First time snowboarding

One of the friends I’ve met here in Portland is an avid snowboarder. Inspired by the winter Olympics, and a desire to visit the mountain I borrowed Lena’s skiing attire and convinced my friend to teach me how to snowboard. We spent the day at Government Camp atop of Mt. Hood. Once we rented our gear, I learned how to strap into the snowboard (without falling) and we hopped on the ski lift for adventures!

I had a blast, and I was surprised at how easy snowboarding was to learn. I did eat snow quite a bit, but by the end of the day my skills had improved substantially and I fell much less.

SONY DSC

ski01

ski02

ski03

Ski/snowboarding season is almost over, but I will definitely try to make it to a mountain next season (and maybe have a go at skiing)!

xoxo
-P

Trip to the Oregon coast

We spent the day travelling along the coast, soaking up one of the few gorgeous coastal sunny weekends, and tromping on beaches. Oregon coasts are unlike any other I’ve seen, the water is sparkling blue, and the topography is majestic!

We started our adventures in Oceanside where we ducked and tiptoed through a tunnel formed by fallen rocks that brought us to spectacular views. I loved seeing mussels, sea anemones, dogs playing on the beach and the feel of my hair blowing in the wind

SONY DSC

The Oregon Coast

SONY DSC

Beach houses

SONY DSC

Tiptoeing through a tunnel

SONY DSC

Having fun in the water

beach07

Sea anemones and mussles

SONY DSC

Queen of the rock

SONY DSC

High up

SONY DSC

With Lena!

SONY DSC

In Oceanside

SONY DSC

Beautiful coast

After hanging out in Oceanside, we made a slight detour to check out Camp Meares were we hiked a bit to find a 300 year old octopus sitka tree, a lighthouse and spectacular views.

SONY DSC

SONY DSC

SONY DSC

Apparently, no trip to the coast is finished without a bite of Tillamook cheese. We stopped by the cheese factory and learned how cheese is made while eating Tillamook ice cream

SONY DSC

SONY DSC

SONY DSC

For a pick-me-up, we stopped by and espresso bar near the train on our way to Cannon beach.

SONY DSC

SONY DSC

It was a perfect Saturday

xoxo
-P

Weekend in a Yurt

We left on Friday evening to go to the coast for the weekend and stayed in a yurt! The yurts remind me of the trekkershuts that I camped in when I go to Belgium, they are cheap to rent out at ~$40/night, and are super cozy. The drive out west was gorgeous as we got to see the sun set. I also had a little bit of fun playing around with a fish-eye lens.

SONY DSC

SONY DSC

SONY DSC

The yurts were impressive

SONY DSC

SONY DSC

SONY DSC

SONY DSC

The next morning, we had brunch at a restaurant on the beach and spent time soaking in the forest air.

SONY DSC

SONY DSC

SONY DSC

xoxo
-P

Currently pondering: creative vs. distributive work

Economic life is a mix of creative and distributive work. Creative work is defined as creating something (a tangible good, or idea) that adds to the total available for all to enjoy while distributive work is defined as work that takes goods or services that would otherwise be available to others and therefore comes at their expense.  Successful societies maximize the creative and minimize the distributive. Societies where everyone can only achieve gains at the expense of others are by definition impoverished. (See Roger Bootle’s The Trouble with Markets)

“This distinction between creative and distributive activities applies in today’s society. Consider the doctor tending to a patient or the midwife helping to deliver a baby. Everything they do is creative rather than distributive.

Or consider the marketing executive for a washing powder manufacturer. Her job is pretty much purely distributive. It is to do her best to ensure that her company sells more washing powder than its rivals. If she succeeds, the rewards will be greater for her and her company. But her success will be mirrored by other companies doing badly. Her contribution is purely distributive. Most jobs are a mixture of the creative and distributive. And society needs a mixture.”

just an interesting thought/book.

xoxo
-P

Softies

Hello sweets, I hope you’re having good laughs today and that you have a great weekend.
This morning I found out that I’m going on a surprise weekend getaway to the coast. I haven’t yet checked out the Oregon beaches, so I’m excited to breathe in the scent of the Pacific Ocean…and spend the weekend in a yurt!

