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Pug Life

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Saturday, April 28, 2012

Here Today, Hail Tomorrow

Three days ago I posted my container vegetable garden. It was really exciting; I've been nurturing these plants from seed and I finally got to put them in the ground.

Twenty minutes ago, I watched in horror as this happened:


My heart, it hurts.

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Wednesday, April 25, 2012

DIY: Container Vegetable Garden

Last month, I started several varieties of seeds in my DIY: Newspaper Seed Pots . They were doing quite well and were outgrowing their temporary pots. I have been stuck inside with a terrible ear infection for close to two-weeks, so despite it being a tad early, I decided to take my chances and get my container garden going.

For my vegetable plants, I plant in 5-gallon buckets. They're not the prettiest option, but the price can't be beat. These lovely orange numbers were $2.60 at Home Depot. A comparable sized pot would have been significantly more.

If you go the bucket route, the first step is to add drainage holes. No fancy tools required here - just a couple screwdrivers. I started with a small screwdriver and pushed it through the bottom. You could use a hammer to tap it in, but the plastic isn't that strong so it isn't necessary.

Once the small hole is made, switch to a larger screwdriver and push that through to enlarge the hole.

Do this about 5 times around the bottom of the bucket, and it's ready to go.

Fill up the buckets with potting mix. A large bag (2.5 cubic feet) of potting mix filled two 5-gallon buckets with plenty left over for smaller herb pots.

Now, it's time to plant!

Grab your newspaper pots, remove the tape, and open up the bottom...

...and plant the entire thing!

 Repeat until you have a lovely patio container garden.

Clockwise from left I have: Cucumbers, Peppers, Cherry Tomatoes, Tomatoes, Dill, Cilantro, Italian Parsley, Basil and Mint.

If you made plant markers, now is the time to deploy them.

Are you gardening this year?

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Tuesday, April 17, 2012

DIY: Tea Towel Apron

When I cook, I'm constantly reaching for a hand towel - a towel that seems to always be just out of reach. So, when I saw this tutorial I knew this little half apron was the perfect solution. A towel I can't misplace!

It also gave me an excuse to fire up Athena. This apron could not be simpler to put together, so it was a great first sewing project after a long break.

I picked this tea towel up at Dollar Tree for, you guessed it, a buck.
I measured enough ribbon to go around my waist and tie comfortably.
Put the ends together and fold. Then, snip the end off at a diagonal.
This gives you pretty ends and will help prevent fraying. It's not a perfect solution, but it's the trick my grandma taught me. :)
Center the length of ribbon along the length of the towel, and pin. I put the ribbon on the bottom, then the towel, so I could see what I was doing.
Start sewing!

 Once you've attached the ribbon, you're done! 

Digital Paper by

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Wednesday, April 11, 2012

DIY: Newspaper Seed Pot Update

A few weeks ago I made these newspaper seed pots. I stuck the whole tray in a sunny window, and here are the results so far! They should be ready to be transplanted outside in a couple weeks. The whole process was easy, and really rewarding. I will definitely start my plants from seed from now on.

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Monday, April 9, 2012

Kit Kat Birthday Cake

Variations of this adorable cake have been making the rounds on the internet for years, and I've always wanted a reason to make it. I'm the resident birthday cake maker among my group of friends, and I love choosing the perfect design.

Saturday was my thrifting buddy Katie's birthday. She's not that much into cake and icing, but she does love candy, so I finally had a good reason to make the Kit Kat Cake.

Here's what you'll need:
  • 1 Cake Mix
  • 1 batch buttercream icing
  • 1 'medium' Family-Size bag m&m's
  • 5-6 large Kit Kat bars (I had the equivalent of 4 King-Size bars here, and I really could have used 1 or 2 more)
I've never had great luck with scratch cakes, so I rely on mixes. I went with Funfetti for this cake, so the colorful inside would match the m&m topping. If you're a scratch baker, just dump some sprinkles into your cake batter - it'll create the same affect.

Use your cake mix to bake two 9-inch round cakes, and frost.

Begin placing the Kit Kat bars along the sides. I started out breaking them into twos, but realized I didn't have enough to go around. If you buy 5-6 bars, you can do it this way. If you buy only 4 like me, you'll need to break them into singles and space them out a bit.

Now, pour in the m&m's.
Tie a ribbon around the cake, and enjoy!

Linking up here , here , here , here, here and here.

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Thursday, April 5, 2012

Shopping Thrifty

I love Thrift Stores. I love finding random items I never knew I had to have.

My current mission is to find a cute, vintage suitcase to create one of these adorable craft cases:

Found here
If you're not a veteran thrift store shopper, there are a few things I recommend: 

Of course, my lucky pugs weren't so lucky today. I struck out on suitcases, even after visiting two Goodwill and two Salvation Army stores on both sides of the river. I guess they transferred their luck to my friend Katie, who scored some great new t-shirts and this beauty:
Only $25!
And best of all, it fit in the back of the car. Phew.
I didn't leave totally empty-handed though. I found this Risk game in great condition, for only $1.99.
 If you're a board game fanatic like I am, you must check out your local Salvation Army store! I'd say about 90% of my board games (and I have a lot) came from Salvation Army - they always have all the pieces and are in awesome shape.

This one didn't even have all the pieces punched out. Score!

Alas, the search for an old suitcase continues. If you know of any resource I'm not exploiting (thrift stores, yard sales), please let me know!

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