wishful wednesday {a little sumpin' for The Man}

One thing this Lazy Lady does best is fantasize about the future.  I'm not very good at living "in the now," I'm always thinking about the next recipe we should make, or couch we should buy, or city we'll live in, or job I could have, and where we'll be in 1, 3, 5, or 15 years.  It's not really the healthy way to live, buuuut sometimes I come up with some really great futures. . . 

Today's Wishful Wednesday will be short and sweet . . . I'll let you in on why a little later.

The Man loves his tools and loves his job, and is always thinking about how to make the perfect shop. Whenever we think about our dream home, somewhere off to the side built on our expansive dream-world property is a woodshop for Andrew.  A big, organized, well-equipped shop.  He has a bunch of Fine WoodWorking Magazines (as well as their off-shoots).  Some are recent and some are from the 90's but they all have great stuff in them.  These are some of the photos kept in the back of our minds, for if when that day comes . . .
I even drool over this image! Look at those tools! Every single chisel and plane has it's own spot to live in, amazing!

One day I'll expand on what we/he'd love in an at-home shop but for now I'll leave you with this:
Look at those 90's Dad Outfits! AWESOME!

food week on "where the lovely things are"

One of my favorite blogs to visit every morning is Where the Lovely Things Are.  Right now I'm an even bigger fan because she has devoted this whole week to food! It's Food Week! How fun is that? She'll be blogging about anything and everything food related.  I was really excited by yesterday's post about food books, look at some of the cookbooks she found:

I love cookbooks! My collection is pretty small so far but there are quite a few she mentioned that I'd love to pick up, especially Tart and Sweet: 101 Canning and Pickling Recipes for the Modern Kitchen, I really want to learn how to Pickle things and Can some fruit! My mom told me about Miette, it has pink pages with scalloped edges and the recipes are from the pastry shop in San Francisco, I'm excited to buy it but I'm going to wait until the fall when the corrected version comes out (aparently there were a few mistakes printed).  And can you beleive there is a whole cookbook devoted to PotPies!!?!  I want so many of these! On her blog she lists the name of each book pictured with a link to a place to buy it. She's so helpful!

Head on over to her blog and check out some foodspiration!

wishful wednesdays {duvet}

One thing this Lazy Lady does best is fantasize about the future.  I'm not very good at living "in the now," I'm always thinking about the next recipe we should make, or couch we should buy, or city we'll live in, or job I could have, and where we'll be in 1, 3, 5, or 15 years.  It's not really the healthy way to live, buuuut sometimes I come up with some really great futures. . . 

Our comforter is crap.
Yeah, I said it.

The comforter we use now is The Man's. He doesn't remember where it came from, but somehow it came into his possession. In my opinion you shouldn't sleep with anything if you don't know where it came from (but ask for it's last name and where it grew up, and you're good to go *wink*wink*).  It's comfy but I don't like how it looks and as much as I wash it, it still feels dirty.

Now that we've decided to stay in this apartment for another year it's time to get back in to decorating it.  We never quite got to the bedroom, and at first it didn't matter, but I don't think I can spend one more year with dingy walls, an unorganized closet, and a strange old bedspread.

One of the first things I'd like to change is that comforter.  I've had a few ideas but it's so hard to choose, and so hard to afford (duvets are expensive!!!).  My plan is to first buy a regular ol' comforter (probably at Ikea or HomeGoods) and then buy a duvet.  Most decorative comforters are either way to expensive or really unattractive.  It will also be easier to buy the comforter with only comfort in mind, and to buy the duvet for it's looks.  I've already been lucky enough to find both looks and comfort in a man, so I'm not going to push my luck and try to find the whole package in one bedspread!

This is something I've been looking for for a while now, and a lot of the options I've found in the past don't exists anymore.  There is so much out there: Ruched and Textured, Patterned, Solid, Quilted . . . so here is what I have been looking at:

I could go with something simple like Stripes:

West Elm - Stripe Duvet Cover in Citron and Feather Gray - $69.00 for a Full/Queen
Dwell Studio - Draper Stripe in Ash - $280.00 for Full/Queen and pair of Shams. (O.O - those are my eyes poping out of my head due to that price!!)

It's Classic, It's Clean, It's won't go out of style, and it wouldn't make our bedroom impossible to decorate. All in all a nice, safe choice. Safe.

There is another way to go with pattern.  Still simple, but brighter and more whimsicle if you may.

Jonathan Adler - Hollywood in Green - $195.00 for a Full/Queen
West Elm - Organic Ironwork - $89.00 for a Full/Queen
Z Gallerie - Mimosa Reversible in Aquamarine - $149.95 for a Full/Queen.

These are more fun but they will also sway a lot of the other decisions to be made regarding the bedroom.  I wanted the one from Z Gallerie for a long time, but when I went to visit it it was so shiny!!  We actually tried buying a duvet cover last year at target, just a simple solid colored duvet.  It looked just fine in the store, a great color, a reasonable price, but when we took it home and spread it out I felt like I was in some slimy bachlorpad with satin sheets and a round bed that slowly spins while gettin-in-on-music played in the backround.  It was too Shiny!  That thing went right back to the store, and I have a feeling the Mimosa duvet would give me the same feeling.  The Jonathan Adler duvet is pretty and it also comes in a light grey.

