things I love today


a happy jumble of interesting things

And that's all for now. Coming soon: pictures from our super-fabulous memorial day picnic and maybe, if you're lucky, my current reading list.


yard sake sale shopping for fun, and, well, fun

New curtains, more books, blue pyrex, and the piece de resistance: an icre dream maker. For $5. That is currently whirring away in the kitchen, full of chocolate ice cream.
new curtains

blue pyrex

hooray! an ice cream maker!

and, as always, more books.


attack of the sequinned strawberry

I look like peter pan (alternate title: craaaaazy eyes)
By the way, don't you think "sequinned strawberry" sounds the subject of some particularly obscure manga?
So, I told my sisters yesterday that I was wearing a GIANT STRAWBERRY on my chest, and not just any strawberry, but a SEQUINNED one, and they immediately threatened to disown me. I think that what with all this old-lady cruisewear I've been sporting, I should look for a spot as a spokesperson.
::interject: I can see my husband through the office window, hanging up laundry while shirtless, tanned, and wearing the cap that's required for highlights. The strings are dangling on his chest in a most charming manner. ::
So anyway, I had to post a picture of my sequinned attire.
strawberry tank: thrifted
white tee: gap
skinny jeans: H&M
black belt: express
green flats: payless (!!!)

I'm standing on the porch railing as a storm blows in, trying to look cute! And manga-esqe! and pixieish!

self portrait with wall

self-portrait of the two of us


I think I might have a slight addiction to vintage purses


And that's not all of them. (Please note that I'm also posting this photo as a sort of time capsule: at one point in time, my bedroom was not a mess. Truly it is momentous.)

I'm tired today. I've been pushing myself all week, trying to finish up school pictures for a local homeschool group. Last night we had a family photo shoot (pictures soon, I hope!) and then we had grocery shopping to do in preparation for the weekend, and then I decided that I needed to clean more of the house. So, yeah. My brain is fuzzy right now.

But the girls are coming this weekend, so we're going yardsaling, (yard saleing?) and I promise to take pictures. Until then!


just my luck

The week that I decide "really must get rid of this tummy; no more sugar for a while" is the week that outof5 decides to post a dessert-themed mix. Ah, cruel fate. Should I take this as a sign that fat tummies are in?
(Oh, and did I mention that, based on the reccommendations of others, I'm currently reading this cookbook and it's made me want to find an ice cream maker when I go yardsaleing this weekend? Truly I'm not the brightest crayon in the bunch.)
Image courtesy outof5

debating the point

debatable So I can't decide if these sandals give the whole look a cool, funky, D&G bondage-esqe vibe, or if they make me look like an older lady in cruisewear, lacking only souvenier jewelry and large sunglasses to complete the ensemble. Opinions? I did wear this today, though, because even if I do look like a cruise queen, it's not a vibe I channel very often, so I might as well try it once in a while, right? Different is good. Please excuse the wet hair and lack of makeup/accessories; I had to snag husband to take the picture before he left, which was only minutes after I got out of the shower.
I'd like to add that my right sandal broke pretty much the minute I arrived at work, so as I type this it's sitting on the floor waiting for the superglue to dry that will hopefully keep it in place. I almost wish that it would break again, though, so I can wear mismatched shoes for the rest of the day and when people ask whyI'll tell them, "I'm starting a trend, because there are so many great shoes in the world there's no way I'll make it though them all if I stick with wearing one pair at a time."
vintage yellow linen dress/tunic-y thing: thrifted
black capris: thrifted
black sandals: thrifted


coolness, and a question

And now for the question: does anyone have a brilliant way of wrapping and pinning sweaters without snagging them? I love the look, and usually secure the sweater with a safety pin before adding the decorative pin on top, but inevitably I get snags. So sad. Any suggestions?


when we get bored we take pictures

Almost a month ago I dragged my sister-in-law and her best friend out for a photoshoot. We raided my closet for clothes, which is fine on E, but not so great on A, since she's 4 inches shorter and a good 2 sizes smaller. Which is why she ended up in the pink boots; they are the ONLY shoes of mine that would stay on her feet.

standing on the tracks

vintage bench


sparking creativity

quick fashiony stuff

suddenly I want to wear hats
clothes for $10 There are a couple of cute dresses on there, and a cabled Ralph Lauren sweater that might work on Porkchop.
Suzie at Style Bubble does some wardrobe refashioning, with fabulous results, as usual. (Don't you love the way she does her pictures?)

