Friday, December 30, 2011

Massage Envy, My New Love

Last night I cashed in on a gift certificate my mother gave me for Christmas, to Massage Envy, which must be one of the greatest places on earth. I got an hour and a half massage, including aromatherapy massage lotions in their "anxiety release" scent, which was a soothing melange of lavender, orange, and some other calming stuff. I almost went for the straight lavender scent, but decided I would do the other one and just burn some lavender incense at home instead, thus completing my 360 degrees of harmonious environmental energy.

Oh, it was amazing. For an hour and a half, I lay practically comatose, and possibly slightly salivating, while this saintly woman slowly returned me to the state of Human Being. I went in with tension in my neck and shoulders from sitting at a computer all day, and general stressiness from running around and living life all day and not having enough time for yoga, and walked out of there literally bouncing down the sidewalk, I felt so light.

I try to make empathetic noises when people tell me they do not like massage, but honestly I am at a loss as to why. Perhaps I was a cat in a previous life, who now responds instinctively to back rubs, but the experience of having aromatic lotion rubbed into your tired skin while you slowly unwind every muscle in your body, is just unbeatable. Massages should be covered by health care plans, and not just because you made up something to the insurance company about "your old football injury acting up again."

Haha, like anyone would ever believe I played football.

*photo courtesy of

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Take Ye the Tureen of Goose Fat

While the content of my blog posts certainly strays from the original title of this blog, I've always felt that the 18th-century ethos still influences how I interpret modern social norms, politics, fashion and food.

Whether it is my unshakable obsession with the admittedly unhealthy bread pudding family, or my annual tribute to my patron authoress, Jane Austen, in the form of her favorite drink, the whipped syllabub, 18th-century food somehow always strikes me as the best comfort food, full of hearty, salty, sweet, creamy, savory ingredients meant to be slowly enjoyed in the days before all of those things were put on Santa's Naughty List.

So I was delighted when this morning I discovered that Colonial Williamsburg's website has launched a digitized version of an 18th century cookbook: "History is Served: 18th-century recipes for a 21st-century kitchen."

For the ambitious, or for the 18th century grad student, you can read the original 18th-century description and interpret as best you can (half the fun!). For the more modern reader, a 21st-century description is provided below, with more straight-forward instructions.

Let the colonial cookery begin!

*photo courtesy of

Eclipses Bring Cookies and Change

Oh my, I can't believe it's December. And not just December, but like, halfway through December.

So sorry it has been a bit of awhile since I last blogged. My boss has gotten some funky new jewelry in at Falkora Jewelry, so I've been writing web copy for pieces like these fun atomic age earrings.

Falkora also had a show at the recent First Fridays in Pittsburgh, on Penn Ave in the Friendship/Garfield area, and was very successful!

I am not sure yet that I totally have the whole Christmas thing in hand this year, but at least I did get some decorations up and baked some sugar cookies today.

Today was also a lunar eclipse, and funnily enough I did hear of two major (or one major, and one semi-major for my family) events that took place today: my dad, stepmom and stepsister got two new kittens (monumental since the deaths of our other two cats), and my cousin got ENGAGED!!

That is the big one. I have been smiling all evening after hearing about it. I haven't met her fiancé yet, but thanks to Facebook I pretty much feel like I know him. I am so happy for both of them.

As winter approaches, we come up with so many reasons to celebrate and try to bring light back to the world. Peace and love and light to you all, dear friends, in the coming days.

*photo courtesy of

it's not just for the classroom!