Monday, December 6, 2010

sour cream apple pie

Just a quick post to tell you that if you haven't made Alicia's Sour Cream Apple Pie, you need to drop everything and go make it right. now. Seriously one of the most delicious pies I have ever made! And that is coming from someone who fancies herself to be quite the expert. If I was going to change one teeny thing about this recipe, I would probably double the streudel topping. Otherwise, it's perfect!

Friday, November 26, 2010


I hope everybody had a great Thanksgiving! Mine was low-key and peaceful, and couldn't have been nicer. I made a meat-free meal for my family, then went on a photo walk around my neighborhood as the sun started to set. The evening was spent making Christmas cards and watching the original Miracle on 34th Street (and Bridget Jones's Diary!).

This Thanksgiving, I'm thankful for:
-The support and love of my family.
-An amazing family of friends all over the country--and the world!
-My drive to write and to create.
-Books, and words in all their forms.

And, on a less serious note:
-space heaters
-my playlist of Christmas pop music
-that I've finally mastered the skinny jeans/boots concept.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Taking a Day Off


I had big plans for today--my day off. I was going to be terrifyingly productive, run all over town, and accomplish all the things I'd been putting off for weeks. Instead, I woke up with a migraine, and spent more or less the whole day reading blogs, taking Advil, and drinking herbal tea. I hate the frustrating feeling of losing a day--but this was my body's way of telling me to take some time off. The bright side is that I've run across a ton of new blogs and great posts during my epic day of interneting!

~101 Ways to Cheer Yourself Up Part One & Part Two

~A great list from Yes and Yes of "31 Things I've Learned in 31 Years" (this whole list is so very true and wise)

~I'm totally in love with the blog One Pearl Button. Alli's a grad student in Archeology who posts all about photography, sewing, knitting, crafting... all the things I love!

Have you guys run across any great bloggy finds lately?

p.s. I've been using Pinterest to keep track of all my online discoveries (I've gone a little nuts posting sewing and crafting tutorials lately!). If you're on Pinterest, follow me, and if you're not on Pinterest, I can send you an invite!

Monday, November 8, 2010

A Week of Tea Towels!

Happy Monday, everybody! My weekend was NOT long enough--I spent Saturday working, and Sunday doing a very long and involved deep-cleaning of my space. But I did get to go to the movies on Saturday night, and it feels sooooo nice to finally have everything tidy and clean again!

I also watched the last episode of Sherlock on Masterpiece Mystery last night. What a cliff-hanger! The time in front of the TV gave me the opportunity to finish the final tea-towel in a set that I've been embroidering for myself. The patterns are iron-on vintage reproduction patterns that I found at Hobby Lobby. I've been working on these for a few months whenever I have down time from other projects. I love them! They're going to look perfect in my super-cute future kitchen.

Aaah I seriously can't get over how cute they are.

How was your weekend?

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Gifted Magazine

I'm taking a brief break from grad school applications and novel-ing to ask my bloggy buddies (too much?) if y'all have seen Gifted Magazine? It's a new online mag put out by the lovely proprietoress of Creature Comforts, an amazing design and visual inspiration blog. (Bonus: she just moved to Tulsa so I guess she's a local blogger now too!) Anyway, Gifted Magazine is an absolute treasure trove of blogger and handmade business profiles, as well as gift ideas and (most excitingly) inexpensive and adorable DIY holiday project ideas!

Do you have a strategy for the holidays yet? My family is trying to make our celebrations more low-key, with less emphasis on gift-giving and more emphasis on the traditions that make the holidays fun, like cookie-baking and movie-watching. We're also switching from a real tree to a sparkly silver tinsel tree!

For myself, I'm trying to do make as much homemade as possible. All my gifts are going to be made by myself, and I'm hoping to have time to make cards and wrappings as well!

Monday, November 1, 2010

Tulsa Indie Emporium!

Whew! What a long, great weekend! It's a struggle this morning to get back into a productive week-day mindset (and boy do I have a lot I have to get done this week... mostly related to grad school applications... ugh). I'm feeling a bit gross--I think I have a sugar hangover from last night's Halloween treat-binge of candy, s'mores (using vegan toasted-coconut marshmallows!), roasted pumpkin seeds, and apple cider. Plus I woke up this morning and it was suddenly COLD outside! I guess this means autumn is really here.

I barely took any pictures this weekend because I was so busy! I was a vendor at Tulsa Indie Emporium, which was a truly amazing event that I was grateful to be a part of. Too often, I find myself falling into the creativity-sapping mindset of "There's nothing to do here and no interesting people," but that is definitely NOT the case! I met so many vibrant crafters and artists this weekend, and came away not only with a great sense of satisfaction from my own participation, but also with a renewed appreciation for the handmade community that exists here.

