Thursday, October 29, 2009

El Terrible...

Want to read an utterly, completely, horrifically terrible article this morning?

Click here.

This only aids to cement the fact that "religious fundamentalists" is just another term for "total nut jobs."

Monday, October 26, 2009

My heart, complete

He's home.

I'm happy.

And a little jealous.

But happy.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Friday Fashion: Hardware

I'm still not totally out of my husband-less funk, as my hormones took a nosedive into my tear-soaked pillow this week, but things are starting to look up. Husband comes home tomorrow morning! I couldn't be happier! To quote a cliche, distance makes the heart grow fonder. Though, in my particular case, distance made the heart grow frantically delirious with a side of suicidal thoughts and a need for intensive counseling and anti-psychotic medication.

But you're not here to listen (read?) to me talking about my problems, right? You're here to see beautiful things, butterfly wings, fairy tale kings. Thanks, Bobby Darin.

So our custom-made vanities are officially in! And they are GORGEOUS! And I didn't take any pictures of them yet to post on here, so that information is really quite meaningless to you, dear reader. But they did help to inspire this Friday Fashion. One of my favorite parts of the vanities is the hardware we picked out - simple, sleek, silver. I'm seriously contemplating getting 8,000 more pieces of the same hardware for our kitchen cabinets, which are still naked and handle-less. But it's a big world and there's a lotta hardware out there, kid. The following tickle my fancy, too:For those of us who have difficulty remembering where we left our silverware. I love the Gaelic-looking font. From Notting Hill.

I love baskets (but only those made by yours truly or Longaberger, not starving, overworked, underpaid children in Taiwan. I'm a humanitarian, you know.). I apparently also love metal woven to look like basket weave. So simple and pretty. Though a single piece costs $14.99. I could maybe outfit one cabinet per year. Are you cheap? Did you buy inexpensive cabinetry that looks lovely but is probably actually made out of sand and Elmer's glue? Feel expensive and chic by outfitting your cabinets with marble knobs. Oh, yes. I said marble. By Cal Crystal.

These SoHo Cabinet Knobs are something I would realistically buy for my house. Very simple, very sleek, very silver. And not terribly expensive - $58.99 for 25 pieces!

These Tanglewood Knobs might be a tad rustic for my own home, but I love the look. They belong in a charming, shabby chic cottage! $11.89 per piece.If I could afford these (and if my dishwasher could afford the opening space, which is another issue entirely), I would outfit every door and drawer with these long handles. They are $20.36 each. Yikes. But oh so lovely.

I couldn't leave you this Friday without including something positively weird. I don't know anyone who loves asparagus so much that they would want tiny replicas as cabinet pulls. But someone must, because here they are, from Modern Objects. I hope this made you laugh out loud. I did.

Have a wonderful weekend, y'alls.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Sad Kitty

My husband left on a jet plane Sunday.

He went to a work conference for the week in Las Vegas. If you would allow me to be sappy for a moment, this will be the longest we have been apart since we have been married. I want him to have a wonderful time, eating at fabulous, new restaurants and seeing shows like Penn & Teller (oh, and, you know, learning), but I can't help being forlorn.

His departure coincides with turmoil in our home life as we move in and move out. I know I'm being vague, but I just want each and every one of you to know that I am working to make my home a comfortable, inviting place. You are welcome in my home at any time. You are welcome to stay in our guest bed for as long as you want and eat our food and enjoy our company. I want people in my life to feel wanted, needed, cherished. It's a terrible thing to feel like an outcast in the only home you have at the moment, one which has never felt like a real home to begin with.

I have noticed one pronounced feature in myself thus far: a frown. I can't seem to help it. Normally, I try to be an optimistic, happy person. I look forward to waking up each day to Husband's face, and his humor is a constant joy all day long. With him around, I just smile involuntarily. But this week won't be one of those weeks, and I can't seem to get myself out of my funk.

If I was a kitten, this is exactly the face I would be making at this very moment.

Oh, and I totally missed posting a Friday Fashion last week. Ya wanna fight about it?

"Great Day to Whoop Somebody's Ass" by Paul Thorn on the Bob and Tom radio show.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Dumpster diving

Here is a very interesting New York Times article about a group that is reusing dumpsters in New York City and turning them into pools. Sure it sounds gross at first blush, but this has got to be recycling at its most innovative. The dumpsters are cleaned, sealed with a plastic liner, and even have a filtration system - turning them into an "urban country club."

This reminds me of my own, extremely country club from my youth. When my cousins and I would visit my grandparents on their farm during the summer, my grandpa would roll out one of the huge, round, metal troughs once used to water cows. He would fill the rusting, retired container with icy water from the garden hose, we would don our swimming suits, and hop in. It wasn't fancy, and it probably wasn't so sanitary, but it was fun.

