{stories and snapshots from my new york city life.}


I'm still writing...but not here!

Hey guys! If you're still following my blog on Blogger, you may have noticed a conspicuous lack of posts since...um January? I've moved to Wordpress and I hope you'll follow me over there!

I am still at muchtomydelight.com. Miss you, love you!


I've Moved!

Much to My Delight has made the switch to WordPress! We're still looking a little rough around the edges over there, but will be posting till the kinks are worked out. Please switch your reader if needed.

Much to My Delight is still found at muchtomydelight.com.
Hope you'll follow me there!


A Day in the Life: The Wednesdate

Every so often, Vin and I will take off work on a random Wednesday and go on what we call a Wednesdate. You can feel free to punch me in the face for calling it that--I know I'd want to. Here's how our day of fun went down yesterday:

7am: Wake, drink mama's happy juice (see Sunday's post), eek out a blog post, watch Today Show. Did y'all see this kid president video? Seriously, if that boy's up for adoption, I'll gladly find a spot for him in my barely one-bedroom apartment. He rules.

8-8:45: Pre-contemplative pep talk to get myself to the gym. This includes positive affirmations and several high fives to the bathroom mirror.

9:30: Enter gym. Guy hands me two promotional t-shirts--one burnt orange, the other blinding neon green. Affirmation worked-- am handsomely rewarded for effort before even exerting any. Hop on elliptical next to guy who smells like he works out much harder than I'm about to.

9:31: Not sure if I can handle what's happening in my nasal cavity. Pretty sure eyes cross for at least two seconds.

9:35: Is this over yet? I think I might be dying.

9:40: Hit my stride. Helped along by my new favorite song--the one Marnie caught Hannah dancing alone in her room to on the last season of Girls. (PS: I love that freakin' show. It makes me feel uncomfortable at least once an episode and Shoshanna is amaze (that's her saying-- "amaze". Not mine. I would never say "amaze" (or presh, or mani, or totes. Just FYI). For realz.

10:20: Leave gym, head home.

10:30-12:30: Shower, quick snack, bicker with Vin about appropriate footwear for lunchtime restaurant with strict dress code involving suit jackets and no sneakers.

1:30: Lunch reservation at 21 Club for NYC Restaurant Week. This place is very money. We are not money and they know it. They seat us by the bussing table.

1:35: Look around the joint. White men in suits as far as the eye can see. The room is almost pitch black and there are toys strung up from the ceiling. This restaurant is very old New York. It's for schmoozers. For business deals and handshakes. Feel gratitude for not having a job that requires shmoozing. I'd suck at it.

2:00: My lunch: salmon tartare with taro chips, roast chicken with truffled potatoes and haricots verts, vanilla creme brulee with raspberries. I've had worse. I've also had better.

2:30: In the bathroom, overhear a mature woman tell a young lady: "You know, my girlfriend's husband just died. He left her $100 million dollars. His first big deal was made here. My friend loves the 21 Club." Internal monologue says duh.

2:55: Wrap up the bill. We're given a delicate plate with baby macarons and tiny chocolates. Class. Maybe we'll come back for the full-price menu and try their $34 burger. More likely, we'll continue getting greasy $5 ones down the street at Petey's.

3:00-3:20: Walk up 5th Avenue. Lots of tourists to dodge. Weird, balmy weather. Hair starting to defect.

3:30: Pop into Henri Bendel to look for new eyelash curler. Am immediately accosted by luxury skincare saleswomen who try to sell me some ungodly expensive creams. Saving dialogue for separate post. Let's just say Vin's change in footwear bit us in the collective ass; these people actually thought we had money.

3:40: Enter Apple Store on 5th. As usual, there are probably 700 people in there. It feels like the tropics and smells like a locker room. Scent so familiar; look around for elliptical guy.

3:42: Try to pry raspberry seed from rear molar with tongue.

3:45: Vin says to salesperson about slim computer, "This thing is so sexy. If Heidi Klum was standing right here next to it, I think I'd spend more time ogling the computer." Salesperson chuckles. I am dubious.

4-4:15: Vin and I spend time sitting outside the Apple store tapping away on our Iphones. It is so meta. ( Just learned what this meant earlier this week. May have used it wrong).

