You are currently browsing the monthly archive for December 2011.

The end of the year is cause for celebration – a time to reflect on what was good, and what should never be repeated, from the 365 days past.

Naturally, celebration for me generally means good food.  Case in point, salmon roe with chives and creme fraiche on top of blinis.

That is a fantastic accompaniment to any festive occasion.

Of course, there are ends to some years that deserve a heightened sense of occasion, if for no other reason than to forsake the badness of the old for the goodness of the new.

This December 31 certainly warranted a more luxurious way to ring in the new. So, I started the celebration a day early.  And I splurged a bit.

Caviar is certainly an indulgence, but being able to buy a small amount makes it more accessible.  The folks at Petrossian are great in helping you find the highest quality for the smallest price point.  And something simple like an accompanying twice-baked potato with truffle butter and parmesan cheese help to extend the decadence.

I’m betting on 2012 to be a spectacular year.  May your New Year’s Eve celebration bring you nothing but goodness and grace – and an abundance of good grub.

Petrossian, 911 Seventh Ave, New York, NY 10019, 212.245.2217

Feeling Loved

In the hustle and bustle of the holiday season, it is easy to get wrapped up in scoring the hard-to-find item, getting the deepest discount and going to the fanciest parties.  I’m certainly guilty of loving the stuff that comes with the season.

But my favorite present this year was not a thing, though I got some very cool things.  In these days when anger in the world is palpable and when people are being pepper sprayed for an on-sale item, I welcome the simple moments spent with people that I love and that love me back.

How lucky I am to have a family that would go to the ends of the earth and back for me, or just something as simple as welcoming me home for a weekend.  I’m  thankful to have spent a weekend with my parents, celebrating Christmas with laughter, grace and lots of grub.  How fortunate I am to have people who offer me a place to lay my head when I’m spent and have no more left to give.  How appreciative I am to have these two people in my life who love me for no other reason than because I’m me.

My wish for you is that you know that grace of feeling loved.  Because that is goodness at its finest.

A Perfect Holiday

Here’s hoping that your holiday embodied the magic and joy of this time of year.


To goodness and grace – may they be incorporated into everyday.

Seasonal Comfort

My goodness of the moment is a cup of tea by Christmas light.

Wishing that wherever you are you find comfort in the season.

The Apple Fritter at Flex Donuts

So.  Here’s the thing.

I really didn’t mean to take a bite out of this before I took this picture.

Actually, I didn’t know that I wanted to take a picture of this apple fritter before I took the bite.  But it was so transformative that I wanted to share.

The picture, not the apple fritter. You’ll need to go and get your own.

I’d been looking around at the food court in Grand Central Station – actually it’s called the Dining Concourse, but really it’s a food court with some trains tucked away on the periphery – and stumbled on the Flex Donut window in the Zocalo space.  The donuts caught my eye, but I kept walking.  The apple fritter began flashing in my mind, so I doubled back.  Thank goodness for second chances.

While the fritter has a good heft to it, it was actually fairly light to the bite.  The first bite was sticky, cakey, sweet and a hint of salty all in one.  The Granny Smith apple chunks were tart and sweet all at the same time, with an underlying booziness in the background.  (Or, I could have been “drunk” with deliciousness.)

Flex Donuts pop up store is only open until December 30, so if you are passing through or catching a train before the year is through, have a try for yourself.

Flex Donuts, at Zocalo in the Lower Level Dining Concourse at Grand Central Terminal.

The Little Things

If I’m being completely honest, sometimes I sit down to write about goodness and I come up with…absolutely nothing.  There are days when my creative well has run dry.  Crazy days that are full of dichotomies: when I’m bored and then overwhelmed, when I’m freezing and then sweating, when I’m famished but then I can’t eat a thing.

Today was that kind of day.

But then the truth is that when I really think about it, when I really pay attention to what happened during the day, there were small moments of grace that made the day.

This morning, I looked out the window and made note of how much I love when the trees in front of my window are bathed in the light from the sunrise.

As I took the escalator up to the lobby of my office, one security guard yelled my name and wished me a happy holiday.  I had no idea he even knew my name.  When I got to the top, another guard, who never makes eye contact with me, smiled and waved at me and wished me a merry Christmas.

When I went to Starbucks this morning for a tall cup of coffee, I was given a grande instead.

A present I ordered for Christmas and had long forgotten about arrived in the mail today, which means someone will be very happy on Christmas morning.

After a few days of wintry cold weather – and a wintry, cold apartment – today was balmy and almost spring-like.  The cool/warm air felt great on my face.

The reality is that even when the day doesn’t have much value, every single day has its moments of grace.

We just need to pay closer attention.

