Thursday, June 5, 2014

Lettuce & Spinach

We have had a very exciting and successful crop of lettuce and spinach already this year. More garden updates to come. I planted 2 kinds of lettuce + spinach for variety. It is unbelievable how beautiful lettuce can be when you grow it yourself. There is a crazy sense of pride that comes from eating food you planted, nurtured, grew, and harvested. I wonder if people used to feel this way when a garden/farm was a means of survival. Maybe that took all the fun out of it. 

We had a terrible time with the garden box last year because when we planted it, it was in the sun. Then the tree filled in and it was mostly shaded. Turns out this is perfect for lettuce and spinach though. They were given plenty of sun when they needed it and about the time the tree filled in this year, they were ready to be harvested. The shade even kept them cooler the last few days before harvest.

I was going to Goodwill this shelf I found at a garage sale and painted green a couple years back when T.J. snagged it and suggested we add it to the garden box (read about how he build the garden box here). I love it! It adds some color and functional space. I imagine we could serve food or drinks on it if we had people over for a cookout or summer get together.

Saturday, February 1, 2014

Be My Valentine

A nice valentine-sy scene. Pillow tutorial here and stenciled chair tutorial here

Monday, January 27, 2014

Painted Ukulele!

Meet my ukulele.... pretty standard right?


I decided I needed a ukulele while at a music store recently. I was attending my nieces' Christmas performance (flute, singing, and trumpet - they are multi-talented). I thought, what better way to work my brain in a different way than I usually do! The only problem was I didn't want a pink one (too baby pink) but I couldn't stand to have a boring old wood one. So I personalized it! I look at painted ukuleles online and they are all so beautiful. Here are some of my favorites: polka dots, more dots, and Hawaii. I decided on painting only the back so the color would be a fun little surprise. Maybe someday I will do the front too.

It took a little liquid courage to take the sand paper to the perfectly smooth back of the ukulele but it was worth the risk. Here was my process:

I started with a lavender ombre and drew the flower design on before I painted it. The inspiration is from this fabric (here) which happens to be the fabric of the very first set of napkins I sold on Etsy! To finish it off I sprayed it down with a glossy sealer - Krylon Crystal Clear. It isn't as smooth as the original finish but it has a nice shiny look and shouldn't ever chip off.

I will leave you with a little family band photo...

Friday, January 17, 2014


My sister turned forty this year so naturally we had to do something special for her. My sister in-law, brother in-law, and I had been cooking up party ideas for a few weeks when my sister insisted she was throwing her own party.... on the same night as the surprise party we had planned! We decided to let her do it, and the surprise would just be all the extra people we had invited.

She wanted a wine and cheese party and I wanted a retro theme and we ended up with a good mix of both. When I arrived at her house a few days before the party she had some of the set up done already. When I saw the napkins she had picked out I thought she must know about the surprise - because they perfectly matched my invitations! Old pictures and blue and white polka dots. A crazy coincidence - or maybe it speaks to our special sisterly connection.

Her house always looks bright, cheery, and ready for a party.


Dessert table complete with a chocolate sampling bar!

Everyone brought at least one bottle of wine so we had quite an assortment to taste. I put pictures of Kate in her "younger days" out on the tables.

 I made Kate a sign out of a dowel, ribbon, fabric, felt, and hot glue (but I didn't make her wear it all night :-))

I also emailed all the party guests and asked them to send me old photos and a message to Katie. I compiled them all in a Shutterfly book (pictured above).
Cute 40th birthday gifts (below) - "40 sucks" and "40 is sweet" from her guests.


Saturday, January 4, 2014

Easy Knit Dress

This dress is an incredibly easy Friday night/Saturday morning project.

Working with knit can be a challenge, but this dress was so straightforward and simple it was hardly a problem! I used McCalls 6886 for the pattern and the purple and black houndstooth fabric is from Joanns (I think). I used about a yard and a half. It took me a couple hours on a Friday night to cut it out and get it started and about an hour more Saturday morning to finish it up. It doesn't get better than that for a new dress!

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