Monday, December 16, 2013


I finished Christmas present number 1 on schedule!  I really liked how it turned out.  At first, I wasn't sure about the yarn (I've been known to be a bit of a yarn snob), but it worked out in the end.  

I made a last minute button change decision.  The original choice was bright red, but this one was bigger and more sophisticated.  I don't regret the decision.  

I went to my local yarn shop to get yarn for some more of my projects and received some surprising deals!  I got enough yarn for two hats and a scarf, PLUS two vintage knitting books for under $20!  Yay!

The yarn I bought for the scarf reminds me of a candy cane.  When I work with it, I use my peppermint lotion, so when the recipient wears it, it will smell like a candy cane too!  

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

funky fresh bedroom

 I'm sick of my bedroom looking like a storage area.  I really want a space where I can relax, either in bed or on furniture.   My bedroom is certainly large enough to have at least two comfortable, separate spaces.  I want sophistication and hidden storage.  Oh yeah, did I mention I need it to be cheep?  I'm going to give myself an initial budget of $200.  I won't be able to do it all at once, but I'll keep track of my budget on here!  My goal is to get as much furniture/decor items secondhand or on sale as possible.  I already have a lot of what I need, so, that's a bonus.  First thing is going to be paint and re-arranging the furniture.  So, here's a quick sketch of what I have in mind (bear in mind that the drawings are not to scale...for example, the room is square!  But, you get the jist of it!):

I like the accent wall to the right of the room.  I'm going with greys on the walls because it's a classic color that goes with just about any decor.  I really like the idea of a grey and pink chevron rug...I hope I can find one.  Of course, I could always make one if I can't find any!  To separate the spaces, I originally had the idea to put a folding screen between them, but decided on a cube shelving unit for the storage.  
I already have a bed, desk, hope chest, bedside tables, a couch, and a bookshelf, so I don't think I'll have to spend to much on the furniture.  I bet I can get a good coffee table second hand!  I will post before pics eventually, but I want to wait until after stage one so you can compare!  

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Christmas is here...

Wow!  This year has gone by fast!  I'm not saying that I can't wait until it's over.  This year can, without a doubt, be considered the worst year of my life.  Those who know me know that I have been through considerable loss this year.  But, it's almost over, and on December 31st, the slate is wiped clean.  

So, instead of dwelling on my circumstances and things that can't be changed, I've issued myself an almost impossible challenge.  I want to start getting my etsy shop up and running, so I'm using this month to get used to utilizing my time to make as many handmade items as I possibly can.  So, the challenge is to make three scarves, two hats, and possibly a couple aprons by the 21st.  I'm really hoping that I surprise myself and I hit my goal so I can surpass it.  Wouldn't it be nice if I could start stocking my etsy?

Here is a sneak peek of project number 1:  

I can't tell you who it's for yet...for obvious reasons.  I decided to go with the Red Heart yarn because of the cheapness factor, but I'm not 100% on it yet.  It's a little on the scratchy side, and I don't care for the sheen cheep acrylic yarn has, but over all, it's nice.  In any event, if I really can't stand it, I can redo it because it's a very quick knit.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013


I was standing in the bathroom looking at myself in the mirror and realized that I had been staring at my reflection for a few minutes, but not actually seeing it.  The scene I was actually looking at was me standing at a fork in a road.  It was in the woods, the road was dirt, and there was an old fashioned wooden sign.  You know, the kind that have a point on one end with the destination written on it.  I had the thought that I need to get trained to do something, and fast.  The coffee shop is behind me, and my future is in front of me.  Do I turn left or right?  Do I make something of myself, or do I waste the talent that I was given?  I know that being stuck in a cubical or office somewhere is not exactly using my talents, but I do believe that it will be a stepping stone to allow me to be able to follow my dreams.

