Friday, December 18, 2009


Yes, it may be true that I've been going a little baby crazy lately. That aside, this movie looks absolutely fantastic. It comes out April 16th and I'm usually not one to head straight for the theaters when a ticket costs so much these days, but I'm THERE for this one. Check it out!!


Saturday, December 12, 2009

Happy Holidays, Friends!

I love the sweet, simple message of this CBS greeting from 1966. Thanks to sfgirlbybay for the link. Happy Holidays and Warm Wishes!

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Another great (Echino!) giveaway.

Happy Holidays! It's giveaway season! Check out these colorful items over at sew i do:

I'm a huge Echino fan, so I'm lovin' those pouches. Again, head over to Sew, Mama, Sew for some more awesome holiday giveaways. Tis' the season for generosity. These folks are amazing.

Giveaway Dress! Gorgeous.

What a generous giveaway going on over at Grosgrain. Check out this gorgeous dress!

Also, head over to Sew Mama Sew for three categories of "Giveaway Day." There are some beautiful items from beautiful people! Happy Holidays, folks!

Friday, November 20, 2009

Thank you, Nordstrom, for everything.

Dear Nordstrom,

You take my money. Yet I love you. I love your whole shopping experience. I love your Rack (ahem). I love your perfume and make-up. I love your sales and schmultzy piano music. But most of all, right now, I'm loving your philosophy regarding Christmas decorations before Thanksgiving. At least one retail store isn't going completely crazy right now. Bless you, Nordstrom. May your days be merry and bright, but not before you slice the turkey.



Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Cartoon Relevance

I love Harold's Planet. Especially when cartoons arrive in my inbox that are just so relevant to my current state of mind. I highly recommend the Daily Cartoon.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

"Minted" for the Holidays

My husband and I take it easy when it comes to holiday cards. We are one of those "photo families." I would love to write a long, thought-out message to each person that I send a card to because I love my friends and family dearly, but time demands that I upload a photo, receive those flat cards in the mail, write a short note, and send. I'll look forward to the long, in-person talks I can have catching up instead of purging everything into my annual holiday card. This year, thanks to a tip from Real Simple magazine, I found These are the absolute hippest, coolest photo cards I've ever seen. They have fabulous stationary as well. I love paper products, so me thinks this will be a dangerous site for my online shopping procrastination. I'll be placing my order now, thank you very much.

Talk Bubbles Personalized Stationary by Jody Wody

Peace Love and Bop Holiday Photo Cards by Alex Elko Design

Mod Berries Holiday Photo Cards by oscar+emma Design

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Yes. It's gotten to that point...

Here's a bit of silliness. It's the end of Week 5 in our good ol' university quarter system. It's in times like these that we need some fun (and some procrastination, perhaps?). I give you two sites that tickled me today: "How to Make Chai Tea" by Lucy Knisley and "Screen Stache."

I do love chai tea, especially on blustery Seattle days. This recipe adds a little fun.

I love my Design*Sponge wallpaper. Now I have an extra-cool screensaver to go along with!

And just for extra measure, a baby squirrel for your viewing pleasure, via Sharon Montrose:

I love squirrels. They're my favorite animals. Don't hate.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Blissful Beatles

Love this today. Find more info on the ever-so-creative SwissMiss here. Happy Hump Day.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Oh, Target, how I love thee.

I always hear stories about so-called Big Box stores and corporate America. It's true... I won't shop at Wal-Mart. Ever. Never ever. Target is a different story and I can't really explain why. Target is classier in my book. They have cheap, environmentally-friendlier (-ier because kitties aren't environmentally friendly at all) kitty litter. I can find inexpensive and somewhat fashionable work clothes. The $5 DVD selection sucks me in like quicksand. The new feature (new to me) that I just discovered and adore is their RedHotShop, in collaboration with Daily Candy. They have awesome products from many of my favorite modern designers like BluDot and Kikkerland. They post monthly and you'll bet I'll be back to check on what's new in Target Land.

...and I WILL be purchasing that slightly weird but awesome Beethoven (or Mortimer) Bust Candle. Hear you me.

