Meet Kristin DeNeeve of Semi Sweet Press!

I took my first Journalism class in College and at the time, I had no clue what it do for me. I was good in English in High School, and for me, Journalism was a natural (and I’ll admit it…easy) progression. Since that class, I have written for a few local publications and my most favorite part about it is the people I’ve met.

Kristin in her home workspace / Photo Credit: Raymond Kim / The Seen

Kristin in her home workspace / Photo Credit: Raymond Kim / The Seen

When I interviewed Kristin of Semi Sweet Press for The Seen mag, I knew of her business, and loved it. But I knew nothing about her. Nowadays, you can conduct a full interview without meeting the person, but it can be hard to have that personal connection through e-mail, and it can be hard to get real, genuine answers from someone when they have the time to edit what they’re saying.

After I received her answers, I instantly knew we would be friends. She made me laugh out loud (again, hard to do through e-mail) and she was authentic. That is why I’m so grateful and happy to have her as one of my first blog partners!

Kristin, 34, runs her Semi Sweet Press stationary business from her home that she shares with her husband in Sacramento. She got her degree in Illustration in college and worked as a designer for eight years before trying her hand at freelance illustration and design.

One of her Holiday card designs / Photo Credit: Kristin DeNeeve

Holiday card set / Photo Credit: Kristin DeNeeve

holiday cards

Photo Credit: Kristin DeNeeve

Her card business started with a card that she made as a promotional piece for her freelance illustration business. She loved that she was able to show her quirky side, and that it wasn’t directed by anybody else. It was all her.

After receiving a positive response from the people who saw it, she started creating more cards for fun. It wasn’t until this past summer that she decided to take her business more seriously and gave it a name, designed a logo and started working on more designs.

She hosted her first workshop a couple weeks ago, and at this time, she will be vending at the GOOD Design Market on 11/2, at a pop-up shop at Lululemon on 11/22, she will be at the DIY Craft + Food Swap that I’m hosting with Shine on 11/23 and there is a possibility that she will be at a craft fair in the Bay Area on 11/29 and 11/30.

Get it girl!

Booth Set-Up / Photo Credit: Kristin DeNeeve

Booth Set-Up / Photo Credit: Kristin DeNeeve

I’m so grateful that writing gave me the opportunity to meet her and convince her to be on my blog. And I’m excited for our DIY Holiday Workshop that we are hosting in December! If you are local, check out her booth a the GOOD Market. If not, you can find all of her current cards on her website and follow her on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Find out more about partnering up with me here and connect with me on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest!

Posted in Business time, Howdy Partner, Local Love, Meet the Maker | Leave a comment

Homemade Holidays: Craft and Food Swap

Swap FlyerLast year, I bought Kate Payne’s Hip Girls Guide to Homemaking and learned about food swapping. Through her site, I found the Food Swap Network and researched how to hold my own food swap.

But here’s the thing. There are so many creative people I know who make so much amazing stuff that isn’t food-related. And some do both! So, I decided on hosting Homemade Holidays: Craft and Food Swap. It will be held at Shine Cafe in Sacramento on Nov 23rd from 4-7 pm.

So, how does one of these things works?

It’s $5 to participate, to help cover the cost of the space and supplies. Swappers will bring homemade food or handmade items to trade (valued around $20), will fill out one swap sheet per item and will put their items and swap sheets on the bidding table.

Everyone will then go around and bid on the items they love. If you’re swapping food, it’s good to bring samples for people to taste. Bidders will write down what they would like to trade, and then everyone will return to their items to look at the possible trades.

Then, it’s swapping time! Everyone will go around and find people who want to trade with them, or vice-verse. There is no push to purchase here, so if there is something you would like to purchase, feel free to get that person’s business card for later.

I hope this event will gather all the wonderful creative people there are in Sacramento, and get them to meet and network, without the pressure of purchasing anything from each other. I’m really excited to see how it will all work out!

Tickets are available through Eventbrite, you can pay via PayPal (use and if there are spaces available, you can pay at the door. You can also connect with other makers by visiting the Event page on Facebook and using #diyswapsac in your social media feeds!

