Saturday, December 30, 2006

happy birthday emily!


Can it really be two years ago today? To me it feels like either a week or an eternity, depending on the day and how tired I am....

We planned to go to the Central Park Zoo to see the polar bears and penguins (two of emily's absolute favorite animals) but the weather is hazy and icky so we're going to wait for the next nice day. Cake and presents later! For now, just all the fun a two-year-old can handle. (which is a lot. today, it feels like an eternity...)

Saturday, December 16, 2006

vintage apron goodness

Earlier this year, my mom gave me some family aprons to keep. I'm fairly sure that all three were made by my grandmother and based on the fabrics I'd guess easily 50 years ago if not more. Finally I had a chance to get them out, iron them and really look them over, and here they are:

First up is this so-classic-I-can't-believe it example. The fabric, the colors, the contrast-trimmed pocket, this is so vintage looking it almost looks like modern retro. And it's in perfect shape!

vintage apron - apples

Then we have this classic gingham with cross-stitching that follows the fabric pattern. Unfortunately this one is not in great shape, there's a large area of discoloration and one of the ties has actually torn (but is still attached). I'm hoping I can fix it up.

vintage apron - gingham

And finally, this cute apron that was my mom's. We know this because her name is embroidered on the pocket:

vintage apron - mom's pocket

I absolutely love that fabric. I don't know that I've ever seen bees and chickens in a print together before, but it somehow seems perfect. This one is a bit fragile but definitely worth preserving!

I don't know if I could ever bring myself to use any of them, but it's really neat to have four generation's aprons (Emily already has two little ones of her own) all together.

Monday, December 11, 2006

Surf Munny!

Surf Mummy munny (surfing)

We were asked to do a custom 8" Munny for the Uberbot Holiday Heroes charity auction, and he is done just barely in time! He's based on our Surf Mummy designer mini-mate from back in the day. And I think he's really cute. In a gruesome, living-dead sort of way. Surf Mummy will be up for auction in a few days to raise money for Toys for Tots, here's hoping he helps makes the holidays special for a bunch of little kids! More info at Evan's journal; more photos in Evan's flickrstream.

Saturday, December 2, 2006

more apron swap goodness

And this is the apron that I made for the swap, which I made for Sara:

winter swap apron

I went with a winter theme and tried to follow her likes (sparkly, blue, not too foofy). I had some serious moments of doubt - first, when I got the giant snowflake fabric I began to think I was insane for coming up with this idea. Then of course, we were gone for a good bit of the month, and I didn't think I'd be able to finish it. But, somehow I did, and I was really happy with the final result! Here's a closeup of the under-layer with its loose snowflakes:

winter apron detail

And here's a pic of the recipe cards and a few extras (a matching goody bag with gelt, and some rose tea for relaxing):

winter swap extras

So all-in-all, two very successful swaps so far. Can't wait til the next one! (of course, I know what the theme is, hahahaha!)

Friday, December 1, 2006

it's my party...

and while I'm not really in the party mood, as hostess I kind of have to show up, don't I? Today is the big reveal day (well, weekend, starting today) for the second What's Cookin' apron swap and I have to say, I am pleased as punch about the fabulous apron that I got! Check it out:

what's cookin' swap apron

the theme was "holiday hostess" -- a party/hostess apron with either a holiday (of the recipient's choosing) or winter theme. Debi drew my name and obviously went with the winter theme. And seriously, those fabrics look like I chose them myself! Vintage-y blues and yellows to go with my kitchen, a cool mid-century asterisk pattern on the yellow and snowflakes (and I love snowflakes) on the overlay. Here's a closeup of the pocket so you can see the fabrics better:

swap apron pocket

That pocket detail makes me think this may have been made from a vintage pattern, or is inspired by a vintage apron. But I'm just guessing here. Debi also sent me matching recipe cards with 2 great-looking holiday recipes, and a little ornament which was immediately stolen from me by a little baby! So all-in-all, fabulous guesswork and/or research by Debi to make an apron that I seriously might have made myself. I mean, it's scary how totally "me" it is. Thanks, Debi!!

As for the apron that I made...I'll post about that as soon as I know it's been safely received!

Friday, November 24, 2006

giving thanks

to everyone who's commented or emailed their love, condolences and support; here or on Evan's journal. It really has been helpful. thanks to you all, and I hope you are all having a wonderful weekend with your own loved ones!

Sunday, November 19, 2006


...because there's no title for this that makes sense to me.

We have just gotten back from an emergency trip south. One of my younger brothers (I have four) collapsed two weeks ago, and although he was revived on the way to the hospital, he never regained consciousness and died a few days later. He was just 30, and was one of the most amazing people I have ever known. I can't even go into how much he had to overcome during his 3 decades, because you wouldn't even believe it. But the 26 years he spent with our family (we adopted him at the age of four) were 26 years the doctors thought he wouldn't even have. And they were 26 years (I can't tell you much about those first four, but I gather they sucked the most) that most people couldn't have handled with the grace and aplomb he eventually developed.

In his words (written for a Japanese site a friend of his was writing about him):

Hello. I'm Josh. This is my history. When I was born, I was born with a disease called Cystic Fibrosis. My doctors told my parents that I wouldn't live to see my 5th birthday. Thanks to modern advances in treatment and medication, I'm still alive today.
At age 25, my C.F. became critical. The only thing that would save my life was a double lung transplant. I almost didn't make it because in the end, my lungs failed. I received my lungs at the last moment. Now I'm 30 yrs. Everyday I wake up, is a wonderful day. I'm so happy that I'm still alive! Now, I always make the most of everyday! Life is great!

Summing up 30 years of incredibly difficult health problems like that is so very, very Josh! And the 11 months he had after his double lung transplant were an amazing gift that he was grateful for every day. He really did say, again and again, "Every day I wake up is a good day".

What he also doesn't mention is that one of the reasons he got his transplant was that for 2 years, while his health was failing dramatically, he fought for a bill in Florida that would close a loophole preventing adult cystic fibrosis patients from getting the lung transplants that Medicaid had already appropriated funds for. The bill was passed on the last day of the 2005 session and has already saved the lives of several young adults in Florida with CF.

Unfortunately, he apparently developed a pulmonary embolism (we'll never know what from, or if it even had anything to do with his transplant) and it killed him before he ever got to completely re-adjust to his new life and lungs.

I don't want you to think he was some saintly do-gooder or anything though. He had a lot of interests that were purely selfish -- he was crazy, I mean crazy about Macross (transforming his Yamato Valkyrie collection back into "fighter" form from "battroid" form so they could be put away was a serious challenge); he drew, he built models, he played bass, he ran around with his friends and did all kinds of things. And the stories I could tell you about his younger days....oh my. But while he was decidedly human, he did fight for not just his own life, but for many other people's as well.

