Friday, August 29, 2008

This favorite fabric/craft shop...

My all time favorite craft shop no longer exists. It was called the Magic Brush and was this huge craft shop where you could find everything from clay for throwing pots and such to fine art supplies and all sorts of things in between. It's now a Lebanese market where we frequently buy baklava so I can't complain too much.
Now my favorite shop is called Fabric Barn in Long Beach (The LBC).

Don't let the name fool you. They have a very limited amount of fabric but a huge, HUGE selection of ribbon/trim. I'm talking aisle upon aisle of ribbon and think I'm exaggerating don't you? Well, my friend I am not, take a peek at these pics...

That's not all there is, there's a lot more, did I mention there are rows and rows of these? So, if you're ever in the L.A./Long Beach area visit the Fabric Barn.

Thanks to handmaiden for the topic. For more great shops, go to Three Buttons and check 'em all out.

All ribbon photos are by Sherry over at Got Art? cuz I can never seem to think to take pictures when I'm there.

Flickr Favs Friday

Since I've been completely house obsessed lately I thought this week's Flickr Favs should be too. Enjoy all the crazy, cool, dilapidated and pretty house pics.

1. Dancing House (#8), 2. our house, 3. The house with the moss green paint., 4. red wooden house, 5. Avebury Manor House, 6. House on the Hill, 7. "Chalet Recart" at Papudo's twilight..., 8. A little fairy tale house??? Yep, little one but "bigger size" is a must see... :), 9. Hundertwasser House I, 10. House for rent: River view, no basement, 11. House of the Mermaid / Casa de la Sirena, 12. Dotty-Wotty House, 13. # 1~This Old House, 14. bbb low-cost housing, tegnestuen vandkunsten, 15. A friendly house, 16. The beach house, 17. Rainbow House On Clipper St., 18. houses of Bryggen

Hooray for Friday!

Fridays are so awesome that not only do they deserve a hooray they deserve their own meme...oh wait, Friday already has a couple of meme's dedicated to it. I forgot. If you wanna play along with the Love Fridays meme head on over to Big Cat's Emporium and check it out. And of course there's my own (sadly neglected as of late but due to return today) Flickr Favs Friday.

So let me spread some love for's why they are so great...
  1. I get out of work at 11. I'm not bragging, really.
  2. New movies open on Fridays. Because I'm such a bad action flick junkie and none of my friends actually want to go see these movies with me, Fridays are the perfect day to go see them since I'm let loose at such an early hour all by myself.
  3. Monrovia Farmer's Market / Street Fair. Bigger now than ever before, you can get your exercise and fresh produce all in one place.
  4. I'm flush with dough since I just got paid.
  5. I can indulge my natural night owl tendancies since there's no work the next day.
Just a few great reasons to love Fridays.

UPDATE: I've mentioned that my sister and I have been trying to buy this house. We had our bid accepted by the bank and were waiting to hear from the city (who has a first time home buyer program we chose to take advantage of) to see how much, if any, funding we would get. The city had enough funding to give grants to 7 applicants, only 3 turned in applications and only 2 (us and our friend who actually started us on this whole adventure) had everything complete. So because of that, we were the only ones who got funding, full funding (that's $100,000 baby!).

Because we didn't know for sure until now if the house was really ours I didn't want to post the interior photos cuz if we ended up not getting it for whatever reason it would have been just that much more difficult. But since we now know here are some photos...

This is the entrance to the living room.

This is our dining room...
and our dining room ceiling (my favorite part of the house).
There are built-ins all over the place.
Our one and only teeny tiny bathroom.
And the kitchen with brand new cupboards and granite countertop.
And that's basically it. The bedrooms are just bedrooms and the garage is just a garage but these are the best bits.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

This Is...My Favourite Children's Book

My favorite all time children's story is Peter Pan. I was given a really nice edition of it in high school by a couple of friends and it has since been lost in one of the many times I moved in the last 10 years and I'm pretty heartbroken about it. One of these days I'll splurge on another one but until then here's some really sweet illustrations by Mabel Lucy Attwell. You can find more here.