So, visions aside...I wanted to put out some positive energy into the universe...or at least my universe.  Every day I've been making sure to clean and tidy at least one small space.  Yesterday it was the dresser in my living room.  Tonight, it was my end table and couch.  I even vacuumed the carpet around the area!  So, here's the proof I've been cleaning: 



You can't tell in the picture, but I'm using my end table the way it was meant to be used.  The remote controls and my iPad are on the shelf between the drawer and the top, and things like lotion, paper pads, and various other random things are tucked quietly in the drawer.  I even vacuumed the couch off...I can't get the spots off the arm though.  I'm not really worried about it, though, because I'm getting a new couch by the end if the year.


Does anybody know what suddenly and unexpectedly being unemployed is good for?  Blogging, cleaning, and crafting!  Yeah!  There is only so many hours a day you can fill out applications.  And you definitely do NOT want to get stuck in that "I'm going to watch daytime television all day" trap.  You WILL find a job...even if it takes a while...but in the mean time, be productive.  You worked full time at the coffee shop until they sold it and you lost your didn't have time to clean, craft, or blog, and your apartment and creative consciousness suffered BIG time, didn't it.  Well, now you have time. No more excuses.  And, hey, why don't you do some sit-ups while you're at it?  
So here's what this unemployed girl has been up to:

About a week ago, our group of friends sent our dear welsh girlfriend home.  We spent the day shopping (this was before I knew I should have been hoarding my money) and I asked my friend over at eyeslifted to help me pick out a new project.  I only had a general idea of what I wanted.  I told her I wanted to make a hipster scarf.  A few minutes later she hands me a couple balls of Bernat Cotton-ish in Crimson Twine.  And, the scarf pattern on the label was PERFECT!  Even though I have been knitting for the better part of a decade I had never knit with such delicate yarn ('s knit on size 6 needles...).  I'm used to projects knit on needle size 10 or larger because of my knitters ADD.    But, I'm forcing myself to work on it.  I'll find myself falling into that daytime T.V. trap, so, I make myself knit while I'm watching.  BAM!  Productive.  And, just so you know I'm cleaning, here is a pic of my newly de-cluttered, dusted, and organized chest of drawers in my living room:

Until next time, my friends!  

Saturday, August 17, 2013

today's project

Today, I will be working on finishing up my set of crocheted flower coasters.  Then maybe I'll draw up packaging for them.  

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

veggie tacos

I had a burst of inspiration, or it what you will...point is, I was a highly motivated camper today.  The other day I made a very simple pasta salad, so I thought I would look for different pasta salad recipes.  While flipping through one of my many cookbooks, I came across a recipe for simple veggie tacos.  I did tweak it a little.  I've been wanting to experiment with mushrooms that weren't the typical white capped or canned.  The canned ones make me sick and the white ones smell HORRIBLE while they are cooking.  (I'm not a fan of mushrooms).  I've heard that portobellos and shiitakes add a meatier texture to vegetarian cuisine, so I thought I'd give it a shot.  So, this is what I did...

I went to the store with a budget of $30 (I also had to buy enough food for the next couple of days and gas for my car out of that $30).  

I peeled and diced the zucchini and onion (the recipe didn't call for me to peel the zucchini, but I really didn't feel like taking the time to get the wax coating off...this was, after all, supposed to be an easy meal!), and sliced the shiitakes into thin slices.

Next, I heated 1 Tbsp olive oil in the largest pan I had, added the chopped veggies and a bag of frozen corn, and sautéed them until the onions were soft.  Since I used a pot instead of a pan, I think it took longer than it normally would...but I had to use what I have.  

Once the veggies were ready, I added a can of black beans and 1/4 Cup canned salsa and heated that through.  

While the whole shibang was heating through, I warmed a couple tortillas and shredded some romaine lettuce.  

Then, as my final step, I put the tacos together.  I layered the lettuce, the mixture, some shredded cheese, and added a dab of sour cream, and voila!  Veggie tacos!!

