Monday, June 29, 2009

All Queued Up

I am about halfway through this book. Enjoying it so much that I deliberately skipped my book club discussion about it so that I could avoid any spoilers. It's taking me forever to finish it though, which is becoming a problem because the stack of books on my nightstand is reaching avalanche proportions. Here's what I've got in the queue: I have to read this book before my July 12th book club discussion. Good luck.
I named my son after the author of this book, so I should probably actually read it.
My brother and mom have been recommending this book to me for ages. I think my brother even called it the best book he's ever read. Just borrowed it from my neighbor, Meredith, so now I can finally see what all of the fuss is about.
I read this a long time ago (loved it!), but I'm hosting a book club discussion about it in August so I'd like to reread it to refresh my memory. I promise I won't serve baby food at the meeting, Amy!
My neighbor, Meredith, recommended this one. Looks intriguing.
Missed the book club discussion on this one too, but have been dying to read it. It's supposed to be a riot. Meredith gave it the thumb's up too.
I'm probably the last person left on the planet who hasn't read this book.
I heard a great review of this book on NPR. And I loved Snowflower and the Secret Fan. So there you have it, my summer reading list. We'll see how far I get . . .

Pearl of Wisdom

Wasn't it Anthony Bourdain in Kitchen Confidential who told the story about how after eating a raw oyster for the first time as a punk kid in France, he became a foodie for life? How up until that moment he had absolutely no idea it was possible for anything to taste that good?
Truer words were never written. I loved how the H did them here. With an ice-cold, slushy ponzu sauce. I'll take a dozen. Better make that a dozen and a half.

Photo Shoot

Some afternoons it's just me, the kids, our backyard and my camera.



Ready for their close-ups.
I love these faces.

Teeter Totter

I was off high heels for a long time. The reasons were endless-- pregnancy, home with babies, knee trouble, back pain, bunions, I already got a man, you name it. But lately I've gotten back into them, especially the platform variety which are really quite comfortable. Except today I sported these, which had me teetering all over the place. So I checked the specs. Turns out these babies are stacked. The heel is 4 3/4 inches high, and the platform only reduces the height to 3 1/2 inches. 3 1/2-inch heels! Not exactly body-friendly. But I love them, and they are super cute, especially with that gold notch on the back. And a good pedicure. Plus some part of me is bound and determined to pull off heels. I just hope I don't die trying.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

An Avocado a Day

Some days my work lunches are really pathetic.I mean throw-myself-at-the-mercy-of-the-snack-bar pathetic.
But if I happen to have one of these in the work refrigerator, suddenly I'm dipping those chips into buttery, green goodness, and I'm experiencing that hot/cold, nuanced texture sensation I so love in my soups. Yes, pathetic can turn into downright delicious thanks to the humble avocado. Could eat one at every meal. And often do.

Starbucks For Kids

It's a familiar scenario. I'm out and about with the kids, it's getting towards lunchtime, I need to find food quickly, but I don't want to haul the kids out of the car or feed them junk either. Enter the drive-through Starbucks. Why there isn't a line of minivans a mile long at that place I'll never understand because it is the answer to all of my mommy prayers. What other drive-through offers bananas, cheese and crackers, grapes and apple slices that don't come with caramel sauce, fresh turkey sandwiches, hard-boiled eggs and whole wheat bagels, yogurt and granola parfaits? Plus I get my caffeine fix. While I used to bemoan the proliferation of this chain, now I'm wishing there was a drive-through version on every corner. Here are S 'n' B having a Starbucks picnic in the back of our minivan on one recent gloomy day at the park. Seriously, if they started introducing Playlands at Starbucks, we'd be there all day. Probably would scare away their target customer base, but hasn't that happened already???

Shaken Not Stirred

These days, the H doesn't have to ask me what I want to drink with dinner. Because my answer is always, "A martini, please." I think I like them best with vodka. So refreshing and clean. And with that green olive chaser. So good. Plus I get to use the glasses that we registered for on a whim, but that I never thought we'd actually get. Well, get them we did. They're so lovely I display them in our china cabinet along with our other gorgeous but useless whimsies. Not so useless after all these glasses.

You Don't Serve Me Flowers

I certainly can't voice this complaint to my guy. Flowers turned up on our salmon dinner the other night.

So pretty. I gingerly scraped off most of the flowers though because I've never really bought into the whole edible flower thing. But one of those carnation-looking thingies kind of accidentally made it into my mouth, and you know, mixed in with the right combination of salmon and martini after-taste it wasn't so bad. I definitely ate my greens-- and pinks and purples and yellows that night. Speaking of martinis . . .

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Models at the Met

There is a very slight chance I might get to go to New York this summer. Since I'm an optimist by nature, I've already started planning my itinerary. Up first (aside from visiting dear relatives), a visit to the Met to see a special exhibition entitled The Model as Muse: Embodying Fashion. Models have always held a guilty fascination for me. On the one hand, they beautifully combine my appreciation for the female form and my love for all things girly. Oh to go through life with perfect lighting, perfect angles and perfect clothes. But I'm also well-versed in the controversies the industry generates. I did graduate from a women's college after all. Oh well, I can still see myself whiling away a blissful afternoon in the gallery staring at these standout images . . . Twiggy in Yves Saint Laurent Linda Evangelista in Guess (American founded 1981) and Virginia Kate Moss in Helmut Lang Naomi Campbell, Linda Evangelista, Tatjana Patitz, Christy Turlington, and Cindy Crawford in Giorgio di Sant' Angelo Naomi Campbell in Geoffrey Beene

Here's the next best thing to being there . . .

We all have to indulge once in a while.

Double Take No. 9 (Father's Day Edition)

Happy Father's Day, hon!Baby Snook
Baby Bubs
You make it look easy.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

I'm a Dan Fan!

