Category Archives: around the world

Music Monday: Gotye

Good morning, all!  Hope you enjoyed the weekend.  I did not- I was in a drug-induced stupor trying to fight off the terrible cold I came down with.  I feel way better today.  I’m getting there slowly but surely.  I’ve been rocking out to today’s MM artist for the past few weeks, and his music definitely kept me company this weekend.

He goes by the name Gotye (pronounced GORE-tee-yay, according to the interwebs), and he brings a fun, groovy mix of rock and pop that is highly listenable.

Born in Belgium, Gotye (Born Wouter De Backer) was raised in Australia and showed early signs of musical ability.  He had an affinity for the drums, but also studied piano, and guitar.  Gotye experimented throughout early adulthood with several bands, including The Basics, a duo with Kris Schroeder.  They’ve released several albums and often perform with Gotye.

It wasn’t until 2006, though, with the release of his album Like Drawing Blood, that Gotye got recognition as a solo act.  Now, with Making Mirrors, Gotye has branched out and upped the ante.  After being hyped on Twitter by celebs like Ashton Kutcher, Mirrors’ second single, “Somebody That I Used To Know,” has been an unexpected hit.  The swinging groove finds him (and guest Kimbra) reflecting on a bad breakup.  The video is a work of art.  Check it out:

Please notice in that vid how bombtastic Kimbra is.  She rocks my world on this track.

You can really hear Gotye’s influences on Making Mirrors.  Some tracks are completely futuristic (“State of the Art”), while others sound like they could have been recorded by Hall & Oates (“I Feel Better”).  I’ve definitely found a song to fit my moods.  I really love “Eyes Wide Open.”  The beat, the lyrics, and his melody are all gorgeous.  Also, whale sounds normally creep me out, but they’re perfect here.  Give it a listen:

Gotye’s Making Mirrors is out now.  Must- have tracks:

“Somebody That I Used To Know”

“Eyes Wide Open”

“In Your Light”

“Save Me”

I love this album so much.  I hope you’ll give it a try.  If you have new music you think I’d like, drop me a line (or a tweet) and I’ll give it a listen.  Thanks so much for stopping by.  Have a great day! xx


BTW I *Really* Like Animal Print

Erin Wasson and a fierce cheetah, Harper's Bazaar 2005

That’s all. There is really no other point to this post other than to come out of the closet as an animal print freak. I thought I had it under control, but last week I signed up on Pinterest, and now I’m afraid I’ll need serious help.

Do you know about Pinterest? It’s a new site that serves as a “virtual pinboard” and lets you organize and share all the amazeballs things you like on the web. It’s crazy. It’s addictive. It’s exclusive. You have to be invited or wait forever for the Pinterest crew to approve your request to join. After asking around, I scored an invite from a girlfriend and signed up last week. Since joining, I’ve probably spent an hour each night pinning and repinning stuff onto my “boards” (how each category is organized). I really act like I don’t have songs to learn and things to do in the morning! Jeez.

Anywho, no one that knows me IRL is at all surprised, but the first board I made was dedicated to animal print. I’m throwing in all the fashion, crafts, and art I find that has the stuff. Mostly leopard, but I love a good zebra or giraffe print, too. No cow or fish scales, my love of animal prints is strictly Safari. Check out some of my finds:

Animal Magnetism in fashion, accessories, and around the house.

I normally don’t like giraffe print bags, but this one is so bright and fun. It would make a great diaper bag or kid’s backpack:

Found on

Check out this bow tie! I wish that The Boyfriend would wear this, but he would rather do just about anything else, I’m sure. I’m going to start wearing bow ties just for this:

Photo credit:

I won’t post everything I’ve found here. It would take too long and the list is ever-expanding, but I hope you’ve seen something that makes you understand my love of animal prints. And if you’re afflicted, I’m sorry if I pulled you off the wagon. ; )

Do any of you use Pinterest? Leave your info in the comments and I’ll check out your boards. (@hezaire) if you want to follow me. I’m glad you stopped by today. Have a good one! xx

Crazy Cool: Sand Art

Image via Wikipedia

You guys might already know that StumbleUpon is one of my favorite things about the internet.  I “stumble” all the time, finding new music, art, and recipes.  A few days ago, I came across Kseniya Simonova, a brilliant sand artist from the Ukraine.  Winner of television talent show “Ukraine’s Got Talent,” this 26 year-old uses her fingers and a mix of volcanic sand and salt to tell stories over a lighted canvas.

She only started painting with sand three years ago, when her husband suggested it after the economic downturn left them unemployed.  She cared for their son during the day, and practiced with sand from 10pm until early morning.

Most of the work Kseniya creates tells an emotional tale, but many, like the video below, show the evolution of a place or people.  Check out Kseniya Simonova’s interpretation of the circus:

Neat-o!  Her back must be killing after standing for hours on end painting.  You can check out more of Kseniya’s videos on her YT channel.

