Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Happy Halloweenie!

Hope you all have a goodie-filled...

...devilishly wonderful day!

Just be sure to scrape all the goopy horrible Halloween goodness out of today because it has to last you a whole year!

I leave you with a fiendish little ditty from my husband's childhood sung to the tune of "The old grey mare just ain't what she used to be...."

Great big gobs of greasy grimy gopher guts

Concentrated monkey meat

Little tiny birdie feet

And me without a STRAWWWWWWW

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Halloweened Out

Is it over yet? Now don't get me wrong-- you all know how much I love Halloween, but this year, I’m kinda ready for it to be over. I think it’s because we started with the cider mills a bit too early, and we have exhausted all the kid’s Halloween activity options. I was so happy that Q was actually old enough to be at least a *teensy* bit interested in spooky festivities that we went a little overboard. If I see one more Disney princess costume (specifically those filled with mean little girls who stick their noses up at my Strawberry Q), I may puke.

So how were your weekends? Ours was lovely. Friday was dinner with friends and their daughter, Ramona, who is Quinn’s buddy. We went to a chaotic Halloween event at the local YMCA. There really wasn’t too much for them to do besides steal cones from some of the games like little mice and stack them up on the floor. We didn’t stop them because there was no order anywhere else anyway.

Saturday, my parents came over. My mom brought ground bologna. Are you familiar?? I’m sure it will sound appalling to those who are not. It’s ring bologna ground up and mixed with pickle relish and mayonnaise. It’s like ham salad with bologna instead, and it HIT THE SPOT. At night, last minute we decided to run over to a Halloween event in the city where I work. It was drizzling a bit, but it was still pretty nifty. She got a little scared, but she reallllllly likes Nerds, so that helped mitigate her fears.

Yesterday, I finished up her trick or treat bag. The pattern’s based on a Martha Stewart owl clip art craft in the October Living. I just drew on the bag with a temporary ink pen and stitched over. I thought I should maybe fill some more stuff in, but eh. If I have time tonight (between making Halloween cupcakes for work potluck and frosted sugar cookies for daycare), I may stitch Quinn’s name on. Not perfect, but very Girl Land. Whoops! Looking at this pic, I definitely need to iron out my hoop crease a little better.

Oh, I also tried this. One word—ugh.

Last thing—Girl Land merchandise is now available for sale in-state at Red Shoes in Ann Arbor!!! That makes 4 stores which makes me very very happy and proud. Sigh.

Monday, October 29, 2007

Me Want Food

Gack. So I made the front cover of our local newspaper doing what I do best-- eating. I'm sharing this fairly unattractive picture with you for sport. This was from a Taste Fest that my friend, Shelly, organized. My friend, Noreen, and I went after work last Tuesday.

So I was half expecting to see the FIRST picture the photographer took. It was of me with half of a shrimp tempura roll hanging out of my mouth and my eyes half open. The photographer came over to get my name, and I said "I don't think so". I was pretty bitchy to him only because I'm already feeling fat, bloated, and unattractive. I didn't need to view the proof in black and white. So he was kind enough to take this second photo. I got his name and contact info and told him I'd be hunting him down if he ran the first one-- I was half kidding, half COMPLETELY serious.

Good thing I made it crystal clear because this was on the front cover of our local paper this morning. And like really REALLY large. While it's not the most flattering pic, I'm just thankful it wasn't of the first picture. I may have cried. I'm thanking my lucky stars.
**Update: Apparently, the picture is more hideous than I originally thought. I have gotten several "sympathy" calls today from friends asking, "Are you ok???". Cringe, cringe. I am going to crawl in a hole now. See you next year.**

Friday, October 26, 2007

Lovely Bones Update

Are you sick of hearing about this yet? Please bear with my deep obsession. I feel that I will, inevitably, be let down by the movie version, but I can't help but hope. C'mon, Mr. Jackson!

So Dark Horizons reports that my boyfriend, Ryan Gosling, is out as Susie's father, and Mark Wahlberg will replace him!. I'm not sure how I feel about this as I do love them both, but I think the scale was tilted just a tad towards Mr. Gosling. Still unsure how Rachel Weisz will (spoiler alert) be able to cheat on EITHER OF THE HOTTIES with Michael Imperioli, but I did read that the role requires a few extra pounds. Even still...I'm just not a monobrow type of gal, I suppose.

Filming started yesterday in Malvern, Pennsylvania if anyone lives near.

