Flowers for Spring

I was on my way home from running errands on Saturday when I spotted a flower shop with beautiful, bright blooms on display on the sidewalk. I decided to keep walking — it was across the street, I didn’t need flowers, they were probably really expensive, etc. But I got to the corner and couldn’t resist. The flowers’ pull was so strong that I crossed the street and walked back up the block (both in opposite directions of where I was headed). In I went, and flowers I purchased. It was our first truly spring-like day, the sun was shining, and they were just so colorful. Were they overpriced and an “impulse buy” on my part? Certainly. But are they beautiful? I’d say so.

All photos by Taking of Toast

Monet at the New York Botanical Garden

This past fall was the season for garden-going, apparently. There was the Conservatory Garden in Central Park, the New York Botanical Gardenand the Brooklyn Botanic Garden. Whew! I can’t remember if I’d been to the New York Botanical Garden before, but I’d been wanting to go to see Monet’s Garden before it closed. The exhibition featured many of the flowers and plants Monet planted at his garden in Giverny (including that green bridge!), so   going to the NYBG was a bit like going to France. Sort of.

I smelled some of the most fragrant roses I’ve ever encountered and enjoyed imagining I was seeing the “real thing.”

That day, it looks like I was very much about the off-center macro photos of flowers (which, I guess, is what I’m often about).

The lily pond behind the Conservatory was one of my favorite parts.

I can see why so many people get married there! I would like to go back some time just to explore the grounds.

All photos by Taking of Toast

Conservatory Garden, Again

As I mentioned in my last post, I took a detour on my way home from the Cloisters in September to visit the Conservatory Garden in Central Park (I’d been meaning to go back since I went last March!). While there were definitely more flowers in bloom this time around, I still wish I’d gone earlier in the summer. This year, I have to be better about making it in time for the cherry blossoms.

More flowers coming soon! I’m almost done with my “Oh, here’s what I did at the end of 2012!” posts. Almost.

All photos by Taking of Toast


Los Angeles was good to me. While I didn’t manage to make it to the ocean this time, I still thoroughly enjoyed my trip. I ate excellent food (and lots of it!), including delicious avocados and tacos; saw beautiful flowers everywhere I looked; made it to one of my favorite places; spent quality time with my gracious hosts; and, did I mention the food? I also took pictures, more of which will hopefully come soon.

Photo by Taking of Toast

Back from the Southwest: Part 2

Wow, did this week seem especially long for anyone else? I don’t think a week has felt this long in ages. Oh, well. It’s almost the weekend! Before I get to part two of my photos from vacation, I thought I’d share just a few things I’ve found myself thinking a lot about this week:

+ I am totally in awe of the table settings (and photos!) from last week’s Sunday Suppers dinner. It’s no wonder I keep seeing Amy Merrick‘s work everywhere.
+ The return of Arrested Development is more in sight than ever before.
+ I’ve already made plans with myself to try out Portland-export Pok Pok sometime soon.

Now, on to the photos (finally)!

Happy weekend!

All photos by Taking of Toast


Last weekend, instead of joining all the St. Patrick’s Day revelers (and, as always, there were many), I took a walk up to the Conservatory Garden, located near the northern end of Central Park. Although it was a little early in the season to be visiting (few trees were in bloom, the fountains were off and without water), I’m still glad I went. If anything, it just made me want even more to go back later in the spring to get the most of it. I can’t wait to see it in a couple months, when hopefully, everything is in bloom.

I even found a perfect spot for reading, which may not be so easy to find later in the season, when the garden will be (presumably) more crowded.

Here’s to spring (and I mean spring, not spring-summer, which we’ve been getting hints of lately)!

Photos by Taking of Toast

Seasonal Thoughts

With spring (even summer?) seemingly just around the bend, I’ve been thinking about starting afresh. Spring begs you to be outside, take advantage of the (hopefully) endless blue sky and just-warm-enough weather, before the humidity of summer makes you want to be anywhere but outside. I have a tendency to laze around inside, but I want to make sure I do things this spring. I’ve decided that those activities don’t have to be outside themselves, as long as they’re inside some place other than my own room. I just have to commit, right?

I’d love to buy some watercolors and paper and practice making cards (I find myself constantly thinking back to these prints by Jessica Durrant) or figure out something to do with these amazing fabrics (after seeing them on Oh Joy!).

I haven’t been to The Cloisters since I was in middle school. I’d like to go back for the Medieval Garden and the views of the Hudson.

Very up there on my list is a visit to the Conservatory Garden in Central Park. (I’ve been meaning to do this for almost a year.)

In the realm of trying something new: I’m no coffee connoisseur and don’t have a clue about how coffee flavors translate from description to taste, but Caffe Vita‘s Caffé Del Sol sounds pretty good to me.

I caved and decided to link my blog to my Pinterest. I’ve had my account for a few months, but I’ve only been updating it every few weeks when I think of it. I’ve done some significant pinning and repinning today, though, and think it’s ready for its debut. (I’m having the most fun with my Home Inspiration board. Aah, the possibilities when you don’t need to worry about a budget!)

So. Let’s see what happens.

Photo by Taking of Toast