Thanks to Potty Mouth Momma for this week's theme. If you wanna check out some more great books, go over to Three Buttons and check 'em out.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Poetry praise

I have been known in the past to jot down some poetry. When, in high school, we needed some copy to fill a bunch of white space in the yearbook (yeah, I was big huge nerd in high school) I'd toss out a quick bit of iambic pentameter or a haiku, etc. Of course this is not to say that they were any good, just funny.

Having said this, I'm not really a big fan of poetry. Mostly because I'm a lazy reader and if I have to decipher what I'm reading I lose interest pretty fast and a lot of poetry is written in such a way that the reader has to decipher what exactly it is that they're reading. Especially a lot of the older poems, you know, the ones by Byron or Longfellow or Plath. But then, I guess if it were straightforward it wouldn't be called poetry.

Anyway, I came across a poem today that I became instantly entranced with. Yes, I did have to do some deciphering but the poet paints such a vivid mental picture that it was worth it. It's called The Ruined Cottage by William Wordsworth. It's really long, so if you don't have the time or the inclination to take 20 minutes to read one poem then don't follow the link but if you are so inclined, by all means check it out.

The poem is a story within a story and it is sad and poignant and even had me a little misty eyed at one point. He touches on a lot of different human emotions and beliefs. At one point he talks about death and faith and all the things that go with both those things. He does it in such a beautiful way...

(It helps to read it ignoring the line breaks. Most people, myself included, when reading poetry, tend to be a little sing-songy because of the way poems are broken up. So pretend it's one big paragraph and only pay attention to the puncuation.)

"My Friend! enough to sorrow you have given,
The purposes of wisdom ask no more:
Nor more would she have craved as due to One
Who, in her worst distress, had ofttimes felt
The unbounded might of prayer; and learned, with soul
Fixed on the Cross, that consolation springs,
From sources deeper far than deepest pain,
For the meek Sufferer. Why then should we read
The forms of things with an unworthy eye?
She sleeps in the calm earth, and peace is here.
I well remember that those very plumes,
Those weeds, and the high spear-grass on that wall,
By mist and silent rain-drops silvered o'er,
As once I passed, into my heart conveyed
So still an image of tranquillity,
So calm and still, and looked so beautiful
Amid the uneasy thoughts which filled my mind,
That what we feel of sorrow and despair
From ruin and from change, and all the grief
That passing shows of Being leave behind,
Appeared an idle dream, that could maintain,
Nowhere, dominion o'er the enlightened spirit
Whose meditative sympathies repose
Upon the breast of Faith...."

So this is just a teeny tiny bit of the poem. I really am enamoured of the way he paints a picture in your head. It comes alive for me.

On the lighter side, check out this little bit of poetry by Robert Louis Stevenson...

(Click photo to enlarge)

His Child's Garden of Verses was previously my favorite, I think The Ruined Cottage might have replaced it.

Monday, August 18, 2008

I miss meat!

The other day, my sister and I were talking about the commercials for vegetarianism that we've been seeing lately and I told her she could never be a vegetarian because she likes meat too much. She, in turn, insisted that I couldn't be a vegetarian. I, thinking to myself that all I eat is mostly chicken anyway, said pishaw! And from that exchange came a challenge. For one month, my sister and I are going veggie. Not vegan, we can still eat eggs and cheese and other dairy products. It's only been a week and two days and I'm missing the meat. Well, really I'm only missing one thing and I'm ashamed to say that I am. I can leave the chicken behind but what I'm really missing is this...

I love the Sausage McMuffin from McD's. I get mine with no egg and slap half of the hashbrown on there....yummmmmmmm!!!!! That's it, that's all the meat I miss. I normally get this on the weekends so Saturday I had an omelet and some yogurt instead that my sister made for me. It was good but it was no Sausage McMuffin!

