Thursday, 18 June 2009

Pop quiz

Where is this located?

(No tries for you, Della...)

Well, wherever that place is, I'll be there for three weeks! I doubt I'll be updating this blog much since well...I'm on holidays!

Friends on facebook may be able to follow my adventures (and maybe even photos).

Those without facebook, I'll post some highlight pics when I'm back.

Wednesday, 17 June 2009

Changing tastes

I think there's a difference between young and old people's tastebuds, and I think I'm developing that of an old person's.

I distinctively remember loathing vegetables when I was growing up, particularly slimey ones like eggplant and okra.

Traditional Chinese herbal soups were always a chore to drink, even though they're supposedly "good for me".

And I loved carbonated drinks...

Fast forward to 2009.

I feel funny when there are no vegetables in my meal, not simply because I'm vegetarian now.

I have not had okra in a while, but I have no qualms eating eggplant. Particularly when it's nicely roasted. Yuuuuum.

I actually willingly make herbal drinks for myself (and poor D) because of the belief that they're "good for me".

Carbonated drinks...well, I still drink them, but not to the extent that I used to.

Those are the few examples that I can think of now, but I'm sure there are plenty of other stuff that I used to hate that for some strange reason I loved eating now.

What about you?

Have you developed an old person's tongue?

Monday, 15 June 2009

Eflin hats

Not much more to say besides I want to make an adult version of this hat for myself!

And I found a use for scrap yarn as beanie tassles. Go recycling!

Pattern here.

Wednesday, 10 June 2009

Church marketing fad

A rather insightful remark from Kevin Hendricks, editor of Church Marketing Sucks today:

A mind-blowing post I saw on Twitter last week: "Why is it at church conferences we rarely are taught about real compassion for growth, yet 'Twitter for Church' classes are full?" Ouch.

Let's be clear: Church marketing is not about hopping on the latest cool fad. It's not about iPhone apps or Facebook pages, though those can be great tools to use.

Church marketing should be about communicating the core of who we are as Christians--the compassion, love and grace that [hopefully] set us apart. Those will be the same tomorrow, next year and 20 years down the road. Twitter? Not so much.

Use Twitter if it works for your church, but remember that it's just a tool. Save your excitement for what really matters.

Being in church communication, I have to admit that I do get carried away with the latest and the bestest.

But it is true, the tool is not the point. The message is.

Tuesday, 9 June 2009

Reverse garbage

Ever wonder where things like excess (brand new) plastic containers, craft supplies, fabric samples and even big street banners and giant industrial displays go to when they die?

Not the landfill, surprisingly.

Well, I suppose most do, but a large amount also goes to Reverse Garbage.

This is what they had to say for themselves:
Reverse Garbage is a not-for-profit co-operative that sells industrial discards, off-cuts and over-runs to the public for creative and practical uses, reducing the amount of waste going to landfill.

We are well known and respected in the education, community and arts sectors for our huge variety of materials, including; perspex, cloth, ceramic tiles, closed-cell foam and foam sheeting, stickers, cardboard, wood, hessian sacks, paper rolls, bubble wrap, toys, craft supplies and dozens of other useful items.

I visited Reverse Garbage about a month ago when I read about it in a magazine. Imagine my surprise when I discovered that its "offices" were located on the grounds of a old military barracks and a market springs up on the premises every Sunday!

Unfortunately, that last visit was interesting, but less than fruitful. There was nothing of interest at Reverse Garbage and the market stalls were closing (they close at 2pm). I did get a two-player board game for $2, but that was about it.

But I really loved the atmosphere of the place. It was very alternative - most of the food sold were organic, and had a very family and community feel to it. Not to mention the fact that there were real life hippies, as opposed to wannabes like me.

And because I loved it so much, I had to return. And the trip two days ago was probably the highlight of my Queen's birthday long weekend.

The lovely atmosphere was still there and this time, there were a bunch of young adults busking, with music that transported me to a medieval court.

