Thursday, July 31, 2014

Items Every Man Should Own

This isn't my list but all this stuff and the image is awesome.

I have seen these lists before and am usually annoyed by them.  I recently saw this ONE at a site called ManMade (which is a decent website) but ended up feeling the same. These lists annoy me because I either don't agree with their choices or get frustrated with people determining what a "man" should be and mostly getting it wrong.  I am by no means the perfect man or think I hold the secret to being that perfect man, but since I have seen these things for a while and always seem to get upset, I figure it's time for my own. If you are going to make a list like this it shouldn't have things that all humans need but rather things that make a man well rounded and useful.  A pencil and notebook is great (for people with hands and eyes), sunglasses are handy (not necessary), a living plant is wonderful and learning how to garden is a great skill (not a manly necessity), a library card (sure, but that's not unique to being a man), an umbrella (honestly, I pride myself on NOT owning an umbrella).

My list is more about what I personally believe every man should own, but this doesn't mean that if you don't have everything then you are not a real man. What makes a man a man (in my mind) is his usefulness to others around him. I also think that everything on this list can be for women as well but, as a man, I can really only speak to what WE should definitely possess.  I don't have all of these items yet either (wish I did), and most of the images aren't exactly what I have but are just examples.

So here it is:

 A Knife- This is the ultimate tool. You should always have a knife handy.  There is never a time when a knife or multi-tool being around isn't a smart move. 

Boots- I personally like to wear boots all the time so having a pair for the outdoors and regular daily use is important. As long as you have a pair of boots that are durable, you are good to go.  I am forced to wear nicer more delicate clothing at times, but I prefer to have clothes that can take a serious beating.  Also, boots just have a tough look to them that will make you feel like you can get anything done at any time.  

An Axe- If you know me then you knew this was coming and you are probably surprised I didn't have it at the top. I have posted about the importance of axes before, but seriously...if you are a man you HAVE TO HAVE ONE.  Even if you don't chop and burn firewood regularly, they are a vital tool for emergencies, clearing over-growth, and camping.

Durable Bag- This isn't my exact bag, but every man should own a durable pack. On the ManMade link they talk about a weekend bag, which was essentially a purse.  I am talking about a bag that can take a serious beating and hold anything from clothing to survival gear to toiletries to diapers, and will last you the rest of your life.  It should be good enough for a weekend trip or a 3 month journey. Grace hates my "raggy bag" but I'll be damned if that thing ever gets thrown out.

A Gun- It's my personal belief that everyone should own their own gun. That gun can stay locked away and never looked at, in a place that is accessible in case of emergency and used only for that purpose, or used on a regular basis for sport.  I respect people who do not like guns and will never own one, but I think that every man (especially those with families) should learn how to properly operate, fire, care for and own a gun in order to protect themselves and those dear to them...if need be.  In fact, men and women alike should all know how to use one properly in case something happens and you end up with one in your hands during a life threatening emergency. You are not less of a man if you do not own a firearm, but at least learn how to handle and shoot one properly. 

Drill- Many tools are useful but this is one that is absolutely necessary.

A power saw of some kind- It could be a table saw, round saw, band saw, miter saw--any kind of cutting tool that can cut and trim wood to size.  You don't have to know how to build a deck or shed, but you will most definitely need this tool for repairing things around the house. Also, once you own tools like this you will want to use them more and learn more. 

Chainsaw- Much like the saws above, this is probably not something you will be using all the time but when a tree falls in your yard, you will wish you had one. And really nothing is quite as manly as the sound it makes and the power you wield when operating one of these bad boys.

Baseball Glove/Mitt- Mine was torn to pieces by my dog so I currently do not have a glove, but every red-blooded American man should own one.  Even if you aren't into baseball, you should have one just in case. 

Fishing Rod- If you don't know how to fish, you should learn.  I rarely go fishing and I just own a little spinning rod, but you should have one just to make you want to go fishing. Much like a gun, this is a skill every man should learn.  I often dream of fly fishing in Montana.

Hammer- You should have an ever-expanding set of tools, but the hammer is vital and will be used in almost every project. Buy a good one that will last because you will always need it. One of my hammers just got stolen so I am pissed.  But I have two more.  So really, every man should have multiple hammers.

Sports Hat- Most people have a hat, but every man should own one for their favorite team. This is for all the times you need a hat outdoors as well as when you undoubtedly go to a game and you need to support your team.  Make sure you wear a crappy one to a hockey game just in case there's a hat trick. Having a good hat is obvious, but it must be on the list.

