These are crazy times we’re living in. I never in my life thought the only way I would be able to see my friends would be on a computer screen. We stayed on for eight hours, until 4 in the morning. It started with happy hour and eventually ended with ice cream. Most of the time we weren’t even talking, really. The company was enough. I love my friends and not being able to see them makes me so sad.
I have such a love hate relationship with New York. My whole family is from Brooklyn and as a child I was immersed in New York life quite a bit. When I was in my teens, it was an escape from the very small beach town that I grew up in. I would take the NJ Transit to Penn Station and wander through Chealsea Market, the Highline, and the Lower East Side where I would eventually become a member of Conartist Collective on Ludlow Street. I would wander the city for hours on end, in and out of the cracks of forgotten Manhattan, looking for anything and everything. As I got older and moved to Boston, my days in the city were limited to a few times a year.
While I was in college, my father finally got to live his dream of being able to walk to work after 30 something years commuting to and from the city to Jersey. He rented a small studio apartment in the Seaport and kept it for about 3 years. The few times a year I go, it was usually to the apartment. A safe space in the chaos that I so often lusted after.
I now find the city to be an overwhelming and intimidating place. I don’t know if its buried trauma from being a little kid during 9/11 and being in school with kids who lost parents, uncles, aunts, and cousins and seeing smoke across the water every time I would drive over the Sandy Hook bridge. Maybe it’s rooted in the trauma from the Boston Bombings in 2013, my first year away from home and my family, suddenly reliving the fear and uncertainty of 2001. Maybe (probably) it’s my anxiety.
New York is a magical place the first and last time you’ll ever walk those streets. It lives in your bones and you’ll never forget it. It’s a cruel and welcoming place at the same time. New York, I love you, but you’re bringing me down.
Some people do a lot of it, some people literally wash their face with hand soap. Whatever you feel works for you! I’m one of those people that has a steady, everyday, morning and night routine. As I’ve said in the past, Glossier is my go-to for face makeup and skin care. Glossier has such a calming, pleasant scent of rosewater. I think out of all of my skin care routine, only the serums and the toner are either scentless or very minimal. Bottom line, if you like the smell of rosewater, Glossier is for you. I know that some might find that smell overwhelming, especially when it’s directly on your face.
Since I’ve started using these products, my skin has honestly never looked better. My face is bright, smooth, and even, what more could I want? I have pretty basic skin, not too oily and not too dry with almost no issues with blemishes, that being said, I don’t find that these products make my skin greasy and that is obviously my no.1. At work, I’m on my feet, running around all day in a hot salon, the last thing I want is to feel like my face is greasy and for me, that’s been a problem with other skin products in the past. My one issue that I do have with this line is if you skip a day or don’t do the whole routine, my skin gets very angry with me. That might not happen to everyone, but that’s what happens here. Other than that, A+++++++.
I’m going to go over my morning and night routine as well as the “tools” I use and the mask that I use once a week.
Milky Jelly Cleanser – Note that this face wash doesn’t get sudsy like some that you might be used to. That’s okay! Just clean your face thoroughly just like with any other cleansing wash.
Soothing Face Mist – I spray this all over my face after washing with cold water. This mist gives my tired skin the hydration it needs after a night’s sleep.
Super Glow – Okay. The Glossier serums are out of this world. I use Super Glow in my morning routine to give my skin a bright appearance (thanks to the vitamin C and magnesium) and it doesn’t leave a sticky residue like most other serums. I allow this to sink all the way in, about. minute or two, before I moisturize.
Bubblewrap – This eye and lip plumping cream is to die for. I tend to do my heavier moisturizing with my nightly routine. Bubblewrap is extremely lightweight and breathable, making it amazing for through out the day. Put one pump of this bad boy on to your ring finger, dab under the eyes and on and around the lips until nicely absorbed. As with the Super Glow, this cream doesn’t leave a sticky residue which is always ideal!
Follow your favorite lip balm for soft lips throughout the day!
I do this routine in the mornings in this order. Tie your hair up and cleanse that face and get ready for the day ahead!
