Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Give Away?

Who wants a present?  Through this blog I've found some great new connections and a few people would love to do a give away.  So, I thought I'd see if anyone was interested.  From the emails and comments I get I know there are way more people following this blog than my "Followers" list shows.  What do you think, time to start give aways on The Fleming Files?

P.S. Isn't this wrap fun, it's printable!  I found it here

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Hydrobike Photos

Well, the hydrobikes were amazing.  Way more fun then Mac and I anticipated!  They were relaxing and a great workout at the same time, people burn an average of 600 calories an hour on them.  Bonus!  We ended up having to wait an hour and a half later then our appointment, but that was fine because it meant we got to watch the sunset on the ocean. Hope you enjoy the photos because we had a great time!

Mac getting the feel of the bikes, and figuring out how to ride it backwards. 

I was obviously too excited for my own good. 

I had no idea that Long Beach has such beautiful canals, we went under about seven bridges and passes some gorgeous houses. 

We kissed under every bridge.

Why wouldn't we act like dorks?  I love how you can see the sun changing in these three photos.

Riding in to the sunset.

It was an absolutely beautiful afternoon, start to finish.  Getting to see the sunset on the harbor was just the icing on the cake!

If you're planning a trip to Southern California, or a local looking for something fun here's there link.  Also look for them on Groupon, Mac and I can't wait to go again!

Monday, August 29, 2011

Unique Bike Bag

I came across this the other day and think it is a great alternative to having a bike basket.  Something I can take off and carry into work with me and use throughout the day.  Also looks like a great gift for someone constantly one the go.  

Friday, August 26, 2011

Summer Sun

Had to share this photo of Elizabeth Taylor as we head into the last weekend in August.  I love the playful yet alluring look of this shot. I can't wait to get out there and enjoy the beautiful summer sun!

I May Fall On My Face...In The Ocean

Mac and I have a tendency to purchase Groupons and never use them.  So this weekend we are going hydrobiking.  Those of you who know me, know that Grace is not my middle name.  I will be thrilled if I get out of this dry, but don't think it's likely.  I'm so excited to try something completely new though, and Mac is being a great sport about it. I'm sure it will offer some great memories at least.  Have an adventurous weekend!

P.S. Kinda wish the hydrobikes still looked like this ;)

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Jazz for Beginners-Julie London

Time  to feature an amazing vocalist Julie London.   London's smokey, sultry voice set her apart from other vocalist at the time, famous for her sensual interpretation of many standards.  Being a total bombshell didn't hurt either, but seriously check out the songs below, their beautiful.  

She sings one of my all time favorite songs, Cry Me A River, it can stop me dead in my tracks and just makes me melt.  I love how melancholy she sounds while also coming off as an independent, strong woman.  And if you're going through a bad break up, this is the song for you my dear. 

Cry Me A River, check out this great live footage too!

Black Coffee, sexy!

Why Don't You Do Right

Red Lips

Red lips, turn on or tun off?  I'm personally a lover of red lipstick, but I can feel Mac cringing when I wear it.  It reminds him of his mom's friends kissing his checks, drinking out of a cup with lipstick marks, their cigarettes in the ashtray with faint red marks.  Isn't it funny how two people can have such totally different connotations of the same thing.  To me it's always been a symbol of vintage glamor, a pick me up, another accessory to an outfit, or quick distraction when I don't have time to do my makeup.  Makes me wonder still sexy or an old fashioned trend?  I going with sexy myself.  

original images via Found in Mom's Basement

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

The Original Playboy Club

I've been passing posters for the Playboy Club t.v. show on my way to work, so of course I had to spend time looking up the original.  I know when the Playboy Club opened in 1960 it's probably one of the more misogynistic things that happened during the sexual revolution but I gotta say I love these pictures and wish I could step back in time and go.  The women are so beautiful and sexy and in the 1960's all their parts were real!  What do you think misogynistic or sexy?

Photos via this great post by The Selvedge Yard.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Hudson Whiskey

I've been seeing this whiskey pop up at a lot of our favorite bars and gastropubs and I've decided tonight is the night to try it. I just love the look of their bottles and their story below, makes me feel like I'm stepping back in time. I think it's time for a Manhattan!

