Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Recap pt. 1- Joining the throngs of the unemployed

October 15th was my last post and now we're on the very cusp of December! Wow time does fly. So what happened in pall that time? Well it turns out lots! The biggest change being that I left my corporate job (that was a very good job I must say, but was a bit soul sucking due to my lack of interest or aptitude in the the given field). I had been looking to make a switch to something more artsy friendly for a while and sadly for the company and many of my colleagues, the team decided to wind down business within the last few months. So I suppose I was given an easy out as I did not really chose to leave but was laid off. However I am grateful for the kick in the pants it gave me to get back on track with a career path that will truly bring me joy, with a bit of a severence to help cushion the transition. So as to that career path... I'm completely lost. My instinct is to return to teaching in some capacity which I really love. Especially at the primary school level. Singing babies is about the most heart warming experience you can have :) However I have this strong, burning desire to work for myself in a creative capacity. I have a few ideas of the direction I can take with this, so I suppose I will be tossing these things around in my head for the next few weeks in the hopes that a super plan emerges. Anyone out in bogland have any experience/tips for changing careers or starting your own business? What was the driving force that helped you jump in feet first? What do you wish you had known when making this switch. I know I enjoy working independently and spending the day in pajamas/work out attire, but I suspect there is more to it than that :) and what about structure? How did you plan your path when you could still barely even see two steps ahead?

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Resource Furniture

Image and Article via Apartment Therapy

This post on Apartment therapy is blowing my mind right now! I've seen similar space saving furniture items, but this company seems to be a bit more modern, diverse and ..SLICK! Anyone into Euro/Scandinavian minimalistic design would love their pieces but they would also work for a less modern space as they blend in so easily. What a life changer for city folk. In a world where even young professionals are being priced out of Manhattan, and even Brooklyn and Queens for that matter. I can smaller apartments/studios fitted with this type of functional furniture becoming a trend in the near future. How very Jetsons.

Time to start checking out studios in the village if that's the case! (In my mind Resource Furniture has the same price point as Ikea....don't ruin my dream..) ;)

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Pet Costumes

Halloween is just around the corner, and you know who's ready? Rupert's ready! Or should I say, Long John Rupert!


How do you feel about pets in costume? Cruel or cute? I'm generally mixed. This hat cracked me up and for 6 dollars, I had to have it, but I don't think I will ever have him wear it for an extended amount of time. I suppose as long as your pet is comfortable and happy, no worries.

Anyone dressing up their pet for Halloween? If you are in need of a costume, check out these hilarious offerings from Target (also where pirate hat came from). They have an amazing metallic shark, a taco with a little sombrero that had me in stitches, and a raptor.. yes a raptor that makes me squeal with glee! I still keep going back to look at it for a laugh. It may be my favorite costume ever!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011


Cords, Striped top: Gap; Chambray Shirt: Loft; Blouse: Target; Watch: Fossil

Corduroy has been making a come back in the last few years. This year I decided to hop aboard that fuzzy, soft, bandwagon. Gap has some great cord options in both a boot cut and an "ankle legging style." What would you nickname that? cegging? leg-roy. I think I like leg-roy.

So I got 2 pairs of the leg-roy version; one in aubergine (Daryll calls them my Prince pants. For surely every day I wear them is 1999.) and one in the rust color.

As far as pairings go, I have been wearing them with 3 tops. This chambray shirt from Loft, this navy blouse from Target for fancy days, and this stripey top, also from gap, when I'm in a cozy mood. Any mariner stripe tops in black or navy would look cool too or a great big cozy sweater. Loving them with both heels and jeans, or maybe some cute booties?

How would you style them?

Like Crazy

I'm so excited to see this movie that I'm not even that sad that they totally stole my idea ;) For anyone who has ever been in an "international romance" where you are citizens of 2 different countries, or hell, even those who have been in normal long distance relationships, this is sure to tug on your heart strings. Ooo and that immigration scene in the trailer strikes fear deep in the heart of this transcontinental wife! Since D and I got together, I had felt like ours was a very modern unsung story. A story about the heart break and love rush of a nearly impossible relationship in a world where very few things are truly out of reach. Life's bitter sweet circumstances are more bitter than sweet when you are in the thick of it, but seeing it through the eyes of someone else, especially a talented filmmaker, you realize how beautiful and delicious it can be.

P.S.  Ingrid Michaelson's cover of "Fools Rush In" is so perfect in every way it makes my heart hurt.

P.P.S It is coming to theaters Oct. 28th!

