And a Happy Weekend to You

I put a lot of things on my plate this week. Locking myself out of the apartment for a couple hours the other day didn't help my feeling a little crunched for time. So I missed a day of adding new jewelry to the sulu-design shop. Today's update includes two pieces to make up for it:

Thank goodness it's Friday. This weekend is gonna rock. Rock, I tell you. Hope you have a great one.


Contrasts in Brass

I'm too busy to linger at the computer this morning. But I did make time to list two new pieces in the sulu-design shop today. I almost kept this little necklace for myself. Seeing as I already made myself pair of brass disc earrings, I figured I could part with it. I'm heading out now to conquer a serious to-do list. I hope you have a good day.


Union Rose

I'm thankful to my friend and coworker, Robin, who introduced me to Union Rose, the latest boutique in Portland to carry sulu-design jewelry. Robin, you may remember, makes really cute skirts out of vintage polyester and has been selling her designs at Union Rose for a while now. I had the pleasure last week of meeting Nicole, the owner of the shop, and I couldn't be happier to have my designs represented there. Nicole rocks. And Union Rose is just a couple doors down from the Country Cat, where I hear the eating is good (I'll confirm that as soon as possible).

The daily sulu-design shop updates march on. These earrings are listed there now, and if I get on the ball, a similar necklace might follow tomorrow.


Friends of the Children

A recent blog post by my friend Betsy reminded me that I never reported back to you on the donation I made in January to Mercy Corps based on sulu-design shop sales. As it happens, I just received a note from the organization last week thanking me for the check. Thanks goes, of course, to those of you who made a purchase from the shop at that time.

I'd like to make another donation based on purchases made from now until the end of May from the sulu-design shop. If you've read my blog for any amount of time now, you know how much I adore my mother. And if you ever venture into the comment section, you know how awesome she is to me. In honor of my mom and of Mother's Day, I'll be donating 25% of all sales from the sulu-design shop from today through May 31st to the Portland chapter of Friends of the Children, a non-profit organization that provides trained adult mentors to vulnerable children from kindergarten through high school graduation. I've been donating pieces of jewelry to their annual auction since I moved to Portland, and I'd like to be able to give a little more to this wonderful organization. I was lucky to be raised in a loving home by amazing parents, and I'd like to pass some of that goodness on to other kids who need it.

As I mentioned last week, my shop updates this week are all about another recent bead obsession (although I don't think I have the triangles out of my system just yet). I can't get enough of these shiny little brass discs - they have a nice weight to them and look great, I think, in stacks:

They're in the sulu-design shop now. I just added a few things to the sale section there, too. I hope you had a nice weekend. I'm only half way into mine now, and I gotta tell you - I'm loving it.


The Proof is in the Pudding

I made a pair of triangle earrings for myself (as evidenced in this reflection in an old, spotted mirror). That's the most you've ever seen of me here, huh? One last pair is in the sulu-design shop now to finish up the week:

I'll be back next week with a whole new obsession. Have a great weekend.


Am I Taking the Triangle Thing Too Far...

if I point out that leek stems sure have a strong triangular growth pattern to them? We had homemade pizza for dinner last night and while I was searching on-line for good topping combinations in order to use up some ingredients we had on hand, I came across this recipe that combines leeks, ricotta, and walnuts. Yes, yes, and yes. While I'm on the topic of leeks, Mom, Barry keeps talking about the leek casserole you make. Can I put in a request for one during our next visit?

So, yeah, like I was saying... triangles. Today's triangle earrings are in the sulu-design shop now.


While I'm on the Subject

The earrings above are today's addition to the sulu-design shop. Since I'm running with this triangle theme, I thought it's time I share a necklace I made for myself based on a DIY Geometric Necklace post I saw a while ago on Ladylike:

Mine's a pretty pared down version of what the original designer made. I just couldn't bear to use up so many of these white stick-like beads in one shot.


Good Music and Stuff

Barry and I went to the Holly Golightly and the Brokeoffs show last night at the Doug Fir, making it official that we've seen Holly perform live more times than any other artist. And as usual, she did not disappoint. Speaking of good music, Barry introduced me to ESG yesterday, a group from the Bronx who recorded in the early eighties. They've got such an awesome mix of influences. The link I've provided lets you sample little bits of their new wavy songs. I was shaking my butt all over the apartment yesterday listening to the album.

Now for today's earrings, more triangles (expect them all week long - I'm seriously feeling these beads). I included this pair in my recently restocked circles and ovals section of the sulu-design shop. Have a wonderful day, and I'll see you back here tomorrow.


Trianglular Obsession

I've had this trianlge post by Summer (whose blog you may already be reading - if not, you should) bookmarked for over two months now. That little black lamp she featured there is killing me with its perfect simplicity. I've kept Summer's post in mind as I've mulled over what to do with a bunch of triangle-shaped beads that I picked up in New York City back in February. Today I dove into the stash got to work so as to be able to stick to my attempt to list a pair of earrings in the sulu-design shop every day for the next couple weeks.