Blu Dot Real Good Chair

So, I'll go ahead and add to that conversation that I won't be purchasing books from Target (sorry). That's one item that I'll leave to the independent and used sellers. There's nothing like the feeling of shopping in a local bookstore. Barnes and Noble, you just don't cut it. There was a great story tonight on Jim Lehrer about the publishing industry. Y'all should definitely check it out before you rush to buy your new Kindle (no thanks).

In other news (and I'm full of it tonight), my desktop wallpaper is going through quick changes these days. From beautiful photos from Ken Burns's "The National Parks," to National Geographic's photo contest, to a new Design*Sponge wallpaper today from Camilla Engman. Camilla's gorgeous wallpaper is the newest one to adorn my beloved desktop. Check 'em all out at Design*Sponge. Happy Monday (I'm sick and am trying to be as positive as possible).

Saturday, October 31, 2009

October 31st

Happy Halloween...

Go Ducks! ...
Oregon: 47 USC: 20

and a Hallo-weiner Dog just for your enjoyment.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Decisions are great... Especially when they're handmade.

**loud cheering from the crowd**

Because, why not?! I just watched all of Etsy's "Handmade Moments" Contest winners and they were fantastic and inspirational. This holiday season shall be handmade... by Etsy or by me! In the meantime, check out the work of this amazing Portland artist (I love Oregon): The Black Apple (aka Emily Martin). Buy her prints. They're beautiful. I don't even know her. I promise.

Books Print, copyright Emily Martin

Branch Bed Print, copyright Emily Martin

Wednesday, October 14, 2009


Okay... here's the tough stuff. I'm seriously plagued by anxiety. I'm anxious about being anxious. I go inside my head and can't seem to get out very easily. In instances like this, it's important to focus on some words of wisdom that might seem a bit contrived, but true nonetheless. Here are some of my favorites right now, in this moment of vulnerability:

You are enough. Just as you are, you are good. You are enough to meet the challenges of your life, and you are enough to go after your dreams. Raise yourself up so that you can remind others that they are enough too.

Others do not define who you are. You define who you are in every choice you make. So if someone doesn’t see what you’re made of yet, don’t worry about it. Just work on living an example.

You never know what will change your life. Showing kindness, and moving out of your comfort zone could connect you with something that could make you happier than you ever were before. Keep an open eye for what you can learn.

Without struggle there is no achievement. Remember this when you face hard times. Difficulty and struggle is not your undoing but rather you’re opportunity.

It is going to be okay. Chaos is what we see when we can’t see the full picture. There is always something that will work its way out. Just be patient, and this too shall pass (A favorite mantra of my Grandpa Dan. I miss you.).

Be patient with yourself. Learning takes time, growing takes time, changes worth making take time. Being impatient with yourself will only get you frustrated and make it harder to do what you are fully capable of. Just give yourself time.

Take risks. To live you must grow; to grow you need risk.

Most of what we stress about is imaginary. Those what if questions that plague your mind are distracting you from the question you need to be asking. Rather than what if, ask what is.

Nobody starts off on top. All of the great men and women in the world had to prove themselves to someone. Every single one of them had to learn how to do what they did with an extreme excellence. That started with the beginner steps. There is nothing shameful about starting off not knowing what you are doing. Everybody starts that way.

This world is beautiful. From the man made structures that took such ingenuity to the majesty of nature herself, the precision and mystery behind existence itself makes the world an incredible place to live in.

Adapted from Goodlife Zen.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Etsy Lovin' and Cold House Remedies

We all love Etsy. That much is undeniable. But I never knew how much Re-Nest loves Etsy! They have some great recommendations for Etsy finds. To add to the list, here are some of my favorite shops:

{decor & design}
Paloma's Nest
Carly Bodnar
Dude and Chick

souvenir souvenir
lisa zain
Reby C Vintage

House of Mouse
Berkeley Illustration
Kristiana Parn

{fabric & clothing)
Reby C
Rainbow Fabrics
Eye Heart Fabric
Mod Fabric
Fabric Place
Down Shadow Lane
On The Inside

Our house is old, I tell you, OLD!! That means it's freezing. I'll be making plenty of these door snakes this year to use up some scraps, have a little sewing therapy, and keep us a little bit warmer this winter. Here are some other great, practical (albeit somewhat obvious) ideas to save energy during the colder months. Please, Seattle, be merciful. Here's how to make them!

