February and March turned out to be two months full of anniversaries. Four years of blogging in February. The last trip I took before lockdown hit (New York City). The last time I went to see a movie in theaters. The last time I went dancing with friends, and had a true night out. The last normal workday. The day we all took our laptops home and our entire worlds narrowed down to the virtual. Things are looking up today, one full year on from the Covid-19 pandemic hitting our shores. Vaccinations are increasing, and with social distancing and masking measures we are seeing a drop in cases across the board. If you need some rational hope, I highly recommend reading this article from The Atlantic. For this round up I’m including everything that has brightened up my late stage pandemic, and helps me see the light at the end of the tunnel in 2021.
From Rachel Tights
It was a particularly rainy and icy February, and though March has given us sunshine and warmer temperatures, a good pair of tights will see you through weather whiplash. Earlier this year a new to me Canadian hosiery brand reached out, and who better to trust with all things winter accessories and base layers than our good friends to the north? I loved styling the polka dot scalloped tights with winter outfits, and for some creative at home photoshoots. There’s something joyful about polka dots, and they brought some of the playfulness of Springs style to a very winter clothing item.
Sacchetto Ballet Flat
The latest in footwear fantasies from Sarah Flint NYC, this super chic ballet flat was inspired by the classical dance itself. With a square toe, sleek fabric and button detail it’s a ready to wear equivalent to a ballet slipper. They additionally partnered with the American Ballet Theater on a limited edition petal pink colorway of the Sacchetto flat, donating 100% of the proceeds towards their Women’s Movement, which supports the creation of new works by female choreographers. Reminder if you use this link, you get $50 off your first purchase. Talk about en pointe!
Laura Mercier Mascara when I wear makeup with my masks out and about I’ve noticed that sometimes my breath condenses on my eyelashes. Little droplets like dew on the grass in early spring mornings. That said it’s somewhat less poetic when I wipe my eyes and smear makeup all over so I look like a particularly stylish racoon. So I’ve upgraded my mascara and I’m loving Laura Mercier’s Caviar Volume Panoramic Mascara.
The Idiot by Elif Batuman
Book number 5/24 I’m trying to read before my 24th birthday in July. This one I actually had given to my sister as part of our Christmas Eve book exchange a few years back. I found the beginning slow but I really engaged with the story in the second half, once Selin went to Europe.
The Summer Before The War by Helen Simonson and Ricarda Huch
Anyone missing Downton Abbey, this book is the perfect solution. A classic Edwardian wartime love story, with all the quirks and charms of small town society. I finished it earlier this week and it was the literary equivalent of scones & tea.
The Unhinged Podcast
Very exciting news for all you lovers, singletons and daters out there, I have a new podcast for you. It’s all about dating when dating apps is the norm. Fitting this these virtual times, no? I’ve chatted about dating before, and like to think of myself as the brunette Carrie Bradshaw (minus the constant refrain of “I couldn’t help but wonder” and several truly unfortunate 90s fashion choices). And fellow Washingtonians the DC dating scene is finally being dissected to your heart’s content. Need I convince you more? Happy listening!
My binge worthy show of the last month, following two best friends from high school through adulthood with all the highs and lows. I especially loved the flashbacks to the 1970s and 1980s. Watch me invest in flares, blue eyeshadow and power blazers this Spring. Watch it on Netflix.
Romancing The Stone
Cheesy 1980s adventure film with one of the best lines in cinema. What did you do, wake up this morning and say, “Today, I’m going to ruin a man’s life”? Rent it on Amazon.
I May Destroy You
The explicit reason why I started my HBO subscription, this television series is as captivating as it is clever. It’s quite raw, following a creative narrative written and acted by Michaela Cole retelling her own sexual assault. It’s filmed in a way that brings to life the process of rebuilding when you can’t find all the pieces.
The United States vs. Billie Holiday
If you tuned into the Golden Globes, you may recognize Andra Day. She won for her portrayal of Billie Holiday, through the height of the singer’s career as she battled addiction and was persecuted by the government for her performance of the song Strange Fruit and as a catalyst for the civil rights movement. From speech patterns, to body language, to mannerism and singing voice she nailed it to a T. Available to stream via Hulu.
Miss Pixie’s DC
A new to me gem of a vintage and antique shop. My friend introduced me to it as we walked back from brunch a few weeks back. I picked up a vintage floral print and a golden spoon. If you live outside of DC or aren’t shopping in person, their Instagram features all of the items and you can buy items before they even reach the shop floor.