Uhm, yeah. Essentially one of these.

Sloshing about in those makeshift pools with my cousin Megnut is one of my favorite childhood summertime memories. I wish life was still that carefree, when all it took to be happy was a water trough and a garden hose.

Go forth and be innovative. But avoid E. coli...keep your mouth closed.

Monday, October 12, 2009

For a foul Monday...

It is a foul Monday. It's dark. It's raining. It's freezing. At least it isn't freezing rain, but I'm not terribly interested in playing Pollyanna and looking for the silver lining today.

In that spirit, I present you: WTF Alexander McQueen?

Yes. They are shoes...

Friday, October 9, 2009

Friday Fashion: Food for the body (and soul)

This might be a teensy weensy Friday Fashion cop-out. But I hope you won't be disappointed. I've been simply swamped at work, and am slowly digging myself out of a hole. So, this Friday Fashion will be a little kitchen-centric. My very own kitchen, actually. And it will only feature one piece of fashion: countertops. Oh, yeah, baby.

Husband took the day off work Wednesday so he could meet our countertop installers. You read that right. We officially have kitchen countertops! Plus, 75% of our kitchen appliances actually work! It's a dadgum Christmas October...

Please revel in the cold, flat, solid surface with me, won't you?

These countertops are an enigma. In the store they looked greenish. In the brochure they looked grayish. In person they look blueish. I think they are amorphous enough to go with any wall color, changing hue themselves (the actual color is "Sonoma" guess they're West Coast inspired?). They look very much like quartz, with medium-sized, multicolored (but in the same color family) chips embedded everywhere. They are a matte finish (*cough* cheaper *cough), but the lights shine on them so nicely that I fear a polished finish would have been blinding. I really can't be bothered to put on sunglasses in my own kitchen at 6:30 in the morning.

The installation company gave us two extra square foot pieces to use as cutting boards and hot pads. Now that was nice, wasn't it? Though I'm quite sure we paid for them, one way or another... The countertops are heat and dent "resistent," but we're not supposed to believe they will necessarily stand up to the fiery bottom of a pan just removed from the stove or the slash of a knife when I get mad and stabby. But, because they are a wonderful invention of modern man, they can be resurfaced, good as new, at any point. Anything that will be able to survive my daily habitation and deeply ingrained klutziness is excellent. Ooh-rah.

Look! It's a bird! It's a plane! No! It's a breakfast bar! There used to be a wall right here. Do you remember? It was bad. This is my favorite part of the entire house, because it made such an impact. The first thing I thought when I saw the bar was how many pie crusts I would be able to roll out on that lovely, gigantic surface. Sorry, my dear feminist readers. I have to come to terms with the fact that I am Betty Crocker incarnate.

There will be a sink faucet here soon, I promise. It's a beautiful, stainless steel, matchy-matchy faucet. Just go ahead and use your imagination. The countertops flow right into the sink, so no crumbs will ever get caught in this puppy.

Next on our list for the kitchen (aside from finish details) is a backsplash. Husband and I are ennamored with glass tile, so we might be headed that route sometime soon. The backsplash isn't an expense we built into the budget or timeline, and it certianly won't keep us from living in the house, but when it is installed, it will go a long way to continuing to make this house really feel like a home.

I suggest you all go out and buy a whisk and some vanilla extract immediately. Happy weekend.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Animals + Voiceovers = Hilarity

Please do enjoy this video, it is hilarious. It is sure to brighten up your dark and rainy Thursday! I found it through Cute Overload, which is also an exceptionally funny site.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Wedding #8,346,571

Our final wedding of this year has come and gone! It all began Friday evening when a couple we know from Dinky College arrived at our house in preparation for the event the next day. They were the first people ever to stay overnight in our almost-completed home. On the scary old bed. That apparently did not collapse. All alone. They look pretty trustworthy, don't you think?

I wouldn't trust the photobomber in aviators though. He looks shady.

After a mind-blowingly delicious breakfast at McDonald's (because we know how to treat our guests right), we headed toward Chi-town and arrived with plenty of time to spare.

The ceremony was just as it should be: beautiful and fast. Refreshingly fast, after attending so many Catholic weddings this year. The bride and groom were never once offered chairs. I do so love Protestants.

Both members of the couple are statuesque. As compared to my gnome-like self and miniature Husband. It seemed like everything went off without a hitch (after all...they ended up...hitched).

We then ventured forth, braving a bit of cold rain, to the reception at an area country club.

