Derek Jeter's pants

Mattio and I love to watch those How It's made shows--when you buy a pair of running shoes, or a lawnmower, or, I don't know, Christmas ornaments, you don't really think about how many people it takes to make that one object.

The same is true for baseball uniforms; I would love to spend the day in this factory, watching Derek Jeter's pants get made.

Of course this clip immediately reminded me of George Costanza: "Cotton BREATHES."


Just stuff I see that I like: 2.22.13

I had a crazy week last week, so I really could've used some downtime. Fortunately Monday was a holiday and Zoesmom was off, so we shopped until we dropped. Actually, I could've used a recovery day from all that shopping, but I think that might be borderline ridiculous. Work-wise, I handed off files to my super awesome developer, got these super cool envelopes for a client (can't wait to show you that whole stationery suite once it comes in from the printer), sent out more stationery to be approved, and right now I'm gearing up for a web design kick off next week. Now I definitely need some downtime, and fortunately the Berkshires will provide that to me tomorrow.

Seen + noted this week:

...And this is why the internet is awesome: somebody bought the domain for Guy Fieri's Times Square restaurant, and published a fake menu. I'd like to shake this guy's hand (fake menu guy, not Fieri guy).

This Google Glass thing could be pretty cool. Especially when I'm on my bike and there's like, a thousand pictures I want to take but ohmygod I am not going to stop because what's the point of riding if I'm stopping every thirty seconds to Instagram?

What happens when you give up your cell phone, social media, AND email? This guy didn't go as crazy as one might think.

I'm not sure this is the Worst Logo Ever (caution: you most likely will have a seizure), but the article does contain sound design advice (especially coming from a non-designer): If you are ever thinking of designing an app, or a website, or literally anything, make sure it doesn't look like someone welded 3D glasses to your face and them bombarded you with gamma rays.

I leveraged this article to socialize it on my blog. Or, I used crazy jargon to tell you about the crazy jargon article. Drink the Kool-Aid, kids, and due diligence.

I think Jason Kottke hits the nail on the head when he says that he could watch this compilation of goats yelling like people once a day for the rest of his life.

Instagram of the week:

3 feet of snow doesn't take as long as you think to melt; but you know, it is 3 feet, so there's still plenty left to sled on. And that's just what we did this past Saturday. I'm not sure who had more fun: the kids or the adults. Hope you're having fun this weekend, no matter what you're doing!


Official calligrapher? Sign me up!

You guys, did you know there is an official White House Calligrapher? Like, that's a real job; to hand letter invitations and certificates FOR THE WHITE HOUSE.

I know, I couldn't believe it either. But it's a real thing, and here's a little C-SPAN video to show you a little more about the White House Graphics and Calligraphy Office (I mean, really. The White House Graphics and Calligraphy Office? How did I not know about this?)

The Graphics and Calligraphy Office (GCO) is a unit of the Social Office at the White House, the official residence of the President of the United States. Located in the East Wing, the Graphics and Calligraphy Office coordinates and produces all non-political social invitations, place cards, presidential proclamationsletters patentmilitary commissions, and official greetings.

I want to work at the GCO. Can you even imagine? "Good morning Mr. President. Can you just approve this presidential proclamation, and I'll have those invitations for you to look at tomorrow?"

Alright, I know that's not really how it works. But I've been watching a lot of the West Wing lately, so that's how I'm imagining it goes. Oh, and by the way, we are of course walking down a hall while I am handing off said files to the president, because everyone in the White House walks and talks. And then Josh Lyman comes by and interrupts us with some witty banter, and... oh, alright. Focus.

Seriously, you guys, carpel tunnel aside (OHMYGOD, THE CARPEL TUNNEL), how awesome would that be: "Today we're working on place cards for the Queen's dinner. Just hand lettering Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge right now..."

Awesome. I'm planning a tour right now, as I type. Because I so want to meet these people (especially the guy who's worked there 27 years. 27 YEARS AND HIS HAND HASN'T FALLEN OFF DUE TO CARPEL TUNNEL) and spend a day in the GCO. Who's coming with me?


Just stuff I see that I like: 2.15.13

This past weekend's epic snowstorm brought us the February break that Fairfield Public Schools had taken out of the calendar this year. Seriously, the kids were off Friday, Monday and Tuesday; the intern was home sick on Wednesday (seriously. Five days she had to be sick, and she chooses the first day back to school), back to school Thursday, and they're off again for a teacher development day today, and President's day on Monday. So, the bright side of all this parent/child bonding (said through clenched teeth) was sledding! Movies (No, we didn't watch Lazy Sunday, but come on, can you really say Chronicles of Narnia without thinking of it?)! Books! And maybe a little too much time on their iPods so I could get something done. Because when you work from home, you really don't get snow days, do you?

