Friday, January 28, 2011

Flower Power

I've decided someone should gift me with this big, bold, beauty of a flower
so that I can wear it loud and proud on Valentine's Day.
Smashing, wouldn't you say? 
And that darling Emerson is pretty cute, too!
I am thinking of making crepe paper corsages for the holiday as well.
It's never too early to start penning your love letters, friends!
Wishing you all a most magical weekend.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

You Get More with Honey than with Vinegar, and Other Lessons from the Bus

Ever errupt in giggles after you do something kind of silly and awkward, and then feel a tremendous need to admit just how awkward you were to anyone and everyone in a public forum?
Enter, having a blog.
So, last night I pretended to know someone on the bus (who thought they knew me)
because I was too afraid of hurting their feelings if I acknowledged that I did not, 
in fact, have any clue who they were.  
Or worse, see their cheeks blush pink with embarrassment
as they realized that they had waved down a complete stranger.
So instead, I thought the smartest thing to do would be to 'channel' this person they were mistaking me for.
I don't know how I get myself in these situations, but I do.
At one point, I tried to inch my way to the back of the bus
and remove myself from the conversation- I really did.
But, I must graciously thank you, Goddess of Awkward Scenarios,
you arranged for the woman sitting next to the girl on the bus
to get up right as I tried to pop my headphones back in and excuse myself.
Oh, the tangled web you weave!
So there I was, nodding along in conversations about my charming boyfriend,
(don't have one)
and swapping stories about our weekends in Tahoe,
(have yet to go)
giggling about the party a few weeks back,
(pretty sure my best friend was visiting and I most certainly, was not, at a party)
and trying to ask generic, yet slightly personal questions
that might lead me to a clue- an inkling- of who this girl was.
You just moved, right?
(Um, no...)
Sure, I felt uncomfortable... but, wait a tick! This is kind of like a conversational scavenger hunt!
What sentence would lead me to the next clue? What fun fact could I unearth next?
I was just settling into my new persona when it happened.
The realization swept over her face as if she'd seen a ghost.
 She quickly looked down and fidgeted with her phone.
The conversation ceased.
It got quiet.
Crickets, people. Crickets.
My face turned hot and I started racking my brain for something, anything, to talk about.
Why, why,why from the beginning did I not just dismiss her wave with a friendly, "Oh no, I think you have the wrong person?"
After what felt like hours, we approached her stop and as she excused herself to get up,
I hung onto my last piece of pride and squealed, "It was so good  to bump into you again!"
I'll admit it.
I kind of felt like a creep for going along with it.
But, I don't think I'd change my instincts.
I could've coldy stared past her.
But then she'd be wondering all night why the girl she thought she knew, was so icy and mean.
That'd be terrible, people!
So yes, I maintain that you always, always,
get more with honey
than with vinegar.
Even if it leaves you feeling a little batty.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Eat your Greens

I love most leafy greens.
From Boston Bibb and Butter Lettuce, to Mixed Mesclun and Romaine,
my heart is quite smitten.
Even my imaginary pet dog's name is Arugula. 
However, to say I do not care for Kale is, well, being kind.
Swiss Chard, fuggetaboutit.
The bitter stuff is not for moi.
Until I made Kale chips.
Oooh these airy crisp chips are so scrumptious I could eat them by the fistful.
I did actually, this morning.
 And now I fear I will have to buy out the produce section of my gourmet grocer.
They are SO delicious, these healthy little crisps.
Just chop up some kale,
sprinkle with olive oil and salt,
and pop in the over at 300 degrees for about 25 minutes.
I used this recipe as guidance, but really, you cannot mess this up.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Oh, Why Hello Honeysuckle

Pantone's 2011 Color of the Year:
Looks like Claire Danes got it right on the red carpet!
I'm feeling a little smug and on-trend,
 as my apartment is peppered with honeysuckle toned patterns
and variations of turquoisey greens,
 last year's color of the year.
So, go out there and fill your homes with honeysuckle hues!

