Friday, August 31, 2007

junkin' friday

garage sale find of the week:

one punch bowl complete with ladle, hooks and 12 cups.

mailing label on box is shipped to "okay hardware" circa 1973.

3 bucks.

in case anybody i know ever gets married.

:) party anyone?

Thursday, August 30, 2007

girls night out

last night i got to spend time with cassie and kristie and talk artsy stuff. funny thing is, we ran into a couple of other artistic women, cassie's former teachers, and they were doing THE EXACT SAME THING.

in all of my years as a designer, my cup has never overfloweth with so many ideas in my head. most of them (well, ALL of them) do not involve the computer!!!!! finally, i think i have hit the wall on making brochures. note to all my clients who read this, of course that doesn't mean YOU, for whom i am grateful and blessed :)

he he.

seriously, i like making things with my hands. and the women in my life who are so similar in this respect are making me CRAZY by inspiring me even more. the frenzy we all feel when we get together and talk crafts/art projects is absolutely insane. ask any husband about this (or boyfriend in my case) and they just shake their head in bewilderment.

do any of you non-designer people know what i'm talking about? or is it really just us?

last night, kristie brought me back a gift from her monday road trip to Ikea:

what a cute little lampshade! naturally, she bought one for herself (we are the queens of "let's get one for each of us") and i am absolutely smitten with mine.

it led me to purchase THIS book right away today:

so that i can make THIS as soon as possible:

oh my. soon my head is absolutely going to twist off my head. i cannot contain the happiness over the thought of making more beautiful stuff in the near future.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

outta control

just in the past couple of days, i have noticed how my vines on my house have taken off. i planted them 3 years ago, i think, and finally they are doing what they are supposed to do.

i love em, i think they are beautiful.
then i had to go read karen's blog and see what happens when vines get out of control!!

somehow, i still think there are much scarier things in this world than big fluffy foliage. i kind of want some of this stuff that they grow down south!

Monday, August 27, 2007

great grains

among other things that i did this weekend, i decided to use my cool blue canning jars, and organize a bunch of my "whole grains" and beans that were in the cupboard.

i hope you are proud of this display, karen.

for the record, barley is just about the best one of the bunch :)

Sunday, August 26, 2007

crazy cool

one more beautiful birthday gift that came in the mail this weekend:

a wonderful needlepoint (or is it cross stitch?) bookmark made and no doubt designed by kirsten!!

goes so well with the brand spanking new monogrammed joyce meyer amplified bible i got a couple months ago :)

thanks kirst, i bet i don't even wanna know how many hours it took to make this!

i absolutely love it!

i'm feelin' good today

this is probably one of the best music videos i have ever seen.

maybe that is because i'm a designer, but even if you're not, you'll love this.

Credit goes to a woman named Tamara Connolly from the school of visual arts in new york.

Friday, August 24, 2007

dressed to match

of course, she tells the story about this much better than me over at serendipity.

g'day for a b'day

photo courtesy of Rani :)

even though today is officially my birthday,
it's going to be hard to top yesterday.

carey decided to invite a few friends for a "girls lunch" for me, and i had such a great time!

in attendance (this is kinda like those small-town newspaper accounts of what happened, when, and who was involved)....

Rani. new friend extraordinaire. with 2 kids (one in utero) along, and as always the sharpest wit of all :) so glad i get to see her for real on a regular basis now, but she IS THE ONE who got me blogging, and changed my life.

KristieLou. art buddy like no other. she whipped up a FANTASTIC handmade bag for me this week, even though she is torturously (is that a word?) busy and in demand. God blessed me with her in my life about 15 years too late. i would be alot more fruitfully creative if i had known her sooner :)

April. another new friend from Montrose! they grow them well out there. i loved her little girl, who seemed to enjoy the beginnings of "girl dates" and especially the mexican food...

Carey. well, i talk about her alot, but that is because she is my "best man" for life. i know that sounds kinda weird, but really it fits. lucky for me, she is a girly girl at times even IF i always call her "man."

DeAnn. WOW!!!!! i got to meet a fellow blogger for the first time! what a great surprise, she is just as charming in person, and now i can really relate a face to the cool blog posts. so nice to meet you DeeAnn ;)

Rhonda. oh. sometimes, you just don't see friends often enough, because it always seems the plate is too full. but i miss this one, and loved seeing her wearing her "new mom" face so beautifully. i really loved the beautiful prayer box she gave me also.

