Archive for June, 2008
My dad gave me a toolbox when I was in high school. I think it had four things in it: a hammer, a handsaw, a set of screwdrivers and a photo of his dad (to show me that being handy was in my blood). But not even my ancestry could interest me in tools as a teenager.
Yet I dragged that toolbox along to college, then to New York City and even back here to Richmond. With each move my need for (and skill with) those tools grew. And I added plenty to my collection along the way – levels, drills, wrenches, etc – eventually outgrowing the toolbox itself. But to this day we still use that original handsaw and screwdriver set around our house. (I think that hammer is floating around Manhattan somewhere. Sorry Dad.)
I wanted to use this pre-Father’s Day post to say “thank you” to my dad, Sherry’s dad and all the other fathers in our combined lineage that turned us into the handy couple that we are today. So to honor our dads, we thought we’d post embarrassing old photos of them. (Note my dad’s tie. It was a Father’s Day gift I made using puffy paint… proof that paint doesn’t always make something better.)
But enough about our dads. We want to hear about yours. Got any good stories about your dad passing down some fatherly advice or handyman skills to you? Or great ideas for honoring your dad on Father’s Day? I’ve got a special gift up my sleeve this year, but I can’t spill the beans ’til he unwraps it. Sorry!
After countless readers asked what was hanging to the left of our living room fireplace, we thought our cheap teardrop vases from CB2 warranted a post of their very own. With 15 framed works of art in the expansive living and dining room (yup, I counted) the last thing we wanted to bring in were a few more hard edged rectangles. So for less than $12 (actually they were a gift so they were F-R-E-E), we added instant interest. Some wild grass “borrowed” from a Target parking lot completed the look (and has surprisingly held up for the last 12+ months). Observe:
These vases are versatile. If you have a wall at the end of a hallway, a landing at the base of a staircase, a thin slice of space that needs a little spice, or any place that could use some clean curves, these vases are da bomb. So get your order on and send us the after pics, yo. Happy shopping…
Inspiration can come from the strangest places, so I wasn’t even surprised when I saw some cool old canning jars in a recent Pottery Barn catalog and needed to take a closer look. Upon closer inspection I realized they were antique bell jars filled with shells, sand, and even just ocean water with fancy labels that said things like “Mikonos” and “Fiji”. Adorable. So I looked around and realized I had at least one or two keepsakes from each and every vacay that John and I have spent together. Why not put them on display instead of in a box in the closet? So after a trip to Michael’s to pick up 6 canning jars (for just six smackaroos) I returned home and slipped the items into little labeled jars of my own.
Now we’re hardly as posh as the imaginary family who loves in the Pottery Barn catalog, so our labels (hand written with a fine point Sharpie on clear tape) boast locales like San Diego, Rehoboth, Madeira Beach, Alaska, and the Outer Banks.
But they’re just as charming lined up on a shelf in our sunroom near the back door (which we pass through at least five times a day). And it’s nice to glance at our little vacation time capsules on a daily basis instead of keeping them out of sight (and out of mind). I even made a little reminder of our old life in Manhattan complete with our last MetroCard, a buy-ten-get-one-free hot dog card from our favorite little hole in the wall, and matching business cards from the advertising agency where we met.
It’s nice to know that even when we go somewhere sans sand and shells, we can still stick little keepsakes (a ticket stub, a matchbox, a hotel key) into a $1 jar to fondly remember the trip. In fact, to document our Alaskan honeymoon, I used a rock from a hot stone massage that we enjoyed along with a tiny ceramic bear from a craft fair in Anchorage. I can’t wait until our modern day snow globe collection takes over our entire three-tiered bookcase… better start planning some more vacations. And since everyday objects work just as well as shells and sand, it’s no big deal if we don’t make it to Mikonos or Fiji for a while. Whew.