Without further ado, my weekend:

breakfast at Blue Dome Diner

My bestie/assistant/moral support Briel and my friend May of Electrofervor hanging out at our shared table

After an epic day of craft-fair-ing, we headed to Tulsa's new Anthropologie to ooh and aah over the store's beautiful clothing and housewares. I didn't buy anything, though--I'm trying to spend less money on unnecessary things (and make more of my own clothes) this fall. This weekend also involved dinner at Lanna Thai, seeing Red (it was so good!), and an afternoon of shopping at craft stores and fabric stores. Add in the aforementioned cozy Halloween evening of treat binging and answering the door for Trick or Treaters, and I'm worn out!

Happy November, friends! I'm hoping the new month brings new productivity and progress on a number of projects. Plus, I'm diving into Nanowrimo once more (I already have 1700 words that I stayed up past midnight last night to write!), and am hoping to "win" (write 50,000 words) for the third year in a row. The next few weeks are going to be busy!

Monday, October 18, 2010

War Eagle Craft Fair!

This weekend I made my way to War Eagle Mill in northwest Arkansas for my first trip to the War Eagle craft fair! I've been wanting to go for a couple of years now, but this was the first time it was logistically possible. It was definitely an experience. With nearly 300 vendors in one place, I began to feel overwhelmed with options. I didn't get to wander among the booths as long as I would have liked, but there were some great vendors, both of handcrafted goods and of vintage odds and ends. Ultimately, the heat and dust won out over my curiosity and we departed the fair earlier than we had planned, but I was still glad I made the trip. The Ozarks are always gorgeous in the fall, and there's something about craft fairs that just seem autumny to me. What are your favorite autumn excursions?

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

The Fair! Part 2

I love the fair. When I was but a wee baby Kathryn, my first outing with my parents after I was born was to the fair. The fair is in my blood, it's in my heart, it's in my soul. It's the perfect combination of deliciously bizarre food, handicrafts on display, baby animals, creepy midway attractions, and incredible people watching. Oh, and did I mention the food? Sadly I only got to eat cheese on a stick (a must for any vegetarian who secretly misses corn dogs and isn't too picky about the questionably vegetarian preparation methods of said cheese on a stick), and my beloved PINEAPPLE WHIP. I sprung for the $6 cup, I think it was a solid choice.

manna from heaven

death-defying dog trick show, to benefit shelter animals!

Amaaaazing 4-H displays. I love this kind of thing. Pumpkin cow!


Sheep and baby sheep! These sheep rock! (this one's for you, Allison)

Monday, October 11, 2010

Cake, cake, cake!

I'm back! And hopefully with regularly-occurring posts, too!

Last weekend I made my yearly trek to the Tulsa State Fair. My favorite part of the fair is always the Sugar Arts Show, which displays amazing (and frequently bizarre) feats of cake-decorating and fondant- and marzipan-sculpting. Here's a few of my favorites:

Magic Schoolbus cake! I'm newly obsessed with Mz. Frizzle and am sort of considering a Mz. Frizzle Halloween costume this year.

Halloween cake! Owls! Pumpkins!

Amazing Dia de los Muertos cake with sugar skulls

A gnome. Made of cake.

Kitty Gaga. Doesn't really require any more explanation. (my only question: shouldn't she be wearing a dress made of raw fish?)

Wednesday, September 29, 2010


Hello, long-neglected internet world! This month got really crazy really quickly, between friends leaving town and making new friends and looking for jobs and interviewing for jobs and finding new jobs and... let's just say I'm exhausted. I want to sleep for a million hours, not so much because I'm physically tired, but because I'm emotionally spent. However, very soon I should be adjusted to a new schedule and back here on the blog. I'm hoping that after this weekend I'll be rejuvenated and back to regular posting. Until then, thanks for hanging in there!

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

My First Fashion Icon & Fall Trends

It seems like every style blogger I read is talking about fall fashion, and in some ways I'm excited for the clothing possibilities the changing seasons offer as well. I certainly won't complain when I'm able to wear more outside than just shorts & a tank top or a dress and sandals. (Unfortunately it's still so hot here that that's not going to happen for a while). I have mixed feelings about trends for fall, though--it seems like neutrals and a certain tastefulness are going to be in, and, well, I don't do neutrals very well. According to this Refinery 29 post the big color trends for fall are: camel, metallic, olive, ice blue, rich purple, and red. I can get behind purple and red, I guess? The others I could take or leave. Really the problem here is my first fashion icon, Mz Frizzle:

Talk about being able to put together an outfit. I think I still strive, at least subconsciously, to create a theme any time I put an outfit together -- and sometimes, the theme is something classy (like, "Mad Men") but sometimes the theme is something less sophisticated (like "Kinds of Sea Creatures!").

The truth is, I like dressing like Mz Frizz now and again (or more often). I like wearing outlandish colors mixed together, and jewelry that thematically coordinates with my shoes. I like sewing my own clothes in colors and combinations that you just can't find in a store. So, I think my personal fashion trends for fall 2010 are going to be: color, ruffles, ridiculous shoes, handmade accessories, and of course a good Mz Frizzle up-do.

Okay, maybe I'll throw in a few pairs of boots & skinny jeans, and a cardigan here or there. But only if it has ruffles on it or felt flowers pinned to it (or both).