4:45: We're seated at Serendipity--the ice cream shop made famous by a corny John Cusack movie that romanticizes cheating on one's fiance two days before the wedding. It's cute in here, but Vin is sitting in front of a huge painting of a guy wearing nothing but a banana hammock, and it's distracting me. 

5:00: The famous Serendipity "Frozen Hot Chocolate" arrives at the table. Feel disgustingly decadent until table next to us orders the deluxe version with a big hunk of cake and an avalanche of hot fudge on top. My stomach hurts looking at it.

6:00: Back home, glance in mirror. Shit. My skin looks incredible. If Shoshanna were here, she'd prob call it totes amaze. May need to get schmoozy job to afford fancy skin creams at Bendel's. 

8-10:  Vin heads to parents' house; I watch American Idol on couch. Ugh. Nicki Minaj is the worst. Every time she calls someone "darling" in a fake British accent I want to rip off her dumb wig.

10:30: Time for bed. Drift off to sleep in my neon gym shirt, with sparkling pores on my face and raspberry seeds still in my teeth. Goodnight, New York.


Party Idea: The Ice Cream Social

You guys, I was really bad last weekend. I had four bowls of ice cream, a cake pop, a cookie dough truffle, a handful of raspberry M&Ms and a mini chocolate brownie pudding thingy. I felt like ralphing. 

It was really fun though. 

My friend Tara gave me the ice cream attachment for my Kitchen Aid at my shower in September. My friends are all very smart, and they reacted in the most logical way possible. They gave her a round of applause. A few other gal-pals have the ice cream maker too, so we decided it'd be a great idea to have a party where we'd each create a different batch and sample the wares.

It was a great excuse to pull out all the other pretty stuff I was gifted at my shower. I left the dudes off the invitation for a reason. I used dainty little dishes so we didn't gorge on huge portions.

Ice Cream Social Dessert Tasting Menu

Diana's vanilla ice cream with nutella and rocher chocolates

 brownie puddings topped with Bailey's ice cream

rosewater ice cream with mini baklava

Jen W.'s vegan/gluten-free chocolate chip cookie dough truffles &
Irish-coffee cake pops (with chocolate-whiskey cake, semi-sweet shell,
Jameson hard sauce cap and a chocolate-covered espresso bean)

The ladies in my living room/kitchen. Typical NYC entertaining includes needing to rearrange the whole layout and dragging in patio furniture.

My friend Jen sells her delicious vegan/gluten-free cake pops and other treats and is constantly introducing new flavors. And trust me when I say you don't have to eat vegan or gluten-free to enjoy them--they're incredible! Check out Moonface and Wally for ordering info.

I'm still looking for new flavors to make in my ice cream maker. What's your dream cream?


Rock 'n' Roll Brooklyn Wedding!

We went to the coolest wedding Saturday night! One of Vin's very best friends in the world got hitched to an adorable gal who happens to be cousins with another one of our best friends (get all that?), and their wedding was probably the most unique one I've ever been to. They got hitched in a rock club in Brooklyn!

They even got their own concert poster!

Me & buddy Carmela

They were married on onstage by a very rockin' minister. Vinny took all the photos, and I always give him a hard time about whipping out the camera during moments that should (in my opinion) just be watched, but I have to admit...his pictures usually come out amazing. I'm okay with losing some arguments.

The lighting made for some amazing photos--so dramatic!


Some couples are so giddy in love that it's a joy to see them together.
Melissa and Joe are definitely one of those couples.

See what I'm talkin' about?

And the cuteness just don't quit.


And because it was a rock club, the couple and their friends took to the stage all night long.
The newlyweds sang an adorable duet.


The groom's brothers took to rockin'...


                                    And then some hot long-haired dude played a set on the drums...

...and the guitar. What a babe. I wonder if he's single.

Congratulations Melissa and Joe!
Thanks for an unforgettable evening and best wishes for a wonderful wedded life together.


Spilling the Beans: A love letter to coffee

 The other day I complained on Facebook about not having anything to blog about.
"Write about your morning cup of coffee," an old college friend prompted.

Challenge accepted. Let's tawk about coffee.