We went with our friend and neighbor, Joy, to see The Dan Band last night, and they were hi-larious! Well I mean, who can forget their surprising cover of "Total Eclipse of the Heart" in Old School? That was some f***ing funny s**t.
I must admit though that before the concert I wondered how they managed to make a musical career out of dropping a few f-bombs into a song. Now I know. They drop them into lots of songs, along with some other choice expletives, and they do it brilliantly. Dan and the boys' "fake encore" was a particularly raunchy rendition of this song, perfectly-simulated dance moves and all. They definitely left me wanting more.

Close Enough?

I don't know if I should feel proud or mortified that every time Bubs sees a picture of one of these lovelies in a book he gleefully exclaims, "Mama!" Here's hoping he learns how to sound out the letter "l" a little better, real quick like.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Correction

Turns out our time-out bench is not, I repeat, not an antique. Furthest thing from it actually. It's made out of plywood, was manufactured in China, and can easily be purchased on-line for around $34.95. Long story as to why I sincerely thought it was an antique and therefore genuinely drew inspiration from it. But suffice to say, again, that it is not. Good thing I didn't take it on the Roadshow.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

The Milky Way

The H turned it out in the kitchen again last night . . . . . . with this beautiful fresh strawberry, bleu cheese and spinach salad.But the focal point of the meal was the milk-braised pork tenderloin and smashed potatoes smothered in a milk-based gravy. Just moovelous.Too bad we didn't have milkshakes for dessert because that would have gone along nicely with my theme. But we did have root beer floats in THE Coke glasses. And they were too good.Everything was reimagined as breakfast this morning. Udderly scrumptious!

Saturday, June 13, 2009

American Beauties

Why yes, those are red rose petals floating in my children's bathtub. It is my latest no fuss, no muss bathtime technique, and it's working like a charm. Mostly because it's lured Snook back into the bathtub with Bubs, which cuts my whole nighttime routine in half and gets her to bed almost an hour sooner. We'll see how long this lasts, but for now I'm enjoying how Victorian and picturesque it all is and trying not to think about that creepy old Kevin Spacey.

Fringe Benefits

When I made the decision to cut bangs late last year, I had no idea they would come with such great perks. For starters, I can pop into the salon any time for free bang trims in between cuts. Which really helps clean up the look when you're looking at a haircut only once every three to four months, if you're lucky. But wait, there's more. My awesome stylist trims Snook's bangs for free as well! This is huge because a bang trim for Snook used to run me about sixty bucks a pop. What?! That's outrageous!!! Well, in truth the bang trim itself only cost five bucks. But, and talk about this for a brilliant business model, her haircut place is located in the back of a toy store, which is located next door to a darling children's boutique. You try getting out of there for less. Not happening. Yes, I am quite relieved to finally be getting more bang for my buck.

Time Out

The bad news is this bench has been getting way too much use lately. The good news is it's an antique. Which I take to mean that the whole time-out thing must be a tried-and-true disciplinary technique. Meaning it must work. Eventually. I also take comfort in the idea of there being naughty kids back in the olden days. Makes the naughtiness seem more like a kids-being-kids thing and not like something I'm doing wrong. Whatever makes you feel better, right?

The Golden Clutch

This little clutch (in gold) is my latest most greatest fashion find. I was looking for a white clutch, but when I saw this, well it's hard to argue with the versatility and fabulosity of gold. And snakeskin. And a patent leather sheen. And the fact it cost less than thirty dollars. I love that it has both a zipper closure as well as a traditional clutch closure. Setting aside that it reminds me a little of the bag I used to wedge under my Malibu Barbie's arm, I really can find no flaw and look forward to showing it many a good time this summer.

He Lives in Me

So we saw the Lion King in Vegas, picked up the soundtrack, and now I can't stop listening to this same song over and over again. It's a kind of an anthem to every child who has ever lost a parent, and it chokes me up every time. Why I let myself dwell in such a dark place I have no idea. But it's beautiful in its tragedy.

Colorful Coke

Much as I try to limit our McDonald's trips to the occasional drive-through breakfasts and the even more occasional rainy-day playdates, some Friday nights nothing says dinner like the Golden Arches. Like last night for instance, when I tried to ease my guilt with supplemental bowls of cantaloupe all around. My guilt was also eased by the fact that tucked in with our value meals were the neatest little freebies I've seen in a while-- Coca-Cola glasses. Real glass. 16 ounces. In the prettiest shades of light brown and green. I can't remember the last time I drank a Coke (high school?). But there's something eye-catching about that classic, cursive logo, and I've always liked colored glass. Plus if we collect two more colors, we'll have the whole set! What to do? What to do?

Into Thin Air


I am so glad I finally discovered this product. Enough said.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Ladies and Gentlemen

Three months of ballet lessons culminated last Sunday afternoon with Snook's first ballet recital. But first I had to put into practice the lessons I'd been taught the previous week at a ballet bun workshop. I kid you not. They taught us everything from the exact width of the rubber band, to the specific brand/color of the hairnet, to the novel technique of splitting the pony tail into thirds before winding each section into a bun to avoid the "doorknob" effect. At the time I was thinking how nutty to have a bun workshop for three-year-old ballerinas. But on Sunday morning, I must say I knew exactly what to do with Snook's hair, and she looked lovely, right down to the slicked-back bangs. A requirement! Views from the back, top and side. Let me tell you, that bun was going nowhere.A shot in the backyard before it was time go.


And finally, the main event. Did you catch the plie? The port de bras? Just breathtaking! I was so proud of my little ballerina/cupcake face.

Now, lest you think Snook only dances, oh no, this girl is a double threat. As can be seen in this, my first blog video. Enjoy!

video