Monday, October 29, 2012

the perfect storm

happy monday, and happy hurricane! 

i am housebound and happy as a clam due to my pre-storm prep, which included vino, candles, a new book, playing cards,  and the boyfriend's flannel shirt paired with my favorite sweatpants and slippers.

we still have power, but the winds are howling ever more loudly as the hours pass and i wouldn't be surprised if it goes out soon. you can always check out the latest in my hurricane excitement on instagram - i'm @rglevesque :)

to everyone else in the northeast, stay safe and don't get bored! necessity is the mother of invention, as they say...

Thursday, October 25, 2012

fall infusion

farm foliage in northern pennsylvania

it's late october and it FINALLY feels like fall has settled in to stay. i drive 35 miles each way to work down a beautifully scenic parkway and i really get to appreciate the full spectrum of fall foliage, not to mention the small groups of deer that gather to eat grass on the side of the road! we have also taken weekend trips up to vermont and northern pennsylvania, which provided equally idyllic fall scenes.

since the weather has evened out and temperatures are no longer sneaking up into the 70s, i have - at long last! - been able to unearth my cold weather clothes from their storage place under the bed. i did a thorough assessment of my fall/winter wardrobe as i unpacked and found that i would benefit from a few strategic additions. my goal was to add a couple of classic pieces would look current but would also stand the test of time and look fresh for seasons to come.

here are my three new fall additions; i can already tell that they will be in heavy rotation!

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

local bites: the whelk

those of you who have been reading crossed & dotted for awhile know that i love food. if you are new, you will quickly pick up on that, too. my instagram confirms my food obsession: look at this! i might have a problem.

since the boyfriend and i both have a passion for cooking, we tend to stay in most nights to try out new recipes. when we do go out, it's a momentous event and i thought i would document our foodventures (yes, that's a thing) 

in my opinion, there's nothing worse than spending a well-deserved dinner out at a restaurant that proves disappointing, so the aim of local bites is to share real restaurant experiences (the good, the bad, and the delicious!) with some candor and a few pictures.

let's kick this off!

local bites:  the whelk westport
occasion: birthday celebration for a dear friend
in a nutshell: seafood with southern flair; emphasis on local ingredients

what we ordered: 
easy rye-der - rye and fig; a very autumnal, masculine cocktail.
the fennel solution - fennel? in a martini? cool, crisp, and refreshing.
barbera d'asti - it was delicious. and a good price point at $40.
oysters on the half shell
bbq clams
country ham with hush puppies
tuna tartare with fennel and jalapeno
hand cut fries with smoked mayo (literally a mountain of fries!)
warm peekytoe crab fondue
gulf shrimp and grits
roasted stonington scallops with farro verde, okra, corn, squash, leeks, and bacon
roasted gnocchi with sunchokes, leeks, warm oysters, and buttermilk (my choice - SO good.)

the verdict: definitely a repeat.
new favorite, special occasion category.
the whelk is fabulous. the atmosphere is relaxed and casual, the food is the definition of soulful and comforting, and everything we ordered was delicious. you could taste the quality of the ingredients, and the portions were perfect. on the downside, it is on the pricier side so we will probably reserve it for special occasions, or for drinks/apps at the bar and dinner at home.

*we're just two people who enjoy good food - these reviews are entirely based on our own experiences and we are not influenced or compensated in any way.

definitely a repeat
decent; i'd give it another shot
meh, i'm underwhelmed


Tuesday, October 23, 2012

lip service

almost everyone i know has a chapstick/lip balm of choice, especially now that the weather is turning drier and cooler! rosebud salve (in the tube!) has long been my favorite, but it's got some company.

i would like to introduce you to eos lip balms (or bombs, since that is what they look like!)
i received one in a gift bag from a work event and tried it for the first time yesterday and i'm hooked!
it glides on smoothly and my lips feel moisturized without being sticky. plus, the packaging is adorable!
my flavor was strawberry sorbet, which would not be my first choice, but i also discovered that they have sweet mint and lemon drop with spf 15!