Saturday, May 31, 2008

New Old Kids on the Block?

I heard it on the radio tonight, seriously. The "Kids" are back with a new summer single. I'm so conflicted! I mean, they were my first concert! Well, actually the first was the Beach Boys followed by The New Kids. Oh how I loved them. "My Favorite Girl" is still one of my favorite songs. I used to ride around southern Vermont during college, blasting that song, twelve years after it was cool. Sure, loving the New Kids is not half as lame as it was when were 13... but do you really want to hear these guys, who I admit look pretty good, singing about summer time love? I'm even the perfect candidate to win over here. I'd much sooner give these guys a chance over any other polished looking "man band" that come up on my radar.

Don't you guys have families and children by now? Haven't you moved on to successful acting careers ? Perhaps I'm just thinking of the Wahlbergs? Still, if you sang about that, or heck, even your lack of that, I'd be into it! What I can't handle is thirty something men singing about girls in bathing suits or whatever melted popsicle stuff I overheard earlier this evening.

Then & Now

Are they seriously Hangin Tough up there?

I think I coined two new terms... feel free to use them liberally, or as often as applicable.

Man Band
The grown up, more creepy version of a "boy band."

Melted Popsicle
Used to describe a style of music, often produced by Man Bands. Similar to Bubblegum pop, only, more confusing, as the man bands collected age would suggest a more sophisticated audience that did not obsess over candy.

Friday, May 30, 2008

Why kids often rule

There's nothing like a couple of rad, almost five year olds (Luke informed me he's 4 & 11/12 today) to bring you out of a funk.

Today I learned the kids thumbs up/thumbs down moment of the day... a pretty cinchy way to get them to talk about their day, which is usually like pulling teeth. I've asked them to give a thumbs up/thumbs down before, which they latched onto pretty quickly, but today they pretty much started the whole thing on their own. I might have asked "How was your day" (Why we do this to ourselves, I don't know, because it never really works!) and they both showed one thumb up & one down. So I just asked what made the thumbs up and what made the thumbs down.

They got pretty specific right off the bat, "So and so talked mean" followed by the whole ordeal. Weather they were really thinking about that story when they put their thumb down, we'll never know, but it seemed to excite them somehow and open them up for further questioning.

I'm really interested in this strong desire we have as grownups/parents/caretakers/what have yous to know what happens in our child's day. "What did you do today" is the type of question we ask other grownups, not really expecting the real answer: "Oh, I got up early because my husband was snoring, so I made some coffee and then the cat puked. I cleaned it up and then...." When we ask this of a child, we often just want to know where they sat, who they played with or what they drew, but from our own example, these things are trivial and we get the answer "Nothing," instead, or even better, the complete ignore! We need to ask better questions, right?

I find that kids are incredibly eager to talk about almost everything. All it takes is the right key, an "in," if you will. Once the door is opened...gosh, the light that is shed on their world! It's so fun! That's what I would want to study more in school, the ways and methods to ask better questions. Does that make me want to be a child therapist???

Well, the best from today was not so much the daily tasks, but the delightful political discussion. I went like this:

Luke: I'm half British, half Jewish. My Mom is Jewish and my dad is British.
Eleanor: "Me too."
Luke: Your mom's British? And Ken is Jewish, right Eleanor?
For some reason the kids are really into calling Ken, Ken, even Eleanor. I seam to hear his name a lot. Mom's are always "your mom" and Luke's dad is always "pop" or your "pop."
Luke: I think that once the British were fighting the Jewish.
Me: Really?
Luke: It was the Revolution.
Me: Oh, I think your thinking of the Revolutionary War, when the British were fighting the Americans.
Luke: Oh, yeah, that's right. Why were they fighting?
Me: Scrambling to make sense I said something about how the Americans had fled England to find freedom and the British did not want us to have that freedom. They wanted to control the country.
Luke: Who won?
Me: We did.
Luke: That's good.
I think there was a little more exchange about The United States here before Eleanor entered.
Eleanor: Speaking of Presidents, I think Barack Obama is going to win.
Yeah, "speaking of" is a big one this days. Kind of amazing.
Luke: Well Hilliary Clinton is dropping out, so you can vote for her anymore.
Eleanor: I voted for Barack Obama.
Me: So you think he's going to win?
Luke: No body's voting for John McCain!
Me: (Playing devils advocate of course) Well somebody had to vote for him or he wouldn't be running!

I think then we arrived at the playground and our political discourse quickly morphed into thoughts of rainbow ices and swings.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Brutal Re-entry

If I were an astronaut , I'd say my space shuttle had lost some important heat protective covering or something when I re-entered the atmosphere. I feel exposed. My brutal re-entry to Brooklyn from Seattle started with a red eye flight, included a hazy day of jet lagged roof partying, another day of not wanting too leave my house then ended with food poisoning and 24 hours in bed recovering. Now it's back to the routine... but I'm still not ready.