What do you think?  Have you seen Kseniya Simonova’s sand art before?  Thanks for stopping by! xx

Happy Cinco de Mayo!

Woo hoo!  It’s that time of year again- to celebrate something that happened in Mexico  ages ago, and use it as an excuse to pound margaritas!  This year I celebrated in style.  I made tacos (veggie for me, organic beef for the roomies) and dangerous margaritas.  In fact, I might be a little schnockered writing this right now.

Check out my Cinco snacks, and have a great night!


Good Eats: Cream Pot Restaurant

I’m back in Hawaii!  Thank the Lord!  I really needed a break from the daily grind in Orlando, so I retreated home to see my family, friends, and The Boyfriend.  So far, it’s been awesome.  I’m eating at all my favorite spots, and discovering a few new places.  Yum!

The view from Niu St.

One of my favorite so far is The Cream Pot in Waikiki.  Located on the bottom floor of the Hawaiian Monarch Hotel, this charming spot has a great view of Ala Wai canal.

The exterior would make Hansel and Gretel proud with its potted plants and cute archway entrance.  There are huge sliding glass doors that lead to the interior, but The Boyfriend and I sat outside, so I have no idea what goes on in there.

Honestly, reviews on this place said it was Hit or Miss, so we were prepared for slow service and over-salted food (or awesome service, and the best pancakes ever).

Cream Pot’s menu specializes in breakfast/brunch classics with island flair and local produce.  Their presentation isn’t bad either.  I got a cup of Kona coffee that came out with a little miniature shovel for my sugar and a tiny kettle for the cream. Cuteness!

We ordered the Salmon Eggs Benedict ($14.95, I think) and pancakes with strawberries ($9.25, I think).  Omigosh!  This was some of the best breakfast food I’ve had in years.  The Eggs Benedict were served on a crispy hash brown instead of an English muffin.  They were divine.

I stole this pic from Flickr: I was too hungry to take a picture!

The pancakes were a ricotta souffle  pancake with strawberry topping.  They had to be the fluffiest pancakes ever, and we had little chunks of ricotta that made my mouth water.

World's fluffiest pancake? I'm determined to find out!

I think the best strategy for the cream pot (and pretty much everywhere) is to share.  With portion sizes the way they are at most places (Cream Pot has pretty generous sizes), you can try different things.  Plus, if you’re like me, you can satisfy your need for salty and sweet with two different dishes- without having for scarf down two big ass entrees.

Cream Pot Waikiki

444 Niu St
Honolulu, HI 96815

Take someone (you like) to the Cream Pot next time you’re in Waikiki, and let me know what you think! xx

On Japan

By now I’m sure everyone has seen numerous reports about the massive earthquake and tsunami that hit Japan yesterday.  In the aftermath of that quake, Hawaii and other locations in the Pacific basin were on tsunami watch.

My grandpa woke me up (at 4am!) and told me to turn on the TV and  call my parents, who still live in Hawaii.  The next couple of hours went by in a blur.  I sent texts to my parents, friends, and The Boyfriend.  I was glued to CNN.  I checked Twitter every 20 seconds for updates.

It’s still unclear as I write this just how many lives have been lost, or how long it will take to repair the damage to the affected areas.  What we do know is that it’s a perfect opportunity for people from around the globe to pull together and aid those affected by this disaster.  Just like we did for Haiti, or Indonesia, and here at home after Hurricane Katrina. Below are just some of the ways you can lend a hand:

Visit to donate.  AmeriCares is a non-profit organization that provides immediate humanitarian relief to victims of disasters all over the world.

Text “REDCROSS” to 90999 and give $10, which will be added to your phone bill.  Click here for more info.

Help the International Medical Corps send relief teams and supplies by calling 1-800-481-4462, or click here.

There are tons of places to donate and ways to lend a hand.  Remember to research and keep tabs on your donation to make sure it’s put to good use.  I like Charity Navigator, which is a website that ranks charities based on effectiveness.

Have a good day, everybody.  Keep Japan in your thoughts!  xx

. . . Aaaaaaaand That’s Why I Sing.

Check out these funny (German?) ads for job placement.  The tag is “Life’s too short for the wrong job,”  and features life-like shots of poor suckers stuck on the sides of vending machines and gas station pumps.  I’m guessing they’re from late last year sometime.  They are brilliant.

Seriously, these are making my day!  I spent a few years of my life working just to work, and sometimes hating every minute of it.  Now that I’m not in that place anymore, I hope I never have to go back.  I mean, I don’t doubt that I’ll have to wait tables at some point while auditioning, but to get up and go to a job I hate for no reason?  No thanks.

You don’t have to, either.  With the economy the way it is, people will tell you that any job is a job.  That’s true, but I’ve been reading a lot about people who got laid off, then discovered their true passion.  Even if that means they aren’t making as much as they used to.  I’m hopeful that I can live my passion for as long as I want to.  I hope the same for you.

Click to enlarge the photos above, and Google for more funny pics.  Have a great day, folks!

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