Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Coffee and Knitting

My coffee memories are from my 30's. I started late in my years drinking coffee and my experiences have not been all that many, but I have my favorites. I love a good cup of medium to strong coffee, with a rich body. I recently received some coffee from NH and I am dying to open it and brew! I love to grind my own beans but don't always do that. A good cup with my projects are a must...especially when I am at work under a dead line....have to keep the brain awake and alive! LOL! I just recently picked up my knitting habit (again). I am a quilter and right now knitting and quilting are my passions. I have a 1 hour and 20 minute commute one way to work on the train and I use that time wisely. I either knit or read and lately knitting has taken over. I am on a quest to finish projects and especially Christmas projects. I love the fact that I have found a swap that supports good coffee, fabulous yarn and the love of quality in what we like to do!

Monday, October 30, 2006

My first coffee memory

I come from a large family, who all drink coffee (that is except my mom, she's always been a tea drinker, which is where I got my love of tea, but that's another story!). Anyway, my first memory of drinking coffee, was back when I was probably 11 or 12. My cousin, who is a year younger than me, and I have always been close, and we spent a lot of time together as kids. When our family got together, there was always coffee. On holidays the adults would get out the big percolators to keep the coffee flowing all day long. Well, at that age when we wanted to be "considered adults", we began drinking coffee. I remember pouring half a cup of coffee into a Styrofoam cup, and adding lots of sugar and lots of cream! We did feel like such adults having that cup of coffee in our hands!! It's funny to look back at the things you did as a kid. Today, my cousin and I both still have a love of coffee, except neither one of us go for the sugar anymore!! I swear, that memory must be where my aversion to sugar in my coffee comes from!

Just trying to post for the first time!

Since getting the instructions on how to do this I thought I'd give it a try and while I'm at it tell you my favourite coffee memories. You might have noticed my comment regarding Mexican coffee already so I won't talk about that one again, but I do have a few other moments! I never used to drink coffee at all! I was a "tea granny" through and through, but my first introduction to coffee was when I was 18 and my then boyfriend, (became husband, now ex but that's another story for another day) and I went to Montreal to meet his family. We went for supper at his Greek aunt and uncle's house and after a fantastic meal his aunt put on the coffee. It was Turkish coffee thick, dark and sweet served in tiny little china cups that reminded me of my doll dishes that I'd had as a little girl. Trying to be polite and following the rule that my Mom had always taught me that when you're out to dinner you eat what is put in front of you, I drank the strong concoction right down to the bottom which had a layer of pasty grounds. No one had bothered to mention that you don't drink the "sludge!" After 15 years of marriage, I grew to become very fond of Turkish coffee even thought the first experience was somewhat gritty! I've become so fond of coffee over the years that when I was in Library school and taking a marketing course, when we had to create a display board for a project my group jumped on the idea of a coffee display. We set to work gluing coffee beans to cardboard for the border around the bulletin board, had all sorts of recipes and information and even glued individual coffee beans to the linen background we used! The morning that our project was due, we "unveiled" it in style. As people entered the classroom for cataloguing class that day we had the board done, and coffee brewing on a table in front of it! The room smelled wonderful for the duration that our board was up and we got top marks for it! (Some may have thought we were bribing the instructor with the coffee, but hey it tied in nicely and if it gave us extra points there's nothing wrong with that! Ha! Ha!). Well, it's snowing here in Manitoba today and I'm off to warm myself up with a nice hot cup of... you guessed it! Coffee!
We're off to a great start here! I love the introductory entries so far; I think sharing your favorite coffee memories is an excellent idea. I've got a great one for you, but it will have to wait for when I've got a few more minutes. In the meantime, if you haven't posted yet go ahead and share.

Speaking of sharing, I know we have a bunch of people new to Blogger who aren't quite sure how it all works. I know everyone knows how to do comments, but not necessarily new posts. If you want to start your own post (which I hope you all will!) simply log into Blogger and go to the Dashboard. There you can start your post.

Don't forget to grab a button for your blog and spread the word. We still have spots left right now. I'd love to get them filled up by the end of the week so we can get to the really fun part: partners!

Friday, October 27, 2006

My memorable coffee moments

I have a few coffee memories of my own. The first one I can think of is the smell of my grandparents' coffee pot. It was a chrome percolator, always plugged in, sitting on the kitchen table. My grandpa always seemed to have a melamine cup with his favored milky Folger's, sitting in his spot by the back door.

I remember having a cup of fairly nasty McDonald's coffee with my brother. We were tandem driving two of his cars, trying to stay awake on a boring, unending highway.

I had the best alcoholic coffee in St.Louis. I was at an Irish pub in the Soulard district with my brother, and discovered the "Fragile Baby". It had strong coffee, Jameson Irish Whiskey, Frangelico, Bailey's, and topped with homemade whipped cream. I still make them from time to time in the winter- warming and oh so good!

My favorite coffee memory ever was my most expensive cup. My husband and I were in Vienna, Austria, and exploring the town. We found the Hotel Sacher- famous for their torte- and decided to have a snack. When we went inside, the host quickly guided us back outside- we weren't dressed up to snuff to be seated inside. So he sat us on the terrace, which was delightful. My husband ordered a Turkish coffee, and I ordered a Wiener Melange, along with our slices of Sacher torte. That cup of coffee was the best I've had, bar none. A hint of cinnamon, smooth coffee, and a creamy top- it was well worth the cost. I've tried to replicate it, to no success. I can't wait to go back to Vienna, if for nothing more than to sample more coffee. There's an amazing coffee culture there, going back all the way to the Turks.
I have two memories of the best coffee I ever drank, the first was in Mexico at club med and I remember the coffee can had a coffee pot on the label but, alas, the name is forgotton.That was the smoothest cup of java I ever guzzled. The second was in Santa Fe at a friends house where her husband had a coffee cart at one of the hotels and she made a pot of their special grind they used and WOW, I could not get enough of that. Ever since then I have been on the look out for something that compares to those two lost loves. I still haven't found what I've been looking for.... wendy

