joie de vivre-- a cheerful enjoyment of life & an exultation of spirit.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

In The Kitchen.

After a whirlwind weekend with an apartment full of visitors, I found myself with entire night to myself last night. And my gosh, it was wonderful. Within approximately three and a half minutes of my walking in the door from work, the pajama pants and oversized sweatshirt were on, the oven was preheating as the stove warmed a large drizzle of olive oil in the skillet, and a big ol' hunk of aged Parmesan was being worked over with a grater. And so passed the next 5 hours.

With a cold glass of crisp, white wine in one hand and a good book in the other, the night slowly disappeared as I leisurely drifted between my nook on the couch and the kitchen, transitioning from one dish to the next. As the sweet, sweet melodies of Angus & Julia Stone filled the room, the flame from a soy candle in the corner seemed to dance in its holder.

It was perfection in its most simplistic form. Truly.

Pictured above:
- Kale, Shallot & Goat Cheese Crustless Quiche (adapted from Megan's recipe over at Fig & Fauna)
- Whole Wheat Thyme Pizza Dough (adapted from Heidi's recipe over at 101 Cookbooks)
- Peach Blueberry Muffins with a dusting of Oatmeal Cinnamon Sugar (via Mango Tomato)

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Fig & Fauna.

A 3.5 acre homestead tucked away in quaint southern Florida, Fig & Fauna Farm looks to be one of the most wonderful slices of heaven that ever was. I swear, it's stumbling upon beautiful spots of simple serenity like this farm that make my heart race and my brain whirl. And sometimes, that tugging urge to clamber into the nearest car and go off in search of my own small country farmhouse upstate to tuck away in is just too much. One of these days, I swear it's going to be. I just know it. And by gosh it better be soon.

Sticky honeycombs in the summer. Fresh eggs in the morning. Hearty soups full of rich, rooted vegetables in the winter. Nestling into a rocking chair on the back porch listening to the sound of chickens clucking in their coop and cows lowing out in the meadow as the sun dips below the horizon. Oh, be still my heart.

To read more about Fig & Fauna, check out Megan and Rose Martin's intoxicating blog chock-full of beautiful photos and wholesome recipes, here.

(All photos above via Fig & Fauna)

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

(Long) Weekend Snapshots.

To say that our miniature army packed in a whole heck of a lot this weekend would be a grave underestimation. I swear, it's truly hard for me to conjure up more than a few brief moments when we weren't on the move, off to yet another destination, exploring another neighborhood, and sweating our tushes off the whole way there. (Thank you OCD tendencies for fueling me with the unnecessary urge to plan out every second of every day with a suggested schedule of activities. Yikes. Major kudos to you nine crazy fools for dealing with me for that.) But it's funny you know, despite all of the wonderful things we were able to do and see-- all of the things I successfully checked off my cerebral "to-do" list-- looking back through these photos, it's really those moments of unplanned and unscheduled occurrence that stick out as the most memorable.

It was that early evening spent soaking up the last of the city's summer sunlight from a perch by Central Park's boat basin, listening to the string duet across the way and just enjoying each other's company while speculatively people watching the city's passerby. And the afternoon spent deciding not to trek to that baseball game out in Queens and instead spent headed back to that local Mexican joint down the street for another pitcher of sangria for a second night in a row. And the decision to get the heck out of the sun despite the incredible food market we were leaving behind in order to stumble into the nearest coffee shop and just spend the next few hours talking over the most delicious cup of cold brew while praying for the rain to come. And that late night spent lounging around my living room, washing down cold beer with wedges of squeezed lime and dying with laughter over yet another successful achievement of scaring the living bejesus out of me with a ginormous rubber spider hidden under my pillow. 

It's funny how that all happens, isn't it? The way the most meaningful moments often can't be planned, or scheduled, or booked in advance; the way sometimes simply being in the presence of good, dear friends is all you need.

So with that, a (not so) quick peek into some of our crew's adventures from this past weekend, with a heck of a lot of good fun left out thanks to my negligence in properly documenting our treks--

Monday, July 9, 2012

Mixtape. (No. 9)

Hello, sweet friends-- goodness, it's been far too long since we last shared this weekly Monday dance, hasn't it? I hope you're coming off a wonderful weekend, wherever it is you might be.

I was beyond lucky to have a crew of dear friends descend upon this little borough of mine early last week and after six days spent touring around the city, staying up far too late sitting cross-legged on the living room floor playing endless hours of games and laughing ourselves silly over old memories, new pranks, and a mutual intolerance of this horrendously unbearable heat wave, I'm finding myself wishing I could just rewind back to Tuesday and start all over again. (What do you think, friends? Part III again soon?)

Many, many more photos, stories, and posts to come this week (trust me in saying that after weeks of bookmarking pages for a later date, I've got inspiration coming out of my ears at this point), but for now I say we kick back and get this week started off on a good note. Sound good?

Here's to a new week, friends.

Dirty Paws -- Of Monsters and Men
Sit Down By the Fire -- The Veils
Called Out in the Dark -- Snow Patrol
Up Against the Wall -- Peter Bjorn and John
Way to the Future -- Katie Herzig
Dancing In the Dark (Live) -- Mat Kearney
Missed the Boat -- Modest Mouse
Big Jet Plane -- Angus & Julia Stone
Intro -- The xx

p.s. beautiful photo above via Benjamin Bergh

Monday, July 2, 2012

A Brief Moment.

Where-- In the living room, curled in my usual perch
Enjoying-- a cold glass of homemade chai
Thankful-- for an unexpectedly quiet night and time to finally stop by to say hello
Wondering-- how it is that July has already arrived
Realizing-- that even a strong will won't stop December from being here far, far sooner than I'd like
Still-- mulling over the wisdom embedded within this incredibly poignant article
Eager-- to shut the world out for a bit and get lost in this most recent edition of Kinfolk 
Thanks for your patience as things have gotten a bit slow around here, friends. 
Life's balance still throws me for a bit more of a loop than I'd care to admit sometimes. 
More to come, soon.