P.S. I had to post the pants-dropping Marky Mark phase of you, M.W. (sorry), because I remember you when! I think sometimes you seem a little too big for those previously-saggy britches of yours, and you need to remember where you came from. I saw you in 1991 in concert with the Funky Bunch at Meadowbrook Music Hall when my 2 friends and I had our parents drive us 2 hours to Detroit, and you put on an average show-- until we got to see your Calvins, then it was alllll good. Awwwww yeah. xo

Thursday, October 25, 2007 Black

Hi kids! I missed ya. I was at a conference last week, and this week, I am just in a funk. I can’t get out. I’m feeling underwhelmed, uninspired, and just downright icky. But enough about me, how are you doing???

I went to a very informative Urban Planning conference last week. My favorite part was a mobile workshop of an old insane asylum that they are transforming into a mixed use development. The hubby and I have been following this for 5 years. These pictures are some “before” pics from a few years back. Note the scary balconies with chainlink fences over them to keep the patients in! Eek!

Here is an “after” pic as well of a residential building. There are many residential condo units as well as wonderful businesses such as a the Left Foot Charley winery, Pleasanton Bakery, Higher Grounds (dig their website addy " roasting company (the only free trade organic coffee roaster in North America), Stella Trattoria, a spa, salon, art gallery, deli, etc. And get ready because a new boutique hotel will be coming soon! Nifty. OH! And how can I forget-- the Underground Cheesecake Company is also moving there. Yummmmay.

On the crafty front, I’m working on embroidering a personalized trick or treat bag for Q. I will show you when I’m all done. Need to run to Michael’s at lunch to grab some more embroidery floss as well as some green felt to make some strawberry leaves to tie around her wrists and ankles for her Halloween costume. We’re planning on attending a Halloween event Friday night with her little friend, Ramona, and her mom and dad. Hopefully we won't get drenched cuz rain is in the forecast. Bummer!

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Into the Forest!

So now that my craftroom is complete, I'm getting the decorating itch again! Our room is to be turned into Q's big girl room with a forest theme! I'm leaning more towards the mushroom/gnome/woodland creature feel, not so much the fairies-- not that I have anything against fairies!!! :) So imagine the wonderful timing when I received an e-mail alert from Little Odd Forest (love!) that these tree stump stool covers were back in stock! I snatched one up immediately.

My wonderfully talented aunt is going to sew a patchwork quilt for Q. I've been collecting a few Japanese fabrics, but I need to get some more muted patterns to work in there. It's hard!!! I'm not a natural at this. So besides the three kiddie prints (kids, animals, and mushrooms in a forest on white and pink backgrounds), I have a small mushroom print on white, and a small pink polka dot on white. Remind me to take pics of my swatches because I'm sure you all will have wonderful ideas for me.

There is also a wonderful closet in her future room which is begging to be turned into a "secret room". My grandma had a tiny kids-only room upstairs in her work room (she was a florist) with Peter Rabbit wallpaper, a toy piano, and table and chairs with china tea set. I have such happy memories of that bitty room! I wish I had some photos of it, but now the house has been long sold.

Monday, October 15, 2007

C'mon Kids, Get Your Sugar ON

That's right, kiddies, the Girl Land household is giving out FULL SIZE candy bars this Halloween. I'm obviously pulling out all the stops so I can get more than 10 stinkin' trick-or-treaters on my dead end street. Tell your friends!!! Ryan thinks they'll be mostly gone before Halloween, but I disagree. I can justify eating 10 snack size bars in a row, but to eat a full size candy bar???? To shame! That's my screwed up sense of logic for you.

The first year we had the house, I decorated with corn stalks, pumpkins out the wazoo, mums, pumpkin lights, and blared spooky sound effects out the window. I was unaware that kids just don't come down our street. Walter (my single dude neighbor across the street with the cutest Corgi, Goebel) and I used to sit in our respective enclosed porches and occasionally exchange the sheepish nod. He decks his house out with a fake graveyard and owls in the trees. Now I sit inside with the door cracked open and yell, "HOLD ON!" if they knock one too many times. I got a little lazy with my decorating this year. I'm waiting for my peach and greyish black pumpkins to get stolen (my white ones spouted legs and walked away last year). But I still did do the lights. whooooo. hoooooo.

We had one dude in our neighborhood growing up who did the full-size Snickers. Dr. Boulter. He was (wait for it) a dentist. Good career builder, Dr. B!

