Sunday, June 30, 2013

make a 4th of july garland with popcorn bags

Happy almost-july friends! This garland is 8 ft long! I used four different styles of popcorn bags. The classic red and white stripes bag came from The Dollar Tree and the white bag with red and blue stripes came from Cost Plus. The other two bags were etsy finds.
I used my sewing machine to zig-zag stitch the paper bags to a wide grosgrain ribbon. I quite like the differences in their sizes. Since the bags are paper, you could easily use a fold and glue method to create your own garland.

Have fun!

Saturday, June 29, 2013

shop update: red, white, blue, and pretty

My festive independence day inspired dilly packs are in the shop. There are two styles listed. One with a more muted palette (think pale pink, dusty red, and aqua), the other classic red, white, and blue. Not a fan of red, white, and blue? There is also a silver and gold pack full of vintage goodness, and a delightful pack packed with blue.

Thursday, June 27, 2013

even 90 degrees is too hot for me

I'm pathetic when it comes to heat (and so is my mint plant...the darn thing keeps curling up on itself and drying out). My body simply is not a fan and I get anxious and completely nauseated no matter how much water I drink. The tiny casa has no air and while it was much much cooler inside than out I got all heatified when I got crafty.
I ran about the tiny casa like a mad woman today. It helps that I woke up at 6:30am. Wrote out a list last night and managed to cross three things of the list. Yikes! Only three? I need to skeedaddle more often.
There was some pom wrapping when the heat got the best of me and then some stitching and a whole lotta of photographing.
I'm feeling a lot of anxiety about time lately. Like there really isn't enough and yet what is it I actually do? I'm off for the summer and we have some traveling planned but mostly I need to get these projects off my list (they're all for the 4th of July...yikes!) and then it is time to pack, pack, pack.
Yup, you read that right. The mister and I are moving out of the tiny casa and back into the homestead. The sister-a-go-go (well, one of them) is moving out and the mama a-go-go would prefer to not live alone. Since the mister's work space is at the homestead, and we're there more often than not, and the witch-baby is there, and well...we really like the mama a-go-go, it will be an enjoyable change. It will also be a challenge, I know this. Even though the tiny casa is tiny, it is overflowing with stuffity-stuff and we'll be downsizing into two rooms. Much will be stored but I am hoping to be brave enough to part with all sorts of vintagey goodness. I'll probably list it in the shop so as to keep all the other vintagey goodness there company.
Speaking of the shop, I will be adding (if not already added) some festive July 4th inspired dilly packs to it so don't be shy and pick up some pretty whilst contributing to my new camera lens fund!
And now it is time for a cereal snack...that could be dinner, right?

because sometimes we could use a bit of mask happy

We're making kachina doll inspired masks in a-go-goland. Sometimes all you need is a bit of creativity to put the good things in perspective. I'm kinda needing a does of goodness right now. How can you not like a monkey-duck-robot-chicken mask?

I still need to add the paper maché and doodads to the crown and then paint it up. I'm ready for some creatin'. Bring it on!

pondering on sadness and mockery and why do people have to be so cruel

I'd like a do-over for today..or this week...this month even...heck, maybe even the past three years?

My mind is a muddled mess of insecurities and a slight that happened recently that may or may not have been perceived and all in my head. That written out, do you ever get the feeling that you would be better off not interacting with people? That the self that you are is so wholly misunderstood that you feel you have to defend the you that you are constantly? I've been feeling that way a lot lately and I know part of it is perception on my part and I want to own that but a lot of it is others perceptions of me. I'm not you, I'm me, and all of those little bits and pieces that fit together to create the finished me shaped me in so many ways. Those little pieces are what make me unique. They make YOU unique. They make US unique. So why is it that we of small differences feel so largely ignored?

Like a skipping record I find myself pondering over this parrotted thought. If the me that I am bothers you, why bother with me at all? Why set me up for liking you only to mock me from behind? Does it make you feel better to make fun of those who aren't like you?

I'm feeling cranky and snarky and so very tired for being misunderstood but what can I do? As much as I try to be different or some other me I always default back to the simple me.

