Saturday, February 25, 2017

Entertainment Weekly 2.25.17

With traveling to this weekend to visit Alexa and Jack, I had to make sure I have plenty to occupy myself during the flights and layovers! You'd think there would be a direct flight from Boston to Pittsburgh but apparently not...

Reading: I'm still making my way through the Beka Cooper trilogy. I'm on the third one, though, so I'm sure by the time I return to Boston I'll be on to something else! These books tell the story of a young woman defying expectations based on gender and class to become a Dog, the early equivalent of law enforcement. The secondary (and beyond) characters are just as well-written, and there's just enough magic to be exciting without overpowering it.

Listening: I don't think I'll be making it to the concert myself, but in case any of y'all are looking for something fun in Boston Monday night: Colony House. They're a newer indie rock quartet with beautiful music and thoughtful lyrics-and some very danceable songs. They just released their second full length album and it is awesome.

Watching: Well, Dad and I tried to see Moonlight or I Am Not Your Negro last weekend-in honor of #notmypresidentsday-but there was not a single theater showing it within 45 minutes of Providence! We were pretty appalled by this, especially with the number of mainstream and alternative theaters nearby. I'm very curious about the demographics of the areas showing them vs. not. I still certainly mean to see both...perhaps before I return to Providence one night after work. We are really enjoying all of our family sitcoms: Fresh off the Boat, Black-ish, and Modern Family. 

As always , please pass on your recommendations as well!


Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Time to party with J.Crew

Every so often I feel like I should just tell J.Crew to go ahead and take all my money...and their latest new releases definitely have me feeling that way! Their new ready-to-party collection is beyond fabulous and I want it to find excuses for it...

a one-shoulder ruffle dress done right...

this lovely off-the-shoulder dress feels so perfectly French

and OMG the tulle ball skirt...I loved the teal even more but all colors but pink have disappeared!

of course, no look is complete without some fun shoes (that I can still dance in!)

and some fabulous earrings!

are you eyeing any new arrivals? 


Monday, February 20, 2017


Let me offer some advice to everyone single AF who has recently moved: don't start dating someone almost right away. It can be wonderful and romantic and exciting to be discovering a new city with this person, forming all of these memories with him. And if it works out, that's perfect. You'll always associate places and first experiences with them. So if it doesn't-it will be so very painful. You don't have other memories to revert to when you don't want to think about your first coffee date.

As someone who has always made it a point to not allow her romantic life to take precedent over family or friends, the loneliness is also something new. In past relationships, while I spent a lot of time with my partner, I always made sure to spend just as much with my friends. However, I found I put significantly less effort into making new friends outside of work here because I could rely on the couple I already had, my dad, and the new boyfriend. These friends have been wonderful since it ended, but it's definitely not the same as having multiple groups so I always had someone to go to brunch, ice skating, the movies, or just hang out with at home. And my dad is doing his best, but the poor man hasn't had to deal with my dating life since high school. Oh, how things have changed...ha.

There are days when everything reminds me of him. The other day I was flipping through channels and stopped on a chick flick (figuring I've gotten to the point where romance doesn't immediately make me sad/angry, ha!). However, it turns out the romantic leads in the movie shared our names. Are you kidding?! A couple hours later I was listening to a podcast and one of the guests on it spoke at length about his all-time favorite movie-which I had never seen until we watched it recently. With the music, I know I'm bringing it on myself by continuing to listen to that which was meaningful to us. In the past I've stopped listening to certain artists or albums but I'm really trying not to this time. With my first boyfriend, it was Coldplay...later on the Lumineers. You can 100% figure out the timing of my relationships as they relate to what music was popular!

Because we spent so much time together, shared so many interests, and talked all. the. time. there are nearly constant reminders. I try to just frame it as immersion therapy (social worker alert!) and know that it will become less painful over time. I just can't wait for that day to come.

Any tips in the meantime? I'm all ears!


