Blue Jay.

A little piece from my sketchbook. I'm starting to work out ideas + compositions for a show I will be having at the Lee Rd. Phoenix in July. I'm really excited about it. I like having a deadline involved with my personal work so that I don't let things sit unfinished for months and years. 


Charity Shop Challenge: February.

We got another dumping of snow today. About 8 inches or so. Monday it's supposed to be 50 degrees again. So, considering that spring could be just around the corner (wishful thinking?) I decided to feature two of my all time favorite cold weather appropriate thrift store finds for this month's Charity Shop Challenge. Because hopefully, I won't be able to wear them much longer.

The first item is the yellow wool plaid skirt. I acquired this skirt sometime around my first year of college at Unique Thrift. You can't try anything on at Unique, and I was super disappointed when I got home with my purchase only to find out that I couldn't actually button the skirt that I had fallen in love with. So I did a little creative editing and cut out the waistband, replacing it with some elastic. Worked out pretty well in the end. 

The second item is the boots. Ah, the boots. Andrew calls them my reindeer feet. Furry outsides, furry insides, awesome red trim. I saw a pair similar to this on Etsy and after seeing them I couldn't get them out of my head. But the seller wanted $70, and there was no way I was going to pay $70 for a pair of boots, let alone a pair I couldn't try on before buying. And then something magical happened...I had stopped at Unique to take advantage of it's 50% off Monday sale. At the time I was gathering fabric to make rugs for Christmas gifts but my eyes happened to wander over to the shoes and I saw them...the boots.  Not only were they practically unworn, but they fit perfectly, and at 50% off $4.99 I felt like I was stealing them. That was a good day. 

The "Snowland" picture is the tag from inside the boots. So great. 


A new image.

Well, I finally got around to giving the blog a bit of a facelift. When I first started this I didn't put a whole lot of thought or personality into the design, but now that I've been here for almost 5 years (and learned a thing or two about how the blogger design features work) I figured it was about time to change that. So, I set to work with some watercolors, a pencil, and my scanner and now I have this.


PK: moonlight.

I just sent off the files for a new shirt for the band PK. I worked with them a couple of years ago on an another design, it's always nice when clients come back to us and want more. Below is the new design that will be printed soon on American Apparel Heather Forest.

If you're interested, PK is currently giving away their album Into the Roaring for free on their website. They're also in the running to get their band on the cover of Rolling Stone, so give them a little support if you're so inclined. 

Road trip to St. Louis.

What's the best thing that you can do with two vacation days that you're forced to take by the end of the month? Go on a road trip to visit far away friends of course. And that's exactly what we did. Our first 5 hours of driving took us to Indianapolis where we spent the night with my good friend Kevin and his girlfriend Bryanne. They were awesome enough to let us stay with them on a bit of short notice and also recorded the NBC Thursday night lineup for us. In the morning we grabbed some beautiful breakfast at Zest (seriously, "beautiful fruit" was on the menu) and were on our way to St. Louis. 
It was really, really wonderful to soak up some sunshine and enjoy temperatures that didn't require a winter jacket.
Visits with our friends Ryan and Lindsay have been too few and far between since they moved to St. Louis so we were excited to be able to spend the weekend with them. We finally got to see their house and also got to discover a city that we'd never been to before.
We played our favorite, Settlers of Catan, classy style with strawberry martinis. 
Took a walk around a sculpture park.

Visited the zoo. 

And the arch.
We had a lot of great food over the weekend. Lindsay made some really awesome pork tenderloin that I'm looking forward to trying out myself. We got BBQ at Pappy's. I'm not a huge BBQ fan, but it was super good. And my favorite of the weekend, discovering the Fountain on Locust. Entirely homemade amazing ice cream treats and amazing art deco decor. If it were in Cleveland I'd probably be there at least once a week. 

We had a really fun weekend (except for Andrew being sick nearly the entire time). It's been a while since we've spent that much time with friends and I miss it a lot. The drive home seemed to take forever. We had rain the whole drive until Columbus when we were met by a sudden snow storm followed by snowy unplowed highways the rest of the way home. We spent some time in the car shooting videos of the rain on the windows. I will have to clip it together sometime and share. 



Airplanes is just perfect. Thanks NPR.
(Full screen this!)

Back in the swing.

We have returned from our trip to the "Gateway to the West". Cleveland is covered in sparkling ice and the temperature is well below comfortable. Back to work. 


