On Tap for Today

A fun loving, inspired living blog


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Today: The Bachelorette.

[tweetmeme source=”elizabethev” only_single=false]I’ve never watched the show, but if it’s anything like this past weekend, I’ll be DVR-ing the next season.  I got to spend the last three days on the Cape with some of my absolute favorite people.  Equal parts low key and dancey, the weekend was absolutely perfect.

My sister and I picked up our cousin Katie from the train station Friday evening and made it to the Cape in record time, especially considering it was a holiday weekend.  We shared a bottle of wine and a game of Phase 10, before beginning the search for the ultimate “learn to dance like Michael Jackson” YouTube video and establishing the sole ground rule for the weekend (we only needed one):

If you say you’re going to do it, you have to do it.

I broke that rule first thing Saturday morning when I… um… forgot to wear my newly gifted clip-on veil on our run.  Colleen and Tina joined us shortly after we got back to the house, just in time for mimosas on the beach.  We enjoyed beautiful weather and perfect tides all weekend long.

Being a complete control freak person, I was anxious to know what was in store, and a bit nervous about the surprises the girls had in store.  Their thoughtfulness far surpassed anything I could have imagined.  My sister worked with Nick to create a guessing game/video, which was definitely a highlight of the weekend for me.  Not surprisingly, Nick and I had matching answers for most questions about one another, including how annoying my indecisiveness can be… and his questionable taste in music.  There wasn’t a dry eye in the house, though, as Nick talked about how excited he is to get married.

I am just so lucky.  For so many reasons.

Soon, our sweet ride was pulling up.  Katie connected with Jerry, owner of Cape Cod Limousine, and set up a fantastic evening for us.  Having a driver for the night was such a fun surprise.  We played with the overhead lights and music like a bunch of junior prom goers.  Our first stop was the Chatham Bars Inn for drinks by the gazebo as the sun was setting and a fabulous dinner in the tavern.

The roasted tomato soup was perfect for warming up (before donning a heavy Champagne jacket…).

After dinner, we made a quick stop at Land Ho! in Orleans.  I enjoyed a hard cider, a lap around the bar, and a quick lesson on life courtesy of the ladies room.

Jerry’s prediction that the scene at the Ho would be a bust proved true, though the band (and the band members’ hair) was quite good.  Sadly, our glow bracelets didn’t quite fit in.  And no one was dancing.  That was our cue to move on.

We took the express train limo to our old standby, the Woodshed, where we spend the rest of the night dancing, dancing, dancing, drinking and trying to avoid being danced on.  There was some aggressive elbowing taking place on that tiny dance floor.  The Boston Naturals played a great set and being surrounded by the girls had me smiling like mad.

I had to break out my flying squirrel costume (oh… doesn’t everyone have one?) before the night was over, but my attempt to sneak through the house resulted in a skinned knee.  You can’t win ’em all.  I am sure there are photos of Squirelizabeth, but I don’t have any.  Which is entirely fine by me.

Sunday morning, I slept later than I have in decades (possibly an exaggeration, but maybe not) and missed Colleen and Tina departing.  I had so much fun with them, and was glad they could both join us for part of the weekend.  Several of my friends and bridesmaids were traveling, moving, and attending weddings and though I certainly missed them, I felt their love from far away and appreciated all the texts and calls over the course of the weekend.

Katie, Andrea and I fit in another run before more time at the beach, more Phase 10, more MJ videos, and a trip to Kate’s.

Oh, and a beer can duel.  Because what’s a bachelorette party without Bud Light cans flying through the air?

I loved every minute of this weekend.

Also On Tap for Today:

  • I went away and it was August… I came back and it’s September?!
  • Just moved to Boston?
  • Grocery shopping (sort of an emergency)

If you were in a cover band, what would be on your must-play list?


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Today: Old kids on the dock.

[tweetmeme source=”elizabethev” only_single=false]Some people know my friend Elizabeth (we Elizabeths like to stick together) as my drinking buddy.  She’s been present 2 out of the 3 times I’ve been over-served in the past decade.  As she wisely put it yesterday, her gremlin speaks to my gremlin.  We have a way of getting into trouble together.  Which is why I enjoy her company so.  She’s not just my drinking buddy, she’s my thinking buddy, too.   We met at a conference in January, as I sat awkwardly at a lunch table, waiting for the keynote speech to start.  She recommended the vegetarian soup, and then asked if I wanted to grab tea.  We went to a music therapy workshop and giggled while the instructor sang about joy being all around us.  I think that song helped us to skip over being strangers.  The introvert in me is ever grateful for her friendliness.  Elizabeth is kind, generous, and compassionate.  We can talk hippie talk and hockey talk.  What more could a girl ask for?

