Monday, December 7, 2015

Interview with the Creators of Aaron Burr Panties

I still have no good caption for this.

My favorite thing about the internet is that just when I think I've seen everything, something like Aaron Burr panties comes along and reminds me that the world is bigger and weirder than I could ever imagine. Andy Brennan, owner of Aaron Burr Cidery and its associated underwear, was kind enough to answer a few of my questions about authentic cider, Revolutionary history, and creative branding:

You own & run Aaron Burr Cidery. How did you become interested in making Revolutionary-era hard cider, and why did you decide to name your business after Burr? 

When we researched the history of our property, we found that in 1817 the lawyer who sold the property to the homesteaders who started our farm was none other than Aaron Burr. He had no political career anymore [post-duel], but he continued to live into the 1830's so he returned to law. We liked the name because it represented a time and location (New York) where a great cider civilization had thrived. But he had nothing to do with cider, I'm sure. 

Our claim to fame in the cider world is our use of foraged apples. Wild apples posses properties that are superior for hard cider, and when we discovered the taste of true, ancient cider we were floored. I could not believe how sophisticated and complex cider could be. It was instantly my mission to return cider to its rightful place as the local table drink of the Northeast where apples grow better than any other introduced species. Ignoring the “advances” in agriculture and drink over the last 150 years, I was hell-bent to make cider the slow way by using uncultivated “homestead” apples (which are drastically different than the fruit from mono-culture orchards of today.)

I'm guessing you're familiar with Lin-Manuel Miranda's musical Hamilton and its popularity. What do you think of the show's portrayal of Burr (or of Hamilton as the hero)?

I am familiar with the Hamilton play. We were invited to a meeting of the Aaron Burr historical society a year ago and they were all raving about it. But we still have not seen it because now that it is on Broadway the tickets are hard to get. Personally, I love the idea. And I don’t have anything against Hamilton. I think American history was written by Hamilton and Washington sympathizers. Naturally, the powers involved with a central government favor Hamilton’s platform, but I don’t agree that Burr was a villain. I mean, Hamilton picked up a gun too remember. A split second later he could have been the murderer. So it’s not as “good-vs-evil” as we would like it to be.

Have you noticed any uptick in customers recognizing Burr's name because of the musical?

Our cider business is very specialized. We have quite the reputation in our chosen craft but we have a limited supply. The customers who seek our product are mainly wine connoisseurs and people involved in the foodie world, so it’s rare that our cider is found outside those circles. But we do get the occasional Hamilton or Burr enthusiast wanting to try our product. When the play went to Broadway they asked if we could supply bottles for the concession stand. They sell it there still, but the truth is most people still have not discovered the magic of true cider. They are confused by the glut of cheap cider made from conventional apples. In other words, it’s not a big seller outside of foodie circles.


OK, now the big question: Where did the idea for underwear bearing a pistol and Burr's signature come from? Who was like, "You know what? We should make Aaron Burr panties"?

The underwear features our company logo, which is a combination of the signature and gun. Our home-spun branding became a hit in the advertising world and it is used in marketing seminars as an example folk-minimalism. I have no idea what that means. I’m a farmer and cider maker. Nonetheless, I did not want to cheapen our branding by advertising in public despite the pressure for us to “get our brand out there.” Polly and I don’t want to live in a world with corporate logos everywhere. So we joked: maybe we should make logo underwear so that people can privately support our brand.

What inspired you to make your Etsy shop?

Selling on Etsy was the ideas of two friends are in the fashion world, both of whom have sites for their accessories. I want to build the site now and have a whole colonial-absurd theme going on. The next item will likely be neck scarves for men--the kind that landed gentry wear under their button-down shirts. [ed. note: Cravats!] I like the irony that Polly and I are just mom-and-pop farmers producing high-end cider for city elite.


Finally, what do you think Aaron Burr would think of having his signature across a lady's behind?


Speaking of city elite, I think Aaron Burr would consider himself a sophisticated gentleman. I think he and Hamilton both had aspirations to grandeur and considered themselves “more honorable” than common men. Yet both of them had affairs and were obsessed with women. I’m sure Burr, the aristocrat, would be horrified to see his name on women’s panties, but as a desirous and egotistical man he would secretly be pleased as punch.   

