Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Yummy, crab balls!

Another recipe from this month's inspiration board were these crab croquettes from Sunset magazine. Since I can't ever seem to follow directions, I made some additions to mine and used canned crab instead of fresh shelled crab (saves $$). They were so tasty, like a mini crab cake ball. Beware though, it'll only make about 10 balls, so if you're planning on making for many, at least double the recipe.

What you need
1/4 cup green onions, chopped
1 tbsp butter
1/2 tsp garlic powder
salt and pepper
crushed red pepper flakes
6 oz canned crab meat
2 tbsp shredded cheese
1 egg
1-2 cups croutons (or breadcrumbs)
vegetable oil for frying

What you do
1. In a food processor, grind the croutons until you've gotten a breadcrumb consistency. I used garlic and herb croutons, which added some extra nice flavor.
2. Saute onions in butter until soft. Remove from heat and add, seasonings, crab, egg, cheese and 4 tbsp breadcrumbs. Mix well. You can add more breadcrumbs if the consistency is too mushy.
3. Form balls from your crab mixture and roll in breadcrumbs to coat. Fry in hot oil then place on paper towel to soak up the excess oil.
4. I served the crab balls with a mixture of ketchup, hot sauce, bbq sauce and buffalo sauce - a perfect mixture of spicy and sweet. Would also be tasty with tartar sauce.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Go Now, Go Often

My memory games are in the top right corner of the teal shelving unit.
Just an FYI :)
Such exciting news to share today... Kitsch, the new local handmade goods store, opened on Saturday with a bang! All the consignors got an email last night explaining how great the weekend went and more stock would be needed by the end of the month. I'm so excited for the owners and all the crafters who are featured at the shop. If you haven't checked it out yet, they are located over in Ghent at 807 Shirley Ave. and are open Tuesday to Saturday 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., Sundays Noon to 5 p.m.

Mike, Kelly and Randy checking out some
Fairview Place earrings (I think).

Monday, February 27, 2012

Music Monday

Kelly and I if we traveled in the 1800s (by boat) to Phoenix.
She's the one in white looking a bit ill - she is preggers afterall :)
Thanks to the Library of Congress.

In four days I'll be traveling off to Phoenix with Mike's sister-in-law, Kelly, for her first baby shower! I'm excited since I've only been in Arizona via the Colorado River, so I get to experience the whole place with a native (and her family and friends). For today's playlist, a little music to get me packing.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Portfolio Site is Updated!

One of my goals for the month was to update my portfolio site. I added, deleted and reorganized back in May, but to my satisfaction a lot has changed since then and my site needed a little facelift. Take a look and let me know what you think. I'm always looking for new clients, so if you'd like to see your business included in my growing list, don't hesitate to send me an email!

Pinterest Addiction

I've purposely been avoiding Pinterest like the plague for months now. I use FoodGawker and CraftGawker and spend way too much time on those. However, I got a random invitation on Facebook earlier this week and I'm completely addicted. I'm simultanuously planning my new office, Kelly's baby shower, dinner and my wedding. It's magical and terrifying at the same time! And I think I'm okay with it :)

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Thrifty Thursdays Part ll

felt cheeseburger and fries, click here.
After talking with the girls over at Kitsch and showing them all my felt books, they suggested I make just the food and sell that. Duh! Why hadn't I thought of that sooner?? When I was a kid I absolutely LOVED fake food (I still remember the plastic doughnuts I had that smelled like real pastries), plus  felt is totally rad right now :)

taco and chips, click here.

I found these cute little food baskets at the thrift store, four for 99 cents. Considering I found them elsewhere for a buck a piece, I think that's a good deal. I came up with four different food options each with accompanying side dish, add some wax paper and lunch is served!

hot dog and chips, click here.

The final products will be wrapped in cellophane and tagged with some cards and whatnot. You can find these adorable treats over at Fairview Place. Don't wait around, they'll be gone before you know it!

pizza and breadsticks, click here.

Thrifty Thursdays

Today's Thrifty post is also a before and after transformation! I bought this vintage skirt for $7 (I know, it's normally more than what I spend) a few weeks back and knew immediately I had big plans for it. It was super wrinkly and too long for my short legs. So I hemmed it and added some vintage tatting and buttons (thanks to my Grandma and Melissa :). Much better, right?

