Friday, November 30, 2007

View from the BeachTowel

And, oh what a view it was!

We're back from Mexico & although quite chillllly, very happy to be home.

Who's even happier? Iris, of course.

More later, I actually spent some time with my notebook this trip.


Monday, November 19, 2007

Bringing Sexy Back

That was my response when a old friend asked if I needed my head checked when I told him about our motorcycle trip. Especially when he realized that we'd be covering well over 400 miles. "Cuz' we're 'Bringing Sexy Back', I explained".

Doesn't that sound like a good idea?

Jzboy had his own reasons for wanting to get his bike (& perhaps his wife?) going. But I had to find something flip - with an amusing catchphrase - to afford me some distance between my fear and my desire. Whatever works, right?

Once I put aside the images of crashes, fire, ambulances and paraplegia - I really got into it. It actually took less time than I'd imagined, maybe a half hour or so into the trip. In retrospect, I think that I was more concerned about Jzboy's safety than my own.

And, he was fine.

Surprisingly, I ended up feeling a lot safer than I ever thought I could. I think that my calm had to do with our finding a very quiet road to start our journey, riding as a group (you're much easier to see when there are three bikes vs. one), traveling with friends that embrace the importance of taking breaks, a partner that tells you earnestly that "the passenger is boss" (& that said "boss" is "precious cargo" to him) and the promise of winetasting and bountiful dining options at the end of the journey. Nice.

Here is kinda how we got there:

Highway 25 was beautiful and it seemed that we had the road to ourselves once we got past Pinnacles National Monument. The dusty, craggy hillside and one lane road made me forget that I was in California & gave me flashbacks of motocycle films I'd seen and panoramas I'd imagined as a backdrop for such an adventure. It was beautiful, meditative and humbling.

Jen & her Hubs were the inspiration for this trip. About a month ago, at their pre-pre baby shower/adoption referral announcement dinner they casually invited us to tag along with them on this trip. Both of them are wayyy experienced on the track and on the streets (uhm, yeah, Jen's cool like that) and the invite was just the right inspiration for Jzboy to resuscitate his beloved Yamaha Turbo. The Turbo is 25 years old! Uhm, yeah, Jzboy's cool like that!

(Guess which one of us was dreaming of hot cocoa and a nap?)

I was by far the luckiest of the bunch because all I had to do was kick it on the back of the bike & chill. It was a blast. I got to enjoy the wind through my ponytail, the scent of ripened strawberries in the Central California Fields in my nose, the invigorating chill of the fog as we set out on our journey (& as we made our final approach toward home), the familiar images of freshly turned farmland mixed with pungent manure, the dizzying rush of adrenaline, even the butterflies that were there at the start of the trip.

These multilayered sensations made me forget my initial trepidation as well as the stiff back and sore rear end that became souvenirs of the trip.

Totally worth it.

Friday, November 16, 2007

Taking a Deep Breath...

...and going for it.

I've got an Etsy shop! It took a bit of work loading pictures and mustering up some courage - but I did it!

You can see a preview of what I'm calling "Cafe Couture" to the right of the blog over there. Click on the blue link "buttercupbloom" to get to the shop.

Or click here....

I got the idea for the "java jackets" after roasting my fingers one too many times on a hot Americano. Over the past week, I've test-driven the design & love it. Got a lot of compliments, too. Cool thing about these little puppies are that they are made from %100 recycled materials - reduce, reuse, recycle baby! So much better for the enviornment (& for your style) than those cardboard thingys they hand out at the cafe.

C'mon over to the shop...
(Just promise not to tease me about the slightly cockeyed and fuzzy pictures, I'm an Etsy-Newby)

Thursday, November 15, 2007

I ((Heart)) S. V.

Seeing the Suzanne Vega show Monday evening at the Fillmore was a lot like reuniting with an old friend. It was easy and comforting in just that way. Suzanne sounded great and was cheeky and thoughtful as she sang everything from Small Blue Thing to Gypsy to Caramel to just about everything on her new album. Good thing I love her new album so much. There is a real NY vibe to it - she even had an "I (heart) NY" mug that she sipped from onstage.

