Lancaster, PA

Good morning,

Unfortunately, I left my camera at my aunt’s house last night, so you’ll have to wait for Ocean City, New Jersey pictures for a while.  This morning I am going to Lancaster Pennsylvania with my aunts.  I am so excited to go see the beautiful country side.  I wonder if I’ll feel like I’ve traveled back through time, as  Amish people drive by in horse-drawn buggies.  I will be snapping away, so be looking for pictures.

I hope you had a good weekend full of laughter and good conversation.



Friday! Hurray! Hurray! Errr.. I mean Saturday.


Yes, apparently while I was in a flu-induces haze, I forgot to post this, even though I had it READY to go for Friday. Blergh.

Happy Friday!

I’m finally feeling a little better! How are you doing? Do you have any big weekend plans?

Yesterday Brendan and I went to Princeton New Jersey (which is such an amazing place).  We got this really amazing olive oil and strawberry balsamic at Carter & Cavero: Old World Oil Company, and visited a kitchen gadget  store called Kitchen Kapers.  It was so much fun being there, in this beyond charming college town, just the two of us focusing on each other.  It is wonderful being out together, and to feeling like we did those first few months of being together.

Here we are at Carter & Cavero:

Here I am tasting all of the delicious balsamic vinaigrettes.

There was such a huge selection of oils and vinaigrettes, we had a hard time picking our favorites.  In the end we got Truffle Extra-Virgin Olive Oil (so wonderful), Strawberry balsamic, Garlic Extra-Virgin Olive Oil, Tuscan herb Extra-Virgin Olive Oil, and Frantoio Extra-Virgin Olive Oil… Needless to say, we won’t be needing EVOO any time soon!

Also, here are somethings that I’ve been eyeing all week:

A la Patricia Blanchet

These shoes are awesome.  I’ve been wanting to find a pair similar to this for a few years, but nothing really spoke to me like these do.

via House of Turquoise

I love the look of driftwood. Whenever I see a cool drift wood piece it makes me want to learn carpentry so that I could have the ability to make furniture with pieces of awesome wood like the piece above.

via flickr

Brendan would never let me do this, and I’m not sure I would, but it’s pretty cool, right?

Smitten Kitchen’s Porch Swing sounds truly sumptuous.  Now that the weather is getting warming, I see myself having many a gin based cocktail on balmy New Jersey nights. Yum.

Once again, I pay homage to that glorious hue Kelly Green.  This room, designed by Christina Murphy is to die for.  Brendan and I both thought this was such a great look.  Maybe we will replicate it someday.. : )

And I’ll leave you with the sage advice of Ronald Swanson:

Have a stellar weekend! May all your dreams come true.



Easter Weekend

Hello again friends,

Sorry about the long absence.  Let’s just say taking on a massive project (roman shades) while preparing your large home for weekend visitors is  more than one person should take on.  Things got dicey at Casa de L the morning before Brendan’s parents got here.  Poor Brendan is a champion among men for putting up with my crazed desire to finish my blinds and mop the floor… Simultaneously.

But all of my insanity paid off. Drum roll please.

Yep. I am so glad they are finished. I will be posting a DIY this week, along with price comparisons, so you can see how much it costs to make it yourself, and how much it costs to buy them.

Easter weekend was a lot of fun.  Having Brendan’s family here was a lot of fun.  It is always nice to have family come and visit.  We had lots of delicious food and fun together.  We even dyed eggs!

My Mother-in-law Scottie and I made a board for drying dyed eggs that we found on Here is a pictures of our eggs… And our lamb and potatoes that we had for our Easter dinner. YUM!

Okay… So that’s not a  great picture, but it’s the only one I have (sorry!).

We had a great weekend. Hopefully everyone will come back soon.

What did you do for Easter?



Tonight we’re Gonna Party Like it’s 1399

Who else is excited about Game of Thrones!? Game of Thrones has become a fever in the blood. I blasted through the first four novels more quickly than I have ever read any other book.  Now I know some of you might be wondering how I could have become so absorbed by a fantasy series, but this one is different.  It is so refreshing to read a male fantasy author who is able to write real women.

No, not the sexpots, or the girls who want to be boys.  These people are real, complicated  three-dimensional women.

While these ladies aren’t always likeable, they are incredibly compelling, and extremely interesting.  This is why I am super pumped about Game of Thrones Season 2!

In honor of hardcore woman power, and medieval awesomeness, I am making a Game of Thrones inspired meal for me and Brendan.

Now, I know what your thinking, we will not be having huge turkey legs and huge flagons of ale…While flagons of ale sounds pretty awesome, I’m going for something more sophisticated.

Here’s what I’m thinking:

Cupcake-Tin Pork Pies

A pork pie?? Totally worthy of the Game of Thrones season two premier? You betcha!  Next, I think some sort of rustic salad, like this Fall Bread Salad.Then it wouldn’t be a feast without those lemon cakes Sansa is such a fan of.  So I will be making Lemon Tea Cake with Blueberry-Red Wine Sauce!

I think it’s going to great! Maybe I will make some rosemary chicken drumsticks, so that we can nibble on them Robert Baratheon style.

