5 Things I’m Smitten With 55

Web Therapy
Friends started the year before I was scheduled to graduate from High School. It was the coolest new show of it’s time. These six companions made up one of the first true ‘ensemble’ shows on television, and while Rachel, Ross, Monica, Joey, and Chandler are all great- it was Phoebe Buffay (aka Lisa Kudrow) that I tuned in for every week. Life after Friends, led to various movie rolls, and eventually the sitcom- The Comeback. Lisa’s D-grade actress character- Valerie Cherish, was hopelessly tragic and almost sickening to watch at times, but genius all the same. While I found it difficult to endure watching Valerie in her pathetic pursuit for stardom, let’s face it- Lisa Kudrow is laugh-out-loud funny. She comes from improvisation rootstock, so it’s no surprise her newest brainchild, Web Therapy takes her back to the source. Initially a webisode, Web Therapy centers around Fiona Wallice. Fiona, a restless therapist, discovers a way to make a 50 minute face-to-face session into a three minute video chat. Mostly improvised by Kudrow and her star-studded cast, the show will leave you in stitches. This is not to be missed.

 

Bed Intruder Tribute
I know you remember this. Huntsville, Alabama- Antoine Dodson was interviewed on a local T.V. station about the attempted rape of his sister. The interview, entertaining in it’s own right, blew up on YouTube, and captured the attention of the music group The Gregory Brothers. They tweeked the interview and used auto tune to amp it up into a catchy viral song and music video. The video was viewed over 84 million times and was the most popular video of 2010. Now the song has been taken to another level with a Tribute Album featuring thirteen different versions of the sought-after mix. There’s the original version (of course), along with a rock, jazz, a cappella, piano, and even ukulele rendition. Not only is this great entertainment, it’s great music, and the money is split 50/50 with the Dobson family. No harm, no foul. Just some good fun.

 

Style Mint
Who wouldn’t want to be styled by a professional designer? Pretty much everyone I know, but not many in mind could afford it. Now with StyleMint you can personalize t-shirts and styling options for peanuts. The dynamic fashion duo, Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen design some of the coolest t-shirts, with the perfect fit, and match you with your ideal one. Visit the site, create a profile based on your style preferences, retail-therapy choices, and voila- see what the twins have for you. Each tee is only $29.99 with free shipping. Little cost for lots of great looks.

 

My New Desk
I have been obsessed with having a mirrored desk ever since I first laid eyes on a Horchow. Completely out of my price range, I set to work to locate the knock-off. One of my favorite home design blogs- Copy Cat Chic featured one from Pier 1. I rushed to find it, and sadly it was sold out- everywhere!!! I didn’t give up, oh no, and located a replacement on Amazon. This was it! I promptly ordered the affordable version, only to discover that it was on back-order. For THREE months! I was patient and it’s paid off. Last week my mirrored fantasy arrived, and I couldn’t be happier.

Alignyo Contest
A few months ago, I featured Alignyo. This week they’re back with another chance to win 3 months of some of the best yoga in NYC for you and a kindred spirit. All you have to do is visit their site, sign up for the “in the know” guide, and cross your pinkies and toes. You won’t be disappointed with getting alignyo in your inbox every week. It has expert reviews of yoga classes all over the city, and the opportunity to meet some of those most inspiring teachers. Enter this win-win contest here.

5 Things I’m Smitten With 54

 

Teint Parfait
On a shopping trip to Bloomingdales in SoHo, I stopped off at the YSL counter to replenish my supply of the magical Touche Eclat. The friendly (not pushy salesman) Daniel, recommended that I try their Teint Parfait under my regular tinted moisturizer.This complexion enhancer is oil-free (music to my ears), and- depending on your needs- can even out your skin tone. It adds a slight (very slight) shimmer to your cheekbones and anywhere light naturally catches, and can smooth out your blotchy tan. Daniel suggested that some days I may just want to wear it with a bit of bronzer, I’ve done it and the results are parfait!