I don't mean to sound all cryptic and I know I am typing in generalizations but over the years I have struggled with so, so, so many people flinging accusations my way that I end up fearing they are correct and I AM a horrible, awful sort of person. Deep down I know they are wrong. They are. But why do I attract this type? Is it because I don't feel I deserve good people in my life? Am I like the sad and insecure girl who dates the wrong guys over and over again? It boggles my mind and makes me teary weepy more often than not.


I'm tired and sad. I wish people could be more kind and understand that once the words and/or actions you say/display have been said and done, there is no going back. You can't take them back. You might pretend you never said them but you did. I heard you. I saw you. I hurt because of you and you can't take it back. You might think you can but you can't.

If anything, I have learned to be more careful in my reactions and spoken words. React, think on it, muddle it through, then respond. Don't ever say anything hateful or mean. You can't take it back and it's an action that festers and grows and grows and festers.

I want to stress this idea of kindness. Of understanding that while we are all the same, we are also very different. We have had different life experiences that have made us stronger or weaker or kinder or meaner. Once we have the grace to understand that perhaps we can change.

I hope so.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

the new normal?

media has really twisted our physical ideals. that's not news to you, i'm sure but here's why i am writing this...back in the 90s, i adored Dharma and  Greg. i especially adored Jenna Elfman as Dharma and remember thinking how tall and willowy she was. just the other day i was at the mama a-go-gos and in control of the television remote and noticed Dharma & Greg was on the TV so i clicked over and was surprised to see a Dharma that looked not as willowy as i remembered. it was the same old Dharma but my perspective had been skewed from all the thinner-than-thin ladies we see on television, in film and on magazine covers. what is wrong with us?

back in the 70s, 80s and 90s even, our teens on television looked like teens. they looked like kids. they were still soft and slightly baby-faced. the girls on Facts of Life would never be cast if the show was up for a redo. they even did an episode on eating disorders. On Growing Pains, Tracy Gold played teenager Carol and battled with anorexia and still had her character be the brunt of repeated fat jokes. Even at her thinnest on the show, she still does not compare with today's Gossip Girls and the like.

The original Beverly Hills, 90210 was revolutionary for its time. Teens playing teens and still looking a lot like teens and dealing with teen issues. Today's twisted version of the show is so upside down I can't tell if it is modeling today's kids or are they modeling it? The actors are too cut, too super hero looking, all thin and pointy-angular. I still believe kids and I mean to included young adults in the term as well, should be kid-like. They should look young and heart happy. They're kids, life shouldn't be so troubling and hard. My soon-to-be-fifteen-year-old niece had a FB when she was 13 and still managed to maintain a young heart, but spidering out to peek at her various friends' pages had me worried. I know much of it was bravado and most of those young people have no clue and I know teens experiment with all sorts of things but thirteen is too young. Fourteen is too young. I was a pretty "good" kid but still, my growing up began around the second half of my 15th year.

When the old boy-a-go-go (also known as danny boy) was 15 and began his young adulthood he still thought we a-go-gos were cooler than his mom so he shared stories with us and as much as I worried about his unbroken little heart and soul, I knew he needed to feel free and confident to do what his 15 year old self yearned to do. He's 23 now and still feeling out the world. Heck, I'm 42 and still feeling things out.

I don't know, I worry about who is shaping our culture. Pop culture used to be just that but now it seems it is the norm. It is an norm that has me worried. What ever happened to ABY NORMAL?

Monday, June 24, 2013

the week in review: june 17-23

Woooo-wheeee! The week was packity-packed-packed with all sorts o' fun and good times! The Zameander crew came to visit and so we got crafty making pom poms, cardboard masks, a messenger bag and more, more, more! We ate yummy eats (SLO Donut! cronuts!), made sandwiches, hit up a photo booth and named an ice cream flavor.

We hit two beaches, walked a pier, fed more goats than you can shake a stick at, and sampled piles of the best strawberries we have ever had!

If only they could have stayed longer! After they left, there was more mask making, a smidge of book reading and a bit more than a smidge of Ted Talks watching....such a lovely week!

