Tuesday, September 30, 2014

New (and possibly red) kicks

I'm overdue for a new pair of sneakers—for walking, not running—and I've been eyeing a red pair for fall. Normally, my walking shoes are neutrals, like gray or black, but there's something about red shoes...
I love how they look polished and sporty at the same time. I'd wear them with jeans, or even better...
...I love how they look so sleek and sophisticated when you pair them with a skirt or dress.
So, tell me what you think, and more importantly, what color are your kicks? I'm leaning toward a pair of Chuck Taylors like these. Opinions, please!

(Image 1, 2, 3, 4)

Monday, September 29, 2014

A reason to go to France

Not that I ever need one, but it seems like it would be worth a plane flight to see this "Sleepy Chick" (Poussin Endormi) in Nantes, right? It's so cute—especially the big belly and beakYou can find this larger-than-life topiary tucked away in Le Jardin des Plantes, one of the oldest and largest botanical gardens in France. The bird was designed by children's author and illustrator Claude Ponti

PS: How sweet is the oversized alarm clock that's there to wake him up? Love it!

(Image 1 and 2)

Friday, September 26, 2014

The weekend is here!

Happy weekend, my darling readers! What do you have planned for the next couple of days off? It's a busy weekend for me: Matt's sister and brother-in-law are in town. They've never been to NYC before in the fall, so we can't wait to show them why this is the best time of year ever here. :) Here, to get your weekend started right, a few happy posts from around the web:

Discover your perfect celeb match in another life. (I got Cary Grant!)

Tips for living like a French girl in NYC.

SJP getting coffee.

Love this pretty floral dress.

Blueberry hand pies. How cute!

Lena Dunham gives great advice. (via Joanna)

The cutest apple picking day trip.

What I'm reading next.

...and speaking of which, have you read this?

Another perk of fall: Dahlia season!

(Image via Twitpic)

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Get out of town

A bit of last minute decision, but I just booked tickets to visit my little sis in California in a few weeks. Yay! I'm going for seven days and I can't wait. She lives an hour from LA in Irvine, but we're looking forward to doing some exploring and checking out some new (and car-accessible!) areas nearby. 
At the very least, we definitely have plans to soak up some sunshine at Newport and Laguna Beaches, both about a 10-15 minute drive from her place. :)

So, now I need your help: What are your favorite things to do in and around LA? 

PS: What we did on my visit last year; and on another visit before that (here and here). 

(Image 1, 2, 3)

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

7 people I follow on Instagram

I'll admit it: I spend a lot of minutes on Instagram (you can follow me here!). But the truth is, I feel so inspired there! There are so many gorgeous pics of travels and art and food and fashion and fun that I can't stop tap, tap, tapping whenever I go on. So, I thought I'd share a list of seven people whose pics and captions I can't get enough of right now. Sound good? Oh—and at the end of this post, I want to hear from you: Who do you love on Instagram? Go!

First up, Haven's Kitchen. Have you been to this culinary school in Chelsea? It also doubles as a café and event space—I love it! The last time I went in, I spent a little bit too much on tea—but they stock the best kind!
January Jones is another favorite of mine. She's funny, quirky, and posts stunning fashion pics. Oh, and dashing pics of Jon Hamm occasionally show up. :)
I'd do almost anything to get a sneak peek at the designs Rifle Paper Co. artist Anna Bond is working on. That's why I adore her Instagram account: She always gives her followers a glimpse of her upcoming designs. Even better, a look at her artful workspace. Talk about a dream job!
For a laugh, I can always count on Jessica Seinfeld, wife of Jerry. Seriously, I live in awe of her talent for humor—definitely a power duo! Another part of what makes her awesome: She's merciless about social media bullies. Funny and classy? Total package.
Oh, Paris. Or I should say: Paris in Four Months. This delightful and colorful feed from French blogger Carin Olsson makes me miss this city day in and day out. Can't you just picture yourself sipping un café under the awning at Les Chimeres as the rain comes down? Le sigh. :)
I'm a huge fan of photographer Max Wanger and am constantly trolling his professional website fantasizing about art I want to buy for my apartment. His Instagram account? A total bonus. Especially when you get a glimpse of vacations, like this trip with his family to Hawaii. Adorable. 
Something sweet for the finish: I love the artistry of Betsy Thorleifson's pretty cakes, especially this ombré design. Stunning, right? Her weekly pics of birthday, wedding, and special occasion confections from her bakery Nine Cakes are works of art. 

