July 31, 2009

Recent Reads

1. The Amulet of Smarkand
If you like magical stories, I'd highly recommend this book. Harry Potterish and a fun read. I've already got the next book in the trilogy by my bed.

2. Fatlands
I've loved this and this book by the author, so wanted to try her earlier works. This is a murder mystery that is smart, feminist and fun.

Le Whif

One of the new experiences at TEDx Boston was trying the new Le Whif - a new way of consuming chocolate. Instead of eating it, you inhale it. Zero calories.

My feedback: Strange packing - looks like lipstick - not sure which end goes in your mouth. I hear that they are changing that in the next rev. Feels like holding a cigar in your hand. When I inhaled, I got a little dusting of chocolate powder in my mouth. Yes a little chocolate taste, but nothing to get excited about - kinda like a little dusting of hot chocolate powder. Might be zero calories, but you also get zero pleasure or satisfaction. Actually left me craving some real chocolate, so headed over to the snack table and helped myself to a large brownie. Delicious. Sure there are calories - but really, there is no comparison as to the sheer pleasure of the experience. No chocolate lite for this girl.

July 30, 2009

TEDx Boston

As you know by now, I love TED so was delighted to be able to attend the TEDx Boston event on Tuesday. Was accompanied by Susan and Maria, and it was awesome. Thank goodness, as it was the first sunny day we'd had in Boston for several days, and going indoors on such a day seemed nuts.

You can see the line up here. I found interesting take aways from every talk. The one that most resonated with me had to do with ArtScience. Our education system is left over from the industrial age and is obsolete in many ways. Requiring students to specialize and compartmentalize what they learn leads to little creativity and innovation. I know this to be true from first hand experience. So was delighted to hear about organizations that are working to change education. Right up my alley. Have a meeting with one of the organizations next week.

The other highlight of the event was the performance by the Youth Orchestra of the Americas. They simply blew me away. All in all, an event that left me inspired and my brain tingling. Love that.

July 28, 2009


The Theme of the Month for July is SUMMER. Here are my 5 pics.

July 27, 2009

Children Full of Life

Love this.

"In the award-winning documentary Children Full of Life, a fourth-grade class in a primary school in Kanazawa, northwest of Tokyo, learn lessons about compassion from their homeroom teacher, Toshiro Kanamori. He instructs each to write their true inner feelings in a letter, and read it aloud in front of the class. By sharing their lives, the children begin to realize the importance of caring for their classmates."

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

Part 4

Part 5

Recent Reads

Been reading with the boys, here are some of their faves:

1. Bats at the Beach
Fantastic. We've read this one several times. Love this one too.

2. The Shy Creatures
This one sure sparked much discussion. Are they real? Or not? Or simply shy?

3. The Knight at Dawn
The first book in the series was such a hit, that we are reading the second one. It's interesting to watch the boys concentrate on a story when there are not many pictures. We've read the first 5 chapters so far.

4. The House in the Night
Luke read this to us. Incredible graphics.

5. The Amulet of Smarkand
Am currently reading this one, and love it. A perfect summer read.

July 25, 2009


The boys were over for a sleepover last night. The keys to a successful sleepover include good food, good books, and plenty of exercise. The torrential rains of the past 24 hours let up, so we went for a 2 mile walk and investigated all the flora and fauna along the way. Lots of emoting and sitting on the road and rubbing of legs, but everyone made it home.

July 23, 2009

Enough Said

It's said that a picture is worth a thousand words. Well, here is the local radar at the moment.

Book Arts

Another rainy day on tap, so worked on my journals. Here are the three I made today. They are about 9"x6" - a size I love. The spines are made using fabric samples that I picked up from a local furniture store. The inside pages are white watercolor paper, and the beads are assorted types from my stash. Simply love how these turned out, and cannot wait to play in them.

Here are some detail pics.

July 22, 2009

Random Musings

  • Am so dang sore. Love my new gym, and think I am overdoing it a little. Played over 2 hours of badminton today and my knees are groaning now. Love it. Anyone up for a game of badminton? Brings back so many fun memories. Does not feel like exercise - feels like playing - and isn't that the whole point?
  • Got an invite from TED today. I'll be going to their Boston event next week. Am so dang excited!
  • Am loving this book. Don't you love when you find a fun read?
  • Been playing on the boat - though not gone on any longer cruises yet - the rain, the rain. Am tired of the rain.
  • Had the most delish meal with goodies from the CSA - corn, new potatoes, fresh peas - simply incredible.
  • Decided to chop off my hair - time for a change. A couple of days after my visit to the haircut joint, decided that it was not short enough so took the clippers in hand yesterday. Probably not so even now, but what the heck. I love it.

Movies Worth Watching

1. The Happening
Do not even bother. I love Marky Mark (yeah, guess he goes by Mark Wahlberg), but he was a cardboard cutout in this movie. Had the essence of a good story line - oh, but fell so very flat. Too bad as I always root for the director. Sigh.

2. Eagle Eye
Woof woof. Another movie not worth watching.

3. Towelhead
Did not love it, but it is worth watching. There is so much bad behaviour in this movie that I don't even know where to begin - found myself talking to the TV much of it.

July 21, 2009

Visual Journal

Visual Journal

Recent Reads

1. The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo
This book is translated from Swedish, and it takes a while to get past some of the clunky sentences. The story is interesting - a murder mystery with social commentary but in the end did not love the book.

2. Outcast
My book club selection for July. Not sure I would have picked this book on my own - and must say that I enjoyed it - though could not wait for it to end. A story with tough subject matter and just when you think that things could not get worse they do! Thankfully came up for some light and air after I was done.

3. Bats at the Library
Read this with the boys and everyone loved it. A fun read.

July 19, 2009

Art Fest

Other activities at the art fest included playing with cameras, making little containers to plant sunflower seeds and of course sampling the food.

Doing the hula

Glorious weather continues, and yesterday we explored the Art Fest in Davies Square. The included learning how to use the hula hoop - remember those?

July 17, 2009

Sail Boston - Picton Castle

Can you imagine sailing into uncharted seas on these ships? Incredible.

Sail Boston - Amistad

The Amistad has quite a history. All the tall ships were open for boarding during the day and then closed for a private reception in the evening. We lucked out with fantastic weather for the event.

Sail Boston - Eagle

There is something quite extraordinary about tall ships. Here are some pics of Eagle.

July 16, 2009

Play Date

A glorious day to be outside today. Had a play date with the boys - spent the time looking for bull frogs, trying to catch fish, reading, drawing in our journals, wrestling and having a picnic. Delightful. (Click on pics to enlarge).