Sunday Wrap up

Another week has come and gone.  New York experienced a little bit of humidity this week- not a fan of humidity.  Also thwarted with some subway issues this week, and trust me, waiting underground in humid weather is not fun.  But here’s the run down- Ratings 0-5.  I’ve received no compensation for any of these things!

Books

“The Little French Bistro” Nina George  The heroine is 59 years old.  I don’t think I can say much more than this- it is refreshing to see an adult women in a novel.  This is a feel good book about overcoming adversity.  While not a great book, it is a fairly easy read. 4

Movies

“Home Again”

A story about a 40 year old woman getting her life back together after she separates from her husband.  (are you sensing a theme?  Middle age women overcoming adversity- yes- and I want to see/read more of it)  Movie is light and cute, if predictable (again, a theme) 3.8

Television

“Suits”- Season Finale.  I didn’t love the finale.  My Suits friends, please give me opinions.

Museums

New York Historical Society

“The Duchess of Carnegie Hall: Photographs by Editta Sherman”  I loved this exhibits.  Portraits of celebrities- many from the 40’s and 50’s.  Absolutely gorgeous.  What was a little dismaying was how many people were photographed smoking, but it was a different time. 4.7

“American Visionary:  John F. Kennedy’s Life and Times”  Amazing photos of JFK.  Beautifully curated exhibit.  4.2

“Eloise at the Museum”  Exhibit that explores the beloved book character Eloise.  Cute exhibit, but really much better for children.  4

Food

Ofrenda  Delicious Mexican food in a lively (loud) cozy (ridiculously small) place.  Appetizer called Queso Fondido, which is basically a Mexican fondue.  Yummy.  Killer, and I mean that literally, Margaritas. 4.3

Island Burger and Shakes- I used to love this place- but the quality of the burgers has gone way down.  No worth going to anymore.  2.8

Levain- This bakery has about the best cookies known to man.  So big they more closely resemble muffin tops.  And I love the chocolate brioche.  Ridiculously yummy!

 

Housekeeping

I have narrowed down my WordPress issues.  On the app, my reader does not always work correctly.  I sometimes miss certain hours of the day, so for example, if someone posts between 11 and 2 pm, I will miss all of the posts- I am not receiving the “Load More Posts” prompt.  Let’s see how long it takes to fix it now that I’ve isolated the issue

Thanks again for all the amazing commentary this week- your feedback is amazingly valuable as always!

 

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Sunday Wrap Up

So, even though summer doesn’t officially end for a few more weeks, this weekend makes it fall for me.  Daughter will finally reenter the school building on Thursday.  The next two months will see me run to the Bronx, and far reaches of Manhattan to attempt to see her play tennis (there aren’t many tennis courts in Manhattan- and no public high school boasts a bunch of tennis courts, so it’s sort of guerilla tennis- one school uses a court that sits aside the West Side Highway.  Imagine playing with constant traffic to your left, and random New Yorkers filing by on your right)  And so the pattern of my free time will change slightly.   As my daughter has an awesome reading list for school, I will probably be rereading a lot of books, cause they will be in the house, and I enjoy discussing literature with her- and she’s going to read Gatsby for the first time- YAY.  But here’s what happened on my “last week” of summer.  Reviews 0-5.  NYC unless otherwise indicated.  My money- no freebies.

Books

“Reading Lolita in Tehran”   Azar Nafisi   I first read this book 15 years ago, and I enjoyed it more then.  It’s a memoir about an Iranian University professor attempting to teach literature during the early Ayatollah years. She ends up having a female book club which discusses books that are banned in Iran. While interesting, it’s a bit self-serving.  3.8

“Murder on the Orient Express”  Agatha Christie.  Reread- first read about 45 years ago.  I love Christie.  I love Poirot (her detective) I love this story.  I reread this because my daughter bought it as a fun read and it was on our Nook account, and because there is a new movie version coming out soon.  I want a fresh comparison of all the film versions to the book.  4.8

Movies

“Leap”  Animated.  This is an average kids movie.  But- it has a strong female heroine, who is resilient.  I think this is important for kids to see, because frankly, I don’t think there are enough strong, female heroines.  But, OK to wait for DVD or cable or streaming, or however else you get movies at home. 4, but entirely because of message.