I've thought about Ruches and Ruffles but The Man quickly vetoed any frou-frou duvets.

I would love to have a big fluffy white comforter but The Man's dirty feet vetoed that option back when we tried white sheets. Although If you don't go to bed with a woodworker everynight you should think about white and creamy colors.  It's just so dreamy.
Either rich fabrics in light colors:
(ignore the pictures I'm only talking about the bed here!)

Or white fluffy blankets with great POPS of color in pillows and acessories:
One day, when we have a guest room I'll make this dream bed come true (and then occassionally take naps in it).

I'm not a huge fan of one large image on a duvet.  It's too much of a statement for me and they're always super cheesy and girlie and some sort of plant, like a large flower.  So I wasn't even considering any of those options until I saw these Duvet and Sham sets by Thomas Paul:

Talk about your statement piece!!  I think even though I probably won't be getting any of these I still might need those whale pillows!

The final option I've been mulling over is to make my own.  Just when I decided to stop daydreaming and start thinking about this seriously a new class popped up on The Needle Shop's class list.
Patchwork Duvet!

I don't really like the sample ones that they show, and patchwork ain't really my style, but I think I could come up with something really fun.
Of course then I'd have to start picking out fabrics, and you know how long that takes me.

How about you? Is your bed already cozy and welcoming? Or have you been left with some boy's hand-me-down like me? Do you like patterns? textures? solids? Would you ever try to DIY your bedspread? Am I crazy!?

Tell me, I want to know!!!

true love

Yesterday was my parents 29th wedding anniversary.  They've been together for almost 32 years (I think I've done that math right), and they love each other now more than ever.

My parents are the cutest most loving couple I've ever met.  They are my role-models, and my best friends.  They've taught me most everything I know, and supported my every dream.  Moving to Chicago, going to SAIC, my job, my relationships, staying in Chicago.  Even if it wasn't what they wanted, they were there to back up my every decision.  When things work out they are right behind me hoopin' and hollerin' and when, inevitably, things go south, they are always there for me to lean on.  I love you mom and dad, my most avid readers, and constant cheerleaders.  You are the most important people in my life and always will be, (seriously when I have kids I'll let them know that they are only second to their grandparents).

Thank you for all that you've given me and Thank you for showing me what true love really is.

I love you both
 . . . and I promise I'll be home soon!

terrible timing

Oh the irony.  Oh the sadness.  Oh the cheese.

I recently came across an awesome website.  It's called Grilled Cheese Social.
I also recently became Lactose Intolerant.
And now you understand the tittle of this post.

At first it came on slowly, I'd feel just a tad gross after eating something super cheesy or cream based, but never anything bad enough to stop eating dairy all together.  It grew little by little over the past year, until BAM! July 19th 2011, our building had an Ice Cream Social and I went waaaaaaaay overboard.  So now I'm trying to live a cheese-less life, and just when I had it under control I found Grilled Cheese Social.

Here are some of the recipes I'm drooling over
 (It was way too hard to narrow it down so I picked out 5 of my favorites)

Bee Sting (remix)
- about 4 slices fresh mozzarella
- 2 hearty slices of a B√Ętard
- 5 slices of sopressata picante
- 1 tbs of red pepper flaked butter
  (combine 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
   with one tablespoon of real salted butter, MIX)
- 1 tbs of basil infused honey
  (fresh basil leaves and tupelo honey, OF  

Marco Polo
-2 slices of Texas toast
-1 cup of shredded manchego
-1 lime wedge
-1 tbs of pickled jalapenos
-1 ear of roasted corn
-1 tbs of smoked chile butter
  (combine 2 pats of unsalted butter, a pinch garlic
   salt, 1 tsp smoked paprika, & 1 heaping tsp chile

The Badger Poutine
- 12 Wisconsin Cheese Curds
- a handful of french fries
- 1.5 tbs of brown gravy
- 2 pats of unsalted butter
- 2 slices of beer bread
  (1 dark beer, room temp, 3 cups of
   self rising flour, 3 tbs of sugar,
   1 pinch of salt, a few sprays of pam)"

She even makes dessert Grilled Cheeses

The (F)unemployment Special
- 2 thin slices of pound cake
- a few slices of brie
- 1/2 tbs fig spread
- 1 small rosemary sprig - chopped
- 1 pat of butter"

And last but most certainly not least.  The one that makes me curse my intolerance the most. . . 

