Monday, April 30, 2012

my window box.

sidewalk, plants
sidewalk | forget-me-nots | dusty miller
carrie, lavender
lavender | friend | sparkles
ball jar | water | terracotta planter
window box, james close-up
james | forget-me-nots
parsley, ball jar
parsley | plant-friends
window box
window box in situ
window box, side view
our tiny apartment is tucked into the back corner of our building. this is lovely for lots of reasons, most of which involve spying on our neighbors. we overhear them merrily cavorting on their expansive balconies, the smells of their barbecues waft graciously into our tiny abode and sometimes the clinks of their glasses almost have us believing that we too are sipping on glasses of chilled rosé under the stars. almost.

the downside? this little corner is pretty dark most of the day. we only have an hour or two of real sunshine in the late afternoon. eager to bring a little brightness into our dim spot, we set out this weekend to plant a window box of our own. no reason that only the apartments that are street-side should have all of the fun!

we bicycled around town popping into neighborhood plant sales and garden shops, gathering plants that would thrive in our shady corner. we chose forget-me-nots, dusty miller, and vinca. i'm already practicing my plant whispering, hopeful that the vinca will works its way down the side of our building and become the envy of our well-heeled neighbors. but showstopper or no, we're pleased as punch with our tiny garden and we're especially grateful that the little guy survived a late-night
bicycle ride home

window box, from below
window box, from inside
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Friday, April 27, 2012

my week in objects (mostly).

five little things that made my week.

1. this lemon water.lemonwater
{because i zested one too many lemons and instead of putting it to waste, i got water that tastes like july}.

3. this nail.
curtain tieback
{because i was holding out for a more stately curtain tie, but reminded myself, again, that simple does the trick}.

3. these geraniums.
{because they stopped flowering inside, so i thought i'd give them a little push on the sill. their just sitting up there hatched another idea. more soon}.

4. this cup of tea with a friend.
{because sometimes tea on someone else's couch provides just the shift of perspective you need}.

5. this plate of crumbs.
{because i love how each slice eaten reveals a little more of this fellow on his bicycle. she's genius, that may luk}.

what little something made your week?

other things:
these photographs show the new york of my grandparents'.
{the main database is temporarily down, due to history lovers everywhere overwhelming the system. amazing}.
incredible pear blossoms.
these have me hankering to head west.
james surfing.

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Thursday, April 26, 2012

lemon cake.

lemons, whole
if you're going to do one thing this weekend, i say, make a lemon cake. there's no more sure-fire way to get your apartment feeling springy and fresh. bonus points: using a lemon reamer is extraordinarily satisfying. so little effort, so much achievement.
a word or two about the cake: it's a funny thing, my relationship with this lemony loaf. i usually go about making sweeping statements about how much i don't like citrusy desserts. for the most part, this is true. give me the choice between chocolate mousse and key lime pie and that poor pie is going to go uneaten. lemon meringue or a chocolate hazelnut confection? the nutella imposter will win. every time.
lemon, slicedso how does this lemon pound cake win my affection? for me, it's a question of timing and density. a lemony pound cake is something best enjoyed in the late afternoon with a warm cup of tea. the buttery cake is too rich after a heavy meal but the weight of it is just right for the hour when the sun shifts in the sky and you've got what feels like eons to go before dinner. there's enough butter and sugar in this stout little cake to fuel an army and if you're someone like me, whose level of crankiness is directly proportionate to the amount of food in her belly, afternoon snacks are a wonderful thing. reamer
i used this recipe from deb, but omitted the glaze. too much sweet, not enough sour for this crank. instead, i sprinkled a bit of powdered sugar and added a little garni of fresh thyme shoots from my teeny tiny apartment herb garden. i also opted to make two cakes in loaf pans, rather than break out the bundt, pretty as it is. 
if you're generous, making two loaves means you have one to share. pause. sometimes i'm not very generous. james made off with half of one loaf this morning and i'm still whimpering. but never fear, i tore through the waxed paper and i've been munching on the second loaf since 7 am. turns out this cake suits just as well when the sun is coming up.cake, sliced
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Wednesday, April 25, 2012

< two fifty: life in a tiny apartment.


skip the bathmat.

i realize i might not get all of you on board with this one. but i think it's genius and i'm hoping to sway you. as you may have seen on the floorplan of our apartment, our bathroom is just 4 feet 10 inches deep. this does not account for the two strange corners that jut into the space and were too annoying to draw. suffice to say, like everything else around here, the room is tiny.

it's even too small to fit a standard bathmat. yes. browse the bathmat selections at most of your favorite shops and you'll find bathmats that are 34 inches long, which is about 3 inches longer than the space between the bathtub and the door frame. no, i could not abide by having a bathmat that slinked its way red carpet-style over the door jam. besides, if we ever actually closed the bathroom door around here, that would just be an added annoyance. 

so, as with most things, we compromised. we use a hand towel instead. spread out, the thing is actually quite handsomely sized but still small enough to fit in the allotted space. and if i wring out my rapunzel locks in the shower before stepping out, it does a perfectly good job of sopping up the water from my squeaky clean feet. added bonuses: it dries super quickly and so doesn't get all stinky and gross. admit it. that happens to you, too. plus it weighs in at about 3 ounces, so adding it to the laundry pile doesn't break the bank. win, win, win.

i'll admit, it's not quite the same as stepping out onto this jazzy number. nor does it make you feel like you're at a spa, the way this surely would. but it works for us and that's all that matters.

