Friday, December 31, 2010

Here Comes 2011


But, oh that 2010! What a full, rich year. So much happened. If only I could remember. Joking aside, there was lots of good stuff, plenty to be grateful for. My family is healthy and happy (far as I can tell!). And my husband currently sports a pencil thin moustache (which will be shaved tomorrow, thank the heavens). Just for the record, we are not Buffet fans, and I had no idea he actually wrote this song. I remember a vintage, radio-sounding voice singing it though I cannot find anything on that. Can you?

In 2010, of note, in no particular order:

- I got previously blogged about new job.

- We adopted a new kitten, Gwyneth, a.k.a. Gato Diablo, the Grey Devil, the Tail-ee-ban, Little Snig, Tail-boo, and a host of other nicknames.

- I was part of a cool vintage and craft show at my bud Sheri’s house! Woo hoo!

- James’ Mom, and my belle mere, Mary, came through some scary heart tests with flying colors! Can I get an Amen!?

- Aforementioned friend, Sheri, is now 5 years healthy after her breast cancer experience. Yay! Goodbye cancer, forever.

Just a few things I remember that made an impression. I am ever grateful for my own life and health and that of others. I wish everyone a happy, healthy and prosperous New Year full of love, comfort, and peace.

Red heart,


Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Bloggus Returnnus


Hey, everybody! First, let me say, I miss everyone! After posting this, I’m going to get over to your blogs and check in! I haven’t had much time lately to post and I miss it, and the sweet comments from you blog beauties. So, the announcement is this: I got a real job! But, before I got said job there was an interminable amount of back and forth via email and telephone until at last there were interviews,then more waiting, an offer letter, a slight differing of opinions over logistics, and finally, acceptance. During the whole process I was sort of frozen, waiting, wondering, thinking about what it all actually meant and how my life would change. And now I am working, and it’s great. I think this is the first company I’ve worked for that doesn’t seem dysfunctional. Of course, I’m very new, but fingers crossed, right?

So, this was the view from the 19th floor of the training room last week. That’s the Ferry Building in front of the ship. I walked over during one of the lunch hours and OMG the shops in that place! Cowgirl Creamery, Blue Bottle Coffee, Boulette’s Larder and an adorable place called The Gardener that sells Weck jars (which I love). I got some herbes de Provence from Boulette’s Larder for me and my belle mere. It’s sort of the perfect spice for everything from soups to eggs to salads to sandwiches even.


I’m going to get my work-life balance sorted out soon enough, so I’ll be back on the blog trail soon.

Saturday, December 04, 2010

Yokoo Rocks

If you've never encountered this woman, please check her out. Yokoo! Even the name makes you smile. Yokoo exudes this almost other-worldly brand of confidence and gentleness that is simply captivating. Before I even really focused in on her beautiful needle wares, I couldn't help but marvel at the way she styles her photos: the clothes, the hair, the glasses, the shoes, the facial expressions and poses. Incredible. She strikes me as a modern day Coco Chanel. Yokoo's Etsy featured seller interview. Yokoo's Etsy shop. Enjoy!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving to All

Here's wishing all you blog beauties a wonderful Thanksgiving from me, James, Saylor, Kate, and Gwyneth - the whole darn family!

Monday, November 22, 2010

Rain Rain Rain

It rained buckets this weekend, but it brought many cozy hours of being snugged up inside. We San Diegans are not as used to rain as, say, Floridians (which is what I am at heart). We forget how to drive and we don't own rain gear for the most part. Agghh!

Well, I ask you: where would you want to sleep if you were a little kitty and there was a big warm robe to crawl into? This is a typical scene many mornings and nights here on the couch. Gwyneth is a Daddy's girl.
She often needs a little rest after getting her butt kicked by Kate. We cheer Kate on because Gwyneth is a bit of a dirty fighter. She dive-bombs Kate as Miss K. tries to ignore her - to no avail. But there’s no ignoring Little G.
This is the sign for a fabric store in La Jolla by this restaurant I love to go to for breakfast. I love the old graphics.
And who could pass up snapping a shot of this be-whiskered cat sticker. Nope, not me.
Happy week to everyone. Hope it’s a nice one for us all! I’m expecting some exciting news, so I’ll be sharing that this week I hope!