Now, you go: Who do you love on Instagram?

(Image 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 and 7)

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Coat shopping

This fall, I've been trying to very carefully think about the wardrobe upgrades I need to make. Sometimes, I can be a bit of an impulse shopper with clothing—which is good and bad. The good part is that it's smart to buy a piece that fits well when you find it. The bad part is that I end up not totally thinking through what I already own and the pieces I need to enhance certain blouses, skirts, pants and dresses. Am I the only one with this issue?

So, this time around, I'm trying to shop smart. I need a new fall coat. And to put the pressure on, over the summer, I tossed the gorgeous, thread-bare one from Ann Taylor that I've owned for almost 10 years. (Trust me, it was a classic!) I've ordered two options to try: The royal blue one above—coincidentally, also from Ann Taylor—and this soft pink one from Lucy Paris.

Early thoughts? Would love to know if there's one you love more!

(Image 1, 2)

Monday, September 22, 2014

Jeff Goldblum + Pink Martini

Last week, I got my fill of arts and culture in New York, first with a chance to see Jeff Goldblum and his band, the Mildred Snitzer Orchestra, at the Carlyle Hotel, and then later in the week, with Pink Martini at the Beacon Theatre on the Upper West Side. 

For Goldblum, this show marked his New York debut (he plays fairly regularly in LA at Rockwell Table & Stage)—and what a performance. The night I was there, he arrived 30 minutes early on stage to joke and banter with the crowd, quizzing his audience on the best Woody Allen films and laughing while teaching the art of heckling. But his talent for piano and singing caused the whole audience to stop their laughter and listen: His voice is dreamy and he has perfect pitch. I fell in love with this tune, called Stella by Starlight.

Two days later, I was at the Beacon, enjoying the world-class sounds of Pink Martini, a group I've followed since being introduced to them at a dinner party in Boston, nearly a decade ago. The host told me Pink Martini albums were his go-to dinner party tunes. I was hooked! Their show in New York was, as always, a treat, made even better by special guests like the Von Trapp grandchildren, who now tour with the band. My favorite song is still Sympathique, a hit from their debut CD back in 1997.

Are you hearing any good music this fall in New York?

(Image 1, 2, and 3)

Friday, September 12, 2014

The weekend is here!

Happy Friday, my darling readers! What do you have planned for the weekend? I'm headed out of town to see family and celebrate my parents 40th wedding anniversary. Four. decades. Amazing, right? :) Here, to get your weekend started right, a few happy posts from around the web:

I don't care if you've already seen it. I'm sharing it again. 

My first massage. Hilarious.

Simple green pasta salad.

Love these fictional (and unforgettable) apartments.

The thought process of getting dressed.

Hair therapy.

Adorable party animals.

SJP's house for sale

Reasons to refrigerate tomatoes.

Jurassic Park sing-along. LOVE.

(Image via From Versailles with Love)

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Books Page: Fall Reads

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What are you reading this fall? I have quite a few books in rotation right now, but the titles above are next on my list:

• I'm a fan of Girls (and totally adore Lena Dunham's tweets), so I'm curious to see what she talks about in her memoir Not That Kind of Girl, due out this month. Here's an excerpt, in case you missed it. 

• Amy Poehler's memoir—called Yes, Please—hits shelves late October. She's such a funny, brilliant lady. I can't wait to read her thoughts and advice on life.

• Last, there's Gone Girl, a title I can start now since it's been out for quite some time! But with the movie due out in a few weeks (here's the trailer), the pressure is on. I definitely want to read the book before watching the Ben Affleck flick.

Now, you go: What books are you excited about right now?

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

A hilarious take on marriage

Are you watching Judy Greer's new show? It's called Married, and it offers a quirky, hilarious (and sometimes touching) portrayal of life after 'I do.' Greer is paired with Nat Faxon, who you might remember from Ben & Kate or The Way, Way Back. I love their chemistry, and the deadpan sense of humor they apply to so many scenarios and moments in their married lives. 

If you haven't seen it, check out the trailer here, and if you have, I'd love to know what you think!

