A Nice Monday

photo 5Note to my self next Sunday evening: Mondays really aren’t that bad. Today I had an ultra-productive yet still quite fun day. Did a bunch of work, met with some very cool people about some exciting upcoming projects, inaugurated a great new pair of black booties (photos to come, of course), had an early dinner with Isabella and my husband during his break between patients, and spent the evening with my girl, trying out the new Gwen Stefani for OPI collection for a post over at TheStir. Now, Isabella and I are about to catch up on the Project Runways All Stars season we’ve been watching. Oh! And I finally got that check in the mail! Woohoo!

Nothing earth-shattering, and there were plenty of mundane moments, but some days are better than others — it’s always nice to be able to tell when you’re having one of the good ones.

An Attempt at Curing the Sunday Night Blues: It Was a Good Week


I’m a terrible one for the Sunday night blues. I usually feel sad and homesick and anxious … even if I have nothing to dread the following day (which I normally don’t!); even if I have something to look forward to (which I often do!). I don’t know; it’s something that feels hardwired into my brain since, oh about fifth grade. Anyway, sometimes it helps me to look back over the preceding week and remember all the great, fun, sweet, and/or productive moments that happened in life since last week’s bout of Sunday night blues. There are always so many of those full-of-grace moments, and this past week there were all of the above and lots that I didn’t get snapshots of, like simply sitting in the car with my sister Hillary, talking and watching the snow fall while we waited to pick up Isabella from ballet. Or enjoying a coffee at my friend Debora’s house, while our girls played. Or having several great work calls with my latest partner in crime, as we dig into some exciting projects; or starting off my Friday night with a Google Hangout with two of my west coast girlfriends, laughing ourselves silly at how funny we all looked; or cooking and drinking wine with some of our closest friends on Saturday night.

Of course there were crummy, tiring, discouraging moments too. I’m so weary of the cold, and I miss my mom terribly, and worry about her out there in California, so far from us and with such a burden of loss and grief to deal with, and I’ve been missing our lost girl so so much, my sweet sister Carolyn, dead now for over a year. Impossible. I had one of those days this past week where I just had to get under the covers in the middle of the afernoon and let the grief weigh me down for a while, close my eyes and just give in to the lump in my throat — haven’t had one of those in a couple of months now.

Then there were the more mundane blah and unpleasant moments: jeans that suddenly feel uncomfortably snug, disappointment in myself for missing a deadline I really could have made, that goshdarn endless pile of laundry…

But that’s what it’s all about, right? The crazy game of hokey pokey we call life? So much wonderfulness, so much fun, despite our failings and disappointments and heartbreaks.

So, happy Sunday night, friends. Here’s to a week ahead with many fun, unexpected moments of grace and sunshine.


Winter Beauty: 3 Things My Angry, Angry Skin Is Happy About


Bioderma Crealine H2O Solution Micellaire Peaux Sensibles

New discovery, thanks to my rude habit of nosing through beauty products that don’t belong to me. I wax poetic about it over at TheStir. My own bottle arrives tomorrow; I can’t wait.


Aveeno Baby Eczema Bath Treatment

I don’t have eczema, but the skin on my body has become so dry and itchy and super duper DUPER sensitive, I can barely tolerate clothing at this point. Seriously. A warm (but not hot) bath with one of these packets is bliss.


Smith’s Rosebud Salve in a Tube

The only product that keeps me from mangling my poor lips by obsessively picking off the dry skin. You’re welcome for that visual. I try to protect my loved ones from it as well by keeping my smoochers coated in this stuff.

What’s getting you through the winter?

Because We Can’t All Have Cate Blanchett’s Career, Dress, or Shoes… But We Can Afford (Some) of Her ’60s Inspired Fairy’ Beauty Products!


I believe that in an alternate version of reality I have a career that resembles Cate Blanchett‘s. Or Naomi Watts‘. I know. You think I’m delusional but what can I say. I know what I know — about my unrealized potential, about my talent, and about how too easily I gave up my dreams when I took a different path in life and it seemed irreconcilable. WHOA THAT’S SOME HEAVY SHIT FOR A BEAUTY POST! (Is that what you’re thinking? I totally agree!!) Also I’m not even FROM Australia so.

Anyway! Don’t worry, I haven’t given up — I’ve just reframed my ambitions … more along the lines of, say, the INCOMPARABLE Maggie Smith in Downton Abbey than the utterly scrumptious Jennifer Lawrence (or even the still utterly scrumptious and somewhat in my age range Amy Adams) in American Hustle. UM ANYWAY. I got the beauty scoop on what products makeup artist Jeanine Lobell used to primp the divine Cate for her SAG awards look and HERE THEY ARE. I’m planning to buy the lipstick. I mean, a girl can still dream, right?

