Wednesday, October 28, 2009

New Plush Spa Robe Colors!

I'm very pleased to announce that my shop, The Lodge Spa, is now offering our Plush Spa Robes in 15 colors!

This robe is perfect for family movie nights, curling up with your favorite book, or snuggling by the fire with that special someone.

I will only be making a limited number during the holiday season. Order yours before November 15th to receive free worldwide shipping! Use the code RobeBlogShip in the message to seller section at checkout.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Weekly Featured Etsy Mini - TheNikiProject

There are a lot of jewelry artists on Etsy. So what does it take to get your work noticed? It has to be well made, well photographed, well priced, and simply stunning. Sound like a daunting task? I'm sure it is! Luckily for Niki from The Niki Project, she has mastered all four.

I love this beautiful necklace, it's feminine yet simple, and at $16.00 it's everyday affordable. That's my kind of Etsy shop!

Check out The Niki Project and receive free shipping if you mention my blog in the message to sellers section!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Some people just have a knack for graphic arts. I, unfortunately, am not one of those people. Every graphic I have made has taken hours of painstaking work just to turn out decent. Kendi of DizzyDaffodil is one of the graphically blessed.
Check out these darling recipe cards! Not like the boring versions from our grandmother's cookbook albums. Kendi also makes fabulous baby announcements, save the date cards, birthday invitations, and more.

Shop DizzyDaffodil this week and receive free shipping on her Printing Services (a $10 value!) when you mention my blog in the message to seller section at checkout.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Autumn Pork Roast with Apples and Sweet Potatoes

It's officially the time of year to bring out the roasts! Though just as delicious in summer, there is something wonderful about enjoying a hearty meal on a cold evening. This recipe is very easy, and quite tasty too!

Roast Ingredients:
1 pork loin roast (2.5 - 3 lbs)
1 packet dry onion soup
1 cup water
1 large oven safe cooking bag

Apples 'n Sweet Potato Bake
4 Granny Smith apples (peeled and sliced)
3 large sweet potatoes (peeled and sliced)
1/4 cranberry juice
2 tbsp butter or margarine
2 tbsp brown sugar
1 tsp cinnamon

Heat oven to 350 degrees

•Place roast in cooking bag. Add onion soup mix and water.
•Cook until thermometer reaches at least 160 degrees ( 1 - 2 hours).
•Before you carve your roast, let it sit for about 15 minutes after you remove if from the oven. This will allow the juices to redistribute and make the meat more moist.
*You can also cook your roast in your slow cooker if desired.

Apples 'n Sweet Potatoes:

•Arrange apples and sweet potatoes in a large baking dish.
•In a small microwavable bowl add cranberry juice, butter, brown sugar, and cinnamon. Heat in microwave until the butter is melted, mix well.
•Pour cranberry mixture over the apples and sweet potatoes, toss to coat.
•Cover baking dish with oven safe lid or aluminum foil. Cook alongside the pork roast until the sweet potatoes are tender. Stir often.


Sunday, October 11, 2009

Weekly Featured Etsy Mini - C.D. Childs

The art of stained glass has always fascinated me. It's one medium that I have never dabbled in - and am too intimidated to try. So naturally when I discovered the beautiful Etsy shop, CDChilds, I was in awe.

I came across quite the dilemma while browsing. Should I feature the coasters or the purse mirrors? Both make such beautiful gifts for the upcoming holidays that I decided to show you both.

Denise creates so many unique and lovely items that you are sure to find a gift for that hard-to-shop-for person on your Christmas list. Browse CDChilds for fun cheese trays, jewelry, sun catchers, and so much more.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Pumpkin Envy

Every fall hundreds of watermelons everywhere suffer from a little known condition known as 'pumpkin envy'. This rare condition actually causes genetic color mutation in affected fruits, turning their red flesh orange. So many questions have been asked in the botanical community. What caused the mutation? Can we prevent it? Can it be reversed? Sadly we still know very little. What does seem to be apparent, however, is the cause. When the weather turns cold and picnics and barbeques are forgotten, so too is vulnerable fruit.

So obviously this orange fleshed watermelon isn't actually an unloved fruit reaching out for attention. However, I still can't explain my shock when I sliced into it. An orange watermelon? I truly had no idea there was such a thing. After a little searching online I found it to be a fun novelty breed. And let me assure you, it was quite tasty. So if you have a chance to try one, don't hesitate. The watermelon community will thank you.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Though our fall colors may not be as spectacular as back east, our Western Colorado mountains can put on quite a show. We live just twenty minutes from some of the most spectacular scenery in Colorado, and though our family enjoys camping, hiking, and sight seeing year round, autumn is my favorite season in the mountains.

