Monday, February 28, 2011

Midwinter break

Today was my first day back at school after a luxuriously lazy midwinter break. I usually go away during this time (Arizona or Rochester in past years), but attempted to save some dough by staying local. Not sure that happened, but I sure enjoyed myself. Here are some of the highlights:

  • Hit up the Cooper Hewitt Design Museum and was totally consumed by the Van Cleef and Arpel exhibit. No cameras allowed (and I actually obliged... didn't want to risk the confrontation). Great combination of stunning pieces of jewelry, interesting videos about the history of the Van Cleef and Arpel families in 1920s NYC and the process of setting stones, and creative, thoughtful layout and design of the exhibit. I was high on adrenaline, diamonds and lust all day. 
  • Made fake flower arrangements from the fake flower store in Korea town. Overwhelming, hilarious and great for brewing ideas.
Welcome to Koreatown
  • Attended the matinee showing of Somewhere by myself at the Angelica Film Center (there are way more people flying solo at the indie theater than your regular theater... New Yorkers in leather jackets, cat ladies with hair that dangles over the back of the seat). The movie was not amazing, but I loved Elle Fanning. 
  • Watched loads of TV from my bed. XOXO Modern Family and Mad Men. 
  • Took my new bike out for a spin. It is so light and fast, I can't wait till my clip less pedals arrive! I also love zipping around town, crouched over my spiffy handle bars w/ my spandex clad derriere up in the air ;) Makes me feel like some sort of superhero/lady gaga on wheels.  
  • Painted a pot for our apartment farm. Zach is the head of this operation. I'm just making sure the color scheme works.
Can you spot the fake one? Humor me and say no.
Habanero peppers, Cherry tomatos, yellow peppers and basil
  • To wrap up a great week, we spent the weekend w/ Liz and Paul! Liz commented on a previous post that she wanted to go to wd-50 when we went, so we made that happen on Friday night and it was a wild tastebud extravaganza. We speed dated w/ everyone's plates at the table. Take a bite, get to know you, rotate clockwise. Repeat. They stayed for the 'Cuse game on Saturday and of course some Chinatown dumplings to top off the 24 hour spree of consuming delicious food and libations.
Wafer cracker things at wd-5O

I also spent quite a bit of quality time with Harriet.
Though, I guess when I start dressing up the cat, it is time to go back to work. 

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Sweethearts don't even taste good

gag me.

It is now 10 days past Valentine's day and Rite Aid has finally trashed their Russell Stover overstock. That's a good thing. I don't like Valentine's day. It makes me feel weird. Here, be romantic. Now. Like something red-plastic-lacy-frilled-chocolate-covered-store-bought "special romance" should be happening. Just because it's Valentine's Day.

This V-day, I was sick with a flu-like plague and Zach was too. It was the perfect excuse not to participate. I was totally relieved when we moved our dinner reservation to the following Saturday and decided to drink OJ and watch the 'Cuse game on the computer. Delightfully lame and so appropriate for two sickies.

I like special things. I just don't like doing them when everyone else is doing them. It makes them less special. I like bike rides and picnics. I like Whole Foods dates w/ the an exciting recipe in hand. Or getting gussied up and going out for cocktails at a new spot. Or even better, when we scope out a new restaurant and finally get to try it, which is exactly what we did on Saturday at Falai.

We sprung for the tasting menu and wine pairings. The dining experience was incredible. It felt as if the chef and staff were showing off (and isn't that how it should always feel?) Starting with an amuse bouche and a sampling of a potential menu item (pici pasta w/ mushrooms and truffle oil) we moved through a foamy marscapone, decadent ricotta flan, my first sweetbreads experiment (I got over the whole brains thing. We eat legs and butts, why not brains?), and absolutely perfect pork w/ pears, savoring bites and swapping swigs of vino with each passing course. The wine pairings were specific to the dishes in front of us- Zach's glasses tended to be white (his dishes were lighter, seafood, cheeses) and mine red. I somehow managed 3 different types of meat in one evening (sweetbreads- from what? no idea, kittens maybe... boar and pork) Om nom. cavewoman. more barbera d'alba please! Before dessert we had a palate cleanser course of a mini macaroon, mint ice cream and candied ginger. Delicious, refreshing, and ready for profiteroles!

