Nuance Carafes

I love to make fusion drinks, usually with vodka or rum.  
I use recycled bottles that have a cork or wooden seal.  
The sad thing is that it is difficult to remove the ingredients once the liquid has absorbed, as well as, flavored the ingredients.  
It seems like such a waste to throw away such goodness which could otherwise be added to other recipes or tossed on some ice-cream as a frisky dessert- Such was the trouble with this: 
Pear Fusion Drink

Come in Nuance Carafes- designed by Danish artist Marcus Vagnby.  
These carafes are made so that both the bottom and the top are are removable.  
The bottles are also dishwasher safe and ideal for both hot and cold liquids. 

Presently they are available in the United States in red, turquoise, lime and black- 


this moment

 Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.


Cool Spiral Wine Cellars

When I was a kid my parents renovated a part of our basement and added a wine cellar.  
Presently I have a wine rack- no cellar for me.  Where we live there are no basements- nothing but rock under us- but if I was to build a wine cellar/bomb shelter I'd want one of these designs:

Designed by a British company their website states this is the:
 quickest, cheapest and easiest way of building a wine cellar for your house.

A watertight, pre-cast cylindrical system that's sunk into the ground, it can be located anywhere.  It can keep up to 1,900 bottles in perfect storage conditions and like a traditional cellar it relies on the surrounding earth for its insulation.


Movies Your Kids Should Watch- Top 20 Classic (80's) Films For Kids

I have a list of films that I think it is my g-d given duty to make sure my monkeys watch, love and laugh at the right parts.
This 'best of' top twenty list combines my favorites as girl, filtered with Dr. J’s favorite as a boy and tested on two contemporary boys. A few of these films my monkeys have seen more than once and we started watching them around when my youngest was five.  Most of these would be entertaining for 5 and older.
I hate movie rating (I always picture a parent holding their kids hand to ‘guide’ them through a PG13 movie). It is the quality of the story and overall message of the film that is important- not whether they say shit or show nudity. Furthermore the more laughter and repeatable lines a movie has the better it is.

Here is a list of films that in my opinion are classics (I grew up in the 1980's) and that Dr J and I both watched as a kids and now as parents with our monkeys.

Princess Bride- (1987) The opening scene with Fred Savage was a favorite of mine as a kid because I had such a crush on him from the Wonder Years series. The fact that it replayed itself in real life when I first introduced the concept of seeing a film called PRINCESS BRIDE to my boys is hilarious.
Grandson: A book? 
Grandfather: That's right. When I was your age, television was called books. And this is a special book. It was the book my father used to read to me when I was sick, and I used to read it to your father. And today I'm gonna read it to you. 
Grandson: Has it got any sports in it? 
Grandfather: Are you kidding? Fencing, fighting, torture, revenge, giants, monsters, chases, escapes, true love, miracles... 
Grandson: Doesn't sound too bad. I'll try to stay awake. 

Grandfather: Oh, well, thank you very much, very nice of you. Your vote of confidence      
                                     is overwhelming. 
Great line is of course: Hello. My name is Inigo Montoya. You killed my father. Prepare to die.
This is story of adventure, love, conspiracy and overcoming adversity.   The losers are 'laugh out loud' funny and the sword fighting scenes are amazing.

Gremlins- (1984) This story is about an inventor who find a pet for his son in a creepy Chinatown shop.  The Mogwai is a cute cuddly creature (that I happen to really badly want as a child) that must be taken care of abiding by three rules.  As all good stories often unfold; the rules are broken and chaos ensues.
This film might be scary for some kids but with the advances in film technology, the effects seem very unrealistic to my boys- making even the famous Gremlin in a blender scene seem laughable.
So, when your washing machine blows up or your TV goes on the fritz, before you call the repair man, turn on all the lights and look under all the beds. 'Cause you never can tell, there just might be a gremlin in your house.
As an aside my older monkey can make the Mogwai 'singing' noise too well.

