March 31, 2011

A Vision in White

And I'm not talking about a bride.

Of course I'm talking about my cat! What else could I possibly be talking about?!? ( :

I love it when it's warm enough to open my windows and turn on my fan. Hank likes it too. One morning he was just sitting there [on top of my ice cream maker (which I'm being stingy about and don't want to open since I'm moving in May) so you can look forward to ice cream recipes in the near future] with his nose stuck in the air breathing in the breeze created by the fan with the curtains billowing around him. He's such a weird cat.

For the record: I'm not a crazy cat lady and I will keep saying that until the day I die.

March 29, 2011

For the love of...grey

I love grey t-shirts.


And when I say "love" I really mean that my wardrobe could consist of grey t-shirts and cardigans and I would be a happy camper. I mean, I like color too, but as I glance through my drawers I notice that the majority of my non-grey tees are heathered (giving them a remarkable similarity to the grey tee).

For example today this is what I look like:
(Sorry for the boob shot.)
See, it's green, but heathered. That's what you call it, right?

This is my normal look:
When I walked downstairs this day Megan rolled her eyes at me and said, "Oh, a grey v-neck. Shocker." Then I smiled and said, "Yup." 

I like it. I have about 5 grey shirts and then a few others in blue and green and black that are pretty much grey counterparts.

( :


March 26, 2011

Etsy LoVE: Art

It's time for some Etsy fun! We've looked at a few accessories, now on to art!

There's some really stinkin' cute stuff in this section. We'll start with what I didn't choose, I do a highest and lowest ranking and simply go with whatever item is listed first although at times there can be several items that are the same price.

Most expensive:

VENUS Self Portrait

Yup, another $100,000.00 item. Is that the max on Etsy?

Least expensive:

Museum d'Orsay On Tilt - Made To Order

I don't really understand. Is it really $0.21??

Random[ish]ly selected things:

Kansas Love 

by poppyandpinecone

These last two are my favorites from this section. Of what I found and searched through. Did you know that you can go through about 10 pages before finding a listing from later than 6 hours. Lots of updates and new stuff on Etsy! ( :


by dazeychic

I know, right? So true.

Print No. Thirty-Six 

by HappyTownUSA

Please go to their store. Look at all the pictures, reminisce about playing with these "people" [that's what we called them as kids] in the nursery at church. Giggle at the pictures and captions. Feel warm contentment in your heart. Purchase a print if/when the mood strikes. 

Love life. 

Disclaimer: I don't know anyone affiliated with any of these items or etsy itself, I just like to peruse the site from time to time.

March 25, 2011


The Holstee Manifesto.

Pretty awesome.

I was just reading about their company...totally cool. They're dedicated to sustainably made that are socially conscious and 10% of (some? all?) sales go toward micro-loans** for new entrepreneurs. Rad. Just check them out! ( :

**As always we pay it forward by using 10% of all sales to help empower entrepreneurs in the developing world through micro-lending.

March 24, 2011

Oh the juxtaposition

I had all these plans to tell you about how cheap I am.

Seriously, I'm cheap, yo.

At IKEA this week, I saw these awesome little-teeny tiny bowls. I'm talking like maybe 1 1/2 inches in diameter. You'd use them for seasonings and such.
Cute as all small things are.
I was thinking about how great these would be for those photos when you're arranging all the ingredients for a recipe. Except they're 4 for $2.99.

That's almost a dollar each...actually it's almost $0.75 each but that's still more than this girl is willing to pay. Then I found the votive section. A twelve pack of tea light holders--basically the same size--for $1.99?
Yes!!! OOOOooooh...a 6 pack of larger votive holders? DEFINITELY. That's what it's about, saving $1.00, getting 2 more "containers" and using items in unintentional ways.
I did all that to save $1.00.

Then I bought an iPhone.
...which I'm smitten with.

Special Request

Since I'm not on the ol' book of faces, if you have my number or email, would you text/email me?

I have a new phone and exactly 3 contacts. LAME.


