Thursday, June 28, 2007

Sunday, June 24, 2007

New Stuff

A package? Must be French.
It's a table! (Specifically, an industrial steel-framed, 1-1/2" butcher-block food prep table).

"It literally Triples our work space!" Paul says.

New Work Surface, originally uploaded by apkoski.

We ordered this little number just before we began investing in Mr. G's chin (which we're cautiously proud to say is finally healing). Eating bean burritos and peanut butter sandwiches for a couple months is worth it!

Thursday, June 21, 2007


Hooray!, originally uploaded by apkoski.

Sorry for my absence. I brought a note, forged the signature: been thesis writing. This is the 'break' week between spring and summer term, so I figured it was my chance to get stuff done while nothing is being expected of me. Next week it's back to analyzing data. Anyone know how to do a linear regression?

In the mean time, production of anything creative has all but ground to a halt. I have managed to make a couple baby gift sets, and do a few utilitarian tasks such as hemming jeans and altering a skirt.

Hey, think anybody would be interested in a tutorial on how to hem jeans without making them look hemmed & dorky? If I find time, I may put one together - the www. is virtual (or is it 'virtually') free information, after all! This is the enticing "before" photo.


Thursday, June 14, 2007

Summer Preview

Pops In A Tray, originally uploaded by apkoski.

Check out "All Songs Considered" for some summer listening recommendations (now in the Archives, left sidebar).

Also, mark your calendars: come help us paint the house starting on July 14th -- or you could just have fun helping us select colors.
Pick Colors: click "Start Color Smart." We like the green family.
Paint the House: Click "Launch Color Visualizer." Ranch may be as accurate as we can get. Here's the house.

More in music: we were honored to be e-vited to a Pandora Get-together to talk about the Music Genome Project. It's next Wednesday @ 7 PM at Disjecta, 5 SE 3rd Ave (at Burnside - just off the Burnside Bridge). I think all local subscribers were invited, & it has to do with 'free' feedback, but hey, I still feel honored!


Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Dun, mostly

Hey, hey, I finally did it. Yesterday I took my last final - my final final - my grand finale final! Tonight we drink! -At our local Delta Cafe starting @ 8:00, & you're all invited.

We'llll scheeee you ther-rre!!!! Yeaaaaaaaah!
OMG, I sthated waaaaay tooooooo early -hee, hee, hee, hee. Sthupid PBR. I schould know to stayd awaysh after my dadth gafe me a sip in my tupperware cuppy when I was weee (shhhh, I don't think you're supposedth to know thhhat).

This is my first Leafletter completion. I figure I owe it to them to finish at least one, since I bitched and moaned -- I mean, provided feedback about the color palette usability. Of course I blamed it on my non-atypical short-term memory problems instead of their lackluster interface. But heck, it's a Beta program (tool, software -- what do you call those?), so I don't feel so bad. They LIKE feedback!

Sunday, June 10, 2007


Boy, last week sure went fast!

I finished a bag (boho or hobo? Please fill me in after I post more pix).
I warmed up my new 1" bias tape maker and love it! The thing is a luxury, but making bias tape the old fashioned way was such a pain.

THat's My Bag Baby, originally uploaded by apkoski.

Saturday Paul & I ran the Helvetia Half Marathon available here on this very cool results page. Turns out he and I about equally above average in our respective divisions. Little fish, big pond. Another (selfish) reason I miss MS. Sigh.

I'm preparing for my final final in my PSU Grad program (besides the little Thesis thing). Test is on Tuesday. Drinks are on Wednesday. ;)

Paul & I bottled another case of beer after the race Sat., 5 gallons of malty porter-like stuff. We tasted his previously bottled batch on Friday, and are absolutely loving it! It must be shared.
The Great Gatsby saga drags on, so I'm getting better at creating kitty collars (a new use for Timtex). I might be able to market them by the time this chin thing goes away.

Oh, and I made the regular Sunday Granola and tried a batch of Lime Cookies from Everybody Likes Sandwiches, a-la How about Orange. They're shortbread cookies with a lime zest/sugar topping. I also topping some with lemon frosting + zest/sugar, but they're a little too sweet.
Thanks guys -- er, girls, I think. There are bunches more food blogs and recipes links on their pages. On the topic, I must again plug the Washington Farmer's Market Lifestyle & Blog happenin' in my hometown of Washington, Iowa; for the purpose of sharing low-mileage/local, garden, organic, or simple foods and recipes, and/or sharing new sources of locally grown foods.-A

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Year of the Cat

Exhibit A:
Exhibit B:
Exhibit C:

Which one worked? Ask me in a week (& cross your fingers for him!).


Monday, June 04, 2007

Giant Sucking Sound

That is the sound of Gatsby's kitty acne reaching ridiculous proportions. Topical ointments, oral antibiotics, special soap, food trials, and a particular accoutrement have all been applied. If it doesn't go away, the vet wants to sedate him and get a biopsy. It's ACNE, for crying out loud! Granted, he's scratched away the fur & skin...
That blue thing is a version of the e-collar, traditionally known as the Elizabethan Collar. For Mr. G, it also doubles as a poncho, parachute, and if flipped up in traditional E-C fashion, a food trough. Anyway, that was our Saturday. When we weren't preoccupied with re-shuffling our finances and calming our traumatized cat, Paul & I spent a lot of time outside -- more specifically, enjoying ourselves and each others' company outside. I think that spot under the Pergola is my new favorite room. Last summer, the idea of sitting on the fmr. deck in the exact same spot just wasn't of interest to us. This past Saturday we sat out until the streetlights came on, about 9:30. Paul smoked a cigar, for no reason this time, and I sipped a Margarita.
The location is still a work in progress. We'd like to add a table, Paul would like a petite smoker/grill, and maybe a couple nice lawn chairs - for company -- and I really like the idea of hanging lights of some sort, maybe like this, this, or this. "When's the party," you ask? Soon, soon.Saturday after lunch, we also did a Home Depot trip where we got an axe, push-broom, a couple plants, and some paint (I know, exciting). Then, out we went. Paul seeded & watered the lawn, and I planted the flowers, pulled weeds, turned the sod pile - which is actually composing, hallelujah. Then our neighbor's daughter brought over some garden-raised rhubarb cake (just the rhubarb, smart-asses). I felt like we were living in a Norman Rockwell home, other than the kitty.

In other news, Friday was my last official data gathering appointment for my thesis. It took just over a month, but now I'm done with that! I was aiming for approx. (I love that word right now) 25 subjects, managed to schedule 28, of which 22 actually showed up to completed the workouts.
Pictured below is part of the contraption that was used to gather Oxygen uptake data. The Hans Rudolph one-way ventilation mask, complete with a 'saliva collector' (beneath my thumb), hooks up to a tube that connects to a gas exchange box. That thingamabob tells me how much of the oxygen that the person breathed in (21 %) is used, and exits as CO2 instead of O2. The fitter you are, the less O2 comes back out. It's an efficiency thing. Anyway, I digress. I like to describe the contraption below as a scuba mask/orthodontia headgear combo; and no, you won't suffocate.

AND Finally, Friday our Sodium Chloride Containment Unit arrived from Alton Brown himself. (Well, I guess his signature could have been printed.) We have been looking for something like the SCCU it in cooking stores for literally years! I guess it never occurred to either of us to check with the guy who originally tipped us off to its existence. Anyway, even though it's a little bigger than we anticipated, we are very satisfied with it (see the picture on the left-hand side; that's a glass dish in a stainless frame, with a little thumb lever lid lifter) - anything beats that darn tupperware box. Don't forget to toss some over your left shoulder.
Parenthetically speaking,