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Listen to This: Belle & Sebastian

November 17, 2010

New Music by Belle & Sebastian

A hunt for new music led to the discovery of Belle & Sebastian, a Scottish group who just released, “Write About Love.” It’s mostly sunny and peppy with a big lean toward ’60s pop.

With a much bigger following across the Atlantic, they’ve been on the indie scene since 1996. This being their ninth studio album, I’m looking forward to all the catching up I have to do.

Norah Jones joins in on the very mellow “Little Lou, Prophet Jack, Ugly John,” and I’m really enjoying the much more upbeat, “Come On Sister.” Both can be heard here on TwentyFourBit.

Try out their cover track Write About Love, (below) – you might be surprised to hear that that’s actress Carey Mulligan singing along.


RedLaser App: Your New Shopping Secret Weapon

November 16, 2010

Shop smarter with RedLaser

Just read the Top 10 Must-Have Apps for iPhone from The New York Times. The one that most impressed me that I had never heard of before was RedLaser, a free app, that just may be your best shopping mate through the holiday season and beyond.

…Well aside from your new Sassy Gay Friend, of course.

Download RedLaser and you can scan any product’s bar code to see the price, and whether you can get it cheaper at another store or at an online retailer like Amazon.

The other cool option? Say you’re in Target or a toy store and spot some items you know your itty bitty would love, but you don’t want to buy it just then. Scan it and save it to a list of gift ideas for whoever you want – then pull up the handy list when a birthday or holiday rolls around.

Food Rules for Anyone Who Eats

November 15, 2010

A great gift for anyone who eats

I came across Food Rules: An Eater’s Manual by Michael Pollan at Border’s the other day. Small enough to fit in your purse and inexpensive enough to buy as stocking-stuffers for anyone you care about – this book is filled with simple reminders of basic principles you probably already know — but all too often forget.

Basic answers to big questions like, “What should I eat?” Mostly plants. “How should I eat?” Not too much.

Boiled down and compiled from the author who wrote “The Omnivore’s Dilemma”, and “In Defense of Food”, some of Pollan’s tips include:

  • It’s not food if it arrived through the window of your car.
  • Don’t eat breakfast cereals that change the color of milk.
  • Eat all the junk food you want as long as you cook it yourself.
  • Eat when you’re hungry, not when you’re bored.
  • Do all your eating at a table.




The No-Fail New Baby Gift Guide: 5 You’ll Want to Give and Receive

November 13, 2010

Sterling Classic Dumbell Rattle by Lunt

My little sis is having a baby. Heading to her shower this weekend got me thinking about the gifts I’ve most loved giving and receiving since entering Momhood four years ago.

If you’re thinking of straying from the registry – or looking for a “Welcome to the World” gift after the happy arrival, here is MOMnPOP’s No-Fail New Baby Gift Guide.

  1. Sterling Silver Anything – Simply the best. Whether it’s a rattle, spoon, cup or comb, this gift is destined to be a cherished keepsake. Lunt and Tiffany & Co. offer outstanding pieces, many of which can be engraved. Plus, sterling has natural antimicrobial properties which new moms like to hear.
  2. Swaddling/Receiving Blankets – Made of muslin and bamboo, Aden + Anais make the cutest, coolest, softest swaddlers out there right now. Available here at Layla Grayce and Target, they are so amazing I almost want to endure another pregnancy just to wrap a newborn in these. Almost. Before these hit the market though, I used SwaddleDesigns for both my babes. In fact, the Little Miss adopted her polka dot version as her go-to at bedtime every night. Gift sets available at Nordstrom and BabiesRUs.
  3. Personalized Blanket – I’ve ordered the personalized cable knit blanket from Elegant Baby for probably 10 new sweet peas over the last couple years. Well-priced and good options for embroidery, just make sure you get the correct spelling of the new babe before ordering. I have to say though, I’m slightly annoyed they aren’t offering the blanket in brown anymore. 
  4. Baby’s First Library – When in doubt, you cannot go wrong with books. Grab some classics like The Little Prince or anything by Shel Silverstein, your own favorites from childhood, or a bunch of board books like I Love You Stinky Face, Goodnight Moon, On the Day You Were Born and anything by Eric Carle or Sandra Boynton. Use a modern, organic receiving blanket (see #2) to line a handsome little basket mom can use in the nursery, and voila! A well-read child.
  5. A Love of Music – Three CDs every nursery should have:

Have some other favorites? Post them here!

The Chignon: Pretty, Classic and Fun to Say

November 12, 2010

Say it with me, The Shee-nyawn

The festive season is upon us and the calendar is filling up with parties, family gatherings and dinner/drinks with friends. So when I found this beautiful blog, This is Glamorous, the other day, I was smitten with their post on holiday hair how-to: the side chignon.

I recently asked my hair stylist for a suggestion and demo on how to do a cute, quick pin-up with a bit more interest than the tired old pony or my never-quite-right messy knot. And it was a variation of the side chignon that she suggested for my shoulder-length hair.

Essentially you pull all your hair into a side pony just behind one ear and tie it back with an elastic. Separate it into three or more pieces and pin each end back into the base of the pony. The longer the hair, the easier it is to work with. It takes a little practice, and if you have shorter hair or layers, don’t worry if there are a few stray pieces shooting out.

You also need to check out their lovely little post on the classic chignon. And for the record, they clarify the pronunciation as, “shee-nyawn.”

Say it with me: Shee-nyawn.

The Cult of the iPhone

November 11, 2010

A friend told me to check this out, then warned me I may fall off my chair laughing. With more than 10 million views, it obviously strikes a chord about the uber-brand Apple has created.

Language Alert: Yes, it’s a cartoon, but I’m pretty sure you don’t want kids listening in or watching this.

Conan’s Back on TBS

November 9, 2010

Conan's Back on TBS

Got a text from my husband who was in NYC Monday night saying, “Back at the hotel watching Conan.” I assumed it meant, “Call me if you’re still up because I’m bored and watching Conan the Barbarian.”

So I called, and had to laugh when I discovered he actually meant he was watching Conan O’Brien’s first show on TBS — you know, nine months after The Tonight Show debacle with Jay Leno. I shut my laptop and ran into the other room to catch up with one of my favorite late night hosts.

Admittedly, the only late night show I ever really watch is The Daily Show with Jon Stewart – which puts me in a quandary now that the two share the same time slot. But, I’ve loved Conan since college (not the Barbarian) – and after the way NBC’s handling of Conan earlier this year, I’m glad he’s back on the air. I just like knowing he and Andy are there if I need a laugh before bed.

Here are reviews from Entertainment Weekly and USA Today.

What do you think? Will you watch? Are you even up that late?

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