Friday, October 19, 2007

Eye Candy Friday, and more

Eye Candy Friday, you say?

Well, I think I've found my winter coat. I just got this from Lulu Lemon today, when I in fact ONLY went to the mall to pick up some Lulu pants that had been hemmed:

The other coat I was really liking was from Eddie Bauer. It's called their "Girl on the Go trench", and it's a pretty nice fit, too, but I like the belt here, and the fun plaid.

So here is my Cautionary Mall Tale:

I went to the mall today to pick up my pants. I got sidetracked in Sephora, and was looking at their acne care products, when a salesgirl told me that some Stila makeup reps were there, doing free makeovers. Yay! So I waited for one of the makeup artists to become free.

She did my face, and all was well and good.

I was shopping around, and about two minutes after I had gotten out of the chair, I noticed my face was itching. And hot. I went back to her, and told her, and when I saw the horrified look on her face, I looked in a mirror. My face was completely red. And it burned. It burned like I had a fever, and it itched like hell. So my artist and another one went and got me some Caudalie toning water on Kleenex, and I started to remove the makeup. I surmised that it was the brush cleaner they had been using, because I've used Stila before and never had an adverse reaction, especially like that. The stuff is called "Brush-Off", or something, and it is awful. They don't even put the active ingredients on the bottle, so this other girl gave me the website and phone number off the bottle. I couldn't take my face any longer. I wanted to rip the skin off. My artist-girl suggested I go to the bathroom down the hall and use cold water.

Where did I go instead? Lush. Luckily, my friend Alyison was working there. I waited for her to finish helping another customer, then hugged her and pleaded for her to help me! She gave me a sample of Aquamarina mask to use, since it has calamine and some other calming stuff. I slapped it on and walked around the store like that for 20 minutes, then washed it off with plenty of cold water, then I was pressing Eau Roma Water compresses on my face for another 10 minutes, then I finally got around to moisturizing with Gorgeous face cream. My face felt much better, but it was still freakin' pissed at me. Alyison's coworker told me she used to work at Nordstrom in the makeup section, and she said that the brush cleaner I encountered was really harsh because it had to kill all the germs on publicly used brushes. I totally understand, it's like a public pool. And, by the same reasoning that I refuse to use public pools (except the salt water one in Seattle), I don't like using public makeup brushes. But that is the first time I have had a reaction like that. I've had my makeup done at lots of different counters, but maybe those people are better with the cleaner....?

Anyway, I ended up dropping a wad at Lush (it is both great and evil to have a friend like Alyison be your salesperson. She knows exactly what I like, and on the other hand...she knows exactly what I like. However, she was great about giving me small sizes of stuff, like I had requested).

So that was my horrible trip to the mall. I bought the jacket after that. No more Sephora brushes for me.

Prior to the mall, I had hit the grocery store so I could buy additional ingredients for my cooking orgy later today. Check out what I found:

In case you don't know who that is, that's Frank Zappa. On a beer bottle. I LOVE IT. Frank Zappa is one of my favorite musical artists, and has been for the better part of a decade (ever since my brother brought me a tape back of FZ stuff from college....yes, back in the days of TAPES!). Anyway, so you know I had to check the beer out! :-) It's made by Lagunitas Brewery. I haven't tried it yet, but I'll let you know. Usually microbreweries aren't bad, even in their mediocre stuff.

On my way home from the mall (the day went: oil change, groceries, mall, yarn store), I stopped by Weaving Works *my LYS*, and flipped through a large pile of books to decide what I would potentially want as Christmas presents. I ended up buying the new Vogue Knitting, the Interweave Knits Holiday Gifts issue, and a ball of red alpaca yarn (7 st/in) to use for a pattern created by the guy who writes Brooklyntweed ... it is a gorgeous hat. Very textural, like fishnet but solid. I was between the red yarn and a gorgeous emerald green. I asked the saleslady, and she liked the red on me better. I was impressed - this little ball of 100% alpaca was only $6.10. A Fabulous Deal, if you ask me.

Here is my current project list:

To Redo:

- second "Hurry Up Spring" armwarmer (thumb on wrong side)

- "Nakiska" headband (was too small)

- chenille tape blanket (at some point; holes in crochet were bothering me)

To Finish:

- "Dove" socks from Cat Bordhi

To Start:

- "Koolhas" (sp?) hat from IK Holiday Gifts (IKHG?)

- some socklets from Knitty

- Clessidra stockings

- socks

- socks

- more socks

- did I mention socks? :-)

- more gloves / accessories...

- SPIN YARN for Baltimore store Milagro (She doesn't actually have a website, but I hope she gets one soon!)


Now, on to cooking. It is 4:54, and I just pulled the apple bake-thing out of the oven. Here it is, at the beginning of the cooking process:

What did I do? Coalesce a lot of other recipes. I basically needed to get rid of a bunch of apples. So I cut maybe 7 or 8 apples - a Golden Delicious, a couple of Fujis (?), and a few Granny Smiths, and tossed them with 1 lemon's worth of fresh-squeezed juice. I then tossed those into a buttered 9x9 Pyrex dish (ok, it could be 9x9, I am assuming that those are it's dimensions). In another bowl, I mixed 1 cup AP flour, 1 c white sugar, and 1 stick of butter to make a crumble. I mixed half the crumble in with the apples, and threw the other half on top. I dotted the crumble with another 1 T butter and sprinkled on the tad of lemon juice left in my juicer, and also squirted on some Madagascar bourbon vanilla extract. I threw it in a preheated 400 deg oven till I could smell it. MMM.

This is the other thing I cooked: my first potato gratin. I also had a few pounds of potatoes to get rid of (do we see a theme?) This used my bigger Pyrex dish, pre-buttered. I basically cut potatoes to make a single layer, then threw down some shredded parmesan, salt, and pepper, and repeated till I got to the top. Then I poured in enough cream to come to the top (yes, real cream), and pressed down to make sure the cream got in everywhere (a tip I picked up from "Good Eats"). I then sprinkled the remainder of the cheese on top, as well as additional salt and pepper. Into a 375 deg oven till it was brown and lovely. I think it took 30-45 min?

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