Value Village Loot!

May 21, 2008 at 4:13 pm | Posted in Thrifty | 1 Comment
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What to do on a day off from work? Head to the local Value Village of course! I was pleasantly surprised to find some lovely linens and a glass jar! YAY! I’ve stopped looking at the clothes because I NEVER find anything worth buying…but on this trip while I was making my way to the “Housewares” section I decided to peruse the “Linens” section. Which I never do. But I am very happy I did because I found this

Thrifty Loot!

tablecloth/runner and then on the end of the aisle I found matching napkins! I was pretty excited! I had originally  thought that maybe I would hack up the tablecloth and turn it into something like a wallet or purse, but now I think I may use it! You can also see my other find in this picture…an aqua glass jar! I have no clue what it is to be used for but I plan on putting it in the bathroom as a pretty decoration! After all this thrifting I didn’t even look for knitting needles OR yarn! I did find a cute crochet afghan and wondered if I could unravel it for yarn, but then passed on it…

I also made a trip to the library. I always head to the new book shelf and on it I found 3 books! One is about healing your back through stretches (I have back problems…my Chiro blames my posture…), another is called “Food and Cooking in Victorian England – A History” (it seems interesting and fulfills my love of food AND history!) and lastly, “Green for Life” (ECO ideas…and quite frightening!!! I am trying to be more green in my life…according to this book I am not doing a very good job!) One thing the book informed me about was a Google sister site www.blackle.com, which is a search engine just like Google, only the background is black which saves energy, it takes alot of power for a white background…I just may make the switch! Those ECO books all make me feel uneasy. You’d think it would be intuitive to humans that using products that are full of chemical crap would be bad…but apparently not. I vow to buy local this summer at the Farmer’s Market in town…or at least the little stand by my house…which I will walk to!

 

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Cupcakes.

May 14, 2008 at 5:03 pm | Posted in Baking | 2 Comments
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So I made some cupcakes the other day. I had these wonderful intentions of providing my mum, grandma and 3 aunts with gorgeous cupcakes that I made –from scratch no less– for Mother’s Day. I chose the Coconut Vanilla Cupcakes from Chatelaine’s May issue, except not everyone loves coconut so I decided to omit it. I also found this All Purpose flour called “NutriBlend” It’s unbleached AP Flour with Wheat Bran (I think…) added to it, so I subbed that in for regular AP Flour. And then I got to baking. My butter was softened, my eggs were room temp and my oven was preheated. Everything went very smoothly! That is until I discovered that I forgot to add the VANILLA! I added it in at the end…instead of with the eggs and prayed to the cupcake fairies that it would all work out. Unfortunately, these cupcakes turned out really dense…almost like a muffin. I wasn’t a fan. I also couldn’t give them to family either…I didn’t want them to have to lie about liking them and then turn around and be like “Poor Errin…can’t even make cupcakes, how will she ever survive?” ( hehehe) Anyways. I loaded 3 up with store bought icing spiked with coconut for my sister and her boyfriend. They loved them. So the next day I whipped up some cream cheese icing, which was delish and frosted the remaining cupcakes, which I admit tasted much better with CC icing…and gave them to my sister to dispose of. And when I say dispose I mean give them to her boyfriend to eat. Anyways here’s some pictures! I felt they looked better than they tasted.

Cupcake!               

Cupcake!

 Cupcake!

Lessons Learned:

  • Slowly substitute new flours
  • Don’t omit coconut ( I like it!)
  • Try a recipe @ least a week in advance, not night before
  • Find a plain vanilla recipe and play with that
  • Make own frosting from now on

 

Off topic but…I also got a sunburn on Tuesday…a lovely blotchy one. I need to remember to wear sunscreen EVERYDAY or at least get a moisturizer that contains one…

 

Go Ahead. Have a Listen.

