Hitting the Ground Running

We got back from a wonderful, relaxing visit with Barry's parents in Richmond a couple days ago, and life has felt pretty crazy ever since. First, there was the E. coli contamination of the water source for the part of Portland in which we live. Cool. Nothing like having to wait 'til you get to work to brush your teeth. Then Barry and I went and made an offer on a loft and proceeded to stress out about everything we could possibly think of in regard to owning our first home. Between twisting my hair and picking at my cuticles (doesn't everyone do that when they're stressed?) I also had to squeeze in some time to work with the new beads I picked up in Richmond. They're so good that I couldn't wait to get my hands on them. And then I heard about cyber Monday. I had no idea that the Monday after Thanksgiving was the day for on-line shopping. So I got swept up in the "news" (which is what often happens when a morning of excessive coffee drinking and npr-listening goes on for too long) and felt the need to update the sulu-design shop, all holiday-ish.

The new styles above are all in the shop now and the styles below have been restocked (click images for links to listings):

I hope those of you in the U.S. had a great Thanksgiving and that each and every one of you are well.


Restock: Necklaces

Click above images for shop listings, or check out the entire sulu-design shop here. I'm going to let these pieces speak for themselves while I chip away at the to-do list I should tackle before we leave on Sunday.


Restock: Sticks That Are So Me

I'm all about this thin wooden bead. I love its dramatic length and its modern, simple look. I love that it's really lightweight. I love how it looks with other beads. I love that it's an exclamation mark hanging from the ears. Who doesn't love punctuation hanging from their ears?

All of these are in the sulu-design shop now. Click on images above to take you there.


Restock: Amber-Tones

Perfect for autumn, great for getting a little dressy around the holidays, just the right amount of rich color, shine, and simplicity. The latest sulu-design shop update is filled with earrings made of amber-toned glass beads.

Click images above for shop listings, and check back in each day this week for new styles. My personal favorites are slated for tomorrow (that last pair up there offers a little foreshadowing), and necklaces are soon to come.


One Thing Leads to Another

Since I don't have the energy this evening to work on my etsy shop, I'm skipping a shop update in favor of an everything else update.

Mornings here have been dark and long, evenings darker and longer. I've been lining up little projects to work on to keep my hands busy during these chilly hours. The first one is now complete: a little pillow made with fabric scraps passed on to me by my boss. It's perfect for chair that Barry or I often occupy in the morning while reading, knitting, or just gazing out the bedroom window.

Speaking of my boss, she took me to a Dr. Marten's warehouse sale last weekend at which I purchased the most perfectly dorky pair of shoes. Me and my ridiculously small feet were able to shop the kids' styles (the ones with the $15 price tags), so I brought home another not-so-dorky pair, too.

Since I'm on the topic of people I work with, it's about time I mention Robin. She's my sweet, stylish coworker who happens to be quite talented with a needle and thread. I stopped by her studio recently and picked up this adorable skirt she'd made from vintage fabric. You can find others like it at her etsy shop.

And speaking of etsy shops, have you checked out Cori's newest one? Several months ago, I had the pleasure of selecting a few pieces from a couple of Cori's sales here in town. I love that little "s" jar and those espresso cups. I haven't brought anything new for the apartment into this place in quite a long time, but I couldn't resist picking up Cori's amazing wares.

Alright, the wind is howling outside and I've gone on for too long. Back to my projects. Stay warm. And let me know what you're doing to pass the cold, dark hours.


Still haven't started my handmade holiday gifts*...

but the sulu-design shop updates continue to roll.

(click images above for direct links to listings)

This Sunday, Barry and I head to Richmond, Virginia, to spend Thanksgiving with his folks. All sulu-design shop orders placed on or before Saturday the 21st will ship on the 21st. Orders placed from the Sunday the 22nd through the Saturday the 28th will ship on the 28th. And then comes December!

*To be fair to my siblings, I should mention that we didn't agree to do handmade holidays again this year. My sister - my truly amazing sister - became the art teacher at her children's school this year. She's been under some serious time pressure which might make the handmade holiday thing too much for her. And I don't know where my brother stands on the issue this year. I'd still really like to do it myself but am coming up sadly short of good gift ideas that I can make by hand. Any great ideas or links for my brother and sister, their spouses, my parents, a niece and two nephews? Note to family: keep your eyes out of these comments, ya hear?


