Tuesday, December 31, 2013

2K14: bring it.

I love living in Philadelphia on the first day of a new year.

When we first moved here (as fresh faced babies), in 2004, I didn't know what I was getting into. Not as far as Philly (I had an idea of what that was), but more in regards to New Years.

2008, 2009, 2010, we threw some super-great ragers over at Beulah, with champagne fountains, countdowns, confetti cannons, loud music, people kissing, and everything. So fun. (Props to Marilyn and Sarah, each in their own way the best co-hosts).

Wasn't Beulah fun?
Fast forward: If you follow me on Instagram (also "doggieeyes" over there, if you're not) you've either watched or not watched some of my New Years Day round-ups.  Around 2010, I started "believing" in the Mummers in earnest. 

(If you don't know about it, I can't even really explain it. Mix f'real dudes, banjos, drag, liquor, sleeplessness, competitive drive, hometown pride, mardi gras, and umbrellas, always, lawlessness, hints of racism, carnival, bitter cold, and hangovers, silly string, party anthems, and olde timey traditions, elaborate costumes, and you've got an idea. If you really need to know you should try wikipedia or something, but I'm not sure how far that would get you.)  

All this stuff happens on New Years Day. Now that I'm an old person, this means taking it a little easier on New Year's Eve. I can do that!  

It's weird and it's wild. And you need to be in bed by 10:30.

And I'm really glad I've gotten to do it so many times.  This is my TENTH New Years in Philly, and I'm looking forward to it again tomorrow.

Ten more years? Maybe. Maybe not.

In any case: to my friends who venture out for another day of parties after a whole night of parties, to midnight kissees, to mummers, to Mayor Nutter (?), to Holly for brainstorming resolutions with me every year, to Brown who is maybe my best Mummer soldier, to everybody: Happy New Year. I like it. (Maybe some more on Resolutions later.)

Monday, December 16, 2013

field trip

This weekend JB and Ry took me to see my Philly Photo Day billboard. It's up in my old hood (5th and Oxford), near Crane Arts.

The rainbows look better IRL (both "IRL" in my own window, really, and "IRL" on the billboard, as opposed to a photo of a photo, if that makes sense.)

Thankfully, we were able to find an excellent parking spot for observation.

Monday, December 2, 2013


Some things I have done for my cat:

  • paid for him to get awesome haircuts
  • got him a kitten
  • bought this cool A-frame birdhouse to hang outside his window
  • bought suet, suet cage, to try to attract birds to birdhouse, in fact attracting all the fatty squirrels 

and finally

  • covering suet in Franks to deter squirrels after reading that they hate spicy
  • conceding that squirrels are going to eat it anyway, but really they're just as interesting to watch as birds

Sunday, December 1, 2013


I subscribe to photoyolo, this super straightforward/cool photography project where you just get emailed one picture a day.

I get the daily picture sent to my hotmail, so it's not jammin' up my "real" inbox. Most days I open my yolo, some days I don't. It might be a phone pic of a dog doing a thing, or it might be this:

but they're usually worth opening and spending 3 seconds on. The simplicity of the whole project (including the website and their emails) was super appealing to me. You can sign up here if you're interested.

Friday, November 29, 2013

school days

Here's my new school, where I'm long-term subbing 'til March.  It's in a cool old mansion on Germantown Ave. 

New job means: 
  • hours of commute a day (which means hours of podcasts a day)
  • early bedtimes (a departure from my most recent sleep-in-til-forever lifestyle)
  • the general sense of purpose which comes from employment at any level
  • clay in the treads of all my shoes, paint in my hair, glue on my sweaters
Edit: working with little kids also means I'm surpassing my daily hug intake.  Brian Neville once told us that a human needs 7+ hugs a day (source?) to feel the best/do the best/etc.  I'm more than there.

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Franklin Flea: the good/bad/etc, "some New York thing"

Today we hit the hot new flea market in town, the Franklin Flea, which has filled the "hip flea market" hole that "sneered" at Brooklyn Flea* left.  I have a couple mixed feelings about it, but generally I'd say to try it out.

The good: it's in the old Strawbridges.  So it's a pretty, old, fancy department store, with a few fixtures (like giant chandeliers) in tact and in use.  There's lots of well curated stuff (furniture, housewares, clothes) and a good mix of vintage and handmade.  For instance, I got this "80's Aztec Babydoll dress", which I think fits into my new "wacky art teacher" wardrobe pretty well.

