Friday, November 18, 2011

Butters and Beans

I just delivered an inventory to Butters and beans today. I love the store it is a all American mostly handmade baby store. It is in a fancy strip mall (across from Eddie Bauer)in a burb of Minneapolis, and the shop owner is convinced that the stuff will sell.

the store is pretty fancy. I am flattered, but the honest dominant feeling I have is that the things I make are full of flaws. the stuff in that store is amazing. some day I will be amazing too right?

The last month I have been preparing the stuff. I started with picking at it like one day I cut out a bunch of shoe linings, and embroidered a little here, and a little there. then I realized that my plan was huge!

then I realized 2 weeks ago that my efforts were pithy.

so for the last two weeks I have been running a sweatshop. here are some samples:

and the result is 22 shoes

(30 including gift sets) 12 hats,

9 headbands,

8 gift sets

it seemed like more doing it all at once. Last week my sewing machine did some damage to my appliques which made me sad. they still turned out ok, but not my best work. bad timing eh? so i took it in to get it fixed and they let me use a loaner. which was broken too. so i spent the day cutting which was one blessing in disguise.then I tried another one. then I sewed all that leather with a machine that was not mine (moohaha), and mine will come back good as new. if only it were free...

in the meantime... E lost her 2 font teeth (this is after the 1st) L. tried her hand at hairdressing.

and R took many floor naps she is currently boycotting her bed unless she is too tired to notice.

the kids watched more movies than were good for them, and my fingers are still showing the evidence of all that hand stitching.

I will not show my craft room it will take days to clean.

I need a nap.

was it worth it? I don't know. I need to figure it all out. I love the idea of being paid for stuff I already made. my etsy shop orders are mostly custom orders. next time I will make more of the same designs. it was fun to design, but changing the thread 20 times is not fun.

I have no idea if it will be worth my time, or where this is all going, but I like making shoes more than hats, and that is what they want at the store.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

in Hiding

I am in hiding right now. I am getting Christmas ready. yes Christmas.

I decided last year to make it. it was inexpensive, I bought whatever fabric I wanted, and it was a hit.

so I am doing it again.

I am funding it this year with sales from my Etsy shop.

and utilizing my new serger!bought also with the proceeds. it is a viking to go along with my sewing machine.

this is great on our tiny budget, and best of all it is more of a surprise than deductions from our bank account from suspicious places.

I am making rag dolls for all the girls, princess dresses (those may be for Halloween) and much much more. I will tell you more later.

I am still around and still moderately sane.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

It's a Reuben! (Idaho style)

My husband Is always teasing me that I am really from Idaho. I have lived in 4 states, Idaho for the shortest amount of time. I was born in Oregon. I lived for about 6 years in Utah. and then moved back to Oregon. but it was Eastern Oregon,and in the Idaho time zone and that is enough for my husband to claim I am not from Oregon. but I am.

so to honor My husband's love of Idaho I will introduce you to an Idaho-style recipe.

I have been making this for a while. I am not sure who to credit, I think someone talking about Reuben sandwiches on TV gave me the idea.

first, gather the stuff. (that is pastrami in the pic. I grabbed the wrong meat, but I figured it out before I added it)

6 Medium potatoes
8 oz Deli corned beef
6-8 oz shredded Swiss cheese
1 c. sour kraut
1/2 tsp. caraway seeds
1/8 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp pepper (no those are not backwards)
vegetable oil

chop the meat and cheese, and combine with sour kraut in a bowl

chop the potatoes by cutting them lengthwise and slicing very thin.

combine seasonings in a small bowl.

get a large nonstick pan, and spread 2 tbsp. oil over the bottom, and add a layer of potatoes make the bottom layer thick-ish (mine was a little thin) the cheese melts and burns on the bottom if you don't.

sprinkle with 1/3 seasonings.

add a layer of meat and cheese mix (1/3).

make 2 more layers the same way.

cook with the lid on for 25-30 min. no need to stir. the layer on the bottom may overcook a little, but it is still yummy.

Friday, August 19, 2011

a giveaway

I am participating in a huge and fantastic giveaway! come and join there are so many nice things!

I am giving away a hat of any size to a lucky winner!

