Thursday, December 10, 2009

Refreshing young talent

I am absolutely in love with her work, and she's such a cool woman to have around the neighborhood.

Monday, December 7, 2009

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas

Yesterday, Jeff's birthday came and went without any Celtic's tix or knit sweaters. We did have a great brunch with Solveig, after he slept in without worrying about the kid and the dog (the ultimate gift these days). He had a nice day, and Solveig and I cooked him a tasty piece of steak for dinner, a sure way to his heart. The big challenge was making sure he felt young, but that was simple - it snowed! I haven't blogged much lately, largely because I've been sort of busy, but mostly because sometimes my two cents just seem like, well, two cents. Very discouraged about healthcare (why don't we just concentrate on getting and keeping the costs down), the new-old war (seriously, 30, ooo more troops, just horrible), and the world's fascination with Tiger Woods and his affairs - who the heck cares, we're all adults here, right? So not anyone's business, let alone everyone's. But instead of ending this post on a negative note, I will share that my Christmas shopping, or should I say "clicking" is completely finished, tree is up, and Jimmy Smith's Christmas album is on continuous play most nights beginning at 5pm. Nothing keeps the spirit inspired like holiday music. I even like the pop cheesy stuff, in the same way that I like Budweiser, few and far between, but always welcome in a back to reality sort of way.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Unless you've been under a rock

you've heard about the Twilight series. Although I am not a Twihard, I do know who Robert Pattinson and Kristin Stewart are - young, normal, hard-working and fanatically obsessed over by bazillions of teens, housewives, and women all over the world. I attempted to read Twilight after I was invited to a "New Moon" premiere party, and I couldn't get to page 2 without laughing out loud in pure shock - "there's no way it can be this bad?" I remember thinking. Well, it is. Really, really bad: the writing, the plot, the language. If I can't get to page 5, I stop reading - have been this way my whole life and I've never electively read a book I didn't like - and why would I, who has the time? Still, I will admit that Robert and Kristin are compelling, in a young, James Dean/Joan Bennett sort of way. But what fascinates me most about KStew is that she really seems fearless in real life, especially with her denim choices - a mark of a woman going places in my book:) Above she is in 4Stroke Denim, a line I declared my love for in a previous post.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Walking the walk

My brain hasn't had much to comment on of late, been storing it all in bits and pieces, as I begin to embark on a new writing project.  We've also  had a lot of social commitments lately, which is something that hasn't always been on the top of my agenda when I crave some creative space. But, who are we if not defined and connected with others in some way, huh?  Lots of impending baby talk, toddler talk, work talk, travel talk, but very little just being stupid funny for the hell of it - my favorite kind of talk. But I have gotten to spend some great times with my friend Doreen,  one of the few women I'm not related to, but who brings out the funny in me, even without the booze. And of course, she is brilliant in her own subtle is a great article about the work she does.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Holy Cougar

Forget the body and gorgeous face, her hair is incredible. My new hair inspiration; hopefully I don't have to wait until I'm 47 to achieve it, but after seeing this spread, 47 is looking damn hot!

Monday, November 9, 2009

The novelty is unaffordable

Ok, decided against the sweater, and for either Celtics or Pats tickets for Jeff's bday. I can not believe how expensive Celtics tickets have become. He would never forgive me for spending $400 on tickets, not including dinner, and a hotel.  Craziness. I gotta make friends with the scalpers....

It's true, downtown was a zoo.

Yesterday it seemed like all of New England descended upon downtown Portsmouth to shop, gather, drink coffee, and enjoy the amazing weather. After a great morning swim and a nice breakfast, Jeff went to play ultimate frisbee, and I walked from our home, across the bridge (open only to pedestrians and bikes for the time being- yay!) to the Portsmouth Brewery to meet friends. As I looked around at the young, hip, vibrant crowd, I realized I was the only one pregnant and with a toddler in tow - but hey, the Patriots were on the big screen and my little brother was at the game so I had to be a part of it. Ah, Sunday.

