Category Archives: ridiculousness

my latest obsession

Never, in a million years, would I have imagined myself the kind of mother who would take her four-year old daughter to the nail salon. Noooooooo way. But as with so many unsuspecting things that come with age/ maturing/ life– I LIVE to go with Delphina to the nail salon. Honestly, I can’t get enough of it, and apparently neither can she— as evident when we were working on her school project called the ALL ABOUT ME poster board… I almost fell off my chair when the question asked– WHAT DO YOU WANT TO BE WHEN YOU GROW UP— my genius daughter responded: ” a nail salon painter.”

I have been going to the same Vietnamese nail salon for almost two decades– I am infamously persnickety about water temperature + nail shape + technician.  But recently I have had a hankering for more… Something much more. More look/ charm/ mojo. And it just so happened that my friend Ali (same Ali from last week’s New Orleans post) did too– and emailed me about a super-talented nail artiste, named Mia in the Mission, at SPARKLE NAILS.

Over the course of the past 6 weeks, Ali and I have burned the midnight oil enslaving ourselves to Mia’s most delicate hands– as she has covered our nails in leopard, hearts, glitters, stripes, baby names, rhinestones, starbursts, gold gilt, and iridescence.  It has become an out-of-control addiction that I highly recommend.

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it’s that time of year…

I don’t know about you, but I take Girls Scout season very seriously…

As a young girl, I was introduced to the ways of entrepreneurial pursuits while being a Girl Scout In Southwest Florida. I quickly learned how to work a calculator and sell door-to-door: Business experience that would prove invaluable. As a result, cookie season has always held a very soft spot in my heart.

Over time, GS cookies have become a favorite annual anticipation, much in the same way as King Cakes at Mardi Gras, Rose wine during summer, or Eggnog at Xmas… There is something about the ritual and ceremony of Girl Scout Cookies that make them delightfully infectious and extra-special. For 6 weeks, these cookies are the most fantastic hostess, thank you, birthday, I-am-sorry, get-better-soon gift ever.

During the cookie season, I am laser focused about my cookie preferences and stockpile for the year. My personal favorites are: 1. Thin Mint 2. Do-Si-Dos. The Thin Mints are utter perfection, and best served frozen/ straight from the freezer, with a glass of red wine— late at night. The combination oozes sensation/ texture and the right amount of sweetness.

You should try it.

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the $16,000 valentine date

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a star is born tonight!

I am on a plane as I type, heading for NYC to witness the smile on my Mother’s face.

As many of you may know my mom/ Elizabeth/ Panther/ Toto/ Liz/ Mrs. Swanson has been a frustrated performer/ singer/ writer/ evangelist/ soothsayer all her life… The stories have been brilliant and endless! In the past few years, she wrote 2 books, called LIFE IS TOO SHORT TO BE CHIC and another called DELPHINA THE DOLPHIN– while recording a song with my good friend + talented musician Bob Lindsey called, I TOLD YA SO!!!!

But, if there was one calling she regrets missing, it is to be a STAR ON BROADWAY. Yes, STAR.  Everyone who knows her knows this.

So, for a very special combined Xmas/ Anniversary, Birthday gift, my dad/ Clarke set out to give her the gift of a lifetime… While perusing the pages of the Neiman Marcus Xmas Catalogue, he stumbled upon FANTASY GIFT #9:

Friends, this extravaganza is happening!

Hats off to Elizabeth, our favorite girl! She cant wait!

Either can we!!!!!  Stay tuned!

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for the love of butter balls

Butter balls.

I don’t know about you, but I live for butter balls. I find them in the most unusual of places: hole-in-the-wall joints in the South OR country clubs in New England OR fancy occasions where the host/s are at least two or three generations older than I… Either way, I find them the hallmark of discerning + elegant proprietors… The very sight of them indicates people with good taste buds + loving hands are preparing whatever is going on in the kitchen.

These little butter balls shout-out for respect + glorify any kind of carbohydrate accompanying your entree.

For kicks, you might want to try to make your own!

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halloween stevie

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pbs’ ode to mister rogers

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gypsy wagons

Should you wonder… Gypsy wagons are horse-drawn carts for those in the “carriage trade” peddling their goods + services across the country sides— offering storage, living space, practicality and beauty, in very limited quantities. Originally conceived as ”bender tents” transporting + providing shelter, these carriages took on new life with the carnival performers, soothsayers, musicians, evangelists, politicians, ladies of the night– or those simply on the lam.

Alternatively, in deeply civilized cultures of history, these carriages were commissioned to pay homage to passages of life: these carriages carried a bride to and from her ceremony or often took families to and from funerals.

They are mesmerizing, poetic, and romantic. I imagine Stevie Nicks must have one, and in my imagination, it is where she goes to write her songs + receive….

 

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claiborne’s fall campaign for michael kors

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michael bauer’s birthday surprise

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the full moon is rising soon

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recipe for a great love letter…

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the modern-day apothecary

 

Who isn’t entranced by an outpost specializing in tinctures + elixirs in little black medicinal bottles; dry herbs in glass jars; crystals of every shape + color; magic wands made of gilded bamboo; exotic teas + remedies defending the heart/ soul/ throat/ anxiety/ twitchy eye and books on healing/ reinventing/ spells???

I certainly am.

I stumbled upon Scarlet Sage Herb Co. a while ago, when I was on the hunt for bundled white sage… the kind that protects + wards off every manner of bad spirit when smudged around the perimeter of your sacred dwelling. Sage bundles are the backbone of so many of my special-delivery care packages, such as:  the heartbreak kit; the housewarming kit; the lucky you kit; the birthday kit, and lastly the thankyouthankyouthankyou kit.

After calling upon many of the usual suspects whom I thought would carry bundled sage– and don’t– someone tipped me off to a little “witchy store” at the end of Valencia street.  Just the thought of a “witchy store” delighted me beyond. But nothing compared to what I saw in person and/or the endless possibilities/ inspiration/ learning had.

For inspiration, check out the heartbreak kit– click here.

photo credit: nicole mcintosh bruce

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screw flowers on mother’s day

Get it here!

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magical kingdom of french ribbons

 

The Ribbonerie is wall-to-wall inspiring… The kind of store you imagine stumbling upon, along a tree-lined street, only in San Francisco, California. It is one of the prettiest shoppes in America + is a true world of ephemera + curio, owned by a proprietress possessed by her love of the exquisite– mostly French ribbons of every kind + shape + edging. A kingdom of magic + old world, where antique feathers, passamentry, buttons, ladies gloves, handkerchiefs + daytime hats are very much de’ rigueur.

Stuffed into every imaginable kind of hutch/ shelf/ case/ rack are acres upon acres of grosgrain, silk, taffeta, metallic, velvet, embroidered, appliqué ribbon– in every imaginable color/ width/ stripe/ polka dot/ plaid, and solid. A mesmerizing explosion of possibilities: bows on wedding gowns, bows on gifts, bows as napkin rings, bows on hats, bows on Xmas tree branches + wreaths, bows in hair, bows on Moses baskets + basinets, and bows on invitation + program.

Paulette Knight’s bounty is the secret weapon for many of the great creatives I know: florists/ crafters seamstress/ interior designers/ clothing designer/ event planners– and a MUST visit for anyone looking to be blown away.

photo credit: nicole mcintosh bruce

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