31 August, 2011

Wine Making at Home, Part 1

There's nothing more satisfying than enjoying the fruits of your own labor. From spinning wool and sewing clothes to gardens and  home-smoked meats, to beer and wine... eat, drink, and be merry. The best part about these things, I think, is knowing exactly where your food and drink came from and what went into bringing it to the table.

Wine Bottles
(click photo to see more of Wine Traveler's photos on Flickr)

This spring, we decided to make our own wine. My husband, Witold (that's Vee-told, in case you're unfamiliar) is doing a guest post to explain the process. All of our product links go to Homebrew.ie and we couldn't recommend them highly enough. Their customer service is wonderful - and if you happen to be in Ireland, they're the perfect supplier for all your homebrew needs.
Now, without further ado - Here is Witold:

An Open Letter to all Shoe Companies

Dear Shoe Companies,
 As you may already know, there are women out in the world who have larger than average feet. You'd probably be surprised at how many of us there are. Also, for your effort put into finding and making available quality shoes for women with size US11/UK9 feet, I am certain that your profits will increase. 
We're talking comfortable, stylish shoes... and not made out of cardboard and plastic either. Real, quality shoes. 

30 August, 2011

Ten Things I Love Tuesday #11

Today is Tuesday, and that means it's time for another 10TILT!!

Welcome to this, the eleventh edition of 10TILT - a selection of things I've found around the web (and possibly elsewhere) that I really, well, love!

29 August, 2011

Braided Dreams

Finally! I have created a successful braided rag rug!

Over a year ago, I wound strips of torn-up duvet covers and pillowcases into balls of "yarn" with the intention of starting a braided rag rug. I had SO much material, but very few colors (several of which did not look great together), so instead of a braided rug, I crocheted the material into what is now one of my favorite items of decor in our home - a 4" in diameter rug that now sits happily in my kitchen.

After that success, I took a few scraps of what I had left, and crocheted another, smaller rug. It is also a happy addition to our home. 

28 August, 2011

T-Shirt Yarn: A Tutorial

T-Shirt yarn! 

Some of you are probably saying to yourselves, "what??" But let me tell you - T-Shirt yarn is useful crafting material. You can use it to knit, crochet, and all sorts of fun stuff! 
This tutorial will teach you how to make one long piece of t-shirt yarn.

25 August, 2011

The Wapitm Bag

There are times, I think, when we all need to run to the store to pick up one or two things, or more or less go somewhere casual and quick. These are the times, at least for me, when I would rather not haul around my purse. 
Enter the Wapitm Bag, you know... When A Purse Is Too Much. Cheesy? Maybe. 

23 August, 2011

Ten Things I Love Tuesday #10 - Inside the Home

As it turns out, I was mistaken in my last 10TILT post! It was number 9 in the series, making this one TEN! Hooray!

22 August, 2011

How to Plant Your Strawberry Shoots

This year, our strawberries didn't get planted for quite a while. After we moved from our previous place, the poor plants just sat in buckets for months and months, until well after strawberry season. They miraculously survived though...

In fact, they survived enough to put out shoots for next year, and we might still get a strawberry or two off our bushes! This blog is how to plant your shoots so you can propagate new bushes from your existing ones.

Showered with Love (a long post)

Hello friends!

I had a fun-filled and relaxing weekend, and not often is it that those two are combined. We spent most of the weekend at home, and I'll tell you all about it - but first... I must tell you about an iPhone app that is absolutely amazing.


18 August, 2011


Do you ever have those days where you just don't know exactly what to write or say? This is one.

- Today I got about half of our dinners for this week and next week prepared and stored so that they just need to be finished up or thawed out. This way I don't have to worry about vegetables going bad and whatnot. Go me!

- The cat's wound is healing nicely. I took his "cone of shame" off one morning and he immediately licked at the spot, opening it up again... Friday marks week three of his living in the cone and believe me, it's getting old for all of us. I just hope he heals up sooner than later. For all our sake.

