My pillow was featured on the front page of Etsy today. I’ve hit a milestone and am drunk on page views and favorites🙂 Celebrate with me by doing some jazz hands and smiling your biggest smile! And maybe throw in a maniacal laugh or two🙂

(It’s the listing in the bottom right-hand corner)

Screen Shot 2013-08-28 at 5.22.21 PM

Click here to visit the treasury: http://www.craftcult.com/vault_list.php?list=41197

Gigantic Tintype Camera Makes Almost Life-Size Portraits!

tintype portrait

I read this article yesterday and can’t stop looking at the portraits. I’m enthralled! And need to make a trip to San Francisco tout de suite to get one of my own🙂

My 15-month-old daughter has been in need of a car seat upgrade for a few months now, and a few weeks ago, she received a brand-new rear-to-front-facing heavy-duty cool-as-all-heck car seat. I had my doubts about paying so much. But after hearing several frugal friends sing its praises, I ordered one.

The Britax Marathon. Cue angels singing. I’m serious. Lots and lots of angels.

This may be the nicest thing I’ve ever owned. If you’ve talked with me in the last few weeks, I may have already listed the features for you:

  • The box it arrived in used no tape. I just pulled it apart and voila, fully put together car seat!
  • No slipping the shoulder straps in and out of tiny slits to adjust the height. Instead, the whole mechanism moves up and down with the squeeze of handy little release.
  • Velcro tabs on either side of the seat to hold the waist straps in place while taking her in and out of the seat. Glorious!
  • Rubbery thing that helps keep the chest straps from getting twisted and helps them lay flat.
  • A pad behind the buckle to keep the buckle where it belongs, not twisted down in the recesses under my child’s bottom.
  • Nifty clamps to keep the seatbelt super-tight and secure as it passes under the car seat. I’ve never seen a car seat wiggle that little.
  • And lots of other safety features, of course.

My 3-year-old also received a new car seat: the Graco Nautilus 3-in-1.

While still very nice, its box was plastered with tape, a pain to open, and a pain to put-together. But it’s not the Nautilus’ fault. I opened the Britax first….

For about the last two weeks I’ve been eating black beans, jasmine rice, and a tablespoon or so of Nearly Normal’s Tamari Ginger vinaigrette. And it’s delicious. And addicting.


If you’re not in the Corvallis area, then you can find a ginger vinaigrette at your local grocery store. The Nearly Normal’s vinaigrette does not have any sesame in it, though others I see in the store often do. Amazon also has several, with sesame, that look delicious as well, including this Trader Joe’s one, which is also fat-free! I may have to pick it up the next time I’m in the store.

Trader Joe’s Ming’s Sesame Soy Ginger Vinaigrette

The Idiot Cord

I’ve started making I-cord wrap bracelets for my Etsy shop. And in looking around at I-cords online, I ran across this lovely little history of the I-Cord and a brief description of how to make one yourself.



To take a look at my new wrap bracelets, visit the Women’s Bracelets section of my shop by clicking on the photo below:


For Christmas, I received a fabulous Vitamix from Donnie and have been looking for ways to use it more often. So far, it’s mostly been green smoothies. But yesterday I thought I’d give everyone a break and make a good old-fashioned fruit smoothie.


Below is the concoction I came up with. The smoothie was delicious! Unfortunately I have no pictures since I forgot before we drank it all up. So here is a picture of my Vitamix instead🙂

I placed the ingredients in the Vitamix in the following order (frozen things are supposed to go on top in a VitaMix, whereas for other blenders it’s usually the opposite):

  • 2 ripe bananas
  • 3 T chia seeds (or as much as you like)
  • 1/4 c. milk
  • 1/2 c. yogurt
  • 1 c. water
  • 1/2 c. Pine-Orange Banana Fruit Juice, Dole (or you can replace this and the water with a cup of fruit nectar. Mmmm!)
  • ~1 c. ice

This made 3 tall-glass-with-a-straw servings.

If I had had an orange on hand, I would’ve thrown that in as well…. Wait, I do have an orange. I guess I will just have to make this again today and throw in the orange  :)

Chocolate Coffee

For about the last year, I’ve been adding cocoa powder to my coffee. Only every now and then, for a treat. Instead of adding the cocoa to the hot coffee in my cup, I add it to the grounds. The result is a subtle chocolatey cup of coffee.

Here are the steps I follow:

1. Choose a yummy cocoa powder.  I use this delicious dark cocoa powder that my brother and his wife sent from Switzerland. It turns out I’m not a big fan of dark hot chocolate but love it in coffee.

Chocolate Coffee 1

Chocolate Coffee 2

2. For 4 cups of coffee, I use 1-2 tablespoons of powder.

Chocolate Coffee 3

3. Cover all of the cocoa with the coffee grounds. The powder tends to foam and froth in the boiling water, so you might have an overflowing filter if you don’t cover it all up.

Chocolate Coffee 4

4. Brew coffee and enjoy!

Chocolate Coffee 5

(5. Of course, I add creamer. Vanilla and chocolate taste delicious!)