Saturday, February 18, 2017

Entertainment Weekly 2.18.17

Last week's five-day weekend definitely threw me for a loop-while I loved the extra time off to be lazy and also catch up on things, I certainly got off my usual schedule. I also grew in gratitude for Overdrive's digital lending library-when I can't get out to get new books, and have a lot of time on m hands, I love that I don't have to purchase everything.

Reading: Tamora Pierce. I loved her books as a pre-teen/teen, and have so enjoyed rereading them! A lot of young adult fiction is so well-written and with such excellent and exciting ideas. I will never be embarrassed at my love for it :) Tamora Pierce in particular writes fantastic and empowering characters for all ages-the Winding Circle series is geared a little younger, while the Beka Cooper trilogy is definitely for older young adults.

Listening: Gotta give another shout out to Us the Duo. Michelle and I went to their concert on Wednesday and it was AMAZING. They are the cutest couple and so talented! They essentially set up a living room onstage and clearly had so much fun performing. Another couple got engaged during one of the songs and it was just too adorable-Carissa started crying onstage when she saw it. I couldn't actually see the couple, but it was so sweet. I also couldn't resist getting a t-shirt with lyrics from the song "Goodbye Forever"...I'm curious to see how people will react to a shirt that says "you're cool but I am cooler"!

Watching: Crazy Ex-Girlfriend season 2 is on Netflix! It is so fun and cute-and weirdly relatable in some ways. If you like rom-coms, clever/sarcastic comedy, plays on rom-com tropes, and music, you have got to watch it. Great for binge-watching over the long weekend!


Friday, February 17, 2017

Magazine Meals: Potatoes and Greens

I love trying out new recipes, and thankfully Dad is always game. I'm getting spoiled here-it's going to be hard to stay motivated when I move out and am only cooking for myself! In the meantime, I'm enjoying making my way through many of the recipes I've saved from Real Simple, Bon Appetite, cookbooks, and other resources.

Dad always loves a hearty meal, and in the winter I definitely want to hibernate with comfort food. In this vein, I opted for Southern Living's recipe for twice-baked green potatoes. My goodness they were delicious-and reheated impressively well. When done in the oven, the skins stayed crispy-key to enjoying a baked potato! Adding greens (I went for kale, my go-to) made it feel very slightly healthier and added some needed texture and flavor.

We (ok, I) felt it needed an accompaniment of something light, crunchy, and (more) green. Bon Appetit's broccoli and brussels sprouts slaw fit the bill perfectly. I left out the anchovy, of course (vegetarian here!), and actually the olives as well-I am not a fan of the green ones, though put a dish of kalamata olives in front of me and they will be gone in a flash.

I must admit, however, by the time I finished off all the leftovers I was ready for something new-anyone who wants to come for dinner sometime just let me know! I love having guinea pigs-I mean guests :)


Monday, February 13, 2017

Happy Galentine's Day!

Happy Galentine's Day to all my favorite ladies! 

I am so grateful to have all of you in my life, near and far. 


Together from the start.

Camp friends can't be beat.
You know it's a true friendship when you can pick up where you left off-5 years later.

Ohhh I miss summer and sunshine-and these lovely ladies.

Work is about a million times better when you have an amazing team.

So grateful to have have Michelle in Boston-can't wait to continue our East Coast adventures!

And my #1 poetic, noble land-mermaid: my mom. 

Wishing you all a day filled with love and friendship!


Sunday, February 12, 2017

Snow Daze

These snow days-resulting in a 4 day weekend-couldn't have come at a better time. I've noticed myself feeling more tired and frustrated (it's concentrated at work, but spilling over everywhere honestly), so was just saying on Tuesday that I really needed to take a day off. I'm not 100% sure of what is causing this, though I've got some ideas of contributing factors. I can't change all of them-I have to keep reminding myself that I can't make people see things my way, and sometimes trying to will just make things worse-but there are some that I'm working on.

