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 café 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

24 October 2012


I'm awesome. I must be.  I got me an award.  Ashley from over at Misty Mountain Designs nominated me for the Readers Appreciation Award!  Woooo!! Everybody dance now!!

Anyway, thanks very much Ashely, you're also awesome.  Let's make a club!  Also, I see your memory of My Grandmotherly Ways, and raise you a Geoknitology!

Everybody, go check out and follow Ashley right now, if you know what's good for you!

This award comes with rules, which, to be frank takes a bit of the fun out of getting an award eh? :P  Those rules are:
  1. thank the person that nominated you [check]  (what kind of black hearted person wouldn't do this anyway?)
  2. answer 10 questions.  Well, I'm going to cheat here, becuase these questions look to be about the same as those for the Sunshine Award, and I've answered them here.  So please check that out if you want to know all about my hopes and dreams :3
  3. nominate some other bloggers. 
Ok, Imma try to nominate peeps I haven't before.  But see here, here and here for other cool bloggers whose blogs I really really love.   It doesn't mean I don't love these peeps any less, but I'm just spreading the love ;)

23 October 2012

The hunt for the ultimate Melbourne CBD eggs benedict: Urban Deli

Last week took us to one of those mega cafes that feed the masses of Melbourne.  Urban Deli has ample outside dining and also some space inside for a nice sit down breakfast.

Dining Date: 17 Oct

Location: Urban Deli
121 Exhibition St
Melbourne, VIC 3000
Ph: 03 9662 9003

I forgot to take a pic of the menu, but I promise it was the usual fare.  I'd been to Urban Deli many times for coffee and lunch, but never for Eggs Benny, so it was about time to try it out!

Individual ratings:
Tanya:  5.5/10

Base: Turkish bread.  Nice enough, not too crunchy.
Eggs:  Cooked perfectly.
Sauce:  Nice, but similar to a few we've been too.  I suspect it is premade, but it had an extra little vinegar-y edge to it.  Not terrible, but unusual. 
Ham:  Fine.  You really can't go wrong with ham.
Price: $14ish?
Coffee:  Ok,  nothing to write home about.
Service:  Very good.  Got the sense they were trying to shoo us out quickly after we'd finished our dish.
Overall comment:  A solid offering, but nothing made Urban Deli's EB stand out for me.  Symptomatic I think of the fact that this venue is a fast paced restaurant catering for the take-away crowd.  My only other comment was the choice of artwork on the wall.  I couldn't stop staring at this nipple.  Totally not my fault right? 

Lil sis:  7.5/10
Last week's eggs Benny were pretty yummy! I think it will be hard for any eggs Benny to live up to last week’s dish but I was overall satisfied with my morning breakfast. Eggs were cooked nicely and there was a generous amount of hollandaise which was actually really yummy! The bread was a mini Turkish bread I think which went well with the dish.

And how does that look on the Benedict-o-meter?   6.5/10 Benedicts!

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

Urban Deli on Urbanspoon


Hi.  I've been having a few issues with my commenting system lately.  I was using Disqus because I thought it was trendy and was a clever way of replying to people and interacting and all that jazz.

Anyway, for a bunch of reasons Disqus and I have decided to go our separate ways.  Sorry Disqus, it's not me, it's you. 

Thanks all for leaving lovely comments for me which are now being kept hostage by Disqus.  For now I'm reverting back to the ol' blogger commenting system, which seems to work just fine, albeit in a basic kinda way. 

Does anyone have any suggestions for ways to improve this commenting malarkey?  I know a lot of times I comment on blogs and there's no way I know if there is an answer or not until I re-vist said blog.  That's kinda annoying. 

20 October 2012

Caturday XXXI

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 Kitten makes love to the camera for you.  Meow.

And I have something to show you!  Check out my cute kitty shoes.  A gift from the Lil Sis.  

Got a kitty related post to share?  Fill in the Mr Linky below!

17 October 2012


Blerg!  I'm currently working on many different things to try to relieve some of the WIP guilt I've been feeling. Now is a good a time as any to air out the grievances right?

The things I'm currently trying to get through are:

1.  Sailor's Delight.  Who remembers this one?  I was going gangbusters on this for a while, but got distracted.  It doesn't help that it takes a good 45 minutes to get through one row.  Yep, 45 minutes.  Also, I need to dye more yarn to get it bigger (see white stuff below).  I bought some called 'Americolour' I think.  Anyone used this dye before?

