Thursday, July 29, 2010

Paper Canning

There has been a little bit of studio organization going on around here. And I thought I'd share a little project I did earlier this week.

Meet my old cans. Aren't they cute?

The paper I used was printed from the sidebar of this lovely artist's blog. You can certainly use scrapbook paper, but this meant that I didn't have to leave the house. Which was a big thumbs-up.

After cutting the paper to sit comfortably outside of the can, secure one side with a little bit of tape.

And again.

What? Finished, already? See, I told you it was a little project!

The group shot. I think that if I knew exactly what was going to be in each can, I'd get some cute sticky labels and put them on the cans. But I don't know yet. So for now, it will be a guessing game every time I'm looking for one of my treasures. I'm going to use them for things like tiny fabric scraps, buttons, bobbins, embroidery floss, candy.. ya know, studio stuff.

The little hyacinth can is already in use as a pencil cup. For holding pink pencils.

For a pink flower that's in the works. How very convenient.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Summer Staple

I am very pro-popsicle. Very. Because I am definitely a pansy in the summer heat. I wilt. And the only thing that seems to perk me up is a nice cool treat. And ice cream is great. But a girl can only eat so much of it before she needs to go out and buy some stretchy pants. Because, ya know....fat.

So these are my new summer staple. Fruit smoothie popsicles. The recipe is pretty complicated, so make sure you pay attention.

First of all, you need a delicious tasting juice. I like Naked juice because it's very thick and freezes delightfully.

Second, you pour it into your popsicle mold. And then you twiddle your thumbs for 4 hours while it freezes.

Lastly, you remove your frozen popsicle from said mold. And you hold it in your hand, anticipating the chilled thrill that awaits you.


Oh, did I say that the recipe was complicated? I meant that it was easy. Very easy.

Monday, July 26, 2010

I love the Mountains...

...and I feel like that's all I've been blogging about lately. But summer in the mountains is really quite short, and oh so lovely. So I can't help myself.

And if I keep bringing you views like this one, you can't possibly be mad, right?

:: photos by Evan ::

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Please put on your Birkenstocks and Tie-dye shirt before reading this post

Because I'm about to tell you about some hippie cookies. And you're gonna want to make them. I promise.

I don't think it's any secret that I have a couple of sweet teeth hanging out in my mouth. And that I like to bake. And that I usually bake sweet things. So when I can combine a little health with my sweets, I am one happy girl.

I found the recipe for these little gems in Barbara Kingsolver's Animal, Vegetable, Miracle (which is just lovely, by the way). And I haven't been able to stop making them. For reals.

I've made a couple of alterations over the past year, and this time I added some hulled hemp seeds. Because they are tasty. And so very good for you. It turned out to be a good decision. Just sayin'.

And while these cookies certainly won't win any beauty contests, they are sooooo good. And very humble.

Zucchini Cookies
from Barbara Kingsolver

1 egg
1/2 c. butter
1/2 c. brown sugar
1/3 c. honey
1 T. vanilla
1 c. white flour
1 c. wheat flour (Holly note: I usually use 2 cups wheat flour and omit the white flour. It's just as delicious.)
1/2 t. baking soda
1/4 t. salt
1/4 t. cinnamon
1/4 t. nutmeg
(Holly addition: 4 T. hulled hemp seeds)
1 c. shredded zucchini
1 c. dark chocolate chips

Combine the wet ingredients, excluding zucchini, and mix well. Add dry ingredients. Mix in zucchini and then the chocolate chips.

Bake at 350 degrees for 12-15 minutes.


And now we're off to the mountains again. Again! These cookies will be coming along too.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Summer Memories

Last summer we lived in a farmhouse in New Mexico. It was pretty awesome. And the best part? Included with the house were 3 funny cats.

From left to right: Stumpy, Bugsy, and Creepy.

This is maybe my favorite picture of the summer. It was soooo hot that week. The pansies died, the kitties slept, and I ate 700 popsicles.

That's all. I was just missing those kitties. And I can't promise that I won't be getting one soon. Sorry mom.

p.s. Thanks for the guest post support. Isn't Evan great???

Monday, July 19, 2010

Special Guest Report by Evan

After months of begging, I have finally been allowed to post a special guest report. This blog is pretty cool, but it has always been missing one thing: the mind of an engineer. So I'm going to make this is as efficient as possible. It's all about numbers, people. I heart math.

Destination: Silver Run Peak, Absaroka-Beartooth Wilderness, Montana

Depart Billings: 6:20 am
Depart Trailhead: 7:45 am, Elev. 7,642 ft
Summit: 3:00 pm, Elev. 12,500 ft
Arrive Trailhead: 8:50 pm
Arrive Billings: 10:30 pm
Door-step to Door-step: 16 hrs 10 min

Total Hiking Time: 13 hrs 5 min
Total Elevation Gain: 4,858 ft
Total Distance: 18.1 miles

Elk: 50+
Mountain Goats: 18
Moose: 3 (1 Bull, 2 ladies)
Rainbows: 2
Alpine Flowers: TMTC (too many to count)
Victory Dance: 1


Evan: 2 (legs)
Holly: 3 (legs, arm)

Mosquito Bites:
Evan: 34+ (some are hidden beneath the sunburn)
Holly: 0 (she needs to be studied by science)

Mental Meltdowns:
Evan: 1 (cause: lots of mosquitoes, yet no repellent)
Holly: 5 (cause: Evan acting like a high school football coach, "Pick those knees up!")

