Category Archives: TV

Weekend Round Up

Sophy had a fantastic time with Aunt Anita and Granny. She was more than happy to share how she’d like everyone to behave for pictures. Lots of snuggles and adventures on Friday while Mommy and Daddy were at work. Lots of shopping and tasty food and just hanging out.

The willing babysitters meant we ventured out for a movie, Elysium, which Rolland loved and I found meh. We did see it at the new DFW Alamo Drafthouse and I really wanted to love the theater but it was also just meh. It was 108 out and felt like it was 98 in the theater. The food was pretty tasty though. I had a baked pretzel with hatch chile queso… yum. It was disappointing when eaten next to someone smelly. Ick.

Monday we caught up on Top Chef Masters. I’ve been hoarding episodes. I’m really enjoying Francis Lam as a guest. He was a favorite on Cooking Channels “Unique Eats” and “Food(ography)“.  I’m also ready for Sang to get off my TV. I usually love TCM more than Top Chef just because everyone’s established and plays nice. There’s always somebody who’s kind of an ass (Michael Chiarello) but this is usually rare. I love the camaraderie and the season with Jonathan Waxman will always be a favorite. This year feels a little more bitchy.

Finally, we’re caught up on visits for a while so it’s time to start the crazy “to do list“. Pray for me.

Aquamarines… maybe?

I have got to start labeling my beads and stones. I’m pretty sure these are aquamarines I had left over from an earlier project. Seriously, they were in a small white dish to the right of my desk. I’m trying to be a little more spontaneous in my art as well as work with what’s on hand. This was a little bit of both. Clearly I have to start taking all my pics outside during daylight! You can’t tell from this but these stones are blue, clear~ish and blue/green. Oy. I am too lazy to wait and go back out and retake then re-post. I only  have so many hours in the day and I had a Jeff Lewis Interior Therapy and while we were watching that why not make a night of it and watch Property Envy? I have a huge crush on Mary McDonald and loved her on Million Dollar Decorators. If we ever win the lottery I’m hiring Mary to design a studio with labeling, and good light, and a fancy book ladder thingy. Yeah, it’s always the opening paragraph where the wheels start to come of on these things.

And…back to the necklace! I liked the idea of stringing these as opposed to using chain as I did on another piece I made a long time ago. The hole drilled into the stones is pretty tiny and the wire is very fine if you wrap it. I may have to go back and redo my earlier piece. I wore it on Monday and was petrified it was going to break. This piece is really sturdy. My only problem was that  I didn’t like the stringing material showing so I  dug through my beads until I found these tiny moonstones and used those in between the larger stones. I wish they had a little more texture but I liked the matte finish so they don’t compete with aquamarines like a rhinestone or a bead with sparkle would have.

There’s a little bit of asymmetry in this one with the carved rose bone bead and the swarovski rondelles but I wanted just a little tiny bit of sparkle and some added interest around the vintage clasp. I added a little medal as pendant if someone wanted to wear the clasp in front. I really liked how it came out. It’s also a little shorter, probably 17 inches, than my normal pieces. My friend Suzanne always wants me to do shorter pieces so I’m working on providing a good mix for everyone.

Five on Friday

I saw this over on Elefantitas Alegres and decided to be a big ol’ joiner and participate. The meet up is at A. Liz Adventures.
 
 
 
My Five 
 
1. Trader Joe’s yogurt squishers  and a super cute toddler. These, yogurt not toddler, are super cheap and as we found out last night, perfect when frozen (smart husband) for a teething toddler on a hot summer night. Also, it blends in nicely when dripped on her chair. Side note: I could put this adorable little toddler as an item in all 5 since she is the bestest. Real word. Anyway, these yogurt squishers are normally just a big squishy thing of yogurt that can be a giant mess. When frozen, healthier popsicle. Ideally, half that size is best but now that I know that I’ll just cut them in half (while frozen seems prudent) and put the other half back in the freezer. That’s how you do it in these fiscally conservative times. 
 
 
Trader Joe’s has a lot of family favorites that deserve their own post at some point.
 
2.  All things jewelry related. I’ve made a few new pieces this week (this one and this one and a couple with no photos yet) and have the creative juices flowing. I’ve got two pieces in progress and another 2 brewing on the back burner. I’ve been gathering a ton of inspiration and have noticed a turquoise trend going. Will have to add some more projects to brew list.
 
