christmas card 2015.

Wishing everyone a very Merry Christmas--I'll be back in 2016!


weekend things... pics:

Saturday morning I ventured to the mall. I usually do 95% of my shopping online, but I was completely behind the eight ball this year which resulted in a frantic mall trip. There were certainly deals to be had, but I downed a martini at 11:00 A.M. because the crowds were a bit much. 

My sister hosted a family gathering Saturday night to celebrate her birthday (which is actually today--happy birthday, Mer!) and I can't get enough of my niece--she is an absolute riot and she bonded big time with Hudson, who is the sweetest dog of all time. And all of the food my sister prepared was DELISH.

My dad came over on Sunday and installed new molding and baseboards in the kitchen. I put on some paint, and I think my kitchen is finally done--I'm hoping to host a housewarming party in the new year.



I went for a hike with my dad this weekend, and finally used the panoramic feature on my phone. 

There aren't any ornaments (just my gold pinecone garland), but I've been loving my big, fat tree. 

Someone has been exceptionally lazy most mornings. I have to drag her out of bed.

I know that everyone is saying it, but I can't believe Christmas is a week away. I still have to finish my shopping, but it shouldn't be too terrible--I'm pretty sure I know what I'm getting. And as much as I love not freezing to death, the temperatures in the Northeast are not screaming holidays--it's been in the high 40s/50s and seems more like spring than December.

I'm loving my job more and more, and I've been getting back into workout mode (I'm planning on running a half marathon in March, which should be good motivation) -- things are, in general, pretty great. 

But despite all the good, I always seem to struggle this time of year--a huge part of me loves the holidays and the festivities and all of the things that go along with it, but another part of me has a tough a major way. 

In closing, THIS:

via goop instagram


best chocolate cake.

I've always considered myself to be more of a vanilla person when it comes to cake, but Beatty's Chocolate Cake (via here and Barefoot Contessa At Home) has made me reconsider--the frosting is so, so good (I think it's the coffee that takes it to the next level), and the cake itself is so densely chocolately...I'm definitely adding this to my list of go-tos when it comes to dessert.


weekend things.

It's boxwood overload at my house thanks to to Trader Joe's and their $9.99 wreaths. I've been spritzing them with water daily and I'm hoping they last until Christmas.

I made a chocolate cake for Thanksgiving (along with my annual sweet potato contribution), and I think it's a new favorite.
My parents and I went up to Maine and took lots of walks by this cool house--you can't get more oceanfront than this.

I had a really nice Thanksgiving and long weekend. My parents hosted, and everything was delicious. Friday, my mom and I headed up to Maine to do a little shopping (and I was able to cross a couple of people off my list)--we went out to eat, ran a Turkey Trot in the rain on Saturday, took some pics for my Christmas card and enjoyed some strong Manhattans by the fire. It was super low key and relaxing and a perfect recharge for the upcoming holiday craziness. Happy December!


checking in.

{ via }
Oh, hello. Once again, I didn't mean to take such a blogging hiatus, but life got in the way. August was a bit of a doozy of a month--MET and I broke up and then I was laid off. I was supposed to have a job all lined up, but then that fell through and I was faced with a bit of a "WTF AM I DOING WITH MY LIFE" meltdown, but I'm happy to report things are on an upward swing. I started a new job in October that I absolutely love so far, and I'm seriously happier than I've been in a while.

I've missed my little blog, but I'm thinking that a refresh might be in order.

Stay tuned.


recent beauty faves.

recent beauty faves.

  • I had heard great things about Donna Karan's deodorant, but the price tag always gave me pause--that was until I went to a wedding, danced up a storm and found myself smelling...gross. I went to Sephora and picked it up, and I am never going back to regular drugstore deodorant. Seriously. It's so good that I can still smell it the day after I apply--if you've been hesitating to pull the trigger on this, DO IT.
  • I have no idea where I misplaced my beloved NARS Red Square lip pencil, so I had to buy another--a classic red that's perfect for every season.
  • For a long time I had been using Benefit's brow pencil, but I hated all the resharpening I had to do (so lazy)--I tried Anastasia's Brow Pen and I love it--no sharpening and it lasts all day.
  • Finally I'm really trying to be better about taking care of my skin, so I've been using the Caudalie Detox Mask once or twice a week. It brightens my face in a major way, and I love it. 


weekend things.

Starting the week off during the summer is the worst--I always feel like we should have a transition day to ease us back into the whole Monday through Friday grind...but since I don't make the rules I suppose I'll play by them...for now.

Seriously, though, I had a great weekend:

I switched out the hardware on MET's dresser, and it made SUCH a difference--who knew $20 would (aesthetically) go so far?