I like my coffee like my men--tall, hot and sweet. I like it in my big, ugly orange mug--the one with the huge crack down the side. I like it in my house. I like it in your house.  I like it in Maxwell's House. I like it in the coffee shop, the diner, and the joint across the street with the open barrels of coffee beans that make my hair smell like mesquite smoked bacon.

I like it strong on Monday, decaffeinated on school nights and with a hearty shot of Bailey's on the weekend. I'm not embarrassed to tell you that I've whispered "I love you" to a cup of coffee.

On extra groggy mornings, I swear it whispers back.

This morning, as the machine beeped at me to let me know the hot stuff was ready, I found myself calling across the room, "Hush now. Mommy's coming for you." It's like a reflex I can't even control. It happens every day and most of the time I'm halfway through the sentence before I realize there's not another person in the room. What exactly is wrong with me? Or as my husband would joke, "What's right with you?"

Which leads me to this question: Who else talks to inanimate objects in their house? Do you hurl expletives at your alarm clock like I do? Do you ask your toilet to kindly shut up when the water keeps running? Tell me I'm not the only one who glares at a ringing cell phone and asks, "Now what the hell do you want?"

But I'm never short or gruff with my coffee. Why would I be? It does so much for me and asks nothing in return but frequent pee breaks. It's my sweet liquid sunshine, my cherie amour, my port in the storm. Coffee lifts me up when I'm feeling down, makes my heart skip several beats and warms my hands, belly and soul. I love it more today than yesterday. But not as much as tomorrow.

And here we are again. The pot has run dry. My orange mug is on the fast track to dregs-town. This love song is nearly over.

"Don't worry," I say to her. "This isn't goodbye. It's see you later."


A Day at the Salon: She Cuts You Down

I had my tri-annual cut and highlights appointment last week. I go to a neighborhood place in Queens rather than a salon in the city, because the price difference is staggering, and the quality is just as good.

I am committed to a stylist I'll call E. She has deeply tanned skin, absolutely enormous breasts, and long skinny legs like two sticks of sugar cane. She speaks in a thick Brazilian accent and alternates between calling people "mi amor" and "you bitch". She is brash and uncensored and seemingly fearless. Basically, she is everything I am not, which always fascinates me.

We kiss cheeks, European style, and she says, "Hey married lady. What's your new name?"
I tell her, and her reply is, "Ugh. Why'd you change it?"

I should have predicted this response.

It reminded me of the time she asked me what I did for a living, and when I told her I was a therapist she said, "Oh god, really? Who would want to talk to crazy people all day?"

It appears she lacks a filter or a fully-functional sensitivity chip, and she's totally comfortable letting it all fly in front of her regular clients. Before exiting the salon, the customer right before me warned: "Don't let her be mean to you." I appreciated the tip, but also understand that E is one of those people who is mean to you because she likes you, and I knew I had hit some kind of new status at the salon when I was one of the people she started calling bitch. As in, "Get up you bitch--it's time to get shampooed." Although most of the time, she just points her finger to show you where she wants you to go, like a puppy being led to its wee-wee pad.

The other stylists, while not quite as brassy as E, are equally gossipy, and spend their time between clients taking smoke breaks, texting and catching up on breaking celebrity news. They wear really tight pants and really tall boots, and spend an inordinate amount of time checking themselves out in the 15 or so mirrors lining the salon's walls. It's like Truvy's shop from Steel Magnolias is still expanding, and this one landed in Queens.

My job can be pretty isolative in comparison, and it always strikes me how much fun all the stylists seem to be having. "You all look like you have so much fun working together," I say, mid-blow-out.

"Oh yeah. We are all friends. We never fight," says E. "You know... we always stick up for each other and the customer's always wrong." Then she throws her head back and cackles like a cartoon villain.

She spins me around in the chair and I take a look at myself. She's so unprofessional, but damn, that girl does good hair. It is sleek and shiny and bouncy, and to confuse me even more, she tells me again and again how pretty she thinks I look. This is definitely an unhealthy relationship.

"You're really great at your job," I say, handing her a 30% tip.

"I know." she replies. And then that cackle.

Just think how she'd talk to me if I tipped the standard 20.