Friday, December 31, 2010


The most beautiful sunset I've ever seen, in Ios, Greece

I'm not normally one for making New Years resolutions. But earlier this month my sweetie told me that his resolution would be to become more of a morning person. Being the half that wakes up around 6:30, bright-eyed and bushy tailed every morning, I told him that I was excited for it, and that I would need it in writing. It also prompted me to think about what sort of positive changes I would like to make for myself.

After contemplating the various things that I would like to change or improve in 2011, I came up with one consistent theme: that I need to be more assertive.

While I am a firm believer that my positive attitude and generous use of my smile have greatly attributed to my success thus far in life, I'm also coming to the realization that I could benefit from behaving more confidently.

I believe this is going to get me a lot further, for example, in the workplace. In my current position, I've noticed that the squeaky wheel gets the grease. The employees that get the best shifts, most hours, etc., aren't necessarily the best at their jobs. They're the ones that speak up when they don't get those things, rather than cower and hope it works out better next time like I far too often do.

I could go on and on about how being a more assertive person in 2011 is going to totally rock my world, but really, this just isn't that sort of blog. I'm a visual artist, not a writer.

So, CHEERS, friends!!! Happy 2011! Here's to us having fun and beautifully manifested new year!

Tuesday, December 28, 2010


We got to visit Georgia.

We went on a Sunday and not a dang thing was open.

So we went back to Florida. The "sunshine state". Where just a few hours earlier it had been snowing. For real.

Friday, December 24, 2010


Today my sweetheart and I are flying to Northern Florida to visit his family for Christmas. With all the packing and cleaning and beer bottling (I've finally found someone whose procrastination exceeds my own), we had a very busy night last night. We got about 3 hours of sleep before our 6:20 AM flight.

One of us sleeps like a baby on planes. One of us doesn't.

Hehe. Good thing he never reads this blog. But then again, neither does anyone else.

Oh wait, Hi Mom!!! And Dad!!!


Thanks to Delta's free wifi during the holidays (YAY!!!) I've been doing lots of internet browsing and found some pretty rad stuff. I think you'll like it:

Hippies, we already knew that 'Shrooms Sent Santa and his Reindeer Flying.

I've always been impressed with people who are ambitious enough to do a one-a-day project. This guy makes and wears one mask a day.

Want to make a statement with your gingerbread house? How about a gingerbread crackhouse? Or homeless dwelling?

And while we feel grateful most of the time, sometimes you've just gotta bitch about a bad Christmas gift.

Oh! And I almost forgot! You MUST MUST MUST check out the new show on IFC, Portlandia. It starts January 21st... and its gonna be AWESOME!!!

Thursday, December 23, 2010


I'm exhausted. I made most of my Christmas gifts this year.


Next year I'm going to the mall.

Kidding. I would never go to the mall.

I've cleaned out all the old beer bottles to get them ready for a nice 'n hoppy, homebrewed pale ale.

I bottled vanilla extract. Its a project I started about 3 months ago.

My very favorite homemade gift: vanilla bean marshmallows!

They go perfectly with the homemade graham crackers.

It all gets tied up with ribbons and bows... or how about hemp twine? Thats how the hippies do it.

Monday, December 20, 2010


You know who's cute? My friends Javier and Harmony.

They're so freaking adorable. I just want to eat them up. They're getting married too. Which is totally rad because they're letting me design their invitations.

They recently had their engagement photos taken by Kimi Kolba. She does some very beautiful work. When I look at it, I feel giddy.

I took some of those photos and I used them to make save-the-dates. I designed them to be 4x6 postcards. There's nothing better than getting a postcard in the mail. Especially when it has these two lovebirds on the front.

Saturday, December 18, 2010


The weather was pretty fantastic yesterday. That doesn't happen much in Portland in December. And by fantastic I mean sun. I am not at all referring to the high winds or low temperature.

So I dusted off my road bike and pumped up the tires.

And took off down the Springwater Corridor. But it was cold. And there was a strong headwind. And I'm out of shape. So I didn't last long.

But it was fun. Word.

Friday, December 17, 2010


I had an interview yesterday.

For a job that I really want.

I prepared.

I did lots of research about the company. I reviewed typical interview questions. I dusted off my portfolio. I put on some nice slacks and a pretty sport coat. I washed and straightened my hair and put on my hipster glasses.

I took the bus downtown. I met with a really awesome woman that knows way more about graphic design and being awesome than I could ever hope to know.

And then I opened my mouth.

I don't know what's wrong with me. I am so awkward.

I'm not saying it went poorly. In fact I think (and hope) that it went really really well. But I'm not exactly the best speaker. Especially when I'm nervous.

And I can't help but imagine that perhaps she would have been just a bit more impressed with me if I'd brought her these cookies. They're really good cookies. Maybe I would have made a really good impression. I would have explained to her that I would be bringing in baked goods like these all the time. Whether my coworkers liked it or not. Just because I think my coworkers are so rad.

These cookies are tasty because they're sweet and salty...

...and crunchy!!! Thanks to some value corn flakes.