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

A Very Hammy Holiday (The Hamilton Gift Guide!)

At this point, you either know someone who won't stop ranting about America's first Treasury Secretary Alexander Hamilton or you are the person ranting about America's first Treasury Secretary Alexander Hamilton. Luckily, I have designed this gift guide for both the confused and the passionate.

For your aunt/dad/best friend who said, "The guy on the ten dollar bill? I don't get it."

The biography that started it all, Alexander Hamilton, by Ron Chernow (possible bonus gift use: get that grumpy relative to turn off Fox News for a few days while s/he reads!)

They got that "Inspiration for the Broadway musical" sticker on there post-haste

For the acquaintance who's like, "No, I know who Hamilton was, I just have no idea why we're talking about him in 2015."

Hamilton (Original Broadway Cast Recording) They'll either love it or they won't, because that is how taste in music works, but at least they'll understand why you keep yelling We are OUTGUNNED! OUTMANNED! OUTNUMBERED! OUTPLANNED! during family games of Risk.

I literally JUST realized that Hamilton makes the 5th point of the star.

For the person who's like, "I am a child and have no idea what you're talking about."

Aaron and Alexander by Don Brown Yes, it's a children's book about that time the vice-president of the United States killed a man. It's a little bit dry, but the illustrations are beautiful and it did not traumatize my six-year-old.

This was just published. I think the author owes Lin Manuel-Miranda a fruit basket.

And to let them know what's coming:

Hamilton Wrapping Paper

"He sees you when you're sleeping/He knows when you're awake"



Gifts for my actual readers, aka Hamilton Trash:

Alexander Hamilton bobblehead. For those moments where you're like, "Should I insult this guy?" Bobblehead Hamilton will always say YES.

Bobblehead Ham says, "You should probably also challenge him to a duel."

Aaron Burr vs Alexander Hamilton: The Duel I mean, you could get the classic dramatic print of Hamilton falling as Burr shoots (in pendant form, even!), but why do that when you can get this one instead? Why does Burr have an octopus on his face? Why is Hamilton wearing "Deal With It" glasses? Because it's awesome, that's why.

The store is called Veeptopus, and it does what it says on the tin: Veeps + Octopi

Alexander Hamilton Bust Look, the heading says it's the perfect holiday gift, and who am I to argue?

You could get "Once challenged the entire Republican party to a duel." etched on the bottom there.

#YAYHAMLET shirt Trust me, the person you're buying it for will get it.

"I WISH I wrote Hamlet!"

King George Candle To ward off terrible ex-boyfriends, I assume.

"Awesome! Wow!"

The Federalist Wines: Dueling Pistols The ad copy says, "Raise a glass to friendship and the freedoms we enjoy everyday!" Those trolls.

More like "DRINK IT AND CRY."


AND FINALLY, the perfect confluence of pop culture, Etsy, and "I can't even:" Aaron Burr panties.

I am speechless. Bereft of speech.

Please feel free to add your Ham gifts in the comments. If you find anything weirder than the Burr panties, I will send you a holiday card.

Monday, November 30, 2015

Llama Gift Guide

A friend of mine once said, "I have taken a lover" in such an exaggerated manner that I heard, "I have taken a LLAMA." His now-fiancĂ© has been known as The Llama ever since.

Recently, I've noticed that llamas and alpacas are having A Moment, joining owls and whales as hip decorative animals. So for all the camelid lovers in your life, here's a llama gift guide:

Leading the trend is Paper Source, which has gone all out with Holiday Llamas, including the Fa La La Llamas:

They're thinking about spitting on you.
Which are available as garlands, cards, gift bags, wrapping paper, and, of course, tea towels.

There's also the llama tree ornament:

Pink? Sure.

And, for my Jewish friends, there are Llamakah cards & wrapping paper (but sadly no tea towels):

I really can't add anything to this image.

Sharing entirely for the name because let's be honest: those things on the scarf look more like goats. Llama said deck you out scarf:

They need longer necks!

I might need this one for myself. Alpaca a punch mug:

Alpacas don't spit.

This would make an excellent housewarming gift. Llama salt & pepper shakers:

I don't think the S&P come out of their noses, but that would be funny.

