Photo by Kristin Johanneck
Wednesday, July 29, 2009
Photo by Kristin Johanneck
Tuesday, July 28, 2009
I don't know if this apartment has ever been as busy as it was last weekend. My folks came to visit and we had a great time, and even though the place is around 500 square feet, the four of us hung out here for a lot of it.
We didn't just have Scattergories marathons or cook up great feasts, though. We ventured out to lands unknown -- namely the Brooklyn Botanic Garden -- and saw some old favorites, too, like Central Park and West Harlem Piers Park.
It was fun to have two very active cameras (I think we took more than 300 photos). Here are some of my favorite shots:
It's weird having two homes now...here and Wisconsin. The longer we're here and the more visitors we have, the more firmly our feet and our hearts will be planted in both places. I don't know if I'll ever get used to that.
Wednesday, July 22, 2009
Sometimes I dream about how I'll spend my retirement years. Of course, being with loved ones, gardening, cooking, reading, and traveling top the list -- but I'm also pretty sure I'll need some sort of job to keep me busy. I often consider volunteer work, but another option comes to mind a lot as well: working at a florist.
I absolutely love flowers...always have. I started working in the garden with my parents, particularly my dad, at a very young age (I even won the W3834 County Road J Junior Rose Gardener Award in the late '80s), and having flowers around the house from time to time is one of the simple pleasures that I let myself indulge in (thanks to Ian's frequent contributions).
At The Knot, I get to think about flowers on a daily basis -- I'm one of the go-to people writers seek out if they're having trouble identifying a bloom for an article. The moments when I get to pore over photos of gorgeous bouquets, centerpieces, and other arrangements are always some of the highlights of my day. Today was a first: I was invited to arrange the three bouquets above for a live broadcast segment that our home director, Krissy, was working on (she decorated the vases!). It was great fun. I hope she'll ask me to do that again sometime. I can always use more photos for my portfolio...even if it won't be unveiled for 38 years.
Monday, July 20, 2009
Sunday, July 12, 2009
This weekend has been particularly notable because Ian and I have managed to finish furnishing our apartment! If I haven't told you, there's a lovely peninsula in the kitchen that serves nicely as a bar. When we signed on this place, we sold our beloved table and chairs and purchased a set of saddle-seat bar stools instead. They finally arrived on Friday, and we put them together yesterday. Now that they're in use, we can once again prepare and eat messy foods (God forbid we get a stain on our new couch!). This prompted tonight's supper: Ian's Beef Teriyaki with Broccoli and Noodles. It's his adaptation of America's Test Kitchens' Beef Teriyaki recipe which can be found in their Family Cookbook. It's absolutely delicious, not to mention cost-effective, quick (30 minutes, start to finish!), and relatively healthy. I highly recommend you get out a pen and paper now or print this blog entry. You'll use it. Promise.
P.S. On an entirely different topic, we have a new roommate, Domingo the Mouse. Does anyone have any tips on getting rid of him? We are currently using traps baited with peanut butter, and no luck. I refuse to use a glue trap. Talk about inhumane...
Wednesday, July 8, 2009
Our bus was decked out with outlets, Wi-Fi, movie screens, leather seats, and even cup holders. The four-hour ride was beautiful. It was so exciting to see rivers, cornfields, and forests. We fully intend to take another Bolt Bus (they do additional routes to Boston, Philadelphia, and Baltimore, all of which would be fun to escape to, as well). Here's the Susquehanna River.
Once we arrived in DC, we made our way to our hotel. Donovan House is one of the most posh and comfortable hotels I've ever stayed in (see the foyer below). It's got very mod decor and an extremely courteous staff. If you ever get the chance to stay here, do it. Special thanks to Thompson Hotels for the fantastic rate (I suppose it's the least they can do for such a dedicated employee!).
As soon as we checked in, it was nearly constant sightseeing for three days. We visited numerous museums (mostly of the Smithsonian variety)... These are both from the Museum of American History: C-3PO and Julia Child's kitchen.
Saw lots of great architecture... (the Department of the Treasury)
And monuments... (The Washington, obviously)
And memorials... (my favorite: the Korean War Memorial)
And plant life... (a "real" magnolia, per our friend Kristen)
And Segways... (they did tours!)
And presidents... (We actually saw Barack drive by in a limo. I took a video of it, but I'm still working on freeze-framing.)
And fireworks... (The first shot is what the mall looked like pre-show. It was this crowded all the way to the Washington Monument.)
...And we ate. Well. Here we are at Brasserie Beck, which serves up delicious French-Belgian bistro fare. They know their beers and wine too. The staff were wonderfully nice, and we even got to stop in the kitchen and say hello.
We also got to have dinner with our the Vons, who recently moved to Washington so Jason could pursue his PhD in theology. We met them at Union. This is the view Kristen and I always have when the four of us are in transit.
And, best of all, we really enjoyed ourselves.
Tuesday, July 7, 2009
And if you're wondering, we had an absolutely fantastic time in the capital. It's getting late, so paring down our 481 photos to an acceptable number to post will have to wait until another day.