The commute is taking its toll, so I'm apartment hunting. I've been missing my friends-it's hard to make new ones when you work till 8pm and commute almost 2 hours each way-so I'm trying to book a trip each month to visit them in their various cities, and encouraging them to come out this way as well. I'm definitely holding stress in my body, so I'm sticking to my Bar Method routine as much as possible and adding in yoga and running where I can. I'm celebrating as many things as I possibly can. I find solace and relief in cooking and baking, so I'm trying out new recipes on myself, my dad, and my coworkers. I might also be doing a little too much shopping...but if that's my worst vice right now I'm not going to beat myself up over it. At least I'm definitely getting some good deals!

when even your sticky socks are trying to pep you up...not pictured: the pom-poms on the back!

Wow, that got more serious than I'd been intending. But you know what? I'm going to leave it. I personally love to read blogs that are real, and not just all sweetness and light...though I think it's time for some of that!

The first snow day I did not leave the house other than to walk Binker-she was loving the snow! I had stocked up on Girl Scout cookies on the way home from work Wednesday in preparation, and may have opened up both boxes...and only changed from pajamas to other pajamas. I got a lot of little tasks done, but definitely still count it as a perfect lazy day.

The second snow day resulted in a trip to PVDonuts...despite our kind neighbor snow-blowing the sidewalk and much of the drive, doing the rest + walking Binker in the snow = feeling like I earned it! This was the first time I was able to walk right in and was able to order after waiting for just one person-though since I'm only one person and these are best when they're fresh, I only got two flavors: churro Nutella and Providence cream (their take on the Boston cream, made with coffee milk cream filling). Holy moly are they delicious. Every month I think I have a new favorite!

Triss and Binker are also pretty happy about our long ladies' weekend...lots of snuggles and play time!

Hope everyone has had a relaxing and rejuvenating weekend!


Saturday, February 11, 2017

Entertainment Weekly 2.11.17

With these couple of snow days, I've had some extra time to catch up on my stories...dare I say I've had too much Netflix?

Reading: Maybe I'm a weirdo, but I love. love. love. cookbooks. My brother got me an autographed copy of the Flour cookbook (along with a gift card to the bakery itself) for Christmas and with my new task of celebrating my coworkers' birthdays, along with needing to do some Valentine's Day baking, I've been planning out some treats to come...

Listening: Joshua Radin recently released his latest album, The Fall and, no surprise, I love it. I've been following him ever since I was in high school, when my mom had to convince me to go with her to his concert at the Ark (on a school night!). I've been to embarrassing number of his concerts in Ann Arbor, Detroit, New York, Boston, and even Berlin when I studied abroad there. But I keep going because not only is his music fantastic but so is his stage presence and performance. Do yourself a favor and check him out. 

Watching: Dad and I saw Hidden Figures and it. was. amazing. I had been meaning to go for a while, and finally got around to it. Dad had heard of it, but was not prepared for the emotional roller coaster! It really was executed so well on every level. The tragedy, of course, being not only the lack of recognition received by these women during their work, but also the continued relevance of so much of the racial tension and commentary.

Any recommendations for next week's entertainment?


Friday, February 10, 2017

Eat Local: Eli's Kitchen

Last week, my dad and I made the trip to Eli's Kitchen in Warren, RI. It's only about 25 minutes away, but in Rhode Island that may as well be an hour to most people. I'm trying not to get caught in that way of thinking, and maintain my Midwest belief that it's an easy drive, but I'm getting a little lazy! I've been wanting to go to Eli's for months now and just not made it a priority...and am now kicking myself! It was amazing, from the service to the drinks to the food. It was completely satisfying for both of us, having creative and classic dishes that appeal to vegetarians and meat-eaters alike. I only managed photos of my food, but rest assured, Dad devoured the clam chowder and shepherd's pie. The servers were all fantastic, and it was very fun to get to watch Eli and the other cooks prepare everything. They even tolerated-with good humor-my dad's attempt to convince everyone to join his martial arts school, the Way of the Dragon.

