Posts Tagged ‘Brooklyn’

Are you hosting a bridal shower or baby shower?  Having a Tea Party for your daughter and her friends?  Or do you need favors for a birthday party.  Need an unique gift idea for someone’s retirement, recovery?  Great gift for both secular and religious holidays.


Today I came across Soji’s Honey Bakeshop  in an email from PURE WOW, which is fast becoming one of my favorite web sites.  It is a fantastic source of recipes and often features new specialty shops.  The photo of the cookies caught my eye, they are colorful, shapely and just so pretty! The following description is taken directly from PURE WOW:

Creator, Sogoal Zolghadri uses a simple homemade frosting and gel food coloring to hand paint watercolor-esque treats in her Red Hook Studio.

Everything about her mini works of art is customizable (from shape to color to design to price). For weddings, you could commission your names. Baby showers: Consider a classic storybook theme. Birthdays definitely call for something festive. But a random Friday? That’s for feelings.

As for the taste, expect a classic sugar-cookie recipe with almond extract and a hint of orange zest (meaning they’re not just a pretty face).

At least two weeks in advance of your fête, order online and Zolghadri will deliver to you in the city or ship nationwide.

I visited the bakery’s website and in FAQ section, learned they will custom paint your order with whatever design you want.  Price varies on complexity of design.  They ship of course.

I’m posting just a few of the magnificent examples of artistry they offer – Please go to their Facebook page or Etsy.  You won’t believe what Soji’s can create!

Hunter Cookies

Hunter Cookies

Wouldn't Mommy Love These?

Wouldn’t Mommy Love These?

Cowboy Cookies or Born Under the Sign of Taurus

Cowboy Cookies or Born Under the Sign of Taurus

Artwork On A Cookie

Artwork On A Cookie

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Probably the most memorable line in the movie, Love Is Strange.  It certainly brought the audience to a loud laugh, but then again, we were in Manhattan watching this tale of love and marriage which takes place in The City.  The film’s main story is that of Ben and George who after 39 years of togetherness, get married and then things go down hill.   George loses his job at a Catholic school but not his faith and without his steady income, the couple is forced to sell their apartment.  Homosexuality is not the subject of the movie, real estate is.  The couple is forced to go separate ways while they look for another affordable apartment.  They call a family meeting and put their dilemma out on the table.  This being New York City, no one has any room to accommodate the couple. That is except for Mindy who lives in Poughkeepsie and has an extra bedroom.  True to NYC island mentality, they all  think living in Poughkeepsie is unthinkable, not even remotely feasible.  That’s when the fun begins…Ben moves in with his nephew, Elliot and his wife, Kate and their son, Joey in a  small two bedroom apartment in  Brooklyn, George moves in with friends who just happen to be a pair of gay cops leading a rather boisterous life, partying night after night, filling the apartment with hordes of people.

Love Is Strange

Love Is Strange

The secondary story involves Kate (Marissa Tomei), wife of Ben’s nephew and writer who works from home and their son. One of the funniest scenes and one I wholeheartedly related to, was where Ben keeps starting up a conversation with Kate who is trying very hard to finish writing her book.  Ben is quiet for a moment and then asks her yet another question.  She is so frustrated, she almost loses it.  Joey, Ben’s nephew is tolerant up to a point;  His world is getting smaller as Uncle Ben takes over part of his bedroom, and intrudes on the already cramped space in this small two bedroom apartment in New York.  He (Joey) has developed a friendship with Vlad, who although may be the same age as Joey is light years beyond him in street smarts and this is cause for concern to his mother and father. 

Actually as I’m writing this, I think the real story in the movie is STRESS.  Ben and George are totally stressed out because they are separated and each is living in someone else’s home.  I think it’s George who says that when you live with someone you get to know them much better than you would want to.  Kate is stressed because her husband Elliot is never home so she is the only one who deals with Joey and Ben.  Elliot is stressed because he’s a filmmaker and well that comes with its own set of issues, George is stressed but for the most part he internalizes it until one night when he just bursts through the door to see George and bursts into tears.

