Blast from the past

Girl meets boy. Boy moves to California the next day. Boy and Girl start a furious letter writing campaign that lasts for 7 months with nearly 200 letters exchanged between them. Boy moves back to Brooklyn. Boy finds one last postcard he forgot to send and gives it to her this week.

Thus is the story of Jim and I.

He bought the postcard, put on the stamp, wrote the message and forgot to mail it, all 9 months ago. It's even more romantic because it's so late.

A boy after my own heart, he couldn't bear to cover up the previous owner's message so he just concocted his own from it. A truly genius and adorable idea. A truly genius and adorable boy.

A Match

Jim's sweet mom, Mary Kate, gave me this antique bookplate for valentines day.

It's adorable and so fitting for us; half Rats of Nimh, half Fivel Goes West.

It's from a childrens vocabulary book from maybe 100 years ago and it's going up in my newly revamped office (photos of which will follow, soon)!

Wellesley Girls

The darling Francesca from The Snail and The Cyclops knows how much I'm obsessed with Wellesley College history, since my great great grandmother was a member of the first graduating class in 1875 and I have a copy of her journals documenting her college experience (definitely worth reading the few excerpts I posted back in the spring if you haven't).

She, in her infinite sweetness, alerted me to an online archive of the Wellesley Legenda, the school's yearbook of sorts. So far, they've archived from 1890 to 1922 and it's amazing.

Jean Baxter Watson, from 1914, is one of my favorites. Most of the other girls in her year were wearing these beautiful delicate white lace gowns, she looks like she'd be voted most likely to win a canoe race or grow a prized vegetable garden. My kind of girl!

I'd like to believe that Marion read a lot of Jane Austen. She certainly looks like the elegant scholar.

And Lillian, so shy, is just darling.

Plus these books are a great source for sweet girls names; Mabel, Nellie, Hazel, Bea, Winnie, Minnie, I could just go on and on...

The 1904 Mandolin Club, which Chelsea and I certainly would have belonged! She on the mandolin and I on the guitar, after a few more moths of practice, mind you.

One long garland of ivy and roses from 1908. I don't know what their doing, but I wish I could have been there.

The 1915 golf team. I do love beautiful tomboys.

After looking through all of the yearbooks non stop over the weekend, a small mental brake down ensued. Maybe it was too much computer time or too many beautiful girls in too many beautiful lace dresses. I don't know what it was for sure, but by Sunday morning I was a wreck.
I needed to be transported to spring in 1914, wearing a long, elegant tomboy getup on a canoe, with a straw hat, immediately. So I did what any non rational girl would do and plunked down a shameful, weeks worth of groceries money on a dress that would become my Wellesley time machine.

I am a girl who has no business buying clothes. I have lots of clothes from my years at Marc and I mostly "work" from home now. My normally so sturdy impulse control just vanished! The amazing Judith at the Hell's Kitchen Flea Market rightly pointed out that I could have easily paid a few hundred more for it downtown (ahem Stock), but that could just be my guilt talking.

It is just the most yummy, tightly woven cotton stripe, with shell buttons , linen collar and french seams. I'm going to wear it every freaking day this spring (and summer). And it's in amazing shape, this dress was sewn to take a beating.

It's by a company that was called Dix-Make, a uniform company from 1910. Not being an expert, I think it's from the 20's or 30's as I found a few Dix-Make adverts that look pretty similar.

I promise you, in 6 months, I will regale you with photos of this dress splashed across all of my warm weather spots. Elmwood, a row boat in Central Park, the crooked branch of my favorite weeping beech tree in the Brooklyn Botanic Garden, the Chesapeake Bay, Riverside Drive, my kitchen, outside Ralph's Italian Ice.....

Until then, I don't know about you but I'll be dreaming about being an old timey Wellesley girl.

Valentine Greetings

Happy Valentines Day from this adorable little 1920s blond boy, sailing his boat at central park.

I've spent the day dressed up like Rosie the Riveter, trying to clean the house before the Mister gets home! So romantic.

Friday the 13th

In honor of the day, here's Minnie, the (mostly) black cat. Once you've had your black cat fix, feel free to go mirror and ladder shopping, too. I'm not a superstitious type, I guess.

Just this week she sat on the lap for the first time, after 5 months. What took ya so long, cat?

Starting from seed

I am embarrassed to admit that for all my plant loving, I've never started herbs from seed. Then again, I've lived in a garden-less apartment in the city for going on 7 years now, nearly my whole dang adult life.

This season I plan on taking much better advantage of my fire escape than last year, when almost all I managed to harvest were 3 miniature tomatoes. Is it worth starting from seed? Should I just buy some little guys from the farmers market in a few months instead? Advice?

Plus these illustrations make me swoony, especially with spring so close. Am I busted for wanting to start from seed just so I can fiddle with these packets?

Calender girls

Yesterday I got a package in the mail containing this beyond wonderful and sweet family portrait calender, hand painted by my mom.

I know I've have written at length about my hippie goddess mother, from her wildflower arranging to her quirky books, her love of capes and her amazing little paintings. But this one takes the cake. It is truly too cute for words.

Mom holding Muffy, me and Minnie, Papa, Micha and Chewpee, our happy little family.

I love that darn cat!

She added each and every family member's birthday, all of the anniversaries, holidays and moon cycles. She is so dear, now I'll never miss anyone's special day again.

We are even wearing our favorite outfits! My red wool swing dress, black tights and hair bow! The heart was a bit of artistic license on my mom's part, though. A big ol heart and knobbly knees are her signatures.

In it's new place of honor in the kitchen. It has immediately become my number one thing I'd save in a fire, after Jim and the cat, of course.


The lovely and wonderful hometown Williamsburg store Catbird is now selling my terrariums!

Made with vintage mason jars and display domes, plus old porcelain mushrooms and animals, I am madly in love with this round of terrariums. Seriously. When I dropped them off at the shop I felt like I was sending my babies to boarding school, never to come home again.

Luckily I know that there are other liked minded girls who will give them new happy homes. Please city folk, stop by Catbird on Bedford ave and say hello to them. They'd kick the pants off a red rose bouquet as a valentines day present, too. $44 and up!


I think admitting out loud my lust for straw-hat weather has made it much worse.

It's freeeezing outside and all I can do to stay warm is ogle these boaters from my favorite accessories inspiration source, a good old fashioned dover pictorial. Don't get me wrong, I love a floppy french straw hat, but I think this summer I'm going to be all about the boater.

Especially the little one, it looks straight out of my favorite John Singer Sargent painting at the MET. Oh, how I was born into the wrong time.

Hat recycling

You can tell when I'm ready for the current season to be over when I start getting fidgety about hats. Last week I was dying to whip out my beloved straw hat collection again. No, Amy, not yet. Several more months to go.

In the meantime, I'm entertaining myself by cutting apart proper felt hats, the kind I should be wearing on a 20 degree day like today.

Maybe it's all of the 40's watch instantly Netflix movies I've been watching, but while dinner was on the stove, I snipped and snipped away at my old felt bucket hat till I got this. Well, this with a few hand stitches to attach the bow.

It took about 15 minutes and it's basically just a little shaped felt oval and bow. So easy and now I finally have something for the mandatory head accessory wedding of a lifetime.

Now I just need to track down some tiny grey elastic to keep it on my head while dancing (and maybe glitter it up, in honor of Ginny).