Daisy Days

comments: 78


























The weather here has been very cold and very rainy and very gray and very dim this past week. Every night I've been piling several quilts on top of me and my sofa-seat and knitting, knitting, knitting, or taking warm baths by candlelight in the afternoon with my girl, who lounges in my lap and lets me pour warm water over her for an hour; we turn the hot tap a few times because we sit for so long it gets too cold. The swimming pool is supposed to open next week and I simply can't imagine this. A lonely, empty pool, and us Portlanders at home in the steamy bathtub.

So the midsummer festival felt more like late spring, with daisies and dancing girls and our college friends (and how lucky we are to have them here, thousands of miles away from where we all went to college!). Last year I made Amelia a baby bunad (a traditional Norwegian folk dress; hers was inspired by the beautiful dresses of the Dovre region of Norway, where her birthfather's family is from). This year I just happened to find this little red calico dress at the resale shop and it fit her perfectly. It is a handmade dress, too, so I couldn't resist. I planned to make her a new Norwegian dress every year so I'll just have to start planning for Christmas because I think little red will be too small by then. Super cute princess-seamed pattern, though. I love princess-seamed dresses. You don't see them too much lately (early '80s — I'm just sayin'!).

We had such a nice Father's Day, home all day alone together, cooking and playing. It was just a perfect day with my loves. I made a Dutch baby pancake and scrambled eggs with onions and mushrooms for Andy for breakfast. He made an awesome — possibly his best one ever — stuffed pizza last night. His recipe is the Edwardo's Famous Stuffed Spinach Pizza from the book Pizza: More than 60 Recipes for Delicious Homemade Pizza. If you aren't sure what Chicago stuffed pizza is, I will tell you: Think of an actual double-crust pie. There's a crust on the bottom, and then inside is all of the mozzarella cheese and a ton of fresh spinach. You pack it in. Then there's another crust on the top, and you crimp up the edges, just like with a pie. And on top of this top crust you add a light layer of a lovely, chunky, light tomato-and-garlic sauce, and then just a bit of sprinkled parmesan cheese. The whole thing is a massive concoction. You bake it in a cheesecake pan (I waitressed at Geppetto's in Oak Park after college, and we had special springform pans for our pizzas there, larger and shallower than a typical cheesecake pan; I need to look for one because I think it would help our crust thin out a bit). It weighs — actually, I have no idea how much it weighs, but a lot! The recipe in this book really does taste so much like Edwardo's pizza (which I liked better than Geppetto's, or even Gino's [Chicagoans, you know all these, right?]). Andy makes this about once a year and it is one of my favorite things. I love it, and it tastes like home.

I also made the Bangkok peanut ice cream from my sister's recipe and that was very delicious. Someone asked if this was a Jeni's recipe and I didn't know what that meant, so I looked it up and discovered that yes, it is! (And I am so getting her book.) I found a recipe online for the Bangkok peanut here. I thought it was really lovely — very subtle but with some texture and a bit of a kick from the cayenne pepper. Making ice cream has given me a whole new appreciation for buying ice cream. I have no idea where this ice cream thing I'm going through came from, really. I have really been enjoying it — and by the time it's time to eat it, you really only need to have the smallest of scoops to be happy. I have a lot of ice cream in my freezer. Which makes one feels rather secure. So that's nice.

Today Amelia and I are going to go to the fabric store. I need some skirts. I have a lot of fabric in my stash but it's all small amounts. I think we'll go to Knittin' Kitten tomorrow and look for '80s calicoes, too.

***My Ravelry page for the Fimma sweater is here :)


Kristy l. says: June 16, 2014 at 06:31 PM

I am dying to go to the Knittin Kitten! I so wish I lived even remotely close. What an awesome store. Vintage fabric, patterns AND yarn.......I'm in! My fav kind of store. We have one good thrift store in my town so I should be grateful, but that's about all we have. My yarn store is walmart.:(. So I usually order from a "local yarn store" online. Have fun shopping tomorrow and buy a vintage pattern for me!

Each time you post photos of you or Andy, I think to myself how much Amelia looks like the both of you. I am amazed by that fact, and think it is just a miracle how that little girl came into your lives, and it was meant to be. Oh, and Andy is just the sweetest, most wonderful man ever...and he cooks! Love to you all from Canada.

the 2nd last picture, with Mimi & bottle on bed :
the quilt with the huge triangles!

is this one of yours?
or do you know the pattern?

i love its boldness & the sashing!


Now I'm all hungry for a Gino's East spinach pizza!!

ooh, the pizza looks nummy. i am a born/raised chicagoan. darci mentioned 'chicago pizza and oven grinder'. sooo good. i think you can buy edwardo's in the grocery store, but i'm sure not the same flavor.

