Thursday, April 29, 2010

23andMe, continued

I came home for lunch the other day, and found a lovely little package from 23andMe on my doorstep. 

I knew the time had come for my saliva sample, but since you have to avoid eating or drinking for 30 minutes before you do it, I decided to wait until I got home from work.  Lucky you though, you don't have to wait for my photojournalistic recap.   Because It.  Starts.  Right.  Now.

Yes, folks, that is a test tube fitted with a little spit funnel.  And yes, I made sure to provide enough saliva to meet the fill line.

When you close the lid on the spit funnel thing, it releases a magical liquid that turns your saliva into mystical genetic-revealing ooze.  Ok, just kidding.  Maybe it's just some sort of clear liquid and I have no idea what it does.  But it's supposed to be there.  Anyway, you remove the funnel and replace it with the "small cap" (it was a pretty average-sized cap, if you ask me).  Then you shake.  For 5 seconds.  It didn't say to shake vigorously, but really, is there any other way to shake? 

Once your spit-magical-liquid is nice and bubbly, you put it in the Specimen Bag.  Because it is now officially a Specimen.  Requiring a Bag.  The bag has a little piece of tissue that says "keep in bag", though I have no idea why.  The bag is also labeled "biohazard", which I can only take to mean that the liquid in the funnel lid is somehow hazardous, cause y'all know my saliva is pretty standard issue.  Maybe you didn't know that.  Maybe this has been way too much information about my spit.  Oh well; it's my blog.

After you take your now-biohazardous saliva and place it in the aforementioned Specimen Bag, you place said bag in the postage pre-paid return envelope.  It's tiny and padded and kind of adorable, if I'm being completely honest.  Seal the envelope and drop it in the mail and you're all done!

The whole thing from opening the box to sealing the envelope took about 5 minutes.  It was kind of fun, and I can't wait to get my results!

Did anyone out there get a test of their own?  Have you done something similar in the past?  Are you madly, insanely jealous and hoping that next year on DNA Day, they offer the same deal?

I thought so.  :)

Friday, April 23, 2010

It's DNA Day! Special offer from 23 and Me (4/23/10 only)

Apparently today is DNA Day, and in honor of this special holiday, the Genetics/Ancestry testing company 23 and Me (founded by the wife of Google founder Sergey Brin) is offering a crazy ridiculous deal on their services.  I was thinking about getting my DNA tested before, but I couldn't justify the hefty pricetag...with this deal, I might just do it.

They are offering their Complete Edition (includes both the Ancestry and Health Editions) for $99.00 - regularly priced at $499!  That's a $400 savings, people!  It's not like I have an extra $99 lying around, but this is something I have been interested in doing ever since I heard about it a few years ago...and something I'd be willing to spend $99 on, I think.

Go to for more information (limit 10 per person; offer only good TODAY, April 23rd, 2010, in honor of DNA day).

What do you think?  Will you be buying?

UPDATE:  5:25pm, the sale has ended, I bought mine.  I was still on the fence, and saw this tweet from 23andMe and realized I didn't want to miss out.  Thank goodness they started following me, and that I followed them back, or I wouldn't have made it!  I'll post an update about this whole genome thing when I get my saliva kit ;-)

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Earth Day, light and airy

It's Earth Day, and yesterday was Administrative Professionals Day, and yet all I have to offer you is this picture of a gorgeous kitchen.  It does feel like a sort of appropriate kitchen for Earth Day, what with all the natural light and flowers and just bright and cheeriness.  Regardless, it will have to suffice, and hopefully soon I will get my blogging self back in gear.  :)

via Apartment Therapy, as usual

Friday, April 16, 2010

I'm a dork

Let me preface this by saying that I am a giant dork.  Ok, now that that's out of the way...I noticed a cool Google logo thing today, and thought I'd blog about it on the off chance that someone else thinks it's cool too.  Or knows why it's so.

The Google Chrome browser has an option for "incognito" browsing. I was browsing all incognito style recently, and noticed that the Google homepage logo looked different.  I couldn't figure out what it was...was it crisper?  More bevel-embossed?  Just for kicks (and because I am a super sleuth), I checked it out in a normal Chrome browser window, and it looked all same-as-usual.  It then clicked: the incognito browser window has no shadow!  Is this because it's so incognito, it doesn't create a shadow? Eh? Eh? Maybe?  That's my theory behind the design choice.  Though that doesn't explain the brighter colors, and lighter (and not-underlined) hyperlinks to the right of and below the search box.  Also, incognito logo doesn't have the little "TM" trademark sign.  Gosh, this is like one of those "find 10 things that are different about these two pictures" games.

