Monday, May 29, 2006

Never Forgotten

A salute to my husband, his fellow SF candidates and the soldiers his unit lost in Iraq. Please think of them all today.

Sunday, May 28, 2006

I've finished reading Martha's new Blueprint magazine. I feel pretty meh about the whole thing. There are some great features - in this edition I liked the tai chi piece and the stationery finder. The magazine is organized well with features categorized room by room - from the top drawer to the bedroom to the worktable, etc... And, it pulls together some great standards from other magazines like its own version of the party guide that In Style runs monthly to a craft like you'd see in Living. There's a pull out sofa-buying guide that's part Consumer Reports, part Domino. They have achieved their stated goal of putting together a magazine that covers everything. In doing so, they've assembled a guide that will help you if you know nothing about anything. Because the spectrum is so broad, there is little depth. Still, the layout is gorgeous. Some of the ideas are great. This is like the buffet of magazines - nothing is fantastic or particularly unique, but there's something for everybody. And it takes a lot less time to read than paging through every single one of the magazines its modeled on.

Monday, May 22, 2006

Black Raven Vintage

I'm not really into vintage clothing myself. But, I'm here for you! If you love vintage, this eBay store looks like a great place to shop! Black Raven Vintage has great feedback and a fun inventory. She includes super detailed measurements and comprehensive descriptions - a must for educated eBay shopping. I love that she models all the clothing herself. Here are a couple of fab dresses she has in her store right now.

Sunday, May 21, 2006

For your little L-A-M-B

Much like the lady herself, Gwen Stefani's L-A-M-B clothing line is expecting. These adorable crib shoes will be available June 1st.

Thoroughly modern mini

If you've been following along here, you've noticed that I'm not a fan of cutesy cute baby stuff. I like the stuff my kids use to be stuff I would use myself, only smaller. I've found a kindred spirit in the folks at ModernMini. I like this bouncer (its so cool, they call it a baby lounger) by Oeuf NYC. You will notice that there are no ugly toy bars teeming with fake aquarium fish or dangling Winnie the Poohs. Nothing lights up or plays midi versions of sticky sweet songs. And, its the color of chocolate. I just don't see how it could get any better.

A bassinet is one of those cool-to-have-but-not-really-necessary baby items. This one is so stylish, it might just become a must have.

I love this little ride on toy. They come in cow, bee and ladybug prints.

New print

Blueprint Magazine is the newest publication hot off the Martha Stewart presses. They are only publishing 6 times per year and you can try it free here. I've just started perusing, but it appears to be Martha's answer to Real Simple. This could be a very good thing. I've always liked Real Simple, but sometimes its solutions are just too simple. A little cheap and uninspired, actually - it could use a little Martha-style complication. So far, so good. I'll post later once I've finished.

Thursday, May 18, 2006

Father's Day is on the way

Father's Day is coming up around the corner and its time to get shopping! I will probably do a few posts on this over the next week. Because, let's face it, men are a bit of a conundrum. While most men aren't particularly picky, they can be tough to shop for. Why is that? Well, thankfully, my husband is actually pretty easy to shop for. I know he covets the next few things. He has a personal GPS training device that he straps onto his arm before going on long runs or marches. It's great for helping keep track of distance and pace. But, he would love to upgrade to the Garmin Forerunner 301 Personal GPS with Heart Rate Monitor to track his heart rate and monitor his exercise intensity and performance.

He would also love to upgrade from his across-the-doorway chin up bar to this standing Chin & Dip Station (EA). And I would love for him to do his pull up stuff outside!

Now if your Dad or husband isn't an exercise obsessed paratrooper, I may be of less help. But, this Beer-O-Matic retro 12-can vending machine from Perpetual Kid may do the trick. It's just short of kegerator but with some style.

Throw rugs are probably not the first thing that comes to mind when you're looking for a Father's Day gift. But these sewer cover rugs, also from Perpetual Kid, are pretty cool for a garage or shed.

The husband and I are from fly fishing territory where angling is considered just about on par with, well, murder. Orvis has fly tying kits from the basic all the way up to this juggernaut. However your giftee fishes, the best thing about a fishing gift is its explicit encouragement to get away guilt-free.

Always a hit with the husband (not so much the Dad) is really anything from

Or, for a gift that's more for you than him, try Kenzo Pour Homme Cologne. This is consistently picked as one of the best men's fragrances ever.

Don't forget that the best present you can give your husband or Dad is to let them know how great a Dad you think they are!

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

The Urban Garden

With the summer on the horizon, the husband and I are ready to start turning the land surrounding the house into actual landscaping. The Urban Garden has just the kind of sleek and modern garden accessories that we covet. The company is in the UK, but you can call for a shipping quote on anything you see on the site. While I really want these super-futuristico wall planters, I'm not sure how practical they are. I can already see myself out there shining them up multiple times a day. And, I'd hate to blind one of the neighbors with a stray sunbeam. Still, I like!

