Way back in January I made a King Cake for one of our knitting Sundays. It was yummy. But kind of a pain, because yeast breads are a lot of work. This one has a cream cheese filling, which is a bit non-traditional, but how can you say no to a cream cheese filling? You can't.
I've been doing a lot of knitting since Christmas, which is part of the reason I've been bad about updating, because I tend to spend my downtime knitting instead of composing LJ posts. Here are a few of the things I've been working on:
Calorimetry headband from Knitty
Flippi scarf from One Skein Wonders (modeled by my MIL, for whom it was made)
Rose's wristwarmers from the end of "Doomsday"
Gretel hat by Ysolda Teague, which is going to be my London hat in the fall
Finally, my Dollar and a Half sweater from the Spring 2007 Interweave.
I've been slowly but surely progressing on this thing, and finally blocked the back and front panels last week. I'm just a few rows away from finishing the second sleeve, then it's on to the dreaded seaming and picking up stitches for the button band. I swear I will finish it, though.
Two weeks ago, I went out to L.A. to visit tlbelle and bgirl and also to attend a couple of Paley panels. It was really short trip, shortened even further by a six-hour airport delay on my way out there. But a great time was had once I finally got there.
First we went to the Friday Night Lights panel. They showed "Leave No One Behind" before the panel, which was one of the best episodes of season two. Unfortunately, it was kind of a small panel, and a lot of cast members weren't there. Particularly missed were Gaius Charles, Taylor Kitsch (who was off shooting Wolverine), and Kyle Chandler, who was supposed to be there but got stuck in Vancouver. Stupid Vancouver.
Moderator Michael Ausiello, Jason Katims, Jeffrey Reiner, Connie Britton and Scott Porter
Connie Britton, Scott Porter, Minka Kelly, Aimee Teegarden, Zach Gilford and Adrianne Palicki
The next night was the Buffy the Vampire Slayer reunion, which was awesome. They showed "Once More with Feeling" before the panel, but surprisingly the audience was not overly into the singing along. I was a bit bummed because neither Eliza Dushku nor Alyson Hannigan were there, but so many other people were that it was still fantastic.
Of course, there's not really a whole lot to say about Buffy at this point that everyone in the audience doesn't already know. Even so, Matt Roush was an abominable moderator. His questions were neither penetrating nor even in some cases questions, and often left the panelists struggling to think of something to say in response. At other times, he skipped over some panelists completely (Charisma Carpenter) or tried to cut them off when they were about to answer a question (Amber Benson). The audience Q&A was hardly better, but then audience Q&A's rarely are.
Bitching aside, it was amazing to see everyone back together again. I was sort of ridiculously exited to see Oz and Tara together for some reason, and in fact, Seth and Amber sat next to each other and pretty much whispered and giggled together like old friends the whole panel. Of all the panelists they were probably my favorites, because they always had something hilarious and/or interesting to say. The section of the audience reserved for studio guests was jam packed with recognizable folks like Jane Espenson and Tom Lenk and lots of others who'd worked on the show. It must have been a hoot back in the green room.
Marti Noxon, Charisma Carpenter, Seth Green, Amber Benson and David Greenwalt
Matt Roush, Joss Whedon, Sarah Michelle Gellar, Nicholas Brendon, James Marsters and Emma Caulfield
Emma Caulfield, Michelle Trachtenberg, Marti Noxon, Charisma Carpenter, Seth Green, Amber Benson and David Greenwalt
This weekend, I did something that will amaze and mystify those of you who know me well: I went camping. And I had a great time. Yeah, that's right. I'm outdoorsy.
The munchkin's been begging to go camping for ages and I said I'd go as long as Mr. Sus handled all of the preparations. It took him a couple of years, but he did finally obtain the necesary equipment and pick a camping site. We went to Brazos Bend State Park, which is only about 45 minutes from our house. It also happens to be full of alligators.
Sadly, we didn't take our camera with us on our first hike, during which we spotted 16 different alligators ranging from a 12-inch juvenile to a big ol' 14-footer. It was late afternoon, so most of the gators were sunning themselves on the islands out in the middle of the lakes, but there were three big ones basking right beside a footbridge and the little guy was sitting on a log right next to the trail.
The camping itself was totally fun. Okay, so sleeping on the ground isn't the most comfortable thing ever, but it wasn't that bad, either. I didn't even panic when I woke up to the site of this guy directly above my head. Fortunately, he was on the outside of the tent so I was only looking at his silhouette. The worst part of the whole experience were the rampaging Boy Scouts in the camp pads across from us. Minimally supervised packs of twelve-year-old boys do not so much make for peace and quiet.
The next morning we packed up our tent and went for an early morning hike, this time with camera in hand. We didn't see as many gators this time, because they were all in the water at this time of day and they're more camouflaged. But the ones we did see were a lot closer. And a lot more intimidating, because when they're lurking in the water it means they're potentially hunting.
This big guy was hanging out by the fishing pier, hoping to steal some fish.
And here's me and the munchkin standing above him so you can get an idea of how big he is.
A cover of coots on 40 Acre Lake (yes, I looked up the collective noun for coots)
A white ibis in the marshes between 40 Acre Lake and Pilant Lake
Gator #18 lurking near the shore of 40 Acre Lake. I only spotted this guy because he was swimming directly towards me. The bank is only about three feet from the trail, so he was maybe six feet away. Do not suspect that there are fences or anything between us and the alligator. They can and do come up onto the trails whenever they feel like it.
Gator #19, just a little ways down the trail. He was even closer to the bank.
White ibis along the shore of 40 Acre Lake.
There was also a spot along the bank where a dozen or more baby alligators were hanging out under their mother's watchful eye. They were only about five or six inches long and were really hard to see, but some were hunting fish in the water and others were lying in the grass beside the trail. The mother alligator was so hidden you could just barely make out her eye sticking out of the water a few feet away. Unfortunately the picture came out blurry, so it's hard to make out the little gators.
If you click on the picture you can view a larger copy, which is a little easier to see. There are at least four baby gators in there.
So yay for camping. And yay for up close looks at alligators. And for the deer we saw driving out of the park. And for the raccoon that menaced the Boy Scouts' camp site and scared the crap out of them. Mwahahaha.