mother’s day gift-o-mania.

mother's day gift-o-mania.

 

mother’s day is upon us, friends. i am a person who not only dislikes but dreads my birthday, gets exhausted just thinking about christmas and no longer qualifies for administrative professionals or national boss’s day, but i do kinda love mother’s day. it’s the one holiday i agree with, because mom’s are in the shit. every damn day. we deserve a day. we really do. so here’s 15 mother’s day gifts that i for onsies would like to be the receiver of, from hecka pricey to el cheap-o and in between.

  1. so after years of avoiding tracy anderson (because part of me feels like her and her band of snobby celebrity clients are the root of all evil), i finally decided to give it another shot. i have to admit that her cooky fakakta moves are legit, even though it feels like the most insane ridiculous shit ever while doing it. this subscription program for $29 a month keeps the workouts rolling in.  i’m hipcentric, if you were wondering.
  2. i heart this sweet little hanging wicker basket all the way from france ($12).
  3. speaking of wicker baskets, these circolo totes ($125) are gonna be the next big thing in wicker handbags, trust.
  4. look at this little set of beautiful ceramic magnolia creamers ($30).
  5. how about a nasty heart charm necklace ($44)? 25% of proceeds go to planned parenthood!
  6. this is about the prettiest fake plant ($47) i ever saw, because mom’s have to worry about keeping babies alive, don’t expect us to not kill plants too!
  7. because every mom could use another coffee table book, here is one with photographs of marianne faithfull ($31).
  8. linen sheets ($229) are still on my list. three years running. hello?
  9. little sachets of moon dust ($24) aka mother’s little helper. because what a drag it is getting old.
  10. here is a gift set ($100) that includes a bottle of rose, pink soap and bath salts, and a candle. because who doesn’t love a drunk bath? seems like a no brainer.
  11. i love a simple gold bracelet like this gia cuff ($28).
  12. have i mentioned the kate somerville as good as gold kit ($130)? about a hundred times? because i’m trying to manifest it into my life.
  13. pretty pretty maryam  nassir zadeh palma sandals (on sale for $316+ another 10% off!).
  14. here is the perfect little yellow wrap dress ($72) for when your kids only give you 5 minutes to get dressed but you still want to channel your inner carrie bradshaw.
  15. last is a fancy polka dot swimsuit, like this beauty from lisa marie fernandez ($541) or this more affordable version from j.crew (on sale for $69+30% off!).

the end.

mother’s day gifts.

mothers day
well my friends, the big day is upon us. here are a few of my favorite things for mamas this year.
  1. new bedding is at the top of my list this year. i recently read this article in real simple about how to choose bed sheets and i am now on the hunt for the perfect set.  i am looking out for some dreamy indigo sheets, and these tommy hilfiger ones are nice, sadly these beauties from west elm are no longer available, and the swanky john robshaw ones are too pricey (even on sale). i have been wanting to try my hand at indigo dying myself, which leads me to my next gift.
  2. this natural indigo dying kit from general store looks awesome, and comes in a pretty box to boot.
  3. i’ve been on a pickling kick for a while now, and i love this little canning discovery kit.
  4. speaking of linens and kitchen stuff, these constellation linen napkins are adorable. i also love this gemstone magnet set.
  5. personally i like the standard gift of flowers, and i am super stoked that there is finally an alternative to the typical method of sending them (which is like a really expensive and typically disappointing crap shoot). bloomnation is a rad website that has rad flowers by rad flower shops that are not janky carnations and oddly colored, semi-wilting mums and daisies in weird, unusable oversized coffee cup or fruit shaped vases. amen.
  6. hows about a t-shirt to declare mama’s mama-ness to the world? i heart this mountain mama t, and this mother bird shirt is totes cool as well.
  7. i also way love receiving plants as gifts. currently i’m wanting a split leaf philodendron, and i love these beautiful two tone pots from crate & barrel. or you could two tone your own, if you’re crafty.
  8. these olo fragrances are a blend of coconut oil, essential oils, key accords and absolutes (whatever that means), and they have awesome ones like palo santo, violet/leather and dark wave. so into it.
  9. i just picked up a little jar of glamglow’s youthmud, and i super duper love it. my skin is v v soft and way less blahzay. glamglow has this cute facial kit that would be awesome to receive.
  10. pretty much over the moon for all things consider the wildflowers, especially her brilliant stump cuff rings and this half moon necklace. her pieces are way gorgeous and they also won’t break the bank.
  11. i love my new roots, her plant based recipes and photos are inspired and the cookbook looks lovely.
  12. i’ve mentioned the life-changing magic of tidying up before, but a re-read seems in order for spring. what mom wouldn’t like to clear out a lil’ clutter, eh?
  13. these pretty candles have plantable packaging that grows into pretty flowers. catalan calendula is the one for me.

