friday fab/five: dr. dog/fireworks/free samples/mojitos, etc.

1. dr. dog: this west philly band has been popping up via my "shuffle" a lot lately...maybe my iphone knows that i'm moving! speaking of moving, these tunes are perfect for bike riding...from sublime coasting to tough hills...when a dr. dog song comes on i grin, sing along and pedal my heart out.

2. watching old mad men episodes: i know, i didn't think i was going to talk about MM until next spring (season 6!!), but my dear friend was sick over the weekend and i got to lounge out with her and watch a bit of season 2. OMG...there is so much that i forgot and characters that i miss...and it was so hard not to talk to her about the recent season...she's catching up though.

3. sephora: usually, i rush in and out of sephora over my lunch break - grabbing some old standby hair shine and maybe a new lip gloss while elbowing my way to the register. but i was in the store last friday and i actually ask for HELP finding something. lesson learned...the cute lady was not only super helpful, but she loaded me up with free samples. i love free things, especially things like origins cooling eye mask.

4. mojito: i had the amazing opportunity to visit cuba (twice!) a few years ago - and boy do they know how to prepare their signature drink. for me, it's not only the perfect summer cocktail, but drinking a mojito on a hot humid day reminds me of my crazy island adventures! now if i can only find that missing bottle of havana club.

5. july: here's a little known fact...the 4th of july AKA independence day is my favorite holiday. yes, the food is always good and grilled, but it's the spectacle of this particular holiday that gets to me. those cheesy country songs make me cry and i relish in exclaiming over a colorful exploding sky. on a related note: i also cry during the national anthem at sports events and when touchdowns result in fireworks. i choose to think it's very american of me to react this way!

(image source 1 // 2 // 3 in athens // 4 // 5 - g. widman)


ear candy: jason schwartzman is a talented man!

i have a crush on jason schwartzman - THE MUSICIAN. i like the actor version of him too, but i have been pleasantly surprised by how much i like the music from his recent band, coconut records. it's great summer pop! and a perfect match for these copper corrugated triangle copper earrings from blueberrycream.


sigh...daydream vacation to the saguaro hotel in palm springs!

when i was cleaning out my travel binder...you know, the folder/binder where you shove colorful pages from magazines about places you dream about going...i found a TON of articles on palm springs. 

i guess my subconscious wants me to go to this desert location! and the saguaro hotel looks like a fun (and colorful) place to stay...as well as the ace hotel. ah, maybe next winter when i am all snowed out!

a picture & a poem: kazim ali

autobiography by kazim ali

we didn’t really speak
my summer wants to answer

the architecture doesn’t matter
this is not my real life

when I am here I want to know
why do I believe what I was taught

a storm is on the way
close all the windows

begin at the earliest hour
is there a self

(poem source)


artistic appreciation: sexy feathers from an MN crafter!

tokara (AKA love sexton AKA minneapolis resident AKA my future neighbor) creates some very cool accessories. i love the color/bling/pleather combo!


just because...you will always need a good font!

i SO heart this font - berimbau - from you work for them.
i want to go have a glass of wine with the letter Y!!

ahhh monday: almost july.


friday/fab 5: water ice/peppermint/bartram's gardens, etc!!

keeping it short and sweet - on account of the heat. oh, a rhyme!

1. pools: my gym has an outdoor unheated pool...and boy, does it hit the spot on a hot day.

2. italian water ice: this regional treat is NOT a snow-cone or a slushie - to me "wooder" ice is plainly cold and sweet and people in philly love it by the cupful. the president even had some when he was in town last summer!

3. movie theaters: so freezing - so dark. i just saw the movie "safety not guaranteed" - it's a pretty awesome little film! see it!

4. bartram's gardens: sometimes the city is SO hot and bartram's is strangely cool and otherworldly. must check out their new bike trail ASAP.

5. peppermint: nothing beats dabbing some peppermint essential oil behind my ears and on my lower back and then getting on my bike. mint + breeze = cold tingly ride!

(images: 2 // 3 via pinterest // 4 // 5)


sigh...dream gift to myself!

i have been visiting this fox claw bracelet by odette once a week for far too long...
maybe it will be the christmas present to myself this year. maybe!?!

ear candy: alela diane!

alela diane's music reminds me of a dense forest...with a little melodic cold struggle mixed in...yet still very beautiful. if that makes any sense. and i think these earrings (by black and white jewels) fit her sonic mood perfectly.


a picture & a poem: sandra beasley!

The Piano Speaks by Sandra Beasley 
For an hour I forgot my fat self,
my neurotic innards, my addiction to alignment.

