Saturday, December 29, 2012

christmas in alabama

I hope everyone has been having a great holiday! It's been pretty stellar over here in Alabama even though the weather has been incredibly lame--cold and rainy ALL. THE. TIME. I've never just wanted it to snow so badly. Anyway, what good is a holiday if it's not an excuse to eat an drink ridiculous amounts? Apparently that's all I choose to photograph as well.

Sunday, December 23, 2012

oh, the parties!

I hope everyone is enjoying their holidays with friends and family either at home (or your home away from home). I'm currently hanging out in Alabama with my parents. I've been enjoying last minute Christmas shopping, wrapping presents, and watching lots of TV. We are heading to pick Kurt up in Nashville this evening and his flight is already delayed! Let's hope he makes it in at some reasonable hour. I've been such a lazy blogger lately, so I thought I would do a quick rundown of the holiday parties I attended before leaving NYC for my vacation in the South.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

let the holidays begin!

{advent calendar (each box is filled with chocolate!) from the best clients ever, the folks over at la maison du chocolat}

Guys, I took my last (if I pass, that is) ARE test yesterday and it is such a weight off my shoulders! No more studying! I'm so excited to read fiction, peruse magazines, watch TV shows, and most of all, go to all the upcoming holiday parties! I'm going to be that girl inappropriately sitting on Santa's lap at your office party and dancing on tables with tinsel in my hair. Believe me, I've earned it. I've got eight parties in the next nine days. Let's hope I don't die or get fired :)

Here are a few events and parties from last week. We'll call it a warm up :)

Monday, December 3, 2012

party at the center {redux}

I know I already gave a rundown from this year's Party@TheCenter, but the professional photos are in! Please indulge me for a moment as I post way too many pictures of us having fun. It helps me get through my Monday. I'm infinitely amazed at what a serious camera and great lighting can do. Check out all the photos here(All images borrowed from photographer Samuel LaHoz's site.)

Friday, November 30, 2012

man cave: accessories

This is my last post about the garage renovation for a while, I promise. Hopefully, I can convince my parents to buy some furniture and allow me to unleash some DIY projects on the space to make the room more livable and fun to hang out in. The final issue to address is all the bare walls and shelves. Let's clutter it up!

Thursday, November 29, 2012

sweet potato pizza

During our brief stay in Chicago, Kurt and I stopped in Baker & Nosh for lunch. We split a couple flat bread pizzas and were really impressed with a sweet potato one. This was my first attempt recreating it, so there will be tweaks in the future, but it was still really good!

1/2 red onion
1 can sweet potato puree
part skim ricotta cheese
1 tube pillsbury pizza dough (I never said this was gourmet)
salt, pepper, random spices
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

Slice the onion into long, thin slivers and toss in a pan on medium low with some olive oil. You want to cook these forever so they get good and caramelized. Once they are soft and brown a little, add a few swigs of balsamic vinegar and a splash of water to the pan. Cook them even longer until the liquid is pretty much evaporated. Empty the sweet potato in a bowl and mix in lots of salt, pepper, and any spices that strike your fancy. Roll out the pizza dough on a greased cookie sheet and spread the sweet potato on top, leaving space at the edge for a crust (we all know the crust is the best part of a pizza). Sprinkle the caramelized onions around evenly. Finish off with several dollops of ricotta cheese on top (you can go for a grid like me or a random pattern). Bake according to the pizza dough directions. Enjoy!

Tweaks: The sweet potato was a little soupy, so I would either use less puree or mash my own sweet potato, so the result is more firm. Also, go for more onion. They cook down a lot and give the pizza a lot of flavor. Keep some breath mints on hand! :)

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

madison shop and new art

While Kurt and Justin were watching the Ohio State vs. Wisconsin game, Brett and I did some shopping along State Street, the main pedestrian strip running through downtown Madison. We came across a cute shop called Anthology, and I could have spent all day in there! I got some great Christmas presents (sadly I can't show you but know they are amazing!) and quite a few things for myself. Lots of new art for my walls!

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

madison/chicago: part two

The final installment of photos!

Monday, November 26, 2012

madison/chicago: part one

Photo dump from when Kurt and I visited Madison,Wisconsin and Chicago! Enjoy!

