Beginning of Summer…

Here we are, Oregon Summer 2015! I arrived just a little over 24 hours ago from New York and it feels like I never left. I must say that I have had a hard time adjusting the first week….I always want to make a plan and have a hard time not having a “busy schedule”. That said, after a week in Eugene, I get the hang of doing nothing and get to be way more mellow and relaxed (all of it disappears the moment that I land in NYC). Totally jet-lagged, exhausted, and tired, here is a quick look at some photos of my first 24 hours in Eugene.

 

A walk to a flat area (we live in a steep hill in every direction) where Tata (my father) could teach Cruzzie how to ride a bike.

A walk to a flat area (we live in a steep hill in every direction) where Tata (my father) was able to teach Cruzzie how to ride a bike. (and yes, That’s Life!)

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Summer 2015 Book List

I hope everyone had a nice Father’s Day! I had a wonderful time celebrating with my guapo, devoted, hands on, loving husband who is the BEST father out there; by riding carousels, sweating buckets at the Playground, drinking milkshakes and eating at Fred’s with my Father-in-law (also a terrific father). Next up, celebrating my own incredible fanny-pack-wearing, dependable, loveable, and smartest man alive father– when we go to Oregon on WEDNESDAY!!!! Not only do our packed bags signify the summer, but so too does my stack of fun books to read. So here is my summer 2015 Book List!

 

GREEN

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Summer 2015 To-Do List

Since summer’s now here (well, kind of. Yes my kids are out of school but I am still in NYC…), I put together my personal to-do list for the season, filled with things I’d love to accomplish before Labor Day. Lots to do in just a small amount of time.

 

1. Drink rose and gobble up oysters at Grand Banks on Pier 25 in NYC. Doesn’t it look ridiculous? Unreal, oh-my-god-I-want-to-go-now.

 

The restaurant is on a BOAT! But not this type of boat. And definitely not this captain.

The restaurant is on a BOAT! But not this type of boat. And definitely not this captain.

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Mini Melissa Kitty Shoes

stretch

 

While it hit other states hard, Juno the Blizzard didn’t really hit NYC….but we still had (a tiny amount of) snow, no school, lots of hot cocoa, sledding, and snow angels. I was a little disappointed to wake up to 2 (ok, 6 total) inches of snow, but super happy to be with the kids and play in the snow.  I hope all the JG readers in New England are doing OK.

 

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Summer 2014 Reading List

Summer is my main time to read a lot; longer days, less to do, and no TV. That said, I have been obsessed with Scandal (so horrible it’s good), surfing the internet (searching for a fall coat), and sports (Wimbledon and World Cup)… so here is my list of books to read this summer! Hope you get some inspiration from this list. Enjoy!

 

1. A Replacement Life (Boris Fishman)

 

boris

 

(Side note: Boris Fishman’s father is a doorman in our building.  The story behind the family and the book is truly inspiring, and I can’t wait to share more with you in a future post.)

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Overalls

Front view.

I jumped on the overall trend bandwagon back in November. Well, actually, last Spring I had my eye on a pair of Roseanna overalls, but didn’t bite the bullet….so it was on my mind well before November. At first I was nervous about sticking out more on the Upper East Side (my affinity of birkenstocks, patagonia, and backpacks aren’t shared by the average UES woman), but what do you know? ALL OF THOSE items are now trending as cool. Oregon style = hipper than you know and > UES stuffiness.

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Green Bean Salad

Devour! You can obviously make this without bacon, if you so desire.

All of my favorite recipes are originally made by my favorite chef, my mama. My mother is hands down the most inventive, creative, and talented chef in the kitchen (among many other traits and accomplishments). And this green bean salad has been in her repertoire for years, and as a result has become one of my go-to-salads. It is fresh, easy, healthy, and good in any season. Enjoy!

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Upstate Shirt

Front.

Here I go AGAIN (and again and again) with some love for tie dye! It doesn’t matter what year or season it is, I will always have a love for the look. And thank you, Upstate, for creating this beautiful shirt! Upstate creates one of a kind pieces of wearable art by using dye techniques based on Japanese shibori. Each of my Upstate items, I LOVE and WEAR and ROCK.

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Surf Bazaar Harem Pants

Totally in love with my beachwear from Surf Bazaar!  Their tanks, tees, and tunics are my beach and summer go-tos (FYI- we just got back from a great vaca in Puerto Rico), and now they have created a pant that is beyond amazing. And these aren’t just your typical pants — they are the perfectly combined craziness of (1) neon (2) drop crotch (3) embroidered cutouts. It is every trend in ONE pant — Hallelujah!

Neon eyelet!!

Neon eyelet!!

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Peach Crisp

Fruit crisps might not be the most photogenic dessert, but they sure are delicious. Even if they look gloopy and mushy (which they are), they still remind me of easy, relaxing, summer nights. This recipe for Peach Crisps was adapted from Alice Waters’ The Art of Simple Food and can be used for any fruit crisp (raspberry, apple, blueberry, rhubarb, the sky is the limit!)

Ingredients:

Ingredients

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Ken’s Beer Can Chicken

Guest blogger alert! Here’s Ken with another fun grilling post:

 

Greetings!  It is great to be out of sweltering New York, and more importantly, reunited with my summering wife and kids in Oregon for a week.  I am blessed to have the ability to really focus on my true passions during my vacation: cooking for my in-laws, and guest-writing for a women’s lifestyle blog.  Good times.

 

I have stepped in for the Josie Girl before, mostly with grilling posts on artichokes and fruit (and separately, Lemon Mint Pasta with Bacon and Tips for Expectant Fathers) The focus on fruit, vegetables and general health?  Not necessarily my first choice (play to your audience), so it’s time for more of a traditional and fun (and manly) post on…. Beer Can Chicken.

