Saturday, October 31, 2009

Busy Week

I had plans every night this week, which meant that the clothes piled up on my closet floor, the mail stacked up on the counter and the Project 365 posts went neglected. It is time to catch up!

Libby and Wine
October 29, 2009
Project 365: Day 209

Libby and I met in college and have been friends since. Although, the past few years we have both been busy, living in different cities and haven't kept in constant contact. When we got together to have dinner and wine at the Riverview Wine Bar on Thursday, it was like we had seen each other last week. Well, except for that we had a ton of things we needed to catch each other up on! We were so busy catching up that I forgot to take a photo at the bar, so I took a photo at home instead.

Bad Boys, Bad Boys
October 30, 2009
Project 365: Day 210

On Friday night, Sally and I got to use the tickets I got through the Twin Cities Free Night of Theater. We saw Rasta Thomas' Bad Boys of Dance at the Ordway in St. Paul. The show was divided into two distinctly different parts, with the second part being my clear favorite. Before the show, we ate dinner at a restaurant Sally recommended called Shish. I enjoyed the dinner, the show and, of course, Sally's company. Thanks to the Free Night program, we both got to see a show that we would not have been likely to buy tickets for, but both liked. Also, I totally need to explore St. Paul some more! There are lots of great places to eat, theaters and stores that are uncharted territory for me.

End of Season
October 31, 2009
Project 365: Day 211

This morning was cold and there was a biting wind blowing. But, that didn't matter to me, because I had a very important errand to run. Today was the LAST day of the Midtown Farmers' Market for the year. Paul and I bundled up, grabbed our cloth bags, stopped by the ATM and then went to the market to stock up. I did manage to clean out the root cellar last weekend and am going to test it out this fall/winter. I am hoping to use local onions, squash, apples from the market and potatoes, carrots and squash from my dad to help keep our favored locavore diet going just a little bit longer into the Minnesota winter. I also bought a nice, dense loaf of rye bread and a jar of marmalade for immediate enjoyment, some cauliflower for the Life Changing Cauliflower recipe, some leeks and kale for soup and some homemade caramels because it is Halloween and I wanted to eat some caramel with my apples!

I am going to miss our weekly trips to the market during the long dormant season. But, Paul and I are going to be planning our own garden over the winter. We aim to be ready to prep and plant our very own garden when spring arrives.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009


Project 365: Day 208

I just got home from a fun evening of pumpkin carving. Genevieve hosted Joey, Mark, Jerri, Zoe and I for dinner and Jack 'O Lantern making. Now I will have something to set outside to attract the trick or treaters on Saturday!

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Hardy Mums

Project 365: Day 207

Pretty much all of the other plants in the yard have gotten pretty beaten up by the snow and frost that we have already gotten here in Minnesota. Not these mums! They look just as happy and healthy as the day I bought them. I enjoy this last little bit of summery plant life that greets me on the front step each time I come and go from the front door.

Mad Skills

Project 365: Day 206
October 26, 2009

Paul has mad citrus peeling skills. Check out that swirly, all-in-one-piece tangerine peel!

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Sunday Knitting Time

Project 365: Day 205

NYC Mural in COLOR!

So much of New York City comes across visually as a wash of shades of gray. There are a ton of stone buildings, lots of concrete, and plenty of brick. So, when we came across this sign and the amazing mural next to it, we took notice.

This mural was hands down the most colorful, impressive mural I have ever seen. Somehow we were the only ones that stopped to look at it. It isn't in a high traffic area, so we could spent our sweet time taking it in and snapping close-ups. You should definitely click on it to see it larger.

Well, 8 posts later, that's it. My trip has been fully shared and documented (except for my Rhinebeck haul). It was an excellent trip with great friends to impressive places and I loved it.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

One More Week

Project 365: Day 204

There is only one more week of the farmer's market left! I just realized that fact today when I stopped by to quickly pick up a few things. I am going to try to get our "root cellar" in order this week so I can do a bunch of stocking up on local produce that will store well. Our house came with a small room that is separated from the rest of the basement. I have hopes that it will function as a root cellar for us but first it will have to be subjected to massive amounts of cleaning.

Brooklyn Bridge

Our last stop before turning our compass towards Laguardia Airport was the Brooklyn Bridge.

It was worth the trek from Midtown. The sites, sounds and sensations of being on the bridge were all pretty remarkable.

Towards Manhattan

Can you see the Statue of Liberty?

Happy Hour

Project 365: Day 203
October 23, 2009

Minneapolis has a happy hour! I had forgotten what a sweet deal happy hour is, since it is illegal in Massachusetts. Paul and I went out to dinner at Conga Latin Bistro and when we ordered our drinks, we got two! MMMMMMmmmm, Mojitos!

NYC Morning

When in New York City, eat bagels! Right?

Our last day in NY was also Jamie's birthday! She didn't seem as excited about it as I was but I think she liked her presents.

We had about half of the day to see as much of NY as we could see. Which, in the context of NYC, doesn't even make a dent. We did our best, though, starting with Grand Central Station.

The whole time we were there, I kept having flashbacks to this event. I wish I could have witnessed Frozen Grand Central Station!

Friday, October 23, 2009

NYC Sights

Going from quiet, rural upstate NY to Times Square in the matter of a few hours makes for quite a culture shock!

When there is nowhere to go but up, here is how they park your car in NYC.

