Tuesday, March 31, 2009

download some sunny optimism cuz you need it.

Looking through my Flickr contacts, I saw this post. Frank Chimero is one of my favorite illustrators and he's allowing friends (and online friends!) to download a hi-res version of his Everything is Going to be Okay print. If you print it out, take a photo and send him a link! I think I'll send one to my mom to brighten up her hospital room for Mother's Day.

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Monday, March 30, 2009

spring cleaning

This weekend was a hive of activity, but also one of the best weekends I've had in a long time. We took a major break away from the computer and did not do a stitch of work all weekend. Seriously, this is a huge deal. Well deserved, definitely. We watched Happy-Go-Luckywhich was amazing, read books, visited the farmer's market, spring cleaned our apartment, made a blood orange/cranberry loaf, went to a party, watched Wassup Rockers, went out for breakfast twice with friends, wandered around our sunny neighbourhood, sat in the sun in the local community gardens, and went to a pot-luck dinner. Phew!

Yes, I did say the weekend was enjoyable and that we spring-cleaned. I didn't find spring cleaning that awful actually. I think because my husband and I tackled most of the work together while listening to loud music and letting in the spring air through our windows. And our place seemed a hundred times better for it. I also think that this was a fantastically sunny weekend helped to put smiles on our faces. Want to spring clean? Try out these homemade cleaning solutions.

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Thursday, March 26, 2009

sleepless in seattle

Work is busy at the moment. It must have been a slow week last week since I posted here almost every day! I'm also really lacking some serious beauty sleep...this week has been rough and the fire alarm testing going in our building isn't helping things.

But I am super excited that our Seattle plans have come into place. I tried out Priceline for the first time and after a few unsuccessful bids, we finally ended up with a stay at the Silver Cloud Stadium Hotel in downtown Seattle. It has great TripAdvisor reviews and while it's on the other end of downtown (it's right across from Safeco Field), I'm definitely excited about it! Plus, our room only cost us $69 dollars/night. Cheaper than our usual $71/night stay with shared bathrooms at the Moore Hotel and way more fancy. We're only staying one night to see the Black Lips and I'm also trying to convince my husband to stay an extra night so that we can have a bit more time in Seattle to explore and do everything we want. We'll see!

The above photo was taken on our last trip to Seattle...in 2006. Breakfast in Ballard at The Dish. I think it's time that we make a return trip!

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Monday, March 23, 2009

lovely smells

I hope everyone had a wonderful weekend! I sure did. Lots of stuff going on including going to see Herman Dune (who unfortunately wasn't as awesome as the last time I saw them in Vancouver) and eating a huge Persian feast with friends who were celebrating the Iranian new year. But this morning it was back to business, including a doctor's visit for one of those unpleasant "feet-in-stirrups" kind of visits.

To soothe my nerves, I wore a little bit of my favorite perfume which just happens to come from a Seattle etsy seller, Sweet Anthem. Karen is my scent du jour, but I've got a few other handmade perfumes by them and I love them all. My husband, on the other hand, is a perfume hater...so I try not to wear scents too often, but I give props to finally finding a great perfume on etsy.

In other news, I was interviewed in Scout Magazine about my cards. Take a look!

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Friday, March 20, 2009

we have a winner!

Using the online magic known as the Random Number Generator, I have selected a winner out of the amazing 51 entries to the "damaged goods" give away. The winner is the 21st commenter, also known as Kathy! Kathy didn't list a blog, but she did note that she liked my newest cards, "You Look Beautiful Today" and "Good Things Will Happen" which she thought were "incredibly positive and uplifting." Well, thank you Kathy, I'm blushing.

Since this give away was so well received, I'll definitely think up more for the future! It was fun, thanks again!


Thursday, March 19, 2009

my ears are burning

Whooo! My food blog is featured in the Storque, which is the official Etsy blog! It was also mentioned in a blurb in Toronto Life as well. I'm also super excited at just how many of you have entered in the "damaged goods" give away!! As my Flickr friend and neighbour, KnitGrl, mentioned, it's like a virtual free box. Indeed! I love it. Remember, deadline is tomorrow at 5pm Vancouver-time, so there's still lots of time to enter if you haven't already.

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Wednesday, March 18, 2009

damaged goods give away: the beautiful project

Uh, didn't I say something about a give away a while back? I did! The thing is, this give away is about damaged goods...stuff that I don't want to sell because the paper had a weird brown bit embedded in it or their was a crack in the fold or the printing wasn't totally perfect. What could I do with the rejects? Just because I don't want to sell them doesn't mean that someone doesn't want them for free, right??

