Holiday Gift Guide 2015 Part II – Science and Blather!

My last post was all about some gifts you could get for the beer and/or food geeks in your life. This list is my other passion, science, and then a bunch of other things that have made my life better over the past year in some way or another. Or, like the last post, a few things I might pick up in the future (holidays make it hard to buy for oneself).

In any case, these are usually things that have made me or someone I love happy, with an occasional thing I’m just dying to buy (for me or someone else).

Science:


First and foremost, let me reiterate “the single best suggestion/idea I can give you is to go shop for your entire list at your favorite local museum, aquarium, planetarium, or zoo.” (This is a direct quote from me from last year, it’s true.) Memberships are great and, yes, some of these places will be doing discounts (the Portland, OR aquarium is, for example) and their main shops are always full of cool and unusual stuff.… Continue reading →

Holiday Gift Guide 2015 Part I – Food and Beer

Last year I did my first ever “gift guide,” and was surprised at how much folks liked the post. I admit, I hadn’t been sure people would be interested in my suggestions, but I decided to put them out there in case it was useful. This year, knowing it was well-liked last year, I’ve been paying a bit more attention to possible suggestions.

It helped, frankly, that Bill and I moved across the country and had to decide both what to get rid of entirely and what to put into storage for the next nine months. The toaster oven made the moving cut, but not the storage cut, for example. The electric kettle in that post, however, remains a part of my day to day living.… Continue reading →

Science, Beer, Food, and Blathering Gift Suggestions

Well, after blogging for four and a half years, I guess I’ve started to get the hang of things. Like, in December, a blogger should consider having a “gift guide” or something. Or a good cookie recipe. Or both.

Well, I have several cookie recipes, but nothing new for you, so I guess we’ll have to settle on a gift ideas. I tried to come up with a few things that I have liked, used, or given as potential gifts from each “section” of the blog (food, beer, science, blather).

Mostly, I think these things are neat, fun, or wonderful and I hope to help you find something spectacular for someone awesome in your life. Or, if not find, give you some a springboard for other ideas.… Continue reading →

Book Giveaway: Kindred by Octavia Butler

I love books. Stories, really, but particularly in written form. I don’t know why I have such a preference for reading over watching or hearing, but I do. (My hierarchy is probably reading > hearing > watching, when it comes to fiction.)

Every now and again, a particular story comes along that really moves me. And Octavia Butler’s Kindred is one of them.

One of the best books I’ve read in a long time.

This is an old book. Thirty-five years old. It appears it’s been chosen as a school text for many of the years it’s been around. Still, I’d never read it or heard of Butler until this year. And based on what I heard of her, I bought every work of hers I could get my hands on at Powell’s in May.… Continue reading →

Three Years, Two Months and Twelve Days

On August 6th, I announced that I was changing the rules of the challenge that launched this blog.

A week ago, I bought my first cookbook since the challenge launched. (Let’s not discuss how many cookbooks I’ve gotten rid of, because I don’t know.)

Yup. Bought a cookbook. Yup. Beer was involved. Nope. No regrets.

No one is surprised by this purchase, I suspect. The book screams that it belongs in my kitchen. Even so, before subjecting myself to being anywhere near it (and thus potentially buying it), I made sure to consider if it was simply an impulse purchase. Basically, did it fill a hole in my collection? If not, was this a really strongly wanted cookbook, or just a passing fancy? Did it keep me under 50 total cookbooks?… Continue reading →