Yesterday evening, I finished sewing up some softies made of actual woolen felt and stuffed with wool batting. My friend Rose owns a natural fiber shop a few blocks from my apartment and I decided to take the plunge and get myself involved with yet another crafty hobby. I love the colorful and playful look of the toys, and the fact that they are made of wool fiber adds a touch of warmth to them.

wool02

wool01

wool03
I hope you have a wonderful Valentine’s day!

xoxo
-P

 

Winter cowl

During the snowstorm last week, nearly everything on the block was closed. Fortunately, the local yarn shop was open. I lingered in the shop longer than usual and found myself drawn to a luscious chunky alpaca. The fiber feels like butter in my hands and when knit up, yields an incredibly drapey fabric. I picked up a skein of sunny yellow as well as a skein in ombre grey. I made a cowl by casting on 30 stitches and used a basic fishermans rib/brioche stitch the entirety of the scarf, alternating the two colors every couple of rows and used a kitchener stitch to graft the ends together to form the cowl.

cowl01

cowl02

cowl04

xoxo
-P

Cabin Fever

We’ve had a massive downpour of snow (10 inches) which is very uncharacteristic for Portland. The city has shut down. The roads are impossible to drive on, and salt trucks/plows are non-existent. I decided to hibernate over at Lena, Aly, and Karen’s house for the weekend as a means of preemptively avoiding cabin fever.

snow4

Evergreens gracefully weathering the snow

We tromped about in the snow, built snowmen, made snow angels, and slid down hills on make-shift sleds!

2014-02-09

Making a snow sculpture with Lena

The weatherman predicts temperatures to rise to the 40’s, hopefully the mess clears away soon!

Pujaxoxo

The January Sweater

The first weeks of January can sometimes be difficult; the holidays have passed, and along with them, the romance of early winter. The weather is cold and dark, and we feel cultural pressure to make resolutions in an effort to craft better versions of ourselves.

This year, I decided to do a bit of selfish knitting. I’d been seeing the gorgeous owls sweater designed by Katie Davies and decided to kick off January by knitting the classic yoke pullover. The garment is knit circularly with no seams from hem to underarm (on both body and sleeves), then the sleeves are joined to the body and worked in the round for the remainder of the sweater. Finishing involves using the kitchener stitch to join the underarms to the body. I like this construction method because it allows for both the ease and convenience of circular knitting as well as the structure of seams in areas where they are very much needed (armholes — regular stress points for the fabric). I would traditionally have used the DPN method to make the sleeves individually, however a friend from my knitting group graciously taught me the two-at a time on two circulars method which I enjoyed.

I used Jamieson & Smith Aran in gingersnap. I love the woolly and rustic nature of the Shetland fiber.

DSC_0325

DSC_0337

sweater01

Now, to move on from the mindless stockinette pullover…

Pujaxoxo

Cosmic Tubing

My friend Rachal celebrated her birthday and invited us to join her!

We made the trek up to Mt. Hood and spent the evening riding escalators up the mountain, and then rode a couple hundred feet down the mountain in tubes.

tubing

tubing02

tubing03

It was exhilarating and weird at the same time. I suppose there’s a first time for everything.

xoxo
-P

Welcome!

In January of 2009 I started a blog called The Feisty Chemist as a means of documenting my thoughts and theories on life through my early twenties.  Lots has happened in the last 5 years, and since that time my thoughts on life have changed substantially. I’m sure there are cached versions of that old site floating around somewhere, suspended in time and space. Good luck accessing that.

I’ve decided to continue this site with a clean slate, using this space more as a means of showcasing my thoughts and the things I create. Hopefully I can retain a childlike wonder as I grow wiser.
Happy reading!

Four year old me

Four year old me

 Pujaxoxo