25 December 2012

Merry Christmas to ME

Do you buy yourself a Christmas present?

I don't usually aim to, but I do buy myself a lot of stuff generally.

This year, I thought I deserved a treat.  It's been a rough December at the very least.

So, I bought myself some crochet patterns!!  SO FREAKING EXCITING.

Ok, so I've bought patterns randomly during the year, so why is it special this time?

Mainly becuase I'm trying to restrict my new crochet project quota.  I've only finished one of these projects, so how can I justify starting something new?  I'll tell you how:  Christmas!

Christmas is all about peace on Earth, spreading joy and good cheer (which I think are the same thing, but who splits hairs at Christmas?) .  What better way to spread joy than by letting go of the anxiety associated with having all these UFOs over my head (dramatic huh?), and letting myself just enjoy the excitement of a new project?  If there is a better feeling in the world than starting something new I have yet to experience it.

Dudes, why didn't you tell me to stop rambling?!?!

I'm sure you'd like to see the present I have bought myself...
Drum rollll (kinda, I couldn't actually find a drumroll gif, plus I just wanted to put ponies on my blog.  Sue me)
Legendary Shawls by Aoibhe Ni!!!!

I have been coveting Venus for so so long, but all of the shawls in the ebook are so great, I thought, if I'm spending 8 bucks, I may as well spend 25 for 7 more patterns.  And that is my story.

Part of the me-present is that I am allowed to start it before I finish anything off so I will be using some of my Christmas break to learn tunisian crochet and starting this shawl!  I am going to use this 'fine silk noil' I picked up dirt cheap a while ago.

I have learned (thanks Rav) that silk noil is made up of the leftover short fibres of silk, giving it the nubbly appearance.  It's also not very strong, so depending on how it works up I may have to use my Ms Gusset pure silk laceweight instead, and wouldn't that be a tragedy ;)

22 December 2012

Caturday: Catmas edition

You may (or may not, whatevs) be wondering what on Earth happened to Caturday.  If you'd been counting, we made it to 34 Caturdays (35 counting this post!)  Anyway, I'm continuing Caturday but am dropping the Mr Linky, mainly because I can't be bothered most of the time.  A big shout out to Beadknitter, who participated in Caturday most often, thanks so much xox.  Y'all are most welcome (and encouraged) to include your kitty posts in the comments below and I will def check em out!

This is the ChristCatmas edition of Caturday!  Wooo!

This morning, The Kitten was at her finest in modelling *cough*beingtortured*cough* her Santa hat.  Thanks for getting into the Catmas spirit!

Have you ever seen a happier feline??

And to keep the Catmas spirit going, here and here are more festive furry friends!

Merry Catmas xox

16 December 2012

Live a Life That Matters

Ready or not, someday it will all come to an end.

There will be no more sunrises, no minutes, hours, days.

All the things you collected, whether treasured or forgotten, will pass to someone else.

Your wealth, fame, and temporal power will shrivel to irrelevance. It will not matter what you owned or what you owed.

Your grudges, resentments, frustrations and jealousies will finally disappear. So too, your hopes, dreams, plans, and to-do lists will expire.

The wins and losses that seemed so important will fade away.  It won’t matter where you came from, or on what side of the tracks you lived.

At the end, whether  you were beautiful or brilliant, male or female, even your skin colour won't matter.

So what will matter?

How will the value of your days be measured?

What will matter is not what you bought, but what you built.  Not what you got, but what you gave.

What will matter is not your success, but your significance.

What will matter is not what you learned, but what you taught.

What will matter is every act of integrity, compassion, courage or sacrifice, that empowered, enriched, and encouraged others.

What will matter is not your competence, but your character.

What will matter how is not how many people you knew, but how many people will feel a lasting loss when you’re gone.

What will matter is not your memories, but the memories that live in those that loved you.

Living a life that matters doesn't happen by accident. It's not a matter of circumstance but of choice.

Choose to live a life that matters.

