On the second to last day of our vacation, a small group of us decided to venture out a bit, so we took a road trip to Cape Hatteras National Seashore,
As you’ll observe in the above map, the seashore is a narrow barrier of islands off the coast of NC–often referred to as a “ribbon of sand” (an apt title once you’ve driven down its roads).
The drive was an additional two hours south of where we were staying, but in my opinion, completely worth it if you ever find yourself in the Outer Banks. Just be warned, if you visit the park in the next 18 months you might experience one minor setback….
The parks famous lighthouse is currently under construction (which none of us were aware of) so we were all pretty bummed when we arrived at the above scene. My friend Kristin has a great photo of us all making sad faces in front of the lighthouse, so I’ll have to try and get it from her so I can post it here.
After the lighthouse debacle we decided it was time to ease our pain with the beach (and beer).
Like our Corona advertisement?
The water was extremely warm, so we spent most of the time swimming. It’s sort of hard to tell, but Meredith is actually holding her Corona up in the above photo (she’s the one in the middle about to be swallowed by the monstrous wave), and I’m stupidly drinking another Corona while walking into the water. I’m not trying to glamorous (or condone) drinking while swimming in any way, but I try to document whats fun, and this was definitely fun.
After a few hours we decided to venture further south to explore some of the more isolated areas of the seashore, and in the process we got to cross over a fun bridge which takes you to Pea Island…
Below is a view from the bridge once we were standing on the other side.
The minute you cross over the bridge it sort of feels like you’re in a completely different state. It’s hard to convey in words, and it’s probably harder for you to notice in the pictures, but the area was just…different…almost like a desert.
We were all in awe of the landscape, so we spent quite a while just exploring the area and taking pictures.
It’s pretty rare when you get to enjoy a coastal landscape without anyone else around, and for me, that’s what makes the National Seashore so special. Having been born and raised in the Northeast, beaches have always just meant no parking and screaming children, so although the next statement might seem dramatic…I definitely have a new found respect for America’s coastlines.
And as an extension to this new found respect, I’m going to be writing out a check to the National Seashore this week, along with Jockey’s Ridge State Park (you’ll read about this in my next blog entry). Both of these state parks are completely free to the public, so I want to thank them by way of a friendly donation. I also would encourage you all to do the same–not for these parks, but for a state or national park that you’ve appreciated in the past.
If you can spare 10 dollars, you’re helping to ensure that the parks remain free for those who can’t.
Ok ok, I stole the above photo off the Cape Hatteras website, but it’s my attempt to tug on your heart strings, and get you to be proactive about donating to your favorite public park. How can you deny the above cuteness?
August 31, 2010 1 Comment
The key to having fun at the beach is to make friends with the people who have cool beach toys…
Michal was extremely excited about getting to surf in North Carolina.
And as you’ll clearly observe in the below photo, he was VERY excited about getting to paddle board in the ocean.
Eli and I watched our boyfriends almost drown from a far, and bonded over being pale and having to wear a hat and sunglasses at the beach.
Below is our “pale is sexy” pose.
And who knew that the outer banks had an obscene amount of cacti everywhere.
After a long day in the sun we decided to do a potluck style dinner with our roommates.
We grilled all of the food.
Grilled lobster tails and scallops.
Grilled beef kabobs.
non-grilled Watermelon Feta Mint Salad (thank you Steph for introducing me to this incredible combo of ingredients)
Cucumber Dill Salad (thank you Karen–this was INCREDIBLE, and I need the recipe so I can post it up here)
You know you’re hungry right now.
August 24, 2010 No Comments
Yesterday two of our friends got married in North Carolina at the Whalehead Club which was just a short drive from the house we rented.
Meet Jean and Peter
The Whalhead Club
The wedding was really incredible, especially since they took a lot of the stuffy tradition out of the ceremony process, and instead turned it into a celebration of their relationship. You would think that logically all weddings would be a celebration of the couple, but I find that most are too focused on the traditions to take the time to add in personal touches, such as having the couples pet turtles at the reception….
They also each took an article of clothing from the other person which they loathed the most and agreed to burn it at the end of the ceremony (it was both funny and touching that the groom was willing to give up his favorite ratty t-shirt for the woman he loves).
Peter and Jean also did so many cool things which were not only creative and beautiful, but budget-friendly. Here were a few of my favorite things:
Fortune Cookie Programs (you had to open up the various flaps to read about the wedding)
Homemade tissue paper decorations
Pies! (rather than traditional wedding cake…and yes, they fed each other pie).
The party favors were re-usable bags with turtles on them (they also had a note inside the bag which read: “Turtles often mistake plastic bags for jellyfish, which can lead to their deaths. By choosing to use this eco-friendly turtle tote instead of plastic bags, you’ll help save a turtle! We have also made a donation to the Network For Endangered Sea Turtles, a non profit organization dedicated to the preservation and protection of sea turtles.”)
