Wednesday, February 27, 2013

4//2013 AMOK

Awesomeness. That is all.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

3//2013 Quickie desserts

I am always on the look-out for "quick" recipes - something tasty that can be whipped up with minimal time and effort. This tendency makes even more sense when there's a demanding newborn around, and just this week I've found a couple of delicious chocolatey recipes that were (relatively) quick and easy.
Celebration choccie roll
The first is Smitten Kitchen's heavenly chocolate cake roll. It has no flour, but, with 8 eggs, it had a really wonderful light texture yet was incredibly rich and filling, especially with the delicious whipped cream. I made this cake during the week to celebrate some good news Simon received - that he is to be a recipient of a Junior Faculty Award - a wonderful recognition of his very hard work. Donnacha and I are super proud!
Gooey nutella raspberry cakes
The second followed an exciting discovery of a lovely Australian blog, eat, little bird. Recipes that include nutella are like shiny things to my magpie brain and I knew I had to make these gooey chocolate cakes with raspberry and nutella as soon as I saw them. The fact that they did not turn out incredible was entirely my own fault - I ran out of flour and included some Bob's Red Mills gluten-free flour mix (only 40g, of 100g), which I had due to a half-hearted gluten-free kick I've been on. Huge mistake - the flavor completely dominated (though my kind visitors said they did not notice). I will definitely make them again, with no substitutions!

Saturday, February 9, 2013

2//2013 Before and after

Not much is getting done around here these days, seeing as my craft table is otherwise occupied. But the smiles make it all worth it!

Monday, January 28, 2013

1//2013 He is here.

Well, he's actually been here for 5 weeks at this point - he's grown quite a bit and lost a lot of hair since this photo was taken. I never imagined the time would go by so quickly, though we do little more than eat, sleep and change nappies (diapers). We are incredibly lucky to have a very chilled little fella who rarely makes a fuss. His mum and dad are completely and utterly in love.

Stripey puerperium
Donnacha was a bigun... 9lbs 11oz, almost 22inches tall, and was too big for many of his clothes from the start. Thankfully all the things I made for him still fit, though I need to get to work on more! The mammy-made object I've been happiest with is the puerperium cardigan, knit with Madelinetosh Tosh Merino DK (in denim and candlewick). Both the pattern and the wool are a joy - I'm going to cast on a larger size as soon as I have a chance! I'll make the next one stripey too; just like babies, I love stripes!

Sunday, November 25, 2012

8.5 months

8.5 month bump
Well, here I am, 8 and a half months pregnant. So many trips and photos and projects and edible things happened over the past 8.5 months but I haven't gotten around to recording them here yet... Anon, anon.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012


(Photo: Reuters/Gary He, via The Atlantic)

We emerged from Hurricane Sandy completely and utterly unscathed, so to say we consider ourselves incredibly lucky is an understatement. I thought this piece nicely captured New York after Sandy - we live in the completely normal part, up on our hill in the Heights, where the worst we experienced was the roof creaking ominously over our heads while the winds and rising waters wreaked havoc elsewhere in the city.

Today, like yesterday, we're working from home in our pyjamas, but it's hard not to be distracted by the stories and the photographs (also here and here), which bring a lump to my throat. lucky.

Thursday, July 19, 2012


We've had plenty of visitors lately, providing us with ample excuse to walk the city and to visit the The High Line - the best place in the city to catch a breeze and a few snaps in this interminable heat! From the Highline, on a breezy cool evening Skytower Shadowtower

Thursday, July 12, 2012


peach cobbler... mmmm This peach cobbler was a delicious way to use up our ~3lbs of CSA peaches! The ginger made it particularly yummy!

