Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Baby Time

Hi there - quick heads up that we are first time new parents!! So I'm on blogging maternity leave for the time being. We're not getting any sleep as it is, so sumpin's gotta give! I'll blog it up just as soon as I can. Thanks for your understanding!

Friday, December 9, 2011

We Need to Talk About Stamford

The movie, We Need to Talk About Kevin, starring Tilda Swinton and and John C. Reilly, is out. Why should you care? Because it was filmed in your backyard! I haven't seen it yet - and the subject matter is heavy - but it's supposed to be very good. If you go, see if you can identify any bits of our town on the big screen.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Guess Who Else is Coming to Town? Bill Clinton!

Tomorrow, Friday, December 9th from 12-2pm, none other than Bill Clinton will be coming to Barrett Bookstore in Darien to sign copies of his new book called "Back to Work."  For more information, contact Rosanna Nissen or Libby Stowell at 203-655-2712. Come meet the former Commander in Chief and support a great local resource:  Barrett Bookstore is located at 314 Heights Road in Darien.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Santa Claus is Coming to Town!

Don't forget to head down to the Landmark building to see Santa and his buddies rappel down the side of the building TOMORROW at 5pm. It's our annual Christmas extravaganza called Heights and Lights. The event moves to Latham Park where you'll enjoy the tree lighting and children's activities.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Books and Snacks and General Preschool Goodness

photo from Slideshow Bruce,
The Palace Theatre will be hosting a performance of "Good Night Moon" by the Mermaid Theatre of Nova Scotia for 1,000 preschoolers. The event is designed to help bring theater to underprivileged children and is offered in conjunction with the Stamford School Readiness Foundation. The event takes place on Thursday, December 8th at 10am. 

Tickets cost $10, and you can get them at the Stamford Center for the Arts website or by calling Carol Bryan at 203-517-3431 for more information. Fairway Market will be providing fresh apples to the children in attendance so they'll leave with bellies full of fruit and brains full of culture.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Who Needs Black Friday When You Have Small Biz Saturday

Support Stamford's local best by participating in Small Business Saturday. It's a concerted effort to make a space for small businesses to thrive, and Stamford could certainly use a bit of that.  Learn more at the event's Facebook page.

The page is pretty cool - it allows you to enter your zip and see examples of local businesses you might think of for tomorrow's event. A gift or a gift certificates at any of the following - examples from the FB page - would make a great holiday giftie:

- Avon Theatre
- Stamford Center for the Arts
Downtown Golf
- Time Zone
- Star Wine and Spirits

So get out there and spend your holiday dollar at home!

Saturday, November 19, 2011


Ok, so turkey specials at the supermarket and preemptive Christmas decorations are a good clue, but the only way I really know that Thanksgiving is upon us is that giant parade balloons start marching up and down Summer Street.  Our bubble butt friends are back TOMORROW at noon to get you in the mood to give thanks. Stamford Downtown has a great lil' mini-site devoted to the festivities.

Want to know which balloons to expect?  Click here. I'm looking forward to the new Very Hungry Caterpillar (and slightly less stoked for the Math is Fun float - my life experience says otherwise). 

If you can't wait until tomorrow, the balloons are getting inflated today from 3-6. They recommend you don't jump on them.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

My Experimental Phase

Franklin Street Works (41 Franklin St) is off with a bang (and a boom, a smash and a crash). This Thursday, Nov 17th from 5-7pm, they are mixing things up with an Experimental Music Night.

Artists featured will be Arvid Tomayko (from Rhode Island) and music duo Use Other Door (from your backyard here in Stamford).

In addition to some funky beats, you'll get to see a new exhibit in the works.

And best of all, it's free!

Monday, November 14, 2011

Write What You Know

photo from Aidan Jones,
They say you should write what you know. The problem with that is that all I know recently is what it feels like to be a human planet. Eight and a half months into my first pregnancy, what I don't know is basically anything else.  So it means I've had nothing interesting to say for a little while.

BUT I'm trying to change my wicked ways, citizens, by bringing you a nice juicy networking event scheduled for tomorrow.

The M.O.D. group, which stands for Motivation + Opportunities + Drive = Success (and who I've blogged about before a few times) is hosting a see-what's-in-store-for-2012 event at Black Bear (261 Main St) tomorrow (Tuesday, November 15th). The event is designed for young local professionals, free of charge and promises acres of networking opportunities. Not a bad thing in this economy where every connection matters. There will be a raffle (what for...they didn't say...) and drink specials of $3 for the duration of the event: 7-9pm.

Check it out and see what people look like off line (except, not me...I'll be busy whining about wearing a bowling ball - I wouldn't want to network with me right now...).

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Entertain the Children without the Cha-ching

photo from, Muffet
Looking for affordable ways to entertain the kids in your life?

On Thursday, November 3rd, from 5-8pm, Stepping Stones Museum (Matthews Park, 303 West Avenue, Norwalk) will open its doors to welcome folks for free! This is part of their Open Arms project to make the museum's attractions available to a wider audience. 

 Exhibits available during the event include an interactive math exhibit called Cyberchase, games and events devoted to financial literacy and a section called Healthyville on nutritious food and budgeting. The evening is sponsored by First County Bank here in Stamford.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Stop, thief!

Watch those iProducts on Metro North! Apparently, theft is up on the commuter train. It's sort of odd to me. For a good long stretch the thief and the victim are locked up together in a moving metal breadbox, so why strike then? Maybe it's only at the stops or on the platform? Either way, hold tight to those pads and pods. I will!

Monday, October 17, 2011

Shop 'Til You Cure

The Strike 3 Foundation, an incredibly worthy cause I've blogged about before, is doing something to to help your wallet and help fight cancer. On Wednesday, November 2nd - one day only - if you buy a $5 savings pass at Lord & Taylor, you'll receive 3 coupon savings passes worth 25%, 20% and 15% off.

 A lot of things not usually covered by L&T coupons are covered! This includes Uggs, makeup and perfume, which are eligible for 15% off. Not too shabby! The $5 goes entirely to The Strike 3 Foundation. What better time to start scratching items off your holiday shopping list?

 For more information about how to get a coupon book, email

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Improving the Community, One Glass at a Time

photo from Pink Sherbert
Last year, the North Stamford Exchange Club (NSEC) put on a great event called the Beer Exchange. My husband went and had a fantastic time. Not only did he sample beers from all over the world and meet a lot of great folks making our local scene better, he was also glad to contribute to a great cause.

The NSEC is a group designed to encourage and promote some of the best things going in our area, such as:
- The Parenting Skills Center (Prevention of Child Abuse)
- Little League
- Babe Ruth Softball
- Belltown Fire Department
- Turn of the River Fire Department
- Stamford Museum and Nature Center

The NSEC is rallying you and me around their good works again with this year's Wine Tasting Event. The event takes place at the Italian Center of Stamford (1620 Newfield Ave.) on Friday, October 28th from 7-10pm. Tickets are $50 and can be purchased at Giovana’s Wine & Spirits (1492 High Ridge Rd.). For more information, call 203-252-2518.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

How Much is that Nothing in the Window?

photo from  antwerpenR,

Retail up and down Bedford Street has always been a mystery to me.  Some storefronts languish for ages.  Others house stores where - I swear - I've never seen anyone enter or exit.  With the throngs of people at some of Bedford's restaurants, why aren't there retail customers as well?