Monday, November 19, 2012

greetings from wisconsin!

Kurt and I were visiting friends, Justin and Brett, that live in Chicago this weekend. While in the great Midwest, we drove up to Madison, Wisconsin so Kurt and Justin could go to the Ohio State vs. Wisconsin football game. Brett and I tooled around town and got massages while the boys were occupied with the game (I say we got the better/warmer end of the deal). Kurt and I are taking Monday off to spend a little time in Chicago and will be back to NYC late tonight. I hope to have some travel updates soon! 

Who is excited for a 3 day week?! I'm absolutely ecstatic about my TWO day week!

Friday, November 16, 2012

man cave: the light

This week I'm helping my parents work through their garage renovation. I did some drawings last year, but now we're changing a few things to better suit their needs. We had never directly addressed the lighting situation, but my dad and I discussed some track lighting to replace the existing garage-y flush mounted fixtures. Over the summer, my parents had an electrician install this general lighting but now the big question remains, what will THE statement light above the pool table be?!

Thursday, November 15, 2012

man cave: furniture

This week I'm helping my parents work through their garage renovation. I did some drawings last year, but now we're changing a few things to better suit their needs. In the original design, I wanted to install a bar complete with built in base cabinets and stone (or similar) countertop. They weren't sure they would use it all that much and and decent countertop material ended up being prohibitively expensive. Instead, we're now considering some free standing furniture pieces. 

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

man cave: windows

This week I'm helping my parents work through their garage renovation. I did some drawings last year, but now we're changing a few things to better suit their needs. The first reconsideration: window treatments. My dad thought the curtains from my last design were a little too girly. And since we're trying to make this sort of a masculine room, we're moving in a different direction with the window coverings.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

man cave progress!

Test #6 is in the books! I'm so burnt out over all this studying that I find myself doing less each time...and then getting to the test and being dumbfounded at all the information I don't know. The system seems to be working out so far (I don't know how they grade these things), so I'll cross my fingers and hope for the best once again. If all goes as planned, I take #7 sometime in December and will have this whole ARE nonsense wrapped up before the end of 2012. Then I will be a free woman! Or an architect...oh jeez, what am I going to do then?!

Anyway, after my test, I devoted the whole afternoon to working on my parent's garage renovation project. It's hard to believe that it's been just about a year since I submitted my last designs. Well, I surveyed the progress when I was home in August (and I'm just getting around to telling you about it in November). Things are moving along at a snail's Graveline's pace but it's looking pretty good so far. Check out all the hard work my dad has put in! See the "before" images here.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

halloween progressive dinner

Happy (late) Halloween! I wanted to throw a party for the occasion, so I organized a progressive dinner with some friends in Brooklyn (see last year's holiday party). Unfortunately, Hurricane Sandy tried to ruin our fun by bringing in high winds and subway cancellations  A few people were deterred by the foul weather, but we had so many other die hard attendees! I was surprised with the turnout and everyone's awesome costumes. Sadly, we had to cut out my apartment from the progression because it is quite a walk from the others. We didn't want anyone to blow away!

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

party @ the center 2012

Wow. What a night! I was nervous all day about the election results but could not be more thrilled to see President Obama have the opportunity of  four more years in the White House! During his first term we were all looking for HOPE and CHANGE, but now I hope to see lots of ACTION (since no one is too concerned about being elected again). I'm invigorated and optimistic about government in the years to come and look forward to it moving ahead.

I dare you to watch Obama's acceptance speech without tears in your eyes. I've been struggling through it all morning! Congratulations, Mr. President!

Well, the Party @ The Center was once again a success. Of course my camera died earlier that day, so all I have to show you are lousy instagram pictures.We handed out glow sticks at the door to party attendees.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

green-wood cemetery

Happy Election Day! I hope you are all getting out there to the polls and casting your vote. I really don't care who you vote for (although I'm a little biased) just get out there and make your voice heard!

Remember when we were doing some city touring with Kurt's Ohio friend, Nathaniel? Well, we had a few hours to show him around Brooklyn on Sunday morning before he had to hit the road. We took him to the Green-Wood Cemetery right near Kurt's house to photograph the scenery. 

Monday, November 5, 2012

go vote!

