A Happy Peach

Things that make my heart smile…


To Chandelier or Not to Chandelier…

When I was in high school I worked at Ethan Allen for a while. It was fun being surrounded by designers and wonderfully decorated rooms. One room, I remember distinctly, had this elegant dining room theme. There was a large crystal chandelier which hung above the dining table. It added that note of richness to the room. The dark cherry wood formal dining set matched so well, creating this upscale feel. It was the sort of thing that I liked to visit, but wouldn’t want to have in my house. I thought it would be too fussy, but I was attracted to in nonetheless. And so I left it to those period pieces like Upstairs Downstairs and Downton Abbey, allowing it to remain one of those seemingly out of reach art pieces.

And then I thought that there had to be some sort of chandelieresque fixture that would fit my taste. So I snooped around and found this.

So pretty and modern....

But this one is $1,454.40, so this is more of an inspiration piece. I remember seeing an article in a magazine several years ago which focused on flocking. One of the flocked item was a small chandelier. It looked so cute. That prompted me to research flocking. I think the basic gist of it is cover the area in glue and apply the flock and viola you have a fun felty new surface. I was trying to find a picture online, but I was out of luck.

My search for other chandelier inspired ideas continued and found this video. It’s in two parts.

While I am not about to go out and buy one of those crickets, it did inspire me to look for other options. I thought of flocking my body of the fixture and using glitter on the danglers. And it doesn’t even have to be a light fixture, it could just be used for decorative purposes.

Then I opened up my email to find that Design Within Reach had this black tabletop candelabra.

DWR tabletop goodness

So that got me thinking about how I can make my own. I would just have to create the model, then a mold and then cast it. I could make it in some sort of acrylic base. And then I could flock it. The possibilities are endless, I’ve just got to figure out what I want to do and what color. I can picture a bright pink, robins egg blue, or even a soft yellow. I was hoping for something fun and interesting but not pretentious. What do you guys think? Chandelier? Candelabra? Nada?


Stories of a Life

One thing I’ve noticed about myself is that I love to hear the stories of others. As a kid I worked with a lot of grown folks and they always had the best stories to tell. I would sit there and listen to them with that bright eyed look. My love of a good life’s tale continue. When I hear the beginnings of a good tale I will stop whatever I am doing, perk up my little ears and listen with great attention.

Sometimes a good life story comes through the radio. Last month I had such a moment, I was sitting listening to the radio when they DJ said that Pinetop Perkin had passed away, he was a spirited 97 year old blues musician. The man on the radio told a story of how at 91 Pinetop Perkin was involved in train wreck, he was in the car. It seems unimaginable that he survived, being that most train vs. car accidents do not bode well for the car. But not only did he survive, but he was not seriously hurt, just a few scratches. It made me more curious about this man. So I went to Wikipedia, as one normally does when snooping, and found his story to be an interesting one. For a long time he was more of a sideman and did not have his own album till he was 75. At the time of his passing he had 20 engagements lined up.

Even more curious I ferreted for more stories. I came across this one in the Huffington Post. He was also known for his kindness and embracing smile. The author of the article, Cat Bennett, told the following story:

Once, when we were in Cannes, France, Pinetop went to an outdoor bar around the corner from our hotel and ordered a drink. It was a hot, sunny, summer afternoon and he sat on the enclosed patio under an umbrella. The band was playing on a small island off the coast so had to board a ferry around dinner time to get there. Everyone met outside the hotel to walk down to the pier but there was no Pinetop. Someone checked his room to find it empty. When Jer and I walked around the corner to see if he might be wandering about, we spotted him at his table on the patio.

“Pine!” we called over. “It’s time to go!”

He smiled, got up and ambled over like he had all the time in the world. “I forgot my wallet,” he said. “I left it up in the room.”

We quickly paid his bill. He’d had several drinks by then. When he realized he’d forgotten his wallet, he’d simply settled in. He couldn’t speak French and knew he couldn’t explain the situation. Neither did he try. It could have meant trouble had he walked out of there so he sat in the hot sun all afternoon. He made the best of his dilemma — ordering a few drinks, a little food, watching the world go by.

“Were you worried, Pine?” I said.

He wasn’t. He just laughed. Something was bound to happen, he said. Someone or something would set him free. Then he laughed again. There was such grace in his acceptance of life in all its permutations, sweet laughter even in the face of discomfort, and gratitude for the gifts that came his way.

The story made me happy to know there was a gentle person like that out there, appreciative to be able to hear this story and sad to know that I would never get a chance to meet him.

Does anyone else enjoy collecting stories?


“Be the change you want to see in the world.” Mahatma Gandhi

The following should be taken as a completely personal post, not one of those goody two shoes moments which is supposed to bully someone into something. It’s a this is what I am thinking about and this is the direction I want to be heading in sort of post. Just thought I would make it clear.

