Saturday, February 27, 2010


I'm alone for the weekend. After almost nine years together, it doesn't seem that we feel the need to impress one another much, but I have to say, having the house to myself has really given me the chance to let loose. By that I mean that I slept in, drank coffee in bed and spent time on the internet. I got up and showered, ate something and then wasted time on the internet. I mopped the entire house because I was cold and nothing gets the blood flowing quite like mopping and then I passed a little time on the internet. It's not like I got nothing done but I'm going to be honest here, I found a new website and I spent a few hours reading it. It had me laughing so hard I got embarrassed (and I'm home alone!) and I'll admit I shed a tear or two. I'll give you the link. 

I'll also give you some ranunculus because they are gorgeous.



Thursday, February 25, 2010

on top of the world

As far as commutes go, I'm lucky. It takes 15 minutes, no freeways, no traffic, no hassle. And on my way home I see this:

It's one of the more amazing views of out city, but until yesterday, I had never stopped except at the stoplight. There's a parking lot (can we say make-out spot?) right off the road so I pulled over. With all of the storms moving in and out lately, the sky has really caught my attention in a new way. Also, I've noticed it's really hard to photograph clouds. It's something I plan to ask about in the class I just enrolled in.



Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Monday, February 22, 2010

etsy finds

Remember back when I used to post about all the fantastic things I wanted to buy off Etsy? I still drool and dream a lot, I just haven't posted my wish-list for awhile. So here's some of what I've been liking recently.

Herb Garden Markers by JustWork $18

Nest #3 by Fort $18

Organic Wool Ruffled Scarflette by MPsen $35

Plantable Thank You Postcards by ruffhouseart $6

All Natural Lip Jam by LaLaBloom $7

Lambswool Slippers by woolybaby $28

The Augusta Handbag by sketchbook $120

Tiger Lily Moccasin by darlingtonia $129

Letterpress Fortune Teller (cootie catcher) by sycamorestreetpress  $8

Sunday, February 21, 2010

speaking of growth spurt

This little thing is turning 6 this week which also means we're really close to celebrating our 6th anniversary. I'm having a hard time believing it has been that long already. But then again, I remember just how tiny she was the first day I held her.

Friday, February 19, 2010

so big

The twins have gone through a real spurt lately. Not so much getting taller, but their language and play skill just shot up. I'm glad, they seem happy about it.





Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Somehow my exercise walk turned into a cappuccino at a nearby coffee shop. I got off work a little early on Monday and the sun was shining and it was over 6o degrees. I think you can see how this might happen.

Also, it's time for another press photo attempt for The Heated. Out of 107 shots, we got 8 that seem usable. This is my favorite of the bunch because it is the least posed, but it's not very "press photo" like either.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

a day of love

Happy Valentine's Day all you little lovebirds.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

look how far we've come

We met our friends for our usual Thursday play-date this morning. We realized this was the third Valentine's the kids have had together and it was certainly the best one yet. Little Em usually screams if the boys come near her, but today (!!!) she warmed up to them and really played with them. She even kissed Totes good-bye. I was shocked. It might have had something to do with the little bag of candy he gave to her, but she doesn't usual fall for that. Here are the little friends on Valentine's day 2008 and today.






Monday, February 8, 2010


I often find myself craving time in the kitchen over the weekends. I cook dinner at home almost every night during the week, but it's usually something quick that I can make without a recipe. It's pretty much the same 10-15 meals in regular rotation.

So by Saturday I need something new, some flavor to interest me. This weekend it was a Roasted Tomato Soup (so very easy and I should confess I have made it before) and a French pastry called Gougere. They are light as feather puffs with gruyere cheese. The dough, a rather gloppy and seemingly odd technique is the same used for profiteroles and eclairs. I've made it a few times and if I weren't using recipes that I whole-heartedly trusted I'm sure I'd be thinking, "this can't be right."