Beatle Juice (1988)- I love the music and dancing in this film, in fact I discovered Harry Belafonte because of this film. The movie came out when I thought Winona Ryder was uber cool even before Reality Bites.   In classic Tim Burton style it combines humor with death and decay. The film is about a country living, house restoring couple who discover their death when an artsy family moves in and starts knocking walls down. The Monkeys favorite part is when they go to the underworld and see all the freaky people and BJ gets his head shrunk after trying to steal a tribal man’s number.
BJ: Hey, there goes Elvis! Yo, King! (switches numbers) 
Well, looks like I'm next. Good thing, too. I gotta do a photo shoot for GQ in about an hour and a half. Yeah, they've been after me for months. Doin' some underwear deal. I don't know what... (tribal guy sprinkles powder on BJ’s head and it starts shrinking)
Whoa, hey! What are you doing? Hey, stop it! Hey, you're messing up my hair! C'mon!                   
Whoa! Whoa! Stop it!... Hey, this might be a good look for me. 

A Christmas Story-(1983) Ralphie just wants a BB Gun but everyone keeps on telling him he is going to shoot his eye out. He has a really nice mom who lets his little brother hide under the kitchen sink and act like a dog but hates his dad’s new lamp.
Although it is technically a Christmas film I think it is hilarious any time of the year and my monkeys agree.  Memorable scenes that make us all laugh out loud include when he gets his tongue stuck on a metal post and when he has his mouth washed out with a bar of soap. Not sure if it is Jewish humor appreciation but my monkeys think the sitting on Santa's lap scene is super funny.

ET- (1982) Um I don't remember using the line 'Penis breath' after seeing this movie as a kid- but my monkeys think that is hilarious.  This film is about a boy who finds an Extra Terrestrial and tries to keep him hidden in his house.  Steven Spielberg is obviously great and this film is well known for being one of the highest grossing films of it's time as well as the first film which explored the possibilities of product placement.  
My Monkeys particularly like the scenes where everyone is wearing radioactive suits.  Drew Barrymore was a break out star and I loved her when I was a kid and I still think she is super cute to watch.

Stand by me- (1986) I pretty much had a crush on all four characters.  The story is about four friends who go on an adventure to find the dead body of a boy. Their adventure is a classic tale of boyhood mischief full of tall tales and close calls. Based on the novel by Stephen King titled The Body this film is a classic. My Monkeys particularly enjoyed the pie eating contest:
What the audience didn't know was that Lardass wasn't really interested in winning. What he wanted was revenge, and right before he was introduced he'd gotten ready for it. (flashback of Lardass drinking Castor Oil and eating a raw egg before the contest). 
There is a lot of swearing in this film. 
Ghostbusters (1984) Three scientist set up a business in an old fire house to trap ghosts and save New York from pesky supernatural spirits- They inadvertently release a world from another dimension and must conquer the forces of evil.
The Monkeys love it Marshmallow man:
I tried to think of the most harmless thing– something that I loved from my childhood, something that would never ever possibly destroy us: Mr. Stay-Puft. Funny us going out like this. Killed by a hundred-foot marshmallow man. c

Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure (1989)- Again I had huge crushes on these guys.  As a mom I think this adventure is an excellent way to give monkeys a crash course in history that can be further developed.  The Monkeys, not so shockingly loved many of the naughty historical figures and we've been taking books out of the library to supplement their interest.

Bill: It is indeed a pleasure to introduce to you a gentleman we picked up in medieval Mongolia in the year 1269. 
Ted: Please welcome, the very excellent barbarian... 
Ted: This is a dude who, 700 years ago, totally ravaged China, and who, we were told, 2 hours ago, totally ravaged Oshman's Sporting Goods. 

Twins- (1988) Following an experiment to produce a perfect being Arnold Schwarzenegger discovers that he has a twin brother. Comedy ensues when he finds his unlikely twin, a small time crook played by Danny Devito.
Julius: My name is Julius and I am your twin brother. 
Vincent : Oh, obviously! The moment I sat down I thought I was looking into a mirror. 
Vincent: You could be a boxer or something. I could be your manager. 
Julius: No, I could never fight for money. 
Vincent: Well that's fine. You fight, I'll keep the money. 
As a girl I thought this film was funny and enjoyed both actors.  My monkeys loved the whole 'brothers forever' aspect of the story. 