Milky Oil– This is my favorite makeup remover!! All you need to do is shake it up, squeeze onto a cotton round, and wipe! Rinse and follow with Milky Jelly Cleanser.
Milky Jelly Cleanser – Same cleanser used in the morning! The gentle formula feels so great after you just scrubbed the day’s makeup and grime off your face.
Solution – AKA toner! Solution is the most gentle toner I’ve ever used. With no overbearing odor, you won’t knock the wind out of yourself every time you ship this near you nose! Pump some onto a cotton round and swipe across your problem areas. I tend to only use this on my T-zone, but on heavy makeup days I’ll wipe it all over.
Mask once a week (see below)
Soothing Face Mist – Like in the morning, spritz all over and feel refreshed!
Super Bounce – Another one of Glossier’s god sent serums! The vitamin B5 helps make your skin so so soft and the hyaluronic acid helps with hydration and keeps your skin nice and tight and plump.
Priming Moisturizer (Rich) – This moisturizer is RICH. Do not underestimate the name. All you need is a dime sized amount and massage it in!
Bubblewrap – Same steps as in the morning. Pump on to your finger and tap around the eyes and lips after moisturizing.
Follow in this order for perfect skin!
Cotton Rounds – You can find these literally anywhere in sleeves of 100 or more for $2-$5. Don’t wanna use rounds? Use whatever you want! Cotton balls, a reusable makeup cloth or pad, a face towel, whatever works best for you.
Face Roller – When my whole nightly routine is complete, I go ahead and help it really absorb into my skin with this face roller. I got this one from Ulta for $19. I love it! the little roller is amazing for getting under your eyes, nose, and lips. These rollers help relieve pressure and help to evenly massage your products into your skin.
Mega Greens Galaxy Pack – I use this mask once a week. This detoxifying mask is packed with antioxidants to help draw out all of that gunk from your pores! Beware that this mask will most likely leave you with red skin for about 20 minutes once you wash it off. That’s Okay! Just continue your routine as usual once you rinse (usually, I’ll apply a mask right after the toner). This mask has tiny little beads in it to help with exfoliation as well. I don’t want you to now have a typical idea of exfoliation beads from other products, this is not packed with them, just gingerly scattered throughout.
Don’t forget to take advantage of sunny days so that you can show off your glowing skin!
And don’t forget to include selfies of you from when you were trying to take a selfie of your glowing skin but your boyfriend is in the kitchen making you laugh. I found these giggles from a Live Photo and honestly I love them!
And as always, products that work for me may not work for you! Always stop using any product if you notice any reactions and if you have any sort of medical condition, always ask your doctor before using anything.
This Valentine’s Day was amazing. We had dinner reservations for when I got off work, but we decided at the last minute to stay home and order a pizza and drink a beer and honestly it was everything I could have wanted. Our anniversary is New Year’s Day, and being right after the holidays, budget for Valentine’s Day is usually pretty tight. We don’t go too crazy on gifts, the last two years we got a hotel room for the night just so we could swim in the pool. No gifts, no nonsense. This year I came home from work to home made chocolate covered strawberries and cookies. Mike isn’t the biggest cook, so this was a great surprise! These with some pink roses and a little pink multi tool for my keychain was just perfect for me. And for my mans? A pair of socks with sloths on them (“slocks” as he calls them) and a hand printed t-shirt from Etsy.
I have been making homemade sauce since I was a little kid but it wasn’t until much older that I started eating and enjoying meat in sauce. This turns into more of a stew like consistency, so if you like you sauce to be a bit more thin, add a little water or broth.
You will need
1 whole yellow onion, diced
as much garlic as you would like ( I used jarred because I didn’t have any fresh)
2 cans of crushed tomatoes
1 or 2 packages of stew meat depending on how much you would like, I usually freeze my meat as soon as I buy it
1/2 cup red wine, preferably not a sweet wine
salt and pepper
red pepper flakes
sugar if needed
In a large pot, brown the meat for about three minutes on either side and then remove from pot and put aside.You can drain the liquid from the beef or not, I usually leave it and use a little less oil.
