lwood: (Default)
Late last night, I was in the Safeway nearest [livejournal.com profile] dpaxson's house, wondering what to make for tonight's meeting. I knew it would be soup (it's Soup Weather), but I was teetering between split pea and lentil...when I saw it, peeking out at me from the shelf.

Oh, what, WHAT did she see? If you don't click, you'll never know! )
lwood: (Default)
The 66/33 candle (D from the previous post) self-extinguished overnight, as it had in the past.

The others all looked fine this morning, but by now, not quite twenty-four hours in, the 80/20 candle (C) is starting to labor: all the same symptoms as D had on its way out, only coming on much more slowly: smaller/dimmer/redder flame with some soot from incompletely burned fuel collecting on the glass, so I suspect it will self-extinguish before it exhausts all available fuel. Therefore, [livejournal.com profile] latzoni, I wouldn't recommend this to you. 8-)

The 90/10 candle (B) looks completely normal, until you compare it to its neighbor, the 100% beeswax (A). Then, and only then, can one observe a slightly smaller and dimmer flame, but it's not laboring or smoking like C.

A and Z are zipping along cheerfully--both flames have large, bright tongues and show every indication of normal fuel consumption. As yet, neither glass has shown any signs of breakage. However, the paraffin I broke in the past didn't crack until it was well past halfway through its burn; that's likely when the beeswax will break its glass, if it does.

Dangit, I wish someone made borosilicate glass in an acceptable cylinder--then it would be full beeswax ahead, and Maxwell's daemon take the hindmost!

-- Lorrie
lwood: (troll)
All righty, folks, as in the previous post, I'm getting rid of all my old gaming books, free to good homes. While that post dealt with White Wolf materials, this has Everything Else: Fading Suns, Legend of the Five Rings, Deadlands, and Dungeons and Dragons 3.0.

Same rules apply as in the previous post:

  • Everything unclaimed by Monday, 1 February 2010, goes to [livejournal.com profile] norsebiker43.

  • Comments are initially screened.

  • The books are leaving my house Monday 1 February 2010, period-space-the-end. Priority Mail, Media Mail, your doorstep, whatever it takes.

  • I abhor PayPal, but I'll take it if I must through [livejournal.com profile] countgeiger. I want nothing for the books; you only pay postage.

  • All decisions are by My Imperial Fiat, yet also subject to My Divine Whimsy.

  • If I accidentally borrowed a listed book from you, and you want it back, I will send it immediately: my cost, my apologies, the only questions asked are those that trigger my faulty memory.

Okay? Let's go!

A Cut for Those Who Couldn't Care Less )

Thanks for helping me find good homes for good books!

-- Lorrie
lwood: (troll)
Hello, folks! We're trying to clean out a bookshelf or two here at the old Snug Harbor. Today's target: role-playing game books.

[livejournal.com profile] countgeiger and I have been gamers, off and on, for most of our adult lives. However, neither of us really do tabletop anymore. Thus, we have a certain surplus of books in a couple old systems--books that we don't think will be worth our time to eBay or hand over to a thrift store. If we have no takers, and Games of Berkeley won't buy used sourcebooks in decent condition, then they're getting...pulped. Which, personally, I hate to do to any book, so I'm making this last-ditch effort to get them to good homes.

This first post will contain our White Wolf books, all of which are old-World of Darkness (there's a couple surprises in there, like Hōl). Subsequent posts will handle other publishers. All books are in good condition (if dusty), and unless otherwise noted are trade paperbacks. If you're in the Bay Area, you can have it for free. If you're not, all I ask is that you pay $5 to cover US Priority Mail postage, or rather less if you're willing to wait for Media Mail's faithful snail to arrive. As for payment method, probably PayPal to [livejournal.com profile] countgeiger will work best, but we can talk.

Comments will be screened so you can put your mailing address therein. Even if you live in the Bay Area, you may want me to go on and send it to you.

Last, it may well be that these books aren't actually mine, but yours, Gentle Reader. If so, I will return it to you for the asking, no questions asked, no postage charged, but assuredly with my apologies.

Let's go! )

Thanks for helping good books find good homes!

-- Lorrie
lwood: (Default)
Some days, you can't get the Catholic out of the girl...because dangit, if you want me to sling mojo/fling woo/etc at someone (or ones...) for an extended period of time, I'm lighting a candle, so that every time I go by I remember and send another packet of Good Thoughts.

But what gnaws at me are these perfectly good classes I'm leaving in a trail behind me, and the fact that I was using paraffin candles--when I'm trying to pull away both from non-durable plastics and reduce my waste.

So, what would happen if I refilled these with molten wax and new wicks?

