Friday, August 29, 2014

So long August!

Chilllll babe.
Hello friends and lovers and greetings from beautiful Charleston/Isle of Palms in South Carolina! I am here for the long weekend hoping to make the most of these final days of summer and to take a much needed break from staring at my laptop screen. The plan is to build sandcastles at the beach with my niece, float in the pool with my nephew and devour something fried and tasty from THIS place. Game on Labor Day. Speaking of which, isn't THIS picture cool? And if you're suddenly curious to know a bit more about the history behind this day off from work/school, click HERE. Lastly, here are some necessities to help you say so long to summer (while secretly praying for an unseasonably warm and sunny September of course!) See you next month :)

Because nothing says summer like Sangria... (HERE)

Breakfast Pizza of the Red White and Blue variety. (HERE)

Do you have one last pool party in you!? (HERE)

Yes Please. (HERE)

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Hump Day Distractions

Seriously good question of the day.
So I'm rollin in a little late with the distractions today, but I'm going to blame it on my all-consuming anticipation of tonight's So You Think You Can Dance performance finale. Dr. H and I are SYTYCD junkies and I just cannot WAIT to see who is going to be crowned "America's Favorite Dancer" (#ThisIsNotAPaidAdvertisement) To get ya through the day, over the hump and straight on to the holiday weekend, here are some delightful distractions from around the web!

* An answer to the tattoo critique "but who knows how it will look when you get old and wrinkly!?"
* If this amazing overnight experience includes free meatballs, I just might have to fly to Australia for it! (via CupofJo)
* Cute, tasty and kid friendly "breakfast sushi".
* Can a normal human wear things like THIS because I kinda want to...
* So freaking creative and cool.
* If it's possible to be turned on by built in bookshelves, I'd have to say THESE are doing the trick. Mmmm.
* That moment when an excellent office prank may have gone too far...
* I like this list.
* This game of flip cup is on a whole other level. #NailingIt

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

An All-Things-Emmys Roundup

Well done buddy!
Did you watch the Emmys last night? Dr. H and I tuned in for the whole 3 hours and were fairly entertained the entire time which for an awards show is a pretty big feat! I thought Seth Meyers did a great job hosting and while I didn't agree with (several) of the winners, I thought the Emmy's were, overall, an excellent evening for my beloved boob tube (we watched EVERY show nominated in more than a few categories. #shamelesscouchpotatoes) Here is a roundup of my thoughts, the fashion and some highlights from last night's show.

* For me, THIS was the funniest bit of the night (and not just because I walked past Billy filming it last week!)
* I thought a LOT of stars brought their A-Game to the red carpet but some personal favorites were:

Lizzy Caplan looking somehow even hotter
than she does (naked!) on Masters of Sex. 

SYTYCD host- robbed of an Emmy, but not
red carpet glory. Cat Deeley for the win!

Sarah Hyland with an age-appropriate
but still classy crop-top look. NICE.

Hayden making pregnancy on the
red carpet look SO good (not easy!)
Honorable mentions to Amy Poehler, Michelle Dockery and January Jones (As for Sarah Paulson... at least you didn't get any mosquito bites!?) For more Emmy fashion favorites (from the experts) click HERE, HERE and HERE

* Look out for Netflix network/cable tv! Last night's bevy of nominees from the streaming service's hit shows like Orange is the New Black and House of Cards were a pretty clear indication of where tv taste is headed. I thought this commercial summed the whole thing up pretty nicely.

* Weird Al is not aging. Also, he's still pretty funny.
* I do not understand the obsession with Amazing Race and Big Bang Theory. Honestly. What am I missing!?!
* THIS is the guy who directed True Detective. He and Willie Nelson obviously share a hair stylist.
* I love Modern Family and have seen just about every episode, but come on. This past season especially, I have a hard time ranking them as better than the actors and shows they were up against.
* I think I need to start watching Sherlock.

Monday, August 25, 2014

Some things I want to eat right now.

I swear I'd cook every night if I could do it here!
I thought I would kick off today and the week with a few tasty looking recipes that have made it onto my cooking to-do list recently. Nothin too complicated, everything so yummy. Enjoy!

