Saturday Night Confessions Re: Elton John and Robert Downey Jr.


Do you remember the Elton John song “I Want Love“? From 2001? It was one of those songs that I memorized all the lyrics to.

I want love on my own terms
After everything I’ve ever learned
Me, I carry too much baggage
Oh man I’ve seen so much traffic

I sang those lyrics in 2001 like I knew exactly what Elton was feeling. I sang those lyrics as a girl who had yet to go on her first date with a guy. And I was in my first year of college. I’ll let that stew in your mind for a while.

I loved this song so much, 5 years after the single was released, I bought the Songs from the West Coast album just to put the one song on repeat in my car. I never actually listened to the other tracks. I’m pretty sure I was so obsessed with this song that I probably ugly cried at least once while singing along to it. Can we say, lonely cat lady status? I’m not even going to tell you how many of my single years I spent having quality time with the Golden Girls every night before bed. It’d be too much for you right now.

More importantly now, do you remember this video?

Let’s talk about it. I probably watched it every morning that it aired on VH1′s morning music block. Let’s all look at Robert Downey Jr. This was before he took on mega super celebrity status with Iron Man. What I would’ve given to walk up behind Robert Downey Jr. to “hug” him. I’d place both of my palms on his butt cheeks just because it’s there for the taking. Let’s study his face. That wonderfully sculpted bone structure is what my dreams are made of. Where are you going, Robert? Singing the next verse in a different room? Okay, I’ll follow you. Look at him being all vulnerable and wanting love. I’m what you want! I’m right here! I have that love you want!


Fast forward to the present. Robert Downey Jr. is now 49. I’d still have his baby.

Oh wait, denied. Disregard my last comment.

Thanks for reading about my short-lived Robert Downey Jr. obsession.

And now I redirect you to this Elton John-related link: How to listen to Elton John’s Greatest Hits, in ten easy steps

[ Video screenshots via Crushable and Medium ]

Make It: July 4th Banner Necklace

I’m a fan of banners/bunting, tissue paper, and cute jewelry. Never at the same exact time, so this is a first. I thought it would be cute and funny to make a Fourth of July banner necklace out of tissue paper. It’s a way of being patriotic without being obtrusive to the eyes. Want to know how to make one? Here it goes!

Materials you’ll need:
- tissue paper: one sheet each of red, white, and blue
- glue stick or glue dots or your choice of adhesive
- string
- scissors

1.) Cut out your banner pieces, two of each color (but you can cut more or less). I cut out diamond shapes about 2 inches high and 1 inch wide. What I did was layer the sheets on top of each other and cut a 2 inch by 6 inch section and folded it in half lengthwise. Then I measured and made pen marks every 1 inch on the folded edge and on the opposite edge I made pen marks at the half inch mark in between those 1 inch marks. Then I drew lines to make triangles and cut those pieces out.

2.) Cut a piece of string. The length is your decision, but I cut about 20 inches so I can cut it down to where I’d like it to hang.

3.) Lay the banner pieces out on a flat surface and line them up in a red/white/blue configuration. Place the string/necklace down across the middle of the pieces. If you need to protect your surface from getting glue on it you can do this step on a sheet of newspaper. Feel free to arrange the pieces in a way that you like, with or without space in between the pieces.

4.) One piece at a time, place a drop of glue or swipe the glue stick over the bottom half, then fold the top half down over the string so you end up with a triangular piece. Make sure to get some glue on the string so the pieces won’t move around while you’re wearing it. Wait for the glue to dry.

5.) Personalize it- you can add embellishments if you want. If not, tie it around your neck and start those July 4th festivities!


And just for laughs, here’s my stock photo-photo, entitled happy girl using smartphone.


Let me know if you make one for yourself. Post it on Instagram or Twitter and tag @ermabasila so I can see!

To Inspire You

Inspire - be awesome today

If you follow certain people on Instagram, especially if you’re attracted to nice looking images, you’ll end up following people in creative fields. At one point I ended up following a lot of calligraphers. Now I’m obsessed and am learning to write calligraphy. I picked up a started kit and a bottle of India ink at my local craft store and I’ve been practicing. I’m doing pretty good, I think. It probably helps that I write cursive decently, and that was half my battle. This week’s inspirational message is short and simple.

Also, a friend sent me a link to video of a person demonstrating different pen nibs and inks. Apparently some people are able to experience an autonomous sensory meridian response while watching a video like this. Are any parts of your body tingling?

Break Out Those Summer Clothes Already

Erma's Summer Outfit

Have you switched out your Winter clothes for all your warm-weather clothing? If you haven’t, well, you should. It’s officially Summer in these parts. I’ll tell you what, I’ll be living in those shorts and sandals for the next three months. It’s shorts, skirts, and dresses from here on out.

Here’s something that’s TMI: I finally shaved my legs for the first time this year(!) a few days ago. After a long and harsh winter I didn’t want to lose any “insulation” until it was absolutely necessary. Luckily for me even if I don’t shave, my leg hair is fine enough that when it grows out to to full length (about 1/4 inch) you still don’t really see leg hair unless your face is right in front of my leg.

And here’s another tidbit: I don’t really have any armpit hair. There’s a few fine strands that grow because I tried plucking them as a teenager and they kept growing in. Other than that it’s smooth under my guns.