I got a bit of a clue about why some stores remain empty when I spoke to a friend of a friend who is opening a coffee shop.  She explained that she'd love to open it on Bedford or Main, but she simply couldn't afford it.  She estimated it would cost $6,000/month to open up shop there.  She told me it was cheaper to open her store in Greenwich or Darien. Really?!?  Clearly the rent is more than the market can bear since so many locations remain unclaimed. Isn't it in the property owners' interest to lower the rent until the spaces are filled?

The good news is that Stamford Downtown has developed a plan. Their 2011 Retail Advancement Program will award up to $50,000 from Stamford Downtown plus a $50,000 landlord contributions - which are paid through tenant improvements and other concessions (what that means, I couldn't say...). Retailers who sign on would have to agree to a 5-year lease.  Only those selling products are eligible.  In other words, no restaurants, no entertainment, no banks, no printers and no copy places. Available retail spots are street level within the Downtown Special Services District.

I'm glad to see that landlords are pulling their weight to help make this community better, and I'm thrilled that Stamford Downtown recognizes that reinvigorating our retail offerings is a worthwhile investment. Maybe all the bloggers (myself included) who have been waxing poetic (aka, complaining) about what we WISH were on Bedford might see a few things fall into place.  A girl can dream...

For information about the 2011 Retail Advancement Program, contact Jacqueline Wetenhall, Director of Retail Development for Stamford Downtown at 203-348-5285 or visit the website.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Stamford Movie Madness

Walking down Bedford tonight - just in front of the Avon - there were two giant tractor trailers and another around the bend in front of the CVS. It's a movie crew doing not much more than waiting around when we were there, but still cool to see! I Googled around a bit but I'm still not sure what the movie is. Anyone else know? 

In other amusing movie news, my Googling revealed a piece from Stamford Patch saying that Brad Pitt was interviewed about the Avon Theatre's "no refund" sign when showing his film, Tree of Life. You probably heard about the notice posted by the Avon that went viral, and if you didn't, you can read the posting here and see some of the coverage of it here. Apparently Mr. Pitt himself was asked about it on Entertainment Weekly and said "They said that? I didn’t know that. That’s great." I like a guy who can laugh at his own vaguely ridiculous movie. I liked the movie, but dinosaurs...really??

Anyhoo...I'm going to see if I can figure out what exactly they are filming - but you might want to take a walk down to the Avon and check it out for yourself. 

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Art Opening!

Had a great time at tonight's opening for Franklin Street Works. The space is lovely with a welcoming cafe bar, modern seating and an inviting outdoor patio. The stairs between the bottom floor art space and the dining/art area are clear plastic and lit from within - very modern, very cool. Besides, you gotta love a party with passed cupcakes.  I haven't spent much time on Franklin Street (just across from UConn Stamford), but I really liked what I saw.  I'll definitely be back.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Buying A Home?

Photo from normanack, 
With any luck, you were smarter than me and did not buy your first home before 2008. Let's say, for example, that you're MUCH smarter than me and ABOUT to buy a home - you might be interested in a workshop on Tuesday night (Sept 20) hosted by First County Bank (Norwalk City Hall, 125 East Ave, Norwalk, Community Room). It's free and you can learn about mortgages, prequalification and negotiation.

If you bring all your financing goodies (past two years of completed tax returns, one month of pay stubs, two months of bank/brokerage statements, profit/loss info if you own a business), you might get prequalified for a mortgage onsite. Event is underway at 7pm and runs to 9pm. 

You can find out more and reserve a spot for yourself by calling 203-969-1830 x 10 or emailing

(Apologies for initially referring to the bank as First "Community" rather than First "County.")

Thursday, September 15, 2011

What Are You Doing This Weekend??

(photo from kpwerker,
No need to go far, there are some fun options here in Stamford.

First, Arts & Crafts on Bedford is back and filling up the street this weekend. There will be 75 vendors selling all kinds of awesomeness from glass to wood and everything in between. I always manage to find some fun Christmas gifts at this event. Hours for Saturday are 10am-6pm and Sunday from 10am-5pm. There's no cost to attend, excellent people watching and activities for little ones (sponsored by the Nature Center and the Bartlett Arboretum). 

Second, Fairway (699 Canal Street; just inside the cafe) is helping you put healthy food on your kids' plate with their Back to School Smart Start Event. On Saturday from 10am-noon, the store welcomes Dr. Carlton Colker, a nutritional consultant, with tips for planning, shopping and eating better. Dr. Colker is a local physician plus an author, TV personality, wellness coach and Fairway's health and nutrition consultant. There will be info on fitness and a Q&A with the doctor as well. And don't let all that education turn your kids off - there will also be some crafts for kids and an opportunity to try some of the healthy food options. 

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Bar Taco is Open!

I realize I've been living under a rock not to know it, but I just didn't - and when I joined a few friends out at Barcelona tonight I was so excited to see it bustling!  Has anyone been?  What do you think????

Monday, September 12, 2011

Goodbye and Hello!


I was so sad to hear that Telluride has closed its doors. If you click on their website, it says "account suspended." Say it ain't so! 

I'd bestowed the title of Best Whiskey Sour on them a while back. Now where will we go for the perfect balance of booze and fruit garnish served in just the right glass? 

It was also a perfect spot to grab a bite before an Avon movie, bring your in-laws for a fancy/rustic dinner and enjoy a lovely lobster salad business lunch. They gave me quite a few food-n-drink inspired smiles, and I will miss them acres and tons.  


As we say goodbye to Telluride in the food world, we have a new neighbor to welcome in the art world. Franklin Street Works (41 Franklin Street) is a shiny new not-for-profit art space here in our corner of the world. I can't wait to see what they offer!!

They are rolling out the red carpet for the rest of us on September 22nd with a reception from 5-8pm to jump start their very first exhibit called "Fernando." Running until November 13, 2011, the exhibit includes artwork by Trisha Baga, Lukas Geronimas, and Mads Lynnerup.

The group's Creative Director, Terri C Smith, tells me the exhibit is "informed, in part, by the organization's location in the city of Stamford and its unique position as a new alternative art space." Locally inspired vision - how exciting!

 There will also be a street food extravaganza on Saturday, October 22nd from noon to 6pm.

Learn more about Franklin Street Works on their Facebook page.

(photo from where are the joneses,

Sunday, September 11, 2011


I doubt there's much I can say that hasn't been said about the horror of ten years ago, but I wanted to add my name to the list of thousands thinking about the victims of 9-11 and praying that we never experience such a tragedy again. I've spent a good chunk of the morning watching tributes and crying like a baby. The time it took just to read out the last names beginning with "P" took ages!  It reminds me of the enormity of our loss.  Good wishes and blessings to everyone who lost someone close and prayers the future of our country.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Weekend Plans? How About Something Seaworthy

(photo from Robin Iversen Rönnlund,
Hurricanes, earthquakes with a chaser of a week of rain - maybe you need something fun to do this weekend? Here are a few watery options:

1. Norwalk Oyster Festival 

From September 9-11th come out for the Oyster Festival (Veteran’s Park, Fort Point Street and Seaview Avenue in East Norwalk, CT). It features an Arts and Crafts Show, performances by Fuel and Soul Asylum, tasty food options, BMX and MotoCROSS stunts and apparently - although I swear we had trouble finding them a few years back - oysters!