I also got these sour cream glasses which are kind of my holy grail of finds (Philadelphia '76 bicentennial glasses).

Which brings me to the (kind of) bad. Prices were spot on.  Like, not outrageously high or anything, but like exactly market value.  No deals.
The other bad news is that it's still a little small.  Hopefully they'll keep growing and take over some more of Strawbridges, and it'll be a spot you might want to spend a couple hours at.

In any case, worth checking out.

*this whole idea is funny, how people basically boycotted the Brooklyn Flea when it was at the Piazza just because it had the word "Brooklyn" in it.  This article in Philly Magazine is great (in a way), especially because of the one quote:  "I refuse to support anything in Philadelphia that has some New York thing in it's name."

Friday, November 15, 2013


Faithful readers will know I'm a big proponent of Philly Photo Day.

Here's a really good picture I took with my telephone at the opening last night.  (It was impossible).

Well, guess what!  This girl's photo is gonna be on a billboard!  During the month of December, you'll be able to take a field trip to picturesque Kensington, Philadelphia, and see my "work" real big.

Why a picture of curtains and rainbows got picked is kind of mysterious, but I'm pretty stoked anyway*

I'm also excited that they picked another one that is going to be a giant cat.  But more on that later.


I (and a few other people you may know) have embarked on a November challenge that's not about mustaches.  After reading both some suspicious but encouraging blog posts , and some I know I can do better than this guy posts on the topic, I got inspired to try it myself.  A gallon a day, for a month (November).

To be honest, I always drink a fair amount of water, so it wasn't a huge change to shoot for a gallon. At the onset, the hardest part was trying to keep track.  Fancy water is always sold in liters, but at home or at the bar, I'm more likely to have a pint, and how do pints and liters match up, and how many of those are in a gallon!?  I eventually abandoned any ideas of liters, and locked into those 8 pints a day.

See?  A whole shelf of pint glasses, ready to get filled and emptied and refilled.

Coming up on 2 weeks (I started on the Nov 3rd), and I must say: there's some pros and cons.  Well, only one con.  Bathroom trips.  All the time. The pros?

  • feeling good about my skin (this may be imaginary)
  • drinking water somehow means I'm eating a little less bad food?  I find I have this mentality that I worked so hard to get all this good (water) into my body, it'd be dumb to eat all the hoagies.*
  • going out, I'm trying to alternate drinks with pints of water.  That double results in drinking less booze (saving money/making better choices) and way better mornings, because my body is ultra hydrated all the time
  • my apartment is, at times, SUPER hot and dry, and I think having so much water in my system is helping me deal with that without having a body freakout

A few friends have jumped on this hydration-train, with various degrees of dedication. While I'm finding that I'm hitting 12(ish) pints (or 1.5gal) a day, that might not be for everyone (A: one liter is a great start, I swear). Anyway. So far? Feeling good. And now I have to go to the bathroom.

I also wrote about this experiment from a...slightly different/probably less appropriate for you angle here.

*this isn't categorically true, and I wouldn't say I've totally made a switch to a healthy diet, but I'm making better decisions sometimes.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013


For someone that likes Halloween pretty good, I sure am ill-prepared for some parts of it.

Sorry, kids.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013


Thanks, Meesh/Jumi/Dan for hosting Halloween and aren't Poseybooth pictures good?

Friday, October 18, 2013


Guess what day it is?  Philly Photo Day.

That means (same as last year, and the year before....) take a picture anywhere in Philadelphia, any time today, and send it in.  Philadelphia Photo Arts Center will print it, and it will be in an exhibit up at Crane Arts (I think in November).

(this isn't a picture I'm sending in, but it's an outtake from other blog, standing in for The Picture. I'll take the right picture soon, the day is young.)

This project started a few years ago, and every time I've been to the exhibit, there are a million more pictures than the time before, which is cool.  It's a little like IRL Instagram (so: cats, selfies, skylines, etc) but also a little better.
Get yours in this year.  Then we can go to the show and drink wine and look for our pictures on the wall and dodge people we don't want to see.

