Posts tagged paper

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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Sushi Pack

I think I’ll start with crafts.

I’ve made a commitment to finish 5 rows each day on my blue blanket.  This lasted for one day. Then I didn’t do it yesterday, so I may have to do 10 rows today to keep up.  We’ll see!

I started the Galaxy top that I’ve been so excited about.  And when I say I started it, I mean I crocheted 5 of the 60 or so pieces needed.  Here are those pieces with the shirt.  I think you’ll be seeing a lot of the progress of this shirt.

I also decorated another planner.  This one I found at Target for a dollar.  They had a whole bin of teacher planners and record books, with the wrong covers.  The lesson plan book had a cover that said “Record Keeper” so they were all only a dollar.  I knew I’d be using my Cricut to rescue THAT.

The different papers are all glittery and foil embossed.  They were part of the big trip to Joann’s a few weeks ago.

In book news, I finished Malinche and Taxonomy of Barnacles, which I realized I never summarized. It’s broken into two parts- nature and nurture.  It follows a family of 6 daughters, all with B-names, as they attempt to win their father’s money by making a lasting name for their family. Hilarity ensues.  It wasn’t great. but it was okay. Malinche was also okay.  Esquivel’s beautiful writing definitely saved the plot.

I began Julie and Julia and love it so far.  I think she’s brilliantly funny and real.  So much of what she writes are one liners that have run through my own head.  I love the side story about the Joy of Sex and that it all started as a blog.

Middlesex is waiting patiently on the end table.  I feel like that might be a book I have to give my full attention, so I’m planning to finish Julie and Julia today and move on to Middlesex tomorrow. I know I’m reading all these books that were hyped so long ago, but who can keep up?

My husband helped with dinner last night.  He’s quite the sushi roller.  When we lived in Arizona, our neighbor was married to a Japanese woman, who would invite us for dinner and teach us how to cook Japanese food.  From her we learned about rice vinegar, Japanese curry, and the love of mayonnaise and sweet red bean desserts. At the farmer’s market and Japanese market I picked up shiitakes, cucumbers, avocados, and nori. I had mine with a soy ginger sauce from Whole Foods and a little wasabi.  Chris is a purist and goes straight soy sauce and lots of wasabi. We paired it with my favorite wine, guwertzraminer.  This one I picked up at Firestone in Los Olivos. Oh! The chopsticks are very special. Chris’s sister was in the military and was stationed in Okinawa.  Chris wanted real chopsticks with an interesting design.  So she sent us lovely enamel chopsticks with naked women. It’s a treat to eat sushi at our house!

All that yumminess got me craving inari, so made myself a nice little Japanese lunch today to follow up. Soba and brown rice inari, miso soup, and dried okra…that’s right dried okra.  Remember my dried mushrooms?  Same thing- dehydrated okra with seasoning. So weird and so delicious.

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I stopped in at Tuesday Morning on the way home from work.  I had been a few weeks ago and there was a crazy amount of scrap booking paper.  Having not discovered my beloved Cricut at that point, I dismissed those crazy scrapbookers and their fancy paper. Now, of course I had to have it.  So I went in and walked out with two big packs of paper- one plain card stock in varying pretty colors and the other scrapbooking paper in stripes, dots and patterns, a collection of ribbon (6 packs were tied together for $2.99 and I can use this for my crochet, too, so you can see how one must buy that), a package of natural beads, because I also found a package of jewelry clasps- earrings, necklace and bracelet clasps (again, $2.99), and finally two books, both $4.99- one on scrapbooking and one on embroidery.  Here’s a picture of the loot:

I haven’t cross stitched since I was a kid making a Christmas ornament from a pattern, but a few months ago I saw Julie Jackson’s book Subversive Cross Stitch and inspired me to take up stitching. Since then I’ve found a ton of cool embroidery books.

In other gluttonous news, the dinner I made Wednesday and that we ate leftovers of on Thursday turned out delish.  It all started from a recipe that I found for eggplant pita sandwiches.  It involved eggplant, tomatoes, brown rice and seasonings in a pita.  When I showed it to my husband we were confused about the brown rice and pita, so I was going to make the eggplant and tomato and just put it over rice. Then we got to talking about how much we liked stuffing and tomato sauce from when I redid an arancini recipe, so together my husband and I designed what will henceforth be known as eggplant stuffing.  Sliced and sauteed mini eggplants, onion, diced no-salt added canned tomatoes and some liquid (I’d use fresh next time) and carrots- added pepper and pizza seasoning. Prepared cornbread stuffing in the microwave.  Greased a  square pan, put in the stuffing and poured the eggplant mix on top.  Baked for 20 minutes at 375.  It was quite good, though probably more of a fall dinner- gorgeous colors- purple, orange, red, yellow.  We had it with our last bottle of Artiste wine.  Artiste is this little winery in Santa Inez that has a gallery of artists who paint with wine.  Their bottles are sealed with melted wax and their wine is robust and delicious.

I finished And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie this morning.  I started it yesterday on the bus to work, and since two buses that morning passed up the stop, I had a good long time to read. I figured it was the Judge by about half way through, mostly because the whole tone of the book was judgment and he was the only one who didn’t receive a note from Owens, but when the last person died, I wasn’t sure. It was okay and I can see how back in the 30s when the books were published it would have been quite the story.  I think I’m jaded by all the procedurals on TV nowadays. I’d read more by her- it was quick and easy and I love the old sense of propriety,

And lastly, I finished the baby hat to match the blanket.  I also tried a bootie (sock), but it turned out too big.  The yarn I was using was over for a blanket and heavier hat, but the booties will have to be thinner yarn. I’m posting the hat, which I think is just adorable and a picture of the bootie, for laughs.

This weekend I plan on starting Scott Westerfeld’s Uglies.  The first in his sci-fi young adult trilogy about a place where 16 year olds get an operation to become pretty and begin their fabulous lives.  Some kids don’t want to to be pretty and live life outside the pretty world.  It reminds me of that Twilight Zone epirsode where the woman wakes up from surgery and everyone is in the shadows and they all gasp at how ugly she is and then they’re revealed to be “ugly” pig-like creatures  and she’s this “gorgeous” human and the moral of the story is… “beauty is in the eye of the beholder.” It’s a little over 400 pages, but big font and large margins lead me to believe I have it done by Tuesday.

I also plan on doing some cricut-ing this weekend!  Hello lovely paper!

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