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7.27.12 Weekend Update: Hot Links

Breaking Bad is back with a vengeance, and we're still making our way through the original Swedish Wallander, but we also stumbled across Inside Men, a new BBC One series that I submit for your viewing pleasure. It's really quite gripping. It's about a brutal armed robbery that takes place at a secure money counting house, the events that lead up to it and the aftermath. I especially love the performance of Steven Mackintosh as the milquetoast manager who finds his inner bad-ass. I confess that after these grueling days spent sweltering at my desk, in the garden and in the kitchen, I like nothing better than stretching out on my Society linen sheets, popping open a bottled Americano and being amused. No more reading, no more surfing, no more writing, no more cooking—but certainly not mindless entertainment, no chick flicks or idle fluff for me. I like something truly engaging, full of believable characters and smart dialogue. Don't you? Here are some more worthy distractions for you...
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6.29.12 Weekend Updates: Hot Links

I know where I'll be for at least part of this weekend: up to my elbows in fruit from Trapani Farms! With berries flooding the markets, this is the time of year for preserving. I've already made strawberry jam—with mint and black pepper and with ancho chile—as well as blueberry with nutmeg, and sour cherry. Now come gooseberries, raspberries and all the stone fruits. My canning guru, Mrs. Wheelbarrow, says to make smaller batches so it's not that daunting, but I like to come away with at least 6 jars of something. I tuck them away to give as holiday gifts, when their sweet reminder of summer is so appreciated. If you need an incentive, think about stirring fresh raspberry jam into your mid-winter yogurt or serving guests a poundcake with fragrant peach preserves in February.

Maybe this weekend you'll be in front of a hot stove, too? Or perhaps putting your feet up in the screened-in porch and taking a nap? Either way, I hope you'll make time to peruse the links I've put together here. There's some fascinating stuff I wouldn't want you to miss.
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photo courtesy of aesop

9.16.11 Shop Talk: Openings & Discoveries

I've told you before of my longstanding devotion to Aesop, the Australian skin- and body-care company, and FINALLY they have arrived in New York. They put so much thought and creativity into everything they do—from their all-natural, socially-conscious products to their creative store design—that it's a pleasure to support the brand. First they opened a kiosk in Grand Central Station, and now their 40th stand-alone location has opened in Nolita, with University Place and Bleecker Street outposts slated for later this year. The unifying design theme, from local architect Jeremy Barbour, is the use of repurposed editions of The New York Times. It creates a soft, faintly industrial look that's a fine, neutral backdrop for the products. Run, don't walk, to stock up on their wonderful Geranium Body Scrub, Fabulous Face Oil and Vetiver Deodorant. They've also launched Thirty Views of New York, a month-long series of recommendations from a diverse roster of cultural luminaries. Every day through October 11th, a different contributor shares a favorite location in New York. It's all part of Aesop's "passionate engagement with the cultural landscape," and is of a piece with their excellent newsletter, which pulls together an international listing of interesting and timely things to do, eat, watch, read, etc.On my way to Tribeca the other day, another new store on West Broadway caught my eye, and I stopped in for a quick look. Turns out it was Treasure & Bond, new from Nordstrom but disguised as a downtown hipster boutique.
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