We can smell spring on the horizon, in spite of the four inches on the ground when we woke up to this morning.


Spring is there, on the horizon, waiting to begin.

Thanks to Seth, I sleep in now more often than not. On one such morning I woke up feeling Read More…

Sunday cleaning

We are cleaning.

This weekend it is the basement’s turn. There are piles of toys in need of purging. Last weekend, with the kids all at grandparent’s houses, Seth and I worked around the clock and made major progress on our room and the main level.

We live in a 1600 square foot house.

That is being generous and including the basement. While it was a mansion to Benjamin and I, it is a bit of a squeeze for the five of us (and one Archer). But, thanks to Ikea, Seth’s design sense and some serious purging (two trucks full), the house feels better than it ever has.

We are impatiently awaiting Spring and its warm breezes, sandals, fire pits and back yard grilling.

Here is a shot of our redecorated living room.


And now, I am off to the basement.

Any others have advice on blending households?



Did you change your last name?

After 10 months of marriage, I am considering changing my last name to Gray.


There are a few reasons I have not changed my name after re-marriage:

1. I never changed my name during my first marriage. Why? Honestly, after all of the green card and INS paper work I couldn’t bear the thought of more forms. And, as my long-time readers know, I realized only ten days in that my first marriage’s days were numbered. So why change my name?  Read More…

He’s making another bag.

hand making leather bag

And this one is for me. I can not wait.

I admit it.

I have been silently (and patiently) waiting for the work on this promised bag to begin. We had to survive back-to-back flus, Christmas and then more colds in the house. But now, he has the time and well, the bag has begun.

Or, I should say bags. Technically, he is making two identical bags. Cutting duplicate pieces as he goes. One is for me and the other will go up for sale in our Beauty and the Biker store.

I chose the design–a favorite featured in one of my fashion magazines last month and he’s duplicating it precisely, minus a few imperfections we have omitted.

Above is Phase II. He’s outlined the pieces, mapped out exactly how they will fall into place and now he’s about to cut that raw hide all up.

Yummy. Yummy.



If you missed Seth’s last handmade leather bag. Click here.

Maker Mondays – Smoking Goose Meatery

Maker Mondays is where I’ll show you some incredible people making even more incredible things, try to explain what makes their stuff so rad, and why you should care.

Today, meat… errr… meet Smoking Goose Meatery. We found Smoking Goose through Green Bean Delivery, the organic & local grocery delivery service we use. Side note: Green Bean Delivery is very competitively priced, sources locally wherever possible, and is ridiculously convenient. Check them out. Back to Smoking Goose Meatery: they had me at bacon.

Smoking Goose bacon

Then I found out they have Read More…

A truly modern family.

Benjamin has two Dads.

There’s his “real Dad” and his “Dad”– Seth.

He calls them both “Dad” or “Daddy”, and sometimes I have to ask for clarification, “Do you mean your real dad or Seth?” But 99.9% of the time we know which Dad he is referring to based on the context of the sentence. One is here and one just isn’t.

What does real mean? To Benjamin it means, he is technically his father, his “real” father. That much he understands. And his real father has no protest to him calling Seth “Dad”, which is think is huge of him.

Then there are Benjamin’s “Uncles”. Not sure what label to give to my Mom’s two manpersons, Larry and Bill, I started calling them Uncles way back when Benjamin was a toddler. Read More…

Farewell, Big Tom

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

Read More…

Weekend soundtrack #3

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.

Entire set from Neslonville Music Festival - Shovels and Rope
I had a hell of a time picking one Read More…

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