Friday, January 29, 2010

cheap amplifier

need a cheap, non-electrical way to boost the sound of your smartphone?

i just love this not-so-recent tip from lifehacker... put it inside a glass and place it on a hard surface. how's that for a simple amplifier?

500x_iphonecup (by ann-dabney)

i tried this while taking a shower today, and my iphone was loud enough that i could here it* over the water.

this is an especially perfect solution while on the road and staying in a hotel. i guess it wouldn't work so well at the "riff raff inn" (mogo's economical chain of choice); they only have plastic cups.

* fyi: i jammed out to this.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

man, was she cool.

this comes from my dear friend, C, who admits this was one of her favorite music videos of her youth and where she learned all her dance moves.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

it's official

yesterday, i went with sis and bro-in-law to their millionth sonogram, where i stared at strange wiggling shapes for half an hour. but mostly, i did a lot of nodding and smiling when told i was seeing a hand, a foot, and a little butt. what do i know? - except that i am so psyched for my sis and bro-in-law. they're going to be make great parents.

well, it's 80% official*. dabney and i are going to be aunties to a bouncing baby GIRL! while the news was enthusiastically received by most of the family, a slight bit of disappointment came through in my father's voice over speakerphone. after years of living with my mom, sister, me and my aunt, how can we blame him?

after being told that my sister would be giving birth to a girl, dad asked, "oh. are you sure? ...but i already have so many girls." to all of us, it has been no secret that he already had manly images of afternoons fishing with his grandson dancing in his head.

next time, dad. next time...

* the little doodlebug had its little legs crossed so tight, it's gender was difficult to read.

Monday, January 25, 2010

baby bump

today, we find out if we are going to be aunties to a boy or a girl. to us, it really makes no difference. we'll spoil him/her all the same.

in the meantime, mama is doing just fine and seems to be keeping her sense of humor.

Baby bump (by ann-dabney)

Friday, January 22, 2010

man, i love japanese commercials

here's one for giga pudding. don't blame me for this song being stuck in your head all day either.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

we're part of the cool crowd

i totally understand these folks. even the title of the accompanying article, "chilled by choice," hits close to home.

with twelve foot ceilings and over 3600 square feet to heat, we generally turn down the heat in our day to day lives by economic choice.  it's only when company is over that we'll pump the thermostat up.

dabney and i have made a habit of bundling up while working and hanging out in our house/store. that often means wool socks, fleece, and flannel.  in fact, i am wearing almost exactly that: long-sleeved tee, wool sweater, fleece vest, cords, and wool socks.  i look like i am about to go for a hike in the vermont woods rather than spend a day at home.

hot coffee in the morning helps. how dabney drinks ice cold diet coke each a.m. confounds me.

that little woodstove works overtime these days and thank god for it.  i've made a little nest at the end of our dining room table 'cause it's the warmest spot in the house.

does anyone else put themselves through this each winter?

would i trade lower ceilings for warmer temps?  hell no.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

va visitors

it sure was nice to spend a weekend visting with friends.  we hadn't seen j in a long time so there was much to catch up on, including a not-so-new relationship.  in fact, we had a ball getting to know r and loved that the two of them could laugh at filipino humor as only people with insider knowledge can.

we hope that they didn't mind us stuffing them silly with local fare and dragging them around from neighborhood to neighborhood.  it sure was fun.

Jenn, Me, Rachel, Dab (by ann-dabney)

Me, Rachel & Jenn (by ann-dabney)

Rachel & Jenn @ Arch (by ann-dabney)

again, not suitable for young audiences

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

not suitable for young audiences

Ahem (by ann-dabney)
(sculpture at the st. louis zoo)

Friday, January 15, 2010

friday bueller

remember this scene?

man, i crack myself up.

Thursday, January 14, 2010


Checking out the artwork

yesterday, friday noticed, for the very first time, this framed piece of wallpaper that has been sitting on the floor in our kitchen for months now.  it's actually wallpaper that was hanging at the place we got married in 2003.

Checking out the artwork

i don't know what was going on in that little pea brain of hers, but she howled at it for a few seconds.

Howling at the artwork

then, moved in closer for a good look.

Close look

then, even closer for a good smell.

Closer look

Wednesday, January 13, 2010


was anyone else as saddened by this as i was?

Friday, January 08, 2010

clooney tour

because 80% of the movie was shot here, st. louis is "up in the air"- crazy and obssessed with all things clooney.

for those of you interested, here's the st. louis post-dispatch's clooney tour of stl.