Saturday, June 16, 2012

a day in the sun

We ate cheese, walked by the river, had a little pick-er-nick and did some knitting (me) MIT OpenCourseWare (him), bought some more cheese, and walked home. What a glorious day! pickernick! Sun knitting! under the bridge Harlem fountain

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Adventures in CSA-ing: Episode 1

Today we collected our first batch of fruit and veg from our local CSA (Community Supported Agriculture). I even volunteered at the stand! And contrary to expectations, it wasn't all swiss chard! We got: a small bag of snow peas (mangetout), a bunch of kale, a bunch of the most amazing rocket/arugula I've ever tasted, a bunch of swiss chard (of course), a head of lettuce, a bunch of spring onions, a little pot of planted coriander/cilantro and chives, 3 garlic scapes and a large punnet of incredibly tasty strawberries. Stwawbewwies! Of all of that, the garlic scapes were the one thing I had never come across before. Garlic Scrapes A quick google led me to a pesto recipe and another to one that combined both the scapes and the arugula. All in the bowl Super easy. Garlic Scrap and Rocket Pesto And super tasty. I just cooked up some fusilli and stirred the pesto in. We ate it with the mangetout, blanched and tossed in butter, lemon zest, salt and pepper. Yum. Dinner! A quick search of smitten kitchen also led me to this very quick and easy strawberry cake. Did I mention yum? mmmmm Jammy Did I say yum?! All in all, a pretty successful first CSA share I think. Well, as long as I come up with something to do with that swiss chard!

Sunday, June 3, 2012


Two steps forward, three steps back. I think I've written before that this is the nature of my crafting progression, and it's still true. Whether it's failing to read/follow a knitting pattern exactly and having to frog back, or not thinking ahead when it came to piecing fabric strips for a quilt (both of these happened in the past few days), progress is sometimes painfully slow. But, progress is progress, and I've finally made some head way on some things I've been meaning to do for a while.
Finished "New Wave" quilt top
The top of a long long long overdue wedding quilt is now pieced! The pattern is Elizabeth Hartman's New Wave quilt. And this was where I did not think ahead when I was piecing.
An error of not-thinking-ahead
Resulting in much cursing and ripping.
Undo undo...
The other two small projects were pencil rolls (from Last-Minute Patchwork+Quilted Gifts). I'm pretty pleased at how they turned out, despite additive inaccuracies in the fabric piecing. The pencils are from Jolly, and I got them here.
Bright Jolly pencils!
Reds and yellows
Pencil pockets
Pretty pencil roll
Cord roll
So, onwards I go! There have been a lot of babies recently, so I need to get back on the baby quilt wagon. I'm thinking simple square quilts. Fast and easy. Famous last words I'm sure. There's also this shawl, that I intended to give to a friend before her wedding last June!! "Better late than never" has become my mantra!

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Pancake Tuesday!

Pancake Tuesday!
Buckwheat pancakes (this recipe) filled with prawns and a sauce based on the Jamie Oliver's fish pie. Yum!
Buckwheat pancake with Cadbury's!
I filled the leftover pancakes with Cadbury's milk chocolate (for Simon) and Nutella (for me)! Double yum!

Friday, February 17, 2012

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

How we do Valentine's

Romantic Valentines in the bodega!
My wonderfully funny and dramatic husband...
my valentine's bunch :)
..and my favorite kind of bunch.

Monday, February 13, 2012


I've already fallen far, far behind on the #FEBphotoaday challenge. Ah well.
words... #febphotoaday, a day late!
I had originally taken the above photo to match the keyword "words." It's my favorite cookbook, the Avoca Café Cookbook, the pages of which are crumpled and stuck together with splashes of soup and sauce and the like. I was going to match this with a post on my cookbook obsession/compulsion, but I think I'll save that for another day, and, instead, return to Simon's accursed knitted jumper (sweater).

The idea for this jumper started here, with Flint knit's wonderful retro hockey sweater. Simon likes plain, unadorned styles, so the Elizabeth Zimmerman Seamless Hybrid pattern seemed perfect. So, about 2 years ago, I ordered several skeins of Malabrigo worsted in azul profundo. Finally, last October, I cast on.

I decided to include a "secret message" for Simon on the inside of the bottom hem, á la Fricknits, and set about making the pattern using this site.
Between spelling errors (I can't spell "shiny," apparently), and the fact that I had never done color work before, it took me a while to get the hem right, but eventually I did my row of purl and started working my way up the body.

