on eating in.

One of the most popular resolutions people seem to make at the start of every new year has something to do with diet. Whether that be to lose those last five pounds or to make a conscious effort to eat better, it never fails that a healthier lifestyle becomes the ultimate goal of that year.  Of course, a very small number of people actually follow through with this and before they know it, they're downing double bacon cheeseburgers with a gigantic soda...on a weekly basis.  Don't get me wrong.  I love a good burger every now and then.  But the older I get, the more I realize that I actually like eating healthfully.  There's something to be said about starting the morning off with a bowl of fresh fruit, Greek yogurt, and some tea.  And then continuing the rest of the day with foods like kale salads, granola bars, and fish.  But I digress.

This past Christmas, I was gifted a wonderful cookbook called 365 Good Reasons To Sit Down And Eat. For obvious reasons, I don't want to place an unrealistic expectation on myself to cook from this book every. single. night.  However, I am cooking from it with the corresponding date.  That's right--this book maps out every single month with a recipe for every single day.  And they are fabulous.  Some dishes are as simple as fried eggs with bacon, others are as wonderfully complex as salmon carpaccio with chervil.  And then there are the desserts.  The desserts!  Pears in wine, French apple tart, Grand Marnier soufflé...need I say more?  I think that every kitchen needs this book on its shelf, even if just to be inspired.  I already know what I'm making for the 14th of this month:  mussels in white wine.  Yum!


out with the old.

Last year, I made a list of resolutions / goals for 2011 and called it my "30 before 30".  And while I still have five more months to go before actually turning 30, I feel like I've done a pretty okay job at accomplishing them.  Of course, there are a few things that I will not be able to do until after the baby is born, but I'm pretty happy with what I've done and I'm still going to try to complete as much of the list as I can before the big 3-0.  Here is the updated list.  (Twenty-one out of thirty isn't so bad, right?  Also, having a baby wasn't part of the "plan", but look at what's happening!  If anything, it may even trump everything on the list.  I could not be happier about that little surprise!)

  1. Make our escape out of Florida plan a reality.
  2. Do the L'Eroica antiquated bicycle ride in Tuscany.
  3. Cook more meals at home.
  4. Open up my ETSY shop.
  5. Take time each day to let out a huge breath and let all of the stresses disappear with it.
  6. Have more romantic date nights with Ryan.
  7. Send out more hand-written letters.
  8. Find something to feel passionate about.
  9. Read more books.
  10. Grow out my hair (without acting on impulse to chop it all off).
  11. Practice patience.
  12. Learn how to sail.
  13. Pay off my debt.
  14. Set pretty pennies aside for more savings.
  15. Perfect one authentically French meal.
  16. Pare down my closet to only the essential classics.
  17. Take more mini-breaks on long weekends to visit out-of-state friends and family.
  18. Ride my bicycle more often.
  19. Have a night-time beauty regimen.
  20. Stop beating myself up over the very very small stuff.
  21. Eat more fruit!
  22. Do more arts & crafts.
  23. Be {more} comfortable in my own skin.
  24. Visit family in Canada.
  25. Exercise on the reg.
  26. Go to the farmers' market for local produce more often.
  27. Go on a camping trip.
  28. Buy more art.
  29. Get the new Haruki Murakami novel 1Q84 as soon as it hits the shelves.
  30. Learn something new. Anything!

This year, I think I'm doing away with the resolutions / lists / goals.  I am, after all, about to embark on what may very well be the biggest adventure yet:  motherhood.  So I'm doing away with the old and embracing the new--everything about it--and I'm giving myself a break for 2012 because I feel like it's only going to be more challenging from here on out and part of my growing up involves being able to let. things. go.  Here's to 2012!


happy new year!

Last night could not have been a better evening.  As I mentioned earlier, we planned to spend our NYE in a very relaxed setting at home.  Ryan and I have never had a new year's celebration where neither of us was actually working.  So when the opportunity presented itself, we decided that instead of staying out until the wee hours of the morning, we would host a small gathering at our home.  And I'm so glad we did.  It was a success!  This was our last NYE without a baby...so we really made it count.  Dinner, old and dear friends, champagne (sparkling apple cider for me), and a few sparklers were all it took to make the evening as perfect as I could have ever imagined.

Happy New Year to all and hope that 2012 brings the best of everything to everyone!