Comfort Food: Toast and Eggs.

Comfort food most often is something simple, easy, and has all the elements of a belly-filling meal.  It's warm and inviting and satisfies like no other.  One of my favorite comfort foods is eggs.  Eggs have always been an "alone" food for me, as in, they are my go-to food if I am eating alone- something that doesn't happen often anymore.  I love that they can be made in minutes in a variety of ways, and I always feel content when I'm finished.

Yesterday I had a rare moment of alone eating: Greta seems to have picked up a cold and was set up with a long Sesame Street video so she could chill out and relax.  This was right around lunch time, so I decided to make myself a treat- a dish my dad always made for my mom when I was little, simply known around our house as toast and eggs.  In full disclosure, I hated this when I was little.  I tried it a few times, but at that time I was a big food separatist- no two foods shall touch!  To have the eggs mixed in with the toast, with pepper of all things, was just too much for my taste buds.

Fast forward 20 or 30 years and this is my new favorite dish lately, and because my dad always made it when I was little, it's now a total comfort food that is suitable for any meal.  Simply made, it is two poached eggs broken over two slices of cubed, buttered toast with salt and pepper for flavor.  It sounds so simple, but there is something about the runny yolk mixing with the dry toast that makes for an amazing taste.  (Also, I'm having a moment over these daylight food photos- another rarity for me.)

To make this, poach two fresh eggs.  Start by boiling water in a shallow frying pan with a sprinkle of salt and a teaspoon or two of white vinegar.  When the water is up to temperature, slowly slide the eggs into the water.  Turn the heat off, cover and let them sit undisturbed for about 3 minutes.  Remove them with a slotted spoon and place them on top of two slices of buttered toast that has been cubed.  Sprinkle lightly with salt and pepper and mix, breaking the yolk to incorporate it with the bread.  Sit quietly and enjoy.

It also helped my mood that I had farm-fresh blue eggs from the next town over, and the bread was homemade rosemary bread out of my favorite bread maker.  Just writing this is making me hungry, so I'm sure I'll be making this one again soon.

What are some of your comfort foods?  Do they come from your childhood?  Anyone have anything like this dish before?

Good Reads: #GIRLBOSS.

Despite seeing some negative reviews, when #GIRLBOSS by Sophia Amoruso, CEO of Nasty Gal popped up in the new books rack at the library, I grabbed it.  Some people loved it, some hated it, so I had to see what it was all about.  I had never heard of Amoruso or Nasty Gal prior to reading this, so I felt like I'd have a pretty objective read.

I ended up enjoying the book.  It's a pretty quick read, and for those of us who are running a small business, there are some really great snippets of advice throughout the narrative: work hard, be professional, and most importantly, use good grammar.  While there's not a ton of insider industry advice, the book is full of common sense business tips from someone without a degree in business, someone who started her business on eBay and built it up from nothing.  I can relate to that and her work ethic.  Some reviewers were turned off by the fact that she really pushed her hard work ethic, citing that this attacks those lazy Milennials, but I think it's a great, realistic message.

If you're building a business from the group up and want some kick-butt reminders that you can do it, I'd recommend giving this a read.

Have you read #GIRLBOSS?  Do you have any small business advice?  What's everyone got going on for the weekend?

The Underground.

I have become part of what I believe to be an underground network: moms like me who have loads of unnecessary, unwanted stuff and are willing to buy, sell, and trade it with other moms looking to take in such stuff.  Think Goodwill/tag sale for the digital age.  I joined a local group on Facebook.  You post a photo of what you have and the price and what town you're in, and wait to see if anyone comments back.  We message each other and make a deal and set up meeting spots and exchange cash for goods in public.  Scandalous.

