Found heart: potato

November 4, 2009

this spuds for you

A friend found this at the farmer’s market and sent it to me in the mail. Simply receiving a package that isn’t something I ordered from West Elm is exciting enough, but a found heart? It brightened my day! Thanks M. 


As I mentioned in my previous post, guys need love too. I like buying Valentine’s Day gifts because there isn’t a lot of expectation and it does not have to be anything big. In most cases a homemade card or hunk of steak will do the trick for the man in your life. Or like I said before, a mix CD is always a good idea. That is, unless it’s your second date. 

Spice coated rack of lamb

1. This recipe is so impressive looking but wont have you slaving away all day in the kitchen. I also like the fact that you get to tell your butcher to french the bones. Ordering a butcher around really makes me feel like a lady.


2. Give him something that will invariably conjure up a “huh. that’s cool looking.” Which you may not know but that is the highest praise from a man. Also its a succulent, so it’s hard to kill. But if he somehow finds a way, it only set you back $5!

ella studio letterpress cards

3. Speak his language with a card that says “I fucking love you” in pretty pink letterpress. Now that’s sincere.

Car Bomb Cupcakes

4. Somebody went and turned the Irish car bomb into a cupcake. Guinness cake, Jameson filling, Baileys frosting- pure genius. Now, why didn’t I think of that? Via Smitten Kitchen.

Breton "Trinch!" Cab Franc

5. You can’t go wrong with a nice bottle of wine and this one is rife with romantic connotations. It is made by a husband and wife team, and named “Trinch!” for the french term of two glasses clinking together. It has big, tannic qualities that will satisfy male taste buds, and best of all: it’s ready to drink now. None of that “keep it in the cellar” nonsense.

smokey highball glasses

6. These classy highballs have an elegant shape but are sturdy enough for a real drink. And who doesn’t always appreciate nice glassware?

Boxer briefs

7. Why should girls be the only ones to get undergarments on V-day? Guys need them too (sometimes more so) These are printed by hand in Portland and have a funny football guy on them. The back says “its good!” Perfect for that man in your life that doesn’t take himself too seriously, and let’s be honest- aren’t those the only ones worth keeping around?

mustache hankerchief

8. I always admired a man who carries a handkerchief, though I’m beginning to think they are going the way of the teacup. Not really needed and a bit old-fashioned. I guess the idea of carrying a snot rag around in your pocket is not appealing to some anymore. But if you think about it- its very green idea. Let your dude live out his ‘stache dreams with this quirky hanky. Pretty sweet.

Love in the Afternoon

9. As the title suggests “Love in the Afternoon” was a very risque film for its time. Though its an old romantic film, this movie does its best to entertain both sexes. For the gents: a very Bond-like character in Gary Cooper and for the gals: you have Audrey Hepburn with all of her impossibly chic Audrey-ness.


Barista's Beans

10. Barista’s Beans is my favorite kind of coffee. It’s fair-trade, organic and roasted fresh in small batches in beautiful Vermont.( Ok, yes, the roaster happens to be my brother, and that’s my nephew above, but that is a mere coincidence.) Everyone loves a good cup of coffee and you can feel good knowing you are supporting someone other than the Starbuck’s monster.

There you have it: “Flirty under $30” Valentine’s day fun. And P.S.- whatever happened to the grade school days of making valentines for everyone in your class? I liked when this holidays represented love amongst friends and wasn’t relegated to coupledom. So if you are living the single life, there is no shame in pouring a big glass of wine for yourself and chomping chocolates in front of the TV. In fact, I think that’s how I spent last Saturday night.

I never understood why people dread Valentine’s day, its all about togetherness, appreciation of the one you love, chocolate, card-making, sipping wine…what’s bad about that? Um, did I mention chocolate? A lot of guys get their feathers all ruffled around this time of year, wondering what to do and buy and curse the heavens along with their shallow pockets. But fret not, my lovlies, because if you have been lucky enough to be caught by cupid’s arrow, you dont need to be a moneybags to show her how much you care. All you need to do is: #1 not forget (which, if you are reading this, you have that taken care of. psst.. its next Saturday) and #2 scrape together around 30 bucks for this “Flirty Under $30 Gift Guide.” As for me? Im easy. All I really want is a guy to tell me I’m pretty and walk the dogs once and a while. Well, a little bubbly never killed anyone.

Another word of advice: never underestimate the power of a mix CD. It says all that you can’t in romantic music form, and becomes a sweet little relationship time capsule in the future. Click here for some of my favorites. You can even steal mine and pass it off as your own. Or, everything below is unique, reasonably priced and you can buy with a click of a button. Is that easy enough for you?

Burgundy Box

1. Chocolates. Don’t mess with a classic. I particularly like the ones in pretty boxes.

2. I guess its creepy to some but I love realistic pictures of hearts. This card is letterpress from Etsy, who says it has to be a Hallmark holiday? Support small artisans!

Sigrid Olsen bowl

3. Speaking of artisans, how does a one of a kind, handpainted bowl from Sigrid Olsen grab ya? Well, it doesn’t grab ya: its a bowl. (Sorry. Grandpa joke tangent.) I love to have something pretty to drop my earrings into when I’m off to bed. No two of these bowls are alike, and I bet if you ask really nicely she’ll even do a custom job. Yes- $30!

Vintage blue and white embroidered linen hand towel HERS

4. Some quirky vintage thing shows that you are thinking outside of the box. To me, old linens conjure up a bygone era where men tipped their caps and apologized to a lady after swearing. These days I’d settle for not being shoved and stepped on while riding the subway.

carpenter, love, lady of necklace

5. This is from a friend’s Etsy shop and I love her unique combo of charms. Its always nice to get simple necklaces like this because they go with everything aren’t something you would normally buy for yourself. Unless you are a shopping addict such as myself. I apologize if I beat you to it and this is no longer available in her shop. Now that I think of it I kinda regret sharing this…

Simple Hoops

6. What girl doesn’t need a good pair of hoop earrings? I put this one on here because its really foolproof and its from another great small artisan.

8x8 original fine art photograph on archival paper with a matte finish

7. You don’t always have to give candy and cards. A beautiful photo can be so romantic. Extra points if you take it yourself and have it framed.

Striped Bass with Saffron Vegetables and Spiced Broccoli Rabe

 8. Cook something delicious. Here’s a great recipe for striped bass with saffron vegetables. I happen to love saffron and I just learned that it has aphrodisiac properties and is used for rituals of beauty and love. Ooh lala!

9. Ok, don’t call me Mommie Dearest or anything, but I love to sleep with an eye mask. I really think you get a deeper sleep that way. This one has all the look of lingerie with none of the sizing conundrums. 

10. Thought I should include a little freebie here. And by that I mean: free. If all else fails and you really can’t spare a dime, or don’t want to deal with shipping, print out a picture of a heart in nature, write something nice on the back, and, voila! You are Prince (or Princess) Charming. (Yes, you could just email it at the very least.)

Stay tuned for the male guide. Because guys need love (read: chocolate) too…


January 18, 2009

Poco Dolce chocolatesOk, so I get that its a little sad to sit at home and look at pictures of chocolate on the internet while I wipe drool off my keyboard, but hey, its Sunday and I’ve got nothing better to do. Plus this post is sort of topical with Valentines day around the corner, might be a good gift for that special someone in your life? Plus the photography on this site  is really simple and beautiful to look at. You don’t even need to- Ah, who am I kidding? Im probably going to order these for myself and devour the whole box before the tape is off. Especially those little toffee bastards.