Five Tutorials I Would Like to Try

link-love-icon250Following Diane and Tammy’s Link Love mission, today I’m sharing five tutorials I would like to try!






Chevron Scarf#1 Jody McKinley’s Chevron Scarf pattern on her JavaJem blog. I also featured this project in my recent post on variegated yarn projects. I just love how the six different colorways of Koigu combine so cheerfully. My biggest hesitation on this one is that I have never knit a single stitch. I’m thinking I’d have to tackle some much simpler scarves before attempting this beauty.





#2 This DIY Chevron Wall Art project by Emma of MyBojuLife. There’s lots of paint chip art out there, but this one grabbed my particular attention. I have a lot of leftover paint chips from when we remodeled one of our bathrooms, and this looks to be a quick and fun project.



#3 Rachel at LinesAcross has this tutorial on how to make beads from scraps of paper and leftover embroidery floss. This tutorial I also featured in a previous post on using flosses in jewelry. It’s a brilliant way to be creative and thrifty at the same time, and I think I have an idea of how to use these beads in projects other than jewelry…




#4 I love the concept behind this baby mobile by Alisa Burke guest posting at SewMamaSew. Once again, I featured this project in a fun previous post about water-themed crafts. With a minimum of planning and expense, she created this striking project. I don’t know any babies who are currently in need of a mobile, but I know some little boys who might like to help me make them a cool door curtain…





Picture of Rain Gutter Garden Planter Troughs#5 Last of the five tutorials I would like to try is some variation of this Rain Gutter Garden Planter tutorial on Instructables. Our house is on an incredibly tiny lot, and planters are our only option. Using rain gutters is an economical way to go vertical without creating too much weight. We’re thinking that some (shallow-rooted) herbs and lettuces might be a nice place to start!

My previous posts in the Link Love Mission include “Five Books I Made Something From,” “Five Posts I’m Proud of Creating” (note: from early in the history of this blog), “Five Favorite Projects for DIY Crafty Goodness,” and my favorite and most important: “Five Blogs that Make Me Laugh.”

Gypsy Ways 2014

My gypsy ways are returning…

Both new and returning readers to this blog may have noticed that my blogging has slowed a bit lately. This is due to a fantastic travel opportunity that is coming up very soon! From roughly May through October, my husband, dog, and I will be in motion.

gypsy ways - what remains of my printed photosFor the past few months, we’ve been concentrating on getting some personal projects done before we hit the road. We remodeled one of our bathrooms, and I finished up a massive project – scanning, organizing, and backing up all my printed and digital photos. This photo is of all that’s left of the printed photos and scrapbooks – a reduction of about 80% of the volume of what was before… heavy awkward scrapbooks begone!

More recently, I’ve been designing cross stitch projects, picking floss colors, and getting all the necessary supplies together to take with us. There are some wardrobe requirements for the trip, so I’ve had to work on that as well. I will say that the purchase of these two pairs of fabulous shoes was necessary (thanks to the sales at Macy’s for not breaking the bank, and man I just love that clear lucite platform!).

gypsy ways - orange strappy platform heelgypsy ways - black patent and clear lucite platform heel







Most of the time, we will have regular internet access. But on similar trips we have stayed in some remote villages where the neighbors were what you see in the video below and internet access was in the nearest library 20 miles away. If that scenario arises, I hope to regularly post some quick updates and photo highlights.

My Etsy shop will continue normal operations, thanks to my Mom who graciously agreed to help with shipping. I’ll be releasing new patterns as I finish stitching them from my current backlog of nifty designs, and as always, I’ll be working on creating new designs. I find a lot of inspiration along our gypsy ways!

So for a short time, my blogging will slow down, but it definitely will not cease. I count myself as one of the truly fortunate that I get to make this trip, so I hope to appreciate it in the moment and not only when I look back in the photos. As many have said, it is not the destination but the journey that really matters.

[Update: The adventure starts here!]