THE LOOK: to go along with that perfectly impossible Givenchy Haute Couture gown “’60s inspired fairy”

(ok, I can see that! Let’s go with it.)


Eye: Lancôme Définicils High Definition Mascara in Black (and false lashes) (obviously… ?)
NARS Duo Eyeshadow in Alhambra (“dusted with a little blush”) (INTRIGUING!)
Surratt Smokey Eye Baton – 3: Cendres


Giorgio Armani Luminous Silk Foundation Shade 2 (I WONDER IF I’m THE SAME SHADE I TOTALLY BET I AM)
Lancôme Translucence Mattifying Silky Pressed Powder
NARS Blush in New Attitude (NOT “ORGASM”?)

Lip: Suratt Lipslique 2: Bon Bon Nars

OMG this “lipslique” is so fabulous and French. The product description at Barneys.com (!!!) says: beautiful. Luscious texture, buildable color. Sheer to medium finish. Applicator is propel-only and does not retract. Be sure to propel accordingly with use as to not crush the lipstick with lid when closing.

HAhahahaha. That is the Frenchest thing I’ve ever read. It’s $34 and I want it. I think Cate wants me to have it…. OH AND HER ROGER VIVIER SHOES TOO.



Weekend: Chaotic Dinner Party & a Delicious Lentil Soup Recipe


Does Martha Stewart’s kitchen ever look like this?

Last night we invited some of our good friends over for dinner, and it was a ton of fun, but I win absolutely zero hostess-with-the-mostess points for style, that’s for sure. The photo above (taken just after Isabella “missed the bowl” and cracked an egg right onto the counter and into a pile of papers) captures the whole evening perfectly.

Earlier this weekend my oldest little sister, who is making my winter by becoming a local girl for a few months while completing an internship in NYC, introduced me to the almost unbearably cute & chic blog, LoveTaza.com. I spent quite a while reading it, feeling jealous of the gorgeous photos of the gorgeous people dressed in adorable clothes in hip locations. Well, I thought to myself, I could probably “curate” my life to resemble something like this … actually no … Not really!

text-dinner-party (more…)

14 of My Favorite Beauty & Style Moments of the Golden Globes & How To Steal Some Of Them


The Golden Globes red carpet last night was scrumptious! There were so many gorgeous looks, and it’s so fun these days to be able to see behind-the-scenes looks via Instagram and all that social media jazz. I quite enjoyed pouring over the photos in my PJs  last night … and this morning. Here are some of my stand-out style & beauty moments, and how to copy some of some of makeup, hair, and nail polish magic.

1. Best of the night. First of all, Lupita Nyong’o won the entire night with her Ralph Lauren dress in my absolute favorite color to wear. Unreal.


Death & Nailpolish: I’m Totally, Unreasonably Thrilled About “Radiant Orchid” (the 2014 Pantone Color of the Year)


I’m totally, unreasonably thrilled to hear the Pantone Color of the Year for 2014 is this gorgeous Radiant Orchid. I fully support this choice. BRING ON THE RADIANT ORCHID!

Why? Because 2013 (year of “Emerald Green”) has been an incredibly shitty year. A dark year, a year of so often being totally overcome by the waves of grief that I usually didn’t even want to fight against. Because why would you fight against something that is so understandable and natural? The waves crash over me, the current pulls me under, and every so often, somehow I float to the surface, and gratefully feel the sun on my face, and bob along in relative peace, until the next wave sends me to my bed, under the covers, body heavy with lead, a good book my only form of respite.

I don’t regret or resent or wish I could undo any of that. The sorrow feels as it should be (though nothing else about this loss does). And, MORE TO THE POINT: I expect to live with this burden — gift? — of grief for the rest of my long, long life. (Gift because this grief is the result of love, something I would not trade an ounce of for an ounce less sorrow.) I know I will carry it, heavy in my heart, part of me, always. One year has been everything but it is nothing, really. One day I will be 56, and it will be the 20th anniversary of Carolyn’s death. That nearly an entire year has passed is impossible enough to imagine. But 20? I can’t even contemplate that. Can’t as in literally can not; my brain does not compute it. I can only stay in the here and now, which is a sad enough place.


I can’t handle another year like 2013. I truly can’t bear it. I need just a little bit more light in the darkness, so the waves don’t take me under permanently. I need some motherfucking RADIANT ORCHID, that’s what I need. A gorgeous, vibrant pink lipstick to wear on the gloomiest days; a pretty pink gleam on my toes to remind me that I still love to dance.