Sunday, June 23, 2013

scrumdilly diy: 4th of july pom pom wreath

Like I have mentioned before I'm think in the frenzy of pom pom making. I'm having too much fun and am making quite the mess. I decided to turn my compulsion into something pretty for July and thus the pom pom wreath was born.
I used a particle-board type base found in the floral department at my local Michael's. It was larger, sturdier and less expensive than an embroidery hoop or foam form of the same size. I also like it because it is flat and has hole drilled in it. It's multi-useful! A couple of coats of white paint on my wreath form just in case any part if it shows through and I was ready to go.
I created a happy pile of independence day-festive poms and popped them into an egg carton for storage.
I began by wrapping red yarn around the wreath-to-be in the style of weaving a dream-catcher. When I was happy with the wrapping, I flipped over the form and added a blob of glue and a clothespin anchor to keep it all in place. To ensure the yarn remained where I wrapped it, I added additional blobs of glue for good measure.
To anchor the poms to the form, I used healthy amounts of tacky glue. I find that yarn needs a bit more glue to stick to things and I never have good luck with hot melt glue (my poor poor army of love lost a few troops). My poms were on the larger, shaggier side so needed a bit more glue than usual otherwise the weight of the poms would dangle from the form instead of staying put.
I entertained the idea of layering more poms on one side to whimsy it up a bit, or maybe even adding a bow but I really liked the simplicity of using just poms and red yarn.
Here it is haging on our front door...
and here over the bed...

winner! winner! winner! winner!

Oh how I wish I could give each one of my entries a garland. As there were but only a few of you, it could be doable but my time is so wonky as of late I would never finish and follow through and then it would hang over my head like all the other things that fell through the cracks (I STILL have nervousness projects dangling overhead and I cannot even remember the details but always think about my dropping the ball there. Shoot!)

Four garlands for four ladies, here ya go!

Please email, etsy mail, or FB message me your address and I will get thee a garland out this week!

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

just in time for solstice, it's a garland giveaway!

Remember these? Leave a comment on this post and one of these lovely festive beauties may be yours!

Along with the three festive garlands I also have this lovely origami papel picado that would look lovely in your home. When you leave a comment, let me know which one is your fave and I'll do my best to make sure it is yours. You have until Saturday, June 22 to enter! Happy almost summer if yer in the western hemisphere!


I am not a fan of confrontation. I do not hold up well to debate and argument. I get far too emotional. With the way social networking has hit us over the heads, I witness a lot of vitriol tossed about. I read, form an opinion and then talk it out with the mister. I don't generally cotton to the idea that Facebook is a place for personal arguments. Your FB page is your page, your space to write what you will. I may not agree with it but it is not my space, it's your space. That said, or rather, written, I was sadly disappointed to read a comment on a friend's page that changed my entire view of this person. The quandry is that this person is allowed to think what they will and that they are allowed to write it down and I am allowed to read it, agree, disagree and move on. I felt compelled to respond, so strongly compelled. I feel compelled so I am using my space to sort it out.

I know that people operate under all sorts of ignorance. I do. We all do. I'm just baffled about it all. And I want to stress that I'm mostly simply disappointed that I read what I read. I also want to repeat that at the same time we are all entitled to our opinions. I know...waffle waffle. I believe this person is wrong just as I am certain they believe I am wrong. So what do we do? Do I drop this person simply because I find this bit of ignorance intolerable or does that make me intolerable as well? Do I invade this person's space to tell them I disagree? If I do not does that make me a supporter of such ignorance? I know I am writing in code here, I just need to process these ideas and feelings.

What made me want to respond so much was/is that I think this person and a few other commentors believe there is nothing wrong in what they wrote or believe and yet to me, it was rife with hatred. The words themselves weren't violent but the context was. I'm still uncertain as to what to do. Like I said, I hate confrontation. I also have a difficult time with ignorance relating to people's choice of partners. Love is love. Loving who you love and being kind is a good thing when it comes from the heart. I feel sad that people still feel a need to make it something other than what it is.

Sigh. Why can't we really just all get along?

Monday, June 17, 2013

the week in review: june 10-16

If I were to go by this photo collage it would appear my week was all about food. Sadly, in a way, ti was. Not really but pretty food abounded and so I snapped away. It was the last week at the preschool until Fall and so I have a lot of photos of the children eating Otter Pops and mixing paint on a painting lathe. It was also just a busy errand-full week and in between these errands I smooshed in some crafty bits and a tiny bit of reading time.

So here ya a reminder to myself and for the week in review...

