Category Archives: Uncategorized

I had this brilliant idea recently to get all daredevil-ish with my hair and dye the inside layers and bright, fire-engine red – fell in love with the idea and when that happens, oh boy, look out!  When I really, really want to do something, all my normal smarts go out the window right along with any shred of patience I might have and I suddenly convince myself that I HAVE TO DO IT RIGHT NOW!!!  So, on the way home from work, it didn’t surprise me when I suddenly veered out of the traffic heading home and set my Hollie GPS to Sally’s Beauty Supply….but it did slightly surprise James who was a great sport and helped me pick out some super red-looking supplies.  He also didn’t bat an eyelash when I told him he was going to be my colourist for the evening.  Of course, I thought you’d appreciate some self-pictures of the fabulous (haha!) hairdo that it took a hair tie and several thousand bobby pins to keep up so we could just dye the underneath…

We played a game of Monopoly while we waited and then for about two more hours after we washed all the dye out of my hair because it’s the longest game in the universe.  I lost.  But my hair looks great!

Hope you’re having a great weekend and that you’re getting a little bit of daredevilish-ness in there, too!

~ Hollie


It is a perfect, gorgeous day for some DIY inspiration – I am itchin’ to make each and every one of these!!!  C’mon and get some projects going with me!

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Anthropologie-Inspired Monogrammed Mugs, thanks to this fabulous chica: http://bywilma.com/2012/07/10/diy-anthropologie-inspired-monogrammed-mugs/

Mini Gotye Duck Pendant (that’s right!  Just like the music video!), thanks to http://mrs-ferguson.blogspot.hu/2012/07/mini-gotye-duck.html#!/2012/07/mini-gotye-duck.html

Toadstool Stool – perfect for a gnome party!  Thanks to http://tikkido.com/node/446

 Free (and super charming!) Printable Vintage Paperdolls, thanks to http://blogs.babble.com/the-new-home-ec/2012/07/11/10-free-printable-paper-dolls/

And finally – NEW OBSESSION ALERT!  This fantastically artsy lady is incredible and I’m wishing were bloggy bff’s – thanks to http://artymcgoo.blogspot.nl/2012/04/lets-smell-flowers.html

~ Hollie


So there are lots of ways to return to a blog that you kinda left in the lurch a teensy bit over a year ago with no real explanation…there’s the “over-explanation” method, where you list a litany of reasons why you feel guilty for not having kept up your end of the bargain for your readers; there’s the “pretend-ya-never-left”, like you somehow just time warped – no biggie!; and there’s the way I feel about it: the “AWESOME-I’M-SO-EXCITED-TO-BE-BLOGGING-AGAIN!” route, in which I’ll dive right back in with a fresh start! 

I was looking at my last post back in June of last year and realizing that SO much has changed in the past 12 months!  I stopped blogging to take care of some life shtuff that was still adventurous, just not super fun to blog about.  There have been some big changes in my personal life – one being that the Redhead and I – who is a giant four years old now! – have moved to a great lil apartment in a different suburb of Minneapolis that’s perfect for us and even better to have our own little adventures in!  I wasn’t very inspired to be cooky or crafty or bloggy during those changes so I took a break, but after getting back in the groove of things, I’m rarin’ to go and hope you’ll join in – it’s great to see you again!


Can all of us in the Twin Cities agree that this “Summer” has been one of the most sun-less seasons ever?!  Believe me, I hate to complain when my alternative is frigid winter, but when the sun showed its face for the approximate 30 minutes that we had beautiful weather today, I frantically raced into action as if I might never see Summer again.

Out came the sun tea pitcher that I’ve kept close at hand, just in case we had enough rays to brew!

I love sun tea….no idea how it tastes so much better than kettle-tea, but but somehow those warm rays lend Lipton a little bit of magic.  Here is the finished sun tea next to the cute plant pot that The Redhead made.  Notice that there are no actual plants growing in the pot.  As I predicted, the poor things didn’t make it very long…

I raced around like a madwoman, frantically running back and forth around the living room trying to jam my shoes on, dragging the pitcher to the porch and excitedly hollering to the Redhead to “quick, get ready so we can take a walk while it’s nice out!”

We have some great paths right outside our door – some shoesie pics as we walked a trail:


What’s more fun than climbing on a giant rock?  Nothing!

And The Redhead’s favorite spot – the bridge with what she calls the “waterfall” which is, in reality, a creek with some rocks (but we’ll let the fantasy continue).

The sunshine was fantastic while it lasted – let’s hope we have lots more soon!


The Redhead tonight: “What are you doing, Momma?”

Me: “Just hanging forks on the wall!”

