Wednesday, March 31, 2010


(Photos from the Life archive)
Good bye, New York.

Hello, jet plane!

I'm off to Amelia Island. Wishing you a very happy Easter weekend with lots of jelly beans and chocolate bunnies.  See you next week!

Monday, March 29, 2010

Best place in the house

Since I was about eleven years old, I've always thought that showers were the best place in the house for a bad guy to hide.

Peter was in New Orleans for his bachelor party this weekend, so I spent the last three days bravely pulling pulling back the shower curtain every time I went into the bathroom.  (What in the world would I do if I saw a bad guy standing in my shower?)

Also, every time I turned on the TV, no matter what channel was on, it seemed like reruns of Law and Order were playing.  Only the worst show ever for a girl to watch while alone in her NYC apartment!

All this to say, Peter, I miss you very much.  I wish it was Wednesday and we were in Florida together.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Blogs I love

The very sweet Une Femme Curieuse included me on her fun list of blogs she loves earlier this week.  I thought I'd share a little list of blogs that I love, too.  Thank you, friends (both real and internet-based!), for writing in these places. I love keeping up with you this way in the funky, digital age we are in.

  1. Cooking with Cheddar
  2. Flip Flops and Boat Shoes
  3. Meet Me in Philadelphia
  4. My DC Studio Life
  5. Une Femme Curieuse (of course!)
  6. Wiley Wifey
And a couple blogs I am more recently obsessed with: 
  1. Apples and Butter
  2. Finslippy
  3. Mabel's House
  4. Slice of Pink
  5. The City Sage
Happy reading.  And a very happy Friday to you all!  

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Rambling post: Olives are awesome

(Photos from my awesome friend over at Cooking with Cheddar.)

I was going to write a little something about my new go-to flavor combo, which is artichokes and olives, but then I started thinking about all the people in the world who think they don't like olives.  I know and understand this misguided thought because for years, I was one of you.   

But then, oh then!  I saw the light.  

Here is the secret: if you can make it through seven olives, by the eighth, you will be in love.  You will crave them, and curse the days (years!) of your life you have wasted not eating them.

I'll be honest, though -- olive one-five in your experiment will be a bit rough.  But by olive six, you will start to think, "This isn't actually that bad."  It goes up from there.

You can take your time working up to your eighth olive.  Don't rush if you're scared!  Just go slow and steady, keeping your eyes on the [delicious olive] prize.

Monday, March 22, 2010


My first-born patchwork pillow!

My mom helped me finish it up this weekend with her sewing machine.

I kind of take back what I said before about wanting a machine.  It was so hard!  And that ruffle -- I was ready to pull it out.  It was seriously misbehaving.  

But now it's done and I love it so much.  I kept stroking it on the night it got finished.  And I told Peter he can't rest his head on it for too long since he has a giant head and I was afraid he would make it lumpy.

I guess I'm still in my fragile new mother state.  Sorry, Peter!  I'm sure I'll be over it in six months or so. 

Friday, March 19, 2010

Easter tree eggs

I haven't decorated Easter eggs in years.  This might sound sad to you, but growing up, we probably only did it two or three times.

This is because when we dyed our eggs, we'd poke holes in the top and bottom with a needle and blow out all the insides, leaving a light, white shell behind.

Eggs like this will last for years, as long as you don't break them.  It is a bit more work though.  

It always made me sad when my friends would spend all this time decorating their hard-boiled eggs, and then have to ruin them for some icky egg salad a few days later.  

Peter didn't really like doing it, but he was a good sport.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Grace in Small Things

Random photo from Brazil.  Just because.

I've been feeling a bit grouchy and generally blah.  A perfect time for Grace in Small Things. Because really, there is so much to be grateful for.

1. Dying eggs last night with Peter -- I'll show you the results later this week!
2. Wearing my spring jacket for the first time since October.
3. Dharma Yoga Brooklyn opening right down the street from my house.
4. Planning NYC visits with friends.
5. Finally learning my correct bra size.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Escort cards


There are lots of things about wedding planning that didn't really make sense to me until I started to do it.  How are you supposed to word the response cards?  Where are the affordable, quality musicians?  How long do ceremonies actually take?


Among the most confounding to me was escort cards.  Never mind the sleazy sounding name.  I just couldn't wrap my mind around how they worked. I've never been to a wedding that used them, and part of me wishes we could skip them all together. But dinner will be spaced out in three separate rooms at the house, and it seems too tricky to have people wandering around to seat themselves in those tight quarters.


Now I get it, sort of.  I'm going to make a card for every guest, with their name and table number/name included.  Placed in alphabetical order, these should be easy to find, right?!


Anyone have any fun suggestions, or advice about what they've seen work well?

P.S. Happy Monday, ladies.  I think it's going to be a beautiful week!  Daylight savings makes me so excited.

Friday, March 12, 2010


I just got my plane ticket to Amelia Island!  In three weeks, I'll meet Peter down there for a week of golf and beach and yummy dinners at Plae.

I'm so excited.  I'm feeling annoyed with wedding planning and work and blogging and commuting to Grand Central.