Five Blogs That Make Me Laugh

link-love-icon250Following the lead of Diane and Tammy, this week I’m rounding up the “Five Blogs That Make Me Laugh″ as part of their “Share the Link Love” mission.





#1 April Winchell

She’s just… just… April. She ran the hilarious and controversial blog Regretsy, and now she’s acting and doing voice work in Hollywood. She’s brash and ballsy, unapologetic and funny as hell. I’m looking forward to seeing if she will continue some of the really amazing holiday charitable works she did with the CF4L Regretsy goons, and her collection of truly horrifying music is, well… truly horrifying. Her comment on the Paul Anka cover of Smells Like Teen Spirit? – “Makes you want to drink Nyquil and crawl behind the armoire.”

#2 TheBloggess

I bet most of you reading this have already heard of Jenny Lawson, aka The Bloggess (Tagline: “Like Mother Teresa, Only Better”). She can be hilarious while at the same time being very honest about her mental health issues that change over time. She was big-time involved in the Traveling Red Dress Project, and she has a photo of Wil Wheaton collating. How can you beat that?

A recent quote: “In all seriousness, bullying is shitty and you shouldn’t do it. That being said, almost no one who is real a bully actually realizes it, so I sort of think it would be better if we had a ‘Maybe-Stop-Being-Such-An-Asshole’ Awareness Day, because honestly, if you don’t think you’re occasionally an asshole then you are totally an asshole.” SO TRUE.

#3 Fark

File:Fark logo 2011.jpgI just love Fark. From the epic threads like the Ballsack Conundrum to the Photoshop contests and the (mostly) good natured bickering in the comments, it’s all pretty fun. But the best part really is the headlines themselves. There are some really witty people out on Fark.

For example, just take a look at the 2012 Headline Of The Year Contest. The overall winner: “Alzheimer’s Walk set for Saturday. Search and rescue set for Sunday.” Geek subtab winner: “Stephen Hawking reaches 70. Must have been a really steep hill.”

#4 Homestarrunner

I miss these guys a lot. They remind me a bit of the Muppets in that there’s simple stuff for kids and more sophisticated stuff for adults while still being funny and not sickly sweet. The site is still open, but they haven’t put any new material on it since December 2010. This is a real shame as Homestarrunner has some of the funniest flash cartoons you’ll see ever. Some of my favorites:

  • The entire series of Strong Bad Emails, especially Dragon (introducing Trogdor, the Burninator!), and Techno. All of the cartoons (best read in order starting with the earliest at the bottom of the list) are full of easter eggs, making it that much more fun to watch. These emails used to come out roughly once a week, creating a keen sense of anticipation on the webs.
  • Teen Girl Squad
  • Halloweeen and Decemberween cartoons [click on Holiday and get yourself a bucket of popcorn]
  • Puppet Homestar singing with They Might Be Giants – ya rly! [click on Puppet Stuff and scroll down to “Puppet Jam: Tropical Lazor Beams]

#5 Hyperbole and a Half

Hyperbole probably, but nevertheless it is FUNNY. My ribs hurt for days after reading The God of Cake, and in fact I have tears streaming from my eyes as I type this just looking at some of the illustrations.

And her story, This is Why I’ll Never Be An Adult, spawned it’s own meme. There’s a reason for this. Allie is hilarious.

How about you? What blogs always make you laugh?

Five Books I Made Something From

This week’s Link Love theme is “Five posts you {actually} made something from.” Well, I have yet to make something from a post, but I have made projects from five books!

The only difficulty with this post is that I don’t have photos of most of the projects I’ve completed. This is silly, I know. Someday soon, I hope to tackle my collection of old photos. I’m going to toss out unnecessary photos, and digitize and organize the remainder. Then, hopefully, I can create a kind of craft portfolio.

In the meantime, here’s a little bit of info about these five helpful and project inspiring crafty books:

#1 Beth Russell’s William Morris Needlepoint

This book is just plain gorgeous, cover to cover. Beth worked at the Royal School of Needlework in London, and her designs certainly are a faithful interpretation of William Morris’ works.

