Remember this little guy?

August 13, 2014 § Leave a comment



He’s 4 years old and all growed up. :)



March 28, 2011 § Leave a comment

Four Favorite Fragrances

January 27, 2011 § 2 Comments

Victoria's Secret Amber Romance

Lush Karma

Lush Vanillary

La Vanila Laboratories Vanilla Grapefruit



5 second shots

January 5, 2011 § 2 Comments

Is each shot given five seconds of consideration? Or only a second each and there are five? Regardless, here are five low-quality photos of rather spectacular subjects: delicious salad for two last night and two kitties.

monterey jack added to romaine, spinach, avocado, tomato, carrot, celery, cucumber, red pepper, dried cranberries, dried apple, pumpkin seeds, almonds, and balsamic vinaigrette


side of pita with spinach & artichoke cream cheese and rosemary and basil


little cat



little cat




little cat bugging big cat


Vanilla Update

December 23, 2010 § 1 Comment

The vanilla extract has turned a beautiful deep amber color.

I purchased amber-colored Boston Round bottles from Specialty Bottle. The bottles are very reasonably priced and high quality. Shipping is a bit steep unless you’re ordering a few, but they arrived in a small box protected in a larger box full of packing peanuts, and each bottle was separated with corrugated cardboard. I can’t imagine them breaking during shipping based on the quality of the bottles and care taken during packaging. I also purchased two tea storage tins with hinged latches which run just under $2 (it seems most specialty tea tins I see in stores run closer to $10!). I’m also impressed with their quality.







I poured vanilla extract in three 2-oz bottles and two 4-oz bottles and added a few vanilla beans to each. I might add a ribbon, but otherwise they’re ready to go to their new homes!

How to make vanilla extract

December 6, 2010 § 6 Comments

My fingertips smell delightfully like vanilla.

Step 1: Obtain vodka

Easy – I bought Sobieski, which I was told was decent-tasting for its $11.95 pricetag.

Step 2: Obtain vanilla beans

I conducted a thorough search of local specialty grocery stores and found, at best, 3 Madagascar vanilla beans for $9.99. I needed 25 beans so I purchased Madagascar Bourbon beans from Vanilla Products USA via eBay. I received 55 Madagascar Bourbons and 10 Tahitian for $17.05 including shipping.

Step 3: Slice vanilla beans lengthwise to expose caviar

Step 4: Place into bottle

Step 5: Repeat

Step 6: Remove excess vodka displaced by vanilla

Step 7: Cap, shake, and photograph before storing in cool dark place. Wait 6 months, shaking occasionally.


PS – This is a tattoo placed on beans to identify its plantation.

Vanilla Bean (too many links, not enough pictures)

December 3, 2010 § 4 Comments

scary vanilla from Mexico

I love vanilla.. actual vanilla, not default plain ice cream.

Breyers Vanilla Bean ice cream

I also love hazelnuts, macadamias, almond-infused scents, and nearly anything nutty. Trader Joe’s Dark Chocolate with 30% hazelnuts is one of my favorite bars.

I add vanilla extract to pancakes, jams, and nearly anything I bake.

I’ve breezed past a few posts about making vanilla extract, but it wasn’t until this one a few days ago that I realized how easy it is!

I bought my bottle of vodka last night (I was recommended Sobieski by the friendly folks over at Friar Tuck: cleaner tasting AND $11.95), and I have 35 Madagascar Bourbon beans and 10 Tahitian beans on their way to my house.

How perfect are these labels?

And these little bottles? Perfectly giftable.

I’ll also love to make the Vanilla Syrup recipe I linked to nearly a year ago!

Finally, once the vanilla pods have left their last bits of flavor behind, I’ll recycle the little nibs into Vanilla Sugar. :)

I’ll be sure take pictures.