Anne. another one i don't see often enough, even if she stalks me here (she told me that). but she's been there on the important days, and for that God knows she is always deeply engrained into my heart.

Cassie. oh, she would be my daughter if i actually could pick who my daughter would be! Cass is the intern who i decided to keep, i know a good one when i find one. LOVE the epcot center mugs she thought of for me, and more importantly, loved seeing her face again, and knowing she is back here close by so that we can play together often.

with that kind of gathering, i cannot possibly believe today could be better! but i'm certainly grateful for the 45 years i've had so far, so today i will surely give thanks!!

Monday, August 20, 2007

meet the new me

after another rousing weekend on the back forty,
i am starting to think i'm going to have to change my name to something else.

and no, it doesn't have to do with my impending marriage.

i am really truly on my way to being the housewife i was meant to be!

or maybe it's more like "homemaker."
what a good title that is.

this weekend i lived up to the name.
plus, i noticed that what used to be my graphic design studio is NOW a sewing room.

look at how cute my 30 year old sewing machine is in there!!!!

i used it this weekend to complete my very first apron. i'm behind kristie, another well-known homemaker, but at least i'm a finisher.

i noticed AFTER i got it done, that the pattern said "for more experienced sewers."

probably because it has pleats, darts, appliques, and is reversible.

still, it turned out quite well.

so well, in fact, that i even got half of a 2nd one done, in addition to weeding the garden, baking bread and cleaning the house.

a woman's work IS never done, thankfully.
i'm kinda starting to like this new name.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

how cool is that?

i want some of these!!!

Friday, August 17, 2007

lunch partner

look who was out in the yard at noon while i was having my lunch outside.

cannot believe i got him to hold still for a pic!

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

love, pain and the whole crazy thing

just downloaded another keith urban cd. i'm a bit behind on things, i guess this was released in october of last year. wasn't it about then that his problems with alcohol, etc., came out in the media?

i like him anyway, i hope he and what's her name are doing well.

it's WAY too easy to buy music online though! i do miss the old days, when you bought a shiny new ALBUM and got to peel away the plastic and see the beautiful (or sometimes, NOT) artwork on the inside!!!!

i guess the tradeoff for the textural thing of a real piece of paper is immediacy. good thing i'm an impulsive girl, or i wouldn't be too happy with all this modern stuff.

all my pretties

well, it's definitely late august on the back forty. alot of the plants are pretty much "spent" while some still look fabulous. among the best of the best are the coleus, which always seem to thrive right up until frost. last year, i loved them so much i could not bear to see my favorites die. so i attempted to nurse them in the basement all winter. for awhile, it worked, but sometime after christmas they all just gave up. or perhaps i gave up on them, and ended up with a pile of dried colored leaves on the floor.

this year, i have a new plan of attack.

i'm attempting to start cuttings or "slips" as my grandma called them, in water and then have a bunch of small plants to carry over the winter. i started a few weeks ago, and many of them have roots, a couple of these are even in dirt already, and doing well. if this works for the whole winter, in the spring i'll either start more cuttings off of THESE, or plant them directly outside. either way, it's a fun way to keep your plants going.

i have my eye on THIS guy next to try and root cuttings off.

in other news, one of my favorite–albeit weird–plants this summer has been the ligularia in the corner by the sun porch. the leaves are just awesome, and now it's decided to bloom too!!! very strange and tropical in feel, don't you think? i love this plant!

Monday, August 13, 2007


oh schwew. computer fixed. little problem, not big one.

so, onto the more important topic for blogging about. this weekend i got an unexpected blessing, but one that was perfectly timed.

i got to see a bff of mine.

this one is named sue. we met in about 1985. i was a newbie employee in the media center at sdsu, she was a student from white lake. we hit it off. we both liked the same guy, who eventually left both of us for greener pastures. but that was okay, because we got to keep each other. through rooming together, silly arguments, weddings, jobs, crazy relationships (that was me), multiple moves and kids, we have stayed connected.

then, a couple of years ago, we lost touch. i guess life just got out of order somehow. things changed, and she moved from one state to another, and i forgot to go along for the ride. i tried to contact her a couple of times, and i never heard back. i did receive a christmas letter, but with the lack of a personal touch, i decided to let go.

except that God had another idea. so this friday, as i stood at a rummage sale that i didn't even really want to be at, and heard a familiar voice yell my name, this bff walked back into my life again.

