Feb 28, 2011

More fluff

White Wedding is a South African movie about a couple's difficulties in the days leading up to their wedding.  I liked the characters and the oh-so-stunning scenery, but it just didn't seem that funny or memorable.  It's pretty much a fluff film.

Thinking vertically

I love the idea of creating a vertical garden.  This one is so cool - not to mention how pretty those asparagus ferns are planted in clumps with those little grey sedums.

I'm found this picture and tons of inspiration over at Flora Grubb's blog and web shop.  I do believe that I'm hooked!

Feb 27, 2011


Exit Through the Gift Shop, the Banksy documentary nominated for an Oscar, made me cackle and left me scratching my head a bit.  Rarely does a documentary make me laugh out loud (could be my taste in docs), but this one was a lot of fun. 

I love love love clever street art.  One of my favorites right now is Joshua Allen Harris.  Check out this video.


This Slate slideshow is lovely to look at.

Feb 26, 2011


These graphics explaining wealth inequality in the U.S. are eye-opening to say the least.

Stand up

If you're in the U.S. and are as infuriated about the plan to slash all funding for Planned Parenthood as I am, I encourage you to contact your representatives.  It's as easy as making a call and leaving a message with their voicemail or staff that you want to see Planned Parenthood funded.  Planned Parenthood performs such important services.  Even if you aren't pro-choice, you have to believe that health screenings, medical care, and pre- and post-natal care for impoverished  women and children are essential.

I turned to the local Planned Parenthood as a broke college student.  They got me into the habit of regular check-ups and provided discounted birth control for me and many of my friends.  They were a useful resource and enabled us to grow up wiser and healthier and have children when it made good sense.  

For a guide of what you can do to stand with planned Parenthood, visit the Planned Parenthood Action Center.  If we don't speak up for what we believe in no one will do it for us.

Feb 24, 2011


I adore the Band of Brothers miniseries.  I expected to have similiar affection for The Pacific - especially since I've always been fascinated by that front ever since a college professor of mine regaled the class with tales of the sea battles.  It didn't live up to its predecessor.  It felt like we spent less time with these guys somehow, and the film seemed limited by a smaller area - like everything was placed on a set that you couldn't escape.  It's really too bad.  I wish this one had felt as sweeping and engaging as the first.  The acting was good for the most part but the whole thing just felt like less than.

Feb 23, 2011

Dark tales

Did your hometown have a spooky story that all the kids tell at campfires and sleepovers?  Cropsey is a documentary all about that creepy story for Staten Island.  It explores the rumors and the all-too-true cases of missing children.  I'm not sure they make their case all that well, but it was worth watching and debating.  Some of the spaces they show (in the local abandoned mental hospital no less) are terribly interesting to see.

Our local tale was about Mary Stockums who was buried in two graves - one for her head and one for her body.  She was rumored to search for her head at night.  Used to scare me silly when I was little!

Feb 22, 2011

Vague notions

I picked up A Separate Peace having vague notions of it's status as a beloved classic.  It's the tale of two friends at boarding school in the states during WWII.  The two are closest friends and and in some ways the biggest of rivals.  Meh!  I never felt that any of the characters had any connection.  The most interesting student in the novel, Leper,  is a side story and a plot clincher.  I almost wish they had followed him instead.

Feb 21, 2011

Steampunk birds

I really love the bird sculptures of Jim Mullan.  Go ahead and search him up.  I like both his simpler works and more elaborate pieces.

Feb 20, 2011


This print would look great in my house.  I'm a little print-obsessed lately.

Feb 19, 2011

With a llama

Have I totally neglected to write about my love for The Fabulous Beekman Boys?  I love it so much. It's a reality show about a couple who decide to attempt to leave their NYC life behind and move to a farm.  Why do I love it?

1. I can vicariously live out the ridiculous idea of moving back to a farm.  (Grew up on one and I don't want all that work; I really just want a slightly bigger lot for more room for gardening).
2. Polka spot - their llama
3. The neighbors are all such an interesting crew.
4. Josh & Brent's relationship is so very sweet and real.

