Monday, December 28, 2009

cabin

we've been up on Quadra Island since 23rd for the holidays,
and we had a fabulous christmas with all the family members!
(on my husband side, 19 of us, plus some friends. my family lives in Japan)
my husband's oldest sister and her family rented a cabin right across from the second oldest sister's house for a week.
now they are back in Alberta, and we, three, got a chance to stay at the cabin for a couple days!
it is really cute and I love how it is done.
a great mix of modern, vintage & sort of country-ish.


tomorrow, we go back to the second oldest sis's house, and we are going to be here until New Years.
little L has been a bit overwhelmed by all the people and activities,
so it was so nice to have our own space for two days to sort of make some adjustments and have some quiet time.

Sunday, December 27, 2009

a very special day

one whole year has been already passed since the very special day of my life.

the day I met my daughter.


she was born today exactly a year ago at the exact time.

I remember
that winter was particularly cold.
there was lots of snow outside.
it was a beautiful snowy day.

I remember
the very first little cry of yours.
you made one little cry and cuddled into my arms.
and mama and papa fell in love with you right at that moment.

I remember
the little noise you made all night long
on the very first night outside mama's body.
all thee of us cuddled into the warm bed until the mornig came.

I remember
your grandpa and grandma's surprised faces
when they came to visit next day.
mama and papa kept you secret as a best Christmas gift for them.

I remember

I remember

I remember

I remember
lots of things about you!





it was a very special day.



P.S. mama and papa love you so much!
and thank you so much for coming into our lives.














Monday, December 21, 2009

holiday giveaway!!

holiday/little L's first birthday giveaway!!



I've been planning to do this giveaway for sometime,
but didn't get around to make a post until now...
(you all already know that I am a last minute person :P!)

here is the giveaway treasure.



makeup clutch(or however you want to use it!)
coin purse
and a plus alpha mini surprise gift!



******************************************[[[ TO WIN ]]]******************************************
simply leave a comment below!
*bonus entry 1 - if you follow my blog, leave another comment for another entry!
*bonus entry 2 -if you post about this giveaway on your blog/website, you will get another extra entry!
please also put a link to the post with your comment!
please make sure to leave your e-mail address.
all the comments mush be made by January 4th, by midnight(Pacific time).
and one winner will be chosen randomly, and will be announced on the following day.
***************************************************************************************************

hope you enjoy this giveaway :)!

good luck, everyone!!!


and Merry Christmas to you all!!
XO














1, 2, 3,,,, butter tarts!

sniff sniff

hmmmmmmmmm
I can smell the yummy butter tarts in the oven!





I made the pie dough last night after little L went to sleep.
and this afternoon, made the filling.

this recipe, which my mother in-law taught me, for filling is so easy to remember.
it goes like this - 1, 2, 3!

1 cup butter
2cups brown sugar
3 eggs

often it makes me confused which number for which ingredients,
but when you think about it, it makes a total sense!
butter is pretty expensive, so it is used only 1 cup.
eggs are what is making the filling thick and biding it together, so they have to be 3.
and what's left is brown sugar, 2!
just melt the butter and sugar in a pot at low heat, and add the eggs beaten.
stir until it is well mixed, and remove from heat.
if you like, add some raisins and pecans after you pore it into the shells.


they are the perfect holiday baking!

Christmas = Butter Tarts

:)

Sunday, December 20, 2009

shirt, and....

so, this is what I ended up doing with the shirt I made for my hubby.

I gave it to him this weekend!
I kinda felt weired about giving only him a gift at Christmas, and no other adults.
(we are doing gifts only for the kids this year in our family)
and this way, I could skip all the hustles I might had to go through
-keeping a secret, which I am really bad at(I like to share the things I am excited about!),
and, keeping a surprise, which would have not been that hard for those kids to find out there was a gift for my husband under the tree...


so, yup, a little bit early, but hey, it was still a good surprise gift for him :)

we'll be off to Quadra Island on Wednesday,
and spend the Christmas with the entire family(19 of us!).

but before we leave, I still have a ton of stuff to do!
I need to finish up all the gifts, and wrap them(I am always running around till the last minute!!),
and mail out some of them.
also some baking needs to be done -cookies and butter tarts to bring with us!
AND, get ready for little L(my daughter)'s birthday!
her b-day is on the 27th, right after Christmas.
we'll be celebrating her first b-day with the family, which will be fun!

we'll see how much stuff I can actually get done...

foam magic

have you ever wished to enjoy a nice cup of chai with a nice thick foam, just like a cafe made one?
my friend, Amanda, told me a secret on how to make a nice thick foam at home
without an espresso machine or anything special.
and I will share that secret with you today :)


all you need is a french press coffee maker.
warm up some milk, and pore that into the press.


