Tuesday, December 31, 2013

a new year

this may be my last pinky leon holiday card, given the state of PL's health. i just looked through my old PL holiday cards and got choked up thinking about the years we've spent together. this has been happening a lot lately! 

i have been enduring all sorts of uncomfortable sleeping positions—or, more accurately not sleeping positions—as pinky has become very snuggly and particular about where he wants to sleep—under the covers and resting his head on my arm, or sharing my pillow and spooning my head—and i want to accommodate/spoil/appreciate him these days. little old kitty.

anyhow, i hope you have a happy 2014! 

Friday, December 27, 2013

december in laguna

is summery, but with clear air and winter light. the beach looked like a tropical one. i don't remember it looking quite this way growing up. 

also, the tree outside my parents' front door was a fiery yellow it hasn't turned before. apparently my dad did not prune it as he has done in the past, and this was the result. the tree is beautiful in spring too, with bunches of light pink pods and green leaves. 

listening to go slow (reminds me of fleetwood mac) and let me go

Saturday, December 21, 2013


near where i live, a big rose, a blue-purple pointy house. 
pinky leon and i winter sunbathe. 

glad to see hannah konnola is doing her advent calendar again this year.

will ferrell on swedish holiday traditions. not bad. he is married to a swede.

god jul! 



Saturday, December 07, 2013

next up

i'm very excited to read these two books. 

the bottom three photos are of pages from swimming studies by leanne shapton.

Sunday, December 01, 2013


this is the earliest i have ever decorated for christmas. i don't know what came over me, but my tree is up and smelling delicious. found some swedish holiday music on spotify too. not the best choices there, but they sufficed. 

smattering of good stuff:

elisabeth's cat (rut) instagram video 
surf shacks
seed: the untold story
gleason ranch: risking everything (funded!)
autumn dewilde, photographer

Saturday, November 30, 2013

my turkey

have had a cold all thanksgiving + weekend, so i've seen a lot of pinky leon.
also watched all of orange is the new black

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

november so far

cookies, cat and truck. and fall light.
good books
beautiful art show by lisa s
and finally rain

also these links:
rachel kaye
johann kauth
kim eichler-messmer

and listening to lucius, new neko, and carolina wallin pérez singing kent songs (swedish)

Monday, November 04, 2013

fort collins farmers market


some of the many chairs at the great kirkland museum of fine and decorative art in denver. one could go many many times and not see everything.

colorado mountains. the landscapes are so spacious. even downtown fort collins is spacious.

sadly, i didn't have my phone/camera for the beautiful steamboat springs and surrounding aspens. glad i caught this moose though just before my battery died! two more bulls are behind him—the dark shapes in the trees.

Friday, November 01, 2013

halloween bird

in the work bathroom.   

being a blackbird meant having the beatles singing in my head all night. could be worse.  

sad i didn't get a photo with elissa, who was also a bird. 

legs masked

not a very advanced costume, but it was fun to get back in the spirit of halloween after several years of lacking the spirit.


Sunday, October 20, 2013

Sunday, October 13, 2013

fall picnic

from our gourmet book club. not pictured: the eaters, delicious pumpkin bread, cheese and crackers, roasted tomatoes, mimosas with fresh squeezed OJ, espresso.  

Friday, October 04, 2013



Thursday, September 26, 2013

storm colors

just more feet

enjoying mazzy star's does someone have your baby now. couldn't find to link. live version

Monday, September 23, 2013

fall arrived

with its bright smile, after a downpour.

(painting by mati rose)

Sunday, September 15, 2013

saturday morning: pastel houses in the fog 



saturday afternoon: j. and i biked the alameda "urban farm" tour. it spanned much of the island. 

on the old naval base end of the island, just as the fog was burning off, we arrived at the alameda point collaborative's csa. this farm 2 market project trains formerly homeless people (who live in alameda point's supportive housing community). all the residents of the supportive community get a 50% discount on the pesticide-free food produced at the farm. (we tried a passion fruit there. wow! so good.) 

over on the east end, at the hottest point in the day, and right when we were getting hungry, we found the tomato tasting spot, which was set up in someone's back yard. yum. all of the tomatoes being sampled were grown in alameda, and there was quite a range of flavors! 


Wednesday, September 11, 2013

concrete facts


Wednesday, September 04, 2013


such good grey-blue-pink-coral-lavenders and jaw-dropping skies lately.

hopefully this skirt will turn an interesting shade of blue-lavender-grey too. i just tried the 3191 black bean dye technique, sans mordant.

Friday, August 30, 2013


boots is winning hearts and minds. 

he lies in the middle of the sidewalk, moving for no one and offering up his sturdy plumpness for pets. all carefree and lazy-like. his tail is kind of short, and he has a black chin. try to not love him. impossible.