Sunday is Family Day where kids 5-12 are free with paid adult admission and there is a flat $15 fee for festival rides from 11am-2pm. There are also specials for kids and a free live show. There isn't parking on site, but parking info is available online.

Get your tickets here. Prices are:
- $12 for general admission
- $10 for seniors
- $10 special Friday admission
- $3 for children 5-12 (free for younger children)
- Free for US military on active duty and their families (needs ID!)

2. Marine Life Study Cruises 

On Saturdays in September and October at 1pm, the Norwalk Maritime Aquarium offers Marine Life Study Cruises for the very reasonable price of $20.50 (two dollar discount for aquarium members). You'll learn about the critters that live in the Sound and why it's one of our best natural resources. Cruises last two and a half hours and allows participants to collect marine animals from the surface to the murky depths. There's a very cool video microscope on the ship so you can get a better look and a "mud grab" to bring it back.

To take part in the cruise, you must be 42 inches tall and kids under 16 must bring along an adult. You can even get financial assistance by filling out this form and returning it to Click here for tickets. If there is space available, you can get tickets on the day of. The ship sails just outside the aquarium's IMAX theater.

3. Greenwich Harbor Yacht Showcase 

In the mood for something a little fancier and schmancier? Put on your boating best and check out the Greenwich Harbor Yacht Showcase at the Delmar hotel and restaurant (500 Steamboat Road in Greenwich). You'll see power boats, sailboats, private planes, luxury cars and - you got it - yachts. Admission is free (although I'm pretty sure everything else is far from it). You can check out the exhibitors and enjoy a beer garden and some excellent food. I've attended a few events at the Delmar, and the food is amazing! The event benefits the 12 Metre Yacht Development Foundation.

If you're really interested in boating it up, join them on Friday the 9th for a Preview Party 6-8pm. It comes complete with hors d'oeuvres, cocktails and entertainment but will set you back $75. That event benefits the Audubon Society. Ticket info is available here.

Stay dry everybody - or if you can't - at least have some fun! 

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Throw Your Shovels in the Air, Waive 'Em Around Like You Just Don't Care

Ok, that may not be the catch phrase artist John J. Bedoya is going for, but (no matter what it says about me) that's what came to mind when I saw the advertisement for his upcoming exhibit at the Fernando Alvarez Gallery. The exhibit, entitled "Beyond Technique" will have an opening reception on September 9th from 6-9 and will be on view until October 16th. Mr. Bedoya is a young guy with heaps of praise under his belt already. You can read a lovely write-up of the show on the CT Post website.

Monday, September 5, 2011

Kick off Next Weekend with Karaoke

Kiss all your lazy summer days with their hurricane prep and surprise earthquakes goodbye! They packed up the summer series sculptures, Labor Day showed up and it's time to admit that autumn snuck up on you. Thankfully, G/R/A/N/D has just the thing to make you feel better. How about live karaoke??!!?? Honestly, that's pretty sweet.
This Thursday from 9pm to 1am, G/R/A/N/D (15 Bank Street) gets the cover band Bliss on stage, and welcomes you to make a complete ass out of yourself rock the stage. You can come and sing OR you can come with your musical weapon of choice: guitar, drums or base (pretty sure they provide the drums unless you plan to bongo it out). Dry your death-of-summer tears with a little rock and roll plus $4 drinks from 9-11pm. Not a bad way to start your fall. (photo from hugochisholm,

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

About Town

The grapevine told me two interesting things today:

1. UBS is staying put! The Hour and quite a few others report that UBS will accept a $20M "forgivable loan" - which I think is code word for a gift - in exchange for sticking around for five years and keeping at least two thousand jobs in the state. I hope that "in the state" means in Stamford proper, but the article doesn't actually say. They'll take in more dough if they bring in more jobs too. Lord only knows what would have happened if UBS had left us at the altar, so I'm glad we'll keep going steady for at least the next little bit.

2. Macy's is getting a facial. My buddy, TK, tells me our downtown Macy's is getting a power wash. She saw it in the works and reported that it was already looking spiffier.

Monday, August 22, 2011

It's Chic to Restaurant Week

Hi there, citizens! In addition to gradually turning into a basketball, I've been busy traveling to Toronto for work then to San Francisco for play and easing my way into the harsh realities of the real world. Luckily, to ease the blow, Stamford Restaurant Week to the rescue! It started today and runs until Monday, September 5th. I love their loose interpretation of "week."

My husband and his parents along with our 7 year old nephew took full advantage of it today with the selection from Lucky's. I'm hoping my friend AF and I do the same by week's end at Volta or Bar Rosso. If you want to see what's on the menu - or the many menus - there's a spiffy little CT Restaurant Week website that I've never seen before.

If you'd rather hear it from yours truly, the deal is this:

$10.11 for lunch; $15.11 for dinner at
- Black Bear
- Grand Burger (dinner only - never been to that one)
- Kujaku
- Lola's Mexican Kitchen (excludes Fri/Sat - see my recent review)
- Lucky's (which is such a neighborhood gem - affordable, easy, no fuss, yum chicken salad sandwiches)
- SBC Downtown
- Tiernan's (I know they serve alcohol...but food? If you say so...)
- Volta (I've been three times now, and really enjoyed it)

$12.11 for lunch; $20.11 for dinner at
- BUtterfield 8
- Capriccio (lunch only - not surprising b/c it's hard to get a dinner table there without any special promotions)
- Kotobuki
- Quattro Pazzi (excludes Fri/Sat - always have great meals here - this one seems like a pretty darned good deal to me)
- Remo's (love Remo's but their prices start out reasonable, so I'm not sure if this one actually saves you money)
- Tengda (with the sad, sad demise of Duo, my reigning favorite sushi option)

$20.11 for lunch; $30.11 for dinner
- Aria
- Barcelona (such a fun summer spot)
- Bar Rosso (excludes Fri/Sat - nice way to check out one of our newest additions - I've only been once but it burned holes in my pockets, so this one, I can assure you, is a good deal)
- Capital Grille
- Chez Jean Pierre (excludes Sun for some strange reason)
- Columbus Park (only been a few times, but a good, solid option)
- Emme of Capri
- EOS (excludes Fri/Sat - good reminder that we need to go back there - check out their stellar review from the NYT)
- Mitchell's
- Morton's (dinner only)
- napa & co (lunch only)
- Tappo (excludes Fri/Sat - if you haven't been, you should fix it soon - pasta is excellent)
- ZAZA (excudes Fri/Sat - another nice new addition to the neighborhood - service is still not great, but food is very nice)

For more info on specials for kids and one for Avon Theatre popcorn, check out the restaurant week website above.

(photo from John Althouse Cohen,

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Rock Stamford!

Don't forget to check out the fantabulous conclusion to Alive @ 5 with headliners, the B-52s!

Sunday, July 31, 2011

T I R E D . . . but anyway . . .

The thing about brewing a kid in your mid-section is that it takes all the extra energy you had floating around and crumbles it up in a little ball and throws it in the incinerator. BUT that is neither here nor there, and when I can rally to write something useful, I WILL!

