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.

Monday after

My summer string lights over the patio

How was your weekend? I had a good one. We had our hands full on Saturday with Scarlett’s very first garage sale, we had quite a few customers and enjoyed hanging out in the sun. I have a farmer’s tan but the new color on my skin is healthy. I know it will return to its pale glory in a few months. Sunday was a minimal chore day, we only took the cars out for a bath and vacuum. We don’t do that very often but it really does feel good to have a clean vehicle.

July is coming to an end and soon it will be birthday month. I love August. When I was younger and growing up in Singapore, it meant that we could look forward to a day off from school – National Day, and in that same week, 3 of us cousins will celebrate our birthdays together (we were born in the same week of the same year). Now, August means the height of summer – grilling out, popsicles, a bountiful garden, orange sunsets and balmy evenings. Can you tell that I am so looking forward to August?

Today’s bits:

I have been wanting mojitos this summer – I think these Danish Modern muddlers will look stylin’ and work well. Of course in a pinch, we can always use one of these wooden rolling pins.

My other half will cringe at this but don’t you think this Hello Kitty wallet is absolutely adorable?

I haven’t had the chance to visit the Georgetown Farmers/Flea market that is held every Saturday. Maybe this week.

The noise of the fan blades from our columnar fan sent me on a quest for a less noisy fan. May I present the Dyson Air Multiplier. It looks sleek and are blade-less so they won’t be a cleaning nightmare. I am not sure about how much I am willing to fork out to be without the extra noise and to have better air flow. But I would be interested in checking these out at a store.

I am always on the lookout for letterpress prints – this Urban Gardening one by Starshaped Press is delightful. Very summer-y colors and a great use of type.

Lens

Puttanesca sauce

All it took was one photography workshop to inspire me to learn more about my camera and to play around more with my Rebel. I got this camera more than 2 years ago but I still know so little about it. Thanks to the food photography workshop that was presented by Aran of Cannelle et Vanille fame. I have to spend more time with my camera, get acquainted with it and learn as much as I can about it.

Other things that have caught my eye lately:

This super cute Orla Kiely bag from the 2010 spring/summer collection.

The Giving Tree is one of my favorite stories. That is probably why I swooned when I saw this iPad decal.

I know that I am not alone when I say that I drool over Anthropologie’s pretties. I wish I had this beautiful platter. The texture is just lovely. And how adorable are these cute elephant shakers?

An inspiring blog that Aran shared with us during the workshop – What Katie Ate. I love how she photographed these cheeses, especially. Somehow the greys and blues in the veins of the cheeses are emphasized by the gray and shadowy backdrop. So many other beautiful pictures are shared in her blog, do check it out.

Thursday

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.

Popping up

Something's growing at my stairs

I bought this vinyl wall art 2 years ago for the living room makeover but we did not end up putting it up there. I think I have found the perfect spot for them. I placed them just at the corner of the stairs, they really look like they’ve always been there. Whenever I see them as I climb the stairs, it makes me smile.

I am so glad that the latest issue for Lonny is now out. I am still savoring each page.

There must be something creative I can do with these lovely textile colors from Jacquard. Oh, you should have seen my excitement when I saw that Blick has opened a store in Seattle right on Broadway, by Jimi’s statue!

This shower curtain will go well with the new Nocturnal Grey walls in the master bath. I can see skyscrapers right in my bathroom! I am such a city girl.

Erica tweeted about this blog – I love it, it makes me want to cook these recipes because of the great drawings.

That’s all for today, I have to go out to enjoy that sunshine before it goes away again.

Your Time

Foxgloves

Not a lot for today but wanted to let you all know that I am still here. I am still listening to my muse and feeling like I’m on fire with creative energy. These days, I’ve been spending it de-cluttering and organizing and does it feel good! I am also re-reading The Design of Everyday Things, it’s very inspiring.

Today’s bits:

These pebble earring studs are very organic and raw
. I think they will look great with a linen outfit.

This limited edition Iced Tea set from Heath Ceramics has caught my eye for a while now. It would look so good on our chestnut dining table.

Our dinner conversation tonight involved horse poop and mushrooms that lead me to now inform you that mushrooms do grow on horse manure. According to dad, the mushrooms picked (washed and cooked) from such cultivation are actually delicious with bacon and eggs in the morning.

What do you think of this cool mid-century inspired pendant/necklace from Kris Nations?

Before I go:

“Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma – which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.” – Steve Jobs

Comeback?

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.

Necklaces

Lately, I have been fascinated with necklaces. Maybe it’s because I had recently got rid of some old pendants and suddenly feel a clear lack of adornment options. Here are some picks from Sundance Catalog – I have to scour Etsy for some great indie options too.

3 bead nklace

Three-bead Linen Necklace – Silver and linen, organic and beautiful to me

cherry blossom nklace

Cherry Blossom Necklace – they actually remind me more of pussy willow

ebony seq nklace

Ebony Sequins Necklace – this is a smart and unique design

droplet nklace

Droplet of Sterling Necklace – I love the simple organic pendant

rosy coral nklace

Rosy Coral Necklace – I love the reds

Orla and Audrey Saturday

I went by the local Target to see if they brought in more Orla Kiely items. There were a few items but the full release should be later this month. I’m going to keep an eye out for them.

I came home with a tote (05) and the small milk crate (02).

I also bought some of my favorite Audrey Hepburn DVDs – I think there will be an Audrey Hepburn film fest next weekend.

AH_breakfast at tiffanys

AH_roman holiday

AH_sabrina