Welcome to the Grand Mesa, the largest flat top mountain in the world. The lake pictured is Jumbo Reservoir, which is actually quite small, and is just one of over three hundred lakes and reservoirs on the Mesa.

Our fall colors are primarily made up of golds from the Aspen trees and russet reds from the Oakbrush. Just down the road from the next picture is Powderhorn, our local ski resort.

The air is crisp this time of year, and the sunshine delightfully warm. Soon the first snow flurries of the year will be flying, and the mountains will be covered in thick blankets of snow, but for now the mountain is alive with colors and the only flurries are golden leaves dancing in the wind.

Thank you for letting me take you on a little tour of the beautiful mountain that is the inspiration for The Lodge Spa. Next time you browse my shop I hope you think of the Grand Mesa that I call home.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Weekly Featured Etsy Mini - Ljlhdesigns

Nothing says fall to me like a great sweater, an awesome pair of boots, and some really fantastic earrings - fantastic earrings just like these. Ljlhdesigns has a great selection of jewelry for the fall, and her prices are amazing. The earrings pictures are just $9.00, and the matching bracelet is just $18.00.

Need another reason to buy? This week only Libby is offering free shipping in both of her shops! Check out Ljlhdesigns for her great jewelry and Ljlhpaper for fun and unique handmade boxes.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Featured Artist Mini - SquidArt

I am very pleased to be featuring Katie of SquidArt as this weeks featured artist. One look at her shop and I was instantly engrossed in her fun and vibrant photography. After browsing for a good ten minutes I decided that it was going to be impossible to choose a favorite. I instead decided to list my top three - Moose Love, Chicken Love, and Penguin Love. These darling photographs are all in her Animal Love series.

Please go and check out her shop now; for an example of her work check out the 'Weekly Featured Etsy Mini' on the right hand side of my blog.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Featured Etsy Mini - VeryVerdant

A few years ago I was searching for luggage tags. I looked all over our town and ended up settling for something I was less than satisfied with. If only I had known about Etsy! I was delighted to discovered VeryVerdant and it's plethora of unique sewn items - especially the luggage tags. They are bright and unique; you buy a set and you will have no trouble spotting your bag again.

Now is the perfect time to head over the VeryVerdant. Sonja has offered 15% off the entire purchase price to my readers! Just type STORYBOOK in the comments box when you checkout. Offer good through September 30th, 2009.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Craft Therapy - Indoor Herb Garden

This weeks Craft Therapy project is one that I have wanted to tackle myself. Putting together an indoor herb garden takes very little time or supplies, and is a very relaxing way to spend part of an afternoon.

What you will need:

4 Small Garden Pots with Saucers
Herb Seeds (parsley, sage, thyme, and chives all grow well indoors)
Small Pebbles
Indoor Potting Soil
12 Toothpicks
Plastic Wrap
4 Rubber Bands or Twine

•To ensure good drainage, fill the bottom quarter of your pots with pebbles.
•Add the Indoor Potting Soil to your planters. Plant 3 seeds in each pot at the recommended depth on the packet.
• Using luke warm water, water the soil well.
• Poke three toothpicks into the soil around the rim. Drape the plastic wrap over the toothpicks and secure around the bottom of the pot with rubberbands, or tie with twine.

Check your soil everyday, adding water if needed. The soil should feel moist, not soggy. Remove the plastic wrap when your seedlings sprout and move to a sunny location. A room with a south facing window is ideal. Thin your herbs down to one plant when the seedlings have two true leaves. When the humidity is very low in winter, you may want to lightly mist your plants daily.

Enjoy your new indoor herb garden!

*Be careful not to place your plants too close to a very sunny window. Even in winter the sunlight can be intense enough to burn your herbs. I lost a thriving mini rose this way last year!

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Featured Mini Monday - MamaBethBling

Every so often something will catch your eye while you're browsing Etsy. You know the item, the one that makes you stop and truly study it's beauty and complexity. You browse all the photos, read the entire listing, and then browse the photos again. This isn't just a piece of inventory; it's art. That describes my first experience with MamaBethBling's shop.

I stumbled on this lovely necklace while doing a little early Christmas planning. This is hand stamped jewelry at its best. Her pieces are beautifully classic, yet unique in design. She has an amazing selection of quality jewelry that can be customized to suit your recipient or occasion. This particular necklace is priced at 30.00 dollars. I have seen generic mass produced jewelry that is made of cheap metal for double that in a department store. With beautiful, reasonably priced items like this, why buy anything but handcrafted?

