A Night with the Movies

"You know what your problem is, it's that you haven't seen enough movies - all of life's riddles are answered in the movies."
Steve Martin
I really love movies.  I love sitting in the dark theater, awaiting the previews and smelling buttered popcorn.  I love reclining on the couch streaming a new documentary on Netflix.  From loud blockbusters to poignant indies, spending a few hours suspended in movie time is one of the great privileges of modern life.


My Oscar Gown

Come with me on a trip to pretend land.  I don't act (though my hubby might disagree).  I don't work in the film industry (though I do support it daily). But, I do think about what I'd wear on the red carpet if I made the famous February trek to the Kodak Theater.

The Bath Ritual

Bathing is a daily necessity but with a little care, it can become a luscious ritual.  When was the last time you took a nice long soak?  Light a few candles, pour yourself a little glass of vino, play some Maria Callas on the iPod, and sit in the fragrant bubbles until your fingers shrivel.  Think about your day or don't think at all.  Relax and restore.
Stevens, The Bath, 1906


Muffin Tops

I've been baking lots of muffins lately.  Perhaps I just want to think of muffin tops other than the one forming around my waistline.  Perhaps my pregnancy cravings are in full carb mode.  Either way, our kitchen counter is starting to look like a bakery display case.  

These yummy blueberry banana muffins are the recent favorites around here. 


Feeling Presidential

"I must study politics and war that my sons may have liberty to study mathematics and philosophy. My sons ought to study mathematics and philosophy, geography, natural history, naval architecture, navigation, commerce, and agriculture, in order to give their children a right to study painting, poetry, music, architecture, statuary, tapestry, and porcelain." -John Adams


Nigella's Cozy Kitchen

Today the Wall Street Journal offers us a tasty little morsel of Nigella Lawson's kitchen.  In the essay, Nigella takes the reader through the attributes of her intimate kitchen.
With her gift for writing, Nigella begins the article, "kitchen is probably one of the most evocative words in the English language....it conjures up warmth and welcome, safety and security, in short, the very notion of home."  Nigella and I are in complete agreement here.  The kitchen most be cozy. 



For me, polka dots have always been in vogue.  Like classic leopard or a Glen plaid, polka dots are a welcome print in my wardrobe.  But, according to recent fashion news, these whimsical, cheerful dots are making a big come-back. 


The Best Chocolate Cake Ever

It is morning here in SoCal, so naturally, my thoughts have turned to cake (if you are not pregnant like moi, you must forgive my craving-dominated food posts until August). 


Love Letters

Remember the first Sex and the City movie (i.e., the good one)?  Remember when Carrie pulls out her old, smelly New York Public Library book called Love Letters of Great Men, Volume 1? I declare we need more old fashioned love letters.  


Pink Week: Painter's Palette

Sir Joshua Reynolds, Lady in Pink, 1781
Being able to spend hours immersed in color is one of the most wonderful aspects of my career as an art historian.  Though I appreciate the compositional qualities of black and white photography and the technical aspects of a marble sculpture, I've always been most attracted to the array of shades in an oil on canvas. 


Pink Week: Beauty Queen

One of the first things women purchase when having a bad day is a new tube of lipstick.  There is something about the transformative power of a little makeup to make me feel like a new woman.  I tend to get stuck in a beauty routine, using the same products and colors day after day; but, occasionally, I browse through Sephora or a department store to spice up my makeup palette.
Pink makeup may conjure up too many thoughts of Elle Woods in Legally Blond or Shelby in Steel Magnolias, but a touch of rose or petal or even fuchsia on your face can make you look fresh and gorgeous. Now there are such an array of pink hues that anyone can find the perfect shade.  


Pink Week: Edible Delights

I have a theory that I may have voiced in this very spot before: pink food inevitably tastes delicious.  For me, pink is one of the most attractive culinary shades. It invites nibbling and suggests sweetness and tartness and general scrumptiousness. When I indulge in a perfect pink cupcake or frosted cookie, the carefree four-year-old in me is released for a few brief moments.

Pink Week: Uber-Feminine Fashion

Pink is the color of romance and a friend tells me that the girl with the pink dress at the party is the one who is selected for each dance.” -Alfred Hottes, author and botanist

Sometimes a girl just needs a pink dress pick-me-up, courtesy of Audrey, Marilyn, Jackie, and Grace.  As these style icons show us, pink can be demure and refined or sassy and bold.  In my humble opinion, every woman can and should wear pink.  Pink in its myriad hues and values can compliment the palest porcelain or the darkest olive skin. 


Pink Week: Design Dreams

For our Wednesday touch of pink, let's move into one of the loveliest home's House Beautiful has ever featured, that of designer and artist Ruthie Sommers in L.A..

In this splendid and whimsical space, pink is used fearlessly, but with utmost elegance and refinement. I shall dream for a moment that I live here:


Pink Week: Flower Power

"I believe in pink. I believe that laughing is the best calorie burner. I believe in kissing, kissing a lot. I believe in being strong when everything seems to be going wrong. I believe that happy girls are the prettiest girls. I believe that tomorrow is another day and I believe in miracles."
-Audrey Hepburn   

As a build-up to the pinkest of all holidays (ahem, Valentine's Day), this week I'm celebrating some of my favorite pinkalicious goodies.  

For today, a few pink posies to peak your passion for Valentine's Day. 


Saint Valentine

Valentine's Day is a very polarizing holiday.  Some of us adore the flowers, the hearts, the candy and the celebration of all of the lovey dovey stuff.  But, conversely, others just hate those little conversation hearts and forced date nights.


Flowers for Friday

When you have only two pennies left in the world, buy a loaf of bread with one, and a lily with the other.  ~Chinese Proverb
In recent Fridays, I've been forgoing my usual bunch of flowers at the market, buying loafs (of bread) instead of lilies.  But today, I indulged in this little bouquet of pink daisies, white hydrangea and little bright green berries.  These eclectic springy flowers bring a little sunshine to the apartment.  I never regret the pennies spent on fresh flowers for my home.


An Architecture of Joy

"I was constantly thinking as if I was asking each building I love so much in Venice whether they would accept me in their company" -Louis Kahn, Italy, 1951
I've praised Louis Kahn before in my review of My Architect.  He is among the handful of architects I know best.  Of course I don't have Frank Gehry or I.M. Pei in my address book, but I believe I've gained a personal connection to these architects by merely being in their spaces.

Happy Chinese New Year

We have entered the Year of the Rabbit. According to the Chinese zodiac, this year shall bring us domestic serenity and professional prosperity.  I'll toast to that...
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