Want to find out more? Have you done a food swap before and want to share some advice? Please drop me a line here and connect with me on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest!

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Hometown Tourist

Nowadays, it’s very rare that I get out and explore. Even in my own town. Our days already feel so packed as it is, and with a toddler, it can take a few hours to prepare for just one hour out. And that one hour can feel like eternity when you are chasing around your little one who has decided against strollers.

However, last week, we were feeling stir-crazy. It was time to get out. We visited downtown Roseville on Friday and then on Saturday, we headed to the place where it all began for us, Midtown.

On our way to downtown Roseville, we stopped by Shady Coffee & Tea. I heard about it through Specialty Coffee Week and wanted to check it out. I don’t normally go to coffee shops with Cecilia because she is, well, she’s almost two.

Shady Coffee & Tea

Shady Coffee & Tea

But Shady Coffee has a really cool outside area with big tables. And I was smart enough to bring her coloring books this time. She colored while I enjoyed my latte and pumpkin scone. You know I had to get that pumpkin scone.

From there, we made it downtown. The first block was a little sketchy the majority of the shops were closed, but we still got to walk by Tower Theater and Blue Line Arts, a nonprofit art gallery.

Tower Theater

Tower Theater

Blue Line Arts

Blue Line Arts

Next, we landed at Sparrow 5. And this is where I realized that there is some good shopping to be done in Roseville. The place is full of funky, repurposed and unique home decor. Just the kind of stuff I like. There was also a studio in the back where they hold art classes for adults and children, and they support local artists by hanging their artwork and buying specialty items from them outright, or putting them on consignment.

Sparrow 5

Sparrow 5

Finally, we stopped by Bloom Vintage, which carries antique and vintage decor for both your home and garden. I found some really neat items in there. Unfortunately, their building has been sold and they have to vacate in 60 days so they are holding a 20-50% off sale right now. If you live close, now is the time to visit!

Bloom Vintage

Bloom Vintage

After that, Cecilia went to play in the water feature in “the square” and got completely soaked. Needless to say, it was time to go.

On Saturday, there was supposed to be a Halloween Fest in Midtown, but it was cancelled because the weather was fickle. Which is a bummer because it was in the 70s by the time the event was supposed to happen. Since she was all dressed up in the costume my mom made for her, we decided to take her around Midtown anyway and just walk around.

IMG_3598As it turns out, some of the shops were trick or treating, so there were a lot of kids in costumes, roaming the streets. It was the cutest thing ever. There were also partygoers getting an early start and walking around with beer in their hands. Ah, Midtown.

But before I could partake in the adventure of walking my daughter in and out of several stores, I had to fuel up. We happened to be right by Luigi’s, a pizza by the slice place on 20th St, between J and K Streets.

Pizzeria Urbano

Pizzeria Urbano

Except that it’s no longer Luigi’s, now it’s Pizzeria Urbano. The concept was the same. But now the decor is more sophisticated and there are not flyers for their shows taking up all the empty space and windows. Luigi’s used to host local shows there – I went to a couple good ones. The employees were super nice, and the mushroom pizza I got hit the spot. It was all I could ask for, really.

We made a couple more stops, including a tattoo shop that was passing out candy (again…Midtown), but I was most impressed by My Studio. I have heard about it before but finally had the chance to stop and talk to the owner. It houses studio space, a retail store and classes. It was such a cool find! There is room for more studio spaces, so it’s definitely worth checking out.

Rick's Dessert Diner

Rick’s Dessert Diner

Before heading back home, we stopped by Ricks Dessert Diner and I got a pumpkin treat. Because, it’s Rick’s, and…pumpkin.

When I lived in Midtown, I felt like I knew everything that was going on. I knew when businesses closed, and when new ones opened. I knew where all the events were, and what to do on any given night. After leaving there in 2012, there is always something that has changed when I go back, and it’s actually kind of nice to still be surprised.

Have you rediscovered where you live? Found any new spots that you love? Share with me in the comments and connect with me on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest!

