Archive for the ‘men/women’ Category

Hello friends! I haven’t shopped in a while, and I’ve been feeling weak, pale and much more apt to leap upon email-newsletter sales than normal, which means I need to do a bit of preemptive control of myself and my trusty credit card.

Hence, a shopping post! (Applause) In my opinion, Mother’s Day is on the same level as Valentine’s Day – a made-up reason to tell somebody you love that you do actually love them, especially if you don’t say it enough. Mom’s day gifts, however, are kind of fun, because they’re not particularly expected but are fun to shop for and always appreciated by our hard-working moms. Plus, a bunch of my friends have BECOME moms recently, so this post is the perfect hint to your fella: “don’t worry about getting up for the baby…. just buy me this“. (Seriously, that’s a link to something BEAUTIFUL. Hint, hint.)

We have a lot of goodies to get to today, because moms are way too easy to shop for and this is partly a list of all the things I want too and I just appreciate them so much. So let’s get shopping!

kuhn rikon mothers day

I love shopping for my mom, because we both seriously love to cook, and buying kitchen gadgets is almost as fun as using them.

This little beauty from Sur La Table would absolutely stop my herb-chopping world. It’s a knife. And it’s flexible, like a cooking gymnast.

Also, it’s only $17.95 and it’s SO PRETTY.

Speaking of cooking, check these bad boys out:

nesting mixing bowls mothers day giftsFrom vesselsandwares on Etsy. This might be the prettiest and most practical $98 you ever spend. Look at my gorgeous serving bowl! Oh, and he has two brothers that I’m making pancakes and scrambled eggs in. Yes, I am that classy.

What’s that you say? Your mom is more the wine and cocktail party type, rather than the whipping-up-breakfast-type? I can totally empathize with that, which is why we’re having breakfast for dinner tonight. Also, you should buy her this:

pottery barn gifts for momFrom Pottery Barn. I LOVE THIS. I’m fairly certain that any of the talented men in my life (Adam, my dad and my brother) could replicate this, and I’m also fairly certain that the ladies in your lives would be EVER so grateful if you did. It wouldn’t even have to be Mother’s Day. Just any ol’ time, if you want to whip this puppy up… (if you just want to go with a bottle instead of a bin, though, you should use these tags, because they are awesome.)

mothers day giftMy mom and I have different styles, but one thing that we are Very Alike About (worst grammatically terrible descriptor ever) is A) we love anything vintage, particularly anything kitchen-related, and B) we kill plants. By the dozens. So I think the above gift (from plantology on Etsy) would be perfect. Already started plants in cute containers… if we do manage to kill it, at least we can try again next year with the vintage coffee can and another budding victim, right?

Chicha, from The Emperor's New Groove

Chicha: So, what did the emperor want?
Pacha: [clears throat] Oh, you know what, he couldn’t see me.
Chicha: [angrily] Couldn’t see you? Why not?
Pacha: I don’t know.
Chicha: Well, well, that’s just rude!
Pacha: Well, he is the emperor. I’m sure he’s busy.
Chicha: No, no, no, no, no. No. Emperor or no emperor, it’s called common courtesy.
Pacha: Honey–
Chicha: If that were me, I’d march right back there and demand to see him, and you know I would!
Pacha: Sweetie, sweetie. Think of the baby.
Chicha: Pacha, I’m fine. This baby’s not coming out for while. But even if it was, I’d give that guy a piece of my mind! That kind of behavior just… just– [snorts in anger] I gotta go wash something.
This rabbit trail is brought to you by my kinship with Chicha (she totally should be considered a Disney princess, by the way) and my assertion that froofy cleaning supplies are always a welcome present, especially when they smell as good as this stuff. Every time I’m mad, I clean the house, (please no comments about calm and happy I must be feeling lately) and good smells always help assuage my tousled spirits.
But I think we need to move on to fashion, because we all have some young and fashionable moms who can rock stuff from Etsy, you know? Stuff like this:
mothers day jewelry I kind of can’t get over how much I love this necklace. Honestly. (From justexpressive on Etsy.)

Also, these are fabulous. They remind me of Costa Rica:

mother day giftsSO PRETTY. From BellaBeachJewelry on Etsy.

I’m kind of in a beachy mood, and I stumbled upon these sandals the other day and thought “this is what I’ve always longed for” then I realized how full of hyperbole my brain is. But seriously. These are really amazing – the perfect blend of trend and class, from J.Jill:

mothers day giftsFinally, we are at our last two offerings. This is a sad moment for me, because I love shopping. You probably quit reading several dumb jokes ago. Anyways, our last two are both bags, one for toting everything, and one for toting camera gear. Both are adorbs.

The one for everything.

That’s all folks! Hug a mom today!


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I call Adam, tearfully.

Me: “I have a tale of woe. Do you want to hear it?”

Him: “Sure.”

Me, spilling out Tale of Woe with much gesticulation and, well, woe.

Him, calmly and kindly and not hysterically at all: “We’ll figure it out. We’ll see what they say. It’s OK, it’ll be fine.”


Why can’t I ever react calmly and not hysterically and more like my wise Hubs?!

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A thousand words…

Strong hands, strong leader. He's the most amazing guy I know.

I’m so glad I said “I do” two years ago today.

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“My faithful readers know that last Fall the Universe, whom I had asked most specifically to step up the pace on sending me a sweetie, obliged in the best possible way with the miraculous appearance of my Charming Suitor. A girl is never too old or jaded to be swept off her feet, and as I have mentioned now and again, I am floating these days in something of a lovebliss cloud. (Hopefully I am not overly sappy about it, I never wanted to be one of those girls who finds The One and spends all her time waxing poetical about snuggling and bringing up rainbows for no apparent reason…a girl still needs to get her snark on.)”

from the Polymath Chronicles (and I know exactly how she feels). Love you Hot and Godly Hubs!

