Saturday, July 16, 2011
Remember those plans I'd made for taking self-portraits of the clothing I've been making and blahblahblah? Well, they were swiftly abandoned and taken over by an art-date with an old soul whom I love very much. Someone I'm very happy to call "friend".
The wild thing about plans changing unexpectedly is that--at least most of the time--the end result turns out to be exactly what your soul needed.
Nothing more than paint, music, and conversation. (Oh, and maybe a little thrift shopping, just for a breather.)
After a tearful and arduous week, I'm going to bed tonight feeling blessed and relieved.
Happy Saturday to you all. <3
Wednesday, July 13, 2011
On our side of town:
- my new sewing machine (it's this one) works like a friggin' dream. I finished my first skirt yesterday. I'm really trying to take my time and learn how to do everything professionally, like finishing seams, etc. I'm also really trying not to get ahead of myself, but I can't help but think I'm one step closer to opening up an Etsy or BigCartel shop for handmade clothing.
- we are gearing up to send Hayden to kindergarten. He starts the 31st of August. Everyone keeps telling me that I'm going to cry, but I don't know. Mostly I'm just nervous. I'm also preparing myself for the inevitable week of his crying and separation anxiety that's bound to happen.
- I am loving Hannah's blog, Whiskey Shores. She just finished her schooling in fibers (my kind of gal), and does some really amazing textile work. Definitely check out her online shop too!
- our garden is slowly producing. We have tons of tomatoes, although only one has fully ripened. We also have a teeny baby watermelon, which is just about the cutest thing I've ever seen. The herbs are in full force, and thankfully so. My tummy has been especially sensitive lately, so that mint and lavender is really coming in handy.
- we are considering a trip to the beach. We had said no to it this year, that we would buckle down and save some money, but that was before an unexpected (and cheap) opportunity for a place to stay came our direction. I'm actually really hoping we can because, well...Pennsylvania winters are sort of long, and a beach trip always seems to soften that blow.
*On another note, I do believe I'm getting this Saturday completely to myself! I know! What I'd actually like to do is model some of the things I've been making and post some pictures, since I'll have the time to screw around. Keep your eyes open--I'd love to hear some feedback.
Thursday, July 7, 2011
I remember the first time I drank chai tea. Luckily, I was at a very ethereal, spicy-smelling, seemingly authentic Indian restaurant, and the (hot) chai they served was out-of-this-stratosphere. I was spoiled by that first experience, wanting every cup of chai afterwards to taste exactly like that one. But eventually, I gave into the conveniences of the tea-bag, a trend that has continued for years.
So I can't explain why, when, over the holiday weekend, I woke up and inexplicably craved chai--delicious, fattening (because of the cream), fragrant chai. I rummaged through the cupboards and realized I didn't have absolutely every single ingredient, but I improvised, not willing to make a grocery trip on the fourth. This is what I came up with, and while it isn't perfectly authentic, it's still pretty damn good. I had mine iced.
(you can obviously up the quantites as much as you want--I was making this for myself and the husband.)
- 2 cups almond milk
- 1 cup half-n-half (yes, I said one cup. That's right.)
- four tea-bags of black tea (try to get the highest quality you can find)
- 1 vanilla pod
- 2 cinnamon sticks
- literally a pinch of freshly grated ginger root
- pinch of cardamom and nutmeg
- sweetner of your choice (I used stevia and tasted the mixture frequently)
In a heavy-bottomed sauce pan, pour in the milk and half-n-half. Bring the mixture to just bubbling--you don't want to scald the milk. Add the tea bags, cinnamon sticks, and vanilla. Let this bubble away for about 7 minutes, adding just a tiny amount of water to the mixture if you think it's getting too thick. Reduce the heat to a simmer. Add the ginger, cardamom, nutmeg, and sweetner. Allow the mixture to cook for about 5 minutes, then take off the heat and let cool. When no longer piping hot, strain the mixture into another pan or a glass bowl--you don't want any spicy bits floating around in your drink.
To serve, fill glasses with ice and (just because) an extra splash of half-n-half. Ladle the tea into the glasses and swish the ice around briefly with a spoon. I like to leave the cream just slightly uncombined--it looks all swirled and pretty in the glass. But that last part is up to you.