The name tags were also turtle themed (on scratch-away rainbow paper)
Later on during the reception Michal and I turned our name tags into ninja turtles
They also used mason jars to serve lemonade and iced tea in
And you can’t have a North Carolina wedding without having peaches!
Since they just bought a house, they had their mail box at the reception, and people were able to write notes and put it inside.
Overall, the reception was a blast…
And of course having some friends there made the experience that much better.
Steph, Eli, and Kristin
Meredith (and some wind)
And having Michal there is always a plus, because he makes me laugh every 10 minutes.
August 23, 2010 No Comments
The saga that is Ninja Zombies continued this past weekend, and it was Michal’s birthday on Saturday, so sleep was sort of an afterthought for two days.
I was sure to take at least one photo of the calm before the storm…
Shortly after this photo was taken, the temperature dipped over 90 degrees, and more than 15 people were packed into an apartment with no ventilation and bright lights.
Despite the heat, it was still a total blast, especially since everyone maintained such an upbeat attitude for the entire weekend.
And now for some behind the scenes photos:
Kat is a make-up artist volunteering her time on set. She’s actually studying to be a special effects make-up artist, so she really knows her stuff. Let’s just say her fake wounds look so real that they’re too gross to post up on this blog.
Filming ran well past 9pm every night, but Michal and Noah got a lot accomplished this past weekend, including one scene where Noah had to direct and play a ninja zombie at the same time….
I’m really not quite sure how Michal’s body handles the abuse of being a DP. You have to constantly arrange your body in different ways to capture certain shots.
When shooting wrapped on Saturday, I surprised Michal with an ice cream cake from his favorite place–Ashley’s in New Haven.
By this time it was after 9pm, and no one had eaten dinner, so the cast and crew devoured the cake.
And in case you were wondering, the base of the cake is crumbled oreo cookies, topped with a layer of chocolate ice cream, which is then topped with a layer of Ashely’s infamous Oreo Ice Cream, which is then topped with frosting and M&Ms.
Yes, it tasted as amazing as it sounds.
The only other really exciting thing from this past weekend besides Ninja Zombies, Michal’s birthday, and lots and lots of ice cream, was the fact that I ran 8 miles and have zero knee pain to report.
Running is officially back on the table.
June 29, 2010 No Comments
I took the day off from work yesterday, so I could drive up to Maine to visit this pretty lady….
Alyx was my best girlfriend from college, and although she now lives in California, her boyfriends sister just so happened to be getting married in the same town my parents have a cottage in (fate will always bring us together).
The ride up to Maine was the only painful part, because I get really bored on long drives by myself, and when you pair that with little to no sleep (was up the night before helping with Ninja Zombie stuff), I have no attention span.
After hearing Lady Antebellum’s “Need You Now” four times on the radio, I ended up behind a Maine lobster truck which I found to be really funny, so I decided to take a picture.
Immediately after snapping this photo, the highway split, and I veered off the wrong way, giving me the pleasure of listening to my GPS scream “RECALCULATING” at me for the next 5 minutes. I guess that’s my punishment for taking a photo while driving.
An hour later I was really bored again, so I pulled up behind this car which offered me free reading material for the next three exits…
Is it illegal to take pictures while driving? It should be, because I definitely wasn’t paying attention to the lines on the road.
Once I finally arrived in Maine, I picked up Alyx, and we hung out at my parent’s place for the day. We mostly laid by the pool, ate some amazing food courtesy of the Pine Tree, and then gossiped about vampires…and on occasion we mentioned real people we care about.
Sadly, she had to get to the rehearsal dinner for the wedding, so we couldn’t hang out the entire day, but Michal and I are going to plan a vacation out to California to visit her sometime soon, so we won’t be parted for long!
I’ll be in Maine for the rest of the weekend, so expect lots of exciting pictures of trees. Joking aside, I’m pretty obsessed with this state. My parents have been taking me here every year since I was a kid, and now this place is like a second home to me, so sometimes when I talk about how happy this place makes me I can get downright emotional. Maine is THAT beautiful! I’ll leave you with some pictures that I snapped last summer:
I can’t wait for this summer.
June 19, 2010 1 Comment
Tomorrow marks the first day of filming for NINJA ZOMBIES!
I think I’ve mentioned this before, but my boyfriend (and pretty much all of my New Haven friends) are shooting a zombie flick this summer, and I’m extremely excited to see it all unfold.
This film has been an incredible labor of love so far, especially since absolutely no one is getting paid.
From the actors, to costume designers, to camera men, to crew….everyone has willingly given up their weekends this summer so they can wear ninja face masks in 80 degree heat (now that’s dedication!).
And what’s my job in all of this? Well I don’t really have an official job, but since the cast and crew are so busy, I’ve taken it upon myself to document the “behind the scenes” mayhem and blog about it. What this really means is that I’m just the “your in the way” girl, or the “don’t touch that prop” girl. Is anyone else drawn to touching breakable and expensive things?
