Frozen Pizza Derby

Took a break from preparing for Craftin Outlaws to have the Frozen Pizza Derby. This past weekend was supposed to be Snowmageddon here in Central Ohio, so I thought this would be a fun way to enjoy some family togetherness. Plus, as much as I love wearing aprons, I am not so enthusiastic about cooking. The smart folks at Wild Goose Creative host something called the Pizza Grand Prix. They have people and businesses make fancy pizza and they judge it. I decided to scale this down and call it a “Derby.”

Frozen pizza is not a hit here at our house. And we also can’t agree on a delivery pizza we all like. There are 5 of us, so go figure. Whenever I’m at the grocery I’m tempted by the low prices and tasty looking pictures to I decided to find out once and for all if there was a low-priced frozen alternative to 3 different kinds of delivery for my brood. Also, I decided to try this on the cheap, meaning cheaper brands. The boy is home from school and dang growing men eat a lot!


Starting out, I was pretty sure the Meijer (store) brand one was going to be at the bottom. Girl #1 doesn’t really like cheese (i know!!) and loves a thick crust, so I was pretty sure she’d go with Freschetta. I was hoping to like the Dr. Oetker, because, well IT’S A DOCTOR! Must be healthy!

When I took them out of the boxes the Dr. Oetker looked the most promising. I figured it would have barely any spinach but check it out!


Here they are all cooked


And here…don’t be judging. Yes, that’s a pack of Fun Dip on my kitchen table.


Everyone agreed the sauce on the Freschetta has the taste of frozen pizza sauce. It’s a taste I hope you are familiar with. Not great but not so bad you gag. The Dr. Oetker actually had too much spinach for my liking. Girl #2 said it was her favorite. It tasted like fresh-cooked spinach. Tons of fresh-cooked spinach. The boy and I both liked the DiGiorno. We had the mozzarella and pesto variety with a thin crust. Unfortunately, the thin crust took it out of the running for Girl #1. Mr. AmyD also liked it but added the caveat that the best part was just eating something to prevent dying in the night. Surprisingly, the only one everyone liked was the Meijer one. It tasted the least like frozen pizza sauce. It was also a full-sized pizza. The fancier ones were all smaller.

There you have it! No clear winners except one we can all eat with very little bitching and no one starves to death. That’s really all a mom of three wishes for.

Do Whatever You Have to Do in Order to Get to Wholly Craft Today!

Make some calls, arrange or rearrange your schedule. Tonight is the Wholly Craft Midnight Madness Sale! We go yearly and it never disappoints. It’s a party with a chocolate fountain and the HOLIDAY APE. Get your pic taken with Holiday Ape, have some snacks, dance a little and get some awesome handmade goods!





There are giveaways every hour between 8:30 and Midnight!

All night long, there are sales!

  • 30% off DIY Kits and supplies
  • 20% off holiday cards and boxed sets
  • 10% off ornaments and calendars

If that’s not enough, there are rotating sales in your favorite categories!

  • 8pm-9pm: 20% off baby goods, kids toys, plush creatures
  • 9pm-10pm: 20% off handbags, paper goods, art prints, books and zines
  • 10pm-11pm: 20% off bath goods, aprons, kitchen and barware and home decor
  • 11pm-12am: 20% off tshirts, clothing, jewelry and accessories

I’ll see you there with our brood! The streets are finally clear, so it’s going to be a blast!


Heather liked 2012 too!

Make Your Own AmyD Coffee Sleeve


Yo! You guys have been so great to us, we thought we’d make this video tutorial showing you how to make your own AmyD Coffee Sleeve! The pattern is here too. Just print it on regular paper and cut it out. You can also trace your favorite coffee shop’s coffee sleeve, but that always feels weird to me.

When we started making these sometime around 2005 we got several cups and came up with a size that fits them all pretty well. Starbuck’s cups tend to be skinnier but taller than most independent coffee shops cups that I’ve come across. We’ve seriously tried to make the best coffee sleeves for you so we put a lot of thought into crap like this!