2.  Aran Toggle Wrap.  I was feeling quite positive about this a couple of weeks back (Positive in the sense that I was nearing completion) but haven't touched it since!  I've since received the toggle buttons in the mail (which were a friggin bargain on ebay by the way), so my excuses for shelving this one are running out.  Well, it's nearly Summer and this is not going to be used until next Winter... as good an excuse as any right?

3.  Summer Garden Granny Square Afghan thing.  This is a legacy from when I just started to learn to crochet.  I was smitten with Lucy and wanted to emulate her.  My crochet skills, and taste have since moved on, so this piece is not as alluring to me as it once was.  Plus I made a bunch of squares with way too small a hook and my tension was UBER tight.  Trying to compensate a bit now by distributing those squares throughout the blanket, but this has definitely lost a lot of it's appeal for me.  I've made heaps of progress since I shared this last (like, a billion years ago). 
This is about half the grannies I want to make.
4.  Honey Cowl.  This is nearing completion, and should be done by next week.  Fingers crossed.  This is my commute project, but I've found that I haven't had the energy lately, or rather, I prefer to just stare blankly out the window during my train ride and zone out. 
Can you see my mistake??

5.  Baby things.  A new project!!  Baby is due in January, and I don't want to be rushing the pressie this time.  Added complexities include that I have a long list of requirements for the pattern:  (a) I don't want to do the ripple because I'm sick of it; (b) mum's allergic to wool so must be cotton; (c) need a 4ply pattern; (d) must be something that can be unisex as mum won't tell me if it's a boy or girl; (e) need a pattern that won't be too stiff in the cotton; (f) I want a stitch pattern that's reversible because everything will use the same pattern and I want the blanket to be reversible because I just do ok? Any suggestions?  I'm considering Sue's no holes hexagon baby sweater, or the similar Hexagon baby jacket with ruffles (probably without ruffles) or Aunt Jens sweater or Old fashioned baby sweater set or Twin stitch baby sweater hat and booties or Lacy set to crochet cardigan or baby set cja-babyset.  So because I haven't made up my mind and dont have an appropriate wip pic to show you, you get a picture of the yarn I'll be using.  Green = unisex right?
Actually, it's Honeydew.  Get it right.

Ok... I didn't realise there were so many.  I reiterate, blerg.  And this are only the WIPs that I'm actively trying to progress.  There are others.

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)

15 October 2012

The hunt for the ultimate Melbourne CBD eggs benedict: The European

After a couple of weeks worth of eggs benny at those cheap and nasty cafés, we decided it was time to go a bit more up market.  Plus I received a recommendation from Pris a couple of weeks ago to visit this venue, so didn't need any more persuasion!

Dining date: 10 Oct

Location: The European
161 Spring Street, Melbourne.
Ph: 9654 0811

From the moment you walk through the door you know The European takes food seriously.  Already bustling at 7.30am, with many tables booked.  The whole experience was very pleasant, and the atmosphere was cosy (read: cramped).  They have this weird double door situation going on when you enter though, and it was actually very squishy to get through the door!

Individual ratings

Tanya:  8.5/10

Base: English Muffins!  Mine were a bit on the chewy side though, perhaps over toasted?
Eggs:  Cooked to perfection!
Sauce:  Perfect consistency, generous amount and tasty.  The Eurpoean's sauce is one of the lemony variations.  If I had to fault it, I would say it could use a bit more of a punch, but that criticism comes at a stretch.
Ham:  The highlight of the dish for me.  I think I could have gotten a whole plate of ham and would have been happy.
Price:  $18.00
Coffee:  Very good.
Service:  Excellent.  Very friendly.
Overall comment: One of the best I've had so far. I haven't rated this higher simply because the memory of the chewy English muffin is holding me back slighlty.  Alhthough lil sis doesn't share my thoughts on this point.

Lil sis:  9.25/10

Yum yum yum, last week we had a most delectable Eggs Benny. They were on the traditional English muffin, eggs cooked perfectly, the ham was as it should be and there was a generous amount of sauce which was also a good consistency. Although we were at a super fancy over priced café I think this might be the best Eggs Benny we have found on our journey. The service was excellent but the fanciness of the café isn’t really where I feel at home. Breakfast was served in a bowl?!?! The entry doors were also stupid however it’s all about the Eggs Benny and I would defiantly go back to the European again.

And how does that look on the benedict-o-meter?  Rounded up to 9/10 Benedicts!  The definite standout and new front runner on the Eggs Benny Leaderboard!

