Thursday, December 18, 2014

Give Unique Christmas Gifts This Year

Unique Christmas Gifts

Each year I find that the most precious gifts are those, big or small, that have been selected with the individual’s interests in mind.  Not just mindless spending and giving, but something heartfelt, meaningful and fun. So are you looking for something to compliment his quirky sense of style?  Or are your sisters into gardening this year like mine?  Uncommon Goods features hundreds of gifts by a variety of designers worth stuffing into the stocking.  Yes, we said #StockingStuffers

You can feel especially good about doing your Christmas shopping at Uncommon Goods because they've committed themselves to sustainability, integrity, compassion, and responsibility to others.  Find out more about what a B Corp Company does and what else is unique about Uncommon Goods. 

Monday, December 15, 2014

The Late Oscar Niemeyer and His Architecture

*I read an article this week in the Wall Street Journal about the late architect Oscar Niemeyer's work and the importance and effect of his architectural legacy. The WSJ goes on to say that Niemeyer was "the last living link to an era that truly believed in architecture and its capacity to embody progress and new technology for the good of all."  We are all critics of architecture and infrastructure around us.  To say that Niemeyer's death marks the end of architectural progress and a vision into the future of what architecture could be...well, I don't know about that.  There's two sides to every story and Niemeyer's work has not always been heralded as mystifying, break-through, visionary art that has transformed a nation.  Another article by Richard J. Williams boldly claims "Brasilia has become a buzzword for the impractical, utopian ideas of the past: a white marble monument to central planning surrounded by slums, " referring to the National Museum of the Republic, a symbol of '50-'60s burst of urban modern zeal in Brasil.

So what do you think of  Niemeyer's architecture?  Over the top and serving a select few?  Or does it continue to be ground-breaking and cutting-edge?

*[This post has been hanging out in the "draft" pile for 1 year.  I completely forgot about the post until today.  So what are your thoughts?]

Friday, December 12, 2014

Beer Review (40): Jubelale by Deschutes Brewery

Jubelale by Deschutes Brewery

BreweryDeschutes Brewery Beer: Winter Warmer/Strong Ale| Beer Advocate Score: 89 Abv: 6.7%

Ah, winter warmers, the perfectly spiced brew to get you through the holiday season with LOTS of cheer.  This is the first time trying the Jubelale by Deschutes Brewery.  It had a nice dark rum and amber colored pour with a tan head.  Lightly spiced, medium hop and nicely flavored.  Caramel, bread, nutmeg and a touch of vanilla.  Grab a six pack for Christmas afternoon.

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Thanksgiving Weekend Photos

I'm sitting here sifting through pictures from last weekend taken in north east Pennsylvania.  Despite the sort of treacherous drive in on Wednesday evening (and the car sliding down the hill backwards), the snow was absolutely beautiful.  We strolled around back roads and checked to see if the lake was freezing up.  The annual Christmas tree shopping was a success too.

Lots of good food and great company.  Muffin loved being out in the snow and I did too!  I hope everyone enjoyed the holiday!

Saturday, December 6, 2014

Velodrome in South Philly?

Velodrome in South Philly?

There has been talk about building a $100 million dollar world-class velodrome in FDR park in S. Philadelphia.  The addition to the park would revitalize a sad, run down splash of greenery near the large sporting complex area.  Four acres are required to build the structure, we'll wait and see if the city is willing to let it go in exchange for a facelift.  In order to appeal to wider audiences, the proposed 6,000 seat building will also house concerts and alternate sporting events, so that'd be neat, right?

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Winter Warmer #RoundUp

Winter Warmer #RoundUp

A great winter ensemble starts with the most reliable outerwear.  That's why I've put together a #RoundUp with some of the highest quality gear on the market to keep you warm and dry through what the
Old Farmer's Almanac is forecasting--another long, cold, and snowy winter.  

The key is to start with a jacket that you can be sure will keep your core warm and snug.  Fjallraven makes it easy with their array of winter jackets that have been tested in some of the harshest environments.  Yep, and their pretty good looking pieces too.  

Apart from the jacket, the second most important part of the ensemble is definitely what goes on the feet.  Smart wool socks and a solid pair of waterproof boots.  You just can't skimp on this part.  Get something reliable with classic styling and a good guarantee.  This is something you can spend a lot on now and keep forever.
Try the LL Bean boots, they're timeless and indestructible.  

1. Fjallraven - Greenland No.1 Down Jacket
2. Harris Tweed - Men's Gloves
3. Fjallraven - Yupik Parka
4. Filson - Wool Seattle Shirt 
7. Fjallraven - Viso Beanie
8. Outlier - M-Back Climbers
9. Tretorn - Gärde Stövel Vinter GTX Boots
10Black Diamond - Spark Gloves
11. Pendleton Woolen Mills - Yakima Camp Blanket
12. Woolrich - Boot Socks
13. Brooks Brothers - Fair Isle Half-Zip Sweater
14. Drakes - Fair Isle Scarf
15. Paulrose Denim - Slim Slub Indigo Raw Denim

What keeps you warm in the winter?  

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Floating Christmas Tree in Corio Bay, Australia

Floating Christmas Tree in Corio Bay, Australia

Floating Christmas Tree in Corio Bay, Australia

Since Thanksgiving has passed here in the states, it’s my family’s tradition to decorate straight away for Christmas.  And now that I'm totally in Christmas mode, I’ve been stumbling upon a lot of cool Christmas-y things to share! 

First off is the temporary floating Christmas tree in Corio Bay, Australia.  It’s a stunning addition to the already beautiful coastline.   Instead of adopting traditional western Christmas decorations, i.e. snow covered pine trees, the lead designer wanted to take a different approach and start new traditions in the bay.  Check out the making of the tree over at Designboom by the very talented Creative Production Services.

Stay tuned for the all of the holiday #RoundUps coming your way!