Friday, April 27, 2012

What are you doing this weekend?

Happy Friday!

First and most importantly, can we all squeal a collective "Awww!" at these photos of a baby elephant playing on a beach? Sometimes I see photos of animals and the sweetness factor overwhelms me so much that I want to cry (see: here), and these are no exception. I love elephants so much.

Secondly, how were your weeks? Mine was good, but really busy with a bunch of work projects, so I'm super glad it's the weekend. On the agenda for the next few days: a big closet clean-out, friend time, workouts, and these chocolate chip cookies (rediscovered via Emily/Kate's blogs). I've actually made them before and they are amazing, and this weekend seems like a good time to revisit. (Plus, since they have to chill for 36 hours, I can bake them on Sunday and then take most of them to work on Monday, which means less opportunity to stuff my face with them.)

What are your plans for the next few days? Tell me, and I'll see you back here on Monday!

Photo source, via Joanna

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Love letter to Sarasota.

Some days are desk days: Eight hours in front of the computer, answering the occasional phone call, responding to email, getting up only for lunch or to take a lap around the office.

Some days are meeting days: Meetings in the conference room under fluorescent lights, meetings spent cradling the phone between ear and shoulder, meetings held while clutching oversize cups of coffee at Starbucks or a local cafe.

And some days are only-in-Sarasota days: Days when the sun shines so brightly, when the sky is such a brilliant shade of blue, and when the air is so crisp and springlike that you can't help pulling over (after a meeting, of course, this one on the very south end of Siesta Key), taking off your shoes, and dipping your toes into sand that looks almost glittery and a Gulf of Mexico that is such a beautiful shade of aquamarine that it almost looks fake.

Yesterday was one of those days.

(Dear Sarasota: Sometimes I love you so much it hurts.)

Happy Thursday, friends.

Photo: my own. Yes, my feet really are that white.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Working girl.

I try really hard not to blatantly repost other bloggers' content, but when I saw a post about Industry of One on Victoria's blog, I knew I had to share here, too. Industry of One is a super-rad site (founded by Adam Patrick Jones and Rachel Brown) that documents the relationship between personal and professional style -- i.e., how someone's job influences what they wear and how they live. I'm totally hooked and can't wait to see more.

And I'm also curious: What's your work style? I work in a creative field, so my wardrobe doesn't vary much from day to night (or weekday to weekend -- you know, minus the whole shorts-and-flip-flops thing). A typical work outfit for me consists of jeans, heels/flats and a cute top, or a little dress and heels. No suits, ever. And while that's not likely to change, I do want to branch out a little more this summer -- maybe try some different patterns, wear more skirts, embrace the bright pants trend further. How about you?

Photos: Industry of One

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

A snapshot of life lately.

Lazy weekends, movies, long walks, snuggles, some surprisingly cool end-of-April weather, friends, birthday celebrations, wine, flowers, meeting amazingly talented people for a new work project...

...and pancakes.

Lots and lots (and lots) of pancakes.

Photo: my own, taken with Instagram.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

The padlocks of Paris.

Shoko's post about travel yesterday mentioned the love locks of Paris, something I'd never heard of. So I did a little research and discovered that they are padlocks chained to Parisian bridges by couples who want to create a (mostly) permanent memorial of their love. I think the idea is pretty cool, but Parisian government seems to think otherwise: Apparently it's tried to cut off the locks, although visitors to the bridges, unsurprisingly, keep replacing them.

Even more interesting: There are love locks in many other countries, including China (where it's customary for couples to "lock their souls" together and then--literally--throw away the key), Italy, Germany and Canada. What do you think of the trend--tacky or kind of romantic?

Photo by Beryl Byrd

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Pushing the reset button.

Over the weekend, I came down with the worst stomach flu I think I've ever had. I spent most of Saturday night in the bathroom, throwing up every 20 minutes for about six hours (I know) (sorry), and then all of Sunday in bed with the cats and several crayon-colored bottles of Gatorade. In fact, I was horizontal for so much of Sunday and Monday that my lower back actually ached, something I've never experienced before. It was not pretty.