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Snippets of Spoiled

A post-it, precariously leaning off the entry table, that reads “You are wonderful!” in Adam’s signature scrawl. Coffee made fresh and early for me, with another Post-It, reminding me to drink it instead of pouring it down the drain.  My phone got eaten by the Pacific Ocean, and instead of suggesting that we merely replace it with another crappy flip-phone of yesteryear, he wants to spoil me with a Droid, the iPhone of AT&T haters. A counter-full of dishes magically becomes clean, burgers are grilled to perfection, the living room is whipped into shape just before guests arrive, I am kissed awake from Sunday afternoon naps and listened to, walked with, hugged and appreciated, taken on dates to eat buckets of popcorn and drink gallons of Diet Coke and watch Stallone blow up bad guys.

Did any girl ever deserve such spoiling?

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We went to Santa Barbara this weekend for a getaway, and my husband spoiled me with a new top. My hair is curly but actually controlled, I’m wearing earrings and my new top, and I feel pretty, happy and alive. I love this feeling, and I wonder sometimes why I let it slip away. Why don’t I strive more for beauty, in my home and life and self?

Most of the time, I’m just lazy. I slip out of pretty because I don’t use my God-given wisdom and grace. Sure, I struggle with flab, with acne (my face still thinks I’m 13) with the normal woes of being a woman in the competitive culture of the OC.

But I too often give in when I should fight for Beauty. It is a struggle. Sometimes I even gloss over this, our undeniably beautiful view from the park below our house.

But there is beauty in other things, too, that is equally worth fighting for. There is beauty in smiles and laughter, in friendship, in knowing one another deeply. There is beauty in being comfortable with where I am and how I look, even, with not constantly questioning my body type or comparing myself to other women (those people with amazing things called “hips” how I envy you!).

See? I did it again. It’s so prevalent, so easy to slip away from an attitude of thankfulness and into strife about how I wish I was. The truth is, I’m not supermodel, but I’m working to embrace the things I can be. I want to see beauty in everything – in Adam’s and my inside-jokes, in our church-family, in our “real” families, in our friends and our sunshiney days and our days of fog and bluster. In Eat Pray Love, Elizabeth Gilbert asserts that true beauty is the only thing that is incorruptable, and I think I agree with her.

Today, I’m going to embrace the beauty in all of God’s creation, including me.

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So, Adam and I are in the beginning stages of beginning a beginner’s group of married folk at our church. (Because we’re beginners, too, you know. January 2009! Holla!) I get very fired up about marriage, and I’ve written about marriage and relationships and all the mess and beauty of it a lot on Ye Olde Blog.  But I have yet to write a definitive “why” for how it gets me fired up.

Since we’re being asked quite often why we want to start this ministry and what it’s about, I figured it was about time to get my thoughts on paper. (Since I am a Christian, and this is my personal assignment to myself for my church, I’m going to mention God. Sorry if you’re squeamish, but I promise I won’t waggle my finger under your nose if you’re not sure about Him. We can still be friends.)

I think I began realizing how needed this ministry was when we got engaged. I was working in the world of Manly Men and got regularly teased (“First marriage? I’ll give it three years.”) or given advice (“You need a pre-nup.” “You’re getting married way too young, are you kidding me?” “Why don’t you just move in together and try it out first?”). I knew that this feedback was largely tongue-in-cheek or genuinely concerned and not meant to be hurtful, but after a while I wanted to scream, “Marriage is a good thing! How have we forgotten this?!”

Which I think is what bothers me most about today’s view of marriage. We have forgotten that it’s a good thing, and we don’t champion it like we should. In her book, “Committed – a skeptic makes peace with marriage” Elizabeth Gilbert refers to the ne’er-do-well heterosexual American couples who don’t care about marriage anymore and just flit around from relationship to relationship being skeptical of the whole institution and avoiding commitment in general. Her solution is to open marriage up to those who do appreciate it and want in – same-sex couples. While I’m not sure that her logic stands, it’s an interesting argument and one that needs to be taken seriously.

Why have so many young heterosexual couples become the ne’er-do-wells that Gilbert refers to? Why has marriage lost its sheen? More importantly, does it even matter?

I hold that it does. I firmly believe that one man and one woman are meant to marry for life, and that as such we are called to be living pictures of Christ and the Church. (The Church meaning collective Christians, not one church or denomination. Just so we’re clear.) Even though the Apostle Paul waxed eloquent on singleness, it’s not the kind of singleness we think of today. Paul’s singleness was a celibate, serious affair – not the “don’t marry, just party” style we roll with now.

I think that marriage gets a bad rap because, deep down,we are upset by how spoiled it has become. We throw zingers back and forth about pre-nups and age and maturity because we are tired of seeing God’s beautiful picture of love and relationship spoiled time and again.

I’m hoping and praying that this ministry can be a small part of changing that.

I want this new venture to be a safe haven for those excited about their marriages and for those who need help getting excited. I want us to compete with the world in the most incredible way – while so many search for love in hook-ups, we should be a warm, welcoming, living and breathing example of how God’s power makes the impossible possible – how two screwed-up, selfish people can become a beacon of hope to a desperate world. We don’t have all the answers, but we have a God who works in spite of our imperfections and gives us grace to move forward in love.

I get excited when I talk about marriage. I know that God has huge plans for this courageous generation of happily married folk who are swimming against the tide of pop culture. I know that we hold an incredible truth in our relationships, and I know that these marriages can change the world.

Our mission statement (as of this moment on my little soap-box) is to champion these marriages, to give hope to those who are trying to figure the whole relationship thing out and embrace the calling that God gives every married couple  – to love and honor each other as He does us. That’s not a big deal at all, is it?

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