May 30, 2013

Waffle House

Waffle House


I mentioned that on our road trip up to our cabin this past Memorial Day Weekend, we made a special stop to indulge in some yummy waffle goodness. Our friend Jeff insisted that it would be worth it if we drove an hour out of our way to Waffle House in Scranton, PA. It was a great decision. Not only did we get to visit Scranton (we all kept one eye out for Jim and Pam!), but the waffles were indeed drool-worthy.

Exhibit A: peanut butter and chocolate chip-

Waffle House


I was really in the mood for more standard fare... but waffles are obviously what this place is famous for, so I still wanted to try them out. I ended up sharing a pecan waffle with Julia... she decked her half out with the crazy toppings above!

Waffle House Waffle House


Also- the prices were so cheap!!! I literally couldn't believe that my eggs/ bacon/ hashbrowns/ toast/ waffle combo was $6 and some change. I had to double check with the waitress a few times that I was reading the menu right, haha.

Waffle House Waffle House Waffle House


PS!! I'm a part of this lovely giveaway for a $200 gift certificate from Tiffany's. The iPad Giveaway has ended, and winner will be announced soon! But you can go enter that one if you're looking for more stuff to win :)

Have an awesome day!!!





Chantilly

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May 28, 2013

Memorial Day Camping!


This past Memorial Day weekend was a most interesting time...

Matt, some friends, and I drove upstate to stay in a cabin for a few days. We were hoping it would be an easy, sun-filled little mini vacation, but there were reports of bad weather. We said "pish posh" to those silly weather reports, moved forward with the decision to go.

The car ride up was filled with all the fun of any road trip! Complete with a brunch at a waffle house, endless giggles in the car, and a pit stop for last-minute supplies at Wal-mart. When we got to the campgrounds, however, it was evident that we picked the wrong weekend to go camping. It was cold and rainy, just as the weather reports had said, and was projected to stay that way.

I guess I didn't fully grasp the implications of camping in the rain, as I hadn't been camping for real since I was little. All the cabins I've come across in my adult life have had electricity and/ or furnaces. Ours didn't. Most of the time, there was nothing to do but sit around the fire pit and try to warm ourselves, as the rain was falling on us.


Despite the conditions though, there were little moments of joy:

Smores.
Being with nature.
The smell of campfire smoke.
Bacon sizzling on a skillet in the morning.
Discovering a new favorite drink (ginger brandy & gingerale!)
Watching the crackling fire for the better part of an hour, without a word passed between us.

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Stirring some eggs after rolling out of my sleeping bag. Un-makeup-ed, and in clothes I'd been in for two straight days!

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Luckily, the rain never got to full-on pouring- it was mostly semi-consistent drizzles the entire time. So we got to explore some of the little trails near the campsite. This was one of my favorite parts of the weekend. I never get to see so much green!

The open fields were breathtaking, and there were little benches where you could sit and enjoy the glory. We also passed by and explored a little cemetery.

Memorial day camping Memorial day camping Memorial day camping Memorial day camping


We made our way back to the City on Sunday, and it was then that I had my very first Sonic experience! We wanted to stop there to end our trip, since only one in our group had ever eaten there. Their burger didn't impress me much, but I discovered that their milkshakes are dangerous! I was particularly taken with the peanut butter cookie shake. A nice finish to a crazy trip, with lots of high and low moments.

Memorial day camping


I'm glad I had this experience, even if it wasn't the "perfect" time. Nothing in life is. It was nice to get out of the City, and sit near a beautiful fire. Would I go camping in the rain again? Probably not. But I'd love to try it out again someday when the sun is shining and the birds are singing :)



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May 24, 2013

Coffee Talk ~ Being "Busy"

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Lots of people enjoy staying busy.

That much is true in the U.S. But especially in New York. At times, it feels like some people do it for the sole sake of saying "Guys, I'm sooo busy!!!!" to their friends, into their phone, walking down the street.

Other people book their schedules to the brim as a drug, of sorts. Activities, jobs, commitments, classes, tasks, social engagements. I have had friends tell me that brings their whole day down if one hour has passed, and they have not accomplished anything. They schedule every minute of their time in excruciating detail on their iPhone calendars, and wonder why they're having nervous breakdowns.

My theory is that a lot of them are running from something inside themselves. Make no mistake, we all have wounds. And for humans, a really popular thing to do when confronted with that fact, or some truth about ourselves that we don't like, is to deny. Run. Numb. Stomp it out before it reaches your heart, and you actually feel something.


I was one of those people once. I'd cram my schedule full of "important things", push myself to the point of exhaustion, and berate myself when I didn't do good enough. I would then go out at night and drink, party with my friends. Wake up hungover, and go to work. Repeat, repeat, repeat. I was trying to block out a lot of things I'd sooner forget.

