30 August 2010

Suzie Butters gardens and cans

A little glimpse into my current kitchen - it's small and it's a rental, but it's been pretty sufficient for the last 2.5 years. This photo is in the middle of making Dilly Beans - dill pickled green and wax beans. Sooooo tasty. Don says he likes them better than pickles.

Maybe you can see my shorthand recipe on the chalkboard - vinegar, pickling salt, dill seed and weed, mustard seeds, snipped beans, and spicy peppers in a couple of jars. Cook down the salt in the vinegar on the stove, group beans and seasonings into sterilzed jars, pour in the brine, then process. Couldn't be easier!

And this is the first major harvest from our garden - was a while ago but I just think our eggplants and peppers are so fantastic.


We're growing several varieties of peppers, eggplant, tomatilloes, kohlrabi, basil, mint and sage this year. What's happening in your garden?

13 August 2010

pure michigan


I'll be on the duney, sandy shores of Lake Michigan this weekend. Send me a message in a bottle, should you need me.

12 August 2010

dreaming about_a pop art kitchen

All I can think about right now (and it's all Don's fault) is a glossy white or grey kitchen, with a bright yellow commercial stove, and awesome red accessories....

(courtesy design*sponge)


we've already got the lovely Le Crueset pans in red!

now all we need is this fun red ceiling fan... (y Lighting)

lucky for me, IKEA makes glorious glossy white and grey cabinets!

now if I can just get someone to give me one of these to hang in there...


(i heart roy lichtenstein)

10 August 2010

New direction?

Recent events and the suggestions of a couple of friends have me thinking about a new brand/topic/direction for this blog (or a new one linked to this). As you may have noticed, I write about whatever strikes me - sustainability, clothing, baking, the city, grievances, poking fun at tourists, etc. But I feel like a specific direction would make my blogging better and more interesting. I've been considering it for a while, but haven't really had that catalyst to actually decide and then come up with a new blog design.

First, Don and I have been working for some time on launching our own brand, Semple Goods, to market and sell a few of his woodworking pieces (and maybe some of my fabric designs). I haven't shared them with the interwebs yet because we are actually working towards copywriting/patenting. Eventually we plan to have a whole website dedicated to this (http://www.semplegoods.com/) but we're just not quite ready to go live.

Second, we're buying a house! And we'll be doing most of the work ourselves over time and I've got all these ideas coming to me. I don't have many opportunities for design in my current job (ironic), so this house will be a really great outlet for reviving and utlizing my residential design talents.

Third, I'm also clearly obsessed with food and baking and eating and sustainable farming. When I'm not thinking about design, there are recipe ideas going through my head. Don and I are serious cooks and love great drink, so I think there would be plenty of material.

So, my dear, loyal, 12 readers, leave me a comment voting for one of the following:


  1. An all-things home design blog, centered around our new house, featuring lovely domestic things (and incorporating Semple Goods as it evolves).
  2. An all-things food blog, centered around my baking and eating and opinions of foods [maybe titled "The Real Life Adventures of Suzie Butters"].
  3. Keep the random mash-up but make it prettier and the postings a little more regular and concise.
[I suppose I could always have two blogs, like Joy - Oh Joy! and Oh Joy! Eats...]

M.I.A.

Yeah, I know. I've been pretty scarce around here. I've still been baking all the time. And working. And doing all the household chores because Don had a deadline that kept him at work 7 days a week for 3 weeks. Oh, and I put together 2 different bids for houses. So I've been a little busy. ARE studying has been postponed until Don's project is done in October. I'm hoping to get you some new fabulous posts to read soon. But August is shaping up to be even busier than July, but all for good reasons.