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Refrigerator magnets, on the move January 17, 2013

Posted by Samuel Snoek-Brown in Kitchen & Bath, Smiley.
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One of my happiest refrigerator magnets.

One of my happiest refrigerator magnets.

I’ve had this happy magnet for ages. It’s part of a whole gang of smiley (and not-so-smiley) faces that lives on my refrigerator.

The whole gang -- including a few cool smileys, a leering mischievous smiley, and a grumpy old frown.

The whole gang — including a few cool smileys, a leering mischievous smiley, and a grumpy old frown.

The gang isn’t exclusive — these smileys do pal around with other smileys, including a different style of “cool” smiley, some of the smiley clips I’ve featured on the blog before, and — not in this photo, but in the vicinity — a smiley face for the state of Wisconsin, where we lived for a few years.

But lately, this particular gang of smileys has been commuting to work: they’re serving double-duty on my dishwasher. I use the traditional smiley when the dishes are clean, the frown when the dishes are dirty, and, once, the mischievous leer when I ran a cleanse cycle on the empty dishwasher.

Right now, the dishes are still dirty.

Right now, the dishes are still dirty.

 

Hot pads January 3, 2013

Posted by Samuel Snoek-Brown in Kitchen & Bath, Smiley.
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More from the Aunt Cheryl Christmas haul: this time, a set of eight hot pads in four different designs!

Hot pads. New to my personal collection

Hot pads. New to my personal collection

That’s a whole meal’s worth of hot, happy dishes I can set out on the table! 🙂

Here are some close-ups:

Cookie jar December 30, 2012

Posted by Samuel Snoek-Brown in Kitchen & Bath, Smiley, The Great Enabler.
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Cookie jar. A gift from The Great Enabler.

Cookie jar. A gift from The Great Enabler.

I’ve been wanting a smiley face cookie jar for just ages. I haven’t made much fuss about it because there are so many smiley face things out there I love and this is just another one on the list. But man, have I wanted one of these things for a long time.

I don’t know if my excellent mother-in-law, The Great Enabler, knew that about me or just assumed that if it was something smiley I would love it (both are true!), but this was her Christmas gift to me this year!

And you better believe it’s already full of home-baked cookies: gingerbread, sugar cookies, peanut butter “kiss” cookies, brownie bites….

Mmmm.... Delicious happiness....

Mmmm…. Delicious happiness….

Apron December 27, 2012

Posted by Samuel Snoek-Brown in Kitchen & Bath, Smiley.
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And so begins the l o n g series of posts featuring ALL the smiley-related gifts I got for Christmas this year:

Apron. A gift from my Aunt Cheryl.

Apron. A gift from my Aunt Cheryl and Uncle Sandy.

This apron was part of a whole slew of smiley kitchen paraphernalia my Aunt Cheryl and Uncle Sandy sent me. I’m going to try to keep it clean — no making pasta sauces in this apron! — but I am, in fact, already wearing it in the kitchen, starting on Christmas morning when it was fresh out of the box!

Making "Dutch babies" -- baked pancakes -- on Christmas morning.

Making “Dutch babies” — baked pancakes — on Christmas morning.

Mini spatulas December 10, 2012

Posted by Samuel Snoek-Brown in Kitchen & Bath, Smiley.
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Remember the smiley spatula from Sur la Table that our happy friend Debbie C. sent me? I’ve been dying to get out to a Sur la Table ever since, but I’ll be honest, Sur la Table is a dangerous store for me to set foot in. It’s one of the two stores my wife and I love dearly but actively avoid until we just can’t help it: my super-organized librarian wife could spend half our savings in The Container Store, and I would definitely spend the other half in Sur la Table.

But when we bought our first house last month, our bank — thrilled at the loan we’d just taken out! — gave us a housewarming gift in the form of a gift card to Sur la Table. So, at long last, we just couldn’t avoid one of my favorite shopping trips anymore….

And while I did buy a few long-time wishlist items (a wooden pizza peel, without which I’ve never felt quite complete ever since my days making wood-fired pizzas in an Italian restaurant; a marble mortar and pestle, and so on), you know I had to stop off at the spatula section and pick up something smiley.

Behold! My new mini spatulas by Spatulart! New to my personal collection.

Behold! My new mini spatulas by Spatulart! New to my personal collection.

Sure, I could have spent the whole card on smiley spatulas, including that excellent large one Debbie C. spotted. But I am married to a practical woman, and her practicality is infectious: I already have several egg-turners and burger-flippers, but I didn’t have any small spreading spatulas.