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Beautiful Day for a Walk in a Cemetery

It's February 21, the sun is shinning and it reached 67 degrees outside! So, I rushed to get my work finished this morning and headed out for the afternoon. I hit up a new thrift store in Portsmouth (it was terrific), then headed over to the Oak Grove Cemetery near Olde Towne.

A man who died in 1905 is still getting
flowers on grave? Must have been a good man!

Loved the branches growing from within this mausoleum.

I used to drive pass this place every day on my way to work, but have never actually been in. So after about 12 minutes of trying to find the entrance, I made my way to the oldest section I could find.

Turns out the original cemetery was called Portlock, which is the back "walk" section of the plot. The newer section is called Oak Grove Cemetery and is referred to as the "avenues."

The oldest date I found was a "born: 1836" but apparently the oldest inscription is 1833. Pretty amazing right? I love how much history is right here in my backyard.

Too many littles there, don't you think?

Have to love this afternoon sun.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Happy Lent

Every year I used to give up something for Lent. Actually, every time it was sweets. And it really had nothing to do with Lent, other than I could usually get someone to bet and compete against me for the six weeks. So, this year I've decided to do it again - giving up sweets. No cupcakes, cookies, candies or pies. No pudding, coffee (because mine is mostly sugar and creamer), muffins or tarts. I have given myself ONE exception to the rule and it's March 3rd (the day of Kelly Jo's baby shower in Phoenix - which I'll be at) and I can't disappoint her family but not indulging in the goodies :)

For my last hurrah, I feed my sweet tooth with a beer float (Oatmeal Stout and Skinny Dip Ice Cream). See you in six weeks, sweets!

Why the Name Fairview Place?

I recently realized I never explained how I got the name Fairview Place.

The short story? It's the name of the street where my Grandmother lived.

A few pages from my inspiration sketchbook.
Which I still look at from time to time since all the
photos came from Thai architecture magazines.

Sketched layout for the
Thailand store.
The long story? I came up with my store idea when I was in Thailand. I had been tasked to remodel the Fair Trade store in Chiang Rai where Izara Arts sold many of their goods. It was so thrilling redesigning the layout, determining what items to sell, feature and put back into the stock room. I also got to come up with the front window display and did it all with a budget of about $10. I knew I had figured out my future: "Bijou." That was the name I had picked out for my shop (meaning small and elegant), which was going to be set up like a studio apartment - bedroom, living room and a kitchen - where you could purchase anything you see. Everything would be vintage, handmade or re-purposed by myself or local artists. I had written up a business plan, started a sketch book where I collected photos for inspiration and even called about prospective rentals in Norfolk (which started at about $2,000 a month, utilities not included).

A few from the actual Fairview Place.

I get back to the States and immediately dive into cleaning out my grandmother's house. I was gathering a lot of items for the store from local thrift stores, but a good portion from her house as well. One day it just hit me, the shop should be called Fairview Place. It's a home filled with treasures, new and old, handmade and re-purposed. (Plus, I felt it was a nice transition for all the things we loved of my Grandmother's but could fit into our own collections).

After I mentioned the name to my mom and Mike, we never said "Bijou" again, and Fairview Place was born. I still like to think one day, the inspiration sketch book will come to life. In the mean time, I'm content with seeing how the selling goes online and in the local consignment shops.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Roasted Butternut Squash

As seen on my inspiration board this month, the "Rooibos butternut pizzettas." I never had any intention of getting the rooibos tea leaves, so substituted one of my favs instead: garlic. With the squash, I served some homemade mac 'n' cheese I had made a few nights before. I have to admit this is pretty much a vegetarian's dream come true.

What you need:
1 butternut squash
3 tablespoons olive oil
2-3 large cloves of garlic, minced
salt and pepper

What you do:
1. Cut the squash at the neck, wrapping and saving the bottom fat portion for later. Stand the squash on end and trim off the hard skin. Then cut into 1/2" slices.
2. On low heat saute your garlic until fragrant.
3. Grease your baking dish.
4. Dip the squash slices into the oil (each side) and lay on your baking dish. Season with rosemary, salt and pepper.
5. Bake at 425 degrees for 30-40 minutes, or until your desired tenderness.

Music Mondays

Russian peasant girls offering berries outside their "izba," the
traditional wooden house you seen behind them.
Photo thanks to the Library of Congress.

A short playlist today, inspired by my mom, dad and sister. Not sure why, but I thought this photo was fitting for today's playlist...Happy Monday!

