Tuesday, November 30, 2010

here comes december

Truth be told, I really just wanted to wear another big sweater today. With leggings. And slippers. But I forced myself to look deeper into my closet and this is what I came up with. When it gets cold, my desire to dress diminishes to nothingness. I really just want to hibernate at home and eat chili and watch E!

(scarf/belt: Goodwill; jumper: Bargain Boutique; dress: Old Navy; shoes: Seychelles)

I'm so ready to start celebrating Christmas. We aren't getting our tree until the weekend after next, so I feel like my holiday spirit is on hold! I seriously need some cheer (in the form of spiked eggnog, festive fir scented candles, chipper carols throughout the house, and well, okay... it's time for some snow!). I mean, it's December tomorrow, and Vermont is practically at the North Pole. Well, not exactly. But pretty close :)

Monday, November 29, 2010

sweater weather

Welcome back to the world, everyone! I hope you enjoyed your long weekends (if you had them) or your regular-sized weekends, otherwise! I sure did :) K and I basically did nothing after the food-filled Turkey day on Thursday. We got to my parents' house around noon and ate lots of snacks (chips, cheese and crackers, veggies, shrimp for everyone but me), then took a jaunty walk up to the "Christmas Tree Field" to get some fresh air and rekindle our appetites. We'll be going back in a couple of weekends to get our tree, and wanted to check out our options! We had a lovely, delicious dinner (as usual), digested while playing several games of Bananagrams, ate pie (apple and pumpkin, oh my!) and coffee with kahlua, and finished off the evening with The Changeling (at my grandmother's request).

(sweater: the cedar chest; skirt: Goodwill; belt: Bargain Boutique; coat: TJMaxx; boots: ALDO)

Since K and I are totally broke (as usual), we basically just stayed in all weekend. I am not one of the merry Americans who hits the malls at 4 am on Black Friday--that sort of madness is definitely not for me or my nerves. Crowds make me a little crazy these days, especially when shopping is involved (I prefer to browse in peace). It was really relaxing--I read, watched bad TV, started another puzzle, and just hung out. And now? I'm back! I definitely wanted to wear a big, bulky sweater this morning and this one fit the bill... I couldn't sleep last night (I think working on the puzzle put my brain in hyperdrive) and when that happens I just want to be cozy all day. I feel sort of like this is what I would have worn growing up in Vermont in the 'fifties--something about the oversized sweater and short pleated skirt suggests Lumberjack Cheerleader to me.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

(song lyric sunday)

i wear your dress

this is just to tell you that i wear your dress sometimes
the one you made with the gold brocade and the empire waistline
you fitted to your figure when it looked just like my own
that was jersey in the fifties, and the women stayed at home

so you laid your paper pattern on the table in between
the silverware and napkins and the harper’s magazines
from a slow suburban season that is nothing but a dream
to your granddaughter

this is just to tell you that i wear your dress sometimes
i wear it down to the bar in town and dance around all night
talking and joking, swearing and smoking like any stranger in a crowd
and nobody stares, nobody cares to tell me i’m not allowed- i am allowed

and my body, by the letter of the law, is still my own
when i lay down in the darkness, unburdened and alone
with the liberty you’ve given like the clothing you’ve outgrown
to your granddaughter

this is just to tell you that i wear your dress sometimes

(anaïs mitchell)

Saturday, November 27, 2010

savory saturday: spicy vegetarian chili


1 T olive oil
1 onion
2 cloves garlic
1 jalepeno (I used two!)
1 red pepper
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp chipotle chili powder
1 c tomato sauce
4 c water
1 15-oz can black beans (drained)
1 15-oz can pinto beans (drained)
1 15-oz can kidney beans (drained)
1 lb frozen sweet corn, thawed
pepper jack cheese


Mince garlic, chop onion and peppers. I used two jalepenos (and extra garlic) because I like my chili *hot*!

Heat oil in large saucepan and sautee onions. Meanwhile, drain beans in a colander and pour a glass of wine for sipping (remember what I said about non-negotiable cooking steps...).

Add garlic, jalepeno, red pepper.

Add oregano and chili powder. Stir/cook ~3 min.

Add beans...

...tomato sauce...
(In the heat of the moment, I accidentally added 3 c of crushed tomatoes, so I just added less water--worked out fine!)

...and corn. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low, and simmer (20 min).

Crush 1/3 of the beans to thicken the soup--I crushed them against the side of the pan with a fork. Cook another 10 min.

Before the chili started simmering (20 min ago), I pre-heated the oven to 425, placed a cake pan in the oven, and prepared a...


1 3/4 c cornmeal
3/4 c flour
1 tsp salt
2 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 c whole milk
1 egg
4 T butter, melted


Combine dry ingredients in a large bowl, then add milk, egg and melted butter.

Grease pre-heated pan with butter and fill with batter.

Put cornbread in oven just after beans have been added to the chili, and cook 22-25 min, until bread begins to brown.