Anywho, hit another cider mill this weekend. Sixty degree weather=much better cider mill weather than 90 degree weather. T'was fun except neither Q nor myself drank any cider (unpasteurized). Although I eat/drink everything else I'm not supposed to while PG (deli meat, nutrasweet, caffeine, soft cheese-- all in moderation)-- I know, EVIL MOM. But something about the floaties on the bottom of the cider carton make it seem just so much more, I dunno, bacteria-filled. Another example of my screwed up logic. Hope everyone else's weekends were lovely!

I have only one more work day, then I am off with my friend to an Urban Planning conference upstate where Ryan and Q will join me Friday. The colors should be at their peak. We used to stay at the most BEAUTIFUL B&B B.Q. (Before Quinn) called the Wellington Inn. Seriously, if anyone is traveling to Traverse City, I'd highly recommend it and get the tour. This couple has taken painstaking measures to restore the home back to its original state looking for photographs and clues to show them how each room looked back in the day. And Barb is the best cook! Mmmm!

Ok, kids, off to bed. Ciao for now!

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Decal Debacle

I received my decals from Ebay today. I knew the price was too good to be true. The woman had made them herself, and the print quality was pretty bad. She was nice though, and she's refunding all my money and said I could just keep them. I was pretty excited to know, however, that you can buy inkjet waterslide decal paper to make your own! I think they would work best on clear glass. I tested one of them out on an orange surface, and it didn't show up too well. Anyway, kinda neat to keep in mind. You can buy the decal paper by the sheet on Ebay, but I'm sure you can find it elsewhere.

I decided to just make my own stick-on decals for the treat pails myself. I think they turned out ok-- I definitely like the owl one better. They are in my shop. I'm so into the Halloweeny mood. I changed my shop banner for the occasion as well. Tee hee!

P.S. Check out my crafty friend, Cyndy's, new Etsy shop called Candy Buttons! Adorable stuff!

Friday, October 12, 2007

21 Days Til Halloween!

...silver shamrock! Finally, the 90 degree weather has moved on! Today was great-- 60 degrees and rainy. Ahhhhhhh! It's supposed to clear up for the weekend but maintain a wonderful high of 58-60 degrees. Now THAT'S cider mill weather.

Dave loaned me this cool book! I cannot believe all the nifty stuff inside. I want it all to decorate my house, well, sans the hefty price tags. Yikes! I love all the paper lanterns with silhouettes. Aren't they great? This little lovey on the right is-- can you see?-- $900! Wow. Seems like all the German diecuts are the big ticket items. Dave said lots of this stuff is even crazy expensive at flea markets too.

Waiting on some retro repro Halloween decals to come in the mail so I can finish up my treat pails. Cutting it kinda close, I know. But I did make another Boo Garland (finally) which is in my shop! Also, my weirdo Halloween diorama dude is there as well.

Oh Fall! I thought you'd never get here!

Thursday, October 11, 2007

The Paper Doll

The sweet and lovely Schultzie outright purchased some Girl Land goods about a month or two ago. She has a lovely shop in Washington state called The Paper Doll-- Bellingham, to be exact (home of Death Cab for Cutie!). I was so honored to have some of my things in her shop!

Anywho, I clicked on their "What's New" section a week or so ago, and look! One of my kitty carry-me cases right there staring me in the face! Hello, little little! I'm such a dork, but it made me very happy. Thanks, Schultzie! Say hi to Soupy Sails for me!

Monday, October 8, 2007

Curiously Familiar

Here's the new One Good Bumblebee email I received today which is on their main website as well:

And here is what Girl Land's website has looked like since April-ish:

I hope this a coincidence because I really would have appreciated a courtesy e-mail. Am I being petty? I put a lot into the thought of my website layout (even though I didn't produce it, I came up with the whole concept). I guess I'm just kinda bummed. Sigh.

**UPDATE: Received a cordial email from Katey today of OGB who swore up and down she hadn't seen my site. I guess I always expect the worse from people, so that's my fault. So chalk it up to coincidence! Changed my "Raging" tag to "whining" instead. You guys are always so supportive though-- thanks for the words of encouragement. XO! Over and out!**

First Attempt

A friend and work colleague is due with her second boy on Q's bday (Nov 12!). Two of my other friends and I are taking her out to lunch this Friday. They asked me to go in on a gift for her, but I said I was going to maybe make something instead. I'm actually going to give her a hooded towel that my friend, Karen, makes (I use them for Quinn every day!), and then I read Sarah's blog yesterday and though what the hey. Here's the outcome:

Not GREAT, but acceptable for a first venture. I need to snip off some threads I noticed after I took this pic. I'm also going to give her a Wise Owl bib and I'll try to package it up nicely. It was nice to be crafty again yesterday. I have today off work (gotta love that Columbus), so I need to get crackin' on Catherine's order!

