Tuesday, December 4, 2007

exploring brooklyn

i had the pleasure of spending an excellent work-hard-play-hard week in new york & brooklyn. fantastic friends & wintry weather.

here are a few shots that i managed to snag in park slope & williamsburg.

[photos via myflickr]


Saturday, November 24, 2007

giving thanks -- and eating tofurkey

the family's thanksgiving feast was enjoyed by omnivores & vegetarians alike.

and the tofurkey was the talk of the day.

the face of a hungry vegetarian

[photo via myflickr]


Wednesday, November 14, 2007

holiday season

with thanksgiving around the corner, my brain flashes forward to the full-fledged holiday season. christmas carols start to ring in my ears (they are already playing them in the streets). red becomes the color of the moment. i am thinking about family, friends, buffets of food, egg nog, and gift giving galore...

i am already working on my recipe book project for all the 20(and30)-somethings on my list...but there are so many more projects that i'd like to work on. cards to create, projects to brainstorm, crafts to make.

and there are so many more places that i'd like to explore to find Just The Right Thing for so-and-so. here are a few online shops that i want to take advantage of:
- the curiosity shop with it's quirky mix of fun & useful
- uncommon goods for the more-than-ordinary
- elseware to support awesomely independent design
- kiosk, the eclectic seasonal mix of imported goodies
- threepotatofour, one of many little online shops to scour
- reform school and other local LA shops
- and all of etsy for surprising finds

for ideas:
- thisnext, maybe a little super consumerism, but it's got spark
- mighty goods, a daily dose of interesting online finds

[photo of xmas06 from myflickr]

Monday, November 12, 2007


above is the view from our living room window. yes it's true! the ultimate symbol of beauty, power, and entertainment is visible from our own home!! well...visible when the smog clears up, that is.

after a chilly week, LA has warmed up and the sun was shining again today. i took an afternoon walk downtown, picked up the house a bit, did some reading. a lowkey day.

back to work tomorrow. the last push before holiday season begins..

Sunday, November 11, 2007

sunday farmer's market

we finally got the hollywood farmer's market today, where we bagged lots of delicious veggies. heirloom tomatoes (red, yellow, green), avocados, hot! peppers, onions, limes, herbs... all fresh and ohsogood. especially those yummy late summer tomatoes. we had a had big bowls of guacamole & fresh salsa and a heaping tray of nachos.

and on the side, perfectly tangy caipirinha (brazilian rum + limes + sugar).

[photo from emdot]

Thursday, November 8, 2007

a favorite blog

over a year ago, i came across five and a half. i fell in love with judy's journals and bought one of the original choose-your-own color varieties. since then, five and a half has exploded in the craftster world, growing into retail stores and expanding their line of pretty paper products every season.

recently, i started following judy's blog and i am totally captivated. she posts the most lovely pictures, often with simple insights & musings & information. it's a beautifully balanced blog experience.

i've especially appreciated the detailed info & advice she offers about working with paper, generating a quality product, and growing into a small business. with my own little paper project underway for the holidays, her tutorials (especially photojojo's awesome video!) have been my foundation and inspiration!

[photo from myflickr]

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

coffee shops

here, there, and travelling, i'm on the lookout for good coffee shops. not just good coffee (although that's the first step), but an excellent overal coffee experience, the ideal coffee situation.

dark wood, roasting beans. smiling staff. fair trade & independent. ceramic mugs and crisp white paper cups. a glowing pastry case, a simple menu. comfy seats, worn-in couches. books, magazines, art. wanting to hole up there all afternoon.

yea, so i miss college town coffee shops. they're not so easy to find in a big city! starbucks and coffee beans crowd out the little guys. but with a little digging, the good ones shine through...

coffee shops that i miss:
3. lady killigrew cafe @ the book mill (montague, ma) - [bottom photo]
2. the haymarket (northampton, ma)
1. rao's coffee (amherst, ma)

local cafes that we visit:
3. cafe balcony (12431 rochester ave)
2. the spot / synergy (4455 overland ave)
1. the coffee conservatory (10117 washington blvd) - [top photo]

[photos from myflickr]

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

a time to bake

autumn is a season for baking. the weather is cool this week, and i want the house to feel warm and smell delicious.

a bunch of super ripe bananas in my freezer begged to be breaded. so following the joy of cookingrecipe, i stirred up a yummy batch with a handful of oatmeal and a dash of cinnamon.

joyful banana bread
1 1/3 c flour
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
3/4 tsp salt
1 1/3 c sugar
5 1/3 tbsp butter
combine dry into wet.
then add:
2 eggs, slightly beaten
then fold in:
2 ripe bananas
+ walnuts/chocolate chips/oatmeal?
i love toasted banana bread with a cup of coffee.