A Tequila Lime Chicken Sandwich with Guacamole and Chipotle Mayo is pretty much the stuff my dreams are made of and the great news is that recipe is not nearly as complex as you might think! And though in my expert(!?) opinion a freshly baked bun from your favorite local bakery is (definitely) the way to go, you could also forgo the bun and serve this chicken/cheese/bacon/guac mountain with a side of beans or veggies for a slightly last carb-tastic meal. Pin it HERE, full recipe HERE.

This recipe is so simple that it's pretty much begging to be a part of your next Sunday brunch. Simply combine in an oven-safe dish 1-2 eggs (depending on the size of your dish), sauteed spinach, halved cherry tomatoes, a dollop (official term) of goat cheese and a few torn pieces of proscuitto. Sprinkle with pepper and a little sea/kosher salt and bake in the oven until the egg starts to firm up (but not all the way). Serve and enjoy!! Pin it HERE.

I always get afraid of recipes which call for shredded brussel sprouts because they seem like so much work, but this Bacon and Brussels Salad looks so tasty that I think I'm going to have to overcome my fears (and purchase a mandoline!) Using the age old trick of improving veggies with bacon, the 40 minutes of prep time will definitely be time well spent. Pin it HERE or check out the full recipe HERE.

And because there should never be a post about food that doesn't show a little love to dessert, check out these adorable Mini "Ice Cream Cone" Cake Pops! The recipe is just my speed (a pre-made glazed munchkin is the main ingredient) but those of you with more of a Betty Crocker inclination could certainly make your own "ice cream scoop" cake pop. Pin it HERE or check out the full recipe HERE.

Friday, August 22, 2014

Yo Quiero...

I may or may not know someone who owned this.
As some of you probably realized (maybe even more than "some"!?) I didn't make it to the blogosphere to post yesterday, but I have a really good reason. I was eating Taco Bell. Specifically, the long coveted Doritos Locos Tacos and the newly discovered AM Crunch Wrap. I ate both of these items for breakfast (#NoShame) and all I can say is WOW (also, YES and "when is it appropriate to eat another?") A long time lover of all things Doritos, I have been holding off on eating a Locos Taco until I could do so with beloved BFFs and yesterday was that glorious day. The AM Crunch Wrap was a last minute (excellent) addition to our order after a drool-worthy commercial indicated that we would find hashbrowns IN the breakfast quesadilla. 

Now I know some people are skeptical of fast food or perhaps too high falutin to "think outside the bun", but to all of you I say "your loss amigo!" These items exceeded my expectations (Doritos Locos Taco Pro-Tip: eat them fresh instead of bringing them home... the shells get a little soggy) and though I'm not suggesting they be part of your next well balanced meal or daily diet, I am saying that you should try them. At least once. Especially if you're like me and Doritos are your thang. Seriously. Eat it now.

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Hump Day Distractions

I pretty much live my life in fear of this
Hello there my merry friends and welcome to Hump Day. I'm chugging along through my first full week as my own boss (more on that soon!) while also trying to enjoy every minute of the gorgeous summer sunshine, that rumor has it, will be fading to fall in just a few weeks (doh!) Here to delight and distract us until the weekend arrives are some goodies from around the web. Enjoy! 

* By the time I got to the end of THIS, tears were just streaming down my cheeks. Way to go Pampers.
* I want to cook HERE.
* For my fellow Mad Men fans, some thoughts from Matthew Weiner about the finale (plus the trailer for a movie he made that I didn't even know was coming out this month)
* Love me a good one pot pasta dish (especially when it allows me to use some of my home grown basil!)
* #IceBucketChallengeFail (warning, some of these look painful and not at all funny, but most are pretty damn hysterical)
* As someone inching closer to becoming a Park Slope stereotype, this list cracked me up.
* If company's slogans were honest.
* I don't know what it says about me that 3 different family members sent me THIS link, but cool. 

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Bling Thing.

or a ruby, or sapphire, or emerald... 
I have always been a lover of all things sparkly, statement, subtle or blingy, but lately I feel like I've stumbled upon some serious jewelry realness across the internets. From bold and blinged out cuffs to dainty chains and charms, here are some beauties worth adding to your collection.