3. With all of this jewelry making, I’ve been obsessed with the West Wing again. I’m starting Season 4 and deep into re-election campaigning. Last episode of Season 3 was tough. I knew it was coming… sob. Anyway, sooo good. Major West Wing love and it’s amazing how many issues going on now are still relevant. The questions and issues they’re tacking via fiction, are pretty real and relevant now. Maybe this is why I have to watch while making something pretty. :0
 
4. Local food joints. We’re trying to eat at home more and save the food budget, now that we’ve gotten around to having a food budget, for a few super tasty treats out vs regular helpings of meh. This weekend I have a couple on my list. First up is Babe’s, that everyone has been talking about forever, but I have yet to try out. So after swimming lessons, we’re hitting the chicken and Costco. I know. So glamorous. Then Sunday, as bribery to drive my ass to Ft Worth and look at beads he couldn’t hate more with me while wrangling a toddler, I’m taking Rolland to Jonathan’s Oak Cliff in hopes it’s tasty enough to forget the imminent hell awaiting him. They have a build your own Bloody Mary Bar! What more could I offer? Also, it’s a tie-in with the jewelry making and more bead hoarding. On a budget.
 
5. Yoga. So, I had this hip thing going on for a long time and finally mentioned it to my new doctor. Love Dr. Bonny! Turns out, the muscles are too tight and have gone all wonky. She suggested I hightail it to a yoga class if I wanted to avoid physical therapy. Sophy’s school has a Wee Yogi’s program – and that name is adorable – which I was checking out at the same time since I’m kind of self conscious about attending a group class. So now I’m doing a weekly private class with Abby. Who is awesome. I’m loving it. The goal is to work on some specific areas then hit the group classes. Although my usual Sat morning got rescheduled for tonight and I may just fall asleep in the meditation.
 
And finally… it’s Friday! Woo hoo!

Mind Blown

So Jonathan Adler has a line for JCP called Happy Chic. I knew they were making all the changes to be trendy and down with all the super cool kids but I never expected them to really mean it. I love, love, love Jonathan Adler and tried to justify the $350 elephant lamp for Sophy’s room but couldn’t really do it.  I also love his partner Simon Doonan who was (is?) the creative director for Barney’s and while I hate Barney’s as elitist assholes – even more so than Neiman Marcus and that’s saying something. He has fantastic style and an amazing spirit. His window displays were incredibly.

Uhm, anyway back to Jonathan Adler. He’s got some very cool pieces at pretty reasonable prices with the JCP line and I picked a few favorites as window shopping.

Love this little bird pillow. Super cute for kids or just a whimsical accent.

I will admit that this couch is a fantasy more than anything practical in our house. Those wooden legs seem less than sturdy for all the real life flopping that goes on in our house. Also, it seems un-conducive to partially gnawed on bunny crackers and snot that would get wiped on it. But I love it for my dream house that is cleaned by elves that also stock the pantry and cook dinner.

This vase is also awesome. I love the black and white stripe in nearly all schemes since it screams “I’m fun damn it!” at you regardless of how snooty you may be striving.

This is also causing further decorating angst for my downstairs main living spaces (I won’t even acknowledge the upstairs). I’ve wanted to repaint since we did it and it came out much darker than I liked. Rolland was thrilled since he would love to live in a cave without light at all. I’m still contemplating white to brighten it up and allow for multiple accessory swap outs. This is unlikely since I refuse to ever get to such a pitiful state and I kind of hate to paint.

Sidenote: I just finished watching the Real Housewives of Beverly Hills followed with a Justified chaser and that’s not a TV leap the body should normally make. Although that Andy Cohen smack down to Adrienne Maloof would’ve been Harlan approved.  I’m going to bed to sleep it off. But, Deputy Marshall Tim is quickly gaining super fans.

Sunday Musing

It’s been pretty low key in our house after a crazy work week. Since I switched jobs last June it’s a nice 8-5 environment so I can’t really complain especially compared to my previous gig. Even with the craziness I still miss my work crew and the ensuing zaniness. Mostly I still keep in touch and can’t wait until Sophy’s birthday for another group meet up. It’s all a little bittersweet and catches up to me at weird times. Last week is one of them. I’ve mostly pushed through and have recovered enough to shop and add a few new items to the wardrobe even in our frugal times. Sale people, sale!

These are some new goodies on their way to my hot little hands as we speak. I wasn’t sure about this one but Rolland co-signed and at $30 bucks it was hard to resist.

In channeling my inner Joan from Mad Men, if you had to click the link you need to get yourself caught up on Mad Men pronto, I couldn’t resist this. I also think it will be perfect for a date night on our trip to Seattle next month.

I have resisted this and this but I’m keeping my eye on them in case of a significant coupon.

This shirt is on my spring must have list and am currently saving pennies. I’m even hunting down a version of the orange necklace at some point in the future. Fantastic styling for my super preppy wish list must have for my white jeans.

