A blogger seeking a richer life... in a wasteland called the suburbs... for my family, myself, and anyone who will listen!

Friday, April 30, 2010


Some retailers have really mixed it up this season, as far as price points... for instance... Anthropologie has beautiful earrings and necklaces this season ranging from $298 all the way down to $38...
These are in the $28 to $38 range...

Love these milky aqua beads... they remind me of the old milk glass dishes from the 40's and 50's

The other retailer who surprised me at how pretty their accessories are this season is Ann Taylor Loft, with the same reasonable prices... and I thought I had to go to Target for these prices...

This gorgeous aqua bib is only $44.50... and I love the chain

This can be worn long or short

Wow... $49.50... Stunning!

Have a great weekend, hope you'e making outdoor plans, as the New York area is expecting 80 degree temps!  I'll be at Little League for a 5:30 game on Saturday night... where's my Sangria!

Thursday, April 29, 2010

The Best For Last

Once the weather turns spring , and I really gear up for lots of grilling, (though I do grill some through winter), it's hard to look back to cooking on my stove... but this tomato sauce I made last night is worth it and is sooooo unbelievably easy it's hard to believe it!  Food bloggers fawn over this perfect sauce from my favorite italian chef Marcella Hazan. Although I have her cookbooks and covet them, I've never made this sauce until I saw it on my favorite food bloggers site, Smitten Kitchen. Now I made it two times in one week, because my kids were begging for it the second time.

These are the three ingedients you'll need, but the essential one is San Marzano, if you can find them...
Photo from Smitten Kitchen

Now, I used San Marzano, chunks of tomatoes, because that's what my local store, Seven Brothers Gourmet, had on the shelf.  A 28 ounce can is all you'll need, but you'll be running back for more so I recommend buying a few.  An onion and butter ( I use Land-o-Lakes) are the other two ingredients, and I made it over spaghetti the first time and fusilli the second.
The thing of course that makes this so special and so delicious is the butter... you say, "butter, not olive oil", WOW, that's sounds crazy, but it's fabulously rich, and full bodied (whoops, that's a wine description, but it's true).
 Thank you Deb from 'Smitten Kitchen', I read you all the time!  

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Text-Free Living!

I sometimes miss the sound of voices in this new world of texting... it's sometimes deafening,  feels like something is missing... like a texture that is missing from a painting...

So when I saw this article my husband emailed me, it struck a cord...

How do you think you would fare if you swore off texting for a few days?!

And what about your kids?...

Well, college students at the University of Maryland experienced withdrawal like a drug addict (no surprise)... but middle schoolers had a different reaction during a two-day experiment reported by the NY Times, at Riverdale Country School... the 'Text Generation' rediscovered it's voice.
Riverdale Country School, photo by Jennifer Altman

As NY Times reporter, Susan Dominus put it...
"Boundaries between work and home have long since fallen, so maybe it should not be surprising that the same is true for school and home. But what middle school student 20 years ago would have voluntarily reached out to her mother 10 times between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m.? If school had any universally agreed upon upside, it was that it gave a 12-year-old some much-needed space to revel in independence or struggle with rejection — space in which, presumably, that 12-year-old could start to figure out who she was, or how he wanted to navigate the world."

I would love to do this experiment at our middle school, in fact I'm going to suggest it at our PTA Council meeting... 

“Kids will do poorly on a test, and more often than not, right away they’ll go into the bathroom and text their mom and dad,” she said. “There’s no sense that the kid just has to feel his feelings. It’s an instant Band-Aid.”

My boys do not text me from the bathroom about how they did on a test, but I know a mother who told me the other day that her daughter texts her everyday from school just to check in with her...

This concerns me... how do you feel?  Leave  your comments below so we can hear your voice.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Fedora On!

A hat can be a show stopper... alluring and intriguing on a woman...
I remember when I used to live in NYC, in my single days, whenever I wore a hat winter or not, and I stepped into an elevator, a man would always say something flattering about the hat, an ice breaker perhaps...
These Fedora's by Eugenia Kim for Target are a great bargain at $16.99...

These lacquered fedoras from Bergdorf Goodman come in 4 colors at $225...

Now this Eugenia Kim Fedora for Bloomingdales with a rhinestone band is $165... 

And loving this Civil War hat of for Saks is $188

And this raw silk beauty at Net-A-Porter, $195

Monday, April 26, 2010

'Fabulous' LA Style

Fabulous, as in 'Meghan Fabulous' of Los Angeles... she calls herself that and she is... a clothing designer for you and me and a 'not too shabby' list of celebrities...little did I know (or care for that matter) when I walked into one of my favorite local boutiques, Meringue, and found this dress/tunic ($216) which is perfect for two affairs I'll be attending...
Mesa Verde Tunic
The under slip is like a snake skin print, in reds, greens, and blues

Fun and different and reasonably priced

So dare to be different this year... I know for myself it's not easy to break out of old habits, like wearing a lot of black, but there is so much COLOR out there this season, you're wardrobe is begging for it...

