Monthly Archives: April 2012

@ Sam’s

The last few days have been downright beautiful here in Boston.  The air has been hot, the sun’s been shining, and David and I have been enjoying lots of walks and open-air lunches. One of the challenges of a beautiful weekend in Boston is to find a delicious meal at a restaurant with a patio that isn’t totally crowded, but lucky for us we know one of the best kept venues in the city, Sam’s.  Located on the top floor of Louis, a small and beautifully curated local department store, Sam’s has a roomy deck and one of the best views of the Boston skyline.  Contrary to what you may think about the fusion of high fashion and food, the portions at Sam’s are always generous and the vibe is comfortable and casual.  It’s always been one of my favorite lunch spots in town and it’s the perfect place to watch the sun set whilst enjoying a crisp glass of champagne.

To avoid the chaos surrounding yesterday’s marathon, David and I decided to keep to the outskirts of the city and spent a couple hours basking in the sunshine on Sam’s deck.  My drink of choice was a perfectly proportioned Aperol Spritz which looked just as refreshing as it tasted and made my heart ache for Italy.  It was a perfect afternoon spent daydreaming in the sunshine with the man I love. 

Where We Come From, Where We’ve Been

I’ve been melancholy all day, so indulge me as I get this out of my system.  (Yes, this is a scheduled post.  Sue me.)

At the recommendation of a friend, I decided to watch Young Adult on my day off.  I know it’s not kosher to admit, but I’m not a huge fan of Juno.  That aside, I’ve remained intrigued by Diablo Cody for a number of reasons, but mostly because she’s super smart, was a stripper, lived in* Minnesota, and, like me**, made it out.

Before I sound like a total asshole, let me get set this straight: I love Minnesota.  No, wait- I love the Twin Cities.  Minneapolis and St. Paul are like secret pockets of super authenticity that the rest of the country is unfortunately ignorant to.  The Twin Cities are home to some of the most charming live music venues, theaters, boutiques and restaurants in all of America, but outside the Twin Cities I find Minnesota to be, well, a little too quaint conformist beige.  Every time I’m back I’m accosted by long vowels that drag like deflated balloons and small-minded chit-chat that makes bile rise in my throat.  Real life example: “Ooooh, sooo you’ve gone and moved to a biiig city now dinch’ya? How’s life out there in Bahhhstiiiin?” And though I love Minnesota and hold so many of its fine inhabitants dear to my heart, I just cannot tolerate that accent, the wardrobe, and the passive aggression that so many people use to mask their own insecurities and imperfections.  Minnesota nice?  You betch’ya it’s real, but I much prefer the very forward aggression of the East Coast.

Though I definitely have my complaints about Boston, I’ve loved living here***- I still love living here!- and I’m a little bit heartbroken about leaving.  This town has taught me how to stand on my own two feet, even when I only have $5 in my bank account and am drunk on cheap brandy.  This town has introduced me to some of my best friends, most encouraging mentors, and the love of my life.  I’ve confronted obstacles, I’ve struggled, and I’ve made out okay, but despite my amazing life here, I still itch for a new adventure and look forward to moving to the UK as I once looked forward to moving out of the Midwest.

After living in England for a while, I know people in Minnesota will put on their worst English accents as say “Ooooh, sooo you’ve gone and moved to Jolly Ole London Town now dinch’ya?” and really it will all be the same.  No matter where I live, I will always be looking forward to something, somewhere, else, but no matter where I am, I will always be from Minnesota, and I’m proud to carry parts of it with me.

It’s funny to think that when I’m in the UK I’ll be exotic- The American Girl!  Just as we become extra chummy with British people we meet on our turf, I know some English people will find me equally as captivating because of my otherness.  This is both flattering and alarming.   It takes a lot of patience and a lot of grace to start over and build from scratch, but I’m looking forward to the challenge and am thrilled to have David by my side this time.

And now I’m going to listen to Mason Jennings for the rest of the night because he speaks to my Minnesotan soul.  XOX

*Yes, I know Diablo Cody is from Chicago.
**Also like me she’s 5′ 51/2″, isn’t afraid of red lipstick, and usually has brown hair.
*** This may have something to do with the fact that the vast majority of my friends are not from Massachusetts and therefore don’t sound or behave like the townie maniac characters from the film I mention in this post.   (Yes, people like that do exist in Massachusetts and yes, it is terrifying.)

