Long Weekend

New summer sandals

A photo posted by @astromei on

I am so happy that I extended my long weekend by taking an extra day off yesterday. Lately, I’ve been feeling the effects of the many moves we had earlier in the year. My body was begging for rest. I complied and went shopping, thus the Instagram.

I’ve been listening to the Mystery Show podcast, thanks to Kate! Loved it so much that I listened to all the episodes in one day. Now I have to wait…

Also really enjoying Crime Writers on Serial. If you listened to Serial Season 1 and like me, have been caught up in this case, you would like this podcast and of course, the very detailed Undisclosed. These podcasts turn my 40 minute bus-ride into a flash!

I downloaded a new (to me!) book that comes highly recommended by a blog friend who prides herself on living life to the fullest.

Loving watermelon, iced coffees, brie on crackers and late night catch-up chats with Mike.

This past week

Cooking some new dishes: Gulai Sayur, collards simmered in spicy coconut milk; Mashed sweet potatoes in chai-infused coconut milk; Lemongrass Chicken Thighs (I marinated, Mike grilled); Coconut jello (no sugar, just coconut water, coconut milk and unflavored gelatin).

Listening to sad bastard (mostly!) music from songsfortheday (thanks to Loobylu!) My favorite song at the moment is Take Me Out by The Wooden Sky. Perfect for a long quiet drive with a loved one, as Adam suggests.

Watching Sherlock. I like the way the series has gone. Very clever.

Would love to taste this gluten-free torte from Macrina Bakery – Torta Gianduja – a six-layer rectangular torta with alternating layers of a chocolate espresso cake and chocolate hazelnut cake glazed with a rich bittersweet chocolate ganache and decorated with hazelnuts.

Trying out new photo app on iPhone called Snapster. You can make your own filters. Neat.

Simply summer

I have been enjoying these long days of late. I try not to fill my days with too many things but somehow it all goes so fast. I spend most of the day reading, checking blogs, keeping up with emails and thinking about new recipes but cooking familiar ones that I have neglected.

Around Scarlett, there has been a lot of cleaning and organizing going on. I think you have heard me mention this a couple of posts before. It has been a slow but really rewarding process. My new workspace is almost done. I just need a rug to tie the whole space together. I have also been living vicariously through the custom building process of my folks’ house. I am learning quite a bit in the process and look forward to seeing the house come together. So excited for my folks.

I made spaghetti tonight. Ripe tomatoes are just the epitome of summer. Marcella Hazan’s sauce is so easy and so delicious. If you haven’t tried it, what are you waiting for?

Today’s bits:

We painted our bathroom a while ago with a dark blue-grey and added a lot of industrial accents. I think these vintage-style pool locker baskets will make a really good accessory. You can find vintage ones on Etsy too.

Summers remind me of deviled eggs but these olive eggs look really tempting.

In Asia, it’s common to find a spray hose right by the side of the toilet bowl. It’s a hand-held bidet. While I was home this time, I got used to using one after going to the potty. I could get one of these diaper sprayers or I could make my own like in this video.

This weekend, we’re having a garage sale but what I’m really looking forward to are BBQ chicken wings. I plan to marinate my chicken wings with coke, honey and soy sauce. Then we throw them on the grill. Perfect for this weather. Scrummy.

Oh and the tacos in the picture are my favorite quick meal – tacos al pastor (spicy pork), tacos de lengua (tongue) and tacos de tripa (crispy spicy bits of fried tripe). So damn good.


Since I’ve been home from Singapore, Thursdays have become the day that I do my grocery shopping. It is far enough away from the weekend to avoid the crowds (especially in the Asian market) but still close enough to it to not miss out on the deals. Grocery shopping = shopping lists. For a while, I had been searching for a good iPhone app that I could use to create lists for shopping and other things. I would use the notepad application but it just didn’t work very well without the ability to check off the items as I went through the store. I think I have found the perfect list application for me – Crush App’s Paperless. I love how it looks (those cute icons!) and the ease of use. I have been using it for a few days now and love it! You should try it out for free and see if you like it, especially if making lists are your thing.

Today’s bits:

Lately, I have been thinking about sewing more. I think I’ll start easy again and try making some handmade napkins. I was doing my decluttering and found that I have very few cloth napkin options. These from Molly @ Purl Bee are too cute.

I am a sucker for good packaging and labels. I would find myself buying something I don’t really need because it was in a lovely package. I have 3 bottles of honey in the pantry but I would buy this bottle here. [via Lovely Package]

In the market for alphabet posters for your little one or yourself? Etsy has a good variety of them.

How adorable is this tea cosy from Robin and Mould’s Etsy shop? And this sleepy dog pillow is darling!