I finally held off on grocery store shopping so I could pick up organic goodies from the farmer's market. We eat a lot of cauliflower in the tiny casa.

scrumdilly-do! got a few Father's Day projects listed and there were two birthdays this week...the mister's was on Monday and the zoe-cat's (my niece actually) was on Thursday. I actually got her goodies wrapped up and mailed in time. Go me!

At the market we picked up some amazing strawberries! Then I made some amazing egg puffs. When one has strawberries, one makes egg puffs. It's just how it is.

Over the weekend we headed over to a friend's for our first official ingredient club meeting. We are trying to come up with a better name but the deal is that two ingredients are randomly picked and you bring at least one dish utilizing one or both ingredients along with recipes. Our first gathering as a hullaballoo of artichokes and cranberries. If you think that is weird, just wait for meeting number two...butter and marshmallow...we gotta git creative so we're not all a sugared out. I've been pinning ideas like crazy. It's enough to keep a girl up all night. Pictured in the collage is our hostess who is among other things a puppet maker.

Along with Father/s Day crafting I put together a July 4th door wreath dealio. I'll get the diy up soon,..more yummy farmer's market groceries, another Father's Day project, painting fun and one of my contributions to the food party....cranberry, cherry, garlic glaze for a wild rice and sauteed artichoke dish. That glaze is tasty!

Along with eating artichoke based foodstuffs we played with puppets and captured bubbles. This little guy is another handmade creation. So cool! Mister had the partner on his hand and is a much better puppet player than I am even if his puppet voice sounds like a mix between Christopher Walken and Ren.

So there ya go, my week in review. A wrangling kiddos, painting paper, mailing packages, reading, movie watching (I watched Endless Love for the first time...for reals!), closet organizing, grocery shopping kind of week.

This week will be a bit more adventurous as I will not be at the school and some of my favorite peoples will be here. Hooray!

Saturday, June 15, 2013

summer is in the air

It's time for happy drinks in jars. This one can be turned into a science experiment. Recipe via scrumdilly-do!

Friday, June 14, 2013

spoons and bowls and bowls and spoons

When  I was setting up for the mister's ice cream party, I realized that while we may have an excess of oddball items such as empty almond butter jars and oh...I don't know...sock monkeys. We lack things in number that may prove more useful such as spoons and ice cream bowls (ice cream bowls are very useful).

Before we hit the road on the BIG road trip, we tossed, donated, and sold oodles and oodles of stuff, crap, junk, and treasure. I think we should have kept the utensils and the bowls. Not ice cream bowls exactly but more bowls than we have (which is even less now as one of my latte bowls bit the dust a few weeks ago).

Luckily however (or sadly, depends on how you view it) mister and I are a bit socially inept and have not made many friends up here.  There are excellent people of quality that we do know, we're just inept enough to think they don't want to be bothered by us and so we tend to tuck our heads in the ground and pretend we are cartoon ostriches . So a lack of spoons for a partay isn't too lame. The family a-go-go is a fair number of people and I had just enough spoons to make it work for eating and for adding sprinkles and such. Can you tell we picked up most of our utensils from the thrift?

Mister and I used to have a quartet of small bowls we dubbed ice cream bowls that came from chinatown. They were the perfect size for two small scoops of ice cream (but probably for rice. I think they were rice bowls) and cute to boot...there were four and now there are two and two perfectly sized bowls for ice cream will not feed a family a-go-go of eight.

When all else fails or panic begins to creep in, it is Target to the rescue. Isn't that they way? I picked up two sets of malamine-like condiment bowls that were perfect in size and happy in color. All stacked up in a topsy-turvy tower is super smile inducing. At least to me it is...

And so there you have it. What accounts for excitement here in the a-go-go household. The acquisition of thriftshop spoons, and plastic bowls for the sole purpose of ice creaming it up...a-go-go style.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

scenes from the mister's birthday

 We had the family a-go-go  over for homemade lemon buttermilk ice cream and snacks. i made a blackberry sauce for the ice cream and we set up some cones and cookies in case the whimsy took over. Our cupboards were cleaned out trying to find enough glasses for water and lemonade (and spoons, golly we have no spoons!) but it was all good and it was a kick in the pants, it was!  Rainbow sprinkles kind of make everything just a tad more festive, don't ya think? After mr. a-go-go opened his gifts, I passed around all the homemade cards mister made for me over the years. That boy sure has mad skills. Sigh. I find him quite dreamy. Adore.