I'll start with this pair. Its colors remind me of the painted velodrome of the Keirin race that Barry was watching while I was working on earrings today. Speaking of track racing, I'm reminded of this old pairing from my Original Intent series, too. Hope your week has started well. Back tomorrow.


Good Reads

My sister and her husband are raising three amazing kids. The last time I talked to my niece and nephews, the oldest one gets on the phone and says to me, "Aunt Suz, I've got a great book recommendation for you." I love that this was the first thing out of his mouth, totally unprompted. Having taught sixth grade for several years, I've been recommending some of my favorite age-appropriate books to Nicholas, a fifth grader, and now he's returning the favor. In case you're wondering, he highly recommends the Percy Jackson and the Olympians series. I'll be referencing Andrea's new blog frequently for more good kid-friendly reads to pass on to him, I'm sure.

And on an unrelated note, the sulu-design productivity rolls on. Find the above earrings here. Have an awesome weekend. Maybe I'll see some of you Portlanders here on Sunday.


Running with the Blue Theme

In honor of my attempt at being more productive, these guys are now in the sulu-design shop. And in honor of the upcoming birthday of my wonderful friend Holly, this is now in the oven:

Pumpkin Spice Cake with Honey Frosting
(from Everyday Food, November 2005)

for the cake:
1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted, plus more for pan
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice or (and I chose the "or"):
1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
3/4 teaspoon ginger
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon allspice
1/8 teaspoon cloves
2 large eggs
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 15 ounce can pumpkin puree

for the frosting:
1/2 very soft unsalted butter
8 ounces very soft cream cheese (reduced fat is fine)
1/4 cup honey

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and cutter an 9-inch square baking pan. In a medium bowl, whisk the flour, baking soda, salt, and pumpkin pie spice. In a large bowl, whisk eggs, sugar, butter, and pumpkin puree until combined. Add dry ingredients to pumpkin mixture and mix gently until smooth. Turn batter into pan and smooth. Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with just a few moist crumbs attached. Cool in pan for ten minutes, then turn out of pan and cool completely on a rack, upright. Whisk together the frosting ingredients in a medium bowl until smooth. Spread frosting on cake, cut into squares, and get busy. I can't wait for the get busy part. It smells un-freaking-believable in here. Happy birthday, Hol!


Like Mr. Parker Said

Thanks for your hints yesterday on getting energized. Several of you mentioned exercise as a way to get a jump start. I'm a big believer in the importance of daily physical activity. I actually think it's a change I'd made in my daily workout routine that has me a bit out of sorts. I used to work out every day immediately after work. But several months ago, I began working longer hours at my day job, and going to the gym afterward made my evenings feel too short. So I switched my workouts to the morning. Mornings had always been a really productive time for me in terms of all things sulu, but working out in the morning meant those sulu-related things often got squeezed out. I'm thinking of going back to my old routine, going to the gym after work, and just dealing with less down time in the evenings. Whatever. This is more than you care to know about my daily goings-on, right? This is why some people shouldn't have blogs. So I'll shut up and present you with today's earrings, found here.

As the former principal of the school at which I worked would say every morning over the loud speaker after the day's announcements, "Have a productive day."


Needing a Kick in the Seat of the Pants

I've fallen into a few routines since we've moved that are making me feel less productive and energized than I used to feel. For some reason, I've started doing the things I used to do in the morning in the evening, and vice versa. And I don't think it's working out. Today, I'm changing things up a bit, switching the order in which I tend to my daily activities to see if it'll affect my energy level at all. Today I'm also starting a little sulu-design shop task - listing a new pair of earrings or necklace in the shop every day for the next several weeks. The shop is feeling a little bare, I've not been good about restocking it recently, and Mother's Day is practically around the corner (and mothers love earrings, right, Ma?). So here goes.

The earrings are listed here with lots more to follow. And to you, friends, a question: what do you do to re-energize?


Been Working...

on a photo project with my boss.
What's keeping you busy?


One Meal Becomes Three (Thank You, Barry)

Last week was a really long one for me. By the time I came home from work Saturday evening, I was done. Worthless. I was so happy to find that Barry had an amazing meal waiting for me. I couldn't have asked for anything better (food or comfort wise). He made this pork recipe that totally knocked my socks off and served it with a side of Brussels sprouts sauteed with olive oil, balsamic vinegar, salt, and pepper.

The leftovers made the perfect Easter brunch this morning. The tenderloin was delicious cold. We cracked eggs over the leftover Brussels sprouts, sprinkled them with Parmesan cheese, and baked them. Oh, baby - so, so good.

And for dinner tonight, we drizzled the juicy glaze left from the tenderloin over sauteed potatoes and onions. We served them on the side of some of the yummiest sandwiches ever: goat cheese, sauteed leeks, thin apple slices, and freshly ground black pepper on sourdough bread grilled on a panini press. With a drizzle of honey, they were awesome.

I hope that those of you who celebrate Easter had a lovely holiday. Now that it's over, our eating will return to ho-hum, not-so-blog-worthy regularity. But for one twenty-four hour period, the eating here was damn good. I think I'm ready to face the new week.