Another thing I don’t really need, but totally want regardless

The JP Clasp. $195 on

The JP Clasp. $195 on

Sometimes self care = treating myself to a little burst of color in the form of one of these clasp bracelets by my friend Jill Platner. Sure I will survive without another bracelet, but if just seeing this on my wrist makes me happy and helps me get through the day, then it’s worth every penny.

Plus what’s not to love about supporting an amazing locally based woman-owned business?

Yesterday, at some point…


Ok so I finally made it to the new Whitney Museum. Way more conveniently located (for me) at the last stop of the L train, but for some reason, the new meat packing locale been far more elusive than the museum’s previous Upper East Side location. It was the Biennial that finally reeled me in… And I found the show to be full of work that speaks to what I feel is one of the most important issues facing us today– that of intersectionality, and the overlapping layers of our combined, shared but very different histories on this Earth.

This photo is jut a detail, but Aliza Nisenbaum’s monumental portrait of a diverse group of women meeting to address the urgent plight of immigrants (MOIA’s Women’s Cabinet, 2016) spoke to me personally as I think of the work I’ve been doing with the Women’s March organizers and of how much power a group of women can have if they choose to wield it. It is an image of hope and strength in a time that seems to be full of dark clouds.

You should all go to see the show– as usual there is a lot of work to look at, to think and argue about, to question and to enjoy. The Whitney Biennial is nothing if not guaranteed food for thought.

Yesterday, at some point is a series of photographs that describe a moment I experienced during the previous day (or some point in the very recent past). The posts are meant to be stand alone images, though at times I can’t control myself, and I end up expanding the caption into a more lengthy bit of text. Hopefully the extra information is useful, or at least interesting.

Monday, Monday… or more links to help get us on the road to positivity

looking up

The view from the ground.

Last week, we took a trip into the Berkshires and I went cross country skiing for the first time. I fell. A lot. but the view was so beautiful from the ground, I could have cared less. And thus began my effort to actively seek positivity in a world that feels full of chaos and negative energy right about now. These links all lead to things that celebrate the good in one way or another. Please enjoy.

And have a nice day!

Here are 10 simple ways to raise more creative kids.

Listen to this playlist curated by my friend Luisa for our friend Jill Platner’s blog. It’s called Summoning Spells with good reason…

Spending just 10 minutes a day on mindfullness can completely change the way you react to just about everything. Or at least that’s what the folks at the Harvard Business Review think. And they should know.

Be kind to your immune system by making some of this Astragalus Chai.

Read this amazing piece on the history of recorded jazz music. With photos and sound to go with. It’s a great way to close out Black History Month, if you’re looking to do that kind of thing…

An inspirational and incredible story of an escape from the Holocaust killing grounds of Lithuania.

Yesterday, at some point…

washington sq part revolutionary love protest

My family spent the evening of Valentine’s Day in Washington Square Park with all sorts of artists and activists celebrating Revolutionary Love. I am finding that we are spending lots of time in crowds, holding up signs these days. And also I am finding that there is something really beautiful in standing up, together, for something that you believe in. It is the silver lining in a huge dark cloud. Welcome to the new normal.

Yesterday, at some point is a series of photographs that describe a moment I experienced during the previous day (or some point in the very recent past). The posts are meant to be stand alone images, though at times I can’t control myself, and I end up expanding the caption into a more lengthy bit of text. Hopefully the extra information is useful, or at least interesting. If not, feel free to ignore it.

Monday, Monday (on Tuesday which is also Valentines Day), or a few links about how to love ourselves just a little bit…

origami valentine hearts

The fruits of this year’s Valentine’s Day labor. After we got over the upsetting new No Candy rule at school. Origami to the rescue!

This Valentine’s Day, we all need to treat ourselves to a little love. So for this week’s set of links, I give you some lovely suggestions for ways to escape from the crazy that we have all been inhabiting lately. Happy Valentine’s Day to us!

14 chocolate treats that you can make in under an hour. Need I say more?

Read something sweet, like these really cute things my friend Joanna’s 3 year old son says to her, and smile.

Make something for yourself, damn it. This Scandinavian wall art/hanging thing is the kind of object I see in stores but don’t buy because I think I can make it myself. Which actually wasn’t true till I found step by step instructions online. Thank you Internet.

Exfoliate, exfoliate, exfoliate. This is supposedly the answer to all of our problems. But we have to do it right. Luckily, the good ladies at Goop are here to guide us.

Listen to some music. ALL of the playlists on here we go now kick ass. For reals.

Maybe just give in and go to Florida for the weekend? Or you could just fantasize about any of the places on Design Tripper

Who knew that pine pollen has been used for centuries as a powerful aphrodisiac? It also balances hormones, boosts metabolism and increases energy. You can add some to your daily smoothie, or use it to make these delicious raw lemon rose truffles.

Earthshakers, or People to know about: A series of profiles for Black History Month and beyond

betye saar

Betye Saar, 90 year old mixed media artist and force to be reckoned with. Photo by Ashley Walker.

I was hunting for Valentine’s Day ideas and came across this profile of African American artist Betye Saar in Design Sponge. She has long been one of my favorites, both because she makes work out of all sorts of things (some of her pieces are paintings, some quilts, some sculptures and everything in between…) and because each piece has a narrative that seems to flow out of it effortlessly. Nothing is preachy, yet they all have a strong message to convey that is at once deeply personal, magically surreal and culturally relevant. She is a true modern master.

