Kingdom of Earth

Kingdom of Earth programme  

Being Tennessee Williams fans, Jeff & I had to see Kingdom of Earth when Triad Stage brought the play to Greensboro. This is pure Southern Gothic, dark yet surprisingly funny, courtesy of excellent direction from Preston Lane. Live theatre is such a treat, and I'm always a little nervous—whether in New York, Chicago, or elsewhere—that the production will live up to expectations. No worries here; everything from set design, to wardrobe, to acting was amazing. There are three characters in the production, expertly portrayed by Clayton Fox, Philippe Bowgen, and Ryah Nixon. Nixon arguably has the most demanding role and displays some serious acting chops, projecting equal parts vulnerableness, sexiness, and humor (expect big things for her career). I appreciate that all three did a great job with their unique dialects. I am trying to think of something critical to say about the performance and I’ve got nothing. One thing to note, there are no bad seats at Triad Stage, however some are very close to the action. We happened to be seated second row, stage right. So close that during the final scene, it felt like I could reach out and touch Fox. If you are able get to a performance, please do so. This production runs through March 3, 2013.

 

posted by Rachel

Happy Valentine's Day

heart shaped cookies  

Heart shaped sugar cookies, using Alton Brown's good and easy recipe. The icing is something I developed while making iced cookies for a vegan friend. I believe it looks and tastes virtually the same as traditional "royal icing," but skips the egg whites. Simply mix 3 cups powdered sugar, 2 drops of vanilla, and a quarter cup boiling water (add more sugar or water as needed for proper consistency). Make it fancy with food coloring & sprinkles. Have a sweet day!

 posted by Rachel

Venice in January

Venice Grand Canal  

Technically the best time to visit Venice is off-season, factually the best time to visit Venice is any time you can get there. These shots were taken with a disposable camera—pretty adequate, right? (It's virtually impossible to take a bad photo in Italy). Above, from a vaporetto on the Grand Canal, just beyond the Rialto Bridge. Below, the Piazza San Marco. Venice in late January is cold and beautiful and quiet, with the excitement of Carnival just around the corner.

 

Piazza San Marco Venice

 

 

posted by Rachel

A Black Tie Affair

Preston in bow tie

We're going formal for this New Year's Eve celebration, Preston included. He's got his own festive bow tie that is so easy to make, I hesitate to articulate the instructions, but here they are:

Supplies needed: bow tie / black nylon dog collar / needle / black thread / scissors

What to do: Slip the bow off of the tie band; stitch the center of the bow to the nylon collar (yep, that's it).

I found a vintage silk bow tie at a local thrift store that worked beautifully. If you're going to make one of these, try to get a similar "ready-tied" bow tie on a band or clip—it will be a lot easier to work with than the traditional "self-tie" style. Have a capital new year!

sewing supplies
vintage silk bow tie
Preston in bow tie
Preston in bow tie
Preston in bow tie

 posted by Rachel

New(ish) Boots for the New Year

booties  

A great way to give old knee-high boots a new life is to transform them into ankle booties. I loved this pair of suede wedge boots I found in Italy a few years ago, but at knee-height I was wearing them less and less often. I really wanted a pair of booties that came to just over the ankle, so . . . I paid a cobbler to shorten my boots, which is a perfectly fine option. However, if you have a hot glue gun and some DIY motivation, there's a good tutorial here.

 

 

posted by Rachel