How ridiculously rad is that bracelet!? Custom options just like it are available via the Etsy shop Doloris Petunia and it's only a matter of time before I place my order. I also love the shop's Swarovski friendship bracelets ($28 each) and a stack of Jelly Jems ($18 each or 3 for $45) are the cutest take on the jelly band trend I've ever seen! So pop over to Doloris Petunia and check out her collection of jewels, headpieces and more today!

On the opposite end of the jewelry spectrum, I was excited to discover designer Meira T's collection which is full of dainty charms and chains that make for beautiful everyday outfit accents. From moons and stars to feathers and gemstones, these necklaces come with a significant price tag, but promise to be an elegant yet unique piece that will withstand the test of time in your jewelry box. 

Another Etsy gem comes from StarryBasement Co. whose location cuff caught my eye on Pinterest and led to a treasure trove of adorable cuffs bearing inspirational quotes and customizable messages. Priced reasonably at approximately $20 each (depending on your metal choice), I'd love a stack of copper, silver and gold bracelets for myself, or maybe there's a certainly newly engaged girl who might need this anniversary cuff one day!?

Did you know that Madewell has a seriously awesome jewelry collection? Because they totally do!! I bought this "Knotish" necklace last spring and receive compliments every time I wear it and that's just one example. From bold statements to simple elegance, be sure to check out Madewell next time you're on the hunt for a new piece or bling!

Monday, August 18, 2014

Sis & Mr. J

Nittany Lion Love.
This weekend, my beloved, amazing, brilliant, crazy, beautiful Sis got engaged. Her (awesome) boyfriend of many years, Mr. J (that's right, you've got your own SeektoBe name now buddy!) got down on one knee in the middle of my parents' living room and shocked her socks off with a heartfelt proposal and straight up stunna ring. Sis called me crying, her voice still audibly shaking from the shock and joy. There aren't many surprises in life more moving and merry than a truly unexpectedly timed engagement. 

So now I get to be a Maid of Honor (woo!) and I get to watch my baby sister become a bride. Thinking back to her Bat Mitzvah, I remember watching teary eyed, unexpectedly moved and full of pride at age 17 as my 5-years-younger sister read from the torah and blew me away with her poise and accomplishment. I already realize that this too will be one of those "I know I'm not your parent but I feel compelled to protect and raise you" moments of pride and I cannot freakin wait. I cannot wait to stand back and support and watch as my little snug takes the next step towards her own adult life. And I cannot wait for her to experience all the joys of new love and true love and all the his and hers moments in between. Mazels to you Sis and Mr. J, I couldn't be happier for you.

Friday, August 15, 2014

That’s what she said

Kids say the darndest things...
This post brought to you by the fabulous (parent)thetically speaking.

This volume, ladies (and gentlemen?) is all about the arrival of “why?” into the little miss’s vocabulary and the story-telling, oh the story-telling! Has a story (or a tiny, rambling, crazy person) made you chuckle and think “what could possibly be going on in their head?” Here are some gems that I’m oh-so-glad I wrote down...

* Yesterday there was a little almond sticking out of my belly button.
* You’re my goofiest cookie in the whole wide world and I can’t believe I get to eat you.
* Sometimes firefighters go to synagogue on their own, and they make the synagogue spicy.
* My bracelet says after Mother’s Day is Sister’s Day. That’s where you give all the sisters hug and kisses. And then give them treats like chocolate and Hershey bars.
* The other day, when I woke up in my crib, Daddy wasn’t there, he was still at the dentist where I was born.
* A spectel is when you’re not talking nicely.
* Elsa’s really good at making braids mommy, but you’re not.
* I smell chocolate chip cookies, I think I’ll keep the smell in my nose.
* You know what I call Target? Rawr-get.
* This animation is kind of rude.
* Consplain it to me.
* That hill tickled the inside of my belly.

And now... That’s what she asked

* Do witches brush their teeth?
* Why does red mean stop - why doesn’t green mean stop and red mean go?
* Why do we have a mailbox?
* Where do trucks live?
* Why do people have skin?