On the plus side, I have been finding some really good vegetarian recipes and I've tried just about every veggie patty hamburger out there. So far, the Gardenburger at Farmer Boys and the veggie patty at Islands Restaurant are the tastiest. The Black Bean Burger at Chili's, however, is bland and feels like you're eating deep fried bean dip /refried beans. And for cooking at home, Morningstar Farms has their Meal Starters Grillers Recipe Crumbles for ground beef substitute and they're not bad at all. Their Meal Starters Chik'n Strips aren't too bad either, they're not quite the consistency of chicken but they're very close.

Anyway, it's turning into a culinary adventure! If we have any real winners develop in the kitchen, I'll be sure to post a recipe or two.

This I like to spend my weekend.

Normally, I love to laze around the house, usually in bed. The Bubbers and I just hang out at home doing absolutely nothing, if possible. But...seeing as how we've been trying to buy a house, and actually found one, put a bid on it and had our bid accepted!!!!! we have been doing a lot of window shopping lately. This is the house we're buying...

It's small, 2 bed, 1 bath but there's so much potential in the house that we couldn't pass it up. Of course, there are things that need to be done like pulling up carpet, getting rid of that eyesore of a fence, etc. So, from now until we close escrow our weekends will be filled with window shopping, deciding on landscaping, new furniture (our old stuff needs to go!!), what to do in the slightly awkward garage, etc. It's very exciting. (Sorry there are no interior pictures, I was so excited when I stepped into the house because I knew this one was the one that I forgot all about taking pictures. We're going in again this week to do an inspection so I'll take more pics then.)

So, this weekend we went to Pasadena Architectural Salvage where they specialize in items from the 1880's to the 1930's (our house was built in 1936). Mostly we were looking for a new (old) front door and again, I forgot to take pictures but here are some of the ones we looked at that were on their website...

We also looked at lighting for the dining room. Check out these beauties...

Granted most of these aren't in keeping with the Spanish feel of the house (which we are trying to keep to) but I liked them so much that I put them on our list of possible styles/replicas. Buying these actual fixtures would be breaking our budget (they're way too overpriced) so we're going to be looking for some more reasonable replicas.
So that's how I'll be spending my weekends. To see more, go to Three Buttons and check us all out.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Warning! Whining Ahead!

I miss my computer!!!! It is driving me CRAZY not having it! There are certain blogs that I read religiously that I can not access at work, not to mention my email accounts (yes, plural) on yahoo, and no etsy or ebay?!....GRRRR!!!!! Not that I would do that here at work...not me! But at home, at night, in the late night hours when the yearning hits strongest...I get no satisfaction.

As far as the blogs go, I finally remembered that I can read everybody's posts in my Google reader but I can't leave any comments and I feel I'm neglecting my duties as a responsible blog reader if I don't leave one. While I realize that the Earth won't stop rotating and the Heavens won't end up in chaos if I don't leave a comment, there are times when I just really want to leave one. For instance, when Emily's cat, Miette(over at the Black Apple), fell ill, I couldn't tell her how much I hoped he would get better quickly. Or the other day when Lisa (over at Strickerin) had some apprehension about getting on a plane but had shown her lovely knitted items I couldn't tell her how really nice the hats and scarves looked in those pretty purples and pinks or how I hoped she had a good flight.

I think I'm just upset because leaving a comment is my way of connecting. Lurking on someone's blog is all fine and good but we all know how much comments (nice comments, not those snarky ones some people feel compelled to leave) can boost or bolster our mood.

And then there's all those times when you're sitting around at home talking or even watching tv and you think, "oooh I gotta Google that" but then you realize, "oh yeah, I can't". Bummer.

Anyhoo, I don't really have any photos to go with this rant so I decided to put together this collage of wierd/flashback-y/just plain bad pics of me (because I'm so vain).

That top left photo was my first diy haircut. This is why scissors should be kept out of reach of young children. That and the whole danger factor.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

I bought some fuzzy iron ons to put on onesies for a friend who is due to have a girl in November (I think it's November). Here's how they turned out...not bad, I think they all ended up being straight so that's something. It was a five pack of onesies so I just did all of them, they kinda remind me of those day of the week underwear.

