Thursday

Schooled by a 24 Year Old

Check out this recent college grad's rental apartment in Boston, filled with her DIY projects and flea market and Craigslist finds. Looks magazine-worthy and expensive (campaign-style cabinets or nightstands have been on my want list forever!). Wow, wow, wow.


Photo by Luisa Design

See the apartment photos on Copy Cat Chic today. I'm off to search Craigslist between feedings, cuddles and naps. 

Tuesday

Wolf Pack: Official

Una has been saying for weeks that little Bloom was the official start of our wolf pack and here she is:

Arden Crowley Bloom


Photos by Emmie Cerow

Posting likely to stop for some time for baby bonding. And sleep. 

Saturday

Special Delivery

May 21, 2011 at 9:33 AM
6 Pounds, 2 Ounces


Baby Girl Bloom 
Healthy Appetite, Advanced Sleeper, Una's Beautiful Curls - My Kind of Girl
(name to be determined)

Girlfriend has a full head of hair!
And yes, epidural occurred. Holy sweet hell, natural birth went out the door when I went from 0 - 8 centimeters in two hours flat. That drug is a gift from heaven above.
(I was worried she might be groggy after birth from it, but she was peering at everything for 2 hours! Not a single effect!) Exhausted and thrilled.

Happy birthday!

Friday

Bon Jovi & Baby

Guess where we're going on Saturday night?


Baby's first hairspray. I mean, concert. 

Thursday

Inexpensive Swap for Williams Sonoma Cashmere Throw

Clearly it isn't cashmere at this price (it's a lightweight wool), but at $55 for a 50" x 70" throw in a plethora of excellent colors, this substitute is a fantastic "now" item. (Since cashmere is in the "later when we have more money to burn" category.) 

Available at Company C. 




A Custom Crib Skirt

Una thinks I'm crazy, but since I'm forever dealing with champagne taste on a beer budget, I tend to take on too many projects. (Case in point, our headboard - which took 9 months to come to fruition.) And when it came to the baby's room (and the crib set I liked totaled $995, courtesy of Serena & Lily), I decided it needed a complete rehaul, Abbey-style. AKA, new headboard and bed skirt for the guest bed, crib skirt, pillows and coordinating trim on the inexpensive glider, all done by moi.


Hah. As of now, I've added a grey linen trim to the skirt of the glider (now proven to be a completely unnecessary design task), sucked it up and ordered three pillows from Calico Corners, recovered the bedside lamp in leftover fabric and some rope welting, am halfway done with the headboard, and finally completed Bloomberry's crib skirt. The bed skirt has been abandoned in light of our looming due date.


Here's a photo of the finished crib skirt, made of Thom Filicia's seagull print linen from Calico Corners. I absolutely love it (a bolster pillow and the bedside lamp will match). Pouf is Calypso St. Barth Target collection!




Apologies for the dark tint - I'm on the computer that won't let me edit photos. Will update later. I think it looks great. Though those wheels need to be removed from the crib stat! Una!

Wednesday

Ralph Lauren at Home . . . on the Ranch

Though this is not necessarily my style of home decor, the setting is fantastic. (Okay, I wouldn't look this gift horse in the mouth. I would take it in a heartbeat.) Wow. Wow. Wow. Check out the full post at Habitually Chic for more photos here.







Tuesday

Want

Both the model's legs and the jeans:


William Rast Jade Trouser in Stone
$176.00
Available here.


Gilt Steal

Safavieh Furniture sale at Gilt Groupe today and this fabulous linen-slipcovered chair is a steal

 Two for dinner? Adorable as the head seats at a dining table. I'd pair with wooden side chairs to add natural texture.


Sandra Slipcover Chair for $360 (from $952!)

I wish . . . 

Monday

Ballard Beauties

I am constantly impressed by pieces in the Ballard Designs catalogs. For a very inexpensive price, the company copies designer pieces in a big box way. Yes, I am sure corners are cut in quality in some respects, but you're still getting something better than Ikea and Crate & Barrel with - in my personal opinion - a lot of more interior style. Here are some pieces from the most recent catalog that I'm liking:

Gaspar Luggage Rack for $99.00

Tribeca Bench & Sectional for $309 and up

Durham Tall Bookcase for $499

Column Garden Seat for $159

Lotus Garden Seat for $159

Winged Chair for $449 and up

Bella Cane Bar Stool for $349

York Street Outdoor Table (take 10% off) for $189

Bornova Side Table for $199 (wish this was in coffee table size)


All at BallardDesigns.com

Saturday

Blogger Issues: Recap

Well, I posted on Friday and apparently the internet has deleted any proof of its existence. Those embarassing and hideous photos on Facebook I wish never existed? Yeah, they'll be around for my grandchildren's grandchildren. 

