Category Archives: crafts

Blogging, What a Concept

Today as I was texting a friend about needing a new hobby (or obsession) I thought, what about blogging again? What kind of blog could I start? Then I was like, ‘duh! I have one.’ HA! Oh yeah…

So I had the same job (as a marketing coordinator for a mid size family run, yet nationwide company) for almost 10 years. I was basically miserable for most of that time. I didn’t agree with the personal values/politics of the owners for one thing. That made things challenging. I did enjoy some much of my work and the travel aspect was fantastic. But most of all I made some AMAZING, lifelong friendships there. That’s basically worth 10 years in purgatory. haha.

Well, eight months ago I started a new ‘dream’ job. I’m still in Marketing (I love it!). But now I work for a not-for-profit society dedicated to green alternatives to specific traditional construction methods. Its a bit technical so I won’t go into details… I work FROM HOME! That alone is amazing. I believe in what I’m marketing! I work with a great team! You know, all the dream job requirements.

So why do I need a hobby now? Well, because we all do, right? I’m still cooking all the time. That’s my main hobby. I still read every day – another main hobby of mine. But working from home lends itself to workaholism (well email checking-aholism if I’m being totally honest). It is much more difficult to unplug, to ‘go home’ at the end of the day. Part of that is great because there is maybe a bit more flexibility. I was able to throw a pan of brownies into the oven yesterday in the middle of the day for Valentine’s Day. But on the dark side, I don’t really have a good routine yet. And I’m a routine person. I was kind of being hard on myself because I’ve been at my new gig for 8 months- that seems like enough time to get a routine going. But then I realized that I had been at my old gig for A DECADE! That is a loooong time. Talk about routine! Dang. So now I understand that it is taking me time to adjust. That’s FINE! But I’m ready for my new routine and a new hobby will be something good to look forward to at the end of the work day. I think it will allow me to shut down and transition away from work until the next morning.

Some ideas: Get back into a regular yoga practice! Teach myself to sew. Learn a new language. Take a night class at the community college. Find some craft I can’t live without doing… I guess now is the time to start dabbling until I find something I love. I know I’d like to start doing pottery. I already looked into classes but apparently everyone else is into pottery too because the ONE class available in the evenings in this town is SOLD OUT! :)

Ok… maybe my new hobby will be blogging about finding a hobby…

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Do Stuff: Festive Christmas Mantel!

I love beautiful holiday decorations and for the first several years that David and I were married I decorated elaborately with a different theme each year. I had over 10 rubber totes full of Christmas décor. A few years ago I decided to go the minimalist route with my Christmas decorations. One reason I decided to cut back was because I was spending a lot of money every year on my ‘themes’. Secondly, my curious Cat Friends were destroying my trees! And finally, I decided that I wanted to focus most of my holiday energy on other things like baking and making gifts. So now I spend a few hours each season decorating my mantel (where kitties can’t reach) with some favorite things and usually something new and crafty each year. I have an adorable vintage aluminum Christmas tree that my BFF Joe found for me at a yard sale in New Jersey! I had always wanted a big aluminum tree but the vintage ones are hard to find and the vintage-inspired ones are not in my budget. One year I got a little package in the mail and when I opened it I couldn’t believe my eyes! There was a tiny vintage aluminum tree with its original packaging and instructions! Joe is the best!

Joey's tree!

My mom has a wonderful tradition of giving my sister and me a new special ornament each year. Several of these are hung throughout my house year around, but the others always make an appearance at Christmastime!

several of my special ornaments

And for my crafty fun thing this year I made these adorable (and easy) yarn wrapped trees! I discovered this beautiful gift guide from Ruche and got so inspired to do all kinds of fun holiday things, but the main idea that stuck with me was the wrapped trees. I found a rustic earth-toned yarn at Big Lots that was perfect for my Pumpkin Party banner and also for these trees. And I found the foam cones at the dollar store! I think I made all three trees (plus I have yarn leftover for gift wrapping) for about $4.00.

easy and fun crafty trees

I think little holiday vignettes are so cute and festive! Here’s an adorable one from Smile & Wave that I just fell in love with. What kind of holiday decorating do you like to do?

All my favorites!

funny little santa from before I was born!

I wish I had 1000 of these!

Chili Cheese Nachos! Vegan MoFo & 30 Days of Nachos Continue!

Tonight’s nachos were so basic but so yummy!

I used canned organic vegetarian (vegan) chili poured over baked blue corn tortilla chips.

The chips and chili were topped with some Daiya mozzarella (I would have preferred their pepperjack here, but I can’t find it locally – sad!)

I then heated it in the microwave for a couple minutes to heat the chili and melt the cheese.

A nice dollop of homemade guacamole finishes it off! (come back tomorrow for my ridiculously easy guacamole recipe)

Lightening fast, healthy, and tasty! Everything I want in a weeknight meal. I’ll have the leftovers for lunch tomorrow!

the guac really makes it!

And please click on over to Miss Kala’s blog- VeganCraftastic– and check out her Halloween Zine she’s selling in her etsy shop. So cute!!

Testing 1, 2, 3

Hello friends!I’ve had a few blogs in the past- one about vegan food (when I first became vegan), one about beauty products and such, and one that was going to be about yoga but I only wrote, like, one post. I lost interest in them partly because I’m what you might call a dilettante. I dabble. I jump from interest to interest. So I decided I needed a blog to: a) Keep my projects organized and in the front of my mind, and b) Write about whatever the heck I want without feeling confined to a specific topic.

So this is the first post on ‘jenonoon, the art of fun’. Please click on the ‘about’ page to read a little more about me.

Some of the topics I’m planning to cover in the coming posts are:

  • My quest to become a Certified Group Exercise Instructor. My exam is Sept. 11, 2011. I’ve been studying for a few months now. I’m excited and nervous. I don’t look like a typical ‘aerobics teacher’ so I’m wondering what the other people taking the exam with me will be like. The certification process consists of a full day workshop, written exam and then a practical exam in front of everyone! I eventually hope to teach crazy, sweaty, fun, NON-intimidating cardio classes to people of all shapes, sizes, and levels of coordination.
  • The week after my exam I’m entering my ‘famous’ (haha) coconut cake in the county fair. I finally made the registration deadline this year! This should be fun! (how rad would it be for a vegan cake to take first prize?!)
  • I’m setting up a sewing/crafting studio in my home office/hobby room. I’m going to take a sewing e-course and teach myself. My mom is going to help me (she’s really good at sewing).
  • David and I are planning to learn to speak Danish via Rosetta Stone. David’s family is from Denmark and he knows just a little bit. We think it would be really fun to be able to speak in a sort of ‘code’ to each other.
So those are some of the things I’m going to talk about in the future. I hope that if those things seem interesting to you that you’ll follow along and maybe leave a comment or two!Thank you for reading!

xoxo jenojoon

Mustache Rides