I was sort of destroyed on the big day, which means I was a very bad friend and missed the opening party for the Thank You Stamford event at the Fernando Luis Alvarez Gallery, but the artists who made the cut are on display until September 4th. The show is made up of Stamford artists, local grown talent - which makes it right up my alley. The really exciting bit for me is that my partner in crime for last October's Cans and Cocktails charity event, the man behind We Can't Stop, is one of the masterminds on display. He's a crazy talented guy - and I'm sure he's in good company. Check him out!

In other news, I couldn't help but notice that the Holiday Inn just off Grove has changed hands. All the green turned brown and it's now got a big fat Sheraton Hotel logo front and center. Kinda interesting!

In other, other news, my friends and I went to Zaza's the other day. I had high hopes for the decor and the food - and I wasn't disappointed. I like the black/white/red sophisticated vibe. I like the comfy, central bench seating. The glass wall and the slate of outdoor seating was charming. I ordered a house salad and the California pizza, and both were tremendous. Just typing California pizza makes me start to drool again...avocado, lime, arugula, shrimp...ridiculous.

However, as cute and friendly as our waiter was, there's a lot of room for improvement. I arrived first, and when he asked if I'd like bread while I waited, I said no thanks. Minutes later, there was the bread. Alrighty. When my friends arrived, we all ordered salads, but only two came out at first. Our waiter asked if we'd like the dressing on the side when he took the order (not even our request), and we said yes...which somehow translated into dressed salad with a bowl of extra dressing. Uhh...what? Then maybe 15 minutes later came another salad - after we'd said don't worry about it - we'll split these two. The third salad amazingly did have the dressing on the side. But the pizzas made everything better with their universally acknowledged fabulousness. Yum, yum, yum.

Well, that's about all I can muster...but I'll be back, citizens!

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

What's the Deal with UBS?

We've been hearing for some time that UBS might be shuffling employee to NYC and then that yes indeed they are officially moving employees out of Stamford. The building is still full of UBS employees (for now), and there's some small comfort in knowing their lease runs to 2015, but that will be here sooner than you think.

So why exactly are they thinking of leaving altogether? The New York Times quotes one landlord who has spoken with UBS as saying "They just can’t hire the bankers and traders they need."

But are we really the problem?

There's a great article on the topic on Dealbreaker that says:

The bank, which has not been doing too hot of late, seems to believe that leaving Stamford would be a panacea for all its woes which, according to UBS, boil down to no one wanting to work in Connecticut (rather than no one wanting to work at a place that doesn’t pay and yells at you when you ask if this month’s check will clear).

In addition, what leaves me scratching my head is how the "we can't hire new talent argument" jibes with the FINS article noting that "UBS will slow its investment bank hiring as it responds to weakened business conditions" and that the company is "responding to the 'challenging environment' and will refrain from 'mass recruiting.'" Huh?! Kinda odd that UBS is breaking up with us because we're not giving it something it doesn't want anyway. That plus several sources indicate that UBS will be eliminating hundreds or even thousands of jobs.

So I wonder if we're a convenient excuse for other company failings and those of the economy. Hope they stay, but if they go, hope they know why they're really leaving.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Arbor Eat 'Em

Our loverly friends TK and EL invited us out with their son to catch a little bluegrass music at the Bartlett Arboretum. Despite my Southern roots, I've never been big on bluegrass, but we had a fabulous time. You can bring a picnic, take in a little nature and enjoy some live music for a reasonable price: $10/person and less if you're a member (for evening events) and only $6/person for daytime.

It's hard to find activities that entertain both adults and kids, but this one did the trick. There were tons of children playing frisbee and taking death defying leaps off rocks while the adults chilled out and admired the sincere commitment to bluegrass demonstrated by that one guy's 3 foot long beard - wow!

Bartlett has a nice set of summer concerts set up for the season. You can enjoy the event Sunday mornings from 10-11am until August 7th or Sunday evenings from 5-7pm.

Prefer a little refreshment? They also feature summer cocktail event in the veggie garden on July 21st as well as a tropical garden event on August 18th.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Saturday Self Soothing

Today was rough, and I needed a night out. So my husband and I treated ourselves to dinner and a movie. Gotta get in as many dates as we can before the bambino comes on the scene!

It was a lover-ly evening that started out at Capriccio Cafe. I had the crab cake salad. Apparently, avocado is a mood enhancer. It certainly doesn't hurt to serve it up with succulent crab, tomatoes, corn and seasonal leafy greens. Light fare outside in the afternoon sun is perfection.

We then ventured down to the theater on Summer to see Horrible Bosses. I needed a little comic relief, and it scratched exactly that itch. Charlie Day has some sort of comedic Midas touch. Even watching him freak out singing to The Ting Tings is funny.

It was definitely a pick-me-up, and made me feel better. Feel free to copy my recipe for swinging your mood back into the right direction.

(photo from deshaunicus,

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

If I Had A Hammer...

I'd go see him! Don't forget that your favorite Taco Bell spokesrapper, MC Hammer, is in YOUR backyard TOMORROW! Did all your dreams just come true? He's won 3 Grammys, he's sold 20 million albums (ok, maybe not recently...), and he's spent decades being too legit to quit. If that doesn't get you out the do', I don't know what will. He's here for Alive @ 5 and you can see him at Columbus Park for $10 starting at 5pm.

I couldn't bring myself to say "hey, John Tesh is coming" - but he did - as part of a very cool new summer event here in Stamford. There are four weeks of jazz at the same Columbus Park concert stage on:

- July 13, featuring Marion Meadows
- July 20, featuring Joyce DiCamillo and Maydie Myles
- July 27, featuring the amazing Roberta Flack and Ralph MacDonald with Dennis Collins & Friends

All shows are underway at 6:30pm; admission is free for all but the legendary Ms. Flack, whose show will run you ten bucks.

In other news, my husband and I are expecting our first child in December - just found out we'll be parents to a baby boy - so that's cool!

Sunday, June 26, 2011

On Monday, the Cause is PAWS

Looking for a fun Monday night dinner activity? PAWS - the animal charity I've spoken of many times - is hosting a dinner event at Morton's (377 North State Street). Join them on Monday, June 27th from 5-10:00pm for a $65 prix fixe dinner that benefits their worthy cause. Ten dollars of each meal goes directly to help them help animals in our community.

You'll enjoy:

First Course:
-Caesar Salad or Morton's Salad

Second Course:
-Double Cut Filet, Prime Ribeye Steak or Single Cut Prime New York Strip
-Broiled Sea Scallops, Colossal Shrimp Alexander or Jumbo Lump Crab Cake
-Chicken Christopher

Served with Signature Potato or Fresh Vegetable
(A vegetarian option will be available upon request.)

Third Course:
-Morton's Legendary Hot Chocolate Cake
-Key Lime Pie or
-Creme Brulee

Eat, drink and be helpful!

Thursday, June 23, 2011

POSTPONED - Sad! Rock Your Locks

If you take your girly magazine with two shots of Jäger, you're probably a fan of NYLON Magazine. It's chic, edgy and exactly what Stamford needs.

Lucky us - they're coming to town! They're partnering with Noble Salon to share tips on how to have hip hair in the next few hot months. You'll also enjoy cocktails, hor d'oeuvres, discounts, gifties and other cool perks.

