Thursday, April 30, 2009

The J. Crew University Pant in Navy

My work wardrobe is still a work-in-progress, but one theme has emerged: Navy, and lots of it! I was never one to wear that much navy -- black has always been my dark, neutral shade of choice. But navy has emerged as a major player in my new work wardrobe -- so much so that I think it's time to supplement the pair of navy stovepipe DKNY trousers that I wear at least once a week (I found them on sale and I love them) with another pair of navy pants. I really like this pair from J. Crew (in favorite fit, J. Crew's most universally flattering cut):


Ode to Domino: Serene Bedroom

I am almost 100% confident that I am the last person publicly mourning the loss of Domino magazine. But I have a few more pics to share! (plus, after seeing this link to my little blog on Apartment Therapy, I'm beginning to think that I am perhaps not the only person still mourning the loss of Domino...)

I love the tufted headboard and aquamarine coverlet in this bedroom. So simple and serene!

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Charles Barkeley Is Still on TNT

TNT's coverage of the NBA Playoffs is well underway. I really haven't been keeping up (but I will start -- soon). All I know is that the Lakers have been playing pretty well and that the Hawks won tonight. Oh, and that the Spurs are done (ouch!).

I'm conflicted about Charles Barkley's return to TNT. As we all know, he had an unfortunate run-in with the law several months ago. Should he have returned so soon? I, for one, am having an incredibly hard time taking him seriously. Something about this is just wrong.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Five Reasons to Love Gabriel Byrne

My cable was out for 2 days this week. To compensate me for my troubles, Time Warner Cable has gifted me with a $4 credit to this month's bill and one free month of HBO, HBO2 and Showtime. One hour into my free month of premium channels and I'm suddenly reminded just how much I miss Gabriel Byrne in In Treatment. Here's why:

1. In Treatment is such an amazingly authentic depiction of raw, unfiltered emotion. Gabriel Byrne delivers a compelling performance in every episode.

2. Byrne began his acting career at 29 -- he worked as an archaeologist, bullfighter and teacher before turning to acting full-time.

3. He works as a UNICEF ambassador.

4. Today, he calls Brooklyn home.

5. And finally, my personal favorite: Gabriel Byrne once dated Naomi Campbell!

(Random facts courtesy of Wikipedia.)

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Herb Garden

Several months ago, I attempted to start a little herb garden in my windowsill. It didn't start. I think the seeds were bad. ( I found them in the clearance bin at Target.) Today I tried again, minus the seeds:

This time, I found an already-growing flat leaf Italian parsley plant at Home Depot. I re-potted it, watered it, and placed it in the sunny windowsill. I hope it grows!

P.S. If anyone has any advice on how not to kill my parsley plant, please share!

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Happy Birthday, Dad!

Today is my dad's birthday. He's the best. Happy birthday, Dad. Don't fall out of the hammock! (inside joke)

A Tale of Two Jimmys

Jimmy Fallon's late-night show is growing on me. I caught a few episodes during his first week, and the secondhand embarrassment was almost too much to take. Jimmy F. was incredibly nervous, and it showed. But he's gotten so much more comfortable with the show, and I'm really starting to like it! He's had some great guests ... Justin Timberlake, Rashida Jones, Robert DeNiro ... and it certainly helps that Fallon snagged The Roots as the house band every single night. (aside: 3 years ago, my brother and I caught them in concert at Radio City Music Hall. That concert still ranks as one of my top 3 entertainment experiences of all time. Hands down.).

I felt similarly about Jimmy Kimmel's show when it first aired in 2003. I didn't like it at all, but somewhere between laughing at Uncle Frank and "This Week in Unnecessary Censorship," I was sold.

While we're on the subject of late-night talk show hosts, here's hoping that Jay Leno feels better and returns to television soon.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Apartment Inspiration

Work has been pretty stressful this week -- not as stressful as the week before last (that was more like one really, really long day), but this week was stressful enough. I suppose I should have known something was up when I found myself staying up until 3 a.m. on Sunday night/Monday morning, trying my best to complete a complicated (some would say impossible) assignment. I try not to dwell on the stressful aspects of my job, though. Instead, I choose to focus on the fact that in this economic environment, I should consider myself lucky (and I do) to have a job.

One thing I like to do when I feel stressed is to focus on things that make me happy . . . like decorating my first non-studio apartment (the apartment is, and perhaps always will be, a work-in-progress). With that in mind, I thought that it would be fun to share the original inspiration for my apartment decor.

