Archives for 2011

2011 Holiday Gift Guide

We are officially in the holiday swing and this means one thing…Holiday Shopping and Gift Guides! I am putting together my list of people who I will be buying presents for this year. I have already done some early shopping and have at least one present already for everyone on my list. Yes, congratulations are in order…there is nothing better than the peace of mind of getting a jump start on your holiday shopping. This first holiday gift guide post is geared towards the women in your life.

Because I am the queen of To-Do Lists and love filling up my calendar with events, I am a huge fan of agendas. I still love the feeling of writing things down and crossing them off so I will never become completely computer-based with my scheduling. I bought this particular agenda from Lilly Pulitzer for myself last month and may have to pick one up for one of the girls on my list this year.

This Louis Vuitton wallet is an essential item in my purse. I love its compact size and the ample space for credit cards and cash. It makes a great gift but won’t blow your holiday budget.

Candles are a wonderful gift and make great stocking stuffers. Most people don’t enjoy the soothing effect of candles because they are too often caught up in the hectic nature of life. The holidays are a great time to give your loved ones a little bit of luxury and the permission to slow down and enjoy the moment. I love these Diptyque candles for their simple and pure scents and attractive packaging.

If you are really looking to splurge on the special woman in your life (and yes, this can apply to mothers, sisters, aunts and grandmothers), this Cartier love bracelet is classic, elegant and beautiful.

I absolutely adore this Tiffany & Co. Fifth Avenue Porcelain jar. I think it would make a darling bedside table accessory and the perfect place to store your rings while sleeping.

Stay tuned for more holiday gift ideas!!

An Apple a Day

Lately I have been craving fruits! Just in the past month I have eaten about a million kiwi’s, pears and apples. I’m really craving citrus fruits, probably because we are heading into the winter and fruits are harder to come by. I read all of these great tips for adding more fruit into your diet over at Elle & Blair’s website. I am including the information below. (PS- I really want to make the rainbow fruit platter as pictured above…isn’t it adorable!)

  1. Eating raw fruit for breakfast is a great way to ensure you’re getting all the vitamins and minerals you need to kick start your day, which will give you way more energy too!
  2. Raw fruits are super easy for your body to digest, so eating them in the morning when you’re just waking up (and your metabolism is too) makes it the best time to feast on a plate of fruit.
  3. Many fruits are packed with lots of fiber, which will help you feel full and satisfied until lunchtime.

According to the Mayo Clinic, a healthy and balanced breakfast should include raw fruits (or vegetables), a low fat protein, some dairy and a serving of whole grains. I think a lot of us forget about the raw fruit part even though it’s clearly super important to starting your day off on the right foot.

Here’s a few ways you can work more raw fruits into your breakfasts:

  • Make a protein smoothie and throw in your favorite fruits to make it sweet!
  • Add berries and bananas to your oatmeal along with some milk for an added kick of calcium.
  • Have a fruity parfait! I love to make these as they’re kinda sweet and really filling too. Add your favorite fruits along with a little granola (or your favorite cereal works too) to a cup of low fat yogurt. I sometimes drizzle honey over the top if I want something a little sweeter too.
  • Cook up a breakfast burrito by scrambling some eggs with cheese and wrapping it up in a whole wheat tortilla and have a side of freshly cut up fruit or an apple! Click here to check out my blog about why “an apple a day” really does help keep the doctor away!
  • Slice up some banana and throw a few berries over your favorite whole grain cereal.
  • One of my favorite options is to slice up an apple and a banana and have it with a side of Peanut Butter. You can even drizzle some honey over the banana for a super delicious breakfast.


The Vow

Can’t wait to see this one!

Lauren Bush

Here’s a photograph from Lauren Bush and David Lauren’s wedding. Doesn’t it look like a picture from another era? Gorgeous!


Ugh! I hate that I haven’t posted here in so long. Life sometimes gets in the way, but believe me, I am BACK! Here’s what I’m obsessed with right now.

-Demi & Ashton DIVORCING! I’m proud of Demi for setting a good example. I think we are all tired of Hollywood couples (or couples, in general) sweeping things under the carpet. If someone isn’t treating you how you deserved to be treated, stand up for yourself!

-Jason Segal writing and starring in the *new* Muppet Movie! I literally can not wait to see this one. As a child, the Muppets were my favorite movies (and tv shows). I even loved the Muppet Babies cartoon on Saturday mornings.

-Breaking Dawn comes out today! I wish I were going to see it but alas, I don’t want to battle the long lines and the risk of not getting tickets. I will see it soon, hopefully!

-Holiday shopping! Yes, Thanksgiving is next week which means we are well on our way to Christmas! I have already picked out some cute holiday decorations and I’m already making lists and shopping for my family.

