Everything has a price tag. In our case, living in an idyllic beach village in Costa Rica while one of the coldest winters in years descended on our home in Brooklyn, meant dealing with a few scorpions, perpetual dirt on our floor, and giving up Amazon. At a beach party shortly after arriving, I lamented to my new mom friend about how I could not stand the feeling of dirt on my feet. She sweetly laughed and said, ‘We have a lot of unwinding to do on you”. I knew this was true, and it would be a good thing for me.Read More
Are you ready for take off? Tray tables locked, seats up, belts fastened and your toddler quietly, pleasantly sitting in his seat not kicking the person in front of him.
That whole “getting there is half the fun” was clearly not about getting there with a toddler. I highly recommend pursuing your travel goals with children, but it will take a little more prep work to have “a quarter of the fun” getting there.
To get you all there and back with as few meltdowns as possible, consider these five tipsRead More
Catskills | AdventureRead More
ALL ABOARD! It's time to get out of the city (which ever city you are in) and take full advantage of summer's last long weekend. In NYC the nights are already chilly so it truly feels like summer is on it's way out. Getting out of town involves the dreaded task of ... PACKING! But once you learn to be a good, practical packer this gets easier - Good packing is having that Jenée Sais Quoi !!!
#1: Stick to a color palette. This way different pieces will mix and less shoes and accessories are required.
The color palette depends on the locale. In this particular series I'm going to East Hampton so I chose a Sophisticated, Preppy combo of Summmer White, Black and Navy.
Note* for my weekend in AC is was all about Gold and Bright color.
|| White Linen Pants - Joe Fresh, Black Tank - James Perse, Straw Hat- Olive & Pique (White zip-up sweatshirt - not shown) ||
Later, this outfit was perfect for a casual dinner in the Hamptons.
#4 Sleek Dress. Though summer beach weekends are usually very casual, always bring one dress which can elevate your look for dinner beyond a clam bake. You never know. A dress like this is perfect because it's simple enough to be casual but sleek enough to look special. This one packs up small too!
|The red bathing suit is a perfect accent color to my color palette for easy cover up options.|
Last week we stayed on a Ranch in Winter Park, Colorado where we attended the beautiful wedding of our friends', Rick and Jackie. As I packed for the trip I tried to imagine which dress would be most fitting for not only the occasion but also the landscape. The hand-stamped brown & ivory print felt like rustic Colorado yet the Silk fabric made it glamorous.
The outfit was complete with an antique gold and crystal necklace and The Canal Street Clutch from Mignon Faget.
Here I'm using the clutch like Grace Kelly used her Birkin. Which fashionista gets it???
|Dress: Vintage J.Crew, Necklace: J.Crew, Clutch: Mignon Faget, Bracelet: Heidi Daus|
Pronounced: [klee shay]
Definition: an expression or idea that is overused or predictable and may appear unoriginal
|Thai Iced Coffee and Butter Sweetened Milk Toast @ Somnuek Kopee|
Fashion Cliff Notes | Outfit Ideas
A trip to Colorado is no easy task for packing (well when you care about fashion). There are active days filled with hiking, biking, and sometimes camping. Then there are days of shopping, parties and nice dinners with friends. To some degree I have noticed you can just wear exercise wear all day and everywhere in Colorado. Though, I prefer to "dress for the occasion" so here is how I pulled it off with just carry on luggage.
Light day hikes require little more than comfortable shorts and a tank top. Sunglasses or a hat and sunscreen are imperative. Now get up that mountain and watch for Chipmunks !!!!!
|There is always time for a fashion show on the mountain|
Shorts: Lucky brand | Tank: Zara | Sun Glasses: Vintage Federica Ray
|Outfit for Shopping Pearl Street in Boulder, Colorado|
|Top: Zara Collection | Shorts: Joe Fresh | Handbag: Vintage | Sandals: KorkEase|
|This Mullet Shirt is a party in the back and great for when you just want your derriere covered.|
|Wedding Guest Look: I went for Cocktail meets Flower Child... Very Boulder|
Dress: Vintage dress from the 60s care of Ari's Grandmother
Handbag: Black Woven Monet Minaudier (my own design)
Sparkly Necklaces: J.Crew
Wedge Sandals: Corso Como
|Active day of biking through Canyons and City|
Tennis Skirt: Addidas
Loose Tank Top: Zara
Hot Pink Sports Bra: Kohl's Special
* for a more feminine active look - don't forget about tennis skirts!!! they are not only for tennis*
|Dinner Wear: Fine French Food calls for a tidy sophisticated look but still Colorado relaxed|
Top: Zara Collection (makes a reappearance)
Pants: Uniqlo Hot Pink Denim
Neckwear: Vintage Scarf - flowers, stripes and dots
Today, I'm hanging out at the most adorable (how can they all be so adorable?!) coffee shop inside of a market in Tribeca called All Good Things. The name is very à propos because this is a place where you can buy- you guessed it- all good things, from flowers and chocolates to jewelry and candles and from fine meats and cheeses to local produce and hand-crafted goods. I forgot to mention that their coffee shop is a mini Blue Bottle coffee shop, so I knew just what to get- a New Orleans iced coffee. It's hitting the spot on this hot summer day!