Why are animals in clothes so adorable? I don't know, but here's a llama wearing a hat:

(look at the owl plate too. It's SO CUTE.)

Threadless offers a llama wearing a sweater on a t-shirt:

Definitely thinking about spitting on you.

Or you could combine trends and get a llama ugly Christmas sweater:

If I designed this, it'd spit when someone pulled the scarf.

No llama gift guide would be complete without the movie that put llamas on the map, The Emperor's New Groove:

"Yay, I'm a llama again! Wait."

And finally, if you really, REALLY love our fine furry friends, Island Alpaca on Martha's Vineyard will be happy to give you a quote on this prizewinning beauty:

Her name is Angelina.
COMING WEDNESDAY: THE ALEXANDER HAMILTON GIFT GUIDE

Friday, March 6, 2015

Embracing Your Seasonal Affective Disorder

I hate you.
I begin every winter with the best of intentions: I’ll exercise, use my light lamp, eat healthy, and talk to other humans! Really! This year I’m totally going to do it, an entire life’s worth of evidence to the contrary be damned. Then my Seasonal Affective Disorder actually kicks in and and my brain and body go, “You’re kidding us with all this, right?”

So my original plan was to write about what I say I’m going to do versus what I actually do every year to deal with my SAD. After eight feet of snow in 30 days (not a jokey exaggeration!), Seasonal Affective Disorder starts to seem less like a maladaptive trait and more like a perfectly reasonable lifestyle. The time for healthy choices passed everyone by roughly three feet of snow ago, so let’s just call this a guide to getting to spring in the least painful, least healthy way possible.

Diet: Carbs are your best friend. Your meals should be as dense and white as Rob Gronkowski. Potatoes, bread, and potatoes on bread are all acceptable. All non-carbs should be covered in cheese. The healthiest thing you eat should be pizza (because tomatoes). At least 60% of your daily calories should come from a stockpile of half-off Valentine’s Day candy or bulk-bought Easter candy.

When you run out of candy, switch to alcohol. Cheap alcohol; never waste the good stuff on couch drinking. Chug coffee to wake yourself up. It doesn’t actually work, but if you drink enough you’ll get nauseous and that will keep you awake.

Environment: Whatever you do, Don’t Leave The House. It’s dark, cold, and scary out there. Everything you love in the outside world will still be there in the spring, and if it isn’t, well, then it wasn’t hardcore enough to survive and you don’t need that sort of weakness in your life.

Your only objective is to remain as warm and sedentary as possible. Find the most comfortable couch or chair in your house. Move it to a spot equidistant from the bathroom and a food source. Assemble a circle of necessary books, electronic devices, and remote controls and plant yourself in the middle. Make sure your computer is in there somewhere so you can make ill-advised impulse purchases.

Now take every throw pillow and blanket in your house and construct a cocoon into which you and all of your necessary objects will eventually disappear. (This is also where you will put your SAD-fighting light lamp, which you will never use but will instead stare balefully at every couple of days. That thing is an asshole.)

Do not leave unless there is a large fire. (Small fires can be smothered by your blanket cocoon.) Do not visit friends. Do not let friends visit unless they are willing to climb into your blanket fort and not talk to you.

Behavior: Listen, I know it’s usually an excellent and healthy idea to share your feelings, but I am here to tell you: Do not do this. One of the features of a disorder that leaves you listless and trapped in your house is that every little problem around you becomes a source of annoyance on par with people who lean their entire bodies on subway poles.

Your best bet is to answer every question with, “I have the SAD,” and then stop talking. Otherwise an innocent question from a loved one, like, “Why is the sink full of dishes?” can quickly devolve into you yelling, “And you think I haven’t noticed that you haven’t cut your toenails since September, but I have. I HAVE.”

Health: Sleep. All the sleep. Try to learn to sleep with your eyes partially open so you can do it at work and when people are talking to you. Look up the Guinness World Record for consecutive hours asleep (comas don’t count!) and try to break it. It’s good to have goals, and the longer you’re unconscious, the sooner it will be Spring.

Under no circumstances should you voluntarily exercise. Don’t listen to the commercials trying to sell you gym memberships. It isn’t going to make you feel better; it’s going to make you feel exactly the same, except sweaty. Shoveling and cursing the heavens count as exercise, anyway.

