April Wrap Up

Well the weeks fly by and it is almost May. We had an early spring in CT with the trees blooming at least two weeks early. I am not complaining as I love the fresh, bright green of early spring. After having such a great week in Italy, I needed to catch up with my work and also had a trip to LA for work as well. As some good stuff happened in April, I am sharing an April wrap up.

What I have been reading

With a few plane trips in March and April, I was able to read the following:

Lucy Foly’s The Paris Apartment had me guessing to the end. I also re-discovered audio books and the Libby app which is a free app that you connect your library card. You can use it for audio books and ereader (I have a Kindle). This audiobook was brilliant with each character being played by a different actor. After I finished, I quickly consumed Foly’s The Guest List and The Hunting Party. They were all excellent, suspenseful reads (or listens as was my case). In a way they remind me of Agatha Christie – interesting characters, seemingly throw-away details and just when I think I have figured it out…well I have not! I can’t wait for her next book!

I also tackled The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo. I enjoyed this book even though I found the plot line frustrating – using marriage to deal with various challenges. I won’t say more than that but that was a negative for me.

I am a fan of author, Emily Giffin, but Meant to Be was not a favorite even though it was entertaining enough.

Lastly, I read Want by Lynn Steger Strong on the plane home from Italy. Frankly, I really disliked this book and its characters. It could be relabeled, Millenial Fantasy Meets Reality (and that is all I will say in case you want to read it!). I thought the writing was off too. Probably not a book I would have finished had I not been traveling and this was all I had with me.

New Favorite Blogs

I started this blog because I really enjoy reading what real women have to say! Great to see what Martha Stewart is doing but let’s face it, I don’t have a staff of hundreds. So here are a few favorite along with the links:

Summer Wind. I happened upon this blog as I was looking up reviews on Goyard bags. I found her blog and basically read it for two hours straight. I like that she shares about herself (new trend in blogs is that they tend to get right to recipe or outfit etc.). I also love her style. Classic, but stylish leveraging trends but not a slave to them. She is young but I find that I really enjoy her recommendations even though we are at different life stages (kindred style spirits perhaps!).

Before heading to Italy I realized I really needed an update in European style. As a Francophile I have always paid attention to French girl/woman style so I decided to focus my searches on that and found Leonce Chenal and am I glad I did! I really love this blog and find her spot on when it comes to making recommendations on everything from the best French pharmacy skincare to top footwear brands. She is authentic! Second choice is The French. This is similar to Leonce but the woman is an American living in Paris. Check out both of them if you want a dose of French style!

Around the Kitchen + Garden

So with spring having sprung I turned my attention to growing some annuals inside. I have never done this before but found it frustrating that my zinnias last year did not bloom until July. So, I purchased this grow light and a pack of seeds and guess what they have sprouted! Of course CG2 said that it looks like I am growing Cannabis – apparently these are the same grow lights? I would not know (needless to say!).

Back from Italy I became obsessed with Italian cuisine and had to make home made foccaccia. I used a blend of recipes from Lydia Bastianich and Alison Roman (Alison has a same day recipe). Came out delicious but I would probably cook it a tad less as it was on the hard side the next day.

I’ve also been obsessing a bit over Trader Joe’s hacks. Have you listend to their podcast? It is actually quite fun and they offer a few. This week’s hack is coconut shrimp with their pineapple salsa served in soft tacos…I’ll let you know how it goes.

That’s all for now! Happy almost Friday!