The Fillmore is such a small venue so we were really close and I was just mesmerized. Suzanne connected with the audience in an affectionate, teasing way - much more realistic and sincere than the other shows we've seen this year. Members of the crowd shouted suggestions of songs they wanted to hear - there are so many - and she teased back, playfully negotiating with the group. There were 2 encores - the final song being the Queen and the Soldier. A fitting tune, IMO, for a Veteran's Day evening. It was endearing and personal...and we drove home from the City feeling all warm and happy inside.

Can you believe that Suzanne Vega has a blog?? Click on this link to check it out!

This is a movie she posted of a tune from the new album - Beauty and Crime. The song is called Unbound. At the Fillmore show Suzanne explained that this song was about a plant that she once knew. Give it a listen, it is brilliant. If you are a fan (or even if you're not, but are looking for something fresh for your IPOD) check out her the album. I couldn't recommend enough.

Today Jzboy and I have been waiting in the LID-Line for 18 months. That is a year and a half. Here is Suzanne and her band on David Letterman singing - Anniversary. Even though I know that her song is about 9/11 - it felt appropriate in a way.

Not all anniversaries are sweet and romantic. Sometimes..."each year leaves its unresolving fantasies".

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Showin' Out

A little known fact about me is that I used cater weddings. Once I got a kitchen of my "own" (I lived in the dorms all 4 years of college) I learned the joy that is cooking for others. Many catering gigs kicked that inclination up a notch. I even spent the day before I got married cooking a huge pot of tomato corn chowder for all of our friends/family that were in town. Some people thought that I was nuts, but it was actually very relaxing.

Today I got the chance to tap into those mad catering skills as I offered to help with some food for my friend, Jen's, baby shower. Here is a before picture of my Crudite Platter:

Know what the big-ol' potatoey looking veg is on the cutting mat?? Jicama.


Doesn't this make you want to eat your veggies??

The BabyGurl we were celebrating today, Ms. Amara, is in Ethiopia. Click on this link for a glimpse of her cuteness. Jen & Lionel are on a cloud. It is pretty awesome to see a really-real friend get her referral and celebrate big time. The party was fun and full of big love for the new parents. Cool.

Here is the gift that I made for Amara.

I wonder what she'll name her?

In other creative news, here is a Kitty that has been waiting to be finished up for nearly a year. Both the Teddy & Kitty have sat unstuffed, without faces for far too long. Now they are free to smirk!

This one is going to a dear friend's daughter who has had some difficult surgical proceedures in the past couple weeks. It has been rough on baby & parents. My heart goes out to them.

Finally, be sure that you go hug a Vet this weekend.

Hugs, Dad! XO

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

If You're Into It

Guess what came out for sale todayyyyyyy??

Run don't walk to your local "bullseye" store to get your copy while it is still on sale! I got mine for $19.99!

Check here for more info on the series.

Listen below for a story about a Hiphopopotamus, his friend the Rhymneocerous and for some insight into why I love this wacky show...

Sunday, November 04, 2007

Evidence of Vibrance

When you love color and the coming of Autumn - focusing on Vibrance during the month of November is easy-peasy-lemon-squeezy.

This amaryllis caught my eye on my way home from exercising earlier this week. The two emerging blooms are so wonderful to watch and remind me of my dear friend's recent news of TWINS!!!!

It doesn't hurt to have special visitors on their way. Brightly colored dishware filled my washer & chocolate pie chilled in the fridge in preparation of their trip.

Orangey fabrics inspired a teething bib project.

Its reversable & made to catch drool whilst looking cool.

Best part of all - having a wee girl here to play with said bowls/plates and to model new auntie fashions!

She also test-drove the freshly installed crib. Sweet.

Meanwhile....out in the's a special operation that Jzboy is working on. How cool is it that he's getting in on this Vibrance Project??

Looks like it might be time to dust off the helmets pretty soon. Oooo-eeee!

Just because this song has been going through my head ever since I decided on the title for this post - here is one of my fave tunes from Genesis. Evidence of Autumn. Looks like someone from YouTube put the song to some scenes from Autumn in New York with Winona Ryder and Richard Gere. Maybe the song was actually used in the movie, I don't know. Anyway, it serves a nice backdrop.

I know that there are some other Gen-Heads out there, for the rest of you, try it you might like it....