Posted in Life, Local Love | 2 Comments

Where we do our Living

Untitled-8Right now, our living is in a transitional state. There’s Cecilia’s little cabinet that we got her at the antique fair, waiting to return to her room when space permits. We have an old bookcase that we’re not in love with, but Cecilia is, as she can easily pull down every movie and book we own and string them across the house.


Cecilia’s cabinet. Before it was covered in all of her artwork

Our art is all in the garage, some of it needs to be framed and some just needs to be hung.

I’ve been looking around for living spaces that I can pull some inspiration from, and I have a pretty good idea of what I want. It’s not about finding one living room that will work perfectly for us. Our living style is our own.

I think we’re going for “eclectic farmhouse” aka “a bunch of random shit all thrown together.”

Image found on The Cottage Market

Image found on The Cottage Market

We’re going to remove the old bookcase and replace it with a bunch of crates. We don’t want them on the ground since they will be easily annihilated by babies, so we’re going to hang them. This photo I found on The Cottage Market is the best at showing what we want.

I have found some crates already, and they have slits in them, which makes it perfect for hanging! So I don’t think we’ll need the brackets on the bottom but this pretty much sums it up.

I also found a tutorial for DIY Crate Coffee Table on DIY Vintage Chic, which would be perfect for holding/hiding all of Cecilia’s toys that always find their way into the living room.

Gallery Wall / Photo Credit: Paula Mills / Design*Sponge

Gallery Wall / Photo Credit: Paula Mills / Design*Sponge

We know where we want our big artwork to go, and I already had the idea of creating a gallery wall by our dining table. There are some prints we have that would work perfectly here, and some more that I want to get. I love this photo of Paula Mills‘ dining area on Design*Sponge, and I love the entire sneak peek, definitely worth checking out!

Image from Ikea

Image from Ikea

Ah, yes. The bar cart. Or as Ikea would call this, the Utility Cart. I’ve been searching for a vintage one for a while and have found some good ones, but here is why I love this one. It can hold our computers, the printer and…our cords! Cecilia loves sucking on them, so I would like to minimize cord sucking as much as possible.

I had prided myself on refusing to jump on the wagon to Ikea-town, but here I go.

Ok, I think that should be good for now. I’ll be updating this blog with tips, tools and tutorials as we continue making this house a home. But for now, I will keep hunting for more inspiration and supplies.

Love home decor and design? Connect with me on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest!

Posted in The Living Situation | Leave a comment

Family of four

10735313_923689027660671_1891779487_nThings are happening around here. We’re working on slowly painting each room in the house as we can, moving stuff around and making lists for things we need in Freddy’s room. We’re getting the house ready for the holidays and for our little man, who will be here in less than three months. (THREE MONTHS!)

But are we ready? Is Cecilia going to be ready?

My biggest fear about having a new baby in our family and in our lives isn’t about how we will handle the changes, we’ve done that before. And under much crazier circumstances. I worry about how she will. She’s used to having her mama all to herself, so how will she feel about sharing me?  When she needs a cuddle and I’m busy with little Freddy?

I know it’s something that we will have to work through, and we will, but I wonder what will be going through her head. She loves little babies, but she’s never had one that stuck around.

For now, I’m just focusing on making all the time for her that I can. To allow for all the little interruptions that come with working and going to school from home, and really embracing them rather than get frustrated. We’re going to the pumpkin patch in our free time, and spending a lot of time with family. She’s learning so many new things, and I just love watching her bloom.

I’m getting my business life where I want it to be at the moment, so that it will become more of a routine by the time he gets here, but most of all, I’m just trying to get a grasp on life while I can, before it all changes again.

For those of you who have welcomed a second baby into your family, how did you handle the transition? Please feel free to share any advice! Leave me a comment here and connect with me on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest!

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Friday Finds

I would like to dedicate this post to my sweet tooth. It’s insane. Growing up, my mom always baked homemade chocolate chip cookies and other wonderful desserts and by my early twenties, I thought I had enough desserts and switched to all the salty food instead. Because a girl has got to have her vices. When I got pregnant with Cecilia, my sweet tooth was back in full force. And it hasn’t left.