In case you've been living under a rock and haven't heard, tomorrow is election day! We're not shy about which candidate will be getting our support (I'm totally wearing my shirt to work on Tuesday). Regardless of which direction you will be casting your vote, it's so important to have your voice heard. Please get out there and vote!

And while you're at it being a responsible American citizen, consider donating to the Red Cross. While I was spared the effects of Hurricane Sandy and was awarded a week long "hurrication" from work, a lot of my beloved city looks like a big pile of rubble. (Above is one of many downed trees in Prospect Park.) A lot of people in New Jersey, Staten Island, and the coastal areas of Brooklyn really took a hard hit and could use some assistance. I've been amazed at the generosity of fellow New Yorkers getting out there to volunteer and donate supplies, but as winter weather starts to roll in and people are left without power (still!), food, belongings, and shelter, they could really use a helping hand. Please be generous!

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

hurricane sandy

Thanks for all your texts, thoughts, and well wishes since Hurricane Sandy rolled through earlier this week. We've been inundated with images and news reports of all the damage in New York and New Jersey. I'm almost ashamed to report how well we've fared in my little pocket of Brooklyn. We never lost power and were spared the flood waters (although they were about a block away from my apartment building). A lot of downtown Manhattan is still without power (including my office) and the subways are still shut down,  so I've been on a bit of an extended vacation. I've somehow managed to fit in some runs the past couple days and have surveyed lots of big trees down throughout Brooklyn, especially in Prospect Park. My heart goes out to those who are displaced or without power still or unable to get in or out of the city. Things seem to be getting back to normal a bit today, but I have a feeling the rebuilding will be slow. Stay safe, everyone!

Flood waters pouring into a PATH station.

Jane's Carousel in DUMBO (I was just there!). I haven't heard any reports on how it fared but hope it survived. 

Whether it was a good idea or not, we took a walk down to see the Gowanus Canal on Monday night. The flood waters here are all the way up to 2nd Avenue and 9th Street. Along the way, we also saw firefighters battling a warehouse fire in Gowanus. I'm in awe of all the city workers during this storm. Thanks for keeping us safe!

Kurt and I went on my rooftop Tuesday night and a good chunk of lower Manhattan is still in darkness. Stay safe over there!

The blog seems pretty trivial while all this mess is happening and so many of my fellow New Yorkers are in pain, so I'm taking a break for the week. I'll be back next week with some updates. In the meantime, consider making a donation to help the support efforts.

Friday, October 26, 2012

giveaway winner

Thanks to everyone who entered the giveaway in honor of my 400th post! And the winner is (drum roll, please)....

Commenter #1, Jack Forinash! 

He's the lucky recipient of the gorgeous Wintergreen Christmas Card from Rifle Paper Co. I better be seeing one of these in my mailbox come December! :)

Thanks to everyone who entered. Better luck next time to the rest of you! Have a great weekend!

late night concert

Earlier this week, Kurt, Erik, Silvia, and I went to a Damien Jurado concert after work. I had never listened to his music before and I was a little worried about the late showtime (I need my beauty sleep!), but Erik and Silvia both gave rave reviews of the music.

We began the evening with dinner at Oaxaca Taqueria in the East Village. I've been to both Brooklyn locations and was looking forward to trying one in Manhattan, especially since the restaurant is tucked at the end of this really cute alley. Extra Place is very atypical for the city and a nice pocket of calm. Oaxaca has great food and are byob, which I love. After dinner, we hit a bar on Avenue A because we still had a ton of time to kill. I can't even tell you what the bar was called but I do know they have a 2 for 1 happy hour. Avenue A at 2nd Street, check it out.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

nyc touring

Last Saturday, Kurt's friend Nathaniel was in town from Ohio for about twenty four hours. He is a photographer on the side and wanted to get some shots of very NYC-centric locations. Luckily, the weather could not have been better and he was able to get tons of great sunlight!

