June 28, 2011

Seeing Red

Over the weekend I was able to get out and enjoy the sunshine.  I spent the majority of my days off refurbishing a desk I just picked up from a friend that was moving.  I've been wanting a desk to use as a sewing station. I preferred to get a used one so I could paint it to match the rest of the room. So on Sunday I pushed the desk outside and sanded it down and then painted it.  I also bought new hardware to update the look of the desk. 

The desk before I painted it

I used Behr paint with primer.  The color is called High Drama and is the same red I painted Charlotte's dog bed.

Close up of new hardware.  Its simple but very elegant.

After the paint dried I used a flower pattern and traced it onto the top of the desk and then filled the design in with black.  I wanted to add a touch of nature to the desk but keep it very simple.

Design detail

After everything was dry I was planning on sealing the whole desk with a clear polyurethane to keep it shiny and durable, but it started raining before I had a chance too.  So the next nice weekend I will finish sealing the desk.  I also plan to paint my dresser the same color and design as the desk.  They are in the same room and I think it would look more put together if they looked like a set.

The desk and dresser are part of my new designs to pull together the whole look of my bedroom/craft area.  I am almost finished with organizing/decorating my room and then I will share photos of the whole project.

June 21, 2011

Beach Babe

On the way to the coast

Monday, a few of us girls had the day off from work and the weather was finally starting to feel like summer so we took Charlotte to the beach for her first time.  The four of us headed to Newport for the day.  We walked along the bay front, watched the sea lions, ate some lunch and then went to South Beach to catch some rays.  Charlotte had a great time the whole day.  She made lots of friends along the boardwalk.  We even went to a pet store and bought her a new toy for the beach.

Eating lunch before hitting the beach

Charlotte and Brandy

Charlotte loved the sand.  As soon as we put our bags and blanket down she started rolling all over the sand and our purses.

Charlotte made a Jack Russell friend named Oscar.  He looks sad here because his family was in the water but he didn't like it so he waited for them safely on the beach. 

Charlotte with her new sand toy from Bow Wow Meow in Newport. 

She was covered in sand everywhere!

Running away from the waves

Girls at the beach

Even Mannheim came with us to the beach.  He was hoping to see some Dune Gnomes but alas they did not show up that day.

Igor our falcon kite

We buried Mannheim in the sand.  He didn't mind.  He enjoyed catching some rays between cloud breaks.

Charlotte and Mannheim on the drive home.  She was so exhausted on the way home.  Running in the sand really wore her out.

June 15, 2011

Blooming Beauties

June has been a rainy month so far but the flowers are starting to bloom everywhere.  My garden is full of beautiful colors and smells from many different blooms.  Here are a few photos of what is already out for this season.
 Purple Russell's blend lupine.  I planted this from seed last year.  It looks so pretty I decided to plant more on the backside of the yard this year.

 Orange iris from Schmidt's.  The color is much deeper in person.  It also smells like fruity pebbles. Mmmm.

 Charlotte running with a rose blossom. 

 Inside of a foxglove

 Starship Enterprise Iris. Also from Schmidt's.

 Pink salvia.  These I took home from the store after they were done blooming and nobody wanted them. They were very sad looking plants last summer. Now as you can see they are in full bloom.

 Pink peony blossom.  Another plant I rescued from the store after it was done blooming.  It only has two blooms on it this year.  They are such a rich color, it will be beautiful when its fully open.

 Purple iris, these are growing all over the yard.  Some are four feet high, some are only 2.  I like these iris even after they are done blooming because they have tall grass like foliage.

 White iris.  These I didn't know were in the yard until this spring.  They haven't bloomed the last two years.

 Mimulus, an annual I planted in an old firebox.

 Fuchsia.  I have seen a female Anna's hummingbird stop by a few times to visit this plant.

Cape fuchsias are about to bloom.  Like a fuchsia this attracts hummingbirds but it can be planted in full sun.