So imagine how pleased I was when I realized that one of the boys had written a book about the first year of farm life?  The Bucolic Plague lived up to my love of the series.  I also think that it has the best beginning author notes ever. 

Feb 18, 2011


This Dubious Kitty makes me smile.

So damn charming

I just adored The King's Speech.  It was so lovely, and you end up wanting to take almost every character home to be your new friend.  Even if you don't care a bit for the British royalty, it's just so damn charming.  It's my new favorite best picture-picture.  Watch it, and just try not to smile. 

Feb 17, 2011




Oh Precious and Grace, I fear I'm tiring of you and your series.  The Double Comfort Safari Club may be the last one I read in the Number 1 Ladies Detective Agency series.  They just seem to be replaying the same kind of mysteries and conflicts.  The books are written in a very simplistic style.  I found it so charming at first, but now it's tiresome.  It's really too bad.  I feel like the writing style prevents the characters from becoming more layered and interesting.  It's really too bad.

Feb 16, 2011


How pretty are these fire screens by Philip Nimmo?  Something I do not need one bit, but too pretty to not share.


As promised, I did get a chance to watch The Social Network.  I liked it!  I thought it was very interesting to watch the divide between Harvard students - those with money and connections and those without.  Not to mention the divide between Harvard students and the rest of the world.  I've never been a big Jesse Eisenberg fan, but I really liked him in this.  I think it's possible that his talents just didn't shine so well in comedic Michael Cera type roles. 

Even if you have absolutely no interest in computers or social networking, this movie is a great watch - all about friendship and betrayal. 

Feb 15, 2011

Crossing that one off the list

Finally caught up with watching the movie Boogie Nights.  I have come to the realization that anything by director Paul Thomas Anderson is not for me.  No matter what story he tackles, I end the film thinking "So what?"  I guess it's good to know that I won't need to waste my time on this guy's films anymore.

Feb 14, 2011

Cocktails under a microscope

Very pretty.

No charm

I found the novel Some Tame Gazelle to be such a disappointment.  I was expecting a witty and fun Austen-like read, but it failed on pretty much every account.  The story follows two never-married sisters in a small town as well as the goings-on of the neighbors.  Both sisters long for romance and love.  Sounds like a great premise, right?

This book is beloved by a great number of people, but I found very little to latch onto.  There just seems to be so little connection between any of the characters.  She does capture the pettyness that can occur in small town life pretty well, but misses out on the warmth that counterbalances it.  I just wasn't charmed.

Also I appear to be on a streak of reading books with ugly covers.  While I wouldn't judge a book much by the cover, I can judge the heck out of the cover itself. 

Feb 13, 2011


Absolutely love it.

Coloring is not just for kids

I found the prettiest coloring pages via Painted Fish StudioValentina Ramos created and posted them for all.  Her work is so pretty!

This may inspire a shopping spree for coloring books.  Dover books has always been a good source.  Any others out there I need pointed towards?

Feb 10, 2011


Personally, I find telephones to be rather stressful.  I would far rather email, text, or (even better) write an old-fashioned letter.  Or (even best), meet up with folks over coffee or drinks.  However, I can appreciate the cuteness of this print.  Even though, I might not want it hanging in the house stressing me out.

Feb 9, 2011


What a fun movie!  I recently watched the newest Star Trek movie with two self-professed fan girls.  It could have easily been the company or the film, but I had a lot of fun.  I knew pretty much none of the backstory, but could still apreciate the story.  It was really cute to hear my friends discussing the in-jokes and filling me in when I wanted to know more - not that you need to know much to have fun with the film.  It was cute and funny and full of action and space adventures.  One of the better "blockbusters" I've seen in a while.

Horrified fascination

Room has got some insane buzz.  It was also shortlisted for the Booker prize.  I picked it up and read it within two days - finding it insanely hard to put down.