Thursday, November 5, 2009


I am officially finished with my college prep students, and editing work, and can go back to only teaching two nights a week - yea! We had a great season, and I got to work with a lot of talented students; I also got to observe some what to do and what not to do parental tips. My constant note to self? Guide your kids toward being who there are, not toward who you want them to be. So now I can sit back, do a bit more of my own writing, and maybe try to learn something new. I am not one to ever pick up knitting, give me some idle time and I'd rather go nuts with a paint brush, but I'm sort of feeling the call. I'd love to knit Jeff a sweater for his birthday in December, but that's nothing less than a pipedream. I guess I should figure out a plan B, as there are few things in life as sweet as giving and receiving unexpected presents from the heart. I will have to nonchalantly put out some feelers...would hate to just give him a gift card to Home Depot. Lame.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Autumn never looked so good

Yes, David Beckham is wearing a Hermes backpack, but the dude is rolling in it, so I forgive him. As for Jude, inarguably the biggest rake out there? I still think he is insanely sexy; I recently forked over way too many dineros to catch him as Hamlet on Broadway over Thanksgiving weekend. The last image is from 4 Strokes denim lookbook -I love their fits and washes.

"The mass of mankind has not been born with saddles on their backs, nor a favored few to ride them." - Thomas Jefferson

How annoying to have a Vote Yes on 1 banner ad show up on my blog.  I know there's no telling which ads will appear, but I feel like anything politically minded is just downright unethical. For the record, I will Vote No on 1, for equity and gay rights. I actually noticed that even when I was driving through some of the rural, two horse towns en route up the Maine coast the other day, there were tons of Vote No signs, many even hand made! I'd like to think people are no longer afraid of some falsely created demonizing God, and simply more willing to accept each other as human beings just trying to lead a truthful, supported existence.  

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Just really cool.

If money were not an object, I think I would buy just about every  item in this lookbook.
It's all really wearable and stylish, without being so in your face - exactly what I like.
I particularly like the Rogan selection, and not only because I blush every time I see a picture of the designer, Rogan Gregory - I think I may actually even get a little weak in the knees -  but because the clothes, all made using sustainable practices, are nothing short of utterly cool.

Just how Rockwell Kent saw it

Solveig and I spent a good part of yesterday way up in the beautiful coastal area near Rockland, Maine. I'd like to write that we were looking at an abandoned cottage to fix up as our new summer home, as spending time way up along the Maine coast has always appealed to me. But, we were actually getting the freaking H1N1 vaccination, since no one in our area provides it and we're both considered high risk. So glad that's over with.  Of course we made a day of it, went to a great thrift store, skipped some stones in the harbor, and strolled through the old downtowns, that although quiet, host just about everything a person could need to make Maine the "the way life should be" after all. 

Monday, October 26, 2009

"I like people who shake other people up and make them feel uncomfortable" - Jim Morrison

Watched Rachel Getting Married over the wknd. Although it was one of the best acted and scripted movies I have seen in a very long time, I don't think I could recommend it to anyone I know, as mainly, it's profoundly sad.   I actually watched after midnight, while Jeff slept, and it kept me up all night.  What really intrigues me is that people are hugely torn over this movie. The New Yorker rated it the best movie of 2008, yet there is a Facebook page called "Rachel Getting Married Sucks", with scores of negative, insulting posts. Well, I guess differing opinions are true of any film, but I for one totally got it,and I'm sorry some weren't able to.   I am a glutton for risks in film, and this movie took many.  Perhaps because when one of my best friends in high school became an annoying addict - although not as tragic as this movie's star -  I began to see most people as less problematic and more of just who they are. And so, my big realization early Saturday morning was that if we can find in the viewing of art  just one empathetic instance, we can get so much more out of experiencing new things, and new people in our own lives.  Everything is related, we just have to let our guards down to see where and how the strings attach. It takes a brave, true person to accept others as they are, and a weaker, less substantial one to shun them.  Oh yea, and I also have a big girl crush  on the movie's screen writer, Jenny Lement.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

She shoots, she scores!