I finally finished painting the upstairs hall in Revere Pewter-- and I'm loving the result.
I had the best margaritas in recent memory during a sister lunch on Saturday.

I matched my clothes to my dog.
MET is off on two-week sailing adventure, so I've been left to my own devices. I had the best time with my sister on Saturday--we hit up the typical suburban locales and made a random stop into LOFT (a place I had not frequented since I stocked up on conservative pantsuits during an internship with the D.C. D.A.'s office circa 2003). I was pleasantly surprised with my purchases (a romper, striped tank dress and frenchie tee for $70) and will definitely check back in for their fall arrivals.

I also spent some quality cocktail/pool time with my parents, which was fantastic--I love being so close and I look forward to more social activities with them this week.

Happy Monday, I's here whether we like it or not.


garlic cheddar beer bread.

Sunday night MET and I grilled a full chicken using this apparatus (highly recommend) and I decided we needed some fresh bread to accompany our meal. I used this recipe, and I think it will definitely be on rotation this fall/winter to go with all of our soups and stews.

What you need:

3 cups all-purpose flour
2 tbsp. granulated sugar
1 tbsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
½ tsp. garlic powder
2 tbsp. honey, slightly warmed
1 bottle (12 ounces) beer (I used Samuel Adams Summer)
1 cup shredded cheddar
3 tbsp. unsalted butter, melted

What you do:

  • Preheat the oven to 350°F.  Grease a bread pan.
  • In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt and garlic powder. Using a mixing spoon, stir the beer and honey into the dry ingredients until combined. Stir in the shredded cheddar until just combined. (Be careful not to over mix the dough.) Transfer the dough to the pan, and spread it out with a spoon so that it’s roughly level.
  • Bake for 40 minutes. Remove the pan and brush the melted butter on top of the bread. Return to the oven and bake for 10-15 more minutes, until the top is golden brown and a toothpick/knife inserted in the middle comes out clean. Let cool for at least 5 minutes. Serve warm.


blueprint cleanse review.

As I mentioned yesterday, post-Maine vacation I was feeling rather disgusting so I decided to take the plunge and do a juice cleanse. I had been toying with the idea for a while but my post "try all the clam chowder everywhere" body really sealed the deal. I went with Blueprint: I had heard great things and they also had a special on Gilt City which made the price tag a little easier to justify.

I really tried to stick to their recommendations in prepping myself for my juice journey. Around 3 days before I cut out cheese, meat, caffeine and booze and the day before I only ate cucumbers, avocado, melon and vegetable broth. I figured if I was going to really commit to this, I should be as prepared as possible.

The Juice:
I did the 3-day Renovation, which is the "gateway cleanse".

  • 1 and 3 = Green Juice.
    • This consisted of romaine, celery, cucumber, apple, spinach, kale, parsley and lemon. I was most nervous about this one because I am really, really not a green juice kind of girl. But it went down easier than I thought it would--I could really taste the lemon flavor and I thought it was refreshing (although when I got to the second green juice of the day I was far less enamored--it lost its novelty quickly).
  • 2: P.A.M.
    • This was pineapple, apple and mint and I thought it was very sweet...but it was good and I had no problem drinking it.
  • 4: Spicy Lemonade.
    • Lemon, cayenne and agave nectar--it was definitely spicy but weirdly refreshing.
  • 5: C.A.B.
    • Apple, carrot, beet, lemon and ginger--if you like beets (and I do), this was good--very beet-y.
  • 6: Cashew Milk
    • This was the "dessert" of the bunch and had cashew, vanilla, cinnamon and agave. It was kind of like drinking a healthy milkshake.
The instructions tell you to ease out of the cleanse the same way you ease in, and eat only fruits and vegetables your first day after finishing...but at that point, I needed something more substantial.

I ate a salmon burger with veggies (sans my favorite aioli) and around 6 french fries...and I felt fine (I was worried my system would be shocked by eating real food again, but it was quite happy with lean fish.

The Takeaway:
Overall, I'm glad I did it--I think my system desperately needed a reset, and the fact that I spent so much money on the juice was a huge motivator in finishing. I don't think I lost any weight, but I did feel better and I was more conscious of my food choices after I finished...although I'm not sure I would do it again. I think I could get myself back on track by just eating healthier solid foods after my next vacation food/booze binge.


hello, august.

Yikes. How is it August?

Here's what went down in July:

Boat cruises at night.

Drinks and classic decor at The Ramp.
Lazy Olive leg.
The best mini lobster roll appetizers.
An absolutely gorgeous wedding.
Country club dinners.
Niece bonding.
I spent the majority of July in Maine--there was lots of boating and drinking and clam chowder eating, and by the time we came back I felt absolutely gross and did a juice cleanse (review to come soon). The month ended with a bit of a shakeup at work, so I'm looking forward to a relatively quiet August with lots of pool time and home projects and little to no drama. I'm saving that for my mama.

