Friday, April 29, 2011

My trip to the Asylum!

Winner's ribbon rosettes from Ocala!

Pictures and slides!

Keys (and a Henry Winkler/Fonzie album!

Someone's frog collection (this was part of two shelves!)

Coins from all over the world

Cigar boxes - all sizes and colors

Bottle caps, sold by the handful!

Bedsprings! Reminded me of Christmas trees...

Inevitable, you ask? Not THAT aslyum!

The Texas Art Asylum here in Houston - 1230 Houston Avenue near Washington. 713/224-5220

If you like thrift store shopping and the thrill of the treasure hunt, you'll just love this place. It is especially oriented towards crafters and artists. "Cool stuff for creative reuse" Keep the Texas Art Asylum in mind, too, when you are doing a sewing/craft/estate clean out. You'll know your stuff is going to a good home.

Facebook and follow them on Twitter to keep track of their classes and events. Coming up on April 30 from 3-9 PM, the Texas Art Asylum will be part of the Inner Art Corridor 6th Annual Open Studio Tour.

What did I find besides a great time browsing? Pfaltzgraft "Desert Sky" salt and pepper shakers, unused-still had the sticker on the bottom (50cents), 2 vintage handkerchiefs, and a 40's vintage floral spray. Since they constantly get and sell merchandise, it's best to shop often and grab something when you see it. It may not be back there the next time.

Be sure to check out their sewing section - they had two different Singer buttonholers (complete and like new condition!), original Folkwear Patterns, spools of thread, patterns, vintage fabric and trim, too. I had to slap my hand to keep from swooping up everything.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Thursday Tea Time

This week - Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf Limited Edition Taiwan Green Tea

Cost: $8.20

Number of teabags: 20

Caffeine: Probably a little

Type of tea: Green

Steeping time: 3 minutes

Mix ins: CBTL's Fat Free Vanilla Powder, also tried a little fat-free condensed milk. Both good!

Teabag fragrance: Fruity

Ingredients: Taiwan green tea

Opinion: I had this as an iced tea latte and then just plain iced tea in the store. Not that I was a two-fisted drinker, but the barrista gave me a free iced one after I bought the latte and went back to grab the tin. At home I had it warm, and all three versions were just terrific. It has a fruity-sweet taste, so you don't need to add that much sweetener, if at all. Since it is a Limited Edition, I'm going to get another cannister next time I'm in the store. It is similar to a Jasmine Green Tea, but where that one is more floral, this is more indeterminate "fruit." I had to laugh after I brewed it at home - it looks like a teabag full of spinach! I was also able to reuse the teabag again, brewing it for about 4 1/2 minutes. Not quite as strong as the first run, but still enjoyable a second time.

Rating: 4.25

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Today's Favorite iPod Workout Song

Four Tops - "I Can't Help Myself" -2:46

Loved watching Dennis Quaid and Julia Roberts dance to this in "Something to Talk About"
(That grin of his, big sigh!)

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Upcoming Jo-Ann's Sales

Sew & Save - April 25/30
50% off notions wall

Sew Beautiful - April 25/May 7
30% off Gingher

Super Saturday - April 30
$1.99 McCalls
$1.99 Butterick
$3.99 Vogue

Monday, April 25, 2011

Netflix Stars - Switched

2.75 stars. I thought it would be better, very draggy. The saving grace to this movie is Jeff Goldblum and the wise beyond his years Thomas Robinson. Watch only if there's nothing else to or to do.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Saturday, April 23, 2011


This is what you get when you use the Classic Paas Easter Egg kit with brown organic eggs!
(Except for the upper right blue and purple ones)

And forget to add the water to the dye cups. These are dyed with straight tablet + vinegar. The dye works A LOT faster, too!

Here's what happens when you think you've stirred and completely (not!) dissolved the purple!

Friday, April 22, 2011

Earth Day

USPS Goes Green for Earth Day! The United States Postal Service is currently selling this set of 16 Forever stamps for $7.04, along with tips to Go Green and reduce our environmental impact on Planet Earth.
(No, you won't find the suggestion to save a stamp and pay your bills online!)

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Thursday Tea Time

This week - Tazo Thrive
Cost: $3.49 at Super Target
Number of teabags: 16
Caffeine: A little
Type of tea: Green Herbal
Steeping time: 3 minutes
Mix ins: Just a little fat-free condensed milk
Teabag fragrance: Spearmint
Ingredients: Green tea, green yerba mate, spearmint leaves, green rooibos, rose hips, black pepper, natural flavors, chicory and licorice root
Opinion: Part of Tazo's "Well-Being" tea line. Combining the words "Thrive" and "A formidable blend of green teas and botanicals" made me grab the box. All the ingredients blended together nicely, formidably. You could detect a little of the spearmint at first but then it retreated into the background. I was surprised when I typed the ingredients to see it had black pepper. I like the green tea bonus in the antioxidant department, along with "Balance, a sense of renewed purpose and a dose of optimism" have also been hidden in there. It says so right on the box. This tastes wonderful warm, but I was surprised when I tried it iced, it was so-so. Maybe the heat brings out the other flavors. And that balance thing again.

Rating: 4.0

Today's Favorite iPod Workout Song

Maroon 5 - "Harder to Breathe" - 2:54

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

2011 Hoffman Challenge

Here is the 2011 Hoffman Challenge fabric, H8709 98G-Moss Gold. Pretty, isn't it? I love to see what people do with it. Each time I look it it, I'm liking it even more enough to consider entering the contest this year! Or just sew something cool, and keep it for myself -- and blog about it here. What say y'all?

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Pretty in Pink!

Somehow, all the flowers I selected today at Another Place in Time were all --- PINK!

