Tuesday, November 10, 2009

lovely craft project

Oh, I can't wait to try this necklace!!!!

Christmas time is almost here

And working at a Dutch-American school, maybe I could find someone going to Amsterdam this season to buy me some of this sweet wrapping paper

I'm a sucker for online gift guides, so I will be prowling the net for the best of the best to post here... not that I can afford many of the gifts on the guides for my friends and family - so don't get any ideas, friends and family! You're all getting these this year in honor of Goofus and Gaylen. ha! "The perfect gift for every child on your list!"

Sunday, October 04, 2009

the outnet

Oh, why must this site exist? It brings ridiculously expensive and equally beautiful pieces of clothing just above my level of affordability. When I look at the out-net the conversation in my head goes like this...

Oh! A Rick Owens dress for $359!
I have $359.
I could look good in that and I could wear it so many times it'd be like .30 cents per wear!
Hmmmm, only size-4 left... I could do that cereal diet and lose some weight. And then skip lunch for a few months. And then...
LOOK AWAY! You don't need this! Click on the NYTimes tab: now.

Sigh. A girl can dream.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

canning what i can

Finally, I got to some good canning today! I did Dilly Beans for the first time, a few jars of tomatoes (from my garden!), a repeat of that Peach-Rosemary Jam with the last of this summer's peaches, and some "Cheeky Chilli Chutney" from Jamie Oliver. Whew! Oh, and during all of this, I slow roasted some sweet grape tomatoes - another first for me. They're pretty great. Daniel loves sundried tomatoes and these are similar.

Our garden is starting to show signs of the end of a wet, cold summer. It's finally warmed up, but too late. The blight that hit all of Michigan got the tail end of my tomatoes, so I have a plethora of green tomatoes. Any recipe ideas? Peppers are in and amazing, and I still have lots of chard coming along. But that's about it for produce for us. For a first summer of gardening, I'd say we did well. I'm already dreaming of a big herb garden for next year and maybe a nice green beans tower.

Sunday, August 02, 2009

post it love

Just back from florida this week. What a state of heat and humidity. Michigan welcomes us back with gorgeous, balmy sunny days in the 70s. No place like home!

Thursday, July 16, 2009

french diapers

This strikes me as just hilarious and fun! I mean, who wouldn't want to invest in these Provence inspired diapers?!

jams! part deux

I didn't have any of my pictures up before when I posted about jams...

Daniel made a lemon pie the same day as my jam... double trouble!

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

speaking of canning

This blog is amazing! An absolute treasure trove! It's called Food in Jars. She has an amazing round-up of recipes from all over, instructions for preserving, even info about drying herbs. I mean, Tarragon-Garlic Pickles? I can't wait to try!!!


So far this summer I have just started canning some of my wonderful Michigan produce. This week I did sweet cherry jam and an amazing peach rosemary jam. The peach one turned out very very sweet. I made it with last summer's frozen peaches (in an attempt to clean-out those final 2 bags from my freezer!). Once peach season hits, I'll try it again with a little less sugar...

Peach Rosemary Jam (via Martha Stewart Living)

Makes about 1 quart

* 3 pounds yellow peaches, peeled
* 1/3 cup fresh lemon juice
* 4 3/4 cups sugar
* 4 large sprigs fresh rosemary


1. Halve and pit peaches, then cut into 1/2-inch-thick wedges. Transfer to a large bowl. Add lemon juice; toss. Add sugar and rosemary; toss. Cover; let stand, tossing every hour, for 4 hours (sugar should be completely dissolved).
2. Put peach mixture into a large, wide pot. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Cook until liquid is syrupy, 12 to 13 minutes. Crush lightly with a potato masher, leaving one-quarter of the wedges intact. Skim foam from surface. Discard rosemary sprigs.
3. Seal and process: Fill hot, sterilized 4-ounce jars with hot jam, leaving 1/4 inch space in each jar's neck. Wipe rims with a clean, damp cloth; cover tightly with sterilized lids and screw rings. Transfer jars, using tongs or a jar clamp, to the rack of a large canning pot filled with hot water, keeping jars upright; cover with water by 2 inches. (Jars should be spaced 1 inch apart and should not touch sides of pot.) Cover; bring to a boil. Process jars in gently boiling water 5 minutes. Transfer to a rack; let cool 24 hours. If lids pop back when pressed, they are not sealed; refrigerate immediately, and use within 1 month. Sealed jars can be stored in a cool, dark place up to 1 year.

I ate this jam on crackers with Gorgonzola cheese... WOW.
Next I'm going to do more cherry but this time with tart cherries.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

beautiful destruction

Earlier this year, Vogue featured beautiful photos of nearly dead flowers. Somehow the decay of the flowers was pretty and powerful in its own way. These photos of bursting bubbles from Richard Heeks remind me a little of those, and they are so wonderful!

(via A Cup of Jo)

september come soon?!

Well, not REAL september, but I cannot wait for The September Issue, a documentary about Vogue editor Anna Windsor, to be released at the end of August! Check out the preview... *sigh*

spam mail put to good use!

Oh, Daniel and I cannot stop laughing about these from Elliot Burford! He's made amazing and hilarious illustrations from headers to spam emails. Who knew dirty spam mail could be so redeemable?! ha!