Make this:

Apple Cider Donuts / Photo Credit: Yossy Arefi from Apt 2B Baking Co for Food 52

Apple Cider Donuts / Photo Credit: Yossy Arefi from Apt 2B Baking Co for Food 52

One of my favorite things about going to Apple Hill is getting apple doughnuts. They are always the perfect ending (or beginning, however you prefer) to an insane day of crowd weaving, a lot of walking and taking in all that is Apple Hill.

But when those aren’t available, these apple cider donuts from Yossy Arefi from Apt 2B Baking Co on Food 52 look delightful. Which reminds me, I need a doughnut hole pan.

And this:

Pumpkin Whoopie Pie Cupcakes / Photo Credit: Dana / 3 Boys Unprocessed

Pumpkin Whoopie Pie Cupcakes / Photo Credit: Dana / 3 Boys Unprocessed

I’m sorry, what? You can put a whoopie pie on top of a cupcake? And you can make it with pumpkin? I’m in! This Pumpkin Whoopie Pie Cupcake recipe from 3 Boys Unprocessed looks extreme. Like, extremely delightful. And the cherry on top? She uses the least amount of unprocessed ingredients (hence the blog name) that she can.

Read this:

Baked Occasions Cookbook by Matt Lewis and Renato Poliafito

Baked Occasions Cookbook by Matt Lewis and Renato Poliafito

The gentlemen bakers over at Baked NYC, who are responsible for cookbooks like Baked Explorations, Baked Elements and Baked: The New Frontiers in Baking have treated the world to a new cookbook, Baked Occasions, that came out on Oct 7th.

And this:

Sugar RUSH Cookbook by Johnny Iuzzini

Sugar RUSH Cookbook by Johnny Iuzzini

This book was featured on one of my favorite websites, The Kitchn, as a whole pastry school course for the cost of one book. Johnny Iuzzini, who also wrote Dessert Fourplay, is a 2006 James Beard Award Winner for Best Pastry Chef and recently released Sugar RUSH into the wild on September 30.

Got anything to feed my sweet tooth? Drop a comment and connect with me on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest!

Posted in Food, Friday Finds | Leave a comment

Favorite Halloween DIYs + An Article That Hits Home

Halloween DIYsHalloween. Before, it meant dressing up in a costume that was thrown together minutes before whatever party or bar hop we were attending. It meant people coming over to our apartment before said party and everyone getting too drunk to do anything. It meant pumpkin beer, pumpkin cider and little to no food being consumed that day, except for pizza. There was always pizza. It meant pumpkin smashing.

Now, my mom has been busy making Cecilia’s Little Red Riding Hood costume, and we already have a couple pumpkins and are going back for more tomorrow. I’m looking up recipes, and finding ways to decorate the house that don’t make it look like the kids’ craft section at Michaels threw up in here (luckily, Cecilia is still at the age where I can get away with more grown up decorating until next year). I’m lighting candles that smell like fall and loving that the holiday season means family time.

There is a plethora of Halloween costume and craft DIYs right now, and I wanted to share some of my favorites:

The Art of Painting Pumpkins / Photo Credit: Alisa Burke

The Art of Painting Pumpkins / Photo Credit: Alisa Burke

I have shared Alisa Burke’s painted pumpkins before, and I am still in awe and in total love with them. She recently wrote about the art of painting pumpkins, and shared a little about her process. It’s truly a good read, and I’m going to experiment with it this year.


June Carter + Johnny Cash Costume DIY / Photo Credit: Sarah Hebenstreit of Modern Kids Photography for Oh Happy Day

Ok, seriously. How cute are these June Carter and Johnny Cash costumes from Oh Happy Day?! Since both Cecilia and Freddy have little guitars, and Freddy will definitely have some cowboy boots, this would be so much fun to do in a couple years!

If you aren’t following Oh Happy Day on Facebook, you are probably missing their costume series, and that’s no good.

DIY Floral Skull Centerpiece / Photo Credit: Honestly Yum

DIY Floral Skull Centerpiece / Photo Credit: Honestly Yum

This DIY Floral Skull Centerpiece from Honestly Yum is beautiful. And I would feel more like a grown-up if it was on our table, for some reason. If skulls aren’t your thing, you could probably use a pumpkin or something like that, too.

