Friday, May 31, 2013

Spring Forward | Farewell, May.

What a lovely month May turned out to be.  Finally some great weather mixed with lots of family and friend time. I have nothing to complaint about; so I won't :)  This weekend, we welcome June.  Wow.  And I'm lucky to be kicking it off with my second Mystery Trip with a few of my girlfriends from law school (see our first mystery adventure to Galena here). I'll report back with where we end up on Monday!

Have a wonderful weekend.

xo. di.

*image property of Diane Crary

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Netflix Gems | Arrested Development.

Notwithstanding the constantly growing catalog of available content on Netflix Instant, I know there are a lot of people out there who feel like they can’t find anything to watch.   With this periodic series – Netflix Gems – I aim to introduce you to movies, tv shows and documentaries you may not know are hiding in there.  While Netflix is still lagging behind where I think it should be on new releases and current seasons of television, there’s a whole bunch of awesome there as well, so let's talk about it right here.

I don't think I can say anything about Arrested Development that the Internet hasn't  already covered since the show first went off the air in 2006.  C and I are currently five episodes into Netflix's revived season 4, and I can't decide how I feel about them yet.  They are...different, but not necessarily good or bad.  We're doing an episode or two each night to savor them a bit, and I'm more on board with each one.  

In case you're a big fan of the show like me and haven't come across it yet, Recurring Developments is a seriously impressive fan-made website documenting all the recurring gags in the series.  And then there's the Arrested Development Documentary, released at the beginning of May, with great cast interviews and insight from Mitch Hurwitz and Ron Howard and the rest of the team who made the first three seasons all they were.  I really enjoyed it.

If you're just now coming to the series, I highly recommend starting from the very beginning, with season one, episode one.  Jumping in with these new episodes would be confusing :)

xo. di.

*images via The Huffington Post

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Grateful | May 28, 2013.

I am Grateful.  

A perfect 3-day kick-off to summer.  
Pictures of the Week.

{Happy hour on the porch}
{Burt Lake from the air on Friday night via Lakeshore Express; New outdoor furniture!; America; Picking recipes for next week's episode of Game of Thrones}
{We hung this awesome compass rose in our bedroom at the cottage on Sunday; absolutely love how it came together}
{Puppy love; Putting in the dock for the summer; Afternoon nap; Memorial Day morning kayaking}

Links Worth Sharing.
  • Have you seen Ann Street Studio's coverage of her time at Cannes?  Day 1Day 2Day 3.  Sift through those images and try not to be jealous.  I don't know how she's able to capture such candid and yet perfect images over and over again.  I am in awe of her talent with a camera.
  • Living In: Now & Then hit me right in the nostalgia sweet spot when it popped up on Design*Sponge last week.  Both a movie about childhood summers and one I watched over and over and over again during my own childhood summers, I have so many feels for this movie!
  • Coco + Kelley rounded up some really interesting and memorable interior design images in their A New Kind of Classic post.  
Have a wonderful week.

xo. di.    

*images property of Diane Crary

Friday, May 24, 2013

Spring Forward | Memorial Day Weekend.

Already?  Now that summer weather has finally shown itself in Chicago, the days are just flying.  What is that all about?  We're heading up this evening to the family cottage for the weekend and hoping for a little bit of bathing suit weather.

Have a wonderful and safe holiday weekend.

xo. di. 

P.S. Site news - I'll have really spotty Internet through Monday night when we get back to town, so next week's Grateful post likely won't be up until Tuesday.

*image property of Diane Crary

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Herb Garden.

Apartment living means knocking pretty much everything down in scale.  Someday, I'll have a lavish, sprawling vegetable, fruit and flower garden that supplies us with fresh produce all summer long.  But for now, whatever fits on our windowsill and survives my anti-green thumb is all we've got.   

I picked up a few new herbs at the Green City Market last weekend, and because I like complicating everything, I decided to whip up some flags for the "garden."  Just a little bit of card stock, a very light green watercolor base, toothpicks and some basic calligraphy (still lots to improve on), and I was in business.

