Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Happy Birthday, Sisters!

Twenty-four years ago today I woke up late and learned that the babies had arrived and they were both girls.  Identical twin sisters just for me.  I was pretty excited and wandered around Chicago announcing to anyone who gave a shit that I was their big sister and they were welcome to congratuate me on my good fortune.   Happy Birthday, Sisters!  I hope this year is your favourite one yet!


Tuesday Morning Flowers

Now that the weather finally seems to nice and staying nice I'm leaning into the flower obsession.  I try to buy flowers once a week and this weekend I might stop at my favourite flower market on my way back from my parents' house to pick something lovely for the week.  It's so nice to have a big arrangement on the sideboard in the living room and I have heart that waking up to flowers in your bedroom makes you happier all day (well duh, and also - not very scientific).  Just looking at the pictures in The Flower Recipe makes me happy.  Joanna has posted a couple of very simple recipes this morning for you to test run.

Monday, April 29, 2013


This is the best thing I have ever seen.  I luff the Queen.

Happy Monday.

Friday, April 26, 2013


Paper Flowers, Set of 6, Quince Blossom, Dark Coral

My experience with West Elm has been really mixed,  I ordered Christmas presents that were then backordered (after I paid) until March and only after ten calls and a bunch of really unattractive tweets did they acknowledge this and then attempt to make it right (which looked like just sending half the order and canceling the other order).  Then for birthdays I gave it another shot (because my brother REALLY needed this and my sister needed a house warming gift) and they came and they were beautiful (if slow).  So the fact that I have a deep and abiding need for this rug is source of irritation to me.  Despite the mixed bag that is WE, I'm loving their paper flowers and they have inspired me to try making some of my own before I buy some.     These crepe paper pink flowers are my favourites and this crepe paper bouquet is fun, a few of these on my desk might be just the thing.  
Crafting, a trip to Eastern Market, some roast chicken and a special project for the twins birthday are all on my weekend agenda.  I hope yours is scrumptious. xoxo

Thursday, April 25, 2013


If you've ever seen a picture of our apartment, even at it's very tidiest, you will notice that it is FULL OF THINGS.  We moved our big apartment in Durham into a very small apartment in DC and I wasn't ready to get rid of all the things.  Now my sister is in her own apartment in Rockville and it's time to pass on one of the couches to her (maybe a bookshelf) rearrange and donate.  I've been scouring the interwebs for good ideas and here are some of my favourites:

Apartment Therapy's January Cure (can be done in may though)
Laura Miller on the Well Tended Bookshelf
The NYT asks authors what books they can live without
Young House Love's Organizational Projects
Declutter Tips and Tools from Design Sponge

And my favourite tip from Gretchen Rubin.  She was having a hard time parting with some of her daughters things but once her sister was having a baby she was quite happy to hand them down to him.  She recommends finding a place you'd be happy for things to go.  I know it's so much easier to offer some of my favourite things that no longer fit or just don't get worn to my sisters rather than just send them to Goodwill.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013


Just in case you want to join me in getting a little twisty and then eating tiramisu for breakfast some time, here is the very best tiramisu recipe of all time.  VERY. BEST.  I know because it's my mums.  Also: she scans recipes in and sends me the exact recipe she uses, so you should add the 2T of Kalua and know that 16 oz of cream is FINE apparently.  And get a big trifle bowl.

Monday, April 22, 2013


David is now 28 which feels like adulthood.  I am still only 26 which feels like the very edge of youth. His parents came to town and we had lunch (and tiramisu) and went to the Air and Space Museum and then went to the movies and had pub dinner and home.  Happy Birthday to David!

Friday, April 19, 2013


Cake Bunting - Gold Glitter - Wedding Cake Topper

Cake Bunting from ReadyGo, $12
This weekend is David's birthday and so tonight will be filled with wrapping and decorating and cake baking. I spent this morning listening to NPR's coverage of Boston and cozying up with tea at work away from this blustery weather. I hope it's nicer tomorrow for visiting parents and trips to the museums and lovely lunches (probably not outdoors as originally planned) and maybe a movie in the evening? Who knows. I think we could all use a good weekend. Geesh.  Have a good weekend!