The first word out of my mouth when the movie was over was “Arty” – the film was arty, it was low-key and slow-moving, no micro sound bites here.  John Lithgow and Alfed Molina are point and counterpoint personalities and each one brings his best to Love Is Strange.

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English: The western ramp and pylon of Brookly...

 The western ramp and pylon of Brooklyn Bridge, New York City (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I live in a strange and wondrous place.  My City never sleeps which means should I get a craving for anything in the middle of the night, I can either go downstairs to the 24 hour Duane Reade (drugstore++) or across the street to the 24 hour diner and eat another dinner or breakfast.  I can go to the Opera, the Philarmonic or the theater any night of the week. I can eat any ethnic food any day and visit at least 10 museums anytime.  I can see wonderful, colorful parades on most Sundays in the Spring, and Summer and watch the world go by as Israelis, Pakistanis, Irish, Indians and more walk along Fifth Ave.  That’s just a tiny bit of what makes New York City a wonderful place to experience life. BUT there’s so many things about this city that I didn’t know and here are some of those strange and interesting facts.

  1. In 1857, toilet paper was invented by Joseph C. Gayetty in NYC.
  2. The Jewish population in NYC is the largest in the world outside of Israel.
  3. The city of New York will pay for a one-way plane ticket for any homeless person if they have a guaranteed place to stay.
  4. Pinball was banned in the city until 1978.  The NYPD even held “Prohibition-style” busts.
  5. Albert Einstein’s eyeballs are stored in a safe deposit box in the city.
  6. There’s a wind tunnel near the Flat Iron building that can raise women’s skirts.  Men used to gather outside the Flat Iron building to watch.
  7. New York City has more people than 39 of the 50 states in U.S.
  8. There is a birth in New York City every 4.4 minutes.
  9. There is a death in New York City every 9.1 minutes.
  10. PONY means Product of New York.
  11. The borough of Brooklyn on its own would be the fourth largest city in the United States. Queens would also rank fourth nationally.
  12. New York City has the largest Chinese population of any city outside of Asia.
  13. It can cost over $289,000 for a one-year hot dog stand permit in Central Park.
  14. In 1920, a horse-drawn carriage filled with explosives was detonated on Wall Street killing 30 people. No one was ever caught, and it is considered to be one of the first acts of domestic terrorism.
  15. In nine years, Madison Square Garden’s lease will run out and it will have to move.
  16. Sixty percent of cigarettes sold in NYC are illegally smuggled from other states.
  17. Chernobyl is closer to New York than Fukushima is to L.A.
  18. The Empire State building has its own zip code.
  19. The East River is not a river, it’s a tidal estuary.
  20. There are 20,000 bodies buried in Washington Square Park alone.
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OH my, somehow I’ve been bitten by the March Madness bug.  I am writing this post and listening/watching the Syracuse/Michigan game.  I can relax during this one because it was assumed that Syracuse would win and right now they are leading by 22 points! “Oh how sweet it is”.  

I was going to make Thursday’s Top Ten about the crazy stunt taking place in Brooklyn this week where Franny’s is creating March Madness Pies.  Starting at Sweet Sixteen, they will be offering 16 different pizza pie toppings with cute names.  I thought the names were going to somehow correspond to the teams but they don’t so I’ve opted out of using Franny’s for my post;  Besides, I only like the purest of Neapolitan pizza – rich tomato sauce, some basil and oregano and some blobs of mozzarella with grated Parmesan cheese sprinkled on top!

I found this CAKE vs PIE tournament bracket and thought it was too cool!  HEY GUYS, THIS WOULD REALLY BE FUN IF YOU WOULD COMMENT WITH YOUR CHOICES and advance the bracket till we get to the WINNER.  If you don’t help me and I do it all by myself, I can tell you right now that Ice Cream Cake would probably win.  So let’s do it!!