Labyrinth (1986)- This film is about a young girl who wishes away her baby half brother whom she is stuck babysitting. In a classic case of 'be careful what you wish for' the baby is stolen my the goblin king and Sarah must complete a labyrinth or her brother will be turned into a goblin. 
Once upon a time, there was a beautiful young girl whose stepmother always made her stay home with the baby. And the baby was a spoiled child, and wanted everything for himself, and the young girl was practically a slave. But what no one knew is that the king of the goblins had fallen in love with the girl, and he had given her certain powers. So one night, when the baby had been particularly cruel to her, she called on the goblins for help!

Batteries not includes-(1987) A group of tenants living in a building set for demolition is visited by aliens who help them fight off the bad guys.
Jessica Tandy is great in this film. As a girl I remember thinking how cute the machines are and the intricacy of the machinery and parts certainly appeals to the monkeys.

Home Alone- (1990 not an 80's film but a childhood favorite)
This is slap stick comedy at it's finest.
Kevin: took a shower washing every body part with actual soap; including all my major crevices; including in between my toes and in my belly button which I never did before but sort of enjoyed. I washed my hair with adult formula shampoo and used cream rinse for that just-washed shine. I can't seem to find my toothbrush, so I'll pick one up when I go out today. Other than that, I'm in good shape. 
The monkeys love all the traps that Kevin sets up- The tar and nails bit particularly stands out and my monkey was wondering out loud if that would get infected.  

Never Ending story (1984) Tormented by bullies a young boy finds refuge in a book shop and finds an ancient story book.  He is warned it can be dangerous but as he begins to read it he is drawn into the mythical land of Fantasia which is in desperate need of a hero to save it from destruction.

Mr. K: The video arcade is down the street. Here we just sell small rectangular objects. They're called books. They require a little effort on your part, and make no bee-bee-bee-bee-beeps. On your way please. 

Peewee's big adventures (1985) I didn't really like this so much when I saw it as a kid.  When Dr. J insisted the kids would like it- which they did, I also found a new appreciating for this film.

PW: There's a lotta things about me you don't know anything about, Dottie. Things you wouldn't understand. Things you couldn't understand. Things you shouldn't understand. 
Dottie: I don't understand. 
PW: You don't wanna get mixed up with a guy like me. I'm a loner, Dottie. A rebel. So long, Dott. 

Willy Wonka (1971) This film is a must see in it's original production.  I was shocked to find out it came out WAY before I was born.  I remember seeing it on TV often as a child of the 80's.  Obviously the new version with Johnny Depp is a favorite for my monkeys but I still think it is important for everyone to see the original.
One of my favorite lines is:

WW: The strawberries taste like strawberries, and the snozzberries taste like snozzberries. 
Veruca: Snozzberries? Who ever heard of a snozzberry? 
WW: We are the music makers... and *we* are the dreamers of dreams. 

Goonies- (1985) Two brothers are facing having to move unless they are able to find the money to pay off golf course developers.They end up finding a treasure map.  Along with their friends they call themselves 'The Goonies' and go on a quest with the hope of saving their neighborhood.

Francis:  Tell us everything! Everything! Chuck: Everything. OK! I'll talk! In third grade, I cheated on my history exam. In fourth grade, I stole my uncle Max's toupee and I glued it on my face when I was Moses in my Hebrew School play. In fifth grade, I knocked my sister Edie down the stairs and I blamed it on the dog... When my mom sent me to the summer camp for fat kids and then they served lunch I got nuts and I pigged out and they kicked me out... But the worst thing I ever done - I mixed a pot of fake puke at home and then I went to this movie theater, hid the puke in my jacket, climbed up to the balcony and then, t-t-then, I made a noise like this: hua-hua-hua-huaaaaaaa - and then I dumped it over the side, all over the people in the audience. And then, this was horrible, all the people started getting sick and throwing up all over each other. I never felt so bad in my entire life. 

