Welcome to my blog!!! This is Miss Roxydog. Roxydog will grace many of my pictures. She is incredibly spoiled and highly intelligent. I guess I'm biased...she is my furbaby.

Come visit my etsy store!

Friday, January 7, 2011

Gardening for the New Year

Happy 2011!  So it's been a while since I've posted anything and I could give a bunch of excuses but I'm chalking it up to end of the year madness.  I'm sure you know what I'm talking about!  I am super excited to get back into the swing of things and today, I wanted to share with you how I plan to make one of my resolutions a reality...by gardening!  Just hear me out.

One of my resolutions this year is to really cut back on my spending.  These are lean times, my friends.  Luckily, I have a super smart mom who knows all kinds of shortcuts and has shared some of these with me.  So how am I going to cut back my budget by gardening?  Easy!!!  I've always had some herbs growing in the garden, but I never realized what a savings this is.  My husband and I love to make guacamole but aside from the avocados being mucho expensivo, buying cilantro at $1-$2 a pop adds up.  Especially when you don't usually use all of the cilantro.  This year, I planted cilantro seeds and put them in the kitchen window to start.  I now have a wonderful window box full of the stuff.  The beautiful thing is, in another month, I will plant another container with cilantro seeds so that once the current plants die out, I'll have another crop ready to go outside!

Have you ever bought a bunch of green onions from the store and thrown half of them away?  Another great idea from mom is to plant the leftover green onions.  All you have to do is chop off the green tops and plant the white root portion in a pot.  Water it regularly and watch your green onions grow!  I'm hoping I won't have to buy these babies anymore once I've established another pot of them.

Other herbs I'm growing are: thyme, rosemary, oregano and dill.

Here's a picture of some spinach plants I started.

Good luck and happy gardening!

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Origami box

Well it's almost December and it's time to start thinking about gifts!  Now that I've begun my online etsy store, I'm looking for easy ways to ship my earrings and tags and after too much time on the internet, I found a great alternative to buying boxes...making them!  When I was a little girl, I used to fashion origami boxes out of my lined notebook paper, but now I have a found a use for the odds and ends of scrapbook paper that clutter my workspace.  Hooray!  Reduce, reuse, recycle!

Check out this link for easy origami box instructions!

You can use larger squares of paper to make larger boxes, but remember, the larger the less sturdy the box will be.  Happy folding:)

Monday, November 8, 2010

Sachet Placeholders

Last Spring my mom and I hosted the girls in my family at a Spring Tea at the house.  As little favors, I used these tiny sachets as placecards.  I ran across the pictures recently and thought they might be cute for upcoming holiday dinners.  These particular sachets are from Greenleaf .  You can find retailers at http://www.greenleafgifts.com/.  I found them at my favorite little boutique in Montrose, called Fiona's.  Fiona's is run by, you guessed it, Fiona.  She is the cutest little elderly lady you'd ever want to meet.  She always greets you with hot cider and a cookie and always has an amazing assortment of goodies you never knew you needed.  Anyways, I picked up different scented sachets, tied them up in ribbon and stamped each guest initial on a tag!  The ladies in my family loved them.  And, they are a nice little reminder of that afternoon with the girls!

Monday, November 1, 2010

Getting Organized!

Can I share a little secret?  I have more crafting supplies than I know what to do with.  Now that my husband and I share an "office/craft room" I desperately need to organize my stuff.  So, I found this bulletin board in the garage.  I'm pretty sure it is from like 7th grade but I decided that a little bit of paint and paper could really spruce it up.

First, I painted the frame in plain white.  It took three coats.
Then I added some fun polka dotted paper.

I found the little cafe curtain rod and clippy curtain hangers at Target.  They are perfect to hold notes, inspiration and embellishments.  Then I watercolored these fabric flowers to match and added some buttons for fun.  The two pockets were created out of enveloped that I sealed and tore in half.  And, voila!  A multi-purpose bulletin board!
Happy organizing!

Happy Halloween!!!

I hope you have a wonderful Halloween with lots of tricks and treats!  I just had to share Roxy's costume this year....adorable:)  Unfortunately, the costume was not really great for walking in.

This would be the pumpkin that my hubbie designed.  I designed the happy eyes.  He drank the beer!

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Pumpkin bread tastiness!

