Craft & Consumption

Monday, July 29, 2013

June & July Blooming Summer flowers (zone 6)

Tiger lilies from my mom's house that I scooped up for an indoor bouquet.

Cleome that re-seeded itself in my raised beds. I planted this last year and had no intention of planting it again. I was pleasantly surprised by these fuchsia blooms.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Rabbits in my Garden {Fences and Gates Ed.}

I've been a little upset lately about my garden. I planted lots of cold weather vegetables back in March, including lettuce, spinach, kale, and beets. Unfortunately rabbits have invaded and found my bounty! They have eaten most of the veggies that I planted so far this summer.

We just purchased a garden gate and are working on a fence to keep the varmints out. It's not complete, but we're about 60% there! Here's the gate/arbor that we found. More info/photos to come. I am truly hoping this helps the rabbit infestation problem. Fingers crossed!!

Garden Arbor with Gate

Monday, July 22, 2013

Best (Cheapest, Cutest) Underwear

Ok, I had to share this. This summer I embarked on an underwear overhaul. It was time to grab some fresh new pairs, in bulk. I hate paying $5 or $8 or (gasp!) $12 for a pair of undies. I want to spend $3 or $4 - max. Right? Ok, I'm a cheap-o when it comes to undies. But why pay more when you can find a great pair for $3.50?

In looking for some new, affordable skivvies - my friend recommended I check out Aerie, the intimates division of American Eagle. Turns out my friend was right on the money (she is a shopping goddess after all). Aerie has a "7 pairs for $25" deal, in which each pair is only $3.57. You can mix and match any/all of their styles, including all of the ones you see below. 

I got beautiful lace and cotton pairs for $3.57 each. So worth it! My favorite styles from the overhaul are below. If you're in need (like I was!) for an underwear refresh, definitely go check out

Aerie Vintage Lace Tanga

Aerie Cotton & Lace Boyfriend Brief

Aerie "Vintage Lace" Boyfriend Brief

Thursday, July 18, 2013

April & May Blooming Spring Flowers (zone 6)

Purple Salvia

Lately I've been having some issues with my vegetable garden (read: rabbits). So I've focused my energies even more than usual on my flowers. Here's what happened this spring at our place that got me excited and happy. 

The salvia I planted a few years ago is strong and did well this year. I even had some seeds carry over into a second flower bed. We had little salvia transplants coming up and blooming! 

Creeping flox and Pink Rhododendron
The creeping flox was beautiful in April/May. It was super thick and healthy. I love the rhododendron we planted behind it because it works well with the flox, and it blooms early before the other rhododendron varieties bloom. This is one of my favorite parts of the art of gardening, timing all of the varieties so you have constant beauty throughout the spring-fall seasons. It's like a jigsaw puzzle of location, species, and climate that you have to figure out, constantly modifying as you go.

Monday, July 15, 2013

GiGi: The Greater Reading Gala

A few months ago one of my favorite local non-profit organizations, the Greater Reading Young Professionals, hosted their annual GiGi gala. The gala is a fundraiser to benefit GRYP and provide financial support for their year-round objectives. The main goals of the organization are to improve the Greater Reading area and provide career support for local young professionals. 

Each year the event is hosted in an unoccupied space. This year it was in a vacant section in an industrial building. The building houses a bar, club, and go-cart racing on the first floor, but the second floor remains unoccupied.

me, Robyn Jones of Berks County Living Magazine, and Elaine Fioravanti of Sorrelli Jewelry

Friday, July 12, 2013

Wildflower Garden {year 2}

Last year I planted a wildflower garden with the help of my boyfriend's mom (details here). We started it with a wildflower seed pack. Below is what it looked like last year. There were a mix of bachelor buttons, coreposis, scarlet flax, and catchfly flowers. Everything was a little bit delicate, a little bit timid. The flowers were weak and just getting their footing in the soil last year.

This year the wildflowers are looking super strong, and entirely yellow! The varieties that survived this year and "won" the evolutionary test were the black-eyed susans and the gallardia.

Monday, July 8, 2013

Summer Parties: Osapalooza

We throw a summer party every year. This year's fete included:

1. Drinks
  • Yucca (a tequila + lemon + sugar + ice concoction that is magical)
    • YUCCA DRINK RECIPE: Ice, 6 lemons, 1 cup Sugar, 1 L Tequila, one gallon pickle jar. Add all ingredients into jar, wrap in towel and pass around to friends, shaking for one hour. This drink is potent! Add club soda for a less intense (but equally delicious) beverage. 
  • Red Sangria (with apples and oranges and lemons, oh my!)
  • Lemon Water (to stay hydrated)

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Glamping vs. Camping


Mark and I collaborated this year on an article for the local Berks County Living magazine. He took the photos, and I wrote the article. The theme was camping in all its forms, from glamorous and comfortable (i.e. driving to a camp site, on which you park your fancy AirStream) to serious back-woods camping (i.e. packing a tent in your backpack and hiking to a remote location). 

We ended up inspired to host our own camping event. More on that to come!

In the meantime, didn't Mark's photos turn out kind of amazing?