I'll sum it up real quick - congrats to my youngest sister, Eliza - graduating with honors (and inducted into Phi Beta Kappa!) today! In honor of all of the graduations happening across the country, I posted a design plan from the latest issue of Nesting Newbies, created by Camila of Effortless Style for a young woman just starting out. Her budget is $2500, but I think it could easily be cut in half or more by getting all big pieces from a thrift or vintage store or (nice) garage sale. Adding in lighting, rugs, throw pillows and inexpensive artwork from big box stores or Etsy keeps the look modern and fresh. Get cracking graduates - (pages 206-207)!


Wednesday

Spring Lonny!

The May/June online issue of Lonny is here!


Check it out!

Tuesday

Yep. James Taylor.

I'm pretty sure I need to get hired by Jon's company. Current skill set? Snarky commentator, excellent snacker, internet extraordinista. And ordained minister, a la the Universal Life Church(.com), should an emergency marital union be required.

This weekend, Una's boss threw a joint birthday party for himself and his wife (both having turned the big '65' this year) for 500 of their friends and colleagues (including many who they've met through their charity work). With this ninth month kicking my rear end, 6 PM rolled around and found me moaning in my bed a la "When Harry Met Sally" as Una left the house ready for the big bash. 

Big bash was correct. At 7:31 PM I received a text from Una that read: "The surprise musical guest is JAMES TAYLOR. Get here NOW."

Obviously I dragged my chubby bottom out of bed and made it to the last 45 minutes of his performance, and just in time for my favorite song, "Mexico." Like the giant party pooper I am these days, I waddled out the second the concert ended. Una stayed for cupcakes and the remaining festivities. The coolest part? After James Taylor left, his boss went on stage and pulled 10 names out of a bowl. [When everyone first checked into the party hours before, each was asked what charity they would donate to if they had a choice.] Una's boss donated money on the spot to each of those 10 chosen charities. So cool.

I was informed the next morning that "any future party thrown by said boss would require mandatory attendance."

I think I can be on board with this.

Sunday

The Dirty Thirties

Una's been trying to persuade Bloomberry through nightly chats that arriving before his 30th birthday ("so I can always tell our child that I was in my twenties and you were 31 when it was born") was its best bet. 

Alas, today arrived: no babe. 

To welcome a new decade filled with serious responsibility, Una took himself over to Home Depot and bought a big 'ol grill. I am fully supportive of any and all cooking-related activities that do not involve me. In fact, I'm pretty sure winter grilling is completely underrated.


Happy birthday, Una! 30 is the new 21. 

Saturday

Saved By the Bell

Sleep? What's that? I haven't slept through the night since December. Lately, there's been even less to go around, what with the baby treating my bladder like a punching bag. Waking me out of any kind of slumber is like breaking into a hibernating bear's cave and pelting its face with rocks. I suggest you do that . . . never.


This morning, after being awake for a 2.5 hour streak in the middle of the night (along with the usual 7 trips to the loo), I was rudely surprised by a flying elbow to my lower back. Having finally fallen back asleep just an hour before, I opened one squinty eye and prayed I was confusing a loving back rub for the violent wake-up call. The tap-tap-tap of Una's Blackberry informed me I was not.


Needless to say, the ensuing conversation did not go well for anyone involved.


After Una scampered out of the house in primal fear to get cereal and "anything I needed for breakfast," the door bell rang. Sauntering over in my Giants belly-baring tee shirt (it's Jon's and still not long enough to cover the beast) and a highly-unflattering, calf-length pair of striped pajama pants, I was greeted by a bouquet of Mother's Day flowers and a beaming delivery man.


Well-played, Una. Well-played. 


Defcon 1 emotional crisis averted. 

Happy Mother's Day everyone, and a happy early 30th birthday to my dear, dear loving Una.  

Friday

I Can't Keep This Stuff Straight

Everyone says pregnancy is 9 months (39 completed weeks). But when you get down to the technicalities, it's a little different. As of today, our little Bloomberry is fully formed (meaning its lungs can function on their own outside the womb) and considered "full term." But officially, a "full term" baby is born anywhere from the 37th week to the 42nd week. Way back when, Halle Berry was lampooned for saying a pregnancy was 10 months long. It's not right, but it's not totally off. By the time you hit 42 weeks (please Lord, no), you're already into that 10th month.