And they’re adorable, aren’t they? And yes, I’ve already used them — for spreading homemade garlic butter on bread — and I love them.

In fact, here….

... have a closer look.

… have a closer look.

So happy! 🙂


Also, heads-up, happy readers! Even though I’ve been away for a while, you readers haven’t, and thanks to your regular awesomeness plus a surprising fluke of a day last week, December’s visitor numbers are off the charts! So look for a special note about that later today. And thanks, as always, for stopping by and spreading the smiles. 🙂

 

Plastic cup October 11, 2012

Posted by Samuel Snoek-Brown in Kitchen & Bath, Smiley.
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Plastic cup. From my personal collection.

I’ve had this cup for ages — some of the smiley faces are starting to wear off — but it’s my go-to cup if I ever want a quick glass of water in the kitchen. It gets hot over the stove or while washing dishes, and while any glass of ice water would hit the spot, knowing the water is coming from smileys makes it all the more refreshing! 🙂

Mr. Happy book and bruise soother September 20, 2012

Posted by Samuel Snoek-Brown in Books, Kitchen & Bath, Smiley.
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A couple of weeks ago, I posted about the awesome Mr. Happy notebook and bookbag my nieces and nephew gave me for my birthday. After I posted the photos of those gifts, I asked Jennifer if we still had her old Mr. Men and Little Miss books lying around, and — like the librarian she is — she went straight to them in our bookshelf, sorted through the stack and produced this:

Mr. Happy, by Roger Hargreaves. From Jennifer’s childhood bookshelf! 🙂

But wait, there’s more! Just a few days after that, we went on a shopping trip to The Container Store (where else would a librarian shop for organization tools?), and she called me over the to “impulse buy” rack where she’d spotted this AWESOME Mr. Happy “bruise soother” gel pack:

Of course she bought it for me. 🙂

Today, I was photographing the bruise soother for this post, and Jennifer said, “Man, I really could have used that for my knee.”

Remember Jennifer’s knee?

Bruise on my wife’s knee, 23 June 2009.

Dish brush September 10, 2012

Posted by Samuel Snoek-Brown in Kitchen & Bath, Smiley, Toys.
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Smiley dish brush (and My Little Ponies), courtesy of Lulu.

Jennifer and I went to a Pie Party hosted by one of her coworkers (excellent pear pie and plum pie, Amanda!), and among the many happy friends and colleagues and children who turned up was a pair of twin sisters, Mia and Lulu, who brought along their My Little Ponies. These ponies need a lot of care, of course, including regular mane-brushing, so the girls brought along an assortment of brushes, among which was this FABULOUS smiley-face brush (actually for dishes, but it worked great as a mane brush and later served as a toothbrush when the girls played “dentist”).

Obviously, I laughed and applauded the smiley face brush, and Lulu was nice enough to let me photograph it for my blog.

Thanks, Mia and Lulu (and I hope I’m spelling your names right)! 🙂

 

Water bottle August 27, 2012

Posted by Samuel Snoek-Brown in Kitchen & Bath, Smiley.
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Water bottle. From my nephew Aidan’s collection.

Today was my nephew Aidan’s and niece Zoey’s first day of school. Yesterday, when they were showing me their first-day outfits, Aidan brought me his water bottle, too. 🙂

Today, little Zoey said she started her day with play dough. I asked her what she made, and she told me she made two smileys! Maybe later this week I’ll get to post photos of those, too.

 

Refrigerator magnets August 23, 2012

Posted by Samuel Snoek-Brown in Art, Kitchen & Bath, Smiley.
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Refrigerator magnets. At Kagyu Changchub Chuling Buddhist center, Portland, OR.

Here’s a riddle: Am I so happy because I’m a Buddhist? Or am I a Buddhist because I’m so happy?

Either way, I am always delighted when, between sitting meditation and oral teachings, I slip into my Buddhist center‘s kitchen for a cup of tea and find that someone has arranged the refrigerator magnets into a smiley face!

We Buddhists do love to smile! 🙂

English: Pu-tai, a chinese monk who, for his c...

English: Pu-tai, a chinese monk who, for his contented nature, was and is well known as the “Laughing Buddha”. To laugh is – following many Zen Masters – the most ancient meditation. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama brings togeth...

His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama brings together Buddhists and Western scientists every two years. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)