Even though I made good progress on the body and arms, I didn't manage to get the jumper done in time for Christmas, so I took it home to work on over the break. At one point, I absentmindedly put the knitted body, still on the needles, on my dresser top, only to later discover that I had laid it on top of an oil burner. When I picked it up again, it had managed to soak up a large quantity of paraffin oil, and it stank! The only thing to do was soak it, repeatedly, in detergent... Eventually, the smell shifted, but I was left with a semi-felted body. :(

I soldiered on. I think that most people find this pattern easy, but I have to say, I found it very difficult. The yoke was a three-steps-forward-two-steps-back affair. I initially tried the standard neck-back, only to have to rip it back (along with one of the shoulders). After coming across Brooklyn Tweed's post on the Seamless Hybrid, I decided to go for the Shirt Yoke and am very happy that I did.

Next came the neck. Again, a first attempt had to be ripped back, then a second attempt, bound off and everything, wouldn't go over Simon's head! Third time lucky! But when he finally got the jumper over his head, lo and behold it was at least 2 inches short!! Oh if I had only read EZ's instructions to provisionally cast on, so that the bottom can be finished later and lengthened if needed. So, I had to sit down and follow these instructions to pick up stitches at the bottom of the jumper, just before the hem, then begin working downwards. So all my work on the message for Simon, my shiny bright star, had to be cut off!
Casualty of poor planning
Well, he made some use of it anyway!
Reuse, recycle!
The jumper's still not finished. I'm working on the last few rows now and think it's time to turn and do the hem, but I don't think I'll put a message in this time, or it'll never be done. Not that I think Simon will get to wear it this winter anyway, given how warm it's been! The other thing is that I'm very disappointed with the Malabrigo wool. The whole paraffin incident aside, the wool has almost felted as I've been going along, making any ripping back that I had to do very difficult. The jumper already looks very worn and fuzzy and I'm worried it won't last long after all that work! A quick google search suggests many others have had the same problem... I won't be using Malabrigo again.

Phew, this was an epic post. Hopefully I'll post a pic of the FO in a week or so... I'll be happy to move on from this project! This, this, and this are on the needles!

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Flan de Coco

Flan de Coco!
This was not bad at all, for a first attempt. Next time I'd like it a little more coconut-y. Yum.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012


I came across the February photo-a-day challenge on Fat Mum Slim... it's just what I need! Today's assignment: your view today. Nice and easy!
My view today.. #FEBphotoaday
The photo captures my computer (my view everyday), a pleasingly (or challengingly) full fruit bowl, and my Elizabeth Zimmermann "Knitting Without Tears" book. I have been attempting to knit a Seamless Hybrid sweater for Simon for about 4 months now, and cannot vouch for the "without tears" part. I don't have particularly extensive knitting experience but it is definitely the hardest thing I've tried so far, with a whole lot of frogging going on. Hopefully I will write a post all about it when I'm finished. If that ever happens!

Monday, January 16, 2012

little red

Big brother
Yesterday in -8 (celcius), I ventured out to try and make some use of my wide-angle lens. I only snapped a few pictures before my hands went numb! The angle of these shots makes my neck feel a little sore!

Sunday, January 1, 2012

:: new ::

The sun came out in Ireland today for the first time in two weeks... A great start to the year!
Sun over James Fort, Kinsale

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

twenty-three | And the earth moved...

An earthquake in New York? Who'da thunk it?
ps. Apparently Californians find the East Coast reaction to today's earthquake hilarious.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

twenty-two | life in time lapse

Sometimes I feel like my life is lived in time lapse, with anything between and week and 3 months between snapshots.

June | Québec City, Canada | Cirque du Soleil and Cirque du Cerveau

July | J+G, Begur, Toroella de Montgrí and Pals, Spain

July | Rossnowlagh, Co. Donegal, Ireland

July | Central Park, New York City

July | Birthday Carairinhas

August | Adirondacks