June 14, 2011

Recipe: Strawberry Rhubarb Cobbler

Its time to pick rhubarb and make some tasty dishes with its bright red stalks.  I came across this recipe for Rhubarb cobbler on allrecipes.com.  It turned out quite delicious for my first go at baking a rhubarb dessert.  I also added strawberries to my version.  I thought it was extra sweet this way. 


  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 cup orange juice (I used pineapple mango juice)
  • 4 cups sliced fresh or frozen rhubarb
  • (I added 1 cup sliced strawberries )
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/4 cup quick-cooking oats
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon


In a saucepan, combine sugar and cornstarch. Gradually stir in water and orange juice. Cook and stir until thickened and clear. Add rhubarb and bring to a boil. Remove from the heat. Pour into a 2-qt. baking dish. For dumplings, combine flours, oats, baking powder and salt in a bowl. Combine milk and oil; add to flour mixture, stirring lightly until blended. Spoon over rhubarb. Combine topping ingredients; sprinkle over dumplings. Bake at 425 degrees F for 40 minutes. 



 I had enough rhubarb to make 2 1/2 full sized cobblers so I made extra for the Schmidts crew and for another friend. Everyone that tried it has loved it so far (unless they were just afraid to hurt my feelings)!  I thought it was the perfect dessert to start off the summer.  The only part of the recipe I would change would be to make a second batch of the dumplings for the top.  I feel like most recipes skimp on the crust or the shell, in this case it was the dumplings, so I would have made more to fill in the top a little better.  I also would add some ice cream or whip cream to compliment the dish.  I would definitely recommend making this dessert if you have any rhubarb on hand.

June 09, 2011

Its Raining Babies!

Hand made baby blanket filled with hand made baby clothes and accessories

 This summer is starting off with lots of showers, baby showers that is.  My boyfriend's little sister is expecting her first baby any day now.  She could be having it tonight for all we know.  We're all very excited for her and I wanted to make a handmade present for the newest family member.  The last two weeks I've been working hard putting my baby shower present together and haven't had much time for blogging.  All the energy and time was worth it.  I'm excited to show everyone what I've been working on.  Luisa, if you are reading this STOP NOW and advert your eyes.  No peeking, you will see your present soon enough.

Sock Monkey Blanket with Sun hat and Booties
  I have a thing for sock monkey fabric.  Its soooo cute.  I've created more projects just so I have an excuse to buy all the different colors and patterns it comes in.  For baby Gabriel I used the soft blue design with a coordinating backside.  This was the inspiration for the rest of the baby clothes.  I wanted to create a few sets of outfits that Luisa could mix and match.  The baby hat and booties above can be worn with both outfits I made.

Jungle Outfit
  First I made really cute jungle print pants with a semi-formal tie onsie.  The tie pattern matches the cuff of the pants. 

 I also made a matching sun "safari" hat with the same fabric as the tie and cuffs.  I added a second pattern to the sun hat and used the leftovers to make making booties with green buttons on the sides.

 Baby's sun hat

 Baby's Booties

 Detail of the back of the pants.  I cut out and hand sewed a little monkey face on the back of the pants.

Dinosaur Outfit
  When I saw this dinosaur fabric I knew I had to make baby pants or pj's out of it.   I used the dino pattern for the pants and then made a stencil of the t-rex in the design and blew it up to make a felted dinosaur on the matching onsie.  I used puff paint to give this little guy an eye and a heart. 

 A close up of the t-rex with a heart filled with baby love.

I then folded the new clothes and added a few more baby items I bought and wrapped it all up inside the sock monkey blanket like a diaper.  If I had the right color of ribbon I would have tied it around the bundle and added the anagram 'G' for baby Gabriel.  This will have to wait for tomorrow when I can go buy some.  After I finish I will update this blog with the final photo of the finished project. 

At the beginning of this post I implied that there were multiple baby showers this summer, and there are.  Next month my boyfriend's oldest brother and his wife are expecting their second child and their first baby girl.  So in a few weeks I will be back to making baby clothes.  I'm really excited to make some little girl clothes and hair accessories.  Frank, the father to be is also a Beaver fan so I will be sure to add an Oregon State outfit in the mix.
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