Have you ever had one of those days where everything just seems to fall perfectly into place?

Yesterday I had planned to drive down to a stained glass supply shop near D.C. to buy red, orange, and copper and gold-flecked glass for my next mosaic project. I'm designing a mosaic for the front of my raised flower bed to match the wind catcher that Jack got be for my birthday back in April.

At the last minute, just before Jack and I walked out to the car, I decided to call the shop and make sure they were open. Good thing I did. The shop owners were away on vacation, according to the recording on their answering machine.

I went back to the drawing board (aka my Mac) and searched for another stained glass store. I found one, just 15 minutes up 95 in Baltimore County. Jack and I drove out there only to find that the shop was also closed. "Summer Vacation" said the sign on the door.

Hungry and still determined, Jack and I headed to Hampden, a section of Baltimore made popular by John Waters' films where artists studios and shops, and restaurants and bars line the streets. Maybe we could find stained glass supplies there?

Our first stop was Cafe Hon. We had beers and eyed the menu, which did nothing for us. Again, technology to the rescue! I whipped out my iPhone and opened the Urban Spoon application I had recently downloaded. I waited for the app to find my "current location" and I pressed "nearby." A list of restaurants came up, with Rocket to Venus getting the best reviews.

Convinced, we walked up 36th St. and took a left on Chestnut Ave. On our walk, I pointed out to Jack a few pieces of glass-metal sculptures on a number of storefronts that appeared to be made by Steve, the same artist who did the beautiful piece that hangs in our living room window. Just before reaching Rocket to Venus, we happened to pass by his studio! We stopped in and talked to Steve, who also happens to be a friend of Jack's sister, about his work. I happened to mention to Steve that I was getting into mosaic art and he promptly toured me around his studio, proudly showing off his shelves full of different size sheets of colored glass. He even offered to save me all of his scrap pieces of glass for my projects and sent me on my way with a bag full of copper scraps that I can hammer out and incorporate into my mosaic!

We said goodbye and crossed the street to Rocket to Venus. Closed until 5 p.m. Not willing to wait another half hour to eat, we walked back to 36th St. and stumbled across a new BYOB called King's Grille. Imagine my excitement when I saw shawarma and falafel on the menu outside. A place to relive my trip to Israel through cuisine! The food was delicious, and the owner, originally from Egypt, was as warm and welcoming as could be. I left him a $10 tip on our $17 check. I was on cloud nine.

Here's a picture of some of the tacky, errr unique, art you will find in Hampden. Visit my other blog to see more pics from that day.


  1. Shawarma!!! Yum!!!

    Sounds like a fantastic day!!

  2. I've given you an award :)