Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Philosophical Trash Can?

 I came across this sight on my morning walk today:

A piece of philosophy in the recycle bin:

So true; it is so true.

Monday, February 27, 2012

Dogs and Shoes: Separated at Birth?

 A few days back, one of the bloggers I follow pointed out that Golden Retrievers...

Photo: rkleine

...are the perfect dog to accompany you when you're wearing Uggs:

Photo: Wanja Krah

Totally makes sense! Both are comfy, toasty, cozy, kinda big, and a little doofy-looking.

That got me to thinking about other dog-and-shoe pairings. I realized that Doberman Pinschers...

Photo: Xtraradio

...have always reminded me of scary, high-heeled black boots:

Photo: Markusram

And that Pomeranians...

Photo:  Miss Tessmacher

...are like those fluffy boudoir slippers, come to life:

Photo: Matuko Amini

With just a little reflection it was clear that black Labs...

Photo: A30 Tsitika

...are black motorcycle boots:

Photo: deejayqueue

But they're very friendly motorcycle boots. And Yorkies?

Photo: wsilver

Mary Janes. But be careful: the dogs--and maybe these shoes--are little nippers!

Photo: angeliathatsme

Beagles and Boxers both...

Photo: B, K, & G
Photo: serenityphotographyltd

...remind me of penny loafers. Classic, friendly, easy, all-American shoes. Uh, dogs. No, shoes.

Photo: kudumomo

I'm not certain about bulldogs. If they look more American...

Photo: audrey sei

...then they are totally men's workboots.

Photo: postbear

But if they look more British (don't ask me how they differ, they just do!), then they remind me of men's Oxfords:

Photo: jaimielondonboy

While Italian Greyhounds...

Photo: superfluity

...are pointe shoes.

Photo: poka0059

Dainty, elegant, beautiful. So, what breed do you think ridiculously sexy colored high heels are?

Photo: Aviv

Poodles, of course! The foo-foo, chi-chi type of poodle:

Photo: Llima
Photo: Joseph Robertson

While your typical, average mutt....

Photo: Nic & the Tailless Ones the favorite, beat-up pair of sneaks you'll never part with: 

Photo: agroffman

Hiking boots....

Photo: funkomavintage

...are one of those breeds of big, reliable mountain dogs, like Bernese and St. Bernard. Dependable, sturdy things you can count on in rough terrain. The kind that's got your back if you're lost on a mountainside. 

Photo: svadilfari

And what, you might ask, do I think my silly, ridiculous, adorable pugs are?

Baby shoes! Two-tone baby saddle shoes, to be precise.

Photo: jmelda

Thanks for asking.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

A Pug Tea Party

When I was a little girl, I played Tea Party a lot. My dolls and stuffed toys joined me at a little table, and I broke out the Good Stuff--a.k.a. the toy tea set--and we all had fun eating imaginary cookies and drinking imaginary tea.

I still play Tea Party, of course, but now it's with family and friends. The Good Stuff is sterling spoons, vintage linens, and teacups and teapots of bone china.

Mu Shu: Bone china? Did somebody say BONE china? I'm IN!!!!!

A while back, my Lovely Biggest Sister (as opposed to my Lovely Big Sister) sent the pugs some adorable cookies.

And I thought it would be fun to serve them up, Tea Party style.

 Won Ton: Cookies? Now, please!

I got all the Good Stuff out, sat each of the three pugs on a chair, and made them wait while I snapped shots. Their anxiousness over being THISCLOSE to a cookie meant I had to work really fast. Thus, the out-of-focus pictures.

 Me: Wait for it, waiiiiiiiiit.........

Lots of whimpering and fidgeting ensued as I tried to get off a few good shots. Behind me, The Boy warned, "MOM! This is a Very Bad Idea!" (You can just see his warmups with his favorite number on them, below.)

Teacups and teapots were in danger for their lives. Pugs were about to climb on tables. So after three or four seconds, I relented and gave the command. "OKAY!"

The cookies were gobbled down in a flash.

And they didn't even TRY the tea!

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Starbucks, Spring Flowers, and the Devil's Strip

 This is the strip of earth under the windows at my local Starbucks:

The flowers change with the seasons. They always look so pretty:

Mu Shu and I approve. We wish more stores would step up and care for the flower beds and trees outside their front doors.

Thank you, Starbucks! You may be an overpriced, overexposed chain store, but you got the flowerbed thing right.