I am my own worst critic...

I was watching a TedX video featuring SARK and loving every moment of it. She is a pretty awesome person. She was encouraging her listeners to write a love note to the self. She read hers and it was hysterical. I thought about what if I wrote my own and I grew weepy and teary. Truth be told, I have moments of "go me" where I feel ecstatic and happy and proud of the person I am but then the scary little voices creep in and tell me that really I am not all that. Nor do I deserve to be any such thing and I don't know why.

Active inner critics. Critical.

but then again I'm, also carmelizing onions...

Monday, June 10, 2013

the week in review: june 3-9

Much of the week was spent battling a sore throat that has now morphed into something more. It's not a cold, it's not a flu. I'm not sure if it is viral or bacterial. No fever but lots goo. Sigh. I've managed to keep from getting sick since Valentine's Day, not too shabby. 

So, back the the week in review...a whole lotta laziness do to sickiness and then a Sunday packed with stuff. Clockwise from the top left...Ice cream sandwich goodness for the mister's birthday shindig and pretty linens for the june bed. I did manage a wee bit of crafting aka pom pom making. I'm trying for a head start for the 4th! I picked up a bunch of new bowls. We were having family over for ice cream and well...since it is just the two of us, we are low on dishes. These condiment bowls from Target are the perfect size for ice cream. not being glass, they are also perfect for parties (I'm not posting for the big box store, I just really liked these bowls and they are in MY colors. I can;t find any evidence of them online, huh.)!

I got project from my list completed for Father's Day and had the mister model it. Seriously folks, friendship bracelets for dad made from shoelaces. So cool! I also got a couple of way way way WAY late birthday goodies mailed out to Zaza and Ander. Phew! Oh and lookie that homemade buttermilk ice cream! I used my new used ice cream maker for part of it. Yay for summer! And more june bed prettiness.

For the birthday shindig, along with homemade ice cream I made blackberry sauce from fresh blackberries. I used Vernors ginger ale for my liquid and partial sweetness and added a teaspoon of black pepper for heat. Delicious!

This ick has made me a smidge anal and working with preschoolers only adds to the mix so I spend a lot of time washing odd things like these pom poms I brought into the school for the kiddos to play with. Popped them onto a cookie sheet to dry and placed the cookie sheet on the front porch. Who knows what all my college aged neighbors think?

I made mister stop to take a photo for his birthday. He is not too happy to be all of 44.  I think he looks like a baby still. Next up, I worked on a project for scrumdilly-do! and had to photograph all of its pretty. Don't you think it is pretty? 

And finally...I feel a bit hungover form the week and thought this wee lampshade on the noggin was that perfect added touch. It's been a whirlwind and I've been coughing up a storm whilst typing up this post. Time for something hot to drink. Thank goodness it is my day off. Happy Birthday, mr. a-go-go!

Saturday, June 08, 2013

scrumdilly diy: yarn wall medallions

This month's making the bed art was super fun and easy to do. My first three medallions were made from cardboard and when I realized I needed some more I used up a paper sack as I was out of cardboard. Paper bags are much easier to work with as is creating your circle without outlines. Here ya go!

*yarn in a variety of colors
*tacky glue 
*sponge brush (optional)
*recycled paper bags or other sturdy paper

 My jumping off point for this project involved this chunky neon red yarn. I like working with chunky yarn for this because a little goes a long way. I could not find other neon colors of the chunky kind so I rounded out my medallions with a combo platter of colors.

Cut open you paper bag and lay on a flat surface (sorry the pics are from the cardboard). I used the floor. Apply a large dollop of tacky glue and spread across the paper using your sponge brush or fingers. You could probably use white glue but Tacky Glue is thicker and more pliable.

Cut a length of yarn at least six inches to start and press one end down into the glue and gently wrap it around itself creating a spiral circle.

Continue applying glue as needed and  wrapping yarn around the circle until you get the diameter you like. Set aside to dry.

I made a few on my bag and cut them out after they were dry. If you are making a grouping, use the same colors in different combos so that they play well together without being too matchy-matchy.


Another plus for using paper instead of cardboard is that the paper does not curl nearly as much as the cardboard. It's also easier to hang. Add a loop of two of packing tape to the back and get to decorating.


Have a medallion party, serve round food, decorate with balloons, spin some records, and have fun!