I am proud to have known him, and sorry that Emily won't. In his honor, a few resources:

I know organ donation is a touchy subject, because it comes back to that whole creepy "thinking about death" thing that no-one likes to do. But without donated lungs, he wouldn't have even had the extra year. And he himself was able to donate organs and save three lives last week. If you can't bring yourself to think about it much, please consider just checking off that box on your driver's license.

If you are willing to think about these things in depth, look into an advance directive -- not only can you specify what and how you would donate, you can make your wishes known on a number of (yes, touchy) subjects. I cannot tell you what peace of mind our family had because Josh had filled out one of these Five Wishes forms. We knew exactly what he would have wanted at every turn. I will be filling one of those out myself. Well, when I get up the nerve to think about all that stuff I will.

And again, if you have anything that really needs to be protected, kids or intellectual property or just things that you do want to go to the right home/person/place, think about a will. Icky, I know. (And actually, my brother didn't have or need one -- he was single with no kids, and did not have a family that does things like fight over people's stuff when they die. So, no, not everyone needs one.)

Anyway, that's about all I can really say about it right now. We're just trying to wrap our heads around the whole thing and get back to work, if not back to normal. I am going to take some time to think about things and what I am doing with myself, so I don't know how much or what I'll be posting soon. (As you may have noticed, even Evan is speechless right now.) Thanks for sticking with me this long, and hopefully we'll see you soon.

Wednesday, November 1, 2006

halloween baby!

big and little cheburashkas

Emily's 2nd Halloween, and her first one with a slight clue what was going on. I made her this Cheburashka costume, which has great significance to us but which I knew would be interpreted by most people as a teddy bear (although a few people thought she was a puppy!) I had a serious moment of doubt working on this costume...I didn't think I could pull it off since I was winging most of it. But then everything clicked and it ended up working out fine. Furry felt is pretty awesome, although I feel like washing it would destroy it completely. And I'm not sure how comfortable it actually was -- but she didn't complain a bit, and even kept her hands inside the little paw-mittens!

We took her to the mall for their big trick-or-treat thing. She liked looking at the other kids a lot, didn't like adults talking to her so much, and ended up pretty overwhelmed:

cheburashka at the mall

She sure looked cute though! Next year: real door-to-door trick-or-treating! Well, maybe.

Best costumes at the mall: two little asian boys dressed as yellow-track-suit Bruce Lee and a Shaolin Monk. Their mom was really happy that Evan recognized both costumes!

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

what I got for my birthday...

SICK!!! Annoyingly sick! My first bad cold in maybe 3 years. I am lucky that I don't actually get sick that often because boy oh boy do I HATE IT.

Actually, I did get some cool stuff, lots of well wishes and so on. More on that later. I'm woefully behind thanks to being SICK.

One thing I will post today: Neil Gaiman has done the entire creative community a great service by doing this. Noting the lack of thought most creators have given to the disposition of their intellectual property, he's had a template will drawn up for writers (easily modified for artists and so on I'm sure) that you can freely download and use to cover yourself.

This is actually a subject close to my heart. I've heard several stories of people who died leaving their creations in the hands of family who absolutely should not have had control over their work (and either over-exploited it or supressed it). And while there was no intellectual property involved, I learned a valuable lesson when my uncle died leaving no will, a wife he'd never bother to divorce even though they'd split up a decade earlier, and a live-in partner who was absolutely screwed over by the wife. Very nasty all around. I've since had discussions on many occasions with creators who honestly never even thought about what would happen to their work if they died leaving no will. Think about it for a minute -- if you're very lucky, the law passes your work into the hands of a family member who loves and respects what you do. If you're like most people, it does not.

Anyway, enough of that! If you have intellectual property of any sort to protect (no matter how big or small), go download the will template and get that on your to-do list today!

Friday, October 20, 2006

cutie tezuka!


Okay, seriously, how cute is that? We came across some photos of this new "Tezuka Moderno" line yesterday -- 6 Tezuka characters so far (Astro Boy, Unico, Leo, Pheoniz, Pinoco, and "Sharaku" who I'm not familiar with) have gotten the Cutie treatment from a company called playset procuts. There seems to have been a big art show to launch the line, and a set of capsule toys rolling out this month. Hopefully these will be easy to get, because they are seriously sugar-drenched cuteness! And I, I mean, Emily needs them!

Thursday, October 12, 2006

get more flexible the ultraman way!

No, seriously! Use the classic Ultraman transformation move to get in better shape. I am so doing it right now. Seen in Boost Your Life the Urawaza Way on wired. Also note the bandaid tip -- I saw that one a few months back and have been using it ever since!

Sunday, October 8, 2006

Holiday Hostessing meme

So, the second apron swap is underway, and I'm squeaking my meme answers in under the wire! Mystery partner, I hope they help you out!

1. what kind of holiday party food do you like best? finger food buffet or sit down multi-course style?
Truthfully, while I love the sit-down dinner, I would have to go with finger food -- and baked goods, I like cookies and brownies and things year-round, but especially during the holidays!

2. do you make/use those little name cards for your table seating or is that just another little something that magazines are trying to add to our already long holiday to-do list?
I probably did that as a kid. And it always seems like a good idea. But no.

3. do you miss sitting at the "kid's table"?
Depends on which kid's table! Growing up, the kid's table was the place to be, where my brother and I could totally goof around with friends. I have been at much less fun "kid's tables" though. Funny, no-one seems to do the kid's table anymore.

4. any particular holiday party traditions that you like to do every year?
The holiday season can't start without fast forwarding through Macy's Thanksgiving Parade (we mainly just like the balloons and the "real" Santa); we also must watch A Christmas Story at least once, we drive to see lights, we listen every night to an episode of The Cinnamon Bear...and I'm really looking forward to developing new traditions with the baby! (Okay, I just realized that was supposed to be party traditions, oops!)

5. Which is your favorite winter holiday?
The whole season, although (our thouroughly secular) Xmas wins for gifts and the trees. I love the trees. (Just have to say, nothing beats Halloween though!)

6. do you make or have you tasted any good egg nog recipes...whether using it in a dish or as a drink?
I have never made eggnog but I like the flavor of it -- I can drink the crappiest eggnog and be happy, I swear!

7. fruit cake .... do you love it or think it should be used as a door stop?
I am always seeing recipes for "real" fruitcake that look tempting, but I've been so grossed out by the traditional brick-style that I just can't bring myself to try them.

8. What do you like to do to get yourself in the holiday sprit (ie. certain music, visiting certain seasonal sites, enjoying winter weather, ect.)
Um, all the stuff in question 4; plus wrapping gifts, and I like planning and doing a holiday card! And let's not forget watching the Rankin-Bass specials (especially Rudolph -- we love the misfit toys!), although we usually miss most of them.

9. What is your favorite holiday song and who sings it best?
Hmm, that's a rough one, I like the idea of holiday music better than the reality of it. As much as I might like any song, by the time I've heard it for 3 weeks straight I never want to hear it again. The Cocteau Twin's "Winter Wonderland" is a big favorite.

