Love is Strange

August 22, 2014

Have you seen the trailer for Love is Strange, starring John Lithgow and Alfred Molina as longtime couple Ben and George? It comes out today and looks like such a beautiful, sweet and heartbreaking film (and has great reviews). Director Ira Sachs says of the movie, “It was centered on this one couple who was towards the end of their life and had been together for a very long time, but it was about love in a variety of forms and perspective.” Lithgow and Molina performances seem funny and heartfelt.

Thoughts? Will you see it? I’m looking forward to seeing it!

Image from The Daily Beast via Sony Pictures Classics. Quote via Vanity Fair.)

Happy Anniversary, Whitney & Toru!

August 21, 2014

Whit & Toru

Happy anniversary to my beautiful sister Whitney and her husband Toru! I love this picture of the two of them. It was taken the night before they got married in Napa Valley two years ago, and I just love how you can tell how happy and relaxed they were! I can’t believe it’s been two years…time is a weird thing! Whit and Toru just returned from a week long trip to San Diego where they met their new (and first!) nephew, enjoyed views from the top of the Mt. Soledad National Veterans Memorial, watched stunning California sunsets, and saw hundreds of seals sunning at La Jolla Cove and celebrated two years of marriage together!

Love you both to the moon and back! xo

Seaside Heights, New Jersey

August 19, 2014

Seaside Heights, NJ | Photo credit: Kelley MacDonald, The City and Us blog:

Dan and I got back from New Jersey Sunday evening after a fun weekend getaway to see a few friends and enjoy some beach time. Now I’m wishing we could teleport back to the beach and lounge on our towels in the hot sand. Weekends really should be more than two days! Here are a few pictures from our weekend, if you’d like to see…

Seaside Heights, NJ | Photo credit: Kelley MacDonald, The City and Us blog:

Seaside Heights, NJ | Photo credit: Kelley MacDonald, The City and Us blog:

Seaside Heights, NJ | Photo credit: Kelley MacDonald, The City and Us blog:

Friday night, after Dan got out of work, we met at Port Authority in Manhattan and caught a bus to Tom River, NJ. The bus ride is only about an hour and a half, which makes it easy for a weekend trip. Our good friend Johnny has friends who own a cute house in Seaside Heights (only 10 minutes from the bus stop), and we were lucky enough to stay with them for a couple nights. Seaside Heights, home of the famous Seaside Heights Boardwalk (remember the devastating fire last September that burned much of the Boardwalk after it had just been rebuilt after Hurricane Sandy?) and MTV’s Jersey Shore show, is a cute town with lots of shops and restaurants. The colorful Boardwalk was packed full with ice cream parlors, pizza places, clothing stores, games and rides. There was also a mini golf course and a SkyRide (chairlift ride). I loved how colorful the buildings and storefronts were along the Boardwalk. It was an awesome place to take pictures!


Seaside Heights, NJ | Photo credit: Kelley MacDonald, The City and Us blog:

We spent Saturday afternoon at Seaside Park Beach. I’m not sure exactly what I was expecting, but I was pleasantly surprised at how clean the beach was. The rivers in Manhattan are pretty gross, which makes me skeptical of the oceans nearby, but this beach was great. The water was cold at first so I didn’t do much swimming, but the guys spent quite a while swimming and throwing the football in the waves.

Seaside Heights, NJ | Photo credit: Kelley MacDonald, The City and Us blog:

Seaside Heights, NJ | Photo credit: Kelley MacDonald, The City and Us blog:

Dan and DJ waiting for our table at Jimmy’s Breakfast on Saturday morning.

Seaside Heights, NJ | Photo credit: Kelley MacDonald, The City and Us blog:

On Sunday, we packed up and headed back to Manhattan. We decided to give the train a try on our way back since traffic on the weekends can be miserable getting back into the city, especially during the summer. The train ride was about two hours from Pleasant Point, NJ to Penn Station in Manhattan–easy!

Anyway, hope you had a good weekend! And, thank you, Johnny, for planning this fun weekend! xo

“A Scoop of Roses”

August 18, 2014

Beautiful scoops of roses for your Monday afternoon, just ’cause. Photos of our weekend in New Jersey coming up! xo

(By Vintagepiken)

Scenes from The Bronx

August 14, 2014


A few weeks ago, Dan and I were returning a rental car in The Bronx, and I happened to remember to bring my fancy digital camera! Sometimes, since it can get heavy to carry around the city for longer periods of time, I use my iPhone to take pictures instead of my DSLR. But, on this particular day, we were taking our time getting back to our Upper West Side apartment so we wandered around The Bronx for a bit and I took some pictures. Here are a few from our walk, if you’d like to see…





The painting on this staircase was done by artist Steed Taylor and is called The Bridge & The Devil. The sign explaining the artwork reads: Inspired by Kingsbridge built in 1693 and the Spuyten Duyvil (Spitting Devil) Creek it crossed, this artwork is a reminder of our rich urban history and the never-ending desire to tame and mold New York City’s geography to suit our needs.






As I was taking a picture of this colorful donkey mural, a man walked by and asked if I wanted to take his picture, and, of course, I said yes! The photo below is my first attempt at street style photography. Nailed it.


Beach Tee

August 13, 2014

This Tee read my mind.