May 6, 2008 at 7:52 pm | Posted in music | Leave a comment
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So just when I thought BRAVO Was a useless channel, I discovered they have a program called Bravo Videos. There I heard a song called “Mercy” by Duffy which was great! So I imediately downloaded it and another of her singles “Rockferry”. This stuff is very um…bluesy/jazzy/poppy/vintage sounding! I love it. I also caught the song “Chasing Pavement” by Adele. She is also bluesy and poppy all at once, and apparently has been compared to Amy Winehouse…Adele is more clean cut. I bought the whole album and there are some pretty solid sounding tracks.

So go on. Listen. You’ll like Duffy and Adele.

Money, well spent.

May 1, 2008 at 9:19 pm | Posted in Thrifty | 2 Comments
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This week I’ve been on a spending spree it seems…a new purse (Matt & Nat…very nice!) which set me back $70, a muffin tin (on sale!), a set of mixing bowls (on sale and a birthday gift!), a red bead necklace ($1.99!) and a lovely PYREX juice caraffe ($1.99!!!!). The last two items were found on my thrifting trip to Value Village today. I also resisted the urge to purchase 2 more owl canister things, I felt I had enough even though they did match my previous owl score. I really  love PYREX. The old fancy stuff, not the new clear stuff. That’s too boring for me!! I own (well my mum owns…) the “Spring Blossom – Green Pattern” and my grandma recently gave me two refrigerator dishes that are red and may be a part of the “Friendship Pattern“. Another score from my grandma is a linen tea towel (picture to follow)! It’s rather nice! My grandma has or had a ton of cool stuff, but like most people never thought their old kitchen stuff would be coveted by others! Plus, I can’t let many of my relatives know that I am searching for this stuff because a) they will think I am trying to steal from my grandmother (I’m not!) or b) think I am trying to make $$$ off her “Vintage” pieces (I’m not!) and therefore try to grab the stuff for their own gain! So, I do covert missions! And my grandma hands over the stuff she no longer uses with a look that says “Why the heck do you want this old stuff that I paid a nickel for??” Ahhh I love grandma!! She really is the bees knees! So I guess I better get re-motivated and knit those dishcloths for her!!!!!

And now without further ado, the pics of the lovely PYREX, necklace and tea towel :

Mmmm…Orange Slices on PYREX! Oops it didn’t photograph too well….

 See?? It says PYREX on it….

 

 

 

 

 

 

My necklace reminds me of Persephone herself Jen!! Who…Whom (?) I saw the other day decked out in rouge! Also this necklace is a perfect match to a dress (SJP’s Bitten line) I am wearing to a wedding! Perfect!!

 

 

 

And the tea towel…it’s handpainted I believe is what was printed on the side of it….love the aqua! And pukey green!

And that’s all for today…

Here’s To New Beginnings…

May 1, 2008 at 9:28 am | Posted in random-ness | 1 Comment
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Wow. It’s been awhile. Quite a bit has happened. None of which has anything to do with crafty things! A whole lot of personal stuff, my grandpa passed away, a family rift has been potentially repaired and I have a new outlook on things…But enough with the drama-emo stuff!

So I’m momentarily stalled on my grandma’s dishcloths…But I did buy more yarn because I was getting tired of the colours I had. So I picked up purple and then some white with yellow specks. No pics of it all yet though. Soon though. I feel weird not doing anything crafty.

I have been reading a ton of books about growing an herb/veg garden. I was originally going to have a windowsill garden of herbs, but all the books I’ve read say that it is difficult, so I am going to grow my herbs in containers outside. I have huge plans for this!!! I am going to grow oregano, parsely, basil, garlic chives, spring onions (green onions) and maybe some peppers!! Wish me luck!

I think that’s all for now…oh wait! Those tin canister things I bought? My sister picked up bigger copper coloured ones that were in much better shape for $12.99 at a yardsale…A little pricey but they are nice!

Ok, I shall be back with more crafty stuff soon!