10. Any ideas for interesting holiday themed parties? (Even if it's really out there -- like renting a snow machine and having everyone build snowmen if you live in a no-snow areas!)
Hmmm, well, I have one but I'm keeping it a secret!! Bwahahahaha!!

Also, on the subject of trees, I am big into the artificial tree. Our main tree is white, and I decorate it in red and white, mostly (see it here!); then the 2nd tree (much smaller) is pink, decorated in red, white and silver (see here!). Also I have a tiny silver one that lights up on it's own that's decorated in blue (no photo).

Saturday, October 7, 2006

cookie fun

maple sugar cookies

Last week I wanted to make some cookies, but discovered I'd forgotten to put an egg aside to do so (when we boiled eggs for miso soup). I'd promised Emily that she could help me bake, and since she loves to help cook (I should say, "help", although she can do some basic things pretty well) she was pretty excited about it. Finding eggless cookie recipes was harder than I thought, but I did finally find this recipe for Maple Sugar Cookies:

Preheat oven to 350. Combine 1/2 c sugar and 1/2 c softened butter in large mixer bowl, beat at medium speed until creamy (2-3 minutes). Add 3 T maple syrup* and continue beating until well-mixed. On low speed add 1-1/2 c flour and 1/4 t salt. Shape dough into 1" balls and place on cookie sheet 2-3" apart, flatten with bottom of tumbler or with small toddler's (clean!) hands. Bake for 12-14 minutes.
*the original recipe I based this on called for maple-flavored pancake syrup, so you'll be fine using that I'm sure!

Incredibly easy to make. I scooped the dough with my cookie scoop and put the blobs of dough on a sheet, then helped Emily flatten each one with her hands (note the finger marks!) before baking. I think I baked them a minute too long -- watch them closely! They did not burn or get too dark, but they were on the crisp side.

A few days later I decided to try this eggless cookie:

scotch teas
Scotch Teas
Preheat oven to 350. Combine 1/2 c butter and 1 c (light!) brown sugar in saucepan, stir over medium heat until butter melts. Add 2 c rolled oats, 1/4 t salt and 1 t baking powder, mix well and pour into a greased 8"x8" pan. Bake for 20-25 minutes, let cool and then cut into squares.

These are weird. For one thing, I have dark brown sugar, and I'm thinking from the photo in the book that they mean for you to use light brown sugar. Evan and I ate them all, but the whole time we were going "do we like these? I'm not sure!". Very much like a very good granola bar -- which gives me some idea how much sugar must be in a granola bar!! I might try them again with light brown sugar just to see how they turn out, but I don't think they'll be making regular appearances in the cookie jar here. Not that we actually have a cookie jar, know what I mean. But the maple cookies will definitely be coming back soon!

Friday, October 6, 2006

bib in action

emily at mitsuwa

And here's my etsy bib in action at Mitsuwa's food court (Emily's waiting nicely for her miso there) -- like I said, it folds up tiny and can be tucked into a bag and taken anywhere. Yay!

Tuesday, October 3, 2006

counting down to halloween!

Halloween has always been my favorite holiday (I think partly because October is also my birthday month; and also, where I grew up in Florida it was the month it finally cooled off!) and it seems like more and more people agree these days. So every year we're always excited when the new Halloween decorations and stuff roll out, even though we rarely buy much of anything. (Target is always the big one -- even if the merchandise isn't awesome, the store is decorated fantastically.) This year I actually came across something totally new to me -- a Halloween "countdown" calendar! Basically, it's just like an advent calendar, but counting down to Halloween. I feel sure I saw a different one somewhere too, but I didn't note which catalog it was and it's long gone. And the possibilities for making your own are endless -- I think this is a project in my future!

In other news, the new kitchen faucet landed on our doorstep today (the pull-out spray broke off the old one, plus it was kind of nasty). I am actually going to attempt to replace it myself later this week, although with our goofy sink set-up it may be too much for me. Wish me luck!

Saturday, September 23, 2006

fall is back and so are we!

Yay first day of Fall! We'll be celebrating it shortly with a drive to Mitsuwa, where I hope to find that pumpkin wagashi have arrived!

Our trip was long, but overall pretty pleasant, with just a few roadbumps. Yes, I'm going to bore you with the details:

Day 1:
Got off to a really late start, so we stopped later than planned. Needing to eat fast and get the Monkey Baby (that's Emily, not Evan) to bed, we opted for the Shoney's Buffet across from the hotel. BAD MOVE. REALLY BAD MOVE. Evan thought he was going to die. I didn't feel much better. Emily, being the brains of the family, had refused to eat anything other than a few forkfuls of rice, so she was fine.

Day 2:
Things were going really well and we expected to get to our destination early -- then, a tire blew out. On I-95. Going fast. With an outside temp of oh..95? (And parents of toddlers, you will feel my pain when I tell you this happened about 10 minutes after getting Emily to sleep in the car!) 45 minutes on the side of the road with a sleepy toddler was not fun, and I'm here to tell you that our emergency plan (episodes of Pingu on the laptop) saved the day! Emily sat in the shade and watched them instead of running onto traffic or climbing into the woods after ticks. After getting a new tire in Savannah, GA, we ended up getting into town (that town being Gainesville, FL) in time to have dinner with the folks at a decent local fast food bento place (called Bentos, originally enough), where Emily impressed her grandparents with her amazing miso-slurping skills (she can make a bowl disappear in minutes!)

Day 3:
A very nice day -- we spent the morning doing some (mostly unrewarding) thrifting, had lunch at my beloved Burrito Brothers, got Emily to take a nice long nap, and then -- disaster struck! While checking out the mall just to see what was there, Emily dropped her new bunny (bought for her that morning thrifting) and it was gone just like that. We retraced our steps, checked lost and found, to no avail. Our guess is that the moment after she dropped it, someone scooped it up thinking they'd just scored a cute little bunny for free. PEOPLE! If you find a cute stuffed animal that's been lost -- someone lost it!! And they may be crying. Be nice and turn it in, because the next kid who loses a beloved animal may be yours! And if you have Emily's bunny...I hope it brings you terrible luck!! (The good news -- that night, Emily got her arms loaded with stuffed animals by her uncle, who received way more than he needed during his hospital stay last year. "Puppy" quickly erased all memory of poor departed "Bunny".)

Day 4-5:
The main days of the reunion (which was just my mom's immediate family. which is like, a million people!) -- a cookout, then pool fun for all the kids, followed by a day at the beach. And by the way, if you are like, the suncreen police, and you make sure everyone has their sunscreen, and then you go bodyboarding and forget that all the sunscreen has probably washed off your face and you get your nose are an idiot. Yes, that would be me. A chocolate-dipped chocolate cone from DQ was, at least, some consolation.

Day 6:
A short trip to Atlanta to visit friends, where Evan was introduced to City of Heroes (and he wants to play badly) and got to eat some Krystals.