“Wind River”  This is a thriller based on a Wyoming reservation (But it is not one of those supernatural thrillers that seem to be taking over the box office- don’t get me started on that genre, which is one of very few movie genres I hate)  I thought this was a well made movie.  Great visuals, great acting, great script, great directing.  Every thing about this movie is understated, and it works.  But- it is not an easy movie to recommend, because even though there are many things that are done well, there is something stopping me from saying- “Go see this film”, and I can’t tell you why that is.  FYI, my movie buddy said the exact same thing.  So, if you are still interested, read a review that may contain actual spoilers, and then think about it.  I still give it a 4.4.

Television

Sorry- I pretty much watched the US Open as much as possible, and that was about it.

Food

Alidoro This is a little sandwich stand in the Bowery.  (there are two other locations, but I don’t know how they are physically situated)  They only have 1 or 2 outdoor tables, so this is really a place to grab a sandwich and go to a park to eat.  But you really should grab a sandwich here, because they are that good.  They only do Italian sandwiches here, but mortadella or not, these are some of the best sandwiches I’ve ever eaten.  No lie.  You get a choice of about 6 different rolls (go with the soft roll- I think it’s called Trapezino) because it just makes the sandwich a bit easier to eat, but seriously, all the  bread is perfection.  And then the fillings- they slice the deli meats fresh when you order.  And sandwiches have exact right filling to bread ratio.  Seriously, if they were open now I would go.  4.9

Counter by Chef’s Club- This is a fast casual place in Soho.  It’s unique because about 8 or 9 famous chefs have each contributed the recipe for a dish- so the burgers, sandwiches, whatever are slightly elevated, and slightly awesome.  My daughter and I split what I can only refer to as hash brown tater tots, served with sour cream.  It’s like a tater tot on steroids- salty, crisp and yummy.  Warning- we went early on a Friday, and it was not crowded.  I can imagine on a weekend this place will be mobbed. 4.5

Oddfellows- Soft serve ice cream.  There are only about 5 flavors, and a few toppings, but this is really good ice cream.  I’m not a soft serve girl, but it was really good and creamy.  And it is conveniently located next door to Counter…. 4.3

Housekeeping-

You have all become friends to me, to the point where I talk about you all.  My daughter will say, “Did you come up with a good recommendation for Tater?” or “How’s Ryder?  Did he get his doghouse yet?”.  But this week, my daughter asked “Have you heard from Mojo today?” because my blogging buddy Joanna lives in Houston.  So to everyone in Harvey ravaged areas, my thoughts, prayers, and a little bit of my money are with you.  Stay strong.  You got this!

Thanks to all of you and your comments this week!  I truly appreciate every one of you!  I love keeping the conversations going.  I’m learning that so many people share the same feeling and struggles that I often feel.  Thanks for the honestly and the stories!

Ok- this week I plan on writing about family (spent Saturday with my parents and we will spend today with my Father in law and Sister in law- I’m guessing there will be anxiety and blog posts stemming from both these things) There might be an non- family rant or two.   I can’t imagine not mentioning pumpkin spice……. But who knows- I never blog about what I think I’m going to blog about!!

Happy September.

Sunday Wrap Up

I was not particularly organized this week- I think I’m suffering some sort of end of summeritis.  But here is what I did do this week.  All events take place in New York City unless otherwise stated.  Ratings are 0-5.  I have received no compensation for any of these things- though I often wonder if I should be reimbursed for time taken out of my life…..