*do not put too muchmilk here

press it up and down vigorously for like 30 times.

and here it is!!
the nice thick foam for your coffee, tea, steamers!



I made myself a cup of matcha latte.
(matcha powder, milk, and honey and vanilla to taste)
now you can enjoy home cafe :)




Wednesday, December 16, 2009

shirt, done!

so, I finally finished the shirt a couple days ago.


it is based on Jakob pattern from Burda Style, and I arranged it to a cowboy style.

I cut the fabric diagonally for the shoulders, pockets, and cuffs.
I wanted to do the same for the part that the buttons go on,
but ran out of fabric, and the store no longer carried the same fabric... :(
which was a real bummer...

finished up with the pearl snaps, and that made it look like a real cowboy shirt!

now it is all wrapped in the Christmas wrapping paper,

and, I am debating whether I should wait till Christmas to really surprise him,
(I think he has NO idea that I am giving him a present! because this year,
our family decided to do gifts only for the children, but no adults. even then, NINE kids in our family!)
or, I should give it to him this weekend, so that he could wear it to a couple of Christmas parties we are going this weekend...

hmmmmmmmmm
what should I do?!

Monday, December 14, 2009

a dress for my bestfriend

I got an order on a dress from my BESTEST friend, Mika, about 2 months ago.
I can't believe how long it took me to finish it...
a bit embarrassing, almost.
I've never worked on a custom order (for clothes) before.
it was a definitely an experience,
especially I couldn't take specific measurements, nor could I check it fits nicely on her...


but today I received an e-mail from her saying she got the dress and she is happy with it!
it was nerve racking, but well worth it.
she is happy with the dress, that is the most important thing!

so, here is the finished product!
I used Danielle pattern from Burda Style.

I changed the sleeves into tent sleeves.
I refered to the how-to on Burda Style,
but ended up with too much volume...
so I made little adjustments here and there.

the back didn't line up properly...
well, I should have checked, but it was too late(too much work) to fix it.

so I got a hint from this dress Satomi made.
hide it with a bow!!
how clever :)
the bow is attached by snap buttons.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

pshhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!

I started working on a Christmas gift for my husband yesterday.
decided to make a shirt for him.
actually I've been meaning to make it for a quite sometime now...
I am a great procrastinator :P !
also, he's been complaining he doesn't have a nice fashionable long sleeve shirt.

I am using Jakob pattern from Burda Style.
but, I am going to make it more like a cowboy shirt with some alternations.

this is the fabric I am using - plaid flannel.


hope to finish tomorrow...
before he comes back home from Vancouver.

maybe?
...

if not, for sure by next weekend!


hope I will surprise him!
I don't think he finds it out.

package

a few days ago,
we received a package from my mom.
inside,
some toys for little L,


and some warm clothes from UNIQLO for me and my hubby.
one of the clothes I got was this pair of legwarmers.
I LOVE legwarmers!!
they are my lifesaver in the winter in addition to earmuffs :)


thanks, mom!!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

train ride

this is what we did last weekend :)

sorry for the bad pics...
I had my camera set to the night mode,
but it seemed worked better with the auto setting...
what a bummer :(
we went to BC Forest Discovery Centre to ride the Christmas Express.
all the fun kids stuff you get to do when you have a child...
much more coming, I am sure :)


also, we went to a lavender farm for their Christmas Opening,
which wasn't nothing special...
they just had their lavender shop open.
but we got ourselves a nice bottle of salve and oil.
on the farm they had some sheep.
we went to check them out.
as you can see in the pic, they were running away when we got close to them.
then I start calling them.
"baaaaa baaaaaaaa"
apparently I did a good job!
then they stopped and stared at me.

