Friday, October 17, 2014

I'm Alive!

I have been an inexcusably bad blogger! I promise I'm alive, but I've been BUSY busy. I can't wait to tell you all about it when things calm down a bit, but in the meantime, here's some of what I've been up to:

I chopped off 8 inches of my hair and Sean & I celebrated our 4th anniversary at Supper, a new restaurant in Norfolk! Everything was delicious; I had the Coca-Cola braised pot roast and it was so good.

 I scoped out cool art at the Port Warwick Art & Sculpture Festival and picked up a couple pieces...can't wait to frame them and pop them into my gallery wall.

A bunch of us went to see the Long Island Medium Experience and it was amazing! Even if it was totally B.S., it was very moving to see how she was able to bring some closure and peace to people. We cried the WHOLE time.

And this week, I experimented with a slow cooker pork ragu with casarecce....still need to master the ratio of pork to sauce, but it was very good. Once I feel better about the recipe, I'll share it here!

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Sunday Best v.222

"The Killing Jar" by Michael Mendez

Fall is BUSY. It was already looking pretty busy, but now it's starting to look crazy busy. Last night, some girlfriends and I went to see the Long Island Medium "Experience" in a big arena. I've barely watched the show, and I'm not someone who finds it easy to believe in spirits contacting from the other side, but let me tell you it's QUITE a show. Whether it's all real or she's just a great reader of body language doesn't really matter; it was very moving and it was obvious she provided comfort to people who needed it. Interesting, for sure. 

Speaking of interesting, here are some links I found entertaining this week:

Thursday, October 9, 2014

4 Years

10 years ago, I met my best friend...

 And four years ago, we sealed the deal and became husband and wife, with fantasies of the life we would make together.

And this year, our fourth year of marriage, we've started tackling some of those fantasies. We bought a car and now, we are house hunting! It only makes me more excited for year 5, to see what it will bring. 

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Ballerina Bride

It's the week of my fourth wedding anniversary and as per tradition, I like to get my wedding jollies out by posting fantasy wedding theme ideas during my wedding week nostalgia! Forgive my light posting as of late...the house hunt is heating up! 

As the daughter of a ballet teacher, I couldn't help but soak in some ballet history despite my inability to soak in some flexibility. One of my favorite ballets as a child was "Giselle," and I was always enraptured by the costumes, which feature a longer "romantic"-length tutu. I mean, don't these ladies look like the most ethereal ballet corps you've ever seen?

I love the idea of bringing some of that elegance and poise to a wedding. Perhaps an evening affair in a beautiful old hotel, or even the lobby of a gorgeous old theater. 

Ballerina Bride

In my bridal fantasy, I would look every bit the part in dusty ballet rose, with a skirt that moves beautifully, an elegant bun and simple accessories. May I suggest:

  • Gown: This cream pouf of a dress by Justin Alexander, sure to leave everyone swooning after seeing it in action on the dance floor.
  • Earrings: Rose gold crystal studs, $48 at Henri Bendel. The perfect accessories for a long neck!
  • Headband: An elegant bow harkens back to the ribbons found on pointe shoes. $23 at Asos.
  • Cheeks: Skip the pirouettes and get a rosy flush from this Maybelline Master Glaze cheek stick, $7 at drugstores.
  • Eyes: Brighten those eyes and highlight that elegant bone structure with Bobbi Brown Shimmer Brick in Apricot, $48 at Neiman Marcus.
  • Shoes: Bring the look together with strappy rose gold sandals; trade them for ballet flats as the night wears on!

ballet bridesmaids

I would put my own corps of bridesmaids in shades of ballet pink, sweet and pretty...perfect for a spring affair.

  • Dresses by Modcloth and J. Crew.
  • Gift matching Anne Taylor studs that go with everything.
  • An elegant bow carries the theme through the wedding.
  • Make sure they have the perfect pink pouts with this hot-selling (seriously, it's sold out at the moment) Charlotte Tilbury lipstick in Coachella Coral.

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Sunday Best v.221

Perfect picture of Debbie Harry by bandmate Chris Stein

Whew! I had a BUSY weekend. Now I'm looking forward to just sitting and devouring Gone Girl so I can see the movie! Here are some great links for your clickety clicking pleasure:

Friday, October 3, 2014

Jams of the Week: Fall Makeup Edition

Do you change up your makeup for the seasons? I always do, and I'm almost boring about it. If summer is all bronzes and pinks, fall is berries, cherries and smoke. Here are a few make-up jams I've been rocking now that it's officially October:

I love this inexpensive palette mix of gold-flecked neutrals, bright pinks and smoky browns. I've been doing a smokey daytime eye for the past few days, using the middle brown color as an eyeliner. It's a fun switch from my summer routine of peaches and bronzes.

Lip Gloss Jam: Burt's Bees in Ruby Moon

This Burt's Bees lip gloss is a great deep shade of ruby, with more of a berry tone than red. The gloss is surprisingly thick and opaque, which is a little dramatic for daytime but in a fun way! Wearing the gloss with the smoky eye makes me feel like a silent film star.

Nude Lipstick Jam: Jennifer's Nude (bwahahaha)

I used to LOVE a nude lipstick in the late 90s and early-aughts. But in the past few years, it's been all about a bright lip and I definitely pushed nude lipsticks out of my consciousness. I'm feeling it's due for a comeback, though, especially when paired with a smoky eye. Loreal came out with a line of nudes for every skin tone, matching their various celebrity spokeswomen. I picked up the lipstick made for J.Lo (we're both bringing that Puerto Rican spice) and it's just about a perfect fit.