 

 

Chai Tea
I like coffee just as much as the next person, but sometimes the “Joe” can have negative effects- like the pesky jitters. So, when I’ve had my fill of rocket fuel I turn to tea- especially Chai Tea. The first time I had Chai was back when I was living in California. My best friend Serena is half Indian and wanted to share with me what real Indian food was like. After a short drive south of the city of LA, we ended up in ‘Little India’ or Artesia. After stuffing our faces with some of the best Indian food I’ve ever had, dessert was served- with home-made Chai. It was sweet, spicy, and had just enough of a caffeine kick. Chai tea is definitely in vogue, so chances are you’ve sipped at least a few already, but I’m here to tell you the sickly sweet faux imitations don’t hold a candle to the real thing. Bottom line- if it comes out of a box or a jar- it ain’t the masala chai Indians cherish. I get my traditional Chai at one of the Hampton Chutney Co. locations around the city. You can make your own from Serenas Mom’s own recipe below:

Boil 5 minutes, then steep 10 minutes:

1 Tbsp fennel or anise seed
6 green cardamom pods
12 cloves
1 cinnamon stick
1/4″ ginger root, sliced thin
1/4 tsp black pepper corns
2 bay leaves
7 Cups water
Add, bring to a boil, and simmer 5 minutes:

2 Tbsp Darjeeling tea
Add:

6 Tbsp honey or brown sugar
1 Cup milk

 

 

Caleb Carr
I must admit I enjoy a good tingle up my spine. Not a fan of full-on horror, I still love to get a chill out of a quality thriller. While film and television will suffice, they don’t leave much to the imagination. I prefer spooky novels, and when I was introduced to Caleb Carr it was scare at first fright. Carr was born in Manhattan, and spent most of his life living on Lower East SideHis knowledge of the city’s ins and outs and American history, are the makings of killer crime stories. The first in the series of two subsequent novels, The Alienist takes place where else, but in seedy downtown New York City circa 1896. Crime reporter John Moore, along with the famous alienist, Dr. Laszlo Kreizler, are on the hunt for a ferocious serial killer. Not only are the words on the page enough to make my pulse quicken with excitement, but when he mentions a recognized city landmark, it forms a smile on my lips. I devoured the Alienist and am now onto The Angel of Darkness, the continuation of this sleuthing team as they embark on their next adventure. Skillfully written, historically fascinating, and heart pumping- these books are not to be missed.

 

 

FIT Continuing Education Courses
I get much of my valuable information straight from the source- that source being my clients. Case in point- my very fashionable designer client, Samantha (who graduated from FIT), filled me in on the classes for non-students at her alma mater. I was intrigued, and a quick look at the FIT website brought up one and two day courses in things such as- ‘Star Quality Vintage Shopping’ and ‘Shop, Cook, Eat: The Best of New York’. Right up my alley. The cost for each is reasonable, and all the instructors are experts in their fields. I’m hoping to take- ‘Foodie’s Paradise: Astoria’, where Astoria native chef Michael Cokkinos (is that a Greek name or what?) shows us around local ethnic specialty stores, fish mongers, butchers, bakers, and markets- unlocking all the culinary secrets my hood has to offer. Just heavenly! Hope to see you there!

 

Ice Loves Coco
Cheese alert!!! This post is not for the too-cool-for-school types. You know- those who never eat non-organic, won’t be caught dead shopping at TJMaxx, and never admit to watching tacky reality T.V. shows. Now, in my defense, I got hooked into watching Ice Loves Coco not because I’m a huge Ice T fan or had ever heard of the buxom Coco before, but instead because of their bulldog Spartacus. It’s not a secret that I’m bulldog obsessed, and actually own one of my own (a rescue named Stitch). So, when I was watching another of my tawdry reality crack, I saw a preview of Ice Loves Coco and immediately programed the DVR. It’s not “I Love Lucy” but Ice and Coco are fun to watch, and there’s plenty of cameos of the supermodel Spart. Perfect to zone out to after a long day- no thinking required.