Day 7:
Mostly just driving, lots of pretty scenery and one shopping stop.

Day 8:
At last! SCORE! We found used bookstores, thrift stores, antique places with cool stuff. We were actually so overwhelmed we almost freaked out. We bought some cool stuff and are planning to go back for more someday! This is the kind of day that road-tripping is all about. Yay!

okay, I've gotta run so we can go look for my wagashi....hopefully I'll have photos of some of the scores we did make asap. Happy Autumn, everybody!!

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

on the road again

originally uploaded to flickr by remjr.

we're packing up and getting ready to get on the highway tomorrow -- we'll be gone for a week visiting family and friends, checking out cool places and hopefully having lots of fun. If nothing else, I'll get to see about one zillion of my cousins! See you when we get back--and I've got lots of crafty goodness going on but no time to post it before we go. Yes, freezer paper is involved!! Stay tuned and have a good week!

Wednesday, September 6, 2006

goodbye summer

summer wagashi

And that was the last little vestige of summer around here -- my goldfish wagashi, which I didn't eat until yesterday, by which point summer was gone! Officially maybe it's got a few more weeks but here in the NE it feels long-gone. (And I was totally taken by surprise, we do not have enough warm clothes! oh well, I'll get used to this dressing a growing child thing eventually....) Still, Fall is my favorite season, even when it catches me off guard like this....and at least this means that pumpkin wagashi are not too far off! And Halloween! And Halloween goodies at Target! Goodbye summer, but hello fall!

Friday, September 1, 2006

it's a peach of a purchase

So today is the big reveal -- the first 5-4-3-2-etsy posting day! And here's my purchase:

a peach of a face

This is the Georgia Peach barette and pin set from Shannon's Lucky Wings etsy shop. I was looking through the accessories category (to narrow down my search) and I saw this early on...and I just found myself drawn back to it again and again. I didn't even plan to make my purchase so early in the month! But I decided that Georgia was my August find and that I wasn't going to wait. Here's another pic where you can see the pin better.

Now...what will I get for September?

Go check the blogroll at the 5-4-3-2-etsy! page to see everyone else's August purchases!!

Friday, August 18, 2006


Actually, not ugly but cute -- a line of variant Uglydolls has shown up, all in black with grey accents (mostly). Regular, mini and keychain size. Sooo cute! I can't find anything online about them, but here's a few that Emily knocked on the floor yesterday:

uglydoll carnage

Aha! Turns out they were San Diego exclusives. I guess the leftovers got shipped out randomly. Good thing we grabbed a ninja Wage for Em and ninja OX for us. I want a ninja Icebat though!!

Thursday, August 17, 2006

baby playlist

Last week we took a very short but much needed vacation, and one of the things I did to get ready was to make a special playlist on the iPod of Emily-approved songs; bouncy stuff, garage rock, some of the big band stuff she likes. And by the 2nd day, she was asking for her 3 favorite songs, over and over (and yes, over).

They were:

"Everybody Monkey" by Freddie Cannon (or, as I like to say, "Freddie BOOM! BOOM! Cannon")

"Gorilla" by The Shandells

"Don't Take it Away" from Yo Gabba Gabba! (See the clip here)

I realize one day it'll be all Cheetah Girls or Devo 2.0 but for now...whew! At least we can take it. And later...well, I think headphones will work out just fine.

Wednesday, August 2, 2006

puchi love!!

Some of you may remember my posting about Re-ment miniature food & housewares some time ago, or have seen photos of some of my collection, or, if you're really old-school, have known for ages about my obsession with miniature (fake) food. Whatever the case may be, it should come as no surprise that I am giddy, I tell you, giddy, over the news that Re-ment is launching here in the US! Offerings appear to be remixes of the original Japanese lines, I'm spotting bits and pieces from all over the series in the sets they're previewing. No news on when and where they will be selling them, but I'm ready to line up right now!

Thursday, July 27, 2006

finishing projects

Ah! Got a few things finished off that had been hanging around the house, making me feel guilty. First up, my matching craft (or beet-cutting, or tomato-sauce-making) apron to go with Emily's:

big dot apron

This was an easy one, it was cut out and all I needed to do was stitch the bias tape around all the edges (and I just left extra at the corners for the ties!). I still have some of this laminated fabric left, and now I'm thinking...matching placemats!!

I also finished up this crossover top I had made for Emily:

ladybug top

It's modified from one of the many patterns that are out there for this perennial -- I altered it to copy a top I had as a kid. I don't have the original top or pattern, but what I did have was a little copy of it that one of my parents made for a doll I had! The main change is that the front is straight across, and in the back the wrap part is cut at a different angle. Mmmm, hard to describe actually, you'll just have to take my word for it. Anyway, it had been done for a bit, just needed buttonholes and buttons. Check out the cute little ladybug buttons I'd forgotten I had!

Monday, July 24, 2006

yo gabba goodness!

If you remember the kid's show I posted about a while back, Yo Gabba Gabba, well, they have some new stuff to entertain your little Gabba addict (if you have one like we do!). They now have a page of sample clips up along with the trailer! yay! Unfortunately, the songs are gone, but I'm sure they'll have more fun stuff up soon. There was a premiere in LA recently (Emily was invited! But of course we couldn't exactly go...) and hopefully the DVD will be out soon. In the meantime, here's our current favorite clip, "Please Thank You". Go Gabba Gabba!

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

the recipes!

apron swap recipe cards

Those are the recipe cards I made for Heather to match her apron. All baking: strawberry bread, banana bread, and a really good (and freezable) chocolate chip recipe. All three are well tested in our kitchen! (I could probably make that banana bread in my sleep!) The little designs are actually cut-outs from the fabric, and the bases are vintage blank recipe cards, with the recipes cut out and glued down.

In case you're interested, here are the actual recipes:

Strawberry Bread
1-1/2 c fresh strawberries, rinsed, cored and sliced
1 c sugar
1-1/2 c flour
1 t baking powder
1/2 t baking soda
1/4 t salt
1 t cinnamon
2 eggs
1/2 t vanilla
1/2 c butter, melted and then cooled (very important!)
Preheat oven to 350°. Lightly grease and flour an 8"x5" loaf pan. Place strawberries in a small bowl and sprinkle with 1/2 cup of the sugar; mix and set aside. In a large bowl, mix together all remaining dry ingredients. In your medium bowl, beat eggs til foamy, then add the vanilla and butter, then the strawberry-sugar mixture. Combine with the dry ingredients, mixing until completely moistened. Scrape batter into pan and bake for 60 minutes, or until a toothpick/skewer comes out clean. Cool pan on a rack for 20-30 minutes before removing.