the end.

covet: winter edition

covet: winter edition
well, it’s official, summer is really, totally and truly dunzo. the beautiful fall weather we were having has pretty much disappeared as well. today is windy, overcast and downright cold (by bay area standards) and we are supposed to have rain the rest of the week. i am wondering where in the world i put all of my socks and sweaters and coats and all that i want to do is curl up and eat. here is my wishing well list for the cold days ahead.
  1. i’ve said it before and i’ll say it again: i love how fashion trickles down to the masses. i remember when maison martin margiela started doing their crazy round shouldered coats and oversized suits for their fall 2010 collection. i wondered how in the world this might translate to real clothing, but then celine nailed the round shouldered coat (as they do most coats) and the looks went on from there. so i for one am happy to see this pretty boucle version from forever 21 for $57.
  2. another trend i’m happy to see re-emerging is the dark lipstick trend from the good ol’ 90’s. i really want to get my hands on these little color sticks from marc jacobs, and this one is appropriately titled “smack,” for the 90’s goth junky in us all.
  3. so socks. socks in winter are the jam, and these cable knit over the knee socks look heavenly.
  4. getting older is a real bitch, in case you hadn’t heard. i find myself achy in new ways and i must admit, my already wonky eyes are not what they used to be. i’d sure love a new pair of glasses, like these uber cool ones from bon look.
  5. i’m not much of a christmas person, but there are a couple of christmasy items that have caught my fancy this year. these heart shaped ristas from new mexico are adorbs. i love these little lama and cactus ornaments from furbish studio. we’ve decided not to get a tree this year, but i will miss the smell. these rustic candles are supposed to smell of sandalwood, cedar and leather.
  6. i am sure that it is the years of working in offices where inevitably someone would send a box of harry & david holiday items and inevitably i would find myself sneaking into the break room and devouring the moose munch that have me craving it. i’m sad to report that it is in fact not even kind of vegan, but i found this recipe that looks…pretty good for not being the real thing.
  7. i am totally a curl up with a blanket gal, and lucky for me my husband got me a wool hudsons bay blanket for my birthday. this is our first winter with the baby sleeping on his own and i worry about him being too cold. i loooove these beautiful heroic chief crib blankets from pendleton, so we can totes match.
  8. having a toddler makes me long for the days when i had the luxury of watching, say, a 3 hour swedish film like bergman’s scenes from a marriage or even a rad documentary like this new johnny thunders doc.
  9. another little luxury that i miss is baths, and not ones spent chasing a slippery little chub around (although those are wonderful in their own way). these beautiful little jars of bathtub tea look divine.
  10. i have been looking for a book that i actually want to read for months now, and i’m feeling like ann pachett’s new collection this is the story of a happy marriage  could just be the one for me. i’m also wanting the vibrant table cookbook, for some really great russian-ish vegetarian/vegan recipes.
  11. lately i’ve been missing my film cameras, and wanting to document this highly festive season in a more inspired and less digitized (read: lazy) way. i’m kind of blown away by all of the instant cameras suddenly coming out. this fujifilm one is totally beautiful and is pretty much my dream camera.
  12. i love this simple little nest ring from rachel pfeffer for my cold dry hands.
  13. lastly is a nice glass of red wine with my nice and v v handsome husband. my former boss put out a wine, and last year for christmas he sent us a bottle. it was honestly one of the best wines that i have ever tasted. i wanted to suck the remnants off of the cork when it was done. while it’s not likely he’ll send another this year, a girl can dream.

the end.