|Fall Winter 2012/13 Add Campaign|
|Mila Canvas Valise Clutch|
At the Sunday Night Bazaar in Chiang Mai, Ari and I found bits of Thai fashion we could not leave behind.
In a Vogue Thailand article, I discovered even Tory Burch could not help but to also be inspired by the rousing textiles and colors of the Thai Highlands. These are part of her Spring 2013 Collection.
|From Vogue Scrapbook to my travel Scrapbook|
Refined, Playful, & Possibly the most Versatile Accessory
|Jim Thompson Silk Scarf with Elephant Print|
Since we just arrived back home the day before Valentines, I was not expecting any kind of Valentine's surprise as we are both terribly jet lagged and spent from the trip. But when I awoke, I found a surprise from Thailand. It's the quintessential fashionable gift from the land of silk, elephants and smiles: A Jim Thompson silk scarf.
Knowing how to wear a scarf takes some practice and displays a sense of refinement. Having the gusto to pull it off shows good taste and a playful attitude. For a trip, it's the perfect accessory for packing light as it can be a hair accessory, a neck accessory, a waist accessory or....
a bedroom accessory - think blindfold.
Helloooo, it's Valentine's day.
|A new addition to my scarf addiction.|
|Fashion show while still in my night gown. Fold in half, Tie around neck - Instant Refinement|
|Schmatta Style. Laid back.|
|With the Knot in the front - Make sure you know good knots, sailor.|
|Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr.... Happy Valentines lovers|
|Receiving an elephant kiss in Thailand|
|Ari getting an elephant hug in Thailand|
With animal shaped patterns everywhere now (it started with birds), not only is this scarf nostalgic but totally on-trend.
As I finished dressing for our Friday night out "on the town" in Koh Chang, Thailand (a beach town), I exclaimed to Ari, "Isn't Fashion so much fun!" He laughed and said, "I love that you will always be a little girl." To that, I say: Whatever ;)
We were meeting up with friends to celebrate a birthday and see what the night life had to offer. After days of just living in a bathing suit and sarong, I was ready to put on a little mascara and pull together an appropriate Night Time outfit with my modest assortment of clothing packed.
- I thought, little white shorts would be hot & sexy, thus covering the Seductive part.
- For Jewelry I did the Playful arm party thing with multiple Friendship bracelets. Also, a fluorescent bandeau under your slightly see-thru white shirt is totally: Playful Seductress.
- Night is always the time to to put on shine since it's so dark outside! or in Da' Club. Rhinestones alone may be too much for an island, but when they are woven into an friendship bracelet style belt - they are a perfect Beach Nightwear Accessory.
- Lastly, Accessorize with a Cute date
|Tortoise Time-Will-Tell Watch, Friendship Bracelet Arm Party from Madewell, Sparkly Belt, Bright Purple leather bag|
|Sparkly Hand Woven Belt from Calypso, the ultimate Beach store in the City (NYC)|
|Fluorescent Pink Bandeau Bra from Jackie's in New Orleans|
|Let the Night Begin|
Note: a perfectly normal day time outfit was transformed for night with a few small accessories. Good to remember when needing to pack light!
the SARONG - Exotic, Multi-Functional, and Packable
Hailing from island life, the Sarong is naturally Exotic as it is part of traditional dress of exotic peoples.
In the states most guys would never be caught wearing a sarong, but in Thailand and other south eastern Asian countries, it's quite common. Thus, I was able to convince Ari to borrow one of my less girly looking ones. After this trip, he may be sold on what a perfect piece of beach attire it is.
I may have coerced him into a Sarong Fashion show......
|Ari loving the long dude sarong in front of our Bungalow|
Yes, finally a post on A Life with Ari about Kitties!!!!!!!!
Thailand is full of roaming dogs (though not very scary ones) and kitties (but not as many as Rome).