MamaBethBling has generously offered free shipping to the readers of my blog! Just mention Storybook Stitches when you checkout.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Our Giveaway Winner

The Winner of the Moist Heat Therapy Set is: Mattscraftywife!

Congratulations! I hope you enjoy your new neck wrap and slipper inserts.

To thank everyone who entered, I am offering 20% off any item in my shop if you mention my blog. (Credited on your PayPal account).

Thank you!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Blog Carnival - Brag on Yourself

As a new member of the EtsyBloggers Team, I feel that I jumped in just in time for a difficult Blog Carnival topic. Brag on Yourself. What are You Most Proud of in Your Life? Brag on myself? Yikes.

I found myself staring at the ceiling the other night, trying to fall asleep, pondering this question. There are countless things I'm proud of.

•My children play nicely together more than they fight.
•I make seriously awesome dark chocolate cookies with white chocolate chips (I am willing to share the recipe).
•I actually harvested radishes this year before I got bored of my garden and found better things to occupy my time.

So what am I most proud of? Everything. There is no momentous achievement that overshadows the rest. My world is a collage of seemingly tiny moments. Little insignificant details, that when spun together, make the beautiful tapestry that is what I am proud to call my life.

Monday, September 7, 2009

People Eat Flax Seed?

Flax seeds are wonderful; I use them in all my heat therapy packs. They are composed of 30 -40% oil, and this gives them the ability to stay toasty warm for long periods of time. Grains like rice or wheat will dry out after just a few uses and lose their ability to hold heat, but flax seed will stay moist after repeated heatings. As you can see, flax seeds are perfect for heat therapy. But for breakfast?

Recently flax seeds have been getting a lot attention in the health community. So I took an afternoon and did a little research. Apparently the oil that is great from a therapy standpoint is even more amazing if ingested internally.

Ever heard of Omega-3's. Who hasn't, right? The all important fat that feeds your brain and heart is found in high quantities in each little flax seed. That's great news if you aren't a huge fan of fish! Flax seeds also contain more antioxidants and plant estrogen rich lignans than any other plant foods. About 75 - 800 times more. Need more fiber? Try 4 grams of fiber per two ground tablespoons. Pretty good stuff!

So how do you incorporate them into your everyday diet? The first step is grinding them, or buying them preground. Your body will absorb more of the nutritional benefits this way. Then you can start adding them to all sorts of dishes. Oatmeal, sauces, smoothies, and yogurt are all a popular choices.

What's my family's favorite way to flax seeds? Tucked into the foods they eat every day! I like to replace some of the flour in a traditional quick bread recipe. You will have a delectable flax rich treat...that tastes nothing like flax seeds. Here's my favorite recipe. Give it a try and let me know what you think!

Oatmeal Raisin Muffins

1 1/4 cups all purpose flour
1 cup quick cooking oatmeal
1/4 cup flax seeds
3 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
1 cup milk
1/3 cup applesauce
1 egg
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 vegetable oil
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup raisins

Blend the oatmeal and flax seeds in a food processor until coarsely ground. Blend in baking powder, salt, pumpkin pie spice, and flour.

In a separate bowl blend milk, applesauce, egg, vanilla extract, oil, and brown sugar. Mix with dry ingredients until just blended. Add in raisins.

Pour batter into muffin tins. Bake at 375 degrees for 23 - 27 minutes, or until toothpick comes out clean. Makes approx. 12 muffins.

The Results Are In!!!

The winners in my Autumn Scents Poll are:

Vanilla Pumpkin and September Woods!

Be sure to check by my shop and browse the new selection. The new scents will make their debut towards the end of September. Thank you for voting!

Want to be informed when I add the new scent line? Go to Storybook Stitches and contact me with your e-mail address.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Apples and Pumpkins and Spice...Oh My!

Fall is in the air. Mornings are crisp and evenings are cool. Soon pumpkins will be showing up on doorsteps and trees will be sporting the first yellow leaves of the season. I am thrilled. This is by far my favorite time of the year, and to celebrate I intend on flooding my shop with yummy autumn aromas. But how do I choose? Pumpkin, Cinnamon, Apple, Chrysanthemum, Autumn Woods…There are so many tantalizing aromas to pick from!
You, trusted followers, must choose for me!

Vanilla Pumpkin - Who doesn't love pumpkin? This traditional fall scent is accompanied by cinnamon, clove, and nutmeg. Subtle vanilla accents the blend, giving it a lovely sweet note.

Apples and Oak - Apple and spice with rich woody undertones. Warm, inviting, and earthy.