I needlepointed the Artichoke pattern you can see below. Whereas the photo was finished into a cushion, mine is finished into a framed wall hanging. The two projects are nearly identical and they’re absolutely beautiful!


#2 Danish Cross-Stitch Zodiac Samplers (Dover Needlework)by Jana Hauschild

I purchased this funky tome not necessarily for the zodiac element, but more for the flower border patterns. Every month has a different featured flower and they’re all very pretty without being too cutesy.

I rearranged parts of about 9 of the borders to make an all-flower cross stitch project and gave it to a friend as a housewarming present. I hope I can find a photo of it as it was really lovely and cheery.


#3 101 Needlepoint Stitches and How to Use Them: Fully Illustrated with Photographs and Diagrams (Dover Embroidery, Needlepoint)by Hope Hanley

This is one that yes, I do have a photo of the project I created. The book doesn’t include this sampler as shown – I just created the sampler, as I remember, on the fly with a scrap piece of small gauge canvas. The piece is only about 8″ x 10″. I would love to remember how I came up with the layout!

Needlepoint Stitch Sampler - 1996


celtic#4 Celtic Charted Designs (Dover Embroidery, Needlepoint)by Co Spinhoven

This book contains animal patterns (as you can see by the cover), geometrics, knotwork, and then some spiral patterns. One of the biggest spiral patterns I needlepointed in green, gold, red, and purple for a friend’s wedding. Her wedding had an Irish theme, so I thought it was appropriate.

My friend recently told me this great story about the project. “My aunt, my mother’s sister, came to visit on her way from Iowa to the LA area. When she came in the front door (huggy-huggy) she saw the wedding gift artwork/[needlepoint] you did for us. She touched the glass and said all sorts of Kansas-Missouri things, and then carried it with her when I gave her a tour of the house.” How cool is that!?!

samplerquilt#5 Design and Make Your Own Contemporary Sampler Quilt (Dover Quilting)by Katie Pasquini

If you have never made a quilt before, this book is a great place to start. The book includes instructions for three different sizes of quilts, including everything from how much fabric to purchase to how to finish the edges. I made my first quilt using this book.

I wish I had a photo of this quilt project to share. Not so much for the patterns, but for the fabrics I picked out (I’m still proud of my choices, 15 years later!). Fortunately, this quilt is still in my possession and I’ll get it photographed sooner rather than later.



Disclosure: Ancora Crafts is an Amazon Associate – your purchases from the links above will help support Ancora Crafts. I own every linked book in this post. I will only endorse products that I believe, based on our personal knowledge of the products, are worthy of such endorsement.

Five Posts I’m Proud of Creating – 2013

Once again following the lead of Diane and Tammy, I’m rounding up the “Five Posts I’m Proud of Creating in 2013” as part of their “Share the Link Love” mission.

I started blogging in February of this year, and what an adventure it has been! I honestly had no idea of exactly what I was getting into, and to be honest, I still don’t as blogging seems to be constantly evolving (just read Diane’s post on the topic). Creating posts takes more time than I originally thought, but I’m happy to be writing again after a gap of many years. I’m also trying to emphasize quality of posts over quantity of posts, and that seems to keep me motivated and to be working. With all that in mind, here’s five posts I’m proud of (in no particular order):


Hitting “publish” the first time was a pretty interesting experience. It was nerve-wracking and thrilling while I was being hopeful and curious all at the same time. It was also the result of a failure (but a fail-forward type failure).
Computer keyboard and touch pad

(Insert sound effect here: “Yeeeeeaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaggggghhhhh!”)

[Photo by darrenleno via Flickr]

The first was an e-commerce platform that I had spent a lot of time and money on setting up, customizing, and maintaining. And after an extended period of time, I never sold a damn thing on it. Not one. Hardly got any views. Obviously, I had to make a change.

Moving my listings to Etsy was the easy part, but changing the .com to a blog took a lot of work, mentally and digitally. Switching to a new web host and learning WordPress were two big hurdles. But the biggest challenge was in making the commitment to blogging – a decision I did not take lightly.

