Thursday, October 29, 2009

One door closes . . .

I headed out to my favorite thrift store on Sunday and noticed that the parking lot was unusually full. As I got closer I saw THE BIG YELLOW SIGN. The thrift store is closing and everything is 50% off.


I have to read it again. At the bottom of the sign it says "Please visit Island Thrift" and gives an address . . . hmm . . . a thrift store I didn't know about? So I took a quick spin around the soon to be closed Northern Thrift and only found a few books, a hand knit baby blanket and two books of sheet music. Then I headed over to Island Thrift.

Wow. That place is huge and it's stuffed to the gills with crap! I had limited time so I didn't get to explore everything but did dig up some fun things:

They had lots of bags of kitchen utensils, something I didn't often find at Northern. Only the french fry cutter on the right has a wooden handle but I like the ice cream scoop and big slotted spoon as well. I bought antother bag for the funnel and also decided to keep a pair of ice tongs, a cake server and a mini ladle. A pretty good score for a total of around $5.00.

I also picked up this old wooden Christmas card holder for $3.00. Made in Japan and most likely some what vintage. Regardless, it's cute, no?

And a splurge for me, $4.50, was a large book called the Family Fireside Music Companion. Look how sweet the graphics are!

Part of me wants to keep it as is and part of me wants to cut it up for other projects. Tough decision.

I'll be heading out for a long weekend, everyone have a safe and spooky Halloween!

Boo ya ~ Rebecca

Monday, October 26, 2009

I Heart Ms. Sid

I have received my return swap from Ms. Sid and it was even better than I expected. Ms. S. really knows what I like and she is a very talented crafter with far more skills!

First off, she didn't cheat like I did. She made me a Witch's Boot filled with 13 Spells. She is so creative! While I loved everything she sent, here are some of my favorites:

A hand made cell phone case and tissue holder. I needed something for my phone and it's fits perfectly. She also included a cute black and white reusable tote that folds up tiny and clips inside your purse. My hand bag is quite fashionable with these accessories!

A tiny cross stitch in a little black felt frame. She and I both enjoy this craft and I am lucky to own many of Sid's creations. She also included some cross stitch patterns, a needle minder and some lovely custom floss.

A fabric knitting/crochet bag that held a skein of super soft bamboo yarn and a gorgeous crochet hook. And we always seem to send each other tea and this year she included the most delicious smelling vanilla tea and a heart shaped tea strainer!

Twinkle toes! A pair of sparkly halloween socks, sparkly toe nail polish and fabric toe separators. How fun!

Each year we exchange a little star shaped box Sid made and include a special wish. I sent it to her last year with a clover shaped pin with the wish of good luck! This year she sent it back with a heart touching story about a chandelier that hung in her family home for many years and how the crystals from that chandelier are imbibed with positive energy. She kindly sent me one of her prized crystals for some positive energy on dealing with my recent Diabietes diagnosis. (Update, I'm Type 1, not Type 2 as expected.)

And that's not even the half of it! She also sent hand made soap, sparkly stitch markers, a kit of all the fun Raven themed carfts and activities she has planned for her Halloween open house, a lovely fabric flower brooch and many many more things.

So my dearest Sid, thank you, thank you, for being my friend. As I've said before, I truely believe in fate and know we were partnered randomly two years back in that swap for a reason.


Saturday, October 24, 2009


As I am more than overdue in having a giveaway why not visit Amey at Peas Porridge? Click HERE to visit her giveaway post and while you're there, browse around a bit.

I'll be back soon to share the AMAZING swap package I received from my friend Ms. Sid.

And what's a post without s picture, huh? How about some puppy cuteness?

Little Lincoln sits under my chair when I'm at my desk. Sweet yes, but those are teeth marks on the chair there. :)

Thursday, October 22, 2009


Two years ago I signed up for the Sweet & Sinister swap hosted by I can't remember who (hence the reason I haven't done it the last two years!) Anyway, I was partnered with the dear Ms. Sid and boy did we hit it off. So much so that we decided to make Halloween swapping a yearly affair.

When I got home from work today there was a note that I missed her package! So I'll have to wait until tomorrow to trek over to the post office and pick it up. In the mean time I thought I'd share what I sent to her since I haven't been able to share some craftyness in awhile.

The whole kit and kaboodle. I really enjoy crafting for Ms. Sid, she and I have similar tastes and I know I can try new things and she will like them.

Like making a pair of earrings. I'm not much for jewelry making but wanted to try a little something.

I crocheted a little jewelry pouch and lined it with a vintage pillow case. These are very fun to make and I plan to whip up a few for the holidays.