A Cautionary Tale

Can't find credit for gorgeous CD

Sometimes nice girls from nice families, the daughters of lawyers and poets, with very nice education - junior year of high school and college at prestigious foreign institutions - from top 30 schools in the north east and very nice shoes and handbags, sometimes these girls become shop girls. Sometimes these girls turn down the only job offered them straight after graduation and they move back in with their parents (who have since moved to Mississippi) and become waitresses and shop girls. They work as nannies and assistants and maybe they get married. These girls didn't mean to become cautionary tales, reminders to study hard and minor in econ, but they do. Their fathers often tell them that you can either get your personal life in order or your professional life and that these girls were on the marriage track and that that's fine. These girls still sort of wish they were minutes away from becoming doctors or lawyers or independently wealthy bloggers. These girls end up working in cubicles while their classmates graduate from masters programs or law schools or start residencies and would literally punch someone for the chance to have an office with a door and window and wall space to hang a print and a place where their plants wouldn't die of lack of sunlight.

I think it might be time for one of these girls to take the GRE and Get It Together. 

Thursday, April 18, 2013


Contaminated water in a drainage ditch behind Pittsburgh Glass Co., Louisiana, 1972.

Smoking marijuana near Leakey, Texas.
Were you aware of the Documerica project? The EPA sent photographers across America in the early to mid-seventies to photograph the environment and the pollution (and WOW the pollution) and the people affected by it. The results are beautiful and evocative and colourful and make me glad I didn’t grow up with firey polluted lakes and rivers and sad I don’t get to smoke with impunity and wear some of those stellar styles. There is an exhibit at the National Archives  and I’m dying to go.

Harvesting wheat in the Palo Verde Valley, Calif., May 1972. 



Sitting Room


The latest installment of my obsession with our sitting room = mood boards. Good god, Hannah. Grow up

Wednesday, April 17, 2013



Have you seen this time capsule apartment in Paris?  It was abandoned when the lady who lived there fled to the south of France before Paris fell to the Nazis.  She never returned but faithfully paid the rent until her death.  Only then was the apartment opened.  It's amazing.

30 x 30

Do you have a bucket list?  That seems a little dire for me so I have a 30 by 30 list.  A list of 30 things I'd like to get done by the time I'm 30 (so I have a little more than three years) that are actually doable.  No winning of Pulitzer Prizes or singing at the Met.  Just things that are reasonable and doable.  I'll follow up as I get them done.

1. Ski regularly (once a year )
2. Join a book club
3. Apply to an MFA program, even if you don’t think you’ll get in
4. Go to a music festival
5. Learn to play one song on the guitar
6. Get professional family photos taken
7. Go on a weekend mini-break with just Dave
8. Make family photo albums
9. Build a piece of furniture
10. Wear a hat to a party
11. Get down to a BMI that is healthy
12. Knit a sweater
13. Make homemade ravioli
14. Start an herb garden in pots.
15. Pay off credit cards
16. Hike with David regularly
17. Learn to make Tom Yum Goong
18. Buy a real painting
19. Design and print family stationary and birthday cards that we keep on hand
20. Make a terrarium
21. Take a pottery class
22. Go camping with Mary and Will
23. Join a yoga studio
24. Buy a piece of real jewelry
25. Get a facial
26. Throw a dinner party
27. Go camping with Dan and Kate
28. Run a 5k (lets keep this reasonable)
29. Take bikes on C&O canal
30. Learn to french braid my own hair

Tuesday, April 16, 2013


Mary has lived in Boston for the past year while going to grad school.  We both went to school an hour away and did our best shopping/eating/flopping around in Boston.  I worked in Cambridge for a semester and for a long time I felt like Massachusettes was the place to get back to, to end up.  I lived there almost as long as I've lived anywhere else.   I am sending happiest thoughts and all my love to my favourite city and some of my favourite people who call Boston home.  