Coffee Poem

There something about the taste and smell of coffee

There something about the taste and smell of coffee
That transports me to another world
Sitting in my office I drink Stacey's filter coffee and
I'm back in America sitting in Eric's jeep outside of just
Dunkin Doughnuts
Or Starbucks with Elaine and Micky

Drinking Irish cream coffee at Milkylane and
I'm back in America at home in my room
Or at "My Father's Place" shooting pool
Driving to Seven Eleven or the corner store
Trying to decide do I want Irish Cream or French Vanilla
And when I get there I say bugger the budget and get
Both plus a packet of big chips on special for 99c * Pleasure

Ah the fine association and memories and but slowly
I am getting addicted * but whether its decaf or caf
It doesn't matter it's the smell and taste of coffee

Now I home in South Africa and I admit
That I am now addicted to coffee in totality
It's the romantic atmosphere of the Shop
The intellectual experience of the conversation
The solitary moment with a book
Excitement of a relationship
Socialisation with friends
The extra motivation when working
Fills in for the boredom and avoidance of food

There is just something about the smell and taste of coffee**

I wrote this poem a few years ago after I Au Paired in America.

Le Coffee

Alright, seems like am in. YAY

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Wow! I'm In!

One of the chosen 50... Wow....
I should have bought a lottery ticket too
Anyway, I'm thrilled to be here. I love coffee. I guess it has something to do with being a night shift RN. Or a night owl in general.
Can't wait to meet my pal.

Blogger vs. Beta-Blogger

So I've gotten e-mails from a few people who can't seem to get their invite to work. Apparently Blogger and Beta-Blogger aren't compatible. I didn't even realize there was a Beta-Blogger until today. Anyone know the difference? Does Beta-Blogger eliminate all the typical Blogger messes that so many of us encounter? Or is it just another way for them to complicate blog-life?

If you are a Beta-Blogger, I can think of two suggesstions:

1. Let me know that you've gotten the invite. I'll then add your blog link to a special "Beta" section in the sidebar. You won't be able to post on our blog, but you can still comment and people can just visit your blog.

2. Just open a second regular old Blogger account and have full use of this blog.

You can still participate either way, just let me know what you wish to do.

If you know more about this or have any other suggestions, just let us know!

Spots are going fast!!!

I can't believe how fast my box is filling up! I just sent out a heap of invites. As soon as you accept your invitation I will add you to the member list on the right.

There are still spots left, so sign up while you still can!

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

What You Need to Know

Edited: The swap is closed. Check back next spring for Coffee Swap Two!

Okay, we all know the really important stuff is the coffee and the yarn, but just to be clear, here’s the dirt:


-You must love coffee and be a knitter/crocheter.

-This is an international swap, so be sure to let me know if you are NOT willing to ship internationally so I can pair you accordingly.

-This swap is for the bloggers and the blogless. If you’re blogless, be sure to use our blog often as it will help your pal get to know you a little better.

-The box should value around $30 - $40 (not including postage) and at the minimum it must include:

-coffee! (about a pound, and we’re talking the good stuff here!:-)
-1-2 skeins of yarn, enough for a small project such as a hat, socks, a scarf, etc.
-treats to go with the coffee

Other things you could include might be a mug or travel mug, coffee accessories, knitting accessories, recipies...get creative! I've provided a few links on the side to get you started.

-This is not a secret swap. You will know your pal and your pal will know you.

-Please do not sign up unless you absolutely, positively know you will not flake on your pal and that you are going to put together a brilliant package. If you do flake, you’ll be barred from any future swaps and disappoint all of us, oh so very much!

-Sign ups will be open today, at 6pm Central, to the first 50 people who sign up. I will close sign ups on November 8th (earlier if we reach 50). Pals will be matched by the 12th, and you will have one month to get your package put together and shipped. All packages should be received by December 10th. (International? Plan ahead!)

Interested? To sign up, email the following info to me at: coffeeswap AT yahoo DOT com

Do you have a blog? Y/N
Blog Address:
Will you take an international pal?
Any allergies or things you want your pal to know?

Once I have confirmed your sign-up, please be sure to accept the blogger invitation and then post to the Knitters Coffee Swap blog. Please use it to introduce yourself and to share your package with us when you receive it. Also feel free to post coffee links, recipies, ideas, or whatever is your fancy.

When I match you up, I will provide questions to help you put together the best package for your swap pal.

Please feel free to let me know if you have any questions or suggestions. This is my first swap and I want to make sure it’s quality! Oh, and of course there WILL be a contest.

Have fun!!! Sign ups open in 20 minutes!!

Edited: I added country to the list of info I need. Might help with international match-ups!:-)

The rules...

...will be up later today. Knittybaby was not in a sleeping mood last night, so no blogging for me!

I'll get them finished up and posted this afternoon once I'm home from work. Sign-ups will start tonight at 6pm Central.

How fast will we fill up those 50 spots?

Monday, October 23, 2006


Well, somehow I managed to pull a button together. As pleased as I was with myself for kind of figuring it out, all I can say is that is one amatuer looking button. So, those of you who are technically proficient and want to make a button, go for it! Otherwise, feel free to take my sad little button, save to your own server, and slap it on your blog.

Sign ups for this swap will start in two days. Since this is my first swap, it will be limited to the first 50 people. Get your mouse buttons ready! Rules and fine print posted tomorrow.

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Here we go!

So I'll be spending the next few days getting organized. Sign ups will hopefully start this Wednesday!