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Let it Snow

Let it Snow

The first snow of the year is always exciting in New York City, but when you live in a city where that remarkable snow tends to last until late February (and sometimes March), it is always nice to get a little vitamin D before you start getting those “is it still cold up there” texts from your friends and family in the south.

 

We spent a week walking the beach, drinking syrupy drinks during the day and good wine at night. We finished a few books and more than a few bottles of spray sunscreen.

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This trip is just what we needed to prepare for the long awaited, long lasting winter in the northeast.

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I love having a little sand in my suitcase from beach vacations; it is like finding cash or your favorite lipstick in the pocket of an old jacket.

With months of jacket season ahead of us, I look forward to making soups, staying in, watching old movies and listening to cozy tunes with my boys. Stay warm, y’all.

Trees Tourists Tips

Trees Tourists Tips

Manhattan is magical this time of year. The storefronts are romantically draped with fresh garland (my favorite), the air is excitingly chilly and the sidewalks are full of tourists. Yesterday, Hudson and I met a close blogger friend at the Nomad Hotel Library Bar to discuss starting this blog.

Thank you to the fabulous staff at the NoMad for allowing Huddy to relax next to the tree. I’m not totally sure this is a dog friendly space, but look at that face.

Hudson’s good looks can charm almost anyone, but the toughest to charm are NYC Taxi Drivers. Oftentimes, available taxi drivers will refuse to pick up passengers with dogs, and last night, the majority of the cab drivers on 6th Avenue were not interested in stopping for poodles. In the midst of our struggle to find a cab, Hudson and I ended up walking through Harold square and found ourselves trapped in a cluster of tourists waiting at a crosswalk. During our wait at the crosswalk, I heard a tourist ask her friend “How do you grocery shop? How do you get your dry cleaning? How do you think people live here?”

Every New Yorker knows that the answer to almost every question in New York is…DELIVERY. Anything and everything can be delivered. Really, almost anything. Even Christmas trees.

Stephen and I got our first real Christmas tree this year. We simply walked down the block, found this beautiful Fraser Fir from Canada, pointed, posed and paid.

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We then directed the delivery guy (who was quite strong and showing off a bit) to our apartment. Christmas tree delivery guys are getting a lot of attention this year. Read this.

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While most delivery in NYC is advertised as “free,” it is always appropriate to tip. Memorize the expected tip percentages listed in this article to avoid any confusion. Stephen and I keep a small stash of tipping bills (and laundry quarters) on the counter next to the door to the apartment.

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We ended our evening with a little celebration in honor of our first real Christmas tree, which smells fantastic, by the way. Cheers!

A Seat At The Table

A Seat At The Table

For Manhattanites, a dining room table in an apartment is a rarity. Most of us don’t have the space to entertain at home, and while I am no exception, I am always up for throwing a little party.

 

When I agreed to host 10 people for Thanksgiving dinner this year, my first concern was space and seating. I made a phone call to  the office services department at work, and they kindly agreed to let me borrow a (very heavy) folding table. A few days before thanksgiving, Stephen met me at work and rolled the table all the way down 6th Avenue to our apartment. Isn’t he a prince? Did you know that finding a good guy in the city can be harder than finding a good table? Love you, Stephen!

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In anticipation of the arrival of the beer pong folding table from work, I’d been collecting pretties for the table. My favorite table accessory this thanksgiving were the huge acorns I picked up in my Grammy’s front yard during a weekend trip to East Texas. I wonder how often the airport security people see carry-on bags full of acorns?

Here is a photo of my table the day before thanksgiving. You’ll notice the candles on the table have been lit to remove the look of an unlit wick. Candles in your home should never show an unused wick. Make a point to light your candles just to blacken the wick when you put them on the table, and always wait until it is time for dinner to light the candles. Candles are only used on tables for meals served after sundown, but you already knew that.

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I am sure you can imagine my excitement when it was finally time to light the candles, and pour everyone the first sip of Beaujolais Nouveau. Typically, you should wait until your guests are seated at the table to pour the wine. Unfortunately, we were dealing with very limited space, and I knew that reaching over heads to pour red wine would end in a disaster. Plus, I confirmed with all guests that they were willing to toast with a little swill of the first grapes of the season.

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Our guests took turns squeezing in our tiny kitchen to load their plates with traditional thanksgiving goodies. Each guest was assigned a dish to bring to the party. Stephen and I provided the turkey and the  pre-dinner punch.

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Regardless of where you’re hosting your next dinner party, don’t forget the importance of setting the table, and no matter what happens during your party, you should be having fun! Party disasters make great stories and can actually be quite glamorous – remember this famous NY party?

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