huge giveaway!

On Poppytalk today they are having a huge giveaway for Little Winter. Seriously probably one of the best giveaways I've ever seen! (and that's not just be I'm in it). 14 vendors contributed to this giveaway, and there are so many wonderful things. Leave a comment on the giveaway post and the winner will be announced next week.

There is also going to be a party on Friday at west elm, a little meet and greet for anyone in Portland. Please come say hi if you can come, just look for the girl that has a double, I'm bringing my twin along.


because I just needed it.

Today I went to some thrift stores on the lookout for something in particular, but I couldn't help picking up this flannel. I also had to make a candy run, which means that I've only eaten snickers all day.

Today is the official trick-or-treating day, because in this town, everything revolves around football. And Saturday we have a home game against Michigan, which is the biggest home game of the year, which also means that starting tomorrow this town turns into a booze-fest. (an entire TAL episode about this here.) Not exactly a good environment to send your children out into. I think it was the last time Penn State played them at home we won, and then there was a riot and people tore down street lights. So Thursday night Halloween it is.

I don't have any plans to dress up, but I did see something online about making wigs for dogs...


little things

insomnia cookies
Things this week that make me happy:

a husband who makes late night runs to insomnia cookies.

getting packages in the mail.

buying the perfect jeans this weekend. (forever skinnys at the gap. 40% off and they fit like they were custom made, and I finally bought the right size! I always buy jeans a size too big, then they stretch.... bleh.)

video chatting with this tiny fellow who I will see in less than a week!

Gigi played with a ball, batted it around, attacked it, chased it and then and threw it back to me (no joke, she's a genius!), for like 5 minutes. This occurance is so rare, and ends so suddenly, it's like an eclipse.


under pressure.

tea break
This is it, this is the big week! This time next week I will be jetting over to PDX. Yikes! I've been working really hard staying up way to late every night. I hit a slight hiccup yesterday that I need to solve, but I'm trying to stay positive. I'm hoping to get a little shop update at the end of this week, but I need to work a couple things out first. If not this week, then right after little winter. I'll let you know!

Gigi has been working so hard—to make up on all the sleep I'm not getting. Seriously, that dog just sleeps all day, she hasn't moved since this morning. I have a system, I sit at the loom and point the space heater on me and weave away. Stopping for little tea breaks now and then, with my favorite chai. If you have any netflix movie suggestions let me know!



favorite place
Kate writes one of my favorite blogs, and I love how she posts bits of her weekend. I decided to use my new toy camera app on my phone to capture more of my weekend.

We had a good and busy weekend, it was sunny and warmed up a little, really beautiful. We ran lots of errands saturday, ate at my favorite place for lunch, Tyler helped me with some little tasks, and we took an amazing sunday drive. Oh yeah, and there was a HUGE spider that was right outside our door. I walked outside before our drive and spotted it, and it scared me to death. It was seriously the biggest spider I've seen. So gross. Let's just say it's no longer with us. I stayed up late into every night weaving, but I love the feeling of being busy with a project.

Click on any pictures to see more info, and the rest of the pictures that didn't make the cut.


a little break.

pumpkin cookies
balls of yarn
I love thursday nights, for us it's the first night of the week that we can spend at home, and we took the time to make a meal together, and watch our favorite shows. Tyler helped me by rolling some of my yarn into balls, and I made pumpkin cookies. They are one of my favorite cookies. It made like 80 cookies because I used a little cookie scoop, and frosted they are like cupcake tops. They are the best the next day when the frosting makes them soft. I have a lot of them to giveaway today, so I don't eat them all!

Pumpkin Cookies
makes about 80 using a small cookie scoop

1 cup shortening
3 cups sugar
2 eggs
2 cups canned pumpkin
1 teaspoons vanilla
5 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ginger
1/4 teaspoon cloves

Butter-cream frosting (beat all ingredients together)

1/3 cup room temperature butter
4 cups powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup milk

Cream shortening and sugar, beat in eggs, pumpkin and vanilla. Stir together dry ingredients, add to wet mix, mix well. Drop by rounded teaspoonfuls onto a parchment-lined cookie sheet. Bake at 400 degrees for 10 minutes or til slightly browned. Frost when cool with cream cheese or butter-cream frosting.


thursdays are my favorite

so much yarn
Today is a windy cold fall day. I forgot how cold it can feel in my house during the daytime because we only heat our house to 62. I'm wearing a scarf, and I really need to knit some fingerless mittens.