Monday, October 3, 2011

Going Home Again

Finishing up my summer weekend fun posts that I have been neglecting, is a bit about our trips up to the Berkshires this summer. I was born and raised in western MA before moving with my family to the dirty dirty, or New Orleans as some call it. However, I am fortunate enough that my Grandma still lives in the area and I am able to visit with her as much as possible in the same house that I spent many a childhood weekend now that, of course, our old house has been long bought and sold. It's a sad thing to move away from a much loved childhood home, to only be allowed a quick glance as you drive through town. You imagine driving up the driveway and walking up the stairs to find everything in its place exactly as you left it, it's your house after all. It raised you along with your parents, as a fixture in every childhood memory, surely that entitles you to some prior claim. I long to run through the yard, do some cartwheels, and pick a few apples from my tree, which I'm sure has withered away by now, and take a nap in the hammock. I used to tell my parents that I was never leaving our house. That when I grew up I would build a small house in the back yard and stay there forever. But as they say, you can't go home again, not really.

The Inn next door to our house where I spent many a day as a babysitter

"You can't go back home to your family, back home to your childhood ... back home to a young man's dreams of glory and of fame ... back home to places in the country, back home to the old forms and systems of things which once seemed everlasting but which are changing all the time — back home to the escapes of Time and Memory."

but you can come close. Make something new. Share your old family memories with your new family. That's why I feel so fortunate that we are still able to make the trip. I am still able to share some of my past life with my new husband. He is able to see the swimming holes where we learned how to swim and cliff jump, go to Tanglewood where I spent every summer of my young life visiting and listening to James Taylor, Beethoven, Mozart, John Williams and more while looking at the stars.

Sitting at my Grandma's table while we share a meal together, and Smores around the fire pit at our family's farm. Experiencing these things together strengthens how important they are. How important they were in shaping who I am today, and how much I look forward to passing them on to the next generation when the simple things like tradition are so easily lost. It helps him feel a part of my family, a part of my past life, present life and future life. It helps fill in the gaps and make us whole. And spending time with family, especially Grandmas.. that never gets old. There is never enough time, but I'm glad we can make the most of the time we do have here. You can't go home again, but you can come close.

Bus Fail!

For most people who live in a big city, public transport can be one of the biggest daily buzz kills out there. To start, you have the unpredictable/non existent transit timetables. Depending on the day, weather, traffic and who your driver or operator has been chatting with, the times between buses and trains can run the gamut from 30 seconds to a half hour or more. (It really is quite the crap shoot, and I have not mastered the art of leaving an hour early for every trip I make to accommodate MTA shenanigans. Especially when said destination in only a mere 15 minutes away.) Once you figure out the general time a bus or train is likely to make an appearance; your plight is still not over. You face sardine-like accommodations, grimy seats, trash strewn floors and surly, grouchy passengers that may or may not have similar personal hygiene/person space ideals as your own. This goes with the territory of being a city dweller. For enjoying the perks of not having to own a car and having a ride and designated driver all hours of the night. For a whole heap of hilarious and outrageous subway anecdotes all New Yorkers seem to have filed away in their memory. For the amazing and unusual performances we get to witness on a daily basis miles under the city. Public transit can be a good thing at times, but more often than not, a daily curse. So, that being said, I was more than dismayed this morning when, apart from the usual "barely passable" service received from the MTA, my fellow passengers and I had to endure the ever exciting "bus driver with a power trip" experience during our morning commute. This woman had a mission, and it was not "picking and dropping off passengers." Noting the "Next Bus Please" ticker on the front of the bus, we knew things were not looking good. Several buses had already passed or not shown up entirely, at our stop, and most of the people I was waiting with had the "I'm late for work wiggles." The bus stopped and did not open the front door, only the back to allow the passengers getting off to exit. Fair enough, I've seen plenty of buses bursting at the seams do this, however upon closer inspection, another woman and myself noticed that there was a ton of room in the back of the bus, and no one moving to accommodate at the front. This also happens quite frequently, so we hopped on through the back door, planning to pay our fare on the way out (I have a monthly metro pass so no biggie). Again many drivers let you do this when it is very cramped up front. Then the sh*t storm started. She was loud and in charge. "GET OFF THE BUS, GET OFF THE BUS NOW OR I'M NOT MOVING! YOU HAVE NEVER SEEN A BUS DRIVER LIKE ME BEFORE." She was right, I haven't because most enjoy remaining employed. We explained that we just need to get to work and there is room down here, but she was nasty, so we got off. As she is about to pull away and we step back to the stop, she decides to show us a choice finger. Not her pointer...not her ring... you get it. So at that point many people were scrambling to take down her number for reporting purposes. Then she either decides to try and make a point or save some face and opens the door and lets passengers on. Bizarre after that tirade. As my fellow ejected passenger and I try to board and pay at the front, she refuses us entry entirely. Apparently because we pushed her authority. Look lady, I just want to get to work. That really is all. I told her to get her power trip elsewhere and left it at that. The poor lady behind me got all sorts of F yous and shut your damn mouth from our ever charming driver. She then swore she would never stop at this stop again. (I have a feeling that's kinda your job) I myself, I am ashamed to say, was not blameless as did call her one choice variation of "witch" as I was ejected the first time, but honestly there was no need for the language that was spewing from her mouth for the next few minutes. At the end of the day, thank god we stood up for ourselves as passengers. We had every right to board that bus and she was not providing service. There was no sick passenger, it was not express, and there was room in the back. If we had missed that bus, everyone at that stop would have been extremely late/already was at that point. The bigger question is, why did it almost "come to blows" as they say? MTA, something is going on, and it needs to be fixed. Apparently they have corrected the financial deficit within the organization, but there is now a serious deficit with regards to service. Buses have been cut and everyone is on edge. I've also heard that the bus drivers are timed, and if the choice comes between making a stop or a pick up and making their time at the depot, they will often blow right past. (I have not yet found an article to back this up, it is just something I had heard that might lead to some sort of explanation as to why this woman felt she did not have to stop for passengers). The saddest part of the whole situation is that, she was slowed down in the end anyway, more passengers were delayed, and everyone on the bus had to witness a lot of negativity, nastiness and choice words. I blush when I remember that kids also ride buses every day. Everyone loses. Next time when I take a stand I will practice taking the high road while not taking no for an answer. Maybe then eventually the daily commute, while a slog, will be a respectful one for rider and driver alike.

