Sunday, November 30, 2008

I Wasn't Invited

In an earlier post I mentioned my daughter and husband attended a tea with the Duchess of York. A few people have asked me what it was like, unfortunately I was not on the invitation list. When my husband told me that he and Lulu would be attending a tea with Fergie at a very swank hotel, I immediately started training Lulu for the big event. My daughter was about five years old and she had experienced plenty of tea parties at home with pink lemonade. I was very nervous about her gracefully drinking actual tea with actual royalty. For one entire week Lulu did spit takes with every sip of tea. I added more sugar and cream and Lulu sprayed the tea out of her mouth every time. The day of the tea party I was a wreck, I watched the local news coverage of Fergie's visit and discovered that my husband was attending a Mother/Daughter tea party, he had not mentioned this detail. Hmmph! Thankfully, it ended up that the Lulu was served lemonade, so no one was sprayed in the face.
***I will do a future post about the time my husband went to a luncheon at the Drake Hotel with Princess Diana, he said there was absolutely no way I could go with him. Once again I watched the news coverage from home and learned that the luncheon was for women to promote breast cancer awareness. Double hmmph!!!

Shopping Nirvana

The fairy door at Red Shoes, notice the store hours on the little door!

I had to save room for my children to ride in the car so I was limited to these wonderful treasures. I could have taken two of everything!!!

The lovely Catherine, owner of Red Shoes

We were so lucky to stop in Ann Arbor on Wednesday and meet Catherine Thursby, the owner of Red Shoes. She has one of the loveliest shops I have ever seen! The entire store is a source of inspiration, wonderful displays, beautiful wall colors and the most amazing stock! It is one of those special places where you instantly feel the good Karma, and you just have to bring something home with you. Catherine is also a talented artist and designer and anything she makes flies right out of the store. I have found shopping nirvana.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Big Bird, No Leftovers

I hope everyone had a lovely holiday. My sister-in-law Jan cooked the most spectacular Thanksgiving dinner, and her table looked so festive with her collection of Fiesta Ware. She generously offered many times to pack up a cooler with leftovers to take on our 5 hour trip back home, but I declined. What was I thinking???? Who doesn't love cold stuffing for breakfast the day after Thanksgiving? I am an idiot. I think I am going to make a bonus Thanksgiving dinner this weekend, just so we can enjoy the leftovers.

Friday, November 28, 2008

My Minutia

I was tagged my the lovely and talented Marsha at Tumble Fish Studio.
I know I am supposed to pick seven people to tag, so please consider yourself tagged!!!

1. My husband and children are cousins of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt.

2. My Aunt Jeannie saw the Beatles in concert.

3. My husband and daughter had tea with Fergie, The Duchess of York and they gave Fergie's daughters Beanie Babies.

4. We lived in Southampton, New York for a few years and we attended a swanky "Bowling Ball". Every famous person in the free world was there and they are much shorter in real life, with the exception of Martha Stewart.

5. I was an unsuccessful screenwriter in Southampton.

6. I have a fear of failure and a fear of success.

7. I have never watched Dancing With The Stars or American Idol.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Family and Red Shoes

We are journeying to be with Michigan family for Thanksgiving. It is always a bit sad for me returning to my hometown, I miss visiting my Dad and I don't know my way around any more. I do look forward to showing my kids the campus and fondly recalling my childhood memories of seeing some raucous anti-war protests. I am also looking forward to popping into Red Shoes and meeting Catherine in person.
Hope all of you have a lovely holiday.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Sam & Ella

How times have changed, I treat raw meat like I'm handling plutonium.

Sam and Ella carve the turkey for Thanksgiving.

The Parade

Because of my husband's job running "Super Great Doll Place", we get to ride in the Festival Of Lights Parade every year. Mickey Mouse rides on the first float and waves a magic wand to light the trees on Michigan Avenue. The big parade was yesterday, and we had the pleasure of riding with brand new Disney characters Bolt and Mittens. This beautiful spectacle is capped off with a fireworks display over the Chicago River. It is quite extraordinary to see the reflections of the fireworks in the high rise windows. It is pretty darn cool.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

The Colonel

This is our collection of Colonel Sanders action figures. I bought these on Ebay years ago, they come from Asian countries where the Colonel is quite popular. In Tokyo there are life size statues of the Colonel in front of every KFC, and they periodically dress the statues in different costumes. We gave this collection to our son because he started collecting food icons when he was five years old. His collection is pretty adorable with Mr. Peanut, Charlie The Tuna, Captain Crunch, Sugar Bear, and Tony The Tiger to name just a few!

Friday, November 21, 2008

Ta Ta For Now

Hollywood photographer Joe Shere captured Sophia Loren and Jayne Mansfield's first meeting in 1958. Sophia seems to be rather distracted by voluminous thoughts on gravity and engineering.

Thursday, November 20, 2008


I bought my first German toy sheep when I lived in France in the 4th grade. I treated it like an action figure and played with it quite a bit, it now has a peg leg. A large grouping of these vintage toy sheep are so beautiful during the holidays and in the spring. I will be unpacking the rest of the flock next week.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Ahead Of His Time

This is a fifty year old photo of dreamy and dapper Cary Grant in car that perhaps our auto makers should have been designing.

