Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Awards, Cheese, and Unusual Birds

I'm overdue in thanking my kindly fellow bloggers for the bloggy awards they've sent my way.

I've been rambling on my sewing blog for three years now and am very grateful for all of you, my readers. I appreciate the virtual interaction with my fellow sewists (via blogs, flickr, and patternreview, and email) more than I ever dreamed I would.

And now for the awards:

The Versatile Blogger award is from Elizabeth, the musician-sewist of ~E Made This. Check out her amazing jeans with buttoned leg vents.

The Liebster Blog award is from Molly, the funny engineer sewist of Toferet's Empty Bobbin. She's sewing her own wedding dress. Eek!

And three people have passed on the Sunshine Award:

Becky, another musician-sewist, of Sew and So. She loves to knit, do refashions, and make Anthropologie knock-offs (custom-made and at a lower price point, to boot).

Sandi, the insanely-prolific sewist, of Sew Much, So Stylin', So Fast, also teaches school, and is uber-organized (at least when it comes to fabric!).


The philosophical Urban Rustic of The Makings of the Urban Rustic. We share a love of 70s fashion, but she manages to sew her 70s patterns instead of just drooling over them (:

Instead of trying to follow the rules of three different bloggy awards, I will give you two 21 wale factoids - and you can participate, too!

Question #1. What's my favorite cheese?

My long-time answer has been smoked gouda, but the recent appearance of chipotle cheddar at our local Target has made me waver a bit in my commitment.

The phrase "Limited Time Only" makes me nervous. It would be a travesty if they stopped making it.

This past summer we visited Thunder Oak Cheese Farm, the only Gouda cheese maker in Canada. The owners are transplants from Holland, so we can be sure the gouda is genuine. They had umpteen varieties of cheese, all of them gouda. Yum!

The truth is, I'm a cheese fanatic.

When my husband and I visited relatives in Norway, we had ample opportunity to eat gjetost, for breakfast. My husband's second cousin and his wife kept a "breakfast tray" on a shelf in the refrigerator. It had an assortment of things like cheese, crackers, meats and maybe lingonberry jam - I don't remember exactly. Every morning, they just pulled out that tray and breakfast was ready. I couldn't exactly say I loved gjetost. It's something you'd have to get used to.

Question #2: What interesting bird have you seen lately?

Several times a week, I submit lists of birds I spot to ebird. The site organizes the lists and keeps track of how many birds I've seen where and when. So it's easy to see that I've seen 69 different species in my backyard alone.

Anyway, my new favorite is the curious Hooded Merganser. Isn't it great? I've seen this one in a couple of the nearby lakes but, no, not in my backyard.

photo from All About Birds

And here's your chance to participate.

1. What's your favorite cheese?

2. What interesting birds have you seen lately?


  1. I like my FIL's organic ricotta. He makes fancier cheese, but I'm not sophisticated enough to appreciate them... His ricotta comes out quite firm, I cut it into slabs and use it in lasagne and canneloni. It's beyond delish. I also can't go past his holoumi.. .I grill a mess of it, chop it up and mix it with baby spinach, some carrots and raisins and walnuts in big batches for my lunches.

    I guess the most interesting bird I've seen lately is a swamp hen... They're lovely little birds, despite their ugly name.


  2. Mmmm, the ricotta sounds delicious. And it goes without saying we don't have swamp hens around here. I guess I'll have to visit your neck of the woods to see one in person.

  3. I love grilled haloumi cheese. Or haloumi cheese and watermelon.
    And last week I was squarked at by a full feathered peacock staring at the Coke machine on Sentosa Island.

  4. Manchego! Yum yum.

    I just saw a red headed woodpecker the other day, just like Woody (you can see I'm not a very sophisticated bird watcher :)

  5. Fun! Cheese - let's see...... I can't pick one. I'll have to say Jarlsberg, especially melted on toast in the oven, with oregano sprinkled on. Also aged gouda, because it's so nutty. I've tried gjetost, only because our FIL brought some over and said we HAD to have it. Looks and tastes like peanut butter.

    Birds - I don't generally see interesting birds in our backyard, because they're all interesting, given how different they are compared to Singapore birds. I am particularly surprised every time I see a blue jay, because I've always thought they were small birds (having never seen them except on baseball jerseys).

  6. To eat my favourite cheese at the moment is "Vignotte",nice and creamy and full of cholesterol but the cheese with my favourite name has to be "Stinking Bishop".

    As for birds the Red Kite flew over my garden the other day but with this unseasonal weather we are having I sat in the sunshine yesterday and just enjoyed listening to to the Goldfinches and the Chiff Chaff singing.

    congrats on your triple whammy!!

  7. My favourite cheese is Manchego from spain, its made from 100% sheep's milk and seems to cause me less sinus reaction than cow's milk cheeses.
    The house I live in was named L'Hirondelle (The Swallow) by the former owner, an elderly French lady. I think that is a very pretty name for a house.

  8. That's a hard one to pick-- I am rather fond of cheese! So it really depends on my mood, but it's probably a 3-way toss up between pepper Jack, aged Irish cheddar (Trader Joe's has a great one!) or brie after it's been baked. Especially with fruit.


Sorry to add word verification. Too much spam lately....


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