Unexpected Party Playlist

My grandpa turned 80 this week! I have been assigned the rewarding task of assembling a party playlist with all of his favorite songs. For years, if Grandpa hears a song he likes, he writes the title down and I return with a cd of all the tunes. This is a random sampling of some of the songs he has requested over the years for his master playlist.

Sinister Minister by Bela Fleck and the Flecktones
I was lucky to see this group perform in Brooklyn, last week! Somehow I didn’t know that Victor Wooten is the bass player?

Mama Told Me Not to Come by Three Dog Night
The cool thing about making these playlists for Grandpa is that I end up with new music in my arsenal. This song has been on my party playlist ever since! Also, I love this seventies getup! These guys are so fun to watch perform.

Lime in the Coconut by Harry Nilsson
He did all of the voices in this recording! You should definitely watch this absurdist Muppet’s version, while you’re at it.

Life’s Been Good by Eagles
This song has such a relaxed feeling and playful lyrics. It is a very casual conversation about the life of fame and riches.

Hot for Teacher by Van Halen
Another song to make you laugh. Van Halen uses a lot of enthusiasm and comedic timing to pull this silly song off.

 

Related: Pay Attention to these Musicians this Summer
Related: I Was Invited to a Secret Concert

Tripstagram: Danish Summer Birthday Celebration

I have written before about my experiences in Denmark, and thanks to Facebook memories I have a few more photos and experiences to share. While I was there, I had a birthday where I got a sampling of Danish birthday traditions, and then I was “the help” (I was working as an au pair) setting up a birthday party for the youngest daughter of the family.

One cool thing about Danish birthday celebrations is that they start first things in the morning. The family comes to wake you singing the birthday song and waving Danish flags, which double as a birthday celebrations.

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The flag is flown outside when there is a birthday in the house. The red and white colors of the flag can be seen in the gorgeous table setting for the birthday morning.

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One special, traditional dish that was prepared for the party was this meaty roll, which had some sort of cut of meat inside, which was then wrapped in essentially meatloaf, and them wrapped in bread! The mother of the family made two of these, and it was a bit labor intensive to assemble them and roll them up tightly.

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The party took place in the sunny garden with all sorts of family and friends. It was a fun cultural experience to talk with the locals about life in America and life in Denmark.

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This is the special Danish layer cake decorated for the birthday! Filled with pancake-like layers separated only by a creamy frosting, and decorated in the traditional pink color, topped with little Danish flags! This treat is all sugar 🙂

 

Birthday Brunch

Yesterday I went out to brunch as an early birthday celebration. Here is where we went and what we ate!

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We had THE BIGGEST BRUNCH at The Hash House. It was warm enough to sit on the patio and sip iced coffee!

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Then we went to the 3 Arts Gallery, which is a Restoration Hardware in a unique architectural space. We put our name in for the 2 hour wait for a table under the sparkly chandelier, and browsed the store (testing all the leather couches) until a seat opened up! Check out that chandelier behind the espresso and salted caramel ice cream!

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A special bonus: we went shopping and browsing afterwards, and Madewell gave me a $25 gift card! Sign up with them as a Madewell insider to get a special birthday present!

3 Things

  1. My birthday is on Monday and I think I am going to make myself frozen peaches and cream cake, and maybe also this lemon tart. (Related: berry tart)

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2. Have you seen this time lapse video of a cloud inversion inside the Grand Canyon? This is pretty cool to see, especially since I was recently there!

SKYGLOWPROJECT.COM: KAIBAB ELEGY from Harun Mehmedinovic on Vimeo.

3. We have guests coming next week and are excited to share Chicago with them. Last week, I discovered Green Street Smoked Meats with my new climbing friends and it is the best place for omnivores to enjoy barbecue and beer! When I was ordering a delicious pulled pork, I overheard a cook explaining that the brisket smokes for 16 hours every day! There is a great outdoor space, and the entire inside is warmly lit and smells of hickory and cedar smoke! There is also a coffee shop adjacent/inside the bar and a top secret ramen bar in the basement… it has a 3 hour wait because it only seats about 15 people!

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Climber

via Daily Prompt: Climbing

My sister is a climber. She laces her shoes purposefully, ties the knots carefully, and chooses her handholds deliberately. She knows how to stretch to reach the next hold, or how to propel herself slightly higher. She gives other people this opportunity, guiding and hoisting, belaying them into a new sense of confidence.

When my sister was little, she climbed trees. So did I, but she always climbed a little bit further, and jumped down when she was done. When I was done, I sort of shimmied down, scraping my arms and legs bloody against the rough tree bark. I have climbed enough trees, though, to know the satisfaction it draws. Each branch, every scrape, each slipped then recovered foot hold, brings a new sense of accomplishment. I did it. I am higher than I was a moment ago. I am taller than I was a moment ago. I can see farther than the people on the ground.

Curiosity has gotten the better of me, and I’ve decided I would like to know how it feels to be a good climber. To climb a hard route successfully, without cheating. To boulder without falling, only jumping deliberately. To scale a cliffside in the great outdoors! In an effort to commit, I am planning to tryout Brooklyn Boulder’s “Beginner to Badass” program, a 30 day package where I can practice and train and learn and grow in new ways.

This week, my little sister turns twenty. In a way, I have watched her go from tree to rock; from follower to leader, from novice to expert, from student to teacher. I have watched my sister go from beginner to badass.

Happy (early) birthday, Kendra!

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