The Khalcheesi
- 1/2 cup Iberico cheese
- 2 thinly sliced pieces of ciabatta
- 2 pats of salted butter
- 1 tsp of garlic salt
- 1 sausage stuffed baby pepper (PLEASE DO
   (stuffed with one ground sausage patty, 1 tbs
   of iberico cheese, a bit of fresh parsley, drizzled 
   with olive oil and baked for 40 minutes at 350)


So, do me a favor.  If you love cheese, and your body can break it down, go to this site, pick out your favorite, make yourself a cheesy treat, and tell me how it was!
I need to live vicariously!!!

sweet wares

I know It's been about a month since The Man and I took our little vacay to Portland, OR, but there are still a few things I'd like to share with you.

I love baking, and cake decorating, and all the bits and bobs involved in both.  So, when my mom told our friend and I that there was a new baking supply store near our neighborhood we were totally down to check it out.  The three of us left the Men at home and hopped in the car to go to Sweet Wares.  It was an incredibly cute store, and I want at least one of everything inside of it.
They had the cutest collection of Cake Trays.  I wish I could have two kitchens, one to actually use without clutter on the counters and one to show off all the kitchen accessories I want.   That way I could buy all the cute serving ware that I see in shops like these and keep it out on display.

This was my favorite corner of the store:
 They had every size, color, and shape of sprinkles, sanding sugars, jimmies, and those silver ball sprinkles you see on wedding cakes and cookies in Martha Stewart catalogues.
The displayed was beautiful!
I have no idea what I would do with all those sprinkles, but I want them!!

They also had a wall of baking books.  I thought this one looked fun:

The woman who worked there was really sweet, and to top it all off starting in September they'll have cooking/baking classes.

If you live in Portland you should check it out.  It's an adorable little shop and it's run by the same people who run Baker & Spice, which is a great bakery just a few doors down.  Buy some popover pans at Sweet Wares and then pop on over to Baker & Spice to eat a treat!!!!


There's a new market in town . . .

 . . . and it's AWESOME!
Mariano's Fresh Market is a new grocery store in our neighborhood (kinda).  Last week we thought we'd just give it a try.  Since that first "try" we've been there almost every night, and no where else.  It's like a Whole Foods mixed with a regular grocery store, with great fresh food all at great fresh prices.  I know it's a bit weird to blog about a grocery store, but I'm in love.

They have a million different kinds of everything ranging from crap to gourmet to weird stuff you've never heard of.

Their produce is beautiful and cheap, but this little section is my favorite
This little side section is always filled with "exotic" fruits.  Sure pomegranates and kiwi are no big thing. But Aloe, Sugar Cane, Rambutan (related to Lychee), Baby Pineapples, Star Fruit, Strawberry Papayas! These aren't things you find in your everyday Jewel Osco or Dominicks (that's Albertsons or Safeway for you West Coasters).

Then past the breads, ready-made foods, and long dessert counter you find  . . .
Any kind of Seafood, and Meat you could think of.  I'm bummed at myself for not taking a picture of the tons of different cuts of steak,  because they are beautiful.  I mean Look at all those Sausages!!! (Hey, stop giggling and be a grown-up)
Mussels, Clams, Oysters, Scallops, Squid, Octopus.  Tuna, Salmon, Trout, Grupper, Halibut, Cod, Catfish, Perch, Marlin, Swordfish.  I may not want to eat all of those, but I like knowing they're there, just in case.

And although I can't have much of it now that I'm lactose intolerant . . .
Look how pretty that cheese section is.  It has it's own white chocolate Leaning Tower of Pisa.

This place is really great, and super delicious.  They even had this
The Man had just told me days before that if I ever wanted to get him a gift I could find a place that sells the Chipotle Tabasco, because he could only ever find it at the Chipotle restaurants and he loved it.  Well, look no further!

O.K. just one more thing about this grocery store then I swear I'm done.
They Have A Beer Sampler Section!
In the walk-in cooler is a wall with every beer they sell that comes in a six-pack.  You take an empty "sampler" six-pack and fill it with whatever you like and it's $8.99.  One of the girls who works there told us that if there is anything we didn't see in the cooler we could let her know and she'd add it so we could take one!

Seriously, if you live here in Chicago, you've got to try this place.
And if you don't then sorry for the rant.
I just really love grocery shopping!!

farmers market

I hope everyone had a wonderful Labor Day weekend.  Especially those of you who still had to labor on Monday.  I had Monday off and let me tell you it was glorious! We tried to go on a day trip, the destination was a bit of a bust but the drive is always the best part anyway. Well, now that we're back in the swing of things I thought I tell you about last Thursday, when I Finally got back to the Farmer's Market!!!!!

It's been forever, It's been 2 whole months, but I was Finally able to go.  I was so excited I wanted to get everything, but instead I was good and kept to my 20$ limit.

Everything Bagels



Fresh Dill

Bell Peppers (that's 7 of them!!)

Golden Beets

Pepper Corn Asiago Bread

All this for 17 bucks!!!! 

(those 7 bell peppers were only 4 dollars, it's the best deal at the market and i'm so glad they're in season again)

We used the tomato, onions and dill to make chicken "gyros" (we were going to get pita but this onion bread looked so good at the store we took a less traditional route).  

The power went out for a bit. . . 
But that didn't stop us!


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