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Monthly Archives: December 2012

Barcelona

Merry Christmas from Barcelona!

My family and I are only a few days into our trip and we’ve already seen so much. The apartment we’re staying at is in a great neighborhood and we can get to many places by foot — Barcelona is full of big boulevards and quaint little alleyways. I think my favorite part is simply getting lost :). Yesterday we visited La Sagrada Familia and ate at two fantastic restaurants: Euskal Etxea and Montiel Restaurante (espai gastronomic). Plenty of delicious fish tapas and at Montiel I had a spice sausage rice dish with the biggest portion of lobster I’ve ever seen! On Friday, my brother Christopher and I ventured out to a wine bar named El Bitxo, an old-fashioned cocktail bar called Ginger, and managed to stumble upon a Spanish club for some dancing. The photo above is of a refreshing young white wine I had at El Bitxo, and the name Menganito (Verdejo) translates to “John Doe”… All of their wine labels were so clever!

Since most of the city’s restaurants will be closed these next few days, we’ll be visiting the museums including Picasso, Dali, and perhaps rent a car and visit Monserrat! I’m looking forward to heading into the Spanish mountains, they are absolutely breath-taking.

I’m shooting our trip with film, so eventually I’ll get the rolls developed and scanned and share some.

I hope you all have a wonderful holiday!

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So as I mentioned a moment ago, I’m packing for Barcelona!

And not only am I packing for a vacation, I’m packing to move. When I return, all of my things will be in the new apartment, yikes! Luckily most of my belongings fit into one big box and a couple Ikea bags. As I’ve been packing I noticed one important thing: I’m lacking a proper winter jacket. You know, the kind of jacket that is long, resists all kinds of weather, AND looks good?! Well, I’m very picky, so I can never find that perfect jacket… until now.

GOD BLESS YOU, DESIGNERS REMIXYOU HAVE MY PERFECT JACKET.

You can find it here in two colorways. I’m saving every øre for this classic parka.

 

parkaparka

 

My wonderful mother has sent Anders and I an early house-warming package! I had no idea what to expect, but was pleasantly surprised as I tore open all the wrappings. She sent not only practical house items, but some from the beloved Chester County in which I grew up back in Pennsylvania. I love how thoughtful the gifts were, it makes me miss home! What in your apartments are treasured items from home?

riedel-o-wine-tumbler-cabernet-275

We received 12 of these fantastic wine tumblers from Cuvee. I have a feeling these will serve much more than wine… maybe some cognac or whiskey on cold nights!

 

hotel collection

Hotel Collection towels. I know why these are some of Oprah’s favorite things… the micro-cotton is unbelievably soft! I want to take a nap in these towels, they are so luxurious.

 

Patchouli

Hand crafted soap from Stonefield Soaps located in Chester County, PA. Immediately as I opened the box, these soaps filled the room with scents of Arabian Spice and Patchouli. They’re made with goat’s milk and shea butter and are chemical-free… m’mm. They smell so good!

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hesnæs

Yesterday I got back from a relaxing 4-day trip in Hesnæs, a cozy little town in the south of Denmark. The folks I know down there are musicians and so every year they have “Christmas in Hesnæs” with a handful of their students… a handful being 18 of us! The house was full of music and delicious food, decoration-making, Christmas movies, and lots of wine and juleøl. We took long walks in the forest and by the beach, where Anders took this great photograph of me.

Now I’m only home for one more night until I hop on a plane to meet my family in Barcelona where we’ll be having Christmas this year! I’ll be sure to write about all the places we’ll go and visit… I couldn’t be more excited :). This December feels like it’s Christmas every day, I’m lucky to have such a great year!

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The inevitable first-cold-of-the-winter has stricken me without warning, and I’ve been bed ridden all day, dreaming of the comfort food I wish to cook but can’t! Normally, Momma is at my rescue without hesitation. With an ocean separating us, I’m lucky to have someone else take care of me and deliver the thing I’ve been craving all day: a big delicious BURGER. In my achey state, I feel like any burger I attempt will be similar to this one Julia Child made on David Letterman… beef tartare au gratin:

 

Anders taught me about the “Danish version” of Julia, named Kirsten Hüttemeiers, and appropriately a good parody of her. Oh, I know what is on my Christmas list now… Mastering the Art of French Cooking!