No flea market yesterday. I was feeling morning sicky, and I figured that coupled with 88 degree heat and humidity with no shade in sight and an hour's drive made a bad combo. Phooey.

Sunday, October 7, 2007

Creepin' Me Out

So Q says yesterday, "Kid crying, kid crying" and is looking all sad. I say, "Where is there a kid crying?", thinking she is hearing a neighbor kid having a tantrum or something outside. She pulls me into our guest room and points to this statue guy we use as a door stop. Frigging SCARY!!! Our black and white cat knocked him over when we first bought him and his head broke off, so Ryan glued it back on. Ryan said, "Eesh, maybe that's why he's crying!". That's the room we're going to have to move into soon to make room for Baby #2, and now we're freaked out about it. I can't wait to tell my mom because she already think the thing comes alive at night. I think she puts something over it when she sleeps over.

We took Q to get her first haircut yesterday. We went to this only moderately awful kid's haircut chain, and she did alright. She wouldn't wear the cape though. It's a little less Gene Wilder-ish now. Then we went to a cider mill and sweated our arses off.

Also made Ryan go back to the estate sale from yesterday so I could buy Missy Mouse!!!! That's the one I thought I had bought but I didn't. Isn't she cute? I'm very content now.

I am heading off to a flea market in a bit, so I will show you my finds in the next day or so.

Saturday, October 6, 2007


I have had this lamp for my craft room for months now. I finally bought the lamp shade, tea-stained it, then bought the vintage poms off Ebay and attached them this morning. Bout dang time.

Today is the hubby's and my 6th anniversary! We are celebrating in a few weeks with a trip to Traverse City. We go there every year, and it's wonderful. We're taking Q too.

Trying to figure out what to do today. Q desperately needs a haircut. I don't want to do it myself. She has pretty tight curls, and when we pick her up from daycare she looks like a wild woman. It's her "Gene Wilder Look". But I also wanted to go to a cider mill even though Ryan is not thrilled with going to a cider mill when it's supposed to get up to 86 degrees today.

Hope everyone is having fun!

Friday, October 5, 2007

Garbage Sale

This is a term that my friend, Sue, affectionately uses—she LOVES garage and estate sales both. Funny what people are drawn to at such sales. Her obsession is table linens. I gravitate towards salt & pepper shakers, planters, aprons, embroidery, anything with animals or kids on them, children’s books, framed prints, etc. Speaking of, I just adore this “cow” picture recently scored by Nicole. Her picture looks like it’s from a catalog.

Anywho, Sue is only one of two of my real-life junking friends (the other being Dave), both co-workers. Sue and have now twice gone to sales at lunch. Today was quite the adventure! She hit this particular sale yesterday on her day off and loved it so much that she wanted to go back. So we drove about 20 minutes to the town, and um, drove around trying to find it for about another ½ hour. She was giving up and feeling sheepish (t’was no biggie for me—my lunch date had canceled) when her friend called and gave us some better directions. She still wasn’t sure, so we tracked down a postal worker she had talked to yesterday near the sale, and Miss P.O.’s mind was a steel trap—of course she remembered…114 West!

Anywho, lovely little sale. Much more estate than garage. TONS of aprons, vintage baby clothing, children’s books, Christmas kitsch, linens, furniture, etc. Most of the cloth items were torn or stained (I don’t do badly stained or ripped unless it’s basically free), and we didn’t have much time to dig, but I did get a few darling aprons (don't you love the windmill one?), a huge BAG of wooden figurine ornaments and a few more kitschy one, and one kid’s book with beautiful silhouettes on the front and back covers. I had in my hand the CUTEST mouse toothpick holder that could have been turned into a tiny pincushion, and I must have set it down because I don’t have it. Boo hoo! I had a sense of panic when I thought I may have put it in the ornament bag or under the aprons and walked off with it, but I didn’t. Although the Sarah Devil sitting on my left shoulder wishes that I had inadvertently stolen it. Mwaaaahaahaaahaaa.

Oh, here are some other small finds from Sue’s and my last estate sale together—some perfectly Girl Land fabric, for one! If this were wallpaper, I would use it to do up another room in Girl Land’s imaginary wee cottage in the woods. Also found were a retro 80s mirrored compact, some rabbit miniatures for dioramas, and some SUPER CUTE Swedish kids cocktail napkins. Oh, and I also got this milk glass pedestal bowl at a thrift store about a month ago. I'm thinking I will put some of this stuff in my shop. And here are some more pics on my Flickr page.