In our mini-shopping weekend we picked up a few Mini Boden items for Sophy Bear. Love their clothes but they’re pretty pricey so stocking up while I can. When she hits two she’s going to be rocking some super cute outfits. We did splurge on her birthday dress. Soooo cute. Can’t wait. I also got a text that my sister, Debbie, who lives in Austin was in town with her son for a tennis tournament so we caught up for brunch today. Got some good pics. Also the first time I had met my nephew Jesse who is a cutie. He’s a fantastic tennis player and was kicking some tennis tail at Allen High School. Go Jesse!

This week I need to get back to the regular gym attendance. Dreading those 4:30 am wake up calls though. Not much else planned and that’s nice. Dinner at home and a little tv time… OH! Are you watching The Americans? I liked it a lot more than I thought I would. It’s filling my Homeland void since having cut of movie channels. Also loving Continuum. Even Rolland likes it and he typically hates all Syfy programming. A few more new shows starting and adding to DVR. I’ll report back once I remember what they are and if I’m enjoying them.

Happy Sunday and back to football now that the lights are back on… I mean really people, things that you should double check include cords, fuses and wattage Beyonce may need for lip synching. Yep, I said it.

80/20

Sophy Bear and I before we headed out this am. It was actually lovely, if a little precarious, with the snow and ice but it really felt like winter and I am a winter super fan. Love it. I would be happy to drive in it 70% of the time. I’m guessing this is unlikely in DFW unless the Mayans take some quick action. I also love any opportunity to snuggle this little cutie and put her in clothing with ears. Ears look good on anybody. True fact (totally stolen from my friend David, but I love it and am working it until it’s no longer noticeable as not mine).

All of this is to point out how amazing this am was and I’m grateful. I have got to work on not letting “perfect be the enemy of the good”. Wikipedia is mostly giving credit to Voltaire for this little nugget but I’m embracing it. I focus on perfection regularly to the detriment of a lovely trip, scene, meal, etc. I only see the things that went wrong or what was missing not what was fantastic and good. The road to happiness is not found by nitpicking. Also true fact. See what I did there. Eh, good right? Anyway, wikipedia also goes on to discuss how 20% of the effort gets you 80% return and the last 20% of the task takes 80% of the effort. For most things in life, 80% really is the goal. If the house is at 80% I get more snuggles, more baking time, more time snuggling with Rolland and so on. This is where I need to make some changes and really figure out what’s worth driving myself crazy. Really, it can’t be everything all the time. Madness that is. So, this rambling post, going up just like this so I can go watch more Bravo programming. Also the new Lost Girl. But what’s worth the effort, getting my ass up at 4:30 tomorrow to go to the gym. 80% effort on that one! Happy Tuesday!

The Little Paris Kitchen

I’ve discovered a new favorite show that my husband can hate. And he does. A lot. Although to be fair Rachel Khoo never stood a chance since he hears the french music playing and bee lines it out of the room. That man seriously has issues with the French. It’s not right. Also, anyone want to visit Paris with me? He claims to never return. London? London he loves and will visit any time.
… Anyway, I love The Little Paris Kitchen on the Cooking Channel and can’t wait for the cookbook The Little Paris Kitchen: 120 Simple But Classic French Recipes to come out. I may, in the interest of frugality and minor torture, make it my Valentine’s Day present request. So far the recipes look relatively easy but fancy enough for a nice dinner if you use the good china. Also, being on the frugality train I love the Paris eye candy to help nip in the travel bug. It doesn’t really work but I still like the eye candy. 
So far, there have been a few new offerings for the late winter that look pretty good. I’m really looking forward to Danielle Bryk’s new show on DIY. I loved what she did with her house on Family Under Construction. House and Home has a gallery of a few finished rooms. Luckily, the husband loved this one so we can both watch. I’m hoping it will help keep the home organization and improvement momentum going. Additionally, I want to paint everything white – another hated of the husband’s. For the love of God, never bring up Sarah Richards. He’ll lose his poop. 

Anything else new I can’t miss?

Camera Love Continues

Continuing with my camera love I now want to go here. Instead I had to settle with this purchase Instant Love: How to Make Magic and Memories with Polaroids since it is a little more budget and baby friendly.
 
I’m making the most of my instant camera love and can’t wait to find some creative uses for pictures of this little cutie.
HA! Not what you expected, sometimes she resists photos and is not an angelic little creature who poos silk. Nope, that poo is stinky and gross. Additionally, she has taken to screaming. For no reason. Just ’cause. Forcing you to distract her with something sparkly. …  I’m starting to become uncomfortable with the turn of the conversation and where she may have gotten the sparkly distraction gene. You have to admit, that pigtail and tantrum is cute as hell.

