September 30, 2013 § Leave a comment
This weekend, my good (and gorgeous) friends Karen and Sarah came all the way from Toronto to hang out with me in Brooklyn!
It was so great to finally get them here – and just in time before I’m enormously pregnant and before I have a baby to carry around on the outside of me.
On Saturday, after Sarah got tattooed in the city, the three of us went to Smorgasburg. This has become a staple for entertaining visitors. So many food stands! So many choices! Not to mention a beautiful view of Manhattan from Brooklyn.
After some walking, shopping, and a rest at home, next on our agenda was dinner. I tried to show them the deliciousness that is Paulie Gee’s, but we didn’t feel like waiting an hour and a half for a table so we went to the new spot River Styx instead.
Filled with pasta and cocktails (in my case, a mocktail), I took them to Transmitter Park so they could see the nighttime view over the East River.
Sarah loves New York so much now that she did a little show.
We stopped at Oak & Iron for a drink since it was only half full and had a jukebox playing mostly Fleetwood Mac. Then to conclude our Franklin Street tour, we grabbed a bottle of wine at Dandelion Wine right before closing time. This apparently seems to be the best time to go as the people who work there are extra friendly and play you Neil Young songs when they find out you’re all Canadian.
They also treated Sarah and Karen to some bourbon, which Sarah ended up taking home the rest of in her purse. Greenpoint hospitality!
Sunday was quieter, especially since Nick and I had booked a Childbirth Education class in the middle of the afternoon before we knew we were going to have visitors. We still managed to have a tasty brunch and some hang outs afterwards though.
Thank you so much for coming to visit, ladies! I haven’t laughed that much in a while. Love you <3
May 28, 2013 § 8 Comments
I have dyed my dirty blonde hair bright platinum blonde for over 15 years, but I always knew getting pregnant would be my end point.
You can technically dye your hair while you are expecting, but the thought of all those chemicals being absorbed through my scalp every month, plus the strong dye smell turned me off. I have been weaning myself off the good stuff for over 4 months when I decided now that I’m safely into my second trimester, I should do something about my roots and sad-looking faded hair.
After seeing my friend Annie’s fun ombre ‘do, I went to see Megan at Exhibit Salon in Greenpoint. She attempted to get as close to my natural colour as possible, but ended up adding in some brown tones since I’m not sure if they make a hair dye for “colourless ash blonde”. She kept the blonde bottoms to create an ombre look (and reduce the amount of shock for me!), but toned them to fade more gradually into the darker colour now on top.
I’m still getting used to it, but I hope I decide this is something I can live with for a while because it will be so much more manageable! What do you think? Help me be okay with this, friends!
February 21, 2013 § 1 Comment
Last weekend, our friends Julia and Jay came to visit! And you know what? We didn’t go into Manhattan ONCE!
Instead, we hung out in three different Brooklyn neighbourhoods, beginning of course, with Greenpoint for each of our brunches. We also took the East River Ferry to DUMBO, where Julia was very excited to get some treats from Jacques Torres.
Those cookies were SO GOOD!
We also spoiled ourselves with soaps and toiletries from West Elm Market before heading back North for dinner at Lokal. That night, all of us being very happily married thirty-somethings, we decided to stay in to watch a movie.
On Sunday, despite the chilly wind and freezing temperatures, we bundled up and went to Fort Greene to check out the indoor Brooklyn Flea.
It was a complete madhouse, but Nick and I found a few prints for our living room! We also enjoyed some treats in the basement food court, and you can’t help but appreciate the architecture of this old building.
Later that afternoon, I took Julia to my favourite store, Dalaga, where we both wanted the same bracelet. Obviously we had to have them and declare them “friendship bracelets”.
Before long it was time for them to leave again, but not without promises of another visit soon. Thanks for coming and enjoying a relaxing, yet productive, Brooklyn weekend with us, guys! xoxo
November 11, 2012 § 1 Comment
This weekend, for the first time since Nick and I were married, my parents came to visit us in Brooklyn!
And although they’ve come to visit us three times now, this was the first time they were able to be here with no agenda, no plans, and not have to even venture into Manhattan. It was so nice to show them our neighbourhood and give them an idea of how we live here.
They arrived Friday evening, so we made dinner at home and hung out on the couch, drinking a bottle of wine from my favourite neighbourhood wine shop, just talking. On Saturday, after a bagel breakfast, we walked to Williamsburg and had lunch at Smorgasburg. I took my Mom to Dalaga (my favourite!) where she got to buy a cute sweater and scarf. We had a tasty dinner at Habitat and spent another night in, chatting on our comfy couch that has convinced them they need a sectional for their cottage ;)
This morning, we had brunch at Brooklyn Label and walked around Greenpoint, then to McCarren Park and back. It was such a beautiful, warm Fall day!
Since I got my sense of humour from them, I knew they’d appreciate our “Live Chicken Laughter” sign.
They should be landing back home in Toronto right about now. Thanks for coming to visit, Mom & Dad! We hope you liked Greenpoint and that you come back again real soon.
October 29, 2012 § Leave a comment
I have officially gone into survival mode now that the impending storm should be hitting within hours. Nick and I bought food and water yesterday, but this morning I woke up and started filling containers and pots with water. We’ve been charging our electronics and bought more batteries for the iPod dock we can charge our phones with. I’ve washed and cut up vegetables for us and bought even more cereal and crackers. Still at this point, we’ve been waiting for the storm to hit for almost a day and it’s hard to concentrate on anything else.
I appreciate everyone who has checked in on us. We will be staying in our apartment and waiting this out. Our area might flood, but will probably lose power which will mean we’ll lose internet. I just hope our cell phone service holds so I can let everyone know we are doing fine.