Anyway, I find that one of the very few bright spots of being that sick is that it forces you to push the reset button.What I had this weekend definitely wasn't food poisoning, but it did make me super-aware of the fact that, pre-stomach bug, I'd eaten cereal, two (large) spoonfuls of cream cheese frosting (for my coconut cake for a charity event), half an order of shrimp pad Thai, a root beer, two or three candied fruit slices, an ice cream cone and a veggie tortilla. I'm almost grateful that I've been forced to eat toast strips and chicken-and-rice soup for the past two days; I think my body needed the detox and the reminder that sometimes (oftentimes, actually) being gentle to yourself is better.

So that's where I am this week, and I think the next few days (and hopefully lots of them after that) are going to be filled with more soup, lots of tea, salads, yoga, Pilates and long walks. Here's to pushing the reset button, even when you didn't know you needed to.

Photo by me

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Loving: Prints from Leah Duncan.

I love pretty much everything Leah Duncan does (and in fact own this pillow cover), so it's no surprise that right now I'm coveting these two prints -- the swan and whale are so cute. Get them here.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Wednesday deliciousness.

1. Oranges drizzled with good honey (my current fave is TruBee, available locally at Artisan Cheese Company) and sprinkled with cinnamon. Comforting and a little exotic at the same time.

2. Cold-brewed iced coffee -- I use Deb's recipe, which I discovered via a tweet by Kate. The perfect afternoon pick-me-up; especially delicious with popcorn or a handful of nuts. (I drink mine with a healthy splash of almond milk and agave nectar, just like I do my morning chai tea.)

P.S. A third delicious thing? These spicy turkey meatballs, which aren't particularly photogenic but which are amazingly good. I made a batch Monday night and froze most of them, but am eating the leftovers for dinners this week. They're great with spaghetti, but they're equally wonderful coated in warm marinara sauce and dusted with grated Asiago cheese, served alongside a little salad. Yum.

First photo by me; second via Smitten Kitchen

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Two adorable outfits.

I really love these outfits -- super bright and cheery. Don't Joana and Solange both look so happy, too?

Photos by Garance Dore

Monday, April 9, 2012

Scenes from the weekend + committing to...

What a wonderful weekend. I'm at that point in my life where I now appreciate the quirks and beauty of my hometown, and going to visit it, like I did this weekend, means taking advantage of those things rather than counting down the minutes until I can get back to Sarasota. A nice feeling, for sure.

I had Friday off from work, so after a morning pedicure (much needed, long overdue), I headed north to Winter Park and my parents' house. On the way, I stopped at Rifle Paper Co.'s bricks-and-mortar storefront and picked up a few little treats (see: first photograph), then headed home to see my mom and hang out with my seven-year-old cousin, who's been staying with my parents. He and I wound up having a great time taking my parents' two dogs to the local dog park and then eating too much frozen yogurt afterward.

Saturday, I have to say, was a total throwback to childhood thanks to two little words: go karts. We took my cousin to Lil 500 (a go-kart track my uncle used to take my brother and me to when we were my cousin's age), and I think we loved it as much as he did. It didn't hurt that the weather was absolutely perfect, either -- humidity free, with highs in the upper 70s and a warm breeze -- and the feeling of the wind in our hair and the sun on our faces was enough to give us all perma-grins. What a fun day.

Then, before Easter dinner at my parents' house on Sunday, we decided to take part in the ultimate Winter Park tourist activity (and one of the most fun, too): the Winter Park Scenic Boat Tour, which has been around since 1938 and which travels through the lakes and canals of Winter Park -- which is also known, apparently, as the "Venice of America" (a title that makes me laugh). The weather was just as perfect as it was the day before, and it was fantastic being out on the water, listening to our old Southern tour guide (who was wearing tape-measure suspenders!) and just completely relaxing. My favorite part of the trip was going through the pretty canals, pictured above.

