Monday, April 30, 2012

The Time I Caught a Rainbow in a Cup from Je & Jo

Jon and I went to Je & Jo for a quick snack on Sunday,
and in our cup of fizzy ginger limeade
I caught a rainbow!

We also got an apple galette, a chocolate, chocolate chip cookie,
and two ice creams: 
fresh mint with lemon lavender shortbread cookie dough 
and coconut milk ice cream with toasted coconut pieces.

Friday, April 27, 2012

Scarlet Ibis, Renoir, Family Love, TGIF!

Bronx Zoo Scarlet Ibis
Hammy Couple
(I told them not to pose, but they did.)
I'm thinking about heading to the Frick for Renoir Night. Don't you love when museums are free?!

I'm also getting a facial.

And we're going to celebrate Jon's brother's birthday.

Speaking of brothers, my brother got the notice that he's been accepted to run in this year's NYC Marathon! Yay, Dom! (Though that there's a whole application process for this is beyond me.)

"I can't smile without you. . . ." My mom and dad are taking me to see Barry Manilow on Wednesday!

Fun fact: Barry and I share a birthday and my mom, who loves both of us.

Since I mentioned everyone but my sister, I think I should. The wonderful book that she's in is being published in a couple of weeks: My First Gymnastics Class! Go buy a copy now!


Thursday, April 26, 2012


So last July I started writing down some movie reviews because it's just easier for me to pull up a blog about what I thought than trying to remember it. 

I came up with a rating system based on emoticons, since they're the most succinct form of a written expression:

:) -- Ooh! -- I wouldn't be too embarrassed about recommending this.

:/ -- Err. -- Maybe if you've got nothing else to watch at all.

:( -- What?! -- As in What is this garbage?!

Then I summarized why I gave that face, what I felt the overall movie was about, and what I thought was kind of surprising. Below are a few that I've recently written. (The list will expand as I repost the bunch of reviews that were in this post originally, and when I review new movies too).

So I hope you check out these reviews, maybe reconsider what you're downloading, streaming, or renting from Netflix or Amazon, and share your thoughts with me:

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Don Antonio by Starita

Think of the most perfect savory pillowy fried dough.
With the crunch of a fried crust on the outside,
and the beautiful chew of the warm, soft inside.
Now imagine that laced with a delicious red sauce
and topped with smoked buffalo mozzarella.
Mmm. Mmm. Mmm.
That's the Starita.

It's the image on the Don Antonio's website that made us want 
to eat what's in that guy's hands in the first place.
It's what we're going back to eat someday 
because it was just so freaking good.

The Girella pizza was very tasty too,
but there are a million other pizzas on the menu to try:
with white pizza 
and gluten-free pizza 
and vegetarian pizza options galore,
in addition to their huge lists of specialty pizzas and red pizzas.

The two pizzas were more than enough for me and Jon,
but we still got dessert.
We opted for the the homemade panna cotta, 
which oddly enough came with chocolate syrup.
Have you ever had chocolate covered panna cotta?
Next time I want to try the tiramisu.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Chilly Gonzales at Le Poisson Rogue

This concert was one of the best ones I've been to. Phenomenal music, seats up front, and food and drinks. Why can't all concerts be as civilized and casual?

I was a bit concerned, having never been to Le Poisson Rogue before and the Yelp reviews had scared me. But there wasn't anything to really worry about. The food, service, and all of the event space was nice. What's more is that the acoustics of the room were really great compared to some other venues we've been to (looking at you, Radio City).

The most terrifying part of the whole event was hoping that Chilly Gonzales didn't toss his head so that his hair sweat would fall into my food. Luckily we were close enough to see his sweat drip and spray, but we weren't in the splash zone. Not that I blame him for sweating. Being on a stage and performing with that much energy--even if you're not wearing an American Apparel leotard and bouncing up and down (ahem, CSS) can be arduous.

Overall CG's set was everything and more than I thought it'd be. (I had read an article about his show in San Francisco, which sort of spoiled a bit of his act.) This show was slightly different though, CG performed with a string quartet called the Fuck Luck Orchestra. They were wonderful--if I ever need to hire string musicians, they'd be my go-to group.

And though I also read about how he uses audience participation for his shows, one of the most surprising things happened when the guy who recorded the video above had volunteered when CG wanted someone onstage for a little piano demonstration. This guy played one of CG's songs--and CG improvised on top of that. It was really cool because this Tommy kid didn't suck or mess up the song, and CG acted like a really nice guy about it.

I'd definitely go to another CG concert if given the opportunity.

For an idea of what my view looked like and some more details on the concert, check out TheMusic.FM's article on this concert. (The photographer crouched right in front of me, so I know this was the exact view I had.)

