Thursday, July 30, 2009

Blowing in the Wind

I have a thing for wind chimes. I love the gentle sounds they make in the breeze, coupled with the smell of the ocean, I’m in heaven. It’s these same sounds that make my husband crazy. We have been negotiating wind chime usage for 27 years, he’s against them and I'm for them. Over the years we have compromised in the silence of sun catchers and glass art, that is until recently.

When I opened my shop there was no doubt that I would carry wind chimes, I searched for ones that are unique, earth friendly and eye catching with melodic sounds. I found all of this in Goose Rocks Designs.

Every wind chime is made by hand, they cut, drill, and tumble the glass, and cut, drill, and form all the frames. Each wind chime is more beautiful than the next. If you don’t believe me check out their website for photos. The added bonus is that each is packed in a water soluble biodegradable box made from cornstarch.

I carry a selection of Goose Rocks Designs in my shop and one on my front porch. The good news; no complaints from my husband, yet.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Can you hear me now?

The illicit trade of the minerals tin, tantalum (also called coltan), tungsten and gold are perpetuating the violence in the eastern Congo. Until reading the article “More Revelations about the Conflict Materials in your Cell Phone”, I was clueless as to the violent impact the trade of these minerals has caused. This information has made me stop and take pause. I recommend the read.

A few more links you might find of interest:
2009 Run for Congo Woman
Raise hope for Congo

Friday, July 17, 2009

Driving Miss Edie

I have been absent from the blog-o-sphere for a few days (an upper respiratory infection will do that to a girl), but now I’m back and I have a lovely little house guest, Edie May. She was dropped off yesterday morning by her human Dodge as he was leaving on vacation. Yes, Dodge is his real name. Edie is a Georgia girl, a basset hound that wants to be treated like the Diva that she is. I can’t determine if my boys Tucker and Floyd (also Bassets) are considerate of her feminine ways or just placating the bitch (as it were).

I love Edie, she is the lap dog I never had. When this petite little hound climbs onto my chair her weight does not hinder blood flow to my legs, seize mobility or body block my view. Floyd who does inflict the aforementioned discomforts gets a bit jealous, he is enormous and thinks he’s a cat. A mind set that has gotten him into a few jams in the past. Despite his child like behavior he extends a “doggy courtesy” to Miss Edie and leaves her be. His manners taught not by me, but his elder Tucker, who at times has little patience in rearing the young lad. That said they have been behaving like gentlemen. While playing they tone down the “rough housing” so Edie can participate and when food is served they wait for Edie to take the first bite. Whoever said chivalry was dead knew not of the Basset Hound.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Mother Nature... never underestimate the power of a woman.

From Memorial Day through Labor Day the Outer Banks comes alive with sun worshippers and party goers. It’s only fitting that the first wind turbine erected on this skinny Barrier Island would provide energy to a micro-brewery.

The project took 5 years to become a reality for Aubrey Davis and Eric Reese, owners of The Outer Banks Brewing Station. Situated just 500 ft. from the beach the wind driven structure has become an icon of the beach and brings attention to the already popular brewery.

Anticipating the seasonal storms the 72 ft. wind turbine was built to withstand winds up to 132 mph. A necessity here on the beach. During a Nor-Easter I was nearly blown off of a deck, my son was able to stop me by grabbing the back of my shirt. Lesson learned; do not stand outside to observe the angry sea, even if it is an awesome sight.

To honor the first wind turbine used to brew beer on the Outer Banks, brewer Scott Meyer created a special beer just for the occasion, the “10KV Pale Ale” (10 kilovolts of power).

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

The Perfect Wedding Dress

A friend of ours will be tying the knot in October and has asked for my help in finding unique wedding favors. With an eye for style, she is an incessant bargain hunter and wise not to buy into the idea that a beautiful wedding has to cost as much as your first house. So while looking for valuable steals I found this little ditty….. pre-owned wedding dresses. If I were getting married again this is where I would shop. Looking at the many options I felt like a kid in a candy store. With 2,699 dresses currently listed, they have something for every style bride. Maybe I can convince Peter to re-new our vows, I have a Vera Wang all picked out. It makes perfect sense; renew…recycle.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Let's Make A Little Noise

I applaud those that drive a hybrid vehicle and look forward to owning one myself. Here's an interesting tidbit regarding hybrid vehicles; they are difficult for the vision impaired community to detect. When the vehicles slow to a stop they often run on battery power, which is silent. As you can imagine this could present a hazard at intersections and in parking lots. Japan is now considering adding noise to their hybrids to help the vision impaired. Hopefully all car manufacturers will begin adding some sort of universal sound to hybrid cars. This seems more like a necessity to me rather than an option.

I'll Keep My Day Job

We have clearly established that I am not a food blogger, however I do love to bake. After my recent cupcake failure I felt a need to redeem myself. In celebration of my daughters return from her year long adventure in Europe, I baked a pie. I found this "Easy Coconut Pie Recipe" on, the title held true as easy it was. I knew the vodka pie crust recipe from Cook's Illustrated Magazine would work well with the filling. I tried this recipe for the first time this past Thanksgiving and it is by far the best crust I have ever made. And I have made a lot. The coconut custard filling with the vodka crust was a perfect match. Both were moist and flavorful. The pie was enjoyed by all and I was finally able to bask in baking glory.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

A Hot Piece of Glass

There is a glistening elegance to hand blown glass. I have a variety of colorful pieces hanging on my porch and in my windows. I love my wind chimes but my husband complains as he finds their sounds distracting. A compromise has been found in art glass, we both enjoy the solitude in their lustrous colors.

My favorite glass comes from prolific artist Luke Adams. A young glass blower out of New England, Luke and his talented team of artist’s create individually unique pieces. The colors are spectacular. I received a new shipment of sun catchers the other day, one of which caught my eye. The twist ornament shimmered in sea foam greens and blues like an ocean wave. I was sad to sell it that same afternoon as I had considered keeping it for myself.

If you live near Norwood, Ma., stop in and see Luke in his glass blowing studio, he happily welcomes visitors. If you need to fuel some creativity he teaches glass blowing classes as well.

“Glass is a material formed by fire and shaped by human breath, nothing else can offer an artist creatively, what is possible in glass.” - Luke

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Kudos to Aunt Shirley

You wouldn’t want to put your dirty shoes on a kitchen table so why put your hand bag on a dirty floor? My husbands Aunt Shirley told me about purse hangers when I first opened and suggested I carry them. I agreed but it took me a few months to decide on a hanger to sell in my shop. When I found these beautiful diffused glass hooks made by Laura at Iridescent Dreams I was hooked too. They are pretty to look at, easy to carry and easy to use. The weighted disc keeps the hanger firmly planted on any flat surface. No two are exactly the same and they are made in an array of delightful colors. Go ahead, spoil yourself. You deserve one