Friday, September 2, 2011

Jack of all trades

 In this economic climate it seems that many people are attempting to diversify themselves. Up skill themselves. And why not? I know I am. I've always considered myself a Jack of all Trades. I am very passionate and good at many things... but master?... I'm just not sure. I've been thinking and researching on this topic for a while now, of what I am good at,  what my core skills are, what I should pursue to better myself to provide more opportunities, but more importantly what I can be really passionate about. I looked into college courses, etc. in areas I think I'd like.. Event planning, flower arranging, letterpress, photoshop, anything creative really. I love projects. But many seem suuuper expensive for something I am not totally committed to.. and then I came across this site. CourseHorse! So cool! It's like all the extra curriculars you wanted to take without the heavy college fees. I think I am going to try and take a few of these classes this fall and see where it leads. I know several friends who are starting their own businesses and kinda want to learn through practice and it seems like this is a great place to see if you can pick up some extra skills. Cause when all is said and done, no job seems secure anymore. Now more than ever it seems the key word you need on your resume is adaptable. Anyone have any experience with this? Have you embraced and interest and cultivated it into your main source of income? Any tips for those starting off down the long road to self employment? :)

Thursday, September 1, 2011

The Lot and the Highline

One of these past summer weekends (I'm waaay behind in my posting!) We took our first trip to the Highline. I'd heard bits about it over the last few years, but didn't really understand what it was. It is actually an elevated park that was built on top of an old train line that runs from Gansevoort Street in the Meatpacking District to West 34th Street, between 10th & 11th Avenues. In the 1930's the city used the line to lift dangerous freight trains off the New York streets. In the 80's the line stopped entirely and fell into disrepair and in the 90's they began the transformation of the rails into a really cool park. Its a fantastic place for a stroll after dinner to watch the sunset, and I hear they even have stargazing events at night. It's amazing how peaceful it is there with all the flowers and people laying on the big grassy lawns. I love it there because although you are still in the hustle and bustle of the city, it offers such a wonderful opportunity to stop and just take everything in. Nature can bring so much refreshment to a hot, old, tired city and its dwellers.

We stopped by the Lot before hand to grab some food (Korilla BBQ!) and had a great time taking pictures and people watching as we walked along the park. The Lot itself is such a fun place to visit. Exactly how it sounds, the Lot is ..... a Lot. Each day of the week different famous food trucks from around the city pull up and form a sort of bohemian food court. They also have beers on tap and ROLLERSKATING! So fun with a group of people. I think Uniqlo even has a pop up shop there for those who really like to multitask and shop while they rollerskate, or more likely for those of us who head over right after work, and would love a change of comfy clothes ha!

This photo is so perfect to describe the Highline. Nature and city intersect.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Lunch Break Staycation

oo la la

Ugh I could definitely do with one of these right now. A few weeks ago, my lovely hubby met me for Lunch! Actually it was the monthaversary of us being married for Jesus ;) (we had 2 weddings, a civil ceremony last year and a big ol' Irish Catholic wedding this June, of which I kept saying..."This ones for Jesus!") He was so sweet and surprised me with a bouquet of hydrangea to remind me of Nantucket (where we met) and took me to Le Pain Quotidien for yummy sandwiches. Right next to the bakery on 53rd street is a little alcove with a waterfall and tables and chairs for outdoor lunching. We grabbed our baguettes and snatched up a table. As we were chatting and sampling the sandwiches we had selected, I realize that I felt so relaxed and so out of NYC! It was like a little mini Parisian vacation or I suppose a Parisian style staycation. I went back to work and had a really nice afternoon. I felt so refreshed. Anyone have any ideas where we should try next? What is your favorite place to escape and feel like you are somewhere else. To just put life on hold for 30 mins or a few hours?

mmm sangwig

Monday, August 15, 2011

Weekend Update

This weekend was the best of both worlds. For me. For poor Daryll it meant working all Saturday evening and missing a fantastic friend reunion, only to be free Sunday for all the "Suzie homemaker" business. Sigh, thems the breaks of being a grown up in the restaurant business I guess... But yes this weekend was very nice.. For me.

