Thursday, August 25, 2011

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Happy Birthday Melanie!

"There is no friend like someone who has known you since you were five."
- Anne Stevenson

Girl Scouts, hayride at Jackson Pumpkin Farm circa 1994

Please note Melanie's awesome Little Mermaid rain jacket and purple jeans, my killer wind breaker and necklace made from an old film canister (remember those?!) and a dinosaur sticker. Even from an early age... Birds of a feather, my friends, birds of a feather.

Happy Birthday, Melanie!

Sunday, August 21, 2011

New Duds

I am poor.

I need to remind myself of that constantly, otherwise I will go out and spend every penny I have on new clothes and shoes and be homeless within three weeks. Instead, I window shop like a mofo and make extravagant wishlists in my head.

But sometimes, sometimes, every couple months, when I've been good, I will splurge on myself. These splurges usually entail a lunch break shopping spree because I work right next door to a shopping center with a wide array of stores where I can do serious damage.

I thought I'd share a couple of the things I purchased recently with you, if for no other reason but for you to tell me how cute they are and then I won't feel so bad about spending the money.

Red chiffon top by Decapolis. Purchased from 344. It covers a lot, but it's very sheer which makes it very sexy. Plus I love the color.

Grey sequined dress by Moon Collection. Also purchased at 344.
Where am I ever going to wear this dress? Does it matter? The answers are, "Who cares?" and, "Nope." I saw it and I had to have it.

Last, but most certainly not least, I HAD to show you my new shoes.

I'd been eyeing these bad boys at Aldo for about a month. When pay day finally came around, I knew it was time. I've already worn them out twice and have gotten so many compliments on them. The best part is, because of the platform and the sturdy heel, they're super comfortable. I danced all night the last time I wore them. Which is exactly what shoes like this are made for.

The next time I go shopping, I'll be sure to share my haul with you!

Have you splurged on yourself lately?

Wednesday, August 17, 2011


You know how much I love So You Think You Can Dance. Love love love. Hands down one of the most entertaining shows on television. These dancers are incredibly, incredibly talented. The season ended last week and I just wanted to share my three favorite numbers with you.

Melanie & Marko from the first night of the competition. So heartbreakingly lovely.

The top 10 girls. Bad ass.

And this. This. Sasha and Twitch. Mmm, mmm, mmmmm. This is how breakfast should be every morning.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Happy Birthday Mac!

Happy birthday to the best brother a girl could ask for!
Back when my brother was too fat to crawl.

Mac is 22 today. And at 22 he's already done way more than I have at 24. For example, last night we were FaceTiming and I asked him how school was going. His response? "Great. This morning I cracked open this guy's spine with a chisel to see his spinal chords."
What did you do today?

Not only is the kid smarter than I am, he's funnier, nicer, and all around cooler than I'll ever be. A little brother a girl can really look up to.

Hope you had a wonderful day, Mac. I love you!

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Tangerine Dream

Oh my goodness.

You guys. Have you ever experienced love at first sight? I always thought it was an idea made up for movies and romance novels. But then today I experienced it for myself and I can tell you - it's the real thing.

Behold the object of my desire...

Yes, it's a dress.

An absolutely stunningly beautiful dress.

I love every single thing about it. The vibrant color, the gold embroidered embellishments, the deep V in the back. It's ladylike and demure, while still being eye-catching and sexy.

I found it on Lucky for me there is a huge Anthropologie about a block away from my office. Guess where I'm stopping after work tonight?

Let's get real, I can't afford this dress. It's $358.00. But I just want to try it on and feel it against my skin. Admire the way it pinches in at the waist and flows out from there. Then I'll stand in front of the huge mirror staring at myself for 25 minutes while I imagine a world where I can drop $358.00 on a dress without blinking an eye and all the amazing places I'd be able to wear it.

I want.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Moves Like Jagger

I'm not a huge fan of Maroon5, but this... Well, I kind of love this a lot.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

A Tribute

My grandfather died in June.

I sat here for about 20 minutes trying to think of some clever and pretty way to segue into that, cushion the blow for you a little bit, but there really isn't one. And anyways, that's not what my grandfather was like. Straight to the point, sometimes harshly so, but always polite, always honest. I like to think that I have a little bit of that in me.

There wasn't any one particular cause of death. He got pneumonia from a complication with a surgery at Christmastime and never really recovered. It's harder to bounce back from something like that at 90 years old. He lived on his own up until then, completely independent and doin' his thang. But after the surgery and the pneumonia, that was no longer an option and he spent the last 6 months of his life he was in a nursing home. He hated it. He was confused most of the time and asked to go home constantly. I regret not being there when he passed away, but the rest of my family was there and they all said that he was peaceful. He was ready.

What a cool dude.

About ten years ago, my grandmother passed away. She had Parkinson's Disease (a disease so horrifying and debilitating that I would not wish it on my worst enemy) and eventually required more care than my grandfather could give her, so she spent the last year of her life in a nursing home. My grandfather got up every morning, ate breakfast and went to the nursing home. He sat with my grandmother all day and kept her company. As her disease progressed and robbed her of her speech, he sat there in silence with her and held her hand. Every single day.
My grandparents on their wedding day.

The last time I saw my grandfather was in May, almost a month to the day before he died. He was fairly lucid that day, and was so excited that I was there. He put his hands on my face and said, "Domenica! Look at you!" And then he hummed a little song. Before I left I told him I would be back in July and he squeezed both of my hands in his. "July," he said with a smile. "We'll set off some fireworks then."

