Posts tagged embroidery

Catch Up- Ketchup- Catsup

Hi!  I’m back from vacation with a few things to show you.  I didn’t get much crafting done, because I pretty much just sat around and ate cheese and drank beer and homemade wine. Tough life, huh?

I did want to post some pictures of cards I made before I left and an embroidery gift I finished the night before flying out.

This is the card I made for my mom’s birthday.  It’s my first counted cross-stitch project.  I bought the tri-fold card in Solvang when we went wine tasting. I colored the outside to look like a wooden frame (it didn’t really, but that was the idea).  I loved doing this project, I really enjoy cross-stitch.  When we were in Wisconsin I got to see a bunch of amazing projects my mother-in-law has done- teeny tiny canvases with elaborate angels and backgrounds.  SO cool. But here’s mine and maybe someday I’ll be as good as her.

I made this card for Maggie to celebrate her finding the Tiniest Studio Ever ™ in Berkeley and the Card Positioning Template that inspired it.


And this card for my friend Raina (sent with cookies and a book).

Also for Raina and her husband, who just bought a house, I’m making these embroidered place mats.  these two are finished with just small birds in the corners.  I’m planning two more with a larger lovebird scene in the middle.  The pattern is from the Sublime Sketch Pad that I mentioned in my last post.

For my birthday, my in-laws gave me two crochet sets.  I made this star pot holder in one evening while watching the Olympics.

They also bought me a set to make a star shaped baby blanket that has one color fading into another.  It’s a beautiful project- my mother-in-law got herself one and finished it while we were there.  It will take me months! I worked more on my blue baby blanket and it almost done! I also started another project, but I can’t show that until December.


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I’m slowly, but surely knocking things off my summer to-do list. I made the above necklace with supplies from the 99 cent store, Joanne’s and Tuesday Morning. If you can’t tell, the large part is a branch with two birds and a nest. It caught my eye because the nature theme went so well with the natural beads I had. The other necklace is a wish necklace given to me by a student on the last day of school.  The giver puts the necklace on while the receiver makes a wish.  You don’t remove the necklace, and when it falls off your wish should come true. Its a tiny little apple, and despite my dislike of anything generally teacher-y, I love this necklace.  I’ve worn it since receiving it and I’m waiting patiently for it to fall off.  Luckily I have no modeling commitments in the near future, or they’d have to airbrush it out.

Due to the upcoming trip we’ve been winding our way down through our fresh foods, so we don’t have too much to get rid of before we leave. I did finally get my sandwich maker sandwich, though!  My hubby made me a fake turkey and cheese, with a side of salsa and avocado.  Look at that masterpiece!  So crunchy and warm on the outside and so melty and hot on the inside.  I loved this sandwich so much on Friday, I asked for another one at 9pm on Saturday night. Yum!

I’ve kind of dropped the ball (of yarn?) of my crocheting because I’m really getting into embroidery and cross stitch.  I finished my first project of each.  Using the unicorn iron-on from the Sublime Stitching Craft Pad and a 3 dollar tank top I made this gem.  I think the shirt is hysterically cute! There’s a close up and a picture of the shirt.  Neither came out great, but you’ll get the gist.

I also completed a counted cross stitch project from the embroidery book I bought at Tuesday Morning. I’ll post that when I get back from WI, as it’s a surprise for someone who reads my blog.

I finished Julie and Julia a while back and loved it.  I thought it was so easy to read and I think the author seems refreshingly real.  It felt like reading a blog (which it originally was). I love that she didn’t hold anything back about her ups and downs. I’m halfway through Middlesex, by Jeffery Eugenides.  My former TA gave me the hardcover book for the holidays and it’s beautiful.  It looked lovely on my shelf. I kept getting drawn to it and the turned away because of the enormous commitment it takes to read a 500 plus pager. So I waited until summer.  Now I’m kicking myself.  Why did I wait? Knowing this book has been easily available to me for months and I’ve snubbed my nose at it? What’s wrong with me? I’m completely absorbed in the book and the characters. I can’t wait to finish.  I think about the book while I’m doing other thing, plotting time to sit down and read more. It’s told from the point of view of a hermaphrodite male, born and raised as a female.  He tells the story of his family, beginning with his grandparents and follows them, along with the genetic mutation responsible for his condition, from Turkey/Greece to Detroit. This is a picture of the 1st edition version that I have (yes, pre-Oprah).

Native Son by Richard Wright and Any Human Heart by William Boyd (my August book club book) are both making the trek to the mid-west with me, along with two crochet projects, a cross stitch project, two sewing projects, my running shoes, my Nintendo DS, and my video iPOd. I think that will keep me busy?

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I’ve been spending a wonderful week with my mom and husband, so the posts have been non existent.  I’ve been taking pictures of things I’ve made and been working on, though, so for your viewing pleasure- my last week of food and crafting fun.