Autumn Meadow - A celebration of the flowers that make their debut in early fall. Chrysanthemum and chamomile play stars in this blend that is clean, earthy, and slightly floral.

Apple Jack Spice - Tart apple mingles with orange, cinnamon, clove, and nutmeg. Like strolling through an orchard on a cool autumn day.
September Woods - Pine, oak, and just a faint hint of spice. A rich blend that will transport you to a warm fall day in the forest.
So which one's your favorite? I will be choosing two scents for this autumn season, give me a hand and vote now!
Poll located on the right of this page.

Monday, August 31, 2009

Storybook Stitches Giveaway

To celebrate my new line of relaxation products I am giving away a Moist Heat Therapy Neck Wrap and Slipper Insert Set to one lucky follower!

Open to US and Canada residents only

To enter my giveaway: Become a follower of my blog (If you aren't already). Then go to my Etsy Shop and tell me what your favorite item is.

Additional entries:

* Add my Etsy button to your blog/website (Leave comment with url)

* Tweet about this giveaway (Leave comment with username)

*Put a link to this giveaway on Facebook (Leave comment)

* Blog about this giveaway (leave comment with url)

Make sure you leave a comment each time you fill the requirement for an additional entry.

The winner will be chosen at random Friday, September 11.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Cuddly, Cozy, and Cute

My custom plush robes are finally available for sale! After years of making these cuddly robes for family and friends, I have decided to add them to my Etsy Shop. Made from the softest spa minky fabric, they are sure to delight the loved one's in your life. Available in children's and adult sizes.

Save 15% on all Robes with this Coupon Code ROBEBLOG
Good now through October 31st, 2009

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Storybook Stitches Giveaway!

I am so excited to announce that Leigh at Organic Mamas is hosting a giveaway for one of my sun hats! She also has a bunch of other great giveaways going on right now. Check it out!

Monday, July 27, 2009

Back to Business

It seems like July has been a whirlwind of exciting weekends, vacations, and family visits. We've hiked ghosttowns at an astounding 11,000 feet, hosted a great birthday BBQ, and relaxed in the worlds largest hotspring pool. Now it's time to get back to work.
During my month long break from Etsy I asked myself what I truly enjoyed creating, what really makes me happy. I realized during that time that I have always loved creating costumes. It's what brought me to sewing, and what honed my skills. I am thinking of taking Storybook Stitches in a new direction. I have been sketching several different ideas and I hope to have a few available on my Etsy shop in time for Halloween.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Refreshing Fruit Dip

This quick tasty recipe was shared with me by a generous co-worker. My summery favorite is so easy to make, you can whip up a batch in no time!


1 jar marshmallow fluff
1 8 oz package regular cream cheese (not reduced fat!)
1 TBSP Lemon Extract

Assorted Fruits such as:


Just whip the marshmallow fluff, cream cheese, and lemon extract and you're done! Serve in a pretty bowl with the fruit on the side, and you have a pretty edible centerpiece for any occasion.

Friday, June 5, 2009

Every year when the forsythia blooms I march myself out to my front yard to prune my eleven rose bushes. It's not very fun, and it's usually a little painful. The scratches and cuts are forgotten the morning I walk out my front door and I am greeted by dozens of sunny blooms.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

I'm now offering hair bows at my Etsy shop!

When I was little I loved all things pretty, and hair bows were high on that list. What little girl doesn't like a pretty bow in her pony tail? My favorite way to wear my hair was half up, pulled back by a French Clip. Even when I was very young I could snap these barrettes into my hair.

My handmade hair bows are backed with an easy to snap French clip, just like the ones I used to love. The barrettes I currently have listed on Etsy are made of securely tied colorful ribbons looped into fun bows. At four inches they are the perfect size for your little girl!

Come check out my latest creation!

Monday, May 18, 2009

4th of July Inspired Favorites

Summer is well on its way in my little Colorado town. Sunny days and hot temperatures remind me that 4th of July festivities are just around the corner. Here I've picked a few of my favorite Etsy shop items inspired by Independence Day.

Ingrid's Creations
Bouquet of Flowers Choker Necklace

New Hope Beads
USA Flag Stamp Pendant

American Grape 5X7 Fine Art Photograph

Saturday, May 16, 2009

May Blanket Sale

In the month of May I'm offering my soft knit swaddling blankets for just five dollars. Choose one of my colors, or request your own!

My stretchy knit blankets are lightweight for spring and summer babies, perfect for warding off the chill in air conditioned rooms. The large size works well for covering a car seat while in public, or to shield your little one from the sun while in the stroller.