Sunday, March 31, 2013

Not-My-Easter Sunday

Yes, my family is Christian Orthodox and our Easter is
in fact on May 5th this year.  (Ooo!  Cinco de Mayo themed drinks anyone??)
However, we still get together on every "not-our-Easter" to drink, yell and eat!

This Sunday gathering started out very much on point.
My cousin's wife Tara takes a sip of soda and starts shaking her head saying,
"Nope... Nope!! Guysss.. no." We are all half listening until she yells,
"JUNE 2012!" at us.  Then we realize that what she is trying to do is warn us that 
the soda has gone bad and is almost a year expired.  Her husband Brian replies with
"Well I just drank an entire glass and I didn't notice a thing" which is when I 
added "Tara..... this is an every holiday occurrence.  We grew up on stale soda."
Tara's face was horrified until we explained that every year someone would ask
where the soda was and my grandmother would yell sharply "in Nene's room!!!" 
My mother would go grab the soda, pour it and theeeen the outbursts would 
happen.  Everyone yelling about expired soda... mostly the women yelling 
"IT'S FINE! IT'S FINE!" my grandmother yelling "OH STOP IT!  JUST DRINK
and the kids yelling "Oh my God that's disgusting!!! How old is thaaaat!?"
{total chaos}
I think the oldest soda we were forced to drink was just shy of 3 years expired. 

I'm not joking.

Needless to say we pretty much grew up on stale soda and it was 
extremely fitting that our first real holiday without my grandmother, there was
 soda that magically appeared on the table and it was about 10 months expired.
Her way of saying Happy Easter!  

I am so glad I came home for not-my-Easter.  As I get older I just can't 
get enough of my bat-shit-crazy family.  They're just so spicy!

The food was great, per usual!  I made my brussel sprouts with turkey bacon,
shrimp salad with pesto sauce and Lemon Rosé Bellinis.  All well received! 
{I will leave the recipes for the food in a separate post!}

Now the old ladies didn't care for the drinks too much but the kids loved them!
By old ladies I mean my mom and aunt and by kids I mean my cousins, brother, 
brother's girl friend and myself.  So I mean... take what you will from that.  

My Aunt Gia made her famous Swedish Meatballs, my uncle cooked the 
rest of the meal ie ham, cheesy potatoes, corn, etc., my cousin made
Cadbury Egg brownies (sooo good!!!), my aunt made ricotta cookies,
my mom made the ice cream cake and those cute as a button
Peep cupcakes were made by Tara and Brian's neighbor Kathy!
(Had to give you a shout out Kathy... such a great Easter treat)

And here are the photos.....

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Back by popular demand....

Boozy holidays with the Kosta Clan! 

Photo on right by Alexandra Grablewski

For this not-my-Easter I will be making Lemon Rosé Bellinis!
Found this gem on.. drum roll please... Pinterest!!! (surprise surprise)
I will let you know how it comes out.. well my family will definitely let
me know their opinions.. per usual.. and I will report back. 


1 spoonful lemon sorbet, softened 
1/2 ounce citrus vodka
4 ounces rosé champagne 
2-3 raspberries, for garnish 
1 crazy Albanian family (most important) 

Friday, March 29, 2013

An Eccentric Egg

Image via
A few years back when I was searching the web for a recipe 
for a natural way to dye Easter Eggs, I came across this photo.  This egg is so cool.
Much like the technique that I used to dye my red eggs, you use onion skins to get this look.
Onion skins, rice, leaves, sprigs of dill all wrapped up in a cloth and tied with a string.
So gorgeous and I really would love to try this.  If not this weekend then on my actual
Easter weekend in May.  I'm on my way home to Boston right now to spend time 
with my family.  I'm pretty excited about it but it's bittersweet.  It's the first real 
holiday without my Grandma and my Uncle Pete.  They'll be there in spirit.

My grandmother kept saying over and over right before she died "Don't forget about Easter! 
Make sure to get together for Easter!" I think she was scared that we would all drift apart 
without her or just get caught up in our own lives.  She has nothing to worry about though.
We'll all be together and I'll be wearing her egg necklace around my neck
keeping her close to my heart always.

Can't wait to get off this train and go for a long walk with my mom
and then grab a nice dinner and have a taaaall glass of wine.  Cheers!


Thursday, March 28, 2013

Little Joy

This album makes me so happy.
It will be added to my cooking playlist very soon.

#tbt #2007wasagreatyear

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Every last detail...

The San Fran store literally took my blood, sweat and tears...
(one night I may have had too much wine and I may have had some emotions).
Everything, from the gold leaf on the windows to the hand painted mural on the floor
had so much attention to detail that it was an overwhelming feeling of accomplishment for all 
of us after the job was done.   It's a lot of fun but stressful at the same time.  We work hard so 
that we get to play hard.  We're pretty good at both I would have to say.

I love these Gant Rugger shops.. they have so much  character.
My store planner is just brilliant.  I feel so lucky to get to work with these people.

Most of the vintage pieces I sourced from WRK Design in Nolita 
(right across the street from our Prince Street location!!) and  ABC Carpet & Home's 
Raw section.  Best part of my job is going hunting for vintage pieces. Most of the lighting 
was sourced (not by me) in Europe and the floor boards were from an old shipyard.
Anyways... of course I took a million and five pictures so here they are!


Quote by Theodore Roosevelt Schwartz III