xmas gifts for the foodie

foodie gift guide
well my friends, christmas is just about a month away. holy cow. here are some neat-o gifts (that won’t break the bank) for those of us who spend most of our precious moments in the kitchen.
  1. a market basket. i like the idea of buying a whole bunch of items and putting them into a market basket for a gift, but the basket alone is a great gift. baskets of africa has a whole bunch of pretty cloth handled ones in the $36 range for the vegans of the world. the wonderful bon boutique has these little leather handled ones for $38.
  2. there’s nothing more inspiring than a beautiful new cookbook and there are so many rad ones out right now. as you know i’m dying to get mexico: the cookbook, but i’m also excited about the slanted door, which is modern vietnamese recipes from one of my favorite spots in san francisco. there is also the cookbook from the dinner series seven suppers, and sean brock’s heritage which features southern recipes. all good things, i say.
  3. a good bottle of wine is always a friendly gift. i am sooo not a wine snob, but i completely love orin swift’s wines. their labels alone are utterly brilliant, and they gots the goods to back it up.
  4. coffee is another great gift, and i love all of the small contraptions out there for making coffee, they are affordable and decidedly cool to receive as gifts. i love these beautiful glass chemex coffee makers for $40, and these iconic le creuset stoneware french presses (for $60) are so lovely. add a can of cuban espresso or a bag of your favorite coffee (mine is blue bottle) and you’re set.
  5. spices are crucial and these little gift boxes have organic spices from 9 different regions for $22. drying your own herbs and giving them as gifts is tre cool, but if you don’t have the herbs you can buy this awesome swag, with 5 bunches of herbs tied to pretty birch swag. dried new mexico chilis made into these ristras are a cool alternative to a christmas wreath.
  6. giving your favorite little kitchen utensil is a great way to pass on kitchen tips. i for one love these little lemon juicers. these japanese copper graters are perfect for grating ginger. these brightly colored magnetic timers are a classic. this set of 4 essential beechwood handled knives are so pretty. i love these teak salt dish & spoon sets for $18, and this bamboo mortar and pestle for $30. i’m crazy about these gorgeous brass nordic elk measuring cups from anthropologie for $38. i love a nice kitchen candle to neutralize all the smelliness, and these little $9 ones from target are made with essential oils.
  7. some pretty napkins or kitchen towels are a nice little luxury. i love these beautiful indigo napkins from lost & found for $28, and these indigo cloths from general store for $15. ikea has these pretty red floral towels for $4.99.

the end.

covet

covet
here we are at another monday. i am feeling a little uninspired this week. last week was one of those weeks where it seemed everything that i cooked tasted like mush. vegetable brothy mush. so this week i am vowing to try new things. here’s my most hearted items for the week.
  1. i’m wanting to start over with my kitchen wares as well as my closet. the dutch oven that i have is tiny, and i’m wanting a larger one like these pretty enameled cast iron ones from martha stewart. i’m also wishing that i had more than one frying pan that is worth a darn, and this 12″ cream one looks swell. my kitchen drawers need organizing and i’m thinking about some drawer organizers. for organizing my drawers. got it? i dig these expandable ones.
  2. speaking of feeling uninspired in the kitchen, i am dying to get this beautiful cookbook entitled mexico: the cookbook. the cover is like a bright papel picado and the book is rumored to be pretty much the bible for mexican dishes. i want this baby muchos muchos.
  3. i’ve been really interested in essential oils lately. mainly because i feel like my house always smells like diapers and vegan brothy mush. but also because i like the idea of my house smelling like a super swanky spa where ladies go for relaxing times. and i heard tell it mellows people and babies the eff out, which i am all for. i love this oil diffuser that turns a pretty gold when it lights up. and i heart these little oil kits from mountain rose herbs.
  4. last week i ventured in to sephora to sample the goods. i long ago learned to never, ever fall prey to their trickery and trick lighting and smoke and mirrors, so i never buy anything the first time there. i always wear it out into the actual world and see it for what it is. that being said, i tried out this new makeup from laura mercier and it’s amazing. it’s super light and almost powdery in a good way, and not cakey in the least. i also tried out this contouring pencil from tarte, because it is called the sculptor contouring face slenderizer, and i want to get my hands on anything that will slenderize my face, and i mean, this actually has it in the title. so it had me at hello. and anyways, it is really easy to use and i totally want to get it. i’m also still on my perfume kick, and i want to have this pretty little magnolia scent from commodity.
  5. my search for boots continues, and i’ve got my eye on these whiskey colored babes from diba that are made from real leather.
  6. i’m sorta obsessed with this dress from black crane. but $145 for a dress that calls itself a sack and has frayed edges? i don’t know. i just don’t know.
  7. last but surely not least is the new memoir from the incredible and wonderful lady called anjelica huston. this one allegedly goes into all of the sorted details about her relationship with jack nicholson. i can’t wait.

baby proofing 101

baby proof

over the past few weeks i’ve become increasingly concerned with baby proofing, and by “concerned” i mean obsessed. maybe i’m just tired of chasing my son around the house and saying “don’t touch!” or maybe i am tired of keeping literally everything that i own on the few pieces of furniture that are above hip level or have doors. i have been wishing that i could get into a time machine, go back, and buy completely different furniture than what i have. baby proofing is one of the big “just figure it out” things in parenthood. there are a bunch of plastic thingies on sale on the internet but no real instruction manual on how to wrap up all the valuable and dangerous items. here’s a list for anyone who is pulling their graying hair out, like me.