I’m so glad we’ve reached this point in our friendship that I can tell you these things.

If you’re curious, here’s where I got all of the clothes in the photo, but I warn you that my wardrobe is wayyyy past season so if you want these exact items, good luck in your search:
Blouse, Old Navy (similar)
White denim shorts, Kohls (similar one here on sale for $29.99)
Bikini (matching bottom not pictured), Old Navy
Sandals, Old Navy (I told you I’m past season. these are remotely similar)
Tote, Marc Jacobs, eBay (it was one of those totes that come with a fragrance purchase, I just like the jute fabric)

Also, I wanted to show you a few photos from my Summer Pops performance over the weekend. I love that we end our season with an outdoor concert free to the community. There were cannons fired, fireworks shot into the sky, and about 25,000 happy people who love music.

summer pops 14

[ Photos via Chorus of Westerly's Facebook Page ]


[ Photo via Chris Walsh ]

The Girls With Glasses are Not Fancy


If you’ve somehow been tracking my Spotify listening history you’ll be annoyed to know that I’ve been recently obsessed with Iggy Azalea’s “Fancy,” and a couple dance remixes that came from it. I actually like the remixes more because I can dance with them when I’m driving alone. My favorite Girls with Glasses made their own version of Iggy’s song called “I’m Not Fancy” that all the mommas could relate to.

That hook is so catchy.

And if you want to know where to get their clothes, there you go.

[ image via ]

While We Were Out

Long story short: I did a lot of stuff these first 6 months of 2014. Did I tell you about any of it? Show you adorable pictures? Nope. Sorry. Lost track of time!

So here’s an iPhone photo dump! What happened? I’ll tell ya… We’ve been eating burgers, celebrated a 4th birthday, got lost in a candy store, went to the farmer’s market, had dinner with friends, had date nights, Easter parties, play dates, I did craft projects like my crazy idea to reupholster our dining chairs in zebra print, ate a lot of sushi, took pictures of sexy man arms, sang classical music, hung out on whaling ships, pretended to be robots, and started the 2014 wedding season.





Clicketh through to see more photos… Continue reading

The Week in Instagram

This week has been full of community and family. I performed Dvorak’s Stabat Mater with a huge chorus, soloists, and full orchestra and had so much fun singing a 90-minute piece twice. I’m not joking. So much passion for music coming from this heart o’ mine.

The three of us have been going out for family date nights lately. Aiden is just so cool to hang out with that I like bringing him out whenever we can. He usually only wants to eat sushi when we go eat but sometimes we can persuade him with pizza, or mac and cheese off the kid’s menu. I’m also now a fan of craft beer, and this says a lot for a strictly wine drinker.

There’s been music making at home also. Adam is recording some music with members of his old band, and that means ALL THE GUITARS! come out of hiding. At this point there’s more chance of me stubbing my toe on an acoustic than step on a toy. And I’m not complaining. I kind of love this mess.

That cheerleading photo was from 1994. Enjoy it.

Oh yeah, see the photo with the people on the boat?! I’m weirdly excited that Charles W. Morgan, the only surviving whaling ship from the 19th Century, has been restored and is about to go on it’s 38th voyage soon!!! One thing about people from this area is that we love our submarines and wooden ships and hate Benedict Arnold. I’m this close to buying a cute nautical outfit for Aiden so we can tour the ship before it heads to Newport. I snapped a few photos earlier this week while they were busy readying the ship for sailing. I may or may not have worn my boat shoes just to feel like I was dressed appropriately for the occasion.

I’m also embracing makeup as a beauty enhancer, not concealer. I realized I have a lot of beauty samples in my bathroom drawer and I’d rather use them up before they go bad. Have you ever used an eyeliner pencil that crusted and crumbled as you scraped it across your eyelid? That’s no fun. As part of my “not obviously center stage” stage makeup for my chorus performances last Sunday I decided to fill in my eyebrows to give them more definition and make you think I mean business. Mascara and lipstick with a bit of blush came later, but I made sure to start the day with these arched guns.

Follow me on Instagram if you want. Have a good weekend!!

Girl Crush: Misty Copeland


I think I might be a little obsessed with all things ballet lately. From the Free People ad faux pas I learned about Under Armour’s ad campaign featuring American Ballet Theater soloist Misty Copeland. A little Google image searching and some stalking on Instagram and I am now a big fan of hers.

In any profession I am very in awe of the professionals in the field. When the Chorus of Westerly performs with renowned soloists I take the time to study their techniques and try to implement certain things to improve myself as a singer. Observing skilled professionals is like attending a free masterclass or workshop. There’s valuable information for the taking when you get to watch a professional at work! If I were an aspiring ballet dancer I’d already have read all her interviews and bought her book off of Amazon. I think I might actually buy her book…


Follow her online: / Instagram / Twitter

Other ballet things that have intrigued me:
- Janie Taylor for Chloé
- Where Ballet Meets Fashion
- Dance, a video for a ballerina shoe that Saint Laurent made in 2013

[ Photos via Women's Health Mag, Joel Minden, Delux, Pittsburgh Urban Media, copyright Erin Baiano ]