Profiteroles w/ cardamom & orange rind. MmmMMm
We had an evening that was exciting, experimental, and special. There were no sugary sweet romantic pretenses; it just happened. We also made a deal not to celebrate Vday on Vday, but to have a baller date in February. Stupid? Maybe, but that's the way, uh huh, uh huh I like it

P.S. Thanks Pat & Lydia :)

Sunday, February 13, 2011


Today has been super productive and chock full of activities. Oh, how I love activities!

Does going to Whole Foods count as an activity? If so, thats one... Zach and I also went to our first fashion show, played dress up at Moscot, brewed beer (him), made cookies (me), and I finished up some jewelry projects that I've been working on.

Susanna Rae Fall/Winter 2011 Collection
Zach's friend's girlfriend is Susanne Rae, a designer from Brooklyn, so we had the pleasure of going to her Fall/Winter 2011 show at Lincoln Center. Woweee! Fancy fancy. Great people watching, photogs, a live band, anorexic models, and gorgeous clothes. Why are fashion shows not a regular part of my life? The theme was kind of victorian gone grunge and the gowns w/ open and racer backs and heavy on the trim were really what got me. I may have fallen in love with one white gown in particular.

Plunging V back and lots of fringe.
Let's just call it mine. 
Fashion shows are definitely something I need to do more of. How is it that I'm 26 and just getting to my first one, while this precious little munchkin is already in glittery sneaks and filming the show on an iPhone? P.S. I took the pic when her mom wasn't looking. Like a creep. 

This kid is going to do big things in life. 
Tonight we got busy with some role playing. As brewmaster and jeweler ;) I'd like to say I helped, but it was mostly Zach working on a batch of IPA, while I finished up a long overdue ring and tie pin. 

IPA grains

Brewmaster Zach

The grey and white one is the one I just finished.

I used Silver Black to oxidize the ring before setting the stone.
Brings a little funky-punky edge to it. 

Tie pin


Happy Valentine's Day!
(doodled in silver shavings)

Wednesday, February 9, 2011


After taking a month long hiatus from making jewelry, I am back at it. My two current projects are a tie pin and a ring. I'll post pics when I finish them. While I may have been inactive, I found to my surprise that my materials have been rather active. My acid bath crystalized and made a cool crystal frisbee thing.

Acid bath in my crockpot little dipper
 I heated up the crock pot and was able to pry out the frisbee, which doesn't look as cool and sparkly as it is in real life.

Oxidized metal is so cool. Perfect ROY G BIV around the edge
of the bezel.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Idle hands make things funny

I've said it before and I'll say it again, I love worthwhile vandalism and graffiti. If it improves the situation, by all means, vandalize away.


Ice, Ice, Baby
Boy oh boy, the past two weeks have just been chock full of winter weather status updates and whining. More than usual, I think. I am a total culprit of the whining. My world is wet, cold, and gray. It doesn't help that there has been the chance of a snow day almost every week for the past month, so I've been trying to manage that spike in adrenaline/excitement and the inevitable disappointment when I check the Department of Ed website one last time before begrudgingly pouring the hot water into the coffee filter. 

It is harder to whip out the phone or camera when it is violently precipitating, but I've managed to snap a few pictures here and there. They paint a pretty funny (though not funny, haha) picture of NYC in the winter. I think they also explain why we wear black, why Spa Week and Restaurant Week were invented and their strategic midwinter timing. 

...and we shall call this still life Survival, abandoned.
Materials: steel, snow, booze, kryptonite, fire hose

Ice Age 4

6:20 am
Good morning to you too, machine guns at City Hall 

Good idea, just toss your bike tire. Not like you'll
be needing it any time soon.

Feeling down? Need a coffin? I know a guy in Gowanus...

Segue off of the coffin picture... I can't say that I've totally hated the weather. I find it's easier to get work done when it is nasty outside. The past few weeks have been super productive at work, my bed time has been delightfully early, and I have beef stew on the agenda for tomorrow. Somewhere in this mess, there is goodness to be found. Just not outside.


The dental floss like pull string that hangs from my closet light broke last week. Good thing I have a robust craft box and could live out my daydream/doodles of having a cluster of chandelier crystals hanging in my closet. (I guess the real dream is a chandelier in my closet, but let's not get carried away here.) With a little grosgrain ribbon, some chandelier crystals, brass wire and pliers, I whipped up a new pull string without leaving my apt. 

Next up, paint over those ugly ass yellow/beige walls with a color that POPS!