A fantastic few days off, indeed -- and now it's a new week and I kind of can't believe it. Nevertheless, here are my goals for the next few days:

+ Continue early-waking and sugar-reducing.
+ Speaking of food, plan out my menu for the week. I've been eating kind of randomly lately and, as with most of the things in my life, I find I function much better when I stick to a bit of a routine. So, yes: do that.
+ Do. My. Taxes. (Oh, hello, last minute.)
+ Be kind. As I've been reminded via some family stuff lately, you never know who's struggling or how much.
+ Embrace the gorgeous weather.

And you? Tell me, and I'll see you back here tomorrow!

Photos by me, taken with Instagram (I'm pinkoclock, if you'd like to follow me!).

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Loving: Prints from You Sentimental Idiot.

I love these black-and-white illustrations from You Sentimental Idiot. (The shop name makes me giggle, too.)

That's all.

Happy Thursday!

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Scenes from Sarasota: Posh on Palm, take two

I've mentioned my love for shabby-chic haven Posh on Palm before, but walking back from lunch today, I couldn't help but snap a few photos of the sweet scenes outside the store (and was happy to see that there's a new addition: Cafe Posh). It's always pink o'clock in that place, for sure.

photos by me, taken with Instagram

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

movie magic.

on sunday night, i watched one of my very favorite movies: big fish. i actually own it on dvd, but it was on hbo, so i decided to keep it on in the background while i was doing some other work. of course, pretty soon i was completely involved in the story -- again -- and the work i was doing quickly faded into background as the movie moved to the forefront.

i love so many things about big fish: there's the beautiful cinematography, of course, and also the excellent acting, but there's the plot, too -- about magic and imagination, about the nature and art of storytelling, about  how things get passed on over time and through generations, about the things we keep with us and come back to. there's also the poignant relationship between edward bloom (played by ewan macgregor and albert finney) and his son, will (played by billy crudup), and watching that arc unfold is funny and sad and touching. the last scenes of the movie never fail to make me cry, and i think that's why i don't watch it very often. still, every time i do, it sticks with me, and i tend to walk around with rose-colored glasses for awhile; i see just a little more magic in the world. and i think that's the key to the most powerful stories: they're transformative and they change our perspective -- even if just for a little while.

have you seen big fish? and while we're at it, what's your favorite movie?

images via columbia pictures

Monday, April 2, 2012

scenes from the weekend + committing to...

what a weekend: after a fun dinner with my friends k. and s. on friday night, i got to meet stacy london (!) on saturday afternoon at a mall in brandon, florida -- and fellow what not to wear fans, rest assured that stacy is just as funny and warm and, yes, direct in person as she is on television. it was such a great experience and it made me start thinking about how i want to dress this spring/summer -- always a fun thing to contemplate. (fyi: stacy says natural fibers like cotton blends and silks are best in heat, and she also says no linen, because you'll look like a mess the second you sit down. good to know.)

sunday was a quiet, and though i spent some time outside by the water in the beautiful weather, the majority of the day was dedicated to doing work, laundry and grocery shopping. (i made a big pot of this soup -- flavorful and no-fail, seriously.)

it's a short week for me at work, which is exciting, but as is the case with all short weeks, it's shaping up to be a busy one -- lots of new projects on the horizon. so i'm planning on buckling down -- and in that spirit, here are my little goals for the week:

+ cut back on sugar -- this is actually my goal for the entire month of april. i've noticed that my sweet intake has gone up lately, and honestly, while i love a treat as much as the next girl, too much of a good thing makes me feel yucky. so i'm going to go easy on the white stuff (and use natural sweeteners, like agave nectar and honey, if i have to have them) and replace my usual desserts with fruit. (tonight, for example, i'm having orange slices with cinnamon and honey. yum.)

+ continue the waking-up-early thing. i've been doing really well with it; here's to keeping it up.

+ organize my closet -- it's kind of scary in there and i think it's time for a goodwill drop-off.

+ do my taxes. (sigh.)

how about you -- what are your goals for the week?

photos -- little vignettes around my apartment -- by me.