Being Lazy

I will be back in a little while. We have had a couple of health issues that have thrown our lives up side down. All is well now and we are going to be back on schedule! xo, L

2009 Resolutions:

*Take more time to stop and smell the roses.
*Explore more of my beautiful city: Spontaneous adventures!
*Spend more time with family and friends.
*Take more photographs (use the old manual camera more).
*Buy only what I absolutely love.
*Expand Paper Treasure... take the fashion world by storm!

**Thanks for all of your love and support this year!**

Holiday Hangover

We had a lovely holiday. We just hung around in our PJs and took things slowly with no pressures. We did that for the most part but then we hooked up with our friends, Karen, Neal and Emily for an impromptu dinner and a fun night of conversation and Wii. Just to be able to relax with my boys and the freedom of going wherever and whenever or nowhere for a few days is such a great feeling.

We played a lot of Monopoly and Pipeline. The boys built a lot of Lego and I discovered that reading the Lego manuals is not one of my talents. In the end though,the fun of piecing the Indiana Jones, Batman, and Star Wars sets were worth the effort.

I did some baking and the cookies came out surprisingly good. I'm not much of a baker because I'm not that good at following instructions. The cookies were yummy and the recipe came from here courtesy of Ree at The Pioneer Woman.

I'm also having fun with digital scrapbooking. You have to go here for a great giveaway. Rhonna's stuff is to die for. Though I'm not normally a frilly or ultra-feminine type when it comes to design, I do love her designs. Check it out! Good luck!

Holiday Postcards

The holiday promo cards are in the mail! If I missed you, please shoot me an email or a text - NO, just kidding on the text, I do NOT have text messaging on my cell phone. Text messaging is the theme of this year's holiday card. Texting has become a common form of communication... especially for kids!
This year's card illustrates how technically savvy today's
kids are ... why, even Santa can't surprise them on Christmas Eve.!
At the first sight of St. Nick, a text is sent ...

Wishing all my blog friends a Happy Holiday and Best Wishes to all for 2009!
PS -I've had a LOT of trouble with people taking art off the blog and using it on their sites. Please respect the © Thanks!

Here Birdie, Birdie Bulletin

I made this bulletin board for my book The Modern Crafter - Home Stuff. I'll give you some tips for making your own using the Here, Birdie, Birdie bird from my free tote design. I've reduced the image to fit the block. You can find the template here.

First, you need to buy a 16" x 20" framed canvas [back of the frame shown below] from any crafts store. Glue a 16" x 20" piece of cork to the front of this framed canvas and let it dry. 

This is where all of your leftover batting will come in handy. Wrap a 18" x 22" piece of batting around and staple to the back of the frame.  Trim excess batting from the corners.

Sew the quilt top as per the directions in the pattern and center on the front of the board. Pull fabric to the back and staple. For a nice finish, staple a 16" x 20" piece of cardstock to the back of the frame.
xo, L

Here Birdie, Birdie

In the spirit of my obsession with this little birdie who graces my tree, I'll have a couple of really easy projects for those of you who are just dying to make something handmade but are crunched for time. Come back tonight. Here's a sneak peek:

You'll be able to whip up this cute bulletin board in 1-2 hours. Come back for some fun. xo, L

Last Minute Holiday Shopping Events!

Dear Portland,

If you are brave enough to bare this crazy storm.....

I will be at The Jam tomorrow, Sunday, December 21st from 5-9. I will be
selling jewelry and drinking delicious Mango Margaritas and eating
snacks. (2239 SE Hawthorne)


My jewelry will be at Olio United's Cheer & Beer last minute holiday
shopping event on Tuesday, December 23rd from 5-9. They've got beer and
awesome present ideas. (1028 SE Water Ave)

Stay warm!!

Gift Certificates Now Available

New in the shop in the amount of your choice (with a $25 minimum). The Perfect last minute Holiday Gift as they can be emailed as well as mailed the old fashioned way. Plus the certificate is handmade with love, by moi!

