A blogging mama meet-up. A while back I wrote about meeting some blogging friends in person for the first time. Well, we did it again, but this time there were seven of us. The photo above is what Mr. T came up with when I asked him to use my camera to take a picture of us lined-up mamas. That’s the back of my head–guess the boy likes close-ups. Tara.mama.wendy’s Finn got a much better one. Maya of Urban Organica did a fun write-up of the day. And Amy of Diary of a Domestic Animal wrote a musing that made me teary. I’m still amazed at how you can find kindred souls via computers. And I’m still feeling the magic of the day.
making mozzarella. Ever since reading Animal, Vegetable, Miracle, I’ve wanted to try making my own fresh mozzarella. I finally got a cheesemaking kit, and have made two batches. I’m still learning and tweaking, but it’s been fun! Good, local organic milk seems to be key. I’ve used full-fat milk in both batches, but I’m going to try lowfat for my next batch; the locally-made mozzarella that I like tastes like it’s from part-skim milk. And while our tomatoes haven’t gone gangbusters this year–note to self: plant favas and amend soil–we’ve had a steady stream. Perfect with homemade mozz.
new books. Spunk and Bite: A Writer’s Guide to Bold, Contemporary Style, by Arthur Plotnik is very naughtily tempting me away from my essayist for this month, M.F.K Fisher. The book was recommended by my writing friend Carolyn, after reading my E.B. White post, and the comments on Strunk and White’s Elements of Style. Spunk and Bite is the antidote to all the confining rules of Strunk and White. Here’s a quote, showing Plotnik’s response to a quote by White: “Stick to the standard, White decreed, because ‘by the time this paragraph sees print, uptight, ripoff, rap, dude, vibe, copout, and funky will be the words of yesteryear’. That was some thirty years ago–and, dude, those words are still very much around.” Funny. The whole book is written with that kind of wit. Good writing advice that takes its own advice.
making kombucha. Now I’m really going to be accused of going off the deep end of the earth mama pool. But I’ve developed a craving for the stuff. I’ve always been a vinegar fiend, and kombucha is vinegary, fizzy and thirst-quenching. Plus there are lots of purported health benefits, which you can read about online, or in books like Nourishing Traditions. But at $3 and up per bottle, I thought I’d try to make my own. You need a kombucha “mother” to start a batch, which means you need a friend with a working batch, or you can buy one (fairly expensively) online. I’m trying to start my own mother, using a store-bought bottle and this recipe from Paprika. I started mine on 8/25, and it’s just about ready for brewing a first batch. Of course, I think it’s developed especially well over the last few days, because my jar got a new cover. Isn’t it exquisite? It was crocheted by Molly, using thread from her husband’s grandmother. Looking at every tiny stitch in its pattern, I’m awed by the artistry and the fact that it’s been gifted to me. It’s really far too beautiful to be on a jar of kombucha; look at how pretty it looks on Molly’s pitcher. Then again, I kinda like having it over my pet project. Like I told Molly, it’s sorta perfect, resting over something that’s alive and growing and changing–like friendship.
knitting progress. This one’s coming along much faster than my sweater coat. One sleeve almost finished, one more to go. It’s in linen and cotton–perfect for the Indian summer weather we’re having, and I want to wear it now! My version is a bastardization of two patterns. Details here for you Ravelers.
So tell me, what has you all atwitter?