Certain people will tell you that your malaise can be solved by vitamins. This is also bullshit. Vitamins make you feel better because they are the only advice from your doctor that you ever manage to follow, not because they actually have any healing properties. Buy the gummy vitamins and refill the bottle with Haribo gummies when it’s empty. No one will know, and you get more candy.

Entertainment: Binge watch television shows that have already ended. You do not have the emotional reserves to hit the last episode on Netflix and realize it’s a cliffhanger. Ideally, you want a show where something gets fixed, be it a person, home, or business. That way you get a vicarious sense of accomplishment without actually having to do anything.

Movies are all right, but don’t watch anything that looks emotional. Sure, the catharsis of a good cry might seem appealing, but what happens when you can’t stop? I cried for so long after Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind that my spouse suggested going to the emergency room to check on my tear ducts. Also, if a pet appears within the first ten minutes of the movie, check Does the Dog Die immediately.

Do not watch anything by Joss Whedon, except maybe The Avengers. But only the Captain America parts.

OK, all right: this is terrible advice. You will be chemically bonded to your couch by spring if you actually follow it. But one of the worst parts of depression is looking at the things you should be doing versus the things you’re actually capable of doing and beating yourself up over the vast gap between them. So if you need to pour M&Ms directly from the bag into your mouth in order to get back to a place where your relationships can survive the winter intact? I say do it and ditch the guilt.

Thursday, March 5, 2015

A Little Myth


The first Selene & Endymion story I read.




I wrote a freelance piece about myths associated with islands in the Aegean Sea, and one about the origin of Patmos island lodged itself in my head, possibly because it was one of the only Greek myths I've ever read that didn't involve murder, cheating, and/or revenge.  Here's the Wikipedia version:

According to a legend within the Greek mythology, the island's original name was "Letois," after the goddess Artemis, daughter of Leto. It was believed that Patmos came into existence thanks to her divine intervention. Mythology tells of how Patmos existed as an island at the bottom of the sea.

Deer-huntress Artemis frequently paid visits to Caria, the mainland across the shore from Patmos, where she had a shrine on Mount Latmos. There, she used to meet up with the moon goddess Selene, who cast her light on the ocean, revealing the sunken island of Patmos.

Selene was always trying to get Artemis to bring the sunken island to the surface and, hence, to life. Selene finally convinced Artemis, who, in turn, elicited her brother Apollo's help, in order to persuade Zeus to allow the island to arise from the sea.


It's all very [citation needed] and I wasn't able to find the same version of the story anywhere else, but Patmos wasn't very important until St. John of Patmos had a bad trip in a cave there and wrote the Book of Revelation. So maybe people made up a different version of its origin every time they told the   myth. Which, hey, is exactly what I'm about to do:

So Artemis, while hunting on Mount Latmos, often stopped for some goddess-talk with Selene, who kept time on Latmos with her immortal-in-sleep lover Endymion.

(When Selene first fell in love with Endymion, I imagine Artemis was like, "Aw, come on! Chicks before dicks. We moon virgins have to stick together." And Selene was like, "But he's cute!" which wasn't really going to sway a goddess whose usual thought about cute things was whether their heads would look good on her wall. But it meant Selene came around for chats on Latmos, so Artemis was won over eventually.)

"So he sleeps all the time?" Artemis asked one night.

"Yes," Selene replied, bending and poking a bit of moonlight into a luminous moth which flew off once it realized what it was.

"Does he talk?" Talking men were among Artemis's least favorite things.

"Mmm...mostly things like 'forget the cheese' and 'ladder rain apples.'"

"So he doesn't order you around or start wars or anything?"

"He's a shepherd, cousin. He wouldn't be doing any of those things anyway."

"Yes he would. He's a man. They all have delusions of grandeur." Artemis paused. "Does he sleepwalk?"

"Walk? No. Other things? Yes."

"Well, obviously. You're up to what, 36 daughters now?"

"Thirty-eight. I had twins last week."

"Oh! Congratulations. I should send them a gift, yes?"

"Your temple took care of it. You sent them lovely booties with their initials sewn on."

