Monday, September 29, 2014

A reason to go to France

Not that I ever need one, but it seems like it would be worth a plane flight to see this "Sleepy Chick" (Poussin Endormi) in Nantes, right? It's so cute—especially the big belly and beakYou can find this larger-than-life topiary tucked away in Le Jardin des Plantes, one of the oldest and largest botanical gardens in France. The bird was designed by children's author and illustrator Claude Ponti

PS: How sweet is the oversized alarm clock that's there to wake him up? Love it!

(Image 1 and 2)

Friday, September 26, 2014

The weekend is here!

Happy weekend, my darling readers! What do you have planned for the next couple of days off? It's a busy weekend for me: Matt's sister and brother-in-law are in town. They've never been to NYC before in the fall, so we can't wait to show them why this is the best time of year ever here. :) Here, to get your weekend started right, a few happy posts from around the web:

Discover your perfect celeb match in another life. (I got Cary Grant!)

Tips for living like a French girl in NYC.

SJP getting coffee.

Love this pretty floral dress.

Blueberry hand pies. How cute!

Lena Dunham gives great advice. (via Joanna)

The cutest apple picking day trip.

What I'm reading next.

...and speaking of which, have you read this?

Another perk of fall: Dahlia season!

(Image via Twitpic)

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Get out of town

A bit of last minute decision, but I just booked tickets to visit my little sis in California in a few weeks. Yay! I'm going for seven days and I can't wait. She lives an hour from LA in Irvine, but we're looking forward to doing some exploring and checking out some new (and car-accessible!) areas nearby. 
At the very least, we definitely have plans to soak up some sunshine at Newport and Laguna Beaches, both about a 10-15 minute drive from her place. :)

So, now I need your help: What are your favorite things to do in and around LA? 

PS: What we did on my visit last year; and on another visit before that (here and here). 

(Image 1, 2, 3)

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

7 people I follow on Instagram

I'll admit it: I spend a lot of minutes on Instagram (you can follow me here!). But the truth is, I feel so inspired there! There are so many gorgeous pics of travels and art and food and fashion and fun that I can't stop tap, tap, tapping whenever I go on. So, I thought I'd share a list of seven people whose pics and captions I can't get enough of right now. Sound good? Oh—and at the end of this post, I want to hear from you: Who do you love on Instagram? Go!

First up, Haven's Kitchen. Have you been to this culinary school in Chelsea? It also doubles as a café and event space—I love it! The last time I went in, I spent a little bit too much on tea—but they stock the best kind!
January Jones is another favorite of mine. She's funny, quirky, and posts stunning fashion pics. Oh, and dashing pics of Jon Hamm occasionally show up. :)
I'd do almost anything to get a sneak peek at the designs Rifle Paper Co. artist Anna Bond is working on. That's why I adore her Instagram account: She always gives her followers a glimpse of her upcoming designs. Even better, a look at her artful workspace. Talk about a dream job!
For a laugh, I can always count on Jessica Seinfeld, wife of Jerry. Seriously, I live in awe of her talent for humor—definitely a power duo! Another part of what makes her awesome: She's merciless about social media bullies. Funny and classy? Total package.
Oh, Paris. Or I should say: Paris in Four Months. This delightful and colorful feed from French blogger Carin Olsson makes me miss this city day in and day out. Can't you just picture yourself sipping un café under the awning at Les Chimeres as the rain comes down? Le sigh. :)
I'm a huge fan of photographer Max Wanger and am constantly trolling his professional website fantasizing about art I want to buy for my apartment. His Instagram account? A total bonus. Especially when you get a glimpse of vacations, like this trip with his family to Hawaii. Adorable. 
Something sweet for the finish: I love the artistry of Betsy Thorleifson's pretty cakes, especially this ombré design. Stunning, right? Her weekly pics of birthday, wedding, and special occasion confections from her bakery Nine Cakes are works of art. 

Now, you go: Who do you love on Instagram?

(Image 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 and 7)

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Coat shopping

This fall, I've been trying to very carefully think about the wardrobe upgrades I need to make. Sometimes, I can be a bit of an impulse shopper with clothing—which is good and bad. The good part is that it's smart to buy a piece that fits well when you find it. The bad part is that I end up not totally thinking through what I already own and the pieces I need to enhance certain blouses, skirts, pants and dresses. Am I the only one with this issue?

So, this time around, I'm trying to shop smart. I need a new fall coat. And to put the pressure on, over the summer, I tossed the gorgeous, thread-bare one from Ann Taylor that I've owned for almost 10 years. (Trust me, it was a classic!) I've ordered two options to try: The royal blue one above—coincidentally, also from Ann Taylor—and this soft pink one from Lucy Paris.

Early thoughts? Would love to know if there's one you love more!

(Image 1, 2)

Monday, September 22, 2014

Jeff Goldblum + Pink Martini

Last week, I got my fill of arts and culture in New York, first with a chance to see Jeff Goldblum and his band, the Mildred Snitzer Orchestra, at the Carlyle Hotel, and then later in the week, with Pink Martini at the Beacon Theatre on the Upper West Side. 

For Goldblum, this show marked his New York debut (he plays fairly regularly in LA at Rockwell Table & Stage)—and what a performance. The night I was there, he arrived 30 minutes early on stage to joke and banter with the crowd, quizzing his audience on the best Woody Allen films and laughing while teaching the art of heckling. But his talent for piano and singing caused the whole audience to stop their laughter and listen: His voice is dreamy and he has perfect pitch. I fell in love with this tune, called Stella by Starlight.

Two days later, I was at the Beacon, enjoying the world-class sounds of Pink Martini, a group I've followed since being introduced to them at a dinner party in Boston, nearly a decade ago. The host told me Pink Martini albums were his go-to dinner party tunes. I was hooked! Their show in New York was, as always, a treat, made even better by special guests like the Von Trapp grandchildren, who now tour with the band. My favorite song is still Sympathique, a hit from their debut CD back in 1997.

Are you hearing any good music this fall in New York?

(Image 1, 2, and 3)

Friday, September 12, 2014

The weekend is here!

Happy Friday, my darling readers! What do you have planned for the weekend? I'm headed out of town to see family and celebrate my parents 40th wedding anniversary. Four. decades. Amazing, right? :) Here, to get your weekend started right, a few happy posts from around the web:

I don't care if you've already seen it. I'm sharing it again. 

My first massage. Hilarious.

Simple green pasta salad.

Love these fictional (and unforgettable) apartments.

The thought process of getting dressed.

Hair therapy.

Adorable party animals.

SJP's house for sale

Reasons to refrigerate tomatoes.

Jurassic Park sing-along. LOVE.

(Image via From Versailles with Love)