This has helped me weed out a ton of stuff we've stopped using- our baby carseats, toys, coats, toys, books, toys, and in turn, I can use that money to pick up some things I might not otherwise want to buy new, like the two LeapFrog tablets I picked up- one for Gus, one for Greta- that they will use for a few years before they are onto bigger and better things, or the vintage German sled that I picked up the other day that will make a great porch decoration in the winter.  It's a faster, hyper-local version of eBay or even Craigslist.  Because it's a Facebook group, it happens in real time, and you could have your item in a matter of hours if you can plan to meet.

While this is a fabulous and handy tool for someone like me, I've had to set some ground rules for purchasing:

1. Only use the money I've gotten from selling off goods in the tag sale group to buy new things from the group.  I keep the cash separate from other money and use that to keep myself in check.

2. Decide if it's really something I need or need to get rid of.  I spent one week criss-crossing town to various meetups and was wondering if the time and gas was worth it, but it felt so good to get rid of things we don't use, and felt so good to pick up a few things the kids will love.  I try and keep this in mind.  If I would sell something for just a couple of dollars, it's almost more worth it to me to just bring it to the dump exchange and let someone have it for free.

3. Try to practice "one thing in, one thing out".  I picked up two amazing winter wool coats at the Goodwill a few weeks ago- one J.Crew and one Zara- for $30 each.  I already have two wool coats that I rarely wear anymore, so I listed them on the tag sale site.  I don't feel so bad taking in new things if I'm getting rid of others that are similar in nature.

4. Don't sell anything the kids are still using, no matter how much I want to get rid of it.  It's tempting to put all the things on the site, but if the kids are still actively interested in something, it stays.

Are you part of the underground?  What are your best trifting/tag sale-ing rules?  Is there anything on your current must-find list, or are you in clean-out mode?

Favorite Finds: Neutrals.

When I set off on this version of Finds, I noticed a theme to my most recent Etsy favorites: everything I've picked lately is in soft, neutral tones, which really shouldn't be a surprise to me- most of our house is done is tans, browns, and whites, and my wardrobe would probably never be called "colorful" (helloooooo, gray!).  Whether it be the palette of the season, or I just really love my neutrals, these all jump out to me as things I need.

Every time I put a pre-printed address label on my envelope, I've wished I had a fancy stamp to use instead.  I love so many of the ones in this shop:
Angelique Ink

Tea for two!  Such pretty and simple cups for your morning or afternoon tea:
Crow White Pottery

I love this long feather necklace.  Love.  It would look amazing on its own or layered with shorter necklaces.

Yes, why the hell not?  This should be my business motto, for sure.  I love the script and bold design.
Rowens Co.

 If ever there was a sucker for a little jar, it would be me.  What would you put in this?

This clock would make for an amazing showpiece over a mantle.  I love the wood piecing and its mid-century feel.
Ola Di Clock

I'm thinking that at some major anniversary I'd like to get an anniversary band, but I don't really want one of those standard ones.  This vintage setting could definitely fill the bill:
 Blue Ridge Notions

Which one is your favorite?  Do you gravitate toward neutrals, too, or are you drawn to color?  And really, why the hell not?


I'm going into this holiday season with a lot of fabric and color choices in the shop.  My theory has always been the more choice the better because something may catch someone's eye in one print that might not in another.  Or someone may be a pink person and all I have is green.  I don't want to narrow myself down to just one thing. 

On the other hand, this can be exhausting and time-consuming work.  Matching prints and colors for new items takes probably more time than anything because it has to look just right.  Part of the problem is that I love fabric, and when I see something, I have to have it.  This leaves me with a lot of choices, so I've been debating picking a handful of prints and buying yardage and offering those prints for a season.  Then switching it up with new fabrics, like an actual business with an actual collection.

The huge problem with this is I don't know if what I decide to pick is what the customer is going to like.  I'm also afraid that it would make my shop look too boring.  One of my in-person craft show shoppers told me I had happy fabric choices.  I like that.  So, the debate is whether making it easier on myself is better, or whether it's best to just keep on the way I am.

As a customer, do you like more choice, or does that make it more confusing?