This morning I made a quick run to the dairy (one of my favorite things about living in a small PA town), and I returned my bottle and got a new half gallon, paid my money and ran out the door. As I got to the parking lot, my bottle carrier broke, and my bottle fell and shattered. Milk exploded everywhere, all over my shoes. I had to walk in and I think I said something about having a "milk accident." There is a very small downside to having your milk in glass bottles.

Now that it's Thursday, it's time so weave up a storm for the weekend! We have a nice evening planned, going to have dinner, make some pumpkin cookies, and make stuff together. Tyler is such a great helper to me.

Thanks for all your kind words about my scarves yesterday! It really made my day. I'll be finishing more colors and hopefully getting more pictures up at the shop to get ready for next week's update.



My scarves! I've been working so hard to make these just right. I put my new weaving skills to use to make this loop scarf that I've had in my head for a long time. It's been so great to make something that I've fallen in love with, I hope that you all will like them too! I love scarves, and this one to me is perfect because it is warm and practical, but then can transition to wear indoors to be cozy and comfortable. I joined the ends together and finished it with a ticking stripe fabric and label that can be hidden or shown off.

It seems fitting to go back to my first crafty passion, yarn. This yarn is truly special. It's super chunky, and so soft, you have to feel it to believe it. I just love the way that weaving makes a unique texture that is so different than knitting.

I have been working hard to get them ready for little winter, but for those who can't come to this amazing event, I am going to have a small shop update next week! I have switched my shop, so go check it out, and if you want to know exactly when I'm going to update my shop (now and in the future) you can join my mailing list. I will also let you know here of course.

I will be showing more colors and pictures very soon. It's always pretty terrifying to do something new and to put myself out there, thanks for all your support!

Huge thanks to my friend kim for being such a willing model. She did such a great job!



soft grids
I've been weaving as much as I can lately. Trying to get ready for little winter. I love using super thick yarn, and the grid that weaving makes. Hoping to unveil everything this week. I've been getting the normal pre-show stressed, mixed in with some fear of doing something new. It's always scary to put yourself out there, not know if you will fail. I've had fleet thoughts lately, that maybe if I never even tried I would have to feel this way, but then I would also be unhappy. So on I go, and I hope for the best. I'm grateful for all the support you give.

I'm just looking to the positive knowing that even though little winter is fast approaching, that also means that I will be seeing my dear sister and her adorable baby! That makes me so happy. I will keep thinking about that.


fall friday

friday date
friday market
Today has been the most idyllic fall day so far. It started off by getting a care package in the mail from my mom, who sent me huckleberry jam and pumpkins that she grew in her garden (though only 2 stems survived the trip), and a bunch of vintage buttons! She knows me too well.

I went to go to lunch with tyler, and we went to my new favorite place and got some pizza. I am so obsessed about that place, I want to go there everyday. We walked to the farmers market where we bought some pound cake from the bakery, fresh lemon pepper pasta, and veggies to roast to make a pretty great dinner tonight. It was so sunny, and a cold wind was blowing and there were leaves everywhere. I even ran into my good friend and we had a chat. It made me realize how much I love this little town, I'm learning more about it all the time.

I hope you're having a good fall friday. I am busy working on everything for little winter, I am hoping to finally be able to show you all about it next week.



it's resting place
So just minutes ago, I was having a productive day, just weaving, and watching some tv on my computer, when I see something dark flash between me and my loom (I sit on the ground).

**now, a little aside, I am one of the many people on this earth that has a huge fear of spiders. Huge. If I see anything I can't even think straight until it is gone. Grew up with the eyes of an eagle and could spot a spider anywhere and would yell at my dad to kill it. I once, as I normally did as a young girl, was reading Reader's Digest from cover to cover (seriously, us kids would FIGHT to see who could read it first, and I thought this was normal) and there was an article that talked all about brown recluse spiders and HOW THEY SOMETIMES HIDE IN YOUR BED BETWEEN THE SHEETS. Could not sleep for weeks. Weeks! I think I was 10, and now I realize that sometimes, knowledge isn't power.

I yell my choice profanity, and I think squealed/shrieked a few times, and it had the gall, the nerve, to park on my yarn. While moments of screaming, (I think I looked at Gigi and talked to her, thinking she would maybe help me) I knew I had to get rid of it, no way around it. I grabbed a ruler and one of my metal recipe boxes (I knew collections were good for something) and maneuvered the yarn away from the spider.