I was in some intensive therapy program or another, when I finally broke. All my defense mechanisms were melting away from me, and it was then that learned the art of being still within yourself. This art... it's not so popular in our culture. But still. I reveled in spending an entire day writing in my journal. Discovering myself, and finding out that- surprise! I was not as bad as I thought.

But of course, this isn't the way of the world, and I've been struggling with this concept since I found out about it. Because we live in a world that worships at the altar of "busy." And cultivating a peaceful, mindful life can feel downright impossible in that circumstance.



My intention in writing this was supposed to be about why I haven't made any posts this week. I have been "busy," folks. There was a time that I used to write posts two weeks in advance. There was a time when I had some breathing room. And now, I don't have much to say about anything at all. This makes me sad. I miss this blog. I miss sharing. And I miss socializing with the wonderful people that come here to visit (you!)

But such is life. I do at least think there will be some gaps next week when I'll be able to take some pictures, write some posts, and feel inspired again.


Also, a treat for you- The Totally Awesome Blog Hop will make its grand re-emergence this tomorrow! By the time you read this, I'll be on the road, escaping to a cabin in the woods for Memorial Day (with no Internet access.) But I am your faithful host, so I will be here with you in spirit.

Have a lovely holiday, everyone. And remember to relax. Be still within yourself :)




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May 17, 2013

Life moments


Happy Friday!!

Here are a few more sun-soaked moments from last week and beyond.

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How has your week been? Random bit of info from me- I've started taking a voice class! I've felt a bit stymied creatively lately, so I saw a sweet deal on Groupon, and grabbed it. Even though I already teach vocal lessons, I figure there is always more to learn.

This particular class has an R&B-esque style, with lots of would-be divas and people doing crazy runs and riffs. I think it will be good to try a different style than I currently do, though, and I'm already seeing a different side of my singing coming out. After class, I notice it's easier for me to hit those "money notes." Yay!


Also, if any of you live in VT, I'm traveling up there to play a show tomorrow night at Radio Bean in Burlington!! See my show page for details.


PS, Dance with Dragons is getting good!!

PPS, I HATE Ramsay Snow. Hate.



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May 15, 2013

Pinboard Restyle


Hey, how is everyone today?

I want to share a recent project with you. I had the urge to spruce up my office area, and was recently inspired by a pinboard I'd seen in the Cyber PR office. "A pinboard. Huh... why don't I have one of those?", I thought. I wanted to get a similar one, in order to write down little notes, reminders to myself, and inspirational photos.

I picked up a this medium-sized one from the Container Store, and set about remaking it into a cuter style that suits my aesthetic!

pinboard diy


I basically just the colors I had on hand- which was a limited selection. First, I painted the main area of the cork board with white acrylic paint. I was running out, and there was only juust enough to finish the board, so I actually didn't get to paint the entire surface cleanly. However, I ended up liking the stippled effect.

I then painted the wood frame a darker color of brown.

pinboard diy pinboard diy


After that I experimented a bit. I really am no visual artist. I have no talent for painting or drawing, so the "art" part of the DIY process is always challenging for me. A lot of the lines didn't come out perfectly straight. Luckily, I like a lot of styles that play off the imperfectness of the "artwork." This is what I went for :)

pinboard diy


I ended up with this!! Quite honestly, I was scared this would be a total fail, but it wasn't. It's cute and imperfect, and it makes me happy to look at.

pinboard diy







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May 13, 2013

Urban

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photos by Tamar Haviv


I had a lovely coffee date with my pal Tamar the other day. I asked her to take some photos of me, but my camera battery died. So some of these were shot with her iPhone, and some with my camera (guess which ones are which!)

I've mentioned her a bunch on this blog, and she's a fellow singer-songwriter friend. Well, one of her songs just made it into a Crayola commercial!! Also awesome- I sang the backing vocals on this song, and did the vocal arranging. The vocals aren't showcased in the commercial, but it's still pretty cool!

Anyone else wanna hire me to sing backing vocals/ arranging on their songs? I'm very reasonable :P

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Also, I love my shirt- which you can't really see in these pictures due to my sunglasses obscuring it. But trust me, it's rad. I went a little spendy this time, and bought it at an all-handmade shop in Bushwick. It's nice to be able to wear something that you know is completely sweatshop-free.

Other news- I finally picked back up with the Song of Ice and Fire series, and started reading Dance with Dragons last week. I've been really apprehensive about it. As good as the story is, the terrible things that happen to a lot of the characters just crush me.

Still... I have to know what happens to Tyrion!! Haha.

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Chantilly


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