Profusion Cherry Zinnia, Magellan Mix Zinnia, a pink petunia (missing tag), Crystal White Zinnia, QIS Carmine Gomphrena

Burda Hall of Fame Favorite - 5223

I recently whipped up these two latest robe renditions of good old tried and true Burda 5223 in View B. Here's earlier versions in cottons, fleece and flannel (2007, 2008, 2009) I love this pattern, but it is a fabric hog - 5 yards! If I hit the sales right, I can still find good quality and interesting fabrics for my goal of less than $5/yard.

My "Knight in Shining Armor" is actually a not very stretchy knit, thus proving this pattern design can also work very well with a more stable knit.

And it is always fun to zap up that facing edge trim -- setting it on the bias and adding a couple packages of piping. One of these days I'll try a contrast fabric for it and the belt.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Marigold Monday

I've been finding some pretty and interesting marigolds at Another Place in Time. Normally I don't usually plant them, but they are adding a nice touch of color right now.

Antigua Orange - Upper left

Mr. Majestic -Upper right
Bonanza Bolero - Lower left
Safari Yellow - Lower right

Today's Favorite iPod Workout Song

Robbie Williams - "Angels" - 4:25

Boy, if you can hit the turns at the changes...very powerful!

Sunday, April 17, 2011

New Penzeys Catalog and Coupon!

The new Penzeys catalog - Early Summer 2011, arrived, along with a coupon for a free 1/2 cup jar of any spice! To order online, use the code "KINDNESS" Offer expires July 11, 2011.

This catalog's recipes which pop out to me are the Apple Shortbread Crisp on page 17, the Peanut Butter Blondies on page 51, the Raspberry Chipolte Marinade on page 41 and the Herbed Sweet Potato Wedges featured on the cover.

Call 800/741-7787 or visit their website to start getting their catalogs and great recipes!

Saturday, April 16, 2011

New Sandra Betzina Patterns!

Vogue 1234 Dress

Vogue 1243 Jacket

I've seen variations of 1243's Views A & B before, but I think the View C pink one is pretty cute for a nice lightweight summer jacket. Or in an evening fabrication style.
The 1234 dress looks interesting, I wish I could see some of Sandra's versions. The fabric used in the photo looks just terrible!

Friday, April 15, 2011

Hello Kitty -- DUCK TAPE!

The power of Hello Kitty in adhesive form!

Duck Brand Duck Tape Hello Kitty Exclusive Limited Edition - 1.88 inches x 10 yards for $5.99 at Target. I'll probably use it for package mailing and wherever I need a happy touch of Hello Kitty color.

(SIL 34307, Barcode 75353 03588)

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Thursday Tea Time

This week - The Republic of Tea Hibiscus SuperFlower Tea Pineapple Lychee

Cost: $9.99 at Whole Foods Market

Number of teabags: 36 Caffeine: No Type of tea: Herbal Steeping time: 7 minutes Mix ins: Just a little bit of sugar Teabag fragrance: Pineapple Ingredients: Hibiscus (flower), rosehips (fruit), apples (fruit), stevia (leaf) pineapple bits (fruit), natural pineapple and lychee flavors Opinion: I tried this first hot with a little bit of milk. Uh, OK. Then I tried it iced with just a little bit of sugar. Ah ha! There you go. Definitely tropical fruity, a perfect ice tea flavor. Pretty apricot color, too. Pretty good for you also - supposedly the hibiscus flower can help maintain healthy blood pressure and cholesterol levels, strengthen the immune system, and combat those cell-damaging free radicals. Rating: 3.75

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Hello Kitty Cool Ties

Here's some of the Cool Ties I've made from the Hello Kitty fabric I found at Jo-Ann's! (If you are looking for it at the Sugar Land store, don't bother. I bought what was left on the bolt!

Saturday, April 09, 2011

I have no idea what's going on with Blogger's line spacing

Anyone else having this problem?

I just tried going back into edit format and toggled between
Compose, the Edit Html and then hit Preview, then Publish.

It worked for the Thursday Tea Time and it is working for this one.

What a PITA!!! Please fix this, Google!

Thursday, April 07, 2011

Thursday Tea Time

Cost: $9.99 at Whole Foods Market

Number of teabags: 36

Caffeine: No

Type of tea: Herbal

Steeping time: 5-7 minutes

Mix ins: Just a little fat-free condensed milk

Teabag fragrance: Apple

Ingredients: Hibiscus (flower), rosehips (fruit), apple bits (fruit), stevia (leaf), natural vanilla and apple flavors

Opinion: As described on the label, it does taste like apple pie a la mode, especially when you add splash of milk! I've already gone through six bags, I love this flavor! Fruity apple with just a touch of vanilla. Can't wait to try it iced with just a little bit of sugar, too.

Rating: 4.75

Tuesday, April 05, 2011

Off into my cart!

The "Wild Blue Yonder" -- PURPLE with a touch of lavender rose! Everblooming Grandiflora - with a "delectable citrus blossom and rose fragrance."

3 gallon size, $13.99 at Costco. Sent via BlackBerry by AT&T

Monday, April 04, 2011

Today's Favorite iPod Workout Song

Collective Soul - "Better Now" - 3:13 Great beat, perfect for mid-swim or mid-run!

Sunday, April 03, 2011

Netflix Stars - Love & Other Drugs

3/5 - I didn't know this was a true story! Now you do, too. It was a pretty good movie though some scenes were a little bit "over-exposed" -- I'm not a prude by any means, but really now?! Someone had said that Anne Hathaway doesn't have that chemistry with her male co-stars and this is also the case here. Both she and Jake can act OK and are easy on the eyes, but I didn't see the sparks fly between them.