For all things fabulously (parent)thetically speaking, click HERE

Thursday, August 14, 2014


Hit the road!
Have you ever taken a road trip? For several years Sis and I were devoted to week-long adventures on the road and Dr. H and I never hesitate to turn a drive into an adventure. Something about the time spent in comfy clothes chatting, listening to great tunes and throwing your hands out the window to feel the wind blowing past is just a whole lot of fun. Here to help you hit the road are some Merry Meri tips and tricks for road trippin'!

* Take the Scenic Route (literally).
When taking a road trip, getting from A to B should not be your only objective. Consider taking scenic routes and avoiding highways and leave time each day for detours. Some of my favorite road trip memories were the result of unexpected pit stops prompted by the "Attractions at this Exit" sign (like caverns in West Virginia... Sis and I always stop for caverns:)

* Plan ahead (but maybe not too much).
My road trips always have a route selected and highlights along it to serve as a guide, but I don't always make hotel reservations in advance or book things that require the trip to function on a strict schedule. Allow yourself flexibility so that you don't feel rushed and be open to the idea of settling in for the night wherever you find yourself when you get tired. Want to take the adventure up a notch? This list of camper and airstream rentals looks pretty awesome.

* Make a circle.
Don't travel the same way twice because what's the fun in that!? When setting your itinerary, try to make a loop that will allow you to visit different places and view different sites while driving. If you belong to AAA (which I highly recommend!) they are an AMAZING resource for road trip planning because they can create a customized "TripTik" of your route with suggested stops along the way. Yup, it's pretty sweet.

* Pick ridiculous destinations (say yes to the penguin encounter).
Always wanted to go to the roller coaster capital of the world? Need to stop for a kayak on a lake? How about a taste of fried chicken from the pub near Thomas Jefferson's house? In my opinion, the hokier the better when it comes to road trips. So go to the ballpark just to eat the "famous" chili cheese dog or discover that there's an aquarium in Kentucky just across a bridge from your stop in Cincinnati (and say yes to the live penguin encounter!)

* Bring the essentials. 
Things you definitely need: An excellent playlist, snacks, a GPS/phone and car charger, a camera (and you better bust it out in the car AND at each destination) and 1 outfit for every sort of activity (aka, 1 workout outfit, 1 comfy outfit, 1 "somewhere nice" outfit, a bathing suit and a sweatshirt). I also highly recommend bringing along a few stamps (because people love getting postcards:)

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Back just in time to Hump (Day) it.

Friends, I have returned!! Please excuse my silence these past two days, but I was a bit wrapped up in real life work and blog life work fell a bit behind. Buuuut I'm back!! And because two days away means I have much to say in addition to links to share, here's a hearty serving of distractions and ramblings to get you through the day.

* I, like a great many others, am deeply saddened by this week's loss of Robin Williams. While I think his role as "Gennnnnie offf thhheee lamp!!!" may be the one that touched me most as a child, countless others, from Good Will Hunting and Hook to Dead Poet's Society and Mrs. Doubtfire showed a range and talent beyond compare. As I've said before, losing a beloved celebrity often feels like losing someone much closer. Robin touched us all (even of the primate variety) and he will most certainly be missed.

* After that somber thought, this joyful reminder to never stop dancing, will surely bring the smile back to your face:

* This week is Shark Week on Discovery Channel which Dr. H and I celebrated by cooking up some Mako Shark for dinner last night (freshly caught by Dad this weekend!) Impress your friends with some shark knowledge today!
* Are you ready to go back in time with The Nostalgia Machine!? (This site is so f'ing cool)
* On Saturday I went with my Dr. H family to the PGA Championship (aka a golf tournament) in Louisville, Kentucky. I give Louisville two thumbs up (THIS place was awesome) and golf... more credit than I'd originally thought. It's much more interesting in person than on tv, that is until you find a nice quiet spot in the shade and dose off leaning against a building. Not that I'd know from experience or anything...
* Genius hacks for fixing "ruined" clothes.
* Turns out my life is a lot like the movie Frozen. Which Disney movie is actually based on your life!? (thanks sis!)

