Wednesday, December 30, 2009

New Years Cards are the new Christmas Cards

This year I made a vow to myself that I would send out Christmas cards, but well, that didn't happen. I even have some fabulous ones that I got 60% off at a store closing. *sniff* (I loved that store.) I underestimated - as usual - all the things I wanted to do/needed to do/still have to do during the holiday season. My solution? New Year's cards!!! Why didn't I think of this before?!?! Why waste your precious Christmas shopping time writing out Christmas cards? Send a New Years card instead! So, instead of doing the pile of work sitting on my desk, one day my sister and I sat and designed our New Year's cards that we will be sending out. I really like mine, although I wish that one of the fonts had printed bigger, but who is going to notice but me??

Anyway, I decided to brush up on my brush strokes (he he he.....get it? Brush up....HA! I kill me!!) when addressing my envelopes. My calligraphy instructors always encouraged us to practice our calligraphy anytime we are sending out anything. In fact, my copperplate calligraphy instructor would even write her checks out in copperplate. But, I have not whipped out anything in probably 3 years. So, here are the final results before I added the addresses.

I am really rusty so I apologize in advance for those that will be receiving cards that don't met my usual standards of excellence, but I didn't order extra envelopes so you'll just have to deal. These three were my favorite, and frankly, the only ones that received the stamp of approval from moi.

I will be leaving next weekend for India so this will probably be my last post of 2009. Happy New Year!! All the best in 2010! I hope your New Year resolutions include lots of crafting!!

Friday, October 16, 2009

It's not me. It's U (verse).

So, I have been MIA for quite some time. I still maintain that I am busy getting my U-verse fix, but honestly I haven't had much to write about. I have gotten so far behind on my shows that I sometimes feel like deleting them all because it's not realistic to watch that much television and still have a day job. I haven't really been making anything. Work has been very stressful. (I have two gray hairs in the most obvious spot to prove it.) Home life has been so-so. I actually dove into the infamous "blue room" and started my clean sweep of my former life. It's been pretty theraputic to see where I've been, who I was, and how different I am now. Sad sometimes. Motivating other times. Either way, I am feeling good about the amout of stuff I've gotten rid of while still getting overwhelmed at the amount of stuff I have to yet to go thru. But, my motivation to clean out that room has been a bridal shower I am hosting at my home on November 7. I will finish that room by November 7 and it will be pristine and beautiful and magical and clean and empty. Mostly it will be empty. And that is what I look forward to at the end of the day.

I also have my computer to blame. It has pretty much said it's goodbyes, so I haven't read up on my celebrity gossip or my daily blogs. I feel like I am neglecting my blogger friends, but then I realize 'oh, they don't even know who I am' and then I don't feel so guilty. But, I do miss them. Mr. Bean and I decided we will buy me another computer, but I am going to be patient for this one. I am at the point that I just want to finish buying all my furniture and get it over with. So. I will wait.

Anyway. I have recently made a couple of things worth posting. I will post them when I get some decent pics, so you'll have to just wait. I figure the one reader I do have has probably seen it already, so I am in no hurry. :) But for now I will just say, it's not me. It's U-verse. :)

Friday, August 21, 2009

U-verse has changed my universe....and other news.

Sorry for the lack of posts. Mr. B finally kicked Comcast to the curb and signed us up for AT&T's U-verse. We got a free 37" TV from my work and against all sorts of marriage/design/sleep principles, we put it in our bedroom. And it is great. Mr. B also splurged and got us Showtime and Starz. For $5! So, we have pretty much been in honeymoon phase with U-verse and recording everything we possibly can and then some. God is good.
In other news, I finally got my Le Creuset dutch oven and she is a beauty.

The color is being discontinued, so the sale price even beat the price at the Le Crueset outlet by my house! Mr. B said I could get it since he knew I've been wanting it longer than I wanted him.

My first dish to make was Williams Sonoma's Poulet Nicoise. Williams Sonoma had a picture of it on their cover about a year ago and I have been drooling over it ever since. The dutch oven and the recipe. Mine came out looking exactly like the picture on the front cover. Here's the iPhone version. Trust me. In real life, it looked amazing.

As far as taste, it was okay. I read that if you did not put in enough tarragon that it would taste like chicken soup. And that is pretty much what I got. I'm not too familiar with tarragon, but I read that since it is very strong, use it sparingly. I didn't have fresh tarragon, so I bought dried tarragon and only put in half the amount called for in the recipe. Apparently, I cut back too much. But, I will give it another go another time. It is a lot of food for just me and Mr. Bean to eat, so maybe sometime when we have company over.