Just look at this expensive Canon 7D camera that I can play with when no one is looking!
And what do we have here? A whole table of breakable goodies for me to get my hands on!
Everyone is working pretty tirelessly tonight to get things ready for the first day of filming tomorrow…
Eli and Meredith are heading up the art department, and they are in the process of putting the final touches on some of the ninja costumes.
Below Mike is preparing a few Korean dishes to serve the cast and crew tomorrow. He’s also an actor in the film AND the producer, so basically Mike won’t be getting any sleep tonight.
There is literally a person in every corner of the apartment doing something….
What’s great about an indie film is that you’re forced to get creative. Above Mike holds a device meant to be a foam water gun for kids in a pool, but with the help of a sharpie marker, it’s now a professional blood distribution unit for applying that extra bit of gore on the zombie actors.
The above photo is actually the last Michal sighting I had. I think he’s somewhere at Home Depot right now constructing stabilizer rigs for his camera out of bike racks and other miscellaneous parts, but the last I heard he was at Toys R’ Us trying to construct a moving dolly? If you see him, please remind him that he should construct his inventions after he pays for the raw materials, and that we miss him, and he should come home.
June 11, 2010 No Comments
Pigs head, pork belly, lambs throat, and bone marrow are just a few of the things you can experience at the culinary adventure that is Roberta’s in Brooklyn, NY.
Although I had my fears about the menu, it turned out to be a REALLY fun night.
Michal and I were the first ones to arrive at the restaurant (we were meeting 5 others to celebrate my friend Jesse’s birthday), so it was the perfect opportunity for me to take some interior shots of the awesomely eccentric decor, which I would describe as “warehouse chic.”
Being that there is an awesome bar and outdoor lounge in the back, waiting to be seated actually turned out to be a great socializing opportunity, and with all the laughs before dinner, I didn’t even notice the wait.
After being seated, we decided to just order a hodgepodge of items off the menu to share. Our picks were the following:
- Braised Tripe (cow stomach)
- Sweet Bread (lamb and calf neck/pancreas)
- Seared Scallops w/ Pigs Head
- Two orders of the combo meat and cheese plate (from what I can remember there was prosciutto, blue cheese, soft brie, candied walnuts and cherries)
- Good Girl Pizza (Kale, Pork Sausage, and Garlic)
- Rosso Pizza w/ Anchovies (tomato, oregeno, garlic)
- Calzone Tony (stuffed with mozzarella, mushrooms, artichoke hearts, pesto sauce)
- Bone Marrow, but they ran out.
As for what I ate, I sampled the candied walnuts, sweet cherries, seared scallops, calzone, and I had quite a few slices of anchovy pizza. Presentation was nice too. I tried to get shots of the food, but the lighting was so dim, that I sort of gave up half-way through. I did manage to salvage a few close-up shots of the anchovy pizza, but please keep in mind they do not do the food justice…
As for cost, we dropped about 25 dollars per person (not including drinks), but I’m pretty sure we spent on the higher end of the Roberta’s price range. In the end though, who cares about the price when you get to have a fun night out with great people.
All and all, Roberta’s is definitely worth trying, and a great place to hold a birthday party for your favorite hipster friend
March 28, 2010 2 Comments
My friend Mike is really passionate about cooking, and for the past three years now, he’s hosted an annual dinner party for his friends. Throughout the night you’re served a total of 6 courses, and with the help of his friend Liz (a classically trained baker), they serve an extravagant line-up of food to around 30 people! It’s quite an undertaking, and certainly not for anyone who can’t handle high stress situations, but for anyone who is truly passionate about cooking, this is such a fantastic idea for something to do with a group of your closest friends.
Mike asked that each person pitch in just $15 to cover the cost of food and place settings (and trust me when I say that didn’t even begin to cover his costs). He puts a lot of time into turning his apartment into a mock New York Italian restaurant, complete with candles, printed menus, and waiters (a.k.a his most loyal friends and family members).
The courses were as follows:
Fontina Risotto Cakes with Fresh Chives
Sauteed Shrimp with Pancetta on Creamy Polenta
Wrapped Pork Tenderloins with Pistachio Pesto and Sweet Potato Puree
Tomato, Basil and Mozzarella Salad (Liz used organic basil from a local farmers market)
Almond Praline Cake with Mascarpone Frosting, Espresso Creme Brulee, and Limoncello.
I wish I had taken better pictures of each course, but the lighting was really dim, and plus I was super hungry, so when a plate came out I usually just started eating. My favorite moment of the night though was when Liz whipped out a blow torch to make her Espresso Creme Brulee. So bad ass!
I got home from the dinner party at around midnight, and boy was I exhausted. Between the race in Manchester, walking around Middletown, and eating some serious good eats, my body was ready to shut down. As tired as I was though, I was incredibly happy with how my Saturday had panned out.
What a perfect first day of spring.
March 21, 2010 2 Comments