"Oh, Me bless them, they're so much better at gift-giving than I am." Another pause. "So. No talking. No fighting. You can come and go as you please, and your visits end in daughters?"

"That about sums it up, yes."

Artemis offered her fist, at which Selene stared for a moment before realizing she was expected to nudge it with her fist. (Artemis: Goddess of Fistbumps.)

"You know," Selene said after a moment, "If your temple is sick of sending baby clothes, there is something you could get me when daughter 39 arrives."

"Is it a birth control spell?"

Selene laughed and a thousand moon flowers sprang into bloom. "No, dearest. You see that shiny bit of land down at the bottom of the ocean there?"

"Ocean's not my domain. Ask Poseidon."

"I will not. He's a jackass. Besides, I want it raised out of the ocean. He'd never agree to that."

"I imagine Athena would do it just to spite him."

"Oh, she's on my list too. She turned my favorite weaver into a spider last week."

"Well, I hate to break it to you, Cos, but I can't raise land."

"But your brother raises the sun every day, yes? Maybe he could do it?"

"Has he sent baby gifts?"

"No, but he has inquired a few times as to whether my eldest has reached adolescence yet."

"Oh for Zeus's sake. Yeah, I'll ask him."

***

"What's in it for me?" Apollo asked as he harnessed his sun-chariot.

"I'll owe you?"

"No. I'm not falling for that again. You've owed me for three millennia for not telling Dad you were behind the Kalydonian Boar."

Artemis knew the quickest way to get her brother's attention and said, "It's for Selene."

"Reeeeeally?"

"You are. So. Gross."

Apollo took the reins in one hand and shot a finger gun at his twin with the other. "I'll see what I can do," he called, taking to the sky.

***

Apollo went straight to Zeus. "Hey, Dad, wanna do a favor for your favorite son?"

"Sure. What does Hercules want?"

"That's cold, Dad."

"My father swallowed my siblings. You can deal with sarcasm."

Apollo told his father about Selene and her favorite spit of land. Zeus replied, "Hmm. Does she love it as much as that virile shepherd she keeps in a cave?"

***

The next time Artemis met Selene on Latmos, Patmos was glowing in the moonlight and Selene had a radiant toddler balanced on her lap. The Goddess of the Hunt wrinkled her nose and said, "A baby? Really?"

Selene just sent Pandeia over to give her sister-aunt a sticky-fingered hug.

Friday, October 18, 2013

Notes from Parenthood

Not my kid. Not enough snot and limb flailing, for one thing.


A few weeks ago, for reasons known only to herself, my daughter decided to throw an afternoon-long tantrum. As she screamed, I cycled through annoyance, concern, anger, empathy, back to concern, then finally shellshocked admiration at her stamina and commitment to cause.

Around hour two, her cries suddenly changed pitch and frequency. Seeing an opening, I hollered "RE-MIX!" and, as she stared in confusion, I began singing:

It's the remix to ignition,
hot and fresh out the kitchen.
I can't sing you the rest,
'cause it's not safe for children.

She frowned. She giggled. She wasn't yelling!

Then she took a deep breath and started all over again.

Friday, May 31, 2013

Sample Sale: Superhero Style

I joke that superhero comics are my midlife crisis. I turned 35 and all of a sudden I was consumed with the urge to surround myself with TPBs and have opinions on the characterization of heroes only, like, five people have ever heard of. I blame Kelly Sue DeConnick for being an awesome writer and a redhead (I can't resist a redehad, y'all). 

But I still love fashion and frippery, so here are my interests combined:


Solid Supernova Pendant (Free People, $39.95 from $58) Carol Danvers, Captain Marvel, has the best costume in comics right now. I'm not even going to add "in my opinion." I am stating this as fact. Get a little bit of her badass-ness with this necklace. (Also: Lord,  has she come a long way from that first outfit, which I look at and immediately think "vagina wedgie.") (Also also: read her book. She is the best.)


Viento Arrow Cuff (Free people, $69.95 from $100) Hawkeye is the comic I would recommend to non-comics readers (aka: me, until about a year ago!) The writing and art are fantastic, and you don't need to know 50 years of canon to enjoy it. From a fashion perspective, arrows are in; I see them in jewelry a lot.