Restock: Simple sulu

Bringing back some popular old-school sulu themes here:

Click images above for sulu-design shop listings, find sale items here, and check back soon for more updates. Thanks, friends.


Restock: Fancy Pants

Today's sulu-design shop update is a little on the fancy side - smoky colors, carved floral motifs, shiny faceted beads... perfect for the holidays.

Click images above for shop listings, and stay tuned for simple, modern designs tomorrow.


Just in Time for Stess-Free Holidays

I'm planning on restocking the sulu-design shop throughout this week and next, starting with a few pairs of earrings today (click images for shop listings):

I ship orders from the shop as soon as they're placed, so if you're thinking of giving sulu-designs for holiday gifts, you can order well into December (depending on the holiday for which you're giving gifts) and they should arrive on time. But in case you're like me and Bethany, whose recent post reminded me that it's time to get rolling on holiday preparations if I want to really enjoy the holidays at all, I'm getting the shop all stocked up for you starting now. Lots more earrings and necklaces to follow and a little sale on a few pieces, too. Hope your week is off to a good start.


Lest You Think I Was Joking About Hibernation

I give you this: the view from the picnic table outside the Waffle Window, where Barry and I split a waffle topped with pumpkin pie filling, whipped cream, and caramel. My teeth hurt just thinking about it.


Button Haul and Hibernation Recipes

Yesterday, after we checked out the flea market (score on the button front) that was recommended to me by the lovely ladies of Bonnet, Barry and I headed to an Indian restaurant that we've been meaning to check out. It was the first really tasty and reasonably priced Indian food that we've had at a restaurant since we moved to Portland. Finally. Thinking about mentioning it here made me realize how little I've posted about food recently. I figured it was high time that I get to posting some links to recipes we've been enjoying because the eating has been good 'round these parts.

Last night for dinner, I made a fall favorite: stuffed squash. Depending on what's on-hand in our kitchen, the stuffing varies. Last night, it included apple, red onion, walnuts, currants, cinnamon, brown sugar, and bits of turkey bacon. I've been revisiting this braised lamb shank recipe, too, using inexpensive cuts of beef in place of lamb. Served over polenta, it's such a satisfying meal on a chilly autumn day.

But it's Barry who's really been rockin' the kitchen. First, there was his cornmeal and kale spoon bread. Then he made stuffed squash with a spicy flare. And a few weeks ago, I came home after a long day at work to find Barry preparing curry-dusted scallops served atop a green pea puree - a nice surprise he'd put together to celebrate the 13th anniversary of our first kiss. That guy. Finally, for my birthday dessert (I'm not a birthday cake kind of gal - but don't get me wrong, I'm totally down with flourless chocolate cake, cheesecake, and carrot cake) Barry made this amazing pear crisp with candied ginger. The boy is no joke.

It's time to start thinking about hibernation if you haven't already, folks. But don't worry - there's still plenty of time to fatten up for the winter. Do as the animals do, I say. Hopefully some of these recipes will help. Do you have any fall favorites to share?

Edited to add: How could I forget to mention Marissa's butternut squash soup recipe? We could live on that alone in the fall. It's on the table tonight. And since it's food related, check out this link from the New York Times via my father-in-law. I love the food scene in Portland, but the service at restaurants here frequently doesn't live up to my expectations. My biggest peeve? Breaking rule #17. I'm looking forward to the next 50.


Don't Worry Mom - This One's Not the One

We've been looking with diligence at apartments, hoping to find one that's right for us to buy. We've been drawn to some modern construction - clean lines, white walls, totally simple, very us. But not much has seemed just right. Maybe we need to open our search up to houses. Driving home from another viewing this morning, we passed this sad little house with a "For Sale" sign in the window:

It was totally decrepit - pipes torn out of the bathroom wall, broken windows all around, a yard overgrown with threatening, thorny vines. The little romantic in me thought something about it was really endearing and wanted to buy it immediately and give it new life. The big anal retentive monster in me brought the romantic to her senses, but let her take a few photos before pushing on. The search continues...