Monday, May 17, 2010

I've Moved

Kopah's Soap Box has moved to a new blog: This Handmade Life.  Please update your links and subscriptions.  

For the time being the Kopah Etsy shop is still open with a limited soap selection.  If you are looking for something that you don't see in stock, e-mail me.  I have a larger inventory than what is currently listed in the shop.  Thank you!

I can also be found at:

Wednesday, February 24, 2010


I can't believe March is sneaking up on us already.  Where does the time go?  Something I ask myself a lot these days.  For me this year is about getting back on track and staying focused and attaining the goals I have set out for myself.  To do this, I am making small goal sheets for each month of things that I really want to get done.  Some of them may be little things that just popped into my head as I was writing the list, others are things that will help me reach some of my yearly goals.  In any case, I am going to post them here in hopes that it will help me stay on track.  So here goes, March goals....

- Wash my face EVERY DAY!  I have this bad habit on the weekends of getting lazy and not washing my face before bed...I know, it's a travesty, but seriously it's causing some major skin irritations and it has to stop, like now.  So this month I vow to wash my face twice a day, NO MATTER WHAT!

- Get 10 things done on my to-do list, including a few that have been on there for a while.

- Make a definite decision about the shop.

- Practice photography, learn how to use one new function on my camera.

- Work on at least one craft project.

- Learn new German words

- Complete one furniture refinishing project.

- Start to collect ideas and samples for bathroom renovation, work on having the bathroom renovation started and/or completed by the end of March.

- Bake/cook 3 things on my food list.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Making Decisions....

I have been contemplating a lot of things recently, one of which is whether or not I should keep my Kopah shop open. The truth is, soap making is beginning to feel like work to me. As much as I hate to admit it, it’s true. I am at the point where I don’t even know if I want to continue making it for my self and my family.

This could be just a phase, a reaction to my new, increasingly busy schedule focused around blogging, which is leaving little, if any time for soap making. I’m hesitant to make any rash decisions because I’m not 100% sure how I feel, but it is something that has been bouncing around in my head for quite some time. Mike and I have a project in the works that I would really prefer to put my focus into, in addition to my blogging which has quickly become a true passion and creative outlet for me.

That being said, I am also considering shutting down this blog to put my focus into The Design Boards and other endeavors. This blog has always been attached to my Kopah shop and I’m not sure if it makes sense to keep it open if the shop closes and I don’t blog here nearly as much as I would like. I am really looking for more of a personal outlet where I can post periodically about my life, my crafting, gardening, cooking etc., stuff that doesn’t really make sense to blog about over at TDB. So, if I do decide to close my shop, this blog would most likely move to a new link (not attached to Kopah) where the focus would be on my personal life.

Anyway, that's what I've got going on right now...what's new with you guys?

Monday, February 8, 2010

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Wedding Details

If you are interested in reading about the details of my wedding please hop over to The Design Boards for Part One and Two.  Enjoy!

Monday, February 1, 2010

I finally sucked it up and purchased some polaroid film, oh so expensive, and very much expired. I did some research on this prior to buying it and apparently, expired film, as long as it isn't you know, from the 1970's, can actually give the photos a really cool effect. We'll see...if they come out anything like these photos, I will be ecstatic. I can't wait to get started...

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Better Late Than Never

Well now that February is almost upon us I thought it would be nice to finally share my new years goals.  I don't like to call them resolutions, if I call them goals then I have an easier time sticking to them....don't ask why!  So, it is a new year and this marks a year of a lot of new beginnings for me and my family.  I really want to dedicate this year to my shop and my blogs.  I had high hopes for this same thing last year but as you know, many things got in the way.  It seems that now I can finally find the time and energy to focus on these things.  Here are some of the goals I have set forth for this year....

1. Read books - I had not the time or energy to focus on one of my favorite hobbies last year, this year I really want to make an effort to lose myself in a good book from time to time
2. Learn how to take beautiful pictures
3. Grow a beautiful and abundant garden
4. Learn calligraphy - This is something I have always been interested in, when we lived in New York I was going to take classes, there aren't any offered here in Florida so I will have to teach myself
5. Bake and cook
6. Use my Polaroid camera - I have collected three now from Goodwill, I have yet to buy any film to test them out but am so eager to start shooting with them
7. Decorate our home and make it a lovely, cozy, warm, reflection of us and our personalities.
8. Make my blogs beautiful and inspiring places to visit
9. Improve my writing, find my voice, make my blogs a reflection of that
10.  Find more time for my hobbies and interests - Sometimes I lose focus and forget to have fun with crafting and other hobbies, this is something I want to focus on this year
11. Explore more crafting projects
12. Take up knitting again, take another class to brush up on my skills
13. Sew more often, try to make a piece of clothing
14. Take a flower arranging class
15. Throw beautiful parties, entertain with friends more often, be like Martha :)
16. Create a studio where I can make and create and be inspired
17. Get through our home renovations without filing for divorce or going gray!
18. Become conversational in German - I am visiting Germany in December, I really would like to speak fluently with my new in-laws!
19. Practice yoga, play tennis, stay active

