Archive for the ‘I Recommend’ Category

Seeking Warmth

Thursday, November 15th, 2007

The days are getting shorter and the wind a little more crisp around these parts. We’re sailing quickly in to Winter. (Was anyone else surprised to realize that Thanksgiving is next week? Wasn’t it September just yesterday?) We’ve been taking a lot of walks, hoping to get lots of outdoor time in before it gets really cold. With promises of snow falling sometime this weekend, it looks like we might be running out of time. You see, I’m not what you’d call lover of winter. It’s just so darned long and cold up here.

But you know what I do love about Winter? Hats. Scarves. Mittens. Slippers. Warmth. And here are some of my recent faves for keeping all the bits warm:

Monkey Hat
GlitzConcepts Monkey Hat.

Dash looks extremely cute in hats, but he’s not much for keeping them on. I think we might stand a chance with this monkey hat. Hopefully it would take him a while to figure out how to get it off. Super glue anyone?

Red Cloche
Adorable Cloche of Red by BoringSidney

Adorable is right! Consider this added to my Christmas list.

Linen scarf
Linen Scarf from MyCabinDoor

I’m totally in love with the scarves at MyCabinDoor. And she’s a fellow coastal Mainer!

Kimono slippers
Kimono Slippers for tiny, stylish feet at Happyexpat

Hey, I’m Working Here.

Wednesday, October 24th, 2007

You may not have noticed, but for the past few days I’ve actually been working.
Like, for money. I’ve been full-time mommying for exactly nine months (happy birthday, dashy!) and have finally figured out how to juggle that along with some freelance. I know, I’m really really slow to catch on. One thing I totally figured out, though? Mommying doesn’t pay well.

So work on my desk means that I really need to not be blogging right now. I need to get to work on this book (which incidentally, is quite interesting. i typically work with fiction, but this one is all about how to raise a better family, go against the mainstream, be a better person, etc.).

I’ll leave you with this, which I am currently coveting:

Golden Opulence

My friend Cassie made this and it’s been getting some good press (Here and Here). The Golden Opulence bracelet is a limited edition run featuring vintage brass chains and a single nugget of Copper Rutile. Each bracelet will be unique since no two Rutile gems are ever the same. Get yours now, but leave one for me ok?

Thing of the Month. A Review

Tuesday, October 9th, 2007

Well, it’s happened. I’ve officially started thinking about Christmas. Is that not kind of ridiculous? You and I both know it is, but let’s agree to put it aside.

Have you seen this Thing of the Month site? It’s the perfect site to get you thinking about gift-giving and if you’re new to it (like I was earlier today), consider this my first gift to you.

We all have at least one hard-to-buy-for person on our lists. You were going to get them a gift card, weren’t you? Nah, you can do better than that. Trust me. How about Flying Object of the Month?
flying phlat

If they don’t at least smile when they open this, you are allowed to take them off your list for next year. Honest.

Or for the kids, the Toddler Toy Club.

Award winning, well-designed, and eco-friendly toys are delivered every 4, 6, or 12 months, depending on the package you buy. Can you say “Lead Poisoning Free Christmas?” I think you can.

There’s so much more and it appears that more clubs are being added all the time. Check back before Christmas a few times so you’re on top of things.

I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention this one thing that is killing me about this site. This. I know they’re not responsible for it, but why why why didn’t I come up with this? It’s a cardboard house, people. Cardboard.


Dashiell: Handmade Birdie
Toddler Toy of the Month Club
Little Musician Club

Neil: Flying Object Club
Beam Bot Club

Me: Tin Toy Club

The HappyDashery Opens its Doors

Friday, September 28th, 2007

At long freaking last, I have opened the doors to the HappyDashery Vintage Shop.

(Sound of the internets fleeing to a new! shopping! site!)

And for those of you who’ve stuck around…

Can you tell I’m mildly stuck on this name-everything-after-Dashiell thing? It’s so much easier than actually having to come up with unique names. And it’s working, so I’m going with it.
Opening a shop is something I’ve wanted to do for a long time. And while I still want an actual bricks and mortar shop, this is a fun and much easier way to achieve it for now. Eight month olds and retail shops do not mix.
Anyway, I’m excited and scared and having a lot of fun. I even sold something!

There’s some fine tuning to do over there and new items are being added every day (it’s a slow process over there at etsy). It’s my goal to start with vintage and then work into a line of vintage supplies and amazing things made with such supplies. Things made in my imaginary studio of glory.

I’ve been dreaming lately about my imaginary studio and all the trimmings and I’m so happy to share that it’s nearly a reality. It’s a shared room (I can’t kick Neil out completely), but one whole half of it will have room for me. I’m all giddy just thinking about it! Once the walls are painted from drab gray and cranberry to an inspirational orange, I will be unstoppable.

So, in summary, if you like the vintage, retro, mid-century, eames era, kitsch, insert your own label here stuff, check in with my store regularly.

Also, if you want to help pay my mortgage, check in with my store regularly. I’ll see you there.

I Love Stokke

Monday, July 30th, 2007

I really really do.