Friday night consisted of girly dinner and drinks at one of our old standbys Arriba, Arriba in Sunnyside. 5$ Margaritas and pretty decent Mexican food. Yes and yes. My bff Lowra and I had a lovely chat per usual, and my carne asada taco's definitely hit the spot. Daryll = working, but then a surprise! The restaurant was dead (this being August in NYC and all the restaurant's regulars, i.e. finance people were either in the Hampton's or in their various other summer houses. Seriously, August in NYC is void of most of the high falutins. Especially on the weekends. Yay for plebs!) so D got to come home early and meet us at Molly Blooms, a beautifully redone Irish pub also on Queens Blvd. in Sunnyside. They have a rad back garden for drinks and food during the summer. Definitely check it out if you are in the area. We were just enjoying our Woo woos, (i.e. the vodka, cran, and peach schnapps ridiculous drink special for the night) and a chat when the "best bar owner ever" stopped on by. This guy was everything I love about Ireland. Irish of course, extremely friendly, witty, and deliciously irreverent. Seriously the jokes that he was coming up with were hilarious and shocking. Wonderful! He totally sold us on a trip back to the pub
which goes to show, if you are friendly with your guests and make them feel at home, they will not only have a great time but want to return to keep the good times rollin'. Plus, he reminded us all of D's dad so much it made my heart smile. We are so homesick for our families! I definitely have the sweetest most fun in-laws ever so anyone that reminds us of them has to be good people.

Saturday was a busy one. We got up early at 11am. tee hee. and headed over to our friends, Smashryn and Job's house on the upper west side for their house warming party. I got to see the place a few weeks back when it was infested with Smashryn boxes, but now the place looks super swank! They both put in long and hard hours to make their home look great (note Job's pseudonym is..well..Job.. like the bible man. That should give you a clue as to the trials of the S and J apt) and it all paid off. It was a lovely party with homemade fancy cake, and sangria, and gifts of bacon. D did get to partake in a few hours of the party, and then he went to work, and I went off to BEER GARDEN! Beer Gardening is an important agricultural activity here in New York. One cannot have summer without it. There were many people that were watered, and card games that ...Our good friend, hmm lets call her Jan, came over from Philly to visit, and we all had a good catch up. We took a break from drinking for some life changing Greek food over at Taverna Kyclades in Astoria, and more drinking. Really a perfect evening with Drinks, Friends and Fried Cheese! mmm.

very serious business, this beer gardening..
 Sunday= Cleaning, Trader Joe's food shopping, and Irish Stew making... All of which Daryll got to participate in. Lucky boy! Definitely the best part of the weekend to piggy back on, don't you agree..Not! Cue sad trumpets....:(

Notice for a post this long winded there should most definitely be more photos. Greek and Mexican tastiness- MIA, Apartment Party and Fancy Cake-Absent. Say it with me ala JFK. "We can do bettah!"

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Imperial Woodpecker Snoballs

They also sell ZAPP'S chips! Best chips ever. Like Cape Cod's dirty older sibling. Much more interesting and exciting but probably really bad for you.

Upon returning from our honeymoon, I was super excited to start blogging again about all things wedding. Then I decided that I would rather wait until we received our professional photo disk in the mail so I could feature some really fancy images of the day and look all professional blogy like......then another month slipped through my fingers..... poop.

It seriously seems like summer months speed by at twice the rate of, say, sleepy ol' January or February. Those definitely feel like the longest ones in my book and before you know it, it's winter again and I have to blog about snowmageddons and boots and shovels and the inside of my apartment...NOOOOO....So before all the hot, sticky, jacket free, sundress wearing deliciousness of summer disappears let's just get to it, and worry about the wedding recap at a later date. Oh the suspense! I know. Any who,  here is a bit about my new summer '11 food favorite, Imperial Woodpecker Snoballs. Yay!