You’ll need felt, scissors, and basic sewing skills. We use a machine, but there’s no reason you can’t hand-sew it. Also, we use fake felt that is made from recycled soda bottles. It’s called Eco-fi and we love it. It seems you guys do too! For the applique, we use stiffened felt, but you can embroider something or leave it plain. It’s your coffee sleeve after all!

Let me know if you have any questions!

It also helps to have wretched fingernails and dry hands to really bring it all together.

And you can still buy them from us of course and use the time we spent making it by making sweet sweet love!


Here’s the video!

And right here is your pattern. Just click on it and print it!


We used the awesome app, Shadow Puppet to make our video

Go Big or Go Home

Last night was the Small Business Beanstalk Award Gala at The Bluestone. I’ve not come to tell you about that, alas.* I’m here to talk about the one-man-band Teen Fiction.

The event was lacking a dancing audience. You know, people were all fancy, holding cocktails. No matter, this guy performed like he was at Madison Square Garden and people in the audience were in a frenzy screaming “Teen Fiction!” at the tops of their lungs. They weren’t and there were about 15 people dancing. He jumped off the stage at one point. I was so impressed with the enthusiasm he shared.

How hard was that? How hard is it to give something not knowing if the receiving party wants it? I was thinking that the only way his thing works is if he always gives it like we want it. Holding back even a little would make it awkward and awful.

If you get a chance, go see this guy, even if it’s only for a lesson on the benefit of enthusiasm.

*I changed my mind. Wholly Craft won the award for Best Retail Store. There is no one more deserving than Olivera!

Why not let someone make your day?

The Country Living Fair was this weekend. It was entertaining, exhausting and fantastic all at once. I have a little story to share and then I’m off to the sweatshop. It starts off crappy then has a happy finish, so keep reading!

Image(This is just a pic of the snow globe Olivia gave me at Country Living. I’m excited about it and thought you’d want to see it too!)

I was feeling sort of angsty after an interesting encounter with a person attending the fair. She openly was drawing our goods so that she could then make them and sell them at her church bazaar. She told me this.

People photograph our stuff all the time so they can make it. That really doesn’t bother me. If a person is a maker (I think it’s a personality type) they don’t WANT to buy stuff. They want to make it. I think that’s awesome! It’s the person that wants to pass it off as their own idea that chaps my ass. The woman I mentioned also was surprised to learn it was my idea. That was the part that really got me. She assumed it was something I just saw on Pinterest or whatever and was copying it and making money from it. She assumed that THAT is the norm.

While I was sitting at the booth and mulling this over, trying to figure out why I was so annoyed, an awesome person came into our booth. (I was sharing a booth with Wholly Craft. I know! A celebrity!) She was looking around with her husband and both just seemed so damn happy and I thought, “Dalrymple, (that’s what I say when I’m talking to myself) you gotta quit thinking about that turd from earlier because here are some people that just want to be nice so you should let them.”

When she came up to pay (She bought some cool drawer pulls), she said, “Are you the AmyD?” I was surprised and didn’t really know how to respond, so stupidly said, “I suppose!” She then explained that she has two of our aprons and loved our stuff. I jumped up and hugged her. I’m always so grateful that people work their asses off at their jobs and use the money they earned to buy our goods. She was super sweet and asked to get a picture, which almost made me cry.

I just want you guys to know how grateful I am. Thank you for buying our goods and thank you for being so damn nice.

Turns out she has a blog too! She wrote about her day at Country Living. Stay at Work Housewife! Go read it! Tell her AmyD sent you.

Some Inexpensive Off-the-radar Gift Ideas for New Moms and Their Families

Since my pal, Olivia, is having her baby any day, I’ve been thinking quite a bit about good gift ideas for new moms and their families. As a mom to three kids, these are some of the best gifts I got or wanted to get. A couple might already be obvious to you but these were my favorites! Add your ideas too!

Food Delivery gift cards – Maybe you have a Cafe Courier in your area that picks up food from a variety of restaurants. A favorite pizza delivery place is great too. Anything that says “Here, let me feed you” is always appreciated.

