April 24, 2012

Miracle (re)growth in the kitchen

I had read somewhere (probably on Pinterest) that if you chop up the green parts of spring onions, but leave the white parts intact, you can regrow the green parts simply by placing the remainder of the onions into some water and leaving them alone for some time. Someone even claimed that you can do this repeatedly! Needless to say, I was a bit skeptical about this miracle re-growth, but I decided to do a little science experiment anyway, just to test it out.

After making a salad one day, I was left with the white parts of five spring onions. The onions came with their roots mostly chopped off, but some roots remained attached, which gave me hope. Here is the "before":

Spring onions, before.

I put the glass with the onions on the window sill that got the most sunshine during the day and left them alone for eight days. I didn't even bother changing the water. At first, there was no noticeable growth. But after a few days, some new green tips began to appear. It was working after all! But the growth was so slow, I thought that there was no way any significant amount of onion would re-grow in a reasonable amount of time. Turns out I was wrong. Once the green shoots started sprouting, they continued growing at a faster pace every day. Here they are, eight days later, tall and green:

Spring onions, eight days later.

It was truly a miracle in the kitchen! Of course, no science experiment is complete until you eat it test it. (Ok, seriously now, kids. Don't eat your real science experiments!) Sure, the onions looked real and quite green, but would they still taste like onions? I had to find out. I took a couple of my miracle spring onions and chopped up the green parts into a salad. They tasted like onions, alright! If anything, the onion-y taste was even stronger than in the original spring onions. As I was chopping them up, I also noticed that the onions developed some gnarly looking roots.

Spring onions grew new roots in water!

All in all, I am calling this kitchen science experiment a success.

April 21, 2012

Wedding To Do List Update

Despite the radio silence on the blog lately, we've actually made some progress on our wedding To Do list! Here is what it looks like now:

  • Find and purchase D's attire
  • Find and purchase D's ring
  • Let everyone who is helping with the wedding know what we are expecting from them
  • Have hair and makeup trial appointment
  • Have engagement photos taken while we are still legitimately engaged
  • Have a dry run for making bouquets (this one is a DIY effort)
  • Make sure the bridal party has something to wear (this has been proving to be oddly difficult to check off the list)
  • Make all the decorations (yeah, that's all on me)
  • Figure out our ceremony and vows (almost done!)
  • Make playlists for the cocktail hour, dinner, and dance party (work in progress)
  • Order alcohol for the wedding
  • Figure out where our guests are going to park (because our venue does not come with parking)
  • Get marriage license (rather important!)
  • Create a day-of schedule and panic after realizing how crazy it's going to be
  • Make a seating chart
  • Make wedding announcements
  • Figure out our first dance (we have been practicing!)

We finally bought D's suit! He looks quite handsome in it, and I can't wait to see it all done after alterations. D also already purchased a potential shirt, and I found him a tie that perfectly matches my dress. D also figured out what kind of ring he wants, and finally bought it. We were told that resizing will take up to four weeks, which makes me a bit nervous, but let's hope we get the ring on time.

The hair and makeup trial went really well, and we decided to take advantage of the opportunity and have our engagement photos taken the day I was all dolled up. We went to a park, and D's dad (who is a photographer) did the photoshoot. I've never had to "model" for an hour worth of photos before! It was tiring but absolutely worth it. The photos came out great, and we are hoping to use some of them for our wedding announcements.

I just did a dry run of my wedding bouquet using this tutorial from APW, and honestly, it couldn't have been easier. It took me all of fifteen minutes to make, and the result is a simple and pretty bouquet. I am very happy with how it turned out, and I'll post some photos of it soon.

April 4, 2012

My Dream Home Office: Inspiration

Apartment Therapy had a great post today about being a compulsive re-decorator. Finally, I have a name for my affliction. Or, as I prefer to call it, a "hobby". I am constantly talking about rearranging the living room or re-decorating the second bedroom. It's as if I can't leave this apartment alone the way it is - something always needs to be tweaked just so! Luckily, D is one hundred percent OK with me moving furniture around, and he half jokes about the fact that I will most likely be rearranging our home for the rest of our lives. I don't disagree with that statement...

We have lived in our apartment for almost two years, and I am still not satisfied with the state of our second bedroom. I will post photos one day, but suffice to say, it is a difficult space. Despite being a simple box of a room, it has its challenges. One wall has a door to the hallway. Another wall has a closet door. A third wall has a window in one corner and wall air conditioning unit in another corner. (Oh, how I hate that ugly contraption! The original A/C unit was broken when we moved in, but the replacement unit our landlord installed is smaller than the hole in the wall where it goes. Having a hole in the wall was just lovely during the Boston winters, as you might imagine. I finally plugged it up with some foam, which reduced the draft but did nothing to conceal the ugliness.) The last wall has a door that goes to the outside (our fire escape, I suppose) and a soffit-like structure that probably houses some plumbing or electrical wiring.

To add to the complexity, this room has to wear many hats. It functions as:
  • my home office
  • our TV room
  • a guest bedroom
  • bicycle storage
  • yoga room
  • occasional craft room

Yeah, this room works hard. And it is not a very big space (I don't remember the exact measurements, but I think it's something like 10' by 12'). So, naturally, it looks like a total mess. Adding to the pigsty, we also have wedding-related crap lying around all over the apartment, including a lot of stuff in this room. Since budgeting for the wedding doesn't leave us with much spare cash, I haven't been buying any new furniture for the room, but moving the existing stuff around instead. This is only marginally helping my sanity. Meanwhile, I like to daydream of a pretty and functional multipurpose room.

As long as we are dreaming, let's start with my home office. I've been collecting inspirational images on Pinterest for about a year now, and after organizing the home office photos onto a separate pin board, I discovered a pattern. Behold:

West Elm Parsons desk in white, IKEA Expedit shelves. From here.

West Elm Parsons desk in white, IKEA Expedit shelves. From here.

West Elm Parsons desk in white. From here.
Do you see it yet? I am completely obsessed with the West Elm Parsons desk, particularly in white! And, apparently, it goes well with the IKEA Expedit shelving units (great for organizing), also in white. In fact, I have been on a white furniture kick for a while now, which is odd because we don't own any white furniture. So yes, in my dream home office, I must have the Parsons desk, and it must be white. And I am now on a hunt for it on Craigslist (because the wedding is making me poor, and I am too cheap to pay full price).

Of course, every office desk needs an office chair. My problem is that I find most traditional office chairs unappealing. What I have in mind is something like this:

Love the lines on this white chair. Nicely paired with a Parsons desk. From here.

The bamboo detail on this (white) chair is gorgeous. From here.

See? Even my dream office chair must be white. And it must have interesting lines, and a colorful seat/cushion. I haven't seen anything affordable in stores that resembles these chairs, so that may be another piece of furniture to look for on Craigslist or in thrift stores in the future. But I'll take it one office item at a time. Next step - create a moodboard!