My healthclub is undergoing some major renovations. It has recently been purchased by a Swedish dude, and all of the changes will be vast improvements from its neglected former state. So far, the chlorine pool has been refilled with a saline solution (no chemicals!), and the exercise room is currently getting a "green" face lift, with bamboo floors and a solar roof. Going to the gym mon-fri is a must for me; mostly because Solveig loves the daycare there, and I need the Solveig free time, chatting with mom friends, and attempting to get completely lost in sweat.  So lately, with all the work that's being done, and equipment being replaced, I am down to about 2 things I can use while there: the recumbent bike and the basketball court. Naturally, I've chosen the court.  The court is a gem. It seems to be mostly used at night, so I have it all to myself. Although I do practice my dribbling -through the legs, behind the back -  as well as my enviable finger spin, it's all about the foul shot percentage: I am currently at 30%, but improving daily. It has sort of become my morning Zen - something about the bounce of a basketball is really soothing.  Moral of the story? You're never too old to be young again. And, pretending Rajon Rondo is guarding you while you go up for that layup, is not such a bad way to start the day.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Yum, yum, and yum

Both Jeff and I are currently addicted to tzatziki, a Greek yogurt dip we eat with thick pita bread. Although this was the one thing my mother would make for me and only me when I was younger, she went big when chopping the cucumbers, which made it more like a cucumber salad (still really good) than a dip.  You can find it at Whole Foods, or many markets; we get ours from a little company in Merrimack, NH - they sell their products at our local produce market, right up the road.  I've tried making it, but I just can't get it down.  I like to use Greek yogurt, lemon, dill, cucumbers and some olive oil. This recipe is absolutely amazing, and you can pretty much eat it with anything.  Not sure what's going on, but all I want to eat lately is Mediterranean food, even for dessert.  

Monday, October 19, 2009

"I'm talkin' bout music I ain't talkin' bout rap, you talkin' bout who's hot I ain't talkin' bout that"

Although Jeff uses Pandora a whole bunch, usually just letting it stream from his laptop while he attempts to cook or get some work done, I am not at all a fan. In fact, I resent that my musical preference  is being deduced to the predictability of a computer code, written by people who have no idea about me, or what I'm doing during any particular listening opportunity. Listening to music is an intimate experience for me. I listen to a wide array of music, and prefer to let chance direct my own non-virtual steam. The one time I used Pandora, I was more than let down.  Suggesting Taylor Swift because I like Gillian Welch? I don't think so.  Not that Taylor isn't talented, but it's not  so much about the genre as it is about the music. I do love getting suggestions from friends, and finding new artists when I least expect it, but that's just it - I  have to least expect it.   It's impossible to tell me what I am bound to  like because I enjoy Nina Simone, Radiohead, and even at times, Jay Z.   All of the mathematically deduced suggestions completely elude the fact that listening to music, in many ways, is an act of freedom, of self-discovery, and no computer program can come close to the thoughtfulness, coincidence, and even fate, that's involved in that ever satisfying voyage.  

Sunday, October 18, 2009

A perfect Autumn night

Went to a fabulous party/bonfire in Nottingham, NH last night. Donkeys, horses, an adored pig, 3 fires, and an array of unbelievable mostly homegrown food. So glad we got out there before it gets too cold to stand around for a while looking at the stars and the distant mountains.

Friday, October 16, 2009

A compelling read, part dos

I just have to say, I am so lost in these stories that I forgot that I am actually reading. I love this type of writing, filled with  direct language and lyrical imagery. I can't believe it has taken me this long to begin this - I bought the book over a year ago. For any of you who are just waiting for the right time to delve into your last book purchase or borrow, take it from me, there's no time like the present.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

The weather outside's delightful

IT's October and there's snow in our Southern Maine forecast, but so far it's just been crazy talk - sometimes I think meteorologists are just looking for attention.  Yet if we do get some flaky puffs, I won't be remiss.  I grew up dreading winter and cold weather, but now I can't have it any other way.  I actually look forward to it, which is surreal for me to admit. But my latest theory is that if you are happy in life, truly happy inside, you just don't give a crap about the weather! I mean really, get a grip; it's just freaking weather, and it's actually exciting to loose yourself in its  unexpected craziness.  I may just be saying this because I scored a sweet vintage shearling coat while in the city, or I may just very well be happy. Truly happy. So bring it on Altitude Lou, I already got the soup on, and there's even bread in the oven.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