But this simple supper wasn't going to satisfy my baking desire, so I baked a very approachable and rather tasty lemon cake. The recipe came from Bon Appetit and I absolutely love the texture it gets from a small amount of cornmeal. Any cake that doesn't involve the mixer is one I'll make again. You simply put all dry ingredients into one bowl and the wet into another. Fold them together and pour into a cake pan lined with parchment paper. I loved it with just the glaze, but went ahead and made the sauce (I used cherries instead of blueberries because that's what they had at the store) and served it with tea on Sunday afternoon. Totally fantastic, and one I'm trying to find an excuse to make again.




Lemon Cornmeal Cake with Lemon Glaze and Crushed-Blueberry Sauce

1 1/2 c powdered sugar, sifted
2 T lemon juice, more if needed
Combine sugar and lemon juice in a small bowl, stir with a spoon until smooth and paste-like. Add juice as needed.

1 1/2 c all-purpose flour
1/3 c cornmeal
3/4 c sugar
3 1/2 t baking powder
1/2 t salt
1 c buttermilk
2 large eggs
1 T lemon zest
3/4 t vanilla
1 stick unsalted butter, melted and cooled

Preheat oven to 350 with the rack in the center. Butter a 9" cake pan and line the bottom with parchment. Combine the first 5 ingredients in a large bowl and whisk to blend. Whisk buttermilk, eggs, lemon zest, and vanilla in a small bowl. Pour buttermilk mixture and melted butter into the dry ingredients. Using a rubber spatula, gently fold liquids into flour until just blended. Scrape batter into cake pan and spread evenly.
Bake cake until a cake tester comes out clean, about 30 minutes (I cooked mine 33 min.)
Immediately run a knife around sides of cake. Invert cake onto a plate, pull off pan, peel off parchment, place a rack onto the cake and invert again so the cake is right side up. While the cake is still hot, spread the glaze. Cool completely. Serve with sauce, recipe follows.

Crushed-Blueberry Sauce
3 c fresh blueberries or frozen, thawed, divided
2/3 c brown sugar
2 t lemon juice
1/2 t lemon zest
pinch of salt

Combine 1 1/2 c berries and all the remaining ingredients into a medium saucepan. Stir over medium heat and bring to a boil. Turn down to simmer and cook for about 7 minutes, stirring often. Remove from heat and add remaining berries, crushing slightly with a spoon.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

protecting the goods

I'm in the process of converting a lovely little JCrew purse that I bought second-hand into a stylish camera bag. Two weeks ago I spent spent most of a rainy afternoon searching the internet for a bag that I could both afford and liked the look of. Admitedly I rather  enojoyed the countless cups and tea and the luxurious feeling of wasting time but the search was in vain, not a single item met the requirements. I found a great bag on Etsy that I could convert, but it was still more money than I should spend after having bought that rather nice camera itself.
I used a double stack of 1/2" foam and just traced the bottom of the purse onto it. Some bright teal corduroy I had laying around looks good with the interior of the purse. I just sewed it about three-quarters of the way around inside out and then flipped it, shoved int the foam and top stitched it closed. Nothing fancy, just a protective layer that can come out to be cleaned if necessary. Today I'll make a case of some sort for the actual camera to fit in.  

Friday, February 5, 2010

stuff to buy

I've been posting some stuff in my shop. I've also been thinking a lot about making adult aprons. Not actually making them, but thinking about it. (Are you happy?)

big girls

Yesterday a miracle happened. The girls played together, without screaming or pulling hair, for 45 minutes. This was a new record for them by oh, about 43 minutes. I'm not even kidding! Three seems to be a hard number, often two of them can go uninterrupted for 20 minutes if I keep the third entertained. But this was all 3 sisters engaged in some sort of make believe game involving a birthday party, slumber party and school. I kept an eye (and ear) on them, but stayed out of view as much as possible so as not to disturb the magic that was happening. I've been promised that it'd get easier after the twins were 2 or so by many strangers with experience, but it's been hard to believe. I might be able to after all.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010


I don't love the weather in San Francisco. In fact, I really don't like it at all. I know, I know, it never gets muggy, the pipes never freeze, it's mild all year round. But I miss seasons. It's been raining a lot here, and it's colder now than it was a few months ago, but look what I found over the weekend. And it's not just one tree, it's lots of them. C'mon, it's the second of February!