Monday, April 25, 2011

Forward.

Today I start week 5 of 6 of my second to last block. Next block I only have one class and it's my portfolio class which I'm really looking forward to - the Flash animation class I'm doing right now has been a struggle for me and plus, it is going to be my last class, what's not to look forward to? With Sunday to Sunday school weeks I've not had much time to think about anything other than what's going on right now with the umpteen deadlines that are always in my face.

I had some time on Friday afternoon and Sunday night to think a little for fun - rather than forced thinking which is less enjoyable. For fun I was thinking about all the things I can do - all the things that are going to help pay off my loans - when I'm done with school. Then I was thinking about how I want to do SO much... too much really.

I need to narrow it down. What should I do? I feel like I want a break, like a few weeks of nothing but cleaning my house and organising everything that's been put on hold for the last 18 months. Should I restart my etsy right away? What should I sell? Custom invitations, announcements and cards, prints or things I make? Should I combine the two? Should I seek clients or just do my own thing?

Goodness. I need to make some lists.

It is exciting though and I'm sure this anxiety is pretty normal... right?

WHOWANTSTOHIREME? Excuse me. I have tourettes.

Friday, April 22, 2011

"And the sky was all violet..."

It's no secret that I'm a dreamer, always have been, always will be. It's one of my favourite things to do. Another of my absolute favourite things to do is encourage others to make their dreams come true. When they've made one dream come true I like to encourage them harder to make MORE come true! Why stop at having one dream come true? To me, it almost seems like waste to only stop at one dream.

I grew up hearing, "You can be anything you want to be if you put your mind to it." I really believe it because I have parents who believe it and taught me that. I've also put it to practice and know it's true.

This morning my new friend Camilla presented her dream in the form of online magazine The Violet. I wasn't sure what I was expecting but I had that feeling of pure excitement tumbling about inside my tummy this morning when I clicked on the link to view the first issue. Before even seeing it I was bursting with happy for her - it didn't even matter what it looked like because Camilla made her dream come true and that is amazing on it's own! Then I clicked the page to open it and was sucked right in - even from a graphic design stand-point.

I read it, cover to cover and ended so inspired and uplifted! There's a serious lack of this is in todays world, and Camilla's rounded up the best of the best in regards to writers (engaging and honest), images (clean and beautiful), subjects (inspiring and zesty) and given it to us. I love it!

I feel like it's such a treat that I can't not share it with all my lovies! Head over The Violet and take a gander. Don't stop there - be a part of making someone elses dream come true and share it, like it on facebook, make goals, try the recipes (I made her hummus recipe yesterday and it's all I plan on eating today), email her your experiences.

I have a dream of helping other peoples dreams come true. Have you ever had a goal that you just wished someone would appear out of nowhere and help you achieve it? We have opportunities to be that someone...


Speaking of goals and dreams are you making a summer list this year?

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

A spin on breakfast - for Rachel

Rachel,
 I don't make breakfast for dinner - except sometimes when we have cereal :S I fairly enjoy it when other people feed me breakfast for dinner though. However, I do have a new default recipe for when we're in the mood for breakfast and I don't want to make something huge/we leave it too late in the day/I don't want to dirty too many dishes (so I don't have to clean them).

Here's the recipe:

Frozen tater tots OR crinkle cut fries - basically any potato thing you have in your freezer. I like crinkle cut best)
1 can of cream of mushroom (or chicken) soup
Sour cream - sometimes I use a big dollop, sometimes I use the whole tub
Grated cheese - any kind you like and basically as much as you like
Fillers ie. cubed ham, diced onion, sweetcorn, cooked sausage, crumbled bacon, diced peppers...
A shake of hot sauce if you'd like

Preheat your oven to 350'f
Grease your dish - we use a 9 x 9 because we could eat the whole 9 x 13 which isn't good.
Cover the bottom of your dish with frozen tots/fries in a single layer
In a bowl combine soup, sour cream, and shake of hot sauce if you'd like
Add a handful (or 2) of cheese
Mix in your fillers - I like ham, sweetcorn and onion
Pour soupy mixture over tots/fries and spread to the edges as well as possible
Top with a little more cheese

Bake for 45 minutes until cheese is melty and sauce is bubbly.

It's not healthy in the slightest but it's easy to make, easy to customise, hot, filling, can be as cheap as you like,  and I dare say it is comfort food too.

This is what we call Breakfast Casserole.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Time saver; brain saver.

Last week Stuart and I decided (again) to plan our meals out for the next couple of weeks in order to save dinner time frustration and brain power that's needed elsewhere. Stuart very kindly spent a morning flipping through a few recipe books and wrote down the name of 13 (10 of which are completely new to us) dishes, the page number and book it came from, and made a shopping list with all the ingredients we'd need to make them all.

This is our list. (x marks the ones we've had so far):
Gnocchi with ricotta and tomato basil sauce x
Fettuccine with creamy tomato sauce
Mexican potato frittata
Lemon-ginger chicken x
Chili x
Creamy tomato-basil soup x
Meatballs
Enchiladas
Lasagna x
Chicken tetrazzini
Sweet and sour meatballs x
French onion soup
Breakfast casserole x

As soon as I got home from grocery shopping I put together a big batch of meatballs, split them and froze them for throwing in the crockpot when I don't have time to cook. I made the lasagna and cooked it the night before we were going to eat it- it could then be frozen if we'd wanted or heated whenever - another time saver. Soup also saves well. Heaven!

I love being able to pick something off the list (we keep it on the fridge) in the morning and prepare for it through the day, and then have it ready for when Stuart gets home. It cuts out the whole "what are we having for dinner?" "what do you want for dinner?" "I don't know" "well I don't know either. Tell me when you know" conversation we'd have every single evening that always ended with us hungry and irritated at 8pm. I hate choosing what we're having for dinner.

I posted a few of the recipes on our recipe blog tonight. Let me know if you try any of them or if you have any I should try.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

April.

I've put everything, absolutely every-thing on hold these past 16 months. I know I've mentioned it before but I don't know if I can really express the extent of the "everything". I've taken very few photo's, blogged almost never, read very few books, slept in past 6:30am hardly ever, done absolutely no crafts, bakes very little... I haven't been myself. Waah waaaah!

Anyway, with almost just 8 weeks left until graduation I'm dreaming of the things I'm going to get up to, the goals I'm looking forward to accomplishing, the life I'm going to start living again. I can't wait!

Friends, I'm going to stop neglecting you verrrry soon!

Friday, April 1, 2011

Get me right.

We celebrated our 7th Lover-versary at the start of March and righted something we both have regretted for a while now. We never had a photographer at our wedding, in fact we'd never had our picture taken together professionally at all. I've been desperately wanting to replace the very few pictures we have on our walls for years and years but have never really had anything perfect to put in their place - getting pictures taken takes time and money which we don't have much of either.

It just so happens that one of my best friendies, Wendy (Blue Lily Photo) is taking over the world with her photography right now and was in town just after our anniversary. We headed over to San Francisco in the rain for a quick photo sesh. It was so rainy and dull that I didn't get to wear my fabby skirt that my friend, Chiemi made for me but I have plans for that soon too, don't worry.

It feels so good to have put something right - don't ever think that you don't need a photographer at the most special events of your life. You do!


Stuart was nervous and talked through the whole session. It's a miracle Wendy was able to capture anything good between his talking and my constant shushing him. I love them though and they'll be taking pride of place on our walls for a long time!