29 May 2010

you should really go to the West Allis farmers market

Herbs // west allis farmers market

So living in Milwaukee is weird sometimes. I'm not talking about actual day to day living here, as that is mostly boring/the same as everywhere else. Or at least every other mid-size postindustrial decaying American city. What was my point?

Yes, okay--Milwaukee, specifically people's attitudes towards it. In short, they are rarely positive. I know several people who actively hate it, some of whom live here. One of my sister's work friends apparently called it a 'shithole' recently. This happened right before she visited a few weeks ago, but her friend said it before Tracey mentioned visiting me. It just sort of came up, apparently? That is probably a fair representation of the general opinion of Milwaukee in the Midwest.

And you know what, I get it! Well, sort of. I'm not going to get into Milwaukee's problems, both historical and current, and I am really not going to get into how uncomfortable it makes me when Wisconsin residents from outside the Milwaukee metro area (read: mostly white people) talk about how the city with our largest population of African-Americans is just completely awful.

What I will talk about instead is one of the awesome things about Milwaukee, namely its numerous farmers markets! I went to one today! The one in West Allis, specifically. Which, ha, one of the awesome things about Milwaukee is not actually in Milwaukee's city limits! But there are at least four other farmers markets in the city, one within walking distance of me which doesn't start for another three weeks, dammit. Anyway, I went to the one in West Allis today, and while it was sort of tiny, especially compared to the Dane County Farmers Market (stupid Madison), but it has a ridiculous amount of flower vendors, some awesome ladies that sell a wide variety of herbs (Cook With Herbs website; they seemed really excited about their recipes when I talked to them, so probably they are worth trying), a tamale vendor who actually sells vegetarian tamales (which are rare like... something that's rare! whatever, it's late), and an awesome woman who make the most delicious veg spring rolls I've tasted in ages.

So, uh, in conclusion, Milwaukee does actually have some cool things? I am possibly/probably going to go to West Allis every week, just to eat tamales and spring rolls. I'm pretty excited about all the herbs I bought too. I got three (!!!) kinds of basil (sweet, Thai, and cinnamon), two kinds of mint (Korean and mojito), lemongrass, and rosemary, Vietnamese coriander, and culantro, which is used in Carribbean cooking and apparently tastes like cilantro but is not stupid and impossible to grow like stupid, stupid cilantro. I completely forgot to get chives, which are really easy to grow, but I guess I can do that next week. I already transferred everything to planters (made from quart yogurt containers!), so I am feeling pretty good about my container garden. And about summer, still! Awesome. I hope your summer is going well too.

26 May 2010

things are happening

Today has been super awesome. I woke up early, made coffee, and dealt with some emails and other things. Nathan and I went out for breakfast at Cafe Hollander (meh) and then went to Goodwill. I found 3 cardigans (!!!) plus a bunch of t-shirts that will be good for refashioning. Possibly they will turn out awful, but possibly not!

inner workings of my serger

 I made a bandanna for Nathan, which took roughly 334 hours. Well, the bandanna took about 2 minutes to make, but it was preceded by at least 579 hours of messing with my serger (threading/rethreading/messing with settings/changing needle plates/etc) before it would do a rolled hem. But I figured it out! And made a bandanna! No photo though, the hem was sort of wavy; possibly a tension issue? Whatever, it is a bandanna and Nathan is wearing it at work RIGHT NOW.

red tank top

I also finished binding the armholes of a red tank top I started sometime last year. Slow-going, and sort of frustrating as the tank top is too big and will probably not be worn outside the house. It's really not worth ripping out a bunch of seams to resize it, as the fabric is just awful, but it's lightweight, so it'll be fine to wear around the house on stupid gross humid days like today. I still need to hem it; I'm thinking this would be a good time to practice doing a blind hem.

Exciting! Seriously, I am excited about sewing. This summer is shaping up to be amazing. I've got a bunch of organizing to do over the next few days, and then I can start working on some sweet projects I've got planned. More on that soon.

25 May 2010


plarn I turned in final grades yesterday afternoon, which means I am officially done with spring semester. To celebrate, I went out for dinner and was in bed by 9.

I ran some errands this morning--including mailing an Etsy order (!!!)--and then spent some time cleaning the house. (I get very confused when I don't have schoolwork to do. Which is not even actually the case, as I have a thesis proposal that I'm supposed to be finishing & submitting by the end of the month. Which is the end of this week. Crap.) I also started a new knitting project! This will possibly one day be a shopping bag; so far, it is just sort of lame. Knitting with plastic-bag yarn (sorry, PLARN, ugh why do they think of such stupid words for things) is not quite as awesome and it sounds. But! I'm going to end up using 50-60 plastic bags (or less? or more? I don't know.) instead of throwing them away, so whatever I guess. It definitely feels good to do some crafting. I think tomorrow will be more knitting and possibly some serging. And oh, probably I should work on that thesis proposal.

23 May 2010

17 May 2010

closer and closer to done!

DIG AND SAVE OMG, originally uploaded by marinatina.

6 or 8 more pages + editing

exams to grade + final grades to calculate

(and because i've been so productive and have not procrastinated at all!), madison field trip w/ Nathan + hang out time at the farmer's market w/ good friends + nepalese lunch + dig & save, my new favorite thrift store (clothing by the pound!)

13 May 2010


I am still alive! And slowly approaching the end of the semester. Get ready, I'm gonna blog the shit out of this fucking blog after next weekend. CURSING WILL HAPPEN.

Also, I'm almost done with my scarf! I don't know if I like it or not, but I will be wearing the shit out of it. (Who says cursing makes you sound dumb?!)

I would post a photo, but my phone battery is dead, because I left my charger in the hotel in Minnetonka, and for some reason I only bought a car charger to replace it, and I don't actually drive that much. So, my phone has been dead most of the past week and a half! I do not miss it at all, except for not being able to easily post low-quality photos of knitting and other such things.

(I should probably cut back on the coffee.)

10 May 2010


Rest stopHere's a photo I took at a rest stop. I forget which one; somewhere in Wisconsin off of I-94. Exciting! Taken with my phone with fxCamera, an Android app. I have since figured out how to take photos that are actually rectangular, like real Polaroids. Real fake Polaroids.

Anyway. It is May 10th, somehow. The end of the semester is in sight, but it still seems so damn far away. I am finally over the flu, I think, and let me tell you, getting the flu right at the beginning of finals sucks exactly as much as you would expect. There are a lot of things I should be doing right now; I guess I'll go work on those?