…wait a minute…I’m sure I remember being told NOT to do that as a kid!  And here I am, doing it on purpose!  At least this time it didn’t involve a food fight or getting out of washing dishes.  DIY art for my dining room was the adventure for today!

I have a small-ish two bedroom apartment, but somehow my walls are always blank – you’d think I’d be able to fill a few walls with stylish stuff, but either the “stuff” I want to put on my walls surpasses my budget or I am just unable find what I’m looking for.  So I decided to make some of my own, on the cheap – and I’m pretty excited at how it came out!

I nabbed a set of forks and knives – four of each – from the thrift store for around $1 per set the last time I was there and then picked up a couple of $3.00 picture frames at Wal-Mart.  I really have something against perfection and eat up (pardon the pun!) the interesting mismatch going on with the forks.

Then it was time to lay the newspaper down on the dining room table and let the white spray paint fly!

After they were dry, I used the absolute easiest method of hanging them on my wall and was thrilled that it worked!  I picked up some Scotch “Permanent Mounting” tape, which is not technically permanent, and comes in a long roll of thin adhesive foam.  I need to make the statement that I am in no way affiliated with 3M and I don’t receive any kind of compensation by mentioning their products – I just REALLY liked this stuff!  The best part about using this kind of adhesive – besides that it will come off of the wall without taking paint with it – is that you can easily cut the strip into whatever shape you need which was absolutely perfect when I was attaching it to my oddly-shaped utensils.

I measured and marked two inches between each knife and fork and just stuck them to the walls!  Afterward, I decided to give the Permanent Mounting a go with the frames and mounted them on the wall in the same way.  Time will tell if the mounting will work long-term, so I’ll update this post later on to let you know how it holds up through the hot days of summer.

I am really liking the result!  It’s a really simple look, but just a bit unexpected.  I saw some similar pieces at a well-known boutique about town with a price tag of $70 a piece, so I was excited that I could recreate it for a fraction of that …and it’s always more fun to make it yourself, especially when it is this easy to accomplish!  My new art, from a seat at my dining room table:


 

I saw some really cute and slightly cheeky burp clothes at a local boutique and thought, “I’m pretty sure I could do that myself for the babies I know!”  And come to find out, it was a really easy and fun project, so here goes the tutorial:

What you’ll need:

Burp Clothes or Cloth Diapers

Approximately ¼ yard of fabric per Burp Cloth

Thread

Wonder Under or another fusible adhesive

Sewing Machine

Iron

I found these cute cotton fabrics in the quilting section of my fabric store and had ¼ of a yard cut of each.  I ended up with additional material left over – you could probably easily skimp down to 1/8 of a yard and be just fine.  My only criteria for material was that I wanted a basic cotton with patterns that were small enough to show up well when I cut letters out – you wouldn’t necessarily want to choose a fabric with a large floral pattern, for instance, because when you cut smallish letters out, you’d only be able to see parts of the pattern (unless this is what you are going for and then, by all means, buy that enormous floral!)

Next comes the best part!  Choose your word(s) that you’ll be sewing onto the cloths (or name or monogram – whatever you’d like) and the font that you prefer.  A lot of people have special cutting tools like the Cricut that come with programs to cut in all kinds of unique lettering and shapes, but I don’t so I just used my old, faithful friend, Microsoft Word.  I typed the word “burp” and chose a font that I liked (I used a couple of different fonts, but really liked “Blue Highway” because the lines were thick and the lettering was wide), then I enlarged the letters to approximately a 600 point font.  You’ll just want to gauge how big you’d like your letters.  Then print them out, cut out the letters and you have yourself a set of letter patterns!

 

Now, the next couple of steps could probably have been simplified had I thought them through a little bit better to begin with, so I’ll show you what I did and then how I could have saved myself some time.  I used the letter patterns to draw lettering onto my fusible adhesive.

Then I roughly cut out the adhesive and placed them where I wanted them on my pieces of fabric to iron them on.  Then I cut the letters out of the fabric. 

If I had ironed the fusible adhesive onto the fabric to start with and then used the letter patterns, I could have saved myself some cutting time, so feel free to learn from my lack of forethought!

Don’t forget to cut any holes out of letters that have holes! Here’s an easy way:

Pinch the letter together with the middle of the….not sure what to call it…”future-hole” (sure, that works) at the edge, then cut once towards the edge of the future-hole.  Snip from the center to the edges in wedges like pie and then take small snippets of center out – it’ll be a lot cleaner and there’s less chance of accidentally cutting your finger off trying to finagle the scissors around such a tiny space because scissors don’t like that.

