Thursday, December 29, 2011

sparklers and tiaras

I absolutely love Zooey Deschanel's voice and the combination of her with Joseph Gordon-Levitt is so 500 Days of Summer flashback, which is why I love their New Year's Eve video. Even though New Years Eve is still a few days away I thought I would share some inspiration to go with the music.



Wednesday, December 28, 2011

a fir tree

I have mentioned several times that Ryno and I had our first ever Christmas tree and we absolutely loved it. We had so much fun decorating, listening to music and hanging out together. I wanted to share some of the photos we took during the process. We put the timer on the camera and took photos at random throughout the evening. At the end Ryno turned out the lights to get a photo of the Christmas lights on the tree, which I think looks lovely. The red tree skirt is the one I started a few months ago. We put it under the tree, but it is definitely an ongoing project for me.

Monday, December 26, 2011

reinventing the wheel

I have an odd obsession with the color wheel. In my studio spaces over the years there have been times that it is the only image I will hang on my wall. I love it's simplicity and find it cheerful. I also enjoy that it has structure, but that people find ways to modify it to create variation. For example, I absolutely love it in a quilt form...

I also really love it as a necklace, which just happened to be my Christmas gift from Ryno. He knew I was desperately wanting the color wheel pendant necklace from Yellow Owl Workshop, so after a futile attempt of hunting one down in Austin (that I had seen weeks earlier) he contacted them directly. He told me when I opened it that they were tremendously helpful in assuring he was able to have it here for Christmas. It's absolutely beautiful. I love it Ryno!


Sunday, December 25, 2011

merry christmas...

 you and yours! I hope you are all having a lovely Christmas. We had a wonderful evening filled with music, dinner, presents and family. It was so great to have my family fly in today and Ryno's brother join our little party as well. We were even able to talk with Ryno's family last night and tonight via video chat, which was really nice.

Ryno and I put up our Christmas tree last night (we bought it the day before...we were a little behind). We had so much fun hand making some of our decorations, and Ryno had to do a few quick electrical repairs to bring our lights back to life. After working through all the technical difficulties we were able to enjoy putting up our ornaments on our first ever tree. We discovered we have a lot of ornaments we didn't even know about, since both of our moms packed us ornament boxes when we first got married. It was neat to see all of our ornaments combined together and to hang the Mount Vernon ornaments my parents give us yearly for our anniversary. I will share more tree decorating photos once I pull them from our Canon.

Until then above is our Christmas postcard. We took the photo in early November right when the weather started to feel a bit wintery. Ryno and I worked on making our Texas chalkboard together one weekend. We traced the outline and then took turns cutting it out of wood with our jigsaw. Finally, we used chalkboard paint to coat it and white chalk to write our holiday message. We had a lot of fun trying out different locations throughout town, and Elton got some of his favorite treats for his very good behavior throughout the process. We are planning to convert it to a hanging chalkboard that we can leave notes on by the door.

Again, Merry Christmas to you all!

Thursday, December 22, 2011

love locks

Have you been to Pont des Arts in Paris? My few days in Paris were such a whirlwind that although we went to the Louvre twice, I think we missed the pedestrian bridge. I saw an article about it the other day with a photo of all the love padlocks that are attached to it. I have heard of love padlocks before, but I had never seen them in such mass as on the Pont des Arts in Paris. Love locks seem to be a very controversial topic due to city officials seeing them as a nuisance as well as destructive to public property. However, the romantic in me (and others apparently since they continue to appear on bridges) loves the idea of securing a love lock to a bridge and tossing the key in the water below. Of course, I think Paris is probably the most romantic place one could leave their lock, but while I was researching this I discovered there are other popular locations. Apparently a tower in Seoul and bridges in Vancouver, Cologne, Rome & Florence are also popular spots. On one bridge in Moscow, the Luzhkov Bridge, metal trees were added to the bridge to create a more permanent place for the locks. I love the communal installation that is created out of the locks and messages left on each of them. I also love that when the Pont des Arts was cleared of all its love locks overnight Parisians and visitors started adding again, but to the Pont de l'Archevêché.

Pont des Arts: Paris

N Seoul Tower: Seoul

Pont de l'Archevêché: Paris

Ponte Milvio: Rome

Cologne, Germany

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

it's almost here

Christmas is only 4 days away. Ryno and I will be spending the holidays in Austin with my family. We are really excited to host Christmas. However, I think the fact that we don't have to catch a flight has made us procrastinate a little. We still have to decorate and wrap presents. Since, I will be here I plan to post over the holidays as much as possible. That being said it may be a bit light the next few days while I hurry to get everything ready. I am sure a few of you are in the same spot as me, so I thought I would share some of the Pinterest finds that have brought a smile to my face. With all the hustle and bustle it is nice to slow down, smile and laugh.


Tuesday, December 20, 2011

loving notting hill

This weekend I watched one of my favorite movies, Notting Hill. It is the perfect combination of a few things that completely rock, such as small British towns, lovely gardens & Chagall paintings. The art, music and setting definitely make this a fave of mine. Although, I pretty much love anything with Hugh Grant in it; he is hilarious. Have you seen it?



