Wednesday, July 30, 2008

The Lambs and the Lions Playing

I saw this video on the Today Show this morning and it touched me so much that it made me cry.  It's quite short and worth the two minutes or so it takes to watch it.  First the video, then my commentary.  Without further adieu, meet Christian the Lion:

After watching this video, I had to wonder why it is that this video, in all of its preciousness, caused me to cry.  It wasn't a sobbing cry, but neither was it tears of joy.  My own answer to this is that depicted in that video is something my soul longs to see; it is what we were created for.  The Bible talks about the lambs and the lions playing together, and here is a visual representation of just that.  It's a beautiful moment, and one that I look forward to seeing myself one day.  It's how God intended it to be before The Fall juxtaposed and inverted the natural relationships of this world. 

Monday, July 28, 2008

Why HELLO there, handsome!

My father and I flew out of the Philadelphia International Airport on Thursday afternoon, landing in Columbia, South Carolina that evening.  We stayed with my Aunt Helen and her sister, my grandmother, and on Saturday, a group of us drove down to Oak Park, Georgia for a Griffin/Warren/Cannady family reunion.  "Bubbahead" Joe made the BBQ with his famous BBQ sauce, and everyone else contributed to the potluck with superb southern cooking.

I'm a bit of a genealogy freak, sometimes spending five or more hours a day researching my family history, so meeting all of these long-lost (to me) relatives proved to be quite a treat.  I now have a bit more conception of my family, especially as my great-grandmother Warren had something like nine siblings.  We also found proof that we're Irish!  Funnily enough, I've always wanted to be Irish, having romanticized them so.  Now, we'll have to take a trip to see those rolling, emerald green hills, and crumbling castles.  Maybe I'll even stumble upon a Leprechaun.

Moreover, stashed in my great aunt's collection of papers was a completed application to be a Daughter of the American Revolution.  Someone else has already done the work, so now all I need to do it update it and apply.  Now, all I need to do is find the paperwork to be a Daughter of the Confederacy-- here I'm showing my southern roots:)

Here for your viewing pleasure are a couple of old photos I uncovered over the weekend.  The first gentleman, Ned Cannady, is quite the looker and is the reference in my post's title.  Sigh.  Were he not long dead, nor a relative, I might have looked him up and said hello:) The other pictures are also of relatives, but are singled out because I like the way they look, either their style or their clothing (Yes, I'm making a distinction between the two.)  One of the things I really enjoyed was looking at their mode of dress in these old photos.  Do enjoy.

This girl looks like someone I'd be friends with (she's my great great aunt, btw).

Sunday, July 20, 2008

It's Blogger Time

It seems that no matter how hard I try to be a consistent poster, I lose track of the days, and before you know a week, or even a month has passed before I've written anything.  My hat certainly goes off to those bloggers who post every day or every other day.  Oh well.  I mean well (much like everything I do in life), but I somehow find myself easily sidetracked.

I just picked up the current issue of Elle with a surprisingly attractive Mariah Carey on the cover.  I'm stealing a bit of their thunder, but I've been perusing the issue for less than five minutes and I've already stumbled across these items I want:

Of course, it only costs $1475 + shipping for all twelve designs in addition to a subscription to seven issues.  Yeah, once my next paycheck rolls in I will be signing up for that.  Hmmm.

  • Edward Steichen: In High Fashion: The Conde Nast Years, 1923-1937.  
     Wow, this book is quite a beauty, filled with fashion photographs.  You can buy it here at, but I'm hoping my local library will carry it.

  • Imperishable Beauty at Boston's Museum of Fine Arts.  The exhibit showcases art nouveau jewelry from the late 1800s to early 1900s.
Art Nouveau?  Jewelry?  Enough said.  I.Wanna.Be.There.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Meet the Internet

I'm quite proud of myself these days: Firstly, I started my own blog on blogger (I also have two travel blogs here), and have actually managed to stick with it since March.  Secondly, I've now gotten the hang of adding pictures, utilizing programs such as Flickr, to add some panache to my pages, and, as of a couple of days ago, I've learned how to imbed videos into my pages.  Add to that the use of Google's web tools such as Google Analytics, and even some tinkering around on Blogrolling, Feedblitz, and Feedburner, and I'm pretty proud of myself for figuring these things out.  For today's trick, I'd like to upload my first Picasa web album-- I made it last night as a web portfolio of my modeling pictures to send to potential agencies when looking for representation.

This, ladies and gentlemen, is me with a lotta makeup on, retouching, and good lighting.  Oh yeah, let's not forget photographers that know what they're doing.

Without further ado, I present my first Picasa Web Album:  (Yeah!)

And, while I'm on the subject of cool websites, my niece turned me on to this one: Picnik.  It's a free online picture editing website-- great for those of us who like to play with our pictures but don't have ready access to Photoshop.  Definitely check it out!

Saturday, July 12, 2008

People Hear what they See

ABOVE: Watch a clip of Beyond the Sea with Kevin Spacey performing the title song as Bobby Darin.  After that you can compare him to the real thing with Bobby Darin's performance of Mack the Knife.

I've been taking advantage of the free movies at the local library which means I pick out movies to watch that I might not watch if I had to pay for them.