We're headed back to Le Poisson Rogue in a few weeks to for the 2012 Undead Music Festival Marathon and Tonic Reunion Show: Sex Mob, Vinicius Cantuaria, Yuka C. Honda, Elysian Fields, White Out, Stabbing Eastward with Ryan Sawyer and Tunde Adebimpe, Chicago Underground Duo, Tony Malaby, Gerald Cleaver, Jamie Saft's New Zion Trio, Joe Sander, and more. I've heard of some of these bands, seen maybe one and a half of them, but it should be interesting.

Thursday, April 19, 2012


There was a man on the subway who had on 
one dress shoe and one flip-flop with a black sock.

This reminded me of when our friend came over for dinner 
after working a thirty-hour shift in the NICU or PICU 
or ER or maternity ward or something crazy,
and she wore a different style black flat on each foot.
She didn't realize it until she was on the subway.

And when Jon went to work with sneakers
instead of his dress shoes
when he worked at an i-bank,
where people dress up for work.


11:41 AM Jonathan: I know
  I was so out of it
  I walked out of the apartment
  and like
  I was getting down the street
  like by starwich
  and it was like
  I was thinking about
  how maybe I should buy another pair of sneakers
  because I really like my sneakers
  and they might become extinct
11:42 AM and then I was like
  why am I thinking about this
  it was because I was wearing sneakers
  so I went back home
  to put on my other shoes

And also at my pre-college psych course
at St. Peter's College
where the hippie teacher wore two different Birkenstocks.
That might've been intentional though.

I've yet to accidentally wear the wrong shoes
due to sleep deprivation.
Have you accidentally stepped out wearing the wrong shoes?

Monday, April 16, 2012


For a snappy snack try an egg-in-a-hole.

Butter up a piece of aluminum foil.
Cut out the bread hole with a cookie cutter.
Drop in one egg.
Use the toaster setting on your toaster oven
to obtain desired doneness.
Add truffle salt or bacon salt or sea salt
and some fresh cracked pepper.

What to do with that holed-out white part?
Put some cheese on it.
Melt it a little in the toaster oven.

Pair it all with some apples or other crispy fruit or vegetables.


Saturday, April 14, 2012

The Best Prize in a Plastic Easter Egg

On Easter Sunday, 
we headed to my other aunt and uncle's country club
in New Jersey for an Easter lunch.
We all incidentally wore black and white (women)
and blue shirts (men).
We also, oddly enough, got there early.

My aunt Isabella came up with the best Easter egg surprise.
Each plastic egg had different amounts of money
from $10 to $50 dollars
or NOTHING but a Peep.
She had us pick one each.
It was a lot of fun. 
Jon got the grand prize of $50
and a lot of Jelly Belly jelly beans.

We spent the rest of the afternoon catching up on work,
but someone in the Helena up the block
was playing with his or her window.
He or she kept moving his or her window 
so a bright flashing cross kept blinding us 
for about fifteen minutes.
We eventually closed the shade.
Hopefully it wasn't someone trapped 
and trying to get help/attention.
But that constantly blinding, flashing cross on Easter Sunday
reminded me of how terrible I am at my religion 
all over again.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Macaroons vs. Macarons

Does it bother you when someone calls them "macaroons"?
They're so different from the coconut cookies dipped in chocolate!
Macaroons are delicious, but they're not macarons.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Fruit Snacks

(Rose-raspberry, apple, blood orange, 
apricot, pineapple, citrus, oh my!)

Red orange and orange orange pieces

Which do you fancy more?

Monday, April 9, 2012

Easter Was Egg-cellent!

My cousin Samantha
made these cute little deviled eggs
at her mom and dad's house on Long Island. 

They're like in a jacuzzi,
being eggs.

She found the recipe on Pinterest
and was resolved to make it.

Olive eyes, carrot beaks and feet.
Egg heads and bodies and innards.
Mmm . . . tasty innards!

It's the best kind of deviled egg too
because it's two servings in one!

My PoPo said she got full 
from eating two of the eggs herself.

I imagine this is what it looks like 
when a bunch of eggs
watch another egg
break dance.

Or going back to the jacuzzi scene,
when it floats in the middle of them all.
A kind of egg synchronized-swimming scene.

Speaking of eggs,
"Eggs, I really love you like the sky above!"

Friday, April 6, 2012


Searching for the MoMA app on my phone, I found Yo Moma jokes instead. (I thought they'd be like: Your MoMA's so dumb, she thought a Warhol was a Duchamp! Your MoMA's such a slut, she's doesn't charge on Friday nights. Your MoMA's so fat she has a, like, three restaurants in her. But they weren't. They're just so dumb they don't know how to spell "momma.")

40 ways to tie a scarf! Considering fashion that kills, it might be a good idea to learn some of these.

Some new words to use in everyday rotation: Glitterbanged. Stickyfingers. Masticate.

Speaking of food, Monday we're planning to eat fried chicken and waffles; Tuesday, it's Taka Taka; and Thursday is Jewel Bako with a sushi concierge

Ooh! Maybe we'll try these for our next soiree.