Buh-Bye Seasonal Depression, Helllo Vitamin D

I am in h-e-a-v-e-n.
It's 70 degrees in San Francisco.
And, if it couldn't get any better,
my agency has been tasked with working from home for the past 2.5 days.
Serendipitously (at least in my opinion)
 pipes burst in our office and sent us all running for the hills, literally.
And ever since, I've had an extra skip in my step and a feeling of glee.
Bye, bye seasonal depression!
Yesterday, I had the chance to be one of those people.
You know, the lucky ones- sunning outside on the sidewalk,
computer in hand and a bottomless cup of coffee?
 I walk by those people in the middle of the day and wonder:
How do they get the luxury of working from a sunny patch of sidewalk?
Well, it was my turn to be the woman of envy,
and boy did it feel delicious. 
I didn't realize just how truly hard up for vitamin D I was until yesterday.
I peeled off my jacket and let the sun soak into my skin for a good hour or so.
I swear, I could smell the scent of my skin tanning and my nose freckling.
I indulged in the beads of sweat forming on my brow.
Even the leathery old man sitting next to me
smoking a cigarette triggered a hazy nostalgia
of beach boardwalks and summer parties.
Pure bliss.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Walking Through Redwoods...

A visit from my best friend this weekend refreshed my spirit and erased all the grey of January.
I am always grateful for guests, and I feel  so proud showing off San Francisco and the special places I’ve only just started to discover out here.
After a late pizza dinner and a quick stop at a friend’s birthday drinks,
we woke on Saturday to clear blue skies and California sunshine.
We headed out to Mt. Talampais and hiked our hearts out. 
Our 8 mile loop took us through forests of moss covered redwoods and sent us skipping over bubbling woodland creeks.
It took us up and over footbridges and under old arched trees.
It was so quiet.
We emerged from the emerald city into the sunlight and up a dirt road that smelled of sage and felt like the desert.
And there we were...
perched over the glittering Pacific.  
It was absolutely magical.
The return trip brought us above the tree line and face to face with stoically straight redwood trunks.  Afterwards, we met a friend and her dog on the lawn of the Pelican Inn (an adorable English Cottage at the foot of Muir Beach) for a well-deserved cocktail at dusk.
After our active, outdoor Saturday,
Sunday was devoted to pure gluttony.
We ate and drank our way through the city, starting with brunch at Bar Tartine and then sampled honey lavender and salted caramel ice cream at Bi-Rite Creamery.
Keeping in the spirit of true tourism,
we acted on the recommendation from a woman at the foot of Dolores Park,
and climbed up to the top of the hill to take in sweeping views of the city.  
We met up with more friends to cheer on the J-E-T-S and then scampered off to an early dinner at Nopa.  
We lingered over every dish, putting our trust in our server and sipped signature cocktails we wouldn’t ordinarily order. 
The conversation matched the cuisine.
That’s the great thing about best friends.
They listen to your worries and give encouragement,  gently nudging you from feeling blue.
They share in your excitement over a new relationship, and cheer on your upcoming adventures.
It was a special weekend, and although we don’t share the same home base, it was a good reminder that true friends and family are never far away.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Thank You, Friday

Collective sigh on three.
I'm so relieved it's Friday. Thank you, Friday.
This whole week felt like an itchy wool sweater against bare skin.
I have a best friend en route to California as I type,
and her visit couldn't be timed more perfectly.
I'm so ready for a giggly weekend with my girlfriend.
It's going to be 66 on Saturday!
Wishing you all eucalyptus scented air and sunshine on your shoulders.
Happy weekend, friends.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

License to Ill.

Flashback to Sixteen!
(Well, make that seventeen in my case.)
I have to take my driver's test tomorrow.
Apparently, you're supposed to get this within 10 days of moving to California.
I'm closer the the 10 month mark.
The geeky thing is,
I'm feeling sort of nervous and sixteen-y about this all over again.
I've got sweaty palms and shaky boots, people!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Tough Day

It's a tough day for my older sister today.
I know things are feeling really jumbled and terribly sad and empty.
And, well.
It's too raw to explain here but...
I really, really,
wish I was just a few stops away on the 6 train tonight.
So we could drink tea, and eat cookies,
 and pet Dinah. 
 And oh how I'd hug you tight, tight, tight.
And maybe,
just for a few hours,
things would feel okay.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Serendipitous Saturday

Feast your eyes on this beauty, dear readers!
I found this table at one of my favorite home decor stores in my neighborhood.
It's kind of tucked away in between a v-e-r-y questionable
Chinese food restaurantand a dry cleaners.
 It was such a serendipitous stop-in for me.
I was waiting for the bus and just popped in to take a peek at the luxurious: and voila!
A peek of red on the tag caught my eagle eye
and sent my neck whip lashing back towards it: sale, sale, sale!
One tiny, unnoticeable crevice at the edge of the table divided the price by half.
All my sweet little trinkets have been waiting for new 'surface area real estate.'
Bachelorette Pad: Almost Complete!