And just to reiterate why I love England and find it charming. Check out the photo of the Churchill Arms, one of their best decorated pubs.

Monday, December 19, 2011

touring magnolia city

We road tripped to Houston (aka magnolia city) a couple weekends ago to visit friends and see their place. We had a few activities planned, but we also had some downtime to catch-up over good meals. The night we arrived we went to their favorite sushi bar. It was delicious and for dessert we all shared fried Oreos! Saturday we met up with another friend from college and went to the Nutcracker ballet. Afterwards we checked out a few bars. One of the bars we went to had stained glass lamps covering the ceiling; it was really beautiful.

Before leaving Sunday afternoon we went to the Houston Zoo. My parents tell me we went there when I was a kid, but I didn't recognize any part of it. It was much larger than I expected. Also, we saw an animal we had never seen before, the Okapi. The sign said they had only been discovered in the 1900s, which I thought was pretty amazing. I tried to get a photo of L with it since it was her favorite, but it  turned and showed its behind just then. It was a great weekend with friends and we can't wait to get together again in the new year!

Friday, December 16, 2011

nina for the holidays

I am off to spend the weekend with Ryno. It has been a very busy week, but it is finally the weekend! I am leaving you with Nina Simone this weekend. I would love to hear her mixed in with the holiday music playing everywhere. She is absolutely amazing and such a classic. I will be back to share more about the week later this weekend.

Have a great weekend!

Friday, December 9, 2011

monsters of folk

I was watching the ACL tapings the other day when Monsters of Folk started playing. It was my first time hearing their music, but since it is the combination of Jim James, Conor Oberst, Mike Mogis & M. Ward it
was bound to be good. I absolutely love their song The Right Place and thought I would share it to enjoy over your weekend.

Ryno and I are headed to Houston to visit friends and see the ballet! Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

counting down

The first week of December is over and there are only two weekends left before Christmas weekend is here! How is your holiday shopping and preparation going? I am still working away on the Christmas tree skirt I started sewing over Thanksgiving. It is definitely a slow process, but I know I will love it when it's finished!

Ryno and I have most of our gift shopping taken care of, but we still have some friends on the list. While I was looking around online last night I noticed that a few shops are promoting a gift of the day. West Elm, Anthropologie, Madewell and J. Crew all have some version of a calendar countdown to Christmas. The Anthropologie countdown offers customers a chance to win the "gift of the day" by entering a daily contest online. I think the 12 Days of Madewell is really sweet. I love all their printed scarves and cozy sweaters.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

pink peonies and yellow bonnets

Today, I am excited to have pink peonies! They are the same color as the peonies from my wedding bouquet, which makes me love them even more.

I listened to The Decemberists a lot today. I was reminiscing about seeing them perform earlier this year. My favorite song from the new album was June Hymn. I love the lyrics and the way they sound to the music. That sounds silly, but you have to hear it to understand. My favorite verse (followed by the chorus) is...

pegging clothing on the line
training jasmine how to vine
up the arbor to your door and more
standing on the landing with the war
you shouldered all the night before

and once upon it yellow bonnets garland all the lawn
and you were waking, day was breaking a panoply of song
summer comes to springville hill

June Hymn by Colin Meloy

Monday, December 5, 2011

teepee time

The rain hung around Austin all weekend. It was one of those lovely, gray-filled weekends. We are finally out of the "burn ban," and water is actually pooling in the grass rather than evaporating immediately.

We decided to go out for dinner Friday, but skipped the comedy club. Instead we hung out at our favorite pizza restaurant and listened to music. I had exactly two quarters, which we put towards a few songs from the jukebox. Ryno chose a Granddaddy song while I picked a song from Tom Petty. Fortunately there was a family with little kids who also wanted to play music from the jukebox. Since the kids didn't know any of the albums the parents were dictating all the music choices, which brought up some Dolly Parton and Patsy Cline. I was pretty thrilled. Saturday we had Ryno's office party, which was a lot of fun. The evening though rainy was very warn, so we were able to be outside and check out the teepee. Yes a real teepee. Ryno decided we need one too. I agree it would be a pretty amazing way to sleep outside.

Friday, December 2, 2011

the guggenheim grotto

We are heading to a comedy club and dinner later. It has been rainy and cold in Austin today. The rest of the weekend is set to be rain-filled too. It's been a long time since we've had an entire rainy weekend, and I plan to use it to work on some ongoing projects and start a few new ones. My City & Colour album arrived a few weeks ago, but today was a great day for some of the slower songs on it. I love sad songs, especially when it rains.

Today, I want to share a song I am absolutely in love with right now. It is by a Dublin band called The Guggenheim Grotto. The song is I Think I Love You. I spent a lot of time hunting for a video that had both good film and sound; this video was the best. The one snag is there is a dedication at the start to Claire and Josh, who I don't know...still I hope you can enjoy the music!