Ingredients

Ingredients. 4 lb chicken, can o’ beer (room temperature), olive oil, salt, pepper, and if you have it, rosemary, and thyme.

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Summer Hair

99.99% of the time, my hair is up in an olive-oyl chignon. I rarely wear it in a different style…guilty of being boring and predictable! Luckily, contributing editor Ali, via her hair stylist, Kate has some tips for us! Here they are! Thanks, Ali and Kate! Take it away!

 

Ali, and her amazingly styled, perfectly cut hair. Thanks to Kate! (and genetics, too. Obvi).

Ali, and her amazingly styled, perfectly cut hair. Thanks to Kate! (and genetics, too. Obvi).

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Summer Activities in NYC

Just finished a great weekend with the family all together, as Ken is out for the week here in Oregon. We went on a hike, attended a puppet show, drank some coffee, and ventured to the Oregon Country Fair. So, although I am not in New York for the summer, here is a list of ten activities that I would do if I were there.

1.  Shop at the Artists and Fleas pop up store at Chelsea Market.

Chelsea Market

Chelsea Market

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Gazpacho

I know, I know, I know. Sounds super boring and uninspiring. But trust me, this is a GOOD gazpacho. I always try different gazpacho recipes as there are so many versions and varieties out there, but I always go back to THIS one. So use this recipe to create a simple, lovely, and delicious cold soup on a hot summer day. This recipe is loosely based off the gazpacho recipe from The Breitenbush Cookbook.

Ingredients:

Ingredients

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Holiday Weekend

Not that there is much difference between a weekend and a weekday during my summer vacation in Oregon, but we have had a great last couple of days. My brother and his family came down from Seattle, and there was a constant influx of noise, commotion, and chaos, combined with love, laughter, and happiness. When the two of our families are at my parents house (minus Ken, who is working in New York but coming out on Friday!), there is A LOT going on, but we all love being together so much. Here is a look at what we did. A lot of outdoor activities, as normal:

We set up a tent in the backyard for the cousins to sleep in.

We set up a tent in the backyard for the cousins to sleep in.

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Flat Sandals

High summer is here, so grab your sandals and get ready to dance the night away! The flat traditional Spanish sandal is my footwear of choice these days. They are as comfortable as Birkenstocks, yet more sophisticated and subtle. Easy to slip on and off, cozy for your feet to walk around in, and stylish to wear with any outfit.

These spanish flat sandals are created by the NY line, Plomo.

These Spanish flat sandals are created by the NY line, Plomo, although a lot of different brands sell very similar versions.

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Lola Hats

School is out for summer! Here Comes the Sun! Protect your skin, and wear a hat. And not just any hat, a Lola hat.

Lola

Lola Hats is a Brooklyn company, created by Lola Ehrlich. Now sold in boutiques and department stores, these hats are simple and chic, with a slight twist and flair. All of the hats are all hand-made in Brooklyn and have a sense of individuality and creativity, while being practical, protective, and classic.

My current obsession: straw hat.

My current obsession: straw hat.

Purple feathers.

Purple feathers.

Birds' view.

Birds’ eye view (sideways).

Side view.

Side view.

Other side view.

Other side view.

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White Summer Dress

Hi ladies! Thanks so much for all the positive feedback from the feature in Lonny. We were really nervous about it, but we’re very happy with the article.  The Lonny team was so great to work with! SOOOO….one of the most frequently asked questions was what dress I wore for the Pound Ridge shoot. Good question, as I *LOVE* this dress and it is oh-so-perfect for hot-sunny-firefly types of summer days and nights.

Sorry for yet ANOTHER show of this picture, but instead of focusing on the whole image, look specifically at the dress! (It turned out nice on camera, right?)

Sorry for yet ANOTHER post of this picture, but instead of focusing on the whole image, look specifically at the dress! (It turned out nice on camera, right?)

This white dress is by Mes Demoiselles — an oh so chic and fashionable Parisian line. The dress is a crinkled gauze and eyelet, with a gathered elastic waist, and tiers added to the skirt base. It comes with a cotton slip lining so you don’t have to worry about panty lines. It is a perfection combination of casual and put-together, day and night, easy and effort-less, vintage and new.

You can wear it with or without a belt, too. The belt adds a little more flavor and style, but I also love the simplicity  and solid color without the belt.

You can wear it with or without a belt, too. The belt adds a little more flavor and style, but I also love the simplicity and solid color without the belt.

My modeling career -- awkward!

My modeling career — awkward!

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Mango Tapioca

I love mushy food.  Like love.  It’s like I am a 90 year old woman with no teeth.  So what is one of my dream desserts? TAPIOCA!. I experimented and created my own LACTOSE-FREE (aka vegan with an egg) mango tapioca recipe. Refreshing, soothing, delicious. Enjoy!

Ingredients:

Ingredients.

* 2 and 3/4 cups almond/soy milk
* 1/3 cup of sugar
* 3 tablespoons of minute tapioca
* 1 beaten egg
* 1 mango
* 1/2 cup of coconut milk
Directions:

*  Mix milk, sugar, tapioca and (beaten egg) in a saucepan and let mixture sit for 5 minutes.

I didn't listen to my own directions and simply placed the egg into the mixture before beating the egg. WRONG, beat the egg before you place it in the milk mixture.

I didn’t listen to my own directions and simply placed the egg into the mixture before beating the egg. WRONG, beat the egg before you place it in the milk mixture.

Blend.

Blend.

* On medium heat, cook the mixture until it comes to a full boil while constantly stirring.

Boiling tapioca.

Boiling tapioca.

Getting thicker.

Getting thicker. OH MY GOD, watching tapioca form is like finding a split end! And then examining it under the microscope. #highschooldays #itsthesmallthings #obsessive

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