One such movie is the Bobby Darin biopic Beyond the Sea starring Kevin Spacey.  Now, when I watch movies, I like to look for little "messages" in them, i.e., a reason for them being in existence, so to speak.  A movie can be entertaining, or not, but chances are I won't remember it unless it has something that speaks to me.  

Basically, the movie goes through the stages of Bobby's life-- from his childhood in The Bronx to writing a hit song (Splish Splash), to falling in love with and marrying actress Sandra Dee.  We see the singer soar, playing major venues with his trademark swagger, and then we watch as he dries up.  It's all fluff and only semi-true, but there's a scene that happens in the last twenty minutes or so which redeemed the film for me.

After a couple of years with no hits, Bobby reinvents himself as a hippy type, playing political folk songs.  He isn't very popular, and fans boo him from the stage.  The Ah-Ha moment happens when he's crying on his wife's shoulder and she says, "I know... People only hear what they see."  

After that, he performs one last show in Vegas, but walks out as the old Bobby Darin-- the one that knows how to croon, with a nod to his Emmy-winning Mack the Knife days.  But, instead of singing his old standards, he sings the political ballad that got him booed off the stage.  This time, however, he has pizzazz and he brings the crowds to their feet in applause.

You see, he gives the people what they want-- the successful, swinging Bobby Darin, and they give him their ears and hearts.  My friend, Michaela, once told another friend, "Listen, Sunday, you just tell people that you're amazing, and they'll believe it."  I've also heard the expression "Fake it 'til you make it."  I think all of these sentiments are useful when we think about what it takes to be successful.  

That's pretty much my two cents, but that expression is sticking with me.  I'm feeling the need to reinvent myself-- leave Norma Jean behind, if you will.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Age Appropriate Dressing

I went to the mall with my fourteen year-old niece and it occurred to me for the first time that I might be too old to dress the way that I do.  Is there a rule for what is appropriate for one to wear at certain ages?  When Vogue does their annual "How to Dress at any Age" issue, why don't they ever address this question?  

When Morgan was dropped off at my house today, she had on a GREAT pair of skinny jeans-- just what I've been looking for.  When I asked her where she got them, she said that she had just bought them at the mall, and that they were on sale, so away we went.  We ended up at Delia's, which for those of you who don't know, is mostly a catalogue (but sometimes a store) filled with fourteen to fifteen year-old girls looking like, well, like high-school girls.  And here I was hanging out with someone who is fifteen years my junior, and I'm buying the same clothes as her, albeit a few sizes larger.  Moreover, en route to Delia's, we stopped at a shoe store where Morgan bought a pair of GREY CONVERSE-- the exact replica of a pair I own.

So, the question is-- how should a 28 year-old woman (soon to be 29) be dressing?  I felt kind of silly when I walked into the mall and all the teeny-bopper girls started looking at me like I'm competition and the boys checked me out.  Maybe the skin-tight jeans, long earrings, and tank tops just aren't appropriate anymore.

But, then again, when I pointed out to my niece a pair of shoes I thought were cute, she exclaimed, "Ew.  You like old lady clothes."  Hmmm.

I found the recommendations below in an article about age dressing at the  It's okay but not that helpful in resolving these all important questions. 

Age 16-25
Experiment while you can. Don’t dress too old (note, not like Katie Holmes and Kate Middleton) and enjoy being girly (later on it just won’t work) with bows, frills and quirky layering. If you’re not girly, then you can still push your look to the extreme, whether you’re an indie, a punk or an emo. Don’t be too calculated and enjoy the freedom to be mismatched — it’s not a time to worry about subtlety.

Age 26-35
You can still have fun with clothes, but this is the time to learn how to take young fashion into the workplace. Look for belted cardigans, mix tailoring with soft fabrics, invest in one nice piece of jewellery and buy a good, but not too flashy, handbag.

Age 36-45
Girly no longer works, but don’t go too far the other way. Start tidying up the look with clean lines, but you can still go casual in nice jeans and a good cashmere knit. If by your mid-forties you can’t give up the short skirts, then wear them with opaque tights and flat shoes. Buy a good winter coat and don’t scrimp on the shoes and bags.

Age 46-55
Go for good quality separates that really flatter your figure. Wear simple blazers, stiffer fabrics for added structure (crisp shirts, pleat-front trousers) and dresses. Sleek and pulled together is the look. Avoid cheap, gimmicky jewellery and accessories, as well as “amusing” hair colours. It is worth getting your colours done to learn which shades suit your complexion.

Age 56-65
You can still follow trends, but learn to do it more subtly. Accessories are a great nod to a trend, a patent belt lifts an outfit without you having dramatically to change your look. Choose longer sleeves for covering the arms, and if your waist isn’t what it once was, then look for shapes that skim rather than cling. Grooming becomes more important — make sure that your hair is neat.

Age 65+
Have fun with large statement jewellery and find your glamorous side — printed silk scarves, luxurious blouses, simple wide-legged trousers and elegant evening wear. Look for opulent fabrics such as silk and velvet. Dress up the accessories, it’s amazing what a sparkly clutch bag can do for a simple outfit. Here.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Dancing around the world

My friend Christian sent me an email directing me to this video on youtube.  I have to say that watching it brought a huge smile to my face and I had to share it.  It's pretty fun to watch and joyful in its own right, but if you're like me and love to travel, then you should especially appreciate this:

If you happen to be curious about this Matt fellow, you can check out his website  Also, there's a story about him in The New York Times here