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

What do I care about, anyway?

Being as this blog is mostly for me to remember things throughout my busy day, here's a photo of a mantel that I could love to copy. It looks just like ours but definitely more hip:

Bless you, Design*Sponge! While I'm at it, I have been on a delightfully long-term reading kick obsessed with food, where it comes from, and how we as responsible humans should eat. My favorites so far have been by Michael Pollan and Barbara Kingsolver. See my reading list in the margin!

This was a great article over at Apartment Therapy about all of those confusing food labels and which ones we really should care about. One of my goals next spring is to find an affordable Seattle CSA to belong to. I am excited at the prospect of cooking with a box of fresh, local fruits and veggies. We have gotten so used to the convenience of Trader Joe's frozen foods section and I know how important it is to value and respect the food that's on our table. It's important to me, at least. Any ideas on Seattle local food resources? I'll keep up the research. Now that school has started, I need good things to procrastinate with.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Love... just love.

I love this house. I just love it. I just... it's... great... it's... beautiful... just... look!
Thank you, Apartment Therapy, for the daily inspiration.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Decor Lust

I'm lusting over this Chicago house today. I'm feeling a bit down about my fixer-upper rental right now... I've never had to deal with a difficult rental situation before (I know, lucky). I'm going to paint the walls and was looking for some inspiration when I stumbled upon this beautiful post over at Darling Dexter referring back to another great post on Cookie Magazine. Feast your eyes on this simple, bright, beauty!

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Food for Thought

While I don't identify myself as a religious person, I like to think that I am a grateful person. I've been reading a lot of Michael Pollan lately and thinking a lot about the foods I eat and how they're affecting my health, my happiness, my world, my city, my neighborhood. I grew up saying grace before dinner but have lost that tradition over time. Pollan quotes Wendell Berry as inspiration for "eat[ing] more deliberately":
Eating with the fullest pleasure - pleasure, that is, that does not depend on ignorance - is perhaps the profoundest enactment of our connection with the world. In this pleasure we experience and celebrate our dependence and our gratitude, for we are living from mystery, from creatures we did not make and powers we cannot comprehend.

Monday, September 14, 2009


I am always excited to get a new issue of Real Simple in the mail. I get so excited at the prospect of learning some clever ways to repurpose old things and discovering some new and easy recipes. The recipes have been pretty good for the most part, but I'm always a little careful trying new things. This month, we tried the ravioli with apples and walnuts and it was fantastic. I added a little grilled chicken from Trader Joe's and it was a delicious, filling, early-fall meal! Enjoy!


  • 1 pound cheese ravioli (fresh or frozen)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 cup walnuts, roughly chopped
  • 1 crisp apple (such as Braeburn or Gala), cut into matchsticks
  • 1/2 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley, chopped
  • kosher salt and black pepper
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan (1 ounce)


  1. Cook the ravioli according to the package directions.
  2. Meanwhile, heat the oil in a medium skillet over medium heat. Add the walnuts and cook, stirring often, until lightly toasted and fragrant, 4 to 5 minutes.
  3. Add the apple, parsley, 1⁄2 teaspoon salt, and 1⁄4 teaspoon pepper and toss to combine. Spoon over the ravioli and sprinkle with the Parmesan.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Moving In...

