A blogger seeking a richer life... in a wasteland called the suburbs... for my family, myself, and anyone who will listen!

Monday, January 31, 2011

Who Me?... No You?... Jimmy Choo!

I feel like rhyming this morning so... Who me?... No you?... Jimmy Choo!
Besides Manolo Blahnik, it's Jimmy Choo!
My favorite shoe designers who create works of art using shoes, have never seen the inside of my closet!
Why is that?
They are out of my budget, that's why!
Boo Hoo Jimmy Choo
I love you... (oh, how corny).
Yesterday, after a shopping marathon, looking for a shoe to match a dress for a special occasion, with hard to match sequins (rectangular), that are kind-of-platinum... not silver, not gold... I came across the almost perfect shoes in Saks.  Why almost perfect you ask, because they cost $750!!!!!!!!... that's why!  I put them on and almost died... like when you're twelve and imagine being a princess... I wanted someone to be my witness to the beauty and perfection of these glittering, tastefully glittering gems.  I called my friend Jill right then, but no answer...  I even thought about buying them and then after wearing them for that special day,  I could rent them out?...
These photos do NOT do them justice...

Just in case you love them too and are considering buying them, although I hate you, they do come in two styles of pumps with the same beautiful color glitter.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Belted!... 2 Ways

Looks what's coming down the runway for Spring 2011... Belts!... around the waist and the neck (chokers I mean)... Lanvin's RTW inspirational collection is just that... inspirational and wearable!...

I'm loving this and I think these looks will translate well, trickling down to very affordable clothing.

Now, to all my friends and readers please leave a comment or two (short and anonymous is fine) each time you read my post.  It let's me know you're out there and shows me your support.

Thanks and Happy Tuesday! 

Monday, January 24, 2011

Old Habits

I know I get stuck in old habits just as well as the next person... it's part of who we are, all those experiences that lead up to now, make us who we are, sometimes no matter how hard we want to change.  Get to the point already right?... nothing heavy, it's just that I sometimes get frustrated when I make a delicious and healthy dinner, something different with a beautiful sauce and hubby breaks out a jar of Saucy Susan (basically duck sauce) and says, "Oh this would be good with it!"... the kids know what's coming when the glare from me is enough to sizzle the entire dinner table into a minuscule pile of ashes... and he then says, "What's wrong with that?"...

For some it's putting ketchup on everything!  For my husband, who grew up eating a lot of chinese food (his mother was a terrible cook), especially as a bachelor, his favorite chinese dish is still Cantonese style Sweet and Sour Pork.  The funny thing (trying to laugh) is that he's a guy who prides himself in healthy eating!!!... he barely eats any red meat, lot's of fish, salads, nuts, and whole grains... old habits die hard, and I guess if that's the worst thing then...
Anyway, I try to keep a sense of humor about it, which is not easy when you are cursed with highly developed taste buds... no joke, I can really tell when a food is thinking about going bad, or stale, or has just a little refrigerator burn and he'll drink sour milk and not realize it!
At least Saucy Susan has some apricot in it.  
Oh, I DO love it when he reads me descriptive articles about the great restaurants of the world... and then we fantasize about flying to them.  Love you honey!
What are your old food habits?  I like rich fatty meats.... there I said it... I do avoid them most of the time, but they taste so good,  especially when I see them being prepared on the Food Network by some of the greatest chefs... or when Anthony Bourdain eats greasy street food it really gets me salivating.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Intensely Romantic

If I was to imagine my fantasy, a most romantic place to spend time with my sweetheart, I couldn't have imagined anything as beautiful as this...
The newly designed Gramercy Park Hotel (NYC) - "An entirely new genre of hotel... Bohemian reinvented for the 21st century with an original combination of styles, with great pieces of furniture and artwork and the extraordinary use of color."

Private key access to Gramercy Park...

Valentine's Day is coming up, but there are anniversaries and birthdays too, any excuse is good enough to just get away without kids and spend some time alone just the two of you... it's important for the relationship and the family to recharge...
 I'm talking to myself as well as you because I don't put enough thought into special time for my husband and I alone... right honey?
We are going away together for the weekend in February and I'm looking forward to it!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Alla Puttanesca

A quick and tasty pasta dish my whole family loves is always very satisfying, like this Linguine alla Puttanesca made from a dried mix straight from Italia via Brooklyn...

Marinella Brand

I purchased it from my local market, Seven Brothers, in East Northport, NY.
The owner recommended it the other day and I'm happy he did.  I'll be going back for more...

Cooks up fast with directions in broken English on the back of the package

Served it with baby cucumbers and Blue Cheese dressing... fast and easy!

Hope you can find it near you!

Friday, January 14, 2011

Shorts in Winter!

The dead of winter and he's wearing shorts!

It's winter and the stores are selling these lacrosse shorts for the kids... they're fashion and the kids want them.
So maybe I'm crazy to let him wear them right?... my car says it's only 19 degrees outside this morning and this is what he's wearing to school.  Granted they blast the heat in school and then they blast the heat on the bus, so maybe it's not that crazy, but it looks crazy!