I dig these recycled tire planters on a couple different levels. They have a real industrial vibe with a handmade look.

And, they remind me of the wacky hey-honey-let's-build-an-Earthship-days. What, you didn't live those? Well, look closely, you'll see the recycled tires in the foundation.

I love this sleek table set. Its way more art than adirondack.

This next piece is a ceramic fire bowl. It's really just a fancy candle. But, I'm going to pretend its big like an outdoor fire pit. Because, that's what I'd like it to be and this blog is all about my little material heart's desires. Okthanksbye.

I'm still a super star!

I'm getting old. I can admit this. What I hate to admit is that I'm going all soccer mom over here. Gwen Stefani is older than me and she's still maintaining! Me, all I've got is a teeny tiny bit of edge left.

The perfect place to indulge that last wee little bit of inner rebel is E.C. Star. In general, the line is more punk than I've ever been. But, some of the pieces are just perfect for me - even in all my suburban glory.

I love this dress. I love that its seersucker. I love that its black seersucker. Most of all, I love that they call it the Pirate Dress.

Because that means it goes perfectly with this fantastic tote.

I am so not a cat person. I'm not even sure why I like this simple tank top so much. But, I do.

I also really like this vintage birdie tee. I don't usually wear t-shirts, but I could make an exception for this one!

And lastly, this brings me back to my usual, girlie girl ways.


Papillon Handbags are designed by a Japanese artist and inspired by the last century school of Art Nouveau. These dramatic bags are all hand embroidered with brilliant colors and distinctive designs. One of my favorites is this spectacular tote made with hand-embroidered satin and Cognac leather. I think it would make any travel feel quite glamorous!

This handbag is decidedly less dramatic but with a very chic and understated lure. I really like the shape.

Monday, May 15, 2006

Pillow perfect

Hable Construction is a textile design company. I love the artistry in their fabrics. While the fabrics themselves are only available to professionals, they sell a whole host of products for the home. I really love the pillows.

Thanks guys!

Thanks so much to all who popped in and left a comment in the spirit of yesterday's Benevolent Blogging soiree - to those of you who showed up a little early or a little late, don't worry, you counted too! Thanks especially to the genuinely kind and thoroughly humble Katie over at Scentzilla who dreamed this up and put it all together. I've sent $21.00 to FINCA International in honor of all of you! Unfortunately, my pea brain didn't take the opportunity to customize the thank you card beyond marking the gift in the name of Benevolent Blogging. But, you can check out the generic thanks from Network for Good - who process the gift - here.

Sunday, May 14, 2006

Blogroll please

I've posted a blogroll in the sidebar. Yes, it took a little prodding. But, it's there now. Althouse - As I said in my inaugural post, this is one very smart, rather funky lady. She links to fascinating articles and issues, asks pointed questions and hosts a diverse and civilized (!) commentariat. Beauty Addict - Kristen Kelly, aka the Beauty Addict, is a little obsessed with makeup. She writes knowledgable and fun to read reviews - often on products that are new to me - and posts a fun silly celebrity makeup of the week. Christopher Althouse - Like me, he's just jumped in to the blogging side of the blogosphere and already he's got me hooked. Disparate and intriguing topics and fun photoblogging. Chronicles of Jake - Like my husband, he's going through the Special Forces Qualification Course here at Fort Bragg. He's an excellent writer with a fascinating subject. Frugal Fashionista - I'm loving this blog. She deconstructs stylish celebrity looks on the cheap. And she is so much more techno-savvy than me - no interminable parades of pictures on her site! Go Fug Yourself - Everybody knows who these girls are. No greater praise can be given than that of this anonymous reader: "Your shriveled little hearts must be made of tar." Manolo's Shoe Blog - Pretty shoes, hilarious commentary and a zany accent. What more could a girl want?

No more nursing clothes nightmares

Huzzah to all you nursing mamas - it may be natural but it ain't always easy! For me, one of the hardest parts of nursing is the god awful ugly clothes. I've never been a fan of wearing regular clothes and just hiking up my shirt. But, you couldn't pay me to wear most of what's out there. Here is some of what I will (and do) wear. Any search for the perfect breastfeeding accoutrement simply must begin at When I was nursing my son, they were the only ones out with these fabulous nursing bra style tanks. While there are a whole host of copycats out there now, these remain the highest quality with the most flattering fit.

For simple yet fairly stylish basics, check out the selection over at Expressiva Nursingwear.

Japanese Weekend usually has at least a few fun pieces.

Last but not least, you can do much better than the granny-bras at Motherhood. For fantastic lingerie - both nursing and not - check out What better time to feel sexy than when you're sporting the best breasts of your life!?