Fun Wednesday

My husband and I both work from home, and it's really easy for us to be home-bound through the week, except when we take walks in the late afternoon. It occurred to me I needed to make plans in the week to get us out of the house for some fun and to explore new places. Working our own hours we have the advantage of doing this any day of the week, which is great because weekends are often packed with people everywhere. I chose Wednesday as our fun day to explore a new place around the city. So here it begins. 

Last week we had to go to Pasadena for business so we made a day of it. Every time I visit Pasadena I am always impressed with the city. It's full of creative shops and restaurants, wide open roads, beautiful old trees surrounding impressive home etc.. We drove up to Arlington Garden and were greeted by the scent of orange flowers. I instantly felt calm and peaceful there. It's a mid-size public garden full of a great variety of rare and endangered California Natives and orange groves that are self sustaining. The garden is divided into sections, each section furnished with inviting chairs, benches, and tables surrounded by coordinated wild flowers, trees, and native plants. You can go through the garden in less than an hour but we ended exploring there for hours. It's such a magical place. If you ever need to get away in need for serenity, I highly recommend this garden. 

Wheeeeee! Woodland Creatures are Here!

They are finally here at Hello Maupoo after much trial and error. I hand molded and painted these cute woodland creatures using paper clay. I love this clay for several reasons - it's non-toxic, perfect surface for painting, and it's lightweight. You don't have to worry about it pulling down on lightweight fabrics like t-shirts. They are playful and mischievous at times but always sweet. Take them along with you on your shirt, dress, bag, hat, or scarf. Of course they make a delightful gift! 

Woodland Creature - Playing in a Washi Jungle Gym

Woodland Creature - Say "Cheese"

Woodland Creature  - Wheeeeee

Woodland Creature  - Peekaboo

Polenta, My New Favorite Food

It's been awhile since I posted a recipe and I think it's time I share one today, especially since I made a super delicious meal yesterday. My recent favorite food is polenta. Ever since I learned that I am allergic to gluten I have been experimenting with various substitutes. Polenta is great because it's easy to make and can be layered with any toppings or sauces of your choice. Luckily I had many vegetables stocked in the fridge to work from. I chose asparagus, shiitake mushrooms, yellow bell pepper, and onion for toppings. I like my polenta to be the consistency of porridge so I made it last to keep it from setting. Try it out for your next meal. I promise you will fall in love with it. Enjoy!

Serves 4 people

1 3/4 cups cormeal - I used Bob's Red Mill Organic Corn Grits
6 cups of water
1 1/2 teaspoon salt
1-3 tablespoon unsalted butter
1/2 cup of Parmesan cheese

In a medium sauce pan add 6 cups of water and salt and bring to a boil. Gradually whisk in the cornmeal. Reduce the heat to low and add butter and Parmesan cheese and whisk the mixture until it thickens to the consistency of porridge about 15 minutes.

{Caramelized Onions and Vegetable Toppings}

1 1/2 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon olive oil
4 large shiitake mushrooms
1 yellow bell pepper
1 yellow onion
15 thin stalks of asparagus
1 garlic
salt and pepper to taste
Parmesan cheese

  • Place the skillet over medium heat and add butter and olive oil. Add sliced onions and garlic stir them to coat them with butter and oil. Close the lid for 10-15 minutes. Check occasionally to stir the onions. Once onions are caramelized add rest of the vegetables.  
  • Stir the shiitake mushrooms, yellow bell pepper, and asparagus in the skillet and cook for 5 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste
  • Add the vegetables on top of polenta and sprinkle Parmesan cheese. 

Pattern Land - Colorful Place Full of Patterns

I am excited to share my new Pattern Land series. Pattern Land is a colorful happy place full of Pattern Creatures living in a land made of patterns. This series captures the simple moments of the family of four who live there. They are available at Hello Maupoo. Enjoy!

Pattern Land - Set of Three Prints

Little Pattern Creatures Print

Pattern Creatures Family Portrait
Peek a Boo Print

Rainbow Print

Thread Earrings are here!

Do you love thread earrings much as I do? Here are my latest designs of thread earrings. I wanted to maintained the delicate and light nature of the thread by incorporating simple geometric shapes. They are super light and easy to wear, and goes well with any outfits. They are available at Hy Jewelry. Enjoy!

January Blues...Moving Forward

It seemed like yesterday we celebrated the New Year, yet we are already midway through January. People say time flies when you are having fun. Not for me. I've been struggling this month to be productive. I am not sure if it's the pressure of starting the new year right or just a symptom of post holiday blues. Well here I am. I have a project that I started last year which I have been struggling to get back to. Good news is I got back to it the last the few days and am finally happy with the direction it's taking. Below are makings of where I am going.

Hy Jewelry Fall Collection is Here!

I have been busy designing jewelry for the fall collection. I have a lot of pieces to share with you, and here is the first set of necklaces. I am enjoying the colorful beads in combination with gold metal. I think it adds elegance. The tinniest circle necklace is my go to necklace for everyday wear. It's so simple and basic that it goes with every outfit. They are available at HyJewelry at Etsy. Stay tuned for more jewelry coming soon!

Black and Gold Beaded Necklace

Color Beaded Necklace

Tiniest Circle Necklace

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