Anywho, countdown is on. Sleep has gone out the window, wiener fingers are in full effect (courtesy of swollen hands - Una says my fingers aren't big enough for the medical term 'sausage fingers'), getting dressed is an unfortunate situation that involves more spandex than I care to admit, putting on non-velcro shoes makes me break out in a sweat, and my belly is so tight it feels like one wrong kick and the baby's likely to fly out of my belly button a la "Alien 3" (or Renesmee's birth in Breaking Dawn for you younger folks).

Pregnancy is a funny thing.

Thursday

Cinco de Drinko and More

 Image via JSonline.com

Cinco de Mayo (Spanish for "fifth of May") is a holiday held on May 5. It is celebrated nationwide in the United States and regionally in Mexico, primarily in the state of Puebla.The date is observed in the United States as a celebration of Mexican heritage and pride, and to commemorate the cause of freedom and democracy during the first years of the American Civil War. In the state of Puebla, the date is observed to commemorate the Mexican army's unlikely victory over French forces at the Battle of Puebla on May 5, 1862, under the leadership of General Ignacio Zaragoza SeguĂ­n. 

Below, some local places to celebrate "Cinco de Madness" (courtesy of OnMilwaukee.com) - including Beer Bong Bingo, a free flat screen TV giveaway, the first ever Bay View Salsa Crawl, "Cinco de Drinko" at Spin Milwaukee, the "Air Sex World Championships" (you have to read it to believe it), a jalapeno-eating contest and more. Man, I cannot wait for my first frozen mango margarita post-baby. Sweet, cold deliciousness.
Art Bar
722 E. Burleigh St., (414) 372-7880
artbar-riverwest.com
In honor of Cinco de Mayo, Art Bar is hosting "Beer Bong Bingo" with $3 Lakefront brews, rails or shots from 8 p.m. to close. Bingo is from 10 p.m. to midnight, and if you win bingo, the beer bong is one of the prizes. (But don't fret if bongs aren't your thing, there are other prizes, maybe even some with Mexican themes.)

Burnhearts
2599 S. Logan Ave., (414) 294-0490
Burnhearts will serve up Mexican beer specials during the day and a hard cider tasting with Crispin and Fox Barrel on tap in the evening.

Bel Air Cantina
1935 N. Water St., (414) 226-2245
belaircantina.com
A shot of Inocente tequila gets you a ticket to win prizes in a raffle, including a flat screen TV. Keep things going with Corona, Corona Light cans and Dos Equis taps for $2.

Bryant's Cocktail Lounge
1579 S. 9th St., (414) 383-2620
bryantscocktaillounge.com
If cerveza isn't your beverage of choice, sit back and enjoy the holiday the old fashioned way, that is with some old fashioned cocktails. Bryant's "Bone Crusher" of tequila, fresh lime, pepper and hot sauce is $3.50 all day Thursday. Enjoy it with some other $5 old fashioneds during cocktail hour from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m.

Tonic Tavern
2335 S. Kinnickinnic Ave., (414) 455-3205
tonictavern.com
Join OnMilwaukee.com, Art Milwaukee, NEWaukee and the Tweet Up Girls for the first annual "Bay View Salsa Crawl and Art Jamboree." Visit each of the three bars from 7 to 10 p.m. to sample and vote on your favorite salsa. Enjoy Cinco de Mayo themed art from six local artists, Mexican appetizers, three live bands, dance performances and Cumbia lessons. Open canvas painting, skull candy decorating, pinatas, a taco truck and much more go with the drink specials at each bar, like Corona for $3 until they're gone at Sugar Maple.

Cielito Lindo
739 S. 2nd St., (414) 649-0401
cielitolindomilwaukee.com
Pop in to Cielito Lindo's 2nd Street location for a cold $2.50 Tecate and stay for some classic Mexican dishes.

COA
5750 N. Port Washington Rd., (414) 967-1451
getcoa.comCOA, the Bianchini restaurant at Bayshore Town Center, gets going early with the Maricachi Azteca Real Trio at 11:30 a.m. Great food and specials all day. DJ Willy and dancing from Salsabrosa all night from 9 p.m. to midnight. 

Conejitos539 W. Virginia St., (414) 278-9106conejitosplace.netConejitos is always a destination for good, cheap Mexican food. Go for your usual on Cinco de Mayo and also take in a live Tex-Mex band from 5 to 10 p.m.

Tres Hermanos
1332 W. Lincoln Ave., (414) 384-9050
If you can take the heat, and quickly, sign up for the Third Annual Jalapeno Eating Contest at Tres Hermanos during the Lincoln Village Cinco de Mayo celebration. First one to eat 20 jalapenos wins a three-day trip to Las Vegas. Drink specials at all three bars begin at noon. Contest starts at 6 p.m. with live music throughout the day.

