…My ultimate girl-crush, on three of my favorite things: shopping, wandering, and Paris.
Bundle up, snowy regions. It’s going to be a looooooong winter.
Turtlenecks remind me a couple of winter-themed things, but most of all, they remind of my awkward phase through middle school when I wore some unflattering fit of the turtleneck every day from December to March. I don’t even know how I pulled it off (or didn’t), but since I retired the look in high school, nary has my closet ever seen the passing of another high neck. Perusing through J. Crew’s social media though, I came across this picture featuring an Aran Crafts for J. Crew cable turtleneck and I’m considering bringing the infamous hickey-hider (…middle school…) back into rotation. Soft, cozy, and texturized layers update the look, and a muted red lip and the signature J. Crew “don’t care hair” look tops it off for both on- and off-duty.
Dairly Week: a weekly roundup of my current favorites.
Between work, friends, Christmas-present shopping, and learning to take care of myself on my own, it’s been a stressful few weeks so any down time I have has been allocated to pure relaxation (read: reading, sleeping, eating, in reverse order). Here’s what’s keeping me going through a busy month:
From top left:
1. I’m an avid reader of Matchbook Magazine, which I’ve always found to be a great source of inspiration: from features on up-and-coming fashion entrepreneurs to new hot books on the market to interior design. Every first Monday of the month, I’m stalking my inbox for the Matchbook Magazine “new issue!” notification. The December issue features some of my favorite bloggers (Carly Heitlinger of The College Prepster and Mackenzie Horan of Design Darling) and some great gift ideas!
2. I procrastinated on pre-ordering Brandon Stanton’s book, Humans of New York, based on his photo-blog of the same name. So you could imagine my excitement when Barnes & Noble and Amazon announced a 50% off deal on Black Friday for this book, for which I bolted to the nearest store to grab a copy.
3. My sister introduced me to this cool new iPhone app, Wrapp, that allows you to give free gift cards to places like American Eagle, Hulu Plus, Alex and Ani, H&M to your Facebook friends. Always a nice treat to get a little extra discount on holiday shopping (especially if you follow my habit of “one for you,
one two for me”).
4. My local Target store (and possibly many other retailers) now carries Panera Bread’s delicious Mac & Cheese, one of my favorites—second only to Beecher’s Cheeses' version. This is basically the best thing to happen to grocery stores since sliced bread (in my opinion). Is this news to you? Or have I just been living under a rock?
Difficulties break some men but make others. No axe is sharp enough to cut the soul of a sinner who keeps on trying, one armed with the hope that he will rise even in the end.
--Nelson Mandela, 1918 - 2013
In Boston’s arguably most charming neighborhood of Brookline, the favorite past time of the residents (or maybe just my handful of friends there) is brunch. Zaftig’s is a big name in that area (and perennial favorite), but after one too many matzo balls, I decided to branch out and met up with friends at The Regal Beagle for brunch…and proceeded to revisit the Beagle the following week with a certain man friend, thereby converting him into a Beagle Brunch person as well. As I’m sitting here writing this post, all I can think about is the pumpkin pancakes and stuffed berries and cream French toast croissant (a mouthful, literally…I know). And if the fact that the restaurant was a full house exactly eight minutes after opening on a Sunday isn’t enough to convince you, the menu definitely will.
What to get here: I’m always a fan of the eggs Benedict (they can make the eggs anyway you like), but keep your eyes out for the weekly special. More often than not, they have been the source of major food envy/satisfaction depending the position I happen to be in.
What to drink: A classic cup of java, but their mimosas sound delicious.
What are some of your favorite brunch spots in Boston?
It had been a while since I was in Boston, and I had forgotten what a beautiful city it is. You could put it in a snow globe. It is a beautiful, compact, and, of course, watery city.
I like the manageability of Boston: its size. I thought of an expression I heard about Florence, years ago. The expression is an Italian one: ‘within the hand of man.’ Florence is a city within the hand of man — walkable and all that — and so is Boston. I don’t mean to call it dinky. It’s just — manageable, a city on a human scale.
--Jay Nordlinger, “Boston Souvenirs”
Dairly Week: a weekly roundup of my current (Connecticut food!) favorites.
On travel jobs, the only thing more important than the work at the client site is the food you’ll be eating for lunch and dinner. Despite the fact that our hotel in Milford, Connecticut the past week was fully equipped with a kitchen and fridge, it was considerably easier to just
pig out explore the local cuisine, which included these favorites of mine that I plan on revisiting once I’m out there again for the audit in March…
- Soup + chicken Caesar wrap at Bobette’s, all too conveniently located from my Milford client and a crowd favorite.
- A hot panini from Napoli’s, an overwhelmingly Italian shack with delicious hot sandwiches and pastas.