Some people say that the happiest New Yorkers are those who leave the city often. But what if the re-entry is like this every time? Is this just a coincidence, or am I missing a pretty obvious sign? I don't think I can handle either option right now, to tell you the truth, so I think I'll put my space ship on auto pilot and try to at least enjoy the zero gravity.

Back to the Flea!

This Sunday peeps. Apparently there's early bird viewing from 8-10 for $5. Now I really can't party Saturdays! (Or stay up late finishing trees which is what I'm more likely to be doing!)

Monday, May 26, 2008

Oops, I forgot!

These are the cool stores I enjoyed browsing in Seattle:

The Bouncing Wall, Queen Anne. Local indie designers. Lots of cute tees and jewelry!
Hilltop Yarn, Queen Anne. A lovely old house converted to knitting store.
Blackbird, Ballard. Lot's of fancy pants mens stuff, see right.
Velouria, Ballard. More Indie designers! Yeah!

Go shopping!!

The Seattle Rundown

Days in Seattle: 9

Neighborhoods visited: 9
  • Queen Anne
  • Ballard
  • Freemont
  • Greenlake
  • Downtown (public market right)
  • Capitol Hill
  • Blue Ridge
  • Eastlake
Parks Visited: 4
  • Carkeek ( right) A lovely walk from Kj's house. It has a nice grassy part with a childrens play area and then you cross a bridge over train tracks to get to the beach. The view of the mountains is amazing!!
  • Kerry Park This spot is pretty much where all the photos of the Seattle skyline are taken. It's located about halfway up Queen Anne Hill (or mountain as I call it!)
  • Golden Gardens We went here at night and it was cool because the mountains looked all eerie and blue in the distance. This park has fire pits and many groups of people were there, sitting by their orange fires, dotting the beach.
  • St. Edward Park (left) We went here with Kj's niece Abby to play on the playground. It was a pretty awesome castle... with room for grownups too!
Restaurants visited: 12 (!)
  • Greenlake Bar & Grill Burger with fries, yum
  • McMenamins- Queen Anne Burger with tots, yum. Local beer sampler, double yum. I recommend the terminator beer!
  • Macrina Bakery & Cafe I ate here twice! First a brunch of eggs & brioche toast and then the Heirloom tomato salad with a lemon tart for dessert! Double YUM!!
  • A place I don't remember More burgers & beer. Seattle loves burgers... or maybe it's just me?
  • La Carta A wonderful Mexican place in Ballard. I think I ate three bowls of salsa! Triple yum!
  • Blue C Sushi Conveyor belt sushi, need I say more?
  • Another Mexican place I don't remember Tacos a go go! Yum.
  • Another Burger
  • Eastlake Bar & Grill I highly recommend sitting on the patio! Yum.

Coffees purchased: 9 (probably more like 12)
I can honestly say that I found all of my coffees in Seattle at least 3 times better than any I've had in New York. Even the local chains of Starbucks and Tulleys produced a superior brew... My favorites were

Movies Watched: 5
  • Forgetting Sarah Marshall It was an ok film, but the joy was seeing it at the Big Picture, an awesome underground movie theater that actually seams more like a speakeasy. You can grab a cocktail beforehand and even arrange to have one brought in to you during the film! Sitting in the front row means having a comfortable leather footstool. I recommend the "Bogart" which mixed muddled lime & sage with gin.
  • Lord of the Rings:Fellowship of the Ring extended edition
  • Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull We saw this in the packed theater on opening day. It was pretty fun and totally Indiana Jonesy!
  • Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers extended edition
  • Lord of the Rings: Return of the King extended edition
Yes we watched the last two in one day! Sometimes when Kj and I get together, we just have to visit Middle Earth. We also watched the entire third season of Arrested Development.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Make it old!

I saw this on another blog. You can take a regular photo and make it old. Hmmmmm... the site is in a language I don't understand...but simple enough to figure out. Have fun!

Thursday, May 22, 2008

New flickr set: Seattle

There's nothing like your friend's beautiful loft/shop/studio to make you want to move to Seattle...

My pals Isabelle & Nick are just amazing folk. They have converted a garage into this amazing home & studio for their growing business: Piano Nobile. Check out Isabelle's lovely bags in their Etsy store!

Kj and I had a lovely time chillin in the front "yard"with Bauhaus the puppy, some wine and some olives. We later went out for conveyor belt sushi and came back for strawberry rhubarb pie and a movie projected on the wall. Um, can you say best day ever?

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Seattle 2.0

The pieced together panorama:

The far away shot

The testing my digital zoom shot. (You can see people, people!!!)
I just had to try this rhubarb soda...
and then there was the cocktail sampling at Kjs work...

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Seattle so far...

I love flying! You go from flat flat farms

to mountains appear out of nowhere! Window seats are always for me.