Chocolate Chip Cookies
1/2 c unsalted butter,
6 T sugar
6 T light brown sugar
1/4 t salt
1-1/2 t vanilla
1 c plus 2 T flour
1/2 baking soda
1 c chocolate chips
1 c pecan or walnut pieces
Preheat oven to 375°. Beat the butter, sugars, salt and vanilla until well-combined. Add in the egg, scrape bowl down with spatula and beat for a few more seconds. In a 2nd bowl, whisk together the flour and soda. Add dry ingredients to wet and mix on low speed until just blended. Add chocolate and nuts and mix in by hand. Shape dough into 11/2” balls and place about 3” apart on ungreased cookie sheets. Bake for 9-12 minutes, until edges are golden. Let sit for 5 minutes before transferring to wire racks.
Alternately: do not preheat oven, and place shaped cookies close together on cookie sheets and freeze. Transfer when frozen to freezer bags or containers, bake at 375° in batches as small or large as you like.

Banana Bread
2 large eggs
1 c sugar
1/3 c vegetable oil
1 c mashed bananas
2 t vanilla
1 t baking soda
1 t baking powder
1 t salt
1 t cinnamon
1/2 t nutmeg
2-2/3 c flour
1 c sour cream
Preheat oven to 350°. Beat together the eggs, sugar and oil. Blend in the bananas and vanilla. In another bowl, whisk together all dry ingredients and then add all at once to the banana mixture. Mix quickly but thoroughly, then stir in the sour cream, mixing until just combined. Pour batter into a greased and floured 9"x5" pan. Bake for 1 hour, or until a cake tester comes out clean.

Notes: On the banana bread - I am a purist and I don't like nuts or chocolate in my banana bread, but the original recipe (from King Arthur Flour) calls for up to 1 cup of chopped nuts as an option, and I'm sure chips would work too. Also, you can substitute yogurt or buttermilk for the sour cream, but I don't think it works as well. The strawberry bread is from a Penzey's Spice catalog and my onw note on that is that you can chop the berries up if you need to (Emily doesn't like the texture of the large slices). The cookies are from a chronicle books fundraiser called From Our House To Yours, I can't remember the origin past that.

Sunday, July 16, 2006

aprons, aprons, everywhere!

So this weekend was the big (if virtual) apron swapping party! I hope everyone who participated was as happy with the results as I was -- I loved the apron I made and the apron that I got! First, here's what I made:

what's cookin' 1 - baking theme

I drew Heather, who loves to bake, and ended up going with a baking theme for my apron and recipes. I happened to have this really cute baking themed retro fabric in a wishlist, without any idea what to use it for. And when Heather posted a link to this apron (as a "dream" apron) I was totally inspired by the ruffle motif, and came up with the design you see above. I was really happy with the ruffle on mine, although I didn't get a good pic before sending it off. I was so happy with this apron, in fact, that I made one for myself as well! And then...I made a little matching one for Emily!

baking apron mini!

I was already in a mini-apron mood, because I made a craft/play apron for Emily's pal Tess' birthday gift -- it's a reversible apron, with one side laminated for messy crafts:

reversible mini apron - craft side

and the other side a pretty floral to go with her kitchen when she "cooks":

reversible mini apron - cooking side

And yes, Emily has a match of that one, too!

Finally, here's the apron I got from my partner, Crystal:

my apron!

It's so cute! And it really is exactly what I was hoping people would get from this swap -- something that you really like that you would never think to make for yourself. She also sent me some recipes I'm dying to try (well, the empanadas will have to wait, the oven is verboten for the next month or so) and some other goodies. See?


Now you might think that's enough aprons for now but...I think I need an apron to match the mini craft apron. And Emily needs (for real) an art smock or something, because those washable crayons? Guess what, they don't always wash out! So stay tuned for more aprony goodness!

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

my birth date says all that?

Not tagged by Mary Ann, just copycatted from her:

Your Birthdate: October 18

You are a cohesive force - able to bring many people together for a common cause.

You tend to excel in work situations, but you also facilitate a lot of social gatherings too.

Beyond being a good leader, you are good at inspiring others.

You also keep your powerful emotions in check - you know when to emote and when to repress.

Your strength: Emotional maturity beyond your years

Your weakness: Wearing yourself down with too many responsibilities

Your power color: Crimson red

Your power symbol: Snowflake

Your power month: September

Wednesday, July 5, 2006

wacky cake

By request, here's the recipe for the WWII-era ration cake recipe I used for the s'mores mini-cakes; it's called "wacky cake" and if you google that phrase you'll actually find the recipe all over the place. However, I'm using a version that was reworked slightly by the America's Test Kitchen people for their Cook's Country magazine (which, btw, I love). You can see the usual version here; according to the research in the Cook's Country article, it was first published in 1949 in a collection of reader recipes and was submitted by one Mrs. Donald Adam of Detroit. I think their ingredient changes are worth following:

1 1/2 c unbleached all-purpose flour
3/4 c sugar
1/4 c unsweetened cocoa
3/4 t baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 t vanilla
1 T vinegar
5 T vegetable oil
1 c cold water

the directions in all recipes are almost all exactly the same: Preheat oven to 350° F; sift dry ingredients into an 8x8 baking pan (I actually dump them all in and whisk together); make one large hole and two small in the mixture, pouring the oil into the large hole and the vanilla and vinegar into the small ones -- then, pour the water over the whole thing, mix quickly until moistened (do not beat) and pop into the oven for 30 minutes. I have never frosted this cake, just eaten it straight or sprinkled powdered sugar on before serving. ALSO: don't try this the first time if company's coming! My first one was a disaster (I was nervous about overmixing and there were huge streaks of flour through it!) and while hopefully yours won't be, it is slightly weird so play it safe! Some recipes say to mix in a bowl and then pour into a pan, but according to Cook's Country you risk having it not rise as well.

This cake is seriously quick and easy, cheap, vegan and really good if you like chocolate cake!

WHOAH! STOP THE PRESSES! Astute reader Melanie caught a typo in the recipe (I sent her a scan of the original), which I've just fixed. The amounts on the vanilla and vinegar were switched -- oops!! What you see now is correct. Sorry!

Monday, July 3, 2006

s'mores mini-cakes!

s'mores mini-cakes

Sort of in the cupcake tradition, but really far enough removed that I'm just going to call them "mini-cakes". These are the cakes I made for Emily's half-birthday party (which was just the three of us!) -- graham cracker squares, topped with little slabs of chocolate cake, with mini-marshmallows broiled on top of the whole thing. Extra-exciting was that I finally used my broiler for the first time -- I don't know why I've been so nervous about it! The crackers were like little edible plates, and surprisinly softened up enough in the few moments in the oven to eat as part of the cake; the cake itself is from scratch and is a WWII ration cake recipe that I love -- no eggs or milk!; and the marshmallows I stuck on by brushing the cake tops with water and then just placing them on. I then broiled them all until they looked like this (maybe 2-3 minutes?). And they were delicious. (I actually liked the broiled marshmallows as a topping a lot -- I'm not really that big a fan of frosting.) A definite to-make-again!

Friday, June 30, 2006

happy half birthday!

