Postcrossing - Everyone likes snail mail!

A year or so ago, I came across this awesome website, Postcrossing. At the time, I didnt have the space, material, or funds to get involved, but about a month ago I decided to check it out again.

Basically, its a way to connect with people all over the world, through postcards! You get a random user's address, and send them a card. When they receive your card they register it on the website, and then its your turn! Some other random user will get YOUR address, and send YOU a card! When you receive it, you register it so that they can now receive theirs! Its a lot of fun.

To start out, you can request up to five addresses at a time. I decided to start small and only requested two. One wound up being in Germany, and the other one in Russia! Too cool!

I decided that instead of buying one-size-fits-all postcards to send, I would create my own, personalized for the recipient! (I've blocked out all personal information in the photos for privacy)

The first one was for Frank in Germany. This is what I made him:

I was super excited to get to use some of the German that I learned in school! I was actually considering minoring in German, but I just don't have the time. :(

You can see the postcard's page here.

The other postcard I got to send was for Eva in Russia. This is what I made for her:

This one I obviously had to write in English. You can see this one's page here, and even leave me (and Eva) comments!

I also recently received some postcards! Click the image to go to that postcard's page.

From China
From Winniey in China
From Washington state
From Susan in Washington state
From Australia
From Megan in Australia

So far, I LOVE Postcrossing! Who doesnt like getting snail mail? Something other than bills anyway!!

If you're interested in doing a direct-swap with me, contact me from my profile!

Today on Google..

So the other day I was bored and messing around on Google. I started coming across some .. interesting .. auto-completes. If you're unfamiliar with Google's auto-complete feature (because you've been living under a rock for the past 10 years..), basically it takes what you've typed in, and suggests some searches based on things people commonly search for.

Well, there are some strange things that people are searching for. So.. I decided to take my amazing art skillzzz and illustrate some of them. The results are below. Enjoy.

This one I had to delve into a bit, because the first autocorrect wasn't a full search. SO I went ahead and clicked the first one, and then looked to see what the rest of the phrase would be.

Craftaholics Anonymous Summer 2013 Gift Exchange - What I Got

As I mentioned in my previous post, I had the pleasure of being involved with the crafty gift exchange that Linda from Craftaholics Anonymous puts on twice a year.

I was paired with the lovely Linda from Creative Commotion, though she admittedly doesnt do much blogging lately. It is for this reason that I thought I should showcase the lovely gifts she made for me! This will follow.

If you'd like to see what I made for Linda, you can check out my blog post about it by clicking the photo below:

Now, back to what Linda made for me.

The first thing I pulled out was this bag. Now, it might look like a t-shirt... but thats because it is! Its a very cute bag "upcycled" from a t-shirt. Look how cool! (And its very soft, even better!)

I just love the added detail of the zig-zags around the edge. Very subtle, but appreciated.

Then I found this cute little box that seems to be made of scrapbooking paper, or something similar

Super cute!! I'm holding on to this for sure. And inside...

This awesome little necklace! The hanging bit can be flipped around to display either the flower or the butterfly. She said she picked the colors because of my love for orange. I dig it! I've already worn it a few times; I absolutely love the butterfly print. Mega cute for sure.

All in all, I've got to say I definitely enjoyed participating in this gift exchange. I'm looking forward to the next one!

Craftaholics Anonymous Summer 2013 Gift Exchange - What I made

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I had the pleasure of being involved in the gift exchange this summer that Linda from Craftaholics Anonymous puts on twice a year! I read about it a few months ago, but just missed the last one, so I was very excited when I got the notification about the one this summer! The button below links up to the linky-party for this particular exchange.

Linda uses an awesome website, Elfster, that works as a sort of virtual "Secret Santa". I got paired up with the lovely Linda from Creative Commotion (though she admittedly doesn't do much blogging these days). You can also read about what she made for me by clicking here.

Now this exchange was actually last month, and this post is a little later than I was hoping for it to be. BUT better late than never, right?!

Heres what I made for Linda:

I started out asking her about some of the things she likes to do. She mentioned that her home is somewhat nautically themed, and she loves visiting the beach every year. I remembered reading about an awesome beach bag/towel/pillow over at DIY Enthusiasts. I made a few modifications to her design based on the materials I picked out, and the size of my towels. Here is the finished product.

 And rolled out, Django seemed to get the idea right away!

I had a blast picking out the materials and making this one. In fact, I want to do another one for myself! It makes a great gift for anyone who likes the beach, or even just hanging out at the pool, for those that arent lucky enough to live near the ocean.

I also remembered something that I had been wanting to try out based on this product I saw on Pinterest a while back:

You can get this product fron Etsy by clicking on the image.