Seen + noted this week:

Loving this new campaign from Expedia using airport codes from luggage tags to send a message. Clever.

And while we're on the subject of travel, here's AirBnB's annual report. I love the stories that it tells.

Because I'm a type nerd.

About a month ago, I was called for jury duty, and man, was I stressed about being chosen to serve. I wish that I had read this beautifully written article about an acquaintance's experience being called for jury duty before I had to go. Not only is it so eloquent, but it really puts things in perspective.

Instagram of the week:

I'm not going to bore you with snowstorm pics. If you live around here, you're still living it. Instead, how cool is this? This is Mattio's great-grandmother's passport. Unfortunately, his grandmother passed away this past week; one of his relatives brought this to the luncheon after the funeral. This was his grandmother's mother. I hope his grandmother was a well-behaved child, because something tells me you do NOT want to be on the wrong side of this woman.Weekend plans, anyone? We are--FINALLY--taking advantage of the snow and going skiing, and then since it's a long weekend, and Monday is a holiday, and there are sales to be taken advantage of, Zoesmom and I have some plans to do serious damage at Kate Spade. I mean, unless you are Mattio reading this, and if so then we are just going to window shop.Happy weekend!


Opt out

I am so annoyed by the existence of the phone book. Seriously. Who is still using this antiquated mode of getting in touch with someone?

Yesterday I needed a snow plow. I didn't dig out the phone book, I searched online for someone who could dig me out of my driveway. To tell you the truth, it wouldn't even occur to me to look in a phone book. At all.

And yet it keeps getting delivered to my house, and I keep piling them up in the mudroom (because in some sick twist of fate, the recycling company will not accept them; and I have too much environmental guilt to flat out throw them away). I know I can bring them down to the phone company to be recycled, but OH. MY. GOD. Talk about unnecessary steps to get rid of something I never wanted in the first place.

Enter the National Yellow Pages Consumer Choice and Opt Out Site. Register with them, and you can choose which phone books you don't want to receive (ALL OF THEM). No joke, we were registered to get FOUR phone books. Four. It's mind boggling that these companies are still in business, and in business so much that there are four phone books in my area.

I've gone and unchecked every box--no more phone book piles in my mudroom!


Watch this

Current state:

Seriously, you guys. If you're not in New England, I can't even begin to describe the amount of snow--here in Fairfield we got 35 inches. THIRTY FIVE INCHES. The majority of the snow fell Friday into Saturday, and as of Monday morning we are still not completely dug out.

It's insane.


Just stuff I see that I like: 2.8.13

File approved, release to printer.

My 5 favorite words this week. 1 client has said them to me--waiting on 1 more!

Seen + noted this week:

From the "This Person Has Too Much Time on Their Hands" department: Gangnam Style, drawn by hand.

Last week was the final episode of 30 Rock--and while I haven't watched the show in a while, I did enjoy it in it's prime. Here's a fun list of infographics based on 30 Rock jokes ("It's after 6. What am I, a farmer?" gets me every time. If there was one role Alec Baldwin was born to play, it was Jack Donaghy).

Last week was also a pretty big, fancy football game. During the game, the lights went out. And people tweeted about it. Some of those tweets were funny.

People: pay your graphic designers. Well, really, pay anyone who does any sort of work for you. But seriously, when you don't pay the person who has access to your web server, this happens.

Memos from the 80s (30 YEARS AGO, if you're into feeling old) are funny, especially this one from the New York Times, citing their computer policy.

It's getting real in the Whole Foods parking lot. Funny.

Instagram of the week:

This past weekend, we traveled to Philadelphia... basically for lunch. We had a crazy night Saturday night, and our kids all had to be in different places at different times, but the teenager's photography was going to be on display at Drexel University, and the opening day was Saturday, so how could we not go? Logistics wouldn't allow for us to make a weekend out of it, so Saturday morning we dropped the other 2 kids off with helpful friends and family, and we drove 3 hours to Philly, ate lunch at Drexel Pizza, saw Ashlee's artwork, and drove the 3 hours back home. We might've been in Philly for an hour and a half--but very worth it to see the teenager's work up on a gallery wall. And, quite frankly, the talent on those walls was amazing. So the Instagram of the week is the teenager's gallery debut--hopefully the first of many.

