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Charting the style of daily life...with the mouth of a sailor.

travel

Cape So Hard 2019

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Jam packed pilgrimage to Massachusetts, per ush.

T H E B E R K S H I R E S | B O S T O N

We stopped to see some dear friends in western Mass, where we visited a large and very charming farmer’s market (where PCF stopped to pet every dog) and had poolside hangs with said friends.

The farmhouse sink in our bedroom was too charming not to use for a FoxSea pic.

FoxSea

We finally made it to Fenway as a family, though to see a soccer match, not the Red Sox. We had a blast, but vowed to come back for a baseball game next time.

I honestly couldn’t get over the beauty of the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, as well as the sadness and mystery surrounding the still unsolved heist. *Binge the podcast Last Seen for tons of intriguing details about one of the most famous art thefts in history.

Bought myself a few little goodies in the gift shop, including this articulated fish pendant that reminds me of my mother’s 1970’s version.

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We always want the boys to be familiar with Boston, so we tried to take them around to see various sights, neighborhoods and some of our favorite restaurants. Then we spent a little time at Children’s Museum for old times sake. Martin’s Playground just outside the museum ended up being their favorite destination.

C A P E C O D AKA H E A V E N ON E A R T H

The Cape is the best. I get such a great feeling of peace and calm when I’m there — even during stressful moments (there are always a few while on a multi-family vacation), there’s still a sort of… contentment. Everything is better there. We always look for new ways to enjoy our Cape time, building on beloved traditions with new memories, so this year we took advantage of David Sedaris’ book tour and IT. WAS. AMAZING. We stayed after so we could have our books signed and get a chance to speak with him. He’s divine. A fucking international treasure. I have a picture of him (not sharing for now) that is fantastic. A story for another time…

F O X S E A S K I N

I always take advantage of the beautiful, oh so FoxSea scenery for some pretty photos for the ‘gram. #ABP #alwaysbepromoting

FoxSea Skin

A Very Sporty 48 Hours in Chicago

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We love Chicago, and try to travel there a couple times a year. This summer, we planned a very Fox boy-centric, sporty weekend. I did still manage to get a little shopping in.

Morning river walk to breakfast.

Shopping (the boys didn’t let me buy them the sequin jackets, sigh)

Chicago Fire - our first MLS game!

Cubs game - the first for all of us but Ryan.

By the end of the weekend, we were all exhausted, sweaty and a little slap happy.

Took the opportunity to add some festive flair to my grandmother’s train case.

train case

Build, Play, Getaway

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Typically, Ryan and I go on Spring Break without our kids. This year, we decided not to be assholes and take them somewhere warm and fun. So, we hopped a flight to Florida (PCF’s first flight!) to visit my sea-ster in Cape Coral, then headed to LEGO Land for two days of amusement park fun. 75% of us got a nasty bug over the course of the week, but we still managed to have a great time. It was a real scene, man.

THE JOURNEY

CAPE CORAL / SANIBEL ISLAND

LEGOLAND

76 Hours in Chicago (and then back again)

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We Foxes love city time, so we plan semi-regular trips to Chicago. We skipped our traditional in between Thanksgiving and Christmas visit, so we went in January instead, during an accurately predicted blizzard, in fact. We weren’t scurred. And it actually paid off, as we had the city virtually to ourselves! ‘Twas fun.

I’ve been wanting to stop at the Albanese Candy Factory for years, and this time we finally did it. They make the best gummy candies in the world. And a truth about me is that I cannot resist a good Boston fruit slice. As we pull onto Lake Shore Drive, we always play a song of the same name by Aliotta Haynes Jeremiah. It’s very jaunty and puts us in a festive “yay we’re in Chicago” mood. And now for my fave pic of our stay: a traditional f^ck off to the Trump tower. I love that my five year old knows to do it, and that my ten year old knows to snap a picture of it. We are the resistance.

We are major fans of The Ambassador, because it’s gorgeous, the staff is awesome and we just feel so comfy there. While I always stayed at The Drake with my family (still love you, boo), The Ambassador has become our little Fox family’s #1.