Coat the bottom of the pan in olive oil if you have decided to get rid of the juices from the meat, if you’ve left it just a little drop will do ya.
Add your diced yellow onion and cook until almost becomes translucent.
Once the onion is at that point, then add the garlic and cook together for a minute or two. It is very important to not let the garlic get darker than slightly tan. If garlic burns, it will ruin the flavor of whatever you are cooking.
Add the meat back to the pot and add the wine. Cook all of this together for two minutes.
Add the tomatoes and seasoning. If you prefer to not have a little spice, just skip the red pepper flakes. If you want it more garlicky, add some garlic powder.
Start small with spices!!!
Cover and cook on medium for 2 hours or until meat can be cut easily with a fork.
**Add basil and oregano if you’d like**
**Add sugar if too salty or bitter**
Don’t forget to check and stir the pot about every 20 minutes to make sure nothing is sticking to the bottom. There’s nothing worse than burning a really good pot or pan.
Serve over pasta, polenta, baked potatoes, or even eat it by itself!
You guys!!! My Mellow Cosmetics lipstick finally came and wow!
When I tell you that my lips haven’t felt this moisturized in so long, I mean it. The formula is so smooth and it glides over your lips effortlessly. I ordered the shade Chocolate, a brown lip isn’t usually my thing so I figured I’d give it a shot. This is so pigmented! One swipe over your lips and you’re good to go. I’m usually a matte lipstick girl and trying this cream formula was a game changer.
And can we talk about this packaging?! I am living for this gold and mauve color theme. So clean, fresh, and sleek!
Even though this line is extremely pigmented, it comes off with one wipe of your wash cloth. Usually I’m stuck at the sink scrubbing my lips to get whatever matte I was wearing that day. It felt so good to literally just wipe it right off with no hassle!
In this chaos, we are all craving social interaction, but I’m also craving my family. My family is in New Jersey and New York and I’m in Boston and It’s been really hard being here and not with them.
The past couple of weeks, we’ve been doing family happy hour and family cooking lessons! We all come together on Zoom, nearly 15 of us, and cook eat together as a family.
This week, my grandma (the queen) taught us how to make gnocchi from scratch! I could not get over how easy it was because in my head it’s such a lengthy and difficult process. Literally all you need is two potatoes, 2 cups of flour, two eggs, and salt. In a quick 25 minutes, you have 4 servings of freshly made gnocchi.
Ahead of time, boil your potatoes. Do not peel or chop as they would become waterlogged. Cook until fork tender.
Remove from water and let cool.
Once the potatoes are cool enough, you’ll be able to peel the skin off with your hands.
Smash the potatoes with a fork until there are no chunks larger than a pea.
Sprinkle the potatoes with salt.
DO NOT ADD BUTTER OR MILK, this isn’t supposed to be “mashed potatoes”
Crack egg onto potatoes followed by a cup of flour
Start mixing all three together with your hands
If you find the mix too sticky, add a little more flour
Too dry? Add another egg
Once the dough is needed together, flatten it to a disc about an inch thick all the way through.
Cut into three equal slices and roll them to about a foot and a half in length
Cut into bite size pieces no bigger than an inch
If you’d like, you can roll the pieces on a fork to give it those signature lines, but I like mine smooth
Bring water to a boil and salt it
Add 7 pieces at a time so they don’t stick together
once they’re steadily floating, take them out and place them immediately into whatever sauce you have prepared so they don’t dry out.
Freeze whatever you don’t eat!
Pair with your favorite sauce or vegetable or soup for a hearty and soul warming meal.
Amy and Blake, Sid and Nancy, Bonnie and Clyde, Bob and Linda, Johnny and June, Ron and Sam. Out of all of these we are probably Bob and Linda from Bob’s Burgers, but I’d like to think we’re as infamous as the rest. Mike came into my life at the most amazing time and two years on we’re more in love than ever. This is just a Mike appreciation post, I love him very much.