A Few Things

November 15, 2013

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Image and text by Gabrielle.

Hello, Friends. I’m waving hello from San Diego! I flew down this morning for my cousin’s wedding. What a treat to see so much of my family! Alas, our sitter didn’t work out, so Ben Blair stayed home with the kids. He’s such a champ. He makes it easy to come home — even from a place as pretty as San Diego. Our family is missing Liz and Jared at the wedding this weekend — they couldn’t come because their new baby arrived! (I love her name so much.)

While I head off to wedding festivities, here are a few things I’ve wanted to share with you:

Before They Pass Away. Compelling images of groups on the edge of disappearing. Via Dooce.

- Why your friends shape your happiness and your career.

- Welcome to DinovemberThanks, Katherine.

- The 15 communities of America. This article prompted some interesting conversations at our house.

- Ralph assured me everyone in the world has already seen this, but it was new to me — and so touching!

- Great ideas for a shared room nursery.

- Do you suffer from decision fatigue?

- This book looks compelling. Thanks, Azra.

- In case you missed it, my tips on Setting the Kids Table for the big feast.

- Plus, 15 DIY Wreaths for Thanksgiving.

I hope you have a wonderful weekend. I’ll meet you back here on Monday. I miss you already.


P.S. — The photo at top is the view from my bedroom. Makes me happy. For more snapshots, follow along with me on Instagram.

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A Few Things
November 15, 2013 at 7:40 pm

{ 16 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Brittney November 15, 2013 at 4:36 pm

I definitely thought the “before they pass away” link was going to be groups of WWI veterans or holocaust survivors. So the actual series was not what I was expecting, but it is SUPER interesting. Thanks for sharing.


2 Design Mom November 15, 2013 at 11:28 pm

I found it super interesting as well. It brought up so many questions for me about life with and without technology.


3 Grace @ sense and simplicity November 15, 2013 at 6:59 pm

Weddings are lovely for bringing family together like that. I hope you have a wonderful break from the usual routine of home and life.

The photographs in Before they Pass Away are gorgeous. I’m left conflicted though, about the wisdom of exposing the tribes to the west any sooner than necessary through contact with the photographer and capturing their unique beauty forever in photographs.


4 Design Mom November 15, 2013 at 11:29 pm

I know what you mean. The idea of disturbing them or treating them as objects is not okay. But learning about them is okay. And there’s conflict somewhere in between.


5 Hillary November 15, 2013 at 8:52 pm

Always love your links. Intrigued especially this go round by the communities of America link. Who knew I lived in the exurbs? :)


6 Design Mom November 15, 2013 at 11:30 pm

Exurbs was a new term to me as well.


7 Design Mom November 15, 2013 at 11:30 pm

Thank goodness I remembered to check the weather. At first I was planning sandals!


8 Hillary November 15, 2013 at 10:27 pm

Hello from San Diego! Hope that you brought your warm clothes, it’s supposed to be a chilly weekend here. Hope you have a lovely weekend!


9 Dee November 16, 2013 at 5:59 am

Have a great time at the wedding! That portrait series was intriguing, there were a few tribal that I had not heard of before. I just watched a documentary on happiness, so I totally believe that you community can affect your happiness levels. According to that map, I lived in military posts pretty much my entire adult life. Not surprising since my husband is an Army vet and then we moved closer to his family (also servicemembers).


10 Anke November 16, 2013 at 4:32 pm

The “communities of America” is super interesting for me. I am studying and will be a teacher in 1-2 years in Kiel/North-Germany. At the moment I am doing some practical learning experience at a school.
The geographical, political and cultural aspects of the USA are part of the school curriculum in class 8. I will use some of the information for lessons.

THANKS FOR POINTING ME THERE! I will see what kind of discussion we can have in class with the kids. Sometimes 13-14 year olds are pretty well informed and interested. Sometimes not – I will see ;-)

Privately I am especially interested in the so called LDS enclaves, which obviously are areas that the average European tourist doesn’t visit. There are few Mormons in Germany and they are considered as ultra conservative cults by most people. I do not know if this is a true impression. Through reading your blog and other blogs written by LDS women I get a different impression. Reading your blog is a peek into a culture that is both similar and different to the one I know. Interesting!


11 Anke November 16, 2013 at 4:35 pm

Oh and I really laughed about the Dinosaurs. What a great idea. I could try it with my nephews and their playmobil figurines!


12 Megan November 17, 2013 at 9:44 am

I love when you say, “I miss you already.” What a sweet sign-off. Makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside!


13 Lissa November 17, 2013 at 3:23 pm

Thank you for posting the link to decision fatigue! We are at the beginnings of planning and building a new home. After many months of living in a rental and a year of dealing with major life events for all family members, we’ve not been able to make any decisions on how to move forward – except to pick a builder. Friends keep asking, ‘when are you going to get started’ & people can’t seem to understand what is taking us so long. Now I know. Thank you!!!


14 Lucy November 18, 2013 at 4:49 am

After thinking about it for the past week I feel I have to comment about the Before They Pass Away series. Such compelling pictures I thought, but then I got a shock seeing Maori from New Zealand included. As a New Zealander of Maori decent I was a little confused and frustrated over the article. It states that the photos feature “dozens of cultures around the world whose people live in seclusion and are at risk of fading away. ” Maori do not live in seclusion! Maori are completely integrated into society and have been that way for over 100 years. The clothing worn in the photos are worn for important occasions and cultural performances, no Maori walks around in a grass skirt all day or hunts in the forest with spears for survival. It is completely misleading! And then when the interviewer talks about people envying these tribes in the west, New Zealand is completely westernised as is everyone who lives there! Those people standing on the beach were probably happily checking their iPhones before they posed. Yes Maori are dying out in the sense that there are technically no full blooded Maori left but the culture will be going no where. We sing our national anthem in Maori and English and Maori is taught at schools and kindergartens. I just really wanted to clarify this for your readers and I am also going to write on the article’s page.


15 amanda November 18, 2013 at 8:45 am

The veteran’s video was new to me too …. Thanks for sharing!


16 K Galgerud November 21, 2013 at 11:38 pm

I am going to step forward and be the controversial one I guess. Personally I’d like to say that I absolutely do not like the dinovember. I’m seeing my friends share it all over the place and it seems I’m one of few who absolutely are against the idea. I don’t mean this in a rude way at all but it really just doesn’t feel right with me. I believe it’s important to play and imagine with our children, but even moreso it is important to teach our children what is real and what is not. I can think of plenty of other ways to entertain my children. And also I can tell you that it is a wonderful feeling that my daughter looks to me when she thinks that something might not be true or real that she sees or hears. Maybe it’s partially inspired by her unique personality, one of those old soul babies (4 year old now), from the beginning she looked questioning at things that were not realistic and it took time for her to really get into pretend play. She will remind you it’s only pretend, especially in her drawings! Anyway, here I am stating what I believe; I do not think it is right or the wisest of parenting choices. :)


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