Saturday, August 24, 2013

in b/w and in deep blue-purple


from the never-ending supply of nostalgia in alameda

1713 in berkeley

Thursday, August 22, 2013


mine/not mine

Saturday, August 17, 2013


it's the weekend, so i am eating sweets and taking walks. (started a new old cars in alameda set, in addition to the truck one.)

i also listened to this american life. the story this week is unbelievable and depressing. an estimated 7,000 eritreans have been held hostage and tortured, raped, and/or killed in the sinai peninsula in egypt. it is incredible that human trafficking on such a large scale has been allowed and continues to happen. and that people (other journalists, government officials, and police in various countries) were so reluctant/refused to help meron estefanos, the eritrean-swedish journalist, who was trying to publicize the story in 2011 and get help for the hostages. hostages that were eventually able to escape to israel, were given little or no assistance in israel, aside from the country letting the survivors live there. and now israel can indefinitely detain new eritrean arrivals and has begun sending them back to eritrea.

here's also a ny times article about it.

Thursday, August 15, 2013


patched truck, patched fence

interview with severine von tscharner fleming
sugarhouse creamery  (scroll down page for sweet cow videos)
both found via the irrisistable fleet of bicycles

Sunday, August 11, 2013

two in one


Saturday, August 10, 2013

sun and flowers

top two from oona's friend chris' lovely oakland house. such a pretty garden and front yard, with lots of native plants, including a row of peeling manzanitas. (set)

good stuff
twin designer/photographers at the weaver house
an interview with artist/weaver hannah waldron
pretty video of willie nelson and sons for a fashion label  

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

last sweden bits: vattnet


sweden is a watery place with all that coastline and rivers threading through the land from the coast, the lakes, and the islands (30,000-ish in stockholm's archipelago alone). probably my favorite summertime activity there is swimming in the dark water—water that seems to contain all past swims while also waking me to the present with the initial chill, the mysterious feathery things (fish? reeds?) brushing by, and the soft, smooth mouth of the water. 

this year it wasn't that hot while i was in sweden (around 70 degrees most days). but i did manage to take a couple of swims in the stockholm archipelago (in addition to the quickest of midsummer dips at alnö). my last full day in sweden was the only really hot day of my trip, which only made me want to stay longer and swim more. 

above photos are from my aunt and uncle's house in spillersboda in the stockholm archipelago.

Saturday, July 20, 2013



good stuff:

lena corwin's fabric for the latest more & co collection.

christer strömholm's beautiful photos

planetary folklore

Thursday, July 11, 2013

sweden bits 3: fejan

in sweden they now call facebook fejan (pronounced fay-ahn), fay is short for face and the an at the end is the article the. so fejan means the face in swedish, though the actual swedish word for face is ansikte

anyhow, occasionally i appreciate fejan. on this trip, because of re-connections made through FB, i stayed for several days in stockholm in inger's fantastic apartment. i hadn't seen inger in about 12 years. (somehow i did not take a photo of her and her beautiful kids, but here is some cool wallpaper in her apartment and us 12 years ago.) i also met up with ola, a friend i hadn't seen in 21 years. 

i met both inger and ola at a folkhögskola (similar to a trade school/community college) that i attended for a year after graduating from high school. because of sweden's generous education funding, it was basically free to attend and live at/be fed by (numerous times a day) the school. at that school, i shared a large dorm room with amelie, and we, with inger and 12 other women, attended weaving and cooking classes. 

amelie and i have kept in contact over the years, but we hadn't seen ola (our dorm room neighbor and friend), since we left school. ola, who studied music at the school, had saved, and shared with us, some incriminating evidence of the gentle torment/somewhat desperate affection amelie and i inflicted upon him. this psychedelic heart was just one piece in a series of strange communications from us to ola. 

ola, inger, amelie, and i agreed that the school we attended was like a year-long summer camp, and we reflected on how lucky/privileged we were to have had such an experience—a year to put off decisions about college/work and just make friends, engage in shenanigans, and learn (about ourselves mostly). pretty unreal.  