I really like thinking about this story.

This makes me want to learn the woman's steps to the tango--'cause I only kinda know the man's:

Thursday, April 5, 2012

PAL Fit! (or: Mural Painting on a Rainy Saturday)

This past Saturday
I went with Lux
to help paint a mural
to decorate their recreation center.
Our theme was PAL Fit.

I met some PAL kids that live in my neighborhood: 
Charlie, Michaela, and Isis.
Charlie and Michaela helped us paint.
Isis was kind of an enigma.

We almost had a food pyramid and a food plate,
but some of the girls on our team messed it up.
Another messed up thing was 
the girl climbing up the side of the pyramid.
Lux and I called her Smeagol.

I helped paint in a good amount of stuff, 
but that soccer ball is my masterpiece. . . .
Hang that soccer ball up in the Louvre 
and call that collection complete!

Since it's part of my day job
I queried the group about the floating basketball girl.
We decided she was fine as is.
(It's the magic of the soccer ball that keeps her afloat
because the soccer ball is that awesome!
That's my theory anyway,
since I think everyone else was too cranky 
to care once we filled it all in.)

Here's me and Lux and some girls' butts and our mural.
Lux painted the heart sun and led our mural team.
She was awesome!
And I got a free T-shirt out of the experience.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Boot, Cat, Boot, Cat

So my sister's ringtone for me is some dude saying, "Boot, Cat, Boot, Cat . . ." It's a little odd, but catchy!

:) -- Ooh! -- I wouldn't be too embarrassed about recommending this.

:/ -- Err. -- Maybe if you've got nothing else to watch at all.

:( -- What?! -- As in What is this garbage?!


Full disclosure, I rush proofread the movie novel and worked on the 3-D movie guide, but like most books based on animated movies, the movie was a lot more fun than the books. (The 3-D in the 3-D movie guide though is really cool.) If you like cats, don't find Dreamworks movies terrible, and want to laugh, then you should check it out.

Overall: Puss and Humpty Dumpty and other characters that include Kitty Softpaws and Jack and Jill are after the Golden Goose. You learn that there's no clear cut line between good and bad; about friendship and trust; and that declawing your cat might inhibit her skills to pick a lock if necessary. Guillermo del Toro was an executive producer, and it's a good looking movie.

Surprise: "Ooooooh!" to quote the most random cat in the movie. Love that cat.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Macaron Favorites

Let's talk about the ideal macaron.

For me a perfect macaron is one that is 
not too chewy/wet or chalky/stale, but just right.
And it just dissolves in your mouth.
With a lovely intense overall flavor,
the filling complementing the shell.

I do love Pierre Herme's macarons the best
for the flavor combinations and intensity.
(The ones we got from Pierre Herme in Paris 
this past February were magnifique!
We've only been to his shops in Paris and Tokyo.
He's not opening one in NYC anytime soon.)

Laduree next.
(They're a bit firmer than Pierre Herme--just not as magical.
They also have very basic flavors usually.
There's one shop in NYC, and it takes an hour to get a macaron

And for a local/won't have to wait for an hour favorite:
(They have a huge selection of flavors and 
I think are similar quality to Laduree,
but I'd need to taste them side by side.)

What are your favorite macaron shops?

Monday, April 2, 2012

Dinner Party Leftovers

spinach ricotta
spinach ricotta

(recycled leftover components
from the vegetarian birthday party dinner)

Sunday, April 1, 2012

A Vegetarian Birthday Party Dinner

We celebrated Carmina's birthday with a dinner

She's vegetarian,
so no corn beef and cabbage today.
What we had was so much better!

Jon made a beet vinaigrette for a small salad to start. 

I had no idea that the magenta sauce in the cup was the vinaigrette 
at the time that I took this photo.
Anyway, right before serving it, he dressed the salads for us.
It was really delicious.

For a small appetizer, 
he used up some leftover fancy spaghetti we had 
to serve with a vegetarian interpreted carbonara sauce: 
very buttery and Parmesan-y.
He topped it off with some truffle caviar.

We all had seconds.

For the main course,
we had cannelloni filled with spinach and ricotta 
(that first photo above) 
topped with saffron-and-paprika-infused oil.

Jon took sheets of fresh lasagna, halved, and cooked them.
While he did that, he baked the spinach and ricotta mixture to warm it up.
Then he assembled it.
This cooking-things-separate method made for a really nice presentation.

And you wouldn't believe how delicious it was!

For dessert we had olive oil cake,
fresh whipped cream,
and freshly pureed blueberries on the side.

The extra mini cakes we gave away as party favors.

I think it was a very good dinner party,
and we each had beer to celebrate St. Patrick's Day.

The birthday girl got a bit tipsy
and our stomachs were full
and we had fun.
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