The weather forecast here is snow, snow, snow--and I for one, can't wait! We are hunkering down Saturday, and saving our energy for Sunday when we'll hopefully be skiing on fresh powder. I hope you guys all have a great weekend, no matter what the weather brings you!



Sometimes I come across something so jaw-droppingly beautiful, it leaves me speechless (hard to imagine, I know). But seriously--these graphite drawings by cuban artist Jorge López Pardo? I can't. There just are no words to describe the beauty.

López Pardo uses a plane as a symbol of the modern man who undergoes the trials and tribulations of life—struggling with inner dilemmas, from loneliness to one's own personal path. They are artistic portrayals of the plight of man. 
To explain his chosen subject López Pardo says, "A plane has no boundaries—in fact, it’s always breaking them." He also points out their globally recognized form and the multicultural cargo and passengers any given aircraft holds. His message about the contemporary man's internal struggle is a universal one. The artist explains, "The sobriety and the formal synthesis, as well as the vague environments, make these works spaces for a gaze toward the interior, a search that exceeds the limits of the machine and becomes eminently human."


Watch this

Football is stupid, and Downton was on, and you've probably seen most of the commercials anyway so I'm not going to be doing any Super Bowl recapping today.

Instead, I'm going to show you a commercial that aired locally in CT during last night's game. It's for the Smilow Cancer Center at Yale, and features the Chamber singers of my 9 year old's children's choir (she's not in the Chamber Choir--yet) singing Smilow's feature song, Closer to Free, in a flash mob at Union Station in New Haven.

If you can't watch this without crying (and maybe it's just me; some of the singers are friends/siblings of friends with my kids--and, you know, the whole, people surviving cancer), then you definitely should not watch the 3 minute cut, which is even more impressive.

Everything about this is so amazing: the singers (that kid that gets up to sing at first--can you imagine being him??), the dancers, the looks on people's faces... Love, love love it. Much better than some of last night's national ads, no?


Just stuff I see that I like: 2.1.13

This week has been filled with lots of little odds and ends for me: I'm working on a couple of website designs, some stationery suites, and a client just got back to me regarding a logo I worked on before the holidays. She didn't pick my first choice, which is a little more than the usual bummer; as I worked so hard on the concept behind it, and I truly, truly loved it. Don't get me wrong, I still like the logo she ended up going with--just not as much as my first choice. Ah well, you win some, you lose some; and--in this case--some just end up coming in second place.

Seen + noted this week:

Ladies and gentlemen (but mostly ladies): may I present John Slattery at the SAG Awards. Normally I'm a Jon Hamm kind of girl, but really, the suit? The glasses? THE HAIR?? I die.

Speaking of I die... check out these Underwater Dogs photos. A small handful of the dogs look vicious, but most are completely head-over-heels adorable.

I'm embarrassed to say how I came across this link for calligrapher Rajiv Surendra's website (I'm not saying I did, but I might have found it in a Buzzfeed article titled Where the Guys From Mean Girls Are Now. I said MIGHT). Anywho, don't read that Buzzfeed article--if I did read it I would report that it's 100% useless and not that entertaining--instead check out Rajiv's beautiful work. Much more visually pleasing.

I love the idea behind this This Downton Abbey Super Nintendo game, even though it looks more painfully boring than "tastefully exciting." The video is cute, especially the background theme music.

Speaking of Downton... Recapping This past week's episode, or what I like to call, HOLY CRAP! Or the much lighter Season 3, episode 4 recap via Facebook.

Claire Danes + crying = Claire Danes Cry Face Project. Made me giggle.

I can't decide if I like this new Vine app or not. I think if my kids knew about it, they'd have a field day (they love making videos). Have you used it yet? What do you think?

Instagram of the week:

Wednesday morning was super foggy here--you could barely see in front of you. I made the girls walk to school, because prior to that it was raining, and prior to that it was about 2 degrees--for a week. When I got home from Wednesday morning's walk, my hair could best be described as "Afro." But the fresh air and the dense fog blurring everything was worth it.This weekend we're off to Philly for the teenager's photography exhibit! I can't wait! We usually go skiing Super Bowl Sunday, but because we have such a busy Saturday I'm not sure that's going to happen. We will be hunkered down Sunday night, with Mattio more interested in the game and myself more interested in the ads (and Downton, natch). I hope your weekend is just as fun as ours promises to be!