Monday, November 23, 2009

Baby Steps

I feel like I've lost almost a week of my life to this flu. I watched TV the entire time I was sick. Actually, scratch that, I woke up, put on something I'd want to watch, fall asleep after five minutes and repeat the process every four or five hours. I'm finally feeling better and I'm trying to catch up on lost time today. So I actually ventured out of the house and went (where else?) the craft store and the dollar store.

First, I had seen these made on a few Web sites now, but I loved the idea (and the frugality of it), I had to make my own. I didn't take pictures of the steps, but I will tell you it involved a candle stick holder, a little hurricane vase, some glass frosting spray paint and a hot glue gun. Then I added a ribbon and stuck a candle in it for instant Christmas decorations!

And my other project is in the dryer as we speak: a stamped-print shirt. Oh, how freakin' cute is this?

My friend, who watched me haphazardly place the stamps said, "You know you just put owls on your boobs, right?" Some quick thinking and I answered her with "Well, they're called 'hooters' for a reason, right?" Then I realized how perverted my shirt was. Oh well, it was just the prototype to see how I liked the look.

But look at how cute these owls are! I love this stamp.

The instructions on setting the paint are below.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Craigslist Finds

Right before I got sick, I started getting addicted to the Free Stuff on Craigslist, especially anything involving Curb Alerts. My most recent finds are just waiting patiently in my living room for me to feel better.

Finally! A real living room table! The potential for this baby is actually a little overwhelming.

Here's a find I grabbed in the dark and didn't even know exactly what it was until I got home. Other than a missing screw, I think it's the coolest piece of furniture I've ever owned!

But wait, there's more!

But wait, there's MORE STILL!

And the whole thing? Completely pulled apart? Oh, it's incredible...

I can't wait to get some paint and Mod Podge on this baby, but not only that: I can't wait to fill it! Who knows what I'll fill it with, but I still can't wait!

Skating Party Cupcakes

Even though I'm stuck in bed, I finally uploaded some pictures from my camera, including the cupcakes I made for my friend's roller skating party a few weeks ago.

Can you tell they're supposed to look like rollerskating wheels? Well, even if they don't, I had fun using an apple corer with Reese's Peanut Butter Cups.

So Much Craft Time I Can't Use!

I've become a statistic, officially. I am at Day Four of Swine Flu, given to me by my husband who finally went back to work today. Unfortunately, I haven't even been out of bed for long periods of time, other than visiting the doctor.

I promise, once I'm better, there will be more updates!

Saturday, November 7, 2009

"I Can Make That!"

So, even though Apartment Therapy did not hire me as a blogger, I can't hold it against them. I'm sure there were TONS of applicants. But, I still maintain that a lot of the stuff they push on their Web site could be handmade, rather than purchased. With that said, I exclaimed the weekly "I can make that!" when seeing this.

I am determined to create something with this in mind. Actually, when I was at Jo-Ann's yesterday (yeah, it was pay day, where else would I be?), I saw something I may be able to work with. But, sorry, $32 for this? I love it and all, but $32?

I Passed! I Passed!

OK, um, maybe not "passed", per say. But I did take a quiz and I pretty much got what I think I deserved. And, by quiz, I mean this gem from HomeGoods (ahh, my splurge store-because I trick myself into buying more because of the good deals) and Deborah Neddleman founding editor-in-chief of the late (great) magazine, Domino.

But, here were my results on what type of decorator I am:

Emily, you are an EARTHY CASUAL

You're interested in creating a welcoming home where people feel comfortable and happiness flourishes. You appreciate the warmth and individuality of natural materials and handcrafted things and are inspired by colors and forms from nature. You love mixing up different textures and are sensitive to the tactile qualities of objects. Your style is grounded and solid, not flighty or frilly. And you are never taken in by the trend of the moment.
You value creativity. You are stylish and fun loving, and can be an inspiration to others. You have a natural sense of drama, and you know you have to be willing to take risks—whether with colors, finishes, furniture choices, or ideas—for your home to stand out. Your home can be happy and lively and the place all of your friends want to be.

As I read it, I wasn't saying "duh" as much as I was saying "thank you! Finally someone gets it!"

Oh, and here's the color pallet suggested for my home.