Mow the lawn –  If your friend’s kid is born in Spring or Summer, for God’s sake, mow their damn lawn. Some people are persnickety about their lawns, so you might have to ask first. Usually, those people don’t have kids or their kids are grown anyway.

Shovel the driveway and sidewalk – Same situation, but in the winter. Just do it. Don’t ask if you can do it because they will say no.

Clean their house –  When you go over to “help,” don’t spend all of your time holding the baby, unless it’s so someone can shower or poop. Get your ass in the kitchen and wash dishes or empty/load the dishwasher. Clean a toilet. Fold laundry. Don’t ask. Seriously. Well, to be polite, you can say, “Where do you put your glasses?” or “Am I allowed to use bleach for this gross toilet?” or something. But don’t ask if you can do it. They will probably say no. When you are done, leave. Unless an adult is crying, then they may want you to listen. You can also stay so someone can shower or poop, like I already said.

Don’t offer advice unless they ask – not really a gift to some, but Dude, it’s a gift.

Sheets for the grownup bed – They will probably get lots of crib sheets for the sweet little one. Trust me, the grownup bed will get it’s share of poop, pee and spit up. They will need new sheets too.

Towels- See above. Actually, this one never gets old. A friend just got me towels for my birthday because she was tired of listening to me complain about the towel situation. If you have kids, they will poop, pee, and barf on almost everything you own, but towels and bedding seem to get the worst of it.

A puppy – no. never. NEVER. Unless you secretly hate them.

Sleepwear that functions as clothing – The mom might want something that sorta looks like clothes but feels like pajamas so she won’t feel naked as she is wrestling a baby on the boob for the first few times. That can turn into a highway-style accident in a matter of seconds. Yoga pants are always a good choice too.

Sleep mask – Naps need to be taken whenever they can be got. A sleep mask helps with daytime naps. (Though hilariously, the first week the baby will sleep almost all the time leading the parents to tell everyone how easy it is. DON’T DISAGREE. Just laugh in the car on the way home. They will get theirs in a couple of weeks and then you can hug them while they cry and you  feel guilty about laughing a few weeks earlier.)

Magazine subscription – to something OTHER THAN a parenting or organizing magazine. Same goes for Pinterest. Those things are great, but right after having a baby, the last thing anyone needs is someone telling them they need to be more organized, energized, or more ANYTHING. What they have going on right now is plenty. My favorite at this time, and still is, is Vanity Fair.

A few flashlights with batteries – They’ll be stumbling around in the dark not wanting to wake the baby. Also, I was always one of those moms that was convinced the kid was going to die in the middle of the night so sometimes i liked to flash a flashlight to see if they squinted a little in their sleep. SUPER DUMB I know. But it gave me a sense of relief.

One more thing, ALWAYS wash your hands before touching that baby. I always felt like a dick for asking people to do that. Just do it. Don’t say “Should I wash my hands?” and put it on them either. Just say “I’m going to go wash my hands.” In this category also is Don’t Wear Perfume to Their House. Just don’t. It’s not going to kill you. My kids had trouble with this as babies and people would get offended when I asked them to put a diaper or blanket on their shoulder before holding the babies. Don’t wear perfume, just in case.

The best gift you can give is to just be supportive and available. Being a parent is wonderful but also scary at first as each of us tries to figure out our own parenting style.






North Market Hat Trick

Did you see the previous post about the awesomeness that is the North Market Apron Gala? If not, click that back there.

We are so excited to tell you guys what’s been going on behind the scenes in Ye Olde Sweatshop since then! Our aprons are going to be sold at the Wasserstrom store at the North Market called “The Source.” They have been great to work with and our aprons should be available there next week. I instantly loved Rodney when I met him and his team at The Source are some of the best people Heather and I have worked with. Direct, friendly, they know what they want and are very supportive. I want them to go steady!