Missoni Creates Fashion Traffic Jam

Yesterday’s launch of MISSONI for Target created quite the traffic jam on and has lead to some major Ebay action. In less than 24 hours, over 20,000 MISSONI for Target items have been listed on Ebay. A Missoni bike that retails for $399 is up to $1135 on the auction website (according to Fashionista). Target is currently selling 400 Missoni items, but the majority of items seem to be “sold out.” While Twitter was filled with sad @Target mentions from eager buyers who couldn’t seem to purchase the highly coveted Missoni items, it seems Oprah Winfrey had no problem getting her hands on the hot commodity. Wednesday, after attending the company’s national sales meeting, Ms. O tweeted “Spent the day going to and from Minneapolis. Gorgeous CLEAN city.had a fun time meeting our friends at TARGET! Got a MIssoni box!”

Ringer with Sarah Michelle Gellar

Last night brought the return of Sarah Michelle Gellar to television. If you are like me, you grew up with SMG being a constant presence on your television in the form of “Buffy” from Buffy the Vampire Slayer. SMG was fighting vampires long before it was the cool “Twilight-y” thing to do.

Now she’s back and with a new suspenseful show to captivate viewers. RINGER is the story of twin sisters Bridget and Siobhan Kelly. Bridget is a former exotic dancer and on the run after witnessing a murder. Her estranged sister, Siobhan, is living a life of extreme wealth and privilege. When Bridget becomes convinced that her FBI protector is not going to be able to offer her the safety she needs, she devises a plan of her own. She seeks out her sister and the two go sailing to talk about the situation at hand. When Bridget wakes up on the boat, Siobhan is gone and Bridget suspects suicide. So what’s a girl on the run to do? Bridget decides to “hide” in her twin sister’s life. What she could never have expected was the secrets her seemingly perfect sister is hiding.

I have to admit that the first 15 minutes of the show left me empty. I felt SMG was overacting and the plot seemed a bit too contrived, but then things started to get interesting. The opulent life of Siobhan is enjoyable to watch and the secrets she is keeping are enough to keep the viewer hooked.

All in all, SMG’s return to the small screen may just be worth the wait.



Salts in Cambridge

The other night I had the indescribable pleasure of dining at SALTS in Cambridge, MA. Reservations are required for the sole reason that this is a very small, very intimate and charming restaurant nestled in the heart of Cambridge. Salts is described as a “magical space of tranquility and elegance,” and that couldn’t be more accurate. This small, one room, dining room gives you the feeling of eating in someone’s home, and yet the hushed voices and muted tones create a sense of privacy.

The menu at SALTS is “French influenced contemporary American cuisine.” They work closely with farmers and fisherman and have their own organic farm located in Canterbury, New Hampshire. Because Salts is a little on the pricey side, I decided immediately that I was only going to order an entree (and possibly save room for dessert). Therefore, I was more than delighted to be treated to an “amuse bouche” compliments of the chef. Gazpacho! I’ve never had gazpacho (I will admit I have a very limited palate but am working on rectifying this immediately) and was absolutely enchanted by what is essentially a cold, vegetable soup. I have never before eaten a soup that was as delicious as the one presented to me. What a perfect way to kick off the meal!


I debated between ordering the Free Range Chicken (served with petite garden carrots, baby zucchini, white asparagus, grapefruit and darjeeling tea) or the Painted Hills Beef Ribeye. The ribeye won. It was served with the Salts farm sunchokes, horseradish gremolata, bone marrow custard and potato. Talk about perfect execution. Everything on my plate worked in perfect combination. The horseradish and carmelized onions, eaten with the rib eye, created the perfect balance and brought out each flavor, respectively. Having never in my life tried (or seen) bone marrow, I was more than curious. While it wasn’t something that I would be inclined to order again, it was interesting and had me going back for more. It tasted like a slightly salty custard or rice pudding. And that brings me to the salt! Our meal was served with three salts, a black salt from Cypress, a pink Australian salt, and Fleur de Sal from France. The black salt was intensely strong and added an amazing flavor to the meat. There was also a side of potatoes, thinly sliced and stacked, that worked as a perfect addition to the meal.


And finally, for dessert, the Chocolate Cremeux. Essentially this was a deconstructed chocolate cake. Very rich and decadent but with a playful aspect to it. Eating this dessert became a game of how to create the perfect combination of sweets.


Overall, I was so pleasantly surprised by my dinner at SALTS. As someone who rarely ventures off the beaten path of mainstream, chain restaurants, SALTS opened my eyes to a whole new world of dining experiences. I am now recommending it to everyone and hoping that they dive into a new culinary delight.


The Magical Food

It seems that every day brings a new study telling us to “eat this, not that.” Well, today is no different, but I am happy to jump on this particular bandwagon because I am a big fan of today’s golden food…yogurt!

According to TIME magazine, a study from Harvard researchers says that it is the quality of the food rather than the calorie count that really matters. I couldn’t agree more with this statement. People, women in particular, tend to get sucked into the fad diets, cutting all sugar, all carbs, eating only meat, only vegetables, no fruit. These restrictions make people obsess and are therefore more likely to fall of the wagon and spring into the extreme opposite, bingeing on the foods you had previously denied yourself. Because honestly, the minute you tell yourself that you “can’t” have something, don’t you want it even more?

So what this study states, and what is becoming a huge trend in the diet and health industry, is that the focus should be on quality. It relates back to the steadfast advice, everything in moderation with an emphasis on fruits, vegetable, nuts, whole grains and YOGURT!