The food stalls were all open this time, and I got the most delicious plate of char kway teow - a great reminder of home. And for those who don't know, this is a miracle in itself. Seven years in Australia and I had yet to find a good plate of char kway teow in this country. That plate of char kway teow was enough to make it a highlight.

But no, that stall also sold chai tow kway! It must be the only stall in the whole of Australia that did (in my knowledge anyway)!

Ironical that the chef was not Asian, but...

Tastebuds satisfied, I decided to poke into Reverse Garbage again and found some great stuff:

Metres of elastic band that will probably serve as hair tie for me for the rest of my life.

Some cute buttons and the little ring bits that I will soon transform into earrings (watch this space).

All for the low low price of $2.

If you're ever in the Sydney region, I highly recommend visiting Reverse Garbage. And do so on a Sunday, you'll never be the same again.

Sunday, 7 June 2009

Transformers cufflinks

It was D's birthday on Wednesday and I had a dilemma.

I wanted to buy him a present, but I didn't want to participate in the wanton consumerism of birthday presents and whatnots as well.

I couldn't knit him something because well, I had left it too late to be able to knit something of worth in time for his birthday.

The solution?

Something handmade from the delightful "marketplace" called Etsy.

All items are handmade by individual artists, which means supporting people and creativity, as opposed to items made from mass producing multinationals.

And because I could even shop by location, I specifically chose Sydney so that transport and postage is kept to the minimum.

I also found the perfect little present:

Yes, they are Transformers cufflinks.

And yes, we are nerds.

Friday, 5 June 2009

Wondrous buttonhole

Currently knitting up the most delightful looking February Lady Sweater and have learned the most wonderful way to make a buttonhole!

Previously, the only way I knew how to make a buttonhole is to do a yarn over. Which essentially means that my buttonhole is limited to the size of two stitches, which therefore does not allow for bigger sized buttons if one wished.

Cue the wondrous buttonhole (with easy to follow instructions).

And in essence, it's a matter of binding off and casting off again. Neat, tidy, more or less reversible, makes no adverse impact on the garment and best of all, the buttonhole can go for as big as you want it too.

Thursday, 4 June 2009


Can you sincerely share the Good News and the love of God with someone and yet disdainfully mention their sins/mistakes as if you're better than them?

I believe that when we truly love someone like Jesus does, and are trying to reflect who Jesus is to people, we should perhaps hold back on our judgements and see them for who they are.

So what if they're currently in prison serving a sentence for a crime they committed before they were introduced to Christ?

So what if they've sinned in some form or manner?

Do we say things like "they're scary, I wouldn't want them near me!"

How can you say you love them, when you really don't think they're worthy of your love? How can you care for them, and yet think yourself better than them?

How is that extending the grace of God to them?

We're all sinners in our own right. What we have to our advantage is the fact that we weren't caught or publicly punished. But we've still made mistakes.

If we expect God and others to treat us fair, shouldn't we at least do the same to others?

What do you think?

How will you treat someone who is currently serving a sentence in prison for a crime they committed before they knew Christ?

How will you treat them if they've served their sentence and are now wanting to meet you in person?

Monday, 1 June 2009

My new best friend

Yup. My new best friend is white vinegar.

That cheap, strong smelling liquid found in most households.

I haven't discovered a use for it yet for actually cooking, but oh, the wonders it does for cleaning.

There is a whole list of things you can use vinegar for in cleaning, but so far, I've only used it for two.

The first one, I've mentioned before - when combined with bi-carb, it removes stains extremely easily and gives surfaces a real nice shine.

The second one was something I was a little dubious about, considering how strong the smell of vinegar is, but it works.

I'm talking about pouring vinegar into your laundry in the final rinse.

The recommended amount is 1/2 to 1 cup, but I usually just pour a glug.

It acts as an extremely environmentally friendly fabric softener and it also brightens the colours of your clothes.

And when you pull the clothes out of the machine, no strange vinegar smell.


Environmentally friendly.

And cheap.

Vinegar photo from here.
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