Our move has been proving much more difficult than we originally thought. We've already learned a lot... renting in this market depends not only on a keen eye for Craigslist, but on dumb luck as well. When something looks even remotely appealing, you have to POUNCE! So, we pounced... and we ended up with a lot more work than we had anticipated. It's been a tough week or so and I'm giving myself a little recoup time on the couch. One highlight so far is that the kitties have a lot more room to run around and many more windows to watch the other animals in the neighborhood. We were worried that Ham may never feel comfortable again after we stuffed him into a kennel, but yesterday he returned to his favorite, trusting, comfy position. Maybe everything will be okay after all.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Roll Out The Welcome Mat

In honor of our new home (well, new to us...) this post is devoted to one of the first pieces of decor your visitors will see: the doormat. Below, a few of my favorites and where to find them.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Sample Sales & The Saga of the Mysterious Bump in the Quilt

Brilliant idea over at Design*Sponge this morning as a part of Kelly Moseley's Sneak Peak. For an inexpensive and beautiful design touch in a room, order wallpaper samples to frame. Graham & Brown offers so many beautiful and contemporary designs in 8 x 10 samples for $2 each! Many of the prints come in various color combinations and can be hung in tandem for an artistic touch without committing to paper an entire room. This is such a great idea for rentals, too. I've already spent way too much time on the Graham & Brown site, but plan to spend much more perusing their beautiful designs. Now to choose patterns for my place! Too much fun.

{photo credit from}

And now for storytime with perdue:trouvé ...

The Saga of the Mysterious Bump in the Quilt

One day, I laid my quilt out on the bed to begin the basting process...

Then, a mysterious bump appeared!

Hamlet was alarmed when he noticed the mysterious bump.

And so he decided to investigate... and what did he find?!

He found a sneaky Cicero!


{and now you've seen the quilt I've been working on ALL SUMMER inspired by the gorgeous quilt shown on Film In the Fridge}

P.S. My computer is cured! I went a little bit picture-crazy...

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Rental Therapy

There's a great article on Aparment Therapy on customizing your rental. Being as the hubby and I will be renting for quite awhile, this was a handy little article. Most of the advice consisted of things I have heard of or attempted before, but the pictures really show how you can get creative with a rental property. I'm loving all of the color and art in the kitchen. I'll definitely have to consult this post again after our big move!

Friday, August 14, 2009

So Fresh and So Clean, Clean!

We're moving into a new (new to us, at least) home at the end of this month. I have high hopes for our new dwelling place! I've been hooked on numerous design blogs now for quite awhile and have been drooling over the beautiful homes of the folks that post on Design*Sponge and Apartment Therapy. There are fantastic ideas on those blogs that I dream of recreating from inexpensive materials salvaged from thrift stores around my city. I have these moments of design epiphany that last only a few precious moments and then fade away into inspiration obscurity. This is why I've created this blog! My memory is horrible, but online is forever. Thank you, internet. Here are some vows I have made to myself for our upcoming move:

1. Petrochemicals in household cleaners are not safe and not renewable. Make your own cleaners from inexpensive and safe ingredients at home. Design*Sponge has some great advice!

2. Hit up the local Goodwill. When I find a project or idea that strikes my fancy, don't head straight to Target or Ikea. The Goodwill is closer to my new house, much cheaper than buying new, and more earth-friendly. Remember.

3. Buy in bulk. I love the smell of the spice rack at my local grocery. Find some empty baby food jars and store spices in bulk. Make creative labels and decorate the lids.

4. Look at clothes that inspire me in a new light. I am currently immersed in a love affair with my sewing machine. I hope that this is a relationship that lasts a long, long time. I can get creative with second hand clothing and add a ruffle here or a pleat there to make the old new and unique.

5. My home is MINE (and my husbands' and my cats'). Don't be afraid to infuse the different personalities of our household into our decor. Design blogs are inspiring and beautiful, but I need to remain true to my crazy self. I need to keep this in mind but also... KEEP IT SIMPLE, SWEETIE!! My hoarding days need to come to an end.

Okay, that's enough to work on for now! These will be nice reminders for me every time I log in (I hope). I've finished day 1, week 2 of my Couch to 5k running plan. Week 2 is harder but I'm feeling more excited about running than I have before. This is a good thing! Couch to 5k can also become my Learn to Love Running (After a Lifetime of Hating It) plan.