And I'm happy to report all 3 herbs are still alive and well and even growing!

xo. di.

*images property of Diane Crary

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Nostalgia is Seductive.

{inspired by The Office's series finale last week, I spent a couple of hours this past weekend sketching, calligraphy-ing and watercoloring the above.  
It's not as great as I'd imagined in my head, but what are ya gonna do!}

Have you ever seen or read an interview with an actor best known for a television role talk about how because he's in our living rooms every week (on tv, I mean!), people seem more likely to approach him and equate him with that character?  That can't go very well for King Joffrey (Jack Gleeson) of Game of Thrones, but I get it.  You grow-up with certain shows, they can inspire or provoke change in you, they make you laugh and cry and feel like you are a part of a world that is built, piece by piece, over years.  And when you think back on them or go back and watch a show all over again, you remember little bits of who you were during that time so powerfully, it's like a rabbit hole of memories.  

Here's a few for me:
  • The Office first, in honor of its recent ending: "Bears. Beets. Battlestar Galactica." "You must be PMS-ing pretty hard right now, huh?"  And of course, "That's what she said."  All substituting for actual conversation for like 2 years.
  • Texting my law school roommate/best friend (who now lives in a different state), "do you think we're really going to meet The Mother tonight?" - and all those times we've discussed Ted Mosby's search for his future wife over the last few years.
  • Throwing a four-course Westerosi feast for Game of Thrones' season 2 premiere.
  • CryingOpenly sobbing at "I got off the plane" sitting next to my college roommate on our awful futon during the FRIENDS series finale the last night of sophomore year.
  • Having friends over to watch Dawson's Creek almost every Wednesday night senior year of high school; Team Pacey!
  • Friday Night Lights.  LOST.  The Vampire Diaries.  Harper's Island.  I could keep going for way too long on this.
One last quote from 9 years of watching The Office, a good summation: "I wish there was a way to know you're in the good ole days when you're in them." -Andy Bernard.  Or as I prefer to look at it: all days are the good ole days; you just don't realize why until they're over. 

xo. di.

*image property of Diane Crary

Monday, May 20, 2013

Grateful | May 20, 2013.

I am Grateful.  

For summer weather and leisurely weekends.
Pictures of the Week.

{Hyacinths are a weakness of mine}
{Receiving pretty wedding invitations is the best; Flavored water with fresh ingredients; Marmaduke?!; Playing with watercolor}
{Sushi dinner take-out in the park with a friend; Calla lily plant is blooming like crazy!; Started selling some clothes 
on Poshmark - have you ever done it?; Love having lilacs in bouquets, so fragrant!}

Links Worth Sharing.
Have a wonderful week.

xo. di.    

*images property of Diane Crary

Friday, May 17, 2013

Spring Forward | Non Sequiturs.

Stray Observations of the Week:
  • The red carpet fashion at Cannes Film Festival always yields some great eye candy (Nicole is looking GOOD up there!).  Like last week's Met Gala, Cannes seems to inspire more dramatic and costume-worthy looks than awards shows in the States.  I'm looking forward to checking back in throughout the weekend.
  • It has been a pretty intense work week for me, but C and I got to sneak in Star Trek Into Darkness 2 days early at the Navy Pier IMAX on Wednesday, and it was really good.  Highly recommend, and that's coming from a Star Wars-lovin' non-Trekkie :)  I might just be a Cumberbitch.
  • I was really satisfied with The Office's series finale last night.  If you watched: were you?
  • Don't forget: the second jewel in the Triple Crown is tomorrow!
  • Go Wings!
  • 80 degree forecast the entire weekend; hoping wherever you are, it's similarly beautiful.
Have a wonderful weekend.

xo. di.