I love sheep :)

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

OD'ed on

CHOCOLATE

especially CARAMEL
the BEST organic caramel chocolate ever :)

Sunday, December 6, 2009

last day of the SALE!

just a quick reminder:
today is the last day of the pre-holiday sale!
if you have not completed your holiday shopping list,
please gvisit my shop to see if anything catches your eye :)

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

cookies!

my husband has been working away from home for over three months now.
he still comes back on the weekends, but it is still hard to maintain our lives like this...
it seems like this will continue to be like this till the mid February or March...
{{sigh}}
I can't believe for some families it is 'normal' that fathers working away, and they only get see him every few months or so...
Hope this is not going to become our 'normal'.




anyhow,
Sundays are really busy for me.
I cook a few things for my husband to take for his lunches for the week,
which takes me a whole afternoon.
this week I made winter roasted beef, squash soup, potato salad, and baked some cookies.


these cookies are one of my favourites to bake.
they are so easy and quick!
simple ingredients and taste soooooo goooooooooooooooooooooooddddddddd :)


the recipe is originally from Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon,

(we highly recommend this nutrition/cook book!)
and I arrange it a little bit.


here is my version of her cashew orange cookies
[ORANGE ALMOND COOKIE]
1 1/2c almond flour/meal
1/2c spelt or kamut flour
1/2c arrowroot starch flour
1/2c rapadura sugar
1/2c butter(room temp)
1 tsp vanilla
a pinch of salt
grated rind of 1 orange
just put all the ingredients above in a bowl, and mix with hand until it holds together.
roll the dough into a golfball-sized balls, and flatten them by hand.
bake at 300 degrees for 15 - 20 min until it browns the bottoms and edges.
*you can change the ratio of spelt/kamut flour and arrowroot starch. it just needs to be a total of 1c.
put more of spelt/kamut flour in, if you like it heavy
or, put more of arrowroot starch in, if you like them to be light and crispy


Bon appetit :)
they are so perfect for the holiday season, too!



Tuesday, December 1, 2009

meet our friend, Tad!

last Saturday, we went to see our friend, Tad, playing at a local coffee shop.

it had been a while since the last time he did his own gig,
but it was a nice cozy setting and little L sure enjoyed him playing music! (so did we, of course!)

anyhow, here is a little clip from the show for you :)
you can also hear little L 'talking' in the background.
and the reason why it's wiggling so much is because little L was dancing right beside me while Tad was playing :)
*sorry about the poor quality of the image and sound*
video

please go check out his myspace,
and you can listen to one of his songs newly recorded in Vancouver.
he also plays in a bluegrass band, Skagway.
you can listen to a few tunes on their MySpace, too :)

Monday, November 30, 2009

100


whoa
I am surprised that I am still here, writing another post,
well the 100th post!!

when I started this blog, I wasn't sure where to start, what to write about, and even how long it would last.
but today, I am writing this post very proudly :)

thank you so much for the people who read my blog(mostly my ramblings).
it's been fun blogging and so great to read comments and get feedback from people from all over the globe.
THANK YOU :)
I will try to keep up with it as often as I can within my limited free time.

also, I'd love to know if you have any input to my blog!
any suggestions for the blog?
any requests for how-to's?
anything you'd like to know about me?

Sunday, November 29, 2009

pre-holiday sale announcement



I kind of got lost of the dates and forgot about the sale I mentioned in the previous post...
and just realized that was supposed to start TODAY!
because I am starting it a bit late, I extended the sale one day longer.
anyhow, the PRE-HOLIDAY SALE is here and here is how it works :)
PRE-HOLIDAY SALE
******************************************************************************
10% off on ALL the items in my store!
during Nov. 29th - Dec. 6th(till the midnight Pacific Time)
please put a discount code: PRE2009HOLIDAY in the box of "message to seller" when you check out
in order to receive the discount.
then I will refund the amount through Paypal.
*******************************************************************************
a lot of items in the store are one of a kind, unless it's mentioned it is custom order after the purchase.