(Via Madewell)

5 Vacation Ideas in the US

August 12, 2014

Naked Ladies (the pink flower variety) cascade down the hill before McWay Falls

Today, my sister and her husband are flying to San Diego to meet their new nephew and soak up some California sun, and my Mom and her husband are flying to Sacramento to visit family and then spend a few days exploring Lake Tahoe. Since I not-so-secretly wish I was going too, I thought I would share five places in the US that are on my bucket list to visit (in no particular order):

1. Big Sur, California. The McWay Falls, an 80-foot waterfall, in Big Sur is breathtaking and looks like a wonderful place to explore. A tip mentioned on Kate Miss’ blog: star gaze from the hot springs at Esalen! OK!

2. Charleston, South Carolina. Because, THE TREES! I know there are many beautiful things to see and fun things to do in Charleston, but THE TREES! If I lived in Charleston, I would do EVERYTHING in my power to build a fully functional, year-round tree house in one of these phenomenal trees.

3. Joshua Tree National Park. There are always beautiful photos of Joshua Tree popping up on my Instagram feed, and every time I see one I picture Dan and myself camping in a vintage Airstream in the middle of the desert cooking S’mores and taking pictures of the amazing landscape and sunsets. One day!

Desert Life

The View Behind Me

4. Austin, Texas. I really want to swim in Jacob’s Well in Wimberley, TX, which is about 45 minutes outside of Austin. And the Hamilton Pool, a natural swimming pole, in Austin is another beautiful swimming spot that you have to hike to, which would be really fun to do!

5. Nashville, Tennessee. I haven’t spent much time in the south, except for when visiting family in Houston, (which, I realize, is arguably the most “south” you can get, at least according to most Houstonians), but I haven’t spent much time outside Houston. The south has always seemed like an enigma to me, mostly because it’s wildly different than New England. I’d love to explore Nashville someday. The people seem laid back and soulful. Plus, I’ve been searching for a skull to decorate with for like ever, and I just know there’s one waiting for me in Nashville!

kinfolk l'esprit de la mer dinner / Nashville, TN

Are you planning any vacations this year? Any recommendations to add to this list?

PS. Bar Harbor and York Beach, Maine, and a gorgeous B&B in Brooklyn!


(Photo credits: Big Sur: top photo by Rob DeGraff, second photo by Kate Miss. Charleston: both images by KT Merry. Joshua Tree: first image via Brian Flaherty, second and third images by Nick Carver. Austin: first image unknown, second via Park Central Austin. Nashville: first image via Beth Kirby for Kinfolk, second image via the imogene + willie shop’s tumblr page.)

Good and Cheap Cookbook

August 11, 2014

The free e-book Good and Cheap, written and photographed by Leanne Brown, is a cookbook aimed at helping low income families eat better by cooking for themselves. Created for the capstone project for her MA in Food Studies at New York University, Brown describes Good and Cheap as, “a collection of recipes for people with limited incomes, particularly those on a $4/day food stamps budget.” After Brown posted her free PDF version online, it went viral on social media sites such as Reddit and Tumblr and was featured on national news stations and covered in newspapers and magazines. This support gave Brown the idea to launch a Kickstarter campaign to print hardcopies of her very popular e-book version. Her goal was to get copies of Good and Cheap into the hands of people who didn’t have access to the online version or who wouldn’t otherwise see it.

Brown’s Kickstarter was hugely successful; starting with a goal to fundraise $10,000, the campaign finished with more than $144,000 in donations and is now available to pre order! Books will ship in September with the addition of 20 new recipes. You can also donate a copy of the book and there are special options to order in bulk for low-income families. Brown states on her website, “I think everyone should eat great food every day. Eating well means learning to cook. It means banishing the mindset that preparing daily meals is a huge chore or takes tremendous skill. Cooking is easy — you just have to practice.”

Although aimed towards low-income families, there’s something for everyone in this beautifully photographed cookbook. I’m particularly excited to try the Whole Wheat Jalapeno Cheddar Scones, Vegetable Jambalaya, and Cauliflower Tacos. Also, the section called “Things on Toast” is genius and the recipes look delicious! Here’s a peek at the “Things on Toast” section:


(Video via Good and Cheap Kickstarter page; images and information from Leanne’s website and the pdf version of Good and Cheap.)

Etsy Find: Weekender Bag

August 8, 2014

Happy Friday, everybody! What are you up to this weekend? Tonight, Dan and I are headed to see this show. Have you seen it? Dan’s colleague is a producer and we’re excited to go check it out. We’ll also be hanging around and exploring our new neighborhood, which I’m really excited about! There seems to be so much happening in Brooklyn.

How lovely is this large weekender bag by Awlsnap? I love its tomboy feel and the navy color is perfect (they also offer a beautiful chocolate brown version). I’d love to use it for our frequent trips to Vermont and New Hampshire.

Hope you have a relaxing weekend! xo

9 Unique Wedding Gifts for a Bride

August 5, 2014

This past weekend, our friends Kristen and Spencer got married in New Hampshire. Their intimate ceremony took place along the Connecticut River, and the setting and decor were so beautiful. It was a treat to escape hot New York City for a couple of days and to catch up with friends we hadn’t seen in years.

Kristen and Spencer’s wedding was the first for us this season. Usually by this point in the summer, we’d have already been to a few weddings with three or four more scheduled for late summer and fall. I think we’re coming to the end of that age range when you have weddings every weekend of the summer; we’ve easily been to over 25 weddings in the past four years! (Crazy!)

Since I keep my eyes and ears open for unique wedding gift ideas, I thought I’d share a few ideas for brides, specifically.

Here are 9 ideas for unique wedding gifts for a bride:

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Blogmilk | Brandi Bernoskie