Sunday, May 30, 2010


18 years.
A beautiful life.
Happy Anniversary Alan!

Here's a random little assortment of songs I love about love.

Our engagement photo was taken by Scogin Mayo, spring 1992

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

old guys are cool

I've had these gents in my inspiration folder for awhile now. I love old guys. When I heard 60's t.v. personality Art Linkletter died today at 97, I thought about these guys again. They are still making cool stuff in their 90's. Irving Harper, above, designed some of the most recognizable housewares of the 50's and 60's. Today, at 93, he makes intricate paper sculptures. Read about his genius right here.

This is Vollis Simpson, a retired farm equipment repairman. Vollis uses scrap metal and junk yard parts to create enormous metal sculptures he calls Whirligigs. A mere 91, he lives and works in Lucama, North Carolina. Read more about Vollis here.

Don't his Whirligigs look oddly perfect in this holiday window for Bergdorf Goodman?

And if you aren't familiar with Mr. Linkletter, take a look at this clip back when television shows were sweet. I vaguely recall...

photos from NY Times, Design Sponge and American Visionary Art Museum

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

*zip it there sporty spice!

I'm crazy about iced coffee on a summer afternoon. Here's a little "recipe" to make your own. All you need is a jar, 1/3 cup of ground coffee and 12 hours. I had to rig a lid since my lids and jars are never together.

Cold-Brewed Iced Coffee
Time: 5 minutes to mix plus 12 hours' resting
1/3 c. ground coffee
Milk (optional)
1. In a jar, stir together coffee and 1 1/2 c. water. Cover and let rest at room temp for 12 hours.
2. Strain twice through a coffee filter. In a tall glass filled with ice, mix equal parts coffee concentrate and water, or to taste. If desired add milk and anything else you like.
Yield: two drinks

*Title of post from this clip featuring Will Ferrell jonesing for a cup of joe. Funny.

Monday, May 24, 2010

plants on strings

Look at these incredible string gardens as seen on Poppytalk via Aesthetic Outburst. Super cool. See more here.
Happy Monday everyone!

Thursday, May 20, 2010

pile o babies

My poor sewing machine could use a little love. We've been on the clock day and night. That's why it's been so quiet at Rotten Bananas lately. I've been busy sewing the first items for my brand new Etsy store, The Shop at Red Llama Studio. By now, most of you are probably familiar with Etsy. If you aren't, it's an online site for buying and selling handmade and vintage items. Mass production is a no no. I'm opening my "store" with mostly baby items. Aren't babies supposed to be recession proof?
Bonus: Tiny plastic baby included with each purchase while supplies last.

Monday, May 17, 2010

the art guys

Doesn't this party look like a blast? That tent is the best! It was designed by The Art Guys out of Houston, Texas.
These guys do a little bit of everything ranging from performance art and large scale installations to sculptures and intricate drawings. Most of their pieces are based on very ordinary, accessible objects. I love this one called Get a Hold of the Situation, made entirely of clamps and plywood.

This table is called Plywood Lace.

Click here and scroll to the bottom of the page to see a couple of short videos. My favorite is Bottle Rockets. These two have a great time making art together. Thanks to Kalynn for today's post inspiration. Happy Monday!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

sooner or later...they break everything

I laughed to the point of tears
this morning. All thanks to Shit My Kids Ruined, a hilarious site where people send in photos of the destruction wrought by their offspring. We're well beyond this stage (unless you count that fingernail polish remover eating off the surface of the table top incident?! well, maybe we're not past this stage)..
...maybe that's why it's so stinkin' funny.

I actually had my eye poked by both daughters. Once with a paintbrush and once a fingernail. The pain brought me to my knees. But the patch is so becoming.

The old pepper in the fish tank trick. Good one.
So many great ideas. Tough to pick my favorite.

Today's fun via Alan and Eric Lidji

Tuesday, May 11, 2010


Who says baby quilts have to be colorful and whimsical?
Most certainly not me.
Although I do love color and wholeheartedly embrace whimsy, I love making crisp white baby quilts.

Meet Peyton. Her mommy works in advertising and Target is her big client. Everyday at work Peyton's mommy is inundated with color.
Loud, vibrant, saturated color.
At home, she wants a rest from the color. This is the family living room and that tiny baby in the gorgeous white bowl is Peyton.

For Peyton's quilt, I used eyelet remnants from shirt designer Craig Taylor for a touch of girly, japanese double gauze, flax colored linen, pin wale corduroy, seersucker from Mood and straight up utility cotton for beautiful texture and variety. Every fabric was soft, and most importantly, washable!

Her name is hand embroidered tone on tone. It's subtle, (can you even see it?) but it's there.

I love that Peyton's mommy isn't afraid to throw it on the floor and get it dirty. It's loved.
Maybe it will be the quilt Peyton remembers when she grows up. That would make me very happy.

Neutral baby quilt = Bullseye.