Happy weekend, everyone!  I hope it is restful and relaxing.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Lots of bang for your crafting buck

Embroidery is the best craft ever.  

It lets you go from this: 

To this: the time it took Peter to watch an episode of Lost.  (Seriously, when is that show going to be over.  Sorry Lost fans!  But you kind of drive me nuts.)  

Moving on!  Embroidery is lots of bang for your crafting buck.  It isn't time intensive, doesn't require a lot of big, expensive stuff to get going, and it's so easy to do.  

I ordered the garden variety pattern from Sublime Stitching, so I'm going to be embroidering some flowers and pots to this towel, too.  And also everything else I own.  

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Making plans

Everyone, please say hello to Peter's new girlfriend.  

She's about four feet tall and super heavy.  Loves to wear fuzzy hats.  

He took out for a spin on Sunday afternoon, and even let me play with her (modern couple that we are!).    But he had so much fun on Sunday, he's already making plans to see her again on Wednesday and Friday.  Without me.  

I can't believe golf season crept up so fast!  I wonder if we'll be able to ski again.*

*Note: I am not at all complaining about this splendid week, weather gods!  

Monday, March 8, 2010

What's on your nightstand, Ashley?

There are few people I knew in fourth grade that I am still happy to keep in touch with, and Ashley is one of them. She is smart, has a fantastic eye for decor, and is an excellent writer on top of all that.  She just starting blogging about her wonderful life and home in Philadelphia.  I bet you will love her style as much as I do. And with that:
Right now, I have the new book from Gail Collins called When Everything Changed: The Amazing Journey of American Women from 1960 to the Present on my nightstand. I slyly mentioned it before Christmas, and just received it a few weeks ago for Valentine's Day. It presents a fascinating picture of the progress of the last forty years, and is a must-read.
The second book is This is for You, by Rob Ryan. Coincidentally, this was a Valentine's Day gift to my boyfriend a few years back. It reminds me that people in our lives are put there for a special reason, so I like to keep it close. 
Thank you so much, Ashley!

What on your nightstand right now?!  Email at AT!

Friday, March 5, 2010

Hence, perfect

Is your mom's birthday around this time of year?  It really seems like the perfect time for a mom to have her birthday.  Maybe that's because my Mom's birthday was yesterday.  Hence, perfect.

To celebrate this perfect birthday time, Peter and I made a special dinner for her last Saturday night.

A long story that has been much shortened: my parents were supposed to be in Santa Barbara this week, but my Dad got sick, and they had to postpone their trip.

This seemed so very sad to me because I've been to Santa Barbara and I know how wonderful it is, and I know they would have loved it so.

I had this brilliant idea that we could recreate Santa Barbara in the Berkshires by drinking fun wine from that area and planning a menu based on Bouchon's dishes.

Just a little FYI: as awesome as Western Massachusetts in February is not, and never will be, Santa Barbara.  We gave it a shot, though.  It was a lovely meal.


Field greens with pear, almonds and lemon vinaigrette
Risotto with shrimp, shaved fennel, crispy prosciutto, tarragon and baby peas

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Easter tree

Inspired by this image, I picked up a bunch of pussy willow branches last night to make my own Easter tree (of sorts). 

It looked pretty on its own, but I wanted to add a little Easter pizazz.  I made bunny and egg cut-outs and traced them onto the pages of the Spring Lilly Pulitzer catalog.  So many bright colors in that catalog -- it was just begging to be made into Easter ornaments.  

I love how cheerful it looks, even on a grey, windy day like today.  

Up next: egg dying!

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

A tough job

Being the mother of the bride or groom is a tough job. You are a host, but it's not exactly your party. You want to look beautiful, but you can't upstage the main event. Your outfit can't be too dressy or too young or too white.

I'm newly obsessed with the online shop eShakti. Adorable, fun, affordable custom-made clothing, you guys. And they have so many pretty dresses for women of all ages...including mothers of the bride and groom.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Spring is Coming List of Fun

(Martha, obviously)

I just made a long list called, "Really Annoying Things that You Must Do Anyway."  It includes things like getting my paperwork ready to send off to my tax person and making a dentist appointment.

To counteract that icky list, I made one right after of all kinds of fun things I want to do.  You know, for balance.

Spring is Coming List of Fun: 
What's on your Spring is Coming List of Fun?!

Monday, March 1, 2010

What's on your nightstand, Katie?

My wonderful friend Katie is next up in our series. She has excellent taste in books and is always saying, very seriously, "Oh, Julie, you will love this."  And then she's right!  

She writes titles in all capital letters because she is a publishing goddess/insider.   
I'm reading the beautifully written A MOUNTAIN OF CRUMBS by Elena Gorokhova.  It is the Russian version of ANGELA'S ASHES. dear Frank McCourt, I miss you.
AND also, I have the Fodor's Travel Guide to Peru on my nightstand!!! 
Thank you so much, Katie!  I always love to hear about what you're reading.  

I know you are just itching to tell me what's on your nightstand right me at AT!
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