After we checked into our hotel, Jamie and I took a long, sightseeing walk through Manhattan with the end destination of Highline Park. We met Beth there for a walk-dinner-walk evening. The park is really fantastic. For the second time during this trip, we found ourselves walking on a former railroad line turned park.

windows on a nearby building

plants growing in open spaces between concrete panels

The park is constructed atop the old, elevated railroad with walking paths, plants, trees and a variety of sitting and lounging options. Here, Beth is trying out one of the chairs that is mounted on the railroad tracks while the sun shines directly into her eyes. Some of these lounge chairs can slide together to make doublewides!

Beth chose a great place in Chelsea Market for us to eat dinner. The Green Table served us up some tasty local food in a cute little space. I loved the Chelsea Market building, too.

After dinner, Beth led us on a walk through Greenwich Village to Washington Square Park where we saw this great view of the Empire State Building through the Washington Square Arch.

We were in like company with other tourists snapping photos, so we took turns capturing some evening shots.

Me and Beth

Jamie and I

It was great to be able to fit in a visit with Beth. Jamie and I have both invited Beth to move to Minneapolis so we can have more fun evenings together. Beth, thanks for making the trip into the city from Princeton to see us!

Sleepy Hollow, NY

After an evening of vegging out and knitting in the hotel, we arose early to head back to NY. Upon Becky's suggestion, we allocated time to make a touristy stop in the village of Sleepy Hollow, NY. Sleepy Hollow is where Washington Irving, author of The Legend of Sleepy Hollow, is buried. Besides that, the town, the Old Dutch Church, Sleepy Hollow Cemetery, the Headless Horseman Bridge and the Philipsburg Manor were all picturesque places to spend a little time on a (sunny!) fall afternoon.

Sleepy Hollow Cemetery

Irving plot where Washington Irving is buried

Headless Horseman Bridge

Philipsburg Manor

After our stop in Sleepy Hollow, we had to go to the airport to drop Becky off for her flight home, return the car and then head into NYC.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Heading Indoors

Project 365: Day 202

It seems that Thursday lunches with Sally are going to have to move indoors for the year.

Rhinebeck - Day 2

Day 2 of the festival is decidedly less intense than day 1. The lines were shorter and the barns were less crowded. If it weren't for the much smaller selection, I might just opt for skipping the first day in favor of the second or at least taking it a little easier on the first day.

We took advantage of the short morning line at the artichoke stand to have a dish of fried artichokes over white beans and escarole. If I am not mistaken, this stand at the festival always has the longest line. It was good, but I don't think I would wait for hours for it. My curiousity was satisfied though, even if it meant eating something garlicky for breakfast.

The day rained on and off, but we still managed to spend the rest of our budgets on some pretty yarn and enjoy the extra space in the booths for browsing.

I'll take some photos of my loot to show you soon.

Rhinebeck - Day 1!

After much anticipation, the day finally arrived! The forecast was for snow and rain with a high of 42 degrees. Luckily we had checked the forecast before we went on the trip so we had all brought warm clothes and layers. For those who have never been to Rhinebeck, let me tell you, it is a big deal. People come from all over to see other knitters, buy yarn and knitting goods, buy fleece and spinning and felting supplies, take classes, eat festival food, look at/buy animals and enjoy the weekend amidst the fall beauty of the Catskill Mountains in the company of other fiber fanatics. We had to wait in line to get in the gates on a COLD October morning an hour after the gates had opened. We were still happy to be there, cold and line and all.

Once in the gate, the first booth we saw was none other than South Minneapolis's Jennie the Potter.

After we stopped at her booth, we skipped the barns to head to the nearest building so we could warm up for a while.

In the building we found one of the things that was on my list: soap! Simpler Thyme makes soap grab bags that contain a pound of mixed small bars of soap. Becky got one for Paul and I as a housewarming present. Jamie bought some grab bags, too. The rest of the trip the smell of these soaps followed us: in the car, in the hotel, in our bags. It smelled delicious.

Jamie and I got to knit on the Big Sock. The logistics of this sock are quite interesting. Multiple people work on it at the same time with a complicated leap frog system that keeps multiple strands moving at the same time and stitches that are spread over many circular needles.

This is the sheep and wool festival, so of course there were also barns full of fiber animals. Some of the animals were being sold, some were there to be shown, some were there to be sheared. This one had an awesome Kid of Kid 'n Play haircut. Judging by his baaing and his stuck out tongue, he either did not appreciate me mocking his hair or the trimming he was getting around his private parts.

There were a lot of varieties of sheep at the festival, some with light coats, some dark, some with long dreadlocks, some with fluffy fleeces and even some naked sheep!

There are not a ton of vegetarian foods to get psyched about at the festival but the apple crisp with caramel was something to get excited about. Jamie and I each had one both days of the festival.

Seacolors Yarn:

We went straight from the festival to the Ravelry party. A party bus took us from a nearby parking lot to the party site. When we arrived, we were greeted by Bob, the ravelry mascot. OK, we were greeted by Ysolda Teague in the Bob costume she knitted. The real Bob was not in attendance. (Bob is the Boston Terrier of Jess and Casey, founders of Ravelry, and the mascot of Ravelry).

She did an amazing job making the costume and was happy to oblidge all of the requests for Bob photos.

The party felt much like a wedding reception except that everyone was knitting!

We got gift bags, had some snacks and drinks and finished off the night with a cupcake.

It was a long, fun, tiring, inspiring, cold, but not snowy or rainy day. And, the festival wasn't over yet!
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