What to Expect from Here on Out

Minor updates or anything I think is nice or cute at the time of posting :)

Friday, December 4, 2015

A little creativity at a time

Usually on Pinterest i find myself repinning things other people have posted. I just started using some of my photos as backgrounds for sayings or just pretty landscapes and posting to my Pinterest page. These 'pins' even though they don't take long and aren't especially original give me a small sense of creative accomplishment. In my day job I never get a to be creative and this is a good forum I can quickly fit into a busy day/week/ life 😊 
Will they revolutionize the world or add something to the larger art community? Definitely not, but it adds just a little happy feeling of putting something positive out there. 

Monday, November 9, 2015

Performance Art

Arts Brookfield recently presented a performance art exhibit by Ernesto Pujol. I discovered the show because I work in the area and take my lunch breaks walking in Brookfield Place. I have to say I didn't even notice them the first day they were there...not sure if that was the choreographers' intention or if it's just that I'm in my own world when routinely walking around there.

Either way when they handed me the brochure for the art project I took notice of the 11 people surrounding the giant glass wall by the escalators, okay that's a lie it took me a minute or two to realize there were these people sitting around in white robes.

It was a cool concept but as the days wore on it was a little irritating, they were just sitting around writing, pretending to ignore everyone around them. Going about your own business is normal, there's too many people in NY so if you take notice of everyone it's overload, at least for me.  These performance artists sat at desks writing, their actions were uniform, somewhat serene. It was a little unnerving because they were supposed to be writing about those around them and what they saw, i started wondering if any of them noticed me or what they'd do if I walked over and read their notes, but I never did.

The show also reminded me of sci-fi movies and time travel/ parallel world shows and books, which added whimsy to an otherwise dull workday. I really enjoyed the performers, and the concept of the show. I'm not certain I got the idea in its entirety but for an average lady on her lunch break it was a great thing to see. The photo attached is from the official brochure for the show. 

Sent from my iPhone

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Autumn so far

Autumn wasn't my favorite season as a kid, it brought on stress of a new school year, start of colds from cold winters. Now I find myself enjoying the crisp air, the layers to help hide the baby bump that hasn't gone away even though my newborn is now a toddler. 

This season seems to come alive through her, she's able to walk and run now so she's exploring everything. Going to the park and watching her be amazed how the leaves crunch underfoot. Warning her not to run too fast and helping her up after she loses her footing on a pile of leaves. I'm appreciative of how incredible this change of season is, from a weekend trip upstate with family, and seeing the bright reds and oranges draping the forest to the soft wind blowing my hair. I'm trying to focus on the positive, not really a simple thing for me. 

Of course there's always the downside of less sunlight and how its dark now by the time i leave work, but the good outweighs the bad so here's me trying to promise myself to focus on the good and beautiful side that nature gives for free every day. 

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

First of Many

We are first time parents and our baby is turning one. There's been so much excitement; much like our little one the party planning keeps growing. Apart from our wedding I don't remember ever adding so many little 'extras' to a party. I wanted to share some of our experiences with other parents, feel free to comment if you any ideas what we can do next birthday.

Initially we thought to have a simple party, why make a huge deal right? As we got closer to the birthday I started thinking she's grown and learned so much in such a short time, it's definately a celebration of her life.

We are blessed with many special people close to our daughter so we opted to rent a room for the party. I am no Betty Crocker so cooking (mostly for the safety of our guests) was not an option, although my sweet Mom who actually can cook offered but we went with a caterer.

I think decorations were simple, a few balloons, a banner, paper garland, and pull string pinata. I quibbled over the need for a banner but admit it's really cute and I'm happy we got it. Then I decided I wanted to have a candy-bar to display around the cake, and a small chalkboard sign for the entrance of the room. Since the 2 tier cake will be brought out toward the end of her party my husband thought it'd be good to get cupcakes. I agreed because it will be nice to have some sweets out during the party so he ordered some (with the owl birthday theme) I can't wait to see how cute they look!

Another item I ordered from 'theroyalprincess' on Etsy was bloomers and a bib to match her party theme and colors on her dress. I'm going to attempt to make leg warmers for her in case she gets chilly, I saw a DIY from knee socks online. See link for bloomers, you can request her to personalize characters, colors the owner was very helpful.Etsy personalized bloomers

The other add on was the childrens entertainer, we saw one at our friends babies' birthday and all the kids seemed to have a great time. The one we chose is low key with a guitar and set to sing to the little ones for about 40 minutes. I haven't seen how they are with kids so can't endorse just yet but will do another blog post party.

My husband and I wanted a cake topper, another DIY project we saw was little banners online. We bought wooden meat skewers to use as posts, ribbon to attach the paper flags. I created a word document with diamond shapes and personalized it, we can print, cut, and fold the diamonds over to make the flags. See example you may want to make your own.