:) what a really great thing! we met the next morning for breakfast, shared all the things in our lives, and connected so easily again. no, things are not the same, in fact, some things are painful and too personal to blog about. but we connected, that is what is important, and i understood once again that the Lord will work things out in His timing, for His purpose. i am glad He's doing that now, so that we can pray for each other's needs, and remember that He put us together so very long ago, and will always keep us together in some fashion or another.

thanks Lord! i needed her.

back to basics

well, this is a Monday i guess. the darned computer cancer that struck my machine a couple weeks ago went on a rampage again and ate 42 GIG of memory over the weekend.

so, i'm on a crappy old laptop, sitting in an uncomfortable chair, wondering how to work today without my "usual" situation.

i guess i'll start by blogging about the soup i made this weekend.

tomato basil.
mmmmmmmmmmmm good.

2-3 T. olive oil
1 small onion
3 cloves garlic
3 T. white wine
2-3 T. basil, fresh chopped
1 tsp. dried oregano
salt and pepper to taste
1 qt. tomatoes
1 T. brown sugar
1/2 c. whipping cream

saute onion and garlic in olive oil. add wine, and reduce liquid down. add spices and tomatoes, heat tomatoes to boiling.

when tomatoes boil, remove from heat, and puree in blender until smooth. (here's a tip: NEVER fill the blender too full with hot liquids. not only will you give yourself a big surprise with burns from the liquid, your ceiling will never be the same. not that i would know anything about that :))

place puree back into saucepan, add whipping cream and brown sugar, and enjoy! you can add a bit of chopped basil into the mixture at this point if you really like basil :)

try this. you will LOVE it.

Friday, August 10, 2007

truth or fiction?

you guys decide.

today when i picked up carey from getting the oil in her car changed, she was sitting in the "customer lounge" reading a copy of Good Housekeeping magazine with newfound wonder in her eyes, and said,

"this looks like a REALLY good magazine."

he he he.


well, the concert last night left me feeling good.

there is something just RIGHT about rock and roll music. it's like it enters into your body, shakes stuff around and rearranges it, and leaves it feeling sort of settled. i mostly go to Christian concerts nowadays, but i think God would approve of chris daughtry also.

he met all my expectations, a nice southern boy who didn't talk much, but really let that amazing voice and a band of other nice boys do the talking with a simple set of songs from his album, and an enthusiastic crowd as a backdrop. he left us all on a high note with a rousing version of "there and back again" and a "God bless y'all." he left me particularly with a ringing in my ears, and a nice peaceful "fix" of jangly guitars and beautiful melodies.


i'm full up for awhile now, i guess.

Thursday, August 09, 2007

is it winding down, or gearing up?

lately, i look forward to thursdays. that is the day when i give myself permission to do the stuff i like to do the best. well, maybe not THE BEST, but the stuff other than my job that seems to be calling me more and more.

used to be, i'd work, or think about work, about 5.5 days a week. monday thru friday, and starting again on sunday afternoon when the thoughts of the upcoming work week would start cropping up. since i've been "home" i have noticed a startling shift in my "work week."

now, i start getting ready for the weekend on thursdays. i try to have all the heavy lifting, workwise, done by then, or there is a good chance i won't get it done at all. why? because the rest of my life cannot be contained by just saturday and sunday anymore, and really, not even by a three day weekend, especially in the summertime.

so, i need thursdays too. oh sure, i have a website to design today, and some signage for a client of mine. in fact, i really must get going on that right away. but here's the rest of my list of "to dos" today:

1) dealing with the sweet corn. thanks to the generosity of a Montrosian, i have 12 nice ears to enjoy. problem is, they say you should eat sweet corn right away after you pick it. and since i am not quite ready to have a dozen ears of corn for lunch, i will prepare and freeze this bounty sometime today.

2) dealing with the peppers. i just talked about how the pepper crop is kind of disappointing this year. not enough big green peppers for cooking and eating. but since i decided to "go gourmet" and planted a bunch of varieties, i DO have a nice little assortment of weird peppers that probably taste good. so, i need to chop and freeze these guys today as well.

3) coffee with my friend sher. okay, no coffee for me YET, but conversation. i have been meaning to chat with her one-on-one for about 3 weeks, and even though she is RETIRED, she is always too busy. so, todays's the day. no backing out.