Pleated Silk Dress in Pansy (Madewell, $99.99 from $150) Kate Bishop is a large part of what Makes Hawkeye so awesome. She is smart, sassy, and up for anything but standing still and looking pretty. Kate's outfit considerations: 1) Is it purple? 2) Can I kick ass in it?




Spring Trench (BodenUSA, $138.60 from $198) The closest I could find to Jessica Drew's fierce coat in Hawkeye #9 (Jess, aka Spiderwoman, really needs a costume redesign. My boobs hurt for hers whenever I see her superhero-ing outfit.)



Two-Tone Reading Glasses (Anthropologie, $19.95 from $38) To hide your secret superhero identity, duh.



V Neck Dress (Shopbop, $529 from $880) Serving up Emma Frost realness. (Ed. Note: Finding a SFW Emma image? Very, very difficult.) But she's my favorite even with the cheesecake costume, and this is why:
Me too, Emma. Me too.

Alchemia Bullet Bracelet (Shopbop, $117 from $195) In the comics, Black Widow has bracelets that fire something called the "widow's bite." IDK what that is. I don't think it's important. What is important is: What the fuck is going on with her legs in this picture? Uh, anyway, this bracelet is made of bullets. 



Just the Way You Star Skirt (ModCloth, $61.99 from $87.99) You will never convince me that this isn't Wonder Woman's go-to date-and-or-BBQ skirt.





Red Haute American Summer Dress (ModCloth, $90.99 from $129.99) If you want to date Captain America.


In and Nights Out Dress (ModCloth, $39.99 from $79.99) If you want to seduce Captain America.



Glittered Stretch Belt (Anthropologie, $19.95 from $38) I could not for the life of me think of a specific superhero to attach this to, but it looks like it should be part of someone's costume, doesn't it? (ETA: Thor. It's Thor-esque. Thanks, Kelly Sue!)

Friday, May 17, 2013

Sample Sale: Geek Chic

I very clearly recall being 11 years old, sitting in my hometown library with a friend, and trying to shush him as we talked about Star Trek: The Next Generation, because holy shit, what if someone found out I was a Trekkie? That would've been, well, not social suicide, because everyone already knew I was a huge nerd, but something awful, obviously.

It turns out one of the best things about getting old is the complete failure of one's Give A Fuck. Nowadays I'm like, HEY, READ MY FANFICTION or LOOK, I WENT TO A CONVENTION. Wear your niche interests proudly, my friends, because everyone's a nerd about something.

Marie Curie Babydoll (Think Geek, $18.99 from $20.99) As a kid, I read everything I could get my hands on about Marie Curie. She had an amazing life in addition to being a brilliant scientist. So when someone tells you "Cute shirt!" you can respond, "Thanks! Marie Curie was a badass."




Thor Hammer Cuff Bracelet (Think Geek, $18.49 from $36.99) I like this because it's subtle and stands on its own as a pretty piece of jewelry independent of its geekspiration.




Converse All Star Cheetara athletic shoe (Journeys, $29.99 from $59.99) Guys, DO NOT go back and try to rewatch Thundercats. You'll be so disappointed. Cheetara still looks awesome, though, so rock these shoes.


Star Wars Vehicles Cookie Cutters (Williams-Sonoma, $9.99 from $19.95) My 6-year-old nephew is super into a bunch of Star Wars stuff that I know nothing about (the Lego sets alone!), and he loves to tell me all about random characters and their adventures. But my favorite moment came last summer when he said, "Aunt Lyette, did you know Darth Vader is Luke Skywalker's father?" Um, yeah kid. I was aware of that.



Red (Threadless, $12.95 from $19.50 [t-shirt] @29.95 from $49.50 [hoodie]) All the women's t-shirts are sold out, but you can get a 2X men's shirt and wear it as a sleep-shirt, maybe? That's what I would do if I didn't think it's scare the snot out of Baby Razor if I walked into her room in the middle of the night wearing it.


Comic Gia (Kate Spade, $39 from $78) Less comics and more pop art, but still geek chic. Bright, cute, and useful.


Comic Relief Dress (ModCloth, $48.99 from $97.99) It's the BOINK! over the bosom that makes it, really.


