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Thursday, January 31, 2013

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

a new favourite thing: the french press.

i'm sure a lot of people reading use or have used this method of coffee making for a long time, and for that, i am jealous that 
someone let you in on the secret before i was. for those of you who are still in the dark: keep reading, and you're welcome.
up until a few months ago, i had never experienced the luxury that is french pressed coffee, in fact, i didn't even know what the hell it was. and then one morning after a night out and a sleepover with friends, i woke up to a beautiful breakfast and a cup of coffee unlike i had ever tasted, shit was so good. i stored the idea away in my back pocket as a christmas gift for paulie, and went for it when i found the nicest press and the perfect little grinder at home outfitters a few weeks later. that kid loves his kitchen gadgets and accessories so much so, i'm pretty sure he thinks he's chef pasquale (you will know who this is if you have a nonno who while growing up, watched cooking shows all morning and wrestling all afternoon like mine did). turns out, i raved on about how good the coffee was enough that he went out and bought me the exact same gift. they say when you're with someone for long enough, you start thinking and doing the same things.
this worries me.
we use it every weekend (as much as the thought of having enough energy to boil water, grind beans and brew coffee before work during the week sounds amazing, it would never fucking happen) and it gets a lot of love let me tell you. there is a definite technique and finesse to the french press process, and once we learned what kind of beans we like (standing in front of 40 varieties of coffee beans at 'starbucks' is less daunting than ordering a coffee there, so that's always nice) the perfect temperature and timing, we have taken our love for coffee-all-morning to a whole other level. if you have loved coffee since the first time your nonna made you drink it with breakfast when you were 3, or have always drooled while the coffee is being made in the 'dexter' opening theme, you will love the french press. life is too short to not drink really good coffee, and definitely too short to not drink good wine.

Sunday, January 27, 2013

daily beautiful things.

{image via}
i have mentioned my beautiful blonde friend neena a few times in the past, and how she has followed her dreams to toronto where she has fully blossomed into a stellar hair & makeup artist, and now an expert for 'garnier' -- i know, she's fucking unreal. i am honestly so proud of this girl, i get tears in my eyes and almost pee myself anytime i see something she has created -- in print, ad, and more and more as of late, on tv! she is a real life pro, oozing with coolness, confidence in what she is explaining, and the exact same uniqueness that made me fall in love with her the moment i laid eyes on her -- which i'll have you know was while performing as the lead in a play in the 12th grade. she sings, she dances a mean jazz square, she's hilarious, and she could make "sloth" from 'the goonies' look like james fucking franco. i adore this girl and could squeeze her tiny body until every last perfectly manicured nail popped right off her talented little hands.

 because i love being able to show off my friends, i wanted to share some of her recent work when she was asked to style a few of the 'much music' vj's. the video below was my favourite: a) because this phoebe broad is adorable and i love the way neena styles her short hurr and b) because she mentions a few tips & tits that i never knew before for styling your hair to get the best results. if you want to watch all of the videos, you can follow this link and scroll to the bottom. daily beautiful things friends.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

time stands still.

time stands still
best in moments
that look suspiciously
like ordinary life.

-- brian andreas.

Monday, January 21, 2013

currently making me happiest.

diddlin' around with valentine's day place setting options : pink hyacinths in blue bottles.
fireplace mantle decorated with love.
homemade chocolate chip cookies in a vintage rose print tin for girl's night.
a kiss for windy.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

through opa's camera: sweet nostalgia.

last summer i chatted about inheriting my opa's camera and how i am in love with the nostalgia of it all. it's the way i try not to move around the order his things are tucked into his camera bag, or how it feels to hold the camera to my cheek and look through the view finder. for me, it's a way to be closer to him -- his camera is a connection we have to each other we never knew was there when he was still here, and although i can't go back and live that out with him, i can move forward with much intention.

along with his camera and accessories, my dad gave a me a cd filled with a bunch of opa's slides that my uncle had uploaded and copied for him. opa was always so good at developing his film and getting it organized into what seemed like thousands of albums, which i would then scatter all around me while visiting, and park my ass in front of the wall unit to look through them. they would tell stories of their trips to holland, washington and myrtle beach, and the time my dad pissed all over a cannon while having his photo taken on another family vacation -- it's like the photos would bring them right back to that moment, and they would laugh, and i would wish i could have been there.