Television

Food Network Star– I’ve been Team Jason and Team Corey from Day 1.  I do not know who is going to be crowned this evening- but I am going with Jason.  It’s been a fun, if predictable, season.  4.2

Sharknado 5– No- I didn’t watch Sharknado, or any of the franchise.  But Husband did have them on yesterday afternoon- I don’t know which one…..does it matter?  It’s sharks flying around- I believe 5 is subtitles “Global Swarming”……I think I have missed my calling, because who wouldn’t want to write for this franchise?  And….lest we forget….I heard a rumor that Fabio is doing a cameo as the Pope.  I may have to watch it just to see that……As I didn’t watch it- I can’t rate it…but wow-

Movies

The Nut Job 2:  Nutty by Nature- This is one of those situations where, having not seen the original, I was totally lost as to what was happening.  Not.  My daughter and I going to see this movie signifies that she is regressing due to increased stress levels, we were bored and hot, and this might be worst summer for movies ever.  It’s silly, and the message gets lost in stupidity- which is bad, because the message is to work hard and nothing comes easy, and working as a team helps to solve injustices.  I just wish the creators of the movie worked hard, and worked together, because the whole thing is disjointed. 2

Exhibits: Force of Nature at The Museum at FIT Fit is a fashion school.  There museum is amazing, and free.  If you like fashion (and I mean enjoy it, you don’t have to be fashionable- I love beautiful clothes, but I am least fashionable person in world) you need to check out this place.  The present exhibit is both odd and gorgeous.  Per the exhibit brochure, “Forces of Nature examines the complex relationship between fashion and the natural world”. Curating an exhibit about fashion always amazes and impresses me- to know that much about clothing is mind boggling.  Venue 4.5.  Exhibit 4.5

Food

Street Taco  You know when I say you’re never too old?  Well- I lied.  I am too old to go to places like this.  The music is ear shattering.  The food is average. But I truly believe that if I was in my twenties, I would love this place.  Attractive people, having fun, drinking what appeared to be refreshing cocktails.  But for me 3.

Rosa’s Pizza Middle Village Queens This was a great quintessential New York slice of pizza- the regular, the Grandma, and the Sicilian.  Great dough, cooked properly.  Good cheese to sauce ratio. 4.5

Shake Shack- I know- I’ve extolled the virtues of Shake Shack before- but they have a hot chicken sandwich now- hot as in spicy- as in I’m a chili head and love spicy food.  4.3

Ample Hills Creamery Ice Cream at Baked by Melissa- My daughter got an ice cream- so to be fair, I just had a taste- but this is seriously good ice cream.  Rich, and creamy and delicious.  If you ever see Ample Hills ice cream- try it.  4.

Housekeeping:

I forget to mention last week- my gym has still not properly fixed the air conditioning in the spin room.  It is not pleasant.  I might need to join twitter just to complain about the gym.

I did not finish reading a book this week!!!!  Horror!!!  That alone shows you how off I was!

I just realized that there is a SPAM folder for comments.  This confounds me because I discovered really well versed comments stuck in there.  It also confounds me because somehow, the person talking about their favorite game of thrones character, 16 times, did not make it into SPAM folder…..so I apologize for those of you who had taken the time to write comments that appeared to go unnoticed….

Speaking of comments- thank you to everyone who joined the conversations this week.  The best thing about the internet was on display this week- a bunch of people, from different backgrounds, sharing their opinions on subjects.  At the end of the day, communication really is the key to everything.

 

 

 

Sunday Wrap Up

Re-entry from vacation is often difficult.  There is laundry to wash, errands to run, blogs to read…..But I’m slowing catching up.  As always, I received no endorsement for anything mentioned in this was post.  Rating are 0-5.  All locations are New York City unless otherwise specified.  And you know I’m not a critic, but especially not an art critic- so my exhibit critique is purely my initial impressions.   Here’s the gist….

Books:

The Feed” MT Anderson.  I’ve had some discussions about this book with various people.  Frankly, it mentally scared the pants off me.  It’s a dystopian world that seems oddly relevant.  Is it a great book?  No.  Does it make you think?  Yes.  I think every teenager should read this book (which is appropriate as it is YA, and my daughter was given it as a summer assignment) 4

Television:

“Broadchurch“- I’m ambivalent about the story this season, but Not about David Tennant.  3.8

“Suits“- I love the relationship between Harvey and Mike- great writing.  Now they add Dule Hill- from the much missed Psych (but don’t worry- movie coming in December).  The show has trite plot points, but I don’t care. 4

Movies:

Despicable Me 3″- This movie is exactly what you would expect from the third in a series of animated movies aimed at young children.  My family was tired of laundry and we wanted an air conditioned escape that was close to the supermarket.  3

“Dunkirk“- I normally like movies that are heavy on dialogue and interplay between characters.  This really has neither.  But it is a spectacular war movie.  Brilliant direction- staging was spectacular.  4.7

Museums:

New Museum–   Located in the East VIllage/Noho area (I don’t know what they’re calling the Bowery these days)- building is small but conducive to exhibits.  Exhibits tend to be newer contemporary works that are usually pretty thought inducing.  It expounds the definition of what art actually is.  7th floor has a small viewing area that is pretty neat, but view is Ok.  Cute coffee shop.  Venue- 4.3

Exhibits:

“Half -Truths” Paul Ramirez Jonas- Loved this.  Exhibit is literally fueled by attendees.  I’m loving the trend of people contributing to a work of art- it adds and edge and an authenticity to works, and makes it socially relevant.  Downside- it is not meant to last.  I’m not sure how I feel about the non-permanence. 4.8

“Under-Song For a Cipher”Lynette Yiadom-Boakye  Paintings.  Old fashioned paintings.  Nice. 4

“Good Thing You Are Not Alone” Kaari Upson.  Huge installation piece “Idiot’s Guide Womb Room”.  Loved it.  The rest of the exhibit was interesting, and, as all contemporary art does, it makes you think.  4.3

Antibodies” Carol Rama This didn’t do anything for me.  It seemed sort of generic, which is saying something if you describe contemporary art as such. 3.5

“Viscera Has Questions About Itself” Elaine Cameron-Weir   This was a small exhibit, but actually pretty interesting.  Use of generic materials in different ways.  You can sort of immerse yourself in the works, which makes it interesting.  I’m going to call it installation art. 4

Food:

The Palm Too- Old school steak house.  Meal is fine, but I think it’s too highly priced, and I would rather go to other places.  That being said, it is perfect restaurant to take Father in Law for his 80th birthday if he is a carnivore. 4

Rubirosa- We went for lunch.  Pizza very good- thin crust.  Chicken pesto sandwich also delicious.  I’ve had better pizza in New York though.  We didn’t get pasta, but table next to us did and it looked amazing.

Housekeeping:

My daughter did not get picked to be a US Open Ball person.  She was sad but not devastated.

We did not visit my nephews at their camp.  Husband realized that it was prohibitively far from our destination, both going to, and leaving Maine.

Emoji Movie.  At one point this movie had a Rotten Tomatoes score of 0.  As of Saturday night- the rating stood at 7%.

I am almost done reading blogs.  I read them in a weird pattern that even I don’t understand- but it doesn’t matter because I am almost caught up!

My high score on Ballz is 121.  This is a personal triumph as I am not good at app games.

 

 

 

Sunday Wrap Up

Here’s a little piece of my life this week.  Unless otherwise stated, events take place in New York City.  As always, I paid my way for all the following.  Ratings are 0-5.  Enjoy!

Books

“The Awkward Age: A Novel” Francesca Segal- Awkward is an appropriate word for this book- it truly is awkward.  And I try to avoid siding with men, but I had to agree with the male characters in this book.  This book would appeal to parents of teens.  3.5

Movies

“Casablanca”- Rooftop Cinema.  First of all, here’s looking at you…I haven’t seen this movie in 20 years- but it still holds up.  It is as good today as it was 75 years ago.  4.99.  I saw this movie as part of the Rooftop Cinema series- A rooftop in Brooklyn is equipped with lawn chairs, blankets, rain ponchos, head phones, popcorn machine and a screen.  There is something magical about watching a movie with the Manhattan skyline in the background.  Great experience all around. (except for the 5 flights of stairs, and the restroom being on the second floor.  Venue 4.5

“Falsettos”- Technically, this is a Broadway show that was filmed, so though I saw it at a traditional movie theater, it really is a “live” musical performance.  This was a wonderful show, no matter how you look at it- happy, sad, real and human.  4.8