As a New Orleans girl, I was delighted to hear that a fellow NOLA chick, Neesa Peterson, had decided to put her fashion career on hold indefinitely to bring a little summer joy to the Manhattan masses. After a few great write ups like the one linked above, and some guerrilla social media tactics, the little snowball shop got off the ground. With New Orleans people, good food news travels fast. Just a few short day's after their opening, my hometown NOLA loves and I had already visited the shop 2 times, however many more trips are in order to sample all the deliciousness on the MASSIVE menu..
Just a snippet of the massive menu
For those of you who aren't familiar with Snoballs. They are a billion times better than snow cones. They don't even compare to snow cones. Snow cones will break your teeth if you allow them to fuse together. Eating them is a highly unenjoyable experience, save for the 10 seconds it takes for you to suck all the flavor out of them. Snoball are a highly evolved ice creatures in comparison. The special machine used to flake the ice comes straight from New Orleans and makes the fluffiest, snowflake like ice ever. Then you add the flavor. There is a precise process for adding the flavor as well. Each flavor is in a clear glass bottle with masking tape labels (the only way its done in the south!) and is added to the snow in 2 layers. Big scoop of snow...tons of syrup.....big scoop of snow....boat load more syrup and you're done. There is no way to suck out the syrup. It just fuses with the ice, in perfect fluffy sno syrup ice love harmony. My favorite flavors so far and, well, always have been, Almond Cream or Wedding Cake for you southerners, and Ice Cream. The best part is most of these snowballs will only set you back a few calories and one diabetic coma! If you are looking to get a little wild, try the stuffed Snoballs. They are Snowballs with vanilla ice cream on top. Scandalous! Best with the Birthday Cake flavor. Or get condensed milk. Also very good with the Birthday cake. Can you tell I enjoy the Birthday Cake. The flavors we sampled our first visit were, half and half wedding and birthday cake and Cotton Candy. I love sampling new flavors with friends. It always turns into a pleasant version of a Berti Bott's Every Flavor Bean experience I had one Halloween with my family... "what does the grass one taste like?...." ....."grass!" "What does the "pepper one taste like?" ...."oh! pepper!" "what does the vomit one taste like?"............."Ahhhh vomit!!!!!!" cut to my cousin running to the bathroom and vigorously spiting it out. The cotton candy really did taste like cotton candy! It's always so surprising to me. I would love to get through all the flavors by summers end. That would be a very enjoyable month indeed!

The End

Friday, July 8, 2011

Labor of Love

Our wedding party and us on Howth pier by the incredibly talented Christina Brosnan of Brosnan Photographic

After quite a lengthy hiatus, I am happy to say that I am back and blogging. From May- June things went just a wee bit crazy. Our Ireland Wedding date was fast approaching and I was a bridal mess with to many "to-do's" to check off the list and too little time. So sadly my blog became temporary wedding roadkill. The upside to this is not only did our hard work pay off tenfold, but I emerged with many different experiences and lessons in the world of event planning and DIY (aside from an amazing husband, two of the best extended families imaginable and an EPIC, HUGELY EPIC dance party! Of course!). It is a rare situation when all your scatterbrained ideas pull together in the exact way it played out in your head, if not better..(well, maybe not that rare, but definitely rewarding) and you get to share something truly magical with the people you love. I can't wait to post some of the highlights of the wedding over the next few days..and then dive into the realm of what follows "Happily Ever After." I'm not sure what that may be exactly but I'm excited for all the projects, possibilities and WEDDINGS (finally not mine! ha!) in the future. xx

Monday, April 18, 2011

Mesa Coyoacan

Decor at Mesa Coyoacan. The restaurants funky style was featured over at Apartment Therapy. Check out the article after the jump!
  Happy Monday!

     Hope everyone had a fantastic weekend. We sure did! We got a few items checked off our wedding To-Do list and had a wonderful relaxing Sunday, which included the BEST Mexican food I've ever had,  hands down! Daryll and I are still day dreaming about it and wondering when we can go back for more. I was on my best blogger behavior and did manage to snap some pics to share before we completely devoured our food.

     Ok, so it was half eaten, so maybe I should reserve "best blogger behaviour" for next time when I actually capture the food before I've started eating it. However, considering the amazingness that was our meal, I can hardly be blamed. The restaurant in question is Mesa Coyoacan in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. The style and flavor profile of the food reminded me of both Cafe Frida and Pompano; two other delicious Mexican eateries in Manhattan, however, I found Mesa's food a bit fresher; more exciting and adventurous flavor wise; and  more reasonable when it came to the price. We both got the Jamaican Margaritas (on the rocks salted) which were made with Hibiscus and orange liquor, and shared Guacamole and Tortilla Soup for our starters. The margaritas were great. Very refreshing and easy to drink. I did read a few reviews criticizing their potency, and although they were indeed a bit weaker than other Margaritas I have had (Uh, Blockheads!) they were incredibly smooth and in no way "skimpy" on the liquor. When it comes to Guacamole, Daryll and I are kind of snobbish. We really love the green stuff and try it everywhere I go. This one was incredibly fresh and very creamy (sorry, I hate that word but it is what it is!); not as roughly mixed as some of the "Guac-made-table side" restaurants we have been too. I was also delighted that they did not serve it in the stone mortar, but instead in a smooth bowl. The reason for this is while the mortar might look "cool" or "rustic," it is also very difficult to get all the last bits of guac out of! (We're Guacamole Gluttons what can I say.) So yay for smooth bowls! The Tortilla Soup was nice as well and was a generous portion, perfect for sharing. I especially liked the fresh avocado, tortilla strips and cheese that were added to it right before serving. 
    Our entrees were so satisfying. Daryll cannot stop talking about his Camarones Al Ajillo. It was a platter of smokey, grilled Shrimp that were marinated in Chipotle and lime; rice mixed with fresh corn; black beans topped with Cotija cheese, and fresh avocado. What made this dish perfect for him was that it was served with corn tortillas, so you can make a little taco out of whatever you like. Daryll love making sandwiches out of his meals. He constantly eats half of his breakfast or dinner and then somehow finds bread or a wrap to sandwich the rest, so he was in heaven. The shrimp were truly amazing. I've really never tasted anything like it. This is the only photo I have of his meal. He was stopping for no man, or woman....