I am of the notion that people are inherently good. Under normal circumstance I believe we all want to do what’s right, but sometimes what falls in our general scope of what’s right can differ from others. I would like to think that most of us try to not hurt people and not cheat people. I understand that there are times when people get hurt and it was unintentional, but I think those are extenuating circumstances. And I think that is how most of us try to live our lives doing what we need to get by and trying not to hurt people.

However, what I notice is that “being good” is about what you don’t do, you don’t harm people and you don’t cheat them (and yes I know it’s a generalized way of looking at it, but the variety which entails a virtuous nature is way too vast for this post). In my way of thinking, and this is just my personal viewpoint, I try to take a more “proactive” approach. Now, when I was a teenager I don’t think I would have understood this properly, but having lived my life and had experiences I realize the importance of my actions. I think about what effect my actions have on others and then try to pick the one that does the least harm.

When I was in college I worked for a few nonprofit organizations and found those jobs to be some of the most rewarding. After college I worked in law enforcement, this work showed a whole other side of life to me. It brought a new understanding of people who made different choices a little better. After I left law enforcement I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do, so I began to volunteer. I have volunteered at a few different places for causes that I believe in. What I took away is how much value my work was to the people who were benefited from it, this personal growth was my payment. I realized what I do to/for another I do/for to myself.

Now that I am asking myself questions about who I want to be and what I want to do next, I turn to volunteering for answers. When I ask myself the question of my identity I hear the following quote from Gandhi:

Be the change you want to see in the world….

I expand his thought with:

  • Be the good you want to see in the world
  • Be a force for good

So I’ve been researching some new nonprofit projects to work on. I’ve gone back to a couple of organizations which I have used before.

I am still looking. I am looking for virtual volunteer projects. I was looking into the Peace Corps, but I am unsure if a two-year commitment is right for me at this time.

This old song has been playing in my head right lately. This is the really long version.


On Offer….

One thing about being a recovering shopaholic is the temptation. As I have said before I am doing OK resisting, but these offers just seem to keep coming. Here are a few that I think I may be able to resist, but just in case I thought I would post for you guys:

  • Deborah Lippman is offering 10% off all orders of $60 or more from now till April 28th (11:59pm) with discount code glitter2011. Personally I’d wait for Beauty.com when they give 20% off for friends and family, but they don’t have the entire line. Also on the Lippmann site you pay shipping, with Beauty.com you don’t pay shipping on orders over $49 (although it’s $25 right now). Or just buy it from Zappos, no discount, but free shipping both ways on everything. Can’t go wrong there (plus they are super nice). Although shipping rules may be different if you live outside of the U.S.
  • Saks Fifth Avenue is having their friends and family again. It’s a bit late this year, and I notice that the discount has gone done over the years, oh well. It’s 10% for beauty and fragrance, 15% for jewelry, and 20% for all others (and the fancy pants designers aren’t included). The coupon code is FRIEND3, you can also print it out and bring it in store. It used to be that this combo’d up with the beauty event, but I think that’s past.
  • J. Crew is always having some sort of sale shipping deal. They’re doing 30% off sale and free shipping with $150 purchase. Discount code OURTREAT

I think those are the ones for now. I’ll let you know if more come into my inbox. Man, it is hard to avoid these temptations.


Zoya Nail Polish Exchange…

I know, I seriously need to stop, and I have been good. I just skipped the Sephora Friends and Family discount, the Bobbi Brown Discount, and the Ulta coupons. There is a sense of relief each time I do. I am now trying to to get too involved with the Saks Friends and Family Discount. If you want a picture, it’s much like a child sticking it’s finger in their ears, closing their eyes and singing (off key mind you) at the top of their lungs “I can’t hear you.”

But in case you can rationalize it, here is a promo to turn old bottles of nail polish for some brand spanking new ones.Here are the details from the Zoya website.


Out with the old – in with the new! In honor of Earth Day from April 20, 2011 – April 27, 2011(11:59PM EST) Zoya Nail Polish will exchange* your old, out-of-style, unwanted nail color and replenish your nail polish supply with fresh Zoya fashion colors. All you pay is $4.00 per bottle for shipping and processing. Choose from over 300 formaldehyde, toluene, camphor and dibutyl phthalate (DBP) free, long-lasting, award winning, healthy colors to replace your old color! Zoya will properly dispose of your old polish.

Here’s all you need to do!

  1. Go to Zoya.com and pick out the polishes you would like and add them to your cart. You must select at least 6 bottles  and no more than 24 bottles of polish (Salons accounts minimum 12 maximum 48 bottles.)
  2. Apply the code:  EARTHZOYA
  3. Your order value will be adjusted to reflect the promotion
  4. SUBMIT your order!

