Friday, March 27, 2009

Woman's Day

I have been searching and searching for old (early 1960s) copies of Woman's Day Encyclopedia of Cookery volumes, as well as their WD Collector's Cookbooks. I have found some of the Encyclopedia volumes so far... I just LOVE the graphics! And in Vol. 11 of the Encyclopedia I even found an article, "The Pleasures of Tea Drinking", by James A. Beard! It begins, 

'Thank God for tea! What would the world do without tea?--How did it exist? I am glad that I was not born before tea.' This warm appreciation for the cup that cheers was expressed by Sidney Smith, English writer and wit of the early 19th century. I heartily agree with Mr. Smith. The era B.T.--Before tea--must have been bleak."

So if you run across any cheap copies, be sure to snatch them up, or let me know and I will! I'm going to frame this one and put it up in my kitchen. 

Three Must-See Exhibits

A New and Native Beauty: The Art and Craft of Greene and Greene at the Renwick Gallery.
Click here for an online tour (courtesy the Huntington Library and the Gamble House).

"The architecture and decorative arts designed by Charles Greene (1868-1957) and his brother Henry Greene (1870-1954) a century ago in California are recognized internationally as among the finest of the American Arts and Crafts Movement. The Greenes carefully considered every detail of the buildings and objects they designed, incorporating European, Asian and Native American influences. Like their contemporary Frank Lloyd Wright, they believed architecture to be no less than a design language for life, imbuing their projects with an expressive sensitivity for geography, climate, landscape and lifestyle. Their progressive ideas about design still influence California architecture today.
"The Art and Craft of Greene & Greene, the most comprehensive exhibition of the brothers' work to date, examines their legacy with 127 objects in a variety of media, including beautifully inlaid furniture, artfully executed stained glass and metalwork, as well as rare architectural drawings and photographs."

State of Deception, at the National Holocaust Memorial Museum. This is a fascinating look on the use of propaganda during WWII. The Washington Post's review of the exhibit is worth reading for its insight into the media ecological implications of the exhibit.

Morandi: Master of a Modern Still Life, at the Phillips Collection. (This is not the same exhibit that was at the Met a year ago).

Sticker Books

I saw these in Philly at a great modern toys shop: Eye Like Sticker books. They have sticker books that cover all of the usual suspects: colors, letters, animals, seasons, & c. Eye Like also produces colorfully illustrated books which take all of their inspiration from nature

G and I have been going through these sticker books that I found at Costco. Now, I'm not usually one for all of the branded items that are clogging up children's wares... however, these sticker books are great! The activities are really well laid out, engaging for a two year old, and are challenging. Many of the other sticker books that I have gotten for G are too complicated or boring. Upon doing a cursory google check, it looks as though they are out of print (I guess that's why they are at Costco!), but if you have a Costco membership, it's well worth grabbing them while they are there. 

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Nella Last's War

I just read the Washington Post's review of Nella Last's Peace (WP March 25, 2009, Nora Krug), I can't wait to read it! But first, I'll have to read Nella Last's War. I can't believe I didn't know about these before! 

"Nella Last may be the most prolific writer you've never heard of. For nearly 30 years, beginning in August 1939, this mother of two in Barrow-in-Furness, England, wrote a diary at a 60-page-per-month clip, leaving behind several million words. Her journal was part of a social research project called Mass Observation, which did exactly as it
 sounds: collected the observations of citizens who shared their thoug
hts on matters both personal and political. An edited portion of Last's musing was published in 2006 as 'Nella Last's War,' which also served as the basis for a BBC series, avail
able on DVD, called 'Housewife, 49' (a name that reflects Last's age when she began the diary."

More informaiton about Mass Observation and it's history can be found here



I found a very thorough and helpful site to preform cooking conversions, it allows you to choose the material (honey, sugar, flour, etc.) for more accuracy. 

Thursday, March 12, 2009

So my best friend is pregnant...