"Before Prohibition more than 1,000 farm distillers produced alcohol from New York grains and fruits.  Tuthilltown Spirits brings the tradition of small batch distillation back to the Hudson Valley, distilling whiskeys which were the first legally distilled and aged grain spirits produced in New York since Prohibition."
     -Tuthilltown Spirits

Monday, August 22, 2011

Rise and Shine

A few of you have been asking for pictures of my new studio,  I can't say that it's at that point yet, things to paint and pictures to hang.  However, one thing I absolutely love is my bedside table.  My room gets so much wonderful sunshine I just love waking up in there.  I could sit there all day curled up with a good book.  

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Laugh A Little

These photos of Elvis Presley and Sophia Loren just make me smile!  Especially loving the last one, looks like so much fun.  Have a laughter filled weekend!

Unique Wine Charms

There are some things you want and some things you want, these are the latter for me.  I still can't get over how unique these are.  We never seem to have enough wine charms for all our guests and these just might be a necessity for a wine and cheese apartment warming party!

Aside from the variety of words they offer, they also make custom glass tile picture charms, wouldn't they be a fun icebreaker or as a gift?

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Back To School!

Look at all these vintage back to school goodies I found!  I can't help but get excited this time of year and think of bouquets of newly sharpened pencils.  Wouldn't some of these brighten up your office while bring back a sense of nostalgia, or look so cute in a kids room?  Mac has that pencil holder and it adds so much character to his desk, happy shopping!

#1, #2, #3, #4, #5, #6, #7, #8

So This Is Love

I can't thank my friend Lauren enough for capturing these moments.  The three of us were out having man-mosas, mimosa in a pint glass, when Mac said "have I ever shown you my hummingbird impression?"  as he began humming and inching nearer to my pint.  

The reaction in the second photo is my favorite, like we're two little kids on the play ground.  My face looks like he just took my toy and his looks like he knows he's gonna get in trouble, haha. I guess some of us never grow up. 

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Fixed Gear Bikes

Is it just me or doest it feel like fixies are everywhere?  Especially in the summer sun it seems like half the people I see out on bikes are on fixed gears.  I love seeing some of their fun colors cruising around me. 

Mac loves his fixed gear, constantly going on 30 mile morning bike rides along the coast.  I still haven't given one a try but am thinking I want to see what all the fuss is about.  What do you think, ever ridden one or want to?

Monday, August 15, 2011

London On My Mind

I was chatting with a friend about our time spent living in London a few years ago and now I can't stop thinking about my morning runs through the South Kensington/Knightsbridge Mews.  Originally built as stables around the properties of nobility they have been converted into the most adorable, secluded homes and were the perfect quiet neighborhoods to explore on my runs.  

Missing my morning run, damp streets, crisp autumn air, and my cozy cup of English breakfast tea after.

P.S. My favorite was the one on the left, loved watching the ivy change from bright green to shades of red and orange in the autumn.  

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Anni Hall Happiness

In my mind there are few movies as amazingly delightful as Annie Hall.  So you can imagine my joy finding this great George Hirschfeld print, I just had to share. I've always loved Hirschfeld's work but this just seems to capture the essence of the movie and the beautiful chemistry Keaton and Allen had in it.  Have a delightful weekend!

Finally,The Mad Men Clothing Line!

All I can say is "thank you Banana Republic!!!!"  I have been long waiting for stores to sell clothing like this, vintage inspired that fits my body.  I love to go thrifting and look for actual vintage clothing but sometimes it's so hard to find something cool that fits well. Needless to say, I can not wait to go try on everything from this line! Check out the full line here.

P.S. How sexy is the men's clothing!

Classic Cocktail-Tom Collins

It's time for a classic, classic cocktail.  We're talking 1886, yep that's a classic.  I'm sure a lot of you have heard of a Tom Collins but have you ordered one or just thought of it as that drink your grandpa used to order?  

Give it a try, perfect to savor in the last days of summer.  Light and refreshing, gin, lemon, and simple syrup.  I prefer mine without the traditional cherry and orange wedge garnish, and substitute it with lemon.  And if you're feeling adventurous try using a ginger simple syrup or adding a shot of domain de canton, perfection!

  • 1 1/2 oz Gin
  • 1/2 oz simple syrup
  • Juice of half a lemon
  • Soda Water

Shake gin, simple syrup, and lemon over ice, pour into tall collins glass and top with soda water.  Add lemon zest, orange slice, cherry, ginger, whatever ya feel.  Enjoy!