that's the thing about photos; they can take you anywhere you want to go. they bring you back to that very moment and make you feel, if only a fraction, as you did in that space and time, and as i flipped through the images of opa's slides, i realized how he easily captured those oh-so-special moments. you didn't have to be physically be there to see and feel what it was like to be right then and there -- laying in the warm sun on the front yard on a summer day, or oma feeling beautiful enough in pearls and a pretty dress to want her picture taken (my favourite picture of oma ever, which i plan on printing off and framing). i also couldn't help but notice that he had a few go-to subjects that made up most of his images: his kids, his prized possessions like their home and cars, and of course, my oma. evident by his photos he loooooved to photograph my oma, and she loved being on the other side of his lens just as much. and i can't tell you how romantic i think that is.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

lost & found.

for the two years leading up to when paulie proposed, i faithfully grew my hair out like it was the be-all and end-all -- my hair and i would be prepared for when that kid finally popped the question if it was the last thing i did. when i finally accepted it might never happen, i sat in my friend lindsay's salon chair and let her cut my hair off until i looked like a boy. 2 weeks later, that fucker proposed. now, i'm not sure if it was out of spite, or done subconsciously (or maybe a little bit of both) but it was pretty clear to me that a short cut was what made him happiest (natalie portman or shannyn sossamon with a pixie gives him chub), so you know what i did next? grew that shit out for the wedding. 

now we're married and neither of us is going anywhere -- with no 'big days' to prepare myself for, or reasons to (or not to) cut my hair, i'm a free bird and can do with my coiffe as i please. so i have gone and done what any good wife would do for their man, and went right back to that same cut he loved enough to propose to. happening in stages, my hair went from tit length, to chin length, to cheek length and now i'm hovering somewhere around pubes length -- that's right, i have a head of ungroomed pubes, and paulie has never called me cute more than he has in the last week. whether i'm in full makeup, dressed for a party, or wearing his track pants and t shirt with nothing but chapstick on, he is a happy little boy, and i'm left trying to find myself again.

it's amazing how something like hair can change so much about the way you feel about yourself. i've always been the kind of girl who likes to experiment with cut, colour and style...hell i've been platinum blonde, brunette, a red head and somewhere in between all those things at once. it's been long, short, asymmetrical, and who could forget the time i had my friend neena spend three days  braiding every last strand of it into 25 packages of fake hair, only to have my father cut it off my head within four days because i had developed a migraine that was threatening my vision -- long story short, i've been everything but bald.

as i near the end of my 20's (i just puked in my mouth a little bit) i am finding myself trying to do just that; find myself. sometimes i think i have a firm handle on who i am and what i want my image to portray, while other times i can spend far too long to admit in front of the mirror, adjusting and readjusting the way i look, only to walk away more lost than i was to start. i know that every girl (and most likely boy) has had this problem at some point, so indecisive, so unsure, i feel like my acne ridden, 84 pound, breastless, pre-pubescent self.  i've always held onto the thought that as i get older, i will became more and more confident in myself, more self-aware, and i know i will learn to love and accept the way i look, and embrace it to the fullest, enormous pisces features and all. that's not to say i'm not happy with myself now, i just know those looming 30's will bring with them a new found appreciation for the girl i am and the girl my husband is in love with -- 
right down to the very last pube on my head.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

nothing but light.

{image via}

i look at you and see all the ways a soul can bruise,
and i wish i could sink my hands into your flesh
and light lanterns along your spine
so you know
that there’s nothing but light when i see you.

--shinji moon.

Tuesday, January 08, 2013

atlas genius: trojans.

the first time i heard this song i shazamed the shit out of it and haven't stopped listening to it since.
it just makes me so happy. and dance. it makes me dance. a lot.

Sunday, January 06, 2013

my bar cart is going to make me an alcoholic.

i had been on the lookout for a bar cart for the last good year, so when sheena, a friend at work mentioned she had one in her scary basement that she was going to sell, i jumped on that shit lickity split. i knew it was brass, vintage, and if sheena liked it, it was probably perfect. oh, and she wanted $20 bucks for it, so it could have been covered in turds and i still would have been interested. i picked it up from her house that day, and checked it out in my rearview mirror the entire way home, like i had ryan gosling naked in my back seat reciting lines from 'the notebook' to me. truth is, i love this thing so much, i would take the cart over ryan. but seriously.
i got it home, squeaky clean and set up by the time paul was home from work, and cannot even begin to explain the joy this thing brings to me -- i realize how mental that sounds, but honestly, it's like a beautiful little miracle, that sits in the corner of my dining room, and puts a stupid smile on my face each and every time i (make a point) to walk past it. it's the perfect size, suits the style of our home like a dream, and is actually a functional item, as opposed to the plethora of shit i hoard collect and display purely based on aesthetics.
i have arranged and rearranged it about 346 times in the last week, and was finally satisfied enough to have a photo shoot and share it. i found a few blogs with handy tips/bar cart etiquette on properly stocking & styling your cart (i know, who knew there was such a thing), and found it really useful when choosing what is and isn't a necessity on the cart at all times. basically, you want:

-- a few of each style glass you use most: rocks, martini, wine, highball and shot glasses are classic.
-- bar tools, napkins & straws.
-- a few decorative pieces: i like the look of classic red carnations & a beautiful bar book.
-- accoutrements: simple syrups, mixes, lemons, limes & other fruit you use often.
-- and the best for last, booze: i chose staples like vodka, scotch, rum, wine, and liqueurs.
i'm confident i'm borderline alcoholic considering the amount of time i spend around this thing, and it's inspired me to bring home unique bottles of booze and try new cocktails. bottoms up.
ps-if you grew up spending your days with italian grandparents, you know how amazing brio/mio is. if you don't know
what i'm talking about, or haven't had it in a million years, get the fuck on that. shit's so good.

Thursday, January 03, 2013

new years: cigars, fringe, red lips & "the stache".

new years eve: a time to reflect, a time to appreciate, and the perfect excuse to get fucked up with your favourite people, this year was no exception to the rule. one of my closest friends and favourite red head laura, invited a group of us to her home for a 20's themed murder mystery party, and i'm telling you, this girl pulled out all the stops. featuring a delicious meal of homemade pierogies (which three of us made a few days before the party, laura's babcia would be so proud), lots of snacks a few sambuca shots for good measure, 
everyone was assigned a character and came in costume.

the room was chock-a-block with fringed dresses, strands of pearls, fedoras, cigars and the most incredible "stache" gracing the face of our honourable "mayor biggs", we schmoozed and boozed until the lights went out, a gun was fired and my sweet fiancĂ© "nicky" was whacked by dinner. the rest of the meal was spent trying to figure out who was in cahoots with who, and which one of us was responsible for killing off the biggest mob boss in town (that's my man!). by the time the murderer was revealed we were feelin' good and the rest of the night was how i suspect most parties of the 20's panned out -- lots of fun and even more laughs, it was the perfect way to 
peace out 2012 and take 2013 by the cojones.

Tuesday, January 01, 2013

goals: making 2013 count.

as i have shared in the past, i am a giant nerd fan of list and goal writing -- needless to say, this time of year always makes me really happy. i think about what kind of resolutions i want to make in the days leading up to new years eve, so i have them prepared in my mind and can start working on them as quickly after midnight as possible, which normally isn't that quickly after, as i'm usually focused on not barfing my brains out. however the thing about resolutions, is how they sometimes have a way of getting away from you; either you make a goal that's just too ambitious to complete at that certain time in your life, or you make too many goals in the hopes that by the end of the year you maybe managed to stick to at least one, which is why this time around, i am holding myself accountable 
for only 3 simple, easy goals.

1. read more : honestly this goal is embarrassing for me to have on the list, let alone make it #1. i'm not saying i don't read, i have a list of about 12 blogs i visit on a daily basis, and read a lot online, however i read one. whole. book. from start to finish in 2012, and i hardly consider jenna jameson's biography "how to make love like a porn star" (which was given to me by paulie on our first anniversary as it's "technically a paper gift you know"), a life altering read. it was an entertaining guilty pleasure, nothing more, nothing less. this year i plan to knock off some of the classics, and get the books i already have stacked on my nightstand done and done.

2. take better care of my skin : pretty self explanatory, i am at the point in my life where i can't neglect or take for granted what i have gotten away with in the past. i have always done the bare minimum when it comes to using sunscreen and daily routines, but i know the significant difference a little bit of work can make. if all i do this year is apply sunscreen to my face each day, and drink more water, it will be more than i did for myself last year.

3. try something new each month : my good friend jules did this a few years ago, and i was so inspired by it, i adopted it as one of my biggest resolutions for 2013. something as simple as trying a new ethnic food, or learning a new craft, is an easy way for me to not only have fresh experiences, but also learn to be more open minded. i'm not going to write a list of each thing to try or do, but plan to be aware of opportunities when they present themselves and take a leap of faith (big or small) when they do.

*not listed but goes without saying, sort my career out and take the first steps into making it happen. oh, and stay away from paul's penis -- i'm confident it's his new year's resolution to get me knocked up.
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