*images clockwise from top L: 1,2,3,4

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Beauty | Dr. Jart+ BB Cream

I have fallen, like so many before me, for BB ("beauty balm") cream.  Dr. Jart's, in particular.  To begin, a confession: when I first started wearing make-up every day, some time in early high school, I declared [to myself] to go concealer/foundation/powder free for as long as possible.  And for the next 10+ years, I adhered to that declaration.  Beyond not liking the feel of it on my face and worrying about break-outs, I just felt that having a natural base, even if it meant uncovered flaws and unevenness, led to a more natural, softer look that I preferred.  

Well I'm 29 now, and while not exactly an old maid, I've noticed a few more imperfections recently.  After hearing over and over about the benefits of BB cream: its all-in-one functionality as a foundation, concealer, serum, sunscreen and moisturizer, I took a chance on Dr. Jart's version and will not be going back on it.  It's lightweight and blends easily, but the real benefit is how much longer my make-up lasts, stays in place and looks fresh throughout the day with a BB cream base, not to mention that I really should have added a daily SPF on my face years ago.   

If this cream is a bit too rich for your blood (I know I'm very choosy about what cosmetics I consider "worth" going upscale on), Tristan of Besotted Blog has raved about L'oreal's BB Magic Cream, at a far more friendly price.
xo. di.

*images property of Diane Crary
*I received nothing for this post; these are just my opinions and experiences, and I'd be happy to answer any questions you have about the product.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Netflix Gems | Neverland.

Notwithstanding the constantly growing catalog of available content on Netflix Instant, I know there are a lot of people out there who feel like they can’t find anything to watch.   With this periodic series – Netflix Gems – I aim to introduce you to movies, tv shows and documentaries you may not know are hiding in there.  While Netflix is still lagging behind where I think it should be on new releases and current seasons of television, there’s a whole bunch of awesome there as well, so let's talk about it right here.

If you watch Once Upon a Time (like me!), you might be looking for more of J.M. Barrie's Peter Pan after the final 2 episodes of the season, which concluded last Sunday.  Neverland, a Peter Pan origin story, which originally aired as a 2-night miniseries on SyFy in December 2011, is the perfect anecdote.  Watch the trailer here.  

The story follows Peter in Victorian-era London, the leader of a group of orphaned pick-pockets, whose mentor and guardian, James Hook, accidentally transports them all to Neverland.

{Charlie Rowe as Peter, a pretty fabulous child actor}
{Rhys Ifans as Jimmy Hook - you know where this is going, right?}
{Peter's arrival in Neverland}
 {Captured by pirates}
{The Lost Boys}
 {Neverland, in all its glory}
{Bob Hoskins as Smee; Anna Friel as Captain Elizabeth Bonny}
{Peter and Tink, voiced by Keira Knightley}

SyFy's reimagined fairy tale series, like this one - including Tin Man in 2007 and Alice in 2009 - skew a bit darker, so I wouldn't consider this family entertainment for wee ones, but older children should be just fine.   

"All the world is made of faith, and trust, and pixie dust.” 

xo. di.

P.S. Game of Thrones' own Tywin Lannister - Charles Dance - also makes a brief appearance in Neverland; his presence is always a treat.

*images via SyFy

Monday, May 13, 2013

Grateful | May 13, 2013.

I am Grateful.  

A lovely weekend of spring projects, dinners out, and lots of rest.  
Pictures of the Week.

{vibrant tulips; a misty morning in Lincoln Park; a lovely calla lily plant from the Green City Market
French wine out of my Beauty & the Beast carafe, my souvenir from our January trip to Disney:)}

{major closet clean-out: new purchases on the far left, charity offerings on the right; have instituted a one-in-one-out policy.  doing well so far!}

Links Worth Sharing.
Have a wonderful week.

xo. di.    

*images belong to Diane Crary

Friday, May 10, 2013

Spring Forward | The Office.