PS: The show that made me love Judy Greer the most.

(Image 1, 2)

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Pretty purses for fall

I'm long overdue for a new fall bag, and I can't decide which one to get! I've carried a pretty dark gray one from Kate Spade for the past year, and I love it, but I think I'm ready for a color change. Here's what I like: 

- This hyper pink number from Kate Spade Saturday. The shoulder strap is detachable. Two looks in one!
- Something that's a bit more neutral: the Amorous Satchel from Rebecca Minkoff in Tortoro (a blush tone). I like the size of this one—it could totally fit my new planner, don't you think?
- I also like this hobo style from Sarah Jessica Parker's Nordstrom collection. It's called the New Yorker, and I love the new fall color palette.

Do you have a go-to style of bag you love? Or a brand you trust and go back to again and again? Would love your input on this!

(Image 1, 2)

Monday, September 8, 2014

Card night

Do you ever play card games? It's funny: I always laugh at how many decks of cards we have in our apartment. At last count, we have eight packs in the junk drawer in our kitchen! How we've managed to accumulate so many is something I'll never understand. ;)

But actually, a pack of playing cards is an awesome thing to have on hand. We used them on the train through Italy, in Maine last weekend to play cribbage, and have pulled them out for game night with friends, too.

So, not that I need another pack, but how cute are the hand-painted cards above? The king and queen look so dapper, right? This would totally become my go-to set. 

Do you play cards? What games do you love to play?

PS: Another portable game I love. 

(Images via One Canoe Two)

Friday, September 5, 2014

The weekend is here!

Happy Friday, my darling readers! How was your week? Mine was short—and busy. Whoa. I'm excited for a couple of days to play catch up and recharge, and—let's be honest—clean my apartment! ;) Wishing you a wonderful weekend ahead. Here, to get it started right, a few happy posts from around the web:

Perfect for start-ups: Book a tricycle.

Pizza as fashion trend. (Plus, skillet pizza. Yum!)

The breakfast sandwich re-do.

Love this five-word challenge.

The coolest tree swing!

A Brooklyn Heights travel guide.

At last! An updo idea for short hair.

Shop like a chef.

California dreaming.

Joan Rivers laugh track.

(Image via I Dream Of...)

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Running at night

With summer winding down, I've been feeling a bit panicked about not taking enough advantage of living close to Brooklyn Bridge Park. So, I've started a pattern of evening runs after work. In a perfect world, I'd be a morning person who gets out at dawn to pound the pavement first thing. But there's something so lovely and peaceful about running at night—especially with the twinkling New York City skyline as your backdrop. I'm telling you, if you cue up the right song (truthfully, I've been working out to this soundtrack a lot) and pair it with this view, it's quite empowering at the end of a long day.

Do you run outside? Is there a view you look forward to along the way? Would love to hear about it!

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

A long weekend in Maine

So, today is my birthday! To celebrate, I had the perfect (early) gift. A weekend in my favorite place in the world: Maine. Matt and I headed up there for Labor Day weekend to hit the beach, go fishing, read and relax. We had great weather and great company—so many of my cousins and their kids ended up making the trek north for the weekend, too. It was so much fun to see everyone and catch up on each other's lives. 

Also, has anyone else played cornhole? This was only my second or third time. My dad built the boards above himself so that everyone in the family could play. On Saturday night, we had a family BBQ—and a high stakes tournament! The great part is the game is fun for all ages. For example, when the kids stepped up to throw, we had them take 10 giant steps forward to make things fair against the adults. :) 

Did you have a nice long weekend? What did you do?

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

September Page: A Toast!

Happy September, my darling readers! Did you have a nice Labor Day weekend? I can't believe how quickly summer came and went. It was filled with so many fun things. For example:

- Delicious salads
- Farmer's Market finds
- Summer blockbusters
- Weekend excursions (like this one and this one)

Now, I can't wait for fall to arrive. I've mentioned before on my blog: It's my favorite month! Maybe that's because my birthday falls within it, but it's also when everything starts to feel a little bit cozier, we get back on track with goals and projects (even if we're not going back to school), and there's a feeling of a fresh start. And let's not forget, the return of fall TV! ;)

What about you? What do you look forward to most in September?

(Image 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5)