Adventures in Bread Making, Day 2

April 2, 2008 at 1:11 pm | Posted in Baking, crafting | 2 Comments
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(Where’s Day 1 you ask? Well it wasn’t captured on film. Sorry. It was way better than Day 2 so I am really kicking myself for not documenting my first stab at making bread, without a bread machine.)

I was so thrilled with the way my bread turned out on Day 1 that I decided to make more today.

Things started off well enough…Dough, risingIt rose beautifully. Twice. Then when it came time to “bake”, it all went to hell in a handbasket pretty quickly. I swear the drama is needed! Bread.Doesn’t it kind of look like it’s frowning? Like it knows it didn’t do it’s job and cook properly? There’s a pretty big divot in the middle, where it sunk down…I blame Libby the Dog for that. She was running amok in the kitchen at the time. I was also on the phone, which may have had something to do with it as well…who knows. Anyways, in case you wanted to know exactly what this bread is, I shall tell you! It is Microwave “Baked” English Muffin Bread, from a Weight Watchers Cookbook. Like English Muffins, this is best toasted, with jam…The first bread I “baked” turned out beautifully and was gobbled up pretty quickly too! This one, just isn’t aesthetically pleasing…Oh well. I’ll still eat it for brekkies!

I realized in my last post that I didn’t put up a picture of my knitting! So here are a bunch o’ knitting pictures.Dishcloths for Grandma!                                                                 The top white blob thing, is actually supposed to be the circular scrubbie from the dishcloth duo pattern from Knitability. It looks nothing like it is supposed to. I don’t know where I went wrong! Then there is the Ballband, which I made smaller because I found the first one I made was too bulky and cumbersome when doing the dishes.             

 Next up is “Nubbins”. Nubbins!It’s a pretty easy knit! I like the nubbins on the edge, makes it look all fancy! The pattern is from here: http://inahappycamper.eponym.com/Nubbins%20Dishcloth.pdf

I think that’s all for now! I hope to find time to break in the sewing machine! I have to make an apron by May for a gift, and I need to beef up my sewing skills! Here’s hoping the weekend brings lots of spare time! It’s also Cupcake Week on Martha! I am OBSESSED with CUPCAKES!!!!! I love eating them. I love baking them. I love looking at them. So, maybe I will make cupcakes this weekend…maybe I can find a “diet” version…since I don’t think cupcakes fit into the healthy living plan…

I’ll leave you with a pic of Libby, who I found sleeping on my bed. Doesn’t her expression say, “What the hell? I was sleeping here, leave me alone!” ??

   

Libby

                                                                                                              

10 cm of Snow?!

March 27, 2008 at 1:09 pm | Posted in crafting, knitting, Thrifty | 3 Comments
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Ahem. It’s SPRING! That’s all I ‘m saying…I don’t want to anger the weather gods and risk crappy Summer weather…soooo.

I decided to go to Value Village to cheer myself up. I was specifically looking for yarn and knitting needles. There were none to be found! As, I wandered through the aisles, sadly of course, I spotted these crazy tin canisters.Thrifty Canisters

 4 for $1.99???? Yeah I could care less if the coffee one has a copper lid with an aqua handle or that they’re incredibly grungy. With tax it came to $2.25. That’s a bargain! They’re “The Queen Line”

 

Canisters, Again

By A.R.Lite, Made in Canada! I was thinking of keeping my crafting notions in the canisters. Or just displaying them on the baker’s rack in the kitchen. I’ll wash them of course! Although, I am against putting consumables in them. It’s just a rule I have. So yeah I was pretty excited to find these! And the colour! I love it!

Tomorrow, I vow to use my sewing machine. I think I will make a passport wallet. Even though there is no travel in my future. Sadly. I also just discovered that…um. The phone just rang and interupted my train of thought!! Oh right. I was going to say the ADORN Magazine is no longer. Could be a rumour. But I did read it on the internet and everyone one knows that if something is on the internet, well then it’s true!