I had the cajun sweet potato melt, and while I had the option for dressed greens (and very much enjoyed the bite I stole from Dad), I decided to go full sweet potato by having the fries with curry salt and mango ketchup. Definitely the right choice. Accompanied by a Moscow Mule (made with a local ginger beer by Yacht Club), it was the perfect meal.

We don't often get dessert, as both of us would rather have cheese than sugar, but we couldn't resist one of the specials: a dark chocolate bread pudding with whiskey sauce. Eli was kind enough to recommend serving the sauce on the side, as I'm still (years later, ha) recovering from college whiskey-related traumas. However, I did add a very small amount to what I had and it was delicious! Of course, Dad was very happy to have the rest of it on his.

I definitely plan to go back soon...most likely for brunch, but I've got to have dinner there again too! If anyone is interested in joining me, and therefore giving me an excuse to go...just let me know :) I wish I could go for the Fat Tuesday dinner, but alas, I'll be working until my usual time of 8pm-in Boston. I'll just have to make it up with some paczki...


Wednesday, February 8, 2017

On Wednesdays We Wear Pink: Galentine's Day Gifts

My February is going a little differently than planned, but that's not going to stop me from enjoying all things pink, red, and heart-covered! My mom and I always celebrate Valentine's Day by sending little gifts, and for the last couple years my old roommate Hannah and I threw a Galentine's Day party, obviously inspired by Parks and Recreation, complete with waffles and mimosas. This year I'll just be working both days, but I do plan to take in some tasty baked goods to celebrate. More on that to come (once I've actually decided what to make...).

I always love pink, but February gives me a special excuse to enjoy the girliest of things. I always have a wishlist going of course, but this is a chance highlight some of the sweeter things on it.

Galentine's Day 2017

I may have to celebrate Galentine's Day by treating myself...whoops!

How will you be celebrating?


Hei Hei zip front jacket

Marysia Swim swim bikini bottom

New balance footwear

J Crew pink leather bag
$170 -

Kate spade clutch

Kate Spade watch

Anthropologie pink cap

Monday, February 6, 2017

Super Bowl LI

Now, I don't claim to be a rabid football any stretch of the imagination. I care about Michigan football (a lot) but that is due almost 100% to growing up in Ann Arbor and working at Michigania. However, you can't live or work in the Boston area and not get caught up in the excitement.  Or at least the excuse to eat delicious cheese-based treats (pretty much anything not meat is cheese) and drink beer. This year I'm breaking out of my usual assignment to bring dessert in order to make a savory thing I can actually eat. I had to still work baking in there so I'm making Half-Baked Harvest's Buffalo Cheddar Pretzel Twists with Everything Spice. O.M.G. How in the world could I pass up the cheesy goodness once I came across it? The answer is: there is no way.

Y'all need to make these immediately. I was rather intimidated, as I had never made pretzels before and it does require the whole boiling in baking soda water thing. But hey, guess what? It's not actually hard! The trickiest thing was not overdoing it on the buffalo sauce, but even the ones that looked messy going in were pretty good at the end-and they all definitely tasted delicious.

I had slightly mixed feelings about the Patriots' win-Boston friends, please don't hate me! I was rooting for them, but I couldn't quite separate Tom Brady's politics from his performance, just as I can't with musicians or artists. Even giving him the benefit of the doubt, wearing a "Make America Great Again" cap is at best thoughtless, and I have higher expectations.

I am still glad they won, if only for how much better work will be today for it. It's funny how reminiscent South Boston is of Ann Arbor when it comes to the feeling of the city depending on the success of the athletics. Thank goodness the Celtics won both games this weekend too! I actually got to go to the first half of the game on Friday with some of the kids I work with and two other staff. I had the most sports-filled weekend I've had in many years-a big change for this arts-focused girl!

baby's first NBA game


P.S. There's always more to do. Take care of yourself, but keep fighting!