The Kardashians

So what are your thoughts on the Kardashian family? On one hand I think it’s great to see “reality stars” who don’t look like Heidi Montag. (Who, by the way, recently revealed the startling news that she spends 14 hours a DAY at the gym!)

But then again, the Kardashian’s aren’t exactly “girl next door” types. And really, what are they famous for exactly? Kim got paid $300,000 for her engagement photos in PEOPLE Magazine?! And now Kourtney is on the cover of SHAPE Magazine. In the cover story, Kourtney talks about her running workout. As someone who has only just discovered running over the past year, I am always interested in reading about other runners. (I already have my favorite online runners). I like to read about the routines of runners…especially if it can help me look like THIS!

Tough Day

Today was a tough day. I was very emotional and overwhelmed. I was having one of those break down days when everything – everything – just seems to be going WRONG. I did my usual 3 mile walk with my mom in the morning (we walk every day). Along our walk we met the most interesting man, a landscape architect from Australia. He was fascinating. He’s doing work right around the corner from my parents house and it has been really fun to watch his progress.

Work was work and it didn’t help alleviate the stress I was under. But the sun was shining and that did help lighten my mood. What worked to really kick my bad mood was the 3 mile run I did after work. It turned my bad mood into a distant memory.

So my advice to anyone suffering from a less than stellar mood…GET MOVING! (I think I made this exact statement in yesterday’s post but it certainly bears repeating).

Every Day

I’m trying to post every. single. day.

I know that the key to sticking with something is to be consistent. So I’m really, really, really going to try to post every day. I hope I can do it!

Wish me luck!

…and if you stumble across this blog, leave me a comment. It might just be the incentive I need to KEEP GOING!


Ran 3 miles.

Walked 2.5 miles.

Walked after dinner…more of a stroll.


Self Magazine Photo Shoot

I was profiled in the February issue of SELF Magazine in an article on healthy weight and self-acceptance. It was a wonderful experience and I was able to do it with my mother, sister and niece. Definitely something I will never forget. With regards to the world of photo shoots and stylists, this experience really opened my eyes. So much goes into a simple photo shoot and it really is important to experiment with different designers and styles. My look consisted of a JCrew sweater, Eileen Fisher tank top and Eileen Fisher jeans. I loved it all!

But what was most important about this article was that it was about self-acceptance and having a healthy body image. I love clothes and makeup and jewelry, like most women, but I also believe, truly believe, that beauty comes from within. A healthy lifestyle is key. I exercise every single day, in any way I can. I walk, swim and run. I get outside and MOVE! Being active keeps me sane. It keeps my stress level in check. It gives me confidence and allows me to enjoy my life (and delicious summer cookouts). I don’t obsess over what I eat, I just keep moving.

My Hand to Hold…

…my heart to keep.

My Hand to Hold. My Heart to Keep.

I love these ring bearer bowls from BHLDN. I may have to snag one for a bridal shower gift.


Just a little note to say “Hi!” by one of my favorite scrapbookers, Ann-Marie! Things like this make me wish I was a little more “crafty.” I would make cards ALL THE TIME!

Summer Wedding Season

First wedding of the season and it was a torrential downpour! This photo is completely misleading because it was pouring BUCKETS while these shots were being snapped. I have no idea why it looks so bright and beautiful but we made the best of it and tackled the unpredictable New England weather like champions. My naturally curly hair stayed sleek and straight thanks to a few miracle products (Living Proof’s No Frizz and KMS Flat Out).

Dress Calvin Klein, Silver Bracelet, Shoes BCBG

The wedding was held at the Hotel Marlowe in Cambridge, MA. This was the first time I had ever been to this particular venue and it was gorgeous. It was a good size wedding and the function room felt comfortable and elegant.

I also loved the simplicity of the centerpieces with the simple pink candles scattered across the table.

…and of course, the bride was stunning!


SIDE NOTE: The salad was delicious! It was a goat cheese and raspberry salad with a balsamic vinaigrette. I have never had raspberries on a salad, nor have I ever tried goat cheese (shocking!) and I was so pleasantly surprised by both.

Do you ever discover new things and wonder how you missed out on them in the first place? What new things have you discovered that you now can’t live without?


Shopping in Marblehead

Stopped into a cute little store in Marblehead today during my daily walk and what a delight! The store, Bancroft & Friends, is packed with wonderful pieces (pillows, purses, dishware) all with a nice calming blue, green and purple palette. Her pieces are all handmade and would make amazing wedding gifts. If you aren’t into the nautical theme, she has some beautiful floral pieces as well. I loved the hydrangea platter (above) but was also sort of smitten by the nautical/sea pieces (below). You can also find pieces in her Etsy store.

Summer Napkins

I love this idea for a simple, classic summertime napkin! I found it on Martha Stewart, of course!

Have a wonderful weekend

JCrew Summer Straw Hat

Love this hat. Might have to pick one up at JCrew ASAP. Especially after all the news about the safety of sunblocks. Just FYI, here’s a list of the safest blocks out there.