It's the story of a mother and child whose world is confined to one small room - the only world the child has ever known.  The writing is creative and the mother's coping techniques are really well thought out.  I had a lot of issues with the narrator, 5 year old Jack.  His language abilities swing wildly between baby-like and really sophisticated, and I felt that this disconnect took me out of the story several times. 

It was compelling despite of its flaws though.  My husband even remarked on the horrified look that would come over my face frequently while reading the book.  I just couldn't set it down for very long.

Feb 8, 2011

Another kind of list

Andrea Carlisle's poem Emily Dickinson's To Do List made me smile.  I thought I'd share.

Do yourself favor

And watch Better Off Ted.  Seriously, its laugh-so-hard-it-hurts funny.  There were only two season but so good.  I think it's a little The Office meets Arrested Development.  And with it's own sweet and hysterically funny thing happening too.

Feb 7, 2011

Filling in the gaps

Until last week, I lover of many a classic Hollywood musical, had never seen The King & I.  And lemme tell you, it's pretty great.

I never expected to like Yul Brenner nearly so much.  He's pretty fantastic and mischevious and fun.  The music I knew would be totally worth it.  It lived up to it.

This film is pretty adorable.  This is what makes filling in those movie gaps all the more fun.

Feb 5, 2011


Watched The Devil & Daniel Johnston over the weekend.  It's a documentary about a brilliant musician stimied by manic depression.  I was both amazed at his talent and really saddened by his friends' and family's heartbreak.  I can't imagine watching someone you love hit the lows that he's suffered.  The film itself felt a bit too long, but maybe I'm just spoiled by documentaries that tell their tale quick and sharp.

Feb 3, 2011


A few years ago, I read and really enjoyed The Time Traverler's Wife.  It sucked me in, chewed me up, and spit me out so completely.  And while that may not sound pleasant, sometimes that's exactly the kind of book you need.

I knew they made a movie of it and I knew I should probably avoid that movie.  My resolve was good...until it wasn't.  So I watched the film version - with my boy who had also read the book a few years ago when I thrust it into his hands and commanded that he give it a try.  (He admitted to remembering very little of the novel even though he'd liked it.)

Eric Bana was miserabley painful to watch.  The man emotes like a rock.  I'm also peeved with some of the changes.  I'm not a purist - I think generally that films adapted from books need adjustments.  Not everything that works on the page can be done well in a film.  However, the changes they made in this one seemed like downgrades.  Most specifically, I'm looking at you final scene of the film.  I wanted that pay-off and I feel pretty cheated.

Feb 2, 2011

Should know better

Winter's Bone seems like it should be exactly my kind of movie - a dark tale about a poor family seeking their drug dealing father whose ran off on bail.  If they don't find him and get him to court, their house and land are forfeit.

What this movie got right?
- The portrayal of being dirt poor in a backwoods area.  It isn't something I've lived - my family always got along well enough, but being from a somewhat Appalachian county, I've definitely seen thinks like this.  Junk piles, houses made up of scraps, people scraping by on what they could hunt.  This film felt real.

- The scary clan-like ness of the family. 

- The actors.  Every person in this does a great job.  Dale Dickey is totally my choice for best supporting actress of 2010 although she isn't even nominated.

What didn't sit right with me?
- The film has been described as an Ozark film noir mystery.  The mystery seemed less than central to the story somehow.  And I've never ever been a film noir fan so it shouldn't have been a surprise when I felt a bit unconcerned about how it all gets solved.

Overall it is a good film, but I won't be raving - just appreciative.

Inspiring interior

Seriously prettily decorated home to be seen here.  Love the colors and style.

Feb 1, 2011


Easy A is totally fluffy and fun and silly.  All about a high school student who lies about her sexual exploits in order to ruin her own reputation.  It's kind of a bubblegum ish movie and the lead actress is pretty perfectly cast.  A really fun watch!