Friday Featured Art: Arthur Rubloff Paperweight Collection

One of the little-known collections at the Art Institute is down in the basement. The Arthur Rubloff Paperweight Collection includes over 1500 incredible glass paperweights. Apparently, paperweights were wildly popular in the mid-19th century when people were writing lots of letters. I especially like the millefiori ones.


Thursday Text: The Lost Art of Gratitude

I'm all caught up with the Isabel Dalhousie series by Alexander McCall Smith now. I finished The Lost Art of Gratitude last week. I liked a passage in which he was expressing the idea that God has something to do with beauty.

He said:

It was an intriguing thought, as it meant that a concert could be a spiritual experience, a secular painting a religious icon, a beguiling face a passing angel.


License Plates, Part 2

Here are a few more of the fancy license plates I've seen lately. Actually, the Indiana one is the first that I can remember having a dramatic redesign. I still really like it. (Sara - I've added Missouri's new one at the bottom so that you can see how boring it is compared to the others. And you have to put your year sticker in the middle of the plate in between the numbers!)


Winged Heart

I had a minor disaster the other day - a little stained glass decoration that I bought at Westminster Abbey fell from the window and broke into 6 pieces. So sad. The glass was made by a Scottish company called Winged Heart. I can only find the Tudor rose design on their site in the paperweight form, so I may have to consider that as a replacement. The other glass that I brought home with me was from Arbroath (Scotland) and is a thistle. I think I'll hang it on a nail rather than on the window!


Shelby Accessory Tower

I saw this in the latest Pottery Barn catalog. It's the Shelby Accessory Tower, and it's just for accessories. There's even a drawer just for rings. Fabulous (and totally out of my price range for at least the next 30 years...).


Friday Featured Art: Louis Sullivan

The Art Institute is showing an exhibit called "Looking after Louis Sullivan." It is largely a gathering of photography and design sketches of the architect's work. It is truly incredible - to think that such ornamentation and detail went into the building of ordinary places like banks. We were heartbroken to see how many of the places have since been demolished. What a genius!


Thursday Tunes: The Crow

We heard this song on satellite radio (the bluegrass channel) the other day and thought that it was fantastic. It's Steve Martin, and it's called The Crow.


Williams-Sonoma Cookbooks

When we were downtown on Saturday, we stopped in Williams-Sonoma (just window shopping, of course). I noticed their lovely line of cookbooks. Doesn't this ice pops one look fun? We always had ebelskivers growing up, but we never filled them with anything except syrup - so I would love to see what their options are.


License Plates

When we were on our big road trip in June, I noticed all sorts of fancy new license plates. I love what states are doing with them these days. Missouri got a new design when we lived there (and we even got to vote on it), but it was still very plain and simple. Ohio's new one is very pretty!


Chatsworth Attic Sale

I read in Architectural Digest that Chatsworth is partnering with Sotheby's for an attic sale. The lots are incredible. The cheapest appear to be the tea cups and saucers. I would love one!


Friday Featured Art: The Nasher Museum of Art

Duke University has an interesting art museum. This piece is part of the permanent collection at the Nasher Museum of Art. I can't remember who the artist is, but this is a self portrait. It was fascinating - the stubble on the chin and the eyelashes and all of the features were so lifelike (and it's gigantic)!


Thursday Tunes: Sarah Jarosz

On our way home from North Carolina, we went to the Grand Ole Opry at the Ryman Auditorium. Sarah Jarosz was making her Opry debut, and she was great. She is a fantastic instrumentalist with a wonderful bluegrass sound. Check her out.


St. Andrews

The British Open starts tomorrow at the Old Course at St. Andrews. It is a beautiful place. Here are some pictures that we took when we were there last summer. The first is the clubhouse. (I don't know who the people are playing - it was just an ordinary day.) The second is the North Sea, and the third is the ruined castle. I would love to go back.


Pride and Prejudice

Some friends loaned me the BBC version of Pride and Prejudice. So, when I finish watching it later this week, we can chat!


Friday Featured Art: Rescue of the Lost Lamb

I went to the temple last night and was reminded of this work by Minerva Teichert. It's called Rescue of the Lost Lamb. I think it's really sweet.


Thursday Text: The More Loving One

In Alexander McCall Smith's book, The Right Attitude to Rain, he mentions a poem by W.H. Auden (actually, he mentions a lot of Auden throughout the series). This one is called The More Loving One.

Looking up at the stars, I know quite well
That, for all they care, I can go to hell,
But on earth indifference is the least
We have to dread from man or beast.

How should we like it were stars to burn
With a passion for us we could not return?
If equal affection cannot be,
Let the more loving one be me.

Admirer as I think I am
Of stars that do not give a damn,
I cannot, now I see them, say
I missed one terribly all day.

Were all stars to disappear or die,
I should learn to look at an empty sky
And feel its total dark sublime,
Though this might take me a little time.


North Carolina Bluestone

The campus of Duke University is very beautiful. The buildings are neo-Gothic, and most are made of a combination of Hillsborough bluestone and Indiana limestone. Here's the Duke Chapel that towers 210 feet and houses 50 bells. The stone combination is very unusual but very effective aesthetically.



Have you seen these snazzy soda makers? Sodastream offers these little things that go on your counter. You fill the bottle with water, the contraption adds carbonation, and then you can add flavors. It looks like a cheap and fun way to make your own soda!



I hope you had a good Fourth! We watched the Macy's NYC fireworks on TV, and they were really great.


Friday Featured Art: Abel Pann

I spent a lot of time at the Perkins Library while we were at Duke University. In the entry, they had an exhibit called "Illustrating the Hebrew Bible." There were some interesting works of art. I liked this one of the creation of Adam by Abel Pann. The caption says, "And he breathed into his nostrils the breath of life."


Thursday Text: Duke Motto

The motto of Duke University is Eruditio et Religio. It refers to the founding of the institution and the hope that education and religion would always go together. I think that's a great aspiration.