29 April 2011

first thing

I made myself a fancy bowl of oatmeal this morning.  Actually, it was a pretty normal bowl of oatmeal, with the special appearance of strawberries.  I was very excited about this bowl of oatmeal, until I began eating it and suddenly realized that the strawberries tasted like red lumps of nothingness.

Then I remembered why I usually refuse to buy strawberries until they're in-season locally and being sold by the pint at our farmers' market.  No more California-grown supermarket strawberries for me this spring. Blech.

The thing is, I was really trying to get my morning off to a good start.  It's been a bit of a rough stretch at our house lately, and I'm still trying to find the right combination of routine, inspiration, and cautious optimism that will make me feel like a real person again.

The routine--which is a key element of my life--has been kind of hard to hammer out, what with shifting schedules and long, empty stretches of free time.

And the inspiration--which I sometimes find absolutely everywhere--has been coming in wisps and threads lately.  I'm having a hard time finding something that I genuinely want to pour my energy into.  This isn't a new thing for me, although it's been a little more pronounced lately.

Feel free to contact me if you have any advice to share.  Or if you'd like to send me a chocolate cake.  Either would be fine.

In the meantime, I'm trying to get by on a handful of small, pleasant things.  Like having dinner with some dear people tonight.  And venturing out for this tomorrow.  Or maybe that.

While I'm trying to figure out where to take my life next, here's a to-do list to get your weekend going...

Happy weekending to you!

22 April 2011

hens & eggs

There's plenty of holiday to go around this weekend.  With Easter and Earth Day within a few days of each other, there's lots to celebrate.

Easter is a pretty quiet holiday around our house, for any number of reasons.  This year, one of those reasons will be that I'm at work.

I'm still trying to find ways to celebrate, though.  For instance, I was seriously thinking about dyeing some eggs today.  The thing is, the fun part about doing that is decorating lots of eggs, not just, say, half a dozen.  So who's going to eat the twenty-some eggs after I'm finished with them?

Maybe I'll give some eggs away.  Or maybe I won't indulge in the tradition this year.  Maybe I'll just sit around eating jelly beans and Cadbury eggs--my other favorite part of Easter...

If you're celebrating this Sunday, you still have time to finish a few good projects before Easter rolls around.  Here are some of my favorites for you:

As for Earth Day:  No lectures from me today on recycling or using people-friendly cleaning products--I do that every other day of the year.  Instead, here are a few fun things to enjoy while you're counting your planetary blessings:

rockin' chicken coop

Whether you're observing Easter, Earth Day, or the end of Passover, for that matter, I hope your weekend is full of family and joy...

18 April 2011


So I am sick.  Remember when you were little and you were too sick to go to school, so you got to stay home and lay on the couch in your pajamas, wrapped up in blankets, eating popsicles, and watching day-time television for, like, the second time in your short life?

To be honest, I never actually got to do any of those things, but that's exactly what I feel like doing today.  Instead, I'm on my way to work.  It's funny, when I was little, I thought that grown-ups had more control over their lives.

I also thought that Paris was a short swim from the Outer Banks of North Carolina, which just goes to show that I was wrong about a lot of things back then.

Hopefully, you're all feeling well, friends.  It's no fun being sick, especially when the sun is shining, the finches are singing, and--oh, right--you have to go work...

Happy Monday.

15 April 2011


I'm coming to this a bit late today.  I'm working through the weekend, so I've been trying to pack as much as I could into my Friday.  My day so far:

two letters written & in the mail
one tiny sewing project finished
one--fruitless--trip to the thrift store
six robins
one hummingbird
one snail
a million spring flowers
three rooms vacuumed
one teeny bowl of ice cream
one phone call to Ohio
one trip to the library
one chocolate lab pup
one gigantic German shepherd
one bag of groceries lugged home
one load of laundry
one batch of granola

I'm planning on getting a little more done before the day ends, and then it'll be time for that whole nose-to-the-grindstone thing.  If you've got a little more free time than I do this weekend, here are a few things to keep you entertained...

Happy weekend to you, friends!

13 April 2011


So here's something fun:  It seems that I'll be doing another Salvage Bride workshop!  May 28th is the day circled on the calendar and the rest of the details are coming together quickly.  If you're in the Seattle Metro area and would like to join us for a morning of crafty wedding talk, stay tuned for more info...

I'm excited to have an excuse to immerse myself in Weddingland once again.  We're quickly approaching our one-year anniversary, but I still haven't totally gotten over my fascination with invites, favors, and fancy table settings.

I hope you'll forgive me if I dabble a bit in wedding talk these next few weeks.  I promise it won't be the only thing on the docket.  And besides, who doesn't love a good party?

11 April 2011


I've got something fun to share with you all, but I need a few more days to work out the details.  Check back Wednesday for the low-down.

Happy Monday!

08 April 2011


Sometimes, I like to look at things that I absolutely cannot have.  Call it wishful thinking, or anything else you want, but this is the reason why I can't walk past Anthropologie without "taking a quick look" and why I always ask to see the dessert menu, even when I'm way too full--or way too poor--to order dessert.

So the other day, I was doing some of this wishful wandering over at Terrain--which frequently features items that would require multiple paychecks for me to purchase.  But then, I was cruising through the first page of the 'new arrivals' and found myself saying, "Hey, I have that."  Twice.

For someone with no ground to garden in, I have an awful lot of gardening tools.  And some things that might be more accurately referred to as "farm implements."  There's a tractor seat on our back porch.  And two chicken feeders.

And, apparently, I'm also the owner of a pair of okubo shears.  Who knew?  I came across these a few years ago at my old job and have been using them to prune herbs ever since.  Terrain says that theirs are made in Japan, and I'm guessing that mine are, too.

As for the other thing, it's a bit of a stretch.  Terrain has some cute little herb snips that are four inches long and kind of pretty.  Mine are over a foot long and too big to use for clipping little bits of oregano.  In fact, I'm pretty sure they were used to shear sheep.

Which is way more interesting than snipping herbs.

The sun is out, so I'm planning on spending some more time sifting through the collections of stuff on the back porch, seeing what other exciting things I've managed to bury under more recent acquisitions.  If you're too organized for anything like that to happen to you, then here are a few other fun things to keep you busy:

olive oil cake to go with the berries

Happy weekend!

01 April 2011


They're tiny--and they're not terribly photogenic--but I'm excited they've come.  The arugula sprouts are here.  These are the first sprouts of the season, and they herald the beginning of a season of fresh greens and backporch harvests.

To be honest, these weren't the very first sprouts of the season.  The first was a little radish that pushed its way out of the soil sometime yesterday morning.  Sadly, the radish sprout was stolen by a small, furry thief.  Thus begins my annual battle with the squirrels.  My tactics involve lots of physical barriers accompanied by occasional bursts of hollering.

I think the fencing might be more effective.

Fortunately, once the little seedlings have gotten big enough that they can't be harvested in one small snack, I can take down all the ugly chicken wire and old window screens that have become my last line of defense...

My weekend plans involve making granola, baking some more bread, and working on a secret project that I'm hoping to unveil in the next week or so.  If you're looking for something new to do, here are a few fun things for you:

Happy weekend to you!