...and I'm looking up all kinds of things about pregnancy. I found this adorable, "How Big is Baby?" chart:

Weeks 3 & 4*: Poppyseed
Your little zygote is settling into your uterus...
> More on what baby's up to

Week 5: Appleseed
Average size: .13 in**
Major organs and systems are forming...
> More on what baby's up to

Week 6: Sweet Pea
Average size: .25 in
Blood is starting to circulate...
> More on what baby's up to

Week 7: Blueberry
size: .51 in
Baby's brain is growing fast...
> More on what baby's up to

Week 8: Raspberry
Average size: .63 in, .04 oz
Little arms and legs are moving like crazy...
> More on what baby's up to

Week 9: Green Olive
Average size: .9 in, .07 oz
A Doppler device might pick up a heartbeat...
> More on what baby's up to

Week 10: Prune
Average size: 1.2 in, .14 oz
Arm joints are working, and soon legs will too...
> More on what baby's up to

Week 11: Lime
Average size: 1.6 in, .25 oz
Fingers and toes are no longer webbed...
> More on what baby's up to

Week 12: Plum
Average size: 2.1 in, .49 oz
Almost all vital systems are fully formed...
> More on what baby's up to

Week 13: Peach
size: 2.9 in, .81 oz
Teeth and vocal cords are appearing...
> More on what baby's up to

Week 14: Lemon
size: 3.4 in, 1.5 oz
Liver, kidney and spleen are continuing to develop...
> More on what baby's up to

Week 15: Naval Orange
size: 4.0 in, 2.5 oz
Legs are finally longer than arms...
> More on what baby's up to

Week 16: Avocado
size: 4.6 in, 3.5 oz
Eyebrows, lashes and hair are filling in...
> More on what baby's up to

Week 17: Onion
Average size: 5.1 in, 5.9 oz

Skeleton is hardening, and fat is accumulating...
> More on what baby's up to

Week 18: Sweet Potato
Average size: 5.6 in, 6.7 oz

Baby's moving like crazy -- feel anything yet?
> More on what baby's up to

Week 19: Mango
Average size: 6.0 in, 8.5 oz

Vernix caseosa is coating baby's skin...
> More on what baby's up to

Week 20: Cantaloupe
Average size: 6.5 in, 10.6 oz

Boy or girl, genitals are fully formed...
> More on what baby's up to

Week 21: Banana
Average size: 10.5 in
***, 12.7 oz
Taste buds are starting to work...
> More on what baby's up to

Weeks 21-24 (Month 5): Papaya
Average size: 10.5-11.8 in, 12.7-20.8 oz

Nipples are sprouting, and face is fully formed!
> More on what baby's up to

Weeks 25-28 (Month 6): Eggplant
Average size:
13.6-14.8 in, 1.5-2.2 lb
Immune system is preparing for the outside world...
> More on what baby's up to

Weeks 29-32 (Month 7): Squash
Average size: 15.2-16.7 in, 2.5-3.8 lb

Sleeping and waking cycles are establishing...
> More on what baby's up to

Weeks 33-36 (Month 8): Honeydew
Average size: 17.2-18.7 in, 4.2-5.8 lb
Growth is slowing, and baby may soon descend...
> More on what baby's up to

Weeks 37-Delivery (Month 9): Watermelon
Average size: 18.9-20.9 in, 6.2-9.2 lb

Full term! Baby's finally ready for the outside world...
> More on what baby's up to

Friday, March 06, 2009

More on Domino's Demise

The March 2009, and last, issue of Domino magazine.
Great blogwatch in the post. Go sign the petitions!

Food and Sex

Fascinating article by Mary Eberstadt, "Is Food the New Sex?" 

Just a couple of interesting excerpts:

"The opprobrium reserved for gluttony, for example, seems to have little immediate force now, even among believers. On
 rare occasions when one even sees the word, it is almost always used in a metaphorical, secular sense."

"Perhaps the most revealing example o the infusion of morality into food codes can be found in the current European passion for what the French call terroir--an idea that originally referred to the specific qualities conferred by geography on certain food products (notably wine) and that has now assumed a life of its own as a moral guide to buying and consuming locally. That there is no such widespread, concomitant attempt to impose a new morality on sexual pursuits in Western Europe seems something of an understatement. But as a measure of the reach of terroir as a moral code, consider only a sermon from Durham Cathedral in 2007. In it, the dean explained Lent as an event that 'says to us, cultivate a good terroir, a spiritual ecology that will re-focus our passion for God, our praying, our pursuit of justice in the world, our care for our fellow human beings.'"

"This junk sex shares all the defining features of junk food. It is produced and consumed by people who do not know on another. It is disdained by those who believe they have access to more authentic experience or 'healthier' options. Internet pornography is further widely said--right now, in its relatively early years--to be harmless, much as few people thought little of the ills to come through convenient prepared food when it first appeared; and evidence is also beginning to emerge about compulsive pornography consumption, as it did slowly but surely in the case of compulsive packaged food consumption, that this laissez-faire judgment is wrong."