- Author unknown

21 November 2012

The hunt for the ultimate Melbourne CBD eggs benedict: Gordon's Cafe

You may have noticed that there has been a small hiatus from the hunt.  Things just get in the way sometimes.  Anyway, we're back!!

Dining Date: 14 November 2012

Location: Gordon's Cafe
306 Little Collins St
Melbourne, VIC 3000
Ph: 03 9663 5103

The Causeway looks a bit dodgy when you enter it from Bourke Street, but is much more inviting from Little Collins.  Gordon's Cafe is technically on Little Collins (apparently) but you enter from The Causeway.  A great little cafe, and was quite busy even early in the morning, always a good sign.

Individual ratings:
Tanya:  6.5/10
Base:  English muffins!  Nice and fresh and toasted perfectly.
Eggs:  Good, although is that vinegar I taste?  Yes, it is.
Sauce:  Tasty, but nothing to write home about. 
Ham:  Good.
Price: $15.50
Coffee:  Quite good.  
Service:  Friendly and attentive. 
Overall comment:  Overall, good.  Not great, but enjoyable.  Like my sister, I can't pinpoint why Gordon's EB didn't blow me away.  All of the elements were fine, making for a fine dish.  That's it I suppose, it's fine.  That being said, I would visit Gordon's again. 

Lil sis: 6.5/10
After a two week break from our weekly EB, I was keen to get back into it. Today’s EB was average but still satisfying. Another hidden location in Melbourne we found ourselves tucked away in yet another alley way I didn’t even know existed. The dish was served on the English muffin, eggs were cooked well and over all it was satisfactory, however nothing really stood out with today’s dish, the hollandaise was average and even the ham lacked flavor, I think this may have been because it was shaved so finely? Service was reasonable, maybe a little over priced? Oh and coffee was ok! I score today’s EB a 6.5/10.

And how does that look on the Benedict-o-meter?  A firm 6.5 out of 10 Benedicts!!

Make sure you check out the map to see the other eggs benny locations lil sis and I have checked out.

Gordon's Cafe on Urbanspoon

14 November 2012


You'd think looking back on my blog the last few weeks that I'd forgotten how to crochet or something. 

There has been a severe crochet shortage going on here. 

I'm partly blaming this on going to Queensland with my sisters for 6 days over the Melbourne Cup weekend.  I really thought it would be a holiday where I would get lots of time for hooking.  wrong.  When you spend 6 days in Queensland with 3 sisters and 3 nieces, you have no time.  It was full on.  Great, but full on.  The reason for the Queensland trip was to meet my Queenslander sister's baby (aww).  She is super cute, but the worst thing about having a younger sister with a baby is that now everyone tells you that you need a baby.  No I don't, eff off.

Which brings me to babies.

Working on a layette for a friend's baby.  I'm trying to pump this out so I can move onto something else.  It took ages to settle on a pattern, which is the cotton's fault.  Damn you cotton!

I'm using this pattern.  The main problem is that cotton is just not as snuggly as wool, so everything I was working up felt stiff as a board.  I tried about 5 patterns and pulled out every one.  I've decided to just stick with this now.  I dunno, I'm not super happy with it.  The stitch pattern looks messy to me.  I have decided that I will just have to accept that maybe, sometimes, things I make might not be absolutely 100% perfect.  I have to learn to be ok with that. 

Linking to- WIP Wednesday (Tami's Amis) | WIP Wednesday (Ambassador Crochet) | Yarn Along (Small Things) | Keep Calm and Craft On {Crafting on} (Frontier Dreams) | What you doing Wednesday (SusanD1408 Crochet Addict) | Hookin on Hump Day (My Merry Messy Life)

11 November 2012

October Movies

Another month over, another bunch of movies done and dusted!!

Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter (2012)
Ok, so I knew this movie would be right up my alley, but I didn't think it would blow me away the way it did.  Absolutely amazing.  Cinematically beautiful, and a clever story interwoven with real historical events.  This movie has now found its way onto my all time favourites list!  SEE IT!