 

Next step – iron your letters onto your burp clothes or cloth diapers and then zig-zag around the edges with your sewing machine.

These came out really cute and there are tons of possibilities with what you can write, so have fun and make some special burp clothes for that baby in your life today.


I took my inspiration for Etsy-awesomeness-finding from the current weather conditions outside of my window today…no hail-themed items, though…

 

1. Handmade Grey Cable Bag by effybags

2. Say My Name Initial Necklace by makepienotwar

3. Man in Raincoat Print by delaflamant

4. Big Rain Cloud Mobile by leptitpapillon

5. Sunshine Coral and Glass Earrings by BlueDoveStudio

6. Umbrella and Rain Drops Hand Carved Rubber Stamp Set by GreenGardenStamps

 

 


I really wish that I had a green thumb!  I don’t.  I don’t know what the opposite of having a green thumb is, but my thumb is that color.  I wish that I could keep a plant – any plant – alive, but it never seems to work out for me; however, when The Redhead gave me a hand-painted (by her!) flower-pot, I felt like with her help, we might be able to successfully grow our own little flowers.

This is her getting frustrated that I wanted to take pictures of her present instead of getting down to business and planting something in it – you can see her face getting more and more miserable with every shot (geez, Momma!).

I love that even simple things like planting seeds feels like a new and exciting adventure to a three year old…she loved the idea that she was going to get to plant something in “mud”.

Now, the best part – getting our hands dirty!

A little water (hopefully, we’ll remember to do this on a daily basis so the plant will actually grow).

Dirt, sun, water and a great paint job – if I were a plant, this would be the life for me!

 


I love soup!  Any day, any time.  I seriously ate a bowl of shrimp bisque a friend offered me at 7:45 in the morning once (and it was fabulous!).  However, as the days warm up, I am well aware that people’s hot-food threshold will be reached as we all look for stuff to make for meals that won’t cause us to further crank up the air conditioner, so here’s my farewell to soup for the season post, featuring the BEST soupy meal I’ve had in a really long time!

My friend, Randy, has a passion – no, obsession – for French Onion Soup.  He’ll order it no matter where he is eating, looking for an awesome bowl.  It only makes sense that he perfect his own recipe and, after some badgering, he gave it to  me!  I love his take on the classic:

One rainy day last week was a perfect soup day:

 

…so after The Redhead and I made a dash to the grocery store (after playing in puddles), I followed his instructions and made the BEST French Onion Soup ever, just like Randy promised!!!

 

The recipe calls for four large onions of any type – Randy says that he has used Walla Walla onions, other large Spanish onions or even small organic onions from the Farmer’s Market.  I chose a mix of white and red onions – just the normal, grocery store variety – with a few shallots mixed in because I LOVE shallots. 

I also made some really easy croutons out of sourdough bread by just tearing the loaf into smallish pieces, tossing with melted butter, a little salt and pepper and toasting them in the oven at 350 degrees for about ten minutes – yum!

In my opinion, a good bowl of soup is lonely without an equally delicious sandwich, so I put together some toasted ham sandwiches with some fresh tomatoes, mozzarella and basil – aren’t ingredients this time of year so pretty?

I asked Randy if I could share his toiled-over recipe and he said definitely, so here you go if you want to rebel against the warming weather to recreate the magic in your kitchen!

Incidentally, I just found out that Randy has recently made a dream move to Maui!  I wish him luck and the time of his life! 

 


I think I’ve mentioned how excited I am that Spring is finally here – it is definitely my favorite season and it’s taken FOREVER for it to come to Minnesota, so I’m really grateful!  Along with Spring comes all kinds of fun stuff, like tree buds and green grass and Easter….and with Easter comes not-so-fun stuff like rouge strands of Easter basket “grass” that gets stuck in my vacuum and hoards of left over plastic eggs. 

The Redhead has approximately fourteen million of these plastic eggs strewn around the house, emptied of their sugary contents.  I threw away most of them but then a miracle happened and I saw this post  at Creativity in Progress: Brilliant!

I immediately heated up the hot glue gun and with a button, some beads, a sharpie and some random bits from my crafty left-overs, The Redhead had an absolutely adorable – and even personalized(!) – new little tea set!

She helped pick out some of the decorations – she especially liked the gold stars on her orange tea cup and then she played with them for an hour – they’ve quickly become one of her favorite play things!  She especially likes filling them up with Momma’s beads and serving them to us as “special drinks”.

 What a great way to re-use and repurpose junk I would have just tossed in the garbage can three months from now when I was sick of seeing them all over the house!  I’m tempted to use the other three million plastic eggs to make sets for all the little girls I know….