Because no matter the season, no matter if you’re staying home or going outside, you need good underwear. And when it comes to lingerie, boutique and french is the way to go.
Sezane Pre-Spring Collection
Summertime is around the corner and finger’s crossed we might have a reason to get all dressed up to the nines. Whether it’s a beach getaway or a special dinner on the horizon, Sika Designs creates slow fashion, ethically designed and made garments that are spectacular. I adore this blue and white dream of a dress, or this striped day-dress here. Handmade in Ghana, think about ordering now to have it in 8 weeks for the start of summer!
Shop Made in DC
Birthdays, anniversaries, graduations coming up? Why not support local business, all in one place? Made in DC has a website and several locations throughout the city. I especially love the loofah soaps and the Madam VP whiskey.
Aubergine Crumble (Eggplant Parmigiana) recipe from The Greedy Model
Emma Lou’s latest Instagram venture is a lesson in don’t scroll when hungry. Namely because her dishes will make your mouth water through the screen. I bookmarked this recipe, and though it definitely was not a quick meal, there was something soothing about the process. Plus I’m really missing Italy, so I’ll take any excuse to have mozzarella, tomato and basil for dinner.
Summerlong Supper Club
The unicorn idea born out of the goal of saving New York restaurants, the three course meal subscription recently came to Washington DC. They are partnering with culinary gems of the district including Rose’s Luxury Centrolina and more, to deliver meals in the 6 weeks leading up to summer. The subscriptions sold out within a week, but if you love the idea, keep your eye out on their Instagram page as they may have new things in the works.
In early March I got slightly ahead of myself on a bright sunny day and led a girls expedition out to Middleburg Virginia in the pursuit of beautiful vistas, picnics and wine. We layered up in turtlenecks, tall boots and chic coats and hats but it was the windiest day. My co-pilot and moonlighting photographer and I lasted about an hour sat next to the firepit, the wind whipping our hair and chasing runaway lunch bags before we surrendered and sat in my car for an hour gossiping. That said, it was a beautiful view, and well priced Blanc de blanc. As the weather warms this Spring and we all venture out of our hidey holes, Greenhill Wineries is a lovely place to spend a day sipping wine and basking in the sun.
Resources to stand with the Asian American Pacific Islander Community
As many of you saw on the news, this week there was a racist and misogynistic hate crime in Atlanta, 8 people killed and 6 of them asian women. This is the latest in a year of heightened xenophobia, prejudice and discrimination against east and south asian people. I’m linking several resources and articles that address this issue, the history of anti-asian sentiment and policy in the United States, and how we can support the AAPI community.
A very comprehensive guide here. Learning, statistics, news updates, and where to donate.
On the depiction of asian women in the media, film and television by Diet Prada.
A dinner series to support Washingtonian asian owned restaurants, donating to benefit Stop APPI Hate. Their first event is March 25th!
Daniel Dae Kim’s speech to congress, a powerful message.
For DC residents- bystander intervention training organized by Advancing Justice. If you were unable to attend the Sunday rally in support, keep an eye out for more opportunities to get involved and show solidarity.
My friend Andrea Cheong’s powerful piece for British Vogue, sharing her experiences with anti-asian racism and misogyny.
The Definitive Best Banana Bread
Come on, you didn’t think I’d write a list for the anniversary of going down the Covid-19 Rabbit Hole without including the poster boy recipe? Who else is keeping up with their sourdough starters, knitting projects, Duo Lingo, jigsaw puzzles and yoga challenges? Who is in a two step dance with the Netflix algorithm? Regardless here’s in my humble opinion the recipe for the very best banana bread (courtesy of my Aunt Lynnie).
1 3/4 c. all-purpose flour
1 tsp. salt
1 T. baking powder
In a separate bowl, mix:
1/3 c. melted butter
2/3 c. sugar
1 or 2 beaten eggs
(1/4 tsp .grated lemon rind) optional
Mash 2 to 3 ripe bananas. Add part of the flour mixture to the sugar mixture, then some of the mashed banana to the sugar mixture. Continue alternating between the flour mixture and mashed banana until everything has been combined with the sugar mixture. ( Sometimes I add some dried cranberries or chocolate chips too.) Bake at 350 for 45-60 minutes in a greased loaf pan. Toothpick will come out clean. Cool for a bit in the pan then remove to finish cooling.
One year on, love to you all xx