Dark Shadows (2012)
BOR-ING!  Seriously, I waited for this movie to get good, and it just didn't.  It was all flash and no substance.  I don't even want to go into it.  Probably most people really liked this movie, but I am a bit over the Burton-Depp dealio.  I do really like Johnny Depp, so I don't know why I thought this movie sucked so hard.

That's My Boy (2012)
Unexpectedly good.  When I saw the trailers for this movie I think I vomited in my mouth a little.  But watching it was a lot of fun.  It's Adam Sandler back to his so-wrong-it's-funny movies.  I would highly recommend this as a great popcorn movie if you loved Billy Madison and Happy Gilmore (which I totally did btw).

Army of Darkness (1992)
Or should I say, Bruce Campbell v the Army of Darkness??  This is A's favourite movie of all time, so I've seen it many, many times.  I can probably recite every line.  There periodically comes a time when we'll say, 'Hey, we haven't watched Army for a while.'  We then quickly remedy the situation.  Brilliant movie.

Whore (1991)
What a weird movie!  Apparently it was made in response to Pretty Woman, as an illustration of the 'real' life of a prostitute.  The weird thing about it was that parts of it was hilariously funny in a bad B-grade movie sort of way, and other parts were deadly serious and bordering on disturbing.  No cute crafty thing for this movie, but I thought I'd share the clip that got me to watch the movie with you:

Fantastic Mr Fox (2009)
Are you cussing with me?  This movie was good, even though I'm not the hugest Wes Anderson fan.  I mean, sometimes I find his movies hard to watch.  I know they're good, but they're the kind of, 'hey look at me I'm so cool' good that I'm not always that into.  Anyway, I liked Anderson's style as he applied it to this Dahl classic.  The music was fantastic, and the puppets looked amazing.

Taken 2 (2012)
How great was Taken?  Really great, that's how great.  So naturally, I had to see Taken 2, which was not as great but still a bit great, so I was happy enough.  I wanted to put this picture here but I thought it might be a bit much, so here is a much classier version :D

Up (2009)
When I can't sleep, I watch Disney movies.  On this particular night, I was in a bit of a weepy mood, so I put this one on purely for the heartbreaking fist 15 minutes.  How do they get away with it?

Tarzan (1999)
Another sleepless night, but this time I was in the mood for a little Phil Collins.  Man, what a good movie!  Disney, where have you gone and why aren't you making anymore fun beautiful animation??

The Losers (2010)
Chris Evans!!!  Ok, there are other reasons to watch this movie too.  But, you don't really need any, because Chris Evans.  That's right bitches, I've got a crossbow!

Aaaaannndd the pick for this month?  Abraham Lincoln:  Vampire Hunter!!!  Absolutely Epic.  

10 November 2012

Caturday XXXIV

It's Caturday!  The day I dedicate to The Kitten and her cuteness, and invite you to do the same with your kitties!

Bit late today, but better late than never!

Another rad photo.  Don't be alarmed, I caught The Kitten mid yawn.

Share your kitty related posts by filling in Mr Linky below!

Have a great Caturday xox

03 November 2012

Caturday XXXIII

It's Caturday!  The day I dedicate to The Kitten and her cuteness, and invite you to do the same with your kitties!

Today, the cat's in the bag!!  Hahaha.  I think I've already mentioned that one of The Kitten's favourite pasttimes is hiding in bags.  Here she is, up to some shenanigans.

Got a kitty related post?  Just pop the deets in Mr Linky below.

Have a great Caturday!

01 November 2012

7700 people can't be wrong

Look what I made!

In hindsight I should have taken some photos with the cowl unfolded, but c'est la vie right?  I made this for Lil Sis, after she bought some yarn to try to knit and gave up because she found it too boring.  I took it off her hands and whipped this up for her.  Just in time for Summer!  ha!

I asked her to model it for me.  She is much cooler than me, look at her awesome tattoo!