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Happy Food-Bruxie

Bruxie is our happy place, gourmet waffle sandwiches...done!  Bruxie is in the City of Orange which is itself one of the most adorable towns in Southern California.  There is normally a line around this little stand. However, while you wait one of the owners normally comes around and explains just what a bruxie is, what makes them different from other types of waffles, what the seasonal specials are, their sweet and savory varieties, and will even help you pick out the best sandwich for you based on your tastes.  In. Love. 

Our favorite is the prosciutto and gruyere with chives and dijon mustard, pressed in the waffle it's almost like some kind of magical grilled cheese. I would also recommend their homemade custard, and they have a date and honey shake I've been craving.   

I think Mac is dreaming about the Bruxie he's about to eat. 

Don't pass up the waffle fries, believe me, so good! 

Strolling around Orange with the delicious custard. 

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

August Melting Into September

Like myself, I know a lot of you are anticipating autumn and the changing seasons.  As the days slowly get shorter and a little crisper I am drawn to these warm carmel colors, don't you just love that tie?

I've been thinking of how important these last summer days were when I was about seven years old.  Visiting my dad at work, sitting by his drafting table with a bevy of colorful markers and pencils at my disposal, thinking of how lucky I was not to be at school.  Memories I find out that Mac has as well, his father was an architect and mine a graphic designer.  Have a lovely day and soak in the last of summer!  

Monday, August 8, 2011

Whipped Cream ... And Other Delights

Just me or is this an amazing idea for a boudoir photo shoot?  Mac and I both love this album cover, so I was floored when I stumbled across these photos. Photographer Christa Meola had a client request this shoot as a gift for her husband, and I think they did an amazing job recreating the album cover.  Looks like they had so much fun during the photo shoot!  Is there a classic photo you'd want recreated?  

P.S. The original model on the album cover Dolores Erickson was three months pregnant at the time and hid the more risque photos so her husband wouldn't see them, haha.  

Friday, August 5, 2011

Heaven Is A Macaron

If I wasn't moving this weekend I would want to be sitting in a park with Mac eating macarons and drinking champaign.  After the year and a half I spent working professionally in pastry there are a few things I will still take the time to make once every six months or so.  Croissants and french macarons.  I am obsessed with macarons, I haven't met a man yet that is mad about them but I adore the sweet little things!  Have a delicious weekend!

P.S. If your near the city of Orange Paris In A Cup sells the best macarons I've tasted yet!  You can also buy them here, I'm dying to try their pumpkin macarons.    

Real Man-Marlon Brando

Ha-cha-cha Marlon Brando.  It's hard for me to talk about him without sounding like a dime novel, but I'll try.  

When we started the Real Man series we described it as "men that every guy wants to be and every woman wants to be with" enter Marlon Brando.   When I think of Brando I think of raw masculine energy, from the rolls he played throughout his career to his personal life very few men come close.  

There is one story from his autobiography that seems to express just how much masculine energy he must have had.  Apparently one night, in his early career, he had a young attractive woman come to his house.  Long story short, she offered to wash his feet and Marlon was taken aback but agreed.  The woman proceeded to wash his feet, dry them with her hair, and then make love to him.  Gotta say I don't know too many men that have had this experience or ever will.  Clearly the woman had an obsession, but I also can't say I blame her.  

P.S. Check out this fun video of him playing the bongos. 

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Tips From An Irish Man

Mac and I were at the taproom by my house last night sitting at the bar, as usual, and couldn't help but notice the guy with the amazing Irish accent sitting next to us.  Like a lot of people Mac and I had met in Ireland one question turned into a full conversation with amazing stories.  We came away with some pretty interesting tips. 

  • Don't order corned beef in Ireland.  Irish people don't traditionally eat corned beef.  Originally it was boiled ham and when Irish immigrants came to America they saw their Jewish neighbors similar way of preparing beef and adapted it.  
  • Never order a black and tan in southern Ireland it represents the British uniforms.  Also don't order an Irish car bomb, apparently you'll look like a tourist. 
  • Magners Irish cider is a summer drink served on the rocks, not warm in a pint glass.  
  • Often before they get to know you an Irishman can tell if your from the north or south by your name.  Northern Irish were traditionally named after British royalty, James, Catherine, Charles.  While the south of Ireland had more catholic names, Patrick, Joseph, Bridget.  
  • My family name is more Irish than Mac's.  Fleming-"ya, that's an Irish name, more Norman origins though."  Brady-"now that's a good Irish name."  Win!
  • The most authentic fish and chips he's had in California were at Pike in Long Beach. 

