Archive for the ‘Travels’ Category

Three weeks from today I’ll be on a plane to one of my favorite places with some of my favorite people. I’m heading to New York City for Jen’s Manhattan Meet-up and I couldn’t be more excited. I’m leaving Husband and Daughter behind, which will be more than difficult, but it will be nice to get away and hang with the girls.

On my list of Must-sees and Must-dos:

• Dumplings in Chinatown (see above)

• Any Farmers’ Market (to get local goodies)

Mood (!)

• Central Park (at least part of it)

Guggenheim (never been there, strange, eh?)

• A Bagel in Brooklyn

• A cupcake that’s NOT from Magnolia

Museum of Arts and Design

• And to wander

So, I ask you, what am I missing? What do I have to see that’s off the beaten path? Where do I have to eat? I plan to walk almost everywhere, so I’ll need at least four or 5 meals a day. Suggestions? Thanks!

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(Okay, so maybe it was from a walk LAST Wednesday, but I figured the sights in sunny Cozumel are more interesting than cold, frozen, gray Minnesota. Enjoy!)

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There are dozens and hundreds of jewelry stores in Cozumel. They range from trinkety bracelets with your name on them to Cartier. From what I could tell, most of them were loaded with tacky silver jewelry that may or may not be made with any true silver. I bought a bracelet at one of these stores and was able to negotiate a bargain for myself. But as I wandered around the town, I was drawn to one store repeatedly. Most of their inventory was the same that I saw elsewhere, except slightly less tacky and a bit more legitimate. But then I came across a display case filled with the work of Mexican Jewelry Designer Martha Vargas.

I was immediately drawn to her bracelets made of wood and silver, but reality had me checking out this simple necklace instead.

I love it. I originally thought the black dots were a stone, but it turns out they’re wood. Makes sense. I’m absolutely thrilled that I bought it for myself. Check out her site and her beautiful work. I contacted her US rep and they are working on adding her work to this site.

Here is an artist statement I found from her:

“Today, with these hands, to the rhythm of my woman’s heart, I model the materials of the earth and mix silver, wood, stones and crystals, adding bursts of light.”

Beautiful, isn’t she?

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Outta Here…

Can’t take any more snow, cold, wind chills or icy sidewalks. So I’m heading to the beach for a week. Take care, stay warm, and I’ll try to bring back some sunshine.


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Denver Eats


As reported, we recently spent a few days in the fine city of Denver. Short of the fact that it is so dry there my eyes nearly shrivel up and fall out, I like Denver. The scenery is beautiful and the city isn’t too big to figure out. Even though we were there to hang out with my newest nephew, we still had to eat and were able to find a couple local places that we’re sure to go back to.

Sunday night we went to dinner at Le Central, “The Affordable French Restaurant”, is just south of the capital and downtown. And affordable it was. It was also really dark and the photos just didn’t turn out. It appears that their specialty is mussels, which I adore, but didn’t go for that night. Husband started with the Escargot (his favorite) and then had a beautiful salmon dish. I started with a truffled puff pastry dish which is pretty mediocre, and a truly amazing and rich Beef Bourginon over pasta. It was way too much food, but so good. (I was still craving beef for some reason). I ordered a chocolate mouse cake for dessert and brought it back to the hotel because we were so tired.

I would go back, but I’d probably order the mussels (which are served with endless french fries). But the prices and the cute atmosphere really caught my attention.

The last night we were in town, I kept my camera in my purse and we enjoyed an amazing meal at Sushi Sasa just west of Lodo. I knew this place would be good when we drove by at 8pm on a MOnday and it was packed. We got the last open table. I was very impressed with the simple interior and the wide variety of dishes on the menu. We started with Miso Soup, Cucumber-crab salad and Edamame. Then we tried a dish called Atomic Shrimp Dynamite, which was shrimp and asparagus tempura mixed with spicy mayo. It was really amazing. Just hot enough without tossing you out of your chair. Next up was a beautiful platter of sushi rolls, including a roll that contained baked fish. It was really different, but amazing, and I am still craving it.

If you’re ever in Denver hit the Sushi place first and the French place if you’ve got time. Oh, and bring plenty of eye drops and lip balm. Ouch.

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Feet tired. Crowds getting annoying. Subway waits getting long. But we still had to eat.

After a trip through MOMA, lunch at an Indian Buffet in Manhattan.

Followed by a rich chocolate cupcake at Magnolia Bakery.

And a really amazing Burger and Fries at Bartabac in Brooklyn.

Then off to the airport and back to the reality of real life in the Midwest. Which really ain’t all that bad.

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