cheffery at it's finest

image from purposedesign

yesterday, me and some girls from work went to supper solved and threw together some culinary masterpieces. i'm not even kidding. italian stuffed flank steak, beef burgundy, chicken tikka masala, veggie lasagna.. man. it's the best invention ever - i love to cook but the cleanup time is what kills me. i just like to cook then enjoy - forget the dishes. they can do themselves.

but these were so *easy peasy* it was almost ridiculous. and now i've got a freezer full of 18 meals ready to be tossed in the oven... and i know firsthand how much salt, preservatives and other stuff went into it. (y'know. cause i was there.) so great. so delicious. i love food.


finally - a chance to regroup

so i've finally finished my paper, my laptop is fixed and my camera is working.

time to breathe.

coming up on my to-do list:

01. make more of my glass gem magnets. i've received my shipment of supplies, there's nothing holding me back. watch me go. they'll be awesome, and sell out just as fast as the first batch... i won't even get them posted in my

02. continue the sexying up of my banner and images in here.

03. start (or is it finish?) reupholstering my
chair. i've also been inspired to make some pillows. guess that means i'll have to get the tension fixed on my sewing machine after all.

04. figure out what the hell i'm going to do with my steamer trunk. i feel like an awful person if i do anything to it, really. i just want to make it feel... nice. yeah? yeah. i'd love to peel out the old paper and paint + seal it a great colour. maybe green. or maybe something neutral... cause the trunk's dark brown. hm.


kindergarten revisited.

new favourite tool for show-and-tell: Big Huge Labs' Mosaic Maker. not only did it allow me to make myself a sweet little mosaic to decorate, but it also automatically made up some HTML coding for below to make it easier for me to properly reference their makers. careful, it's addictive. honestly.

1. purple sea snails, 2. Happy!, 3. toadstools in wet grass, 4. giant bird of paradise, 5. dandy drop, 6. You're Beautiful


i now have a road map

cartoon from www.weblogcartoons.com

Cartoon by Dave Walker.

c'est magnifique. new best thing ever.

busy day today, but i'm glad i at least now know where i'm going and how to get there. that's a relief.


happy happy long weekend (plus one)

happy happy family day! i'm thrilled that we're enjoying our shiny new holiday weekend.

worked on my latest paper, found two awesome new blogs (here and here), enjoyed a surprise snack break prepared by mike (apple slices, punkin loaf and a brownie - xo!), wandered lazily through the interweb while the snow was blowing outside, went out for dinner to dine on 2-for-1 wings with coke, added a third column to my blog (look left! look left!), and now am winding down in preparation for my extra day off tomorrow.

phew. tough life.


rat race

The trouble with so many of us is that we underestimate the power of simplicity. We have a tendency, it seems, to over complicate our lives and forget what is important and what is not.

We tend to mistake movement for achievement. We tend to focus on activities instead of results.

And as the pace of life continues to race along in the outside world, we forget that we have the power to control our lives regardless of what's going on outside.

-Robert Stuberg


cabin fever

i've got an itch. i can feel it, but can't quite scratch it enough to make me happy. i could feel it coming for the past few weeks, prodding at the back of my head - probably because first my camera was acting up, then my laptop was out of commission. now i've a paper to finish, but all i want to do is progress on the various projects that have stowed away in the back of my mind + in my basement for the past few months.

{happy news: as of 7:45pm this evening, it appears that my laptop is now back up and running, thanks to mike's friend taking a whole day to come down and reformat + reinstall windows. note to self... make something awesome to express my intense gratitude.}

regardless, there's way too many things on my to-do list; it's not been too difficult to find things that inspire me, that end up on the list... it's just a matter of figuring out which to do first. that is, until reading jcaroline's how-to on reupholstering a vintage chair. i have a little stockpile of projects in my basement that were started but for some reason were left unfinished. included in this is my ugly slipper chair.

i had seen it at a garage sale last summer, and was looking for furniture/housewares/decorations/cool discoveries. it cost me $5, but i had big dreams for this lil piece of ugly chair. so i bought it, mike loaded it into his car (cobwebs and all) and i brought it home and within a week, had it stripped and ready to rock. but since then, there's been no forward motion on it whatsoever. seriously. it's looked like this for six months now. but since i've been unable to complete a few other projects due to lack of space to spray-paint (since it's so cold outside), this would make a perfect cold-weather project. i just need to find some foam and cotton batting to make it a bit more cushy, but i'm glad to be back on track.

now i just need to finish that paper and decide on a fabric...