Lighter- You don't have to smoke to own a permanent lighter.  Fire starting is important in many applications and why not have a long lasting sturdy lighter that can be used around the house, camping, or in an emergency.  I have the one above which is also the Zippo Indiana Jones used. It was given to me by my buddy, Phil over a decade ago and it's always in my "raggy bag." 

A Football- Another thing that my damn dog destroyed not too long ago, so I currently don't have a football.  It kind of hurts every time I think about it.  Much like a baseball glove, this item is vital to being an American man.

The last thing I will add is not a thing but rather a skill every man should most definitely possess.  All men have to know how to drive a manual transmission vehicle. This is not a suggestion and if you don't already know, never tell anyone and quickly learn. I beg this of you.  I once sprained both my ankles (that's right...I said both) at the same time and the guy I was with (I will not mention his name) could not drive me and my car home. If you are reading this blog you know exactly who you are and I still curse you for it. 

That's my list and I am sticking to it. But I would love to hear any suggestions and additions in the comments below.


Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Something Old, Something New

The Horn-A-Phone iPhone Dock

I don't typically go in for e-lectronic gadgets, but I rather like these two. Combining the newfangled with the old fashioned really gets me going! I especially like the idea of purposefully click-clacking away on an old typewriter without having to tangle with typewriter ribbon (what is that even like?) or wait for the Wite-Out to set (do they sell that stuff anymore?). It would make even the quickest emails you dashed off feel of great importance.   

USB Smith Corona Sterling Typewriter Computer Keyboard

- Cathleen 

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Pulling the Trigger

I'm finally doing it! I'm pulling the trigger on the Brunschwig and Fils Battle of Valmy wallpaper for Teddy's room.

Brunschwig and Fils
Battle of Valmy
Do you like my blurry photo? 

A dear friend of mine, Molly Bruno, owns her own design firm Molly Bruno Interiors, and I'm ordering the wallpaper through her.

Molly is incredibly talented and can meet all of your design needs. She created a beautiful design board for Clementine's room that was both inspired and sensitive to Clementine's wants. We've slowly but surely been purchasing the items Molly suggested to turn Clemmy's room into a fresh, age-appropriate space. 

I'll keep you posted on the wallpaper. I'm so excited to get it up in Teddy's room.

Happy Tuesday!

PS- There's still time to place bids on some of Jillian Dressed's collection I'm selling on eBay... check it out!

Monday, July 28, 2014

Artwork of the Week: Illustration from Earth Songs

Illustration from Earth Songs, 1973

One of the nicest parts of my days at the beach are when we adjourn to the deck after dinner with the end of a bottle of wine and talk about what we're going to have for dinner the next night. It combines three of my favorite activities: sitting under the stars in the cool breeze, making plans, and thinking about food. Tomorrow's menu includes crab cakes and comeback sauce. It's so nice to look forward to things. 

This is an illustration from a book called Earth Songs that was published in 1973. I think. I couldn't find much about it or the person who drew it. But it's rather nice to look at, don't you think?

- Cathleen 

[Image via Cori Kindred on Flickr]

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

I Might Have a Slight Problem

I declared to Micky not two days ago that I was not going to collect any shells on this beach trip. 
"I have a really beautiful collection already," I said, "What am I going to do with MORE shells? Psh."

I sounded so sure of myshellf. 

Maybe it's the hippie in me talking, but I think the rust-colored pair in the middle could make a totally cool set of earrings. Right??

- Cathleen 

Monday, July 21, 2014

Artwork of the Week: Illustration by Rhona Garvin

Illustration by Rhona Garvin

Still beaching. I finished AOGG. A pile of tears were shed. (SO GOOD, you guys.)
Nothing much else to report. 

The drawing above was a sketch for what turned into this screenprint. I think I prefer the earlier version, though. I have always appreciated great economy of line. You can see more work from UK illustrator Rhona Garvin on her website ( as well as a peek into her process on her blog (

- Cathleen 

Friday, July 18, 2014

Love and Lion

I'm throwing a wedding shower tomorrow and I've been in the thick of the prep this week. Last night, I made at least three miles of bunting that included a bucket of glitter. And even though I didn't finish until almost 1am, I still wanted to find more shiz to glitterfy. 

Maybe not exactly three miles...

While I'm a PRO at slap-and-giggle crafting, actual skilled work does not come naturally. I came across this fun blog, Love and Lion (don't you love the name? I heart "L" alliteration) when I was trying to find a not-crummy shower game. They had the cutest "Stat Card" game and one of the bloggers, Leah, was generous enough to send me a PDF that I could replicate. Unfortunately, when I mentioned before that I don't have any real skills, I wasn't joking. I couldn't create anything even remotely pretty or fun, despite staring at it for hours.

These are the original game cards- I couldn't seem to load mine.  Shocker.