Well it's officially Fall in California.  This morning I went for a walk with my hubbie and Miss Roxy and it was crisp out and a little chilly!  Crazy how it can change overnight from sweltering temperatures to ugg boots and scarves.  Anyways, it felt like it was time to break out a favorite recipe of mine:  Chocolate chip pumpkin bread.  This was first introduced to me by my mother-in-law.  Every Thanksgiving, she'd bake a bunch of loaves when we visited, and then she would always send us home with a loaf (which never actually made it through the 8 hour car ride!)  The following recipe is actually from a good friend of mine.  I tweaked it a bit as hers did not include chocolate chips...and let's face it, everything is better with chocolate chips!
This recipe will make one regular loaf plus 5 mini loaves...the perfect amount if you want some for yourself, and then 5 little gifts for friends or coworkers.

Time Required:  30-50 minutes
Serves:  3 regular loaves or 48 mini muffins or 5 mini loaves and 1 regular loaf
Preheat oven @ 350 degrees

Grease and flour loaf pans
In a large bowl, mix until well blended:
1 (15 ounce) can pumpkin puree
4 eggs
1 cup vegetable oil
2/3 cup water
2 cups white sugar
1 cup brown sugar

In a separate bowl, whisk together:
3 1/2 cups flour
2 tsp. baking soda
1 1/2 tsp. salt
2 tsp. ground cinnamon
2 tsp. ground nutmeg
1 tsp. ground cloves (I leave this out...not a big clove fan)
1/2 tsp. ground ginger

Stir dry ingredients into the pumpkin mixture until just blended.
Mix in 1 (12 ounce bag) chocolate chips...I usually add about a 1/4 of a bag more!

Topping:  Blend 1/2 stick room temperature butter
1/2 cup brown sugar

Pour pumpkin batter into pans.  Drizzle with topping.

3 loaves: 50 minutes
Mini muffins: 11-12 minutes
Mini loaves: 30 minutes
* Cooking times vary.  Test doneness with toothpicks!  Insert toothpick into center of loaf.  If it comes out clean, it's done!
*The "boo appetit" tag was easy to make.  Cut two different pieces of printed paper.  (2"x3" and 2 1/2" x 3 1/2").  Stamp "Boo" on smaller piece and emboss with silver or black embossing powder.  (I used the color marcasite by Stampendous.)  Print "appetit" with fine marker.  Affix smaller piece onto larger with gluestick.  Use a glue dot to stick ghost embellie (this one is from ghost fabric trim) and tie onto package with black eyelash yarn!  Boo-tiful:)

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Baby Brag Book

A good friend of mine just had a beautiful baby boy. This little brag book is simple to make and easy to personalize for anyone. Here's how:

~Chipboard (you can buy it or just use the cardboard backing you find in scrapbook paper packs or notepads.)
~Scrapbook paper 2-12x12 sheets and coordinating scraps for matting and embellishments
~7 3/4"x 26" piece of artist paper (I buy a large piece from a local art supply and ask them to cut multiple pieces to be used for other books.  Generally I will get 3-4 books out of one piece!)
~Gluestick (you will probably use at least one full stick)
~Embellies: Here I've used coordinating scraps of ribbon, stamped images, stickers, punches, brads etc.
  1. Cut 2-4x8" pieces of cardboard and 1-1/2x8" for the spine
  2. Lay pieces on a 9 1/2"x 9" scrapbook piece of paper leaving 1/4" in between pieces.  You should have at least 1/4" margin all the way around.  It should look like this:
3.  Using a glue stick, cover entire area of the three pieces of cardboard and affix to paper.  You can use a bone folder or just your hands to make sure it is smooth.

4.  Cut corners on the diagonal as close to the corner of the cardboard as possible.  An exacto knife works best. 
5.  Now glue edges down.  Here's what it looks like now:
6.  If you would like to use ribbons to close the book, center and glue them now!  Glue a coordinating 8"x8"piece of scrapbook paper on the inside.  I usually set mine just inside the border so that a little bit of the cover paper shows.  Depending on how far apart the cardboard pieces are, you may have to adjust the measurement.  It looks like this:
7.  If you want to add the giftcard pocket, simply cut a scrap of paper slightly shorter than the height of the giftcard and fold the bottom and two sides about 1/4" in.  Use a gluestick to secure on the front panel.  Only glue the 3-1/4" folded parts so that you create a pocket!
8.  Now take your 7 3/4" x 26" piece of white artist paper and accordian fold it making each panel approximately 3 1/2" wide. 
9.  Glue the first panel of the accordian to the back (right side) of the book. 

10.  Now you are ready to embellish each panel with fun papers and embellies.  As you can see here, I used two panels to form one layout for a larger picture.

Let your imagination run wild and you will have an "out of this world" gift for a loved one!!!! 
p.s. I tore the front panel of the accordian for a different look.  This also works well when your accordian piece is a little short of a full panel!
Hope you enjoyed this project!  Let me know how your's turns out:)