Join them on Wednesday, June 29th from 6-8pm. Noble Salon is located at 848 High Ridge Road. RSVP by emailing and get set to look smashing.

(photo from Beny Shlevich,

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Alive @ 5 Starts THURSDAY

If you only have two eyes, you'll fit in just fine because tomorrow's act is Third Eye Blind. They've been around since '97, and you'll remember some of their bigger tunes like "Semi-Charmed Life" and "How’s It Going to Be." (Which are now officially stuck in my head.) Also rocking tomorrow's stage is the Bandapalooza victor, Black Taxi.

Don't forget:
- You gotta be 21+ to get inside the concert space after 7pm (bring an ID), but you can stick around if you're younger and enter earlier.
- Attendance will run you ten bucks; kids 12 and under are gratis.
- You can join the party by entering on Main St. east of Clark and bits of Summer St.
- What can't you bring? Coolers, glass containers, booze, pets, video cameras or tape recorders.
- Bags are probably getting searched.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Bar Rosso Boom or Bust?

This weekend, I went to a lover-ly birthday celebration at Bar Rosso. Clearly, acres of people tried to figure out its charms long before me because the joint was packed. We sat up on the second level with a view of the bar, the stunning textured lighting and quite a collection of Saturday night cleavage. There's a lot to love at our newest resto fixture, but it's not all crystal, sparkling perfection. Let's take a look at the:

Decor: People in my party familiar with Bennett's said they could hardly believe it was the same space. Apparently the staircase was the only vestige of the building's former self. The shaded bulbs in the fixtures, rough cut stone walls, hammered cutlery and black iron accents made for an upscale rustic feel. The space is both intimate and enormous. There were delicate touches as well, like paper thin wine glasses that were so light we almost broke them. It was an impressive, sophisticated space to enjoy a meal with friends.

Service: It's hard to find fault in the decor, but it's not quite the same challenge when the service is put to the test. Our initial greeting was warm and inviting. However, attention to detail was not their strong suit. The waiter brought out a small bowl of some dark condiment, explaining that it was spicy sauce "or something." Very specific. Although they did well accommodating our large table, the wait between courses was ridiculous - which was particularly bizarre because they limited us to a set menu because of the group's size. Although we only had three dinner options, they still managed to bring my neighbor the wrong one. Another guest never received the coffee he ordered. That same guest asked for a single flavor of the gelato trio, but still received all three like everyone else. Although they're doing quite a few things right, service is not yet one of them.

Food: I should say that although we were presented with a limited menu, our options were excellent. My one gripe is that they failed to print prices on our set menu, so we had no idea what cost what. Still, I ordered the grilled vegetable appetizer, the baked chicken entree and the gelato. The vegetables were very much in keeping with the atmosphere: rustic and rich. I enjoyed the provincial flavor of the eggplant, but I could have done without the shock of the green olives. I generally prefer that sort of dish served warm, but it was tasty and charmingly presented in a simple dark glazed bowl. My fellow party goers had praise for the calamari, but wanted some sort of dipping sauce. Perhaps the upscale version is a nudist. My husband ordered the salad, and the dressing had a little too much punch for me, but I liked the thin, broad slivers of carrots. The texture was just right.

As for the entree, I adored the chicken. I never eat chicken with the skin, and I'd forgotten how much moisture and flavor it lends. Yum! I enjoyed the cheesy roasted potatoes, but the dish could have used a little something green. The balsamic glaze was particularly palate pleasing. Most people liked the spaghetti and meatballs. It was a variation on spicy meatballs to have a spicy sauce with a mild meatball, but I suppose it's a good plan to change up a classic dish. Some people noted that the sauce overwhelmed the meat, but other folks had high praise. My friend, TL, ordered the steak and had no regrets. She particularly appreciated the potatoes and the companion sauce (and I appreciated the tender fava bean I stole off her plate!).

The gelato trio was delish. The chocolate was phenomenal - hands down, the highlight of the meal - and paired well with the caramel/sea salt and basil. I didn't know what to expect with basil gelato, but it was an unmistakable, fresh seasonal treat. A friend shared a bite of the rosemary pound cake, which was unique and fabulous. It was grilled and served with strawberries and cream on a long slender plate. The texture was toasted on the outside, soft on the inside and melded seamlessly with the savory stewed berries. My husband had the third option (whose name escapes me now) and it was a vaguely suggestive-looking churro-like pastry served with bananas. Its odd shape made it a challenge to eat gracefully, but the flavors were spot on.

At almost $100/person, it was not a penny pincher's evening, but we had a splendid time among friends eating fine food in an amazing venue. I would definitely go back and see what the rest of the menu has to offer (and see if the service has risen to the promise of the setting).

Friday, June 10, 2011

I Don't Need No Stinking Ribbon...

And I will cut it!

Or at least Congressman Jim Himes will. You can see him and a few other folks, novelty scissors in hand, snipping that ribbon at the Franklin Street Community Health Center.

To meet a growing demand, they've added five exam rooms and four new jobs, all to get you and yours a little healthier. You can watch the magic happen at 141 Franklin Street in Stamford on Monday, June 13 at 9:30am. For more info, contact Eliza Cole at (860) 262-2546 or

Wednesday, June 8, 2011


TOMORROW see Bandapalooza on Bedford Street, which closes down for the event from 5-11pm. It's tomorrow and on June 16th. It features extended sidewalk cafes and live entertainment from bands competing for a coveted Alive@Five spot. We went last year and had a blast!

June 9 bands are Stalking Sally vs. The Mike Cusato Band
June 16 bands are The Adam Currie Band vs. The Mad Things featuring The Good Doctor

Restaurants taking part are:
- BUtterfield 8
- Bradford’s Grill & Tavern
- Brick House Bar & Grill
- Capriccio Café
- Lola’s Mexican Kitchen
- Lucky’s Classic Burger & Malt Shop
- Remo’s Brick Oven Pizza
- Telluride
- Tengda Asian Bistro
- Tigín Irish Pub

More info available on the SDDS website.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

This Just In

Volta (aka, crepes, gelato, summer patio awesomeness) will open its doors on (or pretty darned close to) June 15th - how exciting!

Wednesday Means Summer Party Day

Ok, so Memorial Day has come and gone and skirts are getting shorter, but as far as I'm concerned not really summer until the Stamford sculptures tell me so. They're speaking to me (and you!) on Wednesday with the Opening Party from 5:30 to 8:30pm TOMORROW at the Stamford Marriott (243 Tresser).

You can meet the artists, tour the sculptures and party with the sponsors at the big fat kickoff event to this year's event, Wit & Whimsy.

Ok so the recommended RSVP deadline has come and gone, but I betcha they'll make a spot for you if you RSVP to You can see the official invitation here. The price of admission is $50 and a sunny, summer attitude.

(photo from,

Sunday, June 5, 2011

I'm Sick!

And it stinks! I was coughing all night - some of that in my husband's face apparently (soooorrryyy!) - and felt feverish and nauseous. Yuck! Now this isn't really a "personal" sort of blog, and I don't like to burden you with all my trials and tribs, but I say this to tell you all the much more fun things I had PLANNED to do today.