Monday, April 15, 2013


We missed the peak of Cherry Blossom Fest but they were still pink pink pink and gorgeous.  The tidal basin and the Jefferson Memorial are a hot spot for the blossoms and the new and incredibly moving MLK Memorial right on the water is fantastic.  The weather was warm and we grabbed chips and ice cream at the Lincoln memorial and trecked through the war memorials to the cherry blossoms where little children looked very much in danger of falling in and lots of mummies and daddies tried to rangle them into photographable positions and David and I worried about dropping camera and iPhones into the water.  Lovely Lovely.


This weekend was busy busy busy.  On Saturday I went up to Maryland for a bridal shower with arm loads of flowers and champagne and some fancy bottles of juice (God forbid we pour juice from the Simply Orange bottle).  

 On Friday night I went to the flower wholesaler and came home with ALL the flowers and spent an evening eating french fries and cramming snap dragons into every vase I own.  They made it up to the shower little the worse for wear but after the drive back they are looking a little rough.  Now they are on every surface of the apartment.  Bedside flower arrangements, dresser flower arrangements, kitchen counter arrangements. 


Sunday morning I was awoken with donuts and coffee and the newspaper in bed.  The Washington Post is a journalistic mess (and I may of may not have thrown it accross the room when I found the third instance of terrible punctuation) but the donut was delicious and the coffee was strong and it kept me in bed until noon.  Lovely.

Once I dragged myself from bed I wandered down to Eastern Market to get bacon and veggies and the thickest, darkest, most lovely bread and we ate lunch of pea-shoots with backon and lemon and salt and pepper and eggs over easy with bread and butter.  Amazing.

And I STILL haven't killed my cacti.  Good job me.  Cherry blossom photos to follow.

How was your weekend?

Friday, April 12, 2013


blonde RAT'S NEST block print

Blessed Friday - time to pack away the winter clothes, ditch work early to pick up all the flowers and arrange them, bridal shower lunch and then a walk through the tidal basin to look at the cherry blossoms (hopefully in a stripey dress).  I hope you have a brilliant weekend.

I think I need this print for my bathroom.

Hat, Sun

SUN HAT Wide Brim Hat  for Women  Natural Straw Hat

Remember my post yesterday about vintage hats?  Don't you think that this one is divine?  Perfect for all the sundresses and sandals and sloppy hair that I'm wearing to work this week and presumably will continue to rock all summer long. 


Thursday, April 11, 2013



When the weather is this warm I want to be the sort of summery gorgeous girl who wears hats.

April Showers

Bridal Shower

I'm almost all done prepping for my friends shower. Sometimes it's a little stressful but I am a sucker for a party with paper invitations, flower arrangements and deserts on big white platters. I've also never met a mimosa I would multiply by ten (maybe I have a drinking problem?). I've ordered flowers from the same place I ordered them for my wedding, almost three years ago (!!!) and I'm going to hang vintage post cards from Paris (found on the internet and printed at Walgreens for $1.08) from twine and clothespins (from the dollar store) and fill all the vases I own with flowers. I'm almost finished making mini-jars of jam for favours (the maid of honor is baking poundcakes for everyone and embroidering towels - what?!) and I'm going to pick up champagne and juice tomorrow for a mimosa bar. Do I own an ice bucket to keep champagne chilled? I think so.

My three sisters meanly keep telling me that I'm too old/married/fat to be a bridesmaid and I only have a small and viciously wonderful cadre of girlfriends so I think my days of bridesmaiding are almost through. Which is tragic because, as I've said, I do love throwing a party.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013


I don't actually sail.  I so so so wish I did.  Would it be a bridge too far to wear one of these gorgeous anchor bracelets from Kiel James Patrick?  Probably.  But I do love.


DC seems to have gone from winter to summer in a flash.  On Thursday before I left for the beach I wore a floor length down coat.  On Monday I wore a summer dress without tights and no jacket.  It's come on all of a sudden and it's time for lunches on the bench outside the office and flowers on every tree.  Last night David and I had snacks and drinks in the courtyard and wandered around the very warm gorgeous city.  The air conditioning in on less than a week after the heating was.  It's gorgeous.