pretty li'l flowers and things

if you have two loaves of bread, sell one and buy a hyacinth. - persian proverb

mm. what a gorgeous image. i love shopping for fresh flowers and potted plants. we were in the grocery store yesterday picking up some tulips for our moms, and i couldn't help but get excited for spring. sixty more days, right? nothing beats fresh new springtime green, new buds on the trees, and crocuses poking out of the soil. i'm going to buy some potted hyacinth for my office. probably little tulips and daffodils too. maybe even some gerbera daisies. i'll be sitting in a little indoor garden.

i just found these quote vessels and tags from paper boat press via black.white.bliss and ... well, i really love them. the imperfect shape of the bowls and text is so appealing. i think i'll start incorporating more quotes and text into my own pieces - i've had a few pretty little ideas in mind to work on for a while now. good thing i've a newly invented long weekend starting tomorrow, and a snowstorm coming on sunday night.. it's the perfect excuse to hole up and get to work.



i wasn't kidding about the heart-shaped-everything. check out the heart shaped meringue goodness from martha stewart. mm.

i officially heart hearts.

so it seems that everyone's been having a whole bunch of fun making heart-shaped food except me. don't get me wrong - i'm not an ooey-gooey-looking-forward-to-v-day-like-it's-going-out-of-style kinda girl.. (proof: mike and i are double-dating with our mothers tonight for tea/coffee at Tim Hortons.)

i wouldn't have otherwise jumped on the heart-shaped bandwagon except for the fact that i've seen a whole bunch of heart-shaped goodies everywhere lately and ... well ... it's cute. how can you resist it when everybody's using heart-shaped cookie cutters and the like to create adorable french toasts, ice cream and brownies? i bet you couldn't hold back even if you tried.

regardless, i baptised myself in the mob mentality and went ahead to make valentines day from-scratch chocolate chip cookies. what makes these different from the everyday chocolate chip cookies? the red-and-pink m&m's, of course!

as i discovered that the tiny metal heart cookie cutter gets hot very quickly when slicing fresh-from-the-oven cookies, i decided to make a mix of small hearts and big round cookies ... and in the end, i think they look (and taste) pretty great.

maybe i'll start incorporating heart-shaped foods into everyday life. i wonder how tiny heart-shaped meatloafs (meatloaves?) would look?


so many things, so many pies

so my laptop is still out of commission. i think i'm going to have to reformat + reinstall windows to show it who's boss. i think that sometimes you have to do that with laptops; lay down the law, put the pants on + make it behave. otherwise they get all saucy and start stomping around your house like they run the show. (and they don't).

this weekend will be getting-back-up-and-running weekend. i can feel my to-do list backing up as the days go by, and it makes me antsy. additionally, i keep finding all of these gorgeous and awesome blogs, and want to be able to finish mine in order to make mine equally awesome and gorgeous, but am stuck without any of my programs or pictures.

it's a lonely, lonely place, with no computer.

the upside, however, is how much i've learned from the whole experience. my computer goddess ashley says that she's impressed with how much i've learned from the whole thing... i'm just glad that i didn't have to end up paying $189 to best buy's geek squad for them to push alt+f10 to do a system recovery. thanks, but no thanks guys. i can buy a whole lot of supplies from michaels for that amount.

i digress. now, i feel that with a little research and a lot of help from "experts" in online forums, instructional videos from youtube, and a whole lot of determination, i'm now a qualified computer expert. sort of. it's kind of a nice feeling. (it's just a shame that my optical drive still doesn't realize it exists.)

to unwind, i might have to make a few mini-pies as demonstrated by not martha. i can barely resist. rhubarb, apple, blueberry, raspberry, cherry... how can it *not* fix my laptop woes?


this is what you shall do...

"This is what you shall do: Love the earth and sun and the animals, despise riches, give alms to everyone that asks, stand up for the stupid and crazy, devote your income and labor to others, hate tyrants, argue not concerning God, have patience and indulgence toward the people, take off your hat to nothing known or unknown or to any man or number of men, go freely with powerful uneducated persons and with the young and with the mothers of families, read these leaves in the open air every season of every year of your life, re-examine all you have been told at school or church or in any book, dismiss whatever insults your own soul, and your very flesh shall be a great poem and have the richest fluency not only in its words but in the silent lines of its lips and face and between the lashes of your eyes and in every motion and joint of your body."

-- Walt Whitman


my technology is planning a mutiny against me.

it started with my camera misbehaving. the batteries were getting saucy. i got them in line; all ready to go and make my fantastic blog, even had a photoshoot in order to list some more items in my etsy shop, and then lo and behold, my laptop has a nervous breakdown.

stage fright, perhaps?


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