Here’s the progress I’ve made on my 2nd Ballband. I missed SnB because of a migraine. That is what work does to me. Or it could’ve been due to the fact that I didn’t have my morning coffee or tea. Sometimes, I have tea instead of coffee in the morning. I always have a tea at night. I love visiting my grandma because she always puts my tea in a tea cup! (I drink it out of a mug when I am at home…I know it’s unheard of!). Speaking of my grandma and also of dishcloths, I need to make her some. She has these old ratty knit ones from like 5 years ago. She needs some snazzy new ones, courtesy of moi!

And here is the marshmallow salad, AKA ambrosia salad I made for the potluck. The people who ate it, enjoyed it. But I had a ton of leftovers. I know it looks gross, but I swear it tastes good!

MmmMmmMarshmallows

Ugh. My computer is having issues and frustrating me, that must be a sign that I need to stop writing!

It’s Easter, Yo!

March 22, 2008 at 11:06 am | Posted in crafting, random-ness | 1 Comment
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I should’ve made Easter eggs. I saw a lovely tutorial from Martha. Yeah, I call her “Martha”…no need for silly formalities like last names. She took little bits of lace, tied it around an egg and dunked ’em in veg dye. They were quite pretty. I’d almost want to keep them around all year! I should round up a photo….here you go.Eggs, Martha Style But of course I was under the impression that “adults” don’t colour eggs, that’s for children. But look how sophisticated this is. Children are not sophisticated…but I kind of am. So there.

 Oh what else is happening?? Ummmm. Yeah I’m pretty boring in case you haven’t noticed that yet. I missed SnB because I was trying to put together a lesson plan on “Positive Attitude” for work. It (surprisingly!) went over really well. Waaay better than my “Anger Management” lesson. Go figure. I did knit however, at work! It was perfectly acceptable, because the group was learning to knit and crochet as a skill. We do this thing where one person from the group teaches the rest of the group a skill.

So for Easter, things are different this year. My sister is actually hosting the dinner. I’m not sure how I feel about it. It’s a blending of my family with her boyfriend’s family. It’s going to be interesting. Especially with a 10 month old Bloodhound who weighs 115 lbs. and is about as tall as I am when he stands on his hind legs. He also is notorious for stealing food. Mostly I think because he’s not allowed to eat “people” food. But we shall see…I’m apprehensive about this dinner.

At work we’re having an Easter potluck lunch. I am bringing marshmallow salad. I will post pics later of it. It should be good. I mean whipped topping, mandarin oranges, pineapple, grapes, coconut, coloured marshmallows…what more could you want??

So I totally forgot it was Spring. Might have been due to the fact it SNOWED. Yeah, I’m not impressed Mother Nature! Or Weather Fairies. Whoever it is who makes this crazy weather. Where’s the warm sunshine? I need the natural light, it’s good for my well-being.

Well. I suppose I should venture out to the Superstore. Wish me luck. It’ll be a zoo. Because when the grocery store is closed for a day, people freak out and think they’ll never see food again. I’ll try to be on my best behaviour and not yell at the person who stands in the middle of the aisle chatting with a long lost friend of friend’s uncle’s second cousin by marriage. HAPPY EASTER!

 

 

At Least the Sun is Shining.

March 9, 2008 at 6:22 pm | Posted in random-ness | 2 Comments
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Then again it is causing a crazy glare off the piles of snow and causing me to go blind. But at least the snow stopped right? And maybe the sun means that Spring is actually coming. I can have hope can’t I??

So even with all this snow and thus free time, I haven’t done any crafting! I feel bad about it too. And the crappy weather has prevented me from attending the local SnB. So fingers crossed I can get out to this Tuesday’s….