I wanted to make something similar, with a picture frame on a chalkboard so you could write your own personalized messages around it. So I decided to try and make my own.

These are the materials I had:

And this was the end product:

It can be stood up vertically, or lain horizontally like in the picture. I must say I'm pretty happy with how it turned out! It might be a little dificult to get the photos into the frame, since it is stuck onto the chalkboard, but I left a space at the top/side to allow the photo to slide in/out.

I was very happy with the gifts I made for Linda, and I got them mailed out to her on the very last day of the exchange!

What do you think? Have you ever participated in a gift exchange? Let me know your thoughts!

Django! (Unchained)

Please pardon the title of this post, I know it's completely bad. But it actually does fit.

About 2-3 weeks ago, a man came into the office with the cutest little 2-3 month old pitbull (mix?) puppy. He wasn't treating it great, the poor thing was so scared he peed there on the floor. Upon closer inspection, he had a partially embedded collar, and was pretty thin and malnourished. I wasn't there at the time, but long story short, animal control got involved and the man was investigated.

The puppy stayed at the clinic for a few days until I felt bad for him and brought him home one night so he wouldnt have to be cooped up in the kennel all the time. A coworker brought him home that weekend, and then I started bringing him home any night I was at the office. Naturally we grew attached. Doc gave him his first set of booster shots and some flea treatment.

Well things have finally been figured out regarding his owner, and guess what... we're keeping him! The last thing we needed was another critter, but sometimes you gotta do what you gotta do. And he's just the sweetest little thing.

His neck is almost completely healed up, just waiting on the fur to grow back now. He's gained some weight, and the issue with his "wrist" joint seems to be remedying itself with proper nutrition and exercise. He does snort a lot still though, but I think thats just him! He's starting to understand that he's supposed to go potty outside, he just hasn't realized he should TELL us to let him out yet.

He runs around like a crazy one minute, then flops down on your lap and falls asleep the next. He really is a big 'ol lap dog, just wants to be next to people all the time. We'll see how that goes when he weighs 70 pounds!

Anyway, this was pretty much just an excuse to show off this cutie we came into possession of. He's just the cutest, aint he?! Thats Django!

Honey Lime Tilapia

So its been a very long time since my last post. I chock that up to being very, very busy. 17 credit hours on top of my new job at the vet clinic on top of tutoring... barely enough time to sleep and bathe, let alone blog. But I had some time this weekend, so I wanted to share this one with you guys.

So this one was kind of me just throwing stuff together and hoping for the best, but it turned out pretty good so I'll share!

What You'll Need:

  • 3-4 Tilapia filets
  • 1/4 cup Honey
  • 2 tsp minced Garlic
  • 1 tsp minced Onion (I used dried)
  • 1 Lime
  • Pinch of Rosemary
  • Kosher Salt (or regular would work too, I just prefer using Kosher since its larger grain)
  • Pepper
  • Med-Large size Bowl

Add Honey, Garlic, Rosemary, and Onion to bowl. Mix well.

Take your Lime, cut it in half. Squeeze one half into the bowl and mix. Save the other half. Set aside.

Take your fish filets. I usually give them a rinse under the sink just to get any sliminess off. You can pat it dry if you want, I didnt because I'm lazy. Rub salt and pepper on to taste. Then put them in the bowl with the sauce stuff. Smoosh it around so they're all covered in it, then let marinate for at least an hour. Dont worry, I'll wait here. -whistles-

Ah, you're back! Nice to see you again. So now that your fish has marinated...

Take a baking dish. I prefer glass, but whatever works. Also you might notice in the photos, I used a pie pan. Because my baking dish was dirty. Eh, it is what it is!

Grease that baby up. I like to use coconut oil, but whatever works for you.

Put your fish in the dish (hey, that rhymed!)

And this is where the other half of your lime comes in. Cut thin slices of it and place a slice on each filet. Fancy!

And might as well dump the rest of the marinade on top. Hey, live a little! ;)

Toss the squeezed lime and whatevers left of what you cut slices off of into the compost. You can read all about my Vermiculture Bin pictured to the right.

Anyway, pop those fishies in the oven and let 'em bake at 350 for about 20 minutes or until flaky.

(See that pan on the bottom rack? Read all about my Adventures in Baking Dirt, coming soon.)

In the meantime, get some sides going. Rice is generally a must with fish like this (plus fills you up more), and I made some broccoli as well. Notice my super ghetto method of covering my pots. A stock pot lid, and a small frying pan act as covers. Because I'm classy as all get-out.

Your fish is done! Looks pretty tasty, huh? Stick those puppies on a plate and enjoy!

I'd love feedback! Have you ever made anything similar? Any alterations you'd make? Have you tried it and liked it? Hated it? Let me know!