I think this is one of those really smart spiders that when I would prod it, it would play dead. Seriously. then random flail out its legs and move. The picture above is when it was "dead" oh woe is me. So I smashed it, and then I was afraid that it would come back to life, so I did look and it seemed dead. But Then I took some hefty martha tomes (thanks for making encyclopedias) and weighted it down so it can't leave, and so I can relax until Tyler comes home to get rid of the body. I will walk around this all day, I just can't touch it.

yuck. every time I see that picture I gag. Sorry to those people who catch spiders and then "set them free" I am not that person. now i'm going to have the creepy-crawlies all day. and I'll have to check my bed tonight.


toms + tomato

Walking outside, I noticed that my prudence purple tomato that has been green since the beginning of summer has finally decided that now is the time to mature. It was waiting for fall, just like me.

I can't imagine how, I swear it's almost been freezing at nights. What can I say, I have pretty stubborn tomatoes. My sun golds are also deciding to rebel and ripen. No matter how much I neglect them, not water them, or weed them. (sorry mom!)

I caved and bought the first new pair of many new shoes I have to get this winter. Those 3 pairs of sneaks are pretty much all I have, and I got embarrassed to show up to work with shoes with huge holes in them. Toms are pretty much sneaker's fat lazy cousin. In the best of ways. They are pretty much like slippers, and I couldn't resist the peach color. Next up, a pair of black boots, rain boots, and oxfords. Do you have any favorites to recommend? I need serious help.

Speaking of toms, this is probably the cutest use of them, which is from the blog of my newest interwebs friend whitney. So adorable.


count to three.

My week has already started off pretty hectic. Yesterday I was working out a huge yarn order that went wrong for 6 hours, exchanging over 30 emails with someone named Judy until we finally straightened out a very confusing situation.

Today I needed to process my passport application, and this weekend we went to take photos at walmart, and the lady was super rude and wouldn't let us wear our glasses and wouldn't let us look at the photos (reminding why I never shop at walmart). So we walked away, and I decided to shoot them myself. Which I promptly waited to do until this morning, two hours before my passport appointment.

My hair is slightly a mess (leftover from yesterday), and I wish I had taken more time to maybe figure out my eyebrow situation and let my sleep creases fade from my neck, but at least it's taken in natural light and I had 20 pictures to choose from. I ended up not using the glasses picture because it was taken too close, and I was running out of time. Oh well. I figure it's lots better than what I would get taken by someone else.

I am excited to get my first passport. We are taking our first trip abroad with friends during Christmas break. You're thinking someplace warm? Maybe New Zealand or Australia? Nope. Try Iceland and Denmark. Adventure!


weekend of new.

she's got style
The new semesters always bring new people in a college town. Kim is from Austin, and she has really great style. I was taking some photos with her this weekend and I couldn't help getting a shot of her boots. I love her yellow shoelaces, and her socks + rolled pants. She's pretty effortless. I can't wait to show you the rest of our quick photo shoot—soon!

We had a really fun weekend, we saw the social network, which was really interesting. We also found a new restaurant in town that nearly had me in tears it was so good. A pizza place that serves artisan pizzas, with super fresh local seasonal ingredients. Living in a small town with not too many options, it was like winning the lottery. I also bought some new shoes and we found a white noise maker alarm clock so we now sleep to the sound of rain falling. Lots of discoveries.

Hope your weekends were great. I am determined to make this week seriously count, and overcome some problems I have to solve.


movie night.

at the dollars
taken on my phone

I love going to our dollar movie. We hardly watch any movies first run. This is a great way to use my loose change, because it's actually one dollar. We have a ritual now where we go to wegmans and buy some treats at the bulk bins to smuggle in my purse. Last night we went to see a really late movie, Scott Pilgrim vs the World, and it was so good. Tyler had a lot of loud laughs.

We also have just as much fun scoping out the other couples. We like to speculate, like in the movie date night. The one in front of us were obviously on a first or second date. They probably went to the mexican place next door for dinner, which is why they were early to the movie. They were engaged in a very lively "I'm getting to know you" conversation, seemed like they were hitting it off. I loved watching their body language, I knew it was a first date or something because once the movie started they got silent were sitting up very straight, like they were very aware of the distance between them. I could feel some awkward vibes.

