Friday, May 29, 2009

Lavender Shortbread



Today I wanted to make cookies that weren't chocolate. Or chocolate chip. Or something chocolatey. Umm... chocolate... (go off into daydream...)

*Ahem*

So, I tried lavender cookies. I get excited when I see a new cookie recipe that calls for neat ingredients. If I'd looked more closely, I'd have noticed that it was simply a shortbread recipe with lavender added. Still, it tastes *d i v i n e*.

Lavender Shortbread

1/2 cup butter (1 stick)
1/2 cup sugar
1 & 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 T dried lavender or 2 T fresh lavender

Cream the butter and sugar. Add in the lavender and flour. Press mixture into a springform pan (mine was 9"). Bake at 300 F for 40 minutes. Let cool for about 10 minutes and cut into wedges. Yum.

I wish I'd had lavender lemonade to go with it...
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Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Back in the Saddle Again


It's been several months since I worked on my word beads. I've put tons of stuff in my shop on sale and will be clearing it out of the shop at the end of the month. In its place, I've got a whole new line of library and book-themed items! Here is the first of the lot.

Hey, wait. It's not book-themed. Oh well. I guess I've got some other stuff in there, too.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Book Art: Magnetic Knife Holder


I saw this post on Instructables on making your own magnetic knife holder from a piece of wood and computer hard drive magnets. I love that idea, but found a way to make it a bit more personal for a book lover like myself.

How to make a magnetic knife block from a book:

Materials:
magnets (I got mine from salvaged hard drives, but this is a good place, too!)
book
x-acto knife
permanent glue


1. Start by choosing a book. I chose this old cookbook that worked well with my kitchen's colors.


2. Measuring your magnets, cut a well inside the front of the book block deep enough for the magnets to sit comfortably, but snugly.


3. Put a good amount of glue in the well and place your magnets inside. I broke a magnet trying to get it off one of the metal things - they are VERY brittle - and so I put the pieces in the gaps.


4. Next, glue the cover of the book down over the magnets and glue the edges of the book block to seal shut. Bye-bye recipes from the early 60's...


5. Place a heavy weight on it until it is dry. Afterwards, you have a couple of choices. You can drill two holes in the back of the book and put those keyhole hangers in them or do what I did because I'm impatient.


Voila! Sit it on your countertop and love the convenience of steak knives and paring knives within reaching distance. What I love about this is that they won't get dulled by rubbing against wood inside a block. And it's a book, of course.

As soon as I get more magnets, I hope to make a larger one for my big knives. If I'd had more money, I would have bought 1/8x1x2 magnets for this job and put them a lot closer together for better hold. Still, this works for now and I love how it looks!

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Paper Yarn


A while back I saw an article about making your own yarn out of newsprint. Now, I'm more of a book-type person rather an a newsprint-type and wanted to make paper from book text. So, I read up on the different articles about spinning and making my own drop spindle and doing all that jazz. Last night was my first attempt of making my own paper yarn. By hand. No spindle. I couldn't find the supplies I needed and I was impatient. So, I twisted it by hand. My fingers hurt/burned with the friction and I was only about to do about 24 inches' worth, but it looks cool. I need to get my own spindle because I'll wear my fingers to blisters doing it the manual way.
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Sunday, May 10, 2009

Book Origami Gothic Cathedral


I saw a new design that I wanted to learn how to do on my own. It looks like architecture in a cathedral. After a bunch of trial and error, I figured out how to make the soft curve of an arc. Yay me! My next experiment is to alternate pages and the curves, so it makes a circle-type of shape. Can't wait to see if/how it turns out.


What am I going to do with these sculptures? I love them and would like to become good enough at making them to feel comfortable selling them. Is that just a pipe dream? Would anyone really care about them?


Oh, I learned something new with this folding pattern. I don't know if it can be seen well in the picture, but some of the arc bottoms are pointier than the others. One side of the book vs the other side. The pointy ones were creased with my thumb nail after folding. The curvier ones were just folded with my finger. No sharp creasing. I like the look so much more...
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Saturday, May 9, 2009

One Day Left for Neat Giveaway

Go to Olivebites' blog to sign up for this great Mother's Day giveaway.

Maybe I should do one, too. What do you think?

If so, what would you like given?

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Wednesday's Good Intentions

I came home from work last night to find that my husband had folded the laundry.

The laundry I had set out for him to wash. Four loads' worth.

Monday, May 4, 2009

Sunday's Good Intentions


I'd just put out my watercolor supplies when my cat decided to jump up and investigate. It turns out, she likes to lick watercolors. Bad kitty.


I found this recipe for blackberry cupcakes on Good Things Catered that I became obsessed with making. I had bought blackberries from Costco and nearly forgotten I had them... They are good even though they have tons of seeds...