treehugger52:

Yup… this

I would have done it in white. But…love. 

treehugger52:

Yup… this

I would have done it in white. But…love. 

(via tsundokuproblem)

Glitter, Popsicle sticks, fingerprints. Hints of brilliance (obvi).

Glitter, Popsicle sticks, fingerprints. Hints of brilliance (obvi).

Tags: 2013

I pulled my back at the YMCA.
I wasn’t lifting weights or finishing 60 minutes with the “Sleeping With the Enemy” cardio machine, I was sitting on the floor, rolling a ball around with the baby. Who’s now really hardly a baby and can do things like crawl and swat a volleyball and wave and say, “Hi. Hi,”  to the giant screen flashing images of happy families.
We played with a few kids and their nannies. (“Ooo, she’s sooo cute! She has those adorable little Chinky eyes!” one said to me, being not the first woman to think that’s an appropriate thing to say. Do people think Chink is not racist? Or just that I’m the nanny, not the person married to the source of said Chinky-ness, and so have no reason to be offended?) At one point Emmy made tracks toward some metal bleachers, I quickly bent and scooped her up, felt a sudden twinge! and then stood there in a contraction of pain, wondering how I was going to carry my 21-pound kid the block home.
I managed.
With Emmy fed and bathe (courtesy of her Babah) a glass of wine felt all too in order. Except this is hardly the wine I imagined it would be or was quite in the mood for. The longer I sip, though, it’s growing on me. It’s not right for this moment, after the dinner I just ate or in the cold air of my air-conditioned apartment. But I can imagine it being a glorious workhorse beside a platter of fresh seafood — grilled or fried squid, maybe. It’s citrusy, acidic, astringent. A bright, sharp wine you taste in the front of your mouth, like a pucker. A wine you want to drink outdoors, in some sea air. In a bathing suit and with a suntan. And the back muscles of a much younger woman.  
Wine: Falloria il Palagio, Vernaccia di San Gimignano 2009
Grape: Vernaccia
Region: Tuscany
Price: $15 in Brooklyn  (Though I see it online for $12)
Notes: Lemon, pineapple, grass, hay.

I pulled my back at the YMCA.

I wasn’t lifting weights or finishing 60 minutes with the “Sleeping With the Enemy” cardio machine, I was sitting on the floor, rolling a ball around with the baby. Who’s now really hardly a baby and can do things like crawl and swat a volleyball and wave and say, “Hi. Hi,”  to the giant screen flashing images of happy families.

We played with a few kids and their nannies. (“Ooo, she’s sooo cute! She has those adorable little Chinky eyes!” one said to me, being not the first woman to think that’s an appropriate thing to say. Do people think Chink is not racist? Or just that I’m the nanny, not the person married to the source of said Chinky-ness, and so have no reason to be offended?) At one point Emmy made tracks toward some metal bleachers, I quickly bent and scooped her up, felt a sudden twinge! and then stood there in a contraction of pain, wondering how I was going to carry my 21-pound kid the block home.

I managed.

With Emmy fed and bathe (courtesy of her Babah) a glass of wine felt all too in order. Except this is hardly the wine I imagined it would be or was quite in the mood for. The longer I sip, though, it’s growing on me. It’s not right for this moment, after the dinner I just ate or in the cold air of my air-conditioned apartment. But I can imagine it being a glorious workhorse beside a platter of fresh seafood — grilled or fried squid, maybe. It’s citrusy, acidic, astringent. A bright, sharp wine you taste in the front of your mouth, like a pucker. A wine you want to drink outdoors, in some sea air. In a bathing suit and with a suntan. And the back muscles of a much younger woman.  

Wine: Falloria il Palagio, Vernaccia di San Gimignano 2009

Grape: Vernaccia

Region: Tuscany

Price: $15 in Brooklyn  (Though I see it online for $12)

Notes: Lemon, pineapple, grass, hay.

"How to eat an elephant? One bite at a time… And enjoy."

Italian Wine Merchants’ Sergio Esposito on how to begin learning about Italian wines.