Pattern:  Honey Cowl.  I wasn't convinced about this pattern until the very end.  It comes out nice and squishy, but not too stiff.  I made a few errors, like accidentally doing two rows of knit, and messing up the sl st/purl sequence, but I don't think they are noticeable at all.
Needles: 5.00mm circulars. 
Yarn: Moda Vera Pure Wool 8ply.  Softened up quite nicely on washing.
Ravelled here

-Linking with-
Tami's Amis FO Fridays | Fiber Arts Fridays at Wisdom Begins in Wonder | Natural Suburbia for Creative Fridays | I've Made Friday at SusanD1408 Crochet Addict | I ♥ Fridays at Petals to Picots

31 October 2012

Pfft Halloween

As an Aussie, I am entirely justified in saying pfft Halloween.

As a child, Halloween was only that thing we saw when watching American TV shows, and was always dismissed as being American.  Not that there's anything wrong with that, but the States were just, not us, you know?

Fast forward twenty years and stores are pushing Halloween paraphernalia out the wazoo.  What the hell dudes?  Kids are starting to trick-or-treat.  This offends me. 

To be honest, I don't even know what Halloween is.  It's apparently to celebrate the end of Summer?  Well, hello Australia, we're in Spring now.  SPRING DAMMIT!.  So, what relevance does Halloween have to us?  I just see it as a way for greedy kids to try to con free lollies out of me.  I have news for you greedy kids:  it ain't gonna happen.  If you knock on my door tonight, you'll be getting a blank stare.  I refuse to play along.  Actually, I really don't care what you do greedy kids, but I'm still not giving you free lollies. 

Anyway, all this pfft Halloween gobbledegook was really a segway for me to show off some stuff I own.  If I know one thing about Halloween, it's that Halloween = pumpkins!  Right?  Right?  I mean, if there's one thing my blog reading list is telling me is that pumpkins are so hot right now.  If I see another pumpkin crochet pattern... I'll probably do nothing, but seriously, how many do you need? 

You probably don't remember, but I am collecting vegetable shaped soup tureens.  My first acquisitions were a sweet cauliflower and aubergine design.

Progress in building my collection has been slow, but recently I got this totally gorgeous piece!  IT'S A PUMPKIN and therefore topically relevant at the moment! 

Isn't it beautiful??  I've also acquired smaller receptacles, which I am calling 'mini tureens' which I'm sure is incorrect.  Look at the watermelon, isn't it rad??  I need to have me a partay so I can make guacamole and serve it in the avo. 

 And the whole tureen family so far!  I am totally in love with them, can you tell?

Happy Halloween, I suppose.

29 October 2012

The hunt for the ultimate Melbourne CBD eggs benedict: Degani Bakery Cafe

We thought we'd give the Paris end a break last week and get back down to the other end of town.  Was it a mistake?

Dining Date: 24 Oct

Location: Degani Bakery Cafe
Goldsbrough Lane

This might be the first chain cafe we've tried.  I'd be interested to try other locations of this cafe in the CBD, if only to check consistency, and to determine if they are all just as bad!!

Individual ratings:

Tanya:  1/10
Base: English muffins, though they soaked up the sauce, and in this case, that was a very bad thing.
Eggs:  Distinct flavour of vinegar.  Cooked fine, but the vinegar flavour was far too strong.
Sauce:  Absolutely horrid.  Never had one like it.  It tasted like vinegar.  This is the first time in our hunt that I've had to scrape the sauce off as I just could not eat it. 
Ham:  Perhaps the only redeeming feature.  Ham is ham. 
Price: $10
Coffee:  Ok, but nothing special.
Service: You order at the register and food is brought to you.  Staff were friendly enough, but didn't go out of their way.  I didn't get any water!!
Overall comment:  Bleh bleh and double bleh.  Ok, I ate the whole thing, but you must realise that I am 1) not one to waste food; and 2) I was hungry.  Even so, it was a struggle because the whole dish tasted like vinegar.  Potently so.  Hence my low low score.  (In hindsight we really should have said something, perhaps it was a mistake?  We'll never know!)