I also made my first cross stitch on perforated paper. It made the project very interesting!

This sweet doggie collage was Ms. Sid's favorite. I had a feeling she would like it! I love making these and really should do it more often. I recently found a book that is all vintage photos of dogs or dogs and their humans.

I actually wanted to make a shaker for our swap last year and never got around to it. This was very fun to make. I used some Martha Stewart Crafts Halloween invites from last year that I got on clearance. I took an empty paper ribbon spool and filled it with lentils placing tape over the holes in the spool and then glued the invites on each side. Then I put a hole in the bottom and stuffed in a ribbon wrapped dowel stick and added some decorative flair. Viola!

Oh, did I mention this swap had a theme? Well it was a Witch's boot (like a Christmas stocking) and I tried to make one but well, it stunk. So running out of time I pulled out the pattern for a bag from one of my favorite Tilda books, Sew Pretty Home Style, and whipped up a Witch's hand bag instead. (Thanks for letting me cheat, S.!)

And I finally got to use a Halloween fabric remnant I swear I bought like 5 years ago.

So Sid, thanks for being my friend and always being so gracious about our swap. I know I'll love every single thing you sent me and I'll be in line at the Post Office first thing tomorrow.


Monday, October 19, 2009

A Work in Progress

Well I made something. I don't love it, it's just okay but at least it's DONE.

It's a hat though it looks like a birthday cake sitting there like that. The pretty posey pin was made by The Queen herself, who I am very over due to visit with.

I've actually made quite a few things lately but they were for swaps and I want to make sure they have arrived before I spoil the surprise. :)

I also managed to find time to update The Goodness Shop. Remember these aprons?

Well you can find most of them HERE.

Except for this one:

I kept that beauty for myself. That ruffle is organza, yum. I added a few other items including some paper packs and hope to add even more over the week. I've decided that's it's way too crowded over here and some things have GOT TO GO. I'll be donating some but will list some things I think some of you may like in the shop.

Fondly ~ RR

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

En la Cucina con Ida

My dear friend Ida (pronounced E-da) came for a visit last weekend. We've been friends since the 10th grade when we met at Show Choir Camp - think Glee but you don't get to go home at the end of the day. Ida is Puerto Rican and a marvelous cook. I was so happy when she offered to cook for us and teach me some Hispanic recipes. For those of you that don't know, my husband is of Colombian descent. He is a first generation American, his parents having come to the states in the 60s. So needless to say, he was excited about some Hispanic home cooking!

First up - Empanadas! Ida said that on the east side of PR they are called something else but I can't remember what it was! (Ida - remind me!)

That would be me trying my hand at crimping them closed. I think this is something you get better at with practice!

She also made Aroz con Pollo (Chicken with Rice) which was to die for!

And one of my favorites, Tostones, which are made from green plantains:

I got to squish them, which was kind of fun.

Needless to say, it was a wonderful meal and I think I may be able to recreate it though definitely not as well. :)

I'd also like to say that we dedicated our day of cooking to Ida's grandmother, Mama Ida, who passed away this summer. I never got to meet Mama Ida, she lived in Puerto Rico, but I felt like I knew her. She would call Ida at my house when she would sleep over when we were in high school so I did get to talk to her a bit. Mama Ida is dearly missed by her family.

Thank you, Ida, for the wonderful treat!


Wednesday, October 07, 2009

My Own Private Island

I believe I've mentioned before that I come from a family of crafty people. My sister is a photographer, crafter and has recently started making jewelry. My Mom crochets, does paper crafts and has a real knack for decorating. And my Dad is a wood worker.

A few months ago I mentioned how I would like to have a kitchen cart like the one at my parents house. I jokingly asked my Dad to make me one thinking he'd say he'd look into it when he can. Well happily he accepted my project and last weekend when he came up to pick up my Mom after her stay here to help me after surgery he delivered to me my very own Island:

It's handcrafted from tiger maple, a few pieces of walnut and has a granite top. The pattern is based on the cart at my parents house but, no offense Mom, this one is much much better.

It has two shelves and three drawers that slid out to either side. He even attached a vintage bottle opener for Luis AND found knobs for the drawers that match the knobs on my cabinets (which also happen to be handcrafted from maple as well.)

I can't put into words how pleased I am with it and how touched that he would put so much time and effort into making me something. My Dad really has the know how to create fabulous furniture. In addition to the Island I also have a walnut desk he made me when I was in highschool. (Which I am sitting at as I write this.) While it's a great old desk I will say that he's come a long way in his craft!

So thanks Dad. Luis and I love our new Island.