That said, I should let you know, if you don’t know already, that I am a huge snob. Not about everything, but with Dashiell’s baby goods I’ve been particularly picky. It started with wanting nothing but the best for our new baby and also wanting nothing that is going to ugly-up my home. Honestly, I would do anything for this boy, but the thought of having to buy everything in primary colors for the next 5 years is simply not acceptable. Yes, Dashiell already owns lots of brightly colored toys (and clothes, but I’ll save that for another post) because I know color is engaging for an infant. Great. Bright colors- check. But considering he’s just 6 months old, how much more do we need? How quickly will the mass-produced toys and plastic crap take over our home? Too quickly, I fear.

This is my basic thought on this: we’ve chosen to bring Dash into our home to share our lives. We did not choose to hand our home over to Fisher Price and the everloving red yellow and blue, just because someone decided that’s exactly what every baby on the planet needs to have in order to be an honest and good citizen of the world. So when we started looking for a high chair, I realized it was an excellent example of how we could deviate from the brainwashing. Something that he’ll sit in and cover with food doesn’t need to be multi-colored, Disney- or Dora-themed, or just plain ugly. It should be something that you want to look at for the next year or so, and something that you can afford.

So, back to my love for Stokke. Those good people have gone and created a high chair that, among other things, will support Dashiell’s 350lb. bottom, should things ever head in that direction. If I know my genetics like I know my genetics, we probably won’t get around to testing this aspect of the chair, and that’s quite all right with me. The Tripp Trapp has lots of features we can appreciate right now with Dash being a trim 15lbs. And the most attractive feature? Its’ looks. It fits right in with our furniture and isn’t plastic and ugly! It’s a baby-gear revolution!

Stokke Tripp Trapp high chair baby

First, the basics.

Stokke Tripp Trapp
5-point safety harness
Seat and footrest adjust vertically and horizontally
Handcrafted from solid European beechwood
Engineered for stability; ergonomically designed
Adjusts for continuous use from 6 months to adulthood (holds adults up to 350 lbs.)[SEE?! What did I tell ya?]
Baby Rail (sold separately) provides greater security for children from 6 to 24 months
Adjusts easily with wrench (included)
Armless design allows a child to get in and out safely
Seven-year warranty on all wooden components
18″W x 19″D x 31″HDashiell in the Tripp Trapp High Chair

So we’ve had this assembled for a whole 4 days now and I’m so happy with it! We were feeding him on the table in the Bumbo, but he kind of slouches down in it, so once he got the whole sitting up thing it just wasn’t working for him anymore. The Tripp Trapp lets him sit right at the table with us which he loves. Note in the picture: We’re using the baby rail in place of the harness for the time being and it works like a charm. I wouldn’t leave him alone in it, but I feel safe about it with us right there.

There is no food tray so you have to be ok with a messy table. Honestly, I think it’s much easier to just wipe the applesauce off the table than to detach a tray, take it to the kitchen, and load it in the dishwasher or handwash it. Couldn’t be easier.

And as to the price point, at about $200, considering he will never outgrow it, it’s worth every penny.

I imagine I’ll update this review when we remove the baby rail and start adjusting the seat for the growing boy, but for now, this seat is getting a 10 out of 10 from me.

Stokke? Will you marry me?

I may be snobbish, but I’m awfully cute.

UPDATE: After having used the Tripp Trapp for a good six months now I figured it was time for a review update.

We are still using the baby rail and not using the harness. I love that he has been able to use this chair right at the table with us, and the rail allowed him some freedom to move around but still be contained. Without the rail, we’d have never seen that Dash loves to stand while eating, and also to dance a bit. He does his I Love Food dance at every meal, something he wouldn’t have been able to do with a traditional highchair. It’s adorable, and on the developmental side, it’s really helped him learn balance. (He began walk at 10 months and was immediately comfortable on his feet. We didn’t tell him he’d been practicing all that time while he was eating.)

On the down side, switching from the baby rail to the harness is going to be difficult. Recently, he’s begun to climb out of the Tripp Trapp and onto the table. Pretty cute to see in action, but ultimately not a good habit to form. With that, we took off the rail and strapped him in. It makes sense that he totally rebelled and refused to be held down, what with it being the total opposite of how he’s been eating all this time. Stokke says that the rail is good up through 24 months, so I think we’ll keep using it for the time being. Either he’ll start a new habit (sitting while eating? ground breaking!) by then or we’ll just have to suck it up and deal with the potential tantrum.

One more quick note: portability. I don’t think it was designed with this in mind, but once we realized how much we preferred this highchair over others, we began to take it with us to restaurants and friend’s houses. Pretty easy to do, though we definitely got some funny looks in the restaurants.

That was a while ago now, and we’ve sort of come to terms with those dirty little community highchairs they have at restaurants. Ok, that’s kind of a lie. I cringe when I realize we have to use one and I really wish Stokke would come out with a portable version of this.

Overall? Still loving this product. Would definitely recommend. Will update again when we have to make the next size/harness adjustment.