(Oh, and bonus big deal: PPAC had a successful Kickstarter for this project, and will be posting 40 Photo Day photos on billboards this year.  That's cool.)

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

the Diaphone-in

Last week, our pals the Diaphone played upstairs at KFN, with some of our other friends and some strangers.

Aside from an embarrassing trip-up with the door boy, it was all really nice. You can listen to their music here.


I'm at home today, waiting on Urban Outfitters worst business move (a delivery company called "LASERSHIP").  With time on my hands and leftover spaghetti in my belly, I'm sorting through recent pictures, organizing them in the best way I know how*, by room.

Things that are going on in my kitchen lately.  (Not cooking.)

Getting cats out of cabinets, Halloween props, and out-takes from my other blogging gig.

*jk, sort of.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

eShakti (a plug, but a real one)

If you've seen me lately, I've probably raved on eShakti to you.  I got into it through someone else's blog, what seems like a billion years ago*, and have been totally stoked on it since.

Here's the first dress I got from them. Seersucker.  Good, yeah?

They make these great, vintage-y dresses, and here's my favorite parts:

  • great quality, fully lined(!) dresses
  • full skirts (think Betty Draper, early years)
  • there is always a sale, and usually a good one
  • $25 off your first order ($30 now!)
  • custom sizing, as in made-for-you, what-are-your-measurements
  • customization (you want cap sleeves? a longer skirt?)
  • pockets on everything so far
  • details like fabric buttons, and great embroidery

I've gotten three so far that I like a lot.  (Disclosure. I also got one I didn't like. No big.  Sent it back, and got a credit for the full amount plus 20%).  They're like the dresses you just dream of finding at a thrift store or Anthropologie's basement, but if you do find it, it doesn't fit great, or has a gross stain or something.

Anyway: as part of their referral program, you can use my link and get $30 off (instead of $25) and I get a credit with them.  Do it. Try one out.

I have only two non-raves about them. First is that shipping is a little pricey, (because of overseas? I don't know) but they sometimes do free shipping promotions, so maybe that will happen again soon.  You could fill your cart, and wait for it.  Second non-rave, the website is a little crazy to navigate (a lot of sorting the good from the bad) but you'll figure it out.

Try a dress.  If you end up needing a code (but I don't think you will?) try "liedke32cy".

This buffalo plaid one is my favorite one.

*probably more like 3 months ago

Sunday, October 6, 2013


Perhaps fueled by the season, or by a recent Apartment Therapy post, or by my recent (re)foray into the world of Scully and Mulder*, I went on a (very short) journey to find out who used to live in my house.

In case you haven't been to my South Philly house, it's this big old victorian on Broad Street - now cut up into four apartments. It's cool to think about when it was a single family home, and who lived here, and what was life on Broad Street like.  (I also like thinking about how all people who have lived here in the past hundred(+) years have probably had New Year's Day parties because of the prime location for the Mummer's parade.)

Anyway, thanks to the recent(?) digitalization of the 1940 census, it's fairly easy to get a little info on who lived here (or anywhere) that year. In this case, Mary and Christine Hehl, single ladies, college grads (!) who apparently never married (or had jobs).  WHAT DID THE TWO OF THEM DO IN THIS GIANT HOUSE!  As a single, underemployed girl myself, I feel pretty connected to them.  Did they too spend afternoons getting coffee on Passyunk?

Did a little backtracking, and these girls always lived in this house, so far as I can tell.  At this (1940) point, they're in their late sixties.  So the next question is, what happened to Mom (also "Mary Christine") and German transplant Dad?  Died.  In the house!  Spooky!

This is what I do now.  (The hardest part is always reading the cursive.)

*I'm not totally sure how Scully and Mulder fit in, but I think they do.  I watch it and am inspired to research things and come to goofier conclusions than normal.

Thursday, October 3, 2013

lucky day

In between jobs today I found this big ole crystal (?) in the free box at the Aids Thrift.  Gonna find a good spot for it so it will shoot some good lasers my way.

Then, I found this cool lion mug, which lord knows isn't the best mug in my life, but is still pretty cool.

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Smoke 'Em

Here's a little video recap of a recent event at Yards, where you can spot yours truly* slo-mo pouring beer and walking around in a professional manner.