Love ~ Becky

Sunday, October 04, 2009

Digging In

I love fall. It really sparks me to be creative. I was so worried that my back and leg problem would keep me from enjoying my favorite season but I'm feeling better and better every day. Tuesday I'll have my sutures out which to me starts the beginning of my road to better health. I can't wait to be "back to normal" and to start doing all those things I love about this time of year.

Yesterday dear Louie took me out to the thrift store, book store and craft store. My favorite Trifecta of Shopping. Nothing too exciting about the thrifts except these fun old canning jars:

I love these for storing things in the craft room and for using as fun containers for holiday gifts. Perhaps I'll stuff one with a sewing kit including a handmade needle book like the ones I made for friends a few years back:

That was such a fun project! I added them to traditional mason jars and made the tops into pin cushions. Perhaps with these glass topped jars I'll make one of these cute little crocheted pin cushions made from a bottle cap:

Earlier this summer I thrifted this lovely collection of vintage crochet cotton.

Don't you just love the colors? They would make adorable bottle cap pin cushions.

I also picked up the fall issues of some of my favorite crafting magazine and have already started both a knitting and a cross stitch project. (you KNOW I can't work on just one thing at once!) So as you can see, I am motivated to get a move on with my holiday crafty gifts. Anyone else start making for the holidays yet?

I realize that I have lots to catch up on so expect to hear from me more often. Next time: The BEST handcrafted piece of furniture you'll ever see.


Thursday, October 01, 2009


I'm a huge believer in fate. I believe that we walk certain paths so that we do certain things and meet certain people. I believe that if, say, you get the urge to drop everything, quit your job and move to New York City with a van full of stuff and an uncashed tax return check YOU SHOULD DO IT. Because you never know if you'll get that job where the employer went through 18 applicants to get to you and then they assign you a desk right next to the man you're going to marry in 5 years. Trust me. It happens. ;)

So I now believe that fate stepped in again last Monday when I went to the ER at Lenox Hill Hospital. I knew I was being admitted so I packed up my overnight bag and washed my hair and face and headed off. I spent most of the day laying around in a drugged up haze until they moved me to a room at about 8:00 pm. There was no one in the room so I was able to choose the window bed. Now I knew I was getting a room mate. Hospitals are way too efficient to over look an empty bed and the ER was pretty packed that day. The only thing I was looking forward to during my stay, well except for pain relief, was some peace and quiet. Now I worried that my room mate would be loud or mean or worse, really really sick.

When I heard them rolling in a gurney I knew this was it. The curtain between the beds was drawn so I couldn't see anything. It took them some time to get settled in before they walked to the bathroom which was by my bed. She smiled at me and said "Hi roomy. I'm Susan." She seemed to be about my age and her smile reminded me of a friend I've had since the 9th grade. Over the next three days Susan and I formed a friendship that I think will last.

Susan came to the ER from dinner so she was wearing her pearls and earrings with her hospital gown. We hit it off right away and talked about everything. We both got Heparin shots that gave us murderous headaches. So we formed the Anti-Heparin League and started taking walks in the hallway to prevent both the shots and the blood clots. Like I said, Susan had on her pearls and she also had to carry her handbag with her on our walks. So imagine the two of us strolling arm in arm down the hallway dragging IV carts and chattering away. We even had one of those traditional hospital episodes where a nice young doctor comes up and says "Um Miss, you should close the back of your gown." Ah yes . . . you can imagine I'm sure. It totally cracked us up (could have been the drugs) and we were also highly amused by the young resident who had to come in and ask about our bowel movements every day. Nice.

On Thursday morning before they came to get me for surgery Susan asked for my husband's phone number so she could check on me. Luis told me later that she called and he filled her in. After the surgery I was moved to a different room and when my family left I was very sad. I realized this was the first time I had been there alone because I had always had Susan right next door. We spoke again when she called me the next day to check in and see if I was sent home yet. It's like we've known each other forever.

Now imagine the odds in a city the size of New York to end up sharing a hospital room with someone you get along with so well. Sounds like we were fated to be friends, no? :)

I hope to get together with her soon and cash in on her promise to teach me to cook something French. So once my week of doctors visits is past and my friend who is visiting next week has come and gone (Hi Ida! Seems we were fated to be friends, too, huh?) I hope to see Susan again.

Susan, thank you so so much for being there. (Though I am sorry it was so painful for the two of us.) It really made a scary situation much better.

As to my health, I've been getting around pretty well, don't so much need that cane anymore but anything that falls on the floor stays on the floor. I've been doing some cross stitch and watching some TV and anxiously awaiting my return to normal life. I hope to have some projects to share soon!



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