Happy Days
  Finally, we get to my meal. I got the Carne Asada Tacos, not very adventurous, I know, but they were super flavorful. D commented that the meat was top quality, and they were garnished with onion, cilantro and a little bit of lime. They also came with this fantastic salsa quartet with mild chipotle salsa; mild tomatillo salsa, which was a little spicy; Medium something or other, which was tasty but pretty spicy; and Habanero Salsa (Didn't try it, didn't want to cry). My favorite though was the CORN. It was grilled corn on the cob with spices, Cojita, lime, mayo, and God's love sprinkled on it. It was so amazing. Sweet, salty, spicy, it had it all. Here is D and my corn that he hijacked. Drunk with Deliciousness.

nom nom nom
So, to sum up. GO THERE.

Anyone been? Anyone have their own yummy restaurant experience this week?

Friday, April 15, 2011


Secrets Maroma Beach where we are going in July. Yay!
So I had my first Honeymoon dream last night, or more accurately, my first "Mexico/Tropical/Vacation dream as there were many randomers there with us, we kept incessantly taking photos of wildlife (including a camel?) and I barely saw Daryll the whole time. Definitely not what I had in mind for my Honeymoon. Lots of peace and quiet on the beach with a drink in hand is mostly what we will be up to during that week. But the dream did address the fact that I am craving warm weather and SUN! Tons and Tons of it. I can't wait to swim again or even just dip my toes in the water without fear of frostbite, to be able to throw on a sundress and some sandals and be good to go (I used to wear flip flops in Louisiana year round! Le sigh), to be energized in the morning when the sun casts a warm glow through my window instead of wanting to sleep all day under a duvet while it is dark, cold, and wet outside and to crave healthy foods and fruit instead of cheese, meat, potatoes or anything relatively hazardous to my heart, arteries and love handles. Coincidentally yesterday and today are the sunniest days we've had in a very long time and already I feel my spirits lift. I'm going to give myself a month to slim down and shape up before the summer shopping commences and I already have a few things on my wish list for the trip.

Twist-front bandeau tank
J Crew Twist-front bandeau tank. Totally Classic

Farmer's market tote
Also from J Crew. Perfect Beach Bag.

Panama hat
J Crew panama hat. (no trend intended :) )
And finally. The one summer item that I have been hoping for, for two years! The one item I will wear into the ground (the last pair literally broke apart while I was walking because I wore them EVERY DAY for 2 summers) My lovely Jacks...

Jack Rogers "Hamptons" Thong Sandals
Jack Rogers. Love, shoe love.

I will more than likely fine similar affordable alternative for all the items above, except for the Jack Rogers. They are the type of shoe that goes the distance with you. Especially during the summer as you can dress them up or down and wear them to almost anything! I was so sad when my old pair broke. Most people have items that tell a story of their lives. These were it for me. I spend many happy summers walking around Nantucket in them, I meet my husband in them and danced like mad in them. Looking forward to having these on my feet again. Any summer buys on the horizon for you? Do you have one item that you splurge on for quality? With so many cute one pieces I am totally sold on the more flattering and classic swimwear. Are you going for the tank as well or will you stay a bikini girl?

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Repurposed Wine Bottles

Photo by Kim Fetrow

 I am crushing on these cute cups that I found over on Plastolux. They are made out of cut wine bottles that  were lovingly etched with a sand blaster and some clever templates. Check out the step by step here! They look amazingly easy to do using a cutting kit and etch cream (for those of us without sand blasting access.) Alas, I'm a bit sad that I found these a day too late as we had just tossed a million empty champagne bottles (exaggeration but the mimosas were flowing all morning!) from my bridal shower this weekend. I always hate throwing out pretty bottles and can think of a million uses for these little guys. I am obsessed with the "brush your teeth cup" and can already envision it in the bathroom, while the "chemist" cup would be perfect for cotton balls or Q-tips, or hair ties. You name it! Great idea for votives or vases as well. Oo! At the Plastolux site they also show a set of cups with numbers etched onto them- perfect for you DIY wedding people wanting to combine table numbers and floral arrangements in one elegant flourish! These are probably not the best craft for kids to do, hands on, but they could definitely create their own designs, as well as observe the process. Any ideas on what you would use these for in your own home?