Leah came to my rescue again and offered to redesign the card for me for almost free. And then, she put up with all my tweaks AND reworked another bit so I could use it as a sticky label! So fantastic! I know everyone talks about the rise of the internet troll, but it is amazing what fun, creative, and generous people you can connect with over the web. Thanks again, Leah!

And Happy Weekend, Friends!

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Swings & Arrows + Jillian Dressed = Awesomeness!

Hi readers! My dear friend Jillian of Jillian Dressed has an awesome blog featuring amazing outfits she puts together. Jillian and I taught together for a few years and she wore an inspired outfit everyday. She's helped me out with so many outfit dilemmas and now you can keep up with her even if you don't work at the same school anymore... woot woot!

That's Jillian... duh!
Jillian and I have teamed up to sell some gorgeous pieces of clothing and shoes she no longer wears... check them out, bid and win! A lot more will be posted in the next few days. In the meantime... enjoy.

Happy Thursday!!

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Summer Reading

This summer I decided it was high time that I finally finished Anne of Green Gables. Have any of you read it before? I was IN LOVE with the movie series. Like, checked it and re-checked it out of the library pretty much every summer that I spent at my Grandma Cueto's house. I can still remember how much my heart ached with every interaction between Anne and Gilbert. My grandmother was actually the one who gave me a copy of the book with a lovely inscription for my 9th Christmas, and I'm embarrassed to say that I never picked it up. UNTIL NOW. I've resolved to read it instead of watch TV or mindlessly surf the internet while Graham's asleep here at the beach, and already I'm thoroughly enjoying it. The first sentence alone brought a wistful chuckle to my countenance. (Just the sort of thing LM Montgomery might say, perhaps?) 

- Cathleen 

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Before the Dawn of the Apes

I have been posting a lot of short film on the blog of late so I apologize to those who don't care about such things or, like my wife, refuse to click on video links.  That being said- Here is another series of shorts that I absolutely love.
When Rise of the Planet of the Apes came out I thoroughly enjoyed the movie and was happy with the direction of the reboot.  Movie reboots can be just plain awful and Tim Burton's Planet of the Apes reboot was a prime example of this.  But this latest attempt has been infinitely better, and I think it's even better than the old movies (aside from the original Charlton Heston one).
I had been looking forward to Dawn of the Planet of the Apes but wasn't crazy excited until I stumbled onto these short films that were made by three different directors and meant to show what happens during the 10 years between the first and second movies.  They make the post apocalyptic world feel very real and involve the viewer on an emotional level during a time that would never have been depicted in the actual feature movies.  Then there was the latest Dawn trailer and that solidified my new found excitement.

Spread of the Simian Flu (Year 1)

Struggle to Survive (Year 5)

Story of the Gun (Year 10)- I think this one is my favorite.  Following one shotgun and it's different owners from before the epidemic all the way through to the beginning of the upcoming movie is genius.  It expertly depicts the passing of time as well as show the severity of the human situation in a mere 10 minutes.


Monday, July 14, 2014

Artwork of the Week: Illustration by Sabrina Arnault

Illustration by Sabrina Arnault

We are at the beach! Emerald Isle, NC to be precise. We arrived Saturday afternoon and so far my main concerns are adequate sunscreen coverage and nap schedule adherence. Sunday morning was spent trying to coax Graham away from the comforts of sandy Cheerios under the beach umbrella and into the water. Progress was made --- after 2 hours and several attempts, he allowed me to carry him in up to my waist, and even laughed when we were blind-sided by a wave on the way back to the shore. But it was all at great cost; I probably brought home a pound of sand in my bathing suit. Speaking of, I picked up a couple of solid one pieces at Target before I left. Pleasantly surprised by the selection; both fairly attractive with decent butt coverage. I recommend a look-see if you're in the market for something along those lines. 

The illustration above doesn't have a title that I could find, but it does have some serious sass. Also Sabrina Arnault's website doesn't appear to be up and running (what gives?), so you'll have to just Google her for more images.

- Cathleen 

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Currently On My Mind

Here's a sampling of the things I've currently been coveting:

Nautical Knots Coasters By Smathers & Branson
Adorbs! Can be purchased here.

Whale Handcrafted Hook Pillow

Can be purchased here. Would be perfect for Clementine's room!

Leonard Everett Fisher

This beautiful graphic alphabet poster. Can't be purchased anywhere... boo hoo. I have ways to get around that though. 

Krass & Co. 
Classica Lobster, Navy

These Krass & Co. shorts... perfectly preppy. I have two pairs of their shorts and I love love love them! They are comfy and cute. They do have that weird underwear lining thing though, and I have no idea why that's in there... does anyone know? I just cut the lining out of mine.

