Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Lumix GX1 - love it... and yet, the contest!

I always liked photography, but these last few weeks, armed with my brand new Lumix GX1, I feel like I'm a born again photographer. 

These little mirrorless camera is so incredibly powerful and yet so small, I actually can handle taking it everywhere I go (I got the pancake lens for now). The focus is quick, the images sharp and I can snap pictures at my heart's content with one hand and nobody will even see me coming. I'm the unsuspected tourist with the point and shoot, looking clumsily at the back screen (soon to the upgraded with a view finder for those overly sunny days). Most would think, surely it can't be taken seriously...say... like a big, heavy, in-your-face DSLR (Digital single-lens reflex). Still, I wouldn't mind one bit having my hands on this Cannon 5D Mark III to use in more controlled situations... and because, well, the world of photography seems to be still stubbornly hanging on these and it can feel a little awkward to explain to a full fledged SLR aficionado what a mirrorless is. (the picture above is from dpreview, another great photography site).
This brings me to this really cool contest that SnapKnot came up with. If you win, you can pick either a Nikon D800 or Canon 5D Mark III. How cool is that? Here's the link for the contest

Good luck!

Saturday, April 6, 2013

Shlomit Ofir Jewelry Design - Beautiful accessories, even for little girls.

Some things are just so beautiful, it doesn't really matter if they where made for children or grown ups. Forget pink, bold flowery accessories, this hair bow, although simple, is a classic for any age. This particular one, comes from Shlomit Ofir's small shop on Shabazi (Neve Tsedek) and there are literally dozens of pieces to choose from.
Definitely worth taking a look.

Where to find it: Shlomit Ofir Jewelry Design
Price: 120.00 shekels (on sale)

Friday, April 5, 2013

Hadass Hall's Motek shop - I found Irene's new favorite bag!

Hadass Hall's Motek shop, is one of my favorite places when I'm looking for that special something for my girls. Everything feels handmade and unique. The materials are fantastic, the designs are simple, but so stylish... no Disney print outs or disco going outfits, just real children's clothes. This time, I couldn't resist taking this little bag for Irene. The bright blue and deep red match beautifully. I also added a few retro styled pin badges they had at the store. When I gave it to her, she was so overwhelmed, she gave it back to me, covered her eyes and made me pretend she was having a surprise. So although she had already seen it, I told her to close her eyes and open her hands. I gave it to her one more time...  and sheer bliss. That was so special. 
Luckily, the size was just right to fit in her lunch box, as it quickly became her new favorite school bag and it goes pretty much everywhere with her.  

Where to find: Motek- Hadass Hall
Price for the bag: 49.00 Shekels
Price of the pin badges: 15.00 Shekels each

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Princess Embroidered apron & hat set - for little chefs

Passover finally came to an end. *sigh of relief* 

As many of you might understand, small children can turn very sour if you take their favorite carbs away, namely, white bread and frosties. In full honesty, I'm not sure why I actually make them go through with it, but I suspect it's mostly cultural and perhaps a good pinch of social pressure. I'm just too practical to even try and find any esoteric reason behind this.

Passover is however, a fantastic time to unleash your imagination and try to turn a dry, tasteless (some might argue) matzah, into something good, all the while keeping your out of school children from going nuts. 

This year, I decided to put them in the kitchen and make them cook their food. Yes, a cruel and unusual punishment. Just look at my son's face, toiling with his matzah bread, while his sister oversees the work, while eating a Papouchado matzah cookie.
That adorable (and very professional looking) princess apron and hat set, just made everything a whole lot more fun! It's from Cooksmart, made of 100% cotton and has a pretty embroidered gold crown. The hat is adjustable (just be careful with that Velcro, long hair can get tangled in it). 

Where to find the princess apron set: Shooka, 7 Rambam St. Tel Aviv
Price: 119.00 shekels for a set

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Waldorf Dolls - The Zen Doll

Have a hundred interests, find one passion.

I'm still working on that, one interest at the time and right now, I'd love to share my most recent one, which are Waldorf dolls. The moment I saw these, I knew I had to give them a try. They are quite a challenge to make but the result is wonderful. They just look so Zen and peaceful, don't they?
The body is made of cotton and wool, which makes them feel cuddly and warm. The eyes and mouth are hand stitched and the hair is made of soft felting wool, that is also stitched strand by strand to the head. The body is very flexible and poseable, so it's easy to change the clothing too. Almost everything about these dolls can be personalized. This particular one belongs to Irene, my older daughter and she loved her already, even before I stitched the hair in!

Any suggestions for the next one?

Vibram Five Fingers - LOve mE?

The Bikila LS

Admittedly, it takes a certain amount of courage to step into them and step outside, specially when you live in the outskirts of South Tel Aviv. 
The first time, I found myself running aimlessly, just so people wouldn't have time to notice them on my feet. But that of course, was before I came to realize that, unlike grown adults wearing Crocs, this actually was a worthy statement. 
The Vibram Five Fingers are not pretty, not by a long shot, but they will make you run and think differently. They are extremely light and snug and have just enough padding to protect the foot, all the while leaving you with that wonderful feeling of being the road runner. 
They take time to get used to and you should limit yourself to 2 minutes runs and slowly increase it. As with any other muscle, those in your feet need to adapt, otherwise you might end up with an injury. I personally felt some soreness on the arch of my feet up to the calves, but it was gone after a couple of days and I was able to get back to running.

So who should wear these? Anyone really, even kids, but if you like running and hiking,  these are worth a fair try. The grip is just fantastic!
Still having a hard time getting over the look? There is a huge selection of models and colors. Chances are, you'll find one that you'll actually feel less self conscious to wear the first time... but you'll be proud to show off once you really get the feel of it.

Where to find them? Pro:Sport  (wonderful service and in store test run to find the perfect shoe for you)
Price: 300.00 Shekels (They are on sale now!)

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Tommee Tippee - Explora Magic Mat

Here's a nifty little gadget from Tommee Tippee that will keep your baby's plate in place.
But don't get your hopes up, your little one will still make a mess, he just won't be able to throw the whole thing up in the air, which is a such a comfort! ;-)
Seriously now, the neat thing about this silicone pad is that, aside from actually working, it can be used with any plates, thanks to a strong suction cup. All it needs is a flat surface.
It's easy to use, easy to clean. It also comes in a range of pretty retro colors.

Where to find them: most large children products retailers.
Price: 60.00 Shekels a piece