Sweet, salty, crunchy, awesome!

Spanish Peanut Cookies

  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • 1 cup flaked coconut
  • 1 cup salted peanuts
  • 1/2 cup corn flakes, finely crushed
For Icing:
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 tablespoon warm water
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
Preheat oven to 350.
Cream the butter and sugar.
Add egg and beat well.
In a separate bowl, combine the flour, baking powder and baking soda.
Add the flour mixture to the butter and blend.
Add the remaining dry ingredients, combining well after each one.
Drop batter by the rounded spoonful onto a cookie sheet.
Bake for 12-15 minutes. Allow to cool.
Beat together icing ingredients, and drizzle over cookies.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010


Hi! I've missed you! Its been waaaay too long. I'm sorry.

I've been busy.
Damaging UHaul trucks, then shelling out wads of money to have them fixed. Ugh.
Returning the keys to my apartment.
Staring at the piles of boxes around the house that need to be unpacked.

If your kitchen looked like this, you wouldn't spend much time in there either.

So, bear with me. I promise, I have lots of very exciting things to post about in the coming days. Not more pictures of moving boxes and disgusting kitchens. Promise.

Friday, December 10, 2010


Things are looking a teeny bit brighter around here.



I know, not really a big deal; it's still a very 1970s kitchen. But it still makes oh so much of a difference in the kitchen.

It even inspired me to make some whole wheat banana bread.

Unfortunately, the banana bread is dry and flavorless, but at least the house smells great. And I have more light in my kitchen.

Thursday, December 9, 2010


This last weekend we brewed another batch of beer: another Honey Porter because the last one was that good! And this weekend, we'll be making a pale ale.

I decided that its about time I designed some labels for our beer. So I began the process today by doing some research. The following are favorites, courtesy of the Dieline.

Austin Beerworks label is simple, but both effective and attractive.

This label is for a homemade brew. Fuck yeah for homemade brew!

I love love love these labels! The bike, the vintage type, and the soft colors. Beautiful! And they just happen to be designed by HUB, one of my favorite local design firms.

These labels for Bard's Beer are charming!

And... my favorite: Pistonhead with their Dia de los Muertos skulls. Makes me want a beer with my tattoo.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010


Lets pretend for a second.

The weather is sunny and warm. There are flowers blooming, and leaves on the trees. The day light lasts later than 4:00. And you've got a sweet adirondack chair and lemonade for taking it all in.

I guess thats the mindset I was in when I made these cupcakes. Nevermind that I was caught out in a nasty rain and wind storm yesterday on my bike for about an hour. These cupcakes make it allllll better.

Mini Lavender Lemon Cupcakes
  • 1 cup white flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons dried lavender blossoms, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon lemon zest
  • 1/2 cup low-fat buttermilk
For icing
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 5 teaspoons lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • fresh lavender buds to garnish
Preheat oven to 350.
Line mini cupcake liners.
In a small bowl, whisk together flour, lavender, baking powder and salt. Set aside.
In a medium bowl, beat butter and sugar with an electric mixer for about 3 minutes, until light and fluffy.
Beat in egg, lemon juice, and zest.
Beat in 1/3 flour mixture, then half the buttermilk, then 1/3 flour mixture, then remaining 1/2 buttermilk, followed by remaining 1/3 flour mixture.
Fill cupcake liners about 2/3 full.
Bake for about 15 minutes.
Allow to cool completely.
To make icing, stir confectioner's sugar and lemon juice until smooth.
Stir in zest.
Drizzle over cupcakes and garnish with lavender.

Sunday, December 5, 2010


I finished up the ornaments that were created at craft night a couple weeks ago. Its too bad the photo doesn't do justice to the glitter I sprayed all over them.

Friday, December 3, 2010


These cookies. Oh man. They are the best. The very very best. They have a ridiculous amount of chocolate in them, as well as espresso, so they are extra rich. And satisfying. It really only takes one of these cookies to get your chocolate fix for the day. Yeah, they're that good.

But I'm just a little embarrassed. You see, I got this recipe when I was about 16. From CosmoGirl (which, sadly, has far more content to it than regular Cosmo). And even though it's been one of my favorite cookie recipes ever since, I'm always just a little embarrassed to pull out a recipe card that came from a page with the quote "I'd rather eat these cookies than go on a date - seriously!"


Alas, they are amazing cookies. Truly a great recipe from quite an unexpected source. They're chewy, rich, and delicious. Make them.

Chocolate Chip Espresso Cookies
adapted from *ahem* CosmoGirl

  • 1/4 cup all purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 1/2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 eggs
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground espresso beans
In a small bowl, combine flour, baking powder and salt and set aside.
Create a double boiler and melt 1 3/4 cups of the chocolate chips and all of the butter in it, stirring constantly until it melts.
In a large bowl, whisk the eggs and sugar together until light and fluffy.
Stir in espresso, then chocolate mixture, then let cool.
Stir in flour mixture and remaining 3/4 cup chocolate chips.
Put bowl in the fridge for 20 minutes to allow dough to firm up
Make tablespoon-sized balls and place on a lined cookie sheet.
Put cookie sheet in the freezer and leave for a few hours.
Preheat oven to 375.
Don't thaw dough.
Bake for 7-10 minutes.
Cookies will be doughy on the inside, crisp on the outside.
Enjoy with a giant glass of milk.