A comparative analysis below.  Because I was worried that it was a fluke and was going to go away, I took screenshots and slapped them into a picture.  Check check.  Or try incognito browsing for yourself and see the difference live and in your face.  I'm hoping one of my Google buddies will read this and leave a comment about the different faces of

Yes, Please

Photo via Young House Love

PS - I love/hate YHL...Ok, I don't hate. I'm just jealous. How can anyone's life be that (seemingly) perfect? They are those DIY-ers you love to hate, I suppose...but their DIY home improvements are so ridiculously awesome, that I can't help but just wish I could have their house.  Are there any style/home/life bloggers that you can't stand* because you totally want to be them?

*by "can't stand" I obviously mean read religiously and follow on Twitter, and share with friends and wish I could be.  Obvi.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Spring Flowers

I bought these ready-to-blossom flowers last week, because I just love when flowers bloom in the apartment.  Makes me all happy.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Remember when this blog was about knitting?

When I first started this blog, I wrote about knitting a lot.  And funny story, I actually used my knit lunch bag today, on the day I will finally blog again about something I've knitted.  No kidding.  PS - I just realized that I never shared the finished bag, avec lovely star button (that I don't actually use as a button, because that buttonhole would just be annoying).  So here ya go.  The bag. 

The lovely Miss Keira was my bag model, which actually ties in nicely with today's post about knitting.  Keira recently became a big sister, which inspired me to bust out my circular needles and learn how to make a little baby hat. Of course, my first attempt resulted in the tiniest hat known to mankind, which ended up being more doll-sized than baby-sized.  Perhaps (and this is just a guess) I have underestimated the size of a newborn baby's head.  Did you know that their heads are actually not all that tiny when they come out?  Terrifying.

I digress.  After teeny babydoll hat, I tried again...resulting in about 1" of twisted, mobius-y gigantor that would definitely have been too big for Baby.  I decided to invest in some slightly larger yarn, and use slightly larger needles, since um, I was frustrated and wanted to try again with something that wouldn't take quite so long.  I didn't want to venture in to the scary land of Double Pointed Needles, so I stretched that thing as far as it would go on my 16" Size 10 Circulars.  The result? The hat you see below on the left.

It was almost big enough to fit me.  My head is slightly larger than the head of Miss Baby, but I had extra yarn and tried again, casting on about half as many stitches.  The result?  An adorable pair of hats, perfect for Big Sis and Lil Sis to wear together.  And by golly, these hats better fit those girls! :-)

Actually, I made three hats in the last week.  Baby is getting 2 hats, because baby yarn is ridiculously soft and adorable.  I may have bought 4 different skeins of baby yarn. Attention friends: if you are pregnant, or recently had a baby, expect to receive a baby hat.  I might be obsessed.

I got an amazing deal on a set of DPNs on Amazon (5 DPNs in 13 sizes for $21.99!), and figured I'd brave the DPN knitting on the smaller hat...smaller hat = more difficult to stretch out on the circulars.  And you know what?  It wasn't awful.  I made a little mistake when making the pastel hat (it was my first try), and used 3 DPNs total instead of 3 for the stitches and a 4th to stitch with, but you can't even tell.  See?

Thanks to Crazy Aunt Purl for her awesome tutorial.  Also, see this one about decreasing stitches.  She is hilarious, and is one of the main reasons I am not afraid of DPNs.  After finishing off the pastel hat, I finished off the bright baby hat, this time using the correct number of DPNs.  Wow.  That was way easier.  I might even say that I love doing this now.  It's pretty awesome, and I really like pulling the yarn through the stitches at the end to finish it off - there's something satisfying about pulling it all together (literally) like it's a drawstring bag.  Super!  No fear!

Wow, totally scary!!!

I'm totally doing it!!

Another Scam!

We saw another "too good to be true" listing on Craigslist, and sure enough, the response to my inquiry email reeks of scamminess.  It's very similar to the other scam-listing, actually.  My favorite parts are in bold.  Yikes.  I was kind of disappointed to see that it had already been flagged.  I totally wanted to flag it.