A mostly frozen Lake Erie.

It was pretty easy to convince Andrew that today would be a good day to go check out the frozen lake since it was 45 degrees out. I absolutely love how 45 degrees can feel so good after weeks of freezing cold. Not quite warm enough for Polaroid film though, it took a while to develop into more realistic colors...although a purple landscape is sort of lovely. 


More image love from The Selby.

Those fish scale tiles and that clay boat lamp make me happy. I'm inspired by the crewel work on that rocking chair. Our cats have turned the edge of our good sofa into a scratching post and it makes me want to scream...but maybe I can embroider over top of the mess. It's a thought. 

(All images from: http://www.theselby.com/)


Black Bean Enchiladas.

Of course I would have a cookbook from my most favorite TV show. Ever. Don't you?

We made Black Bean Enchiladas tonight. The recipe called for ground caribou but since we didn't exactly have any of that in our freezer we opted for ground beef. Being our first time making enchiladas, we were very happy with the results. They tasted great and we only had one minor hitch, some parts of the tortillas got stuck to the bottom of the dish. I was pretty nervous about cooking with a jalapeno since I don't really care for super spicy food and I wasn't sure how hot it was going to turn out. It was perfect. Or at least it was for me. I think this will end up being made in our kitchen again. 

This is what Mrs. Noanuk cooked for Dr. Fleischman when he finished his fast before being inducted into our tribe. It's Mexican, except for the caribou. You can use ground chuck instead and, you know, it might even be better. Caribou is like all wild meat - almost too lean. Tasty, though. 

Dr. Fleischman doesn't really do anything with the tribe. But I feel good knowing he's an honorary member. 

(From the Northern Exposure Cookbook.)


Local Natives - Take Away Show.

I've been obsessed with this band again lately. I need more of them in my life. Another album please?
(This recording is perfect for the headphones.)


From the closet.

I got a lot of compliments on my color palette today. 

(EDIT: I just found out about Jen's Charity Shop Challenge and since I do a lot of my shopping at second hand stores I thought I would participate. Conveniently, the blouse in the photo above is from a resale shop (it cost me a whole $3!) so it will be my first submission. The Flickr group can be found here: http://www.flickr.com/groups/charityshopchallenge/)

Google submarine.

I love that the Google homepage is a working submarine today. Complete with narwhals and jellyfish. Perfect. 


Bowie in a bowtie.

I think he liked it. 


Currently reading, just read.

A while ago a good friend of mine recommended that I read Through Painted Deserts by Donald Miller. I remember that being during my 5th year of college when I was completing my thesis. I was working in my studio from 8am to 2am so, needless to say, I wasn't doing much reading at that time. Fast forward to just before Christmas, I find the book in the picked over remains of a bookstore's going out of business sale and I'm pleasantly surprised. I accumulated several other books around the same time, but Through Painted Deserts was the book I decided to start off the new year with. I'm so glad I did. 

"The seasons remind me that I must keep changing, and I want to change because it is God's way."

There are several times in the year that I feel the urge to reinvent myself. The beginning of the year, the spring, the fall. There's something about the seasons that bring that out in me, especially the spring. This sentence really called out to me when I read it. 

"I want to keep my soul fertile for the changes, so things keep getting born in me, so things keep dying when it is time for things to die. I want to keep walking away from the person I was a moment ago, because a mind was made to figure things out, not to read the same page recurrently."

The book is a memoir about Donald Miller's road trip from Texas to Oregon in an old Volkswagen Van. He and his friend Paul experience the country without the distractions of everyday life, with barely enough money to reach their destination, and Donald continues to question "why?". They discover what's really important in life, and what it's like to desire only the simple things. It made me crave a life without anything holding me down. Sometimes I really feel like if I had the opportunity to just get up and leave I would. Working odd jobs anywhere just to experience all this life has to offer. I have a love/hate relationship with books like this for that very reason. I loved this book. There isn't much else to say. 

"You're a pretty good person, you know. God made a whole beautiful earth and decided to put you in it, to experience all of this beauty. You can't do that watching television all the time." 


This week I started Under the Tuscan Sun by Frances Mayes. I read about half of one of her books last year but lost interest in it for various reasons. I'm only a few chapters in, but finding myself much more interested in this one. A story about buying an abandoned home in Tuscany...sigh. 

(The books are sitting on the bench we are working on...consider it a little sneak peak.)