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Former English Major

Way back when, I was an English major in college; for those that know me, yes I had a few majors but graduated with English. Grammar never was my strong point, I liked old novels and writing stories. My mind was wandering today, I found myself wondering where the phrase, 'there's more than one way to skin a cat' came from. If you think about it, its a gruesome euphemism. Who are these people that skin cats and why do would they know more than one method? I turned to good old google and saw that cat fur was sometimes used in the past (poor kitties) :( At first I was surprised but realized I had purchased a jacket about ten years ago with fur around the hood; it didn't occur to me it was real fur when I bought it. Who knows what little critter unwillingly contributed to it. I purchased without thinking, a mistake I corrected in myself. Much more recently I tried giving up meat, I still eat fish so it's not as difficult as I thought but not sure if I'm getting enough of the protein I need. I don't think it's bad to eat meat but I felt like going without it for awhile. Lets see how long it lasts :) Another tidbit from the site I learned was that in 1832 the House of Commons in England passed a Prevention to Animal Cruelty Act. I thought it was interesting that both then and now people are trying to make it safe for every life in this world. The link is below if you want to check on it.

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Under Pressure...but only from myself

I love the song Under Pressure by Queen and as my husband and I are planning our babies First Birthday party I just keep replaying the song in my head. I'm not sure why I feel so much pressure about her first birthday, it's not as if the baby will remember it. But I want it to be a good memory for all our family and friends. Our first debate was whether to have it at home or in a place, the decision was made after we wrote out the guest list. We have a lot of people to invite and wanted to make sure everyone was comfortable. The second thing we mulled over was whether to try to cook ourselves or cater the party. After doing the math we decided it'd be about the same amount of money to cater it and luckily found a hall close to home (mostly within our budget) that would accomodate. Plus having it catered will allow us to enjoy ourselves at the party. There's also the benefit of me not accidentally poison all my loved ones since cooking is not my strongest suit. :) Onto phase three, the theme!! What to do, what to do, she likes a book from Bunnies By the Bay but of course there's no decorations for that. Then I looked online and just got inundated and confused - TMI! I have a lot of ideas but in the end and with good advice decided to keep it generic and simple. I never much thought about themes for parties but from the ones I've attended it really does make a difference, especially for a kids party. I think planning the party would be worse and make me anxious if I didn't have the help of our families. Knowing that I can turn to everyone to ask for advice or their opinions is really helping me out. My sister, sister-in-law, and friends have experience with throwing kid parties so they've all been a great resource for me.

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Coffee Without The Attitude

A new coffee shop opened up last year next door to my job called Gregory's Coffee, I stop in every now and again. I like the coffee, but also the staff are surprisingly pleasant. I say surprising because in the rush of the city I feel there's not too much time for customer service. I don't know if it's the chain or just this particular location, the baristas know a lot about coffee. I tend to get confused if I try to order outside my normal regular coffee but once asked what a cortado was and got a quick history lesson, which sadly I can't remember. Since they put in so much effort I felt like I should try one. It packed a punch but was pretty tasty. Since it's close to Valentines day they have a promotion going on if you bring them a valentine you get a free cup of coffee. I thought this was such a cute idea, and remembered that in December if you brought them a snowflake made of paper you'd get a free coffee as well. It's very cute because they then had all these snowflakes decorating the shop. It's nice to see that kind of connection with customers.

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Next Warren Buffett?

I've had an account for picking stocks for awhile and mostly left it dormant with virtual tumble weeds passing through. Lately I've been trying to educate myself about the stock market and started to invest the least amount possible. I think there's real potential for even a layman like myself to earn a little extra spending income or at least that's what I hope. Now am I the next Warren Buffett? Not going to happen, but I found that I had a fear of the stock market. I realized I had the mindset that choosing stocks was complicated, risky, and not for 'someone like me'. In this day and age where we have access to articles, and stock forecasts to help you learn what may be a good buy for you, I got to thinking it's ridiculous for me to think I can't do this when it's literally at my fingertips. I don't have thousands of dollars to buy large stock in a great company, but I don't need it. I can focus on start-ups and invest small amounts. The great thing about it, I can put in $10 a month and choose some under performing stock whose value I think may increase in six months or more. The downside, if the stock doesn't pick up, I lose $10 but won't break the bank. So really I don't see a downside, may as well try and hope for the best.

Twice online consignment

I recently came upon a site called Like Twice and fell in definite like :) It took me a couple of visits to the site to get the genius of it, as someone who prefers the quality that you can sometimes get from high-end brands but can't justify to my bank account why I'm paying high prices this is a great site. I've been to thrift or consignment stores before but depending on the store set-up, it's not the best shopping experience. Sometimes thrift stores can be down right frustrating. On 'Like Twice' I can just select my sizes, item, and even which brands I'm looking for and they pull up a selection of gently used clothes, bags, even shoes. Maybe the best part of this online gem is that they buy your old brands, with some criteria for condition and age. I'm going to try to send some items, I'll post again once I find out if the process really is good as it seems. The best part for me is that I can clean out some items in my closet that I'm tired of or outgrew (baby weight) and either get some money for them or store credit. I'm thinking I may opt for the store credit.