Toy Story 3 comes today, and I think we are some of the last people in the world that haven't seen it, like when we watched avatar at the dollars (and it wasn't even digital, it was on film, you could see all the dust specs and streaking.). I think we are going to shell out real money for the social network this weekend though. Do you have any movie routines?


thrifting thursday

thrift finds
thrift finds
I stopped by my favorite thrift store today, and I for once only bought a little bit of fabric. I found some fun and useful things that I actually need. Well the polaroid camera I don't need, especially because I have one pretty much like this one, but this one was new in the box, never been used. Mint condition. And super cheap. I have been really wanting to try the impossible project's new film, so this one would be perfect. I might sell my other ones.

I also bought a unused disposable waterproof camera. Maybe it's weird, but I have plans for this one. I did find some blue ticking fabric that I couldn't pass up. Two things I really needed was a kettle, and a big metal pot for dyeing fabrics. I have used my regular pots in the past, which is a bad thing, don't do it!


tiny trinkets.

tiny treasures
tiny treasures
tiny treasures
I have banished myself to my studio right now, because I am really trying to get things done. As I was looking around this morning I found myself looking at a few tiny things that I have up that I love. It's hard to find these little treasures right now because my studio is such a mess (it's a rule that clutter is directly proportional to the level of stress).

One of my favorite things is my baby double acorns. I have two sets of these that I picked up recently. I love walking around acorn trees to find the little anomalies. It is a little dangerous though, because acorns fall from trees like rocks, and I've almost been hit a few times. I think I get that from my mom, who I've spend lots of time scouring the ground for chestnuts and acorns, with the thrill like we are picking up money. Always picking something up and then exclaiming to the other how special it was, and repeating over and over until my dad drags us away, or asks a question like "what are you going to do with those?" Anything and everything! 

This flower pin is made I think from some sort of stiffened paper. It is very old, and I love the color and simplicity of it. I got it at a garage sale with some other old pins for a dollar. Definitely one of those things I just bought for no reason.

These ring shaped paper clips rock my world. I remember finding them in a really dark dusty basement of a house and getting the feeling like I had struck gold. I looked around sneakily like I had gotten away with something, even though they were only 25 cents and no one could care less. I can't bear to use them, but maybe I will someday.



I'm in a bit of a fog this morning I think recovering from our weekend. We met up in Pittsburgh with a good friend who came to visit us. We wanted to show him what Pittsburgh is all about, because I know I had misconceptions in the past and that was even after living in (and loving) Buffalo. We started out our trip by staying up really late and then getting up super early (maybe I got to sleep in) to go to a REI garage sale. We were 40th in line, and it was pretty crazy. A mad dash for sure. Our friend Levi knows a lot about outdoor gear, and we were looking to get some things for an upcoming trip, and we know nothing and needed some help. We we able to get some great buys, and it was a little thrilling to be a part of a crazy sale.

We ate at our favorite brunch place in the world, coca cafe and ate french toast with different toppings like herbed goat cheese and brie and figs. We also ate great mexican at the round corner cantina, and I became obsessed with the ice cream at Oh Yeah ice cream and waffles. You pick a base and swirl in countless mix-ins like hemp protein, mango, or turkey jerky. I got sweet cream ice cream with chai spice, and it was the greatest love of my life. Seriously I wanted that moment to last forever.

We did some touristy things too, we went up a funicular train (had no idea what that word was) to see the skyline at night. That was really cool, pittsburgh is a really beautiful city. We also went to Falling Water on Sunday. It is a masterpiece, and really lives up to everything that has been said about it. It was a little bit rainy, but the leaves and the woods surrounding the house were stunning.

We ended the trip with a visit to Jerry's records—that was pretty epic. Huge collections of anything you can imagine. Levi is a collector and we could have spent a whole day there. We are determined to find a place to put a turntable to play our chuck mangione album that we picked up. We are a little obsessed with feels so good.

It was superb weekend getaway, and I think we converted Levi to the greatness of Pittsburgh.


tiny paws, tiny places.

After a day where it didn't stop raining I had a cozy night where I was trying to work on some designs. My girl came over and seemed a little clingy, maybe because we went to the vet that day, but she snuggled up next to me all night. She usually likes to be in her own spot, and I felt so special that she wanted to be next to me. I might have just snuggled with her for an hour, but I just couldn't help it.

I can't believe today it is October! I have a lot that I hope to do this month. Speaking of, Poppytalk is sponsoring little winter, and they put up a great post today to introduce it. Can't wait to show you all what I've been working on.

oh, and ps, my blog url has now changed to secretpocketblog.com. You can change any links you have, my old blogspot address will still redirect. 
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