Thursday, August 30, 2012

Feeling Like Fall

We have been very lucky with a mild and rainy (for Texas) August. The plants are liking it and I was even able to turn off my drip system this week. The mornings and nights have been tolerable, nice even. Some mornings have been down right chilly (okay maybe just one)! This is just unheard of in August here. It has me daydreaming and ready to plant a Fall veggie garden and get back out in the garden.

The back yard is blooming.
 Garden August 2012 Garden August 2012 Garden August 2012 Garden August 2012 Garden August 2012 Garden August 2012 Garden August 2012

And the front is blooming in spots too. Garden August 2012 Garden August 2012 Garden August 2012 Garden August 2012

Thanks August for going easy on us this year.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Karlie's Guitar

I have to share Karlie's other birthday present.

I found a little child sized guitar at my favorite thrift shop earlier this year. We sanded and spray painted the top with pink glitter paint. Frank had the genius idea to give her stickers to put on the back and sides of the guitar. Glitter guitar redo IMG_2112 IMG_2124 Karlie and her guitar

She was a little shy with it at first but seemed to like it. I hope it gives her a little spark of creativity and that she continues to love to sing.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Karlie's Birtday Pictures

I have been a bad blogger. It took me ages to get my pictures from Karlie's birthday onto my computer and then my computer seemed to have died yesterday. It did come back on, miraculously. So here I am a week later finally sharing all the fun we had.

We got into Austin the night before her party and she was ready to decorate her cake from the minute we walked in.  I baked the layers and made the frosting and gum paste flowers at home and put it all together the night before the party with her help.  
Decorating the cake

I used my favorite Vanilla Cake and Cream Cheese Frosting recipes. A double batch of the cake makes this tall 9x13 cake. There were at least thirty people at the party and we came home with lots of leftovers.

Don't worry, she didn't eat all that frosting, just enough for me to snap this.Decorating the cake

Her daddy (my brother) found a #3 sparkler for the top of her cake and it startled her quite a bit. I can't help but love these images even though she looks scared. I think the cake turned out pretty cute, if I do say so myself.  I kept it as simple as possible since we had to travel with it.  Karlie's third birthday party Karlie's third birthday party Karlie's third birthday party

Her big present from us was the Snow White costume that I made. It had a million pattern pieces and I hated sewing with the satin, but it was all worth while when she put it on at the end of the party. It fits perfectly, and she just looks so cute in it. If I know her, and I think I do, I bet she is putting it on almost everyday after school! I also found Sapphire sparkle shoes at Target that match the costume perfectly.  So stinking cute!
 Snow White birthday girl Snow White birthday girl
I love that little girl to pieces and I'm so glad I can do and make things for her that she loves.

The pattern is Simplicity 2563, there are also a child/girl and misses sized versions.  Though it was tedious, it wasn't difficult.  The satin sewed up better than I expected, except for the hand sewn hem, which pulled the fabric and the zipper, which I sewed too close in one spot. There is a Cinderella version on this same pattern, but I think I would make her other costumes before making this pattern again.

Friday, August 17, 2012

Celebrating my favorite little girl

I have a ton to do before Karlie's birthday party tomorrow. I'm making the cake and I still have to hem and wrap her present. Ack! I better get to work.

We talked to Karlie on the phone a couple of nights ago.  I called to see if she was excited about her party, but I don't think she realized how soon it was.  She said she didn't want a party but when we told her we were bringing presents she paid attention and asked, "What kind of presents".  I can't believe my favorite little girl is turning 3!

I made gum paste flowers and a 3 for her cake. Karlie's cake decorations
Snow white costume almost finished

We will be off celebrating for the weekend. See you next week. xoxo Ashley

Monday, August 13, 2012

Another reason to love Summer!

I planted mint this Summer and love it in my tea. I had never been a Mojito drinker but after planting mint I figured I better find a good recipe for one. I found this one, with mint infused simple syrup, which makes all the difference. The simple syrup has been in my fridge at least a month and is still good. I don't drink these often, but sometimes I just need a Mojito! Makin mojitos! Makin mojitos! Makin mojitos!

I like to muddle a key lime with the mint, then add the mint syrup, rum and ice and top with a squeeze of another key lime. I top it all off with sparkling water. Yum!

Friday, August 10, 2012

Doing my best

I'm doing my best to enjoy the summer, despite miserable temperatures. Yesterday the high was 108, but today we got a "cold" front and it was only supposed to be up to 97.

The sunset was gorgeous last night and I was wishing we were out on the trail with a better view. I can't wait for Fall and cooler weather. A friend of mine started an outdoor exercise program a few weeks ago.  As impressed as I am with her dedication and as much as I wish I could make myself do the same, I just can't get out there in the heat.
 Summer Sunset Summer Sunset

Lucy and Berta in the backyard jungle. Jungle pets
 I'm trying my best to get all my to do's done. I sewed on the Snow White dress today and it is going to be oh so cute! I got dinner on the table for the first time this week. I have finished and shipped out all pending jewelry orders and have almost finished a new piece of jewelry that I have been working on for a good while. That one last solder join isn't cooperating.

I discovered and am currently obsessed with the HBO show Girls.  Have you seen it?  It is witty, real and funny.  I just love it!  It reminds me of college and makes me long for the days of living with and hanging with my girlfriends all the time.  I called my friend Christi, who told me about the show, but forgot to bring it up to her.  She is one of my college friends that I miss spending time with.

I hope you have a great weekend!  I will be at Central Market in the midst of Hatch Fest.  Come see me if you dare.  It will be busy there.
xoxo
Ashley

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Something Special for a Princess

Can you guess what I'm working on? Something special for princess Karlie

Our princess of a niece Karlie turns three in a couple of weeks. She is currently obsessed with Snow White. I won't show you the finished product til after I give it to her. This picture shows sixteen pattern pieces that I have already sewn. There are countless more! I was a bit overwhelmed at first but am taking it one step at a time and it is coming together nicely. I'm also in charge of the cake and am trying to keep it simple since we have to travel and I'll probably decorate in Austin. I'm thinking of just using a Snow White figurine on top of a simple round cake and perhaps some apple cupcakes to go with it?

Thursday, August 2, 2012

The Little Things

Sometimes it's the little things that make me happy. My tiny Zinnias make me smile.
They are so small.
 Tiny Zinnias Tiny Zinnias

My bowl of wishing stones. Wishing rock collection

It is too dang hot to be outside.  Luckily I set up a drip system to keep the garden going.  It helps to bring a little bit of nature indoors with us. 

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

I made something new!

Stop the presses! I made an all new piece of jewelry. I'm sure you have wondered if I still make jewelry. I do, I just don't have much time for new designs. These were a custom order to go with my Stacked Pebble Pendant. I'm really pleased with the way they turned out. Sometimes the simplest things are the most appealing. I will be offering this design as a made to order item.

Sterling Pebble Earrings Sterling Pebble Earrings

 I hope you like them as much as I do!
xoxo
Ashley