Group Photos

I have been collecting group photos since college, I especially love the super long ones that are framed. If you check out the pics of our home In M.E. Home Comapnion,
Barbara Elliott Martin took a lovely picture of some of our group photos that hang in our bedroom. My husband sees them almost like a black and white wallpaper with a repetitive pattern. I would love to turn some of the images into long pillows, I think they would be beautiful.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Ki's Junk Revolution

Photos from Junk Revolution

Look how cute these recycled license plates are! Ki Nassauer just opened up her store Junk Revolution
and I absolutely love these. You can make your own sign or have her do it for you on a piece of barn wood. I was thinking of making one that said "welcome". My daughter will be receiving one of the necklaces for Christmas. Imagine how cute it would be to get an initial for each of your children and wear them on a chain. I love the mix of colors and fonts, so very cute.

Monday, November 17, 2008

The Beatles

One of my all time best finds was this 1964 Milton Bradley game "The Beatles Flip Your Wig". I bought the game for just .25 cents when I was in college!!! Gray and I went to a library book sale and they were selling old board games for a quarter each, I was so excited to get the Beatles game that I didn't bother to see what else they had. I keep the game pieces in our church bulletin board in the family room.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Bike Ride

It's a gorgeous fall day in Chicago, a perfect day for a bike ride!

Clara Bow

I decided this morning that I had angry looking eyebrows, they appeared too pointy in the center instead of graceful arches. I went to town on my poor brows and I now have two red stripes where my eyebrows once were. When the swelling and redness goes down, I am wondering what I will do up there. Could I pull off a tubby middle aged Clara Bow look? Nope. During these dreadful economic times I may offer up my former eyebrow space to advertisers.
I just recovered from last weeks beard rash. I tried a sample of face cream last Sunday and developed a rash wherever I had applied it, unfortunately it was on my cheeks, chin and above my lip. I looked like I had a beard made out of rash. I guess it's a good thing that we only have 3 hours of daylight during the winter months.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Hello Kitty Rock

Hello Kitty Guitar = Very Harajuku
Looky what I found today at my favorite junk store!!! Lulu has to lug her pink sparkly Daisy Rock guitar on the bus everyday, now she can leave it at school and practice on this totally cool Hello Kitty Fender Stratocaster at home. Lulu felt self conscious taking pink sparkly to play in her high school jazz band until her very cool musician Uncle told her he would play pink sparkly on stage. I was a little apprehensive that Lulu would think Hello Kitty was too young for her, but she loves it!

Friday, November 14, 2008


I have a friend who has the nicest smelling home, she told me she keeps a pot on the stove simmering with water and spices. I immediately filled a pot with cinnamon, whole cloves, nutmeg and water. If mulled cider and apple pie had a baby it would be the smell in my house!
When the kids got home from school they said what are you cooking it smells delicious ? That wonderful scent actually brings out the June Cleaver in me. I did make quite a shmancy meal that night, beef tenderloin, mashed potatoes and roasted carrots. Whenever I make a nice dinner, Mr. Man (now called Gray) is always delayed at work and has to eat his dinner reheated. He came home and ate his meal as I was tucking in the kids. When I came down stairs I asked him if he liked his dinner. He said that the food was great, but the gravy was a little odd. The big dope had drowned his meal in the potpourri on the stove. Gray always hesitates before putting gravy on his food now.


Photo and Bear by Saucy at Bloggedy, Blog, Blog
Saucy is giving away this lovely bear on her blog. Esther's story is like so many other star struck bears who moved to Hollywood in the 1930's, only finding work peddling candy or cigarettes in swanky nightclubs.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Jens Jensen

A newly restored Jens Jensen Park with a council ring and reflecting pool. We pass this everyday on our way to school!

Danish born, American landscape architect Jens Jensen 1860-1951. Jensen was one of the founders of the early conservation movement, and believed in using native plants.
Julius Rosenwald's Estate
now Rosewood Park and Beach

Overlooking Rosewood beach on Lake Michigan
This is where all of my sea glass comes from!

Jens Jensen's stone river leading to a reflecting pool

We are so lucky in my neighborhood to have so many wonderful examples of Jens Jensen's prairie style, native gardens and parks. Jensen designed the grounds for the estate of Julius Rosenwald. It was purchased from the Rosenwald family and the estate was later torn down. The reflecting pool and surroundings at Upper Rosewood is what remains of his work.

Oprah Update

It's 11:15 am and Mr. Man just finished watching the taping of Oprah's show. The guest was Nate Berkus, the cutest man alive! Mr. Man did not meet Oprah or Nate, but the Harpo person he was meeting with gave him a couple bags of Oprah swag! Mr. Man was told that Jennifer Anniston will be the guest taping later this afternoon. The Nate show will air Nov. 24th.
*****I am officially changing my husband's name on this blog. I would like to come up with some type of a symbol for him, like Prince in the 90's. The wee ones also want name changes now, even though they don't have higher ups lurking about.

Instead Of Aladdin

I put together this Moroccan party for Lulu and her friends when they were into Princess Jasmine and Aladdin. I made it a point not to have any Disney versions of these characters at the party.
I made this tent out of PVC pipes and super inexpensive fabric. Lulu gave all of her guests these little pillows made from sari fabric.
I popped these little frames and sequined covered animals into all of the goody bags.
I usually cheat by decorating a plain store bought cake.
The kids dined on couscous, chicken skewers and lots of fruit kabobs.

There is always a craft, the guests turned wood frames into mosaic masterpieces!

Putting together the goody bag is usually my favorite part of the party. Lulu and I scoured different ethnic stores looking for exotic candy and gifts.