DIY Pumpkin Crate Display / Photo Credit: Emily and Erick of Heidi's Bridge for Poppytalk Handmade

DIY Pumpkin Crate Display / Photo Credit: Emily and Erick of Heidi’s Bridge for Poppytalk Handmade

I have a feeling that most of the pumpkins we get this year are going to be Cecilia-sized. I’m going to try letting her decorate her own (wish me luck!) and this DIY Pumpkin Crate Display from Emily and Erick of Heidi’s Bridge on Poppytalk Handmade would be a perfect way to display them all!

And if you’re in the Sacramento area…

Photo Credit: Kristin deNeeve / Semi Sweet Press

Photo Credit: Kristin deNeeve / Semi Sweet Press

I shared this in my Specialty Coffee Week post, but as a reminder, Kristin of Semi Sweet Press is hosting a workshop at Temple Fine Coffee & Tea on Sunday, and it should be a lot of fun! Tickets are $15 and you can get them here.

I know this isn’t Halloween related, but…

Photo Credit: Tess Wilson / Apartment Therapy

Photo Credit: Tess Wilson / Apartment Therapy

When I read this article On Becoming An Accidental Housewife by Tess Wilson on Apartment Therapy, I got tears in my eyes (I’m pregnant, it happens). Aside from the specifics, it felt like I wrote it. Even though he calls it “our money,” it’s really not mine. It’s his and we share it. I still don’t have that feeling of independence. My experience is actually what led me to start my blog, and my obsession with DIY.

What Halloween DIYs are you loving right now? Did you try any of these? Have a tutorial you want to share? Leave a comment and connect with me on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest!

Posted in Crafts, Inspired, Local Love | Leave a comment

Specialty Coffee Week Happenings!

Today marks the kickoff of Sacramento’s very first Specialty Coffee Week. And with craft coffee roasters like Temple, Insight, Chocolate Fish and Old Soul putting Sacramento on the coffee map, it’s about time we dedicated a week to celebrate all the work that goes into roasting that cup of warm, delicious heaven.

Here are a few of my favorite events going on this week:


Image from Vaneli's Handcrafted Coffee

Image from Vaneli’s Handcrafted Coffee

Coffee Kids Benefit at Rick’s Dessert Diner – This event, hosted by Vaneli’s Handcrafted Coffee in Rocklin, will feature coffee roasted three different ways that’s paired with cake from Rick’s Dessert Diner (the best dessert place on earth). It’s $10 to attend and all the proceeds go to Coffee Kids. If you live in Sacramento and haven’t checked out Rick’s new location, this is the perfect time to go.

Classic Revolution Sacramento at Shine Cafe – There will be a coffee-themed classical musical performance and a coffee-pairing menu featuring Temple coffee and dinner from The Roaming Spoon. Admission is $5. Shine is a super sweet and chill coffee house that is also hosting a Renegade Exchange this weekend.


Some of Marleena's work. Photo from Yellowbill.

Some of Marleena’s work. Photo from Yellowbill.

Latte Art with Marleena at Yellowbill Bakery and Cafe – I have never been to Yellowbill before, but the pictures on Facebook make it look warm, inviting and full of delicious food. You can eat all the pastries your heart can desire and watch a latte art demonstration. It’s crazy what kind of designs they can make!


Coffee Works Tour at Coffee Works – This is the oldest roastery in Sacramento, is it bad that I’ve never been there before? A super cool opportunity to see the inner workings of a roastery.

Temple's Aeropress. Photo from Temple Fine Coffee & Tea

Temple’s Aeropress. Photo from Temple Fine Coffee & Tea

Home Brewing Class at Temple Coffee Roasters – This is one of my favorite coffee shops in Sacramento, and they’re hosting a class on home brewing, which is perfect for those of us who can’t make it to a cafe every day. There are three locations in Sacramento, and this event will be held at their S Street location, which is actually the only one I’ve visited.


Photo from Rosaura Unangst / Pigment and Parchment

Photo from Rosaura Unangst / Pigment and Parchment

Coffee themed Hand Lettering Workshop at Vic’s Cafe –  My girl Rosaura at Pigment and Parchment will be hosting this wonderful event, blending her love of coffee and art. All the materials are provided, and there will be still-life painting and coffee vignettes included in this event. You can get your tickets here if you want to treat yo’self to a night of fun.