Friday, April 23, 2010

Joined At The Hip

My new camera and I are joined at the hip... so last night after making this flower arrangement with Tulips and Viburnum from my garden, I couldn't resist taking about 25 shots with the incandescent light of my kitchen.  There were only a few I liked...  and I've learned over the years, after doing some professional photography (sports stuff), that the more the better, you can never take too many.  Most of the time you can't go back.  We used to say, "film is cheap", now with digital, there's no excuse for not shooting with a high ratio!

Spring Flowers with Sleeping Dog...

Don't love the orange on the plate with the plums and avocados

So this morning I decided to take photos of the flowers with the limited amount of morning light in the kitchen and some incandescent... after the kids went off to school...

Notice the color change, and there's no orange on the plate (phew!), that was bugging me

Wish I had smell-o-vision for you, because the fragrance is just so wonderful.
Obsessive maybe, but I'm going to photograph them again when the natural light gets better in my kitchen later on today.
If you REALLY want to be inspired check out these photos from one of my favorite bloggers ohjoy, and the images from stylist, Camilla Krishnaswamy.

Have a great weekend... and if you love taking pictures, bring your camera with you on errands, it'll make going to the supermarket a lot more interesting.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

A Ground Swell

The ground swell which lead to the environmental movement of the 70's and it's pinnacle, Earth Day, got it's momentum in 1962 from a book written by Rachel Carlson called "Silent Spring", which sounded the alarm...she said that we were destroying the planet with the over use of pesticides... of course the pesticide industry called her "an hysterical woman'... haven't we heard that one before!  I had no idea about her until my husband and I happened upon a wonderfully thoughtful and riveting historic documentary a few nights ago on WNET 13, called "Earth Days"... you can look it up in your local listings or watch it online too.  There's lots of great footage and sometimes brutally honest info about Denis Hayes, leader of Earth Day, and the great U.S. Senator from Wisconsin, Gaylord Nelson, who founded Earth Day, which eventually lead to the formation of the EPA.

Denis Hayes

U.S. Senator Gaylord Nelson

Another terrific documentary which stopped my Pop Culture addicted 12 year old in his tracks (and that's no easy feat) , is another PBS, Nature show, "Frogs: The Thin Green Line"...

Thank you Rachel Carlson, and other women who have spoken out when it was unpopular!
This is what brought me to tears a few weeks ago on a family trip to Sedona... this view from 'Broken Arrow Trail'...

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Our Kids & 'Sexting'

New word, New world... 'Sexting', definition: sending sexually suggestive text messages and images via ones cell phone.  Experts say that this is a national epidemic among children, and as many as 20% percent of our kids are involved.  Few parents are aware of the content of these messages, and the kids don't realize the potential negative personal and even criminal consequences.
Yesterday I attended a seminar on this topic through our school district... it's not easy, but monitoring their cell phone and Facebook activity, speaking to them about this topic openly, not just once but many times is so important... they just don't get the privacy thing... privacy has a different meaning today than when we grew up.
 Just last week this controversy broke... This promotional video put out for Microsoft's new Kin phones, clearly advocates sexting, and was killed after 'Consumer Reports' complained, and many others were outraged...  I'm sure you'll agree after seeing this "creepy sequence".

For some of these kids who got caught, and have been charged with child pornography, some say was not what the law was intended for and is a miscarriage of justice. In these cases the punishment does not fit the crime... never-the-less, this is the current state of the law in many states.

For those of us who have recently outfitted our kids with cell phones now that they are in middle school, it's not too early to start the discussion.
For strategies in reducing the risk this is a recommended article from U.S. News Health.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Sunny Bags!

Sunny in color, beautiful, unique prints...  and because they're from Rising Tide Fair Trade, which means hope for people and for the planet... Spring has sprung, and if you're as excited as I am about the weather and the spring flowering all around us, these beautiful hobo bags ($140) are just the thing...

Wow, this shrub of spring flowers running down the side of my driveway, has the sweetest fragrance without being nauseating... Korean Spice Viburnum.  It blooms for only about 2 weeks, but it's heavenly, and my neighbors come by for clippings... it brings Spring inside!

Monday, April 19, 2010


I've never liked myself in sleeveless tops, I've always been self-conscious of the way my arms look... my left arm is (I think) a lot bigger than my right, maybe because I'm a lefty... so when my mother insisted that I buy this racer back tank from Lululemon Athletica, I hesitated but obliged and I'm so glad I did... I love this tank and so many other clothes they make... everything is so well designed...

Tanks or vests are very big this season and are so varied in styling and fabric... 

Drop Side Jersey Vest, $65

So pretty front and back

I would wear this with pants, probably jeans

How are you about showing your arms?... maybe I should be including weights in my daily workout...

Friday, April 16, 2010

Color Me Consuela!

Thinking Summer already... while vacationing this 'Spring Break' in Sedona, I discovered Consuela, a designer extraordinaire from Dripping Falls, Texas... I just like saying dripping falls... if you're afraid of color this is not for you or just maybe it is... her original inspiration was Cozumel, Mexico... and the "vibrant colors in folk art and textiles from around the world"...

The bags are waterproof too so they're great for the beach, adventures with the kids... and clothing is coming to the newly revised website soon!
Have a great weekend!