The Completed Task

The presents are wrapped.  The cards have been mailed.  The tips are in envelopes, ready to be distributed.

There is grace in knowing that what was on the list can now be checked off, and there is goodness in the sigh of relief that follows the completion of the task at hand.

Grace Quote

Feeling a bit rundown and overwhelmed, this quote provided just the right amount of inspiration.

 Don’t ask what the world needs.  Ask what makes you come alive and go do it.  Because what the world needs is people who have come alive.

–H. Thurman

What makes you come alive?

Today, though a day off, was a day where I didn’t want to move from underneath my down comforter.  So I stayed cocooned under it for most of the day.  Feeling slightly under the weather and cold from the drafts coming from my window, I felt no need to venture outdoors.

The problem was that I didn’t have much food in the fridge. Which, whether  you’ve been reading this blog for a day or for years, you know is an EPIC problem.

Luckily, food delivery exists.  And what makes it even easier is using the Seamless website, which makes virtually every restaurant that delivers in my area just a few strokes of the keyboard away.  All I had to do was choose the restaurant, make my selections from the menu, and enter a credit card.  The end of tummy rumblings was just a half hour away.

If you want to spoon with your covers too, visit the website.  The service is available in several US cities – and London too!

Now if I could only figure out how to answer the door without getting out of bed.  That would be goodness to the max!


Chocolate Croissants

I’ve mentioned my Sunday morning ritual of a cup of coffee and a chocolate croissant.  The truth is that I am on a mission to find the best chocolate croissant, or pain au chocolat if I’m being fancy, in New York City.  At some point on Saturday, I like to pick one up from a bakery for Sunday breakfast.

The one I chose for today was pretty stellar.

Light and airy with discernable buttery layers – the mark of a well-made croissant – and a center of high-quality dark chocolate, this pastry made a languid Sunday morning just perfect.

I can’t wait to see what next Sunday brings.

Francois Payard Bakery,  116 West Houston Street, New York, NY, 212.995.0888


The only thing I love more than sleeping in on the weekend is venturing out for a delicious brunch.

This morning I visited Blue Ribbon Bakery in the West Village.  I hadn’t eaten there in ages, but it was like visiting an old friend and remembering how much you love her.

This jogged my memory quite vividly.


Poached eggs with lemon cayenne hollandaise, over chorizo-onion hash.  The dish is a beautiful balance of textures and tastes: creamy eggs, crispy potatoes, silky and tangy hollandaise, salty and meaty chorizo and buttery onions for a touch of sweetness.

Just writing that makes me want to go back.  Next time, I hope to see you there.

Blue Ribbon Bakery, 35 Downing Street, New York, NY 10014, 212.337.0404

The Little Pie Company

Every so often you taste something that simply rocks your world.

This pie does that for me.

Sour cream walnut apple pie.  Those words are magic.  The taste is simply heavenly.  Creamy layers of Granny Smith apples topped with a brown sugar walnut streusel create the perfect crave-worthy bite.

Time to stop talking about the pie, and time to start eating the pie.

The Little Pie Company, 424 W. 43rd Street, New York, NY, 212.736.4780.


I don’t quite understand the fascination.  Even my own.  But, Pinterest is slightly addictive.

Okay, not slighty.  Incredibly addictive.

So, what is it, you ask?  It is a website where you can “pin” favorite images onto a virtual board, creating a personalized cyber mood wall.  The home page is a scrolling scrapbook of pictures that members have pinned to their walls.

Basically, it is a crawl of beautiful things.  It’s strangely satisfying to look through other people’s pictures and see what is magnificent to them.

We’re just getting started on the site, but if you want to check it out, follow us on our Pinterest page.

Happy Pinning!


Tonight I went out to dinner with my parents.

We drank; we ate; we had fun.  It was better than “Cats”.  🙂

There is nothing like spending time with people who know you well, who get your jokes, who can have an entire conversation with just one look.

I consider myself a lucky girl.

The New Apple Store in Grand Central Station

I often pass through Grand Central Station on my way home from work, which, given the number of commuters who travel through there every day, is slightly insane.   But its grandeur is so old New York, and it makes me happy.

Now there is a new reason to visit the landmark.

The brand new Apple store opened a week ago in the former Metrazur restaurant space.  It is the largest Apple store in the world.   Seamlessly and unobtrusively placed in within the architecture of the train station, it is a welcome diversion for Apple aficionados like me.

If you have an iPhone, you can purchase accessories using the Apple Store app without ever having to track down a sales person.

Now, that is goodness in the Big Apple.

Apple, Grand Central, 89 E. 42nd Street, New York, NY 10017; 212.284.1800

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