Fall Nail Jam: Essie Cashmere Bathrobe

I picked this color up last year and I find myself gazing at it in different types of lighting because it's such a fascinating shade. In some light, it looks like gunmetal; in others, it looks like a deep navy sky. It's very sophisticated, in my opinion.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Wine Club: Mimosa Edition

After all these years of Wine Club, enjoying themed nights from New Zealand to Argentina, we realized we'd missed a truly crucial theme: breakfast for dinner with mimosas! Ashleigh killed it with her breakfast for dinner spread, which included: hash brown casserole topped with corn flakes, two types of quiche and all the fixins' for delicious yogurt parfaits.

And most crucial: candied bacon. I mean, really, how can we even eat it any other way?

Our mimosa combos included: Peach Mango...

Cranberry juice (a "Poinsetta" perfect for holiday brunches)...

And champagne spiked with a berry liquor similar to Chambord and real, live berries!

I love mimosas in any shape and form, but my personal fave was the Peach Mango. Any flavor combos you recommend that we missed?

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Sunday Best v.220

Adorable Cary Grant and the cutest little friend you ever did see.

It's officially fall! I've made stew, I've had pumpkin ale, I've painted my nails gray and I've worn a scarf. It's happening. Are you loving it? If you, like me, are a football widow, here's a list of links to keep you busy!

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Back to Ocracoke

 Our first trip to Ocracoke last year was so magical that I pledged to visit every year for the rest of my life if I could. This past weekend, we made our first return, with our lovely friends Holly and Arthur in tow! We sold them an amazing vision in our pitch: riding bikes all over the island, hiking dunes, hitting the beach in the morning and sunset cruises in the evening.

And then we got to the island, and it rained for the entire first day. Oops.

 The good news is that a heavy downpour doesn't damper the island's spirit one bit. The first good thing was that our hotel suite was upgraded to a cottage rental at no additional cost. WIN!

Although we were super bummed to not be able to ride our bikes everywhere (we learned the hard way that riding without fenders makes your backside look like you've been mud wrestling), we had so much fun meeting the insanely friendly locals and fellow tourists.

On Friday, we rode our bikes in the rain, showered and went out to Zillie's Island Pantry, the ultimate wine/beer/gourmet goods store where everybody knows your name. You can purchase a glass of wine to sip while you shop, grab a beer on tap or even get a beer from the fridge and pop the cap. From there, the "small world" weekend began...the man who poured my wine lived in the same tiny community as me as a principal for my high school years!

 From Zillie's, we went to Ocracoke Pizza Co. to pick up a pepperoni pizza and go back home to settle in for a rainy, rainy night.

 Luckily, Sunday was gorgeous. We enjoyed coffee and tea in our sunroom, then ventured out for lunch and shopping (still sadly sans our bikes).

 We headed to The Flying Melon, where I couldn't help but get the same delicious honey lime chicken sandwich I had last year. Then Arthur, Holly and I browsed in some shops before heading back to Zillie's to do some day-drinking and visiting. It was the most FUN afternoon. By the time we left, we felt like we'd made new best friends...

 Like with this lady, who insisted Holly try on every hat for sale and gushed at how cute she looked. Adorable.

 Happy beer drinking crew!

 After Zillie's, we sloshed through our wet backyard to take at least a couple minutes to stand on our tiny strand of beach. How cute is our house?

 Everyone at Zillie's told us our next stop had to be happy hour at Smacnally's, where we could sip cocktails while watching the spectacular sunset. The boys enjoyed 2-Hearted beers and Holly and I enjoyed matching pineapple-peach mimosas.

 Everyone at Zillie's was right. That was a good plan.

 From Smacnally's we marched down the road to have dinner at Dajio, an incredibly inventive restaurant with an ever-changing seasonal menu. Holly and I both ordered the Lime Chile Pesto linguine with chicken and it was like a delicious fusion of Thai and Italian. So good.

Not Pictured: The hours we spent sitting on the upstairs balcony literally watching shooting stars. Before Sunday night, I had seen one in my life. I've now seen about eight! It was incredible to see the stars so clearly, listening to the ocean and just talking about life.

 Monday morning, it was back to reality. We had to return our bikes (riding through the still-flooded streets, unfortunately) and hit the road.

 But not without a detour to visit the Ocracoke Lighthouse (and its guard cat, obviously)...

 And definitely not without enjoying a delicious breakfast at Ocracoke Coffee. I thoroughly enjoyed my Asiago bagel with — wait for it — bacon, onion and jalapeno cream cheese. Oh man, I'll be dreaming about that for a long time.

 Please ignore my billowing T-shirt and just acknowledge the sad/joyful experience of taking a free ferry ride away from your amazing weekend escape. Bye bye magical island life; hello mainland drudgery!

The nicest thing about driving back from Ocracoke is that you're still in the Outer Banks for most of the trip, so it makes it a little easier to drag your vacation out. We had a delicious lunch at the Nags Head standby, Tortuga's Lie (that's a jerk chicken salad with pineapple wrap and "island fries").

And the final treat to help us rip off the Band Aid and return to real life: a half-dozen Duck Donuts, hot and fresh with delicious glaze. I have yet to have a donut with a better consistency, with a subtle crunch from the fried exterior giving way to soft, pillowy cake inside. Cue the angels singing.

We're already fantasizing about a longer trip in 2015, hopefully with better weather and smarter packing skills! (I seriously packed two white sweaters...for a rainy weekend.)

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Sunday Best v.219

Geraniums by Henri Matisse

Y'all. Fall is coming fast and furious! I'm excited and yet still sort of sad, which is crazy considering fall is favorite season. I'm just not quite ready to give up sandals! But I can definitely get behind scarves.