You may say I'm a dreamer

I have a love/hate relationship with my pillow. When I toss and turn amidst visions of literary postulations, I blame my pillow as the clock reminds me of the few hours of sleep that I will likely be getting. And when I fall asleep instantly, mysteriously filling the ever elusive  dream-card with the most pleasant occurrences, loving people, and unthinkable good fortune, it is my pillow whom I thank in the morning. This morning I awoke grateful and refreshed - a clean slate. I am completely caught up with contractual work, and now I can get a little lost in the bliss still floating through my subconsciousness, and  finish writing a song.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

An apple a day

Overloaded with a continuous avalanche of conflicting health information out there, as well as a current preoccupation with House MD, I am often left so pessimistic about the state of medical research and diagnostics. I just have less trust in modern medicine, and in trendy miracle foods. For all I know, eating burgers everyday and drinking pints of something or other may keep me living carefree and healthy for as long as the moon allows. But since I'm unwilling to investigate that claim, I like to read this blog to stay abreast of some interesting happenings out there. It's not fatalistic, cautionary, new-agey, weighty, preachy, or uninteresting. In other words, it's time well spent.

Is it time to get up yet?

When I looked at the calendar last Friday and saw that besides the coming weekend, we would have plans every weekend through mid-November, I decided to instill a lets do absolutely nothing until Monday rule.  On Friday we stayed in and ate Chinese food (Thai seemed like too much effort), watched Away We Go (which was sweet and at times hysterical). On rainy Saturday, I lazed around on the couch reading cookbooks while Jeff and Solveig perfected their impressive nap/book rotation, and on Sunday we took a long drive up to the Lakes Region to check out the foliage, attend a local artisan fair and eat a yummy harvest dinner  - that somebody else cooked, of course. There was neither a chore to do nor an errand to run -not even a trip to the dump with the trash. It could all wait.   And I have to say, my brain is still sort of stuck in that nonchalance, which is really nice. We've been so busy with work, house stuff, commitments, etc, that we haven't had much opportunity to just unwind, even on weekends.  So now it's Wednesday, we head to NYC on Friday, have dinner plans, parties, and company every weekend through mid November.  And I'm looking more forward to it all, mostly because I've gotten the much needed indolence out of the way.  So if you can squeeze it in, I highly recommend squeezing nothing in.  After all, many times the best plans are simply not planned. 

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Absolut Marketing

Great marketing, especially since the Celtics' preseason is underway.  If there's one thing Bostonians have more than most, it's pride - still not sure if that's a good thing, but it usually makes for a fun time at games.

Friday, October 2, 2009

My how the time flies, part 2

A great read, and not just for fathers and sons.  As I write this I realize that Solveig's naps will soon be obsolete (unless she takes after her dad), and that our days together will go by faster than my heart is willing to accept.  Hope everyone gets some good quality time in with their loved ones this weekend.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

A room of one's own

As I've been looking at various studio spaces around town, I am realizing that I'm not really hip to small, creative workplaces. I need big. Vast. And somehow, linear.  I dare say, I could write novels here. In the winter, of course. 

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

I want to be a part of it

Our seasonal trips to NYC usually go something like this: 1. visit Jeff's folks 2. exhibit of some sort 3. street pretzel 4. shop and walk around a specific neighborhood 6. epic dinner 7.drinks, music, or books 8. jump back on the train.  Next wknd we will actually be able to stay overnight, which means 2 days of things we've been unable to partake in since early summer. I'm still undecided about dinner, our last Greek spot on the lower east side will  be hard to beat, but I'm aiming for something different...maybe Afghan.  And since we have 2 days (thank God for grandparents), we can see both this and this, which I'm really looking forward to experiencing.  

Pure Perfection

Ah Penelope, my hair inspiration. I only have about 2 more years of growth to go....

Much more than an inch

Well I was hoping to finish my patio/ chess board project, but it rained last night and I was greeted this morning by a very ominous looking worm slowly making its way from square to square. I know, they're good for the earth, Darwin spent his last years studying them, and they're really not that big. But still, this guy was scary as all hell. He was by far the largest worm I've ever seen, and I swear he was getting bigger right before my very eyes.  Messing with him is a no-no, not unlike microwaving peeps, which has always been nightmare inducing. The picture above is of "Barry",  from Cornwall, England,  a 4-foot long giant sea worm that terrorized local coral and chewed through a 20 ft long fish  line.  When he stings, his bristles leave you permanently numb.  So yea, somehow I just don't feel like taking my chances today.