[photo from myflickr]

Monday, November 5, 2007


i had a wonderful, long walking afternoon (celebrating car-free monday!).

while i was out, i finally posted a few beautiful stickers.

i came across the you-are-beautiful website last spring. such a simple, but awesome idea. i sent away for the stickers---and then they've sat in my wallet for months.

today i finally stuck the message to the streets of LA.

[photos from myflickr]

Sunday, November 4, 2007

charting time

my 2008 calendar from Pentagram is waiting patiently for january 1st.

other time keeper's to love:
- nikki mcclure
- papersource
- snow & graham
- sebastian wrong
- tokyo bay

[photo of my workspace from myflickr]

Saturday, November 3, 2007

saving daylight

happy daylight savings time ~ enjoy your extra hour in bed!

[photo via myflickr]

Friday, November 2, 2007

books invite all, they constrain none

i finished reading the fountainhead this week. it's the sort of book that stole every open moment of my day.

browsing through our bookshelves, i came across a book that i've never read... i thought now was a good time to try the book.

share books with friends: shelfari and goodreads

share books with the world: bookcrossing

[photo from myflickr]

Thursday, November 1, 2007

mulled cider for november

In the autumn spirit, i attempted some hot mulled cider last night.
mmmm, the smell of cinnamon & nutmeg & cloves.

lots of variations of hot cider recipes. here's one...

mulled cider
8 c apple cider
1/2 c packed brown sugar
6 inches cinnamon stick (or ground cinnamon?)
1 tsp ground nutmeg
1 tsp allspice
1 tsp cloves
all the sugar was a bit sweet for me... and i might try adding in a few orange slices next time to add some zest.

check out mulled wine bags @ kiosk.

unfortunately, we had 0 trick or treaters for halloween.
but we do have a big plastic pumpkin full of candy!

Sunday, October 21, 2007

mrs. lyons' apple crisp

definitely my favorite apple crisp recipe.

delicious with a big scoop of vanilla ice cream on the side.

[photo of apple crisp from myflickr]

Friday, October 12, 2007

autumn in LA

So this is my very first fall outside of New England since...ever.

My annual clock expects cider, crisp air, itchy wool sweaters, and falling leaves...But here in Los Angeles, the lovely weather justcontinues. Flowers blooming, trees green, sunshine.

But my innerclock is still reigning, at least in my mind. I'm convinced that I can smell the Fall Smell. I'm craving seasonal beverages: hazelnut coffee, pumpkin beer, hot cider. The sweaters on sale at local stores seem out of place--but I'll happily embrace them! I baked apple crisp just to smell the cinnamon & spice. Now if only I could find a big pile of leaves to crunch through...

[photo from umass campus, fall '05 from myflickr]

Saturday, October 6, 2007

...of the moment

drinking... ruby red chai tea from trader joe's

morning croissants from La Dijonaise

god bless you, mr. rosewater by vonnegut

watching... farecast.com for good thanksgiving rates

listening... to morning becomes eclectic on KCRW

Friday, September 14, 2007

sans auto

another almost-carfree monday. i love wandering & exploring on foot, and a camera is the perfect pass to zoom in our this ironic crazy gritty pretty LA world.

i do wish that i could/would live a more carfree life on non-mondays. even working just a few miles from home, it's still hard to decipher a reliable bus route to get there. i know it's just a matter of committing to give it a try. i will. someday. soon?

see greenLAgirl for inspiration to de-car in LA.

[photo from myflickr]

Sunday, September 2, 2007

angels vs. rangers

entering angel stadium.

baseball diamond at dusk.

rallying at the bottom of the eighth.
(note the attentive rally monkey.)

