Casual Fridays Part 6

I haven’t done a casual Fridays post for awhile – and since I’ve been under the weather this week, I just haven’t really had a chance to do much in the way of gardening, or cooking, or crafting. But I have had lots of time to sit around reading the internet! Here are a few things I found around this week that I really enjoyed:

1. You Grow Girl on Earth Day. I was driving to work on Wednesday morning and as I listened to the radio hosts talk about Earth Day, I definitely found myself rolling my eyes and groaning “Yes people, let’s give the earth its very own day along with National Cat Day or Secretary Appreciation Day”. But that’s not really what it’s all about – and this article really resonated with me.

2. 30 Surprising Stars Who Were on The X-files Before They Were Famous – I can’t say that I am at all excited for the upcoming X-files reboot, although I was a huge fan of Seasons 1-5. I’m not saying that I won’t watch the new episodes given the opportunity, but I’m not having kittens over here. I’m not usually a re-poster of these types of internet articles, but I did enjoy this one. My favorite not-so-famous-then-but-famous-now appearances were Giovanni Ribisi, Bryan Cranston, and Luke Wilson. Also, Michael Buble?! Who knew.

3. The Calgary Comic and Entertainment Expo last weekend had record breaking attendance! I’m definitely not a crowds person but I attended because I really, really wanted to meet the boys of Beverly Hills 90210. And I did! And I touched all of them! Haha. But seriously, Jason, Ian and Luke did a great panel (I wish it would have been longer!) and I was pleased to find out that they are all very nice and down-to-earth people, thankfully not crushing all of my teenage dreams.

4. I’ve been thinking about getting one of these mini patio greenhouses for a few years now but I’m still waffling. First of all, they are a bit pricey, and second, do I really need it? I already have a greenhouse in my back yard, but it is primarily for growing hot peppers. I think a mini greenhouse would be ideal for growing things like eggplant in a brighter/hotter part of my yard (I’m actually thinking right on my upper deck), but I haven’t had any success with eggplant in the past, so would it be worth it to try again? Feel free to chime in if you have any experience with these greenhouses, or if you think I shouldn’t even bother. I’ve also thought about building my own similar greenhouse, but I just don’t want to take on another project, especially since our growing season is so short already, I kind of just want to enjoy it and focus on ripping out the remaining sod in the front yard. I guess I have a problem committing to a large-ish purchase like this that may or may not yield results.

5. I’ve been reading along with Banjo’s Daughters and I’m really, really enjoying it. You need to start right at the beginning though – but luckily the archives do not go back very far yet!

I’ve been trying to post gardening photos on my instagram as much as I can. This week I am over the moon with my tiny dwarf tomato seedlings (pictured below) – they are the most adorable! These ones are called Red Robin. I grew them last year and while they aren’t exactly anything extraordinary taste-wise (better than a store bought baby tomato, but not as good as most of the other varieties I grow), I do love them because they are petite and grow a million tomatoes on one tiny plant. Plus, I am doing an experiment with them this year which I will explain in another post.

Red Robin Tomato Seedlings

Aren’t they just the most adorable?! I hope everyone has a lovely weekend!

Casual Fridays Part 5

What a busy week it has been! I wasn’t feeling well at the beginning of the week so I guess I lost a few days of accomplishing things so I’m really looking forward to getting caught up on things! In the meantime, here are a few things I found on the internet this week that perked me up a bit!

10 Things

1. This Ontario home tour on Design*Sponge is pretty wonderful. I love all of their vintage furniture pieces.

2. I don’t get too excited about new music anymore, but a new Hayden album is coming March 24th! And there are sneak peaks here and here. I’ve loved Hayden since I was a teen and have seen him multiple times live (not to brag or anything, I just really love him and he is amazing live). Needless to say, I’m very excited about the full album.

