ladies who brunch

casual brunch outfit ladies who brunch

 

Ah, brunch–let me count the ways in which I love you. This weekend rolled around and it called for sleeping in late (I made it ’til 7:45 a.m. Woohoo!), a lazy morning around the apartment and a casual brunch in Brooklyn. It’s so close to Queens (just a quick few minutes away on the BQE), but unless I’m heading to Brooklyn Flea or Smorgasburg, I really don’t spend much time there. So away we went.

 

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After stuffing our faces silly, we needed to walk it off (a massive egg sandwich will do that to ya, I guess). Trekking over the Brooklyn Bridge has been on my NYC bucket list for a while, so my roommate and I somehow found our way there and walked over–the view from up there is seriously something special.

 

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It wasn’t too crowed, and it completely reignited my love for the city–which, I have to admit, had waned this week with the hundreds of people camping outside the new Times Square H&M waiting for Lady Gaga…it took me 20 minutes to get to my office door and was just all-around not fun. We ended the day with gelato in Little Italy, a bit of shopping at C. Wonder and Joe Fresh (where I snagged this adorable skirt!) and sushi on the couch. Pretty perfect if you ask me!

 

 

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1 & 2. Some of the best views in the city.

3. I’m kind of Nuts for Nuts…go figure.

4. Gangly, tangled trees always seem a bit magical.

5. These two were having the most amazingly serious “bro” convo about girls. Yes, I was eavesdropping.

6. Magnet snaps for sale.

7. We witnessed the most beautiful little wedding.

8. This gentleman was playing perfect vintage tunes on this gorgeous sax. I couldn’t stop imagining where his talent had taken him throughout his life.

9 & 10. There’s no better way to celebrate a Sunday stroll than with Laduree macarons.

11. Bird’s eye view.

 

 

p.s I updated my “about me” page and added a FAQ section. If you have a question that wasn’t answered there, shoot me an e-mail and I’ll add it!

 

 

the market

smorgoutfit3 the market

Tee Zara, Jacket Gap (similar), Scarf Zara, Pants Joe Fresh, Booties Steve Madden (similar), Bag from the leather market in Florence.

Since moving to NYC, I’ve discovered a new favorite way to spend my Saturdays: the market. Farmer’s markets, craft markets, fine food markets–you name it, I’m in there like swimwear. Growing up in a small rural town, there were few chance to really hit up markets the way NYC does them: big, well-curated, local. A dream, really.

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The gorgeous weather on Saturday presented the perfect (and probably final) opportunity to put on one of my favorite casual looks (I actually might spend 24/7 in these burgundy pants if it was socially acceptable) and head to Brooklyn for an amazing food fair, Smorgasburg, and the Renegade Craft market with a few girlfriends. It felt especially poignant to be on the East River, supporting so many local businesses only weeks after Hurricane Sandy.

smorgoutfit1 the market

I was able to pick up a pair of Dino earrings I’ve had my eye on (yes, you read that right!), plus a few Christmas gifts and some homemade jam–for you NYC gals, I urge you to try Anarchy in a Jar! Their strawberry balsamic jam is out-of-this-world amazing.

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How cute is this bow ring one of my friends picked up?

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What’s your favorite way to spend your treasured Saturday afternoons?

 

 

bon iver in nyc

iver2 bon iver in nyc

If you couldn’t tell from all of my playlists (and my incessant concert talk), I’m a huge music geek. I like my music like I like my buffets–a little bit of everything (though none of it can touch on my plate…some weird OCD thing of mine). I could go on and on ranting about my favorites (Bruce, Beatles, Damien Rice, Mumford, Beirut, Dave just to name a few), but I’ll get to the point. I’ve been dying to see Bon Iver–for. like. ever. We’re talking going on two years here, but for some reason it just never fell together.

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I was super bummed when I couldn’t make his Radio City concerts last week–until I hit a stroke of good luck and received an invite to a private performance (eek!) for work (<insert insanely obnoxious happy dance here). Let me tell you, they’re phenominal live. Justin Vernon (the band’s front man) plays with this incredible, infections passion and talent just oozes out of every member in the zillion-piece band. Considering nothing I say can really do them justice, I figured it’d be best to throw together a playlist of my favorite songs for those of you who may not be familiar. You + a cozy blanket + a cup of coffee (or hot chocolate, if that’s your thing) + this playlist = bliss. I promise.