Another big flea on Sunday! Happy weekend all! xo

Thursday, October 4, 2007

Pushing Daisies

I watched this show last night and was so very pleasantly surprised! Just what I needed-- another show in my repertoire. Like I don't watch enough of the boob tube already.

For those who don't know the (slightly silly) premise, Ned is a pie maker who has the bizarre gift of reviving dead folk with one touch and can send them back to death with a second touch. He is in business with a P.I. and together they solve murders by reviving the victims to ask who killed them. Slightly morbid but somehow very very cute!!! He then revives a childhood crush, a girl named Chuck or Charlotte Charles, and he decides to keep her alive. Their crush is rekindled, but he cannot touch her again or she will die all over again.

Ok, sounds really morbid? It's so not! It's one of the cutest things I've seen in awhile. The best parts about it: the tres Amelie-esque narrator who refers to Ned as "The Pie Maker"; the Tim Burton-like colors, backdrops, and the scenery are beautiful; the name of Ned's bakery is called The Pie Hole (ha); and Chuck's wonderfully weird ex-synchronized swimming aunts (The Darling Mermaid Darlings) played by Ellen Greene and Swoozie Kurtz. How can you go wrong? Anyway, it's on Wednesdays from 8pm-9pm eastern time.

You can watch the opening scene on Youtube! Let me know if anyone else watched it and/or liked it.

Wednesday, October 3, 2007


We had a lovely stay in the Twin Cities! Check out what we did (brace yourself for the boringness and notice how the whole trip revolves around food).

Thursday: Checked into our hotel, Chambers. They couldn’t find our reservation even though I provided them with my confirmation email and confirmation number therefore we got an upgraded room (that cost $565/night!!!). God bless incompetent computerized reservation systems. In the lobby, they had an art vending machine. You put $$ in, and get a lil' piece of art! That night, we ate at Chambers Kitchen. I was drooling over the lovely drinks like ginger margaritas and cucumber mint cocktail, but alas, no could do.

Friday: Ate breakfast at Hell’s Kitchen. Oona told me they have great homemade peanut butter. YUM, did they (we bought 3 jars)! Ryan got a bloody mary made with beer instead of vodka and said it was the best bloody mary he’s ever had (I’m not a bloody mary fan myself). Went to Crafty Planet, and I met Rebecca. She’s so cute. We were at DUCF together, but I never got a chance to meet her. Didn’t buy much though because I was feeling uninspired, but it was so great to see all those lovely Japanese import fabrics in person! Then went to Patina and bought a few things for Q. Then went to the Walker Art Center and sculpture garden. At night, ate at Cosmos with some friends of my hubby’s sister. Great food! Although, my pregnancy upchuck reflex kicked in a bit with the palette cleanser (a shot of carrot ginger juice with a ball of “exploding coconut” which tasted like an eyeball). Everything else was tres magnifique though—our waiter was great and resembled Andy Dick. I’m sure he’d love to hear that.

Saturday: Ate at Town Talk Diner—Ryan got awesome steak and eggs. Went to I Like You, another indie shop, and saw many cutie pie wares from The Glitter Workshop. Drove to the burbs for my friend’s wedding and then to the reception near the Mall of America. At the reception, we sat with some random people who were from St. Paul but kept referring to Minneapolis as “Murderapolis”. Let me tell you that downtown Minneapolis looked like Pleasantville to us. Ryan said he would love to drive them down to Detroit and just leave them somewhere. They’d poop their pants. Now, we LOVE downtown Detroit—such great restaurants, museums, theaters-- but people from out of town freak out. They also were so kind to suggest going to a chain restaurant near the Mall of America as well as to a local Renaissance Festival for fun (we have one in the Detroit area too; I'm sure the MN one is equally as sucky). I just nodded and smiled politely.

Sunday: Ate at Hell’s Kitchen again! Had THE MOST amazing ham, pear, and fontina sandwich ever. Ryan got their Mahnomin Porridge which was also super tasty. I may try to recreate both things. Went back to the burbs to hubby’s sis’ friends’ house. Met their kids and played Pretty Pretty Princess and Life and ate fresh baked cookies. Fun, rainy afternoon stuff. For dinner, went to Ike’s for just a burger. We were sick of eating out by this point. Weird joint. Lots of drunk Vikings and Packers fans about too.

Monday: Back to Detroit! Thanks for listening to my synopsis. If you were my mother, you’d say, “Are you done yet? It’s like I’m listening to a story about a dream you had!” xo