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

The European on Urbanspoon

[sorry for the repost peeps, I think I deleted the original somehow -_-]

13 October 2012

Caturday XXX

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

Today, insta-kitten!  Yepyep, now I have my new trendy phone I get to play with Instagram.  I didn't get the appeal previously, but now I am super hooked!  It's much more convenient to snap The Kitten using my phone which is usually within reach.  I'm 'omlair' if you'd like to follow me :D  Expect many pictures of The Kitten!

Got a kitty related post to share? Fill in the Mr Linky below!

12 October 2012


When you get a new gadget, are you like me and totally covet and swoon over it?  I do.  I just got myself a new phone.  Getting a new phone is a Big Deal for me.  I was going to have to be commited to this new piece of technology for Two Years.  I previously had a little Blackberry (the only thing it had going for it was that it was purple), and the amount of things I couldn't do with it was getting ridiculous.  I didn't want an iphone, because Apple.  (Also, googling to find an appropriate 'evil Apple' link I found this.  Now I wish I got a Nokia E70!! I love you internet)

Anyway, I've now commited myself to a Samsung Galaxy S3(It's designed for humans - can you say the same about the iphone?  hmmm?)  I'm very pleased.  It does lots of fancy things.  I can finally play Angry Birds.  I can use Instagram.  Words with Friends!  All the things that you've probably been doing for the last couple of years are finally at my fingertips. 

Anyway back to the coveting part.  Now that I had this new shiny toy, I needed to protect it!!  My precioussss!  I'm super paranoid about the screen getting damaged etc.  So, enter my mad crochet skillz and exit my resulting amazing tapestry crochet phone case

If you want to make one, it's pretty simple.  I used some generic DK acrylic yarn from a chain store and a 4mm hook.

Using two colours, ch 17 with both strands. 
Row 1:  dc into second ch from hook and next 2 ch using first colour, change colours* and dc into next 3 chs using second colour.  Keep doing this (3 dc in each alternating colour), and when you get to the last ch, dc 3 with colour 2 and then 1 dc with colour 1 (so putting 4 dc into the last ch).  Rotate your work and dc down the other side of the chain, continuing 3 dc of each colour.  When you get back to the first ch, dc 2 in colour 2, then dc 1 in that same colour on top of the first st of row 1.  You should have had to change colours 12 times (ie you will aave 12 stripes). 

Row 2 and all subsequent rows:  continue pattern of 3 dc in each alternating colour around in a spiral until your phone case is the desired length.

Once you've got it the size you want, choose one of your colours and sl st around the top.  This will prevent the opening from stretching out and will help it look finished.  Weave in your ends!

* if you don't know how to change colours this might help.  Essentially when drawing through your last loop of the dc you use the colour you are changing to.

Hopefully this chart might help out.  The most difficult thing I found was getting the foundation chain the right number so my stripes were even!

Now, at the end my phone case was a bit snug for my phone, so I crammed a piece of cardboard inside to stretch it out and steam blocked it, seeing as I used acrylic yarn.  It worked perfectly!  If you use wool blocking will do much more wonderous things for you, so it might stretch out a bit more.

Do let me know if you make one for electronic gadgets! 

Also, this pattern is now on Ravelry 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

11 October 2012

yarn p0rn

Hazel from Hazel's Crochet recently had a giveaway for her blogiversary!  And wouldn't you know it, I won!  And what did I win?? 
Stop drooling! 
Congrats to Hazel on a year of blogging and thank you so so much for your generosity!  Look at the colour!  Absolutely stunning!  This is the most luxurious yarn I've ever had the pleasure of fondling.  For now I will be doing just that (fondling) as I just don't have any capacity for a new project right now.  This yarn is definitely calling out to be seen and felt against the skin, so I'm thinking a cowl or shawlette.  Here are all the patterns in my favourites that might suit this type and amount of yarn.  I really like Brandywine, Magrathea and Travelling Woman, but I'll need to level up my knitting skills before attempting.  I also thing something like Euro cowl would really allow the yarn to speak for itself.  Do you have any suggestions?

I love love love thinking about pattern possibilities!   It's just that... so many patterns, so little time!  AmIright or AmIright? 

That reminds me that my 2nd blogiversary is coming up in January.  I might just have to pass my good fortune forward.  What should I do?  Yarn giveaways are pretty delicious, so I might just have to copy Hazel :)