So without further ado, here's what I'm giving away: 4 cards (damaged goods) + 1 perfect card from my shop (who knows which card it will be...except it will be a surprise!). And look, one of the reject cards isn't even available yet in the shop! To enter, just leave a comment below letting me know what is your favorite card available at my etsy shop. Please include your name or a link to your blog (so I can contact you) by this Friday March 20th 5pm PST and I will pick 1 random commenter.

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Tuesday, March 17, 2009

city of dreams

Seriously, what is it about Portland, OR?! This morning I awoke to a ton of fabulous Portland things in my feed reader. What is it about Portland that supports such creativity? I was recently interviewed by a local magazine and they had asked me what makes Vancouver so creative and I answered that it's hard to be a successful creative in this city. Laws, bi-laws and so much interference by the Man make things hard, so you have to be creative to get around things.

In Portland, it just seems to be so easy. Portland, the city, just seems so welcoming to great ideas. There are cool little shops and businesses and small independents thrive. My husband jokingly says it's because Portland has such short city blocks compared to Vancouver. It could also be because of the chickens. If so, Vancouver now allows backyard urban chickens. Maybe the chickens will help Vancouver win the war on creativity!

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Monday, March 16, 2009

you like me!

Phew, what a morning it has been! I spent the morning giving a final polish to a new client website design mock-up and then via Twitter I found out that my food blog had won for best Canadian Blog at the SXSW Bloggies!! What huge and exciting news! It was hard to get back to regular design work especially since I was so hopped up on strong coffee. Now, I've got a ton more work to do and then I think I'm going to convince my husband to take me out for a fancy cocktail to celebrate! Whoooo!!!! The card above is from my etsy shop....perfect sentiment for today!

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Sunday, March 15, 2009

etsy shop: something's hiding in here

I saw links to this video in so many places, but when it showed up in my feed reader on Jan's blog, I decided to watch it. Wow, how inspiring! Their loft in Philly? Amazing!


Saturday, March 14, 2009

seattle get-a-way?

Truth be told, I'm not a huge fan of Seattle. I think because it's pretty much a car driving city. If you want to go to Ballard, to the U District and then to downtown and Capitol Hill there's a lot of highway driving. I'm more of a walking around girl, so that's why I love Vancouver so much. Cars aren't needed (tho everyone does seem to have them anyway). But Seattle does have The Black Lips coming April 25th and of course, a few days later, there's also Molly's book signing which I'd love to go to. However, it's easier to convince my husband to drive 2 and a half hours to see a rock show than a book signing, so I'm hoping we'll rent a car for a night for the Black Lips show.

So, if we do make it to Seattle, please give me your tips! Nice affordable place to stay! Best breakfast! Great cheap dinner! Affordable is the only way we travel, so no fancy dinners or expensive hotels please. I'm not afraid to admit that we're cheap.

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Thursday, March 12, 2009

weekend watching

On the weekend, we watched 2 movies. The Dark Knight was pretty good, but not as great as the previous Batman film. In fact, I've only seen the Christian Bale Batman movies...really, why bother with the others? But the movie that I quite enjoyed and was totally surprised by was The Wackness. I had never heard about it and then it landed in my lap. Ben Kingsley is great as always and the soundtrack which is so 1990's hip hop is pretty memorable too. Oh yeah, and the story is sweet and real. A lovely little surprise of a film.


Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Paul Rudd´s sexy dance

I'm feeling a bit worn down today (and I'm crossing my fingers that I'm not getting sick), but this clip made me laugh out loud a lot.

Monday, March 09, 2009

cute tote and other crafty things

I LOVE this scalloped tote that I saw via Creature Comforts. I'm not usually a purse gal, but giant totes are totally useful for lugging around books and groceries. I'm putting this on my birthday wish list...May's not that far away. Snow started falling last night and it's still falling this morning. Maybe spring really is far far away. I'm not pleased.

And another new card for my shop. Rainbow coloured blobs are always a good thing. More good things? I will be at the Got Craft? sale on Sunday May 3rd. Check out all the other great vendors here. I've also designed the poster and the postcards for the sale which will be printed and posted around town soon. Got Craft? has also gone mini and they will be doing a twice-a-month sale starting soon. I did the posters and postcards for that event too. Check out the postcard design here.

In other crafty news, the craft collective that I'm a part of, Hob Snobs, has been accepted to the One of a Kind craft fair happening in Vancouver in October. This is a giant event, a HUGE trade show kind of thing. I've never done anything quite so large so I'm very nervous and very excited too. At least Val and Sasha will be shaking in their boots right along with me!