Mark Pasch, Ltd.
333 W. Brown Deer Rd., (414) 351-5634
markpaschlimited.com/mpltd.html
Mark Pasch hosts the "Cinco de Mayo Trunk Show" for new summer and fall 2011 clothing lines with a bar and Mexican appetizers from noon to 8 p.m. Otto's Liquor will have a tequila presentation.

Spin Milwaukee
233 E. Chicago St., (414) 831-7746
spingalactic.com/milwaukee
"Cinco de Drinko" begins at 9 p.m. with $3 Jose Cuervo and $5 Patron shots and $20 bottomless tap beer (except Triple Abbey). Fortunately for those taking advantage of the bottomless taps, the kitchen is open until midnight.

Stonefly Brewery
735 E. Center St., (414) 264-3630
stoneflybrewery.com
The organizers of the "Air Sex World Championships," hosted by comedian Chris Trew, say there's no better way to spend Cinco de Mayo. Picture an air guitar competition, but the person performing on stage has an imaginary sex partner (and maybe an imaginary guitar still, who knows). No nakedness or real orgasms, just sexy fun for a $5 cover.

Trocadero
1758 N. Water St., (414) 272-0205
ztrocadero.com
Celebrate "Cinco de Madness" at Trocadero with $5 house and $8 top-shelf margaritas. Each margarita gets you a ticket to win bottles of high quality tequila.

Tuesday

Savage Beauty? Questionable Fashion.

Boy, what a disappointment. 

Frankly, fashion in general lately has been boo-ring. The royal wedding and now the Met Gala - fashion's biggest social event of the year - commemorating none other than the bad boy of fashion, Alexander McQueen - and this is what we get? Snoozefest.

And while I think the classic ladylike looks that are the rage these days are beautiful, they just aren't exciting or interesting. Here are my personal favorites from last night's party in New York City, and a few disasters for amusement.

First, a few that dressed in the spirit of the eccentric McQueen . . .
Liv Tyler in Givenchy Haute Couture

Shalom Harlow in Marchesa

Karolina Kurkova in Jean Paul Gaultier

Hillary Rhoda in Alexander McQueen

Followed by the good . . . 

Maggie Gyllenhaal in Stella McCartney

 Ashley Olsen in vintage Dior Haute Couture
While I'm not sure I would wear this, she looks so grown-up.

Isabel Lucas in Louis Vuitton
The color and headpiece make this unique, which is exactly what Alexander McQueen was - absolutely a one-of-a-kind.

Amy Poehler in J. Mendel
This is classic and elegant, but the color, sheer drape and her necklace make it interesting, no matter what decade. I would love, love to own this dress. 
Hair = fail.

Princess Paltrow in Stella McCartney
She's on a column dress kick (hello Oscars), but this one fits amazing. Also backless.

Florench Welch (of Florence and the Machine) in Yves Saint Laurent
She looks like she dropped out of the 30s. And love her red hair.

Naomi Watts in Stella McCartney
On the safe side, but loving by the long, sheer sleeves.

The Almost Award: Mary-Kate Olsen in vintage Givenchy
I love the dress; the fit is horrendous. If the waist and hips were fitted and the sleeves belled out and came in at the wrist, I would wear this in a heartbeat. 
The green and deep corally red are awesome together. 
Hair, as usual, a fail.

The bad . . . 

Elettra Wiedemann in her grandmother Ingrid Bergman's dress, as redesigned by Prabal Gurung
Unflattering across the board. Should have kept it long.

Emma Stone in Lanvin
Hair, lipstick, floral pattern, dress shape: all zeros.

Jessica Alba in Ralph Lauren
Pretty sure they took a wrinkled bolt of bridesmaid silk and wrapped her in it. Awful.

Penelope Cruz
She's worn this dress a million times. That's why.

Sofia Vergara in Carolina Herrera.
Or is it Laura Ashley's prom collection? I can't tell. The worst of the worst.
Looks cheap.

And the hot: 
Jeremy Irons's son, Max Irons. Just because.

Photos via style.com; nymag.com; stylefrizz.com.

Thoughts?

Monday

Savage Beauty

The Metropolitan Museum Costume Institute's Gala is tonight and its theme is Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty


Of course, the timing is quite perfect, as Alexander McQueen's creative director (McQueen committed suicide last year at the age of 41) Sarah Burton designed Kate Middleton's wedding dress for her marriage to Prince William.



Photos via Style.com

Can't wait!