Saturday, March 31, 2012

a bag!

I've been avoiding the sewing class I'm taking because I just didn't now what I wanted to make my third assignment -  a reusable shopping bag - out of. 

Luckily, inspiration struck in the form of a friend who wanted to get rid of a bunch of fabric, including this ticking.

What is is about ticking? - I just love the way it looks, it's practical yet beautiful stripe.

Anyhoo, so here's the bag, and I'm quite pleased with it.
Actually, it's my first "three dimensional" project - everything else has been flat - curtains, the table runner, etc. So I am really excited about it. I may have done a happy dance.
I learned how to reinforce the straps by sewing an "X" on the seam, and I decided to leave the selvage edge on the top becuase I like the little detail.
So now I have a handy bag for going to the beach this summer - just in time!
...Now if only the weather would cooperate. Hmph.
I was a bit of a boob and instead of sewing the "good" sides together, wound up sewing one backwards, but I decided to leave it and what turned out as a mistake just makes it a bit more visually interesting. At least I think so. I'm not just being lazy. Really. 
Oh, also? I made these doughnuts. If you haven't discovered 101 Cookbooks yet, go. Now. I love how Heidi is all about healthy, whole food, but every once in a while sneaks in a recipe like this. Makes me feel more human. But I mean, hey - they are baked, after all.
And beautiful.
And covered with cinnamon and sugar.
How could you go wrong?

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

a little thing i like to call...

my first recipe!

years ago, i was camping with some friends and we were sitting around the fire one night. i'd had just the right amount of sunshine, yummy food, and alcohol to put me in a contemplative mood. we were playing "truth or dare", and for the life of me, i chose truth. i can't for the life of me remember what the question was, but my answer still rings true today - i want to make something. i want to add something to the world that didn't exist before.

i'm not saying that this little recipe is that thing, but it's a start.

raw kale salad

1 bunch kale (i really like using the lacinato or flat leaf kale)
2 grated carrots
1 grated beet
1/4 cup chopped cilantro
1/2-1 whole avocado, chopped
a few scallions, chopped
(omit any of these and replace other raw veggies you'd like to add -i've added celery, radishes, and peppers. mix and match with what is fresh and seasonal)
juice of a lime, lemon, meyer lemon, etc...maybe a bit more
about twice as much olive oil
a good sprinkle of coarse salt
a few grinds of pepper

mix together all the veggies
pour the juice and oil over the top, sprinkle with s & p
toss thoroughly (more thoroughly than you would another salad - the acids and salt need to work with the raw veggies to start to break them down a bit) and let sit for a few to let the flavors meld
top with feta, if you're feeling feisty


Sweet new curtains, how I love you. You make my window so pretty, and now I can undress freely in my room without worrying about giving the whole island a show.

Take THAT, peeping Toms!

(speaking of peeping, how about them peepers!?)

Wow, taking pictures of a window is HARD!

Monday, March 19, 2012

a changing of the guard

I was a lucky girl this weekend and got to go on a bit of a fabric shopping binge with a good friend. Thanks to the low, low prices at Marden's, I stocked up on fabric I'll use for the next few projects... and some that doesn't have a project in mind yet. It will hang out and wait for just the right thing.
Included in this pile of happiness is another flannel sheet for Finn, a skirt and dress for Mama, a pair of tiny corduroy pants, and the project I can't wait to begin - bedroom curtains!
This is the curtain situation in our room right now...long and gauzy, these curtains came with the house, and they're perfectly fine, but for a window facing the road, and very little space in said room, it makes undressing a bit of an adventure, particularly with the lights on at night. Yikes!

So, farewell, curtains. There will be some cute updates to you in the near future!

Thursday, March 8, 2012

a sheet.

So I made this sheet.
I got the flannel at Goodwill weeks ago and have been sitting on it until now for this very purpose.
We'd been passed down a bunch of crib sheets, but none of them was flannel, and in Maine in February, you NEED some flannel, even this (super crazy weird) winter. 
The most awesome part? It was easy.
Actually, it's been on Finn's bed now for over a week and he still hasn't wet it yet. I had been washing up to two sheets a day, so I think that means it's got his seal of approval.

And can we talk about how awesome his crib is again? Built by his grandfather and his dad, I think it's the perfect showcase for his fancy new bedding.


I've been thinking a bit about why exactly I started this blog. It's because I want more moments like this one - I'm sitting on my couch with lemon buttermilk scones in the oven, a cup of tea in my hand, a knitting project in progress next to me, and jazz on Pandora. I want more simplicity. I want more reality. I want to get out of my head and out of the consumer-driven society I've been a part of for so long.

It's a lot to get a head around at once, so I'm taking baby steps - making lip balm and cloth napkins are good starts, but they're really representative of who I want to be and where I want to go in this life of mine. I want to be more present, more thoughtful, and more engaged.

Its all perfect timing for me to be having this little epiphany because we're thinking about a home - where we want to live and more importantly, HOW. We've looked at a few houses for sale that would be just fine, but nothing is right, you know? The more I think about it, the more clarity I get about my priorities. First, I want LAND. LAND in capital letters - I'm not talking acres and acres - two is fine for me, but I want that space, that breathing room. For gardens, for livestock, for a tree house, a barn or shop...maybe a sauna? Living on this island, desirable land is scarce and often expensive, so I'm hoping that in the next couple of years, just the right piece becomes available. No water view, just a sweet spot where we can build our home.

Home. It's a big deal. Especially when you're starting from scratch. I always thought we'd buy a "fixer-upper". There are so many empty houses available, and we've got the skillz to do it. But the more I think about it, the more the twitchy control-freak side of me gets that maniacal glint in her eyes and starts twirling her fake mustache. Man, I've got plans for this place, but most of all, I want to look around in ten years and see a home with a history - that has been created and shaped by our (as cliche as it sounds) blood, sweat, and tears. I want a home that treads lightly and is a part of its surroundings. One that is efficient, light, and full.

Big ideas, friends. It's what keeps me up at night.