No wedding is complete without an ophthalmologically-challenged pirate.

Precious and few are the moments we two can share. Name that artist.

I loved all of the purple (especially the bridesmaid dresses in royal purple and lavender). I was totally jealous of all the purple. It's a terrible thing having an entire color group cut from your wardrobe. Husband and I suffer in silence.

Note our desperation.

At the reception, the food was excellent, the company was engaging, and my shoes never once hurt my feet.

The photobomber strikes again! The innocent victims are another, yet unmarried couple from Dinky College. Poor innocents.

At one point the gentlemen turned into tie zombies...

...and managed to molest the groom with their crotchal regions and thumbs...

Maybe the happy couple should have rethought their guest list...there sure were a lot of weird people in attendance...

Congratulations, you two!

Friday, October 2, 2009

Why my liver cries

First off, I am not a big alcohol drinker. I will tolerate anything mixed and topped with fruit, but I can usually detect the faintest hint of alcohol in even the most pink, sugared, girly drink, and I find most of it simply unpalatable. Aside from gin and tonics, which I think are somehow quite refreshing, I would prefer a regular Coke any day. It's fattening enough without the added octane (probably because I will drink five of them in one sitting...).

That said, I am about to recommend a wine that will make your life worth living. If you don't believe in a good and gracious God, this will change your mind. It might even cure the world of all manners of disease and pestilence. I'm just saying. It's that good.

Stella Rosa, which translates to "Star Rose" according to Babel Fish (my go-to source for my old French homework), is a red dessert wine, "to be served with fruit and cheese," according to the label. Previously, I have never found red wine to be anything but disgusting. A beverage that makes your mouth dry after consumption is surely the work of some kind of devil practicing for your inevitable stay in the fifth circle of hell. But this is seriously delicious. Even better, the bottle is just beautiful. Simple, elegant, striking.

It is from the Piedmont region of Italy, and according to my dear friend Philboy, you can acquire Stella Rosa at Binny's Beverage Depot in Chicago (which, in my opinion, is the best name ever for a liquor store). Their Web site lists it for $11.99, so while your liver may cry from overcomsumption, your wallet will not.

Philboy and his lovely girlfriend purchased two bottles for me, which I have been selfishly hoarding until I have an occasion of celebration worthy of indulgement. We're having guests over to OUR ALMOST COMPLETED HOUSE tonight, and I just might have to break open a bottle.

We're headed to Chicago soon, and if I can sneak away at any point, I will hightail it to the nearest of the "22 Chicagoland Superstores" and buy a case or thirty.

I think you should, too.

Friday Fashion: The answer, my friend, is blowin' in the wind

All of a sudden, it's fall. A cold, windy fall. Just last week I was still wearing my silver glitter flip flops, and today I had to pull out my black pea coat. In a word: BRRRR.

I'm not even ready to put out bright orange pumpkins and bumpy gourds, let alone start worrying about snow. But, apparently, the seasonal weather says "Ready or not, here I come!" Therefore, this Friday Fashion post is dedicated to beautiful coats and jackets. If I am to be forced to lose feeling in my nose and wish I'd worn some thermal underwear, at least I can look darn good while freezing off my pah-tootie. Enjoy. (And make me some cocoa!)

Stadium-Cloth Winnie Jacket by J. Crew, $245.
I mostly love this cropped jacket because of the button closure. So unique! Of course, I could never wear this beautiful, bright color. Blonds don't look good in yellow. It's something I've had to come to terms with. I know you're wondering how I could possibly bear such torture. I guess I'm just that strong of a person.

City Style Military Jacket by New York & Company, $59.95. This might be my favorite (and priced pretty well!). I would feel just a little bit dominatrix in this. A whip or large rifle could complement the jacket nicely. You might have to start calling me "The Chairman..."

Pink Tartan Ruffled Down Puffy Coat by Bloomingdales, $695. Seriously? Ruffles?! This is such a breakthrough in the science of puffy jackets. By this time next year we'll be getting to work via jet-propelled backpacks and eating all our meals in pill form.

Michael Kors Women's Wool Babydoll coat on, $114.99.
I have this thing where I want to look adorable all the time. It helps me hide the fact that I have no marketable skills or desirable talents. I think this coat could really help my cause, because it is CUH-YUTE! I think I would have to go red on this one, but the ivory is just divine!

Aeryn Double Breasted Trench Coat from DKNY, $295. Sometimes, you just can't beat a classic, double breasted trench. For the record, if I ever went out in public in one of these, I would not have any clothes on underneath. Not a stitch. I'll just go ahead and leave you with that glorious mental image for this weekend.