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Flowers vs Cheese

After almost two years of dating Mac I am finally starting to understand men's views of buying flowers, why spend money on something that's going to die in three days?  A few of my friends have recently gotten gorgeous bouquets from their men as a "thinking of you" gift. Don't get me wrong, I would love to get flowers in the office.  But it also got me thinking, if you're gonna spend some cash to say "I love you" why not say it with cheese?  Getting a dozen roses delivered to my desk, beautiful!  Getting a selection of artisan cheeses delivered to my desk, even better!!

I know some of you are cheese lovers like Mac and I, so think about it. Everyone deserves a little surprise every now and then. Whether it's from a gourmet website or a basket you put together, why not get a "thinking of you" surprise that also turns into a romantic wine and cheese dinner.   
Found these at igourmet, boxes by region, cheese type, wine and beer pairings. 

Jazz for Beginners-Dave Brubeck

It's time to talk about some great jazz piano playing and composing.  Dave Brubeck has written and preformed some of jazz's most legendary pieces, named by the Library of Congress as a "Living Legend."  

He formed the Dave Brubeck Quartet in 1951 and became known for his odd time signatures and polyrythm, as well as one of the leaders of the Jazz Renaissance.  I had a chance to see him live a few years ago and it was every bit as good as I had imagined.  Sit back, take a listen, and known that you're hearing one of the masters. 

Everyone has their favorites, but Time Out is mine. 

Take Five, great live performance.  Love the way this video is shot, how cool is the set?

Another of their most popular songs, Blue Rondo A La Turk

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Happy Food-Joe Jost's

Joe Jost's is one of Mac's favorite restaurants/bars and now I find myself craving it too.  The first time however, I was seriously doubtful.  I'd never eaten a pickled egg in my life nor did I want to and the hot dog sandwich wasn't really in line with the lean protein and veggie diet I was so diligently trying to stick to.  Little did I know that that night I would drink two schooners of beer, eat two hot dog sandwiches, and three pickled eggs.  Apparently I was hungry and in need of some really good food.  

Next time your near Long Beach give them a visit.  Built in 1924 during prohibition as a barber's shop and pool haul the place is dripping with history and they still have their original barber license hanging on the wall.  You can also keep an eye on their beer cam, all beer a never served warmer than 29 degrees!  It may not be fancy but for a fun evening with friends, good beer, wonderful food, and atmosphere Joe Jost's hits the spot.  

Hot dog sandwich and their famous pickled eggs, always served on a bed pretzels.  

Perfectly preserved, the original bar and pool haul. 

P.S. They've also been producing a pin-up calendar for the last 50 years! 

Monday, August 1, 2011

Love and Stuff

Do you ever have those moments where you look at your significant other dancing around the house, playing ski ball, singing badly in the car and just think "I love you"  those ah-ha moments of "I wouldn't want you any other way and I'm so glad that something in you wants to be with me."  That was this whole weekend with Mac, a giant "I don't know why you've chosen to be with me but I'm so so happy that you have."  

I got off work Friday night and had happy hour with friends waiting for traffic to die down.  I later got to Mac's house to find wine and a cheese plate waiting and Mac in the back preparing dinner for me.  I was stunned, not only did Mac go grocery shopping (not his favorite) but put so much thought into making me a dinner that not only included my favorite things but was also healthy.  Instantly relaxing me after my third week at a new job and the anxiety of finding a new studio.  He knew exactly what I needed, even before I did.  

Mac is one of the more selfless people I know, so I shouldn't be surprised.  But there are moments when life catches you off guard, that you can find someone who stops their life even for a few hours to say, "let me take care of you."  I'm probably one of the harder people to be in a relationship with, lord knows my emotions get the best of me sometimes, yet for some reason I get to be with Mac.  So here's a big thank you to the people who love us,even when we can't understand why.  
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