I did Nathan’s podcast again, here it is!
It was around this time last year that I visited The Great Jack O’Lantern Blaze in Hudson Valley in Croton-On-Hudson. It’s only about an hour away from New York City on Metro-North and it’s definitely worth the trek if you have any kind of love for all things October.
Once inside, you take a walking tour around the property that displays more than 7,000 illuminated jack o’ lanterns, all designed and hand-carved. There’s also a color-changing star show in the Pumpkin Planetarium, amongst other things that beautifully showcase the pumpkins. The whole thing is beautifully done and while the background music can get repetitive, it’s a really fun night out.
The whole experience takes between 60-90 minutes, and even when it’s sold out you don’t feel very rushed to move quickly. Definitely buy tickets in advance though since sell outs are common. Adult admission is $22 and kids are $16.
Literally one of the best episodes of a television show of all time.
The leaves are fucking changing. DO YOU REALIZE THIS?! The fact that it feels like fall and actually IS fall is incredible. I’ve already unpacked my colder season attire and bed sheets and pumpkin table runners and you can’t fucking stop this train, BABY. Here’s all that went down in September.
I ate the (insanely good) heirloom tomato panzanella salad with anchovies at Cherry Point in Greenpoint in Brooklyn and it was my first panzanella salad and I was right to assume that I’d be in love with such a dish. Definitely will always order this in the future if I see it on any menu ever.
I bought the Sun Of A Beach Ombré Spray from OUAI a few months ago (it’s supposed to add highlights to your hair through exposure to the sun), and even though I only used it once… this is a hard pass. It does state that you should use it more than once to see results, but I just expected to be more wowed after one time. Any time I use Sun-In, even after one try, you can see a difference. So for $24, I’d expect something upon first use. Definite disappointment.
I was pretty excited to see that Charlotte Tilbury is now available at Sephora since that means that I was finally able to try out their Bar Of Gold Highlighting Palette, which turned out to be a huge disappointment. It’s such beautiful packaging, don’t be deceived. It’s just as sparkly and low quality as pretty much every other highlighter on the planet with the exception of maaaaybe Benefit’s Watt’s Up Soft Focus Highlighter, which is the only one I tend to gravitate towards.
I didn’t even know there was an Ulta store in NYC until recently, so I finally went the other day and whoa. Their Colourpop section was bigger than I anticipated - and it also has their brow pencils that I use exclusively, so that’s amazing. I did try their “coveted” highlighters as well and yeah they’re not even close to great. But that’s fine since their liquid lipsticks and brow pencils are amazing. You can’t have it all, deal with it.
I know it’s been years since The Office ended, but I tend to live in the past so obviously I’ve been watching a lot of bloopers from the show that I hadn’t seen before.
I saw The Corpse Bride for the first time and… meh? Maybe I just missed the time frame when I could’ve enjoyed this one, I think.
Loving this Cat Power version of the Rihanna song Stay.
I finally watched and finished all of Disenchantment and… I wish it were funnier. I don’t even say that with an attitude - I really, really wish it were funnier. Of the whole first season, only the final two episodes were actually interesting, which sucks and I wish it weren’t this way, but that’s just the reality of it.
So earlier this year I accidentally got on the Herbalife program and then realized what was going on, so I got out. It’s such an awful company and I can’t believe it took me this long to even hear about it. Definitely watch the documentary that I just saw Betting on Zero if you’d never heard about it or if you know anyone who’s ever tried Herbalife.
I’m not trying to say that I have a problem or anything, but sometimes when I can’t sleep I’ll take NyQuil only because I really need to sleep that night, no interruptions. So when I saw ZzzQuil at the store, obviously I thought I should try that since its main purpose is to put you to sleep. What’s insane is that it didn’t work AT ALL. Makes zero sense. Don’t be fooled, stick to NyQuil.
I watched the second season of The Good Place, mostly because there wasn’t much else on, but still. Best parts? Easily a tie between the appearances of Jason Mantzoukas and Maya Rudolph. I love that man more than any other actor on TV these days. Every time he’s on screen, he’s perfect. Man is amazing and constantly the funniest person in every scene. Other than that, the show’s still just okay. Also, Manny Jacinto is such a fox it’s maddening. Also also, Ted Danson being so great in this scene.
I attempted to read Judd Apatow’s Sick in the Head, but snoooooooooze. I really did try to read as much as I could, but it was a lot. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, that man does not know how to condense. I’ve always hated his interview style and find that he takes hours upon hours to get to a main point. I mean, in a book about interviewing comedians, in what world is asking the question “So were you a class clown in high school?” in any way groundbreaking? I really don’t know why I’m so hard on this man (especially because of how much I loved Freaks and Geeks as well as Undeclared), but it’s just one of those things I can’t budge on. The ONLY thing I took away from the book was the fact that I learned that Martin Short went to university to become a social worker. Neat. THAT’S IT.
In other book news, Chrissy Teigen’s second cookbook came out! Already picked out two things from it that I’m gonna make for Thanksgiving in a few weeks. ALSO! Lindy West just announced that her next book (The Witches Are Coming) will come out next spring!
Finally went to the Met rooftop to see this year’s installation and look, I don’t really think I’m a hard person to impress. I’m not. But look at this.
…that’s all there was. On an entire rooftop. Why is it so hard to get installation art that makes good use of its space? I’ll never shut up about this, but years ago there were numerous, gorgeous, playful structures created by Jeff Koons on that roof and you felt like you were in another world. I don’t need art to be pretty, but I do need it to make sense in its space. Not asking a lot here.
