Saturday, May 30, 2009

I love the way this feels.

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Here's a few more.

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I just really get a lot of pleasure out of all of this. I know it's nothing special, but I think it is.

The Late Bloomer's Revolution.

Started The Late Bloomer's Revolution by Amy Cohen yesterday after it arrived in the mail from Ruth. (Thanks!)

She also sent me the NYC Moleskin Notebook and I can't wait to start filling it with ideas for my trip in August.

Friday, May 29, 2009

The Yard.

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After lunch in Park Ridge with Michelle, we went to the Hinsdale Nursery. I love this place. It's so beautiful and well organized. We picked some pretty flowers and vines. I trimmed the bushes in the front afterward and set up the plants with the pots for planting tomorrow. I feel pretty beat, but that's probably mostly because I whooped it up last night pretty good. Tomorrow we've got to get a few more plants and flowers, a whole lot of food, and then spend the rest of the day getting the house and yard party-ready.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Perks of Being a Wallflower.

I finished The Perks of Being a Wallflower last week. It took 11 days, but that's only because I was trying to make it last. I loved the main character Charlie, so much. I broke down and cried several times at his sweet, thoughtful, sensitive self. So cute was this book, I highly recommend.

Dear Troy posted this image while I was in the middle of reading the book. It reminded me of something Charlie might have written down.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

May 27.

Today is my birthday. I wanted to post some image/s that were calm and beautiful. I was searching around, but my mind kept drifting back to the elaborate, subtle and serene work of Liz Jaff. A while ago I posted a couple images of her bright, colorful and abstract quilt designs, seemingly a complete about-face from these white-on-white paper sculptures and drawings. I think all of it is so pretty. Happy Birthday to me.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

The Loot (Part 1).

One really fun part of my parents coming up is discovering the stuff they pull out of the car when they arrive. I was surprised to unpack two boxes filled with a set of plain white, gold-rimmed China place settings for 12 that my Mom couldn't pass up at an estate sale. I would have never picked gold, but it definitely compliments the living/dining room decor. Hilarious to imagine entertaining 12 guests to sit-down dinner, but also nice to have.

She also brought up a framed boat photograph by Ray Hartl that I love. At least I thought it was a photograph*. I'm barely remembering her telling me it was a print of a painting, but we got sidetracked when she called the boat "yellow" so I didn't get the full story. I have since asked two people, and not one of us would call this boat yellow. You?

As I mentioned before, figuring out where to put these new things was a challenge. I needed to pull down a bunch of stuff and rearrange, typically a long process of moving, looking, leaving, moving again, and so on. So, while the pillow cases were being made and I was OCD'ing my closet, I was also able to go about this ritual uninterrupted.

This last shot has the 6 items I found at the antique pavillion place in Michigan. The second to last booth I stopped at had what I'd been looking for the whole time: the first beveled edge mirror to start my collection. In it's reflection you can also see 4 frames I got to hold some botanical prints. Another surprise was the little robin's egg blue frame that has a sweet little bird scene. I still think that black frame on the large print is too heavy, but it will do for now. The bathroom is coming together. I love finding treasures.

*It is a photo, or at least a print of a photo. I don't know where that earlier discussion was going. Also, the website I've linked to doesn't really seem to be functioning, but this is the artist.

The List.

After my mini-meltdown yesterday, I remembered the list I'd worked up in the event that I had something I needed or wanted to do and my Mom did not. So, while I did this:

she made the canvas pillow cases for the chairs on the deck. Hurray!

Monday, May 25, 2009

Standard visitor stress.

My parents arrived Thursday night and it's been a whirlwind ever since. I kind of planned it that way so we wouldn't have to answer the question of what we're doing next all the time, but now I'm tired and just want to nap all day. My Dad left for Canada early Thursday morning, so it's been my Mom and me. She's trying to take me to lunch right now. I haven't had my coffee even, because I had to get up and go to volleyball practice and then mow the lawn before it starts raining for the next three days. Not that I'm complaining, but isn't she sick of running around? And doing projects? And eating? I am. So I'm back in bed getting my caffeine fix now and trying to recharge.

I regret not photographing any of our outings this weekend, but I learned something else recently: I don't like taking pictures around certain people when I feel like I am holding them up, or they are watching me do it. I also don't like people shadowing me when I am trying to figure out placement for new wall hangings! And I don't want help! I know, I know. But really, cleaning out the garage doesn't really work with two people does it? How many times can a person answer, Where do you want this?

Going for cup #2. Starting to feel a little better.

So, besides sharing my space and my time, which is usually luxuriously my own, I am also feeling "off" because of the new things that have entered the house. I know, right? Nice problem to have. But I feel like I need to get all the walls rehung – and looking "right" – before the birthday party here this weekend.