Roxane, the fantastic manager of The Source introduced us to Dareen of Better Earth, another North Market store. (Thank you Roxane!)  Dareen is so dang sweet. My favorite quality is enthusiasm. Dareen is rocking with enthusiasm. She is now carrying our line of coasters made with Eco-fi. Eco-fi is made of shredded soda bottles and feels like felt.


At Comfest, we met Ann Leonard. Ann owns Touch of Earth, the coffee shop in the North Market. Do you know how lucky we are to have met her? Very. She is fantastic of course and is now carrying our line of coffee sleeves made with Eco-fi.


Thank you so much Dave Wible and Mary Martineau. You guys let us be a part of the Apron Gala and look what happened! 


Thank you, North Market! (and a sidebar)

Oh North Market Apron Gala, how I love you! We had tons and tons of fun Saturday night! The North Market Apron Gala is an event that benefits the North Market Development Authority. Those are the folks that run the North Market. It’s a historical place! The event consists of walking around the North Market and eating and drinking until you can’t do it anymore.

Heather, Mary Martineau and me. You really should have seen her shoes. The whole outfit was awesome!

How we got involved in all this, was Mary Martineau. She’s the marketing director for the North Market. If you ever work on a project with Mary, you better have your shit together is all I’m saying. We made the aprons for the host committee and then created custom aprons for the sponsors. I knew we had to really put our best into these, since Mary was our connection for the event. She just really does a great job and has it all together so you don’t want to be the messed-up cog in the machine,  you know?

I wasn’t sure what to expect. I had heard there was a ton of food and drink and people and celebrities. It’s true, people! All of it is true! It was sort of funny with the food because here is this awesome food and it’s just sitting there for you to take. Bryan went up to Firdous and the chicken kabob was calling to him, “I can just take this?!” the guy said “Yep!” and we were off!

Whenever we saw someone in one of our aprons we tried to get their picture. Everyone was really nice about it, maybe because we were so excited. It was like Christmas every time!

Rodney Wasserstrom and me!

Around one corner, a guy came towards us in his apron and I recognized the Wasserstrom logo and cleaver we had made. “Hey!” I said, “Can I get my picture taken with you? I made that!” He said sure and I had to fix the strap for him and adjust it all to look good and I was pretty much all up in his grill. He asked what I did for a living and I told him Heather and I make housewares and clothing from salvaged fabrics. I asked him what he did and he said he was Rodney Wasserstrom. I know! I about died. DIED! I apologized for adjusting his clothes and luckily, Mary Martineau walked up and stopped me before it got worse. He was super nice and he looks dashing in the apron. (Too bad the pic is a little blurry)

Super-nice Ben Walters of Short North Spices

More food and drink! Bryan said the pulled pork sandwich at North Market Spices was excellent. Let me tell you, those guys are so freaking nice over there. Ben was there and his mom and I think it was his dad or a friend. If someone knows let me know! They were just having a great time.

Tom Griesdorn!

Around another corner, we saw a guy in his WBNS 10tv apron. It was Tom Griesdorn! He’s got a serious job as president and station manager at 10tv.  He was also kind enough to let us get his picture too. Tom’s a big muckity-muck, people,  and he was just hanging out in his apron. This event is awesome!

Patient and kind Limited Brands Gala-goer

This lady from Limited Brands was so nice to us! She waited patiently while we worked out camera glitches and let us take her picture. Her friends were all nice and complimentary over the apron too. Yay!!

Heather, Bethia, me, and Andy Dehus

Bethia Woolf and Andy Dehus of Columbus Food Adventures were there, of course! Bethia pretty much knows everything about food. She was one of Columbus Alive’s People to Watch in 2010. As I was just stalking her online I also learned that she taught at Smith. Smith! I think I got smarter by touching her, I swear to God!

I didn’t get a pic of CMH Gourmand, Jim Ellison, which is unfortunate. He offered some good parenting advice and it’s always fun to talk to him. He’s also a food genius person. I really admire that in others because I possess none of it myself.