Thanks for the email. My name is Collins Comb the owner of the 1 Bedroom Condo you are making enquiry of, Its still available for immediate possession. The rent includes all utilities such as : - all furnishings - linens- tableware-  cooking utensils- water- heat- internet- basic cable TV etc Options and extras:- off-street  parking / garage (2 cars) - electricity- phone- digital or HD TV.Presently am out of the country to cover some story of African History in West Africa countries like: Sudan, Ghana and Nigeria, and others but presently in Nigeria. I'm a TV News  correspondant. This is a very big task but I have to do it, all the documents to the property and keys are in safe hand here with me. we are looking for a responsible person that can take a very good care of it for us, as we are not after the money for the rent but want it to be clean all the time and the possible tenant will see the Condo as his or her own.
Here is the Condo address:2600 Ashby Ave #1, Berkeley CA 94705 ...Ready for immediate move-in!You can drive down there to take a look at it...i will be willing to rent my Condo out for the maximum of 5 years and below.I personally had wanted to sell the Condo earlier on.But after long time deliberation between me and my wife Elizabeth we finally agreed on renting out the Condo, because it was initially to be sold. But I really want you to take good care of the Condo, as if it were your own Condo.
I will be online through out to get back to you as soon as you are able to get back to me. I would want to know how soon you would want to move in, as I will be taking a 1 or 2-month upfront payment which mean the first and last months you will be staying in the Condo including some utilities (Electricity, Water, Internet, Heat and Garbage). I am asking for $1536 For 2 month upfront payment Or $768 for 1 month upfront payment and I believe we should be able to help ourselves. including utilities because I want you to take a very good care of the Condo while I am away.
Because due to my present location. Is not possible for you to view the interior of the place when i have the keys and the document with me here in africa..I am looking forward to hear from you ASAP so i will like you to go ahead and fill out the rent application form so that will can proceed further and discuss on how to get the  the keys and papers sent to you via Dhl or ups e.t.c, also are you ready to rent it now or when?.So here is the Rent Application Form Below..
                                             =========  RENT APPLICATION FORM ============
                                                                PRIVATE & CONFIDENTIAL
Also,Pls answer these questions below:
1)Your Full Name______________________________________
2)Present Address(where you reside now) & Phone Number______________________________
 3)How old are you _____________________________
4)Are you married ______________________________ _____
5)How many people will be living in the Condo___________________________
6)Do you have a pet _________________________________________
7)Do you have a car __________________________________________
8)Occupation _________________________________________________
9)How long are you willing to stay _________________________________________
10)When do you intend to move in _________________________________________
11)1 month Or 2 month deposit needed ______________________________________
12) Pictures of all the Occupant that will stay in my Condo______________________________________
Pet allows.
I will use the information above to prepare the rental agreement , rent receipts and other documents. Make sure the correct information is type.Do reply with your both cell & home number i am going to call you if your application form has been accepted or call me after filling the rental application form. A package containing the housing documents, property address with full description. Inlcuding the direction to the place and keys will be ship to you once you both agreed with the term and condition. Call me once you fill out the application form.Here is my contact number: +2348028713386 or 0112348028713386....i will be expecting your call to know how serious you are in renting my Condo
 Thanks & God Bless

Sunday, April 11, 2010


"Nook" is one of my favorite words; it's just so cozy and comforting somehow.  From that nook I slide into on the couch when I'm falling asleep as we watch TV, to that perfect little nook on his shoulder when he puts his arm around me, to that private, secret reading nook that we all dream about in our "someday I will have a perfect home" dreams...nooks are happy and wonderful places indeed.

Which brings me to the breakfast nook.  Ah yes, one of the most famous of all nooks.  A series of breakfast nooks was posted on Apartment Therapy last week, so I thought I'd share a few of my favorites.  Click here to see the original article.

And now, if you'll excuse me, it's cold and rainy here in Berkeley, and there's a little couch nook all decked out with a down comforter, whispering my name.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Can't help it

I'm sorry - I really do have pictures of my own to post on this blog o mine, but things have been busy, and I haven't been able to get them all up on my computer and edited and such.  So for now, please enjoy this (hot damn it's pretty) kitchen.  Via Apartment Therapy.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

The Old Man is Snoring

The current weather in Berkeley, according to my Gmail theme.  It is absolutely accurate.

Pretty Tile and Another Dreamy Kitchen

I don't normally like things that are uneven, asymmetrical, or otherwise "jaggedy," but I do love the way this shower tile looks.   I think that grout would be a pain in the butt to keep clean though...I'm so torn!  It looks so nice!  Maybe it could be sealed with some sort of lacquer or something so it could be cleaned more easily or something.  Anyway, it's pretty.  via Apartment Therapy

This kitchen is so bright and cheery!  I love the turquoise island, of course, but I also love the brightly colored colander, vases, etc...and the cabinets, and that cake stand on the counter.  via Apartment Therapy

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Also Called "National Fun Day"

I don't have any sort of elaborate April Fools' Post planned...I'm not usually one for the "OMG WE ARE ENGAGED JUST KIDDING APRIL FOOLS" type of posts (hello, Facebook? Did you send out a memo telling everyone to post fake engagement announcements this year? sigh), and I am generally gullible when it comes to April Fools' Day anyway.  Around 6:30am this morning, Will woke up suddenly, saying "Oh Crap! Oh Crap!"  I thought he was talking in his sleep, and mumbled, "agwugwethr what's wrong? asfoasfijasf" (or something like that).  "OH CRAP IT'S 9:45!!"   "What?!"   "Ha, ha. April Fools."    "argh. I'm going back to bed."

I do, however, love (love love) when companies get in on the fun.  Google (erm, Topeka) is usually the winner (for complexity, follow through, and commitment!), but this year, Whole Foods had some great stuff up too.  So did Southwest.

Anyway, because I love Google and all its awesomeness, here's a look at some of my favorite Google April Fools' Hoaxes, past and present.