March 30, 2011

Victory Garden--A Brief History and Explanation

Briefly and in bullet point form:
  • Foods rationed during WWII: Sugar, butter, milk, cheese, eggs, coffee, meat and canned goods.
  • The government and businesses urged people to make gardening a family and community effort.
  • Soybeans originated in China and Manchuria.
  • Tofu is one food product made from soybeans and is a major source of protein in oriental diets.
  • When the war started, the USDA exhorted farmers to produce much more of "the miracle bean," (soybeans) as they started calling it.
All information taken from The Wessels Living History Farm website.

As made obvious by my oh-so-subtle font amplification, I chose the name "Victory Garden" because many of the foods rationed are ones I can't eat, my family (mom especially) have really been good about trying new foods that are healthy for us all, and soybeans have become an important dietary staple for me.

A couple of exceptions:
  • I will never give up coffee
  • I don't have the room to plant my own veggies so I'll be going to the Farmer's Market instead
One of the biggest problems I've been having with not eating dairy and meat has been that I'm hungry all the time! So I decided for breakie this morning I would have some oatmeal and black tea. That should stick to my ribs for awhile. Fingers crossed.

March 29, 2011

Victory Garden

When I was younger, I was an incredibly picky eater. I remember sitting at the dinner table hours after my family had finished, left to stare at my asparagus, growing colder and slimier by the second. While I never resorted to the antics of my sister (i.e. sticking her carrots down the floor heating vent), I was not a happy camper when it came to eating my veggies. Broccoli was fine drowned in melted cheese but as for everything else--no, thank you. Even apples had to have the skins cut off or else I would gag as I tried to swallow them.

Suffice to say I've always had food issues.

In the past two months or so, I've realized that I have more food intolerances than I knew at first. Let's take a look, shall we?

Things that I'm allergic to:
1. Garlic
2. Pineapple (maybe)
3. Pollen
4. Oil paint
5. Keira Knightley

Things that make me sick:
1. Low-blood sugar (i.e. not eating enough)
2. Lactose
3. Beer
4. Red meat
5. White meat, in excess
6. Citrus, in excess (maybe)
7. Bananas (they're mushy and make me gag)
8. See previous list

As a result, I've been eating a fairly vegetarian and soy-based diet. Now, I do enjoy my veggies quite a bit--more so certainly than when I was younger. But it hasn't been quite so fun trying to find additional sources of protein and iron and all those other nutritional words that mean nothing to me. Also (since I'm in list mode). . .

Previously enjoyable activities that have now been ruined for me:
1. Baseball games (beer and hot dog)
2. Having a giant glass of milk with a warm fresh-out-of-the-oven brownie
3. Barbecues (guess who's going to be the urchin nibbling on the tomato and lettuce toppings while everyone else is gobbling up their giant hamburgers this summer)
4. Eating Caesar Salad (garlic)
5. Talking about Pride and Prejudice (NO! I don't mean the new one! I mean the mini-series that was created before it got ruined!)

This leads me to my point. I'm going to be posting a new segment every once in awhile entitled "Victory Garden." Having to watch what I eat, I think it will be interesting to see how long I can keep myself alive before I, as a weak gazelle, am forced to lie down beside the watering hole, curled up in the fetal position, whimpering to the scavenging predators that they win.

But as for now, I'm up and about, leaping around, hooves pleasantly pattering along the plains.

Currently, I'm headed in the direction of the Farmer's Market downtown.

March 24, 2011

You Can Be an American Girl Too

It all started when I saw these shorts on ModCloth:
and they immediately reminded me of An American Girl: Molly.

When I was younger, I spent hours poring over these books, which is the reason why you're about to read a post featuring clothing found online for the grown woman who wants to dress like one of her childhood dolls (which, who doesn't want to do that...?).

A couple of things to note before we begin.
1. These are chronological. Trust me. I looked them up.
2. These are obviously inspirations, not direct replicas (unlike the Josefina outfit that my mom made for me for my 4th Grade Walk Thru California History Day).
3. These are only the original American Girls (Plus Josefina). None of this contemporary, unpronounceably named doll nonsense.
4. I had the Kirsten doll. (Not really necessary for you to know, but interesting since she's a Swede who moved to Minnesota and my grandma is a Norwegian who moved to Wisconsin)






She gets 2. Just because.

You didn't really think I would deny you pictures of me dressed up as a blond Josefina, did you?

Close up:
Yes, I was a Muppet.

March 23, 2011



by Karla Kuskin

I’m shouting
I’m singing
I’m swinging through trees
I’m winging skyhigh
With the buzzing black bees.
I’m the sun
I’m the moon
I’m the dew on the rose.
I’m a rabbit
Whose habit
Is twitching his nose.
I’m lively
I’m lovely
I’m kicking my heels.
I’m crying “Come Dance”
To the fresh water eels.
I’m racing through meadows
Without any coat
I’m a gamboling lamb
I’m a light leaping goat
I’m a bud
I’m a bloom
I’m a dove on the wing.
I’m running on rooftops
And welcoming spring!

Archived Here

March 22, 2011

Cat's Eye View

This is Cricket:

We had a bit of a storm this past week. For most places in the rest of the United States, this isn't particularly interesting. But considering that I live in California, and by this time last year already had a tan from painting out in the backyard in my swimsuit, it's been a bit out of the ordinary.
Naturally, during the most blustery of days, we ran out of coffee (cue horror music here). Thankfully, I live within walking distance of the coffee shop downtown. I pulled on my rain boots, donned my hat and lime green raincoat, and braved the weather all for the sake of caffeine.

Once I got home and shook off the rain water, I nestled into our cute kitchen nook to drink my coffee and watch the rain.

Cats, as you may know, are like parasites. If there's the possibility of a warm lap in the vicinity, they'll follow it around until it's made available. That's when they pounce and suck all the warmth out of the lap. Once the warmth is depleted, they move on to their next prey, leaving your legs frozen.

Cricket is no exception:

This is what our nook looks like from Cricket's vantage point:

Thankfully, she doesn't like coffee, or she would have tried to take that too.

What's thrifty in this post?
1. Metal pig on the table
2. White chairs
3. Cricket (In a way. We did get her from ARF. Both of our cats are little secondhand finds, whom we love.)
4. Did you notice our neighbor's car? This is where I get a little stalker-y, so be forewarned. But aren't you green with envy too?!

March 20, 2011


Consolidation has been on my mind for a couple of months now. I've been cleaning and organizing my room like a mad woman, often for hours at a time. As such, I've decided to combine the primary 2 blogs that I've been writing. In the immortal words of myself (that I wrote just a few minutes ago on my other blog):
"For a little over a year, now, I've been concurrently writing 2 blogs (besides the horrifying story blog that Dana and I write). I had initially thought that Bow Ties and Bandits would be my personal blog for friends and family, while Pastiche would be my blog focused on thrifty treasures and tips. But I've come to realize, that really, there's no separating the two. Thrift ("vintage", if you're feeling pretentious) shopping and creating unique pieces from previously unloved pieces is an integral part of my life and vice versa."
Therefore, things are about to get more personal. Not too personal of course. I'm still a cold-hearted shell of a person, after all.
Not too much will change. I did bring over my reading list from my other blog, but that's about it.

And here we go.

March 18, 2011

Things Are Coming

Big Things.
Be Prepared.

P.s. If I read this post, I would be ticked. So I'll leave you with this:
We currently have that same California dew landing so gracefully on our rooftops, sidewalks, and temperate-weather plants.