If you follow me on Twitter, you might know that I love Columbus Brewing Company Beer. I do I do! I don’t drink a lot. I have one beer per day at 4pm and that’s usually it. Seeing as how I have one per day, it’s got to be a good one. That special beer for me is Columbus Brewing Company’s Pale Ale. Some days it’s the IPA. I could go on and on. Another point to remember is that I know zero about brewing beer. It’s as though it’s magic to me. You put some crazy stuff in a jar and you get beer! Magic! As a fan of Columbus Brewing, making their apron was so awesome! When I say “I’m a fan” of something, it means I’m kind of ape shit focused about it. (If you want to hear a funny little story about how I met them in an airport in Denver, read in the yellowish box functioning as a sidebar below. If you don’t care about that, skip it.) We played around with their logo and came up with this!

Heather, Eric Bean (his signature is on the dang box, people!), and me

Heather has quite an eye for things. (Just last weeked she recognized Greg Lashutka at the North Market shopping) I tend to see mostly just the shiny things. As we were coming out of the Dispatch kitchen, Heather nudged me and whispered “Columbus Brewing! Columbus Brewing!” We got to get our picture taken with Eric and I will talk about it every day. Beth Bean must think I am insane. These people are some of my business heroes! I got to meet them!

At the end of it all, Dave Wible gave us a bouquet of flowers! Dude, I felt like some kind of empowered Cinderella! I was really surprised by this. He was so kind to have worked with us and we really appreciated the opportunity.  Thanks, Dave!

Heather and me at the Apron Gala. I certainly couldn’t do this without her and this awesome town.

Now we’ve got to come up with something supercool for next year! You can see all of our pics over at our facebook page here!

An insiders guide to enjoying the apron gala

This will be my first year attending the North Market Apron Gala! I’m so excited! From what I hear, there’s tons of awesome food and drink and there might still be a ticket or two left for sale! We are were fortunate enough to be involved with this even by making aprons for the host committee and sponsors.

This is the apron we made for Limited Brands

As a newbie to the North Market Apron Gala, I wondered if there were any ways to best enjoy the awesomeness of it all. Luckily, I wondered this aloud and my pal Jordan was nearby and answered, “Totally!” and not in a Valley Girl way. But in a serious way that I knew meant I should pay attention.

Our apron for Ice Miller Legal Counsel. We were hoping “Ice Miller” was some kind of beer distribution thing, but no. Ice Miller Legal Counsel is nice too though!

Here are some questions Jordan was kind enough to answer for me!

How many times have you been to the Apron Gala? (I asked this question to get some insight into whether or not we should take her advice.)  This is my third consecutive year and it’s one of my favorite annual events in Columbus. 

What’s the purpose of the Apron Gala?  The Apron Gala benefits the North Market Development Authority, the non-profit organization that operates and manages the historic North Market.

Should I get there early?  Definitely. I will be there at 6:55 waiting for the doors to open!

What should I wear? Wear whatever you’ll be most comfortable in. This really is an event where you’ll be as comfortable in jeans as you will something fancier. 

Do I have to wear an apron to get in? You don’t have to wear an apron to get in but the best male and female aprons win great prizes and admiration by all and everyone wearing an apron will be entered into a drawing for a special prize. 

Have you seen any celebrities there?  Absolutely! Jeni Britton Bauer was there last year scooping ice cream. I also got to chat with Trish Gentile and Johnny Dornback, owners of the wonderful Basi Italia, and a personal favorite, Randy Malloy, owner of CD101. Not to mention all the fabulous venders and staff at the North Market who are rockstars in their own right.

What’s the size of the crowd like?   The crowd is fairly large, but there’s more than enough food and drinks for everyone. And the patio will be open so it’ll be the perfect place to see and be seen this Saturday with the lovely weather they’re forecasting.

Is the food ample, or should I eat before I go?  Do not eat before you go. In fact, don’t eat all day in preparation for the feast that awaits at the Apron Gala. Each of the 30+ vendors serve an appetizer, main dish, and dessert. I think Miriam Bowers Abbott from The Other Paper described it best when she said, “Essentially, the event is like a giant dream buffet whereby all the North Market vendors serve up nonstop treats for three hours.”

