Booze You Can Use: Have a Gimlet

photo courtesy

The other night, I had a sip of a gimlet for the first time in ages. The gimlet was likely one of the first cocktails I ever had or made on the regular -- buying myself a bottle of Rose's Lime juice and splashing it together with vodka over ice. And then somehow I forgot about them. Somewhere in the mix, about 6 years ago, I rediscovered them, albeit briefly, when I tossed out the bottle of Rose's and started making them with fresh lime juice or Employees Only Lime Cordial (does this stuff still exist?), and swapped gin for the vodka. That sip the other night made me remember what a great, refreshing summer drink it is. Perhaps I'll make one tonight . . .


2.5 ounces gin
.5 ounce simple syrup
.5 ounce lime juice

Shake and strain into an ice-filled rocks glass. Garnish with lime.

My Staycation Was for the Dogs

And it was soooooo relaxing.  I took an extremely long Memorial Day weekend to recover from an incredibly busy past month or so. In addition to a trip to Ikea and some continued work unpacking my kitchen, I didn't have much on the agenda. I once again moved out to Brooklyn Heights with Moxie, this time to dogsit for Barley & Hops while their humans took a vacation. Aside from an impromptu dinner at Noodle Pudding on Thursday, hosting a barbecue Friday night and attending another barbecue on Sunday, I did a whole lot of NOTHING. It was glorious. I slept late, went running, cooked/grilled, read, binge-watched Season 2 of Bloodline, and watched the sunsets over the Brooklyn Promenade. Oh, and there were dogs. This shot was taken yesterday evening sitting on a lounge chair on the patio, a glass of lambrusco to my left, enjoying the evening breeze with my dog posse. Rachel & Nagib -- happy to hold down the fort at the #dogpalace anytime.

Notes on a Renovation #4: Home Away From Home

20160430_091907During the worst of the renovation, Moxie and I have been fortunate enough to live with our good friends Rachel & Nagib and their dogs, Barley and Hops, in Brooklyn Heights.  I don't even know where to begin on how lucky we are. When all is said and done, they will have had us as guests for two full weeks -- their hospitality shows no bounds.   We've had a great time together -- so much so that I'm afraid Moxie isn't going to want to come home. 

The kitchen has been gutted, the pass-through created in the wall, electrical work, plumbing and gas is done, the walls have been prepped for paining, and the waterproof membrane has been laid down on the floor. This week -- installation of the floor tile, painting, and installation of cabinets, countertops, and appliances. Progress!!

I Only Wanted to See You Laughing in the Purple Rain

Dearly beloved
We are gathered here today
To get through this thing called life
Electric word life
It means forever and that's a mighty long time
But I'm here to tell you
There's something else
The after world
A world of never ending happiness
You can always see the sun, day or night
So when you call up that shrink in Beverly Hills
You know the one, Dr. Everything'll Be Alright
Instead of asking him how much of your time is left
Ask him how much of your mind, baby
'Cause in this life
Things are much harder than in the after world
In this life
You're on your own
Heartbroken by the loss of a true musical genius.  RIP Prince.  

Notes on a Renovation #3 -- Getting Real

Appliances are purchased, asbestos testing completed (negative!), packing and prep checklists made, building architect has approved the plans, paperwork is almost finished, pre-construction meeting scheduled with building and contractor, and work is scheduled to start the week of 4/18.

That said, I had a drink the other night with a neighbor who went through renovations in my building and he scared the hell out of me with regards to the amount of preparation I'll have to do to prevent everything in the entire apartment being covered in dust. His secret weapon? An industrial-sized roll of plastic wrap.

I also learned that I'll be able to keep my current fridge in my apartment somewhere to use until the new one is set up. Between that and the microwave & toaster (a.k.a. my auxiliary kitchen on a bar cart by my door), I should be able to do some cooking and eating at home after the initial demolition period (during which I'll be relocating to Brooklyn).  

Of course all of this is going on during my busiest time of year at work. If all goes well, it'll be done before I have to go to Chicago for a conference in mid-May. Fingers crossed . . .

The Mind/Body Connection

I have gotten to a point in my life where there are two key factors that have a major impact on my general well-being: sleep and exercise. When I don't get enough of either, I get cranky, stressed, have trouble focusing, and generally get less accomplished. For me, "enough" sleep seems to be at least 7 hours per night and "enough" exercise means not going any more than 3 days without a decent workout. Sleep and exercise can cure almost anything for me - I think more clearly and stressful things fall into perspective - and as an added benefit, exercise helps me sleep better and sleep improves my workouts (even making it somewhat likely that I can work out before work!). All in all, sleep and exercise keep me calm and sane in many ways. I highly recommend it.

Notes on a Renovation #2

Way back when I wrote a post about my kitchen renovation. No, it hasn't started yet, but I have made a great deal of progress. I've firmed up my design, selected all of my materials and appliances, signed contracts with the designer, cabinet/counter installer, and contractor, and sent various checks out.  I've also started to select a new couch and chair for my living room (the living room update is a collateral consequence of the kitchen renovation, plus my couch has about had it). Work starts mid-to-late April, and, in theory, everything will be done by mid-May. I can't wait!!!