I’m very happy to say that ever since I hit “publish” on the first post in late February, although it’s a lot of work, I’m having a lot of fun with this blog!

#2 Followup on my ACrafty Interview with Betty Busby

acrafty interview - betty busby with her quilt disco urchinI published an interview with quilt artist Betty Busby in June. I have been in awe of her work since I first saw it and I was so curious about her process. In August she was gracious enough to give me, my husband, and our dog Scully a tour of her home and studio space in Albuquerque. It was a real honor and treat for all of us, and I’m really happy that I was brave and took the chance to ask her if she was available.

#3 Making a Better Blog

The Better IdeaMost of my very early posts on the blog are about my own projects and products, and that was fine. But in May, after doing a lot of reading about blogging, I had a kind of epiphany about the direction of my blog. I’m sure it will shift again someday, but this post sums up my current bloggy path.

[Photo: The Better Idea by (the brilliant) Peggy Dembicer via Flickr]



#4 Favorite Books – Crafty and Otherwise

As part of Rosalilium’s Blog Every Day in May project, I put more information about myself out on the internet than I ever thought I would. Of all the 31 topics that month, I really enjoyed creating this post about my favorite books.Bill the Cat for President

 [Bill the Cat for President from Bloom County. Photo by tjosephson2 via Flickr]

#5 My Hexie Madness Series

I had done a few other crafty roundups before, but the hexagon series really stands out. I dug deep, spending days on the internet to find examples of hexagon crafts in all types of disciplines. I ended up finding some really outstanding hexies in interesting places. I tried to find as many tutorials and patterns as possible, but where those didn’t exist, I did find some excellent sources of inspiration. Love the leather pouffe and these popsicle sticks – so fun! [Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4]

How about you? Share your “proud five” post over at CraftyPod!

My Top 5 Posts of 2013 Thus Far

I’m following the lead of Diane (of CraftyPod fame) today and posting my top 5 posts of 2013 thus far.

#1 Most Popular: Part two of my series on hexagons (HEXIE MADNESS, really), that covered crochet, felt, lace and tatting, polymer clay, origami, and last but not least, popsicle sticks. The hexie origami boxes are proving to be the most popular outgoing links, but my sentimental favorite has to be this colorful and fun popsicle stick hexagonal basket.

ACrafty Interview - Katie Kutthroat ain't nobody got time for that cross stitch#2 Most Popular: The ACrafty Interview with Katie Kutthroat. Katie was one of the first people I ever contacted on Twitter. Katie’s cross stitch has always cracked me up, and it has been seen on the set of the HBO show Girls. It was very interesting to get a glimpse into her crafty process and to see how she benefits from stitching.

#3 Most Popular: My book review of Crochet Saved My Life by Kathryn Vercillo of CrochetConcupiscience. Her book explains the benefits of crochet for a variety mental conditions including depression, anxiety, OCD and addiction, for physical conditions such as chronic pain, fibromyalgia, and multiple sclerosis, and as a tool in occupational therapy.

Her book also has a curious physical effect! Read the review for more info about Kathryn’s fantastic world of crochet.


Nicey Jane hexies#4 Most Popular: Part one of my hexagon series, this one covering quilting (featuring a link or two to CraftyPod), leatherwork, scrapbooking, weaving, and jewelry. Of all the links, I think the most popular is probably these bordered hexies, although the Diane von Furstenburg box clutch gets a lot of attention as well.

acrafty interview craftypod quilting happiness book cover#5 Most Popular: I’m very pleased to say that it’s my ACrafty Interview with Diane of CraftyPod! Diane was so gracious to give some of her valuable time to my fledgling blog. I have to say that CraftyPod is a wonderful resource of crafts and craft blog information, and I highly recommend anyone in a creative field to follow her adventures (and best of luck with the new book launch this week, Diane!).



Etsy Shop Updates – June 2013

Just finished up some major Etsy shop updates and maintenance!

