Thursday, November 19, 2009


I have a love/hate relationship with catalogs. My mailslot at home is choked at this time of year. I keep a recycling bag right near the door and that's where most of them end up before they even see the top of the dining room table (where the rest of the mail languishes). A few catch my eye and imagination. These images are courtesy of the Museum of Modern Art Catalog.

Cleverly designed, these miniature vellum lampshades instantly transform any wine glass into a small lamp-just add a tealight or votive candle. Each tube comes with three unique shades, but that means I'd have to buy at least three to get a set. I know I don't have to be so match-matchy, but still. . . fairly affordable at $15. Then I start thinking, I could make these! but with my luck, I'd make more of a fire hazard than anything else. Still. . .

I like this wallet, but at $198 I wouldn't need it because I wouldn't have any money left to store.
The pig is just too cute, but at $90, it's also too expensive just for being cute.

Now this I could afford, and might even have ordered by the time you read this. Acrylic fibers hand-blended, needle-punched together, and saturated with latex. As the catalog says, it would be ideal as a doormat. Antimicrobial and antistatic. Machine washable. Shoes not included. I'm thinking of it for my kitchen.
Can I put this corkscrew on my stocking wishlist? I promise to share whatever I open with it. . .

I really like the MoMA holiday cards, but they are certainly no bargain. Most are more than $20 for 8 cards.

My favorite item in the catalog was this Bauhaus lamp. Each lamp is numbered and certified with the Bauhaus logo. It should be, for $925. It's $295 just to replace the globe.

Let's see what catalogs show up in today's mail. . .

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Book Thoughts

I loved The Art of Racing in the Rain. Very sweet, clearly written by somebody who loves dogs, or at least one in particular. I don't give Molly nearly that much credit, but then again, she doesn't watch as much tv as Enzo did.

Speaking of books about dogs, have you had a chance to start Edgar Sawtelle? I know it's a huge undertaking. I'm interested in your thoughts.

Next on my list? I have a stack to get to. Stacks of books, stacks of magazines, and oh yes, it's catalog season. I chuck a lot of them, but I admit to a fascination with some of the more exotic ones. I'll post some of my favorites soon. You can tell the season of my life by my latest bedside reading: Menopause and Natural Hormones and The Sexy Years by Susan Somers. Shut up. I'm no Earth Mother type-- there's got to be a better way. Better living through chemistry. I'm on the bandwagon for bio-identical hormones. Roscoe and I have our big anniversary trip to Aruba coming up and I'd like to be able to enjoy it.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Sharing the Road

Yikes-- I nearly hit a bicyclist this morning. I pulled through the mail drop lane at the Geo. Mason Dr. post office. I had to wait to exit for a kid walking a dog to cross the exit lane and looked carefully to my left for traffic coming over the hill from Lee Hwy. You know people fly over that hill. There was a car just pulled into the on-street parking lane. The rider must have been just behind that car when I looked, because I sure didn't see him. I was going so slowly he had plenty of time to slow himself down (he must have been going fast). He rang his bell at me and followed me as I turned right on to whatever street that is that takes you up to Harrison. I realized as I stopped at the sign at Harrison that he was turning around to get back onto George Mason so he must have been trying to follow me, I guess to yell at me. I really did not see him, though I did look and saw the other parking car and no other cars approaching as I turned. Holy cow! I'm sure I scared him, but he sure scared me too!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Soccer Madness

It's quiet this morning, thank goodness. I'm sore-- soccer practice (for the 10 to 12-year olds) was at 5 to accomodate the new earlier darkness, but 5 is too early for one of the two coaches, and the other coach has issues yesterday. The Mrs. Coaches had agreed to take the practice on, but they were clearly short-handed. I'm standing there in my three-inch wedges, clucking, "Gee, too bad I didn't bring my sneakers. . .," when one Mrs. Coach pipes up, "OH! I have an extra pair in the car-- what size are you?" I was reluctant, (couldn't anybody else hear my internal scream: NOOOOOOO! You can't make me!!!!!!) but it was fun. It's been so long-- running with abandon, kicking a ball. . . Troy was lamenting my lame defensive skills, but I'm still savoring hearing one boy yelling to another, "What are you doing?? Get the ball!" and the other boy yelling back, "I can't! Mrs. Allison is too good!" I'm glad the light was almost gone. Made pretending I looked good out there a little easier. My knees and hips are feeling the exercise for sure, but why would my left elbow be sore? I was definitely creaking when I got out of bed this morning.

I have some great photos, but blogspot isn't letting me insert photos this morning for some reason.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Costumes and Politics

I don't get some people. My 12-year old is, in his own words, a history geek. His latest reading, starting as homework but he's branching out on his own, has been about the Civil War. His favorite movie right now is Glory, but living south of the Mason Dixon line as we do, most of the battlefields are known as Confederate, and we've heard people still refer to the Civil War as the War of Northern Aggression. I digress. On one of our battleground forays or another, Troy picked up the gray slouch hat, and seeing it surface in his room, he decided to round out the uniform for Halloween. Gray jeans, navy jacket (the gold buttons were key), silk sash, leather belt across his chest, white gloves. . . I thought he looked great.

When I asked him if all the kids were going to be dressing up for a school party Friday evening, he expressed some concern that some people would think badly of him dressed as a Confederate soldier. I scoffed. "Would people think badly of you if you dressed as the Frankenstein monster? Or think you were a better person if you dressed as Superman?" As far as I know nobody gave him a hard time at the party. I even offered to ghoul it up with a bloodied bandage or something, but he thought that cheapened the costume.

Then last night, long time friends/neighbors asked how he was dressing for the holiday. When I told her, she says, "Really? That's. . . ummm. . . interesting. . .Confederate? Kinda scary. . ."


My first response was, "Well, we are in the south!" I think that was the wrong thing to say.

Molly wanted to go along for the trick or treating, but Troy said no to the dogs of war. Troy's buddies agreed to pose with him. The friend on the left scared the bejeesus out of the toddlers when he helped answer the door. One literally ran screaming to mommy. He felt really bad! The friend in the middle wasn't nearly so creative, but they all made a good haul.

So what do you think? I thought the neighbor was making a political big deal out of it. I can't believe she was offended!