Tag Archives: Beer

Pink hair is making me vain.

Vainty, vanity and pink hairIt’s true. I keep looking in the mirror because it’s so much fun to see my hair pink. Then I keep taking pictures of myself to make sure it looks ok. I’m aiming for trendy, not trashy and a girl has to keep tabs on this sort of thing. Unremarkably, my hair remains pink every time I glance at it, and has not turned into a white trash, train wreck of a hairstyle.

Yesterday was a good day despite the return of frigid temperatures. The rain has let up a bit but temps for the past two weeks have been 10 – 20 degrees below average. It’s nearly May and we’re pushing to hit 50 during the day. Sigh. I managed to get the hops into the ground. It’s been so rainy that gardening has been nearly impossible. It felt good to get out there and dig in the dirt….even if I did have to wear a parka to keep warm. So I dug 8 holes for the hop rhizomes (roots). They were about 18″ wide and 18 – 24″ deep. The rhizomes aren’t huge, and don’t require a hole that big, but all the research advocated digging large holes so that you could mix a good amount of composted manure into the dirt. My shoulders and butt have not forgiven the hour and half of digging, hoeing and back filling from yesterday. The only decent thing about the cold weather is that hops love it. Even though this is quite late in the season for planting them, I don’t think they’ll suffer. That’s more than I can say for my aching shoulders.

Yesterday I received my huge box of goodies from akasha, my Beer & Fiber swap partner. The idea was to get paired up with a friend, and buy them some yarn and beer that isn’t commonly available in their area. akasha went all out, sending me double the amount of beer specified, plus extra needles and a cute sweater key chain. It was an amazing package. See the pictures below for more details. If I hadn’t been out of the house for the season opening bikini wax, we would have started tasting them after dinner. It’s been cold enough that they were all about 45 degrees from sitting in the delivery truck all day. Sigh. It’s like a Belgian beer dream. There are four imports plus a few more American brewed Belgian styles. Oh, and don’t forget the IPA, stouts, and wheat beers. They’re all over 5% alcohol, which means that I can’t buy any of these beers in the great state of Iowa due to our stupid beer laws. I feel like a little kid on Beer Christmas. Thanks, akasha! You are so generous and thoughtful!!! Sit back and get comfy….here comes the beer parade:

The whole lot

Beer with pink or red labels: Stoudt’s Fat Dog, Dogfish Head 90 minute IPA, and Southern Tier’s Raspberry Wheat:

Red and pink beer

Yellow Beer: Imported Saison, and American brewed double wit and saison. Yummy! I’ve never had a Saison yet. I’m so excited!

Beers with yellow labels

Beers with blue labels: Old Heathen, Golden Monkey and a chocolate cream homebrew! Sigh. So tempting.

Blue label beers

The Imported Belgians: I don’t know a lot about these, but look at the funky Belgian bottles! yay! A Dubbel, A tripel and Pirate beer!

Belgian beer

And a little yarny goodness to finish off the parade. It’s the AquaTide colorway, hand dyed by Ellyn Cooper. (Ellyn Cooper’s Yarn Sonnets) A brand new kind of sock yarn to knit up – in colors that blend beautifully with my wardrobe.

Aquatide Ellyn Cooper's Yarn Sonnets

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Beer Geek

Check out the nice lacing on this beer.Since purchasing my lovely husband a basic beer brewing kit for his birthday in very late August, I’ve become a beer geek. Most probably geekier than even my DH himself. I blame the dyeing of yarn mostly. Because once it’s dyed, it has to be washed, dried and re-skeined. Thanks to my washing machine (Soak and spin with water supplies shut off, only! Do not send any skein of yarn through a regular wash cycle it will ruin it. You’ve been warned.) and a lovely drying rack and fan setup those parts of the process don’t take very long. But the re-skeining….oi, the re-skeining takes forever. So I started listening to knitting podcasts. But there just weren’t enough to keep up with the hours I spend watching the yarn go round and round. So I moved on to sports. I play fantasy football, so that was great. But once I got through all the pertinent backlog the knitting and the sports podcasts weren’t enough to keep up. I moved onto the beer and brewing podcasts. With their huge backlogs, and frequent updates, I’ve been a happy skeiner for a couple of months. Of course when you spend hours a day listening to a plethora of education programming on brewing and tasting beer,  you might just turn into a Beer Geek by osmosis. Your Darling Husband might also laugh at you and accuse you of being slightly obsessive. Your mother might start to worry about your drinking habits because you show up for all family events with at least a 6 pack of home brew, and politely demand the empties so they can be sanitized in time to bottle the batch of stout in the secondary.

The Beer Geek inside might also strongly suggest she’d like to visit a brewery as part of the Thanksgiving Lovely Nick drinking at New Belgiumtravel plans…..and that is how we ended up at the New Belgium brewery on Black Friday with my MIL & FIL. It was a great trip. Very interesting, even though we weren’t able to take a guided tour. We arrived in the early afternoon (I was having slight misgivings about going tasting in the early afternoon, given the prohibitionist attitudes towards alcohol here in the USA.), and all 140 tickets for a guided tour had been gone since 10 am that morning. Apparently, the Black Friday craziness had set in because there were people lined up outside the brewery before they opened. The tasting room was standing room only when we arrived, and the very hospitable New Belgium employee inside the door cheerily told us to make our way to the bar, as this was a lull and he anticipated a crowd making it’s way there in the near future. So after about half an hour we were seated and had the fun of ordering up four tasters of the beers of our choice.

Katie's tasters at New BelgiumLet me say that if you have any interest in beer, and are in the Denver area, you absolutely should visit a brewery. If you are near Fort Collins, you absolutely have to visit New Belgium. It’s a crazy fun place and everyone there is happy. The beer was great and the people there were even better. Despite the large number of people waiting to be served, our bar tended took the time to answer our (OK, my.) inquiries about their beer and ingredients. He even took the time to make me a photocopy of the ingredient lists for every one of their beers so I could try to replicate them here at home. Before we went, I was a huge fan of New Belgium based in their great beers, and after visiting them, I think I might be slightly fanatical. I love it when I find a company that I like outstrips my expectations.

Cheers, go find yourself some Fat Tire or Sunshine today!

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