This post at babble via Frolic is no good at helping me curb my addiction.....bad. bad. bad.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Salt and Fat

          Last weekend we spent Sunday trying out a new restaurant in our neighborhood, Salt and Fat. This Sunday we spent the evening avoiding it. Not because it was bad, but because it was soooo good. I am a bit afraid that this could become a habit of ours, and while the food is delicious and makes our mouths very happy, it will also make our waistlines very sad. Perhaps we became so addicted since we tried a dish aptly named "Crack and Cheese." These were the only two pictures I was able to take of it.....

       As you can see, Daryll approves. What the bowl is missing is the fried potato gnocci, smothered with bechemel sauce and topped with bacon, that it momentarily contained. It was yum. Pretty rich, but not terribly heavy which was surprising. The restaurant has many small plate dishes meant for sharing. They also bring them out one at a time so you can complete one flavor profile before continuing. The next dish we sampled was the "Hanger Steak and Fries." This one really surprised us. The steak was incredibly tender and cooked medium rare. It just melted in your mouth. The fries were perfect, golden brown and salty. We ate it so quick I didn't get a chance to snap a pic. Ooops.

       Last course was the "Fried Chicken."
Fried Chicken at Salt and Fat. It took us a while but we decided that the Ranch sauce was spiked with lemon and Dill.
         Slap your Mama good. The batter was amazing. Salty and spicy without overwhelming the chicken, which by the way had to be the moistest chicken I ever had. (I hate the word moist. Eew. but that's what it was!) Apparently the chef uses a method called "Sous-vide" to maintain the foods flavor and quality while cooking. We quickly realized after this course that we probably picked the heaviest dishes in the joint, but since we were sharing and they were so carefully prepared, we left comfortably full. MMM soo good. It's going to be hard to walk by there now without stopping in for a "snack!" It is very exciting to have a new hip restaurant to go to in our neighborhood.

Weekend Uniform

The original weekend top
Mine is navy and white.
I've got a fever, but no, the only prescription is not more cowbell. I'm pretty sure the only prescription is more Mariner striped tops. I'm so addicted guys, it's getting bad. Like 12 step program bad. I guess the only comfort is that I don't actually buy all the tops I covet, just some. But I feel my resolve beginning to crack. I really want more stripey tops. I've been wearing the one pictured on the left like EVERY weekend since I purchased it (along with the ankle pants I bough from Talbot's as well. Those are also an obsession. P.S. the recent Talbot's spring campaign is very cute! And Julianne Moore is stunning in it.). I rationalized this top since it was a bit different from your typical Mariner fare. I also support my addiction on the premise that these tops are serious staple pieces. A Mariner top, well cut jeans, black flats, trench coat, biker boots- they will be your friends for a long time. Seriously every time I wear these items I instantly feel chic (well minus the biker boots....I am stalking those for my next staple purchase.)
Waa waaaa. Before this post went to press, I recently caved and went a little nuts at H&M by purchasing my new favorite. A RED stripey Mariner top.
 This is the first red one I have purchased, and I've now opened the door to a whole new realm of stripey tops. The possibilities are endless. Please someone affirm my choice in french inspired wear, and don't laugh at me when you see me in the same 2 tops every weekend.

Friday, March 25, 2011

DIY Centerpieces

I finally decided on/put together my DIY wedding centerpieces. We are having our reception in an Irish Tavern complete with stone walls and exposed wood beams..mmm.. and I struggled for ages to figure out what I could do that was romantic, rustic and cost effective without looking cheap. I also hemmed an hawed about posting "spoilers" for my own wedding on this blog, but then figured that no items that I posted could truly spoil a wedding. There are no predictions that can be made until the sum of the parts are witnessed, and in the end that is not the soul of a wedding day anyway. These are just little bits of fluff and prettiness. Bits of cheer to accent the day and maybe somewhere out there another sane bride is looking for affordable bits of fluff for her day too!  I know I spend hours myself googling babys breath centerpieces and finding many that I liked, but did not work for me, or were not fesable to make.
      Since we are getting married in Ireland, I needed to find a shop that was international where I could send and elf with a list, and have everything bought and ready to be assembled when we arrived. Enter my swiss boyfriend IKEA. Don't worry Daryll approves of this relationship. Ikea is there wherever I go in the world, and likes to provide me with pretty things (and meatballs), and I really don't owe him too much at the end of the day. It works out well. Here's how the centerpieces break down for those of you who would like to attempt something similar...

Supplies for each table...
1 Small Burken Jar (.5L)
1 Medium Burken Jar (1L)
Ribbon or twine or rafia of your choice
1 Fenomen set of block candles (5 piece)
1 Tolsby picture frame
20 stems of baby's breath (I paid $10 for mine here in NY just to test out. But it should be cheaper in bulk)
Table numbers from the Wedding Chicks! I love these gals!