3. 10 Things I’ve Learned About Sewing – I’ve been trying lots of new sewing projects lately and I’m really looking to challenge myself this year (look forward to a future post about this!), but after going through all the challenges with my blouse, I was feeling a bit deflated. This is an old article, but it really hit home for me. Especially “When you start, it will look like crap” and “Can you make me one too?”. A great read for any sewer but most of the points work for basically anything in life.

4. I’m going to try making the ultimate veggie burger. A few years ago my sister and I took a day trip out to Field BC just to eat at Truffle Pigs and had the best beet burger ever. While I wish I could go to Truffle Pigs every day, I’ve had to resort to trying to find a recipe I could make at home. Fingers crossed!

5. So buying a white couch was a horrible idea – it just doesn’t stay clean (#homedecormistakes). And even worse is that Ikea no longer makes slip covers for the model that I have. I usually throw a quilt or something over it but I’ve been really liking the look of these Mandala wall tapestries and think they might make a nice couch cover. That paired with a vintage kantha throw would be a nice touch of color and pattern.

Wishing everyone a wonderful and restful weekend!

Casual Fridays Part 4

I don’t know about you, but this has been a long week and I think it is safe to say that I miss the days of sleeping in and not having to leave my house. But I am excited to work on a few projects this weekend and I have picked up a bit of inspiration online here and there throughout the week:


1. I love this woven circle mat tutorial via A Beautiful Mess and I have added it on to my projects list. And is something I would actually make! I can just imagine the possibilities with this.

2. Planning on paper via Uppercase. I don’t know about you, but I’ve been feeling somewhat uninspired and unmotivated this week – I think it has to do with coming out of vacation mode, as well as the terrible weather we’ve been experiencing the last couple of weeks. I really want to sit down and make a planned out schedule of my personal monthly goals, as well as for my upcoming gardening season (seed starting dates, transplant dates, etc), so I’m going to put all of my pretty stationary to use and actually accomplish a plan for my future accomplishments (if that makes sense). There is just something about putting it down on paper that makes the process so much more inspiring for me.

3. Seamwork Magazine Issue 2 has come out this week! The best part is that I finally broke down and bought myself an iPad (RIP to my poor 6 year old Macbook), so I’m totally in to reading magazines online and watching knitting tutorial videos on my lap while I have a set of needles in my hands. Anyway, this magazine is a wonderful read for the sewer as it teaches lots of various techniques I would not have even considered before – plus the photography is beautiful.

4. Jerrica Dishcloth via Knit Picks for the 52 weeks of free dishcloth patterns. This looks like a totally quick and easy knit, plus I need new dishcloths so why not make some. I’m going to keep my eye out for some inexpensive cotton yarn.

5. Caramelized onion & goat cheese tart via Go Make Me looks really good! And simple. I think I need something delicious, new, and simple to make this weekend!

I’ve got a few really good posts planned for next week so be sure to come back and check them out. In the meantime, I hope everyone has a wonderful and restful weekend – stay warm!

Casual Fridays Part 3

The weekend is here! I’m always excited when Friday arrives, but some Fridays bring that extra bit of excitement/relief, you know? November has been an absolutely insane month so far, so I’m hoping the rest of it calms down a bit. It seems that everyone is talking about the holidays so much earlier this year, so I definitely have that on my mind. Next week I’m going to start putting together my holiday posts, starting with a DIY/handmade gift guide! But until then, here are some of my current favorite things:


1. Duchess Bake Shop cookbook $45. My favorite bakery, Duchess Bake Shop, just put out their first cookbook and I cannot be more excited for it. The Duchess is probably the only bakery I would ever make an hour detour for on a road trip because it is that good (and yes, I have made that detour).

2. I’m on the hunt for a new wool coat and while I’m going to scour the thrift store first, I do have my eye on this lovely from GAP, $178. 

3. Knitted elbow patches via Purl Bee. My favorite sweater, which is now too shameful to even wear outside of the house, had massive elbow holes. So I whipped up some of these elbow patches and I’m thankful that my sweater will have a bit more time on this earth with me.