Lil sis:  1.5/10
I was so hungry that I actually ate through the vinegar infested breakfast that we ordered last week. So many points lost because of the god forsaken hollandaise sauce, everything else on the plate was satisfactory, the English muffins, the runny eggs and the tasty ham. Too bad they have no idea how to make a delicious hollandaise, won’t be returning to this cafĂ© EVER!

And how does that look on the Benedict-o-meter?  A futile 1.5 (rounded up) Benedicts!!

Check out my map to see the other eggs benny locations Lil Sis and I have checked out.

Degani Bakery Cafe on Urbanspoon

27 October 2012

Caturday XXXII

It's Caturday!  The day I dedicate to The Kitten and her cuteness, and invite you to do the same with your kitties!

Another cute shot (I mean, they're all cute, but another one nonetheless) of The Kitten sitting contemplatively.  I really need to start taking some action shots, but it's just easier when she's sitting still!!

If you'd like to join in on Caturday (come on ... you know you want to!) fill in the Mr Linky below! 

Have a great Caturday y'all!

26 October 2012

clickety click

Look what I made!
It's a camera-strap cover.  Following the theme of crocheted gadget accessories, I actually made this before the phone case, but hadn't had the opportunity to get me some action shots!!  Many thanks to Lil Sis for indulging me by taking these photos. 

Pattern: A Perrrrfectly Wonderful Tapestry Crochet Kitty Bag.  Obviously I didn't make a bag, I just used the chart.  I did two repeats of the kitty, and it came out the perfect size for my camera strap.  I also did a round of sl st at either end so that it wouldn't stretch at the ends too much.  This was my first tapestry crochet piece, and I think it came out super cute.  Many imperfections, sure, but i'm still very happy.
Yarn: Moda Vera Cupcake
Hook: 4.5mm
Ravelled here

-Linking with-
Tami's Amis FO Fridays | Fiber Arts Fridays at Wisdom Begins in Wonder | Natural Suburbia for Creative Fridays | I've Made Friday at SusanD1408 Crochet Addict | I ♥ Fridays at Petals to Picots

25 October 2012

[Bonus Edition] The hunt for the ultimate eggs benedict: CV's Cafe & Bar

***Bonus Edition***  As in, in addition to our weekly Eggs Benny hunt during the working week...Lil Sis, A and I met up on a Sunday for breakky.  The perfect opportunity to sample the Eggs Benny offered in the wilds known as Carlton. 

Dining Date: 21 Oct

Location: CV's Cafe & Bar
323 Lygon Street
Carlton, VIC 3053
Ph: 03 9347 6813

So we are actually the worst at finding nice places to do a bit of weekend dining.  I'm sure there are places in the Brunswick/Carlton area that are renowned for their breakfast fare, however we just couldn't find any!  So after we drove around a bit we were getting too hungry and determined to just pick the first cafe with a free table we could find!

Individual ratings:

Tanya:  4/10
Base: Some sort of supermarket bought multigrain bread.  Disappointing.
Eggs:  Cooked perfectly, I'll give 'em that.
Sauce:  Not terrible, but not nice either.  You can see from the pics above that it was quite thin and watery, and not enough in any case.  It had a mustardy flavour.
Ham:  Not ham, bacon.  Although I thought it wasn't very nice, just not cooked very well.
Price: $15.50
Coffee:  Drinkable, but not great.
Service: Staff were friendly.
Other:  Also served with single stalk of asparagus wrapped in bacon.  Ok, but weird?
Overall comment:  Travelling off the beaten track (ie the CBD) in this case did not produce promising results.  While edible, CV's eggs benny left a lot to be desired.  It was very ho hum.

Lil sis:  3.5/10
Not at all satisfied with the bonus edition of eggs Benny, given it was on Lygon street may have been a mistake as it is renowned for its Italian restaurants. Breakfast needs lots of work! It was on crappola bread and the sauce was runny and there was not enough of it to compliment the dish. Coffee was ok and eggs were cooked well. I’ve had worse!
And how does that look on the benedict-o-meter? Rounded up to 4/10 Benedicts!

Check out my map to see the other eggs benny locations lil sis and I have checked out.

CV's Cafe & Bar on Urbanspoon