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Friday, May 27, 2011

Adventures in Quilting

I am the most amateur of quilting novices since I've never even made a quilt - however, what I lack in experience I make up for with sheer enthusiasm.

This leads me to my current crafting project: two twin-size patchwork quilts (inspiration & a basic how-to from Cherry Menlove).

The fabric

Cutting squares
(I used our big wood cutting board and a salt cellar as a weight)

The first quilting casualty
 (never cut towards your hand)

Laying out the quilt

The hardest part so far has been cutting the squares, but only because it takes patience and precision (I'm more of an immediate gratification, "who cares about lines," kinda' gal).  This is definitely one of those "no short-cuts allowed" type of projects.

I'll keep you updated on my progress!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Golden Beet Salad with Wheat Berries and Pumpkin Seed Vinaigrette

This recipe (find it here) is definitely not a recipe you want to try and whip up after work on a weekday.

It is time intensive: 1hr to cook the wheat berries, another 1hr 20mins to roast the beets.

However, the end result is worth all the time and effort.  The beets are sweet and earthy, the wheat berries firm but tender, and the nutty dressing is delicious.  If you make this dish on a Sunday afternoon, you'll have leftovers for lunch for days.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011


For some odd reason, I always thought the meatballs in Albondigas (a recipe here, the one we used - from the latest Sunset Magazine - isn't online yet) had shrimp in them.

How wrong I was.

The tasty meatballs in the soup (pictured above) are typically delicious balls of ground beef/pork/herbs/rice - however, Ed picked a recipe that used ground turkey, and they were just as yummy to me.

This is a great recipe to make if you have leftover rice in the fridge and are craving a warm, comforting, quick meal.

Friday, May 20, 2011


Lately the blogosphere has been buzzing about Pinterest, a website where you can "catalog the things you love."  Rolled up in the site is all the fun of saving, clipping, and tearing out your favorite photos from magazine and websites - without the unorganized chaos (and tearing). 

While I'm waiting for my "invitation" to join I've been perusing the boards.

Searching "rustic modern" brought up this pic (among others)

"Cow hide" gave me this:

I have a feeling Pinterest is going to be addicting.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Western Art

Most people, well - smart people, focus on the big items when they're decorating a new home (e.g. sofas, beds, appliances, light fixtures).

I, on the other hand, like to focus on the art.  Impractical, I know, but it makes me happy.

A couple intriguing pieces:

(a girl can dream)

Monday, May 16, 2011

Modern Rustic

It's official, as of the end of this month Ed & I will be proud owners of a cabin in Montana (eek! and yay! see a couple pics here).

Good thing I have a memory like an elephant - because a long, long time ago Ed promised that if we ever got a second home, I could decorate it as I see fit (yipee!). 

Of course, we're poor now so I'm going to be doing a lot of thrifting and shopping at Ikea, and the cabin is actually a bit bigger than our condo (x2) so I'll have a LOT of rooms to furnish - but I'm up to the challenge!  My plan is to decorate the place "modern rustic."

Some inspiration:
 (the inspiring piece was the sheepskin rug you can barely see)

 (cowhide rug here I come!)

 (one room already has olive walls)

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Warby Parker

Warby Parker (an eye-glass shop that I think of as being the "TOMS" of the eye-glass world) first seduced me with their virtual try-on app.  One Saturday I uploaded a photo and amused myself by virtually trying on a bunch of frames I'd never considered before.

They then reeled me in with their free home try-on kit.  5-pairs of glasses, 5-days, free shipping both ways.  Lovely.

And now - they've topped it all off by offering frames + lenses for $95.00.

Warby, you had me at try-on app.

Quick snap of my Warby's
(darn glare)

(one look away shot, to reduce glare)

Friday, May 6, 2011

Cake Mix Cookies

I'm a bit of a baking snob, so when I hear "cake-mix" cookies these words run through my mind: lazy, box-mix?!, preservatives, Martha would NEVER use cake mix, blech.
However, I find the cake mix cookies in the pic above (original post/recipe here, repost here) strangely appealing and seductive.  I also found a couple other interesting "cake-mix" cookie recipes:

What do you think?  Have you ever made cake-mix cookies?

Wednesday, May 4, 2011


My friend Mo and I are headed out to Montana (Kalispell) this weekend to check out a couple cabins the hubby and I have an eye on.

While I've been praying for sunshine and warm weather for our trip, it looks like we're bringing the clouds, cold, and rain with us.  Sigh.  So while I'd love to wear this...

I'll probably be wearing this...

(it's water resistant)

And my trusty hiking boots

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Key Lime Pie

I've had key lime pie on the mind ever since my friend Leigh whipped one up for her Easter dinner.

Over the weekend - I finally decided to make one myself.

The great thing about key lime pie is that you can take a lot of short-cuts and the pie will still taste fabulous.  I didn't feel like juicing 20 tiny limes - so I picked up some key-lime juice and it worked just fine.  Next time I may even use a pre-made graham cracker crust.  If I am feeling really lazy I could even buy whipped cream instead of making it (although that won't happen since I LOVE fresh whipped cream).

(I was too focused on eating the pie to remember to take a pic)