Friday, January 7, 2011

Have a Wonderful Weekend

Three cheers for Friday!
This week actually zipped by, didn't it?
It's c-h-i-l-l-y here in San Francisco, and if it's mitten weather,
I'd rather the sky just open up and sprinkle a little snow dust on us.
I've been crossing things off my New Year's Resolution List left and right.
My dad sent me a note earlier this week, instructing me in a way that only a father could,
to go a little easier on myself.
And so, I took a cue from both Dad, and Dinah the cat,
and allowed myself early nights to bed and instead of a cocktail, 
lots of juices made from leafy greens.
I've embarked on late evening walks;
allowing the crisp, cold air to wake me up after slogging along at work.
I paid off bills and booked upcoming travel.
Heck, I've even taken practice tests so that I can get a license to drive in the great state of California.
This weekend, I plan on leafing through recipes and making a soup on Sunday.
I'll cheer on my beloved blue hens
 and if time allows,
meet some bay area bloggers, whose words inspire me each day.
Wishing you all a weekend full of adventure and grace.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Slide Ranch

I just stumbled upon this website in my rounds on the web.
And...I'm pretty sure I wish I worked here.
Actually, positively sure.
Slide Ranch offers a lot of my favorite things:
Education. Sustainable Living. Animals. Nature.
And some things I could be better with:
Patience. Trust. Calmness.
Oh gosh.
This is all my sister's fault.

On Ice Cream...

My co-worker and I were just playing a favorite lunchtime office game.
It goes something like this:
"Hey Em, whattcha' eating for lunch today?"
"Well, I'm eating this flavorless frozen burrito, but... I'd rather have a milkshake."
-long pause-
"Oh. Yeah. I mean, sometimes people eat ice cream for lunch?"
(And yes, my colleague's response morphed into
an uncomfortable question towards the end of the sentence.)
So naturally, this got me thinking about ice cream nearby,
which led to googling 'best ice cream in San Francisco,'
which led to anger over my looming absence from Bi-Rite Creamery.
Hoping to conduct an ice cream tour of the city with my dad
when my parents come out later this winter.  
That's really all I got today,  friends.

Monday, January 3, 2011

January: The Month of Do-Overs from Last Year.

Resolution Time.
I'm a better baker than I am a cook,
which is puzzling because for some undisclosed reason,
 measuring intimidates the heck out of me
and I'm no good when it comes to precision.
I really love being in the kitchen regardless though, and this year,
at least in the early stages when we're all still brimming with hope and untainted by defeat,
I'm going to try to cook one new recipe every week.
(Fine, every 1-2 weeks.)
I was the lucky recipient of my mom's old Cuisinart this Christmas,
and I boxed that sucker up and sent 'er out west for a second go at purees and soups.
Additionally, I'm going to start reading again.
I'm terribly embarrassed to even admit this, but I only have two books under my belt
since moving to San Francisco.
Let's blame that on being really social and important. Wink.
So, along with the new recipe regime, I' am vowing to read a book every 1-2 weeks as well.
And no, cookbooks won't count- I promise.
Other items of interest that made my New Year's Resolution List:
Getting my stinkin' driver's license.
I can't keep zipping about without a license to drive because er,
one should probably eliminate illegal activities in their life when a new year commences.
Now the more challenging of the bunch,
but also the most meaningful for both mind and body.
I will get back into a regular Bikram routine.
It's so hard to start up again, but once I do I always feeling proud and accomplished.
The first class after a long pause from attendance
makes me so nervous and very self-conscious, but the truth is,
this particular yoga practice is so laser-focused on yourself,
 no one else in the room cares if I lie in Savasana half the time.
Plus, added bonus: I just may end up looking exactly like Christie Turlington.
And yes,
Winter 2011: Emily will put a foot in a ski.
No promises on if I put ski to slope.
Nor will I look like this cute ski bunny from the 1970's...
but I will wear some frosted pink lipstick.
That, my friends, I promise.