So if you don’t know her work, please take a minute to read the Design Sponge profile, and watch the video below in which she speaks about racism in southern California between the World Wars.

And here are three examples of her work, just to whet your appetites to dig deeper.

Stay tuned for more inspirational people as Black History Month continues…

Here comes Valentine’s Day… again!

2016 valentines

Last year, we painted on hearts we’d cut out of newspaper and then stuck them on envelopes we decorated with watercolor and glitter.

It happens every year. I wake up one morning maybe 6 or 8 days into February, and I realize with a panic that Valentine’s Day is RIGHT AROUND THE CORNER and I have done nothing to prepare. We do have a tradition of making peppermint bark, so at least that’s decided. But the packaging changes every year. I think we killed it last year (see above) so the stakes are high.

After I have my moment of despair, I generally roll up my sleeves and dive deep into the internet, looking for inspiration. This year is no different, and I’m going to share the ideas I’ve stumbled upon here– because I’m sure I’m not the only person who has not yet made their heart shaped masterpieces…

glitter rocks

These glitter rock valentines are perfect for a party favor or maybe something you wrap in a clear plastic bag tied up with a red ribbon… They say these are for kids, but to be honest, I kind of want one for my desk!

martha's stenciled gift bag

No search for Valentine’s Day craft ideas is complete without a visit to Martha Stewart. She delivers yet again with these fun stenciled gift bags.

dot cards with glitter heart

Who doesn’t love a card with glitter and polka dots?

paint chip valentines

One trip to the paint store, a handful of paint chips and lo! the best Valentine’s Day bookmarks ever.

This origami heart can be a card, or a tag, or you can make a whole bunch of them and string them up as a garland… the possibilities are endless!

valentine's day heart garland

And, while we’re on the topic of garlands, you could also make these heart garlands and hang them up around your house.

Monday, Monday… or more links about people gettin’ ready

I spent the past few days huddling with a posse of like minded souls, thinking and talking about what we can do to help keep our country from sliding off the rails. And as we gathered, and planned, and thought about the long line of civil rights activists that came before us, this song came to mind.

So instead of my usual varied Monday links, I give you 7 of my favorite versions of the great 1965 song by The Impressions that has become an anthem for so many.

Here’s Curtis Mayfield himself, breaking it down with a whole bunch of priceless outfits on stage with him.

The Reverend Al Green, joined by Linda Jones and Wanda Neal, has a smile that could sink a thousand ships.

Ok so this one isn’t a video, but it’s Aretha Franklin. And as she is the Queen of Soul, her rendition of this song is not to be missed.

Eva Cassidy Keeping it real at the Blues Alley jazz supper club in Georgetown, DC, on the 3rd of January back in 1996.

It wouldn’t be a playlist without a reggae break. So here’s the son of God, Ziggy Marley, with his joyous version.

Alicia Keys, singing her heart out at the piano, before she stopped wearing make up.

And last but not least, Rod Stewart. Seated, unplugged, and bespeckled, but still killing it.

Seize the day

gaby hoffman

The actress Gaby Hoffman rocks Jill Platner like it’s nobody’s business…

Jill Platner makes some of the most beautiful jewelry on the planet. And I’m not just saying that because she is my friend. Every piece is made by hand in her SoHo studio and her store feels like a secret sanctuary in the midst of one of the craziest shopping districts in New York City.

I’ve been photographing her work for years now, and wearing it for even longer. They are the kind of pieces that you can’t take your hands off of, once you’ve put them on. And when you see someone else on the street (or in the airport or on the beach…) you nod to each other like you are both members of some kind of exclusive society that only a precious few know about.

But right now, for the first time that I can remember, she is having a huge sale both online and in her store. So don’t ever say I don’t love you guys. Go check out her site and then get your hands on some of the magic while it’s discounted. You won’t be sorry. You have till Valentine’s Day.

jill platner

A beautiful low hanging pendant by Jill Platner

Making apple sauce at home is way easier than you think

apple sauce

Here’s my own version of quick and easy apple sauce!

My daughter is home sick today. Stomach bug. Fun! So we are currently limited to what our family doctor calls the BART diet. Bananas, apple sauce, rice and toast.

Ada hates bananas. And for some reason she isn’t feeling toast today. (though she has eaten 100 saltines…) which leaves us with apple sauce and rice. And of course, I am out of apple sauce. But I have apples… so I figured, why not? I’ll just make my own. Now in the interest of full disclosure, my father makes the best apple sauce in the world. He picks the apples from the tree in the yard, cooks them down forever, has a whole ricer setup… My version is nowhere near that much of a production. But it was still good. And easier than trying to figure out how to run out to the store and get a commercial version when your kid is home alone sick. Plus I like to think I have apple sauce making in my blood.

Here’s how I did it:

Cut up 4 apples (or less… whatever you have on hand)
Add 3/4 cup apple juice or cider
½ cup coconut sugar (you can use regular— we just had this on had and I figured why not?)
1 tsp of cinnamon

Cook everything down for about 15 minutes till the apples are nice and soft. Then smash them with a potato masher till they reach the desired consistency. You can get a smoother version in a food processor, but I wanted chunks since this is going to be my daughter’s dinner tonight.

Soup to nuts this takes about 30 minutes and is So. Much. Better. than sauce from a store… You may never go back to store-bought again!