Monday, December 31, 2018

New Year's Eve

Levi is fine but he wasn't feeling great this morning. We took him to a 24 hour animal hospital about an hour away from where we're staying. There were tests and an ultrasound and something-something about elevated liver enzyme numbers. We spent the afternoon in a little room at the animal hospital with the vet checking in every half hour or so to update us on the situation. Levi is spending the night there to get fluids and antibiotics and other things and we should get to pick him up tomorrow.

It's New Year's Eve and I had every good intention of staying awake tonight until at least 10:00pm but at 7:00 when we finally got back and were having dinner, the bottom fell out of my energy situation.

"You guys, I got this New Year's banner but I'm too tired to put it together and hang it up so I'm just going to put the box here in the middle of the table and we can pretend. Bob, what are your goals for the new year?"

"Well... I want to make my baseball team better by being a better player. Oh, and keep getting good grades."

"Excellent. What about you, honey?"

"I'd like to find a job I'm excited about. Keep making and recording music, and find something we can do as a family to volunteer our time to a cause we believe in."

"I'm on board with all of that."

"What about you, Mom?"

"I haven't come up with anything yet. Do you have any ideas for me, Bob?"

"You should keep writing."

"Check. Anything else?"

"I don't know, Mom. You're pretty good already."

"Babe, you're the sweetest."

And then I went and poured a cup of 7:30pm coffee so I could make it until 10:00pm.

Saturday, December 29, 2018

Smacksy Saturday Photo: Grand Plans

Teddy swore he would be finished with the jigsaw puzzle by the time we returned from breakfast. He greatly overestimated his puzzlability.

Friday, December 28, 2018

Wednesday, December 26, 2018

The Rosenbergs

Bob's godmother, Jennifer, commissioned this outstanding artwork of me and the guys. I love two dimensional us.

Tuesday, December 25, 2018

And to All a Good Night

As Christmas draws to a close, I show you just how committed to the season I am/was. I am now the proud owner of this package of Part-T-Frills twirl picks ("A Party's Best Friend) which I used six of for Christmas Eve dinner. At this rate I will likely not use them up until 2038. Happy Holidays!

Monday, December 24, 2018

Christmas Eve Play List

Artwork by Bob Rosenberg

This year, in my effort to lean into the holidays, I've been listening to Christmas music since the day after Thanksgiving. Here is a tiny playlist with some of my very favorites.

Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas - Judy Garland
With some Christmas songs it's the song I love, with others, the performance makes it a favorite. The original Judy Garland version of this song from the movie Meet Me in St. Louis is  lovely and heartbreaking.

Jesu Joy of Man's Desiring - Josh Groban
With this one, it's the song itself, by Bach. (No offense to Mr. Groban, he's a peach.) There are many beautiful versions but this will do.

Ave Maria - Barbara Streisand 
This song, by this singer is one of those perfect things, like a sunrise, or waves on the shore.

Let It Snow, Let It Snow, Let It Snow - Steve Lawrence and Eydie Gorme
Every note of this reminds me of my childhood.

The Christmas Song - Nat King Cole
If warmth was a voice, it would be his, singing this.

Sunday, December 23, 2018

Smacksy Sunday Links

A simple practice for stressful holidays.

Six days of leaning way the hell in for the holidays.

The best Christmas scenes in English literature.

Stop everything - it's a historic bookshop for sale with everything in it.

See inside The British Museum using Google Earth.

And two ways of bathing if you're an otter.

Happy Holiday Sunday.

Friday, December 21, 2018

Thursday, December 20, 2018

Another Great Beauty

While we're on the subject of gorgeous artwork made for me by my supremely talented friends, look at this stunner. My friend Angelika created this lovely painting. (I wish you could see the colors and textures in person.) I see a stormy sea and sky. It reminds me of my hometown. What do you see?