For an hour I forgot my fear of rain.

For an hour I was a salamander
shimmying through the kelp in search of shore,
and under his fingers the notes slid loose
from my belly in a long jellyrope of eggs
that took root in the mud. And what

would hatch, I did not know—
a lie. A waltz. An apostle of glass.

For an hour I stood on two legs
and ran. For an hour I panted and galloped.

For an hour I was a maple tree,
and under the summer of his fingers
the notes seeded and winged away

in the clutch of small, elegant helicopters.

(poem source)


just because...i need to start wearing brighter colors!

i saw the knit kid on the oh joy blog and around pinterest recently...
knitwear that's perfect for summertime tans!

artistic appreciation: carrie schneider!

these burning house images by artist carrie schneider are not only haunting and engaging, but eerily balanced. to me, the placement of the solitary fury and destruction of a home on fire within a completely stark landscape seems to keep the danger in check.


sigh...papercut delight!

La Valse Botanique from Gra├ža Brohm on Vimeo.

no bells and whistles...just a bee and some pollen.

ahhh...monday...local sites!


goodbye/hello...a serious post.

this may be my first "serious" post...where i talk about my life and not about my favorite artist, etsy shop or song. so, sigh, here goes: last year around this time my life was turned upside down by the sudden dissolution of my long-term relationship and all of the related messy aftermath. and, to be brutally honest, it was a really tough year that i am still healing from, but i must acknowledge that it has also been one of tremendous growth - professionally (i got a promotion and an award at work), personally (i ran 10 miles...in a row and i got new glasses!), and even emotionally.

through these ups and downs a small seed of an idea started to grow inside my head. i came to realize that RIGHT NOW in my life i can do anything i want to do...and i what do i want to do? i want to decorate my very own bungalow! i want to plant a raspberry patch! i want to take my niece and nephew on an adventure! to name a few things.

and i realized that i didn't want to do any of these things in philly. so, in order to open myself up to a whole slew of new challenges - i have decided to leave my life here in philadelphia at the end of august and move (back) to minnesota.

of course it's with a little terror and a lot of excitement that i plan this major life change. i have been living in philly for over 11 years and it has become more than a home filled with amazing people and places that i love - it's an utterly unique city and i'm forever blessed to have experienced a decade of my life here.

but, it's time for my exit...so....
goodbye rocky, hello paul bunyan!
goodbye cheese steaks and "wooder"-ice, hello walleye and state fair food on a stick!
goodbye roots, hello prince!
goodbye 100% humidity, hello snowstorms!
goodbye mummers, hello? actually the mummers have no comparison!

...and MOST importantly...goodbye to my supportive and amazing philadelphia and east coast friends, hello to my supportive and amazing minnesota friends and family. i cannot begin to thank every freaking one you for all you have done for me! i am excited to share the next phase of my life with you...even if we are in different time-zones!

i want to savor the time i have left in philly and will try to get that on the blog as often as i can...as well as adding some new MN flavor as the big MOVE date gets closer.

thanks for letting me get serious and have a wonderful weekend!

(these marc johns prints are my new mantra - image source)


just because...i love geeky chic!

i saw a little blurb about (waterproof) native shoes on the a cup of joy blog, but i had no idea that
they would so totally appeal to my geeky chic tendencies and my cheapskate tendencies as well. 

perfect for maintaining style while biking in a rainstorm!

ear candy: elvis meets my itunes library!

for some reason i have been listening to a lot of elvis on my itunes lately...solid summer BBQ/public dancing/public beer drinking music! thought these "pause and play" earrings from secret find were a perfect fit!


just because...andy lifschutz's jewelry speaks for itself!

 i heart the creations by andy lifschutz. ahhh...sigh.

a picture & a poem: dancing!

Nostalgia by Billy Collins
Remember the 1340s? We were doing a dance called the Catapult.
You always wore brown, the color craze of the decade,
and I was draped in one of those capes that were popular,
the ones with unicorns and pomegranates in needlework.
Everyone would pause for beer and onions in the afternoon,
and at night we would play a game called “Find the Cow.”
Everything was hand-lettered then, not like today.

Where has the summer of 1572 gone? Brocade and sonnet
marathons were the rage. We used to dress up in the flags
of rival baronies and conquer one another in cold rooms of stone.
Out on the dance floor we were all doing the Struggle
while your sister practiced the Daphne all alone in her room.
We borrowed the jargon of farriers for our slang.
These days language seems transparent, a badly broken code.