Thursday, December 2, 2010


Inspired by craft night that I'm hosting tonight, and the super duper rad prints by a local printmaker that I just discovered, I thought I would spread the word about the Crafty Wonderland Super Colossal Holiday Sale!

Shopping date! Lets go!

Tuesday, November 30, 2010


It's official. I'm moving!

I had to take a few shots of my apartment the other day for creating a listing on craigslist to find a new tenant, and I decided to snap a few extra shots.

A few favorite things about my space here: the soothing color I painted the walls (finally, I get to paint my walls!), my overpriced Anthropologie bedding, and all the windows.

I did so much baking here. And dinner dates with friends and family. Lots of good food filled with lots of love. You were witness to that.

This is my favorite window. It overlooks NW 23rd. This window provided me with ample light to bake, and then photograph. My plants liked it too. I'll miss this window.

I hung my own art in this apartment, and I was surprised how much I liked it.

On most afternoons you could find me in this chair, plugging away at my computer. Usually I was wrapped in this blanket and munching on homemade popcorn. I eat a lot of popcorn.

Goodbye sweet apartment. On to my next chapter.

Sunday, November 28, 2010


Peanut Butter Oatmeal Cookies. So easy. So delicious.

Just some butter and peanut butter...

...+ sugar, eggs and vanilla...

...then oats, flour, salt and baking soda...

...for a simple little cookie.

Peanut Butter Oatmeal Cookies

1/2 cup Butter
1/2 cup Peanut Butter
2/3 cup Brown Sugar
1 Egg
1/2 teaspoon Vanilla
1 cup Oats
2/3 cup Whole Wheat Flour
2/3 teaspoons Baking Soda
1/3 teaspoon Salt

Cream the butter and peanut butter.
Then mix in the sugar, egg and vanilla.
In a separate bowl stir together the oats, flour, baking soda and salt.
Pour the dry ingredients into the wet and mix.
Drop by the spoonfuls onto a cookie sheet and bake at 350 for about 12 minutes.

Saturday, November 27, 2010


What are you doing this Saturday evening? Listening to Justin Timberlake while you pay bills, geek out catching up on blogs and some small graphic design projects?... Wow. I thought I was the only one that cool.

But seriously, with the exception of Justin Timberlake, I'm totally becoming an old lady. The highlight of my week: designing these Winter Warmers drink list. Which isn't even really exciting at all. Unless you're the one drinking them.

Thursday, November 25, 2010


Happy Thanksgiving!

This, friends, is my favorite holiday. Oh, the gluttony! Oh, the relaxation! Really, is there anything better than a whole day dedicated to making and consuming food? Nope.

Thanksgiving is such a great excuse to make all those wonderful recipes that you dream about making, but never seem to have the time or coordination to pull off. Or maybe just something so calorie dense that you can really only excuse it on these special occasions. I specifically remember making about a gallon of the richest, most artery clogging cheese sauce you could imagine. We poured it on everything.

This year, Cory will be smoking a pork loin. We will be making a Salt-Baked Salmon (btw, preparing the salmon in this way made some of the moistest and best salmon I have ever had). I am preparing Beet Wellingtons. And for sides I will also make my classic Mushroom Gravy and a Cranberry Sauce with Dried Figs.

And... Pumpkin Pie!

And I'll admit it. I cheated a teensy bit and used a prepared pie crust. This one's made out of spelt.

Pumpkin and buttermilk. I was tempted to use eggnog instead, just to make it a little extra calorie dense. This is Thanksgiving, after all.

Roasted Pumpkin Pie
Adapted from Mix

  • Premade pie shell (9-9 1/2 in)
  • 1 1/2 cups Roasted Pumpkin
  • 1 cup Buttermilk
  • 3 Large Egg Yolks
  • 1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
  • 2 tablespoons Flour
  • 1 teaspoon Cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon Ground Nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon Ground Cloves
  • 1/4 teaspoon Baking Soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon Salt
  • 1/2 cup Granulated Sugar
  • 1/2 cup Brown Sugar
Preheat the oven to 400.
Defrost the frozen pie shell for 10 minutes, then prick it all over with a fork.
Bake the shell for 10 minutes, gently pricking it if it puffs up.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the pumpkin puree, buttermilk, egg yolks and vanilla.
In a large bowl, stir together the remaining dry ingredients.
Add the wet mixture to the dry and whisk to combine.
Pour into the pre-baked pie.
Place the pie on a rimmed baking sheet.
Bake for 10 minutes at 400.
Reduce temperature to 350 and continue to bake for 45-60 minutes, or until a knife inserted an inch from center comes out clean.
Let cool, then enjoy with a bit of whipped cream, family and friends.