Saturday, July 06, 2013

sweden bits 2: cousins

as an only child, i longed for siblings. when my mom and i spent time in sweden in the summers when i was a child, i loved being around my eight cousins. i have three—malin, tobbe, and daniel—that  are close to me in age, and i have many memories of playing with them—dance routines, neighborhood games, dress up, etc., and of being pushed to try things i probably wouldn't have otherwise—riding bicycles around malin and tobbe's neighborhood, braving roller coasters. 

one of my cousins, karin, came to live with us for a couple of months when she was 13 and i was 8. she attended the local so cal middle school. she was very sophisticated—she liked sitting at the dinner table and talking with the grown ups, while i just wanted to leave the table to play. i inflicted many hours of clappy games on karin, and i wished she'd stay longer as my temporary big sister.

karin is still sophisticated, and she can talk to and philosophize with just about anyone, deftly putting people at ease. she does this in her job too, as a radio host. karin has stayed with me in SF a couple of times, once with her husband peter (another philosopher and easygoing guy). on this visit to sweden, i stayed with them in sundsvall in their great apartment overlooking the water. the apartment is filled with color and grooviness, much like karin and peter. so much style and funk. karin has numerous collections (some seen above)—toy horses from her youth, toy cars, globe roses, plastic pearl necklaces, and more. together, they have loads of records and cds and great thrifted furniture and clothing. none of it is precious; it's playful. it seems like the two of them are having a good time, enjoying life and people and each other, which makes staying with them a good time. tack igen fin kusin o yuri.

after my mormor died in 2005, i thought i might not feel so connected to sweden anymore, or as inclined to visit. but it still feels like a second home in many ways, thanks in part to family and friends (with a particular heartfelt shout out to karin).

Tuesday, July 02, 2013

sweden bits 1: midsummer

aka, holding on to vacation—

i spent midsummer with my aunt ulrika, uncle kjell, cousin karin, and karin's man, peter. i was hoping to celebrate some midsummer traditions, and luckily they were all obliging. in the morning, karin and i spent a couple of hours collecting birch leaves in the woods and flowers along roads to create our midsommarstång. then karin and peter and i dressed the pole around noon and made ourselves some kransor. kjell and karin entertained with some singing. ulrika made lots of yummy traditional midsummer lunch, and we forced ourselves to drink snaps and sing drinking songs. karin and i cajoled the rest to dance some traditional dances around the pole (små grodorna, vi äro musikanter, karusellen, o raketen), which was pretty funny since my aunt and uncle were not altogether into it (or pretended not to be), and since we barely could reach around the pole to form a ring. challenging to sing and dance while laughing.

karin and i jumped into, and quickly out of, the baltic sea (which swedes do not call the baltic sea, but rather östersjön—since sweden isn't a baltic country). the water was extremely cold since we were up "north" in sweden, on the island alnö (technically it's in the middle, but like san francisco, it gets called northern). some of us lazed around and dried off in the sun.

later we enjoyed champagne and more yummy food made by my aunt, and then dessert—swedish strawberries and whipped cream. 

and the blue dusk light lasted all night.

Monday, July 01, 2013

love now


after watching some of the parade, elisa and scottie and i crashed the wedding of some friends who were getting married at city hall during Pride in SF. what a fantastic energy in city hall. while outside the building crowds of pride revelers were partying, inside the building it was a different kind of excitement. a nervous, reverent, brewing excitement, until couples were wed, and then  bursts of clapping and joyous hoots from various corners of the room when knots were tied. when the newlyweds left the upstairs marriage area, they passed folks in line downstairs waiting to get sent up. those in line cheered the newlyweds as they exited the building. whole lotta love in that building.

the man in the second photo above was waiting for his man to show, and meanwhile, he was the wedding band.

love now balloons

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

back in two

alameda snaps. 

i'll be back here in a couple of weeks. off to sverige (sweden) tomorrow!

some of what i will be eating in the next two weeks (not in this order, although maybe...):

svenska jordgubbar
svenska potatis
midsommar snapps?

Sunday, June 02, 2013

wedding day

from a wedding that was the perfect balance of tears and laughter. earnest heartfelt seriousness alongside lightness, humor, and grace. beautiful moving words, so much love, so much dancing silliness, and so much style (as apparent in above photos). what a happy day. congrats lisa and clay.

a few more

diana's of the brides

Friday, May 31, 2013

light stripes \ \\\\ \ \\ \\\

my workplace is near the construction of SF's new transbay terminal. one benefit of this forever construction zone, is that on sunny days, there is a beautiful stripey light show on my walk to work. i did not catch the best part in my short video. i realized upon reviewing it, that the show happens more on people's backs (see seconds 10–8) than on their feet. (i was feeling shy about filming.) must try again. when there are a lot of people walking, it's the best, because everyone has these light stripes going across them, and the walkway is filled with moving stripes. a daytime disco walk, but almost more surreal. so pretty.

Thursday, May 30, 2013

pie ranch and swanton berry farm

outdoor kitchen at pie ranch—looking in/out and mobile chicken coop

at pie ranch some very new goat kids jumped spaztically about, pigs very eagerly scarfed their food (they will get to be 300 pounds!!!!!), cows grazed. at another farm, we saw a peacock in all his unfurled tail glory. the peahen (the white visible behind peacock) could have cared less about her penmate's display. even when he shook himself and all his feathers, and we oood and aahhhd, she went about pecking at the ground. crazy how iridescent his body is. we also picked berries at swanton's, and i made some sweet and sour strawberry rhubarb jam.