Harry and the Hendersons-(1987) A Frankenstein story of a family finding a ‘big foot’ while returning from a camping trip. Portrayed and perceived as a monster the family fights for their loved Harry. There is lots of swearing in this film which made it extra funny for my monkeys.
I wanted King Kong, you brought me a goddamn giant gerbil. I told you exactly what to do. You didn't even come close. 

Back To The Future- I am not a big fan of 'series' but make the exception in this case- 
These next three summaries are written by my monkeys- together in brotherly love. 


Is about a scientist named Doc and he built a time traveling car and he steals plutonium to fuel the car. His friend Marty travels back in time and meets his parents. Things get messed up when his mom falls in love with HIM instead of his father. It’s up to Marty to get his parents back together again and make it back to the future and save Doc from the angry Liberian who want their plutonium back. By hooking up a cord to the clock tower which they know is going to be struck by lightning and will send the time machine back to the future.


In Two Marty and his girlfriend Jenny are married and have kids (or you can call them monkeys). Their kids are in danger and are going to get sent to jail for listening to a gang.  It is up to Marty and Jenny to save their children and the future.


In the final back to the future they have to go back in time to the wild west because Doc always wanted to be a cowboy so he hid the car in an abandoned mine.  Marty gets to meet his great grandfather who is just a baby.  Marty and Doc have to change things again to save themselves.

What films did you love as a child and want your children to be exposed to?


Film: Mammoth

Mammoth is a 2009 film directed by Lukas Moodysson, a Swedish filmaker.
Michelle Williams and Gael Garcia Bernal play a successful New York couple who seem to have it all- Their apartment is spectacular, they both have successful careers and they have a beautiful daughter whom they dote on, named Jackie.  
The film takes place in New York, Thailand and the Philippines- with breathtaking scenes in Thailand and the design and style of the NYC apartment is enviable. 
The cinematography is well done and the camera angles are well thought out and executed. 
The film is touted as a reflection on globalization but I think it it more of a commentary on working mothers and modern day slavery. 
The lead characters do an amazing job- I am a huge Michelle Williams fan and as a close observer of a medical professional think she captures her roll as and ER surgeon well.
Gael Garcia-
Well, it is the icing on the cake that he is an amazing actor. 


Things I Saw Thrifting

I have a running list of things I am looking for and love the rush of finding the perfect item.
Presently, I'm looking for seating: for my master bedroom and my monkeys rooms, curtains (I want to sew something using vintage fabric), I have BIG plans for mason jars and I will buy anything that I can bake bread in- mildly obsessed with making bread these days-
If you have not seen my 'how to' vlog on no-knead bread please check it out- here

Some things I saw:
I swear these are the same seats I used to sit on when I would ride the 'Red Rocket' to school in Toronto
Pretty sure I need something like this for somewhere

What a perfect cuddle seat! I can just picture the four of us on this!
That lion looks like he ate a mouse. 

A banana split chair

I love the idea of a telephone table- my grandmother had one of these- 
G-d knows I never sit and talk- Multi-task- what is this world coming to?!

Love this- It folds up to be 'small' and compact! 

Old- fashion luggage is so trendy as a home accessory- certainly with present day weight restrictions it would not be worth it's weight to use it for its intended purpose.  

I like the style of the first chair and the fabric of the second- They should get married. 

And I did BUY some things: 
We have NEEDED one of these forever and even though my youngest already ripped off part of the equator ("I couldn't help it mom") the monkeys really love this globe- I like that it has measurements, really spins, has tidbits of information, elevated mountain ranges and Israel.  
An Abacus- I need to learn to use it so I can teach the monkeys-

Oh you just wait- I'm going to jar the whole world up.

So in love with this vintage 1970's sheet- 
It looks as if it has barely been used, vibrant colors and not at all worn.
I'm going to make something amazing out of it!

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