Coffee-Infused Beer at Track 7 Brewing Co – You can meet Juan Luis Barrios, a coffee producer from Finca La Merced in Guatemala and have a taste of Track 7’s Panic IPA Firkin, infused with Chocolate Fish coffee.


Small Batch Collaboration Lunch at Golden Bear – Ah, Golden Bear. Such good memories there, and hands down, my favorite bar in Sacramento. There will be an Insight Coffee and Bike Dog Brewery collaboration, and a Cascara Infused Soda from Andrew Calisterio. Oh, and they also serve super good food and have a ridiculously fun yet chill atmosphere.

Image from Beers in Sac

Image from Beers in Sac

Cafe Au Ale Homebrew Competition and Party at Old SoulBeers in Sacramento is hosting this event, where homebrewers are invited to brew their own batch of coffee-infused beer that will be judged by certified beer judges and local industry folk. There will be a party after, and caramels from one of my favorite ladies, Deb Ray at Rebel Confections. You can read my article about it here.


From Green to Brewed at Shady Coffee and Tea – Hey, look at that! An event in Roseville. There will be a live coffee roasting demonstration and single cup pour-overs will be offered. I haven’t actually been here yet, and I would love to check out some coffee shops in my new town, so hopefully I can make this!

Photo from Old Soul Co

Photo from Old Soul Co

Third Saturday Art Walk at Old Soul – Old Soul will be hosting their own Third Saturday Art Walk at their L Street location, which will feature photos from a direct sourcing trip to Central America and a Q&A with Finca Los Congos producer Rina Paguaga. All proceeds from any artwork sold will go to Reading Partners.


Photo from Semi Sweet Press

Photo from Semi Sweet Press

DIY Halloween Card Workshop at Temple – Since Halloween is just a couple weeks away, the wonderful Kristin DeNeeve at Semi Sweet Press and the ladies from Girls on the Grid are co-hosting a Halloween Card Workshop. You can get your tickets here, and enjoy some wonderful coffee while gettin’ crafty. Want to learn more about Kristin? Read my Q&A with her for The Seen here.

Coffee Week Wrap Party at Ruhstaller Tasting Room – And because all good things must come to an end, Ruhstaller will be hosting a Coffee Week Wrap Party, where they will preview the release of their “Sauce” Coffee Stout and one-day-only collaborations, include different hop varieties from their own farm. There will also be live music!

I got the majority of my info from the Specialty Coffee Week website. If you have any questions about the events I’ve posted or if you want me to help promote your coffee-themed event, e-mail me here. And connect with me on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google + and Pinterest!

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DIY Halloween Costume Inspiration: Lucille Ball

When I was in high school, I stumbled across I Love Lucy on TV Land. Or was it Nick at Nite? Either way, I was hooked from the first episode I watched. After that, I bought her autobiography, Love, Lucy and anything else I could find that had her photo slapped on it. I was so intrigued by her, and I am still inspired by her confidence and ability to laugh at herself.

“I’m not funny, what I am is brave”

Even now, when I can’t sleep, I plop myself on the couch and turn on Hallmark so I can get my I Love Lucy fix. This pregnancy-induced insomnia could be where I got my idea to dress up as Lucille Ball for Halloween. And coincidentally, in 1952, she was the first woman to successfully show her pregnancy on air, but CBS still found the word “pregnancy” too vulgar to use in the show.

Oh, how times have changed.


Lucille-Balltumblr_l9ok9rvgXL1qd76iqo1_500There are not a whole lot of options to choose from, but I think I’ll be good if I go with a button up shirt and pair of black pants. I’ve even considered dying my hair, or I could wear a hair wrap like in the photo below to disguise the fact that my hair is not red.

24ff64934ba9e14ba06a66866980b8c2Doesn’t that just melt your heart?

So, what are you going to be for Halloween? Share in the comments and connect with me on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google + and Pinterest!

Posted in Let's Party, Life | Leave a comment