Pictured above: BITE Beauty High Pigment Pencil in “Violet” – $24 at Sephora (Thanks to my dear friend Marta, I recently discovered BITE Beauty chubby lip pencils. They are the ultimate.); L’Oréal Paris Colour Riche Nail in “Royalty Reinvented” – $4.99 at Target (These nail colors by L’Oreal are so great; they totally last.); Laura Mercier Caviar Stick Eye Color in “Orchid” -$24 at LauraMercier.com; Urban Decay Eyeshadow in “Fishnet” and “Grifter” – $18 each at UrbanDecay.com; Viktor & Rolf Flowerbomb Creme because this reminds me of my darling Amy – $90 at Sephora


A Week of Dinners: Sunday, Monday, & Tuesday (“Paleo” Meatloaf, White Bean Soup, & Slow Cooker Pot Roast. Is It Fall, Or Something?)


I’m not sure why, but I thought it would be interesting to look at a week’s worth of dinners. But of course, even though I meant to start and post once a day for a week, it’s Wednesday. However, I did take photos, so I’m halfway with it. I’m a halfway wit!


Now that autumn is beyond full swing and into that second half, where things are just as beautiful but they’re also getting wild and more stark, hints of fierceness and winter, I’m in full-on comfort food cooking mode. Out comes the Crock Pot (or, for the fancy among us, the “slow cooker”), and I forget about the grill hulking lonesomely and stoic out in the cold, and just want things baking in the oven or simmering in pots.


You know what this needs? Chocolate chip cookies. See above.


Friday 5: I Survived Halloween, So Let’s Look at Pretty Beauty Products!


Happy November! I’m happy to have survived Halloween. I was kind of dreading it, for, though I love some aspects of it, I have never loved the really spooky parts, and this year in particular I felt lacking in coping skills to deal with all the ghoulish reminders of death everywhere. Cheery, I know! Who wants me at their costume party this weekend? No one? Great!

BUT … yesterday was a great day, even though I cried a few times when no one was looking. I (mostly) pulled it together and had fun. Every year for the past SEVEN, we’ve spent Halloween with my dear friend D. and her daughter A., who is one of Isabella’s best friends, and this year was especially fun, as A’s little sister B. is not just old enough to participate a bit in the festivities. So lovely and sweet.


We’ll show you how it goes.


Another highlight of the day was definitely taking my little Medusa to the grocery store. All the older ladies stopped to admire her costume.

A friend pointed out to me that even scarier than Medusa is the giant Christmas display in the background.

A friend pointed out to me that even scarier than Medusa is the giant Christmas display in the background.

Medusa carries paper towels.

Medusa carries paper towels.

Anyway, enough about my tenuous grasp on mental health. Let’s get to the Friday 5! Here are some beauty products I’ve been either loving or lusting after this week: (Oh, also, that cat lady in the photo at the top of this post can do a trick. I’ll show you later…)

What's in a name? A lot.

What’s in a name? A lot.

1. Too Faced “Better Than Sex” Mascara. I’m pretty loyal to my beloved CoverGirl LashBlast, but I got some Too Faced products to try out recently and I’m into this mascara — and not just because it was named by a GENIUS.

We really are gentle and oil free!

We really are gentle and oil free!

2. Almay oil free eye makeup remover pads are great for touch-ups if your Better Than Sex mascara runs after you cry in the grocery store because Simon and Garfunkle comes on the radio while you’re buying chocolate for trick-or-treaters!


Happy color, happy packaging! (Even though the mom in me is wondering if there are any paper towels nearby.)

3. I’d be happy to get my paws on the brand new Clinique A Different Nail Enamel for Sensitive Skins in “Happy Heart.” This is Clinique’s second annual partnership with the Happy Hearts Fund, an international charity founded by Petra Nemcova. A portion of each product sale will be donated directly to the Happy Hearts Fund to rebuild schools in areas affected by natural disasters. Very cool.


Even though I cost $26, I am worth it, because I last forever. However, right now, I am on sale for $12 at UrbanDecay.com. I know. I am ridiculously awesome.

4. Urban Decay Baked Bronzer is what keeps me looking like I have a pulse. I’ve had the same container of it for what feels like years! I mean, it can’t be years, but at least a year. It lasts forever. I love it.


All that glitters … is sometimes gold?

5. The  bottle of Deborah Lippman “Glitter and Be Gay” nail polish I have on my bookshelf next to my Kate Spade party shoes reminds me that there are lovely, glittery, and fun times ahead, even though I can’t imagine getting through the holidays without my sister in the world.

On that cheery note … one last trick:


How was your Halloween?


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