Birthing Stories

One of my friends has the best story ever.  Like, a soap-worthy story that just doesn’t happen to people in real life.  Here’s the short version:
Two weeks ago, my friend’s sister went into labor at 4:00 AM.  She woke up my friend, who we’ll call Nancy (because that’s her name) saying, “OHMYGODI’MGOINGINTOLABORANDNEEDYOUTODRIVEMETOTHEHOSPITALRIGHT NOW!” Nancy super quickly got out of bed, got light-headed and passed out.  After being shaken awake, she and her sister got into the car and drove to the hospital.
Along the way, her sister said “THISBABYISCOMINGRIGHTNOW,PULLOVER!” Nancy didn’t believe her at first but before either of them could say Jiminy Cricket the baby was crowning and Nancy’s sister was making scary labor noises.  Nancy pulled over, somehow maneuvered herself between her sister’s legs, and helped deliver the child on the side of the road.  Not only did she play the starring role in one of the most bad-ass birthing stories of all time, she also sustained a super awesome black eye (which she unknowingly got when she passed out/face-planted onto her hardwood floor), and is still in the process of getting the baby juice out of her car’s upholstery.  Nancy, you’re the coolest!

The story, in its entirety, is amazing.  Last Saturday some of my lady friends got together and I took pictures of their reactions to this crazy/gross/awesome tale.  There’s nothing like childbirth to get us squirming!  And yes, tequila shots were involved.

Candles, to set the tone. 
Tequila shots to lubricate the telling of the story.
Friends sitting at attention, ready to listen to all the gory details.
 The story-teller starts her tale…
And we start squirming! Baby juices are no joke, folks!  
Our beautiful hostess covers her mouth, unsure if she is going to laugh hysterically or projectile vomit. 
We hold ourselves (and our beers) tightly as the details ooze. 
Nancy tells us that she caught the baby like a football… all of us are terrified and suddenly feel as if we need to run to the nearest sink and wash our hands. 
Our pregnant friend doesn’t know what to do… she pulls her shirt up and starts rubbing her belly for luck.  In her mind she prays to God that she delivers her babe in a normal place, ideally a hospital. 
Then the story is over and we all eat cupcakes, take our birth control pills, and drink more tequila.

p.s. Nancy’s sister had a beautiful, healthy baby and Nancy’s black eye is almost completely healed.

It’s Official

My UPS delivery person doesn’t know how to ring my doorbell.  As a result, my Slum Castle mailbox is often plastered with ‘We Missed You’ notifications and today was one of those special days.  Because I didn’t want to risk having the delivery person miss me ad infinitum, I decided to take matters into my own hands and pick-up my package from the UPS delivery center.  Dear reader, never ever ever attempt to do this if you can avoid it.  It took me a solid hour in a line of mouth-breathers to get the package in my hands.  But in the end it was worth it and I’m proud to announce that this passport now holds a visa which will allow me permanent entry into the UK. 

You guys, it’s really happening!  I am moving to England.  Eeeeeeeeeeek!

And sometime in the next month, I promise to write a little guide about the visa application process.  It’s not difficult, per ce, but it certainly is frustrating and I have some tips to help you efficiently and quickly get your application finished and on its way to the NYC approval center. 

Cheerio!  (ohmygoshohmygoshohmygosh!)

@ Posto

On nights when David and I are tired and want a simple bite to eat and a glass of wine but don’t want to prepare anything ourselves, we head to Posto.  The food is delicious (and fast) and the atmosphere is relaxed without being too comfortable (you’ll probably never see someone hanging out at the bar  for hours, getting wasted).  Posto is a place we love to bring friends for a quiet meal, a place to slip in-and-out of on a week night, and the place where David and I got engaged (I think the date was November 14th..?).  To us, it’s much more than a fabulous pizzeria with a good wine selection, it’s the bosom we want to snuggle into after a long, difficult day and the arms we want to hold us as it whispers in our ear, everything is going to be okay.  

 P.S. Their chili oil is ahhhhhmazing.  Not as ahhhhhhhhhmazing as mine, but pretty damn close.

