middle school

This American Life: Middle School provided interesting lunchtime listening material today. As I sat at our dining room table with Stella next to me in her high chair chewing on pear slices, I found myself in the middle; looking back and cringing at the thought of my own middle school experience and thinking forward to the years ahead when Stella will be in the throes of that awkward age. 

I cringed for myself and I cringed for her. Like most parents, I hope that she sails through middle school with relative ease, that she won't be tormented by teasing, bullied by girls who seek to damage her self esteem because they are so frightened by it all themselves, marked by acne, or mortified by shyness. Part of me wishes that she is bookish and nerdy, like I was, that she is able to see middle school for what it is, a large dance into adulthood, towards more complex but better things.

Middle School was a frightening and exciting thing for me. It was big, so much bigger than the small canyon grade school I attended. There were dances, and class periods, and people kissed. Looking back I don't know if I was awkward, but I was definitely out of place. I played the cello, my favorite past-time was reading in bed, and I acted professionally at a local theater. Where I tried so hard in grade school to stand out by dyeing my hair pink, in middle school I found myself doing what I could to blend in and hiding the things that would make me different.

As foreign as middle school was, high school was more so. In high school I stopped trying to blend in and just held my breath and hoped it would be over soon. A few weeks before graduating, a boy I had been in classes with since middle school approached me as I was reading alone at a table in the quad and said "when are you going back to your country?" 
"What do you mean?" I asked. 
"Aren't you from, like, Sweden?" he responded.

Oh, adolescence. Listening to the kids being interviewed by the folks at This American Life as they mentally prepared themselves to enter a middle school dance, it was clear that it felt foreign to them too. To all of them.

mustard suede triple bow

I have no where to wear these, but I think they're darling.

happy halloween


what a hutch

I am loving the hutch we recently bought to fill a previously haphazard corner of our kitchen. We had been looking for the right hutch for a few months and finally found just the one at Zonal on Hayes. Isn't it a beauty?



carmelized garlic tart

Garlic Tart
The carmelized garlic tart from Yotam Ottolenghi's Plenty = AMAZING. Plenty is, by far, my favorite cookbook of the moment.

The recipe can be found on KCRW's Good Food Blog...


saturday at big daddy's

Jordan + Stella at fourbarrel

On Saturday we stopped by fourbarrel for coffee before heading over to Big Daddy's Antiques. We discovered Big Daddy's at the Alameda Flea Market awhile back. 

We usually love most everything in their stall at the Flea so we decided to check out their warehouse space in the city. While we didn't come home with any new pieces for our house, we marveled at the space itself and the artful way they've staged all the antiques.

Big Daddy's Antiques
Big Daddy's Antiques
Big Daddy's Antiques
Big Daddy's Antiques
Big Daddy's Antiques
Big Daddy's Antiques


a few things i'm excited about right now

Beirut's The Rip Tide
Amitav Ghosh's River of Smoke, the second book in the Ibis Trilogy and the follow-up to the excellent Sea of Poppies.
Storytime with Stella

Fall outerwear by Zara
West Elm Organic Ikat-stripe sheets
listening to my favorite Bill Evans album on rainy afternoons with a cup of tea,
the possibility of hearty soups and stews,
starting to make plans for our winter trip to Argentina and Uruguay,
old friends made new.


stella, 10 months

A few things Stella is loving at 10 months:
Walks outside
Playing with her friends
Climbing the stairs in our house (over and over and over again)
Pulling books off the shelves
Chewing paper
Watching big kids
Opening cupboards
Giraffes at the zoo 
Waving at everyone
Lift-the-flap books
The Itsy Bitsy Spider
Dogs that go woof
When her Dada walks in the door at the end of the day

Little bear bottom


steve jobs, rip

“Your Time is limited. Don’t waste it living someone else’s life.” – Steve Jobs

[via SwissMiss]


monday's child vintage

My friend Celia recently launched a fabulous vintage shoppe on Etsy called Monday's Child. Take a look at some of the lovely things she's selling.