Take care everybody! xoxo
October 15, 2012 § 3 Comments
As some of you already know, Nick and I have birthdays two days apart. When we were dating long distance, Toronto to New York, this usually meant just one of us would actually get the other one on their actual birthday – whichever date was closest to a weekend. Even though we’ve been married for over two years now, this year was the first year we decided to celebrate our birthdays completely together and make it into a fun “birthday week”.
You already saw what I did on Tuesday, but the celebrations didn’t end there. On Wednesday night, as a lead in to Nick’s big day, we went to see the Yankees play the Orioles. It was great to drink a beer, eat some greasy food, and cheer on NYC with their biggest fan. We ended up leaving after the 7th inning because it looked like they were going to lose, but by the time we got home, they won!
On Thursday, Nick’s birthday was quiet by request, but we did get to eat burritos and watch Prometheus.
On Friday night, we headed into the city to finally watch our good friend Ben’s documentary Unfinished Spaces play at the Cooper Union. It was so interesting and really cool to watch him participate in a filmmaker’s panel after the movie. One snooty architecture professor in attendance even told the entire theatre that Ben reminded him of Wes Anderson. I can kind of see it now!
Saturday night, was our big celebration. We invited 10 of our favourite New Yorkers out to dinner at Supper Restaurant. A lot of these people hadn’t met each other before; they were from totally different social groups. It was so much fun to see them meet. As Nick called it, “a social experiment”. The food was delicious and the company was so great. We love you guys!
We got a few drinks at three different bars afterwards, before we headed home to get our beauty rest because on Sunday morning I got up early to get breakfast with…
Rob and Tami! They were in town visiting from Toronto. It was great to have them in my neighbourhood and introduce them to Brooklyn Label.
Running purely on fumes by Sunday afternoon, Nick and I brought the chocolate dot cookies I made over to Annie’s “pumpkin party”. We ate so many delicious things made by everyone in attendance and Nick got to play with the cat and dog of the apartment.
We finished up our weekend by eating a healthy dinner (after pasta, wine, cupcakes, and bacon-wrapped figs) and watching the season premiere of The Walking Dead.
What a great week! Thanks to everyone who made it so special for us <3
July 27, 2012 § 1 Comment
Of course there are countless food options in New York (especially when you’re exploring both Manhattan and Brooklyn), but I’ve managed to pare it down a little with my current Top Ten Places To Eat. Enjoy!
1. Paulie Gees – Pizza, Brooklyn
Hands down the best pizza I’ve eaten in my life. And I’ve eaten a lot of pizza.
Bonus: Paulie himself plays host every night. He walks around the restaurant with his coffee mug, asking how your pizzas are, what you ordered, and where you’re from. He loved it the time I brought 5 Canadian girls in for dinner.
2. Eataly – Italian, Manhattan
A huge Italian grocery store, owned by super-chef Mario Batali, smack dab in the middle of Manhattan. You can choose one of the many cafes in the store to eat at – including pizza, pasta, fish, gelato, meat, and vegetarian restaurants – and you can buy some pasta, bread, or sauce to bring home with you!
Tip: go on a weeknight. It’s much less busy.
3. Five Leaves – Cafe, Bar, Oysters – Brooklyn
Surrounded by hype and sometimes line-ups of hipsters waiting to get in, Heath Ledger was one of the restaurants’ first investors. Go early and enjoy one of their tasty gin cocktails. My favourite meal so far is the Atlantic Char, but I’m working my way up to the Five Leaves Burger! (Pictured above.)
4. San Loco – Mexican, Manhattan & Brooklyn
This spot is almost fast food, but still way beyond Taco Bell. Get a Guaco Loco – a hard taco, wrapped in a soft taco shell, held together with guacamole. Beans or catfish are my favourite. Enjoy with a Corona or, if you’re feeling saucy, a frozen margarita!
5. Dos Caminos – Mexican, Manhattan
When you find yourself in the Union Square/Gramercy Bermuda Triangle of not knowing where to eat, settling on this chain is actually a pretty decent bet.
My favourites: sangria and their great guacamole!
6. Peter Luger Steakhouse – Steakhouse, Brooklyn
This is a steakhouse the serious meat lover. Go here and feel like you’re a New York mobster. Have waiters ask you “how much steak you want?” instead of giving you a menu. If you aren’t so keen on spending a small fortune on meat, I actually prefer their burgers. BEST BURGERS EVER. But be warned, they are only available at lunchtime. Finish off with cheesecake.
Tip: Make a reservation, even for lunch.
7. Juliette – French, Brooklyn
“A Taste of Paris in Brooklyn”. My favourite brunch spot in Williamsburg. Very cute decor with a pseudo-patio you can enjoy in any weather.
8. Smorgasburg – Food Stands, Brooklyn
This is a food festival to end all food festivals. Best of all, it takes place every Saturday from about May to October. Eat everything from anchovies to BBQ to donuts to roti to pupusas. Go ahead and eat three lunches then dessert!
9. Sidewalk Cafe – American, Manhattan
A good staple, perfect for meeting friends for dinner and drinks after work. With a 2-for-1 Happy Hour, you can get a little tipsy with your tasty meal for about $20!
10. Anywhere you can get a good New York bagel!
These aren’t your store-bought bagels, they’re chewy, salty, hearty, and soooo delicious.
My favourites: Murray’s Bagels, Baker’s Dozen, but of course there are many more throughout Manhattan and Brooklyn. Get the whole experience and slap some lox on that bagel along with your cream cheese! Yum.