March 23, 2011


As I debated and deliberated about what I wanted to do this week I thought about beaches and mountains and then I discovered eBay.

No, not for a vacation, but for a new camera.

Yes, I want a new one. A much improved one. I want Playback Zoom. I have needs.

Therefore, I thought splurging and spending more money driving and staying in Charleston or Topsail or wherever would be better spent toward a crazy expensive camera. Instead of a solo vacay, I went for a solo daycay.

What I'm telling you is that I went to IKEA in Charolotte instead of communing with nature I communed with the sweet smells of home-goods in a giant warehouse.
[rushed picture from the car without checking settings. oops.]
It was delightful. The last time I went to an IKEA, it was a rushed trip, so this time I was leisurely.

For those of you who have never been to an IKEA (Yes, I know it shocks me too, but there are people out there who have never been.), in most IKEAs you walk in the front door and immediately take an escalator upstairs. Then you follow the trails they've created for you so you can see everything. Couches, beds, storage, kitchens, offices, kids and go downstairs to organization, plants, fabric, mirrors, as-is  and furniture pick-up. Along the way, they have rooms set up to show you what you can do with certain amounts of space.

I find these rooms misleading.

OK, so if I have 580 square feet in my apartment you're saying I can put my bed here, couch there, set up my kitchen like that and my bathroom like this? Except I have yet to ever rent, move into, SEE a completely vacant, void square footage apartment. Or house. Or whatever. Maybe one of those mini-barns that you can purchase for storage. That could work.

I also find these rooms inspirational.
In fact, I am smitten with this sink.
Either in the double (above) or single (below) versions. And open shelving, oh how I love open shelving. I know it's messy-especially in a kitchen, but just look at it! *sigh*

This bed? I want it in my life. In a queen, possibly painted red. I'm downgrading...I'm selling most of my furniture which includes my enormous king-sized bed that is way too big for just me.

And this lamp?
Yes, please. Do you think I'll ever have a house big enough for both a library and a craft room?

Speaking of craft rooms, I'll take two of these
and one of these.

Oh and I'll get (have?) several kids so I can decorate their rooms.

Sometimes I'm seduced in IKEA to believing that I'm a modern girl. I'm not a modern girl. I like and appreciate modern decor, but I'm more of a casual, contemporary, country, vintage, kitschy, quirky kind of person. This lamp however, I have no appreciation for, it's ugly and looks like a hanging pillow.

In my future house, where I have both a library and a craft room, I'm also going to have a porch where I can hang this and sit under the candlelight and chat with friends and neighbors.
When you finish up looking at all the good stuff IKEA has to offer, you go into this GIANT warehouse to pick up your furniture.
Everything is labeled throughout the store so you know where to go to find your flat packaged boxes of wonder. They do make travel easier and apparently help costs because shipping is cheaper with the flat boxes. That also means you'd better be ready to put your furniture together. Pros and cons. Of course the one thing I wanted from this section (a stool) was gone. Sold out. I tried my luck in the as-is section.
No luck. ) : I had a not-so-tragic stool accident last week and was looking for something a little sturdier, so I can get above what I'm taking a picture of in the kitchen. Oh, well.

So if I took this two hour trip to Charolotte, what'd I get? Let's look in my bag of wonder:
Everything fit in one bag...IKEA is "bagless" so you have to purchase or bring your own. I purchased.
A utensil caddy, I have smaller one that matches this but I like to keep my wooden utensils separate from my metal ones. Anal retentive? Yes.
These plates. The whole purpose of going to IKEA was to exchange some plates that I purchased last summer. These in slate grey/blue. I forgot the plates and grabbed these that are the same shape but in cream. I'm all about the mix and match.
These candle holders that I'm not going to use as candle holders. I'll tell you more about that tomorrow.


In the kids section they had several options of fabric that was packaged like this:
I had no idea how much it was but at $7.99, I got two.
Hippopotamuseseses. Hippopotami?
They ended up being about 3-4 yards of fabric which is a pretty sweet deal. Now, to get creative!

