Friday, April 30, 2010

A Photo a Day 4/365

Waiting for "a pie to go" at DeLucia's Pizzeria. News flash, after thirty years the old orange booths are gone and there are all new tables and chairs. It looks a lot fresher, but I was a bit taken a back by the reserved sign on the table where the old video game used to be. Thankfully, the portrait of Grandpa Constantino is still up on the wall and the brick oven is firing away.

A Photo a Day 3/365

I'm posting yesterday's photo of the day today because of we got home in the wee hours last night. We baby sat my nieces and nephew and drove home super late. We saw lots of deer, a shunk and a fox on the drive home. I wish I could have gotten a photo of one of the nocturnal critters. Instead a close up of the bush in my brothers front yard. This is our photo of the day because something about it reminds me of the strange quality of the suburbs. More about that another post.

About Face China

When I first saw the About Face china set from Shelf, I thought how calming it would be to have these serene faced pieces around. It turns out their calming quality was inspired by the "Sweet Dreams" mug created in 1949 by A H Woodful for Cadbury to promote their night time beverage Bourn-vita.

The original mug, which was first produced in ceramic and then bakelite, is now a sought after collectible. The bottom two images show an original ceramic mug including the night cap cover that doubles as a coaster (available from Wooden Donkey) and a promotional poster for Bourn-vita. You can read more about more about the history of the Sweet Dreams mug here.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

A Photo a Day 2a & 2b/365

Last of the Radio Flyer or Last of the Deer? I couldn't decide. Both have been decomposing in our back yard. Years of being out in the rain and elements did in our childhood wagon. Not sure who got the deer. It was too large for the local fox who seems more interested in the squirrels and birds. I think either a car or a coyote or a combination of the two. I have spotted a coyote twice now. At first I thought I was imaging things, but he was too large to be a fox and too wild looking to be anyone's dog. Yes, I'm sure we have an Eastern Coyote in our midst.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

A Photo a Day 1/365

A photo a day for 365 days. Can I do it? We'll see. Day one, photo one. Hmm, what will a year of photos reveal?

Today's photo: Hay rolls at the edge of a field on a country road.

Armchair Travel: By the Sea, By The Sea

By the sea, by the sea, by the beautiful sea!
You and me, you and me, oh how happy we'll be!
When each wave comes a-rolling in
We will duck or swim,
And we'll float and fool around the water.
Over and under, and then up for air,
Pa is rich, Ma is rich, so now what do we care?
I love to be beside your side, beside the sea,
Beside the seaside, by the beautiful sea!

From the musical "For Me and My Gal"
(Harold Atteridge / Harry Carroll) (1914)

Full Lyrics here.

There is a chill in the air today and my to do list is full of less than fun things. While I'm trying to push through, I'm going to keep an image of these amazing British beach huts in mind. By the sea, By the sea, at least in spirit today.

You can read more about the history of the British Beach Hut here and here.

Photos via and Channel 4.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Affordable Luxuries # 6: Faux Designer Handbags

I was not the least bit surprised when the recession hit, that over the top and overly expensive designer handbags lost some of their cache. Maybe they are still coveted by some, but the fact that a really nice handbag's price suddenly went through the roof, seemed about as logical as the rise in housing prices.

Personally all the giant zippers, super-sized logos, added baubles and hardware didn't do much to distract from the fact that a designer bag that went for around $500 a few years earlier was suddenly boasting a price tag of $1500 or more. The added glitz was the equivalent of granite counter tops, showy but hardly worth the bloated price.

While I've never been a big fan of knock offs, I did find myself purchasing two mock Goyard totes right before I had my daughter two and a half years ago. I like the Goyard brand and think they make gorgeous leather goods, however the thought of spending $1000 on a rubberized canvas tote with two tiny leather straps was more than I could fathom. So on a very hot August day I broke down and bought my first knock off.