- Our boiler crapped out on us last week. It's starting to get a little cold now that it's creeping up on the end of summer. There were a couple nights where we wanted to turn the heat on but couldn't... socks and sweaters instead! It's fixed now, and as it turns out - it might be something else (like the thermostat) that's broken as well. The good thing is, we have heat if we want it.

16 August, 2011

Then Things I Love Tuesday #8 - Autumn Edition

It's back! 
Welcome to the eighth installment of 10TILT, a collection of things that I'm a fan of each week! I hope you enjoy it and maybe even find some new things to love!

This week, I'm featuring autumn themed items.

1. This cute Halloween costume.

2010 legos minifig halloween costumes
(click photo for source on Flickr)
This is probably the most perfect lego-man costume I've seen. I adore it! 

14 August, 2011

New Languages

Other languages have always fascinated me. I remember looking forward to attending High School, because two years of learning another language was required to graduate. I chose French.
I loved learning French. It was like learning a secret to me. I soaked up all of the language that I could and had the best time trying to come up with new combinations of words. I was never fluent, but even to this day, with my measly two years of learning (more than 10 years ago... ugh...) I still surprise myself with what I remember.

12 August, 2011

A Few Words on Professionalism.

There's much to say on this topic, and let me begin by saying that I am no expert... however, I will share what I've learned along the way.

A lot can be said with your emails, avatar photos, profile pictures, attitude, and even (gasp!) grammar and spelling. 
With emails - it starts with the address. Moreover, you'll be taken more seriously, in my experience, if your email is something simple like your name, "janedoe@email.com" rather than something sounding like a gamer profile, "psycho_cat_lady987@mail.com" or "rainbowzRpurdy@email.com". One of the first lessons of the internet for me (at what now seems like the beginning of time) was to change my email address to reflect my professional self, rather than my silly alter ego.
(incidentally, my very first email address was blookie_nose (at) hotmail (dot) com)

11 August, 2011

Move, Learn, Eat

I happened upon these videos yesterday and just had to share them. 

3 guys, 44 days, 11 countries, 18 flights, 38 thousand miles, an exploding volcano, 2 cameras and almost a terabyte of footage... all to turn 3 ambitious linear concepts based on movement, learning and food ....into 3 beautiful and hopefully compelling short films.....


MOVE from Rick Mereki on Vimeo.

LEARN from Rick Mereki on Vimeo.

EAT from Rick Mereki on Vimeo.

10 August, 2011

Organizing a Tiny Space

Remember my itty-bitty bathroom... the one that's attached to our bedroom? It's the one we use most often and it is the smallest bathroom in the house. This is it just after we moved in, before anything was put in it:

There are certain things I like to keep in a bathroom. Cleaning supplies, for one, but specifically, extra shampoo/conditioner, razor blade refills, towels, facial cleansers... general toiletries. Unfortunately with such a small space comes almost no storage.

08 August, 2011

No Place Like Home...

Ahh... home.

I must admit that though Sweden was fun and relaxing and enjoyable, after three weeks - I was ready for home. The last week of our holiday, V had to go home to return to work, but I stayed behind to hang out with his parents for that additional time. It was really wonderful to get to know them, despite our language barrier (they only speak Polish). I learned a lot of Polish in my time in Sweden... which of course, sounds weird.

Coming home it always the most exhausting part for me. For one thing, I sincerely do dislike the act of travelling. Sure, I like to be in and visit new places. I love seeing fresh scenery. I very much loathe the "getting there" part.

06 August, 2011

my last two weddings...

(While I'm out of the country, I'll be reposting some content from my archives. This one was originally published in early November 2009)

...in America...

...for now...

05 August, 2011

a bit of Macro fun!

(While I'm out of the country, I'll be reposting some content from my archives. This one was originally published in early January, 2008 and I was having fun with my new macro lens)

03 August, 2011

Sweet Confirmation

02 August, 2011


(While I'm out of the country, I'll be reposting some content from my archives. This one was originally published on August 1, 2008, when I was visiting Alaska for a dear friend's wedding. Happy Anniversary Heidi and George!!)


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