Ah, destination weddings. What used to be a coveted booze-filled weekend away with friends in your twenties, soon turns into something less glam when you’re 33, secretly nine weeks pregnant and suffering from the most horrific morning (read: all-day) sickness ever. However, I am pleased to report my nausea temporarily subsided as soon as I stepped foot on the rocky shores of Monhegan Island, Maine. Monhegan is a car-free, forested, artist haven located about 10 miles off the coast. The bride’s family has owned property on the island for decades and it was the perfect backdrop to a chic, relaxed, Northeastern summer wedding.
Jordan and I recently celebrated our first wedding anniversary. Our inaugural year together as a married couple has been nothing short of amazing. We’ve really found our groove and appreciate our relationship now more than ever. In order to celebrate we decided to take a weekend upstate in The Catskills, dog in tow.
Personally, I love a good hotel and usually really dislike staying in other people’s space. I feel like a vacation should be relaxing without having to worry about overstaying your welcome, or when the sheets were last laundered. However, hotel options upstate are lacking and after a major scrub of Airbnb (pastel carpeting and flowered comforters immediately excluded) the perfect mid-century modern oasis in the mountains was found. The Martin House was clean, welcoming and had the most amazing grounds, including a firepit surrounded by fire engine red adirondack chairs. The hosts even left us a chilled bottle of prosecco to celebrate. Cheers to the best first year and clean linens!
Due to the impending summer season, I have begrudgingly cut out carbs from my diet. I’ve managed to avoid all bread baskets and pasta for the past month. However, my most missed indulgence is definitely NYC pizza. I didn’t want to miss out on the monthly ritual where Jordan and I finish off a whole pie in front of reality TV. So, I improvised with a cauliflower crust pizza. Making fun of JoJo and the bachelor contestants was still enjoyable, but now with zero carb guilt.
This month has been nonstop. Between my work schedule, apartment hunting and social engagements, I haven’t had much time to post. Regardless, it’s great to be back on the world wide web. I’m sure the internet was weeping at the thought of another lost blogger. Now dry those eyes.
Every time Jordan and I are in Williamsburg we purposely walk by Mast Brothers on North 3rd Street. The sweet smell of chocolate permeates the air, challenging you not to go inside. Since our first trip several years ago, we’ve accrued a rather large selection of their chocolate bars. Each variety has a carefully appointed, stylish, wallpaper-quality wrapper that is almost as good as the product itself. Currently I’m working on their Sea Salt bar and cannot enter the kitchen without stealing a square.
Recently my grandmother turned 85. To celebrate her birthday, she treated my entire extended family to a trip to Punta Cana in the Dominican Republic. There are about twenty of us, so coordinating everyone’s schedules was a bit difficult – but in the end, the miles-long back and forth e-mail chain was worth it. The time we spent together laughing, eating and lounging was extremely special; the perfect way to celebrate the family matriarch, our Nanny.
Making my own granola always seemed like a bit much. Who really does that? I mean, I don’t own clogs or actually enjoy hiking. I confess that I do own Birkenstocks, but they are absolutely having a come back. Despite my lack of outdoorsiness – I decided to give making my own a try. The recipe turned out to be super easy, delicious and versatile. You can mix in dried fruit or chocolate to enhance the sweetness a bit. The recipe also allows you to substitute different types of nuts depending on what you have available. Maybe this whole granola thing has me rethinking clogs? J to the K.
If I could only eat one type of cuisine for the rest of my life, I would surely pick Mexican. Whenever we are debating take out, I always default to our local Mexican restaurant on Seamless (Sabor a Mexico shout out!). In order to keep the fiesta going at home, I recently made the most delicious beer-marinated steak tacos. The marinade is extremely easy to put together and really penetrates the meat. You need to let the steak marinate for a couple of hours in the fridge, so this recipe does require some foresight, but it’s totally worth the extra prep time.
Cold pressed juices on tap? Yes please! I sampled several offerings from the Vitality Bar at the new Naturopathica Spa in Chelsea. My friend Lauren, a beauty guru and the marketing manager at Naturopathica, was kind enough to give me a tour of the new space. New York is a city where any manicurist with a kitchen timer and portable massage chair can call themselves a spa. So it was amazing to find myself in a space that truly pays homage to the art of wellness and relaxation.
Sometimes preparing a protein for an entree salad seems like such a difficult step. Why not forget the salad part and just eat this roasted chicken immediately? I oftentimes agree, but recently held out in order to prepare the most delicious salmon salad with cornbread croutons.
All of the ingredients come together in a savory, wholesome way and it’s worth the 8 minute roasting time. I realize that making the salmon is already a big step, so baking cornbread may seem out of the question. That being said you can skip the cornbread croutons or substitute store-bought ones. Jordan had made cornbread for chili the previous day, and I decided to recycle it in this salad.
Jordan and I were both off the entire first week of January and did a lot of lazing around to ring in the New Year. We did manage to get in a couple of good meals, watch two seasons of The Affair and reorganize our closets (my idea!). It feels good to get back to work but I’m starting to miss my DVR.