First, I converted all my pattern listings to Digital Downloads. I’m very happy that Etsy has created this functionality. My husband and I travel quite a bit, and customers having the ability to download the patterns they purchase will make part of my business life a lot easier.
Slutmuffin Cross Stitch Pattern PDF

[Now I can get your “Slutmuffin” fix to you from anywhere!]

The second thing I did was to my Etsy shop was update my descriptions and tags. Blogging (and to be specific, the WordPress SEO plugin by Yoast) has really made me more aware of the importance of the links between titles, keywords, and descriptions. It’s a bit too early to tell, but initial indications are that these modifications have had a good effect on my views.

This Persian Flower Needlework is based on a very small element from a historical design book.Third, I reduced the prices on quite a few of my patterns just today. The most dramatic drop was on my Persian Flower cross stitch and needlepoint pattern – down almost 50%! But hey, it’s okay, it needed to happen! [I just love this darn flower so much!]




Aside from Etsy stuff, on this blog I’ve got the next three parts of my series on HEXIE MADNESS coming out soon (here’s Part 1), and this Thursday’s ACrafty Interview is with Sasha at WhatNoMints!

Then, of course, I’ve got about a million new ideas in mind. I’ll have a fun new Colorado-themed pattern and kit coming out next week, and I’ve got some ideas about combining stitching and scrapbooking that might work out really well. Stay tuned!

Top 100 Craft Blogs to Follow in 2013?

Wow! So I went through the whole “Top 100 Craft Blogs to Follow in 2013” list as per and I have to say I’m a bit confused. This list seems to be one person’s favorite crafty blogs. The one person would appear to be from the Philippines due to the high number of Philippino blogs included in the list. I’ve got nothing against any of the blogs in the list (good for you, honestly!), but I doubt there was any kind of voting involved, and not much due diligence performed:

  • #47 and #80 don’t exist and #86 is essentially closed
  • #49 and #95 haven’t been updated in over a year
  • #51, #63, and #69 don’t have anything to do with crafts
  • #40 and #41, while being nice blogs, have very little to do with crafts

IMGP8562.JPGAll that being said, I did manage to find some new-to-me good stuff on the list (or via the list). First, I have to say I love the sense of humor of Mikey Figgy at “Diary of a Demented Stained Glass Store Owner.” The name alone gives me a chuckle! Check out this post: Study of Einstein’s Brain Reveals Source of Genius. Did you know that Einstein was “a heck of a solderer?” Funny!



La Villita textiles in San AntonioI’m also enjoying the musings of Elba at Live Colorful. Her post on Mexican textiles is just gorgeous!




Finished Millennium FalconI can’t believe that I haven’t found Geek Crafts before now! What fun is this? Turn a cast into a Tardis? Yes, please! It goes hand-in-hand with this “We Made a Millennium Falcon for Our 9-Month-Old” post from The Pink Toque. Favorite sentence: “Over breakfast this morning I threw together a bandolier for the Schnauzer out of craft foam.”

HS_070108_Rivoli-SwarovskiThe blog has some really interesting articles about jewelry. Not only do they have some DIY tutorials, but they also have articles about things such as the history of Swarovski crystals, jewelry findings and how are they plated, and gemstone folklore; posts that explain more about the materials commonly used in jewelry. Good info for anyone who is into jewelry, really!

New socksMy final mention from this “Top 100” list is Crafts from the Cwtch “(which rhymes with ‘butch’).” I like Sarah’s writing style and eye for color. She creates some really striking knit and crochet pieces. I really look forward to reading more of her posts, past and future.


Did you find some new good stuff among this odd Top 100 list? Did you think the list was a bit strange as well?

Blog Every Day in May 26 – 31

This is the last set of topics for Rosalilium’s Blog Every Day in May Project. Today I’m covering a fantasy dinner party, my secret talent, the worst advice I’ve ever received, my morning ritual, who inspires me, and reflections on this BEDM project.