Here are some photos of some of my favorites
These kitties live at the Banila in Chiang Mai where we are staying. Actually there are pictures of them on there website and it was the sole reason I wanted to stay. The owner loves cats and has cat decor everywhere. These 4 kitties live in the lobby. During working hours while people are in and out the kitties are on leashes. The leashes are long enough so that they can move around and even sit outside beyond the sliding glass door. I've only known them for a few days but they have such distinct personalities. As a cat adorer, having these sweet kitties around while on a long vacation is such a good fix. Banila Guest house is wonderful for many other reasons too.
|We love to look out side and stare at the boy cat that lives next door|
|All I like to do is Sleep and Dream|
|I'm always a little pissed off|
|I'm always a little bit frightened. I'm very sensitive|
|The cars are so fast. I'm so happy we have these cute leashes to keep us safe.|
|Oh so Nervous .... !!!!!!!|
Kitty in a Cone is so funny no matter where you are. It's a little mean to laugh because they are healing from something, but at least they are being looked after. I also never saw a kitty cone in Thai!
|Don't let the stupid cone fool you. I run this store, bitches|
The basket contained:
- Green Chlorophyll for Cooling the Fever
- Fresh Coconut for hydrating
- Homemade Kampuchea for good probiotics
- Ginger to soothe stomach
In the evening we were going back to our room and the inn keeper realized we were not going to eat dinner. She insisted on buying us a rice soup that Thai people eat when they are sick. When she brought it to our room, I couldn't believe it - IT WAS CHICKEN SOUP (Thai Grandma Style Chicken Soup). Is it possible that every culture uses Chicken Soup as a feel good remedy?!
Last day to be ware of falling coconuts from above
Last day of Part I of our Thailand adventure
Our top recommendations for Koh Chang Island:
Accommodations : K.B. Resort on Kai Bae Beach. http://www.kbresort.com/EN/index.html
It's ideal if a relaxing vacation is what you are after with a beautiful
Restaurants: Porn's Bunglaow http://www.pornsbungalows-kohchang.com/pornsbungalows_e.htm
FYI, Porn is a common Thai nickname
The restaurant is on the beach with cushions to lie down on while u sip a drink of
wait for your food. There is even a tree house to sit in for dinner. My fav!
Magic Garden http://www.magicgardenresort.com/
The food is fantastic and the music is so cool. Our server had the coolest hair too
sorry no picture! They have accommodations too on a party beach if that is the
purpose of your trip
Transport on Island: Mr.Moon Motor bikes
It's across from KB resort. MrMoon is a super cool guy. For less than $10 a day one can rent a motor bike which is the best and most entertaining way to get around the island. The road is full of steep hills and twists and turns. It's definitely an adventure in itself.
Yes it's a metaphor when traveling to far and foreign places.
(Or maybe you've heard the expression "When in Rome do as the Romans do")
The best part about the first day on a beach vacation is taking off your shoes and walking on the sand. The worst part is the sand from the beach stuck between your toes at the end of the day. Instead of neurotically trying to control the situation and constantly cleaning your feet, giving in to the new habitat will be far more rewarding.
Go to Local spots, Eat Local, and Dress Local
(this is not about the Brooklyn Local, Organic Movement ;)
Enjoying and embracing a new culture actually can be made better with proper footware. No joke!
Discovering Kork Ease a few years ago made all warm weather traveling that much better. They are style and function in one. The sandal style works with all warm weather outfits, and the wedge makes long walking tours in a European city or dancing late night in a beachy Thai club more tolerable and graceful. I also like the way my bum looks in a wedge/heel.
While packing for this trip I thought of a great video I once saw about a girls shoes which are animated and all wait eagerly in her closet to see which she will choose to go out into the world. I have a feeling all my other shoes are jealous of the Kork Ease because when I'm packing light, these sandals always win.
Ari's sandals are obviously not wedges but win the cool hippy award. Nomadic State of Mind sandals are the hippest bit of footware for dudes on an island or just in a... nomadic state of mind.
*don't forget sunscreen on your feet when kayaking because no shoes will feel good when those guys are toasted!
This morning, thanks to jet lag, Ari and I were the first on the beach for a sunrise swim. Diving into the ocean to start the day is a dream I have often. The only thing that would have been better is doing it in the Buff! Perhaps tomorrow
While wading in the water, we were looking forward to coffee. Then I started to think how close we are to Sumatra and thinking about this part of the world's history. While this place is civilized, it's not what we Westerners have come to know as civilization. Certainly this rawness is the magnetism ( and sometimes repulsion) for western people.
Here it is WILD. It retains a closeness to Nature and embraces Rawness
Or as Ari told me, " A rabbi once said: we are here to spiritualize the material and materialize the spiritual. "
In addition, the nature makes the Wild and the Wild makes the nature. By Ari