Wednesday, September 23, 2009

A few of my favorite things

Even as I typed the word "products" into my initial post, my head started swimming with all of the directions such an idea could go in, from aromatherapy to entertainment to baby doo-dads.  I started brainstorming, and wanted to give an introductory smattering of some more things I love, just to lay the groundwork for what is to come...

1) Lunaroma  Burlington, Vermont's one and only aromatic apothecary, and one of my favorite places on earth.  I have taken many a friend on a pilgramage to their little purple Burlington hideaway and created a global posse of Lunaroma addicts.  You would die if you really started looking into some of the crap that goes into skincare products these days.  There was a certain upscale, seemingly natural brand that I used for most of my 20s, and I was shocked to find out how much cancer-causing goop most of their prodcuts contain when I checked out the Environmental Working Group's review of skincare products.  Spend a few minutes searching your favorite mass-produced products on that site, and you will be surprised by what you find. Lunaroma, on the other hand, uses natural and organic essential oils to create their delicious products.  You could probably eat most of them on your toast for breakfast.  My personal favorite product of their's at the moment is this one:

Smells like a freshly sliced cuke, absorbs in immediately, and makes you feel like you've been to a spa.  Love it.  I have yet to experience a Lunaroma product that is less than perfect.  My dream would be to work at their new Maui outpost. 

2)  The Barefoot Contessa

I actually considered asking Ina Garten to be Baby J's godmother.  In the early days when I felt like I was just doing nothing but nursing him around the clock, we more often than not were stationed on the couch in front of the Food Network, with Ina soothing us while whipping together a gratin.  Something about the cool, clean zen of her East Hampton kitchen and her butter-filled comfort foods made me feel like everything was going to be okay.  Her guacamole and "perfect roasted chicken" are two of "my" most popular dishes among friends and family.  I aspire to own all of her cookbooks (currently I have the original Barefoot Contessa Cookbook and the Barefoot Contessa at Home, but my sights are set on the Paris and Parties editions as well).  Ina, I love you.

3)  Cookie Magazine  I have always been, as my friend Angella calls me, a "magazine whore."  I just can't get enough of light reading.  As a new mom, this is my new favorite publication.  Cookie features a little bit of all the things I find myself thinking about these days:  mom concerns (vaccines, daycare choices, gear for tots), cooking, home design, fashion and beauty, and with a smattering of celeb stuff just to keep you feeling in that cheesy loop.  And they seem to understand that their readership is chronically sleep-deprived; the articles are quick and easy to skim and digest, but not so fluffy that you feel you've wasted your precious time reading them.  

4)  BravoTV  I can't help myself.  I am flatly obsessed with Top Chef.

I have an embarrassingly encyclopedic knowledge of the "cheftestants" and the dishes they cook.  I adore Padma Lakshmi.  And even though my husband wants to stick a pen in his eye every time he hears her trill "I. DIE.  Bananas," Rachel Zoe is my guilty pleasure.  Oh to own that many perfect pairs of wide leg jeans...

5)  Anneke Jans

A great restaurant is more than delicious food and great service; it creates memories that live on in your mind and become part of your mental happy-place collage.  Anneke Jans is this for me.  It is located in the small town in Maine where my parents live, about an hour from Boston.  I have never had less than a perfect meal there.  My favorite one was this summer when my mom insisted that she watch Baby J and my sister (in town all the way from Cali) and I go out to dinner.  We perched at the bar for several hours, I savored my first post-pregnancy dirty martini, and we ordered every appetizer on the menu, which included the best crab cake I have ever eaten.  What could be better?  You Bostonians looking for a weekend getaway must make your way here.

I could go on and on.  It is actually a great mental exercise to think of all the things that bring you pleasure!  More of this to come...


  1. I LOVE top chef. Obsessed! It so inspires me to actually cook!!



  2. Just thinking of one favorite person, place, experience helped turn a crazy week into a feeling of satifaction and pride. This week will then turn into another favorite that can soothe or inspire later.
    Thank you for reminding me to breathe and live fully both in the past and present.