Book Club Notes

Finally done.

I'm sure I'm not alone in this - reading my assigned book for the upcoming meeting, highlighting points (in my head) to bring up in discussion about sections I loved, parts that dragged on (and I may have s k i m m e d  through), bits I just couldn't string together or was just curious to hear if others shared my thoughts on this or that.  But by the time, the meeting rolls around and I'm well into glass of wine #1, I can't recall a single point. 

Hence, the Book Club Note.

I've been mulling this idea around for months and I'm happy to announce, they are finally done.   Not only is there plenty of room to jot down points of discussion, impressions & opinions, etc.,  there is also space to make note of the next selection (author and title) as well as who is hosting the next meeting and what you're on the hook to bring!  Brilliant!

Book Club Notes 8 Double sided cards / pack $15

Here's to the ladies in my Book Club! 
Thanks for the inspiration!


A New Leaf & Loose Leaf

OK, so the "Friday Faves" was a great idea, in theory.  In practice,  I can't handle the pressure.  There are simply too many new finds, great recipes, ideas and directions of thought to weed through and whittle down to share every Friday.  So from now on, I will simply share what I want, when I want.  It's my blog and I'll share when I want to.

Having said that (and feeling so relieved that the pressure is off),  have a look at these little pouches,  notebooks and checkbook holder from Pilosale.  I'm a sucker for paper related items and these, I love.  But don't stop there.  Check out the shop.  Just admiring the palette of soft colors I can feel the tension easing from all this Friday pressure.  Aahhh . . . 

Zippered Pouches $20 each

Embroidered Notebooks $28

Lined Checkbook Holder $15

Feeling relaxed?  Good.  
Have a wonderful weekend.


Happy New Year!

No, I haven't lost all my marbles.  I know it's September and for as long as I can recall, September has always felt more like a "new year" than January 1st ever has.   Every September brings change; a change in season, a change in grade or school for the kids and, perhaps a change in  routine for some parents.  January, not so much.
This September is no different.  The kids trotted off this morning (after patiently indulging my need to take the annual back-to-school photo on the front steps), excited about seeing their friends and finding out who their teachers will be.  I find myself checking the clock more often than usual and am feeling reflective and excited all at once.  It was a wonderful summer but time stands still for no mom.  September reminds us that our kids keep growing up, needing us a little less with every passing year. 

So tonight, as you sit around the dinner table, sharing in the excitement of all of this change, raise a glass to what will hopefully be a healthy, happy and wonderful New Year.



Friday Faves

Despite this crazy hot weather, September always gets me thinking of comfort food.  I found this delicious recipe a couple of years ago on the Williams-Sonoma site as I was perusing the beautiful copper pots.  In my opinion, these Roquefort Popovers are the perfect pairing for any soup for the family or serve them as hors d'oeuvres when entertaining.  They are easy to make as long as you have a non-stick muffin pan.  This recipe yields 24 warm bites.

I try to tell myself that when something has a lot of flavour, I will eat less of it because I will savour instead of devour.  Not these.  I eat plenty, just   s   l  o    w    l     y   .    .    .

Ingredients :
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. freshly ground white pepper
1 Tbs. finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley (I used chives)
1 1/4 cups milk, at room temperature
1 Tbs. unsalted butter, melted
3 oz. Roquefort or other strong-flavoured, crumbly blue cheese, crumbled.
Directions :
Position a rack in the lower third of an oven and preheat to 450*F.  Generously brush one 24-cup or two 12 cup mini-muffin pans with vegetable oil.

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, salt, white pepper and parsley.  In a large measuring cup, whisk together the milk, eggs and butter.  Pour the wet ingredients over the dry ingredients and whisk together until just combined (don't worry if a few lumps remain).  Pour the batter into the prepared muffin cups to within about 1/4 inch of the rim (about 1 1/2 Tbs. each).  Place a scant 1 tsp. (scant? Please.) crumbled cheese in the center of each filled cup.

Bake for 10 minutes.  Do not open the oven door during this time.  Reduce the oven temperature to 350*F and continue to bake until the popovers are brown and crusty and fully puffed , 8-10 minutes more.
Remove from the oven and immediately transfer the popovers to a napkin-lined bowl or warmed platter.  Serve immediately.   Or, let cool on wire racks for up to 2 hours, then reheat in a 350*F oven for 10 minutes. (Trust me, once you smell them baking, you'll serve immediately - after taste testing, of course.)  Enjoy!


Now, check out these prints by Little Types.  The artist is also a teacher.  10% of each purchase goes to her high school art class where nearly half of the students live at or below the poverty level.  Check out her shop for similar prints available in 2 sizes and in vivid colours for cake lovers, coffee lovers, sailers, teachers and more. 


Handmade Corporate Thank-You Cards : Crazy Talk?

Here's a snap of what I've been working on over the last couple of days.  Am I crazy? 

Too many trees have gone into some incredibly tacky corporate cards and I'm just doing my small part to change that.   Yes, one has to pay a premium for handmade but for crying out loud, do we really need any more high gloss cards with rock climbers saying, "Be the best you can be"?

So, has it been a waste of time?  Will anyone buy them?  I don't know.  But I had a lot of fun making them so, what the hell.