Barolo and Barbaresco are wine words I’ve heard often and vaguely thought of as being one) types of grapes and two) rather high end. Which if you’re feeling generous puts me at 1 and 1. I’ve always thought of wines in terms of varietals — Cabernet Sauvignon, Torontes, Sauvignon Blanc — mostly because that’s how New York wines (the only wines I actually know a little bit about) are categorized. Italy, however, does things differently, and it’s not alone. There are, it’s taken me this long to discover, all types of umbrella categories — Chianti, Soave — that refer instead to regions, towns, zones. Cue: Barolo and Barbaresco. These are the “umbrella category” stars of the Piemonte region, Italy’s most northwestern bit, bordered by Switzerland and France.
For a bit of schooling on the Piemonte, I turned to the 1995 copy of “Wine for Dummies” that I’ve watched collect dust in five apartments but never cracked the spine of. (I know I should buy an updated version, but now a part of me enjoys that the authors’ price quotes are so low.) What I learned:
Piemonte — or, the Piedmont — has two super important wine zones and these are around the towns of Asti (cue cheezy Asti Spumante commercial of your childhood) and Alba. The two big, beautiful, important reds of the region are Barolo and Barbaresco, both of which are made from the Nebbiolo grape and named after a village in its production zone.
Piedmont has a third fancy, if less celebrated, red called Gattinara, which is also made from Nebbiolo, except that in the northern part of Piedmont where Gattinara’s from, Nebbiolo is instead called Spanna.
Piedmont also has two main everyday-drinking reds: Dolcetto and Barbera. Dolcetto (which is not sweet, despite the name) is the lighter of the two — think Beaujolais light — and reportedly goes better with food. The best Dolcettos come from the Alba zone (Dolcetto d’Alba) and both Alba and Asti produce Barberas. Per WfD authors Mary Ewing-Mulligan and Ed McCarthy (heretofore known as EM&M), “Barbera d’Alba is a bit fuller, riper, and richer than the leaner Barbera d’Asti.”
A third everyday red, Nebbiolo d’Alba, is the lightest of all, and is from Nebbiolo vineyards outside the Barolo and Barbaresco zones.
Finally, the region also produces two notable whites: Gavi and Arneis (ahr NASE). Gavi, which is named after a town in the southern Piedmont, is very dry with pronounced acidity, per EM&M, and Arneis, which is actually the name of the grape (!) is “dry to medium-dry” with a “rich texture.”
Part of what appeals to me about Italian wines, and what has made me want to learn more, is how intrinsic each one is to where it’s from. The opposite of planting a trendy grape, it strikes me as wonderfully honest, organic, necessary. On this front, EM&M offer a small but poignant detail. The Nebbiolo grape, they write, is a “noble red variety” and Piedmont’s claim to fame. But, they add, it “produces great wine only in northwestern Italy.”

Barolo and Barbaresco are wine words I’ve heard often and vaguely thought of as being one) types of grapes and two) rather high end. Which if you’re feeling generous puts me at 1 and 1. I’ve always thought of wines in terms of varietals — Cabernet Sauvignon, Torontes, Sauvignon Blanc — mostly because that’s how New York wines (the only wines I actually know a little bit about) are categorized. Italy, however, does things differently, and it’s not alone. There are, it’s taken me this long to discover, all types of umbrella categories — Chianti, Soave — that refer instead to regions, towns, zones. Cue: Barolo and Barbaresco. These are the “umbrella category” stars of the Piemonte region, Italy’s most northwestern bit, bordered by Switzerland and France.

For a bit of schooling on the Piemonte, I turned to the 1995 copy of “Wine for Dummies” that I’ve watched collect dust in five apartments but never cracked the spine of. (I know I should buy an updated version, but now a part of me enjoys that the authors’ price quotes are so low.) What I learned:

Piemonte — or, the Piedmont — has two super important wine zones and these are around the towns of Asti (cue cheezy Asti Spumante commercial of your childhood) and Alba. The two big, beautiful, important reds of the region are Barolo and Barbaresco, both of which are made from the Nebbiolo grape and named after a village in its production zone.

Piedmont has a third fancy, if less celebrated, red called Gattinara, which is also made from Nebbiolo, except that in the northern part of Piedmont where Gattinara’s from, Nebbiolo is instead called Spanna.

Piedmont also has two main everyday-drinking reds: Dolcetto and Barbera. Dolcetto (which is not sweet, despite the name) is the lighter of the two — think Beaujolais light — and reportedly goes better with food. The best Dolcettos come from the Alba zone (Dolcetto d’Alba) and both Alba and Asti produce Barberas. Per WfD authors Mary Ewing-Mulligan and Ed McCarthy (heretofore known as EM&M), “Barbera d’Alba is a bit fuller, riper, and richer than the leaner Barbera d’Asti.”

A third everyday red, Nebbiolo d’Alba, is the lightest of all, and is from Nebbiolo vineyards outside the Barolo and Barbaresco zones.

Finally, the region also produces two notable whites: Gavi and Arneis (ahr NASE). Gavi, which is named after a town in the southern Piedmont, is very dry with pronounced acidity, per EM&M, and Arneis, which is actually the name of the grape (!) is “dry to medium-dry” with a “rich texture.”

Part of what appeals to me about Italian wines, and what has made me want to learn more, is how intrinsic each one is to where it’s from. The opposite of planting a trendy grape, it strikes me as wonderfully honest, organic, necessary. On this front, EM&M offer a small but poignant detail. The Nebbiolo grape, they write, is a “noble red variety” and Piedmont’s claim to fame. But, they add, it “produces great wine only in northwestern Italy.”