Fantasy Dinner Party

I’m going to modify the question as big dinner parties are not really my style. I do better with individuals rather than groups. That way I can really talk to someone and get to know them without worrying about how everyone will get along together.

With that in mind, who would I like to meet and have dinner with? About a million people: actors, civil rights workers, the writers of the US Constitution, the Gee’s Bend quilters, comedians, scholars, fictional characters, my ancestors, ancient religious figures, architects, engineers, writers, athletes, notable people in history, scientists… the list is endless. And the meals would be at the beautiful Cuq en Terrasses hotel near Toulouse, France so I know it’s a beautiful, relaxing setting and I don’t have to worry about cleaning up the damn dishes.
Photo au coeur

Secret Talent

Most of my secret talent isn’t much of a secret – I have a large capacity for memorizing trivial knowledge. Here’s a couple of good examples…

First, I memorized the alphabet backward one day when I was walking home from high school (it was a long walk). I even sing it to the tune of the alphabet song.

The Button-Down Mind Strikes BackSecond, my Dad memorized this list years ago when he was watching The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson and Bob Newhart was the guest. Dad taught it to me when I was young and it has stuck with me ever since.

  • One hen
  • Two ducks
  • Three squawking geese
  • Four limerick oysters
  • Five corpulent porpoises
  • Six pairs of Don Alvairso’s tweezers
  • Seven thousand Macedonians in full battle display
  • Eight brass monkeys from the sacred crypts of Egypt
  • Nine apathetic, sympathetic old men on roller skates with a marked propensity toward procrastination and sloth
  • And ten lyrical, spherical denizens of the deep who hang around the corner of the query and the quay all at the same time.

Worst Advice I’ve Ever Received

“Should” is my least favorite word. Any sentence that starts with “You should…” is automatically the worst advice I’ve ever received.

Look at these three sentences:

  • “You might want to read this book.”
  • “You could read this book.”
  • “You should read this book.”

Using “might” and “could” give you the option of reading the book or not without judgment. To my ear and brain, using “should” implies that you will be judged negatively if you don’t read the book.

Think about the following scenario. Your Mom comes to your house and, without you asking for decorating advice, she says “Honey, I think you should move this chair over here.” Grrr, right? Now, if you ask her opinion, and she says “Well, you could move the chair over here,” that’s a totally different story!

Like most people, I’m not too keen on being judged, so I tend to shy away from people who say “should” a lot. At the same time, I try very hard not to give advice. The only advice I do give is to use sunscreen and to use earplugs. Those are two things you will always appreciate.

Morning Ritual

I really do enjoy a bowl of cereal with cold milk every morning. Yes, please.

Who Inspires Me

  • Maude as played by Ruth Gordon in Harold and Maude.  I want to be like her when I’m 79 years old. A confident, funny, creative, independent survivor.
  • People who discover new places – explorers, pioneers.
  • People who create new information – scientists, scholars, musicians, writers, artists, designers, craftspeople.
  • People who are funny – comedians, movie and TV writers.
  • People who are always learning.

A Whole Month of Blogging

I’m really happy that I participated in this Blog Every Day in May project! I’m pleasantly surprised that I tackled every subject, as I was a bit doubtful that I would make it at first. I’m very glad that I combined many of the topics into one post. For example – my “Morning Ritual” response would be pretty dull as its own post.

Would I do another Blog Every Day in ____ project? Sure! Not for a while, though. I’m looking forward to posting more on my own topic: about how we can improve ourselves through crafts.

Blog Every Day in May 20 – 25

Further topics for Rosalilium’s Blog Every Day in May Project. Today I’m covering the news, my dream job, a message to my 13-year-old self, compliments, the fridge, and my favorite albums.


I’m not sure what to say about the tornado in Oklahoma City other than the fact that it is profoundly sad. I worked in Oklahoma for about 8 months helping to manage the construction of a power plant south of Oklahoma City, about 7 miles from Plaza Towers Elementary. While I was there we did have a tornado warning – the tornado sirens sounded, and that was scary. I’ve been so lucky to not been directly affected by a tornado. The people of Oklahoma, like most Americans, are tough and they will recover. But my heart just goes out to everyone who lost a loved one in Oklahoma on Monday, especially the parents of the children who passed away.