- The Dogwood Blossom salad and A Tisket A Tasket bread basket from Rainbow Gardens…I seldom order just a salad but this was so much more than “just a salad”…it was basically a work of art. Observe:
- Lobster tempura sushi from Tengda…I’ve never had such a thing and it was delicious.
- Tropical drinks and delicious Mexican food at Geronimo’s Southwest Grill in nearby New Haven…Hugo will tell you all about the hidden gems on the menu, and go for his advice…he knows.
Dairly Week: a weekly roundup of my current favorites
I’ve had a busy but exciting week in the office and working (for real!…not training or going to orientation). On Monday, I’ll be heading out to New Haven, Connecticut for my first travel job and—like the company has been apt to do—I’m looking forward to exploring another new city. This weekend will be full of preparation for the business trip, pampering, and spending quality time with friends. Hope you all have a relaxing weekend!
From top left:
1. I’m in love with the gold sheen on my new Fig. 2 Design stationery, a little souvenir from my Chicago trip and acquired at the most charming and beautiful stationery shop I’ve had a chance to visit: GREER.
2. A beautifully lit-up TD Garden and Zakim Bridge, on my walk from the office to the train station.
It’s a small, small world.
In the aftermath of the devastating Boston Marathon bombings, there was a piece in GQ Magazine titled “The Finish Line.” In it, writer Sean Flynn profiles several individuals whose paths crossed while being involved with the Marathon, directly and indirectly, varying from spectator to medical tent nurse to Associated Press photographer. In a touching twist, Flynn reveals towards the end that, unbeknownst to these people at the time of the bombings, their paths have crossed under far more fortuitous and ordinary daily circumstances before the Marathon—a testament (be it intentional or unintentional) to the very spirit of the small-town city Boston is. What sets this GQ piece apart from the countless repetitive Marathon stories then, can be attributed to both coincidence and great story-telling.
Today at work, I was helping a partner at the office I had just met with a project. Through some small talk, I found out that he not only graduated from the same university I graduated from, but his daughter graduated at the same time I did from Boston College, and he is a good friend of a former professor of mine. Even beyond that, I later found out I had indirectly worked for him on several clients the summer before when I was an intern.
The world is small, yes. That notion certainly isn’t a novel one. What was new to me were the daily interactions with people whom I don’t have the chance to pause for small talk. Or maybe just the tiniest little interaction like AP photographer Charles Krupa had with Jeff Bauman and Carlos Arredondo before, during, and after the Marathon—three now-heroic faces. When I’m sprinting for the train, walking through a hallway, or attending an event, anonymous faces don’t typically occur to me as familiar ones. But at the same time, so much of my greatest friendships in life have been defined by people whose acquaintance I was a hair away from missing, and I can only imagine what I might still be missing…and the stories I might be missing as well. Thinking about it in that way, the brushes whooshing passes down a city street, the accidental “sorry, ‘xcuse me" bumps on the T, feels a little more close to heart.
If you haven’t read the GQ article mentioned here, you definitely should.
I was introduced to this Canadian boutique, Aritzia, over the summer by a friend while out shopping in New York City. Her and I both ended up purchasing the Talula Kent Blazer (though my purchase was a gift for my sister). I’m not a typical “blazer person” (I’ve never been a huge fan of the J. Crew schoolboy ones that everyone raves about) but the Aritzia blazer makes me into one. It is a buttery soft fabric, comes in various classic and trendy colors, and is inexpensive and transitions easily from one purpose to another—basically perfect for my office’s business casual environment. Because of it’s light weight, it can work as easily under coats and over sweaters for winter (without the awkward tussle of switching the two out) as it does for warmer weather. I’ve been looking to add a few quality work-appropriate pieces to my wardrobe and this is one of them.
What are your go-to, borderline-obsessive, favorite articles of clothing?
Sticks and stones.
I think of myself as a positive person. I rely on vibes to gauge unfamiliar situations. Humor is a coping mechanism as much as it is a form of entertainment. I am my best self in supportive and encouraging environment and I’m inspired by the people who can consistently see the best in other people or situations, even if it is not always deserved.
But as we all know, negativity is not always avoidable. Inevitably, people and circumstances disappoint. Words are thrown out into open air that hurt, whether they are meant to or not. Hurt is a festering breeding ground for things like regret, sadness, blame, and basically everything I try so hard to avoid. Even just typing those words out weighs me down. Growing up, I was taught to find the reason for failures and negativity within the self. While that often leads to self-improvement, casting blame on myself for everything isn’t always a healthy way to live or think but ignoring failures is hardly a better idea. So I ask: what are some ways you beat the negativity in your life and pick yourself up from failures? Do you meditate? Read an inspirational book?