"It’s so nice of her to come hang out with her most boring friends," Rich said.
Our friend Mina had offered to come to our place for dinner and we’d guiltily accepted — it was definitely our turn to travel to her (younger, hipper) neighborhood instead. We’ve been doing decent work of strolling the baby to restaurants and having dinner while she sleeps, but with the nights getting colder it’s less easy, particularly with the outdoor tables packed away for the season and things inside most Brooklyn restaurants feeling too crowded for a stroller. We could bring her in a carrier, but then there’s the snowsuit to take on and off, waking her up each time.
I’ve intentionally tried to send lots of photos of the baby to my sisters, not wanting them to feel that they’ve missed out on a phase. But Mina has taken this on herself (which I love her even more for) and has likely seen more of Emmy’s faces than anyone but me and Rich. “A woman’s face changes 18 times in her life!” my mother-in-law likes to say, but this baby, to our rapt amazement, seems to have a new face each few weeks.
I made a pasta e fagioli and a salad, and Mina brought a quart of butter pecan ice-cream for dessert. When she arrived, we opened this cannonau — another name for grenache, the guy in the wine store had told me — while we picked at cheese and olives.
It was easy to like. On the nose were hints of dried dates and plums, and in the mouth, we decided, pomegranates and leather.
"It’s like a dusty library in an old mansion," Rich said, sniffing and swirling as he leaned back against the sink. Nose deep in my glass, the reoccuring image that came to me was of dusty, red velvet drapes. Mina sipped and rounded out the picture, deciding, "It’s ‘old-man-ish.’" Which we deduced to mean spicy cologne, leather and something herbaceous.
In the end, while we played with the baby and changed her into pajamas, I overcooked our dinner, letting it loose its soupy-ness and turn into a sort of creamy pasta dish. And I both didn’t have time to make popovers and forgot to buy a baguette. But the baby went to sleep easily and soundly, and the wine and conversation were good and lasting, and — for more hours than we expected — we got to forget about feeling tired, and baby-brained, and like we could possibly be anyone’s least-interesting friends.
Wine: Sella & Mosca Cannonau di Sardegna Riserva 2006
Grape: Cannonau (Grenache)
Region: Sardegna (Sardinia)
Price: $13.99
Notes: Hints of dark-red and brown fruits — dates, plums — plus leather, dust and musky spice.

"It’s so nice of her to come hang out with her most boring friends," Rich said.

Our friend Mina had offered to come to our place for dinner and we’d guiltily accepted — it was definitely our turn to travel to her (younger, hipper) neighborhood instead. We’ve been doing decent work of strolling the baby to restaurants and having dinner while she sleeps, but with the nights getting colder it’s less easy, particularly with the outdoor tables packed away for the season and things inside most Brooklyn restaurants feeling too crowded for a stroller. We could bring her in a carrier, but then there’s the snowsuit to take on and off, waking her up each time.

I’ve intentionally tried to send lots of photos of the baby to my sisters, not wanting them to feel that they’ve missed out on a phase. But Mina has taken this on herself (which I love her even more for) and has likely seen more of Emmy’s faces than anyone but me and Rich. “A woman’s face changes 18 times in her life!” my mother-in-law likes to say, but this baby, to our rapt amazement, seems to have a new face each few weeks.

I made a pasta e fagioli and a salad, and Mina brought a quart of butter pecan ice-cream for dessert. When she arrived, we opened this cannonau — another name for grenache, the guy in the wine store had told me — while we picked at cheese and olives.

It was easy to like. On the nose were hints of dried dates and plums, and in the mouth, we decided, pomegranates and leather.

"It’s like a dusty library in an old mansion," Rich said, sniffing and swirling as he leaned back against the sink. Nose deep in my glass, the reoccuring image that came to me was of dusty, red velvet drapes. Mina sipped and rounded out the picture, deciding, "It’s ‘old-man-ish.’" Which we deduced to mean spicy cologne, leather and something herbaceous.

In the end, while we played with the baby and changed her into pajamas, I overcooked our dinner, letting it loose its soupy-ness and turn into a sort of creamy pasta dish. And I both didn’t have time to make popovers and forgot to buy a baguette. But the baby went to sleep easily and soundly, and the wine and conversation were good and lasting, and — for more hours than we expected — we got to forget about feeling tired, and baby-brained, and like we could possibly be anyone’s least-interesting friends.

Wine: Sella & Mosca Cannonau di Sardegna Riserva 2006

Grape: Cannonau (Grenache)

Region: Sardegna (Sardinia)

Price: $13.99

Notes: Hints of dark-red and brown fruits — dates, plums — plus leather, dust and musky spice.

A Friday in early November, and the days seem to be dark and over before they’ve hardly begun. By the time we finished working, the sun was long gone and neither of us had been out of the apartment all day, nevermind showered. We bundled the baby, headed out for a walk and eventually wound up in a wine shop where a tasting was in swing. After the slightly awkward moment of not wanting to buy what we’d sipped from the salesman’s miniature plastic cups, we decided on this Aglianico, purely because neither of us had ever heard of the grape.

Starting dinner later, the baby asleep, there was the sad moment after the first sip when I could see in Rich’s face that the night would not proceed in quite the way it might have had that sip been a happy one. A quick downturn of the mouth, a wrinkle of the nose. “Oh well…” he said, in a tone that resigned Friday night to the dust bin.

Wine: Naif Rosso 2006

Grape: Aglianico

Region: Campagnia

Price: $16 (in Brooklyn)

Notes: On the nose, alcohol, prune, wet wood, the very slightest hint of cherry — really very hard to detect fruit. And sipping, again, a harsh alcohol quality, barely any fruit.