We’re both running from one thing to the next lately, so I am so glad we were able to sneak in a little chat on the dock at the Esplanade last night.  Just two grown-up kids, talking about retirement accounts and bridesmaids dresses, and soaking up the view.  Life is good.

Also On Tap for Today:

 

What’s your favorite hometown view?


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Today: Summertime.

[tweetmeme source=”elizabethev” only_single=false]While Memorial Day may mark the unofficial start to summer, today is the real deal.  Happy Summer Solstice, ladies and gents.  We reached 90 degrees in Boston, my hair was extra poodle-ly, I started sweating from my elbow creases while walking to get the mail, and my dog needed to be carried back inside after a short prance around the block.  Yep.  Summer’s here.

We celebrated the solstice– and more importantly, Tina‘s birthday– at the Liberty Hotel’s Yappier Hour this evening.  While this may not be bulldog weather, Clark made the most of his time with Murphy and a yard full of other dogs.  And a horse Great Dane.

When Clark hit the deck, we knew it was time to get the little dude back in the air conditioning.  We’re enjoying the rest of the first day of summer with a big pitcher of water and a few frosty treats.

Knowing not everyone is safe and cool indoors during this heatwave, please be sure to check in on loved ones and those most vulnerable.  For more information about helping the homeless during extreme heat, please click here.

What’s cooler than being a good neighbor?

Also On Tap for Today:

How are you spending the real start of summer?


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Today: Breakfast, booty shaking, beers and Bruins.

[tweetmeme source=”elizabethev” only_single=false]It would seem my Saturday was brought to us by the letter B.  I got up early yesterday to host a breakfast meeting, but apparently not early enough.  I found myself rushing about the condo half-dressed, hair half-dried, and floors half-vacuumed.  Reminding myself that I am fully human, I consulted my rules for entertaining and finished things up just as the door buzzer rang.

Sure, the cranberry orange muffins were still baking when everyone was settling in, but that I meant I could don a festive mitt and pull them from the oven with a bit of flair.  Just kidding… sort of.  In addition to the muffins, I combined blueberries, blackberries and raspberries in a big bowl, and topped them with a few ribbons of basil.  I think everything should be topped with a few ribbons of basil.  A fresh pot of tea, some orange juice and a pitcher of water later, and we were good to go.  And by go, I mean sit and debate for three hours.

As the meeting was winding down, I couldn’t help but feel like a restless high schooler, constantly sneaking a glance at the clock, counting down the minutes.  (I don’t wear a watch for this reason, never have.)  I was meeting my friend Elizabeth minutes after the group left to check out The Z Spot, a new Zumba, dance, and yoga studio that just opened in the South End.  I find it’s okay to over-schedule on the weekends, as long as there’s booty dropping involved.

I haven’t taken a Zumba class in ages and sort of made up my own moves when I wasn’t quite sure was going on.  Fortunately, that seems to be a widely accepted practice.  During the hour-long class, various teachers from the studio lead high energy, fun routines.  It was a great way to showcase each teacher’s style and personality.  I had the goofiest grin on my face the entire time.  The studio space, which formerly housed O2 Yoga, is bright and airy, and just a short walk from the Broadway T stop and several bus stops (not that I know anything about T buses… I avoid them at all cost).  I can’t wait to go back for a drop in class soon.  My friend Courteney is teaching yoga there, so I definitely want to check out one of her classes, too.

After class, we headed to Amrheins for salads, beers, and the end of the Bruins game.  Elizabeth is such great company; I’m so glad our paths crossed, especially since making friends as a grown-up is no easy feat.

I haven’t been brave enough to show my face at Owl Station since my 30th birthday party, but fortunately, they deliver.  Nick and I ordered a few of our favorite sushi rolls to enjoy at home with a bright bunch of sunflower on the table.  It was the perfect way to wind down a busy day of b’s.

Also On Tap for Today:

Do you prefer working out at home, or in a studio/gym?


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Today: Will tweet for jeans.

[tweetmeme source=”elizabethev” only_single=false]Tuesdays are usually my night to hit the boxing gym (and subsequently get hit by other people, in the head) and then hit the hay.  I change out of my “real” clothes the second my condo door closes behind me.  Yoga pants were made for 6pm.  This Tuesday, however, I held off on the elastic waistbands and heavy bag to meet Tina and Bridget for Champagne cocktails, tweeting and shopping at the Nordstrom Rack opening event in Burlington.