  1.  don’t kid yourself that this “essentials” kit will cover it, but it does help a little. it has door knob covers for when they are walking, cabinet/drawer locks that you have to screw in (because the adhesive ones pop right off), and some of those electrical outlet plugs.
  2. speaking of outlet plugs, these band-aid shaped ouchlets are adorable. i really like these chord shortening ones that you can wind extra chord inside to keep babies out and off.
  3. for heavier cabinet doors i like these magnetic locks. they are pricey but keep the doors completely closed and hold tight. on the other end are these adhesive latches from ikea that can be put on the outside of drawers or doors to keep from opening. good for when you are on the millionth dresser drawer and don’t want to drill. for side by side cabinet doors i’ve tried them all and i prefer these simple grip n go locks. ikea also makes these cheap, simple finger guards for doors to keep them from slamming shut on babes.
  4. for sharp edges we’ve tried all of the corner bumpers and the adhesive corner covers were a bust. my baby popped them right off and chewed on them. we wound up getting rid of our coffee table because we couldn’t keep anything on it anyway. these foam cushion kits line the entire table, and seem to be the most effective.
  5. you’ll also need furniture straps to keep babies from pulling over shelves, tables, and televisions.
  6. for the bathroom there are a lot of fancy toilet seat locks, but this simple one is fine for me.  there is also the bath spout, which babies can knock their little heads into. this little submarine spout cover is real cute, and cheap too.
  7. back in the kitchen, you’ll need an oven lock to keep baby from pulling down the door, and if your stove knobs are low enough to reach, some knob covers.
  8. baby gates are a mom’s best friend. we happen to live in an old, old house that does not have even door frames, so spring loaded baby gates don’t work for us. we’ve also found that we need flexible gates to use them to block off plants, record and bookshelves. i like this gate because it allows for odd shaping, adjusts to angled doorways, and it is mounted to the wall for sturdiness. if you have stairs, you’ll need a rail guard to keep babies from sliding through railings.

now on to furniture. i see lots of parents “asking the experts” about how to baby proof their furniture. what about my books and records? and my beautiful antique settee? i always hear the same answer: kiss it goodbye. as sick as i am of ikea, it seems to be a necessary evil for parents. so here are some furniture pieces i like, some because of cheapness, but all because of baby proof-ness, and they aren’t even ugly!

  1. this sofa from ikea has rounded arms so baby won’t go boom, the fabric is a very stain friendly dark gray, and the cover can be removed and machine washed.
  2. as you already know, dear reader, i am totally crazy for mid-century sideboards. i’m a huge fan of sideboards for keeping television and stereos on because they are higher up than most media cabinets. ikea has one of their own, for probably the best price you’ll find out there. it’s best feature is those lovely baby proof-able doors to hide all your junk. ikea also has these industrial era influenced cabinets that have locking doors. comes with a key.
  3. keeping up with my mid-century theme, i’m also a huge fan of teak credenzas or bookshelves because of their lovely closed doors at baby level. a couple of investment pieces that will still keep baby at bay are this vintage credenza from dot and bo, and these great shelves from west elm that can build a whole unit. they also have open shelving up top so you can still show off some of your cool knink knacks.
  4. speaking of showing off your knick knacks, i love industrial looking display cases that have locking doors, but are glass so you can still show it off. ikea has two options: a smaller one in a pretty sage green, and this larger one.
  5. wall mounting is kinda your new best friend when you have littles. urban outfitters has some cool wall shelf alternatives, like this geo triangle shelf. of course ikea has lots of wall shelf options, i like these simple shelves that are just $12.99. ikea also has these cool industrial lamps that clamp onto windowsills or can be mounted onto walls, to keep babies from pulling on lamps.
  6. lastly dressers. lord knows babies love to play with drawers. target has this mid-century style dresser that doesn’t have handles for babies to pull out and up on. for only $155, you can’t beat it.

all right, best of luck with all of this madness.

vintage modern: mid-century credenza.

as a new parent you quickly learn just what a sharp, chaotic little death trap your home is. my son began crawling and we realized that we had made all the wrong choices in furniture. there honestly is no good system for childproofing out there. as my friend jeff says, there is one company who makes childproofing stuff and they make two versions: the crappy version and the more expensive, less crappy version. and they do not make anything that will keep your books, records and tchotchkes from coming right off of their little perch and straight into the mouth of your toddler. gone are the days of stacking books on the floor or keeping anything (really, anything) sitting out at waist level or lower. i look around at all of the open shelving that i have and i curse the furniture gods for not directing me towards storage with enclosed, lockable shelves.

as a child i remember my grandparents had their beautiful teak and maple credenzas and sideboards, with their nifty sliding doors and drawers to keep everything tucked away from little prying hands. i’ve looked longingly at the pretty mid-century credenzas at the shops along valencia street in san francisco for years, and watched their price tags skyrocket with the passing months. a vintage one will run you upwards of $2,000, and that’s to start. recently new versions have been popping up all over, not much more affordable, but perhaps a bit. here are 10 ranging in price for $279 to just under $1500.