Archive for March, 2008

Little Chicks and Weird Weather

Has it really been a week since I posted last? Sorry about that. One good reason was because I lost my camera. I tend to be such a visual person myself, that I guess I feel that my words are just not enough. I could not find that camera anywhere. David and I looked and looked. A little over a week ago, I finally got fed up with my messy desk and dumped everything into bags (to be sorted later), so I thought for sure that’s where I’d find it. But no. We looked in my purse, in the car, in the office, under the sofa cushions, in all my bags, everywhere we could think of. See what great shots I’d be missing?


Downy and adorable, huddling for warmth

Caught in the act of eating

Nap time for this little chick

Luckily, we still have our old digital camera. I’m so used to my newer camera that I found it harder to use, heavy and bulky. But I was able to get these adorable pics of Marcy and Alex’s new flock of chicks. Aren’t they so sweet? I think they said there were two Americanas, two Rhode Island Reds and two Australorps. We’d have chickens in a heart beat if it weren’t for our home owner’s association. I was entranced just watching them eat, then sleep, then eat again. There little chirp! chirp! sounds were especially innocent and endearing. They’ll be producing almost an egg a day in about 5 months.

The same day we got to see their new chicks, the weather went a little crazy. First it was sunny, then it would snow, then it would be sunny again and then it hailed! Big, gravel-sized balls of hail pounding everywhere and accumulating rapidly. Here are a couple pictures of that.


A shot with David’s shoes, for perspective

With a fresh-picked camellia blossom from M & A’s tree.

Lastly, I thought I should mention that David was the hero who finally found my camera. And guess where it was? In my purse. Where we BOTH had already looked, and which I carry around almost everywhere. Turns out it fell into the small zipper compartment that I hardly use. And David was all Are you sure it’s not in your purse? So he looked again and there it was. Safe and sound, right beneath my very nose the entire time.

Brownies from Scratch

Last week Marcy made brownies from scratch. I don’t know why, but that seemed like a foreign concept to me (though I was certainly impressed). Me, who loves to bake and is willing to make anything from scratch. Why hadn’t I ever tried it myself? Because my mom always made them from a mix? What a minute, she almost always baked from a mix. Or maybe because there are so many delicious mixes available (Trader Joe’s Truffle Brownie mix comes to mind) and it is so easy to keep a box or two in stock. I just don’t know. But I was inspired to try it myself a few days later. I had forgotten to get her recipe, but I did find this simple one. And although I didn’t add the full amount of flour, and had to cook them almost twice as long because of that (why can’t I just follow the directions like normal people?), they turned out marvelous. I also added a large handful of chocolate chips. Just like the chocolate cake recipe, the quality and color of the chocolate you use will affect the results. Mmm!

Easter and My First ATCs

Happy Easter everyone! I’m sorry I’ve been such a blog slacker this week.

David and I had a pretty mellow day at home today. It was rainy and grey, so we mostly stayed in. This morning I made a special breakfast of Eggs Benedict and later we ate fresh from the oven Swedish cinnamon rolls from a package mix that I got the last time we were at Ikea. Very yum! Otherwise, we bought more dirt/compost to fill our new raised garden bed and went for a nice walk to our neighborhood lake with the dog. Pretty relaxing.

Earlier this week, I made my first artist trading cards for a swap. Actually, I wasn’t even sure what ATCs were, but from what I could glean from the good ‘ole internet, they can be whatever as long as they are (a mostly flat) 2.5 by 3.5 inches. This particular swap was for 2 pressed flower ATCs which gave me the perfect excuse to open my press from late last summer. Some real beauties in that batch. The background images are from an American Express booklet I found in our recycling bin, and I just added a couple lines of thread and hole punch dots. Will these count? I hope so.

Crazy Robin Update

So if you happened to read the previous post, I thought I’d mention that yesterday the Robin decided to transfer it’s affection to our neighbor’s car. But not for long. Yesterday evening it found it’s way back to our vehicle…again. This morning we’re watching it flutter on the car across the street. I’m telling you, this bird just won’t quit.

Winter’s Farmers Market


Naturally occuring white, brown and pale green farm-fresh eggs

Alex, Marcy, David and I went to check out the Hillsdale Farmers Market yesterday, only 20 minutes away. It runs all year, and twice a month in winter. Despite the weather, there was a good selection of in-season produce and other local goods. We picked up a colorful assortment of organic free-range eggs, leeks, rainbow chard, pear cider, and a bag of nettles. Yep, stinging nettles, with their nasty little thorns. We’ve never tried them, but apparently they are super nutritious. The stinging property goes away with boiling (so I’m told). There is great little video on how to harvest them properly, and I think I’ll try this recipe for nettle pesto.

In other weirdness, David pointed out a robin sitting on the side-view mirror of the car yesterday. She would hop down onto the driver’s side window sill and flap her wings, as if trying to get at something inside. David went out to investigate, and found nothing in the car (we rarely use it so it’s pretty clean). He also taped an X over the spot, hoping to distort the reflection, if that what was making her crazy.


The crazy robin, and the taped X to distort the reflection

Poop trails: Driver’s side door

Poop trails: Passenger’s side door

This morning, we found out the bird was still there. Hopping around, and leaving the biggest poop trails on BOTH of the front doors. So weird! So we went out and moved both the cars into the driveway. Which did the trick, and the Robin is gone. But the question remains, what in the heck was she trying to accomplish?

Crafting in Miniature


Matchbox Dresser Drawers 2.25 x 1.5 x 2 inches (shown with mini pink post-it notes)

I have been so bad lately about making things for swaps and not photographing them. I get all wrapped up in sending them out and don’t think about it until too late. This little chest of drawers is the only thing remaining from craft time this week. It’s made up of 6 matchboxes, based upon this matchbox dresser tutorial. I used paper instead of paint, brads for the drawer pulls, and felt rounds for the feet. Each drawer contains little surprises. Tomorrow it is on its way to Sweden.


Bottlecap Pincushion 1.125 x 1.75 inches

I also made two bottlecap pincushions, which I forgot to photograph. Here, however, is one that was sent to me. Isn’t it darling? There is a little yellow bird with a beaded eye on both sides, so it’s uber cute in every direction. Thanks Crystal!

Corteo


Sweet pink plum blossoms from our neigbor’s tree

Last night we went and saw Cirque du Soliel’s Corteo with our friends Alex and Marcy. I don’t know how Portland ended up on the North American tour, but I am so glad because it was AWESOME. One of the best traveling shows since Allegria. If you have an opportunity to buy tickets – DO IT! You’ll be glad you did.

In other news, spring is really beginning to show her face around here. Our yard has multiple spots of color and blooms – bright pink primroses, purple hyacinths, mixed anemones, pale pink daphne, and even our rhubarb has burst upon the scene. Yesterday we even picked up several pots of primula to fill near the front steps and two gardenias (for where, I have no idea). The thing I can’t figure out is why my spinach seeds haven’t sprouted in the garden yet. Am I just being impatient? Maybe something has eaten them or the seeds were no longer viable? I guess only time will tell.