Thursday, January 07, 2010

trivia night

last night, we played our first trivia night in ages at a coffeehouse just a few short blocks from our house. we dubbed our team "pie lovers," in honor of our old boston cohorts. (holla!)

the rules were the same ones with which we are familiar. each round has five questions. a bet from one to five must be placed on each answer to determine point value. team with the highest number of points wins the night. no smartphones allowed.

the questions had primarily to do with pop culture, a specialty of dabney's and mine (or at least that's what we thought until last night). instead, we realized we were sitting amongst of group of youthful twenty-somethings who knew stuff like "who was the star of young guns II?" and "what was the sequel to leprechauns in the 'hood?"

dabney and i felt we had a chance to contribute to our team score by naming four of the six #1 songs that justin timberlake recorded. "rock your body!" "sexy back!" "cry me a river!" um, that other one!! "dick in a box?!" alas, we fell short with three. by the end of the evening, the only answer we could wholeheartedly take credit for was "victor hugo."

lucky for us, we had joe g., undoubtedly the team mvp, whose young nimble mind came up with answers like "sister act 2: back in the habit" and "nickelback." if it wasn't for him, we would have come in dead last. instead, we ended up in the middle of the pack - a respectful result.

Wednesday, January 06, 2010

arcade fire on acl

i don't usually care to watch concert footage, but i watched an encore presentation of arcade fire on austin city limits the other night and was BLOWN AWAY. did anyone else see this?!

lucky for you, it's online.


from david pogue, ny times...
The single best tech idea of 2009, though, the real life-changer, has got to be Readability. It’s a free button for your Web browser’s toolbar (get it at When you click it, Readability eliminates everything from the Web page you’re reading except the text and photos. No ads, blinking, links, banners, promos or anything else. Times Square just goes away.

You wind up with a simple, magazine-like layout, presented in a beautiful font and size (your choice) against a white or off-white background with none of this red-text-against-black business.

You occasionally run into a Web page that Readability doesn’t handle right — no big deal, just refresh the page to see the original. But most of the time, Readability makes the world online a calmer, cleaner, more beautiful place.

to read the rest of the article, go here. i installed this last week and love it. now, go forth and download...

Tuesday, January 05, 2010

dining room table - CHECK.

it has been a challenge finding just the right dining table for our long narrow space.  for the past six months, we've been using two mogo folding tables lined up end to end as a substitute while we searched for the perfect thing. everything looks passable under a clean tablecloth, no?

though a little wide, i was convinced that this table would have worked perfectly, until i saw the price.  i still love its industrial look.  in fact, it reminds me of this find

the other day, dabney came across THE table on craigslist - long, narrow, rustic, with clean lines.  perfect.  the only issue was that dabney wasn't searching st. louis craigslist.  no, she had to be looking at a table that was located in the middle of tennessee!  so off we went down i-55, way down past new madrid (pronounced mad-rid, emphasis on the "mad" - not like the city in spain), past hayti (pronounced "hay-tie," not like the caribbean country), through eastern tennessee, until we got to milan (pronounced "my lan", not like the italian city).

four plus hours goes awfully slowly when you've got a eight and a half foot farm table strapped to the top of your station wagon.  i forgot to snap a picture.  dammit.

Farm table (by ann-dabney)

in the end, the table was just the thing we needed. now, i am off to figure out how to create a firewall to keep dabney off other areas' craigslists.

Friday, January 01, 2010

happy new year sold to the highest bidder

it's the first day of the new year and how do we spend it? at an estate auction, of course!

here i am, lucky number forty-one.
At auction (by ann-dabney)

i was coveting this purple paul mccobb sofa. instead, i had to be satisfied with just sitting on the thing while the price went up and up.

the real highlight of the auction was this lot of 3' tall knee-hugging elves that i so wanted to buy for mr. christmas.  i can just see the christmas card now.

At auction (by ann-dabney)

i was also in lurve with a matching pair of brass light fixtures. (one is pictured below.) they would be so amazing mounted on each side of our bed.

At auction (by ann-dabney)

alas, the auction was so poorly organized that the whole process was akin to getting my teeth drilled at the dentist office. impatience won out, and dabney and i split before it even went on the block.

in the end, we might have left empty-handed, but it was educational nonetheless.  here's hoping that 2010 will be filled with more auction opportunities.