My first day Kj took me to work with her in the Seattle Center. This crazy fountain was playing Nirvana! The kids loved running around in it. Oh yeah, did I mention that it's been 8o degrees??? I was expecting rain and cold!

Yesterday I climbed Queen Anne to the top a found a lovely yarn store!

Hilltop Yarn & Needlepoint
They were super nice and the house is totally amazing inside!! I had no idea, but this weekend is a little Puget Sound yarn crawl. If you make it to all the yarn stores and collect your stamps, you can enter a raffle, but I doubt I'll be able to do that.

That's all for now.... I'm off to the Seattle Cheese Festival!

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Seattle here I come!

For some reason, Elliot Smith always reminds me of Seattle. It must be because my first college roommate introduced me to him and she was from Seattle, so I associate the two. I guess Portland OR was his place which my limited (read: non) knowledge of the pacific north west imagines to be quite similar. Anyway, I'm listening to Smith's drizzly music as I pack my suitcase, because it just feels right.

I'm leaving today to visit my second college roommate and best friend Kj who now lives in Seattle. I'm having a really hard time packing, as usual. I always want to bring six pairs of shoes!! Arghh. You never know right? I have to get it together in the next two hours though! Woo hoo! Vacation! I'm so excited.

I hope to visit all the important places like the space needle and Pikes Place Market. If I can figure out how, I also want to go here:

The photo is from Olympic National Forest, the only rain forest in the US! It's ridiculously beautiful and I would hate to be so close and miss it!

Oh yeah... buzz, buzz, buzz.

Any other suggestions?

Monday, May 12, 2008

On going to bed early...

Tonight I'm doing something I haven't since the start of the Brooklyn flea market six weeks ago: going to bed early! I'm headed out of town for a vacation, what? That's right. So with the 'making things' pressure off, I've been pacing around the house wondering what to do. Now, it's not like I don't have things to do... it's just, there's nothing that really justifies staying up past eleven. I can do it tomorrow, or on the plane, or my favorite, when I get back! Or maybe it doesn't even need to be done in the first place, like drooling over lofts/condos/co-op listings I can't afford on the internet. So rather than pace around, or stare at the computer one more hour, I decided to go to bed. Also, my apartment is freezing right now and I think my bed is really the only warm place! The cats are here (Dinah says hello btw) and we are cozied in for the night.

One last thing before I say adios to el web... my favorites thus far from the paper themed Poppytalk Handmade Market:

Etsy: Your place to buy & sell all things handmade

Cool Hunting blog mention!

Wow! I love the Brooklyn Flea! You never know who you're going to talk to who will then write such sweet things about you for their blog! Thanks to Eric for emailing me the link instantaneously! I'm really going to miss being there the next couple of weekends!

source: Cool Hunting

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Mothers Day...

Dear Mom,
I made you a Mothers Day card. I swear. I even sewed a cute little pocket inside for my IOU. I carried it around for days, intending to mail it. DAYS! The other night, I stuck it in my pocket and promised myself that this time would be it. Yet when I got home, not only had I forgotten to mail it (yet again) it was no longer in my possession. Somewhere along the line, it fell out into the rainy night. If it ever gets to you... I am quite curious now if it will... it'll have had quite a journey! I hope you will forgive me and accept this blog post instead! I love you and will be thinking of you all day as I watch the Moms walk about the flea market. I will be wishing I could buy you some of the tiny cupcakes there and hand you a big bundle of fresh flowers.

Much Love (two bunches!)

Thanks for teaching me: how to knit, how to make three marks so your lines are straight and to love things like craft punches, stickers & stamps. Thanks for cleaning my room and organizing things all the time and helping me to never loose a single Barbie shoe! Thanks for buying me awesome outfits with matching hair thingies and always playing games with me in the car. Oh and huge thanks for taking out loans so I could go to such a great college and do all this stuff that I do. Thanks for supporting that. I'm pretty lucky to have you!

Forest Floor

Last week, at the flea, I had a special request. A commission if you will. Well, actually three, no, make it four! Gosh. It really was so cool. People just started asking if I would do a tree in a container that they brought me and I thought, sure, why not? I mean, that's what this whole shopping local thing is all about, right? PLUS they're giving me great artistic license and trust, which is a makers dream! So... three containers came to me that very day, found in another vendors space and the fourth I'll put together at a later date. Here's the first:

A mini tree in a vintage metal JELLO mold.

When I saw this container I immediately thought of a blossoming cherry tree. Perhaps inspired by a recent trip to the Botanical Garden. I usually steer clear of foliage, but just had to add blossoms on this!!

One other request was for two fiddle heads and a toadstool. I'm waiting for the container to arrive, but in the meantime I thought I'd make fern/mushroom combinations for sale as well. I'm not sure I'll be able to part with this one though, or my favorite dome cover thingy.

More forest floors...

This whole, special request container style has inspired me. I want to start seeking unique containers for my trees, like this one, that I found at Salvation Army. Much better then buying new!!