“Spider-Man: Homecoming”  I loved this movie- possibly one of my favorite superhero movies ever.  I normally prefer my Superheros dark and brooding, but there’s something to be said for youth.  Movie is clever and fun.  Oh, and Ironman is in it……4.8

Food

Cowgirl Hall of Fame- This is Tex-Mex kitsch heaven.  Also least healthy restaurant ever- I believe the lettuce is fried.  Good for groups and children- loud and crazy.  Not for someone looking for a culinary experience.  3.5

Joe’s Pizza- My family calls this place stand-up Joes, because there is a counter, and maybe one stool- you stand up to eat your slice.  But what a slice…If you want a slice of traditional New York pizza, this is the place.  Seriously-  best pizza. 4.9

Aux Merveilleux de Fred- My daughter and I stumbled upon this bakery- it has been around since 1982, and I can’t believe I’d never seen it.  We split a meringue- light and ethereal, but the star would be the brioche.  We didn’t buy a brioche, but they were giving out samples……oh- was this brioche good.  Dream worthy good.  Not quite Paris, but close. 4.5

Sunday Wrap up

Another Sunday- another week in review.  Think of the following as recommendations, not really reviews.  Ratings are done 0-5.  I am receiving no compensation for or from anything I write about.  This is all purely pleasure (in most cases anyway)  All places are in NYC unless otherwise noted.

Movies:

“Baby Driver” I did not like this movie(though I realize I am the only person in the world that didn’t.)  It started off fine and then went off the rails- he’s no Tarantino. Great soundtrack though. 3.8

“Hero” This is a pretty decent movie.  Moves slowly, which I realize is a directorial choice, but still….4.1

Television:

“Broadchurch” David Tennant.  In the movie of my life starring Diane Lane, David Tennant will be my husband.  I think he elevates anything he appears in.  Though I enjoyed Season 1 of this series much more, I’m going to keep watching. 3.8

I have officially given up on the Prime Suspect reboot.

Books:”

“The Portrait” Antoine Laurain  I did not like this book.  Let me rephrase.  I did not understand this book.  If anyone read this, and got it, please help me. 2.8

 

Art: I know nothing about art- I just like to look at pretty and interesting things.  They inspire me, but don’t expect learned criticism, unless you call “ooh its so pretty” learned criticism.

“Mutations” The High Line- to me the High Line is the greatest example of upcycling anywhere, by converting an abandoned rail track into a glorious urban green space.  They often have outdoor art exhibits, such as this years Mutations.  Mutations itself has both good and bad works, but really, you’re walking outside in a beautiful park.  Venue:4.9 exhibit: 4

Morgan Library and Museum 4.5 I love this place- as they are part library, they tend to do many exhibits revolving around writers.  Perfection- “Henry James and American Painting” 4 interesting look at James and his life- try to get tour- docent Elizabeth is wonderful! “This Ever New Self Thoreau and His Journal” 4.5 (First edition Walden, his journals, recommendation letter from Ralph Waldo Emerson) “Noah’s Beasts” 4.2 (works that are from Mesopotamia- amazing) “Poussin, Claude, and French Drawing in the Classical Age” some of these works are just gorgeous.

History:

Federal Hall 4.  The spot (not the building) where Washington took the oath of office.  Interesting and free.  Self guided tour is actually pretty good.

Food

I tried a lot of food this week- here is the quick rundown of highlights:

Salvation Taco 4.5

Hometown Barbecue 4.5- bonus- take Ikea ferry to get there

Steve’s Key Lime Pie 4.9 I got it at Brooklyn Crab, but if you see it, get it

Shake Shack 4.5

I think anything at any of these places would be great!

 

 

 

Sunday Wrap-up

This was a busy week for me.  Here’s my list of the good, the bad, and the ugly- though this week erred almost entirely on the side of the good:

I am getting no compensation for any of these things- I am using all my own ill gotten gains.  Also, unless otherwise stated, all events are in New York City.  Ratings are 0-5.