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

candles in a jar

At our wedding, Daniel and I created some mason jar candles by hanging glass jars with wire and placing tea lights in them. We hung them at all different lenghts throughout the tree branches in my parent's backyard. They were beautiful. Now Alyssa Etinger in her infinite creativity has created the most beautiful porcelain mason jar candles! A good anniversary gift? (photo courtesy of Jen Sliker at laboratorycreative.com). You can find her creations at etsy here: http://www.etsy.com/view_listing.php?listing_id=26824982


This post comes via my new (old) computer! Daniel bought an older Mac computer from a coworker that now proudly sits on the desk in our guest room. So, the new and improved Erin has access to a computer all her own... FINALLY. Part of me really wants to buy a laptop, but I hate the idea of emails getting to me at all times and in all places. I like to leave my work at the desk and get on with the fun things in life.

The other cool thing about actually having a computer is that I can post here a lot more now. I love reading blogs and hate it when people don't update for months... and then I remember that I do that! oops. Now I have no reason or excuse to do that.
In case you missed the HEAT wave hitting all of the midwest and southeast, summer is here with a vengeance and so much is happening around town. Recently, we took a walk at Riverside Park near downtown Grand Rapids, and came across a dog festival/convention of some sort. There were australian shepherds doing amaziing tricks.
Conrad, our australian shepherd, tried to do some of his own tricks later, including running through water and mud as much as he can before getting in the car. I was not as impressed.

It's so nice to just hang around town. Usually in the summer Daniel is travelling a lot and I'm travelling a little too. This time we are staying put as much as we can and enjoying our neighborhood and city. There's so much going on around here; it's really wonderful. Free jazz concerts at the GRAM Friday nights, not-free concerts at Meijer Gardens (just saw Indigo Girls last week!), the Fulton Farmers Market, u-pick fruit, movies at the cheap theater... there's way more. So, I'll just keep posting away! Until then..

Thursday, May 14, 2009

estate sale

This website created by Megan is great. How freeing would it be to par-down to one suitcase and just go? I especially like that she would accept coffee and/or lunch for payment. Bet she will make some new friends through this and wish she was staying in Michigan!

This item is called "The ugliest piece of tupperware known to man." ha!

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

how i feel this week

lovely posters

Daniel and I are planning a road trip South this summer. How fun would it be to go to some National Parks? Until then, I'll look at these fun posters...

Thursday, May 07, 2009


How does this even work?! I don't know, but I want one! :)

it's been so long.... why not start back with Julia!?

I cannot wait to see this film!

How perfect is Meryl Streep for this role?! I just finished reading an amazing book from blogger Molly Wizenberg called A Homemade Life, and loved it. I've already made some of her amazing recipes.

Friday, March 13, 2009


Of the many things that I marginally obsess over, typeface is one. Oh, the film Helvetica did have a hand in this. So, you may understand my fascination and delight over the Periodic Table of Typefaces!!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

winter favorite

I am LOVING this blog (color me). It's making me so cheerful and excited to get crazy with some good color combining to get me through the rest of the Michigan winter.

And these videos are so beautiful. Have you heard about the Playing for Change project/film?

Friday, January 16, 2009


There's a new issue of catapult magazine out titled Cohabit. It's a good one (as always), and I contributed a very small piece titled "All that I let in". I'd promised to write an article a long time ago, and waited until the week before and got sick. So, it may be a little scattered. But, that's okay, because really, I'm scattered most of the time without any excuse!

micro finance

I just heard Rob Rooy give his January Series talk and I'm so amazed and blessed. it was fascinating. It really was not about film very much at all, even though he's had some amazing experiences as first-assistant director and is obviously VERY talented. But he talked all about microfinance - how it works and the stories he's learned through his work filming communities all over the world. check out this website: http://www.kiva.org/
it's a website where individuals can make micro loans, starting at $25 and on up, to families or communities all over the world. amazing! And the main page has a picture of a Peruvian community in the Andes! :)

You can listen to Rooy's talk (and any other January Series lecture) here. I'm really looking forward to the last lecture of the series from International Justice Mission's VP. IJM is one of my favorite organizations, and I did hear Gary Haugen, their President, speak at Willowcreek Leadership Summit this summer. If you've never heard about IJM it is a nonprofit that hires lawyers to represent the most trod-upon people in the world (children forced into prostitution in India, farmers in Nigeria or Nicaragua, etc.) and they do much, much more - like counseling, education, offering safe housing, etc. Check out the New Yorker piece on IJM from this week's edition!

Monday, January 12, 2009

winter love

December 2008 was particularly snowy for Michigan, and I loved every last flake of it. But now I'm working hard to reconcile myself to, dare I say it?, three more months of winter. sigh. So, I made a list of what I love about winter to cheer myself up and to refer to when I get tired of it all. It's just a season; it won't last forever.
Then I thought, I should share this list. Maybe it will remind someone else that there are good things in front of us all the time.

our little neighborhood park at night when it's quiet and snowy
tea - every kind HOT
wearing my toggle coat, russian boots, and wool hat
cooking new recipes
red wine
using my fireplace to it's full potential
candles scented like pine
snow on pine trees
new lotion
sweat pants and turtlenecks
ever-changing daylight
movies at home and at the cheap theater
Schuler Books: tea, a cookie, and a pile of magazines
breakfast at Gaia and Realfood cafe
my hot pink alpaca throw
sledding and skiing, of course!
reading novels in bed
TV seasons
floaty snow, sparkly snow, sugary snow, sticky snow
the quiet
store-bought flowers
laundry that's soft and steamy from the dryer
occasional attempts at wearing makeup
my red-cardinal cardigan
spicy hot cocoa
warm lemon curd on bran muffins (why don't I make those ALL year round?)
baked oatmeal with summer's blueberries from my freezer on a cold morning
long, hot showers
snow outlining all the branches of the trees
birds coming to our feeder every morning
Conrad eating the snow
the smell of clear, frosty air

what would you add?? what do you love about winter?