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Open For Business

At long last, I can reveal the project that's been taking up most of my time lately! After a couple years of hemming and hawing, I've finally opened up a One Room Schoolhouse Etsy Shop!

The shop contains all sorts of hand-sewn fancies, all with a retro aesthetic. I've been hard at work sewing aprons, necklaces and wallets! Putting the shop together was more work than I anticipated, but it's already been a rewarding experience even if it's only been open a couple of hours!

If you like what you see here, hop on over and take a look at the rest of my wares. I welcome feedback on my shop (um, as long as it's not utterly scathing criticism). And, if you buy something from me, I will love you forever and ever! Obviously.

Monday, September 6, 2010

sneak peek

This is just a little glimpse at what I've been working on lately... the final product will be unveiled soon! (Hopefully tomorrow, if I can get my act together)

Weekend in Tuskahoma

I'm home from spending a lovely weekend in Tuskahoma! Apart from a slight (HOUR LONG) backup on the turnpike, the drive down was uneventful, but beautiful. The southeastern corner of the state is all low, rolling mountains, pine trees, lakes and crisp air. I had a great time at the labor day festival with Briel--adequate (excessive) amounts of funnel cake, roasted corn, and fried cheese on a stick were eaten. Plus, all weekend there was a definite snap of autumn in the air--when we woke up on Saturday morning it was almost cold, and we briefly considered taking sweaters and jackets with us when we left the house (that idea was ultimately vetoed, and not only because I'd forgotten to pack any extra layers).

In addition to the labor day festival, we made preserves (!), Briel taught me how to spin with a drop spindle (!), and we also visited some yard sales and went shopping at the variety store in Clayton. Plus, there was plenty of quality lazing-about time, and a little exploring of abandoned houses. A wonderful labor day weekend, all in all!

lazy kitties on the porch

peach goo, soon to be peach preserves

freshly cleaned jars waiting for preserves

the finished item

My first bit of hand-spun yard (dyed with kool-aid)

Friday, September 3, 2010

Outfit Friday, regency style

It is still SO HOT here! Yesterday was at least 97 or 98, plus a lot of humidity. Looking at the forecast, I doubt we'll start having fall weather (read: mid-80s) until early October. Oh well, I supposedly love summer, so I guess I should relish these last days of scorching heat.

Anyway, this weekend I'm off on a surprise trip to Tuskahoma! (The surprise is that I'm actually doing something spontaneous). I'm going to visit Briel and go to the Choctaw Nation labor day fair. Plus Briel saw my list in my last post, and has promised not only to teach me how to spin with a drop spindle, but also how to make and can peach jam! I'm extremely excited.

Yesterday I was reading a regency-era romance novel (Georgette Heyer, anyone?) over breakfast and got inspired to create an outfit that would be reminiscent of that era. The result was maybe less "regency" and more "crazy lady with three different prints," but I still liked it.

top - Modcloth, skirt - GAP, shoes - UO

The skirt I wore is several years old and is intended to sit at the hips, but I safety-pinned it in a few inches and added a scarf-and-brooch belt arrangement to disguise all the jerry-rigging that went into this outfit.

scarf - hippie store, brooch - gift

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

24 before I'm 25

image via weheartit

Okay, this is the last birthday-related post, I promise. Just a little list of goals, some serious and some not so serious, to accomplish before my next birthday.

24 Things Before I Turn 25

1. Participate in the 365 Project.
2. Make homemade preserves.
3. Learn how to spin with a drop spindle.
4. Go to Dollywood.
5. Go on a long hike.
6. Spend an afternoon reading outside.
7. Take a yoga class.
8. Sell my wares at a craft fair.
9. Visit the Wizarding World of Harry Potter.
10. Volunteer at the Humane Society.
11. Go to a show at Cain's.
12. Take a dance class.
13. Throw a party.
14. Write a YA novel.
15. Get my photography certificate.
16. Go out dancing.
17. Go to a show at the Brady.
18. Apply to Library Science grad school.
19. Write a chick lit novel.
20. Go to the Tulsa State Fair.
21. Go to a show at the BOK Center.
22. Visit NYC.
23. Attend a music festival.
24. Visit J in California.

Almond Raspberry Layer Cake

Birthdays are, above all, an excellent excuse to prepare a fancy dessert. As long as I've been old enough to wield sharp kitchen implements and use the stove, I've insisted on preparing my own birthday cake. This year I made this oh-so-tempting Almond Raspberry Layer Cake recipe from Smitten Kitchen. I love almond pastries and dark chocolate, so I thought this would be the perfect combination. I had a blast putting the cake together (it had so many steps! Crumb coat! Homemade buttercream frosting! Decorative icing piped through an actual pastry bag!). In the end it was quite a confection, and I think my family quite enjoyed it. My only failing was that I prepared the cake layers a day early, and stored them wrapped in plastic in the microwave overnight--and I probably should have frozen them instead. The cake turned out just a tad on the dry side, despite the fact that I brushed each layer with simple syrup before adding the raspberry jam filling. Oh well, live and learn.