I am sure this list will continue to grow as we move through the year.  I really want this year to be about me and Mike and enjoying our life, and the home we are creating, our friends and family, and all the little things that we might usually take for granted.  This past year, as difficult as it was, has really made me appreciate all the things we have, nothing is inconsequential anymore.  I am thankful for everything.  My life is good.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Blogging Your Way

I am signed up for the Blogging Your Way class that Holly and Leslie are teaching.  We are currently in week two and I, of course, am already behind and trying to play catch up. So, today I’ve been reading through some of the content and assignments and background on Holly and Leslie.  I’ve been reading Holly’s blog for a long time so I was already pretty familiar with how she got to where she is today but Leslie’s story was new to me.  I am already so inspired and have gotten so much from the little bit I have been able to read through.  Both women are so incredibly talented and I am really looking forward to what the rest of this class will offer and how hopefully it will improve my blogging abilities.  Lord knows this blog could use some help :)  

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Thrifting Finds

We had some luck this weekend while thrifting.  We scored the chair for $5.  Not sure what we will use it for yet, maybe our office.  I am thinking a coat of white paint and some lacquer or maybe something drastic like orange or turquoise, I haven't decided yet.

We also found a Donna Summer record.  We were at a friend's party over the weekend and they had this record, one side is all Love to Love you Baby laid out on different's awesome!

This is the second Polaroid camera I've picked up at Goodwill.  I have no idea if it works or not but it looks like it's in great shape.  Now I just need to suck it up and buy some film (fingers crossed The Impossible Project pulls it off soon)

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

In the Kitchen

Maybe it's all the new kitchen gadgets we received as wedding gifts, or maybe it's just the new found feeling of being a wife, but something has inspired me to want to cook, like all the time. Don't get me wrong, I know my way around the kitchen but since Mike and I have been together, I've sort of let him take over that part of our lives. I basically make the ice water every night for dinner, with the occasional baking session every now and then. Now Mike is starting school (he's going to be a teacher ladies and gentleman, I'm so happy and proud of him for taking this path!) which means that I am taking over the responsibility of cooking and I am really excited about it. In fact, maybe a little too excited. In addition to preparing my yearly goals and resolutions (to be shared at a later date) I have prepared a list of things I want to cook/bake this year (I know, I'm a nerd). So here goes...

- homemade nutella (we have the huge advantage of having German family who bring us over jars of German nutella and yes it's different than the stuff you get here, not full of partially hydrogenated oils and high fructose corn syrup, since we are down to 1 jar of the good stuff, I have resolved to make it myself.)
- french bread/baguette (my hubby got me a bread maker for Christmas and I have already been using it but I want to try to make a really good baguette, like the kind you would find over in Paris)
- cinnamon rolls (another thing I'd like to try in the bread maker)
- homemade crackers
- graham crackers
- granola (I have about 100 recipes for granola, I am determined to find a really good one!)
- Foccacia (do you see a pattern here, that breadmaker is really going to come in handy)
- perfect mac and cheese (my roux always comes out grainy, I think I know how to fix this, but I need to test it out)
- perfect pizza dough (this is something we always struggle with, it's either too dense, or too chewy, etc.)
- savory galette (already made this on Monday night, good but needed tweeking)
- scrambled egg muffins (I saw something like this in Southern Living, thought it would make a good brunch item)
- macarons (the French kind, not the coconut ones, although those are delicious too)
- mayonnaise (we also received a food processor for Christmas and I am dying to try to make the real thing)
- olive oil cake
- plantains (we tried to make plantains over the summer and the result was disastrous, I'm determined to be successful because I love plantains)
- butter (I've read like 5 articles about making homemade butter, it sounds easy, we'll see)
- cheese (we've tried making homemade mozzarella, there were many factors involved in why it may not have turned out perfectly, I want to try again)
- mustard (I've kind of been obsessed with the idea of making my own mustard since I saw this recipe a few years ago.)
- nut butters (again, another food processor thing)
- Indian curries (specifically nilgiri korma from my favorite Indian restaurant in NYC
- naan
- Zaytoon's style pizza (my favorite Middle Eastern restaurant in Brooklyn makes this awesome flat bread pizza with herbs and feta cheese and since we no longer live in the city, I have a huge desire to re-create some of my NYC favorites)
- really good birthday cake from scratch
- puff pastry (I'm baffled by the fact that so many recipes call for this and yet so few people make it from scratch. We received Mastering the Art of French Cooking for Christmas and of course, Julia has a recipe for puff pastry, I must try to make it since the store bought stuff is full of chemicals.)
- gnocchi (love it, never tried to make it before, dying to try Jamie Oliver's recipe for it.)

So that's it! I have a lot of work to do by next year and I'm sure this list will continue to grow. We'll see if I can even get through half of it, but it's still January and I am feeling optimistic!