I should be working on school pictures. I'll get back to that.


thrifting is fun!

some of my treasures from Monday's trip.

I love this poster. It just rocks.
endless summer

Fabrics, l-r: old sheet. The pattern only runs across the end, so I think I'll turn it into a dress with the pattern going around the bottom of the skirt. Green and yellow vintage synthetic of some sort. Very stiff and almost taffeta-y. Orange and green bedspread. It's a loosely woven cotton fabric, homemade, so it's not lined. I'll have plenty of fabric to make cool things out of.

in leiu of actual creativity

hopefully I'll get some pictures up tonight. If not, it's probably because I'm off to the movies with le husband. Which I'm sure you'll agree is way more important than posting.


graduation gift guide, sort of

That time of year is fast approaching, when "Pomp and Circumstance" rings out and the skies are filled with swirling tassels. This year we've three graduates that we'll be expected to celebrate, and so I'm trying to think of meaningful gifts.
Yes, I know every graduate appreciates (read "wants") money. However, I hate giving money (or giftcards) as a gift. They seem so impersonal, however practical. And, while I'm not going to give"Chicken Soup for the Graduate's Soul" or something that will be left sitting on the shelf until the day that it ends in a garage sale, I do like to give books. Specifically, two of my favorite books of all time.

$8.76 from amazon.com
I have to say that this biography of Jim Elliot, covering all of his life but especially focusing on his spiritual development during his college years, is the single most important book I've ever read. His complete spiritual abandon never ceases to amaze me, wether or not I agree with some of his doctrine.

$9.56 from Amazon.com

Love. This. Book. I read and reread it, and it never fails to provide new insight into the human condition and how we deceive ourselves.

But enough books. On to other things. Like notecards! I'm seriously considering getting sets of these made for each of the people who I did senior photos for this year.

$20 for 16

Notecards are always a good option, because they're going to need to write thank-you notes.

And I'm going to come back to this later, because there is some work I should do. What do you like to give graduates, and why?

almost makes rain fun

Don't you want one, too?

good stuff that's worth sharing

hair today, gone tomorrow

Please excuse the awful pun; I couldn't resist.
The picture on the left was taken on Sunday; I'm with my mummy. The one on the right was taken this morning by propping the camera on top of the fridge, which explains the fuzziness. So sorry! So, yeah. You get to see the hair.
DSC_0179 DSC_0009


a rundown of things that are cool

covet. Only the perfect swimsuit, that's what. (As sold by the legendary Esther Williams, no less!)
really helpful, practical rundown of who owns what in the beauty industry
at least 50 ways to use fabric scraps
words directed toward those who want to start a handbag business, but helpful for anyone who wants to start a handcrafting endeavor
I love the use of artwork in these rooms.
seriously adorable: a mug tree
I'm totally subscribing: a blog about cupcakes. Talk about inspiration! And if that's not enough to make you hungry, check out the cake girls. Yummmmmm.
super-smart decorating resolutions. I'm especially trying to practice numbers 2 and 3.
And I'll stop now.

my last batch of pictures from the weekend

I promise.

The place my mum lives isn't exactly a commune, but there is a lot of shared space and several different people renting bits here and there. These are two of the inhabitants, and we were convinced that the guy on the left looks like chuck norris, so much so that we called him that all weekend, to his dismay. Hah!
seriously, doesn't the guy on the left look like chuck norris?

The house is filled with lovely little corners and nooks.
a lovely corner

Random people sitting on a bench as we came out of the farmer's market. I love the way they're engrossed in their own little world.
random people

Another random corner (left) and a ukelele lesson. My mother has acquired two of the noisy little creatures, and despite our lack of knowledge, enthusiastic strumming was known to break out at any moment, accompanied by warbling, preferably off-key.
another corner dueling ukeleles

And this ends my traveling pictures. We shall now return to regularly scheduled programming.