Thursday, July 21, 2011

voluminus velor cloak tutorial

I tried out a new way of posting tutorials. I promised the cloak tutorial from L's birthday and

here it is!

there is a website called Meylah that allows you to open a shop and a blog and post tutorials. I have not figured out how to use it all yet, but the format for the tutorials is really nice,and it even has the option of a printable version of the tutorials.

I love the tutorial format, and the overall appearance. I don't love that it is rather hard to see what people post in the free part of the site you can pay a monthly fee, but I really don't think I want to.
so if nothing else I will probably use this to do tutorials in the future.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Listen To My Recital.

this was our showpiece of the night. at least I think so.

I recently finished a recital that I worked on for months. it was so much fun. the people I worked with were amazing. I was a bit out skilled, but no one ever made me feel like it. I usually get so nervous I can barley see straight, but I never felt that pressure. there were many serious musicians there, some of whom I really admire(including those I performed with) so I think it was a combination of long and thorough preparation, and a very kind group of people.
I am grateful for this recording for a few reasons.

first My mom is a big fan of mine. she wanted to hear this, now she gets to.

second the person who did it did a great job and worked very hard at it. He did a quality sound recording, and had 3 video cameras that he syncd with it. his name is Jason Willoughby for those who know him.

and third because I actually thought I did better after I listened to the recording than my reaction after the fact.This is the first time I have enjoyed a recording of myself. I think the quality of Music plays a big part in that.

even if you are here to hear me, I recommend listening to everything. the viola player is a PHD student on Viola performance here at the University of Minnesota. it is a big school and he is more than worthy of it.

the Piano player is a math professor at the UofM. he is amazing on the piano too. In fact this is the best accompanist I have ever had.

here are our program notes complete with translations

here is the program playlist

Luke Hubbard, Viola
Johann Sebastian Bach suite no. 6
1. prelude
2. Allemande
3. Courante
4. sarabande
part one, and two.

Meikjn Fielding,Mezzo-Soprano Lawrence Gray, Piano

Claude Debussy, Mandoline
Ralph Vaughn Williams, Silent Noon
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Non so piu Cosa son from the marriage of Figaro

Luke Hubbard, Lawrence Gray

Max Bruch, Kol Nidrei

Lawrence Gray
Nocturne no.4. in A major by John Field.

Luke Hubbard, Lawrence Grey, Meikjn Fielding
Johannes Brahms
zwei gesange

1. Gestille Sehnsucht
2. Geistliches Wiegenlied

How this recital came about was that the Larry (the piano player) wanted to learn the piece called Kol Nidre.he was drawn to it during the Jewish holiday Yom Kippur. this piece is a collection on Jewish folk melodies originally arranged for cello. there was a recording he liked of it played on the viola. but as it turns out there is not an arrangement for Viola, so Luke (the viola player) arranged it for them. and because they went to the trouble, the idea of a recital was tossed around. I got into the act because Luke was saying one day that it was hard to find decent viola ensembles. most of them are just boring obbligatos. so, I told him about some Brahms pieces I like that are for Mezzo, Viola and piano. and he said we should do a recital. which I only sort of expected. but it came together, and I am glad it did. It was great to have a reason to do some serious singing again.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

L's Birthday!

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L's book theme was "the princess and the Pea"in miniature. this book is clever unique and fun. I googled it one day and found this Idea and it is a hit! I think L liked the toys better. I decided last minute to make her doll a little room in a box I covered it in an old white sheet from working as a house keeper (I use these all the time) I also used the sheet and ribbon for wrapping. she did not notice that I was too lazy to buy any. I also made her 12 mattresses,the pink one has a little pocket to hold the "pea," a blanket that matches her special blankie, pillow complete with case. And a peekaboo sackmade out of some very pretty fabric I bought just for her. Next is her crown with one for the dolly of course. and last but not least a voluminous Velor cloak. I saw something similar in a cool catalog we get sometimes, and when I looked I could not find a tutorial I liked so I made one up. the "voluminous Velor cloak" tutorial is coming soon. and it is easily adaptable for dollys too! I had intentions to make this cake and homemade Ice cream, but we are having a Dairy Queen cake compliments of grandma instead. The cake cost more than the presents.
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last night there was a HUGE rainstorm. something like 6" and so what better way to celebrate than freezer paper boats and puddle jumping!
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