

--The place is frickin' HUGE. I mean, AIRPLANE HANGAR huge. I think Eien-chan said it best: "Welcome to Ikea! American Airlines departs from Terminal C." I mean, really. Frickin'. Huge. I knew it was gonna be big, but HOLY COW.
--And it smells SO FRICKIN' GOOD. I know that's a weird thing to note, but as we were going up to the front door, we were hit with this downright heavenly scent, something like apple pie, and man it smelled lovely. We smelled it in the Marketplace area too. I swear they were pumping the scent in from somewhere. This led to jokes about this really and truly being a Pikea (Parts 2 and 3 if anyone's interested)
--There is something very Disney-esque about the place. I'm not entirely sure I can put my finger on it. Maybe it's the friendly named furniture, or the happy kiddy place, or the fact that there are helpful (although sometimes admonishing) signs to tell you How Things Work, and oh yeah, don't break open the boxes in the warehouse, it's not nice!
--The food wasn't too bad, all things considered. I appreciated the fact that they had some Swedish-themed foods, although we both agreed that the gravlax could have been more dill-y and less salt-y. The chocolate cake and the apple cake, however, were delish (the latter possibly because of the aforementioned heavenly smell).

All in all, it was a fun adventure. The only real disappointments were 1.) I found the princess cakes I was interested in, but apparently the only way you could get them was frozen in the deli section, not as single-serve in the restaurant. Although now that we know what we're doing, we could probably make the trip in a day, in which case I could bring a cooler, or something. 2.) We were able to find everything on our list, except three corner shelves (there was only one present). This really bugged us. If anyone is going to Ikea soon, and doesn't mind doing me a favor and getting us those shelves, lemme know and we can work something out. <3
ru: (Default)
So tomorrow, Eien-chan and I are going to pile into the car and make the journey to Charlotte to stay overnight. Our mission? To visit Ikea. We have some things in mind we plan to get, but this is also to find out more about this magical land we've been told of, a land of flat-packed furniture, tiny tiny rooms, and princess cakes (I am going to hunt down these princess cakes I keep hearing about). This should prove interesting. If nothing else, it's going to be an adventure!
ru: (fandom)
Boy, it's been a while since I went to a proper movie showing. I would love to change that at some point if I can. I like going to the movies, and I can sit through almost anything once. I try to look at it from the perspective that even if I don't like a movie, I can at least say that I've seen it.

But anyway, Tron: Legacy! Eien-chan and I had meant to go see it last week with his parents with the Imax theater in town, but as luck would have it, the theater had shut down that week for renovations. So, Eien-chan and I went this week, and we saw it in 3D. So, now for thoughts! I think it should go without saying that there will be spoilers, so you've been warned.

Cut! )
ru: (fandom)
I would just like to point out: Knitting is awesome. Star Trek is awesome. Klingons are awesome.

Combining all three?

AWESEOME TRIPLE TRIAD OF AWESOMENESS

I would bet that that's tea in the cup, but having an awesome quartet would create an awesome singularity and suck us all in to oblivion (an awesome oblivion).

July 2017

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