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In just about three weeks time I’m moving with my lovely Anders into our own apartment! There’s nothing quite like starting over in a new place, purging the old clutter and making way for the new. I live for the opportunity to go through old boxes one last time and decide to keep or toss something. And of course, I love re-organizing.

We’ve been earnestly discussing how to get creative with storage, furniture, decorating/framing, and kitchen item things. Scouring the internet for inspiration, Anders and I came across some golden ideas and some copper pots, ha! Well as the time gets closer to the move, I’ll write about our progress and any little trinkets we acquire, so stay tuned!

What are some of your favorite DIY pieces in your little homes?

1 Storage Box Idea

This great storage idea from Apartment Therapy is comprised of IKEA boxes and simple binder clips. But why spend money on a bunch of IKEA boxes when there are boxes being tossed out every day? I have been salvaging vegetable crates that you can find at any grocery store, they’re everywhere! If you’re worried about cleanliness, just take a coat of clear sealant to them and add a bit of color to the inside like the IKEA idea. They’re sturdy enough to hold veggies, so they can hold your books as well! With hardly any money spent on the boxes, perhaps you can save up for fancier support instead of binder clips.

2 Tripod Light

Anders has a broken tripod somewhere, so this idea from My Second Hand Life is perfect. Combined with some white strings of holiday lights I have around the window, it will give a nice soft light during the evening.

3 Pallet Love Seat

Some more free wood! My good friends Maurice and Astrid made their own 2-person pallet couch and Astrid did a lovely job sewing some dark grey cushions. They threw a Greenlandic reindeer skin on to keep their bums warm. Smart.

4 Copper Cookware

Cooking is like breathing. You do it every day. You need it. You don’t generally breathe in crap, so why cook with crap? I’m SO looking forward to investing in some proper cookware, and I’m definitely a sucker for copper. I’m into the new technology of stainless steel inner with copper outer– it reduces the risk of copper getting into your food if damage occurs, still heats food ridiculously fast, and just looks beautiful. I’m fond of brands like All-Clad, but I drool for a cookware set from Mauviel.

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winter1
…These few items!

The snow is falling constantly here in Copenhagen, so I’ve naturally taken to a few items that help beat the harsh weather.

1 Claus Meyer’s Almanak – This monster of a recipe book is weekly-inspired by what is in season here in Denmark, with little snippets of facts about the produce and why it’s good for our health!
2 Acne Lambswool Scarf – A neck-saver for those windy days.
3 Cheap Monday Second-Skin pants – I’ll admit that all of my pants are Cheap Monday! I’m mostly made out of legs, so the high waist style gives me plenty of length and fits beautifully all around. Black is always a natural go-to during winter for me, so I’ve been enjoying this Hunter Green shade.
4 Second Female Ice Knit – Warm, versatile, you can throw a cotton tank-top under it or dress it up with a nice blouse. I love this knit for so many reasons!
5 Opinel wooden corkscrew – As an aspiring wine collector, I’ve learned about some quality corkscrews. This is a must have in the kitchen (especially during the dark days of winter!) or if you work at a wine bar. Not only is it gorgeous, but it’s probably one of the best French corkscrew/knife combinations around.
6 Dope Chelsea boots – These little boots have seen it all… rain, snow, heat. And with the right protection, they’ve lasted for a very long time! I love the Chelsea boot look, I think it’s timeless.
7 Forever 21 Faux Fur vest – I’m not so crazy about buying real fur, so when I saw this vest it was love at first sight. I tuck it under my BB Dakota cape coat (which doesn’t necessarily close in the front) and suddenly I’m warm as toast.
8 Alba Rainforest Acai Antioxidant Body Lotion – I’ve been an Alba advocate for so many years now. Their product line has something for everyone! I love this antioxidant lotion as well as the Hawaiian cocoa butter for hands + body. It rehydrates super dry skin and smells delicious. Also, if you’re looking for the perfect oil-free face moisturizer, I recommend the aloe & green tea.