Happy shopping :)


xo


Friday, November 27, 2009

learning to...

a few days ago, I and little L made a trip to a local library.
along with a few baby books for little L,
I found this book on crochet.

although, my mom knitted a lot when I was little, and made me a few sweaters,
I am so not a knitter!
I do not have that kind of patience...
I know for some people it is a form of relaxation, something to do with their hands involuntarily.
some people can multitask - knitting & watching a movie or something.
but, for me, the repetitive stitches makes me bored,
and the worst thing is, a little embarrassing to say, I can't count!
I can't keep track of how many of this stitches for how many rows,
and I have to start all over again.
then after doing that a few times, I am done! I give up!! end up with n o t h i n g...
however,
I can crochet!! - if it is a small, quick project.
I've made hats and finger-less mitts before with the only stitch I know - single crochet.
the window case of yarn shop looks so pretty and cozy.
and this cold weather has been making me want to crochet.
it's perfect for this cold rainy season - something to do at home while you stay dry and warm.
AND, it is time to learn something new, I'd say.
too many single crochet stitches won't be that exciting.
so, here is the result :)
I made little L a scarf and spider mum flower pin :)
I tried a few different stitches that looked very pretty and elaborate.
but of course something here and there didn't make sense to me, and I failed...
so the scarf is done with half double crochet.
well, little baby steps at a time...



Thursday, November 26, 2009

the best thing in the winter

hotchocolate
+
marshmallow
= winter happiness

one of the cafes I used to go to when I lived in Ashland,
they had a choice of whipped cream or their housemade marshmallow with your hotchocolate.
I always went with the marshmallow, of course!!
I wish there was always a option of marshmallow topping at any cafes...

my husband thinks marshmallows are disgusting!
but, I think it is THE BEST thing in the hotchocolate in the cold winter days :)
what would you say?

Saturday, November 21, 2009

away we go

a must watch movie!

(pic)

one of the best movies we watched recently.

the story was really heart warming and it is a kind of movie makes you feel good after watching.

and the characters are really FUNNY!

one of the reasons why we like it so much was we were(are still?) in the similar situation as the couple.

(well, I guess you have to watch the movie to see what I mean!)

it also reminded me of my pregnancy with little L.

aw,,, it's making me I want to be pregnant again!

(although we have NO plan of having another child. well,,, for now!)





we are going up to Quadra Island for a few days to help my husband's parents build their house!

see you when we get back :)



Friday, November 20, 2009

catch up's and sale announcement

Hello :)
sorry for slacking!
we've been really busy these days.

I have been working on a dress for my best friend.
she is going to a couple of weddings, so I got a commission from her.
I am almost done with it. just need to finish the sleeves and the hem!
I will post pictures when it's done.

since little L(my daughter) is getting more active everyday,
we started looking into baby/kids activities in the area.
in BC, there is a program called Strong Start.
free drep-in programs for preschool kids with their parents/gardians and caregivers.
usually held at elementary schools.
it provides kids a place to play and learn,
and it is an awesome way to meet other families and make friends.
luckily, we have an elementary school in walking distance where they offer this program!
Thursdays are music day, and it is also baby friendly(some activities can be still a bit hard for little L).
so we've been going there on Thursdays and singing and playing instalments, like bells and drums.
it's been really fun and great for little L
not only because she loves music, but also it's so good for her to interact with other kids and babies.

also, we've been going to a baby massage class.
our friend's mom and her co-worker are doing five Friday massage class for FREE!
today was the 3rd class, and it's been awesome.
she does pretty good laying down quietly, if you consider now she is in the phase that is all about moving around!
and everyone in the class is amazed :)
and she passes out after the class.
it is a great way to relax your baby, and an amazing way to connect/communicate with your child.



***************************************************************************************************
okay, now I have a little announcement.

I am going to have a pre-holiday sale at my Etsy shop.
it will be the week of Nov. 29th to Dec 5th.
I will make a post about it again when the day comes closer!

***************************************************************************************************


p.s. have a happy weekend♥

Friday, November 13, 2009

Etsy finds - ear muffs -

- Ear Muffs -
(pic)

(pic)

it's getting cold.
winter is just around the corner!
well, maybe it's here already!!

honestly, ear muffs are one of my favourite things in the winter!
when you wear your hair up, you can't wear a hat or hood.
that's exactly when they come in handy :)


I have just one like in the second pic, and we are the best buddies throughout the winter :) :) :)



p.s. have a nice weekend ;)


Thursday, November 12, 2009

longing to go to...



Scotland


aren't these pictures beautiful?
my friend who lives in Scotland e-mailed them to me yesterday.
he says these are taken around his village!

ever since I met him 5 years ago, I've been wanting to go visit Scotland.
I feel I have a connection with Scotland.
maybe, I was a Scottish person in a past life time or something.
many beautiful places I'd love to go explore,
but definitely Scotland is on the top of my list!


What places are on your list??