Lutron Nova T dimmers:

Several of our clever neighbors have installed dimmer switches on their lights and it really seems to make a differnece in their places. The lights on our mezzanine level are usually way too bright, but having them off isn't really an option. I checked out Lowe's for dimmers but the ones there are pretty utilitarian in appeareance. not like these "architectural grade' dimmers from Lutron in Satin Nickel or Anodized Aluminum finishes (among others). I love them. And they even have outlet covers that match. However, at about $50 each, I guess we first need to decide how long we're going to stay here.


Crate & Barrel Mackenzie duvet cover:

Last week Lexie ripped our favorite duvet cover. I bought it at Muji— my very favorite store for any home accessory you can imagine— in London last December. This Crate & Barrel isn't quite as nice, but it does has similar stripes— in a neutral palette of tonal black and grey stripes and just a hint of red. The best part is that the queen size cover is on sale for $99 and the shams are $19. That's the best price I've seen stateside in quite a while. It will have to do until our next trip to the UK (or Sweden or Japan).


Brooks Brothers Vintage Grey Herringbone Wool Suit:

Usually Brooks Brothers is a little too conservative for me, but this vintage-style suit they've come out with for this season is incredibly hip. And, it actually has flat-front pants. The best part, though, is that it actually comes in a 36 short, which is practically unheard of for off-the-racks suits under $900. Maybe someone out there can explain why off-the-rack short sizes typically start at 38 or 40. Are there so few off us short, thin guys in the world? Anyway, this may have to be my Christmas present. (Bri: Hint, hint. After all, don't I need something gorgeous to wear to the fabulous C.U.Z.'s New Year's Eve party?)


Soft Paws Nail Caps for Cats and Kittens:

Something look a little odd with this picture? That's because the cat is wearing Soft Paws— caps that fit over the nails and held prevent damage to furniture when the cat scratches. Supposedly it's easy to use. "The application is simple. Just fill each nail cap with the adhesive provided and slide it on over the nail. It's that easy!" (They obviously have never met Artemis, who howls whenever we try to hold him. And that brings Lexie, who sort of believes she's his mom, over to try to rescue him.)
It's definitely a humane alternative to declawing if it works. And it would mean we could actually get a new couch without living in fear.


Carre wall sconce:

Yesterday I stopped in Lee's Studio on my way back to my office after a doctor's appointment and found these cool sconces. Made of hand-blown Murano glass and either 10 1/2 or 16 1/2 inches tall, they may finally be the answer to our livingroom lighting dilemma.


A wombat:

I fell in love with wombats about two weeks ago on a JetBlu flight from NYC to Las Vegas. You see, JetBlue has DirectTV, which in turn has Animal Planet. (If any of you have watched Animal Planet then you can guess that I might be a sucker for practicly any of its shows.) After watching endless episodes of "The Planet's Funniest Animals" and "Animal Precinct", on came a show about a couple who rescue wombats out of the pouches of mother wombats who are killed by cars. I was smitten within 30 seconds.

Wombats are large (about the size of a short, fat Labrador or an extremely large English bulldog), nocturnal, herbivorous, burrowing marsupials that are native to the continent of Australia. The one above is a hairy-nosed wombat, which are more friendly than the common wombat (who has a "bald nose"). Although wombats have those pudgy, short little legs and round bellies, they are shockingly speedy—they can sustain bursts of 24 mph speeds for short distances.

I thought a wombat would be a perfect pet— until I saw this video. Now I think I'd just like to spend some time in Australia volunteering with the wombat-rescuing couple.