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

final ode to bbp

Brooklyn Bridge Park had to be one of my favorite locations of the summer. Sadly, I didn't do a lot of lounging on the grass but I did bike and run through frequently. Most out of town visitors got a tour, and we all know I logged quite a few hours at Pier 6. There were some Auburn friends in town the other weekend visiting from Boston and Texas, so I was ecstatic that our weather cooperated (it was gorgeous!) and I was able to take them through the fun DUMBO experience.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

west point, new york

A couple Saturdays ago, Kurt planned a trip up to West Point, NY to see an Army football game against Kent State. Christian, Will, and I joined him on the short bus ride upstate to the campus nestled on the banks of the Hudson River. All I read about on the blogosphere these days is pumpkin patches this and apple picking that, so it was good to get out the city on a fall weekend and see what all the fuss is about. Too bad the trees weren't quite ready to change colors for us just yet.

Monday, October 22, 2012

400 and a {giveaway}!

Before we get down to business, I want to announce that I got word I passed my Structures ARE! This is big news because I was very worried about this test and it stressed me out for a long time. Apparently you can miss lots of questions and still pass! :) Five down, two more to go! It's been a long year of studying and I cannot tell you how ready I am to be done and be a real architect.

4 / 0 / 0

In other news, this is my 400th post!! Doesn't that seem crazy?! I've had four hundred things to write about on the internet?! Thanks for sticking with me. In honor of the momentous occasion, I have a little present for one lucky reader...

Thursday, October 18, 2012

skyline for your thursday

Last week, Kurt and I went to a happy hour at Resolution: 4 Architecture. We had a few drinks, made some new friends, and took in the amazing rooftop view of the city. Not bad for a Friday night.

p.s. Don't forget to get your tickets to the Party@TheCenter! It's only a week away! For more info, see the link on the sidebar >>>>>>

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

city modern house tour

Here in NYC, it's Archtober, the month where architecture and October collide. Open House New York was the first weekend of the month (last year we went to see the TWA Terminal) but I was lazy and didn't get around to any sites this year. However, I did volunteer to be a docent at a City Modern House Tour in Brooklyn (put on by Dwell and New York Magazines) the same weekend. I was stationed at the most homey, adorable townhouse in Boerum Hill. The architect is MADE and Dwell sort of has the rights to the first round of photos of the place, so we were only allowed to take phone images. Please excuse the blurry iPhone shots. This was before I upgraded to my fancy new 4...

Ground floor office/playroom/den. The house sits on a corner lot and has the miraculous opportunity for windows on two sides. Believe me, even on a rainy day, the extra light is amazing!

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

k+p got hitched, day two

The day of the Keely and Patrick's wedding was jam packed with activities. In the morning we were celebrating Jen, a new momma-to-be, and her bun in the oven at a lovely baby shower.

What a gorgeous group of architecture ladies! I loved Jen's dress! Maternity wear is looking good these days.

Monday, October 15, 2012

k+p got hitched, day one

A couple weekends ago, Kurt and I were lucky enough to head back down south to Birmingham, Alabama to see Keely and Patrick get married. It was a busy weekend packed with lots of activities, but I was so happy to see lots of old friends from architecture school. We were so lucky to stay with my dear friend Jessica who was the ultimate hostess. Not only did she take a half day off work to pick us up from the airport, but she and her boyfriend Eric proceeded to chauffeur us around all weekend. Thanks so much!

Kurt and I arrived on Friday and had plans to make a tour of all the new breweries that have been popping up in Birmingham recently. Our first stop was Cahaba Brewing Company. Each of us got a flight of the several beers they had on tap. They have an awesome Alabama-shaped tray for each flight. Absolutely perfect!

Friday, October 12, 2012

oh joy! book party

Jenn and I hopped over to the Columbus Circle west elm after work yesterday for the much anticipated Blog Inc. book party. I was so excited to meet Joy Deangdeelert Cho of the blog Oh Joy! and have her sign our copies of the new book. She was even more cute and lovely than I had imagined. (I don't know how these authors do it! I would be spent after signing 10 books!) Plus, her adorable husband and baby were running around the store mingling with guests. Too cute!