Sunday, November 07, 2010

Miss B. (Katie Bee), Sun Lover

Katie Bee enjoying some rays, and a few moments peace before Ignat (a.k.a. Gwyneth) comes to “play” with nails drawn and fangs ready!
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Friday, November 05, 2010

Wallpaper the Whole House I Would

Marriage is a wonderful thing AND it seriously cuts into my love of wallpaper! I'd have every wall covered with the stuff. And it's not like I've even proposed it, but I feel that men think of one thing when they think of wallpaper: removing it. As husby gets older, however, his defenses must only be weakening when it comes to who makes the decorating decisions. I gain ground every year!

Feast your eyes on these amazing wallpapers...

Here's Mr. Morris himself probably dreaming up some new pattern
to make us gasp with delight!

Thursday, November 04, 2010

Small Bear School

There’s no one quite like my husband. And this is only trumped by the fact that there is no one quite like his Mother. Mary is one of the most creative people I know. She’s an amazing craftswoman and her house is chock full of fantastic vignettes that I am always photographing. Oh, and there’s the Ikebana! It boggles my mind to see some of the things she has made. Lest anyone should think, boy, this gal is butterin’ up her MIL, I’ll get to the point (I’m just one of those lucky gals who loves her mother in law…I have friends who are not as lucky!). So, James recently came home with a gift that his Mom gave him when he was little. She sent it home with him on my birthday. Smile 
I present to you: Small Bear School!
The bears all come out of their chairs and have jointed legs. They also have little black slates for their desks. The teacher’s desk has a little wooden apple. And of course the black board for up front! So cute…

Wednesday, November 03, 2010

Halloween Nite Out

Since my b-day falls close to Halloween, our dinner out is often chaperoned by ghouls and goblins! Here are a few pictures from this weekend’s night out for din-din at Searsucker. The chef, Brian Malarkey, was a Top Chef finalist. He stopped by our table wearing, of course, searsucker! Very cute…
Here are some of the sights we encountered. Frankly, I think the dude in the Hooter’s outfit takes the cake. And that last mustachioed fellow is my neighbor, Jeff, wearing his boyfriend’s Cher wig and a pirate ‘stash! Oh my!

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

Birthday Cupcake

Hey peeps! I know I’ve been M.I.A. lately, but here I am: spotted having a cupcake for breakfast on my birthday last week. Bread & Cie is a bakery and restaurant in the ‘hood with some mean sweets and lunch time goodies. I had an awesome birthday, and it started out superbly with dessert for breakfast. Why not?

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Going Back to School ;)

I think this could be the post graduate degree I’m looking for. I could get about 10 more cats and go to the head of the class! Oh, how I wish I knew how this photo was taken? What were these ladies up to? Very cute indeed.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

$410 Scratch Post

I have this idea/dream/thought that once my traditional work years are over (not exactly sure when I deem this time to be – age 65?) that I’ll open an antique store where I will find odd pieces of furniture, maybe on the side of the road even, re-do them, and make a profit. Kind of like these girls if I were even slightly this good – these girls are amazing. So, a couple months ago, hubs and I were driving to the grocery store and I saw an old wingback chair sitting in front of a house – obviously free to anyone who would haul it off. A burned out toaster was next to it. Fast forward, I have it home, I find fabric and an upholsterer, and it’s back all redone in this cool grey men’s suit-ish fabric and ready for … the cats to use it as a scratch post! Aggghhh! Okay, so there’s a sub-plot (isn’t there always?). I fully instructed the reupholster dude to take it down to the wood and replace all foam, padding, etc. before upholstering it. Well, he did, almost! He apparently used some of the old padding, which he claims was just fine. Hm? So after 4 straight days of sniffing the chair, the cats have pretty much claimed it with their claws! They love to scratch it: the front, the back, the arms, the sides – they love to scratch it! For some reason, (perhaps it’s their special scratching technique), it doesn’t leave scratch marks – it just sounds like they’re ripping it to shreds… It’s actually just sitting in the middle of the dining room until I can clear a spot for it. Oh joy. Excuse the blurry picture!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

$1,000,000 Smile

101007 JHardy 2 LRAlthough you would think that a wife who is also a marketing consultant would have long ago created a whiz-bang incredible website for her darling husband, this is not exactly the case. Did I put up a site that we believe gets the job done for now? Yes. Did husband go and get beautiful pictures professionally taken for his temporary website? Yes. And, does this man have a million dollar smile or what? Uh-huh.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Little Italy: the Festa!

Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay! It’s an Italian festival. A few blocks from our house, we have San Diego’s Little Italy. It’s  like walking down memory lane for me. My dad was a stereotypical Italian man. But I never knew this until I moved here and realized that this is how Italian men are. Of course watching the Sopranos was a little eye-opening, too! Yeeks!
This woman was dancing through the street followed by a band. The smell of garlic and red sauce-laden pasta filled the air. We rode bikes down to the festival and then moseyed over to the car show.
This dude was guarding the gondola. It was so hot, we were wishing we were in a gondola … on a river … in Venice!
Here I am snorking down an icy, fresh squeezed lemonade. It was daaah-lishous!
Over at the car show, a cool vee-dub bus had everyone taking snaps. And, why yes, it smelled like patchouli! Perhaps that was covering up another smell?  I loved the vintage luggage and cooler on the roof.

Tuesday, October 05, 2010

Weekend Breakfast

One of my favorite weekend rituals is going to Pannikin in La Jolla for breakfast. I often meet my MIL and FIL there and they bring their little dog, Choula. Sometimes it’s just me and James, or I even go alone some days. On Sundays, the farmers market is there and it’s a great one. Or on Saturdays, there’s a fabulous store one block down called Etcetera: chock full of vintage and antique furniture, home decor, et al. Here’s the window where you order at Pannikin. I can smell the coffee now…
Saw this funny sign outside one of the shops:
And these cute paw imprints in the sidewalk:
And a pretty window vignette:
Wish we could all meet there and have a big blog people ho-down. Ha! 
How surprising! This isn’t a post about the cats! Oh, just give me time. ;)

Monday, October 04, 2010

S.O.U.L. Food

Picture 361
Hi there, peeps. Are you eating your veggies? I just found this cool food rule, though it’s really nothing new. But, here it is:
Eat more S.O.U.L. food:  Seasonal, Organic, Unprocessed, and Locally grown! Why? Greater nutritional value. Uncontaminated by pesticides and harmful chemicals. Grown without genetically modified organisms. Grown locally to reduce sprays across state lines (I didn’t know this happened anyway!). Fresher because it isn’t spending days being transported on a truck.
This isn’t always easy, but when you can, it’s the way to go! The picture is of an amazing wrap (with strawberries, avocado, and feta) I had at a place called Roots that no longer has their actual restaurant, but apparently goes to the farmers markets now. The two women who run it make delicious, healthy food!

Saturday, October 02, 2010

This Must Be What It’s Like

…to have two children, and one is faster, more outgoing, and more cunning than the other. Our fur-child #1, Kate, was for all accounts, feral. We discovered her in a storm drain by a very busy street. She had the very slightest of purrs, jumped at noises outside, ran and hid from people, and was generally delicate. Feline-fur-child #2 is the opposite. A rattling purr, super-outgoing, faster than a speeding grey bullet, and devious to the tips of all 20 very sharp claws. I know these crazy kittens will work it out, but it’s sad to see her chase our darling Kate under the bed where she has to run to escape the tiny talons of terror. The lazy afternoons with Kate in her bed on my desk are replaced with insane chases through the house until either I throw Gwyneth in the hutch or Kate gets high enough or hidden enough to escape the little rascal. Ah, the kitten drama!