Make that knock offs. I think my enormous stomach helped me negotiate a great deal on two bags. I was happy not to have to choose between the two colors I liked best and thought I could customize one with racing stripes and a monogram a la the real deal. Now with a toddler in tow, I have yet to customize the bag. When I finally get around to it I am going to monogram the bag, as I originally planned, with the letters F,A,K, & E. The better to carry my knock off with pride.
Photo of brilliant faux Chanel bag via glass cloud.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010


Looking at the photos of the Eyjafjallajokul volcano, I think thank goodness I don't live in Iceland. It's not that I don't love Iceland and it's numerous volcanoes, I do. I think I could deal with ash spewing all over the place, but I would never be able to spell anything correctly let alone pronounce it.

I'm sure those in the path of the ash cloud are none too pleased with Eyjafjallajokul, but from my safe distance, I'm really enjoying the surreal visuals this powerhouse is generating. You can see more here and here.

Photo 1: Lighting in Eyjafjallajokul's ash cloud/ Reuters/Lucas Jackson
Photo 2: Day turns into Night/Reuters/Ingolfur Juliusson
Photo 3: Air Traffic Control Geneva/Reuters/ Denis Balibouse

Monday, April 19, 2010

A Sunday Drive

I love a good Sunday drive especially if it takes us to favorite places and down unexpected back roads. Yesterday we finished our chores, including buying this years tomato plants, and then escaped from the over-crowed parking lots and aggressive drivers to less traveled paths.

We drove to Melick's Town Farm and visited Joanie (the pig formerly known as Girlie) and her friend Peach the goat (or ghost as pronounced by my two and half year old) and their two chicken friends. "Here ghost, here ghost." Priceless. We bought a bag of "doughnees", that's doughnuts to the rest of you and continued on to Hearts-Ease Greenhouse and Nursery.

Hearts-Ease, a wonderful little nursery that specializes in orchids, is another of our favorite spots. This little gem is always worth a visit even if, like myself, you don't have a green thumb when it comes to members of the orchid family. There are plenty of annuals and perennials including a great selection of alpine plants. Best of all the small greenhouses are beautiful, peaceful and the proprietress Hildegard Howell is a lovely woman. Hearts-Ease is a true labor of love.

We left with a few alpine plants in tow and wandered down a bunch of back roads before ending our day at Polar Cub an old fashioned ice cream stand that brings to mind an older era and a resolve to eat only salads the next day. A perfect Sunday.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Jasper Conran's Country

I think I could be happy living in the pages of Jasper Conran's new book Country. I'm looking forward to getting a chance to browse through a copy of the book, even if it's only in the book store. Although, I suspect I'll be tempted to break the bank and take a copy home. It's looks like a book one could sink into a comfy chair with and get happily lost in.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

A Shed of One's Own

I'm so inspired by these photos of Artemis Russell's weaving shed in London. The shed was a gift from her mom and built by her brothers. There are wonderful and inspiring photos galore and more info on her blog Junkaholic (here and here) and on her flicker stream.

I love the pictures of her brothers building the shed in the back garden of her London flat and seeing how Artemis transformed the tiny space into a working studio. The 4' x 6' shed is proof you can do a lot with a little space.

Yeah for Yellow

The forsythia and daffodils in bloom outside reminded me how upbeat yellow is. They also made me realize that while I like the color, oddly I don't have any yellow objects in my space. Okay, maybe a crayon and there is a yellow t-shirt some where that I look awful in. Yellow is definitely not my color when it comes to clothing, but I might just decide to add some to my surroundings.

French cafe photo by Little Brown Pen
Love poster available at Made by Girl
Yellow kitchen via sfgirlbybay
Yellow house photo here

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Spring Weather

What a difference a few days and a little sunshine can make. Easter Sunday was amazing this year. Suddenly, after what felt like an extra long winter and way too much rain, the weather decided to behave. The timing was perfect and spring really felt like spring. The daffodils joined the forsythia already in bloom, the air was warm and fragrant and there was a real sense of renewal. We took a ride after our Easter egg hunt and I felt as if we were in a story book version of spring, complete with a babbling brook.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Don't Take My Sunshine Away

Finally some sunshine. Hopefully, it's not just an April Fool's Day prank.