Today is Emily's half-birthday, which we decided we'd celebrate every year since her birthday is in the middle of the holidays. She spent the morning at the zoo -- hopefully some animal photos came out well, and if they did I'll add them later. She then got lunch at a swanky Japanese restaurant. Right now she's out cold, but when she's up it's present time! She's getting more haba blocks for her (small) set; a really swell wooden Totoro puzzle (up close here and here); and what might be my new obsession, some Holztiger animals. I am loving these things as kid's toys, and plan to give her a couple animals for every occasion. And in case you were wondering, no, she's not getting presents twice, these are her presents for the year (although one plush polar bear was put away for her actual birthday).

In other news, things are horrifically hectic around here, but a break is in sight, thank goodness! More then!

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

more rose cupcakes


I didn't make these, they're from the new issue of Family Fun, but aren't they cute? And certainly going to be easier than what I did. Although, after my experience with the sushi cupcakes, I personally don't think I want to deal with fruit roll-ups on anything ever again. Kids would probably love them though.

Friday, June 16, 2006

(not much of a) MoCCA report

So the MoCCA Art Fest was last weekend, something we really look forward to every year -- so much so that we've already bought our table for 2007! (June 23rd-24th - mark your calendars!) Emily and I just went on Saturday (that exhausted her -- and me -- plenty). And we were pretty busy so as usual, didn't get to see a whole lot, but the show was really busy and everyone was pretty up. It's always nice to go to a show where everyone seems to be in a good mood.

Evan already posted a couple of the sketches we got in Emily's book -- we're pretty slack about getting sketches but we've got some cute ones. Besides the Gahan WIlson and Brian Lee O'Malley he posted, we got excellent drawings for her from Christine Norrie ad Todd Webb. Todd, btw, gave me some new comics that were all awesome. I didn't get any other comics myself, but Evan brought home some stuff. Haven't had a chance to look through it though.

The one disappointment of the show -- I saw Tara McPherson sitting at a table, and thought she was there for the show -- I desperately wanted to get a sketch from her in Emily's book -- not only am I a big fan, but so is Emily! At least, I think that's why she's always trying to steal my Tara McPherson Dunny from the desk. But, she was only sitting for a couple hours, by the time one of us was able to get up again she was gone. (And Evan was so swamped on Sunday he barely left the table and missed her Sunday session too!) Oh well, I doubt she does convention sketches anyway, but phooey!

Anyway, MoCCA rules as usual, at least what little we saw of it. Here's to going both day next year!

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

cute kid's aprons


How cute is that little puppet theater apron? It reminds me of a similar apron I saw a while back in a Japanese craft book -- that one was for the parent, and had a puppet theater up on the chest area, I guess so you could play with the puppets while sitting down. It was so cute I wanted to buy the book! (But I didn't -- can't buy everything...) Also really cute for kids are these aprons from Furnis:


Besides the goose and mushroom, there are also cheese and egg as well. Goose is my favorite, though.

Monday, June 12, 2006

a wiki meme!

I was tagged by Thien-Kim with this one; it's pretty fun!!

1. Go to Wikipedia.
2. In the Search box, type your birth month and day (but not year).
3. List three events that happened on your birthday.
4. List two important birthdays and one interesting death.
5. One holiday or observance (if any).

1767 - Mason-Dixon line, survey separating Maryland from Pennsylvania is completed.
1851 - Herman Melville's Moby-Dick is first published as The Whale by Richard Bentley of London.
1985 - Nintendo releases the Nintendo Entertainment System in the United States.
There were too many to choose from! So I picked one from each of the last 3 centuries.

1898 - Lotte Lenya, Austrian singer and actress (d. 1981)
1919 - Anita O'Day, American singer

2000 - Julie London, American singer and actress (b. 1926)
2000 - Gwen Verdon, American dancer and actress (b. 1925)
Okay, I cheated, but Julie London and Gwen Verdon on the same day?!

French Republican Calendar - Piment (Chili Pepper) Day, twenty-seventh day in the Month of Vendemiaire

I'm tagging Christopher, (who I just discovered is way into OTR like Evan is! Which is irrelevant but...) Also Mary and Cate, who I know haven't done this one.

Thursday, June 8, 2006

r.i.p., mr. jinx

Thanks to everyone who's been saying nice things over on Evan's journal. We got home a little while ago from the vet, where Mr. Jinx finally finished out his run here with us. He started to really deteriorate a few days ago, and this morning while we were waiting from a call back from his Dr., he got up onto a kitchen counter and then fell off and was unable to get back up without help. We were hoping he could make it to his 15th birthday next month, but still, nearly 15 years is pretty good for a kitty. Bye bye, Jinxie. Hope Pixie's waiting to show you where the best sleeping spots are.

update: Crushy is a little bounder! Not 6 hours after we came home with no Jinx, and he took possession of the bedroom again. (He gave it up about a year and a half ago). It was nice to have the kitty company though!

Tuesday, June 6, 2006



And here's the kid's show that should go on the air right now, Yo! Gabba Gabba!. The site has a trailer and two songs for downloading -- we showed Emily the trailer a couple days ago when she was sick and it perked her right up. She now insists on seeing the trailer as many times as we can stand and has added the phrase "gabba gabba" to her repertoire. (Her favorite character is Brobee, the green stripey guy.)

The show isn't acually real yet, but with the minds of the Aquabats behind it you know it'll be fantastic. Hopefully someone will pick it up and Emily can enjoy Yo! Gabba Gabba! for real someday! (And in the meantime, where's the merch, guys? Do I have to make her a Brobee shirt myself?)

In other news, my hosting problems continue, and between work, upcoming Mocca and Emily's having been sick (and the bad Mr. Jinx news) I can't attend to it right now. Sorry to those of you who have had trouble commenting or who's emails to me haven't gotten through!

Friday, May 26, 2006

aprons and me(mes)

Here's the meme we're all doing for the What's Cookin' apron/recipe swap. It was harder than you might think, since I only came up with maybe 3 of these!

1. first apron (that you can remember)
An eyelet apron from Germany, part of a traditional outfit my mom's friend brought back when I was maybe 5. I loved that outfit, and I still have the apron! Somewhere...update: still can't remember where it is, but I found one old polaroid in my photo album that shows me wearing it. At the duckpond, apparently.

my first apron

2. last (most recent) apron
If it has to be finished, then it's my "White Christmas" apron that I did for the holiday theme Tie One On. Otherwise, it's my still unfinished entry for the Tie One On white/yellow theme from April -- I threw my back out the last week of April and couldn't finish it, and since I blew getting it into the TOO gallery, well, I just haven't finished it.

3. dream/favorite apron
Last year I had some of this fabric laminated on the front to make a waterproof apron; originally I was going to use it to make an apron from this pattern, but now I want to use the pattern Rebecca used here. All that bias tape though...yikes!

