Monday, January 25, 2010

Weekend Highlights

The opening party - hollywood glam themed, complete with red carpet and fake paparazzi. More pics on here

Alt. was fantastic. So many fascinating people - it reminded me of my college days in the fine arts buildings -"my people" were the creative, non-traditional-looking BYU students wandering the HFAC, stepping over art projects drying in the halls, overhearing music students in the practice rooms.

All the Alt attendees were design people. Most were dressed really cute and all had iphones, except me. I hid my non-iphone under my hair when I had to call home and check on the kiddos' naps/feeding/school progress.

A few of my favorites:

dj earworm - this guy is a music phenom! (but also nice, humble and totally into what he does) I like his United State of Pop 2008 and 2009 and If I were a Free Fallin' Boy mashup. He creates "mashups" of the billboard top 20-or-so songs at the end of the year. Apparently in the dj biz, 20+ songs in 1 mashup is unheard of - and he does it seamlessly. He also started doing the music videos, too, but you can listen to the music only on his site. Earworms' 2009 mashup has been viewed over 8 million times on youtube.

notcot - this giant design site is mostly reader submitted; but the author is such a significant figure in her industry that MAJOR pr campaigns send her free stuff to be promoted on her site. The white rabbit campaign through NYC for SciFi's Alice in Wonderland miniseries was incredible! D and I especially liked the video-projected white rabbits crawling up the building.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Alt. Summit Day 1

I made it safely to SLC yesterday - even after a 2 hour delay at the airport because the plane we were suppossed to fly on had been struck by lightening. The torrential downpours in Southern California have made for difficult travel in and out of the area and our flight to Las Vegas felt like the rollercoaster at the New York New York Hotel/Casino (the girl sitting next to me said our flight was scaring her and she was going to meditate until we landed).

The opening session at the conference was fun and inspiring. Lots of creative people talking about interesting things. Some friends and family wondered what this conference was all about, so here are some examples: the session this afternoon included the authors of these 4 blogs: Making It Lovely; Petit Elefant; Design Milk; Mackin Ink. They discussed what makes up a unique design blog and gave dozens of examples - I could spend the next week sifting through all of the blogs they referenced, but I will not.

Friday, January 15, 2010


At the library yesterday I found this book, peeked inside and thought the Goldilocks doll in the pictures was a bit creepy and I put it back. Little S quickly grabbed it, scanned the pics and insisted we check it out.

After reading it a few times yesterday my verdict is that this book is awesome! The text is long but interesting enough to keep her attention and there are a few funny lines for the benefit of parents. But the images are what make this book phenomenal. They are photographs of scenes set up in a real three-foot-tall house in the woods constructed for the book project. The dolls were made by a famous doll maker and the props were handmade by a well-known British set designer - the 3 tiny spoons were carved from balsa wood and the porridge is real! This book and its production are a work of art. I guess there is a version of Princess and the Pea put together by the same creative team - I must get my hands on it, too.
Goldilocks tries out baby bear's chair and breaks it - too small.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010


I'm watching Young At Heart on PBS's Independent Lens tonight. It's about a New England senior citizen singing group that performs songs from James Brown to Coldplay and everyone inbetween. The show is a riot - and inspiring. Music makes life good even when you're 80+.

Here is the trailer for the show. The second link to YouTube is my favorite part of the show so far - the Young At Heart music video to I Wanna Be Sedated (this song has been a favorite of mine ever since Jared Leto sang it to Claire Danes on My So-Called Life).

You MUST watch this version of Sedated:


I read about it all over the blogosphere - the Altitude Design Summit. It's the first conference dedicated to design and lifestyle blogs. People who love images...that's me. So many of my favorite bloggers were on the speaker list - I was dying to hear them in person. But at $350 to attend 1 1/2 days, it was out of my pricerange for a "fun weekend."

Then I randomly visited DesignMom's blog yesterday for the first time in months, she had a link to one of the conference sponsors giving away 7 free passes, I entered, and I WON! When I read my name on the winners list tonight I screamed so loud to D that it scared Little S and she started crying and hid under the diningroom table. Just another regular night at our house (after she was asleep D pulled a DVD case out of the freezer - she put it there during dinner, I think :)

As a bonus, various Sundance Film Festival events are included in the conference pass. I L-O-V-E Sundance. D and I only attended toward the end of our years in Utah, but it was memorable and we promised to return and make it one of "our things" in years to come.

SLC here I come.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Christmas '09

Little S got what she wanted - a nutcracker from Grandma and Grandpa M. This "nutcracker" dispenses M&Ms through its mouth!

It was a lovely holiday. My mom was visiting from Utah and my little brother made it in from DC. He was a victim of the big snow storm on the east coast that shut down the DC airports for the weekend before Christmas. After sitting in the airport for 8 hours only to have his flight cancelled, he went home and flew out the next morning - upgraded to first class all the way! (During those 8 hours in the airport the travelers in his gate got so angry and rowdy about the lack of information that security guards were brought in to keep things under control! Uncle D was not part of the riots, though :)

Grandma arrived on Christmas Eve and decorated one of the walls in Little S's room like a gingerbread house, complete with candy around the windows! Needless to say, Little S was eating said candy off the walls for a few days before I took the installation down and threw it all away.

D constructed fantastic stockings as usual. His tradition is to make outlandish stockings for each member of the family and this year was no exception.
Auntie L's head is barely visible as she dives into her paintbrush stocking - representing all of the home renos she and Matt (and his FJ, visible through the window) were part of this year.
Uncle D got a giant bag of coal (no real coal inside, though).
Matt is obsessed with zipties so his stocking was constructed from snow fencing and zipties.
Baby's first Christmas. She loves to hug anything soft and her new babydoll got a big hug after it was opened.

Another tradition: passing this VHS version of Beauty and the Beast (remember that?) to a new owner in the family. Uncle D was the recipient this year.

The new easel gets broken in on the front porch the morning after Christmas. I'm loving the oilcloth splat mats I got in LA!