Outstanding in the Field

This is amazing.  Imagine sitting at an incredibly long dining table, all decked out in white linen (the table, not you) and silverware, chatting away with new friends or old, and you're about to be served a gourmet meal made with the freshest ingredients harvested from the land (or sea) your very table is set upon.   Outstanding in the Field is all about honouring "the people whose hard work brings nourishment to the table."

A "roving culinary adventure", settings range from farmer's fields, beaches, coastal cliffs to just about any spectacular setting you can imagine.   Some events take place indoors, in greenhouses, barns or museums.

The cost you ask?  Depending on the remoteness of the location, dinners start at roughly $180 (USD) per person and include a tour of the site, producer discussion, a 5 course meal with wine pairings and all gratuities.  Hhhmmm . . .  So maybe it's more than you might spend on an evening at a restaurant in the city but once you include the parking and stress, wouldn't you pay $200 just once for the chance to sit at one of these long tables and savour the bounty under big sky anywhere?  Sign me up!

North Arm Farm, Pemberton, BC, Canada

Half Moon Bay, CA, USA

Whitty Farms, St-Catharines, ON,  Canada


Friday Faves

Welcome to the first of many "Friday Faves"!   This is where I will share some of my personal favorite discoveries.  They may be recipes, movies, books, new fashion bits & pieces or simply fun little items that might make great gifts for someone you know.  Feel free to let me know how much you like them too!

I'm a sucker for T-shirts and jeans.   Whenever I try on a top that's a little on the dressy side, I always ask myself, "Will this work with my favorite jeans?"  If it won't work, I won't buy it.  I love this ruffle collar top from Dyana's Designs.  It also comes in a long sleeve.  Decisions, decisions . . .

Black Ruffle Blouse from Dyana's Designs $45

Next is this elegant, simple bracelet by Beads Story.  I don't wear a lot of jewelry. (I think it goes back to when I was about 6 and my mom let me wear a pair of her mother's old, pretty earrings that I promptly lost while swinging on a tree swing.  Oh the guilt!)   I'd like to think I've become a smidge more responsible over the years but just in case, I prefer to wear simple, handmade bracelets.  This one caught my eye immediately.  Not only would it pair well with a little black dress, it would also look great with your favorite jeans!!  Don't you agree?

Branch Bracelet by Bead Story $19

Lastly, dedeetsyshop has some of the coziest looking pillows I've seen.  Accent pillows can bring some POP to a room but what's the point of a pillow if you can't cozy up with it? 

Pink & White Hydrangea Pillow $35


New Cards : Thanks for the Buzz (the P.R. kind)

I made up this card to thank a lovely lady for giving me a great tip which lead to some opened doors I wouldn't have otherwise come across.  Small businesses need all the help they can get and with online inboxes overflowing, it's especially nice to receive a hand written note of appreciation.

THANK-YOU for helping to generate some BUZZ  $3.50

Pack of 5  $14.00


Shop Around

Ooohhh . . .    I smell a Christmas wish list brewing . . .

These great tees and more are available from Dadadastudio's e-shop.


A Typography Lesson : Mixing It Up

You know what it's like when you have a bee in your bonnet and everywhere you look, you see the bee as you've never seen it before?  It had always been there but because you hadn't been obsessing about it, you simply never noticed it.  The buzz for me these days has been about successfully marrying fonts.

Several months ago, New York typographers Jonathan Hoefler & Tobias Frere-Jones of Hoefler & Frere-Jones, published this piece on mixing fonts.  In it, they outline four tips for "navigating the typographic ocean".  In short, they say your palette should be assembled with wit, energy, poise and dignity.   Each of these points is thoughtfully explained with images and insightful descriptors.
If you hadn't been pondering the challenges of mixing fonts effectively before, you will after reading this brilliant little lesson from the pros.  

Hoefler & Frere-Jones First Principle for Combining Fonts :
 "Keep one thing consistant and let one thing vary."


Type Play

I love this poster by Micotoledo.  It takes a keen sense of design & type to bring so many fonts together on the same page with confidence.  If you love music as much as you love design, you have to pay Mico a visit.  Yes, he does T-shirts too.  Brilliant.  

Music Philosophy


"From away"

Just back from another great summer week at "The Shore" in Nova Scotia.  We were once again transported to another place and time ; no television, no internet and spotty cell phone reception where the day's plans revolve around the tides.  Building sand castles, searching for sea glass, taking long walks, flying kites. . .   As my friend Jacquie says, "It's all in the doin'." 

We may be "from away" but have always felt welcome to this wonderfully long and peaceful stretch of red sand thanks to the warm maritime hospitality of good friends. 


Just surfin'

This morning, as I needed a break from blog assembly, I came across this lovely blog, which featured my absolute best selling card.  Thank-you Chelsey, The Paper Lady!

"Holy crap.  We had a great time."


Welcome and thank-you for stopping by.

I'm Kathy, owner of Navy Blue Notes, a cheeky little greeting card company.

On this lovely new blog, I look forward to sharing my ideas, works in progress, and thoughts on all manner of topics of interest to my fellow lighthearted lovers of ink and paper, or simply, perhaps, to antagonize the humourless. . . .