Tuesday, July 24, 2012

harvest: creamed peas on toast

make that "on baguette," because we didn't bother to toast the bread - we were too busy devouring this delicious concoction, which I made up on the spot to use up peas that had gone rather crazy while we were in Europe. We laughed that my friend who house sat is a total city girl - 5 feet from the deck, an organic garden is exploding with lettuce and yet there's a bag of discounted spring mix in the fridge? Maybe I'm just too lazy to go to the store; either way, we totally enjoyed the peas, which also seem to have gone untouched (though you never can tell this time of year - they start producing such crazy abundance, all at once!).

All I did here was shell peas (I had maybe 1.5 - 2 cups shelled), saute over medium heat in 1-2 Tbl. of butter, with salt and pepper to taste. I added a couple generous Tbl. of chopped marjoram (also from the garden) to give it a bit of depth and complexity, and as the peas started to cook through and soften, I smashed some of them with a fork. Just as the colour was turning from bright green to a slightly more muted/olive tone, I poured in maybe a quarter to a half-cup of half & half. I continued to saute until the liquid was almost entirely cooked off, then scooped the peas and sauce into a bowl, and we spooned it onto baguette slices.

Seriously, this was SO good! If you've still got peas (though I can't imagine anyone has still got peas coming on - suffice to say, the PacNW is still struggling to get up to 70 degrees Fahrenheit in the afternoon; I feel for all of you sweltering in 100-degree-heat!), or if you will have another round coming in the autumn, give this a go. Simple and delicious!

Monday, July 23, 2012


a particularly brilliant and special woman in my life is recovering from thyroid cancer. I sent her some pretty things to cover the scar while it heals. I hope she wears that scar like a badge of honour when this is done, though; she's a badass for figuring out that something was off so early on, and for having the grit to go in and get checked.

This woman is a survivor.

Friday, July 20, 2012

inspired: Nallik

I love Nallik's amazonite/quartz necklace (at left); I added it to a pinterest board months ago.Of course, at $169, it's way out of my price range. I recently finished (and mailed to a girlfriend) a simple amythest necklace inspired by Nallik's stone necklace, though I'd still like to go hunt up a pair of crystals, match them to each other, and achieve the colour-blocking effect of Nallik's original.

The top of the necklace is just a brass plate, shaped to fit the amythest crystal and adhered with an epoxy made by gorilla glue. A brass chain (Nallik's is gold-plated) and simple clasp finish off the look. I used a 24" long chain for mine.

Simple, but so pretty! I need to make more of these for my girlfriends. =)

Wednesday, July 11, 2012


hello, hello!

it's been a bit quiet around here, I know. After the school year ended, we threw our annual midsommar party (pictures forthcoming when the friend who took them posts me ... it might be a while), and then we packed our things and left for Europe!

I was at a conference in Paris giving a paper on McQueen at the Sorbonne last week, as part of a panel on fashion and exoticism. The rest of the time, my husband and I walked around Paris a lot. We also made it up to Giverny - this is the church near Claude Monet's home where he is buried. Rue Claude Monet is truly beautiful - so many flowers, just leading up to his house. I definitely appreciate hollyhocks in a new way now, and plan to plant an even wilder, more impressionistic garden next year.

We spent this week in Granada, Spain, and return on Friday. I've got some lovely new necklaces to show you that I had almost finished when we left. I hear it's warm in Seattle - nowhere near as warm as southern Spain, but then again, in Seattle, you have humidity. So, between the heat and the jet-lag, I think Saturday will be a perfect day to finish those necklaces and post you some pictures. Maybe even some pictures from our trip?

I've also started a big alabama chanin project: a beaded reverse-appliqued dress. I'm making it out of wool jersey (lined with a softer rayon jersey) for winter. I can post pictures of the progress, but this one's going to take a while to finish. More on that in the months to come.

hope your summer's off to a fantastic start! Things will be picking up here with the usual berrying and etc. once I'm back!