My mom flew in last Thursday night.  The night before I made a recipe from my trusted Vegetarian Times.  Sausage and plum kabobs with hoisin sauce. Sweet and delicious- alternated pieces of veggie sausage, heirloom plums, and mushrooms in a hoisin/soy sauce/ rice wine vinegar concoction. Served on a piece of lettuce.

When I woke up for my birthday the next morning, my mom and husband were busily making me a birthday breakfast of strawberry pancakes with veggie sausages and coffee. (This picture is not of my birthday breakfast, I was in too much of a daze of delicious breakfast love to take a photo- I made myself the same breakfast two days later).

My mom and I went on a girls trips to wine country, so I made quiche and flourless peanut butter cookies for the hubby. I got the recipe for the quiche a few years ago from the Near East website. Type in “quiche” to find it.  We like the mushroom couscous in pie crush with broccoli and mushrooms and 4 eggs mixed with a cup of milk. The cookies I found at All Recipes. I figured I loved flourless chocolate cake, so why not try cookies. And the ratings and reviews of this recipe were so good and it’s so easy- 1 c. PB, 1 C mixed brown/white sugar, 1 egg, splash vanilla- cook 8 minutes at 350. They were thick and delicious.

Last night, before sending my mom off, I made BBQ tofu (frozen slices sauteed in BBQ sauce) with macaroni salad (wheat fusili, cukes, carrot. scallions, radishes, light mayo, nonfat plain yogurt, Free Ranch Dressing, Light Sweet onion dressing, mustard, and relish) and Sweet Corn soup (blend corn with soy milk, garnish with tomato and basil)

I’ve been doing a lot of magazine reading, and haven’t plowed through any books.  I did finish the Book Thief in time for my July book club.  I won’t say much about it, except that it’s one of my top three favorite books ever. The next book club selection is Any Human Heart, which I picked up last week. I’m half way through with both Malinche and Taxonomy of Barnacles. I don’t love Malinche as much as I did when I first wrote about it, but I’ll finish it this weekend.  Taxonomy of Barnacles by Galt Niederhoffer kind of reminds me of The Royal Tennenbaums, but not as good or funny.  It’s trying hard, though, and some of the offbeat side plots make it worth plowing through.

I have the next 8 days off and intend to make a big dent in both Middlesex and Julie and Julia in order to keep muddling along through my summer to do list.

One final check off the summer list- I finished my first embroidery project- the pillowcase is done.  It’s really pretty.  I think I may be able to finish its mate this summer, as well.

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Rock Out With Your Cork Out

I thought that might get your attention!

Yesterday was such a great day. The flour-less chocolate cake was how Candy, Maggie, Cliff, and I ended our wine tasting afternoon at Bottle Rock in Culver City.  We also had this amazing cheese plate:

I can’t remember what it was called, but there was a cheese in the middle that was drizzled with warm honey.  It was like heaven.  The wine tasting was USA wines (actually all California wines) Vs French wines.  There was a rose (France won that for me), a white (Sauvignon Blanc, I think- which the austere French also won for me, though everyone else liked the slutty US wine), and a Burgandy (this time the US for me, the French was too bold). Bottle Rock does tastings every Saturday from 1-4.  I’m planning on taking my mom next week in anticipation for our Santa Barbara wine country trip next Monday.  Chris also heard the stories of cheese and cake and decided to take Saturday off to come with us. Here’s Candy taking good care of her teeth by sipping the reds through a straw!

Before Maggie left us to go back to law school we got a picture in front of the Culver City Farmer’s Market mural. Here is me with my lady loves:

When I got home I finished one side of the embroidery project I started Saturday.  When I went to Joann’s I picked up a pillow case embroidery project.  It’s my first attempt at embroidery, but it looks really pretty so far (the wrong side, is a whole other story, that’s what I’m working on for the other half of the pillow- tying off the string rather than carrying it so far).

Then I made Chris some dinner, I was still full from cheese and cake, but I had some a little later.  I just sauteed all the vegetables in the fridge from the last week- tomato, mushrooms, onions, green onions, pepper, with two Tofurkey Kielbasa and put it over multigrain noodles and topped with feta. It tasted fresh and delicious.

I also made this crochet star.  I have no idea what to do with it. Any suggestions? I was thinking of using it as applique on a tote bag.  What do you think I should do with it?

This morning I went to the Japanese market and picked up some snacks and goodies for the week.  I have a weakness for Asian snacks, and especially Japanese desserts that involve red bean paste.  I make a pretty mean ohagi if I do say so myself. So here’s the loot:

The top row is: dried shiitake snacks, nescafe Ice Cool coffee drink packets, cookies with red bean paste (not very good) and miso soup mix (the only one I can find with no fish powder). Middle row: Ham and Cheese flavored chips for the hubby, pea pod snacks for me, nori maki arare crackers, and chewy candy ( I can’t figure out the flavor). Bottom row- peanut butter mochi (drool!), assorted mochigashi (all red bean filling), and chocolate strawberry candy bar.

I’m off to the beach in a few hours, so I’m trying not to snack on all the salty treats, because no one wants to be bloated in a bikini!

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