Naughty or Nice?

Are you naughty ...or nice?

Today's Craft Idea

Sorry about the photos. We are about to have a big storm and the lighting in this place is terrible this morning. Plus, Blogger will not load my photos. Anyway, I think that you get the idea. I have the templates posted here. I cut out two 15 1/2" squares from the red felt and fused the white felt letters to each side. Then I stitched a zigzag stitched around the letters. I sewed the pillow front and back to each other and stuffed the pillow with fiberfill. Then I hand-stitched the opening closed. I made 4 pompoms and sewed them to the corners after I stuffed the pillow. So cute!

I wanted to show you some more Philadelphia. We happened upon this vintage shop called Retrospect on South Street. I loved how they grouped the items together by color. 

I adore window boxes and row homes. There are lots of these lovely places in Philadelphia.

I loved this mural painted on the firestation wall.
I hope that you enjoyed this little tour of Philadelphia! xo, L

Aren't We Clever?

Today's Crafty Idea

I volunteered to make some decorations for our school library and as I was thinking about it all, I was told that the fire inspector is making the school take down the drapes. Oh no! I had grand plans to decorate with fabric.

I've seen a lot of retail establishments decorate with yarn balls lately and when I was in Philly, there was a pretty wreath hanging on the Starbuck's door. So, I ran down to Michael's to get some inspiration and supplies. My friend, Joanne, and I made these simple but adorable wreaths. [Thanks for your help!] Aren't they cute? They're easy to make too.

First, you wrap some 2 1/2" styrofoam balls with yarn. You don't need a lot. Just wrap it so that you don't see the white parts. Make sure that you rotate the ball around and start winding the yarn in different directions along the way or else you will get huge lumpy ends.

Glue the ornaments and yarn balls onto this cardboard floral ring. We alternated the ornaments with the yarn balls. You will need 6 each of the yarn balls and the ornaments. Let dry and then hang the wreath with a ribbon. Tune in again for another quick idea.

Here's some more Philadelphia. As we were walking along South Street, we kept seeing ceramic mosaics on walls of buildings along the way. At the end of the displays, it was like discovering the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. The Magic Garden is so wonderful.

Here's Jess outside the place. It is like a garden mosaic that takes up a little lot of land.

We didn't have enough time to enter the place but you can take a peek through the gates. There's a lovely path that takes you through the garden.

This is the view of the garden from across the street. You'd enter at the doorway shown at the bottom left of the photo.

See you soon. xo, L

HHDD #24: Pesto! The Round Up!

I know we are all in the middle of one sort of a rush or another. The holidays are coming up (or here already for some of us), year end reports and performance reviews are shaking a stick at us, and we are each trying to get as much done before 2008 finally draws to a close (and before the Big Holiday Dinner is upon us oh my!). I leave for the southern shores of this archipelago on tomorrow and, as you can imagine, I am trying to get a 101-item to-do list done before I go. But this weekend I carved out a bit of time for me to go over these fantastic pesto recipes you all managed to send my way despite the crazy days! :) Looking at all your gorgeous entries for Hay Hay it's Donna Day: Pesto was wonderfully therapeutic and did much to revive my sagging energy! Thank you to all those you participated!

My former Southeast Asia neighbor, now globe-trotting friend Bordeaux, of Marita Says puts my favorite herb, cilantro, on pesto duty with this Cilantro Pesto! Served on some fish tacos which I think is just the perfect way to have them! :)

Bron of stuck with the basic rough chop pesto recipe I posted and tossed it with some New Jersey Benne Potatoes, and served that with pan-fried Akaroa Salmon and a simple garden salad. Doesn't that sound like a delicious meal? :) Easy to throw together too!

From The Constables' Larder, Giff whips up some Arugula Pesto and uses it to top a delicious Lentil and Ham Soup! I love how brightly green the pesto looks agaist the lentils! And I love arugula! Must try this soon :)

Suzana from Home Gourmets makes a Rough Chop Rocket Pesto...rocket/arugula...I'm such a happy camper here! :) She tops a lovely White Bean Soup with the pesto for a warming dinner on a chilly night!