Wednesday, December 19, 2018

Words to Live By

Yesterday, I received this beautiful needlepoint in the mail, made for me by my super talented friend Laurie. I think I have a new motto.

Monday, December 17, 2018

The Newest Member of the Tree

A gift from my friend, Karen. I call this ornament, Jackie O Christmas Tree.

Saturday, December 15, 2018

Smacksy Saturday Photo: Candlelight

I love fireplaces. The look, the smell, the sound - I'm all in. The last time I lived in a house with a working fireplace was 2002. The tray on the coffee table has become our stand-in fireplace: a bunch of candles jammed together, but not enough to set off the smoke detector. And it smells kind of cinnamon-y so it gives the impression that there could be something delicious baking in here. (There isn't.)

Thursday, December 13, 2018

9th Annual Bob's 99 Cent Store Holiday Shopping Trip (*spoiler alert for immediate family)

Bob's Annual 99 Cent Store Holiday Shopping Trip has taken place, once again. Here's how his list was filled out this year:

Me - Green metal travel coffee mug. "I know you already saw it mom but act surprised on Christmas. I picked it because your favorite color is green and I don't think I have to explain the coffee part, do I?"

Mr. Rosenberg - 8oz Bottle of El Tapo hot sauce. "I looked at all the hot sauces and according to the label, this one is the hottest. It has the picture with three chili peppers on it so it's probably pretty darn hot."

Bajan (Mr. Rosenberg's mom) - Silver ceramic shell figurine. "Bajan loves the beach and silver will look good in her house."

Aunt Jill - Mug decorated with the words "Let It Snow" and blue snowflakes. "This is holiday-ish but could sort of double as a Hanukkah mug."

Aunt Jen - Green tea gift pack. "I'm pretty sure Aunt Jen will drink green tea plus green is her favorite color too, I think."

Our Friend Barry - Plush reindeer antler headband. "Barry will totally wear this." (He totally will.)

Pops - Chocolate Santa 3-pack. "Pops loves chocolate and he can save a Santa or two for later."

Our friend Angelika - Small felt poinsettia plant. "She can use this every year since it's fake and everything."

Our friend Anton - Landmarks of the World calendar. "I hope there's some Siberian landmark in here so he can think of home."

MeeMee (my mom) - Christmas Tree shaped music box that plays Oh Christmas Tree. "MeeMee loves Christmas more than anyone I know."

Wednesday, December 12, 2018

Pet Parts

I could blame my continuing adoration of The We Are Teddy & Levi and Our Butts Are Always Touching Phenomenon on my dawning feverish head cold but I'm not really that feverish and my extreme delight is not dependent on anything other than how can anyone not be on board with this level of cuteness? (It's just the sniffles, really.)

Tuesday, December 11, 2018

More Decor

We're still rolling out More Holiday. Please enjoy this lovely garland and sneaky door dog.

Monday, December 10, 2018


"No, we have no idea who ate a chunk out of your delicious tree-skirt."

Thursday, December 6, 2018

The Miracle of Light

Hanukkah is happening. (The Miracle of Light is that we have not set the tinsel tree on fire.)

Monday, December 3, 2018

Good Morning

"Bob? Are you up yet? Follow me into the kitchen and see something."


"I know."

"That sunrise is crazy."

"Isn't it?"

"The sun sure is dressing up for a Monday."

Saturday, December 1, 2018

Friday, November 30, 2018

The Holiday Aroma of It All

You might imagine that Santa would have one of those Christmas tree air fresheners hanging from the rearview mirror of his sleigh. I'm sure you're right, but if he really wanted it to smell all super Christmastime in his immediate area, he would have to go with holiday candles. These smell like fir trees, yes, but also like cinnamon and gingerbread and eggnog and wassail (whatever that is). So Santa, if you're reading this, and of course you are, now you know. Replace that sad, dangling tree with holiday candles. And they won't even be a sleigh fire hazard because, hello? Magic!