I wish I could hand-deliver the contents of the above photograph this weekend to two special ladies: my sister, to round-out Nurses' Appreciation Week (yay nurses!), and my mom, for Mother's Day of course.  I'm thinking about you both today and every day :)  

Non sequitur: has anyone been watching these last few episodes of The Office?  C and I have slugged through the last couple of Michael Scott-less seasons (the Florida arc, Andy Bernard being the worst, ROBERT CALIFORNIA, oh man what a mess), but last night's hour-long episode AND last week's got me with the Jim & Pam memory lane moments.  Remember when that relationship was like the best thing on TV?  The teapot?  The first Dundies?  Casino Night???  I'm so ready for this show to reach its end, but I'm now actually looking forward to the series finale - and still holding out hope for a Steve Carell cameo.  The Office just isn't The Office without him.   So anyway...    

Have a wonderful weekend.

xo. di.

*image via Style Me Pretty

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Wedding | Hot Air Balloons.

One print found on The First Snow's Etsy shop - a favorite of my favorite Etsy shops, btw, I'm in love with her work! - and I was down a rabbit hole of hot air balloon-themed weddings, parties and paper.  

My fear of heights has stopped me from seeking out a hot air balloon ride, but they're still beautiful to look at!

xo. di.

*Image 1 via firstsnowfall's etsy shop, 2 via love and lavender, 3 & 4 via, 5 via Wedding Chicks

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

On Home Improvement.

We live in an apartment in a 100+ year old building, which certainly limits our home improvement projects.  Our dark brown kitchen cabinets and formica countertops aren't going anywhere, but little tweaks that increase quality of life - those should be pursued with gusto.  So realizing we've been showering for months with a partially broken and clogged shower head shooting water in all directions, inevitably soaking the sink and somehow also the floor, because my Dad took one shower in there last weekend and practically declared we would be stopping by a hardware store at some point that day was...embarrassing.  That was also a very long sentence.  Of course we made that stop and my Dad and C installed the new, fabulous shower head later that afternoon.  It is a thing of beauty.  

What's my point, then?  Yes, yes.  My point is to not put these little things off that can make  a big difference.  My other point is that parents are helpful (surprise!).  Likewise, my mom made one meal in my kitchen and started brainstorming ways to add light over the stove and some other organizational help for our teeny kitchen.  Sometimes, parents do understand.  

xo. di.

*image property of Diane Crary

Monday, May 6, 2013

Grateful | May 6, 2013.

I am Grateful.  

A lovely weekend spent with my parents and C around the city.  
Pictures of the Week.

{tulip beds a-popping}
{clockwise from top L: night at the ballet, a Guinness or two on Friday night, traded up on my boring black 
iphone case for Rifle Paper Co's far snazzier look at Greer; Derby Day essentials}
{sunshine streaming in on white blooms}
{clockwise from top L: a stop in A New Leaf; Cinco de Derby - margaritas in mint julep cups!; 
pretty little foxgloves along Michigan Avenue; rewatching Avengers before Ironman 3 with C on Sunday}

Links Worth Sharing.
Have a wonderful week.

xo. di.    

*images belong to Diane Crary

Friday, May 3, 2013

Spring Forward | Parents.

I chose to post this quote today because my parents are in town for the weekend visiting us.  It reminds me that the older you get, the more human your parents become, which shifts the relationship, making it more complicated but ultimately stronger.  Looking forward to this time with them as I kick the rest of this flu bug!

Have a wonderful weekend.

xo. di.

*image via The Year of Lettering

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Fashion | Dream Ballet.

Christian Siriano's Spring 2013 collection was inspired by the whimsical movement of ballet, particularly the Dream Ballet, as performed by the American Ballet Theatre. The Dream Ballet is an adaptation of A Midsummer Night’s Dream, the story of love and romance in fairyland.

The ad campaign, shot by Brad Walsh at New York’s historic Waldorf-Astoria, feature the Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis School at American Ballet Theatre dancers Katerina Eng, Isabelle Seiler, and Carolyn Lippert.

The film campaign, complete with models en pointe:

As I am attending the Joffrey Ballet's Othello this evening with my mom and C, beautiful dance is clearly on my mind.  And if you are in Chicago, I highly recommend purchasing tickets to the last few performances of Othello (it closes this Sunday, May 5).  The music and choreography of this story ballet are incredible. 

xo. di.

*images via tom & lorenzo
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