This event was designed for someone so much cooler than me; it’s a miracle they let me in the front door.  Truly.  The store opens to the public today, but we were given the chance to check out the Rack’s goods a few days early, while tweeting up a storm (#rackopening).  All the while, a DJ played some pretty awesome music, drinks and appetizers made the rounds, and a security team guarded the door.  We each received a gift card, which I put toward a great pair of jeans (Joe’s Jeans are perfect for shorties like me, no hemming needed).  I imagine this what shopping with Britney Spears (before she shaved her head and used her umbrella to poke holes in a car door) was like.  I’ll take shopping with Tina and Bridget over that hot mess any day of the week (yes, especially Tuesdays).

I first discovered the danger magic of Nordstrom Rack a few years ago, when Nick was in Portland, Oregon for business (that sounds so mysterious).  I flew out to visit him for the weekend, arriving in the middle of the work day.  What’s the first thing you should do in a strange city?  Take a tourist map and venture out into unknown neighborhoods!  Flash your cash and jewelry!  Act nervous and distracted!  Duck into the first doorway that isn’t blocked by a man wielding some sort of sword!

That first doorway happened to lead to Portland’s Nordstrom Rack.  I felt like I died and gone to fashion heaven.  If I wasn’t traveling with a strict carry-on only policy, I would have done some major damage.  (For the record, Portland isn’t that scary.  Me on no sleep navigating a new city, however, is very scary.  And yes, there really was a sword.)  If you’re looking to score designer jeans, fun watches and costume jewelry, a special occasion dress or killer handbag, I highly recommend a Tuesday, Wednesday, Sunday… really any day trip to the Rack.

You may have to supply your own Champagne, music and security detail though.  Can’t win ’em all.

Also On Tap for Today:

Do you prefer shopping solo or with friends?


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Today: Bagels and bubbly.

[tweetmeme source=”elizabethev” only_single=false]We got things popping early this morning, enjoying brunch on the roof with our friends Tina and Mal.  What”s better than having great running pals?  When those great running pals become become bagel and bubbly buddies, too.  We always have such a great time with them!  We had planned to get a long run in before brunching, but every now and then, it pays to just cut to the bagels chase.  This morning I whipped up a platter of grown up bagel bites, which paired perfectly with mimosas.  (Everything pairs perfectly with mimosas.)

We planned to eat by the pool, so I wanted to be sure our low key brunch was, well, low key.  Who wants to tote around knives or creamed cheese?  Don’t answer that.   I pre-made a few bagel sandwiches, cut them in quarters and secured each quarter with a toothpick.  My favorite combos:

  • Peanut butter and jam on plain bagels
  • Cucumber and garlic hummus on everything bagels
  • Heirloom tomatoes and cucumber slices with veggie cream cheese on wheat bagels
When you spend four months seeing your friends solely in Spandex, it’s easy to let your guard down.  It’s easy to be goofy.  They’ve seen me at my worst (stumbling into the South Boston Running Emporium after a soul-crushing 18 miler in the snow), so why hide the fact that I just hit myself in the face with a Champagne cork?  Oh, man.  I like to think I know my way around a bottle of bubbly, but somehow the cork got away from me, grazing my cheek and shooting clear off the roof, landing in the driveway below.
I need a life coach.  I’ll bring bagels.
Also On Tap for Today:
How are you spending Labor Day weekend?


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Today: Stick it.

[tweetmeme source=”elizabethev” only_single=false]You’re either going to thank me or curse me for this one, but honestly, I couldn’t keep this dessert to myself.  S’mores.  On a stick.  Yes, really.

It will take you no longer than 5 minutes to whip up a few of these little guys, and you’ll only need four simple ingredients, including the stick.  Break out the marshmallows, dark chocolate, and graham crackers.  A few easy steps and boom!  You’re the most popular person in the room.

  1. Grind down graham crackers in your food processor (or crush them by hand, or with a rolling pin, in a plastic bag)
  2. Melt dark chocolate and stir
  3. Stick your marshmallows… on a stick
  4. Dip the ‘mallows into piping hot melted chocolate and roll in crushed graham crackers
  5. Set on a parchment-lined baking sheet and cool in the refrigerator before serving
I brought a batch to the Cape this weekend for my family’s 2nd of July celebration (they travel well in a vase), and a second batch for our post-race 4th of July cookout today.  If I could justify making a third batch for tomorrow, I would.  I’m working on it.
We had a fabulous Fourth– a great (hot and sweaty) race at Patriot Place, lots of pool time and cooking out at my parents’ house, gorgeous weather, and fabulous company… complete with Clark’s favorite pug, Murphy :).  I can’t think of a better way to celebrate America’s birthday.  I wish it could be summer forever.
Also On Tap for Today:
What’s your favorite snack on a stick?