And what did we learn today? )

I have one filled seven-day glass (yer bog-standard church candle), a half-height but otherwise identical-seeming glass, and a third glass that looks like some sort of double shot/on the rocks/etc glass. All have previously held candles (two paraffin, one soft soy, respectively). We'll see how they do on this blend, provided by the fine folks at Juniper Tree here in Berkeley. I've lit the seven-day and will see how that goes.

No marriage were harmed in the making of these candles--remember, kids, Drano can help you make your saving throw!

-- Lorrie
lwood: (falcon)
Right, so, among my New Year's Firm Plans, I wrote, "Brew at least three meads this year, at least one of which is dedicated to a god."

I admit, that was kind of a low-ball resolution (there are ones on there that will, in fact, be quite hard for me). But let's chat that up a moment and throw some plans around...

First, start another simple mead... )Thor )Then there's Odin. )Frigg has a plum melomel already, but it may need a do-over. )And now another suggestion for the queue... )And that's my current brewery ramblings. Discuss.

-- Lorrie

It's Done

Jan. 15th, 2010 05:17 pm
lwood: (falcon)
"I have a Friend who wants to meet you. She's very fond of golden kitties and has infinite catnip."

After that, we said good-bye, and [livejournal.com profile] countgeiger sent her on her way. We shrouded her in linen, wrapping catgrass and catnip in with her.

Once we buried her, I planted more of each on top...for Sigdrifa, for George, and for all the cats in that yard, for there are by now quite a few.

Then we went home.

-- Lorrie
lwood: (falcon)
A year and a half ago, two days before Greyhaven's midsummer Charlie Party, my favorite cat, George, went from being merely hyperthyroid to active, acute, renal failure.

We chose to euthanize, and the morning of the Charlie Party, I buried him in [livejournal.com profile] dpaxson's front yard.

Tomorrow is the Odin Party.

Yesterday, Sigdrifa spent eighteen hours hiding in a closet. When we finally found her and hauled her out, she was lethargic, staggering, with little control of her hindquarters. She hadn't been eating (we realized when we compared notes) and last night refused water as well.

Today, a diagnosis: diabetes mellitus, with a secondary complication of hepatic lipidosis. Absent the Greek and Latin, that means that if we chose to treat, it's several days of hospitalization, followed by several weeks of a feeding tube, force-feeding her through a tube until her liver came back online, which will be at least three weeks. After that, twice-daily insulin injections for the rest of her life, to a being to whom I cannot explain why we haul her out of hidey holes and jab her with pointy things.

We have chosen to euthanize. Today, or tomorrow, I plant another cat in [livejournal.com profile] dpaxson's front yard.

Wibble, on her part, littermate to George, is elderly (16 1/2) but spry: hyperthyroid is under control with twice-daily oral meds that she doesn't like, but does tolerate. The raw diet we put both cats on a few months ago, plus the hormone therapy, is doing wonders: she's gained weight back and has a lovely silky coat.

[livejournal.com profile] purplevenus is on her way, we're gonna blubber on each other for awhile, and then do what [livejournal.com profile] countgeiger and I have to believe is the right thing by Sigdrifa.

Using six-year-olds' logic, Greyhaven parties are bad for my cats.

-- Lorrie
lwood: (hrafnar logo)
Because I'll be spending much of today packing, but still wanted to get something really nice in for Hrafnar Yule, and I wanted a good vegetarian entrée for the delectable [livejournal.com profile] purplevenus, this is what I've come up with. In the medieval fashion, I like it when sweet and savory are cozy with each other, as they are here.

If you can't find purple barley, you can substitute ordinary hulled (but not pearl) barley, or other whole cereal grains, such as wheat, rye, or brown rice.

Non-Boring, Non-Bland Barley

5clow sodium vegetable broth (as 4 c + 1 c)
1ozdried porcini mushrooms
1/2c(1 stick) unsalted butter
1lbPurple Prairie Barley
2mdred onions, diced to 1/2" cubes
3clovesgarlic, minced or pressed
  salt and fresh-ground pepper
1/2teach of thyme, savory, and sage
3 freshly ground allspice berries
1/2-1cslivered almonds or other nuts (optional)
1/2-1cdried fruit (raisins, cherries, blueberries, cranberries, etc) (optional)


Bring the broth to a boil, and add the dried mushrooms. Once they have rehydrated, cut into bite-sized pieces, if necessary.

While the mushrooms are rehydrating, melt the butter in a generously sized Dutch oven over medium heat. Once the butter has melted, bubbled, and is just beginning to brown, add the barley and cook, stirring frequently, until it starts to "pop" and smells slightly toasted. Add the onion and a generous punch of salt and continue to cook, stirring frequently, until the onion has softened and begun to grow translucent, another five minutes.

Stir in the garlic and herbs (but not the bay leaves), stirring constantly until fragrant.