That's all I got for now. There is an insane thunderstorm outside complete with wind, crazy thunder and lightening, and now hail. The electricity keeps going off and Freddie is actually pretty scared. So, I am signing off.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009


Since I've seen this on about 50 of the blogs I read, I figured I'd participate...

Outside my window... Freddie is hoping to see a cat.

I am thinking... that I need to finish packing.

I am thankful for... air conditioning.

From the kitchen... nothing, nothing, nothing! My MIL made me some fish curry for my birthday and Mr. B is bringing me home some leftovers from his dinner with his coworkers.

I am wearing... a house dress my MIL gave me from India. The most comfortable thing I own right now.

I am creating... a dress. Almost done if I could finish packing. And get off the computer.

I am going... to IOWA!!!!

I am reading... Undress Me in the Temple of Heaven.

I am hoping... to get to bed at a decent hour.

I am hearing... Seinfeld in the background.

Around the house... NOTHING!! I had to clean like a mo' fo' because we are having company tonight.

One of my favorite things... Fish curry. And vacation. :)

A few plans for the rest of the week... Hang out with my sister and BIL and Mr. B. Reading. Shopping. Eating. Relaxing. Boat time. And definitely a lot of laughing. :)

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Weekend Fun.

I finally finished up the last apron on my To-Do list and gave it away. I didn't take pics of it. Mostly because I forgot, but also because it's the same pattern as the other apron I posted pics of a few weeks ago. I used Amy Butler's Wildflowers in Navy in the Daisy Chain line. I fell in love with the fabric when I bought it because I just knew my friend would love it. I am not a huge "blue" fan, like my friend, but I can appreciate a fabulous blue print when I see one. This one is gorgeous in person. My friend loved it. So, I am happy. It's nice to get a good "OMG, I LOVE IT! I CAN'T BELIEVE YOU MADE THIS!" every once in a while. :)

I also made a card for Mr. Bean's cousin. He is the last to graduate from high school on that side of the family, so the family got together on Saturday night. It's a money holder. I based it off of Kristina Werner's gift card holder that was a PDF for Two Peas sometime during the holidays, but I can't find the original link and, frankly, I am too tired to look for it right now. The PDF had a template you could cut out and use, but I remembered basically what it looked like and just went for it. Using the template probably would have saved time, but I didn't have time to mess with my printer once I took the time to find the PDF anyway. So. Here it is.

Front (He will be a Longhorn, of course):


If I would have had a few more minutes (we were running late as it was), I wouldn't have kept the "Class of 2013" and instead would have just put "Congrats" or something. Just looks really heavy for the card. The money was stashed under the flap created by the brads.

That's all I got for now. Finished up some reading I need to to. It seems my list of books I want to read is getting longer than the list of books I've read.

Monday, May 25, 2009


OMG!! I can't believe this!! If you know me at all, you will know that I think my dad is the most amazing man ever. I don't know many dads that can come close to how awesome my dad is and how much he has sacrificed to provide for us - his kids and grandchildren. Anyway, I am sure I will write tons more about him in other posts. So, my favorite blog to read is Kal Barteski's. She's so talented and hilarious and honest and inspiring. She is my Canadian Idol. He he. On Friday, she posted that she was giving two You-Are-An-Awesome-Dad prints if you left a comment to telling her why your dad was awesome. I read all the comments Friday night and was literally balling. I went ahead and put my two cents in, thinking nothing of it, but reading all the comments made me all sentimental about my dad. And guess what. She picked my comment for a print!! Yea!!! Read it here. I know my dad will love it. :) Yea for awesome dads and yea for K. Barteski!!

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Spring Cleaning.

It's been long overdue. I am not by any means a clean freak, but when I was little it was a task that my mother made sure everyone in the house participated in every spring. We'd have to basically purge, dust, and vacuum our butts off. So, around this time of the year, every year, I get that itch that I need to keep that tradition alive. I decided that this weekend would be best since we had an extra day to ourselves and I wouldn't be completely wiped when I returned to work on Monday. I must confess, though, that I had the itch a couple of months ago. But, I ignored it.

My house is practically sparkling from the insane deep cleaning we gave it. And it feels and smells fresh and clean. Love that. We actually didn't touch one hall closet or any of the bedrooms, but I am very, very pleased at the moment. And tired. And sore. :)

Sunday, May 17, 2009

A Card.

Just thought I'd quickly post a few pics. This is a card I made last weekend for a baby christening that we went to.