4. dream sewing machine
I'm happy with my current sewing machine and serger -- if I was better with the serger I might want a fancier one. And someday I wouldn't mind a full-on embroidering machine. At the moment my mad money dream is to get one of these Hello Kitty sewing machines to give Emily when she's bigger! Green or blue...who can choose?

5. what do you put in your pockets? or what strange thing have you ever found in them?
I don't have pockets in any of my clothes except some of my coats and jackets. I rarely use them, but every year when I get them in the fall I find something odd in at least one pocket. Little toys I can't remember getting, usually.

6. condiment(s) you can't live without
I've lived in the NYC area long enough to say mustard. Soy sauce, also.

7. do you wear more showy aprons or dutiful ones?
Definitely the duty aprons.

8. favorite cooking gadget
Could not live without my bread machine and rice cooker.

9. cooking gagdet that promised the world but didn't deliver
The indoor grill we bought -- it just was too much trouble and mess.

10. a recipe that you know by heart and any stories behind it
I don't cook with recipes that often, but one thing that needs a recipe which I do have memorised is baked macaroni and cheese -- it's the actual recipe from the Automat company. Evan wanted me to try it to see if it was like he remembered and it turned out to be the best macaroni we'd ever had.

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

swapping...and I don't mean aprons

I can't believe I keep forgetting to post about this! I got an email last week scouting me to appear on that show Wife Swap; apparently they're looking for some families/wives who are collectors of some sort and came across my old guide to female action figures. So they contacted me to see if I'd be interested -- how freaky! I can't imagine actually doing a show like that -- even if I was willing to look like an idiot on tv for money, I don't really like the idea of putting small kids on tv since they can't make that decision for themselves. But still, a fast $20K? Good thing Emily isn't old enough or I might have been tempted! That's a lot of college fund...and I guess that's how people talk themselves into doing things like that. You can guess at the jokes Evan made when I told him about the email.

Saturday, May 20, 2006

this week's craftiness

stencilled cat face shirt

Finally, I got the chance to try my hand at a freezer paper stencil; I'd been wanting to do it for a while since I definitely don't have time to mess with even the simplest screenprinting. This morning I made this swing shirt for Emily, and it came out really swell, we thought! The design is a little cat face from the credit sequence of Totoro. (See it bigger here!) It was pretty easy too -- I pencilled the design on the freezer paper (on the dull side), cut out the stencil with an x-acto, laid the pieces out on the shirt (shiny side down) and ironed them on. Then dabbed on some black fabric paint, peeled up the stencil pieces (the only really scary step), let the paint dry and heat-set it. I'm sure there's loads of tutorials but I basically followed the system I saw here (where I first saw this idea), especially Amy's brilliant step of adding freezer paper behind the stencil as well. I didn't let it dry overnight though -- I used the blow-dryer on it and heat set it so I could put everything back away as fast as possible. We're all excited to make more stencils!

Also this week, a new washcloth bib, made from an Astroboy washcloth someone gave us years ago (I'm thinking it was our friend Devon but I'm not sure). I think Emily loves it way more than we do!


Thursday, May 18, 2006

an improbable recipe...

...and probably, an impossible one as well! This appeared in an MGM short we saw last week called "I'm Much Obliged". A minor plot point revolved around this newspaper recipe by "Auntie Pru" (actually a cranky old man with dyspepsia), which was so ridiculous I had to write it down. And here it is:

Paradise Whip

2 pounds of marshmallows
1 dozen crushed bananas
1 pound of butterscotch caramel syrup
1 cup dark brown molasses
1 can of condensed milk
6 egg yolks

Beat yolks of six eggs. Add condensed milk, pour in the molasses and caramel syrup. Thoroughly mix marshmallows with bananas. Add liquid ingredients and set aside to cool. Serve with meringue and sweeten to taste.

Obviously, the "sweeten to taste" part is a big joke, haha, about as funny as the short was. (i.e. NOT). I could almost believe this was some noxious 1930s recipe except there is a major step obviously left cool it, but it's never been heated. I did wonder for about 15 minutes if it was possible to make something from this. Then I decided it would just be too gross and sweet no matter what you did! But if you're brave enough to take a crack at it, go right ahead!

Monday, May 15, 2006

All Purpose and Kitchen Tested!!


I'm excited to finally unveil a project my galpal Mary and I have been working on for literally months -- What's Cookin', an apron & recipe swap. The idea is to swap handmade aprons and some of your favorite recipes with like-minded crafty types. I think it'll be lots of fun, so if the idea sounds at all interesting, come on over and read all about it. And maybe I'll see you in the sign-up list!

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

more cupcakes!

sushi cupcakes

For Evan's birthday last week, I made sushi cupcakes since he loves sushi so much. They were actually pretty tasty too, although they did not last long at all (all that candy started breaking down pretty quickly). I baked a sheet cake and used biscuit cutters to make rounds; frosted them with Claire Crespo's "rice" icing (4-1/2 cups shredded coconut, 3/4 cup powdered sugar, and, um, sour cream and a little vanilla. I'll look that up later.) the "nori" is cut from green fruit rollups, which were gross beyond belief. If I ever try this again I will work ahead and get real fruit leather from a health food store. Jujubes were cut into the different shapes for the "tuna", "pickled vegetable" etc. The "soy sauce" is a chocolate-cherry sauce that was really tasty (cocoa powder, powdered sugar and Fox' u-bet cherry syrup) and the wasabi is just a little frosting. I had ideas for the pickled ginger but Evan hates the stuff anyway so I skipped it!

LIke I said, the candy all started breaking down by the next morning, so these definitely would have to be eaten quickly. And I was pretty much picking all the candy off anyway -- but I can see kids going nuts for them. Don't know if I'd do it again, but it was fun to try once!

Friday, April 14, 2006

Emily's birthday cupcakes

cupcake roses for Emily!

Another belated post, this one about the cupcakes I made for Emily's birthday party last year. These were inspired by a photo I clipped from a magazine (although I didn't save enough of the page to know what magazine!) and are buttercream roses iced (with a huge flower-making frosting tip) directly onto the cupcakes. If you've ever seen directions for making icing roses on a flower nail, it's basically the same thing, except you make them right on the cupcakes. And since they're buttercream they're totally edible and yummy, unlike royal frosting or (most) fondant. I was very happy with the way they turned out. I made yellow and pink ones, and the cupcakes are chocolate (thanks to my friend Betty for help with those!) Here they are on display before the party:

before the party

And here the cupcakes are naked; and lined up getting iced.

More info: I used the basic buttercream recipe in the Wilton cake book, but I made it ahead of time and kept it in the fridge; I had to use the mixer to soften it a little but I kept it really cold to make it easier to work with. (I had two setups and when the one I was using started getting warm from my hands I put it in the fridge and switched to the other.) I used the Wilton 125 petal tip -- I wanted to use a bigger one, but I didn't give myself time to get them online and I was lucky to find two 125 tips locally as it was! I pretty much free-handed the roses, I didn't use any petal count system (in the comments -- I actually don't know what that 3-5, 7 count means). I looked at a couple of different ways people made roses and just sort of winged it. There's a reason you don't see all the cupcakes I iced in those photos!!