Saturday, May 25, 2013

a new pattern

sewed my first top from a pattern yesterday. the lovely jennifer serr helped me make a pattern from another top i brought to class. (normally she doesn't teach pattern-making in this class, but because the top was pretty simple—and she seemed to like it—she made an exception.) i am so pleased with the result. i had briefly forgotten how satisfying it is to make something that turns out pretty close to how you had envisioned that thing. excited to try more designs. i am trying to only purchase thrift store clothing or clothing that is not made by companies that exploit people/nature. unfortunately, fabric itself is also made by such companies. it's very hard to find fabric that is made in the US and made using sustainable (or even just non-toxic) practices.

some inspiring sewing ladies: jen hewett, christine haynes and jenny of wiksten made

Monday, May 20, 2013

lime pie

eaten yesterday in the back yard in perfect weather. woodstock even joined us at one point, sitting on the bench like a proper chicken.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

there's a new pig in town

in addition to lots of cool old cars, alameda now has two pigs! this little one was visiting bosco the pig (who is much bigger) when i walked by bosco's yard on saturday, post farmers market. the piglet was snorting up a storm. sounded like a grown up pig already. its owners say she will get to be 25–30 pounds. CUTE.


Thursday, May 16, 2013

Sunday, May 12, 2013

weekend bits

mills mfa show/open studios and the barbary ghosts

Sunday, May 05, 2013

alameda chicken coop tour

joan and dylan and aiden and i went on a bicycle tour of alameda chicken coops. fun to see people's different setups and back yards and chickens of all shades (soft grey, iridescent black, buff, spotted, fluffy footed). heard many breed names batted about, but don't remember many of those (buff orpington, wyandotte, bantam, araucana, ameraucana...) we determined that our chickens are some of the luckiest, space-wise, in alameda. all of the alameda chickens though seem to be pretty happyvery robust ladies. some sweet coops out there. also saw some beekeepers and goats and sheep. more photos

Thursday, May 02, 2013

black cat yellow eyes

her eyes matched the roses.

i love keith shore's illustration style.

this new wildcraft studio school looks rad.

uplifting piece by naomi shihab nye

fresh air interview with author of overdressed about the high cost (human rights and environmental) of cheap clothing. in the 50's almost 100% of Americans' clothing was US made. in 1990, 50%. today 2%. 

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Tuesday, April 23, 2013


the chickens are ready to play badminton.

enjoying suede's comeback-of-sorts. takes me back to 1995, sweden. en fin kväll, eller hur?
what are you not telling me?

Monday, April 22, 2013

sun, in/out

it's been perfect weather in the bay area lately. sunny, soft winds, not too hot. 

california being ridiculously beautiful. in tennessee valley, lupines are blooming and dot the grasses. we saw a whale (or whales), a plump quail chirping, black velvety butterflies, a small snake. among us we ate chicken wings, sparkly water, perfect carrots and hummus, fava beans, a baguette with cheeses, a pear, half an avocado, crostini, spicy nuts, and for dessert, a walnut cakey-loaf thing. an uncoordinated, yet suprisingly complementary, satsifying and decadent picnic. 


Tuesday, April 16, 2013


i remember when they were building the interior of gravel & gold, before they opened, and i would walk by and wonder what this gravel & gold place was going to be. sey yes posters covered the windows, and a lot of woodworking seemed to be happening inside—sawdust came flying out of the darkness through the cracked open door. they've changed their layout many times since opening, but the store retains its yummy scent and always its excellent aesthetic.

the g&g store owners appreciate textile art, marimekko, producing their own fabric/designs, the 60s/70s, sweden, hand crafted goods, and boobs! among other things. and they're a pickup site for eatwell farms csa. overall goodness.

steve martin and edie brickell's collaboration is up on first listen.

a little lightness amidst the sad news.


Sunday, April 14, 2013



a beautiful book by chef magnus nilsson about his restaurant fäviken, which is in the middle of sweden, near the norwegian border.

here is a talk by magnus.
and a shorter video.

Saturday, April 06, 2013

blue | orange

a good blue and a good soup 

now and then i remember to check out what maddie is doing. she's the best

Friday, March 29, 2013



at pixies and peony in alameda

think i'm going to like this automechanic album i just started listening to by jenny o.  

also enjoying the new JT and the new emmylou harris/rodney crowell.


Sunday, March 24, 2013

more stars