If you do screen captures for work or fun, Snagit is a common tool to use. It is now available in beta for Mac. Try it out, you might like it.

Good Morning

Good Morning

It’s another June Seattle day when the sun is playing hide and seek with us once more. I would like the sun to join us until about October, is that too much to ask? I am sure that I’m not the only Seattleite feeling this way. Still, we love our Emerald city because without all this rain, how can we be touted as emerald?

Yesterday, I went to the local garden store to get some annuals, herbs and a couple of veggie starts. I am not sure how they will do if the weather continues to behave this way. But a gardener is always hopeful that Mother Nature would be kind. As I am writing this, the rain has tapered off and the sky seems a little brighter.

Today’s bits:

I found some portulaca or Moss Rose and will be planting them in the front borders since the sun beats down quite hard there when it actually does.

I have a weakness for anything related to, named after and resembling Spain – this Sevilla Chair looks awfully comfortable to me. If only I had a porch…

This bamboo iPhone cover with a laser engraving of Leandro Castelao’s art is quite lovely.

Nigel Slater talks about growing his own vegetables in these videos. (Thanks, curiousmint, for telling me about his new book, Tender.)


Seed madness

You can call this whatever you like but I call it “I’m so glad to be back!”.

As you can tell, I was picking through my seed packets yesterday and sorting through what I might have time to plant in my backyard. Grow, grow, grow, I say!

Have you seen these adorable little frocks Alicia has been sewing for her baby? I love them!

These brick succulent planter idea from Readymade is genius! I think I have the spot just for these.

I’ve been thinking about Alfajores that Matt Armendariz made and didn’t want to get into exploding a can of condensed milk. Dave Lebovitz has good method of making dulce de leche in the oven, minus the can.

How I would love it if someone dedicated this song to me – Yo-Yo Ma & Diana Krall’s You Couldn’t Be Cuter.

I am very curious about this manual Espresso Maker at Matteria.


Scarlett sparkles in the sun

She sparkles, this house of mine, especially in the sunshine.

Since I returned after spring, I have been missing out on some gardening time. The rainy cooler climes we have been experiencing however, does not make me feel so delayed. I was able to get out this past Saturday to weed my entire yard as well as the planting bed. This afternoon, I spent a little more time planting some seeds. I skipped the spring crops and went right into the summer crops – some zucchini, squash, basil, dill, cucumber and greens. I might get one or two tomato starts from the store and see how they fare this summer. Last year was a spectacular year for tomatoes here in the PNW.

I am also finding myself back to blogging since I have some time on my hands. I thought I would share any new things I encounter each day and perhaps some other “little bunnies” that I have chosen to follow down the hole. [wink]

Since my attention has now shifted outside with the longer days (notice I am not saying warmer days), I am coveting some of the pretties at this adorable home/garden/gift store: terrain

Spending time in a certain part of the world has got me thinking about learning to ride a scooter. Aren’t these the cutest helmets?

And probably not that new, but here’s a Tastespotting-esque site for typo-fanatics – we love typography

Blackbird, Fly

I saw these at Urban Outfitters a few months ago and thought it would cool to own a reasonably priced twin lens reflex camera. Even better, it uses 35mm film instead of the usual 120mm for TLRs. That means easy developing of film.

Also, you can shoot in 3 formats – normal 35mm, square 24mm and large square 36mm.

blackbird fly camera

More information here.

No excuse

This week started out slow, mostly with me watching my seedlings grow and dreaming up a new garden layout. I will share that later when I scan my sketch.

Then Tuesday came and a huge box arrived at our doorstep. We ate dinner in a hurry and decided to form a band – lead guitar, drums and bass. My friend K is here visiting and she is an excellent drummer. We’ve been rockin’ out since that night. We weren’t so good that we could quit our day jobs but we have been practicing.¬†We are a little tired when we get to work. But that’s ok, the music runs through our veins and dreams die hard.

Tonight, we play at some tavern in a city near you.


Latest Garden Reads

Apart from travel research, I’ve been hitting these books lately to fan my gardening lust flames while the weather starts to cool down considerably:

carrots loves tomatoes

Carrots Love Tomatoes

I never thought I would have to worry about which plants get along better together. This makes a good reference so I don’t group the disagreeable veggies together.


Heirloom – Notes from an Accidental Tomato Farmer

Tomatoes are always a challenge to grow in Pacific NW but a true gardener loves a challenge. Tim Stark’s story gives me hope that anyone can stumble into happiness.


McGee and Stuckey’s The Bountiful Container

I have a small backyard but often I find myself turning to containers for a lot of my edible planting. I think everyone should be able to grow their own food even if they don’t have a lot of space. This book has a wealth of information on growing edibles in containers.