the awesomeness that is my family


darthfredd porkchop



so we cooked lunch for mum in honor of mother's day

we made lunch for mum for mother's day Fluff El Brother-o set the table in a most impressive manner, complete with nicely folded napkins and picking of wildflowers for the centerpiece. (See, these are the benefits of having lots of sisters: one day, he will know how to woo fair maidens with his ways.) While he worked on this task, Porkchop and I made lunch. (Barbie was in the back room teaching mum how to organize the bookmarks on her computer.) While at the farmer's market that morning, we had picked up fresh greens and baby swiss chard, and the chard fell to me. I'd never cooked it before, but I decided to braise it in a little olive oil with diced onion and lemon juice. The lemon contrasted nicely with the earthiness of the chard. When it was done, I tossed it with linguini and grated parmesan on top.
Porkchop made the salad, and it contained pretty much every yummy thing known to mankind, including steamed green beans, mushroom, avacados, strawberries, and lovely homemade balsamic vinagrette. This is what it all looked like, not terribly beautiful but VERY tasty:
mother's day luncheon

Then for dessert we had coconut sorbet with sliced strawberries and fresh pineapple. YUM.

there are some things I come by honestly

Including my ability to acquire a fabric stash. My mum found these feedsacks at a thrift store; she gave me the one second from the bottom, and offered more, but I just couldn't take them.

vintage feedsacks

This little guy sits on the closet shelf and looks charming; I think he's adorable.

sock monkey


really fast

(since I'm stuck waiting for my iPod to reload everything after having to reformat it this morning. Evil troll of a beast. I reallyreally want to listen to "The Age of Innocence" on the drive, so I'm WAITING. And I wanted to be AT the rental car place ELEVEN MINUTES AGO.) Anyway, I just picked up this link of Audrey Hepburn looks. Talk about inspiration!


I'm going on an adventure!

I'm traveling out to visit with my lovely mother (and sisters!) for Mother's Day. So tomorrow I'll be on the road, listening to "Vanity Fair" on the iPod and ticking off the miles until I see my family. Hopefully I'll return with plenty of pictures and exciting tales. Until then, toodle-oo!

PS: I have a hair appointment on Tuesday. If I don't chicken out it's all coming off. Woot!


warm weather makes me feel alive

It's over eighty today, and that makes me happy. I'm luxuriating in the warmth at every possible turn, letting it wash around me like golden syrup. For some reason, warm weather also makes me want to cook. I'm not sure why that is--most people like to turn off the stove when the temperature rises, but not me. The heat makes me want to eat great quantities of real food--a vast departure from my winter diet of ramen with tofu (no, seriously). I want tomato sauce with fresh basil and green beans with balsamic vinagrette. For now, though, I'm fulfilling those urges by using up the contents of the freezer in anticipation of the day when we'll have to move.
We're having friends over for dessert and coffee Friday night, and I was planning on making a cheesecake, but now I'm rethinking. Wouldn't a coffee granita be cool and refreshing? Or maybe a dish of coconut sorbet with strawberries sliced on top and a spritz of lime.
Ah, the delicious possibilities.

shoe envy

I was flipping through this months GQ magazine (work-related, really!) and I ran across these shoes:

So I stopped and drooled, and then I found them online. They're exactly what I've been looking for to put on the long, skinny toes of my husband. Imagine them with narrow flat-front khakis and a fitted polo: totally hot. Especially on my man who is, I think, a certified hottie. But then, I'm a little prejudiced and now I sound like one of those gushing wives. Ahem, back to the shoes. The price isn't horrid, but I'm hoping to find a better deal. Maybe ebay.


the great hair debate

I'm once again getting bored with my hair (it happens about every three months) but this time I want to do something really drastic with it, and am debating chopping it all off, ala Audrey Hepburn in Roman Holiday and Sabrina. Witness the loveliness:

However, I am posessed of neither the swanlike neck or wondering eyes of Madame Hepburn, so I wasn't entirely convinced I could pull it off. Until my darling sisters, who are wonderful about talking me into doing wild and crazy things, presented this photo:

Similar facial shape? Check. Very short, modern-looking hair? Check. Still looks feminine? Double-check.

So now the question lies with you, dear readers. Should I boldly whack off the long locks that I've had for most of my life, or should I choose some other way of exorcising my boredom? Please feel free to share.

Side note: This photo has nothing to do with anything, other than the fact that it is simply faaaaaabulous. I want to be able to pull off a turban!

in case your kitchen is lacking in personality

For quirky, funny, but still food-related art, check out the Illinois cafepress store. They've amassed some pretty interesting artwork.