it's no secret that i adore this irish designer with her iconic patterns. there is something about that stem print -- naturalism meets clean, modern style! and don't even get me started on the colors.
it's true, orla kiely can be pricey. i almost hesitate to write about this after reading this post today -- though that's a topic for a whole other discussion! but there are good sales (at the end of season, you can often find snag bags for half price -- which i definitely have done!).
furthermore, the quality is ridiculously good. i lugged one bag around the hospital for 3 straight years of residency, and it's still in workable condition. i splurged on a leather wallet over 2 years ago and yet it looks exactly the same as it did when i bought it.
so her bags are fantastic! but there are also smaller treats to be found. much to my delight, there are finally new stationery lines up on the website (although currently only available in the UK).
finally, if you get as much joy from just gazing at orla's creations as i do, you can pretty much experience orla overload for $23 in the form of her gorgeous new coffee-table book:
for yesterday's grant-completion assignment, i had to revisit my college transcript and senior thesis project. unexpectedly, it was a rather enjoyable trip down memory lane.
i shuddered a bit, recalling that in order to determine the effects of early life stress on memory in rats, i had to actually cause them stress, by taking them away from their mothers and isolating them in tiny cages. heartbreaking! i also performed more than my lifetime's share of male rat gonadectomies. i loved doing my thesis project, but i would have been happy living my entire life without ever seeing what a rat's dissected testicle looks like up close.
overall, my grant prep has continued to progress on pace -- definitely a marathon (ultra?) rather than a sprint! i'm excited next week to begin the breakfast challenge as well as the 20/20 apartment therapy home cure. i guess i'm just all ABOUT projects right now.
i am giving away a lovely exacompta space 24 to one lucky reader! all you have to do to enter is leave a comment describing your plans for 2011 in this post.
it seems like the most common plans are big races, finishing school, and having babies! all extremely worthwhile pursuits if you ask me.
workout: well, my tempo run actually went better than i thought it might! perhaps i'm not quite as out of shape as i had thought.
mile 1: (warm-up) 9:02/mi
tempo miles 2-4: 7:51/mi, 8:18/mi, and 8:15/mi respectively = 8:08/mi ave
cooldown mile: 9:28/mi
steamy evening comfort: josh brought back a cold from nicaragua (i'm just thankful it isn't dengue) and i think this spicy shrimp soup (based on spicy shrimp noodle bowl) fit the bill.
i followed the recipe's instruction for brewing up a flavorful seafood brought (this involved using shrimp tails to make a quick stock of sorts), but then sort of freestyled it with the bowl's ingredients. included in my version: udon noodles, bell pepper, broccoli, onion, shrimp, and peanuts! sprinkled with a dash of sriracha, this made for a flavorful & satisfying meal.