The color scheme for that sweater is to die for. Genius! And the pizza pictures - keep em' coming! Looks so tasty. I am almost finished entirely with Dandelion Doe - I couldn't put her down! My daughter and I spent the rainy weekend stuffing her limbs together. The kids are fascinated by her. It is such a rewarding family project:)

Sandy Rongish says: June 16, 2014 at 09:17 PM

Where is the cute little sweater pattern from? LOVE IT!!! :)

Deb Price says: June 16, 2014 at 10:20 PM

Alicia,I don't know if you have a pattern for Amelia's dress. I know that Burda patterns, at one time, had a Dirndl pattern. It looks similar to a Bunad. The ice cream recipes sound yummy and that pizza...amazing! Hope you have a warmer week.

Such a soothing blog to visit :)

Love visiting your blog and your pictures are gorgeous. Oh, Chicago pizza.....being from the city when I go home I feel as if I eat myself around the world. Chicago pizza is always a stop when down in the loop and Michigan Ave { love to shop there also, if you know what I’m talking about}. Hope it warms up in Portland, kinda cool here too on the front range Colorado.

Here is Australia we have some cold weather at the moment so I can know what you mean. Cold and raining, but I love those days sometimes it's a nice reason to say in and not feel guilty for not doing much.
I'm going to try this ice cream thanks so much for the tip. Stunning photos as always :)

I love Jeni's - I've made about half the recipes in the first book and just got the second one. My recommendation is to start with the first book, even though the second one is the one out on bookshelves. I love the way the first one is divided into seasons.

The second book builds on that and adds other fun desserts - I read her books from cover to cover - I love her process, and once you get the hang of it, you'll never go back.

I know you said you love eggy ice creams (and I live in the home of Ted Drewes Frozen Custard, so I'm right there with you), but her recipes are egg free, and really stellar. The custards come into the second book though, so never fear!

I love ice cream, and summer and your sweet pictures. It's been cool here as well (and lovely) but it's back to the sweltering temps this week.

Oh no! looks like the font is back to being hard to read again! But I recognize Chicago stuffed pizza in the pics -- Did Andy make that?
So impressed!

Your food looks amazing - as usual. A load of home made ice-cream in the freezer sounds like a good idea.

It's hard to believe that it was a year ago that Amelia was in that outfit! Where does the time fly?! I have a bit of a vintage fabric thing going on. I love vintage textiles. They need a home! : O )

I had never heard of stuffed pizza before.
Thanks for sharing. I'll try it, for sure!

Love the photos - all of them! The dutch pancake, the pizza, the red dress and, most of all, your sweet girl. Hope things warm up there soon!

Beautiful sweater - I adore the colours you've chosen.

You've inspired me to make more ice cream! :) My bucket is in the freezer right now.... now to pick the flavour.


Stephanie says: June 17, 2014 at 10:37 AM

Just came across this about Jeni. She's about to be on a book tour!


Stephanie says: June 17, 2014 at 10:41 AM

And Jeni's book tour is in Portland on June 29th!!


Oh how I love your color scheme. Of your craftwork, your gorgeous daughter’s dresses, even all you pictures have this beautiful warm tone. I wish I could achieve something like that in my life. Love your blog, so inspiring.

This has to be the most delicious stuffed pizza ever! Oh, it looks absolutely scrumptious. And so does the dutch pancake!

What a lovely post - really nice to find a dress that you can re-cycle too! - I think that the fact that you know the birth father and mother is so cool and that you're following through with her heritage is awesome!!

I like the sound of the filled pizza - my 16 year old son would love it!!! and me - but my waistline maybe not!!!

Have you heard of Rachel Khoo - I'm a French resident of 20 something years and yet I've cooked things from her Little Paris Kitchen book and it has been a revelation!!! - Alicia, buy this book and, if you don't use at least half a dozen recipies out of it - I myself will give you your money back!! believe me - I've been following your blog long enough to know that this book will enriche your life!!!

Danielle G says: June 17, 2014 at 09:25 PM

we saw your family at the festival. i was there with my two girls. amelia gave my daughter, ada, a lovely piece of moss. my mom was the one who realized why she looked familiar. we decided not to be weird stalkers, so we did not say hello, and instead let you all enjoy your day. it was a great festival, even if it took 90 minutes to erect the cross (still hoping it wasn't my kid that moved the bolt!)

That stride she has!!!! I love how purposeful she walks, with boots too!

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About Alicia Paulson


My name is Alicia Paulson
and I love to make things. I live with my husband and daughter in Portland, Oregon, and design sewing, embroidery, knitting, and crochet patterns. See more about me at aliciapaulson.com