Thursday, December 1, 2011

old campus

Today I found some old photos of Georgia Tech's campus in my inbox. My sister came across them and passed them along. It's amazing to see photos of downtown Atlanta with wide open sky. Both of the photos below are of the administration building. I also included the photo I took of the administration building during our last trip.

photos from GT archives

Monday, November 28, 2011

holiday preparations

A few weeks ago I won a Bucilla Christmas tree skirt kit from my first ever eBay bid. I was really excited, because when I first started thinking of what I needed to prepare for our first Christmas at home the tree skirt was at the top of my list. My mom sewed all of our stockings from Bucilla patterns when we were babies, so I wanted to make sure the tree skirt had the same happy, holiday feel that the stockings do. Ryno also has a Bucilla stocking that my mom, sister and I worked on together before his first Christmas at my parents' house. I really love them, and I remember always being so proud to hang my stocking as a kid (it was my favorite part). I was able to get started this weekend, but first I had to get a new pair of sewing scissors. I always start small sewing projects, but I thought since this was an heirloom type of project I should really invest in a good pair of scissors. This was just the excuse I have been waiting for to buy Gingher scissors; I practically skipped to the checkout counter! You can see in the last photo all the pieces included in the kit. The pattern is traced on the felt and numbered to coordinate with the one page instructions. I've started with the embroidery portion, and then I get to start cutting out the pieces! I can't wait to see it come together. I'll keep you posted as to how I'm progressing.

As for the rest of Thanksgiving, I took Elton on a lot of walks. We were able to watch lots of our neighbors' start decorating their houses for Christmas. The big meal I made for Thanksgiving was fish tacos. My family always does fajitas, so I opted to simplify it a bit. It was very delicious. I hope you all had a happy Thanksgiving with your families and friends!

Friday, November 25, 2011

happy strangers

Yesterday, while I was becoming completely addicted to kickstarter, I came across a project I found really interesting. Katie O'Bierne is working on a photography project. She leaves disposable cameras around New York City parks. She takes a disposable camera to the park and ties it to a park bench with a note asking people to take a photograph. Her results are really lovely. I've always loved photography and wished that I had been brave enough to go that route. One of the things I find the most inspiring about her work is that she is able to photograph strangers without them giving that look that says "Why are you taking a photo of me?" Personally, I always found it hard to get a nice candid shot of complete strangers looking relaxed. Her photographs are just that, happy strangers. I also love that she has been able to inspire so many others to get involved with her project and now has cameras in parks all over the world. The ultimate goal of her project is to put on an art show of the work she has accumulated through the project. She is planning to have the show in New York, and I think it would be an amazing show to be able to attend. You can check out her photo series so far on her Tumblr page. I've also included a few my favorites. Would you participate if you found a camera in a park? If you are in New York, she hints as to where a few of the last cameras will be placed.

katie launching a camera

all photos from Katie O'Bierne

Thursday, November 24, 2011


I hope everyone stateside is having a wonderful Thanksgiving. As I mentioned yesterday I am enjoying my holiday relaxing and perusing a bunch of creative sites that are new to me. One in particular, I discovered through a dear friend of mine. She has launched a project on kickstarter. She redesigned the contact lens case in an absolutely beautiful way. Her video is below. This is the first I've heard of kickstarter, but I was immediately hooked. There are so many fascinating projects on the site, and I think it is so inspiring that friends and strangers are able to come together to help support the goals of one person. I don't wear contacts, but Ryno does. I've placed a pledge, and I'm excited to be getting a case for him. Just to be rid of the sound that those plastic tops on contact cases make would be reason enough, but it's also beautiful and so classically Bev. I can't wait to get ours!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

i heart apple

Our old mac went the way of the dodo bird, and today our new, lovely computer arrived. I plan to spend some of my holiday reveling in its shininess. I hope you all have a Happy Thanksgiving with family and friends!

Monday, November 21, 2011

weekend bike rides

Ryno and I took our bikes over to East Austin for the last weekend of studio tours. It was fun to bike around together and check out some more spaces. I really loved Big Red Sun & Curiosity Shoppe. They both had great spaces that were fun to wander through. Sunday we worked on our Christmas card...hopefully will have something to share from that soon! Hope you all had a great weekend too!

Friday, November 18, 2011

city and colour

I'm finally back with a Friday music post. I am so last minute with things, so when we have people come in to town I tend to still be straightening up until the doorbell rings. It's a bad habit and results in me missing my time here.

Anyway, I'm excited to share the song The Girl by City and Colour today. I've become a bit obsessed with their Bring Me Your Love album, and I think the cover is really well done too. I hope you enjoy it. We are visiting with some friends this weekend in Austin and checking out the studio tours... of course!

Thursday, November 17, 2011

dooter's trunk

Ryno and I had so much fun last weekend at East Austin Studio Tours, and we are planning to go back this weekend on bikes. I am already working on planning our route. Last weekend we were able to chat with some of the artists, and we both thought Dooter's Scooter by the company Dooter's Trunk was a brilliant idea. They make the only balance bike made in the US. The concept is that kids can learn to ride a bike at their own pace. They start by pushing themselves on the bike and eventually grow to balancing and coasting on it. As someone that remembers the fear of learning to ride a bike, this seems like such a great way to ease into the idea of balancing on two wheels. Plus they are really lovely looking. The wooden frame and sweet logo drew me in immediately. Wouldn't this be a fun first bike?