Books:

“Confessions of a Domestic Failure” by Bunmi Laditan-  I found this book very funny, but I really feel this book is aimed towards Mothers who try to be Pinterest perfect, but end up being Pinterest fails.  4

Television:

“Grantchester” PBS- I am not loving this season.  I think they forgot that it is supposed to be a murder mystery show. 3.8

“Prime Suspect Tennison” Not Helen Mirren.  3.7

“My Mother and Other Strangers” After two episodes I am unsure what I think.  Giving it one more try. 3.5

“Food Network Star”  I love a food type competition show.  I’m rooting for Cory (him and his food are both easy on the eyes) and Jason (he makes me laugh and his food looks amazing) 4.2

Movies:

“The Big Sick” I loved this movie- happy, sad, funny, touching- it feels real.  4.8

Food:

Magnolia Bakery- banana pudding 4.8

Second Avenue Deli-  pastrami, corned beef, fries…..It’s fine- but the cost is high, and for this much money it should be more than fine. 3.8  (if you want deli, try the more kitsch Katz’s or the more upscale Mile End)

Mel’s Burger Bar- The Broadway- The burgers are decent, but the broadway is served on rye bread.  I happen to love any sort of patty melt situation. 3.9

Covina- Spicy Honey pizza, Mandilli (pasta)- both delicious.  This is great place to go with group because menu is conducive to sharing. 4.4

Music

U2- Lumineers  Giants Stadium NJ- Awesome concert experience.  Just amazing. 4.9

Mid Summer Night Swing- Lincoln Center- outdoor dance party.  I saw Loser’s Lounge, a cover band and they did 70’s disco.  They were amazing and evening was fun.  This was capped off by silent disco.  Silent disco is when everyone gets headphones- three dj’s spin, and there’s a toggle on headphones so you can switch the music.  SO MUCH FUN.  Please try this if you have the opportunity! 4.8 on all aspects

Comedy

People’s Improv Theater (PIT) great small venue.  They host a lot of comedy/improve things.  Shows are inexpensive and short. 4.5 on venue  I saw Gypsy Danger, an improve group that improvs movies.  They were just OK 3.7 on act

Sunday Wrap Up

I’m trying something new today.  I’m not always inspired to write new content on the weekends, but I like the idea of trying to post every day.  So I’m toying with writing a weekly wrap up- citing the best and worst of things that I saw/read/listened/ate in the past week.  If I continue to do this, I promise I will learn how to include links.  I’m just not in a learning mood today.  I also don’t like summaries- I hate when they give too much of the plot away, so you just get my rating system- which is 0-5. I also don’t take pictures of my food- I eat it.  Maybe I’ll eventually post a picture of empty plate.

Best

  1. Pasquale Jones- dinner- Pork shank for 2.  Possibly the best pork dish I’ve ever had.  {4.5}
  2. Trivia Night at Gramercy Ale House- fun {3.5}
  3. “A Dolls House- Part 2”- live theater- Golden Theater- NYC-   Spectacular.  Acting first rate.  Play was brilliant.  {4.9}
  4. Cups and Cones ice cream.  Creamy, delicious, interesting flavors.  Loved the ginger. {4}
  5. Ilili Box- dinner/lunch- spiced chicken wrap (moist chicken, good wrap bread, spiced perfectly), Brussel sprouts (roasted, walnuts and grapes- and you even feel healthy) green lemonade  (yummy) {4.2}
  6. “Standard Deviation” by Katherine Heany. (fiction)  Book made me laugh out loud- and that doesn’t happen often. {4.5}

In the Middle

  1. Gallagher’s Steak House -restaurant- Staff wonderful.  Had 10 ounce filet from lunch special (which is great deal, and filet was excellent) But not all the steaks were as good- and while it is a nice place- you can do better for steak in NYC {3}

The Worst

  1. “The Sunshine Sisters” by Jane Green.  I used to love Jane Green, and looked forward to her books.  Now, I feel like she takes a weighty topic, but then surrounds it with schlock.  Writing more depressing than depressing premise.  {1.5}
  2. “Beatriz at Dinner” (movie)- Starts off with interesting premise.  Falls apart in the middle. {2.8}

 

This is a work in progress- sometimes I need to put something on the page and then work it out. I sometimes get stuck in my head and worry too much about the details. I hope to figure out a better way to present these ideas.