By the way, what do you call the strip of land--often grassy--between the street and the sidewalk? I've always called it the "Devil's Strip." The Hubby thinks this is odd; he's never in his life met somebody who calls it this.

Photo of Devil's Strip, Courtesy of Gardening in a Minute

Me: Whatchoo talkin' 'bout? Lots of people call it the Devil's Strip!
The Hubby: Really? Name one.
Me: Well, my folks did...
The Hubby: You learned it from THEM!
Me: Well, there's our kids....
The Hubby: They learned it from YOU!
Me: Hmmph.

Yesterday The Hubby called me to say he'd gone online and learned that, according to the Urban Dictionary,  the "Devil's Strip" is a term unique to the area around Akron, Ohio.


I went online and found a little website called "Summit County Myths" that insists it's not true. It's actually a term unique to a larger part of Ohio.

Ha ha haaaa!

Yours Truly grew up in Dayton, Ohio, from the age of three years until I was six. Before I was born, my folks lived in Dayton for a number of years, too. My guess is they picked up the phrase from the locals, and it became part of our family's vernacular.

So long as it's planted with flowers, I don't care what you call it.

Monday, February 20, 2012

My French Writing Desk

Years ago, I rescued this couch off the street. It was torn up and nasty, with an ugly Chinese-inspired fabric and godawful Asian-style fretwork between klunky legs. I had it torn down to the frame, reupholstered, and rebuilt with more graceful legs. After it was finished, it graced a sunny alcove in our master bedroom:

But when the Lovely Daughters #1 and #2 moved into the Funny Looking House, they took the couch with them. (They needed it more than we did.) To fill the hole left, I decided I'd love a writing desk. In the ample light filtering in through the alcove's Palladian window, I imagined myself composing an old-fashioned letter or gazing out the window at the waving wall of green ivy beyond.

Yeah, my windows look just like these in a scene from the 1940 movie, "Rebecca." Juuuust like this:

Here's the first Mrs. deWinter's writing desk. Moire-silk matching address books, menu book, and diary. Oooooh!:

 (Have you seen this movie? It's a terrific, spell-binding story! Rent it, please.)

But I digress.

As I was mulling over the idea of a Rebecca-deWinter-style writing desk, this article caught my eye. I tore it out and carried it around in my purse for a while (thus the dog-eared appearance):

Five great desks: Perfect! I especially love the color of this one, from Cost Plus:

But at $200 it's a little pricey for being so very plain. And really, it's just the color that I love.

Then I saw this display through a shop window:

A darling, curvy desk and chair, and a vintage telephone and typewriter. Adorable!

It looks like the desk of a French woman writer. There are a few gorgeous books about women and the Louvre and dogs, a beautiful leather tote, a cup of tea, and even a fuzzy critter sitting on the chair!:

I love everything about this inventive display. I love how it seems to conjure up a certain woman, living in a certain city. But the desk is beyond what I'm willing to pay.

So I kept the French writing desk idea in my head as I poked through some catalogs. I love this twisty-legged beauty from a major interior decorating firm. But it's $1,599 before tax and shipping!:

Umm, no, thank you. So I hit the local charity shops, my go-to place for finding style on a shoestring. Then one day, I saw this desk and blurted out loud, "There's my desk!" It was far less than the $200 Cost Plus desk and had a lot more of the French feel to it:

It has three functioning drawers to hide lots of mess, a generous tabletop, and pretty brass drawer pulls:

And it has all the curvy lines of the white desk in the shop window:

It needs a coat of paint. I haven't decided what yet--glossy white? Chalky French blue? I'm still debating.

But I'm thinking, I can re-create that French writing desk display in the shop window. I already have the books of French museums. I own a vintage typewriter:

And re-creating the cup of tea and fuzzy critter in this house? Pshhht: Piece of cake! Also, I found this adorable map of Paris (actually a sheet of gift-wrap paper) for $5 at a local, French-flavored coffee house/gift shop. I am thinking of applying it, decoupage-style, on the desktop:

Cute, huh? And from the same shop, I nabbed this appealing version of the Eiffel Tower. (I've been wanting an Eiffel Tower sculpture since Lovely Daughter #2 and I spent one glorious week in Paris back in 2007):

Now all that's left is painting the desk. Oh, and the chair, you may ask?

I found it for free on the street.


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