3-10 Ephemera

Orangutan by Sean E. Avery (2013)  Image courtesy of Sean E. Avery

It’s the day before we spring forward and walk around like zombies for a day or two before our rhythms circle back into place.  It’s also the first Saturday in a while that I can ease into the weekend with a few cups of coffee and some serious web surfing.  Here are some of the things I stumbled upon that held my interest for longer than a passing glance…

Hope you have a good weekend doing your thing….and don’t forget to turn back your clock (or have Alexa do it for you!)

If you can’t be with the one you love…


It’s no coincidence that we celebrate Valentine’s Day and National Condom Day on February 14th. If you are looking for love use a condom when you love so you can continue to love for a very long time. If you plan on staying home to spend time with those you already love have a wonderful day celebrating why you love each other. And remember…no matter how you love, or whom you love, or if anyone else understands your love…today of all days, love the one you’re with.

*Love The One You’re With – Stephen Stills

She promised all the sweetest gifts…

Little things mean a lot
Heart Necklace  |  Crystal Heart Puzzle Lego Love Doggie Godiva Heart Tower
It Happened One Night  |  Moonstruck  |  Shrek The Big Sick  |  The Princess Bride | Shalimar  |  Hearts Apron  |  Rose Arrangement  |  AHA Donation  |  Earrings  |  Love T  |  Champagne  |  Heart Umbrella  

It is almost Valentine’s Day and I am being inundated with overpriced roses, candy-colored plush animals, and a multitude of heart-shaped sugars. I’ve never been a ‘show me you love me with a present’ kind of person but I absolutely unashamedly LOVE to give tokens of my affection all year long.  How about you?  Not sure what to give that certain someone in your life?  Here are a few ideas if you are looking for a way to say ‘I love you’ on February 14th (or any other day of the year).

*The Sweetest Gift (Lovers Live) – Sade

Fly Eagles fly….

Super Bowl LII Food – Philly Style

I have been a fan of football, and the Philadelphia Eagles, for a very long time.  Growing up, I never wanted to be a cheerleader but to this day I dream of being out on that field, protecting my quarterback as he throws one deep into the end zone for the winning touchdown.  I did play vicariously through my sons, both of whom started in pee-wee leagues and finished at college as O-line hogs.  And yes, for them I was definitely a cheerleader (often to their embarrassment).

As for the Eagles, the team has had a true Cinderella year.  When the pundits wrote them off after Carson Wentz’s season-ending injury the team kept playing like the first-class athletes they are and never missed a beat.  They truly are the personification of ‘there is no I in team’.  As I write, they are 6 days away from suiting up against the Patriots to play for the Vince Lombardi Trophy. and while they prepare in Minneapolis I am busy preparing too.  Normally, I am all about the traditional wings/nachos/chips & dips/beer refreshments but this year I am all about the Philly Spread (and I don’t mean offense).

I plan on serving Frank’s Soda (a classic Philly soda from my youth), Yuengling Beer (for those who can’t handle the Wishniak), authentic Philadelphia soft pretzels (left over from my holiday visit to Philly), Italian hoagies, steaks wit’ wiz, pork and broccoli rabe sandwiches, crab fries (a la’ Chickie and Pete’s), assorted Tastycakes and Luigi’s water ices.  I won’t be able to replicate Formosa’s rolls for my sandwiches but can authentically replicate just about everything else I will serve.

What about you?  Will you attend a Super Bowl party or watch from your couch?  Are you pulling for another Tom Brady miracle win or, like me, rooting for the underdogs and a game for the ages?  Here’s hoping I’ll be singing Fly Eagles Fly next Sunday night. E. A. G. L. E. S. Eagles!

*Fly Eagles Fly

Andy Warhol looks a scream…

Polaroids by Andy – Collage by Me

I was excited to attend last Thursday’s reception for ‘Famous (and not-so-famous): Polaroids by Andy Warhol’ at Vanderbilt’s Fine Arts Gallery.  Ever since I learned of the show’s opening I’ve been doing a deep dive into all things Andy.  I had forgotten how much Warhol’s work influenced my own art or my fascination with him as the penultimate commercial artist. From his days as an illustrator in the 1950’s to The Factory in the 60’s through to the late 80’s when he was arguably the King of Pop (Art) Warhol was always there before everyone else knew there was a ‘there’ to be.

My earliest memories of Warhol stem from his odd physical appearance; that thatch of white blonde hair and the paler-than-white skin demanded my attention. He looked weird and shy and just a little unhinged, and yet he exuded an intelligence and sly wit that drew me (and countless others) in and left me eager for more.  His use of repetition in his silkscreens and Polaroids shaped my own fascination and use of nine’s in my own work.   I also share his obsession with all things Hollywood and celebrity. I’d even go so far as to argue there would be no Kardashian Kulture without Andy and his Superstars paving the way first.

Warhol was a gifted artist and brilliant visionary who even in death remains way ahead of his time.  Did you know:

  • He coined the term (in conversation with ) ’15 minutes of fame’
  • He produced The Velvet Underground
  • He founded Interview magazine
  • He designed the infamous Rolling Stones Sticky Fingers album cover
  • He used a stable of other artists to mass-produce his work
  • He barely survived being shot by a disgruntled hanger-on (and radical feminist)
  • He used ‘ghost-pissers’ to help create his Oxidation paintings
  • He created 610 time capsules of ephemera, which are housed at his Pittsburgh museum
  • His last art, from 1985-1987, was 5 episodes of MTV’s  Andy Warhol’s Fifteen Minutes

The ‘Famous (not Famous)…’ show left me wanting more.  More Polaroids, more silkscreens, more stories…more Andy.  I’ve got a trip to Pittsburgh planned for the spring to deliver some upholstered furniture to Stephanie Tripier Design for revamping, and will make time to visit The Warhol Museum to see more of Andy’s works.  Maybe I’ll even have Stephanie cover a chair in Campbell’s Soup Cans or multiple Marilyn’s as my own sly homage to Andy: a wink to his art I hope he would approve of.