But for all those mothers out there that have to go through this with REAL children: ouch, it must not be easy.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Hi, I’m Gwyneth and I like to…

…do lots of things. But here are a few:
Chew chair legs:IMG_4767
Watch any Youtube with kittens in it:IMG_4779
Drive Kate insane by taking a year to use the litter box:IMG_4772
Sneak onto the bed while Kate is sleeping, because she has to nap when Kate naps. Yes, people, there was some communal napping going on yesterday. All Hail to the Cat Goddesses! If you look closely above the pillow (click photo to enlarge it) you will see the tiny grey head that is Gwyneth. They were asleep until I got the camera to document this demonstration of household Peace.IMG_4773
And a few other things, which have yet to be documented on film:
- Bite on electrical cords.
- Eat the tails off toy mice.
- Bite the corners of pillows.
- Eat the milky remnants of my Mom’s oatmeal in the morning.
And the joy continues every day. Ha!

I Have Not Stopped Itching Since…

…the first mention of BED BUGS appeared in the news! Can I get an OMG? Let’s just say that the first sign of one anywhere near me, my bed, my laundry, out in the damn yard even, and I’m sticking a For Sale sign on the house. For some reason I find them incredibly gross. And I just found out from Sherri that they bite you in 3s, which is referred to as breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Nooooo! That is just so gnarly. And if you really want to get freaked out, just check out this Google Image search on “bed bug” and see all manner of bites and bugs and horrible things. Ok, going to itch now. I’m happy to report that whatever this itchy thing is on my neck, it is singular in nature -- thank god!

Monday, September 27, 2010


In various places around the house, I have pictures of my sweetest Oreo. There’s a painting over my desk (a gift from a friend),  a framed poem and picture hangs on the wall by my bed (a gift from another friend), his ashes in my night table, and a framed picture in the hall with the other family portraits. Isn’t it amazing the impact a dear pet has on our lives? How lasting? How deep? As time goes by, I make it a point to remember.


Found this snippet on a local veterinarian's site:

Our pets come to us as teachers from up above. They embody the power of unconditional love. They chose us individually with specific intention, manifesting heaven on earth with divine intervention. If given the opportunity their spirit will shine, to demonstrate the father/mother/God divine. They hold not the issues of worry or care. Those are the burdens that we choose to bear. Our pets absorb our negative thoughts and emotions. This they do with strong intent and devotion. Though their time with us seems brief when they part, it is all they needed to share their spirit and heart. Pets are guardian angels that incarnate on earth, sent to show us simply our true right of birth.  

Words by Dr. Tamara Hebbler

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Slowly Making Friends

We don’t have pictures yet of kittens and cats kanoodling, but we have this display of tolerance on the part of our most darling Kate. This is Gwyneth in Kate’s bed – which sits right next to my computer as I work! I came home after breakfast out this morning, and see this. Oh hi. Yep, I’m in Kate’s bed. She was all splayed out sleeping without a care in the world.


Kate says: It’s okay, I’ll hang out in the hall because I’m grown up and have manners!


Thursday, September 23, 2010

Got Scissors.

How many scissors do you have to have before they declare you stark raving mad? And this really isn’t even all of them. Huh? Did I work at the Singer sewing factory? No. I just started throwing them in a basket recently and realized, holy cuttin’ horse, I have a lot of scissors!


Monday, September 20, 2010

A Little Peace

We are at day 10 here at House o’ Cats ‘n Kittens and there’s been a world of change since the tiny grey devil kitten joined our household. My fear of letting Kate get to Gwyneth has been replaced with a desire for her to school the little one whenever and however she can! Now, I cheer Kate on. I don’t actually say, “git her” out loud, but ohhhh I’m thinking it. The wee gato diablo has wreaked havoc within our walls but thankfully after a full belly of breakfast kitten chow, this happens: zzzzzzzzzzzzz. And I praise the kitten goddesses on high for a little peace so I can do something besides rrrrrrrrrrrun from eet! My arms and legs look like a pin cushion.


Thursday, September 16, 2010

A Keane, It Ain’t

So, mystery solved. After checking with Margaret Keane’s agent of sorts, I found that this lil’ painting ain’t no Keane. Oh well, it’s a cute knock off! The agent dude said lots of folks copied her work, and this is just another of those. Well, I certainly got my 5 bucks worth of intrigue. And though I had no idea who Margaret Keane was before this little adventure – now I realize my stepmother had a Keane-esque print hanging in the house when I was growing up.  Oh, the whacky 70s.       

IMG_4749 (640x480) IMG_4745 (640x480)