4. Caramelized onion & potato hand pies, via Beekman 1802. Cold weather + pies = perfection, especially if they happen to be hand pies. This recipe looks so easy and making a large batch seems like the perfect plan (I love freezing things for eating at a time that you don’t feel like cooking, but also don’t feel like leaving the comfort of your home). I’m definitely trying this recipe out on the weekend!

5. Twinkle lights, Crate & Barrel $14.95 – I’m absolutely loving these battery powered twinkle lights. I bought a string last year from Restoration Hardware, but I see other stores offering similar strings for a little bit less dough (the Crate & Barrel version is $10 cheaper for the same length of string!). I love that the strings are metallic – much prettier than the typical plastic! I am going to put these lights on everything.

6. Cat cross stitch pattern – DMC $FREE – With the cold weather and not wanting to leave the house unless absolutely necessary, I’m really into cross stitching right now. I’m currently working on a holiday project (hopefully it will be finished soon and I can share it!), but I came across this cat pattern that I’m dying to make – I’ll probably just do the actual cat and then design my own background. Now the real challenge will be finishing my current project before starting on this one.

7. I’m thinking about lighting again (while I am in love with the string lights above, they are more decorative than functional).  This seems to be a common theme around this time of year – there never seems to be sufficient lighting in my living room, which becomes a problem when I’m knitting or cross stitching in front of the television. I have always thought it was a bit bizarre that our living room does not have any hardwired lighting (our old rental didn’t either!). I think two more table lamps might do the trick and I’ve got my eye on this really pretty and inexpensive option from Target for $50. I have seen more expensive and nicer versions from Schoolhouse Electric and Rejuvenation, so if Target does not pull through for me, I will probably hold off and buy the more expensive option.

I don’t have a ton of stuff planned for the weekend – I just picked up season 4 of Boardwalk Empire so I’m hoping to binge watch that (we don’t have cable or satellite television so all the episodes are brand new to us!). Otherwise, I was planning to do a bit of cooking (obviously those hand pies above but I’m also craving hearty stews with fresh baked bread!), work on some projects around the house and do some work on my holiday gift knitting. I hope your weekend is full of rest, food and whatever else makes you happy!

Casual Fridays Part 2

The weekend is finally here! I’ve got a ton of stuff planned for the weekend and my sister is visiting as well, so I’m sure we’ll get up to lots of mischief (tame, of course). Not too much happening in the garden right now – we’re working on getting through the last of the kale by making lots of kale chips and also giving away as much as we can. Here are a few things that have caught my attention lately:


1. Canning, Pickling, and Freezing with Irma Harding by Marilyn McCrae. I first saw this book on Food in Jars and immediately added it to my Amazon wish list.

2. Jolly Rancher Infused Vodka via A Beautiful Mess. My first reaction was “OMG gross” because I confused Jolly Ranchers for Starburst but then realized my mistake and changed my reaction to “OMG amazing”. I have a fantasy of throwing a teeny bopper birthday party (for myself) that is horse/cat themed and I think this candy-infused vodka would be perfect for my weird fantasy birthday party.

3. Pear Cranberry Jam via Food in Jars. I actually made this a couple of weekends ago and added in cinnamon and black pepper via a suggestion in the comments, but I also added a splash of vanilla to put my own take on it. I’m hoping that it will replace the canned cranberries I usually serve with turkey dinner (you know the kind, that slurps out of the can and then you present on a platter with the tin can mold still completely intact? So classy.).

4. Chocolate Pot de Cre’me via Sweet Paul looks unbelievably amazing. And easy to make! Plus I have tons of preserved sour cherries to go with it!

5. Fish Peppers via Garden Betty look so neat! I’ve added these to my seed purchase list for the next growing season (along with like 15 other hot pepper varieties). I love the story behind them as well – it really hits home how important seed saving is.

Have a wonderful weekend!