Add about a cup of the broth, and scrape to remove anything that may have stuck to the bottom of the pan. Add the remaining broth (with mushrooms) and the bay leaves.

Increase heat to high and bring to a boil, then reduce heat to simmer and cover. Simmer, covered, stirring occasionally, until barley is cooked, about 45 minutes. Just before serving, garnish with dried fruit and nuts.
lwood: (Default)
Tonight's the Seidhjallr meeting, and traditionally whoever hosts provides an entree, and everyone else brings sides.

It's frickin' freezing here in Normally Sunny California, all the more so because a lot of houses have inadequate heating, e.g. my apartment. So--soup of the evening! Beautiful soup! Soup that can boil awhile and warm my apartment despite its inadequate heating!

Tonight, the Soup of the Evening is Pea Soup, modified slightly off that served at the long-time cult favorite road trip restaurant, Split Pea Andersen's. Served alongside will be the third of the two loaves of Finnish sourdough rye I made Saturday.

Yes, third of two.

Oh, and some German mustard and Tillamook sharp cheddar cheese.

This recipe yields rather a lot--the usual recipe involves two quarts of water and one pound of peas; me, I'm feeding five and intend to schlurp on the leftovers until I leave town on Thursday, so I went pound-and-a-half. Happily, a local Good Grocery Store has bounteous bulk bins...

1.5cgreen split peas, sorted and rinsed
3qtlow-sodium vegetable broth*
1 medium onion, coarsely chopped
2 medium carrots, coarsely chopped
2 ribs celery, coarsely chopped
1 ham shank, including the bone, cut into 4-6 large pieces
2pinchescayenne pepper
1/2tdried thyme
3mdbay leaves
  salt and black pepper to taste


Sort and rinse peas. Add all ingredients to large Dutch oven and bring to a boil. Boil for twenty minutes, or until peas are cooked through, then reduce to a simmer. Fish out bay leaves and discard. Fish out ham shank, discard bone and dice meat.

Purée soup by any means necessary: food mill, sieve, blender, or so on. I like stick blender, myself, and I don't run my soup to baby food, either.

Serve immediately with diced ham, rye bread, rye crackers, cheese, and, apparently, mustard.

* - In the original, this is water.
- The original soup is vegan.


-- Lorrie
lwood: (Default)
The previously mentioned loaves were successfully proofed, and rose well.

Until....Read more... )
lwood: (Default)
Having studied the sourdough methods of both the Exploratorium and that of Rose Levy Beranbaum (who graciously allowed Epicurious to use her methods in their bread primer), I wondered:

How could this be rye? I mean, a strong rye flavor. I'm talking "plowman of the Polish prairies" kind of thing.

Read more... )
lwood: (hrafnar logo)
This is the recipe for the soup I served at last night's Hrafnar. I modified it slightly from this one, which itself is a copy of this recipe, published in the now-defunct Gourmet magazine in November 1996.

The significant changes were to use butternut squash purée instead of pumpkin, and vegetable broth instead of beef broth--one of our irregular attendees is a vegetarian who cannot have pumpkins-as-such for religious reasons. As one may freely substitute the winter squashes for each other in most cases, this didn't present a significant challenge.

Recipe behind a cut )
lwood: (Default)
Here's a link from Snopes describing all the national chains that are offering free food to veterans over the weekend and on into Veterans Day proper on Wednesday:


Sidebar: Outback (one of the listed players) donated in support of Proposition 8. Me, I'd just go, eat the freebies, and leave, but I don't qualify...

-- Lorrie
lwood: (Default)
...it's like [livejournal.com profile] dr_beowulf tells his students in his day job in Darkest Arkansas:

"If there IS an Intelligent Designer, he's a complete pervert."

Warning: Animal sexual congress described with words that are not necessarily Safe for Work, but there are no graphical depictions of naughtybits anywhere.

Bonus points for: Mentioning Captain Jack Harkness as one of the very few things more "sexually versatile" than dolphins.

Thanks, [livejournal.com profile] tanrinia!

-- Lorrie
lwood: (Default)
Well, okay, medium crickets weren't the problem.

He really was working up to holy-crap-another-molt.

This morning, I found that he'd dug out, and webbed down, a concave saucer in his container. He's on his back now, working through a process that sheds not just his skin, but also his teeth and lungs.

Bugs is weird.

-- Lorrie
lwood: (Default)
Once back from my trip, I threw a "medium" cricket into Milo's larger box.

Not only did he not eat it, but the cricket molted before weakly hopping about a few days more.

I've put Milo back in the smaller box, with small crickets. However, as he hasn't eaten these yet, either, perhaps this was premature, and he is refusing food as a preparation to molt--again! Yay!

We'll see what happens...

-- Lorrie


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