I'm hoping the dark color in the upper left is a chocolate brown, rather than a black because, OK here it is, I'm afraid to work with black. Like, petrified of black furniture looking too cold and dark and intimidating. And, funnily enough, some of my favorite pieces in other home blogs I've seen are black! But, no, I can't commit. Maybe black furniture is like that guy who you think is out of your league in high school, and you work yourself up so much about him you never even attempt to talk to him. Then, one day, you find out he's a nice guy. A swell guy. A guy you can be friends with. And somehow the fear of talking to him goes away instantly. (Don't really know where that analogy came from, but it makes sense to me.)

Once again, here's the LINK.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

One More Thing

Oh! And the last Halloween decoration I added were these little pumpkins.

And, with the addition of puff paint, I added some 3D designs.

After they dried, I spray painted them.

And, of course, I forgot to take a picture of the finished pumpkins. But, they were lovely. Because they were live pumpkins, I had to throw them away.

The Party

So, somehow I started a tradition of throwing a Halloween party. I've done it three years now. But this year, I was so happy to be able to show off my decorations! As you've seen most of them, I wanted to show some final pictures, now that most are packed away for next year.

And this is my husband, who dressed as his inner child (really, an excuse to wear his footie pajamas I got him last year).

Cheapest (Favorite) Costume Ever

OK, so I completely procrastinated figuring out a costume for myself for Halloween. I was more concerned with decorating the house. But, after spending only $1.50, I was able to come up with, what I think to be, my best costume yet.

$1: aviator sunglasses at the dollar store
$.50: dark nail polish (part of a two-pack at the dollar store)

With a red bandanna, a silver sharpie, a black T-shirt, flannel shirt, jeans, boots and TONs of black eyeliner, I rocked Halloween.

Oh, and did I mention I practiced singing Poison for two weeks straight, only to sing one song twice at two different karaoke bars. Totally worth it, though.

Cooking with Pumpkin

I meant to take more pictures of the cooking part, but when I'm cooking, I get completely distracted with it.

So, I had two pumpkin's worth of innards. Separating the seeds was a draining experience. Wow...I just realized that was a pun, in fact, because there was a lot of draining that had to be done.

But before the draining could be complete, I had to separate the seeds from the, um, little stringy pieces. (I couldn't figure out how else to phrase it.)

Finally, after running them under the water in the colander, the little bits came off, but weren't big enough to be strained through the holes.

And then, I noticed that the seeds floated in water, and the pulp sunk. Ah-ha!

With the use of a slotted spoon, the seeds came out perfectly!

With the pulp that was de-seeded previously, I put it in a blender and blended...and blended, and blended, and blended (see, I knew I should have registered for a food processor). I read online once it gets to the consistency of applesauce, it's great for cookies, breads and anything else that would require the basic pumpkin from a can.

P.S. Looks nothing like what's in the can. I'm not going to question it.

So, I made pumpkin bread, which was delicious.

And I made pumpkin coconut chocolate chip cookies...but the husband got into them before I could take pictures.

One minute I saw the bowl, the next minute it was gone and I heard him running through the house and slamming the bedroom door.

When I pried it open, I found this.

But I did get a picture of the big cookie I made with the leftover dough. It was supposed to be shaped like a turtle, but ended up looking up like a manatee...or a fetus.

Nom nom nom.

My Husband's First Time

Yes, that's right. My husband had never done it before. He was nervous, but I assured him it would be fun and he'd like it. I, being the more experienced one, couldn't wait. It had been so long since I last did it and I knew I wouldn't have enough time during the week. So, I am happy to announce, last Sunday...we carved pumpkins!

(Haha, you people have sick minds if you thought I was referring to anything else...)

And, yes, now that you know what I'm talking about, it's true, my husband never did it. He grew up painting pumpkins, or not decorating at all because my mother-in-law hates Halloween. She goes to Aruba every year to avoid it, actually. I don't blame her, I guess. It's not for some anti-pagan reason or anything like that; her birthday is a couple of weeks before and, growing up, she always had Halloween-themed birthday parties.

Anyway, we went down to my the farm by my grandparent's house because I wanted to pick our own and pay three times what we would pay at the grocery store--it was the one splurge I can recall when I didn't run around looking for the best deal in town.

When we brought them home, he got right to work, breaking two of the pumpkin carving knives trying to cut open the top...then he read the instructions that say not to do that. After scooping out the innards for a good half hour, we used the stencils my mom saved (from 1991!) and gave us. He used painter's tape to hold his on, and by the time I was done, I remembered I had spray adhesive, which worked wonderfully!

Oh, and poking holes in the pattern beforehand makes all the difference in the world, let me tell you!