Moving on! We had an incredibly relaxing Wednesday for my final vacation day yesterday. We wisely used our time and caught up on Top Chef watching all 8 episodes (maybe 9) on our DVR. So now let me say that John Tesar is a little ferret and I’m happy he’s off my TV.  Also, I’m loving Stefan this time around. Much less irritating to me than on his previous season. Now, off to watch Selling New York and heading to bed early. This working stuff seriously cuts into my play time!

Mid-Week Recommendation

 

 I bought The Happiness Project not long after it came out but have just started reading it. I am loving it. Gretchen Rubin’s writing style is perfect for me. Conversational and anecdotal for what worked for her and clear instruction that this is what worked for HER. Apply appropriate type of planning to your own life since her happiness isn’t your happiness. I’m also loving the reminders that it’s important to take care of yourself. That said I went to bed very late last night but previously I had been doing better! I swear. For like, two days I was asleep before 10pm with walks being taken. We’ve also been eating at home and it’s been tasty and wallet friendly. But last night  I was working on a jewelry project for a friend and got totally inspired. Damn day job is interfering with my creative muse!

This weekend includes big plans for cleaning out and organizing. The studio, inside and out, since the weather is gorgeous and we can work in the garage without risking heat stroke. The house will get back under control so say we all… little Battlestar Galactica throw back there since I don’t want to lose my geek street cred, and I want to rid it off about half of the crap that has totally taken over. Big goals people, big goals!

Next, I promise more Halloween pics with cute babies.

In case I haven’t mentioned it before, I love myself some sci-fi and fantasy as long as it’s not all horror and gory filled or just giant bugs and horrible weather disasters. Seriously, when did a tornado or earthquake not caused by aliens or some weird cryptid animal become science fiction? Mystery, angst, romance I’m totally sold. Add in gorgeous locations or fantastic costuming as a bonus and I’ll write a blog post highlighting your awesomeness. Mostly I’m outing my love for Urban Fantasy and if you know me, that closet door was mostly wide open which was a walk-in with seating.

Sooo… Syfy, who has finally convinced me the re-branding wasn’t totally stupid and I often start to spell all sci-fi that way, has some good programming. But, I am still bitter about the loss of Eureka (insert sniffing here) and the Dresden Files which now that I’m getting started I really, really miss The Chronicle  and am kind of nostalgic for Stargate even if they did beat that horse to death a couple of times. I’ve got a little Battlestar Galactica angst as well. Also, I have started to get kind of pissed at Syfy for torpedoing a lot of great programming. 

Ok, I’m over it.

The new season of Haven is getting ready to start and I’m crazy happy about it. It’s set in Maine, has lots of paranormal goodness with pretty people. What’s not to love? They also have a pretty great twitter feed with Dave and Vince but I had to pare down the twitter following and just follow the Herald.

image via Syfy

The latest seaon of Lost Girl has just wrapped up and won’t be back until January. I’m pretty sure you can catch up via episodes on Syfy. This one is filmed in Toronto so the scenery is pretty typical urban environment but the sets are pretty good and the costumes are fantastically leather badass with boots to match. There’s been some romance angst that can get grating but I’m willing to give it another season before I decide if it’s irritating or not.

image via Syfy

The whole family is a fan of Grimm on NBC but they’re a pain in the ass to try and swipe a photo so they just get a link.  This one has fairy tale quotes, moody Portland locations, cute main characters and awesome set design/houses. In a quick cross over, if you love the fairy tales and also graphic novels then Fables is the series for you. Greatness.

In case TV isn’t your favorite, I’ve got a few book recommendations that fit my criteria for good fantasy and have had releases this fall. Seanan McGuirre has two series that are huge favorites. The October Daye series and the Incryptid series which feels a little campier to me but that could just be that the lead character moonlighting as a dancer/cocktail waitress. And by dancer I mean ballroom not stripper. I’ve also started Celia Jerome’s Willow Tate books and they are total camp. Not un-enjoyable but I have to be in the mood or I just find them irritating and want to smack everyone. I’m pretty sure that’s not what she’s going for when reading. 

A few more favorites are Kat Richardson, Ilona Andrews who does a lot of awesome stuff for e-versions and I’m primarily a fan of the gunmetal/Kate Daniels stuff so can’t speak to any of her other series, Carrie Vaughn, and Laura Anne Gilman.I could list a ton more but these are the latest I’ve been reading. 

There’s something about the onset of fall and the approach of Halloween that seems to especially embrace the typical spooky/angsty/moodiness of fantasy. For me, that’s primarily  urban fantasy and the first Harry Potter with floating pumpkins, which has a lot of great talent embracing the genre right now. I’m striking and soaking it up while the iron is still hot. Sorry for the poorly constructed sentence there but you get the idea.