28 February 2011

Shameless Attempt to Win the Prize

This post has nothing to do with bicycles...

I am a food renegade.
I buy illegal milk. I do workshare on an organic farm for our produce. I visit the farmers market for our meat. I buy groceries at the Coop in the bulk bin. And I love fermenting.

We have a little crock of magic sitting on the counter any given day.

This morning I woke up to a favorite website, foodrenegade.com, having a give away of three starters from www.culturesforhealth.com. Both websites are lovely and chock full of information about fermentation.

Check them out for the chance to win three starter cultures:
choice of yogurt starter
choice of sourdough starter
kefir starter

Good luck! Don't forget about me when you've got some delish fermented foods to share.

25 February 2011

Maiden Voyage

This morning I took the rig (Specialized Hard Rock Pro and Columbia Bike Buggy) for a spin with two two year old tots in tow.

It was pretty exciting to wear our new helmets and hit the road. We stayed in the neighborhood, visiting the excellent panaderia on S 1st Street and shared some delicious cupcakes. It was very difficult to find a place to lock the bike and buggy in this busy shopping center. I may need to take a solo mission and scope it out for the future. Instead of locking the bike up I did something very careless and left the rig in the parking spot in front of the bakery. This was a really bad idea because: A) a car could have pulled in and crushed it, B) anybody who wanted to could have got on and rode off.
Next stop: we headed east to S Congress to pay a visit to our friendly neighborhood coffee roaster to pick up chaff for our chicken coop. It was a lot easier to "park" this go. So now I had two bags of chaff to haul along with the babies in the buggy. I put the bags at their feet. They were okay with this for about half the trip home (read: 5 mins) when I started to hear yells of protest behind me.

I am really curious about a couple of things:
1. Tricks that other MoBsters use to haul precious cargo along with their not so precious cargo.
2. Streamlining the lock up and unload with kids on board in a busy area.

Tips always welcome - utilize the comment box.

Locked & Loaded

Pinhead Component Locking System
4Pack Lock Set

  • Front and rear wheel locking skewers.
  • Seat lock.
  • Headset lock.
  • Unique multi combination key.
Austin has high bike crime. We are averaging about one bike per year being stolen at our place. That said, I want to deter a thief the best I can.

Per Rick's suggestion I bought the Pinhead 4 pack to lock up my bike's components (seat post, headset, and front/rear wheels).

Installation was a piece of cake... I did all of it with a 2 year old crawling on me and the bike. The most difficult part was attaching the buggy. The Pinhead rear rod was just long enough to fit the buggy as long as I didn't use the washer that came with the skewer.

The manufacture recommends "a professional bicycle dealer trim off excess Rod length". They did come with a little rubber piece to put over the excess; however, I have a pretty gnarly bruise on my leg from the seat post lock's excess and want it removed ASAP.

I ordered the 4 pack because by doing so all the component locks use one universal key. The key double as a niffty bottle opener, too!

24 February 2011

Tool Time

Park Tool Co. MT-1 Rescue Wrench/ Multi-tool

I picked this little guy up last night at REI while picking up my safety helmet (don't worry, you'll hear about that later). It was between the MT-1 and a couple of the bigger multi-tools, but with me being the thrifter that I am I opted for the cheap.

It's Park Tool Co.'s crudest option as far as multis go- packing a punch with:
  • 3mm, 4mm, 5mm, 6mm, and 8mm hex wrenches
  • 8mm, 9mm, and 10mm socket wrenches
  • straight blade screwdriver
My biggest complaint thus far (I got a good bit of use out of this guy last night), while using the 6mm hex to replace my saddle, the 3mm scratched my seat post.

" uncomplicated, easy to use, and effective", parktool.com
Biking with a toddler in tow? Uncomplicated is the way to go. It's small enough to slip into my back pocket making my load a little lighter.

23 February 2011

Saddle Up

It's here! It's Here! IT'S HERE!

My Brooks B68s Classic (black) saddle came in the post today. And it is a beaut.

Upon unwrapping it from the sophisticated packaging I dressed it with LEXOL-Neatsfoot leather dressing- designed for today's vegetable tanned leather, which is how this hide was tanned.

I eagerly retrieved my tools to replace the vinyl saddle with my new prize leather saddle to find that somebody had used them without replacing them, ugh.
So for now I can only admire it on my desk as I fantasize about how nicely it will shape to my body & cool in hot weather.

Review to follow...

18 February 2011

Filling A Void

I have been searching the interwebs for information about going car-less with young children since the baby was born... two years ago. There is some great information out there when you dig , I thought I would add my two cents as I take the plunge into carless motherhood.

I bought a five year old Specialized Lady Hard Rock Pro off craigslist.org with the intention to transform it to a human powered mini-van. I will document my progress here and I hope other MoBsters will chime in with advice and comments.