Tasty Treats Oh So Sweet Bracketology

Tasty Treats Oh So Sweet Bracketology

I’m not sure exactly who I should be crediting for this bracket which appeared in 2010.  I think JEZEBEL.com, Jessica Coen and Gawker Media are all responsible for this so THANK YOU!

I’m starting it off since today is ROUND 1 in the NCAA Tournament.  I pick Birthday Cake and Apple Pie.  What are your picks?  You might want to copy this and play with a group of your friends.  I hope you’ll play along with me…By Saturday we move to Round 2. 


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American singer-songwriter Neil Sedaka. Taken ...

American singer-songwriter Neil Sedaka. Taken at the 2007 Scream Awards. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

When you hear someone say, “Neil Sedaka,”  what do you think of?  I believe most people think of some 50’s simplistic Rock and Roll tune, like  the happy-go-lucky-even-if-slightly-naieve, Next Door To An Angel.  If that’s what you’re thinking, then please read on because  the next time you hear  the name, Neil Sedaka, you’re going to think twice. NO, not twice more like somewhere between 300-500 – that’s how many songs he wrote.  Neil Sedaka is a consummate composer.  I tried to do some quick research and find the answer to this burning question – just how many songs did Neil Sedaka write and/or cowrite?  I found a list of about 270 titles and in Wikipedia, it says he wrote 500.  Either way, it’s one hell of a lot of musical talent.

Neil Sedaka was playing the piano when he was eight years old.  When he was in high school in Brooklyn, NY he formed a Doo Wop group with now-famous classmates, known as The Tokens.  He was accepted into the prestigious Julliard School of Music in Manhattan, where his parents hoped he would become a concert pianist.  He is a concert pianist, he just doesn’t perform as one – believe me he plays beautifully as he demonstrated tonight at the end of his concert.

BUT tonight’s concert inspired this blog, not so much as a review of his performance but rather more as an homage to his enduring creative talent, a God-given gift (his words).  I wanted to use the word, genius, however, genius connotes (to me anyway) a talent at an extraordinary  level.  Maybe he is composing at an extraordinary level and I don’t recognize it because he makes it seem so easy.   As he said; he sits at the piano, comes up with a tempo, then a melody and then lyrics.  Sounds simple, right?  NOT!  

For me, this evening was yet another trip down nostalgia lane.  Oh those songs!  I think I sat there with a lump in my throat for most of the evening and a couple brought tears to my eyes.  The love songs had lyrics that pluck at your heart-strings.  I guess when you’re a woman of a certain age you can’t help but remember where you were, who you were with and when.  I can’t tell you what I had for dinner 4 nights ago, but I knew every word to every song!  Scary isn’t it?  And most of all I think his lyrics tell it like it is. Mr. Sedaka said that he drew inspiration for his songs from his family and friends.  And the he told us he has been married to the lovely Leba, his wife of 50 years.  She must truly be the love of his life – how else could one feel and express such emotion.  From heartbreak to regrets, to wishing and dreaming of true love, and  from longing to loving forever, the music plays on, the romance continues and all in words you can clearly understand and remember!  

The following are just a few of the songs performed this evening:

Breaking Up Is Hard To Do

Love Will Keep Us Together

Laughter In The Rain

And also the sad but very real Solitaire, Lonely Night, Should Have Never Let You Go, I Let You Walk Away.   The lyrics are haunting.  Often at a concert, the performer introduces some new song they’ve written or recorded and I have mostly been disappointed.  Not so tonight.  Neil Sedaka is still writing songs and sang one from a few years ago, You.  Now that’s a love song!  It had to appeal to the large majority of middle-age couples and seniors in the audience.  It is a story of the lifetime love between two people, very sweet. I loved it!