Thursday, October 11, 2012

food these days

As I've alluded to before, I don't cook much. I manage to feed myself well enough, but rarely whip up elaborate meals, especially since cooking for one is kind of boring. So whenever I do get around to developing some culinary masterpiece, I feel it should be noted, photographed, and ultimately applauded. So here are the latest creations from my kitchen:

I'm not sure if I've mentioned it before, but I am a huge fan of the Pioneer Woman's Mexican Layer Dip (minus the black olives, of course, ick). I took it to a friend's house to watch football several weekends ago and it was a big hit. I always have the satisfaction of toting home an empty dish when bringing this to a party.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

tiger showdown

It's been a couple weeks since my Auburn Tigers lost to LSU, so I think I've mourned long enough to recap the Tiger vs Tiger Showdown football party I threw for the occasion. I had such a fun time making the invitation for the game look like a vintage boxing poster

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

recent things, compliments of instagram

Sorry for the radio silence lately. It's been busy around these parts. When I wasn't running around town or travelling, I was trying to be a good student in preparation for my Structures exam. Of the five exams (out of seven) I've taken so far, this one definitely threw me for a loop. As you can see, Aubie was exhausted by all the studying as well. I finally worked up the nerve to take the test last Friday and it was tough! I treated myself to a beer lunch afterwards and started the waiting game. Cross your fingers I passed!

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

party @ the center

Hey there, party people. Once again I'm helping on the volunteer committee for the Center for Architecture's Party@TheCenter. It's a super fun night of music, dancing, and drinks. And who doesn't love an excuse to dress up? Ticket prices have been decreased since last year, so its a really great deal for five hours of open bar and a DJ. I hope to see you NYC'ers there on October 25th!

See my Party@TheCenter posts from 2011 and 2010. Such a fun time!

Click here to purchase tickets and see the friendly little reminder on my sidebar >>>>>

Friday, September 21, 2012

first friday

The Architectural League took the summer off from First Fridays. Thankfully, we got back in the swing of things in September with an office visit to Weiss/Manfredi

It seems like every office we visit has a drop dead gorgeous view. I am beyond jealous. I probably wouldn't get any work done here. I would be staring out the window all day watching boats sail around on the Hudson River.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

fashion's night out

I've been counting down the days since Fashion's Night Out 2011. Well, that's a lie. It kind of snuck up on me. Thankfully, I had enough to time to scour the FNO website and compile a map of all the fun SoHo locations we should hit. This year, I think I repeated free drinks to Kurt enough times to convince him to join Jenn, Christine, and me.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

ohio tourists: day two

After taking Kurt's Ohio friends to the Highline, of course we had to take them to Brooklyn Bridge Park as well.

Somehow I didn't get any photos of it, but no trip to BBP is complete without a visit to Bark at Pier 6. Kurt and I have been there a crazy amount of times this summer and are going to try to extend our visits into the fall as long as possible.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012


A few Saturdays ago, Kurt and I were going to take some out of town visitors to the Smorgasburg in Brooklyn. They couldn't make it so we went on our own. Kurt loves to support the Red Hook vendors and got a papusa.

Monday, September 17, 2012

ohio tourists: day one

Over Labor Day, Kurt's friends from Ohio, Nick and Ben, were in town to visit with their entire family. I mean, mom and dad were there; so were an aunt and uncle; throw in a cousin and his girlfriend; add another cousin and his wife, and then you have the Peters/Hickey Clan. They had a lot of plans on their own, but thankfully we were able to show them a few small pieces of the city we love.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

alabama highlights

I took a long weekend trip down to Alabama at the end of August to visit my parents and sister. It was a nice departure from the city but not quite as quiet as I had hoped. I feel like I was running around doing more stuff than I do here in the city! I can relax when I'm dead, right? It was still a fun time and we squeezed tons of stuff into just a few days. I'm hoping to spend more leisure time (i.e. on the couch) when I go back for Christmas.

I typically don't fly into the Huntsville Airport, but we found a good deal this time. I loved flying in over the city and being able to identify all the roads and parts of town. The landmarks aren't quite as clear as, say the Empire State Building, but notable nonetheless. What I did notice was a boat load of new construction. Sadly, the majority of it is monotonous subdivisions and massive big box shopping centers to replace ones outdated after 10 years. Le sigh. Northern Alabama isn't making any strides to appeal to my urban love. It was still fun being about as far away from NYC as I could get in a weekend!

I had a crazy early flight out of NYC and lost an hour in time zones, so I was ready for lunch at about 10:30. Perfect time to beat the crowds to some delicious barbecue!

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