Goodbye Worldly Possessions

I’m selling stuff on Craigslist for the first time ever and even though I blew my mom off on the phone when she told me to be careful with the people I deal with, I’m still convinced that the next buyer is actually going to be a Craigslist killer.  This is exacerbated by the fact that everyone who has contacted me has a totally ludicrous email address, fails to grasp any understanding of email composition or grammar, and doesn’t seem to have a name.  Like, who are these people trolling CL for old guitars and filing cabinets anyway?  But don’t worry, mom, I’m making David answer the door.

Anyone have any awesome or weird Craigslist stories?  I think it’s fascinating that people want to buy my old stuff… fascinating, but also really awesome. 

This Counts as my Tuesday Post

  1. David’s sons usually take pictures that are far more interesting than mine. 
  2.  When David is away on business, as he is currently, I often spend my time at home watching movies that we’ve put off watching.  Tonight, I watched The Fighter.  You guys, that movie is exactly why I feel okay about  moving out of Massachusetts.  That and the fact that I can never spell Massachusetts right on the first try (or the second).
  3. The Redcoat returns tomorrow.  I can’t even tell you how tired I am of snuggling with Le Chat.  

Urban Survival

I’m currently playing a game of Urban Survival* and was forced to create this adorable toast torte with local honey and fresh blueberries for breakfast yesterday (I know, woe is me).  I usually eat a banana with oats and almond milk, but David bought whack-a-doodle things at the grocery store this week and I’m having to actually cook to feed myself most meals.   It’s amazing how much deliciousness you can whip up in a kitchen when you push yourself to try things outside your normal food routine (for me that means turning on the stove).  So here I am, being domestic and making lots of delicious things, but none as beautiful as my toast torte. 

*Urban Survival is a game I invented in college when I got snowed-in right before I was supposed to fly home for Christmas.  If you remember back to college, you will probably recall the painstaking process of getting rid of all your perishable food before you and your roommates went away for winter vacation.  Our apartment’s refrigerator was essentially bare and I spent three days living off whatever bizarre food was laying around my little Beacon Hill kitchen.   I drank a lot of gin in those three days and ate an astounding number of expired Pop Tarts and stale Halloween candy.  But I survived, and that’s what’s important.  

The Plan, Sort Of

I’ve alluded to it a lot in my posts, but I’ve spent an extra-large amount of time recently thinking about The Future, and just as I have Great Plans for my life, I also have Great Plans for this blog.  Today I wanted to share a couple ideas with you that I’m nurturing.  No matter how much love and care I give each idea, I know all of them won’t come to fruition, and I also recognize that many of them will end up being a completely different idea from what I write below.  Nonetheless, I’m an open book and wanted to share what I’m thinking.

If you’re new to this blog, you should know that I work as the Brand Manager for a local hair salon.  Over the last few years I’ve learned an invaluable amount about running a successful and profitable (they’re not necessarily the same, y’all) small business, and what to do and not to do to allow it to grow and move forward.
I’ve also learned a lot about authenticity.  As an artist of sorts, I’m naturally drawn to honesty, creative expression, and authenticity.  When my clients come into the salon, I want them to know I care because I do. When I was in Corporate Land last week, I shared with a few female employees why I love my job, and I want to share it now with you: I love what I do because it allows me to exist in a world where the rules don’t apply.  Every day I meet new people- from Nobel Prize winners to famous artists, nerdy engineering students to stylist gurus and everything in between.  When you work in the hair industry, you’re a part of your clients’ most important occasions- we see them on the morning of their weddings, on the day of their child’s first hair cut, and before big dates or parties.  We’ve seen clients get divorced, we’ve gone wig shopping with clients going through chemo, and we’ve been there for their first haircut after their hair grows back.  My industry is a people industry, and I’m honored every day to know so many amazing people and think that possibly I’ve impacted their life in a positive way.

What’s become apparent to me when thinking about my move is that I still want to communicate on a daily basis with a wide verity of people.  I don’t want to see the same co-workers every day, instead I want a number of clients who I can inspire to grow and who will, in turn, inspire me.  I want to help people authentically and creatively market themselves so they can connect with their own clients in a meaningful and honest way.  When I move to the UK, I want to reach out to small businesses and help them develop their story so they can be the best brand they’re able to be.

That’s all.  I just want to help people help themselves, and together I want to make the world a more beautiful place.