This video of a woman and her pooch put a very happy tear in my eye this morning.

Dream Job

MORE sample booksI’m pretty sure that if there was a dream job for me it would be Interior Designer. The creative side of it really appeals to me – pulling together colors, textures, and shapes to make a cohesive whole would be gloriously fun. However, that is one small part of the job. There’s dealing with clients, budgets, and deadlines, expediting all the materials, trying to coordinate with the construction manager and the trades to get what you want done, sales and marketing, managing staff, and some other things I’m sure I haven’t considered yet.

I think most “dream jobs” are like this – it sounds great on the surface, but once you dive in you’ll see there’s a lot more to it.

To my 13-Year-Old Self:

Fist BumpFirst, it gets better. Life is pretty dire now, but it will start getting better soon. Second, learn how to throw a good punch. They might say that you shouldn’t fight but no one will really get mad at you for defending yourself. Third, cut off those damn long nails. They’re just silly, and they keep you from being able to make a good fist.

Best Compliment I’ve Ever Received

My husband and I are supremely happy together. We are extraordinarily lucky to be together and we tell each other this on a regular basis. He’s a smart man of the world, and knowing that he’s very happy being married to me is the best compliment I could ever ask for.

What’s in the Fridge

Halibut and Shrimp with Minted Broth RecipeIn the fridge? Lots of fruit and veggies – zucchini, carrots, cabbage, watermelon, honeydew melon. Leftover halibut and shrimp with minted broth (easy and very yummy), brown rice, green beans. Milk, eggs, cottage cheese, ricotta, pickles, peanut butter, jam, condiments, lots of dark chocolate, cooking wine. Beer – Harp, Guinness, Smithwicks.

In the freezer we have baking supplies – chocolate chips, instant espresso, pecans, walnuts, cranberries. A few remaining Girl Scout Thin Mint cookies, Alaskan beef and reindeer sausage, edamame, peas, ice packs.

Favorite Albums

I just can’t limit myself to five.

Smashing Pumpkins Siamese Dream – Etherial, kick-ass, cohesive. I couldn’t tell you the names of most of the songs, I just press play and drift away. One of those albums that grabbed my attention as I had never heard anything like it before.



Dire Straits On Every Street – Sexy and bluesy with a hint of old country music. Mark Knopfler is a guitar auteur – you always know when he’s playing.

The Beatles The White Album – it spans from orchestral (“Good Night”) to hard rock (“Helter Skelter”) and everything in between. Quite a phase in the evolution of rock and roll.

Product DetailsThe Rolling Stones Sticky Fingers/Let it Bleed (tie) – I heard “Can’t You Hear me Knocking” on a classic rock station back when I was in high school and instantly loved the song. They didn’t play it very often as it’s over seven minutes long. In the pre-internet days it took me years to figure out the lyrics and which album it was on. Once I got my mitts on it, wow! The whole album is great. Let it Bleed is just as amazing with personal faves “Gimme Shelter” and “You Can’t Always Get What You Want.”

Soundgarden Superunknown – A cohesive whole. The album just flows. Another one where I couldn’t tell you the name of many of the songs.

The White Stripes White Blood Cells – Jack White is a genius. When I first heard “Dead Leaves and the Dirty Ground” I was hooked. You won’t find anything that sounds quite like The White Stripes.

FM & AM [Explicit]George Carlin FM & AM – I’ve been listening to this comedy album since I was about six years old (thanks, Dad!).




Bill Hicks Rant in E-minor – Bitter, biting comedy and so true with a glimmer of hope.

Runners Up:

Nothing's Shocking

Wow, my musical taste is pretty dated, doyathink? Well that may be, but you have to admit that I’ve got quite a variety of genres in the mix. I’m not too worried about it!

Full disclosure: I am an Amazon Associate and any purchases you make from the links above will help support