DIY Día de los Muertos

Posted by on Oct 13, 2017 in Craft | 0 comments

DIY Día de los Muertos

Decorating sugar skulls at CraftHack this time last year prompted me to learn more about Día de los Muertos and the handmade elements of this tradition. “Day of the Dead, or Día de los muertos, is a time for commemorating the dead, celebrating with family— both living and dead—and appreciating the cycle of life and death.” – National Museum of the American Indian When you lose someone you love, they don’t stop being part of your life. They remain in your heart and your memories. There’s something beautiful...

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The Southwest’s Indigenous Food and Films

Posted by on Oct 9, 2017 in Craft, Travel | 2 comments

I don’t think I’ve shared this video of a cooking demonstration from Agave Heritage Festival in Tucson here yet. It seemed fitting to post this on Indigenous People’s Day (which I’m glad is gaining traction over Columbus Day!), since the recipe includes several local ingredients originally used by the Native American tribes in this area. Also, unrelated to the video, we went to an IPD screening of two documentaries by Diné (Navajo) filmmakers at the Heard Museum yesterday. Both films were really great! You may...

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Crafts You Carry

Posted by on Aug 21, 2017 in Craft | 6 comments

Crafts You Carry

Anytime you see me, there’s a good chance I have my watercolor kit with me. It’s also not unusual to have a roll or two of washi tape in my bag and/or a few ultra fine tip Sharpies. Maybe a partly finished scrapbook. You never know when you might need to craft on a moment’s notice! My friend Anne always has knitting with her. It has its own little bag. If she has to wait for someone or is in a conference session, she’s working on a scarf or a sweater or hat. Unlike my watercolors, she can knit without looking at her...

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Book Page Garland for a Graduation Party

Posted by on Jul 27, 2017 in Craft | 0 comments

Book Page Garland for a Graduation Party

Phillip finished grad school, after seven years of working full time and taking classes part-time. So we needed to have a party. We ended up reserving space in a restaurant near where the commencement ceremony was, so friends and family could just go there directly afterward. I wanted to add some festive touches but knew I’d have little to no time to decorate before people got there. (It turned out to be the latter.) I kept it super simple with a few school-themed items that I could set up in a flash – all using things I had on...

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Solstice Cookies and Solar Cooking

Posted by on Jun 27, 2017 in Craft | 2 comments

The forecast high in Phoenix for the longest day of the year was 120F (49C). So it seemed like a great day to try baking outside. On the way home from the summer solstice celebration at Burton Barr Library last Tuesday, we picked up chocolate chip cookie dough. I chose that for my solar cooking experiment, because there’s no raw egg in it, and if it doesn’t cook all the way, you end up with doughy cookies – not a bad thing, in my opinion! I scooped spoonfuls of cookie dough into a reflective aluminum roasting pan, covered...

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Chalk Robots

Posted by on Jun 5, 2017 in Craft, Travel | 9 comments

Chalk Robots

There was a chalk drawing of a robot on the ground. No explanation. Just an arrow. So, of course, we followed it – and the next one and the next one – down the steps behind Pike Place Market in Seattle. We tried to guess where they were leading. A street art project? A robot maker? Nowhere? The den of our new robot overlords? One lead us to turn the corner, and then, “Is that it? Is it a baby store?!!” Nope. A larger robot drawing pointed inside a store with a chalkboard sign that answered my question: “{Ugly Baby...

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Year Four in Nine Videos

Posted by on Jun 1, 2017 in Craft, Travel | 0 comments

Year Four in Nine Videos

Today marks the fourth anniversary of Travelcraft Journal! (And the 350th post!) I thought we could take a look back on the past year in 4 places, 4 projects, and 9 videos. 1. Southern California/Pasadena First, let’s road trip to Pasadena in one minute. Of course, we’ll stop for date shakes on the way. Once we get there, we can visit the Norton Simon Museum and the jungle garden at the Huntington. Video: Phoenix to Pasadena in one minute Project: In honor of sea breezes and Santa Ana winds, make a mobile or wind chime! 2. Las...

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Vacancy

Posted by on May 8, 2017 in Craft, Travel | 6 comments

Vacancy

Phillip read an article an old hotel that had been sitting abandoned for years with plans to tear it down when the city decided instead to preserve it. He wanted to go find the Edwards Hotel on his day off, so we drove to the Peoria address in the article. It wasn’t hard to find. Even from outside the chain link fence, it was interesting to guess what had been there originally and what had been added later. Then we took a stroll around Old Town Peoria, where there’s currently not much going on, but they have a revitalization...

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The Opening Of The Fire Pit

Posted by on May 5, 2017 in Craft, Travel | 0 comments

The Opening Of The Fire Pit

After our morning hike at Tumamoc Hill, we returned to the Mission Garden that evening for demonstrations on agave rope making and roasting, tequila tastings, a display of products made from agave fibers, plant sale, and The Opening of the Fire Pit. The day before, probably about the time Phillip and I were driving from Phoenix to Tucson, a group had gathered at the Mission Garden. Jesús García, an Education Specialist at the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum, was demonstrating how to build a fire in a traditional roasting pit and fill it...

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Agave Heritage Week

Posted by on May 1, 2017 in Craft, Travel | 3 comments

Agave Heritage Week

Can you name all the U.S. cities that have the UNESCO “City of Gastronomy” designation? There’s actually only one: Tucson, Arizona. It received the designation, in part, because of its agricultural tradition that goes back thousands of years. One of the early plants cultivated in the region for food, medicine, and fiber was agave, the spiked succulent best known today for tequila. The annual Agave Heritage Festival in Tucson celebrates both ancient and contemporary uses of the plant and its importance to the region. We got to...

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