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Walls of Snow

Everything looks different with THREE foot plus snow banks everywhere I turn while I'm driving... WHITE OUT!  When you're a person who uses visual landmarks to find your way around, even a familiar place, it's a little disorienting.  Instead of a mailbox or shrubs marking a spot,  eyeing massive white walls in their stead has thrown me off causing me to miss turns... Have you experienced this or not?
What perturbed me this morning were not the walls of snow but my forgetful number# 2 son.  When we were turning into the school parking lot this this morning at 6:58 (a 12 minute ride) for jazz band practice my son says, "Oh no mom, I forgot my backpack, drumsticks and music.  I'm really sorry!".  As I felt the heat rising up my neck I look over only to see that he is equipped with his headphones and ipod, that he doesn't forget... EVER!
Sucker that I am, I turned around and made another round trip along the route that I already so detest every Tuesday and Thursday morning... so you see how my morning went.  Oh, and at least this morning I was dressed, not like some mornings when I throw on a coat over my pajamas.  Although I had no makeup on (scary) and had to bring the backpack into the office, no one was there so I labeled it, put it on the shelf for pick up and left... phew!
So how was your morning?

Monday, January 10, 2011

A.P. Redesign!

photo Erik Jacobs; illustration Stephen Webster

Now that my high school freshman is looking at taking AP courses, I've suddenly been thrown into the world of AP courses trying to quickly educate myself about the in's and out's or better the pro's and con's of such higher education.
My son got a letter recommending him for AP Art History and when I asked around about it I was disappointed to hear about the tremendous amount of memorization involved in the course.
So when I picked up the NY Times this weekend, my disappointment turned to optimism for the future of my kids' educations.
The NY Times article, "Rethinking A.P.", says that the A.P. College Board is changing the courses for the better, making the courses more about critical thinking and less about memorization.  They will start rolling out the first revamped courses starting in 2012-2013 "Major revisions to physics, chemistry, European History world history and art history will follow, with the hope of being ready for exams in 2014 or 2015.

Erik Jacobs for the NY Times

While the number of students taking the A.P. Biology test has doubled since 1997 the median scores have dropped to 2's and 1's which equates to C's and failing grades!

I'm encouraged about these overdue changes... Finally!!!

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Pasta Tonnato (Tuna): a Favorite!

I haven't posted a food blog in awhile so here's one of my favorite dishes and healthy too... a great away to start the New Year...
Pasta Tonnato or Tuna Pasta... a delicious and economical dinner which I made even more healthy for myself by adding string beans and keeping the pasta to a minimum.  One of my kids loves this dish with the string beans or broccoli on the side, the other just doesn't even like the smell of tuna from afar!
I always keep a few jars of this lovely stuff on hand, any good Italian tuna will do, as well as a jar of the nonpareil (little) capers...

2 cans of Italian tuna
1 onion chopped 
extra virgin olive oil
nonpareil capers
flat leaf parsley
salt and pepper
butter (for the string beans)
optional: grated parmesan reggiano cheese
optional: for a side or with the pasta steam fresh string beans (about a 1/2 pound)

Cook your pasta, rigatoni, spaghetti, whatever you have around, al dente (firm) drain and toss with enough olive oil so it doesn't stick together and put aside.  While pasta is cooking, in a saute pan, put a few tablespoons of olive oil and saute a small onion on medium heat until it's soft and translucent not brown.  Add the cans of tuna with their oil to the pan along with about 11/2 tablespoons of drained capers and mix breaking apart the tuna.  Chop the parsley fine and add a tablespoonful to the pan reserving some to add just before serving. Add  the pasta to the tuna mixture in the pan and additional olive oil if needed and toss until evenly coated.  Add salt and pepper to taste. Add parley and serve.
I steamed the string beans in the microwave until just soft for about 6 minutes and added a little butter to coat. Serve as a side to the pasta or as I did on top... it delicious!
Optional: add grated parmesan cheese to taste.   

I'll often make this dish in a pinch and many times without the parsley when I have not planned anything for dinner.

Bon appetite!

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Shoe Sale

I always come back to shoes and bags... can't help it... it makes every outfit and speaks volumes about the person.  I once read a book written by an anthropologist discussing different types of men and the telltale signs of each type...one way was by the shoes they wear.
Need Supply, a denim store in Virginia, and a great online shop has some terrific shoes on sale (some sizes not available)great for spring and I can't help but dream about spring with these cold temps upon us...



Let me know which one is your favorite... love to get your comments!

Monday, January 3, 2011

Kid Glam

I'm usually talking about boy clothes when it comes to the kids, because I have boys, but I just love looking at the girls all dressed up.  So when I saw this Crew Cuts catalogue from J. Crew I wished my kids were size 14 and under again!...

Now my boys are wearing 18's so they're sometimes in the boys (when i can find it) and sometimes in the men's department... sort of in between...

I love the tulle skirts and T's combo

Their ballet flats are terrific...

Happy New Year... 1/3/11... I need practice writing 2011!