I wanted to add a little something for each one like on cutie I want to add ruffles to the bottom, for princess I have this idea of taking one of those newborn baby headbands and sewing on a "tiara" made from a piece of hot pink fabric, for Angel, I'm going to iron on a pair of wings to a sweatshirt, and sweetie will also have a headband that has felt "candies" sewn onto it. That leaves me with Diva. I'm stuck. I have no ideas on what to do for it. I'm hoping there might be some suggestions from all you crafty people out there. So, what do you think?

Monday, August 11, 2008

This is...a work in progress...

I bought this material...

back in April and have been meaning to make an apron out of it. I know that it isn't your typical apron material, in fact, if anything, it's anti-apron material but, of course, that's why I want to use it. I haven't decided what to use as the edging or the apron strings. I was thinking one of these...

Now all I have to do is learn how to make an apron and I'm all set!
Thank you Debbie for this week's theme and as always Angela for being the uberhostess.

Thursday, August 7, 2008


My computer is in the hospital. It suffered a near meltdown so we took it to Dr. GeekSquad and they said that it'll be somewhere between 2 to 6 weeks before we get it back. Luckily it's still under the extended warranty that we paid for (you know, the one that most people, me included, usually scoff at, saying it's all bollox, just a way for Best Buy to make money off us suckers, yeah that warranty).

I'm already having withdrawals...shaking, cold sweats, etc. So, from now on all my blogging is going to be done at work which means that a) I have to be very sneaky b) All the bloggers out there that I read normally that are on Typepad or Wordpress I won't be able to access unless I go to a internet cafe or something and there aren't all that many in this area and 3) my This is....'s are all going to be done on Mondays (that's Tuesdays for those down under). I'm just glad that I can still access blogger here at work. Ed the internet Nazi is on vacation for 2 weeks so I'm in no danger of losing that privilege any time soon. He has a tendency of limiting my access and he's probably a little justified in that, seeing as how I spend at least an hour a day either posting to my blog or reading other blogs. I'm such a bad employee.

And because I don't have any real photos to go with this post I'll leave you with a collage of the Bubbers...

Tuesday, August 5, 2008


I usually run on the assumption that people out in blogville know about websites before I do because I'm generally the last to know due to my lack of paying attention. So, forgive me if you know all this already. There's a website out there called Swap-bot. And, like the name says, it's all about swapping. There are swaps for all sorts of things. I've done a few of them...I'm one of those people that could sign up for a bunch of them then get overwhelmed by the commitment to send 20 or 30 different people a bunch of stuff and then my head would explode. That's why I've only signed up for 5, all at different times, since I joined back in May. Right now I'm in a scavenger hunt swap where your partner gives you 15 adjectives then you go out and find little things that you feel fit those words. It's a lot of fun.

These are the items I'm sending off for the scavenger hunt swap.

The swaps can be either national (most of the ones I've seen are US only cuz I think they're based here in the states) or international. I'm finding it a great way to share my corner of the world with people who don't necessarily know anything about where I live.

If you like swapping, and I know you do, check out the site.

Edit: It has been pointed out to me by muralimanohar that I have forgotten to include a link to Swap-bot. How could I have forgotten the most basic of blogging rules?! I must have been in the middle of a brain fart or something, I dunno. Anyway, here you go...Swap-Bot...enjoy!

Sunday, August 3, 2008

This is...not my trade secret

This week's theme (brought to us by Amelia at bollewangenhaptoet) is supposed to be "This trade secret" but I don't have any. By day I'm a receptionist and by night a sewing newbie, craft hobbyist and art dabbler. Because I'm so new to sewing I don't have any trade secrets (but I'm sure I'm going to gain a whole lot of good tips from other people's posts this week!). As far as crafting goes, it's just a hobby, not a trade and I don't do it often enough to have any trade secrets.

The closest thing I have to it would be to do what makes you happy. While my day job definitely falls short of that, my hobbies don't. There's a satisfaction to finishing a project and a joy to finishing it well.

And that's it. My "trade secret".

Thanks to Angela over at Three Buttons for being our meme host.