We need to get the pots potted, the garage organized, the walls hung, the dishes put away, the place clean. We should be running off to the Hinsdale Nursery or the Container Store. The cold and gloom isn't helping. I need to clean out my closets. Oh decisions, decisions.

This is the one photo I took this weekend. We had brunch (oatmeal pancakes for the table, on top of our meals) in Glenn (aka Pancake Town) across from a firehouse. I thought it was cute.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Team Red.

We won our first volleyball games. I don't think our competition was the best in the league. Our team may not be the best either but we sure looked sharp in our new shirts.

Parents come today. I'm going to have my Mom help me pick out and set up one of these structures for climbing clematis. Pretty right?

I think these images are from Martha Stewart.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Alexander Calder.

I always want to make mobiles when I can't be making one, and then when the time comes where I could, I forget I want to. Then I think of Alexander Calder. Calder may be the first artist I ever learned about and then took notice of how I'd heard about him and never forgot his name, or the artwork he brings to mind. By learned about, I mean I hadn't ever heard of him before I was Taught about him. Not like a Picasso or Monet, who you grow up just knowing about. Calder was truly a 'discovery' for me.

I think having hanging art in a living space, moving and existing, is really pretty wonderful. I love how it shifts and balances and creates an ever-changing visual. Some, like these, make me think of fish and being under water. I think all of them are beautiful. Anyway, my friend Aaron over at Walking Paper posted this project detailing how to make your own mobile a while ago. I've been meaning to do it in my 'spare time' for months now. Beat me to the punch. Show me what you come up with.

Maxwell Street Flea Market.

I always wondered what these signs were for when I'd see them from the highway. I think today I got my answer. Michelle and I went down to the Maxwell Street Flea Market. It was the perfect day for it and it made me really nostalgic for city living. We met in our old neighborhood, which had that city-Sunday morning feeling in the air. Kind of slow and sunny, with strollers and coffee.

We found a spot and parked for free and then wandered up and down peeking into booths. Most of it was crap, but it was still fun to look at. People watching was only okay surprisingly. There was one African woman selling soaps and incense I should have asked to photograph. I got some great smelling soap from her.

Michelle got some Dr. Seuss books for Margaret, Army pants to cut off into shorts, and this random clock from some goofy guy who was also trying to get us to buy this dirty doll that looked like Chucky. We both got packs of Orbit gum and plastic floral rings for $1. Honestly the best part for me was the food booths. The ones selling fruit and spices and nuts, but also the Mexican "grills" where you could get tacos and Coca-colas in a glass bottle. Many of these places had tables and chairs set up too, and that's where it was fun to watch the crowd. I'd go back just for that.

By the time we got back to Wicker Park it was in full swing. Softball games, bikes, lots of people walking around and outdoor patios packed with brunch eaters. I'm going to have to plan another morning trip just to walk around there next.

Friday, May 15, 2009

These stairs!

Image from old Domino files via Automatism.

Thursday, May 14, 2009


It is so much nicer to me when the sun is shining when I wake up. I love it now that it's light out actually when I wake up even if it's raining and gloomy. I'm happy that for a few months to come, it will be light in the mornings, but I especially like it when it's bright in the morning.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009


Lately I have been feeling restricted by infinite possibilities.

And not enough time.

This ridiculously incredible pool was photographed by Jean-Fran├žois Jaussaud via Solid Frog. Are you kidding me!?

UPDATE: I just went back and looked at the photographer's website, because I just don't get how this pool works and I wanted to see more of it's surroundings. I believe now this is the indoor pool. There's another one outside just a few feet from the ocean. This is someone's BEACH HOUSE! Ha! If you go to the site, click on "Lifestyle" and then find the thumbnail with the red chair. Amazing.

Some images of Spring on a gloomy day.

I forgot the tree in my backyard flowered.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Two stories from India.

I finally saw Slumdog Millionaire last week and I loved it. I was nervous because it got so much hype and I had recently heard someone say it wasn't that great. What's funny and amazing considering all the exposure and the obvious title, I still had no clue what it was all about. What a great story. How unexpected.

What's strange is that I had seen the documentary Born Into Brothels a few weeks prior. This is a nice eye-opener and great reference for the next time you're feeling sorry for yourself or think you're having a bad day. It's also quite beautiful to see these children smiling despite some pretty terrible conditions, and the lovely photographs they take. Photographer Zana Briski lived and worked in India, where she met a group of kids in the red light district of Calcutta and supplied them with cameras and photography classes. These are some of their photos.

Kids with Cameras, and Born Into Brothels (winner of the Academy Award for best documentary feature) were both results of her hard work and dedication. You can see more of their photographs here. I thought this was an interesting film, one that's stuck with me and I have continued to think about since. It's available on Netflix to Watch Instantly (my favorite thing!).

Photographs taken by Zana Brinski and the children Suchitra, Gour, Kochi and Kochi again.