Neil Sedaka has been writing and singing songs for over 55 years.  The list is way too long for this blog, for as he said tonight, “I’ve a got a million”.  However, so many of the songs were hits and released many times over by various artists, I think you’ll know every one of them:

Happy Birthday Sweet Sixteen

Earth Angel


Alone At Last

Angel Eyes

Bridge Over Troubled Waters

Cathy’s Clown

It’s All In The Game

Climb Up (Stairway to Heaven)

Proud Mary

Stagger Lee

Tears On My Pillow

The Diary

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My friend, Gail sent me this YouTube video and it cracked me up.  Many of you (my readers) who do not live in The City have written to me and told me how much you enjoy hearing about life in Manhattan through photos and prose.  Here’s a video you will find hilarious.

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A few days late but here are some more of the promised photos of Jane’s Carousel, newly installed in Brooklyn, NY.

Jane's carousel, Brooklyn NY

Prancing Silver Stallion

Brooklyn NY, Dumbo park, Jane's carousel

High Stepping White Mare

Brooklyn NY, Jane's Carousel

Riding in Style


Brooklyn, Jane's carousel

Bedecked with Blossoms and Bows

Brooklyn, Jane's carousel

Noble is thy name

carousel photos by Murray Head

Pippa, Brooklyn, carousel

And from our on the spot, junior reporter - Pippa!

photo provided by Heather



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Well, well, and I thought I was SO ORIGINAL with my new little category of interesting tidbits, tasty morsels to whet your appetite for more and lo and behold look what my friend, Gail found online!!!  She came across the blog, Vaude_Visuals which used the term Amuse Bouche and features fantastic photography; not only of the New York Clown Theater Festival but is in fact devoted to photographing the eccentric, daring in the world of performing arts.  Here is the link to his site:   http://vaudevisuals.com/2011/09/flocked-clown-show-audrey-crabtree/

From that site I followed a couple of the links and came to The Brick, a theater and performing art space located in Brooklyn and the place where you can find the Clown Theater Festival of 2011.  Their link is below: The festival runs through September 25th, so you still have time to grab some chuckles and belly laughs- after all who doesn’t love a clown?


The Brick

A Tasty Tidbit

Image from The Brick website

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A while ago I said I was introducing a new category; it is a combination of Only in New York and the subcategory of FAB FOTOS – AIWYFI a/k/a Art Is Where You Find It.  And in New York, art takes many forms.  Sometimes it’s in the architecture, sometimes the people, and sometimes it’s a slice, a snippet, an angle of something, someplace or someone that Murray has captured in his lens.

I hope you enjoy these Postcards from the City

New York City

Two Buildings For The Price Of One

New York City, grate

I Call It "Oozing Grate"

New York City, taxi cabs

Advancing Forces

Roosevelt Island tram

Heading to Roosevelt Island

Bridge to Roosevelt Island

Or You Can Take The Bridge

All Photos Courtesy of Murray Head


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Last night I listened to  the wind howling and Peter complaining about the wind, the snow and life in general lol! The lamp on the porch was swinging precariously and it was too cold and too windy to go out and turn it off and besides our real concern was that it fall over and break and live electricity hit wet snow so we just unplugged it.  And the wind howled some more.  By the time I went to bed I could see a huge drift forming along the sidewalk on the side of the house and another sweeping upwards to the shed.  I thought I would open the back door and take a photo BUT the door would not open-totally blocked with snow drifts.  Comforting thought as I went to bed knowing that in case of emergency we couldn’t get out the back door.   Actually the front door was blocked too but with repeated pushing, we could get it open and thank God, we had the presence of mind to put the snow shovels on the front porch.  AND thank me that I insisted we put the salt in the house and not outside like someone else wanted to.

This is what we woke up to this Monday morning:


Ocean Grove, La Vie en Rose, Monday after the storm, December 27th

Monday Front Porch Drifts 9:30am


Ocean Grove shed, drifts up to the door, Monday, December 27

Monday Drifts Blocking the Shed


bird feeder, snow drifts,December 27th

Monday Backyard Bird Feeder 9:30am


Monday December 27th, car buried, La Vie en Rose Ocean Grove

Monday morning 9:30am

Let the shoveling begin!!!


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