The kids are back in school. Finally.
There’s not a room in the house that has missed Alaina’s nesting. I even tried my hand at some framing and drywall.
I’m still having a blast creating Read More…
The kids are back in school. Finally.
Right now, I’m finishing up a women’s handmade leather bag… For the second time.
The first time just wasn’t good enough, so I called the client and explained it was going to take a little longer to get it to her. Then I took it apart and Read More…
Printed photos are a rarity for me. Lily & Cohen’s baby pictures aren’t in one of those frilly family photo albums. Well, a few of them are. And there are some in frames. But most of the pictures are on my phone and computer… and backed up on two separate external hard drives… and various online photo services. But printing them always seemed like such a hassle. Have to crop them, upload them to some wobbly local photo shop website (or through iPhoto, Flickr, Picasa, etc), select print sizes, glossy or matte finish, and on and on. And, usually, you have to do that all from a computer.
Now, though, we have lots of pictures. A Ms. Single Mama/Beauty and the Biker reader, Julie, told us about an awesome photo app she’s been working on called Groovebook: a photo app for busy families. Groovebook prints a keepsake booklet of up to 100 pictures from your iOS (iPhone, iPod, etc) or Android device each month, sends it to you, and all they charge is $2.99 for shipping/handling. Seriously. So, when Julie asked if we wanted to try out this photo app for free (in exchange for sharing our thoughts about it), we said sure!
You can download Groovebook for free from the iTunes App Store or Google Play. Then, create a free account, and select the pictures you want this month. The pics go from your phone to your door with a few taps.
The kids love these little photo books. Each page is perforated, and tells the date, time, and location of each picture.
Lily tore out a bunch and put them on the pin board in her room.
Sitting in a rickety rocking chair on the patio with the dog.
Brisket smoking over beer-soaked, mesquite wood chips. Read More…
The world of live music lost one of its biggest, most dedicated advocates last week. You’ve probably never heard of him. Even people that went to the hundreds of live shows he put together probably had no idea who he was. But I did, and I’m happy to have gotten to know Thomas McAleer– Big Tom.
I met Tom at Cheatham St Warehouse in mid 2010. A couple months earlier, I’d finally realized
Beauty and the Biker’s Weekend Soundtrack #3!
“Spent Time” - Wheeler Brothers
These guys have a new album coming out on April 2, 2013. It’s called “Gold Boots Glitter” and I’m looking forward to it. In the meantime, here’s a song from their current album. I’m a sucker for a good storytellin’ song. Wheeler Brothers are on tour all over this great country, so make sure you go see a live show. I’m gonna. Music snob stuff: driving backbeat, horns (without sounding kitschy), tempo changes, great harmonies.
There is an incredible amount of amazing music made every day. Sometimes you have to dig for it though.
To save you the trouble of digging, I’ll post my 5 favorite tracks of the week here each Friday morning, for Beauty and the Biker’s Weekend Soundtrack.
In no particular order, here’s Beauty and the Biker’s Weekend Soundtrack #1
“Roll The Bones” by Shakey Graves
Shakey Graves is Alejandro Rose-Garcia. This badass, dirty-blues-guitar-picking, one-man-band (plays a kick drum built into a suitcase and a tambourine with his feet), hails from Austin. The video below is of Roll The Bones, but really any song by this guy is fucking rad. He’s got a couple albums recorded & for sale, and they’re good. But the real treat are the live performances. The albums are intimate and intricate. The live performance is like Johnny Cash and Jim Morrison hanging out with Justin Townes Earle drinking whiskey, shooting guns, and playing guitar with the bullets. Music snob part: tempo changes, dynamics, storytelling, blazingly-tasty guitar picking.
It seems like a lifetime ago, but I was married for 9 years. Obviously, it ended in divorce, so keep that in mind while reading the list below. But, hopefully, you can learn from some of my mistakes. If you have any lessons to add, please add them in the comments. We’d love to hear them. In no particular order, here are 9 lessons from a failed marriage:
- Connect daily. My first marriage died of atrophy. I can’t speak for my ex, but I remember desperately looking for time for me. Between, work, kids, and home repairs, it was really hard to find time to write songs, hang out with my brothers, or play the occasional video game. By about the end of marriage year 3 is when I think I lost my focus. I spent more effort on time for me, than finding a healthy balance. Looking back, I think it was a defense mechanism. I was tired of being hurt– my ex didn’t wan’t to go out because she was worried about spending the money, and over time, that starts to hurt. It’s probably worth spending a few dollars on a sitter, packing a meal, and going to a park. Connecting doesn’t have to mean going out (although, that’s important, too). Connecting means a touch on the shoulder. A kiss for no reason. A compliment. Asking questions. A conversation that doesn’t involve kids or work. Connecting doesn’t mean talking about logistics. Logistics is something even (some of) the most dysfunctional exes can discuss. Find a way to really connect with your spouse/significant other every single day.
- It’s ok to fight (but do it respectfully). It’s a good thing to be passionate. It’s ok to be angry, hurt, sad, really pissed off, whatever. It’s good to express those feelings. It’s always ok to make “I” statements: “I was/felt sad, angry when you said/did [fill in the blank].” Screaming, hurtling insults, sulking? Not so much.
- Learn how to apologize the right way. “I’m sorry you felt Read More…
More handmade leather bags that will outlast you on the way.