1. Get my nails done with my lovely friend, TL. She's a fan of a spot called Tip Top Nails, but there are lots of other good choices around. I'm still sad that You Got Nails closed, but I did a lil' write up for a few other options around town here.

2. Have lunch with our neighbors. If I was feeling creative, I was going to make a summery salad from the excellent produce selection at Fairway (hey look at that, a sale on shrimp - maybe that's the way I'd have gone). If I was feeling lazy, I'd have picked up some sushi and salad choices from Tendga. Either way, yum!

3. Take a walk around the Stamford Nature Center. It's a gorgeous day, and the perfect time to take a stroll.

BUT instead, I'm partying with wadded up tissues and Vitamin C drinks. Bleh. Please go out and have much more fun than me!!

(photo from L'eau Bleue,

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Dining Options Coming Soon...and Already Here!

One thing I've always liked about Stamford is our restaurant offerings. Either they're good, or they don't stick around all that long and then there's something new and exciting in its place. So what's around the bend...or already here? Here are a few things you might enjoy in new local dining options.

- Bartaco. I am REALLY looking forward to this one! Their Port Chester location is already open, and I've heard nothing but good things. Their extensive wine menu is nearly as appealing as their summery cocktail list. How does this sound: "Rosita: Hibiscus Infused Gran Centenario Reposado + Rosemary + Pear Nectar + Cranberry." I'll take 6! You can even get a choice of tequila flights. They have a clever "taco" and "not taco" selection, and you wouldn't believe the options. Tacos include thai shrimp, spicy chorizo, portobello with queso fresco and even things like tripe and tongue! You can get set prices of taco trays or sides of grilled corn with lime, cayenne and cotija cheese or plantains. That's just a small sampling. Can't wait to see the rest of it - on my plate!

- Tasti-D-Lite. Located at 211 Main Street, our newest yogurt shop is now open - perfect for summer! They're all over NYC, and they feature flavors like Banana 'n Peanut Butter, Blueberry Cheesecake, Dulce de Leche and Red Velvet Cake. AND many of their offerings are healthy. You can see nutritional info for each flavor on the website.

- Bar Rosso (it's already here!) It's the brain child of the same folks who brought you Napa & Co., and it promises to offer a modern spin on Italian classics served in an upscale environment with a wall of natural cut rock and sky-high ceilings. The Stamford Advocate reports that whereas Napa is designed to attract a more mature audience, Bar Rosso is supposed to appeal to a younger crowd. The owners will be experimenting with live music and a DJ.

- ZAZA Italian Gastrobar. As CTbites reports, the new spot with the infamous poster is on the cusp of opening its doors - like this month! The tile work on the outside looks stylish, as do the bright red chandeliers (very Tavern on the Green). CTbites reports some exciting things, including brick oven pizza, 26 Italian Tapas, freshly made pasta, and a wide selection of beer and wine. Their write-up is fabulous, so be sure to check it out.

- Volta Gelateria Creperia. Stamford Talk has the scoop - and she got it from a very cool new blog called OmNomCT. Volta will be just next door to the new Bar Rosso. It's brought to you by the geniuses behind Capriccio - which I adore! - and will offer outdoor seating, and just as the name suggests, gelato and crepes! There will also be salads and sandwiches perfect for warm weather dining. Volta and Bar Rosso should certainly put some spring back into Spring Street.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Parade on Sunday!

As Stamford Downtown reminds us, there is a Memorial Day Parade tomorrow starting at noon. Yay for community spirit.

Lola's Take 2

So my friends and I went on an undercover mission this past week to Lola's Mexican Kitchen (135 Bedford Street) to see if they could do a little better than last time around. I don't think they knew it was me, and my husband checked out the other tables and found that we were all just about in the same boat.'d they do?

Much better! The size of my party changed, and the waiter was very accommodating and helpful about it. Gone were the days of sitting around twiddling my thumbs waiting for my water glass to be filled. Our waiter was prompt, attentive and altogether charming.

After some helpful menu suggestions, when the food came, we were pleasantly surprised. One friend raved about the salmon special. Another noted that the tacos were solid and, while not necessarily authentic, the taste wasn't muddled with too much cheese and sour cream. She gave them high marks, and the same held true for the quesadillas. The chips still seem slightly stale, but MUCH better than last time around. Even the place settings seemed more attractive.

All the food came out at the same time too, which was a nice surprise. There was a lot of inconsistency last time around, and the wait was far too long. This time it seemed much more reasonable.

The atmoshpere was fun, upscale, clean and festive. None of that is so different from last time around. They've always gotten good feedback on atmoshpere. It's attractive, interesting and altogether well done. We all liked that it wasn't too "theme-y" - in other words - no psudo hacienda with piñatas and such. Modern sophistocation is refreshing.

No review is worth its salt without some constructive criticism. One friend wished they offered Sauvignon Blanc by the glass, but she was reasonably happy with her Chardonnay substitute. One friend said the sangria could be a little better (too "syrupy"), and arrived with too much ice. On the other hand, the mojitos were a hit!

We paid using an irritatingly large number of credit cards, and the waiter didn't seem bothered in the least.

All told, we had an excellent time, and I'm thrilled to report that Lola's is moving in the right direction. One friend said that Lola's was just what she was looking for in a fun Mexican restaurant. Another friend agreed, and they both said that Lola's filled a void in the neighborhood. I'll definitely go back and hope to see you there.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

The Sculptures are Here!

What a nice surprise today to see the happy little summer sculpture series out and about today. So far, we've seen stacked up little white guys cartwheeling over each others' heads, a colorful square-shouldered computer-looking dude and bright splashes of color on the corner of Atlantic and Tresser. You can see the list of sculptures and artists here. Some of the names are intriguing. I'm partial to Comfy Couch, Ta Dah and Pigeon. The sculpture series always makes me aware that summer is upon us - hooray!

Monday, May 23, 2011

What a Nice Break!

Sorry for the long absence, citizens, but I needed a break - and I got one! In the last few weeks, I've been to Atlanta, Chicago and Vegas. Lots o' flying, but also lots o' fun. So anyhoo, back to business.

Now I know I'm a little late to this game, but I reserve the right to be excited about the Alive @ 5 lineup. So you got your:

- June 23rd – Third Eye Blind. I sort of like How's It Going to Be, and I can't think of any song of theirs that makes me want to shove 16 cotton balls in my ears.

- June 30th – Lee DeWyze. Ok, so I had no idea who that was, which I'm sure is proof that I live under a rock, but the interweb tells me he's the guy who won the 9th season of American Idol. Good for him! I'm sure people other than me care a lot more than I do, and you should come show him some love.

- July 7th – MC Hammer. This. Is. Awesome. I'm praying for parachute pants. I realize that he's become slightly less legit, but I am dying to know what he's got left in those dancing shoes. Can it still not be touched? Guess we'll see!

- July 14th – Dennis DeYoung: The Music of Styx. Now I'm not big on Lady or Come Sail Away, but I'm totally down with Mr. Roboto.

- July 21st – Vertical Horizon. Everything You Want is pretty catchy. I remember the video for You're A God, but I'm not sure that Tiffani Amber Thiessen ever really achieved deity status.

(photo from sk8geek,

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Sculptures are back!