Do you go in with a plan for how to maximize your eating and drinking or are you more of a free-baller?  I’ve been told I sound like Liz Lemon before but yes, I have a plan. Stop 1: The Barrel & Bottle for a cocktail. Stop 2: Curds & Whey. They literally have a tower of cheese (be still my heart). Stop 3: The Fish Guys for fresh oysters. After that I do an hourly lap and eat only the most delectable looking treats, which is hard to do, but you don’t want to fill up your first hour there. You want to maintain to sample as many delicacies as you can over the entire three hours. 

If I have kids and wanted to bring them, is it kid-friendly? (I didn’t want to put her on the spot with this one. She likes kids! But I knew you would want to know! My kids aren’t used to a lot of people being around, since we live in a sweatshop)   I know that both Jeni Britton Bauer and Walker Evans have brought their kids in the past, and they seemed fine with it, but I would suggest finding a sitter if you can. There are a lot of people drinking and mingling, especially as the evening goes on, and I don’t know how much fun that is for a small child.


I haven’t said too much about this, a little about Tim Knapp.

My brother’s partner, Tim Knapp, died in January. We were all shocked and devastated. Tim was so dearly loved and adored by our whole family. There isn’t anyone who met Tim who didn’t like him. He was so sweet and thoughtful to our children. Our daughter, Indie, especially loved joking around with him. She usually tried to get a spot near Aunt Tim at the table or on the couch because she loved his totally inappropriate sense of humor. Tim always let her think he didn’t get it when she teased him and loved seeing her laugh. Tim’s family has been so kind to us. Damon loves them all and they all have Tim’s sweetness about them. My heart breaks every day for Damon and only hope that he can gain some sense of peace or at least tolerate life without Tim.

Tim and Damon

I haven’t talked about this publicly really because it’s just too hard. I’m sorry if you are hearing about it for the first time here in my blog. The reason I decided to share this with you now is that my brother, Damon, and many friends are putting together a memorial garden for our beloved Tim. He absolutely loved gardening. Loved. He planted flowers anywhere and everywhere.

The following is from a letter my brother sent regarding the garden and how people can help…

I have been working in cooperation with The Friends of the Topiary Park (501 3C nonprofit) designing a significant memorial garden to be installed at the northeast entrance to the park. We plan to dedicate the memorial garden on September 1, 2012. A separate invitation will be sent in the mail at a later date. That being said, the garden needs to be started in April or early May. The memorial garden for Tim will have topiary features and be a significant enhancement to the beauty of the park, which was historically called the Old Deaf School Park. (You can read more about this beautiful place at Additionally, some of you may not know that Tim was a writer and poet. He wrote poetry almost every day of our life together and one of his poems will be incorporated into the garden.

Many of you have already sent donations to the park, and I thank you from the bottom of my heart. I would like to give all of our friends the opportunity to participate in the memorial garden if you so choose. All donations should be made to “Friends of the Topiary Park” in memory of Timothy L. Knapp. We are looking to raise about $10,000 to make this project happen, so whatever you can give – no matter how small – will be most appreciated. Your contributions are tax deductible:

Friends of the Topiary Park
480 E. Town St.
Columbus, OH 43215

I would be more than happy to speak with you in more detail about the design of the garden and answer any questions you may have. As you know, Tim loved gardening. I knew my place well in our home–right behind Lucky, Max and the garden…

I thank you from the bottom of my heart for the love and support you have given Tim in his short life. I thank you for every kind deed, sincere conversation and the precious time you spent in our lives.

With hope,

Damon M. Dalrymple

Damon also gave me permission to include Tim’s poem that will be featured at the park…….

When Two Vines Meet
They do not stop
but begin intermingling…
’till you can’t tell where one begins
or ends. I want to be like that
when my arms are around you
and likewise and with a foundation
to support us growing
for years and years
’til we touch the face
of God together.