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Also, we need to talk. The new Mumford and Sons album, Babel, is perfection. Is anyone else listening to it on repeat like me?

a birthday celebration and french toast casserole

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This past weekend we had a lovely little birthday celebration for my roommate–there were decorations (including makeshift tissue paper flowers by yours truly that were sub-par at best), sweets, a delicious-but-ugly cake (I really, really stink at cakes) and plenty of time with good friends.

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Whenever we have guests stay for the weekend, I always try to make breakfast–there’s something nice about sitting down to a brunch, rather than picking up bagels (but don’t get me wrong, I LOVE a good bagel). For this weekend, I pulled together one of my mom’s favorite twists on breakfast, french toast casserole. It’s super simple and can be made ahead of time–all you need to do day of is turn the oven on. That way, you can crawl back into bed until it’s ready…pretty perfect if you ask me!

French Toast Casserole

You’ll need:

  • 1 1/2 loaves of french break or 1 loaf challah bread, cut into cubes
  • 1 8-ounce package of cream cheese
  • 6 eggs
  • 2 cups light cream
  • 1/2 c. maple syrup, plus more for topping
  • 1 stick butter, melted
  • cinnamon

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Grease a baking dish. Cube bread, filling the dish with one layer and setting the rest aside. Cube the block of cream cheese and sprinkle on top of the layer of bread, then place the rest of the bread on top.

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Mix the eggs, cream, syrup and butter together in a bowl. Pour into the baking dish, coating the bread and cream cheese evenly. Cover with tinfoil and place in the fridge for 4-24 hours. When you’re ready to make it, preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Sprinkle the top of the casserole with cinnamon and bake for at least 30 minutes, or until browned and bubbly. Cut into pieces and serve with maple syrup on top. Enjoy!

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black & white

Full disclosure: I screwed this recipe up. Twice. Also, the final product was kind of ugly (but super delicious, I’m told). Just thought we’d get that out of the way.

Anyways, when my best friend’s birthday rolled around, I knew exactly what yummy treat I wanted to send her in a surprise package. Kristen’s love for black and white cookies is well-known, and she’s notorious for eating just the frosting off the tops–because really, we all know that’s the best part anyways.

While the recipe itself was fairly simple, getting the cookies to take the proper shape–or, OK, look half as decent as those deli ones–was no easy task. I may or may not have been moping around the apartment, lamenting my awful cookie-making skills after the first batch, but the second go-around turned out pretty yummy. So what if these are the ugly ducklings of my baking repertoire so far–they still made a birthday extra sweet. That’s really all that counts, right?

Black & White Cookies ( recipe from Joy the Baker)

You’ll need:

  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 2/3 cup buttermilk (shake well!)
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 2/3 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 large eggs

Preheat your over to 350 degrees and set out two cookie sheets. Whisk together flour, baking soda and salt in a bowl. Set aside.

In a small cup, combine the buttermilk and vanilla extract.

Add the butter and sugar to the bowl of an electric mixer. Beat on high until light and fluffy (about 2 1/2 to 3 minutes!). Add eggs and beat until combined. Mix in the flour mixture and buttermilk mixture alternately, beginning and ending with the flour mixture.

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Once combined, spoon approximately 1/4 cup of batter per cookie onto a greased baking sheet. Cook until tops have risen and edges are light brown (about 15 minutes).

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Vanilla Glaze

Combine 2 cups powdered sugar, 1 teaspoon light corn syrup and 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract together in a bowl. Slowly add hot water to the mixture until it reaches the desired consistency (don’t add more than 2 tablespoons–you don’t want it to be too thin!). Turn your cookie bottom side up and spread over half of each.

Chocolate Glaze

Melt 4 oz. semi-sweet chocolate and 3 tablespoons butter together in a bowl, stirring until smooth. Add a tablespoon light corn syrup and stir to combine. Frost the other side of your cookies with this glaze.

As ashamed as I am to even post this picture, here’s the final result (also, terrible quality photo. I was failing on all accounts.):

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What I’m really curious about is this: Kristen goes frosting first, I hit up chocolate then make my way to vanilla–which side do you eat first?

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