Anybody who has lived in our neck o' the woods for more than 15 seconds knows that every summer we welcome a gaggle of new summer sculptures. We've had cats-n-dogs, realistic people, crazy wild animals and many other seasonal visitors. This summer's theme has been revealed: Wit & Whimsy. Stamford Downtown and the City of Stamford bring you 40 sculptures by 12 different artists on display from June to August.

They get the summer party started on June 8th at the Stamford Marriott. You can learn more on the DSSD website or by calling 203.348.5285. You can see a list of sculptors and sculptures here.

(photo from aussiegall,

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Give Props to the Cops

Tomorrow, Friday May 6th, Bedford St will be closed for an event to honor our local police. There will be a parade, and lineup begins for it at 5pm in Veteran's Park. There will be a block party immediately afterwards up and down Bedford hosted by Brickhouse, Bradford's, Tigin, Telluride, BUtterfield8 and Lola's. For a five dollar donation you can enjoy a hotdog or hamburger, and drink specials include $3 bottled beer, $4 draft beer and $5 mixed drinks. The event proceeds support "Killed in the Line of Duty." Good cause and cheap drinks - what more could you ask for!?

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Help Japan Rebuild

Once upon a time, one of my nerdy friends convinced me to watch this Japanimation film called Spirited Away. To be honest, I've never been a big fan of the genre, but I figured it was better than doing actual work. Much to my surprise, I was completely taken by it! It's bizarre and beautiful, and I couldn't look away.

Take a look for yourself and help Japan recover by joining in for Movies for Japan. The event takes place on May 5th from 7-11pm at University of Connecticut-Stamford (1 University Pl).

The charitable event will also feature live music and all proceeds (thanks to AMERICARES™) will support the Pacific Earthquake and Tsunami Fund. For more info, contact Jack O'Brien at 203-858-0720 or Tickets will run you a very reasonable ten bucks.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Lola's Mexican Kitchen

I admit, I was excited when Lola's Mexican Kitchen opened up on Bedford. Lord knows we need more busy storefronts on our main drag. I've given the place a few opportunities to impress me, and so far, I'm really underwhelmed. Here's my take:

- Good: The vibe is festive and fun.

- Bad: The service is incredibly slow. Water refills: slow. Taking food orders: slow. Food service: slow. Book a good long window of time if you plan to check it out for dinner.

- Good: The decor is hip.

- Bad: The food is mediocre. I've paid less for better Mexican food on more than one occasion. It seems to be served without any care, and just glopped onto the plate. They tell me the chips are made on site, but every chip I've ever eaten there has been stale. The guacamole tastes like it was squirted out of a plastic sack.

- Good: The drinks aren't bad. If you're there to make your after work hours happy, it's perfectly fine.

- Bad: The service is questionable. I pulled a waiter aside and asked that they bring out a cake for my husband's birthday. I was pretty surprised when a waiter just sort of tossed it our way without any sort of fanfare. Is it too much to ask for a candle?

Hopefully, my experience isn't indicative of yours. I'd love to be proven wrong. What do you think, citizens?

Personally, I'm pinning all my Mexican food hopes on bartaco which is headed to Summer Street in the near future.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Nice Reporting, CT Bites!

Great story about Bar Rosso on CT Bites - very exciting! They report that opening day is May 12th! Can't wait...

Butterfly, Breaststroke, Benefitting Others

So this long, cold winter you probably spent a good long time sitting on your duff. Summer is the time to get into shape and - even better - to do it as you help others. On June 25th starting at 7am, join the 5th Annual Swim Across America. The event benefits cancer research, and you can pick from a number of distance options:

- 1/2 mile
- 1 1/2 miles
- 3 miles
- 5 miles

Not into swimming? Volunteer as a boater, kayaker or a supporter on the ground. Learn more about the event here and register here.

(photo from Ed.ward,

Monday, April 25, 2011

Run, Fundraiser, Run!

Obama didn't get a trademark on the word "hope," and good thing because Stamford has big plans for it. The annual You-know-what in Motion race to fight cancer is slated for June 5th starting at Columbus Park. It's a groovy little 5k that you can run, walk or bike and all donations go to support the Bennett Cancer Center. We did it last year, and really enjoyed it. I should say that the biking event is longer - and has a few options: 10, 20 and 50 miles that take you through Westchester.

The event has a nice community vibe with enthusiastic runners and jugglers-n-such. And strangers clap for you - what's not to like? Click on the link above to register. They have a goal to raise a million dollars, and they're on their way. On the big day, registration begins at 7am, bike ride at 7:30am, welcome event at 9:15am, run at 9:30am, walk at 10:30am, and closing ceremonies at noon. Hope to see you there!

(photo from Phil Roeder,

Sunday, April 24, 2011

La Marqueta

Happy end-o'Easter everybunny. Hope yours was fabulous! My husband and I saw a real deal bunny hopping around in downtown Stamford. Didn't see baskets or eggs, but that guy's all kinds of tricky. Instead, we saw the new La Marqueta Food Plaza across the street (80 Prospect Street; where the Food Mart used to be). We took a look inside and it was pretty spiffy!

Perhaps the name gives it away, but it's definitely got a Latin flare, featuring a few items that aren't part of my regular grocery list (for example, the flyer advertises Canamelao Panela, Inca Kola Soda and Phoebe Acassan - the only word I know in that list is soda...), but they seem to have all the staples I need and then some. They had a nice selection of produce, meats and dairy. They don't have every brand I might want (for example, I didn't see my favorite vaguely inappropriately named Fage yogurt) but hard to think of something basic I'd really need that I couldn't find.

I remember a friend saying they had to drive 20 minutes to get a decent looking apple for a downtown photo shoot once upon a time - no longer! It was not long ago that I needed hot dog buns in a jiffy, and I got them at the Rite Aid after my husband rejected the awesomely named For Your Convenience - only after I bought them did I see the expiration date was ancient history. Ick. Glad to have a walkable downtown option for a last minute food fix.

(photo from DeusXFlorida,

Friday, April 22, 2011

Design Within Reach of the Produce Aisle

If you head over to Fairway Market right about now, you'll see a sign across the parking lot advertising that Design Within Reach is coming this Spring. It's exciting to see such a swish store headed our way. If you're not familiar with the company, it's all about modern design, which I 1000% dig. It's clean lines, mid-century modern looks and (allegedly) affordable.

My only problem with the store is that it's still pretty far out of my own personal reach, but I LOVE what they have to offer. For example, as much as I am drooling over this little Mad Men-ish bar, the $3,000 price tag is still a little hard to swallow. Perhaps I'll stick to the Japanese Masking Tape. Still, I'm looking forward to some sweet window shopping.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Not My-grove

Interesting article in The Advocate - Highgrove still looking for a bidder.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Work at Home Lunch Anyone?