Thursday, November 29, 2018

Ring in the Bling

Today I slapped a little tinsely garland up on the chandelier and shazam! Instant dining room flair. The holiday hits just keep on coming, folks.

Wednesday, November 28, 2018

And Checking It Twice

I'm even getting some wrapping done early. (You can see I've gotten everyone basketballs this holiday season.)

Tuesday, November 27, 2018

Yes, Already

I was at the grocery store this evening and the checker reached into my basket and pulled out this gorgeous piece of Christmas Tree Butter Art. "Already?" she asked.

"You don't know my life, Tanya," I did not say back to her. Instead, I smiled.

Monday, November 26, 2018

Fiiive Gol-den Riiings

Last year, our holidays were somewhat preempted by illness and unforeseen circumstances. This year, we are back, baby. And we are making up for lost time. There will be holly and ivy and candles and dreidels. There will be hot chocolate and gingerbread houses and presents under the tree. There will be eight nights of Hanukkah lights and cookies left out for Santa and doorbells and sleigh bells and schnitzel with noodles.

I was going to wait until December 1st to get ye olde snow ball rolling but nay, nay I say. Also, why wait? I want seven swans a-swimming immediately.

Look lively, everyone. We're bringing on the joy.

Sunday, November 25, 2018

Smacksy Sunday Links

A year of Thoreau.

Small bookstores are thriving again. Huzzah.

This baking show is my obsession.

On the sale of an older children's book.

How to turn a bad day around. So sweet.

Take a tea break at Beatrix Potter's cottage.

Jenny Holzer's work at the Tate Modern.  (I have two friends, who don't know each other, who were both visiting London last week. I noticed both posted a photo on FB of the same Jeny Holzer piece at the Tate within an our of each other.)

And a nice lizard named Winston.

Happy Sunday.

Friday, November 23, 2018

A Close Second

Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday  - the friends, the family, the pie. My second favorite holiday is the morning after Thanksgiving when I finish cleaning up and sit and have coffee (and leftover pie) and reflect on another lovely holiday. Did I mention the pie? There's pie.

Thursday, November 22, 2018

Sunday, November 18, 2018

Smacksy Sunday Links

The magic of diner booths.

This flowchart will reveal your Thanksgiving celebrity soulmate. 

And from my Thanksgiving celebrity soulmate, the secrets of Ina Garten's pantry. 

A trip through Belle Époque-era Paris.

Just one piece of art.

And Arnie the baby armadillo.

Happy Sunday.

Smacksy Saturday Photo: Remember That Time I Was in Canada?

Everywhere I looked, I saw something spectacular. That's actually true at home too, when I think about it.

Friday, November 16, 2018

I Can't Help Myself

I think you guys know I'm a sucker for moon/front-yard-tree/wind chime.

Thursday, November 15, 2018

It's Stuffing Season, the Most Wonderful Season of All

It's the return of a perennial favorite. That's right! It's Mademoiselle Magic Stuffing Time! Cut your celery! Dice your onions! Drive all over town trying to find a store that sells that most crucial but elusive of ingredients, dried currants! Use all the exclamation points! You can do it and it will all be worth it! Click the link and travel back in time to meet up with your favorite recipe.

Monday, November 12, 2018

Channel Changer

"Hi. It's me, Levi. I'd like you to watch me instead of four straight hours of Food Network's Christmas Cookie Challenge. Thanks."

Sunday, November 11, 2018

Smacksy Sunday Links

Thank you to those around the world who have reached out to ask how we are affected by the intense Southern California wildfires. We are a very safe distance from the fires and not in danger, affected only by smoke. Praying for those who are in the path of the fire.

How to help victims of the California wildfires. 

Tips to make yourself happier right now.

A fascinating woman and her island.

How to go clothes shopping.

Finally, inclusion in ballet shoes.

The way you brew coffee affects caffeine levels. Mmm caffeine.

And a cat and baby squirrels.

Happy Sunday.