Then Zoya will ship out your NEW polish! YEA!

Once you get your order (Here is where the exchanging* happens)

Ship back the equivalent number of bottles to the ones you received to the return address below. (ie. If  you got 6 bottles of Zoya – you would send us 6 NON-ZOYA polishes)

Include a copy of your order receipt and ship to the following address(please check with you carrier on the proper way to ship nail polish)

To clarify the exchange: You do not have to send us the exact amount of bottles that you are ordering. You can send any quantity up to that amount. You can also donate. If you decide you don’t want to do either, it’s ok “Offer is not contingent on customer returning polish” we will still love you and send you the Zoya polishes 🙂 We’ll just send you on a guilt trip for a while 🙂

Art of Beauty, Inc.
c/o Polish Exchange
5060 Taylor Rd, Unit D
Cleveland, Ohio, 44128, USA

Once we receive your polish we do the rest! It’s that simple!


The bottles you send in cannot be Zoya, Qtica or Nocti polishes (but they can be any other brand).

We are using the honor code here folks! We want to make sure you get your Zoya Nail Polish! We send you the polish first then you send your old polish back to us! If you do choose to send us your old polish we promise to properly dispose of it according to EPA guidelines. This offer is only good for 1 week so hurry – Don’t Wait!

I am not sure I am going to do it, but I thought I would pass it along. I’m not the biggest Zoya fan, but they have good colors and maybe you have some bottles that you really aren’t going to use, I know I do.


A Nod Toward the Understated and Sublime…

I’ve noticed that most of my posts have a certain randomness about them. They tend to be things that are on my mind or catch my heart. In that spirit I intend present to you the inspiration that color can bring. I love color and the effect it can have on one’s mood and thoughts. I know that there are color trends, but I tend to go in the direction of what tugs at my senses.

I look at objects and colors and instantly my thoughts begin to think of different possibilities. I am a fan of objects past, I like to watch movies and look at pictures from different eras and take of the objects that occupy the scene. They had such character. Lately I’ve been fascinated with green color family, more specifically jadeite and avocado green. Both are indicative of the retro mod look of the sixties.

The Greenfest first started with this delicious little avocado green bag. I think it’s due out in Fall. I love the shape of the bag, it looks a bit like the French book bags that children used to carry, almost like a briefcase. The soft green hue compliments the mod feeling it attempts (and succeeds) at presenting. To me it’s tres chic (hmm…that was not meant to sound pretentious at all, if it did, sorry about that).

J. Crew Bag coming out this Fall

It then made me think, in this mod little fantasy what would I be riding. Naturally I thought of a Vespa. I’ve always wanted one, but living in such a high traffic area I reasoned against it. But it’s still my dream to live in a place where I can just put about.

My new vintage ride 🙂

I then thought of food, as is the nature of my beast. I thought in this mod little world what I would need is an icebox of some sort (I don’t know why, but I quite like calling a refrigerator and icebox).

My cute green icebox

And of course a stove to cook my yummy creations.

My matching stove...

Or I could go with stove that has contrast colors.

Stove Option number two

It was fun to find and share these cute little gems. These sort of pieces inspire me, in their own way they have a place in my world.

Addendum: I was in a sublime bliss as I listened to St. Germain during my scavenger hunt. If you haven’t heard of them, here’s a taste.


Gone too soon…

I wonder if anyone else gets involved with their TV show only to  have a TV execs yoink it off the air. Not only that, but have you ever found a show after the fact, meaning after it’s been killed mercilessly by the execs and realize that it was a really good show. When that happens I get annoyed, annoyed with the TV people and annoyed with myself for not finding it sooner. It’s as if I had found it sooner, maybe it’s fate would have been different, knowing full well that is not the case but I live to dream.

I don’t understand exactly how they make their decisions to be honest. There are a lot of reality TV shows, and those aren’t the types of shows that I enjoy very much, but they are cheap and easy to make and I think they can be pretty popular with some people. I know that there were two writers strikes in the last ten years which really halted production. It was on the news all the time here when they happened. A lot of people faced difficult times, not just the cast but the production crew, and a lot of shows didn’t have a proper chance of survival. So I guess it’s a matter of interest (which they determine from ratings, but I have no idea how that’s done, because it doesn’t really accurately depict the entire country just a selection), production costs and politics/contracts (which can probably be considered production costs also). But none the less I am not part of that industry so I can’t understand exactly why they do what they do, and with the internet what and how they do it is most likely going to change even more.