A lover-ly reader by the name of EK wrote to say she digs the blog (awesome) and also to see if anyone knows of a work at home lunch group. It sounds like a groovy idea, but I have not heard of anything like that. If you know of something that fits the bill, please add a comment - thanks!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Party on the River

The big plan with Mill River Park is to bring our community some great natural space to make our urban environment a little greener and a little more entertaining. They are (slowly...but surely...) headed in that direction, and you can take part! For example:

- The Park is raising a sapling to Earth Day on April 16 from 9am-2pm. They are welcoming volunteers to and hosting games and exhibits. You'll be planting, raking, digging, painting and all around beautifying the soon-to-be crown jewel of downtown Stamford. Exhibits include a River Habitats display with live animals in addition to other outdoor goodness like knot tying and fishing exhibits. To register, email

- Everybody's a tree hugger once a year - on Arbor Day. The Park celebrates on Friday, April 29 at 11:00am with the display of 29 Kwanzan cherry trees, the offspring of the original Mill River trees planted by Junzo Nojima. The trees have been loved, watered and loved some more in a nursery area of the Park (Main Street at Clinton Avenue). Trees are now 7 feet tall and should be ready to burst into bloom. See them now and visit again in a year when they'll be planted for real and for true.

- Do you know Robin Stein? Robin is the engine behind the fabulous Mill River Playground, built in 2006. He helped coordinate the 1,500 volunteers who made the playground possible. Robin is retiring and you can help send him off in style on May 5th from 6-10pm at the Mill River Playground. Only 200 guests can attend, and tickets are $85. If you want to join, send your check to Marilyn Melfi, Mill River Collaborative, c/o Land Use Bureau, 888 Washington Blvd, Stamford 06904.

- The circus is back in town! The Big Apple Circus returns with a brand new show, and you can see it in action on June 10 & 11 when ticket sales help benefit the Park. Learn more by visiting their website.

(photo from William Schmitt,

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Cheese Dogs Remix

That charming charity, PAWS, is bringing back their Melting Pot benefit event. I wrote about this event last year and wrote a silly poem about the good they do. They find homes for our fuzzy homeless neighbors, and you can help 'em do it!

You can take part on Thursday, April 28th from 5-10pm. It's a prix fixe dinner including appetizer, salad, entree and dessert for $45 per good-deed-do-er. For every lover-ly dinner diner, the Melting Pot will donate ten bucks to PAWS.

Be sure to order from the prix fixe menu. The group's website characterizes your fab dining options as follows:

- Cheese Fondues: Carnivale Cheddar or Queso Fundido (served with breads, apples and fresh vegetables)

- Salad: Shrimp Cerviche or Spinach Mushroom

- Entree: Filet Mignon, Cimichurri Sirloin, Garlic Piri Piri Shrimp, Mole-Marinated Chicken, Citrus-Marinated Pork Tenderloin, Fire-Roasted-Corn Salsa Ravioli (served with fresh vegetables and dipping sauces) Vegetarian Option Available

- Chocolate Fondues: Dark and Dulce Chocolate or Caramel Nut Milk (served with Fresh Fruits and Cakes)

DO make reservations by calling the Melting Pot at (203) 656-4774 or booking online.

Not into melty cheesy goodness? You can help with a donation by visiting the PAWS site.

(photo from gadl,

Monday, April 4, 2011


The flowers are coming up and the city is taking off its winter coat. So how are you watching the season warm up? Here are some ideas:

- Walk/run/bike around Cove Island. It's a nice way to stretch those fat winter legs and remind them what a little sunshine feels like. We went two weekends ago, and it was still cold, but lover-ly. You don't need a parking permit until May 30th, so now's the time!

- The Stamford Nature Center is bursting with spring goodness (the link takes you to all their upcoming awesomeness). They have a Spring Cleaning for Self yoga event underway now, running to June 6th on Monday nights. It's only $15/class. You can also check out Family Take A Hike Week (April 19-21), Heckscher Farm Egg Hunt (April 23) and even Snakes of the World (April 29). What says "happy spring" more than snakes??

- If they haven't filled up, you can still sign up for Stamford Spring Kickball - they've been up and running since 2008 and they're 140 kickers strong.

- Enjoy some top notch outdoor eating at Capriccio Cafe. They have great salads, good service and cocktails to toast the season!

- Look ahead to the Bruce Museum's 26th Annual Outdoor Crafts Festival scheduled for May 21-22nd. We've been a few times, and it's a great event. It's fun to see what people can make and sell, and the food is fabulously bad for you festival fare - yum!

(photo from audreyjm529,

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Good food, good cause, good stuff!

On Wednesday, April 27th from 6-9pm at the Italian Center (1620 Newfield Ave), there's a fabulous event you won't want to miss. It's Fairfield County Eats!, and CT Bites - one of their generous sponsors - gives you the rundown. There's a crazy number of restaurants and other folks participating, including some near and dear to my heart like:

- Tawa Indian Cuisine
- DiMare Pastry
- Fairway Market
- Coromandel
- Colony Grill

The event benefits The Food Bank of Lower Fairfield County, which is a great organization supporting the people who need the most help in our community. You can buy tickets for $45 now, or $50 at the door. If you bring a bag of groceries to the event (just throw 4+ cans in the bag) you'll get a free raffle ticket worth $5...and potentially much more!

Make your plans by visiting the Food Bank's website or by calling 203-358-8898.

Monday, March 28, 2011


You're at work, you pass your colleague's office, he's passed out on the floor - what do you do?!?! You call 911 - now what?? If only you knew CPR!

Be prepared by taking advantage of free CPR classes given by Stamford EMS at First County Bank in Stamford and Darien. Starting on April 2nd and running through May 14th, you can take advantage of free hands-only cardio pulmonary resuscitation courses. What's so great about CPR, you say? It can help keep a patient's blood flowing when their heart has given out. If someone goes into cardiac arrest away from professional medical care, the odds of survival may be double or triple if they have the help of CPR. This version does not require mouth-to-mouth contact, and is just as affective.

Training is between 9am and noon at the following locations on the following dates:

- April 2: 275 Hope Street in Stamford
- April 9: 2950 Summer Street in Stamford
- April 16: 1042 High Ridge Road in Stamford
- April 23: 1110 Hope Street in Stamford
- April 30: 1980 West Main Street in Stamford
- May 7: 637 Shippan Avenue in Stamford
- May 14: 1006 Post Road in Darien

Join in and gain the tools to save a life!

(photo from energetic omphalos,

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Arty Party

My friends and I had a fabulous time on Friday at the opening of Fernando Luis Alvarez's newest exhibit. It's the solo show of Turkish artist Damla Tokcan Faro. She contrasts the ideal world of advertising and suburban tranquility with harsh reality using fanciful images of fairies, fairy tales and the natural world. Not only that, but she's also a lovely person! The show is on display until April 30th. Check it out!!

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Get the Skills to Pay the Bills

A little while back I told you about a local group called M.O.D. Success. They are a resource for young professionals interested in education and networking, and they have a new event coming up called The Power of Distinction
Master Strategies to Stand Out in the Job Search Process
. I've been both interviewee and interviewer, and there's no question - there are a lot of ways to do it wrong. It's tough to sell yourself, but it's even tougher to get ahead without learning to say "I'm awesome! Here's how..."

The event is hosted by career consultant Karen Hinds, CEO of Workplace Success. She will talk about job hunting techniques, common resume mistakes (and solutions!), and how to dress to impress.

AND to help you put together that winning look (winning in the non-Charlie Sheen sense of the word), K&G Fashion Superstore is offering a special trunk show for attendees.

If this is the event for you, pencil it in for Tuesday, March 29th at BUtterfield 8 (112 Bedford Street) from 7-9pm. The event will run you $10 (or the first tiny bit of pay from your brand spankin' new job).

(photo from Pink Sherbet Photography,