The 1790s will never come again. Childhood was big.
People would take walks to the very tops of hills
and write down what they saw in their journals without speaking.
Our collars were high and our hats were extremely soft.
We would surprise each other with alphabets made of twigs.
It was a wonderful time to be alive, or even dead.

I am very fond of the period between 1815 and 1821.
Europe trembled while we sat still for our portraits.
And I would love to return to 1901 if only for a moment,
time enough to wind up a music box and do a few dance steps,
or shoot me back to 1922 or 1941, or at least let me
recapture the serenity of last month when we picked
berries and glided through afternoons in a canoe.

Even this morning would be an improvement over the present.
I was in the garden then, surrounded by the hum of bees
and the Latin names of flowers, watching the early light
flash off the slanted windows of the greenhouse
and silver the limbs on the rows of dark hemlocks.

As usual, I was thinking about the moments of the past,
letting my memory rush over them like water
rushing over the stones on the bottom of a stream.
I was even thinking a little about the future, that place
where people are doing a dance we cannot imagine,
a dance whose name we can only guess.
(poem source)


artistic appreciation: keep company!

this is less of an individual appreciation and more of a brand appreciation...specifically the LA based keep company. i want to put all their comfy casual (yet stylish looking) shoes on my "wish list" ASAP...my arthritic toes are already thanking me.


friday fab/five: SCDP/amino acids/thunder, etc!

1. quinoa: i'm trying to break-up with white rice...and it's freaking hard! basically, my strategy is to phase out the rice and bring in the "super food" quinoa. strange fact: "quinoa is being considered a possible crop in NASA's Controlled Ecological Life Support System for long-duration human occupied spaceflights." wow...all nine of those essential amino acids quinoa contains will help the me and astronauts! this recipe looks yummy!

2. crazy nail polish: i have even started to get into this fad, but what the heck - crazy nails are fun and it's fun to have a party on your fingers every once in a while. find all kinds of nail tutorials here and here.

3. thunderstorms: being from the mid-west, i just love a good thunder/lightening show. i prefer to experience this type of weather awesomeness tucked into bed since getting caught in a soaking downpour is no fun.

4. mad men: i'm losing sleep over the recent twists and turns on this beloved show and super SAD that the season is ending on sunday. how will they end it? HOW? HOW? HOW? and more importantly, how long do we have to wait until season 6?

5. hero king jewelry: AKA zachary little from ohio. i want every single thing on his etsy page. really.

(quinoa photo by Annabelle Breakey // #2 // #3 // #4)


books i read last month...

just because...moonrise kingdom was really lovely!

i had a chance to see the new wes anderson movie - moonrise kingdom - last night and it was delightful...really. and it made me cry...which is not too hard, but should be noted as a positive reaction. see it!

(image source)


a picture & a poem: matthew rohrer

Childhood Stories by Matthew Rohrer
They learned to turn off the gravity in an auditorium
and we all rose into the air,
the same room where they demonstrated
pow-wows and prestidigitation.
But not everyone believed it.
That was the most important lesson
I learned—that a truck driven by a dog
could roll down a hill at dusk
and roll right off a dock into a lake
and sink, and if no one believes you
then what is the point
of telling them wonderful things?
I walked home from the pow-wow
on an early winter night in amazement:
they let me buy the toy tomahawk!
As soon as I got home I was going
to hit my sister with it, but I didn’t know this.

(poem source)


artistic appreciation: alex farnum!

i just love all the LIFE, richness and depth in the work of san fransisco based photographer alex farnum. you have probably already seen many of his pictures in your favorite magazines, cookbooks, websites, etc...enjoy a few of my favorites:



friday fab/five: edward sharpe and samosas!

1. it's time to embrace the season of outdoor eating and drinking...i recently enjoyed having a few watermelon beers at the newly open morgan's pier along the (lovely?) delaware river.

2. i just kept listening to the new edward sharpe and the magnetic zeros album (that was streaming for free) on my NPR music app over and over...so dreamy. (image source)

3. indian food. i know, how could you want to eat hot food when it's so hot outside? let my samosa and basmati rice addiction speak loudly here...because indian food is so flipping good. especially the local fast food indian from mumbai bistro on 10th and locust or you can make make your own samosas!

4. organic elements in jewelry! i just love this trend...check out: midwest alchemy // lexluxe // emiliebliguet.

5. salads...as much as i love hot food, who likes cooking right now? not me. spicy arugula salads are making my stomach smile, but here is a delicious recipe for the blood orange, beet and fennel salad pictured above.