Step 1- Prepare babys breath.
I acually approached this as a hand held bouquet. I still need more practice, but since I wasn't using an opaque container I wanted the stems to look pretty. It makes the top a little harder to control (i.e. make into a perfect pouf, but I think the "wildness" of it adds to the romantic look. Starting with one little bunch as the center of the bouquet keep adding stems in an even manner around the perimeter. I used a little more than half for the large arrangement, and created that one first to make sure it was lush enough. you may have to break off a few unruley pieces to keep it generally uniform, but it should be pretty easy.

Step 2- Cut to the appropriate height.
Do not cut the stems until you have assembled the bouquet. I think I may use a clear hairtie to bind the bouquet together. Then, using the height of the jar as your guide, measure how much of the stem you need to cut off to make the arrangement sit correctly. Running the stems under water while you cut I hear helps keep them fresh.

Step 3- Save or Assemble.
Create the smaller bouquet in the same manner. You could save these in buckets of cold water until a little closer to the event,  if doing them the night before. Or you can fill the jars with cool water and add the bouquets right there and then.

Step 4- Ribbon
I just wrapped cream ribbon around the mouth of the jars and tied them in clean knots. I plan on sealing the edge of the ribbon with a candle to prevent fraying. (This only works for Polyester mix fabrics and ribbon).

Step 5- Table numbers
I simply printed these off in Grey ink on regular printer paper and inserted them in the frame. The frame is two sided so it would be very handy if you wanted to put the number on the front and perhaps a menu, or a little welcome note on the back.

Step 6- Arrange on the table any way you like! I plan on having printed pictures and instruction sheets to hand out since D will most likely be setting up these the morning of the wedding with some elves.

At the end of the day, these priced less (for 2 arrangements with candles and a framed table number) than a small arrangement by most dublin florists! I think en masse they will be lovely.

Friday! Woot!

Frida Kahlo. In honor of our Cafe Frida trip. Amazing food, amazing woman.
Ah, another Friday is finally here! Thank God! It is actually one of the first weekend in a long time that the boy and I will both be off work together and there is lots to catch up on since we NEVER see each other. At least we live together or we really wouldn't see each other. Right now we are just getting by on good mornings and goodnights, but hopefully that will continue to improve. Tonight I am going out for dinner and drinks at Cafe Friday with some friends. Tasty! and then out more drinks to celebrate a friends birthday. Fingers crossed, Mr. Man will get off work at a reasonable hour tonight so he can join the festivities too. Saturday/Sunday are big ones. With our big wedding coming up in 12 weeks (AHHHH!) there is a ton to be done. (For those who don't know us, we had a little wedding last summer due to some immigration hurdles and are now planning our big religious wedding in Ireland). So on tap are the following....
Finish afters invitations and mail to Ireland.
Finish favors (Very excited that I just got my Divine Twine last week for these!),
Trial runs for the bride and bridesmaid bouquets so I can plan what flowers to order. Yes we are doing our flowers. In Ireland. The day before. No I am not psycho. I have a plan. And elves.
Touch base with our vendors and lovely attendants, order BM/GM gifts.
Start planning our drink tickets and seating cards.
Hang our new pictures from Ikea (not wedding related, but we need to change it up).
and finally craigslist the airconditioners that have been in our living room since last summer and need to go before the bridal shower in 2 weeks. (Anyone looking for a cheap almost new AC?!)

Ugh, I'm tired already. Any fun plans for you, blogosphere?

Friday, March 18, 2011

Green Goodness: Lunch Time!

From their facebook profile

Green Goodness is still here! I figured it's Patty's day week for another 2 days and almost the beginning of spring (which is another event that makes our brains scream GREEN! or at least mine anyway. Especially living in a frozen urban wasteland) so we might as well wrap this up. Besides, I've been dying to post on my new favorite lunch spot since I found it a week ago. Taim Mobile Food Van. Yes it's a van, or a truck or what have you, and it makes some of the best sandwiches I've ever had! (Check out the full restaurant here). The top of the roof is a lovely shade of lime green, but that's not why I picked it. I picked it because of their Falafal sandwich. Green Falafal at that! You're Welcome. No really, those of you who do not already know about this van should be thanking me. See, every day the line to get one of these sandwiches (or platters, or smoothies) gets longer and longer!  Like epically long. Soooooo long. It was pretty bad today. I waited 30 mins. Food vans or carts are supposed to be quick y'all. I was not annoyed tho, because it is worth the wait and it's always a good thing when you see fair priced, well produced and freshly made food being supported. In fact I'm hoping that this gets a bit out of control and they have the means and demand to open a location in Midtown West or 2 trucks! Or a truck on every corner! That would be nice! Their Green Falafal Sandwich is super fresh. Each one has about 4-5 falafal balls, hummus, Tahini, Israeli Salad and Pickled Cabbage (ask for the spicy sauce on the side too!) and at $5.75 is a little more expensive than traditional carts but a steal considering the quality of ingredients you are getting. So find out where they are headed next. Follow them on twitter, get their early and make sure you don't tell the impatient, hungry devotees in line that I sent you ;)
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