These pretty little tarts are brought to us by Ilva of the fabulously photographed Lucullian Delights. Check out her Puff Pastry Baskets with Artichoke and Pesto Filling but don't go on an empty stomach! They look and sound absolutely delicious!

Bee of Jugalbandi makes a brilliant Basil and Almond Pesto -- look at that wonderful color! Bee also shares a lot of pesto making tips...I definitely took notes! :) Thanks Bee!

Manali at Cravings shares her Sun Dried Tomato Pesto that looks just mouth-watering on some penne pasta! This is one pesto I have yet to try making...very soon I'm sure as this entry has me craving! ;)

Sarina at the TriniGourmet makes a Blanched Basil, I have never blanched my basil when making pesto but it certainly sounds like an interesting technique! This step is suppose to preserve the color and soften the punch of flavor as well. Thanks for sharing this entry Sarina! :)

Tartasacher of the blog Mil Postres (love the name!) joins this round with a sweet pesto!!! Yay I say! And you thought pesto was only for savories? Well, take a look at this Panna Cotta with Sweet Pesto and Raspberry Sauce and be convinced otherwise!

The lovely Meeta of What's For Lunch Honey? has got me drooling over her Sun Dried Tomato and Purple Basil Pesto -- doesn't it sound so colorful? :) And the perfect light meal amidst all this holiday feasting!

Zaira of La Cocina de Zaira makes some Egg Noodles with Walnut Pesto and Sbrinz Cheese. I love experimenting with different nuts and cheeses in pesto so this has definitely got the wheels in my head turning :)

And here's my original entry...Donna's Rough Chop Basil Pesto! I loved discovering this rustic, no-processor way to make pesto, both for it's ease and for it's robust flavor. Thank you Donna! :)

So there you have it friends! The round up for Hay Hay it's Donna Day: Pesto! Hope you enjoy going over these recipes as much as I did :) Now it's time to vote! Voting begins now and will go on until Tuesday, December 23. Votes can be emailed to eighty_breakfasts(AT)yahoo(DOT)com. I will post the winner after the Christmas holidays!

Now I'm off to Davao (down south...lovely beaches, amazing seafood!) for a wedding! Looking forward to fun times, good food, and some (much-deserved!) R&R :) I'll see you (and your votes) when I get back! :)

Philly Loves Christmas

Ok, back to business. We've got Australian visitors again this year. Reno's cousin, Jessie, and her friend, Alicia, have been here for a few days. Yesterday, I took them to Philadelphia and we had a grand time. We walked and walked and walked! 

I love the old architecture here. The detail in the buildings is awesome. City Hall is gorgeous and I love the detail at the top of the building.

Right outside City Hall, there's a Christmas Market. I love the little booths and I especially love these. I reeeeeeeally wanted this one. Hey, Santa, are you listening?

The window display was oh so pretty. Sigh! There so many of them and it was tough to choose my favorite.

There were some wonderful ornaments. I managed to buy a few little ones for my tree. I'll share them in my next post. Look at these glass ones. 

These wooden ones were adorable. There were trains, toys and teddy bears.

At the next booth, we found these wonderful matroyska dolls. 

The colors are so vibrant and the detail on these were beautiful.

After the market, we walked over to the Liberty Bell. I waited outside and soaked up all of the beauty of the city while the girls were inside. 

Then we took a long walk along South Street. Tune in tomorrow for some interesting stops that we did along the way. On the way back [and it was a long walk], we stopped in at Loop. It is a beautiful and inspiring shop in Philly. Craig is super nice and I did manage to make a purchase. 

Now, don't blame me for helping you spend your money. [I did get Jessie to buy some patterns and fabric.] Right next door is the fabric sister store, Spool.

Wow, it is equally inspiring and so lovely. Check them out. Definitely worth the hike over there.

Here's Laura with a quilt that she was working on.