Blisters: 0
People Seen on Trail: 4
Spiders: TMTC

Snowstorms: 1
Rain/Thunderstorms: 3
Hailstorms: 1

And that pretty much sums it up. Thanks for the love.


Tuesday, July 13, 2010

It's a Done Deal.

Dresser project 2010 came to a close this afternoon.

This was the little print that was holding up the whole party. It came all the way from Hong Kong (because it was the most perfectly lovely shade of blue. don't you agree?), and it only took three and a half weeks to get here. Patience. I loved the story behind this famous saying. It was originally a propaganda poster commissioned during WWII as assurance from King George VI that all necessary measures were being taken to protect the people, so they need not panic. I thought it was a really nice message, and just as important to remember today. Important enough to put a really large reproduction of it on our dresser. oh boy. But it's just a good reminder for me to 'carry on' whenever I'm feeling a little fussy about something.

This is little Miss Ivy. She is a real sweet gal.

I really like how things turned out. And as Evan pointed out the other night, we have a little garden growing on our dresser. And I think that's a very good thing. Because gardens are nice.

And I'm really sorry for all the home decor talk. It had to happen. I just hope it wasn't half as bad as any of these.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Weekend Report

* marsh marigold

:: photos by Evan ::

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Dressing Up

Right before we moved here we purchased a dresser. It was a very exciting day for me and for our clothes. Ya see, we had been living sans dresser for almost 3 years. Unless you count the mini dresser that my Grandpa built for my Dad when he was a baby, which had no handles because they had all been pulled out long ago. I don't count that. And so it was a good day.

And since it had been so long, I had forgotten what to do with a dresser. What do you put on it? Should I buy a big mirror for over the top? Start collecting porcelin dolls and displaying them atop the dresser? I didn't know.

And so everytime I passed by it, I closed my eyes and pretended it wasn't there. Rude. I know.

But now I have mustered up some courage (and inspiration), and have decided to conquer dresser project 2010.

The first step was to sew a runner.

I dug through my 'special scraps' and recovered some Anna Maria fabric that needed a home.

After some quick log cabins, I made the sashing with some dark teal linen. We call this color 'Holly Blue' at our house. Because I love it.

And then, because I wanted to watch the World Cup and I couldn't bring my sewing machine on the couch, I hand stitched around the squares.

Which is the very opposite of lazy. Or something. And so now I have a runner. And I can't wait to show you what happens next! (but I will wait, because not everything is here yet ;)

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

'Tis the season

This weekend will kick off backpacking season 2010 at our house. Evan has done his part already: he planned the trip, bought a new tent (much lighter, he assures me), and demanded some delicious food. He is so demanding.

Just kidding.

He actually doesn't care about food. But I do. Quite a bit. And so this week I've been playing in the kitchen (I love you kitchen!), and have come up with some new additions to our backcountry repertoire.

A few years ago I read that you can dehydrate smoothies and then rehydrate them while you're on the trail. Amazing? Yes. So I blended up our favorite smoothie (equal parts vanilla yogurt, milk, and fruit--usually strawberries), lined the tray with parchment paper, and pressed the 'on' button. So strenuous. I can hardly wait to fill a bottle with cool mountain water and smoothie chips and sip away. (And if I can't wait, the dried smoothie is really good by itself--it tastes like strawberry creamsavers :)

Granola. This recipe came from Evan's sister Anna, and it is so simple and so delicious. Probably because it has coconut in it. Coconut = Awesome.

Oh, did you want the recipe? I thought you might.

Naked Granola

dry ingredients:
3 c. rolled oats
1 c. raw natural/sweetened coconut flakes
1 t. cinnamon
1/4 t. salt

liquid ingredients:
1/3 c. honey
1/4 c. very hot water
1/4 c. canola oil
1 t. vanilla

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking tray with parchment paper. In a bowl, combine dry ingredients and mix. In a separate bowl, combine the liquid ingredients and stir until honey is dissolved. Pour over the dry ingredients and toss together. Spread on baking sheet in a thin layer. Bake 15 minutes and stir. Bake another 15 and stir again. Continue baking in 10 minutes increments until granola is browned to desired degree. Let cool 20 minutes.


Sunday, July 4, 2010

Kitchen yearnings

Whew. I'm back.

And while I was away, I really missed my kitchen and really really missed cooking. Is that normal?

I think that I mostly just missed being able to assemble a few fresh ingredients and call it dinner.

So guess what happened ten seconds after I walked in the door?

A salad was born.

Asian Noodle Salad
from the Pioneer Woman

Salad Ingredients:
1 package linguine noodles, cooked, rinsed and cooled
1/2 head sliced napa cabbage
1/2 head purple cabbage
1/2 bunch baby spinach
1 whole red pepper, thinly sliced
1 whole orange pepper, thinly sliced
1 bag bean sprouts (also called mung bean sprouts)
chopped cilantro, up to one bunch
toasted cashews

Dressing ingredients:
1 whole lime, juiced
8 T. olive oil
8 T. soy sauce
2 T. sesame oil
1/3 c. brown sugar
3 T. fresh ginger
2 whole jalapenos chopped
chopped cilantro

Preparation instructions:
Mix salad ingredients together. Whisk dressing ingredients together and pour over salad. Mix with tongs or hands and serve on a platter. Dressing keeps for up to three days before serving.

Serve with a swirly baguette.

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