Monday, August 11, 2014

Manic Monday.

Happy Monday.
Back tomorrow :) xox.

Friday, August 8, 2014

Just Dance.

Last night I came home from work stressed, tired and mentally pooped from the past few weeks. After talking to my mom on the phone, laying fully clothed on my bed like a mummy and then finally motivating myself to start cooking dinner, Dr. H rolled in (post-drinks with colleagues) to find his wife chopping onions and mentally beating workday dead horses. He exited the kitchen and turned on the stereo. He poured himself a drink and suggested I do the same, but I declined and moved on to smashing garlic. But halfway through singing Boyz II Men's Motownphilly together, I started to bop to the beat. We moved through several Motown classics before arriving at hit tracks from the Jock Jams collection at which point Dr. H took the large knife out of his wife's hand and demanded I come dance. So I danced.

I danced to those 90s hits like I was at a college party and then I took some wine out of the fridge and I kept on dancing. Though I may have taken a break (or 2) to check my phone for emails (I'm working on that compulsion) and I definitely talked more than my dance partner would have preferred (shocker!), eventually it all faded away and there I was in my living room, bottle of wine in hand, grooving with my guy to Zoot Suit Riot (#NoShame). The lesson my friends? Sometimes you have to just stop... and dance. 

Have a wonderful weekend friends (and don't be a afraid to just dance!)

Thursday, August 7, 2014


nap it out buddy.
Today is one of those days when I know I look as tired as I feel which is kind of the worst because every reflective surface I encounter is essentially saying "hey Mer, you could really use a nap." Right. If I hadn't banned it from our daily lexicon a few years back, I'm sure at least one of you would be hitting me over the head with the dreaded "you look tired"... And since the only cure for being tired that isn't actually sleep is laughing (or eating, but I did enough of that last weekend!) here are some funnies to get you through the day:)

letter love.




lThat's cold.

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Hump Day Distractions

Yesterday's post got to be a tad long-winded (me, have a lot to say on a somewhat feminist issue?! No!) so today we're getting straight to it. Happy humping!!

* Infused water seems to be all the rage these days. For inspiration on how to fancify your H2O with just a few simple ingredients, click HERE.
* Apparently, this is the most adorable thing you'll watch all day.
* Some of these are on my "if I'm ever not a renter" list as well.
* Wedding cake fails some of which really make me question the sanity of brides and grooms.
* Stunna(s).
* The absolute perfect LBD... except for the price. Fingers crossed it goes on sale.
* Uhhh... they forgot!!
* Perfect for the man in your life (hehe).
* A unique and beautiful art installation commemorating WWI.
* The cutest crawling race ever.

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

What's in a name?

Will you play the name game?
When I got married, I did not legally change my last name. As 1 of 2 daughters of the only remaining male carrying the W family name (my Dad has sisters and daughters) my family name officially goes extinct with my generation. The very idea of this kind of breaks my heart because my name evokes feelings of my amazing Nan and Pop and all the amazing Ws before them whom I've seen in pictures and heard stories about. I've always felt that my name is my name and love and marriage doesn't really change that.

I never considered the idea of keeping my maiden name revolutionary. My aunt (my lifetime professional woman role model) also kept the W name and I work with many women who for purely professional reasons, elected to do the same. Without even getting into how antiquated it is to assume a woman will change her name upon marrying, there are plenty of modern reasons why she might choose not to. And though I love being referred to as Dr. and Mrs. H socially, I look with pride at my name on things like my business cards and passport as a symbol of the family I come from and will always be a part of... 

Which is why THIS article really got me thinking. In it, the author talks about giving her child her last name instead of her husband's which is something that frankly hadn't even occurred to me. Call me old fashioned (HA!) but I made peace with the notion that I would have a different last name than my children long before Dr. H was even in the picture... but why!? Well, because a woman keeping her last name in this day and age is (finally) not abnormal, but giving that name to kids over their father's certainly is. I get why the author talks about the decision being perceived by many as emasculating to her husband because socially most people just can't wrap their heads around such a progressive decision. I ask repeatedly if Dr. H will consider a hyphenate (partially because "hooray my name lives on" and partially because our names hyphenated sound super bad ass), but that always gets rejected (and I don't think I could have married a much more progressive, empowering man!) "I'm the man and my children shall bear my name" is simply how our culture thinks and I think it's going to be that way for a long time.