The patterened paper is a beautiful chiyogami paper I found at a paper store that was closing by my office. I bought it thinking it'd be perfect for a baby. The chiyogami paper had flecks stars of gold on it, so the yellowish paper is actually a gold shimmer paper that I had left over from a wedding I helped out on.

This is my first attempt at sewing on a card. I'd read so many horror stories about how sewing on paper broke several people's machines, so needless to say, I was hesitant to try it. It was no big deal. My sister says the secret is using a denim needle and not trying to sew through any adhesive. So, there you go! I also made an envelope for the card with a matching liner but the pics of that came out all blurry.

Here is the gift I wrapped.

I personally think that the wrapping on a gift makes it even more special, so I always take time to wrap gifts. I wanted to make the card a part of the wrapping. I toyed around with the idea of a pocket, but I didn't like the results. So, I literally have it tied down by the ribbon. The idea being that it would bring the color I wanted on the wrapping without using as much paper. In retrospect, I think I would have omitted 2 of the stripes of ribbon. Just looks like a lot to me, but I am pleased with how it turned out.

I am slowly working on getting our pics of Napa put up on our website, but I am having issues getting enough time on Mr. B's computer. So, don't hold your breath. :)

Tuesday, May 5, 2009


Sewing is sometimes the most humbling activity I've ever willingly tried. Next to skiing. I have been working on an apron for a friend for....well, forever. It is from a pattern my grandmother gave me that her mother gave her years ago.

I absolutely love the fabric, but my machine didn't. I basically had to hand feed the needle into the fabric about every other stitch. My right arm looks Popeye's now. I hope she loves it. I think I may cry if she ever uses it. Ha. Some pics.....
(Forgive the bad pics. #1, I don't have a cute area to display anything, and #2, I am still trying to learn my camera.)

The front.

The back.

Close up of the pocket. This probably best represents the actual fabric color. I chose to use a red thread because I thought it would look cute in contrast to the other colors (and to match the outline on the flowers) but I realized pretty quickly it shows all my mistakes.

In other news, I finally bought a rug for the front room!!! I have had my eye on a rug since February of last year. I know this because I checked the email my BIL sent me when I begged him to take pics of it since the only store in the state happened to be a few miles from him. I am pretty excited.

I need to post pics of our trip to San Fran. But, I think I will post those to our new website so I can email the link to family. Stay tuned. I am hoping to find some time to do that this weekend.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Second Chances.

I am so moved by this story on Footage is on It is such an amazing story. Love how Gatorade has provided video episodes leading up to the game. At least catch Episode 3 if you get a chance. Love the message this sends out.

Saturday, April 4, 2009

A $5.00 Desktop

Mr. Bean and I had a birthday party to go to this afternoon. One of Mr. Bean's coworkers' son turned one. As part of Asian tradition, they asked us to bring an item representing our profession or talent. The baby is set in front of all the items and whichever item he grabs first dictates what he will eventually grow up to be. I remembered this detail of the party, but Mr. Bean forgot. So, at the last minute we decided to build this. Behold, a $5.00 laptop. Never underestimate the power of a pack rat. I had all the supplies we used in my scrap storage. Including the box.

The blue screen read:

A fatal error of type null pointer has occured at 000123xc1183:ADC in VxD DiskTSD(03). The current application will be terminated.

Press Ctrl + Alt + Delete to continue. But, it will do nothing.

You must buy a MAC to no longer see this section.

The only complaint we got was that there was no USB port. Maybe next year.

The result? Little Oliver technically touched Mr. B's laptop first, but we were blocked by Oliver's father who threw a golf ball down at the last second. So, naturally Ollie was distracted. But, I think we have a future developer in our hands....

Here's the card I made for the baby. I love the idea of the Envelopments line. So, I made this twist on a traditional red envelope.

I tend to spend hours trying to design something really intricate, then end up with something simple like this. The backside had a note for the baby and then a pocket for our gift.

Enough showing off. Mr. Bean is off playing golf. Miss Fred and I are catching up on some z's, laundry, and cleaning while preparing dinner. Guess who is the one catching up on her z's??

Friday, April 3, 2009

Short post.

All I have for today is this. She cracks me up. Love that pic.

Off to another busy weekend... Getting ready for our trip. Well, thinking about getting ready at least. That counts, right?

Thursday, April 2, 2009


If you haven't seen this domestic violence PSA Keira Knightley did, check it out. Here is a short article about it.