Butter cornbread, scoop large helping of chili into enormous bowl, top with shredded pepper jack cheese, and...


Thursday, November 25, 2010

giving thanks

For my parents, who are always, unfailingly, there for me.
For my job, when so much of the country is struggling.
For K, who tolerates Real Housewives and makes really great cake :)
For my friends, old and new and really old.
For my health.
For red wine and ambient light.
For F. Scott Fitzgerald, D. H. Lawrence, Wallace Stegner, Simone de Beauvoir, Doris Lessing, Margaret Atwood, Erica Jong, Tom Robbins, and Kurt Vonnegut.
For chevre, brie, and sharp cheddar.
For jazz on the radio.
For the ocean.
For airplanes, which take me to faraway places.
For theater, which is not dead.
For those rare moments of divine inspiration.
For long walks, long drives, and free time.
For all of you, who make blogging worthwhile!

(photos from last Thanksgiving)

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

what a wednesday

I really overslept, so outfit photos were out of the question this morning. I don't know what it is about waking up lately--I just cannot seem to do it. Plus, my phone has decided to sporatically NOT alarm me when it is time to get up (the "vibrate" mode is suddenly on strike). These factors combined = bad news.

Tonight I will be making Grammy's Apple Pie (as I do every year), drinking wine (as I do every night), and possibly finishing "The Beautiful and Damned," which I am loving (since I love everything that Fitzgerald ever wrote).

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone (and Happy Thursday to my non-American friends)! I hope you have a fabulous day :)

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

ladies and gentlemen

Since yesterday's outfit was seriously monochromatic, I felt a strong impulse to rebound into the color spectrum this morning. Hence, red, red, red! It's pretty amazing how much of a difference the red lipstick makes in pulling an outfit together... it's so classy! I so wish that we were all ladies and gentlemen again...

(chambray: Walmart [unfortunately]; skirt: Goodwill; belt: Bargain Boutique; scarf: vintage Anne Klein; tights: HUE; wool socks: stolen from mom; boots: Seychelles; lipstick: MAC)

Last night K and I watched "The Extra Man," and it was fantastic. I would definitely recommend it to anyone who enjoys rather quirky character films. The basic premise is that a young dandy goes to New York City and rents a room in the apartment of an elderly escort. The film brilliantly captured the rampant eccentricity of the Big Apple (as I imagine it), and was really quite funny. It was written by Jonathan Ames, who has officially made it onto my list of "people to watch" in Hollywood--he also created the fabulous Jason Schwartzmann/Zack Galifianakis TV show "Bored to Death." Lots of awesomeness.

In other news, Thanksgiving in two days!! Woo-hoo :)

Monday, November 22, 2010

post-weekend warrior

Happy Monday, everyone!! I am feeling fairly refreshed after a relaxing weekend :) Don't you love when that happens? I also got a new cubicle at work which is only half ugly-grey-cubicle-walls-and-flourescent-lights--there is an enormous window behind me that looks out over our cozy little town. It's pretty amazing what natural light and access to the outside world can do for the psyche! :)

This weekend started out pretty busy--K and I went to see Ben Kweller on Friday night, and it was pretty good even though we hadn't expected it to be an acoustic show. He's amazingly talented, but many of his songs started to sound the same without the variety a full band provides. I admit I was a little confused by the opening act, a woman named Julia Nunes who didn't particularly appeal to me but seems to be hyper-popular in the YouTube universe.

After a long day of cleaning and errands on Saturday, we dropped in at Red Square to see our friend Myra play a mellow set (just what I needed), then walked next door to see her husband, Justin, as he played an impromptu gig at 1/2 Lounge. Every time I go see a show, especially when I know the performers, it just makes me wish that I were still up on some sort of stage occasionally! I'm hoping I can get a keyboard in the next few months and start teaching myself to play, at least just so I'm able to get a satisfactory singing-fix. K and I were pretty beat after a long day so we left a little early, picked up a delicious pizza, and headed home to settle into the couch and watch Toy Story 3 (not impressed, unfortunately--it couldn't even compare to the first one).

Sunday was spent lounging around, reading, and cooking up a storm. K made an amaaaaaaaaaaaaaaazing flourless chocolate cake (which was dangerously decadent), and I made vegetarian chili with cornbread for dinner. It feels good to be domestic sometimes!

(blouse: Plato's Closet, jumper: VintageStore123 via etsy; tights: Kohl's; shoes: Payless; barrette: Modcloth; belt: Goodwill)

Since the opacity of these tights is not up to par, I layered a pair of grey tights underneath, and voilà! Easy-peasy. I received these leopard-print barrettes as a free gift with my "Frankly, I Don't Give a Dress" dress (which I won from the Clothes Horse!), and have yet to wear either the dress or the barrettes, and since the red halter isn't exactly autumn-appropriate, the dress has been put on the back burner (though I think it would look great with a vintage fur coat, so I might throw that together one of these days...). Hair accessories, however, know no season.

Welcome to my new followers, and thanks to Emily for featuring me on her blog!