Thursday, November 08, 2012

Homebrewed IPA

So the initial brew attempt will be ready this weekend!  It's an IPA which tends to be my favorite.  We'll see how I did.  The process was relatively easy and enjoyable...broke out my camera and took pictures during the process

The initial step is to steep the grains in hot water for an hour (which made my place smell like I had been baking all day!).  

After straining out the grains and adding more water, what's left is the wort....the liquid that eventually becomes the beer.

 IPA = hops :) The wort is boiled for an hour and Cascade & Columbus hops are added at different points during the boil

Finally, the fermentation in the glass carboy for two weeks, followed by two weeks in the bottle.  That four weeks ends this Saturday!  Looking forward to trying it...

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

somethin's homebrewin'...

been wanting to try brewing my own beer for a while.  a friend sent me a link to a sale at BevMo for the Brooklyn BrewShop's Beer Making Kit.  It was only $20 for a one gallon kit, and it included the ingredients for the first batch (what a deal!).  The sale is still going on at BevMo (online and in stores) if you want to check it out.   

this kit came with an IPA ingredients kit.  i'll post pictures of the brewing process.  it was kinda fun.  thankfully i had been saving empty beer bottles to use for the homebrew.  thanks to Google/YouTube, found an easy way to soak the bottles (in water/oxyclean) and the labels peel right off.  then rinsed them off with some soap and water.  will be designing some labels too cause why not? 

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

It's becoming a tradition...

so i'm realizing that i seem to have a recurring theme around this time of year.  a blast of motivation hits me to restart this blog.  not really sure why (ok well this year, my friend lyn sparked some motivation.  she'll be restarting her blog too).  will this motivation die down like it seems to every year?  probably.  but for now i at least get some feeling of accomplishment. 

so what's new in life for me now?  i have a new niece and a new roommate :)  got to meet my newborn niece last week when i went out to colorado.  she was only three weeks old and i hogged her as much as i could since i'll only see her again when i go out there for christmas.  i wish i was more local to see her more often.  here's a picture of her...

i also mentioned a new roommate.  after much waiting, mylah arrived.  she's a beautiful african grey parrot.  Got her from a breeder a couple hours from where I live.  she imitates a couple of my whistles...and hopefully will start talking soon.  i'll have to watch my language around the house so she doesn't repeat anything :) 

here she is...

so that's the update for now.  here's hoping the blog posts continue a little more consistently this time :)

Monday, November 07, 2011

Back in the nation's capital

so i made it through another tax season.  september and early october tend to be crazy with annual tax filings and quarter end deadlines falling within a few weeks of each other.  think i see a tax season grey hair that popped up.  i tell myself it makes me look distinguished, not old.

first half of this week i'm at a tax conference in DC.  i need the CPE credits and this is an "interesting" (loosely defined) one.  it can get a little dry sometimes depending on the speaker...i'm actually writing this as the speaker talks about individual tax reform.  not too relevant for my job but oh well.  looking around this room, i'm definitely one of the youngest people here.  also i have yet to see someone else in jeans.  i'm so professional.
an added bonus of the conference is i get to hang out in DC for a bit.  i do love this town.  got here a few days early and toured the sites/museums a bit.  the sites never get old for me.  it's been sunny but on the chillier side, but the National Mall was still bustling with people playing football, ultimate frisbee.  it's a ton of walking but it has been nice being back.  based on a friend's recommendation, checked out graffiato, an italian restaurant last night and it was awesome.  this conference ends on wednesday and hoping to get a little more sightseeing in before heading back to cali on saturday...

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

dane cook

so work's been crazy working on our tax returns...haven't had much time to upload or share anything new. i DID meet dane cook today at least :-)  he's been one of the early adopters of google+ so he came to google and did a talk.
really cool, down-to-earth guy.  got there early and had a front row seat.  talked to him for a few minutes after the show too.  the photographer of the event got a picture of me and him...just waiting for him to post it...

Tuesday, July 26, 2011


so i was super wired when i got home last night around 11pm (no idea why) and knew sleep wasn't going to happen. so decided to finally start going through the pictures from my DC trip last fall. got a ton of pictures i need to go through so just a few night shots for now. i'm potentially going to DC again in november for a tax conference. looking through the pictures i rediscovered this great quote by thomas jefferson that's actually up in the jefferson memorial. makes me think about the tea partiers (or whoever else) always going on about what the founding fathers would have wanted:

"I am not an advocate for frequent changes in laws and constitutions, but laws and institutions must go hand in hand with the progress of the human mind. As that becomes more developed, more enlightened, as new discoveries are made, new truths discovered and manners and opinions change, with the change of circumstances, institutions must advance also to keep pace with the times. We might as well require a man to wear still the coat which fitted him when a boy as civilized society to remain ever under the regimen of their barbarous ancestors."

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Euro trip...

had my first 'hangout' on google+ yesterday (if you haven't checked out google+ and need an invite, let me know)...the hangout was at the office with coworkers and it's really cool!  someone from our tax team is doing a 6 month rotation in Ireland and leaves on Sunday.  so we had a going away thing for her and set up a hangout on g+ so people from Ireland could conference in.  she'll be touring europe a bit while she's out there.  so lucky!  reminded me of my europe trip a couple years ago and how much i want to go back.  might try and plan a visit while i'd have a free stay in Ireland. 

last time i went i checked out paris, rome, and greece.  would love to see more of france and italy...

Thursday, July 07, 2011

I Love (and miss) New York

my (hopefully annual) trip to NY has come and gone.  the weddings were a lot of fun and from what people said, the song went very well.  I had to play up from the balcony (with no sound system) but thankfully the small church had great acoustics.  got to hang out in NYC for about 4 days...not nearly enough time but since both weddings were in upstate, I couldn't hang out in the city on the weekends.  will definitely be spending more days in nyc next time.  had dinner at lombardi's and walked around the lower east side.  was so much fun being back there.

though made me realize i haven't gone through all the pictures from my NY trip last year.  here's one of the brooklyn bridge for now...hopefully more to come later...

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Practice, Practice, Practice...

so of course I wait until last minute to start practicing for the wedding in NY that I'm playing/singing in.  yikes.  making sloppy mistakes and it's getting frustrating!  i don't think paul stookey envisioned so many f-bombs during this beautiful song when he wrote it.  hopefully i pull it together in time!  guess we'll see...

Friday, June 10, 2011


this is an older one that i don't think i ever posted.  started out as a pencil drawing and then i scanned and painted it in photoshop.  hoping to do more projects like these!