Here's to the last (unofficial) month of summer!


life lately.


...a certain little lady has loved sleeping in...

...I've been loving pool lounging, although it has resulted in red and crispy skin (despite numerous sunscreen applications)...

...I baked up some cupcakes using my go-to recipe... mom and I crushed 4 miles before 8 a.m. on a Saturday...

...and I enjoyed some rosé on the rocks in KPT with someone who is surprisingly agile.

Last week was a bit of a doozy--just when you think you have everything figured out life happens and throws you for a total loop. We needed to get away, and I ended up having a fabulous weekend in Kennebunkport with MET and his family. We're heading back up to Maine midweek for a long vacation and have planned the majority of our activities around eating and it will be one for the books. 


fab weekend, fab company (in pics).

I seriously had the best weekend in Maine with my mom and sister. I'm so lucky to have these two ladies in my life and that we share the same interests (food, shopping, beverages and inappropriate jokes). We hit up Stonewall Kitchen to stock up on jams, ate fried clams and slurped some oysters at Robert's, watched movies with Olive and ended Sunday with a delish lunch at the golf club. I wish every weekend could be like that one--sometimes you just need a little girl time with your favorite people.


maine bound.

Another weekend, another trip to Maine--this time I'm headed up to York for a little girl time with my sister and mom, which is a huge treat because we rarely get up there all together. Looking forward to the usual overload of wine and seafood (and some Olive snuggles thrown in for good measure).

Happy weekend!


summer wishlist: home edition.

summer wishlist: home edition

Oh, my neverending home wishlist...I'm pretty happy with the way things are shaping up at High Street House, but there are a number of items that I'd like to get sooner rather than later (the number one priority being a new dining room table and chairs, as my tiny bistro table from the loft apartment is not conducive to entertaining). I'd also eventually like to get this couch and I've seen at the Crate and Barrel outlet for half the price, but I just dropped $1k on a new washing machine so it will have to wait. 

The joys of homeownership. 


artichoke quinoa.

The picture doesn't do this dish justice. At all. 
Sunday night my mom whipped up a delish dinner, and one of the menu items was artichoke quinoa--I'm a big fan of quinoa (I'll sometimes make a big batch on Sunday with pesto and chicken to bring to work for lunch), and I also have a longstanding love affair with artichokes. This recipe that combines the two does not disappoint.

 Artichoke Quinoa

What you need:
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 cup chopped spring or sweet onions
  • 1/2 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
  • 1 (9-ounce) package frozen artichoke hearts, thawed (I love the ones from Trader Joe's)
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup uncooked quinoa
  • 1 cup chopped fresh parsley
  • 5 teaspoons grated lemon rind
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • Grated Parmesan cheese

What you do:
  • Heat oil in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Add onion and thyme; sauté 5 minutes or until onion is tender. Add artichokes; sauté 2 minutes or until thoroughly heated. Add broth and quinoa; bring to a simmer. Cover and cook 18 minutes or until liquid is completely absorbed.
  • Remove pan from heat. Stir in parsley, rind, juice, and salt. Top with parmesan cheese if desired. Serve warm or at room temperature.


weekend things.*

*I should probably just change the name of this blog to "Weekend Things", as that seems to be all I can blog about.

I had a lovely weekend up in Kennebunkport--MET and I headed up Friday after work and had dinner with his parents. Saturday we went for a sail (I got a little too much sun), attended a cocktail party at the yacht club and stuffed our faces at Hurricane's. And Sunday we bailed on our planned 5K, went out for breakfast and hit the road back to MA. After dinner with my parents Sunday night, we enjoyed a burger cake (I'm a total sucker for novelty baked goods) and went to bed early.

Here's to Monday!


weekend things.

My long weekend in Maine was just what the doctor ordered--there's something to be said for 4-day work weeks (and I'm very glad I have another long one right around the corner). I went for lots of long walks with Olive, had some quality time with my mom and dad, and did a little shopping and cocktailing.

J.Crew Factory Things:
Tank // Sandals // Espadrilles // Shorts
(I can't seem to find the navy tunic tee was on super clearance)

I had the BEST grapefruit gimlet at When Pigs Fly. They used Deep Eddy Ruby Red vodka, and it was so delicious. It will definitely be my drink of choice this summer!


happy weekend.

I know it's only Thursday, but I'm off to Maine for three glorious days. Looking forward to some cocktails, oysters, and general relaxation. Happy weekend!


this or that.

When it comes to the dining room, would you stay traditional and go with with the slipcovered chair, or would you get crazy with copper?