Thursday, September 30, 2010

extending your shelf life

What I find most beautiful in this display is not what the picture reveals. These shelves are a result of a series of negotiations. How do we create more space in our home? Whose treasured belongings deserve more attention? This is a household headed by two passionate people who share a love for beautiful things, beach life, decor--all of which is reflected on three new shelfs.

a forgotten microscope found

As the summer is now catalogued into highlighted events, one family will always come to mind. A couple with two children rented Ebb Tide for a week. We once lived in Ebb Tide, and many of our "artifacts" were stashed away in storage unseen to the eye. Though never underestimate the curiosity of young children. Within five minutes of their arrival, one of the children unearthed this microscope, which belonged to one of Allan's relations--a doctor who did extraordinary things like discover cures for various diseases, perhaps with this very microscope. Luckily we retrieved the piece before it would become just another play thing, tormented by finger paint or slimed with crittery things found at the beach.

getting new glasses

For months I thought about the shelves we had built in Low Tide. When you have cottages filled with every imaginable artifact (Life magazines from the 1970s as example), which do you choose for coveted real estate on these pristine shelfs? The task clouds the head, like choosing one item from a diner menu.

Allan's years of collecting sea glass, enough to replenish a brewery's monthly supply, deserves its own mention. I was daunted by this sea glass, the topic of many heated conversations. Though Olivia and I took the motley jars of mixed up glass and color coded them. Each color was assigned its own glass jar. It was like combing tangles out of knotted hair. Suddenly the individual jars of glass looked gorgeous, worthy of that shelf space.

Sunday, September 19, 2010


Is Luc channeling his namesake Luke Skywalker?


Or perhaps Muhammad Ali?


In fact Luc needed a good cleaning. We wrapped him up in his yummy new bathrobe, a gift from Auntie Janet, and had a quick shower. The baby tub was just too much of a production today. He becomes as slippery as a pond rock. I love when his hair gets slicked back, which I lather to cleanliness. He smells so clean. That clean baby smell.

if degas had a camera phone

Olivia began dance classes this week. Hip Hop and ballet. She attends these classes at the new senior center in town. Its sustainable style with an ode to California craftsman is spacious and modern. It even smells new. However "senior" is a misnomer as it offers hundreds of programs for everyone. If I had a whim to learn bridge, this is where I would go.

It was such a thrill to see Olivia at ballet class. It appeared that the summer seeped into her and helped her grow into this young lady. She was so excited to wear her new leotard and tights. To have her hair arranged in a high bun. While I watched her and a half dozen little ballerinas through the glass you can see them from young girls into young ladies.

Friday, September 17, 2010

super dome

Not just a dependable element in cartoon sketches, the silver dome was a valued addition to our landscape.

carrying on

The photographer commented on the light. The food stylist made course after course, an entire holiday meal in hours that would take an accomplished cook days.

We also had an unexpected visitor, Janet Solomon (of French Blue and Co. notoriety) came by to meet Luc and stumbled upon our affair. Janet makes me giggle. She is the kind of friend who makes me want to quit my job. I'd be one of those ladies who plays with friends and does things like have lunch at outdoor bistros and assist one another in decorating dilemmas.

going green

It's easy to be green when it looks this good.

flowers defined

The floral centerpiece was created by Teresa Sabankaya of The Boony Doon Garden Company, and each flower has a meaning. Power, love, family--the makings of a scandal or a great looking table setting.

before the food arrived

We tinkered with place settings.

ready, set

In High Tide we created an atmosphere to evoke past times with Kathleen's pieces.

centuries ago...

There were special vessels intended for oysters with little pockets hidden within its ornate base to mask spreading knives. Crystal, silver, fine linens were not registry items that were used twice a year. Today I played with such pieces, thanks to my friend Kathleen of Melange Antiques and her adorable niece (a floral designer). They arrived first thing in the morning with baskets of deliveries.

Back to that food magazine that has taken my life (Yum, Food & Fun), I spent another day creating stories for future issues. This is what happened...

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

keen on quinoa

You can dress it up. You can serve it any time of the day. Berries and honey for breakfast. Beans and cayenne pepper for lunch. Or fresh thyme and vegetables from the garden for dinner.

too much food

I have neglected The Four Tides as of late because my focus has been on food. Lots of it. Last year, aside from learning that I was pregnant, I conceived the idea for Yum Food & Fun, a magazine about food and entertaining. I am quite convinced that the pregnancy and a professional excuse to obsess about food is related.

We are working on holiday issues for Yum and its off-shoot, Yum for Kids, so organizing the home would be a luxury right now. Today's assignment was quinoa--the It Grain. In fact quinoa was on one of my week's craving list when I was pregnant as I was attracted to its healthy benefits and found it to be a more substantive alternative to rice and couscous.