Somewhere deep inside me, although I desperately did not want to believe it, I knew that I would not see him in July. I knew that although there would be fireworks, he would not be there to watch them with me. I turned back to wave goodbye to him before I left his room. With a startle I realized that there was no one else there with him. He was alone. And all I could think of was my grandmother so many years earlier. He was there to hold her hand, right til the end, but who was there to hold his? That walk, from his room to the elevator, felt like the longest 10 yards of my life.
Poppa in uniform

I got the phone call the day after my birthday. June 16th. My mom called me at work and told me, voice trembling, that the priest had just left Poppa's bedside. That it would not be long. I probably should have gone home, but what would I have done there? Made myself sick worrying and feeling guilty that I was in Boston. So I stayed at work to keep myself busy. Later, on my way home, I spoke with my dad and he told me that Poppa was gone.

Now I know where I get my good looks and style from!

I went home immediately, of course. We went through boxes of old photos (which is where all of these amazing pictures came from!) and shared our stories, our memories. I put together three boards worth of photos. I did it by myself. It was quiet time that I spent alone with him, at least that's how it felt, and it allowed me to wrap my head around what had happened. His funeral mass was beautiful, and later, at the cemetery, he had a full military honor. As they opened his flag the sun came out from behind a cloud and lit the scene. It was one of the most beautiful and moving things I've ever seen in my life.

My grandfather was cremated, according to his wishes, and laid to rest directly above my grandmother's casket. Now we can all smile and laugh when we say that Poppa will be on top of Nanny for all of eternity, just like they would have wanted it.

When it was over, there were no more tears. I felt, in all honesty, a sense of relief. A sense of peace. My grandfather was a very religious man. He went to church every single day for (almost) his entire life. And while I might struggle sometimes with religion, I do believe in God. And as we left the cemetery I knew that he was at peace. He is in heaven. He is with my grandmother, with his parents and his brothers. He is with God.

So now, now that the sad times are over, I can look back at these old photos of Cosmo, my grandfather, and hold my memories of him close to my heart. I remember the way he laughed with no sound coming out. He loved coffee, we joked that we should put his ashes in a Folgers can, and used to eat his cereal in a bowl of coffee rather than milk. I remember him sitting at the end of my parent's dining table, a fork full of spaghetti in one hand and a huge chunk of bread in the other. How big his hands were, like bear paws. How he made me soup every single day for lunch because that's all I would eat at age four.

I think the phrase "Still waters run deep" was created about men like my Poppa. He was not an outwardly showy man, but the depth of his passion and love for his wife, his family, for life, was unmistakeable. I have never seen someone who loved so completely or so profoundly. He never needed to say it or flash it around, because you always knew it was there. It radiated out from him in waves. I have struggled with this, being able to verbalize and demonstrate my feelings. It's not until recently that I've realized you don't always have to. I'm so proud that I get that from him.
My grandparents again

Dancing to "Sexy Back" at my cousin's wedding last summer

Working the bar at my family's restaurant, The Oaks Inn, 1950's

I know this post has been very long and, in some parts, very sad. But I wanted to share it. My grandfather was an amazing man. Intelligent and funny and brave. He gave every part of himself for the people he loved. I hope that I can have a life half as full and rich as his. What an amazing example he has set for all of us.

Just the two of us, circa 1987

Ti voglio bene, Poppa. Rest in peace.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Summer Dinner

Sometimes it's just too hot to actually cook.

Voila! The perfect summer meal.
Buon appetito :)

Sunday, July 31, 2011

ModCloth Wish List

I love ModCloth.

You guys already know this about me, so that's not really news.

I check the site multiple times a day to view the newest frocks, vote in their amazing Be the Buyer program, and add even more into my shopping cart. I have a wish list that's 5 pages long and counting. In my head I already own all of these items and I imagine all the fabulous places I'll go and things I'll do while I'm wearing a dress picked directly from my fantasy wardrobe.
I mean LOOK at these shoes! I die.

Believe it or not - and let's be honest, this is a big, fat NOT - summer is already drawing to a close. And while I'm enjoying soaking up every ray of sunshine my pale porcelain skin can handle, I've got one eye on the fall fashions and my (fantasy) fall wardrobe.

Fall is my favorite season by far. There's something romantic about a warm, sunny day that turns into a breezy afternoon and ends in a chilly evening snuggled on the couch with someone special. I love the leaves, the smells, the colors, the textures. Everything. And I want my wardrobe to reflect all of that. So here are some of the pieces in my dream wardrobe from ModCloth that I will own one day.
On a warmer day, paired with skinny jeans and ballet flats.

Imagine this one with a red cardigan, grey tights and my grey Mary Janes with the little bows on them.

Chocolate tights, nude pumps and this necklace:
And how pretty and romantic is this shirt?

I want to go apple picking and pair this dress...
With dark tights and these amazing boots:

This one...With a long, soft cardigan and gold flats.

This amazing motorcycle jacket (I am dying over the color!), over this feminine and flowy dress.

Can't you see it with long, gold rope necklaces and dark brown booties?

This gorgeous sweater dress paired with tights and calf-high boots for brunch, shopping and an afternoon curled up with a wonderful book.

How perfect for cocktails out with the girls, right?
Hair pulled up, sparkly earrings, sparkly shoes. Perfect.

Paired with a black turtle neck and black shiny patent leather pumps.
Hellooooo, Joan Halloway!

I just love the simplicity of this these little cream dress. It's just Pretty.
Yes, with a capital P.
And these. I mean.. I just.. Come on, it's not even fair.

Alright, spill. Which fall fashions do you have your eye (and heart set) on?