Will you guys be watching Game of Thrones?

That’s all for now.



Green Fingers


How was your weekend? I had a great weekend.  We saw The Hunger Games on Sunday morning, and really liked it (bt-dubs, we are never paying full price for a movie again. Going at 9:30AM was great. I made banana muffins and we ate breakfast in the theater). Brendan, my economist husband extraordinaire, had issues with the economic model  written by Suzanne Collins… It’s okay though, he still liked it a lot.

The rest of the weekend was spent  planting basil, and making a terrarium!

After I made the terrarium with the help of our new neighbor’s son (he’s four and totally cute!), Brendan and I  planted our basil plants that we picked up on Saturday morning.  Unfortunately, after a long sunny week, there was a cold snap, so we ended up planting them inside… Which looks funny in our kitchen… Mostly because of the rustic barrel that the basil is planted in.  But that’s how we roll in Casa de L, what what.

I didn't realize how pale NJ has made me until just now...

It's important to break up the roots so they know they are no longer living in a small pot. This promotes root expansion, so your plant will grow grow grow

Very rustic looking, non? well I liked it anyway...

We are seriously going to eat pesto allll the time.Warm weather come back soon… I want that darn barrel out of my kitchen.

What did you do this weekend?



Instant View: Double Indemnity

Hello there,

I  love watching Turner Classic Movies.  There is something about those old black and whites that has always enthralled me.  The romances were sweeter, the betrayals more bitter… When we got  married and moved to NJ,  we got cable, but not TCM. How was I going to get my old movie fix? The answer: Netflix. Netflix has tons of old movies on instant view, and I figured I would share my favorites that are currently available for viewing.

Today I wanted to share one of my favorite examples of Film Noir: Billy Wilder’s 1944 classic, Double Indemnity. While Double Indemnity is an earlier example of the Noir genre, no one questions its Noir credentials because it has all of the essential characteristics of a Noir film: Murder, betrayal, a (dynamite) femme fatale, a anti-hero with feet of clay, dark visuals and a black hopelessness that tells the viewers, “This isn’t going to end well.”

One of my favorite things about Double Indemnity is the unholy alliance that is formed between Walter Neff (the said, anti-hero with feet of clay), and Phyllis Dietrichson, played by the brilliant Barbara Stanwyck.

Never was there such a fantastically diabolical femme fatale.  Walter Neff, played by Fred MacMurray, was just your average insurance salesman until the day he met Phyllis.  To see her was to want her, and to have her, her husband had to be taken out of the picture…but only after taking out a sizable insurance policy on him.

Phyllis uses her sex-appeal to seduce and manipulate Walter, until his life falls apart.

The clever use of voice-over narration gives the viewer the sense of Walters’ helplessness is this whole business.  He has a choice to make, and is a free man, but the voice-over, Walter looking back on his past, would suggest a feeling inevitability: this is going to happen. I have to have her- at any cost.

Turns out, the cost is his soul… And that ladies and gentlemen, is Film Noir. See this movie, and tell me what you think.

I hope you like it! Tune in next Wednesday for Frank Capra’s It Happened One Night.



Moonrise Kingdom: Le Temps de l’Amour

Have you seen the trailer for Wes Anderson’s latest film, Moonrise Kingdom? I have been super excited about this movie from the moment I heard another Anderson pic was in the works and that TILDA SWINTON was going to be in it.  I have always liked Tilda Swinton, but her work in Luca Guadagnino’s I am Love cinched it for me, and now I love her.  In case you have not seen I am Love  it is still on instant-view on Netflix.  I am Love is a visual feast.  It’s sumptuous, rich and sinfully good.  Do yourself a favor and go see it! Anywho, back to Moonrise Kingdom,  this film is particularly exciting because not only is this Anderson’s first period piece (set in the 1960’s), but it is also his first to star children Jared Gilman and Kara Hayward. Before you start to think that this film is a children’s movie, note that it is rated PG-13, so it is definitely still catering toward adults.

"I'll be out back. I have a tree to chop down"

Anderson got some of the proverbial band back together. Jason Schwartzman and Bill Murray- you almost can’t have a Wes Anderson film without them.  He also brought in Bruce Willis, Edward Norton,Frances McDormand and Harvey Keitel (Really? Harvey Keitel I suppose stranger things have happened).

The film deals with two twelve year-old’s falling in love and making a pact to run away together.  Various groups on the small New England island band together to find them,when a storm blows into town.  Craziness and that delightful Andersonian quirkiness ensues as the town is turned upside-down, and it seems as if that might not be such a bad thing.

Here is the movie trailer:

What is your favorite Wes Anderson film? Also, here are some pictures of Brendan and I at a Wes Anderson party my best friend Stephanie threw (she is the coolest).

"I think we're just gonna to have to be secretly in love with each other and leave it at that, Ritchie. "

We had a lot of fun at that party.  Which is why I will be dressing up in my best vintage duds in celebration of Moonrise Kingdom when I go to see it opening night.

Have a great weekend!!

Oh, if you were wondering who sang that delightful song in the trailer, that would be French chanteuse Francoise Hardy, “Le Temps De l’Amour.