4) date with Carey at the Fair. i love the Fair. even though the Sioux Empire Fair doesn't really feel like a true fair, it's kind of on the smallish side. there are, however, carnies and bad food. oh. and chris daughtry. and no doubt all of the odd assortment of people that hang out at fairs. the kind of once-a-year enjoyment that i really cannot imagine missing.

schwew. i am tired just thinking about it. better get rolling on the day, because if there is time, i'd like to hit a nice garage sale that starts at 1:00 this afternoon. i guess that at this rate, i'll need to start my weekend on wednesdays pretty soon.

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

where's the proofreader when you need her?

okay, this is funny.

a couple of weeks ago, i bought these adorable salt and pepper shakers for 50 cents at a garage sale. sher and kristie were with me, we all thought they were cute.

i brought em home, put em on the shelf above the stove, and started using them.

just now, while i was talking on the phone to carey, i noticed the PEPPEP shaker! what do you think happened? maybe the artist just got too darn tired to finish out the job?

at any rate, i love them even more now. as a total graphic artist, i know how important it is to have somebody check your work before it goes out.


Monday, August 06, 2007

in other news

the tomatoes are ready to go. a little early, and a little smaller than they should be, but good nonetheless.

first off, started with a cute tray snagged for THREE dollars at a garage sale saturday morning. perfect for holding the crops while they finish ripening...

then, washed and ready to go. wow, is that as many as i think it is?

on the stove, a pot full of yummy tomatoes ready to can.

the days end: 7 pints salsa, 6 quarts stewed tomatoes ready for homemade spaghetti sauce or tomato basil soup. the salsa recipe ROCKED! best i've made yet. guess i will make another batch or two, the "guys" at phil's work lapped up a pretty big helping right away :)

all in all, a good weekend's work. now today i can rest and go back to my real job!

and they all fall DOWN

ah. the taste of disappointment hit me as i awoke on saturday. althoughthe 2.66" of rain we received the previous night was no doubt an answer to prayer, the aftermath was also pretty painful.

about 90% of my beloved sunflower garden went DOWN, and went down hard. i imagine the huge stalks could not handle the weight of so much rain at one time. they were all snapped at the base, so all of them had to be removed.

i tried not to dwell on it, but i was so bummed out. for one, they were my (and the bees!) favorite thing in the garden this year! secondly, they provided privacy from the perverted neighbor. and thirdly, i am just not ready for my plants to die. everything in season, but not yet. please, not yet.

oh well. i DID cut a big beautiful bouqet for the house, and i DID enjoy them so much while they lasted :)

Friday, August 03, 2007

garden woes

i see that DeAnn is going to start a garden next year - good for you DeAnn!

that being said, i am planning to garden BETTER next year, i have made alot of rookie mistakes the past two years, and i need to get better at this.

my peppers, for instance, have been woefully disappointing. along with the tomoatoes. it seems i neglected them too much in june, when they were growing HUGE and let the plant grow big, but not the fruit. they needed more water, and more LOVE during that month. so now i'm left with only enough peppers for ONE little batch of salsa. thankfully, i will have that one batch :)

i also dealt with blossom end rot, too much stuff scrunched in too little space, and poor planning overall. i would not buy the fancy gourmet stuff so much next year, because my mom does better with the cheap plants she buys at the greenhouse. proven choices, why did i not listen? :)

he he. ah well, it seems gardening is like life. not always the way you want it to turn out, but still the biggest blessings of all are in the process, the learning to appreciate what you have, and the joy it brings, perfect or not.

happy gardening everyone :)

Wednesday, August 01, 2007


DeAnn was wondering about a good salsa recipe. which is a good question, because my recipe from last year was too sweet, and had too much vinegar in it. i found THIS recipe, along with rave reviews, on the internet. so, i'm using part of my stash and making some ASAP, probably around friday. i especially love the name of it!

Wonderful Salsa
Makes 6 pints or 3 quarts

8 cups tomatoes, peeled,chopped and drained
2 1/2 cups onions, chopped
1 1/2 cups green peppers
1 cup jalapeno peppers, chopped
6 cloves garlic, minced
2 teaspoons cumin
2 teaspoons pepper
1/8 cup canning salt
2 T. sugar
1/3 cup vinegar
1 (15 ounce) can tomato sauce
1 (12 ounce) can tomato paste
1/4 cup minced cilantro, optional

1. Mix all together and bring to a slow boil for 10 min.
2. Seal in jars and cook in hot water bath for 10 min.
3. The cumin in this makes it hot so when I want a milder salsa I just omit the cumin.

she says yes!

thanks to my buddy carey, who said yes without even knowing who the heck he is.

hopefully this rendition of a johnny cash classic will inspire you, man.