Sunday, March 1, 2009


Not much to report here lately. I came down with some sort of food poisoning Friday and just had my first meal since Thursday night. I was not amused. And neither was Freddie. She and I battled it out on the couch all day Friday and Saturday. I think it's down to a split decision on exactly who the winner was. She fights pretty dirty. Aside from the kicks in the head I received, she was also just pretty sly about flat out telling me "you snooze you lose" everytime I got up from the couch. Inevitably when I returned, she would either have stretched out to the entire length of the couch or she would be on my side of the couch on top of my pillow. I'd like to declare myself the winner since I fought a clean fight. Minus the couple of times I set my alarm off on my phone so that she would think someone was ringing the door bell and get up to check things out. But I only used that as a last resort. Promise.

Anyway, back to the swing of things. I have recently been obsessed with these:

1. Kal Barteski's Custom YOU-ARE-AWESOME posters. I read her blog daily and am pretty obsessed with/jealous of her artwork. I own two of her prints and can't wait to frame them and put them up in my craft room/guest room. Her work is inspirational and empowering. I have the same theory she shares on her blog - that there is just something special about seeing your name in print. Especially when you have a name like mine that isn't exactly going to be printed all over every souvenir shop item in the world. In her words:

I have this theory that seeing your name in print - makes you feel special. Seeing your name in print - gives you an inner confidence to take up space in the world. Seeing your name in print - whether you can read or not - is a powerful way to convey an important message. You are awesome. Or You are Beautiful. Or You are loved + adored. Or you are Hardcore. Or you are Long awaited. Or YOU are kick-ass. You. ARE.

I bought some for my nephews and can't wait to get them and frame them. I stole Penn's (K. Barteski's daughter) line and put on all of them "YOU ARE DESTINED FOR GREATNESS." I was going to give them as part of their birthday presents but I don't think I can wait that long so they just might be apart of their Easter baskets. I hope they will one day appreciate what it says.

2. Amy Butler's Lucky Flowers Stationary. In the words of the great Rachel Zoe, I DIE!

3. The Butterfly Project by LollyChops. Need I say more? Must. Buy. Punches. Now. How awesome would that be to make/give? As well as just being flat out eco-friendly. Recycle, Reuse!! Don't be surprised to see some of these in my home and in a gift box with your name on it. I've already got some pages torn out of catalogs that I've saved over the years simply because I loved the colors in it as well as a plethora of shadow boxes in my storage unit, er, third bedroom. (See, Mom! There is a method to my madness!!)

4. This Vogue pattern.

I walked into Hancock Fabrics and fell in love. I knew it was meant to be because the pattern was on sale for $3.89 AND I found some BEAUTIFUL fabric that happened to be 30% off (that never happens to me) AND all notions - zippers, thread, etc. - were 50% off that day. So, I basically got a new dress for $30.00. Talk about meant to be!! I know it's all wrong for my body type, but I will make it work, dammit. Love. Love. Love it. I've got all the pieces cut. Just got to start sewing. :)

5. Sara Bareilles - (Sittin' On) The Dock of the Bay [Acoustic] - Live at the Fillmore DVD. I stole this obsession from another blogger I love. She said it reminds her of her dad. I got all teary-eyed when I read that because it reminds me of my dad, too. I always have flashbacks of my sister and I as toddlers with my dad - he'd pile us into his truck and we'd start driving. He always had the oldies or classic country music playing on the radio. Except back then it wasn't "classic". Ha. That was also back when seatbelts and carseats were an option. But I always remember looking up at my dad with my sister next to me. Just driving. So this song reminds me of my dad. Driving.

My dad's always been a driver. Always behind the wheel. For some reason, my sister's college always started a week earlier than mine and her finals ended a week after mine so for the first few semesters my dad and I would drive up there and back to help her move in/out. We'd jam out to the oldies and sing together with the windows rolled down in his truck . Elvis was always a fave and since Elvis' death was in August, the oldies station almost always had some sort of tribute going on when we were moving my sister in. I'd eventually get tired of singing but he'd still keep on. Just a little more softly. Not that my dad has an American Idol voice, but there is something so comforting about hearing him sing. I guess because, if you know my dad, it's out of character for him. But, I guess that's why I love to hear him sing. Because when I do hear him sing, it feels like it's just for me.

6. And, lastly, this version of Britney's Hit Me Baby One More Time. My closest friends know how much I despise the late Britney (I am not completely won over by her so-called comeback), but over Christmas, a family friend sung this acoustic version of her song for us during a wild and crazy night of SingStar for the PS3. It was too cool. I almost like his version better than Travis', but probably because the person that sang it is just pretty darn cool.

Alright. Heading out. Got lots of things to catch up around here. It's amazing how much stuff builds up around here when you don't do anything for 3 days. Ugh.