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Shut the Front Door

Botanical Rose iPhone 5 Case - SLIM

Guys,  Rifle Paper Co. is making iPhone covers.  And they are the bestest and most beautiful.  I am still rocking a super attractive pink rubber one I got at Five Below the day I got my phone and was feeling poor and wanted the cheapest cover ever.  But OH!  Pink flowers and pink ombre and gold stripes!

Pink Ombré iPhone 5 Case - INLAY

Gold Stripes iPhone 4 Case - SLIM

Monday, April 8, 2013


Blossoms on my way to work

We left DC on Friday and tights were needed under skirts for work, I wore my long down coat on Thursday to work.  Rehoboth was sunny and windy and babies were chubbed and kissed and snuggled and today, back in the city it is warm.  Really warm.  It'll be in the eighties this week and we will go look at the cherry blossoms.  After we catch up on all the sleep we missed thanks to babies and booze (not together) and burning the candle at both ends and once we stop missing the lobster rolls and good friends.  It's time for DC in spring time.  About effing time.

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Jolie Knows

If you are frustrated to bits by the terrible weather and wish you could be a the lake with your sisters, on a towel or getting ice cream at the lunch house* or walking around the lake with dogs in tow and this windy misery isn’t really supporting your fantasies, remember that Springtime Can Kill You. Jolie Holland knows all about it. I’m off tomorrow at the beach so have a good weekend and stay warm.

*When Quatro was a tiny wee thing she though that because the snackbar looked like a house but you could get lunch there that it must be called a lunch house. It stuck.


Kateryn Silva is basically my new favourite thing since sliced bread,  I'd love love love to have her take family portraits of Dave and me.  We skipped out on engagement photos because - eh. But I'd love to have pictures of us together that we loved  and I'm pretty sure Ms. Silva has never taken an iphone photo I don't love. 

Some of our friends are fantastic at consistently taking really nice photos of themselves together and some of our friends (photography majors!) have not a one.  We definitely fall farther down toward not-a-one on the scale.  It's on my list of things to do by 30 so maybe we can make it happen.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013


Image of Bunny Night Light

This magical night light bunny only costs £4.95 and I think we should all hurry out now and bring home wee bunnies for bedsides and bookshelves and bathrooms.  To light the night.

Hump day


We are going to the beach this weekend. We are poor and young (although not as young as we used to be) and we can only afford to split a beach house three ways with friends of Dave’s from college. They are bringing their babies and we are bringing booze and we’ll enjoy the sea in spring instead of summer. The mid-Atlantic can’t quite let go of the last of the winter and spring won’t be denied so the weather is twitching madly and I’m bringing scarves and sweaters and shorts and sandals and we’ll see where we end up. In a world where my sunglasses weren’t pinched from my second sister when she left them at my parents over the weekend and where I had remembered to get the battery changed in my Alessi watch I would pack the above. Heavy on Old Navy because we’re poor, remember? Because we are young and you can only get away with wearing Old Navy for so long.

There are massive piles of paper at work and hiring to be done and files to be sorted and I am dreaming of wintery spring sea and coffee and friends. The first lot arrive tonight to take in the District before we caravan to the sea tomorrow. It’s hump day, baby, half way there.

Tuesday, April 2, 2013


On Saturday David and I trecked accross town to see Sign Painters at the Renwick. I didn’t know until we got there but it was actually the world premiere of the movie and it was great. I have an inappropriate crush on sign painters now and want to open a business just to be able to have a gold leaf sign.  If it comes to your city and you like lettering and design (or just the resurgence of the handmade nation) it's definitely worth seeing.

We stopped to grab a sandwich on the way there and then walked accross town back to our apartment.  It took us hours and we popped into a couple of historic churches and wandered through the Building Museum (one of my favourite museums in DC) and randomly ran into someone who had a class with David in undergrad (smallest world).  The weather was scrumptious and I ran around without even a jacket.  Wind and rain came back in time for Easter and although the sun is shining now it's forty degrees outside.