I also grabbed 4 of the big IKEA bags for $0.59 each. I'm thinking about doing a project for Matt's birthday (a request for a fishing-equipment holding bag thing) out of these. Waterproof, sturdy, CHEAP fabric? What do you think? Too blue?

And that was my trip to IKEA in Charolotte.

March 20, 2011


It feels like spring out here in North Carolina (Have I ever told you how much I love NC? I love NC.) and spring weather means that I want fresh fruits and veggies.

Food like salad.
Mandarin Salad
This is a salad introduced to me by my dear, sweet friend, Missy. We met at massage school. She is a mother in every form and desires nothing less than to feed every person she comes across. I love it!

First things first, grab a jar and shake up the dressing.
salad dressing
Of course, I don't usually measure. I just eyeball it and adjust according to what I like (lots of vinegar, not so much oil) and you should try that too. That's all that salad dressing is. Just a little fiddling around with some ingredients to spice up your lettuce!

salad dressing
salad dressing
Sugar-I actually use half the amount of sugar in the original recipe. I'll let you know why here in a bit.
salad dressing
Apple cider vinegar-I double or triple the quantity in the recipe. I love vinegar.
salad dressing
Oil-I was trying my best to stay true to the recipe for you...I like it better with about 2 Tablespoons of oil rather than the 1/4 cup.
salad dressing
Juice-I use 2-3 tablespoons of the juice from my mandarin oranges to replace some of the sugar and to add more liquid in lieu of the oil.
salad dressing
Hawt Sauce-I like Frank's. I put that *beep* on everything. Please tell me you know their ads. They crack me up.
salad dressing
Parsley-Fresh is best. Second best would be a good quality dried herb. For those of us who keep trying to be cheap, the $1 Kroger Italian Seasoning is not up to par. It kinda tastes like dirt.
I forgot to take a picture.
There you have it. Salad dressing.
salad dressing
Oh yeah. Shake it.
salad dressing
I make the dressing first so the flavors have some time to incorporate and become friends. ( :

Next up is sugared almonds!

I double this because I'm in salad for the crunchy stuff. It's true. Extra croutons, more nuts, lots of tortilla strips--give me the crunch!

Two ingredients this time: sliced almonds+sugar
sugar almonds
Pop those babies in your pan and get ready to stir. Here, I recommend stirring constantly. Mostly because one time I neglected to do this and decided to chop something else up and I ended up with a blackened pan of carbon. Not tasty.

Medium heat, after two minutes:
sugar almonds
Three and a half minutes:
sugar almonds
Four minutes, done!
sugar almonds
The sugar has melted, gotten slightly caramel in color and is sticking to the almonds. I pour it out on a sheet of waxed paper to let them cool. 
sugar almonds

The only other prep to do is to dice some celery and grate some onion. I don't like raw onion, so I omit that, but it's not horrible. [Especially if you actually like onion.]
celery celery
Lettuce-Butter lettuce is best, but Whole Foods was out, so I used this other stuff that wasn't nearly as good.
Mandarin oranges

Toss that baby and enjoy! Revel in the evening light-thank you daylight savings time!! I love this salad! Of course if you're my mother you will turn your nose up at the fact that I put fruit in my salad.
I don't know where I come from either. ( :

Here's the original recipe from Missy:

Mandarin Salad
  • 1/2 tsp Salt
  • dash of Pepper
  • 2 Tbsp Sugar
  • 2 Tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 1/4 cup Salad Oil
  • dash of Red Pepper Sauce
  • 1 Tbsp Parsley
Shake dressing ingredients in tightly covered jar.

  • 1/4 cup sliced Almonds
  • 1 Tbsp plus 1 tsp Sugar
  • 1 cup Celery, finely diced
  • 1/4-1/2 small Onion, grated
  • 1 can Mandarin Oranges, drained
  • 1-2 bags Butter lettuce 
Cook almonds over low heat adding sugar and stirring constantly until sugar is melted. Cool and break apart. Toss all ingredients together with dressing in a large bowl topping with almonds.