Monday, February 2, 2015

Super Bowl Sunday

So it was Super Bowl Sunday, I'm not a big sports fan but joined a pool which for me helped make the game more interesting. Who knew that for me gambling could make sports fun! As long as its within reason (everything in moderation people) :) I didn't win the pool but no harm no foul, I still enjoyed it. I found that by paying more attention and seeing who won the pool made me more interested in the game, it was different from my usual ritual of just watching the commercials. Although if I'm being honest I think the Budweiser puppy was the cutest! Not knowing much about football I have to say I thought it was a good game, the score was never too far apart. I felt a little bad they started fighting at the end but they both wanted to win so badly, it makes me think of the amount of pressure athletes have to cope with. I have a lot of respect for them to be able to handle that kind of pressure. Now to the good stuff, I thought the big cat Katy Perry rode in on was amazing!!! Especially since its movements were coordinated by people on the bottom. It reminded me of the dragons I've seen at parades in China town here in NY, just people moving together to bring an object to life. The other thing I enjoyed during the game was the food, I had half a hero and wings. Well, I left the wings to my husband I can't really eat hot wings (too spicy) but the celery was good. Definitely a good time :)

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Skin combo

As I've said in my some of my previous posts, I'm not a makeup guru. But I do like trying new products, even if only once or twice.

For years I've had issues figuring out what colors look good with my skin tone. I'm white but have a yellowish tint. I never really thought about undertone and how that affects how certain colors look on me, I just thought some clothes weren't 'me' and moved on.  I recently found a color palette for clothing that will help bring out the best in me.  Now if you're like me and didn't realize what undertone is and whether you are a cool, warm, or whatever you would not know which skin foundation to choose easily either.  So maybe you'll understand why when I say I've found a concealer and foundation team I love that (for me anyway) its a rare experience.

I decided to try on chance Maybelline instant age rewind foundation. I liked the ease of applying it and the color was good for my skin but I felt it still didn't wow me to look in the mirror. I wanted flawless, so I figured I'd also pick up their age rewind concealer. What a difference that little blemish stick made. Added bonus is that they have vitamin c in them and spf which i ❤.

Monday, January 12, 2015

In the Nude - Unzipped!

Don't get too excited from the title, I'm talking about the Unzipped nude eye shadow palette from Lorac. Although I'm excited, I love this palette! My sister recommended Lorac to me the other day, and I happened to see this eye shadow palette in Kohls. My families 'go to' store, they draw us in with store credit and coupon offers, I think at this point my Kohls card balance says I owe them a kidney.
I still need to work on perfecting applying the eye shadow (not the best make up guru so any tips are appreciated) also I loved that it came with a primer. I was thinking to check out youtube or ipsy for application techniques. Happy to say that I am finally getting good use out of a brush set one of my friends gave me a couple of years ago. Have a great day!

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Snack Bug

So it's another late afternoon at work, and I started craving a snack; more specifically chocolate and a coffee.  Since having my first baby 9months ago I've been steadily trying to lose the 'baby weight', I've been doing pretty well but haven't been able to give up my afternoon snack.  

That said, today I opted for a walnut brownie, and more or less regretted it afterward. It's one of those treats I know I shouldn't indulge in while trying to lose weight but I can't seem to stay away from the combination of walnut and chocolate. Then I started thinking how nice it would be to snack on chocolate covered walnuts but haven't seen any around. 

I started searching online for recipes and found a nice simple one for 'cocoa covered almonds' which I think I will substitute with walnuts. The recipe called for mixing the nuts with maple syrup, then simply coating them with cocoa and flour. Then pop them in the oven for 25 minutes. Needless to say I'm now dying to try this, it sounds very simple, which for me in the kitchen is a must! 

I checked her blog and liked the recipes, wish I was as disciplined to eat as clean as this but I guess one step at a time. Wish me luck! Check out the link below if you're interested in the recipes on that blog...

Funeral in Brooklyn

Officer Liu's funeral was Sunday near my neighborhood in Brooklyn, the streets were lined with our police officers and bus loads from outside the city. The show of support they have for each other and for the officers family was really touching, a tragedy like this shows how strong the 'bond of blue' can be. I can't imagine what the family of both officers are going through. Normally when a loved one leaves for work in the morning you expect them to come home, it shines a small light on the 'what if' factor that our police and firemen and their families have to live with in their daily lives. Bless them all.