The New York Times

Links I Love

• Maison Mobile for a Steal: I added this ($7.97!) mobile to a Christmas order and just got around to hanging it up. I’ve long-loved papercuts and this one is absolutely charming. The paper that came with it said it’s created by ige. She has several other gorgeous papercut mobiles, as well as other items, on her site.

• Free-climbing El Capitan: I remember watching tiny people dots climb up the side of El Capitan while on a family vacation to Yosemite years ago. A life goal of mine is to climb (the now traffic-jammed) Half Dome, but the end alone scares me. I just can’t imagine doing what this team is doing.

• Panoramic View of the Andromeda Galaxy: Look. Contemplate. Zoom. Contemplate some more. Repeat.

Cephalovepod Letterpress Valentines: Consider backing my friend Eric Mersmann’s Kickstarter project and receive these beautifully strange cards to give to loved ones for Valentine’s Day.

Old House Dreams: Do you remember my post about the Porter House? I recently found this site, liked it on Facebook and now I get to see links of houses just like the Porter House in my newsfeed weekly. (Andy’s not pleased.)

• Why the World Smells Different After It Rains: Did you catch this article, posted late summer? Petrichor.

This Is How to Draw Spider-Woman As a Hero Rather Than a Sex Object: My boys are all-in in terms of super heroes these days. Loved this.

Forty Portraits in Forty Years: Gorgeous.

Whoorl’s Capsule Wardrobe: 37 items, including shoes. I’m intrigued. Although I fear if I did something like this, I’d just end up shopping to “complete” my capsule in order to make it work. Still, intrigued.

“Recognize that the very molecules that make up your body, the atoms that construct the molecules, are traceable to the crucibles that were once the centers of high mass stars that exploded their chemically rich guts into the galaxy, enriching pristine gas clouds with the chemistry of life. So that we are all connected to each other biologically, to the earth chemically and to the rest of the universe atomically. That’s kinda cool! That makes me smile and I actually feel quite large at the end of that. It’s not that we are better than the universe, we are part of the universe. We are in the universe and the universe is in us.” —Neil deGrasse Tyson

Sophie’s New Backpack

Last year I wrote an essay for The New York Times Motherlode blog titled “The Perfect Backpack.” You can read it here.

After all that, we ended up getting Sophie a new backpack this year. Two reasons: (1) Last year’s backpack was too small for a regular size piece of paper—and her preschool teachers suggested that students have bigger backpacks at this year’s orientation. (2) Sophie’s obsessed with princesses. Disney princesses, specifically.

So I asked Andy’s talented Aunt Susan to make her a new one.

Sophie loves it. I do, too. It has Disney princesses on it but is still homemade. Her name is embroidered on it. It has adjustable straps and a pocket inside. It fits regular size papers perfectly.

Susan sells her work on Etsy here, and she’s very much open to custom work, such as this backpack.

Thanks, Aunt Susan.

“The best thing about doing needlepoint for very small children is that they are so uncritical. The don’t say things like, ‘I see you’ve missed some stitches over here on the leg, was that intentional?’ or ‘Was this creature blinded in a fight?’ They will clasp it in their little arms and love it besottedly, inseparably as the thing becomes more and more rancid.” —Carole Berman and Jennifer Lazarus

The New York Times Motherlode Guest Post: The Perfect Backpack

My HipstaPrint 0 (1) 2

The New York Times Motherlode blog is one of my favorites. Monday I read three essays on Motherlode (Daughter, Rising by Pam Allyn; Pay It Forward by Melissa T. Shultz and Silence is Golden by Karin Kasdin) about sending your child off to college. These essays made me think about Sophie, who will be starting preschool in September. And so I wrote an essay that night, and was thrilled when the editor of Motherlode asked to post it as a bookend to the essays listed above. You can read my essay here.

“Learning is a treasure that will follow its owner everywhere.” —Chinese proverb