Monday, September 28, 2009

From the Northwest Passage to the Great Divide

Five friends I wish I had in my life at this moment:

1.  a boot maker (for purely selfish reasons)
2. a  comedian
3. a crazy artist
4. a mountaineer who is always up for anything
5. an unemployed foodie

Every year for several years now, I've had dear friends move away; most of them at least a 4 hr plane ride away.  For some, it's the grass is always greener, while for others it's just circumstantial. This has left me with a lot of acquaintances, and several "couple" friends. So I shouldn't have been at all surprised when I learned the other day that a friend I met a year ago is moving down South come December. It doubly stinks because our daughters are six months apart, and have very much enjoyed each other. What I will miss most, is that she made me laugh out-loud on a daily basis,  not unlike my 4th grade bff who moved to sunny CA. I am okay with doing my own thing, and many times prefer to, but it almost always takes another person to make you take yourself and your life a lot less seriously, which is profoundly rewarding.  I can accept the grass is greener peoples' decisions (I had some of that in my twenties), and although it is sad to see folks go, I am left really happy with the certainty I have in my life.  Even if I will never be able to find or make the perfect boots I spend countless hours searching for, at least I can listen to this great album and lament. itunes picks: Other Side and Come and Find Me

Friday, September 25, 2009

Last weekend in September

Another picture perfect start to the week's end. After having dinner with friends tonight, I am heading down to Boston in the morning.  Above are a few things I will be seeking and obsessing about while Jeff  will stay in Maine and insulate some nooks and crannies throughout our house - a perfect chance to help out the economy and the environment in one afternoon!  I need to make sure I have all the right stuff to partake in this yummy drink concoction before I hit the ground running this evening.  Enjoy the fresh air this weekend!

Thursday, September 24, 2009

How high can you go?

This morning while in my gym's locker room, a hot fifty-plus women told me that I should try the kickboxing class to "lift my rear".   At first I thought my ears were still clogged from my peaceful hourlong swim. LIFT MY REAR?!?! This, coming from a woman who walked away singing along to the Jonas Brothers on her ipod, mind you.  I could not bring myself to check her out in the mirror's reflection, for fear that her suggestion came firmly grounded. Although a bit insulted at first, now, as I indulge in my favorite refuel snack, I am fully confident that the endless hours one spends fighting gravity will never get them as far as simply ignoring it. 

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

If you build it, they will come

Really trying to never post anything negative on this blog. Negativity is completely barred from any of the college entrance editing I do, and if I sense it even slightly in a work document, it is admonished instantly. Critical observation, however, is another thing - as long as it's never opinionated.  So lately the news has been sucking. Yea, times are tough, and the bad stuff seems to be getting the best of the good stuff, (yea, I'm talking about you Glenn Beck).  I found this story to be one of the small good things out there today, the first day of Fall. Really hoping people hold on to their dreams and visions, as there's nothing else that really sustains the tests of time so beautifully.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Sunday is the new Monday

A while back, I decided to consciously let Sunday be the first day of the week; somewhere along the way, this all important title was haphazardly given to Monday. There's no better way to start your week than sleeping in, having mostly finished house chores, enjoying the great outdoors without dealing with Saturday's yahoos, and cooking great early suppers, or watching the game. It's so much better to just accept Sunday as the new Monday, trust  me.   Your mood for the entire work week will be set while you relax and do things that are entirely up to you.  As an added bonus, Friday is actually the new Saturday. We've been starting the last 4 Sundays off with a morning hike up Mt. A, just a few miles away. It's sort of like our quiet church time, not being church goers, and it's been fun to just get lost in light thought and beautiful shadows, with a still sleepy Solveig calling "tree, tree" while on my back.  When Monday comes, it is already the second day of the workweek, and yes, it somehow magically seems easier for even Jeff to greet. 

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Early to rise

Long day of work today, so when Jeff woke me at 5:45AM to ask if his tie matched, I welcomed it; normally I'd just ignore him and return to the recurring dream in which  David Beckham is picking out my wardrobe. But since we're only days away from our first frost, walking the dog around the block as the sun rises still seems ok.   In a few weeks, it will certainly lose its charm.