[photos from myflickr]

Saturday, September 1, 2007

the NEW! "little black dress" rule

i spend too many mornings rushing at the last minute to find "just the right thing" to wear. i try on 3+ closet combinations, and then i'm grumpy. i'm running late, i throw on whatever, and i spend the rest of the day feeling uncomfortable.

i know this can be avoided if i just resort to wearing a standby. something clean, comfortable, and complimentary. a little black dress (or any combination of blacks/solids, for that matter).

for some bizarre reason, a part of me has felt like resorting to the standby is a "cop out."

but no more!

henceforth, all mornings of uncertainty will be solved with the standby, the steadfast&true. sometimes it's okay to take the easy route.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

library love

currently reading:
- The History of Love

out from the library:
- Snow Flower and the Secret Fan
- Girl, Interrupted
- Balzac and the Little Chinese Seamstress

Each of my current picks claims to be a "National Bestseller"? Maybe that's my book choice? But how easy is it to be a "bestseller" these days? How long do you have to be selling "best" to earn the title?

[10/29/07: seth godin on the new york times bestseller list]

Monday, August 27, 2007

city walk

today was another wonderful car-free monday. it's hard to go a day with needing to drive somewhere for something--especially living in LA. but i feel the worst when i realize that i've spent half of a precious day off driving--or worse (and most likely), sitting in traffic.

luckily, mondays are quiet. i can stay at home, relax, walk downtown, get a few errands done. if i get car-required business done on sunday, then monday can be fully sans auto.

today was a perfect balance of work & play. i spent the morning at home working on a little design project (maybe the start of some exciting outside-of-work work!). and then i took a long afternoon walk around town. hit up the coffee shop, the library, and the choice local stores: my Stellar True Value Hardware, a couple of local shops, and good ol' Goodwill. a stack of books and a few around-the-house necessities made the day a success.

[photo from myflickr]

Friday, August 24, 2007

the ideal rug?!

recycled plastic rugs with colorful floral designs. at $28-89, this could solve my need for an inexpensive-but-attractive rug.
they're earth-friendly! [via AT:LA]

image courtesy of AT:LA

outsider art

over the weekend, we visited the watts towers (or rodia's towers in watts, as our tour guide preferred). what an awesome site. the elaborate, intricate beauty of the structure and the mosaics--it was all amazing. definitely an inspiration in found object art.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

home sweet home

Since we moved into our first, sweet, little apartment, there's been a constant cycle of needing, finding, and arranging things. From Allison's awesome vintage kitchen table (thank you craigslist!) to my DIY pickle jar shelf (thank you home depot & albertsons!), the space needs to be functional, but fun, and cohesive, but true to two personalities.

Now I am searching for just the right...
- bookshelf. low and wooden for the living room. the current one is a white beast trying to take over the space.
- rugs, affordable but interesting & colorful. gotta mask this wall-to-wall carpeting!
- bar cart...not even sure what we're looking for in this, but when we find it, we will know.
- mega bulletin board & industrial-style lighting for our office nook.
- art & posters, an endless pursuit of pretty things for the walls.
- books!! since moving cross-country, our shelves are all but empty.

It might be a long time before we are Dwell-worthy, but I think I enjoy the process as much as the results.

Monday, August 20, 2007

weekend visitors

early on in our apartment life, allison & i decided that with our many visitors coming through our LA live, the one compensation we would require would be a photobooth strip from their stay. this has produced some great refrigerator mementos, even if we haven't coerced every single guest into the booth.

luckily, photobooth'ing is pretty doable in LA. there's one booth at the "must-see" Santa Monica Pier and a nice b&w booth at a nearby bar and many others scattered in funky bars & shops around town. i always love checking photobooth.net to get new locations.

with my mum & dad visiting over the weekend, i was psyched that they happily hopped in a booth on their last day. now i have a recent strip to sit alongside another photo strip of them taken 30 years ago at Hampton Beach, NH.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

beginning & finale

we started the day with lattes and croissants at our neighborhood cafe.

and ended it with a table full of sushi at Noshi Sushi in Koreatown

in between eating, i had a little play & a lot of saturday work

Friday, August 17, 2007


- a new candle, Voluspa's Santiago Huckleberry = a pretty tin + a heavenly smell
- four perfect white plates at goodwill for $4
- another Moosewood cookbook to add to my collection!

plus we have weekend visitors on their way!

Thursday, August 16, 2007


where to begin?
i've been asking myself that for too long
and finally decided to stop thinking about it
sooooo, we start here.

this blog is for:
* sharing
* exploring
* listing
* thinking
* creating