What's currently on your wish list?

Happy Thursday!

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

In Stitches

Spine Quilt by Meg Callahan
Image via

With only rudimentary sewing machine skills in my kit and a definitive lack of ample blanketry in my home, I am seriously considering making a quilt. Grace stitched a really lovely one for me a few years ago---all pale blues, soft creams, and warm browns. It sits with great pride of place on the back of our couch, protecting the button tufting from Graham's picky fingers. However, I think it's time to expand my collection. I've been saving some real beauties on Pinterest for awhile now, and while I'll probably never turn out something as finely crafted as these, they've given me something to aspire to. 

Color Study 306 by Sherri Lynn Wood
Unfortunately sold on Etsy

Autumn Lady by Loretta Bennett
2008, 87 x 65"

Image via

Tangerine Ladders by Barbara Perrino

- Cathleen 

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Wes Anderson/Robert Yeoman Short Films

Over the past few months, I have been assembling all of my movies (DVDs and downloads) and organizing them on iTunes.  I then "Home Share" through my Apple TV which in turn gives easy access to my movie collection on one Apple TV app. It is truly awesome and it has made me acquire more of my favorites just to have them on there.

It's almost becoming a hipster cliche to talk about Wes Anderson movies, but I don't care.  He makes some great films but I also think we need to give a little more credit to Robert Yeoman, his cinematographer.  He has worked on nearly every Wes Anderson project and his shooting style is really what gives Anderson's movies their unique feel. Outside of the quirkiness of the scripts, the cinematography is truly what stands out most in their movies.

That being said, I wanted to post three Wes Anderson short films that I think are great.

Castello Cavalcanti is a funny little film with Jason Schwartzman being Jason Schwartzman.  I think this one is my favorite.

*Nudity and Sexual Content* Hotel Chevalier is a very cool short because it extends the Darjeeling Limited world past the feature movie with Schwartzman playing the same character in a moment before his fraternal adventure.

Bottle Rocket (1994) was Wes Anderson's first project and was a 10 minute short film before he got up the funds and support to make it into his first feature.  Yeoman was not working with him on this one and you can really see the difference.  It is cool to see the Wilson brothers even younger, but in the same roles as the '96 Bottle Rocket movie.

Monday, July 7, 2014

Artwork of the Week: Pregnant Woman with Man

Pregnant Woman with Man by Gustav Klimt

Have any of you seen Call the Midwife? I tore through the second season in two days (there are only 8 episodes so it's not totally unreasonable), and ended each one with an invigorating cry. I do love a good period drama. And this one is really good, you guys. Chummy is the absolute very best part. You'll see.

This drawing by Gustav Klimt is one I hadn't seen before. I think it is a study for his painting Hope I, as is this. Apparently depictions of pregnant women in art were quite rare back then, and Klimt's sketches of full, rounded forms atop spindly legs are done quite beautifully. 

- Cathleen 

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Happy Fourth of July!

Freedom Quilt
Jessie B. Telfair
Happy 4th of July tomorrow! We'll see you Monday!


Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Flea Market Find

Last Saturday I dragged my mom up and down the aisles of the Raleigh Flea Market. Located at the NC State Fairgrounds on weekends all year (except in October when the State Fair's in town), it was a great activity for a beautiful summer day---sans toddler, thanks to my dear husband who stayed home for the team. I snagged the school-bus-yellow wooden chair poorly pictured above for $20, and also purchased a mini measuring tape for $1, one super skinny screwdriver for $1, a pair of rubber-palmed work gloves for $4, and a wooden phone case for $10. Ca-ching is right! The flea market itself was a mix of thoughtfully-displayed well-priced antiques next to booths full of broken bric-a-brac that I couldn't imagine anyone buying, along with the requisite Avon and kettle korn tents. Something for everyone!

I keep thinking about some of the hucksters we encountered. It seems like such a tough job; setting up all of your wares at the start of each morning, hustling and small talking with strangers in the hot sun for hours, then breaking it back down and packing up whatever you weren't able to sell at the end of a long day. Some dealers even had their pre-teens working the tables for them. I wonder what the inside of their houses look like, where they get their merchandise, how much they need to make each day to break even, how their kids feel about all of it. I went in looking for deals and left curious about their lives. I probably need to get out more. 

- Cathleen

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

More Cool Movie Posters

Since I posted about movie posters a few weeks ago, I thought I would follow up with some more. These aren't actual posters for movies, but rather a marketing campaign for a company called Minke. As far as I can tell, they provide graphic and printing services from stationary and screen printing to bookbinding.

The images are very abstract and would be hard to guess the movies without the titles to go along with them.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...