I also made some killer zucchini bread this week. I'll have to post pictures when my computer is back from the Mac-ER.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Getting Ready

I just finished my first week of the Couch to 5k workout plan. I'm feeling good and proud of myself for sticking with something for a week... that's a big deal for someone who is a horrible procrastinator. I'll think of just about anything to get out of running. I'm working out with Robert Ullrey's podcast and I'm really liking my nice "coach." I think I'll try Podrunner next week to see which I like better. I'm so tied to the beat of the music while I workout that I get distracted if my feet and the beat don't match. We'll see if Podrunner matches a little better than Ullrey's. I'll miss the kind words of encouragement, but it might be worth it. My computer is still at the Mac doctor receiving a brand new harddrive, so my pictures are gone for now. Until then, here's a nice stock photo of one of my very favorite places in Seattle where I go running:

In the words of a friend, I can't wait until I become a "runner" without the quotation marks. I can do it. I hope I can get hooked before the rain comes...

Thursday, August 6, 2009


LIFE: I just completed my first day of the Couch to 5k. Piece of cake! There were gazelle-like runners bounding around me but I kept on track. I'm following a plan now! I do so much better with a coach... especially one that I can pause on my iPod! Go, me!

KITTIES: Best cat discovery ever = Feline Pine kitty litter. I cleaned the poo-barn yesterday and had no ammonia smell ruining my nostrils and making me gasp for fresh air. The pine somehow makes the barn smell much better despite the nastiness contained inside. The pine is natural and we are no longer contributing to clay mining from our environmentally-unfriendly clay cat litter.

CRAFTS: I finished my first quilt top! Unfortunately, my iMac got very sick and I had to take it to the MacStore for some computer care. I'm not going to torture my husband with my quilt pictures all over his computer, so I'll have to wait until my computer comes back to post some pictures of my string quilt. It was so much fun to create and I love paper-piecing! I ordered my backing from Contemporary Cloth and am excited to get another fabric package in the mail. There's nothin' like snail mail "surprises"!

...also, I am terrible at sewing jersey. So far the score is:
jersey dress : 1, me : 0. Sad day, but I will be victorious! I think I'll try making some jersey undies. How can that go wrong?!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

DIY Dumpster Ideas

Small rant: Searching for decent rental homes in Seattle is hard. Done.

NOW! On to a dumpster find on the UW campus today. When I finally find that perfect Seattle home, remind me to go to IKEA and purchase some large-print home decor fabric to stretch over a canvas. There were two canvasses next to a dumpster that had this awesome, huge 70's looking print stretched over them. They looked like they needed a little bit of love and I'm too lazy to give them that right now. If you're interested and in the Seattle area oh, right about NOW, go down to the dumpsters outside of the Communications Building and snag yourself some free swag. So, it's not the greenest decision of my life, but I'll make some to my own specs! Sounds like a plan... these fabrics would look great:

In my dream Etsy store, I've decided I'll have to create and market these rag quilts. They look so quick and fun! I'm going through a love affair with pretty fabrics. It's dangerous on a grad student's budget!

Sunday, June 14, 2009


And so it begins. Yesterday, I spent way too much money on fabric and patterns that I don't know how to assemble. It's all very pie-in-the-sky. It's so tough for me to say no to such pretty things... I'm being pulled back to summers of my childhood when I would make "brew" out of flour, water, and molasses and call it my craft project. I made an angel food cake one time for my neighbor's birthday. I decorated my back yard and bought party favors. I was eight years old. I think I was born to be crafty. It's too bad I'm such an impatient person. Maybe my quilting and sewing will help me work on that. Today, I embark upon an adventure with a new Cynthia Rowley pattern. I've gone so far as to cut out the pattern pieces so far. What I've already learned about sewing:

1. I hate ironing.
2. I hate cutting out flimsy tissue paper patterns.
3. I love how it feels to create a quilt block, even after finding out that the online tutorial I was trying to follow is less than stellar.

That means I'm already improving, right? Baby steps, Bill Murray, baby steps.

UPDATE: Here's my finished product! My first sewing project is complete and I'm pretty pleased with the result.