*Andy Warhol – David Bowie


Jesus was a Capricorn…

My natal chart

I no longer make New Year’s resolutions for three reasons.  The first is quite simple.  Whenever I’ve made a resolution it has more often than not failed, leaving me feeling like a loser.  Who wants that?  Secondly, I’m a planner by nature (and by the stars). I am way more successful when I outline deliverables and timelines and work towards my goals, regardless of how long it might take. Finally – and please try not to laugh – with a birthday right after the New Year I look to my monthly and yearly horoscopes as a barometer of what might be in store for me., gauging how my goals might align with my stars to deliver a favorable cosmic outcome.

Do you believe in astrology? I find it hard to entirely dismiss how close the science of the heavens comes to nailing individual personality traits based on the movements and positions of celestial objects.  Silly as it might seem, I have been really excited about the big Capricorn astrology news, which coincided with the start of 2018.  Saturn (Cappy’s ruling planet) entered Capricorn on December 19th and will stay there until 2020 – bringing about three years of what really rocks a goat’s world: long-range plans successfully coming to fruition. For some strange reason this makes me excited and has me feeling like I can make some professional and creative goals I’ve long dreamed of and worked towards a reality.

One day, I want to have a detailed natal chart made so I can see how closely the stars and my reality align.  Until that time I will have to be content with a freebie chart (you can run your own version at Café Astrology or Astrolabe).  According to the skies I am realistic, grounded, dependable and loyal.  I am attracted to status symbols.  I am a planner. I value privacy. I am educated. I am an independent thinker. I always need to win. I am capricious. I am blunt. I love literature. Family is important to me. I like beauty. I am independent. I prize my freedom. I am obstinate. I am a non-conformist. All true things, and certainly all things that define the essence of me.

How about you?  Have you ever run your natal chart to see how accurate it might be?  Do you read your horoscope with any sort of regularity?  Do you believe the heavens play a role in our time on earth?  If so, do you find that creepy or comforting?  Drop me a line.  I’d love to know….

*Jesus was a Capricorn – Kris Kristofferson

12-23 Ephemera

Image courtesy of Weltmeisterschaft der Nikolause ClauWau

Ready or not Christmas is here.  All I have left to do is wrap some gifts and make it home through the woods so I can relax, catch up on some flicks (including Star Wars: The Last Jedi, The Disaster Artist, The Florida Project, Ladybird, and Three Billboards Outside Ebbing Missouri) and football (Go Eagles!) and enjoy time with my family (the BEST present of all).

I’ll also spend some time surfing the web over the next two weeks seeking travel, art, and fashion inspiration for 2018.  As befits THIS holiday season, I’ve spent the past month fascinated by any Christmas-related article I stumble upon, including…

Wishing you a wonderful holiday full of family, friends, and fun.  See you in 2018!

*Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas – Frank Sinatra

I saw mommy kissing Santa Claus…


Last week was super busy for me.  Much of my work week was spent decorating, shopping, catering, and hosting a reception for 60, followed by a one-day 1000 mile drive to retrieve my son for the holidays.  Now that I’ve had a chance to relax and rest I’m ready to share my last guide with you – gift ideas for the real Santa (aka: Mom).  Most mom’s would rather spend time with their loved ones than receive a gift but it never hurts to have a present or two ready so you can stay on her nice list….

  1. Anthropolgie Tea Set for One
  2. Kew Crystal Collar Necklace
  3. Premiere Edition Scrabble
  4. Olive & Thistle Wreath
  5. Kate Spade Cameron Street Lottie Bag
  6. Kendra Scott Juniper Earrings
  7. Modern Sprout Garden Jar Herb Kit 
  8. Lincoln in the Bardo
  9. My Absolute Darling
  10. Dottie Honey Pot
  11. Ted Baker Issy Impressionist Cape Silk Scarf
  12. Floral: The Graphic Book of the Garden
  13. Coco Mademoiselle Eau de Parfum
  14. Sourdough
  15. Dylan’s Candy Bar Signature Chocolate Wheel
  16. SpaFinder
  17. Oscar’s Bouquet Embroidery Pillow Kit
(In case you missed my other gift guides check out kids, tweens, young adults, and dads here)
*I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus – Amy Winehouse

Give love on Christmas Day…


A few weeks ago I listed some gift ideas for kids, teens, and young adults.  Having worked many a Black Friday in my younger years I try not to shop over the Thanksgiving holiday if I can help it.  Fast forward through a week spent working on a Program in Music, Mind & Society event and I am ready to get back into holiday shopping mode.  Next up, some gift ideas for the fathers in your life….

  1. Olive & Sinclair 8 Bar Box Set of Chocolates
  2. Classic Rock-n-Roll Art
  3. The Taking of K-129
  4. Easy 123 Art Paint-by-Numbers Miami Nice
  5. UGG Ascot Slippers
  6. Sticky Fingers : The Life of Jann Wenner and Rolling Stone
  7. Kentucky Bourbon of the Month Club
  8. Ravensberger Neuschwanstein Castle Puzzle
  9. American Fire: Love, Arson and Life in a Vanishing Land
  10. Meyer the Hatter Dobbs Dayton Felt Fedora
  11. Atari Flashback Portable Player
  12. The Black Count: Glory, Revolution, Betrayal, and the Real Count of Monte Cristo
  13. Pink Floyd 1972 Obfusc/ation
  14. DiBruno Brothers Beer & Bourbon Collection 
  15. SCTV Volume 1, 2, and 3,
*Give Love on Christmas Day – The Jackson 5