Friday, February 17, 2012

New at Fairview Place

Seems like it's been a while since I've updated the store with new vintage goodies. For your looking (and hopefully) buying pleasure I've added a nice little selection of bags and our first pair of gorgeous shoes! Enjoy!

 Grey leather bag with retractable handles.

Cherry red woven Summer time bag...The hot weather is right around the corner, right?

Adorable navy blue Swafford clutch, pretty much perfect for any occasion.

 Adorable Bermuda bag with removable cover.

The bag I almost can't give up! This Orioles bag is a one-of-a-kind!

Last, but not least...the hotness of these 1984 pumps. Hola!

Kitsch Opening!

As many of you already know, by the end of the month you'll be able to find handmade Fairview Place items right here in Norfolk! Kitsch, a wonderful little crafty shopping in Ghent basically emerged out of thin air and has graciously let me sell my goods there. They've announced their first opening day will be February 25 at 11 a.m. The shop is going to have make and takes, tutorials, music and refreshments, so it's an absolute must for your weekend! I'm telling you now so you can plan ahead :)

I've been learning a lot in this process, like how to make an inventory sheet, giving my goods pricing codes and smarter ways to package my new items. I've posted my inventory sheet above (I had no idea even what I was suppose to do) if anyone is in need of the general idea. But I'm so excited to see what the coming months have in store for Kitsch and Fairview Place's new found local home!

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Thrifty Thursdays Part II

This may look similar to a post a had a few weeks ago, but don't worry, it's (possibly) even better! I scored this whole container (36+ bobbins of embroidery floss), plus a trusty bobbin winder for $3 at the thrift store! The amount of floss that's here is well worth at least $13, and even though I can't figure out if the bobbin winder is helpful or not, it retails at $5. So, it was definitely a great purchase. Now to add to the rest of my collection!

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Upcycled Fried Rice

Okay, so that sounds a little weird. However, Mike and I got Panda Garden for dinner a few nights back (delicious, BTW), and we had loads of leftover white rice. So, essentially I upcycled my white rice into fried rice. Here's how!

1. Go to the salad bar and grab a mixture of some (or all) of the following: edamame, green/red/yellow peppers, corn, onions, mushrooms, peas and carrots.
2. Buy a small can of pineapple.
3. Stir-fry the above vegetables for 3-5 minutes on high in sesame oil (or whatever oil you have), with garlic, Thai chilies (I used the crushed/dried kind) and soy sauce.
4. Add the pineapple and cook until just caramelized.
5. Add the rice, pineapple juice and more soy sauce. Cook on high until everything gets a little sticky and crispy. Serve immediately.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Happy Valentine's Day

Meeting my February monthly goal #3 (sending out handmade Valentines). I used everything from glitter to paint, ribbon to graph paper. Happy Heart's Day!

Vintage Valentines

I spent a little time perusing the Library of Congress web site for old school Valentines. Just look at these beauties!

 Created in 1883, this was an advertisement for the Prang & Co. card company. 

Valentine from 1890, Cupid's message says "Pray Sweetheart, send me just a line to say you'll be my Valentine."

 Card published in 1919, the message certainly wouldn't have convinced me to be his Valentine!

 A wood engraving from 1860 showing several scenes from the very romantic card writing and receiving.

Wait, is this the Campbell's soup kid? Or the Gerber baby? Either way, I like it. Dated 1919.

Real lace on the front and the message of "So strong's the flame of love for thee that in my heart doth burn, this world to me were paradise didst thou but love me in return" who could say no??? Dated 1890.

 Now Puck, he must have been a man of real romance! I also learned what "putti" meant from reading the description of the artwork – go ahead, learn something and Google 'putti.' Dated 1909.

Just love this one, especially sine it's actually Leap Year! Dated 1904.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Music Mondays

Published in 1933 "Thrilling Love" was
a full novel by Helen Ahern about
all-American Love. A must read, I'm sure :)
*Credit to the Library of Congress

Inspired by the holiday tomorrow, today's playlist is full of love songs. I think you'll be pleasantly surprised with this concoction. Enjoy!

Friday, February 10, 2012

Free Calendar Template

I'll have to admit, I'm pretty proud of myself and my commitment to blogging since the beginning of the year. Granted, it's only been six weeks, but I've already explored a number of topics and have seen the blog and store growing. This simple little calendar I created has kept me in line, so I figured I'd offer it to you as well. Just click the picture below, print at 100% and fill in the according dates. Happy planning!