Unless, maybe it won't... Maybe as women come into careers and leadership roles, as same-sex marriage completely muddles the surname conversation and we move further away from our male-dominated culture, slowly but surely more babies will leave the hospital with birth certificates bearing their mama's name. Maybe someday choosing a last name will be as much of a conversation as choosing a first. Maybe...

Monday, August 4, 2014

Good Eats in NYC

What I found when I searched "pigs eating" on Pinterest.
This weekend might as well have been titled "Meri eats Manhattan" because that's pretty much what it was. Starting with a delicious home-cooked Blue Apron meal on Friday evening (followed by a slice of pizza at a party and then late night mac cheese (it was a fun Friday!)), Saturday included two delicious meals out (more on those in a minute) and Sunday started with Dim Sum, took a trip to Citi Field for a Nathan's hot dog and ended with sushi and bubble tea from the restaurants attached to my apartment building. I consider weighing anything less than 300 lbs this morning a modern miracle. But because all good meals should be shared, I wanted to tell you specifically about Saturday's eats so that you can venture out and (over)indulge just like I did.

* Cafe Habana (17 Prince St. at Elizabeth)
I have been walking past this little blue Cuban shop in Soho for years, reading that its a favorite of Matthew Mcconaughey's and keeping it high on my "for someday" places to eat list. Well, Saturday was the day and Cafe Habana did not disappoint. Ever since going to see Chef, I have been craving some delicious Cuban cuisine and Cafe Habana totally nailed it! A tiny restaurant that did require a 15 minute wait (not too bad for 2pm on a sunny Saturday) Dr. H and I sat at the bar counter and enjoyed every last bite of our Cuban and Molletes sandwiches (I also highly recommend the spicy bloody mary!) And though we didn't order the "famous corn", it was only because I went for chorizo and avocado on my molletes and even I would have had capacity issues at that point. Obviously we will have to go back. The perfect spot for summer brunch with your ladies or an informal but quintessentially ethnic NYC dinner with your man, check out Cafe Habana today!

* Babbo (110 Waverly btw 6th & Washington Sqr Park West)
Babbo is a fancy pants Greenwich Village spot serving up high-end Italian fare from the infamous chef Mario Batali. Thanks to a generous gift certificate from Mommy-in-Law and a fortuitous stroll past the restaurant that afternoon nabbing a reservation for that night (more on that in a minute!) we enjoyed a 3 course meal of impeccably prepared and served food. Babbo is one of those spots where everything on the menu is delicious and unique. From grilled octopus and warm lamb's tongue with a 3-minute egg to chianti stained pappardelle and black spaghetti with rock shrimp, it's nearly impossible to go wrong. And considering the prestige of the place, with main courses all priced within the $20-36 range, Babbo is certainly expensive, but by NYC standards not at all outrageous. Getting in on the other hand can be tricky, since reservations are almost all scooped up promptly 1 month in advance. But for my fellow night owls, Dr. H and I dined at 10:30pm on Saturday and once before  at 10pm (and neither time with much (any?) advance planning) so you can be organized or flexible, either way being worth the trip!

Friday, August 1, 2014

Seeing double.

As you all know, I love taking pictures, but one thing I don't think I've ever shared is that I am a huge sucker for reflections. If I see a puddle, a shiny building exterior or anything that creates a reflection, I'm completely drawn to it. Something about the duplicative, mirrored image is incredibly beautiful to me and I think it makes for a particularly stunning photo. Which is why my jaw was on the floor when I stumbled upon THIS:

I mean, how gorgeous right!? And while some of these images are seriously technical and involve perfect lighting in a perfect place, others come simply from the photographer's ability to see the reflection and pause to frame it just right. 

For more gorgeous reflections, click HERE. Beauty really is everywhere, you just need to remember to see it!