That long winded lead in was just to introduce my list of programs that I thought were fun to watch but yoinked off too soon. So here with go:

Arrested Development

Witty, snarky and slightly bizarre. I honestly don’t know how else to describe this story. The cast is great, the writing hilarious (it still works even today) and it’s narrated by Ron Howard. The show follows the insane antics of the Bluth family, a group of out of touch rich people. The only person who wants to relate to reality is one of the sons, Jason Bateman. And bonus they’re coming out with a movie, hopefully it will be good.

Pushing Daisies

Lee Pace stars as Ned the Pie maker (I have no idea if he  has a last name), a man who due to circumstances had made himself closed off to life. He also has the ability to bring people back for the dead, but only for one minute, he has to touch them again to “redead” them if he keeps them alive any longer than that then another person dies. In addition to owning the Pie Hole, a pie shop, he works with Emerson Cod (Chi McBride) to solve murders using his ability. He brought back his childhood sweetheart Chuck (Anna Friel) and now they can’t touch. I know the premise sounds weird, but Brian Fuller writes clever, fun and witty dialog and creates bright colorful imagery for the viewer to enjoy, it’s quite theatrical. The acting done by the entire cast is quite good. It takes murder mystery and adds more of a fun and perky tone giving it a unique storyline. There were other family issues, and it’s better for you just to watch it.

Because it’s funny….

Dead Like Me

Brian Fuller must have a thing with death.  It’s about a group of undead reapers, their job is to go to people before they die and reap their souls by touching them otherwise the soul stays trapped inside the body until reaped. OK, now I am starting to sound ghoulish, but it’s the writing and the issues that the individuals have that make the show entertaining. Just because you’re undead doesn’t mean you stop feeling, plus I love Mandy Patinkin, he’s such a great actor (and singer, he was awesome in Evita the original stage version I believe). Since the show only had two seasons and was canceled abruptly, they did a movie a couple of years ago. It was not very good unfortunately.


I do enjoy a bit of science fiction, but with a sense of humor. Basically the Firefly is a space craft and the crew is a group of misfits who pull jobs in order to make ends meet (be they legal or otherwise). The have made quite a few enemies and always seem to end up with trouble. It only lasted one season, but there was a action packed movie. The movie had more of a darker tone than the show. If you are squeamish then maybe better to skip.


Happy Earth Day!!!!

In addition to Jazz Appreciation month April has the distinction of also being Earth Month, but Earth Day falls on April 22nd. The first Earth Day, according to Wikipedia was back in 1970, before a lot of us were born. I think it’s best efforts are to inspire and enlighten citizens of the need to care for our planet. It sounds like a bunch of tree hugging malarkey, but take out the eco-pirate agenda and it does make sense. It makes sense to be aware of what you consume, how you consume it, and what how it affects the world we live on. I think that is a simple way of looking at it.

What I really wonder is how much has the world changed since 1970? In the 60s, and this is all info I gathered from movies and people I’ve talked with, people were becoming aware of the environment. I actually think it was more of the younger generation that were becoming more aware of the ecology. From my perspective there was the Hippie movement, with many crunchy individuals made the effort to make environmentally aware decisions. I think a lot of them were vegetarians, they rallied against the establishment and tried to use more natural products. But in came the 80s and the me way of thinking was dominant. People started to become more obsessed with possessions, luxury and wealth. Acquisition of products became the main goal, with little regard for the environment. Then the 90s rolled in, and there was the grunge sort of hippie anti-establishment movement, we began to recycle, but we also saw continued people continuing their materialism. And our cars got bigger, everyone wanted an SUV. Turn of the century (heck of he millennium) and green started to go mainstream. Governments supporting hybrid cars, but we’re still fighting over oil and I doubt OPEC is going to go down without a fight. We continue to recycle, but still we bought a lot of junk (man that’s when I started buying so much garbage). And then the economy took a real dip, so we had to cut back drastically. But now that the economy is healing we are starting to buy again. I don’t know what to say about that.

I think we all want to live on a healthy Earth, so for my part I am revisiting the green principles:

  1. Recycle
  2. Reuse
  3. Reduce

I know that I don’t do enough. I do recycle, but I have not been good at reuse and reduce. I am trying to reduce my consumption, but it’s a hard habit to break. And I try to reuse stuff, and the stuff that I don’t need or want I give away so someone else can use it, but I am not good at upcycling. I start saving older clothing thinking I can repurpose it, but never get around to actually doing it, I then give put the item in the give away bag.

My friends, what do you do to be Green? I think Kermit was right it’s not easy being green.


Free Origins Cleanser Alert!!!

Hi Friends,

You know I love free stuff, who doesn’t. And I love to pass it along to my pals. To celebrate Earth Day Origins is giving away a cleanser (this link will take you to the Origins website) when you fill out a form and bring in your empties to any Origins counter.  I love Checks and Balances myself.



Origins | Special Offers | Earth Day Exclusive! (This is a PDF of the form if you want to print it out from here) Happy Times!!!