When I first moved into my apartment last September, I took a few minutes to take in the view from my 27th floor window. After overcoming my fear of heights, I noticed this beautiful building in the distance:

And here are some of the apartment additions that this little gem of a building has inspired in the months since:

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Apartment Find: Dane Table Lamp

Today's a beautiful day in New York City, and I took advantage of the sunny weather by taking a leisurely stroll from my apartment to Soho . . . where I stumbled into the CB2 store and found exactly what the console table in my living room was missing: the Dane Table Lamp!

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Four Reasons to Hook up my TIVO this Spring/Summer

1. Lifetime's Army Wives. Maybe it's because I'm an Air Force brat. Maybe it's because I love nighttime soaps. Whatever the reason, I am obsessed with this show. I've seen every episode at least twice. It makes me nostalgic for my childhood. New season premieres in June.

2. Bravo's Real Housewives of New Jersey. Enough said. New season premieres in May.

3. Bravo's, err Lifetime's Project Runway. Finally, PR has been freed from the unrelenting grip of that nasty legal battle over the show's move to Lifetime. New season premieres in June (?).

4. WeTV's Bridezillas. This show is outrageous and I love every minute of it. I think it's addictive. I've even convinced my mother and grandmother to watch. (This, I might add, is no small feat. It is very hard to convince them that any reality television show other than Judge Judy, Judge Joe Brown, Judge Mathis, The People's Court or Divorce Court is worth watching.) New season premieres in June.

A New Trench Coat Option

It's *pouring* in NYC right now, and the inclement weather has reminded me that my search for the perfect trench is not over. Yesterday's options were vetoed by my personal wardrobe consultant/mother. Today, I found this trench while "window shopping" online. I love the sleek lines of this option (shown in black and khaki):


image: ($195)

Thoughts? I'm leaning toward the black trench.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Please Help Me Pick Out a (Cute, Affordable) Trench Coat

I need a new trench coat. A few years ago, a bought a great chocolate brown trench from The Gap. It was on sale and it was fabulous. I wore that trench every day that I could -- and now it shows. So I need a new one -- I'm looking for something lightweight, chic and professional-looking. (I'm trying to prepare in advance for those times when work will require me to (a) be out of the office when the weather is bad and (b) look presentable once I get to the out-of-office destination.)

Last Friday, I purchased this Ellen Tracy trench at downtown Manhattan's always unnecessarily hectic discount department store, Century 21. I tried it on in the store, and again at home, where I discovered that it just wasn't a good fit. I'm returning it. The funnel neck collar (it's convertible) is what drew it to me at first:

image: ($138)

While window-shopping online earlier today, I fell in love with this beautiful Vivienne Westwood trench at Liberty, the UK retailer. Its asymmetrical drape is stunning (as is its price tag):

image: (approximately $675)

Harper's Bazaar UK directed me to this option from Banana Republic. I love this shade of gray and the unconventional collar, but it might be too "crinkled" and casual for work:

image: ($79.99 -on sale)

Any thoughts on these? Any other suggestions? Is there an amazing trench out there that I'm missing? Do tell.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Apartment Addition, Courtesy of My Grandmother. (Hi, Grandma!)

I really wanted to wait until the morning to take a few shots of the picture that my grandmother stitched for me (so that I could catch some natural light!), but my mom insisted that I post pictures now. Here are a few (which do not showcase the picture as well as they should -- more to come later, when the sun comes out again).

Seriously, Arizona State University? Seriously?

I just completed the most grueling 13 days of non-stop work. It was exciting and interesting, but also very demanding. I have so much blog updating to do, but I am also exhausted. Getting some rest is first on my agenda. . . right after I comment on this bit of news: It seems that Arizona State University has invited President Barack Obama to be the University's commencement speaker this year, but declined to grant him an honorary degree. Why? Because, according to an ASU spokesperson, "his body of work is yet to come."

Is this some sort of (ill-conceived) joke?

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Good Touch, Bad Touch.

First, the Good: I recently purchased the (still relatively) new touch screen Blackberry Storm. Confession: I really wanted an iPhone, but I am a loyal Verizon customer and I refuse to switch to AT&T just for the "it" Phone. None of that matters, though, because the Storm is great. I feel like I've finally stepped into this century! I can't believe how much I can do with this phone (the web browsing is amazing ... even my little blog looks great on the Storm). Plus, today the Blackberry App World launched, complete with tons of fun applications. I have already downloaded a few new, shiny apps (including mobile-friendly versions of Elle and Slate and something called Viigo that comes highly recommended).

Now, the Bad: Evidently, touching the Queen without being invited to do so is bad form. According to several news outlets, First Lady Michelle Obama gently touched the Queen on the back without an invite during a visit to Buckingham Palace today. Outrage ensued.

In other Michelle Obama news, doesn't she look great here, pictured with Sarah Brown, wife of British Prime Minister Gordon Brown? The best part? She's wearing J. Crew!

Image: The Times Online (UK)