He-Man DIY Paper Figure (Urban Outfitters, $1.99 from $6) There's a Skelator too! Keep them on your desk at work and make them fight.


Smaug's Cash 4 Gold (Busted Tees, $15 from $20) I'm just saying, there are two more Hobbit movies coming out and you're gonna need something to wear to opening night.


Doctor Who TARDIS Talking Cookie Jar (Think Geek, $26.99 from $29.99) Linked for my friend Leigh, who already has the TARDIS coffee pot. (How many TARDIS products do you think there are? Could someone do an all-TARDIS kitchen?)

Friday, May 10, 2013

Happy Mother's Day

No Sample Sale this week! Instead, let me present you with "All About My Mom," as answered by Baby Razor, Age 3 and 3/4.

My mom is 5 years old.

My mom weighs I don't know because she is short.

My mom's favorite color is purple.

My mom's favorite food is egg salad.

My mom always says "I love you too."

Mom cooks the best macaroni.

My mom's job is to write and serve me food.

My mom laughs when I say gookey-ga.

If my mom had time, she would love to take a nap.

My mom & I like to play outside.

My mom really loves boats.

I LOVE my mom because she always gives me great hugs.

And here I was thinking she was the great hugger!


Thursday, May 2, 2013

Sample Sale: Hey, Mama

Alternate titles:
Mama Said Knock You Out
Mama, OoooOOOOooooo (from Bohemian Rhapsody, obviously)

I had trouble with this one, because mothers are vast and contain multitudes. My mother likes decorating. I like comic books. Your mom might like hot rods. Or rock climbing. But if you're stumped for what to get her, hopefully this list will jumpstart your creativity.

Calla Lily Drinkware Set (Uncommon Goods, $49.99 from $100) Probably more decorative than functional, but it'll give your mom the idea of sharing lemonade and chatting with you, which is nice and probably something that mothers and children do somewhere, right?



Sunrise Stoneware Bowl (Terrain, $39.95 from $78) The key to giving home gifts is to know your mother's decorating concept. If your mother doesn't have a decorating concept, I don't know what to tell you. (My mother's house looks like a Better Homes & Gardens show-home for French Country.)





Jane Jeweled Frame (Z Gallerie, $14.99 from $24.95) Frames are nice if you have something cool to put in them. Don't put a picture of yourself, seriously, your mother has enough of those. 



Snow Gardenia Soap (Cisthene, $8 from $14) A big bar of soap is one of my go-to "I have run out of gift ideas" gifts. Get one with fancy packaging so if your giftee doesn't love the scent, he or she can use it as bathroom decoration. Liquid soaps in fancy glass bottles also work. (Bonus soap!)


Mughal Arabesques Umbrella (Metropolitan Museum of Art Store, $20 from $40) Unless your mom lives in Southern California, she needs an umbrella. And she probably buys all of hers from the drug store, because who the heck splurges on umbrellas? Splurge for her.




Grey Moonstone Filigree Earrings (Wendy Mink Jewelry, $40, sample sale) Jewelry is another gift where you have to know what your mother likes. My mom, for example, doesn't like long, dangly earrings. And I don't wear gold. But these are super pretty and maybe your mom would like them? (Bonus for moms with August birthdays: the green stones are peridot, the August birthstone.)



Leaf Headband (BCBG Max Azria, $12.60 from $18) I like this headband. I am a mom. Maybe my husband will actually read the sale post this week, who knows. (Baby Razor is off the hook because she can't read yet.)




Double R Ranch Co. Flank Steak (Williams Sonoma, $45.99 from $65) Only get this if your mom truly enjoys cooking. Otherwise she might be like, "That's great, now I have to do something with this." Or! Buy it and make dinner for her! Ooh, that'll get you major Favorite Kid points.


Prep Bowls (set of 5) (Sur La Table, $10.36 from $12.95) No matter what I'm cooking, I always need more bowls. And these have measurements on the sides, too. Not a particularly glamorous gift, but certainly a useful one.



Cosmos Blue Blossom Watering Can Gift Kit (Willard & May, $25.82 from $32.60) The Razor Family's Go To Mother's Day Gifts, 1983-present: coffee mugs and/or flower stuff. Giftees who love gardening are easy to shop for, because there is always something else that can be added to a garden.