UPDATE:  I made breakfast using the leftover filling from the tacos.  South of the border omelets!  (I really should have added some hot spices to change it up a little...but, I didn't think of it...)  Every time I make omelets, I whisk a special blend of garlic, basil, and some other spices and cheeses directly into the eggs.  Next time I make them I'll actually measure and share so they won't be so secret ;). 

Best breakfast ever!  Lunch will be the topping on a bed of spinach.  I'm poor...don't judge!  

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Latte Art

I've started practicing my latte art again....I'm VERY rusty!  This is not my best work, but at least it resembles a leaf...even if it's a dying leaf....

I want to practice every, today is day 1!!  Maybe, one day, I'll be good enough to compete!

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Losing weight

I started weight watchers last week.  My starting weight (on Monday, June 3) was 217.4, and on Monday June 10 it was 214!!  This photo was taken on Wednesday, June 12, so I may be down a little, but it's the closest thing to a before pic I have...besides, I don't think a couple pounds will make that big a difference, appearance wise!  I'm also working out, trying a few every once in a while I will update you on my progress!  

Thursday, May 2, 2013

enough is enough

I'm sick of living from paycheck to paycheck. I'm sick of wondering if I'll have enough money to eat, or pay rent, or car insurance. I'm also sick of not having health insurance when I need medical help. So, I'm resolving to make a change...well, several, in fact. I've already taken the first step and bought a car and car insurance for the very first time. Up until now, I've relied heavily on my parents generosity to get by. Thank you mom (Kristie Buehler) and Dave (Buehler) for supporting my ass for the last 30 years. I love you both!
The next few steps are going to take a considerable amount of time more. I want to get back in shape...not just because I'm trying to re-enlist, because that's not even a guarantee at this point, but because I want to feel and be healthy. I'm sick of being tired and achy all the time. I've started my container garden (which I will post pics of as soon as the seeds start budding) and I'm trying to walk 2 miles a day. I know that I won't always do that because I'm feeling tired or lazy, but I've set a minimum goal of 6 miles a week. Luckily, the grocery store is exactly 1 mile from my front door and I can get my shopping done while I'm out. Two birds.
The next step is to start saving money (to help pay for school...). My goal: save $5 from tips every day, and 10% of each paycheck for school. I'll use the rest of my tips (which is usually a considerable $15-$20) to buy my groceries for the evening and next morning. the bulk of my paycheck will go to car insurance, rent, and car payments. Anything left will go to a general savings account. I want a nice cushion in case something happens.
I will go to school next semester, so to help ease the hit on my bank account, I'm signing up for financial aide. Hopefully I'll qualify for something.
And finally, I'm going to really concentrate on getting my etsy shop up and running. Mrs. Wondra Vanian and I are going to keep each other on track with that (remember Wondra?). I also want to look for a few craft shows this summer. Any profit I make this summer will go to school things (tuition, books, parking, gas, food, etc.).
Well, I think that's a solid plan. Now, I'm going to be relying on my friends to help me make sure I'm on track with this!

Monday, February 4, 2013


I walk to work. I try to walk as often as I can as a matter of fact, but over the past month or so it has been bitter cold. By the time I get to my destination, my ears are red and sting horribly (this whole being outside in the winter thing is a new concept to me, so I'm learning what I need to be doing...). In any event, the weather has prompted me to make something that would cover my ears and keep me toasty and stylish at the same time. Here is my version of the blueleaf headband by Adrienne Krey (found on

Thursday, January 24, 2013

A Productive Year

So far, 2013 has been a hugely productive year...much more so than 2012 was. It's less than a month in, and already I've written and knit two patterns. I also have sketches of a few other ideas that I want to start on as soon as I'm finished putting the first two together!

In any event, the two patterns I wrote are both Aran pillows, updated to fit a modern living room. I used bold colors and large needles but with traditional Aran cables and moss stitch. Both pillows will be about 24"X24". The yarn is super soft and warm...perfect to cuddle into.