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Sunday, March 08, 2009


Yup, I've gone and opened up another etsy shop. Introducing The Small Joys on etsy! I'm still selling stationery...but with a twist: printable letterhead, notes, gift tags and envelopes. Purchase it, print it, cut it and use it! So far I've got one design, this Eames Chair Set. But there will be more designs coming soon.

It's funny because when I first was deciding to open up an etsy shop in 2005, Cornelius said that I should sell PDF stationery. I said no, who would buy pdfs? Uhhh, apparently lots of people! It's a big trend right now so I'm jumping on the bandwagon. I guess it pays to listen to the husband from time to time.

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Friday, March 06, 2009

new card in the shop

Yesterday I picked up a bunch of new cards from the local print shop. You look beautiful today is now available at my etsy shop and I have a bunch of new cards that will make their debut in the coming week or so. I also will have my very first giveaway! True. So stay tuned next week.

In other news, I've finally got into Twitter. I had an account but didn't really use it. Then I installed TwitterFox (for Firefox) and, oh boy, I'm tweeting! I also have a Tumbler account too. I have to say I love Tumbler. So much easier than blogging and who doesn't love looking at pretty pictures? Follow me on Twitter or Tumbler or both! If you guessed I spent way too much time online, you are correct.

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Thursday, March 05, 2009

front page news

Sometime this afternoon, one of my cards made it to the front page of etsy. I received a ton of hearts, a few sales and a crazy amount of views. Nice!

It's been a busy day, work-wise. A tiny bit of design, a lump of coding and so much freaking testing. I was a bit of a spaz by the time it was all done. But I also got to go out into the sunshine and pick up my new cards from the printers. And stop off at the newly designed & relocated Nuba for a lemon cauliflower sandwich. I took it home (plus a falafel for C) and it was a nice break to the day.

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Wednesday, March 04, 2009

office talk

I don't have a good photo of my office set-up, so I can't show you just how non-ergonomic my office really is. I spend way too much time working at my computer and I've decided that I've got to start setting things up properly. After reading this article, I'll need to place a shelf under my computer so the monitor is at eye-level and I really, really need a good office chair. Ideally, it wouldn't be too ugly or too expensive. Any good ideas where to get a great (ie. comfortable) office chair?


Tuesday, March 03, 2009

kung fu and the booty-ist

At our place, there's been a lot of kung-fu movie watching going on. Cornelius keeps bringing them back from the library. So far, we've watched King Boxer (aka 'Five Fingers Of Death')which is so beautifully shot and lit. Many of the scenes actually look like they were shot inside our courtyard (we live in a Chinatown co-op) at golden hour. It's a very cool film.

The other kung fu film was The 36th Chamber of Shaolin. It was much slower paced than King Boxer but it was still great cinema. We even watched the commentary for this movie, which was highly enjoyable as it was being commented by The RZA. He's definitely a fan of the movie and it shows. But the best part? Instead of saying "Buddhism", The RZA pronouced it "Booty-ism" which is now my most favorite word.

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etsy: black birds

Rainbowswirlz, Blackbird Field Bag :: $20

BROOKLYNrehab, Black Bird :: $20

The Beautiful Project, Howdy :: $3.50

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Monday, March 02, 2009

more jean talk

This morning I stumbled onto this blog post and found a link to MakeYourOwnJeans.com. For hard to fit bods, this might just be the jean solution. Cornelius immediately ordered a custom shirt since he's really tall, really skinny and has a hard time finding shirts with long-enough sleeves. He was pretty excited to be able to order a reasonably priced custom shirt. And I'm sure the jeans would be so worth it too.

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Sunday, March 01, 2009

i buy my jeans at a grocery store and i'm not ashamed to admit it.

I don't have a hot bod (hardly!), a great ass (nope!) or anything that would make me look fly in a pair of jeans. But I love my jeans. It's a rare thing, I know. Before I headed off to visit my parents a few weeks ago, I bought a new pair of jeans from the Gap. They were okay. They were on sale ($49) and they were pretty decent. But then when I was in Ontario, I stopped off at Joe and bought my dream jeans....the kind I always buy when I'm in town visiting my parents. Joe is located in a grocery store. Yes, I buy dream jeans ($19!!) at a friggin' grocery. While there, I also bought a pair of awesome pj pants ($4), a nice t-shirt ($3) and a bottle of olive oil. I'm sure this grocery store exists in Vancouver, but I don't live close to one and I have no reason to go (other than, making my once-a-year stop to buy another pair of jeans). That's me above in Europe wearing my nineteen dollar jeans.

Oh, and I updated my March hit list to the right!