Candle season is upon us: Nathan’s pick? Leaves. My pick? Hot cocoa & cream. Two for $16 at Bath & Body Works at the moment, it you’re in the market. Also, the vanilla pumpkin one from Trader Joe’s was a lot cheaper and smells pretty nuts.
My dear friend Paul was visiting and invited me to go to the Color Factory in NYC with him. It’s pretty much just an Instagram museum meaning that people mainly go to take photos of themselves, so we did! Duh. I don’t know that I’d ever go to one again since it felt a little… hollow? I’m not trying to be negative about the experience, it just seemed very calculated and void of any real meaning with an added air of superficiality. Yeah, that definitely sounds negative. It really just felt like something that would and should be fun for a child, not an adult. I came across a really great piece talking about these types of places that really sums up how I feel about the whole experience.
Can’t even believe I’ve never eaten anything at Grom before, but I now regret every time I’ve walked by and not went in. I mean, look at this beauty.
All right. So I started Riverdale. And listen, shut up, I know it maybe seems like a bad show. You have to get over that thought though because it’s so, so good that I can barely deal with it. Who knew that I had such a yearning inside to see a half naked Jughead Jones in a human, real-life scenario about to have sex for the first time? Not me, apparently, because I REWOUND IT THREE TIMES*. The only way that I can describe why this show is so good? I think it’s mainly because I loved and collected these comics as a kid and I never got to see these characters develop beyond their prudishly chaste lives. And maybe it’s kind of amazing to finally see some shit happen. Major pros: Dylan McKay! Skeet Ulrich (whom, I’m sorry, will forever be the sexiest killer in any movie, of all time). Any and all Bughead scenes (ie. Betty & Jughead scenes). Major cons: pleeease no more musical episodes, they’re awful and if I wanted any musical interlude in a television show I’d watch fucking Glee. Also the fact that the actor who plays Archie has to dye his hair red for the role. If that isn’t sacrilegious then I don’t know what is. It’s insanity. So many hot men with red hair could’ve played that part and I promise you I’m not biased in that opinion, shut your mouth. Also, this is the greatest description of the show I’ve ever heard.
Nathan and I watched Hellraiser on Netflix because I’d never seen it and we wanted to choose “something light” since it’s not October yet. ‘Light’ my bag! WAY too gory and not FUN-gory, just gory-gory. Only thing I liked about it was hearing that when trying to decide on a title, the writers opened it up for discussion to the production team to offer up their own suggestions, prompting a 60-year-old female crew member to offer up "What a Woman Will do for a Good Fuck."
Excited to see what’s in store for October!
*It was nine times. I rewound it nine times.
In all honestly, I can’t believe it’s here. The best part of the year. The beginning of the three equally best seasons. So let’s get down to it, here’s what I’d love to do this fall.
Make an apple or pumpkin pie from scratch since I've never done that with anything other than a key lime pie, which (let’s be honest) is a crazy easy pie to make.
Go to Downey’s for our annual visit.
Take my niece Layla to her first Halloween Haunt at Canada’s Wonderland.
Make some sort of savory souffle.
Display and add to the miniature Halloween village that I set up on the windowsill each year.
Finally start This Is Us.
Make at least two recipes from Chrissy Teigen’s new cookbook.
Do a couples costume with Baby Dog this year since Nathan will be out of town on Halloween.
Do some kind of Halloween craft with the kids.
There are actually a lot more things not written down that are on my list, but I need to keep them secret since certain people will be surprised with them. I’ll be sure to post about them as they happen, though.
I know this came out forever ago but my god this sooooooooong, so so nice I want to scream.
I can’t express the joy I’m feeling right now as I write this post. Summer is no more. We did it. Here’s what I managed to do off of my summer list that I made in June.
Go to the beach at least five times.
Done! And yes I love the beach and all, but five times is definitely the right amount of times to go there. Anything more would just be over-indulgent.
See the new rooftop exhibition at The Met.
Done! And I didn’t think much of it. I’ll speak more about this in my end of September post coming in a few days.
Spend the day doing stuff in Harlem.
Nope, still haven’t done this. It really seems like this would be more fun to do with someone who’s visiting from out of town, so I’ll try to make that happen in the near future when someone comes to visit me.
Make at least three new recipes from Chrissy Teigen's first cookbook, Cravings.
Not even close. No idea why I didn’t attempt this. It’s especially not gonna happen now since I just bought her second cookbook.
Try the frozen Irish coffee at Passage in Astoria.
Visit Chateau Le Woof with Baby Dog in Astoria.
Yep! And it’s wasn’t that spectacular. I definitely like Boris & Horton in the city better.
See the Scarborough Bluffs since I never have before.
Oh yeah I did! Special thanks to my friend Marla for making this one happen. Such a lovely spot.
See Tew Falls in Hamilton.
My time was pretty limited in Canada this summer, so I had to skip this one. But one day I’ll get there.
Go away, anywhere, for a few days with Nathan for our anniversary.
We did! Vermont! And it was so, so nice. We might even go away again before the year is up, which is absolutely wild.
Try SLT finally.
Not a chance. Again, this would be great to do with someone visiting me who’d be into it.
6/10! A passing grade! Honestly it’s a miracle that I did any of these considering how much I loathe summer.
Autumn list coming tomorrow! See you in hell, summer!