Saturday, July 30, 2011

Moose Pillows

This week my mother had a birthday (happy birthday Mom!). I wanted to make her something personal and functional. She just got an ipad (lucky gal!). I debated an ipad cover but was afraid she might already have one (note to self -- excellent holiday idea).

Stymied I perused the internet until I found this pillow via One Pretty Thing. How perfect! My parent's house is decorated in Northwest nature decor and these pillows will fit right in.

Rather than applique I made freezer paper stencils and used fabric paint and glitter already in my stash. The moose pictures were found via a quick Google search for moose silhouette. The fabric was a fabulous thrifty find - six yards full. I may use the left overs to sew a skirt (or two) for myself.

The pillow cases, themselves, have a basic envelope closure. The inserts were found at Jo'Anns (don't forget to go online and print a coupon before heading off to the store).

This was a fun and easy project. Now I'm thinking I might keep up the trend and make a few pillows for the holidays -- I've always loved these little diddies.

So happy to be back on the crafting wagon! Indeed it keeps me sane.


Thursday, July 28, 2011

Majik -- A Refreshing Summer Beverage (and recipe)

When we lived in the valley we frequented Casablanca, a fabulous middle eastern cafe. My all time favorite meal? Sambocik, tabouli, hummus and majik. Yup. Majik -- a refreshing blend of mediterranean juices. Majik is the perfect refreshment for a hot summer's day.

Alas we no longer live in the valley. Try as we might Casablanca refused to move with us. Thus I was left to find my own majik.

The internet was no help what-so-ever. Majik is:
  • a hookah lounge
  • a spritzer made from white wine and 7-up
  • a yellow-bird drink
  • an aioli
There is absolutely no reference to majik as a refreshing mediterranean beverage. So I did what any self-respecting majik loving gal would do. Kitchen experimentation. I've come upon a concoction that is most certainly passable and definitely refreshing. This is a beverage even my children will drink (and that's saying something!)

Without further ado I bring you Majik.

1 tsp rose water
2 cups pomegranate or cranberry juice (I prefer plain, no sugar added varieties)
8 cups water
Juice from one lemon
Mint leaves (optional)
Lemon slices (optional)

Mix all ingredients together, stir well until paste dissolved. Pour over ice. If you are feeling fancy garnish with mint and lemon slices. Serve and enjoy.

Friday, July 22, 2011

{This Moment}

{This Moment} - A Friday Ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, to savor and remember.

Play along with Soulemama.

Thursday, July 21, 2011


While the rest of the country is enmeshed in a heat wave, we in the Pacific Northwest, are searching for summer. Temperatures have been unseasonably cool and though we are smack dab in the middle of it, this hardly feels like the hot season.

Today the sun did come out, as did the wind. Little was bored and itching for something to do. So, in a flash of inspiration, we made pin wheels. All we needed were basic household items; left over craft paper, eraser topped pencils, scissors and a push pins. Easy peasy.

This craft took all of five minutes and I feel a better parent for it. I need to remember that crafting, doing, doesn't have to be difficult or expensive or time consuming. And with that in mind I'm going to find some other crafts to keep us occupied and entertained.

Friday, July 15, 2011

A little of this and a little of that.

This will be another marking post. Things we've been up to. Stuff we've been doing.

First off I must say -- how oh how can summer be half over? I feel like I should have something to show for it. Something accomplished. And yet it feels as if little has been done.

My tomatoes are growing like crazy. I've moved them to my raised beds where they spend their days covered and protected. They've all been transplanted into half gallon garden pots and it is time for me to let them go. Some I've already given to co-workers. The remainder will be sold (hopefully) on Sunday at our first annual plant sale/lemonade stand. I have grand plans for this event -- lemonade (with real lemons), a vintage juice squeezer, a yellow formica table, a hand sewn bunting, and, or course, tomato plants.

I'm finding myself hesitant. I've grown these plants from seeds. Nurtured them. Coddled them. And so, continuing my neurosis, I'll be sending them off with a handout -- the proper care and feeding of tomatoes. Hopefully these little plants of mine will find loving homes and be prolific bearers of fruit.

My side garden is also in full bloom. The beehive is now surrounded by flowers -- purple, yellow, magenta. The honey bees love it. As do our local bumble bees. These amazing insects float from flower to flower in perfect harmony. I've yet to get stung. My hive seems to be quite tolerant. For that I am grateful.

We did make it to the lake once last week. The canoe and kayak are *still* on top of my car. I'm hoping to go back up this weekend (perhaps after our plant sale). Though Hosmer is our typical haunt I'd like to mix it up a bit and try Spark's Lake.

We also made it to the pool once. But only once which feels strange as we typically spend many of our summer days there. I need to sign Little up for swim lessons which will *hopefully* prompt us into action.

What I've not been doing (shame on me): housecleaning, practicing my bagpipes, maintaining my Etsy shop, sewing, knitting, creating. These are all things I'd like to (and should) do. But I've been struggling with our lack of routine. I'm prone to sleep in. To meander. To get lost in this or that.

My goal for the remainder of the month is to set myself a schedule. To accomplish some of the things on my list. But that will have to wait until the weekend is done. First we are going to see Harry Potter, have a feast (thank you Sean and Molly!) and our plant sale.

Oh and tomorrow I'll be getting my haircut for the first time in two years. Nothing drastic. Just a much needed clean up.

So, yes, I guess we have done things and been places despite what it seems. And now it looks like rain so I'd best get my laptop inside.


Sunday, July 3, 2011

All the buzz

honey bees in hiveThis morning was my first solo hive inspection. Little desperately wanted to help but alas we only have one bee suit. Note to self: find two additional bee suits.

Things appear to be going swimmingly in the hive. I saw the queen again - yay! And there are larvae and what I think are capped brood in the cells. The hive has yet to expand and build comb on the additional frames in the super. Hopefully the expansion will begin once this brood hatches.

As I sit and watch the hive it is quite active. Bees coming and going; legs laced with pollen on reentry. My garden, so slow to arrive this year, is close to full bloom. Once the shasta daisies and lavender pop we'll have a plethora of local pollen and nectar.

Today I'm in a puttering mood. All I really want to do is bake cupcakes and transplant tomatoes and maybe have a glass of wine on the porch. But, like it or not, I'm due back at work in a few hours. Fortunately it is an eight-hour shift (the benefit of working a holiday weekend) rather than a longer twelve hour shift. And then, tomorrow, I have the day off. I can't tell you the last time I didn't work on the 4th of July.

And so now I'm off to make a quick batch of cupcakes and brine some ribs before heading back to work.

I hope you are having a fabulous weekend!