I don’t have much to write about and I really don’t feel like writing in sentences so here’s the bulleted version of this week:

  • Weirdest Text Msg Received: “I just saw someone who looked like Phil Spector!” go ahead google him.
  • # of almost accidents (none of which my fault) = 3
  • Progress of Healthy Living Plan = Fair, 2lbs loss, but ate a few too many TimBits…
  • Exercise: Snow shovelling…and running into Winners from the car during blizzard
  • # of job offers = 0, but have a lead on another p/t one
  • Time spent knitting = 0…I’m not proud of it.
  • # of coffees/teas in a week = 10…It’s an addiction. But it’s under control…

And that’s all folks. It was a slow week.

Oh and here is a picture of my car, a Toyota Yaris, under a nice blanket of snow.There’s a car under there!

Happy Leap Year!

February 29, 2008 at 10:54 am | Posted in crafting, random-ness, Thrifty, TV | 3 Comments
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Well, it’s been awhile since I last wrote, so here’s a little update about what I’ve been up to.

First, I finished that Ballband dishcloth. Ballband DishclothI even weaved in the ends! So far, I am finding it difficult to actually use the dishcloth to wash the dishes, however I did use it as a pot holder and it held up pretty well! I need a new knitting project. Oh and some yarn. I’m itching to set up my new sewing machine, but I just haven’t had the time. Maybe I should make the time. I also finished the coffee cozy. Coffee Cozy 

It’s been “finished” for quite some time, but I just decided to weave in the ends and seam it up. It works fairly well. My sister said she’d use one, so maybe I’ll give it to her. Speaking of my dear sister, she ventured out to an indoor yard sale the other weekend and managed to find ONE book of knitting patterns. It’s for men’s socks, but I am pretty sure they can be decreased in size. Guess I better get some DPNs.

Here’s a picture of the front cover.Pattern Book                                      And here’s a picture of my favourite socks. Socks

 

 

 

 

Sadly I frogged the “Wavy” scarf. It was beyond my repairing abilities and was incredibly frustrating. I also wasn’t in love with the wool. It was a pretty colour but not nice against the skin. Oh well, I’ll attempt it again when I feel up to it!

I also started work. It’s interesting, but not in the mentally stimulating interesting kind of way. In the clients are interesting way….you get me? I also have really not done alot. There is no money left in the budget for me to have my own computer. Which sucks. So I really can’t do anything! We’ll see how this goes. I’ve also applied for a job with the local Children’s Services agency, so maybe something will come of that. The library has yet to give me an interview. Guess I’ll have to volunteer…

And lastly, I am obsessed with British programming. If I had the BBC I probably wouldn’t leave the house. Good thing W and HGTV provide me with my fixes. What I’m watching right now: Cook Yourself Thin –>Yummy recipes that are good for the waistline!; Colin and Justin’s Home Heist –> I love these guys!!! They have some other shows that are filmed in Britain, but this show is all Canadian! Also, I am still trying to figure out if Steven and Chris are Canada’s answer to Colin and Justin…I’m just not sure.; How Clean is Your House? –> Seriously Kim is awesome. I want to be her when I am old : ); Location –> Just a home hunting show.; How to Look Good Naked –> Way better than the American knock off. Gok is waaaaaay better than Carson. Even though I’ve never actually watched the American version…but I did see a preview on Oprah, so I can make judgements. Go ahead, check your local listings so you can watch these programmes too!

Phew. That’s along one. Now it’s snowing…2nd storm in a week! And I have to go stock up on groceries. Also, I am starting a healthy eating plan. I’m not calling it a diet. I’m eating smaller (i.e correct!) portions of food, lightening up some recipes and trying to get in the recommended servings of fruits and veg, grains, protein and dairy. Next, I need to tackle the exercise part of my plan…Maybe I’ll call it a Healthy Living Plan…

Anywho, I’m off to the market!

 

(edited to add pics of Colin and Justin and Steven and Chris…just for a visual)

Colin and Justin photo from HGTV.caColin and Justin

Steven and Chris photo from CBC.caSteven and Chris

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