Tuesday, April 11, 2006



I spotted this in Wired's roundup of weird usb gadgets -- they call this an "eyeball baby" but actually, it's a webcam designed to look like Pops from Gegege No Kitaro, only the best ghost manga ever written!! The great things about Pops, is he lives in the empty eye socket of his dead ghost son. No, really! We've loved Gegege ever since it was shown subtitled in NYC back in the early 90s. I seriously think I need this webcam. Not that I even use a webcam.'s Pops! (okay, I don't know that "Pops" is the official translation, in fact I'm pretty sure it's not. But the subtitled version we saw called him that. So, to us, he's always Pops.)

Friday, March 31, 2006

when insanity strikes

when insanity strikes - exhibit D

We have a lot of Little Golden Books we've collected over the years, including both "collectible" (i.e. very expensive to replace and Emily can't have them) and junky reading copies. But one of our favorites is a tatty copy of "A Year In The City", which is dear to our hearts because someone -- a parent or teacher -- went nuts and started crossing out everything they obviously didn't think should be read aloud to children! Mostly the edits are completely inexplicable to me. See the best ones here.

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Friday, March 24, 2006

clothing make-overs!

boba jumper

I've always been really into the idea of cutting down old clothes that still had some wear left in them into kid's clothes -- but until now, I didn't have a kid to re-make anything for! Now that I do, I've started experimenting with the idea. I already had cut down some old pajamas into a pair of pants, which worked out great (and also remade a pair of footed leggings into cuffed pants, making them last an extra 3-4 months!). And this week I finished the best project so far, this cute little geek-baby Boba Fett jumper! The pattern came from a Japanese pattern magazine; the fabric came from this ILM staff shirt someone gave Evan a while back. It was very cool, but big and starting to wear around the collar. So I decided it was the perfect subject.

First, I made a test jumper, using a very old and raggedy cotton shirt I'd bought at Pearl River Mart maybe a decade ago. It came out cute, but halfway through I realized the fabric was worse off than I'd thought, so I cheated and used velcro on the tabs. It looks good on her anyway. And once that came out well, I went for the Boba shirt.

I only had two real challenges: first, the back had the ILM logo across it, so I had to piece the jumper's back to avoid it. Second, I haven't sewn a buttonhole in so long, I apparently forgot how. Several test buttonholes later, I decided to cheat! So those are actually fakes, with snaps sewn on underneath. Maybe next time...

Now we have a small stack of favorite-but-worn t-shirts to be made-over for the next few years. Evan can't wait til I get to his Batboy shirt, but it's so huge, I don't think she'll be getting that one til she's 3 or 4. Jumpers ahoy!

Thursday, March 23, 2006

Welcome to Eltingville

The [adult swim] special (a.k.a. failed pilot) "Welcome To Eltingville" is up on You Tube now, for all those who never got a chance to see it. I'm posting it here because it can't be put on Evan's LJ...if you want to watch it, click below!

Warning absolutely no cuteness ahead. At all. Also, it's about 23 minutes, and kind of LOUD.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

a bug for the baby


Isn't this illustration adorable? It's the cover of the latest Babybug -- a junior-junior version of Cricket (if you remember that) for 1-3 year olds. We got Emily a subscription right before her 1st birthday when I got a good price on it through the mail, and she loves every little issue. They're like little books, and mostly are really cute and not too painful to read and re-read. (With a few notable exceptions.) This cover is by far my favorite illustration we've seen so far! The artist, Holly Berry (for real!) also does a two-page spread inside that's great, it could totally be from an old Golden Book or something. I found out very little about her, but she's illustrated at least a dozen children's books, (check out this page from The Impudent Rooster! So pretty!) some of which will definitely be going on Emily's wishlist!

Sunday, March 19, 2006

sugar shock!


Reader Sandy T alerted me to Pancake Meow--a collection of handcrafted miniature fake food jewelry!! And as we all know, there's not much I love more than mini fake foods...but what to get? There's an amazing array of confections which you can buy (or use) as necklaces, earrings or charms. As a bonus, you can get them scented (although that's not for me--ugh). A bunch can even be customized! I'm personally leaning towards a pink cupcake with white icing (see the one on the left in the pic)...what would you get? Oh, and if the cuteness that artist Leslie makes herself isn't enough, she's going to start carrying an adorable line of Japanese goods from Decole soon. I am so there.

Friday, March 10, 2006

Best. Tarot. Deck. Ever.

My galpal Mary discovered this incredibly cool retro-licious Housewives Tarot and it only took me about 2 minutes to add the (real) deck to my Amazon shopping list! You can also do a reading right on the site, which is pretty fun. Here's my reading!


Wednesday, February 15, 2006

a meme about me me me

I was tagged by Matt days ago but...well, I don't really need to go on and on about how roadrunner is sucking the very life out of me, do I?

Four (day) jobs I've had:
1. salesgirl @ punk/vintage clothing store
2. receptionist @ hair salon
3. art director @ (very small) newspaper
4. counter person @ bagel shop

Four movies I can watch over and over:
1. The Women
2. The Thin Man
I know Evan will see this and be able to tell me of at least 5 more movies I have watched over and over. But right now I'm drawing a blank!

Four places I've lived:
1. NY
2. Florida
that's it!

Four TV shows I love:
None. We pretty much only watch movies. And even shows I did watch I don't feel the need to see again (like Northern Exposure)

Four places I've vacationed:
1. Halifax
2. Mexico
3. London
4. Caribbean

Four of my favorite dishes:
1. tonkatsu
2. salmon with truffles that used to be served at Montrachet
3. asparagus maki (negimaki made with asparagus)
4. chili - practically any kind

Four sites I visit daily:
1. Bloglines (that sums up a ton of sites though)
2. flickr
4. google, I'm always looking something up.

Four places I would rather be right now*:
1. Mitsuwa
2. Marketfair mall in NJ (so upscale! so soothing!)
3. on a ship to Nova Scotia
4. asleep in bed
*right this second

Four bloggers I'm tagging:
1. tulip
2. Mary
3. Evan (who will say, "a what? do I have to?")
4. hmmm...I can't invitation to anyone who wants to take it!

Tuesday, January 31, 2006

shabam! pow! plop... whizz?


I think we've dicovered one of the goofiest comics-related things ever...this video clip for Serge Gainsbourg & Brigitte Bardot's 60s song, Comic Strip. Yup, that's Brigitte up there, in a brunette wig and superhero costume (which I find creepy, but Evan says is pretty accurate for French 60s comics most likely). Not to be missed!!

Forgot to say - while you're there, check out the playlist that it comes from, there's some really interesting clips of 60s French pop! I mainly know the Serge Gainsbourg stuff but there's lots more I've never heard of.

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