Archive for the ‘Dabney AAR’ Category

Say Thursday

Wednesday, January 11th, 2012

DSC06323There’s nothing like trying to take a family photo to convince me that Plato was right: we can only conceive of perfection and never actually attain it.  Year after year, trip after trip, my family has tried to take that perfect photo where each of us looks happy, natural, and–and this is key–at the camera. We’ve come close, but never actually succeeded. My comparatively small family of six, however, is more successful than my extended family (parents, siblings and their families) of 24. That group tries each year to take one picture of all 24 of us, together, on the same set of lobby steps in Western North Carolina where we’ve been vacationing since I was a child. We’ve never once had a photo where even 75% of us managed to look happy, natural, and at the camera.

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I am loving playing “Video Games”… the song

Saturday, December 10th, 2011

YouTube Preview ImageLast week my wonderful niece Lucy posted this video on my Facebook page and since then I’ve listened to Video Games about a hundred times. There’s something about Lana Del Rey’s voice, her lyrics, and the slow majestic music I find irresistible.   The song strikes me as truly romantic–not schmaltzy or sappy, but somehow connected to the way lovers actually experience each other.  I love the chorus with its refrain of  “it’s you, it’s you,” and the way the song ends with a few simple notes played on the piano. (more…)

Have you met Lera Lynn?

Monday, November 28th, 2011

http://www.vimeo.com/15874929A few weeks ago, my sister, who lives in Athens, Georgia, asked me if I’d heard of Athens singer/songwriter Lera Lynn.  I said no. She said, “You gotta check her out. I think you’ll love her.” A few clicks of my mouse later and I had a new favorite singer. (I still love you, Adele.) Lera just released her debut album Have You Met LERA LYNN? which is climbing up the Americana charts and–I’ll bet–will soon make its way to the country charts. (more…)

“Does she or doesn’t she?”

Saturday, November 5th, 2011

nice hairWomen in America spend a lot of money on their hair. And whether they go to a salon or do it at home, a whopping 75% color their locks. For years, I went to a salon and paid someone else to cut, color, and highlight my hair. I’d go every ten to twelve weeks and each time, it would cost over $100. And each time, when I’d return home, my husband would mutter about paying so much for something so easy to do. (He’s cut his own hair for years.)

So, a couple of years ago, I decided I’d do it all myself. I read online about how to cut hair and experimented carefully first with all over color and then with highlights. Now, I’ve got it down… and I’ve never liked the way my hair looks more!

I find the coloring easier to do than the cutting. To color my hair and add highlights, I use Loreal’s two step product Couleur Experte Express in Brioche (described on the box as a light golden brown.)  It’s a nice product and easy to use. (I buy it on Amazon for $12.) I have brownish red hair naturally and am just starting to see a few grey hairs. The coloring/highlighting takes about an hour from start to finish and leaves my hair feeling strong and smooth.

The cutting is a bit trickier. I have fine hair I layer. The hairs in front are the easiest to cut — I pull my “bangs” in front of my eyes, brush them so they’re straight, and put a piece of tape over them. Then I cut along the bottom of the tape. This leaves the hair at the sides longer than that in front. (I usually chunk out little pieces for a less clean line.)  I do the same process with the other two layers of my hair but without the tape. I pull the hair to the front of my face, brush it straight, and cut it in a straight line.

One nice thing about cutting my own hair is that I trim it far more often than I would if I had to pay to do so. This keeps the split ends at bay and also makes my hair less likely to frizz in North Carolina’s humid weather.

It’s working for me and I love saving all that money! How about you? Do you do your own hair? Got any tips to share if you do?

- Dabney AAR

IAM2BZ

Wednesday, October 12th, 2011

4c76898757bc71.33152371frogview-galleryI love customized license plates. What’s not to like? They’re fairly cheap–in my state it’s $30 a year, all of which goes to improve the roads–and are so often amusing. My family and I always try and decode them and feel a fun sense of accomplishment when we do. I live in a town small enough to see many of the same plates over and over again. Today I thought I’d share some of my favorites.

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What do you give to?

Wednesday, October 5th, 2011

Recently my family and I were fortunate to be involved in the creation of a Habitat House.  We watched the house being built–we were on the sponsoring side rather than the building side–and, every week, seeing the house take form was a wonderful thing. It got me thinking about giving and what people give–time, money, ideas, energy–to.

I’m not a religious person and thus do not tithe and am not involved at a church. But I love being a volunteer and have done everything from coaching little kids soccer to chairing the governing committee at my children’s high school. Currently I serve on the Board of my local YMCA and, as a small business owner, try and support many of my town’s charitable events. (more…)

Chaplin’s first true talking picture and its extraordinary last scene

Wednesday, September 28th, 2011
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A friend of mine shared this on Facebook recently and I found it mesmerizing.  I’ve never seen The Great Dictator, but based on this scene, I feel I should.

If you want to read the text of this speech, it can be found here.

Dabney Grinnan

Amazing art in Copenhagen

Wednesday, September 21st, 2011

DSCN0788This past summer, my husband and I went, for the first time, to Copenhagen. The Danes were, to a person, lovely, full of smiles, and blessed with a witty sense of style and humor. (Is there something in the water in Denmark?)  On our last afternoon, we went to the Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek. This is an amazing museum built around the personal collection of Carl Jacobsen (1842–1914), the son of the founder of the Carlsberg Breweries. (more…)

“That’s a fun word, isn’t it?”

Wednesday, September 14th, 2011

words 2

This week, while driving three 15 year olds to school, I overheard my daughter say, after she had defined the word quintessence for her friend, “That’s a fun word, isn’t it?”  My son said, “You know what I think is a fun word? Schadenfreude.” I smiled. Like my kids, I too think many words are flat out fun: fun to say, fun to know, fun to use. The car chat got me thinking about my favorite words… here are ten I love. (more…)

to quote or not to quote… for me that’s never a question

Wednesday, September 7th, 2011

Xander Harris quote from "Buffy the Vampire Slayer"

Xander Harris quote from "Buffy the Vampire Slayer"

I am obsessed with quotes. I am. I waste hours searching for the perfect quote to put in a photo book, on a birthday card or in a review. Quotes speak to me.

So today, I thought I’d share a few of my favorites. (I am, of course, hoping that you will then post your favorites and that I will discover still more cool quotes.)

I am exceedingly fond of the words of Sir Winston Leonard Spencer Churchill (1874-1965). That man had better quips than almost anyone in 20th century politics. Here are some of his better bon mots:

“However beautiful the strategy, you should occasionally look at the results.”

“A modest man, who has much to be modest about.” (On Clement Atlee)

“Once in a while you will stumble upon the truth but most of us manage to pick ourselves up and hurry along as if nothing had happened.”

I love to travel and, when back at home, almost always make a photo book documenting my wanderings. I like to put a quote about travel on the back of each book. Here are a few I’ve used recently:

“The world is a book and those who do not travel read only one page.” St. Augustine. (more…)