I have some pretty exciting news to share! I closed down my Etsy shop earlier this year to refocus and redefine what I wanted to bring to the world of handmade bath & body products. I’m stoked to announce that I will be launching a whole new product line (with a few classic favorites) this Saturday at the Hartford HodgePodge. Here’s a sneak peek:
The Poor & Pretty Apothecary line is 100% natural. Not 95% or 98%, 100%. This means absolutely no synthetic fragrances, dyes, or chemicals. No parabens, sulfates, no chemical preservatives… nothing you wouldn’t find in nature. And where I can, I use only certified organic and fair-trade certified ingredients. And of course, nothing is tested on animals, nor do I use any animal fats or by-products, so my products are still vegan-friendly. Hooray!
I was in need of a little inspiration, so I thought I’d introduce you to designer and illustrator Jay Roeder. I met him at the SoNo Arts Fest this summer and brought home a few of his prints, including this one which I just hung in our living room. I love how it looks with my homemade pom-pom garland.
Jay is a Minnesota native, trained at Sacred Heart University, and now living in Fairfield. I’m so glad he is, too, because I really love his work! It doesn’t look like his online shop is fully set up yet, but you can buy a few of his things via Society6, and probably message him on Facebook if you see a design you want.
I love what this implies: you’re always learning, even if it’s from mistakes.
We have to remember that we’re never going to be perfect, and that’s okay.
Is it just me, or does anyone else think pizza looks way better when it’s cartoonized?
Now that I’m 27 and can no longer fit into the jeans I wore in high school (hello, hips!), I’ve been on a mission to fill my wardrobe with American-made jeans. I absolutely want my dollars to count toward ethically-sourced cotton and fair-wage practices, but I’m not going to pay couture pricing. Some companies really jack up their prices unnecessarily. After a little bit of hunting, I found 10 pairs of jeans made in the USA priced under $100.
I’m not really a pie person, but when my Dad asked me to make dessert for Thanksgiving three years ago, I knew it had to be pie. What’s Thanksgiving without pie?! So after binge watching Pushing Daisies for the millionth time, I decided on Chuck-inspired apple cup-pies with Gruyere cheese baked into the crust. My issue with pies has always been the crust-filling ratio. There needs to be more crust! Cup pies — mini pies baked in cupcake tins — totally solve that for me. And with apple season in full swing, I finally got around to making them again so that I can share them with you (and my grateful co-workers ;)!
Apple Cup Pies — Makes about 12 mini pies. Recipe adapted from Cave Cibum.
5 cups flour
1 tbs sugar
½ tsp salt
3 ½ sticks (28 tbs) salted butter, frozen
5 oz Gruyere cheese, grated
1 cup cold water
1 tsp vanilla (optional, but it’s what Chuck would have done!)
4 apples — peeled, cored, and chopped into cubes. I recommend Granny Smith, Gala, or Honeycrisp.
1 ½ tbs sugar
1 ½ tsp cinnamon
1/8 tsp nutmeg
1 ½ tsp flour
1 ½ tsp vanilla
1 egg, beaten
sugar, for dusting
1. Let’s cut up all of that butta before it melts! Chop it up into nice, little cubes.
2. Combine your flower, sugar, salt, and butter in a large bowl. Because the butter is frozen, you’re going to need to push it into the dry ingredients with your fingertips until clumps begin to form. Then, mix in the grated Gruyere cheese.
3. Add vanilla and water and knead until you’ve got a nice soft dough. If it’s too dry, add more water. Divide the dough in half and pat each half into flattened disks. Wrap these discs in plastic wrap and store them in the fridge for at least an hour, or up to 2 days.
4. While waiting for the dough to chill, chop up your apples…
5. Add in your sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, flour, and vanilla and mix them into the apples until they’re fairly evenly coated.
6. Once your dough is chilled, remove one disk from the refrigerator and roll it out onto a floured surface until it’s about ¼ inch thick.
7. Use a large cup, biscuit cutter, or old Wonton Soup container (yes, that’s what that is) and cut out 12 circles.
8. Grease alternating cups in two cupcake pans, and place your 12 circles into each greased cup. Push them in with your fingertips so they fit into the bottom and sides of the cups. If you don’t have two pans, you can take turns with the one you have, but when you bake the second batch, grease and use the unused cups.
9. Generously fill each pie with apple mixture. It’s okay — preferable! — if it’s overflowing.
10. Roll out your second dough disk and use a smaller cup or biscuit cutter (about 3 1/2 inch) to cut 12 circles. Top each pie with these smaller circles and press the edges together to seal. Brush the top of each pie with beaten egg and dust with sugar, then cut some small steam holes in the tops. Get creative with your steam holes! I gave this heart one to Stan ♥
11. Bake for 15 minutes at 425°, then reduce the heat to 350° and bake an another 15 minutes, until the dough is golden and the filling begins to bubble up.
11. Eat ‘em up! I like them best paired with vanilla ice cream.
I have long been a fan of polka dots, but I think this outfit really captures my polka fever. We’ve also been a little bit polka dot crazy at work, but I can’t tell you why just yet; it’s a secret! ;)
Speaking of work, I think my multicolored Timex Weekender SLip-Thru with a white strap goes pretty well with this outfit, yeah? Especially when I throw on my Yellow-So-Cute Coat from ModCloth. They don’t have it for sale anymore, but here’s a similar peacoat that’s a bit more suited to the season.
How perfect is this yellow bow belt? Hand’s down my favorite belt.
Oh and here’s me walking away from the super nice yellow car in our parking lot (no idea what kind), Dave chasing me with his iPhone and pretending to be the paparazzi. (We have fun!)