24 April, 2009

I am loving this handbag!

If I had $1,500 in disposable income right now, this is what I'd have snapped up. The epitome of "chunk light" if I ever saw it.

A. Riley bag by Jimmy Choo, $1,499.99 at Overstock. Right now.

What an awesome summer bag! I love the color "camel" - it looks smashing with black, white and denim. (I have a lot of skirts and pants this color. OMG! I just *gasp* realized that I do not have any shoes this color. WTF? A situation I shall surely have to rectify this weekend.) 

But, alas, I don't have that kind of moula to burn. So, I will love you from afar, Riley in beige. 

8 is enough... for now

This past week, just in time for Earth Day, we learned Angelina is NOT pregnant. Whew! That is a relief on so many different fronts.  

I mean that, and I don't normally follow celeb gossip pages (except when I'm in the check-out line).

It's good news from the perspective of Earth's carrying capacity - the existing 9 billion+ people already contribute to/exacerbate many of our planet's environmental problems and strain its natural resources. 

And Brangelina have done enough for our world and its citizens, as evidenced by their philanthropy and 5 adoptions. 

On a personal note, I was very relieved (for Angelina) to learn this rumor is false. I try very hard not to judge others, especially celebrities who live under a microscope. But the twins are still babies. I can tell you as a mother of two under the age of 5, the thought of being pregnant again so soon after having had twins is not the least bit appealing on any level - physical, mental, emotional or any other. 

Surely 8 is enough? Unless, of course, you're her.

14 April, 2009

O, holy month redux

It seems every month is a national something-or-other. I recently posted this on my kids' blog, but since that is private I'm re-posting here in its entirety, with a few minor tweaks. I know, perhaps that lacks imagination, but here it is nonetheless:

April is National Grilled Cheese month! How is it possible I've not heard of this in all my thirty-something years? This has got me thinking that I don't, in fact, love the grilled cheese sandwich as much as I think I do.

I love
cheese. I love bread, and I really love them together. So is it any wonder that grilled cheese is my all-time favorite food? So crisp yet gooey and cheesey. I'm not sure how, within moderation, you can possibly go wrong with bread and cheese, particularly melted cheese.

A little history lesson, courtesy of the San Francisco Examiner:
According to Foodtimeline.org, cooked bread and cheese were popular among many ancient cultures but the earliest recipes can be found in Ancient Roman cookbooks. Today’s grilled cheese sandwiches derived from some of these early recipes. The actual inventor of the sandwich is unknown, but the modern grilled cheese sandwiches many American families are familiar with today date back to the 1920s. Sliced white bread and American cheese were popular in many markets and very inexpensive. Thus, the sandwich was a cheap and easy to make treat.
It's simple - bread, cheese, butter - and yet it's not really because the possibilities are endless. What kind of cheese? What kind of bread bread, and how thick? Then there's how you make it and plate it, from the greasy spoon to gourmet everyone has their own version. I love that Roadfood features Pacific Oyster Bar's version with Tillamook and shrimp (it's in Oregon, duh) where the shrimp are sustainable! (Couldn't resist, I just had to throw that in there.)

Even at it's worst, it can still be pretty finger lickin' good, unless we're talking American on white bread - blech. I prefer whole wheat or sourdough bread and colby jack cheese; right now I'm liking Trader Joe's multigrain cracked sourdough. And it's always, repeat always, cut in triangles. Sometimes gruyere/sharp cheddar/bleu cheese, tomato or basil join the party. And tomato soup has a standing invitation, too - I like the
roasted red pepper and tomato soup from Pacific Foods for a little kick. 

So here's some cheesey goodness in honor of this most sacred of months:

What's yours?

10 April, 2009

Tall, dark and smelly

From ScienceDaily (Apr. 7, 2009):
It may be wise to trust the female nose when it comes to body odor. According to new research from the Monell Center, it is more difficult to mask underarm odor when women are doing the smelling.

The female nose, it always knows! The article continues:
"It is quite difficult to block a woman's awareness of body odor. In contrast, it seems rather easy to do so in men," said study lead author... 
The researchers speculate that females are more attuned to biologically relevant information in sweat that may guide women when choosing a mate...
"Taken together, our studies indicate that human sweat conveys information that is of particular importance to females. This may explain why it is so difficult to block women's perception of sweat odors."

So, ladies, what biologically relevant info are you sniffing out? 

Vacillating on vaccinations

I want to be serious for a moment. I will try not to get overly science-y or too serious, but I've been thinking a lot about the topic of autism and vaccinations recently, especially given April is National Autism Awareness Month.

On the subject of vaccinations, many parents increasingly deciding not to vaccinate, and the possible links to autism from vaccinations, Heather Armstrong over at dooce pretty much sums it up for me:
And I put myself in the position of the mother of that ten-month-old baby who caught the disease because they happened to be at the doctor's office at the same time as the infected boy. A ten-month-old baby whose immune system is such that there is a possibility of death. And I realized, I do not think that I would ever be able to forgive the parents of that infected boy. That is my raw, honest emotion toward that scenario.

That our children do not have to fear death from diseases like measles or polio or whooping cough is a miracle made possible by modern technology and science. And I guess the crux of this really complex problem for me is that as the number of parents who choose not to vaccinate their children increases so does the likelihood that these diseases will become a problem again. [Read her full post
What I want to say on this subject, particularly as a mother who has had to make this same decision, is this. Celebrity spokespeople like Jenny McCarthy can do great things for an issue by increasing awareness of it, but please don't substitute stardom or first-hand experience for expertise. The only expert in the clip below is the pediatrician:

Deciding whether to vaccinate your child is a weighty decision, and one that I believe is still best made between you and your pediatrician.

Learn more about the issues - research the hell out of it - and draw your own fact-based conclusions. But do not be swayed solely by who can argue a point better, what so-and-so starlet/hunk thinks, who had the best sound bites, etc. Likewise, do not make the mistake of believing your resulting encyclopedic knowledge substitutes for a medical degree; it does not, but hopefully it will elevate the level of conversation you may have with your doctor. And recognize that your decision might not solely affect the life of just your own daughter or son.

09 April, 2009

About 'Chunk Light'

No, I'm really not an avid consumer of canned tuna, as one might otherwise surmise from the title of this blog. In fact, I actually do not like it very much at all, but more on that another time. I only mention this fact now in order to emphasize that this is most definitely not a blog devoted to tuna or any other fish, though some of my posts might be fishy (*wink), as the nature of my work in a previous job dealt with sustainable seafood.

But I want to talk chunky for a minute.

I chose "chunk light" for the somewhat oxymoronic connotation of the phrase. Can something truly be chunky and light at the same time? All the chunky things I adore in life - witness for example exhibits A and B - are not exactly what I would describe as "light". Chunky jewelry, shoes, ice cream, and soup (not to be confused with THE Chunky soup), though perhaps there is a chunk-style soup that really is "lite".

A. Little number by Rebecca Norman for $195 I am currently drooling over at Max & Chloe.

B. Vallis sandals by Nine West, $88.95 over at zappos.com.

And "light" which has two significant meanings relevant to this blog. The first is brightness - hopefully this becomes a place for a daily weekly dose of sunshine. Again, please take stock of exhibits A and B. The second is illumination, in the sense of understanding. Of course, light also means the opposite of both heavy and serious, both of which also aptly describe me/my outlook on life.

So roll that all up together and you have CHUNK light. Got it? Good. Now in the words of Slater (Rory Cochrane): Check ya later, chunksters!

UPDATE 7/15/2009: I seem to have found a comfortable rhythm posting one to two times weekly, not "daily" as I originally wrote. Something "chunky" and something "light"...