P.S. I sent Peyton this fluffy white llama (photo at top) along with her quilt. Red Llama? White Llama? It's all good.

Monday, May 10, 2010

baby love times two

This movie looks absolutely precious.
I hope all of you mothers out there had a lovely Mothers Day!
Happy Monday everyone.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

my mom

I'm crazy about my mom for so many reasons:
My mom is no drama.
She's a great listener.
Animals are her passion and purpose.
My mom is a one woman humane society.
She inspires fierce loyalty.
My Mom thinks her kids are great, as is.
She doesn't criticize or judge.
And she doesn't dispense unsolicited advice.
Mom cares for the underdog, literally and otherwise.
She looks after dogs, cats, teens and the elderly who
might need a little lift.
Mom helps others quietly, without fanfare or expectation.
She is a very kind person.
From time to time, my mom doesn't mind running afoul of the law for the sake of rescuing pets. She once nabbed an abused dog, brought him home and changed his name and appearance,
like he was in the witness protection program.
She's funny too. Once when she ran out of names for stray dogs, she named a whole slew of them after the Brady kids.
When my girls are grown, I hope they love me as
much as I do my mom.
Happy Mother's Day.

thank your lucky stars

We can always take comfort in knowing that on Mom's watch, we'll never be put in harm's way.

More hilarity from the guys over at Awkward Family Photos. Click here for more mom's of questionable judgement and go give your own mom a tight hug for being so normal!

Happy Mother's Day!

Thursday, May 6, 2010

friday night lights

Ready?!? Okay!!!
Tomorrow night my very favorite show, Friday Night Lights,
returns to NBC.
It has everything and nothing to do with football.
The reviews are stellar going into season 4.
I love this show so much because it reminds me of growing up. We lived in a small Texas town a lot like the one on the show. My dad was the football coach there. When we were tiny, Dad would take us kids to the locker room and toss us in a big shower with multiple heads. Presto! Five kids bathed and ready for bed and a brief break for Mom. Here I am with Dad around 1980 when both of us had darker hair. Long retired from the game, he is still greeted warmly about town as "Coach."
Set your Tivos. You'll be a fan.
Here's the finale from last season to get you caught up.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

gracias mexico!

Thank you Mexico, for the beautiful papel picado and much, much more!
Such as....

Tasty Rita X
Can you tell I was a cocktail waitress throughout college?

Sugar dusted churros.

Lovely and talented Salma.

Candy filled pinatas.

My beloved pintos. You're delicious, cheap and versatile. My comfort food.

Festive Mexican sodas.

Praying for good health, wealth and fortune.

Here's a nice little recipe for White Sangria, the perfect sweet/tart combo for a warm May day.
Happy Cinco de Mayo!

White Sangria from Pastry Queen Parties by Rebecca Rather

1 (1.5 liter) bottle dry white table wine
1 (6 oz) can frozen lemonade concentrate, defrosted
1/4 c. freshly squeezed lime juice, about 4 medium
1/2 c. brandy
fruit for floating in pitcher, such as citrus slices, fresh cherries, pineapple chunks
1 12oz can soda water, or to taste

In a large pitcher, stir together the wine, lemonade, lime juice and brandy. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate fro at least an hour, preferably longer. When ready to serve, stir in the fruit and soda water. Add plenty of ice and serve immediately.

All photos by me except the following:
Salma from her Wikipedia page
Papel picado -
margarita -

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

meet the crew over on sailor glam

We're busy planning Sadie's Bat Mitzvah over on Sailor Glam.
Come over and meet the crew. You can always find new posts by clicking on the
Sailor Glam link on the right side of this page.

Monday, May 3, 2010

won't you smile for the camera?

Sophie turned 15 last week.
I should tell you that Sophie has been a top notch daughter from day one.

The only thing we love more than birthdays around here, is the party that comes with it! Here are a few scenes from Sophie's party last weekend.

Sadie and I did all the cooking. We made lasagna, not only because Sophie loves it, but because it feeds a crowd and we could make it in advance. Sadie enjoyed noodle duty.

Next came the cake. Chocolate with cream cheese frosting. I like to add just a dash of heavy whipping cream to the frosting. It gives it a nice sheen and fluffy consistency. Maybe this is common knowledge?!? Here's the recipe.

Because Sophie loves photography (click on this link to see her super blog) and this crowd loves to strike a pose, I borrowed this beautiful backdrop from a photographer friend of mine, Jim Olvera. Here's a link to his site. We set it up in the backyard. Thanks Alan for cleaning the yard spic and span.

I think they had fun. Pictures don't lie, right?

There was an article in yesterdays New York Times about kids being unable to communicate face to face because they rely solely on texting and Facebook to talk with friends. These girls did not get the memo. They talked and talked some more until 4 am, as only girls can do.

And finally,
Dear Mr. Jamie Oliver, Forgive me!

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