confession: this little guy from brookfarm general store is actually the perfect, modestly sized mat. if we had that beauty we'd have to fend off the crowds trying to get in on our tiny apartment spa action. but we're pinching pennies like crazy over here, so that'll have to wait awhile.

ps. if you haven't already, please vote and help us spread the word. our little apartment is lagging behind the other behemoths. xo.
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Tuesday, April 24, 2012

cherry blossoms.

yesterday was gloomy, gloomy here in new york and i was holed up all day finishing a project. when i finally finished my work, i decided i needed to turn away from the computer and recreate a little bit of one of my favorite springtime pleasures: cherry blossoms.

these guys could not have been simpler to make. i had saved a bit of pink tissue from a gift i received, and i cut it up into like-sized strips. i folded stacks of three or four sheets accordion-style and tied each bundle with string around the middle. next, i folded each accordion in half and then spread the accordion out from the center into a circle. after that, all that's left to do is to wrestle each individual sheet outward from the center, just like a flower.

et voila. cherry blossoms inside on a rainy day. and if i do say so myself, think they look mighty like these real ones i snapped last week.
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Friday, April 20, 2012

my week in objects (mostly).

five little things that made my week.

1. this boardwalk.
{because starting things off with a morning on the beach is never a bad thing}.

2. this neighbor's window box.
{because even though i usually like my window boxes a little scrappier, this one is just too elegant not to be noticed}.

3. this toilet brush.
toilet brush holder
{because i found it at ikea. and while it's not nearly as high quality as the hard goods found in this shop, it's simple and clean. i won't tell you what i was managing with before}.

4. this park.
{because i plan on spending at least two nights a week in it this summer. and this week, it popped}.

5. this message.
love me
{because i never have my camera with me when i walk by, and this week i did}.

what little something made your week?

other things:
we're really thankful for all your votes. keep 'em coming!
this talented lady is photographing our wedding in august. pumped.
i'd like to own a few of these frocks. you?
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Thursday, April 19, 2012

going on a picnic: kaufmann mercantile


when it comes to filling a shop with sustainable and beautiful products, kaufmann mercantile gets it right. everything they sell is not only delightful to behold, but crafted with an eye toward durability and usefulness. it's no secret that choices we make about the stuff that we buy can be tremendously powerful ones. while i admit that decisions about the energy companies we support and whether we drive fuel efficient cars might have more environmental impact, there's no reason why even small purchases shouldn't also be made thoughtfully.

here, i pulled together a few of my favorite items for going on a picnic. it's earth day on sunday and i can't think of a better way to celebrate the planet than by enjoying a meal under the great blue sky. 

kaufmann mercantile will be doing their own celebrating by donating 10% of their sales on sunday to support the farm going up on their own rooftop in brooklyn. sounds like the time is right to snag that canvas utensil roll you've been eyeing and head out for a feast.

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Wednesday, April 18, 2012

< two fifty: life in a tiny apartment.


so, we finally really measured the joint. turns out, we're exactly ten feet under 250 square feet. that's right folks, 240.

we're also totally stoked to have been taken on as contestants for apartment therapy's small cool contest 2012. this news is probably mostly exciting because you all finally get to see shots of the place that expand beyond my kitchen table!

we'd be totally thrilled if you'd hop over and vote for us. telling all your friends, family, and coworkers to vote too would also be lovely {not to mention warding off AT readers who think our curtain looks dingy. rude.}. mostly, we're just happy to show off that we've survived so long in a place so tiny. thanks for indulging us.

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Tuesday, April 17, 2012

people's pops.

people's pops. they're not mind blowing. they're juice, frozen. and that's the beauty of them. don't expect to blown away, expect to be utterly satisfied.  slurp on your very own raspberry basil pop knowing that you're enjoying a treat chock-full of fruit that's been locally grown and responsibly sourced. this weekend at smorgasburg, i sampled one. pure delight.

people's pops have a book coming out in june which will be filled with recipes for making the pops in your own place. you can pre-order it here. in the meantime, if you're local, find them hawking their wares at markets and parks around the city. an afternoon trip along the high line, pop-in-hand, sounds mighty nice to me.

what about you? what's your favorite popsicle flavor?

other things:
i like this mold for making classic pops at home.
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Monday, April 16, 2012

playing hooky.

james and i hopped in the car this morning and headed out to long beach for a morning dip. ok, so the water's not quite warm enough for a dip that doesn't involve a wetsuit, but i did catch up on yesterday's paper and gain a few new freckles. i can already taste summer.
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Friday, April 13, 2012

my week in objects (mostly).

five little things that made my week.

1. this redbud branch.
construction sign
{because i love the way the flowers are all clustered together and that this one in particular really wanted to splash some color on the sidewalk}.

2. these baby toes.
{because they belong to the sweetest niece any girl could ask for}.

3. this counter scene.
{because yesterday was national grilled cheese day and what better place to celebrate than in the local diner where no other patron is younger than sixty and everyone's lived in the neighborhood at least that long}.

4. these tights.
{because they're perfect for spring. and now, they're even on sale}.

5. these tiny herbs.
{because they're still alive after a weekend away. triumph}.

what little something made your week?

other things:
these shots of new yorkers.
these goddess sandals. want.
this kickstarter project. i took piano lessons with one of the directors.
these matchbooks. i have a thing for them lately. this roundup was perfect.
these interview tips.

ps. SO many thanks for taking the survey this week. you guys rock.
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Thursday, April 12, 2012

admiral's row.

wistera 2
house 2
stairswistera 3fencewistera1
a walk yesterday past admiral's row at the brooklyn navy yard. glad to know something positive will be happening in this space, soon. for now, admiring the handiwork of april wisteria.
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