*and probably like seven other people you know.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

polka-dot fridge

Sometimes I order stuff on the internet, then I forget about it, and THEN it's at my door when I get home.  Best*!

Today I got some matte gold vinyl.  

In case you don't know, or in case you can't tell in these pictures, I have the ugliest fridge in the world. I wish I had some before-before-before pictures (it was white, and covered in rust).  Then I tried patterned blue contact paper (hated it), considered a lot of different paint colors, and (on the suggestions of several dinner attendees) landed on matte black paint (which has also gotten very rusty).  

Here's my plain-but-rusty fridge.
This is the vinyl I got in the mail, and my favorite craft-tool, a 2 1/4" circle punch.

Here's the circles I cut - as many as I could get from a 12x24" sheet of vinyl.  It cost $2.99 on Amazon. This is the second time I've used vinyl film, and it's way cooler than contact paper: like a hundred times thinner, and just as easy to re-position or remove.  Definite recommend.

A little measuring, and 20 minutes later, and I sucessfully made my kitchen even busier than it was. Phew.


chores and quotation marks

Feeling grown-up.  I am so excited that it is trash day.

Last Tuesday was trash day, and I was traipsing around Rochester thrift stores so the trash didn't get out.  Now it's so gross.

This is what I blog about.  Gross, yeah?

In other news, I got "interviewed" about the government shutdown today.  I said the dumbest thing, and it's going to be there in the neighborhood paper, with my picture.  COOL.  (It all happened so fast, and will be delivered to your doorstep next week.)  Whoops.

Monday, September 30, 2013

PA Level Ix2

After some fairly relaxed, and non-urgent waiting, today I was emailed an official PDF proving my expertise as a Library Media specialist.  Basically this means that John Dewey and I are professional BFF on several levels (education reform and his decimals).
Getting certified in Library meant

  • studying up on my RL Stine, Laura Ingalls, and Sideways Stories from Wayside School
  • paying the state an amount of money
  • showing up on time for a test.

Nailed it.*

As soon as I can, I'm totally gonna print it on a sympathetic friend's printer and put it next to my other certification and in a folder in a cabinet, where it will somehow magically send out employment rays and get me a cool job, because I'm so much more hirable now that I'm double certified.  Any takers? Seriously.

Other news:

  • iOS 7.  I did it, and it's as good as everyone said.  
  • No coffee mug action yet, but I don't always remember it.  Okay, I only remembered it once.
  • Halloween is heavy on my mind, and perhaps everyone's.  Been coming up a lot, right?  I'm thinking I'll follow a Martha tute this year, hopefully it will be very ephemeral.  More on that later, I'm sure.

*Okay, I also had to already be a certified teacher (check), which, obviously, took years and a very expensive degree.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

mug shot

It's been about a million years* since I blogged.  I was busy student teaching, having a short lived relationship, moving to Broad Street, taking high school kids on field trips, going on mini-vacations to the Poconos, Matoaka, Colorado, Honeoye, having backyard bonfires, buying everything on Craigslist and hanging on rooftops.   Now I'm equally busy (jk) sending out resumes and thinking about Halloween costumes.

All this to say, I'm semi-interested in getting back on the Blogger horse, and going another round.  It's an easy way to motivate myself to take pictures of things, write whole sentences instead of to-do lists, and give all my employed friends something to read for 1-2 minutes during their workday (you're welcome). 

So what's new?  This mug, for one.  HZ had it made for me (to accompany my coffeeshop day-life), and we'll all cross our fingers that it doesn't get me into trouble.  The kind of bad news is that the only nearby shop that has a BYO mug discount doesn't have internet right now, which makes it a less-great place to go.  But hopefully that'll get solved real soon.  

Check back for more important life updates from me.  Like maybe a manicure, yikes.

*7 months or something?  "Forever" in blog world.  

Monday, January 7, 2013


I've had a lot of things happening with my apartment (pad 1), everything in flux (updates, someday).

THEN I found this (pad 2) in my mailbox.

A lot of why's, and how's, and a flood of emotion.  Like "I wish I really was getting all these packages", and "I'm not", and "how can I use this for a good experiment/joke/something".
I can tell you this.  There's no good jokes (they'd all be mean-ish/disappointing), and it has way way less value than say, a blank script pad (not that I'd do that).

Any ideas?