It was cold and snowy and slushy, so when we came back home from adventuring, the crisp yet cozy all white everything refuge of The Ambassador was so comforting, and tres chic, dahlink. As I was flipping through my camera roll from the trip, I realized the majority of my pictures were taken inside the hotel. I just adore it, truly.

If I ever hit some sort of jackpot, I’ll take a permanent suite there, thank you very much.

Strike that last sentence. I’ll snag No. 5 right across the street, but hang out in the lobby, eat some of my meals and grab my morning coffee at The Ambassador. How f^ck!ng cute is that entrance? And the fact that it’s number F I V E seals the deal. In love.

I didn’t take as many food pix as I normally do, but that’s probably because I was too busy eating all the amazing food we had. Our first dinner was at Ramen San and everything was perfect. We did brunch at Le Pain Quotidien one day, then Beatrix the next - both were just perfect for us with kids in tow. Dinner on Saturday was at La Scarola, and we really enjoyed the old school Italian vibe, as well as the Negronis + Shirley Temples. We grabbed coffee at The Wormhole (so fun and funky) on Milwaukee after hitting up the adidas store, as we’re known to do. If there was one great unifier for our family of four, it’s our undying passion for adidas. #yakyak

Rando shenanigans. Those are the best kind, really.

We like to think we’re really good at packing and traveling light, however our cart was loaded with too many bags (though I’ve seen much worse). I was impressed it all fit in the boot of Ryan’s little Prius. *There I go pretending to be British again.

We said see ya laterz to Chicago as late as we possibly could…

…but not before giving one more middle finger to Trump’s midwestern sh!thole. Like son, like mother?


A N D T H E N . . .

I ended up being whisked back to Chicago a couple days later to attend StyleMax, quite unexpectedly but not unpleasantly so.

Lots of randomness here, but I need to move on to another project so I gotta wrap this sh!t up, and how. Love the art deco elevator doors, and anything gold, really, snapped some things I want, some things I ate, and so on and so forth.

I tried on two styles of the blue light blocking glasses from Quay, and I gotta say, I’m going to need a pair of these. It’s a legit work expense, no? *I like to end sentences that way as much as possible. Makes me come across as the teensiest bit French, yes?

The clear highlight of my StyleMax weekend was a trip to Goddess and the Baker (thanks, Liz), for they make a gold glitter latte that’ll burn your eyes out with its unimaginable sparkly-ness. IT. IS. MAGICAL. Everything else was fab too (food, atmosphere) but DRINKING GOLD GLITTER IS THE DEFINITION OF ME LIVING MY BEST LIFE.

Yes, I absolutely went back to visit my pal The Ambassador (I was so close, I had to). Had brekkie, got some coffee to go + a cool felt baseball cap (haven’t worn it yet). I love merch. #shopportunity

And just for the hell of it, this is what I looked like on the way home, with that damn uncooperative bandana. Some days I just can’t get this one to play ball.

~FIN~

48 Hours in The Mitten

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I’d never explored Northern Michigan, and kept seeing all these amazing pictures and posts from the area. So I packed up my family for two days and made the 5 hour trek north. It’s safe to say we fell instantly in love.

We arrived late on Friday night so we got up and out early so we could have maximum exploration time. Our first stop was for coffee, of course, and we landed at Blue Boat in Leland. The cappuccinos were perfect and the kids loved their cherry steamers - with sprinkles!

We stopped into a few shops and explored Leland’s Fishtown but it was WINDY AF so we sat down for a second breakfast, so we could get some protein into the boys and strategize our next moves. My second breakfast was a club soda + a damn fine cup of tomato carrot bisque in an unassuming, cash-only diner called Early Bird (can’t link to it, because they don’t have a website) that my husband totally judged by its outward appearance.

I’m amazed by how much Northern Michigan looks like the East Coast, and I kept closing my eyes, listening to the waves crash and could SWEAR I was on Cape. But there was a distinct lack of salt in the air…

The Leland home we stayed in was so charming, and the same was true for its environs. The mass of yellow leaves, both on the many, many trees and the ground, was spectacularly beautiful. I love looking through family homes, see how they personalize a space, how their chattles, collections and all the other stuff of life mixes with the decor, transforming the rooms into a tangible scrapbook of sorts. This is especially true inside well loved vacation homes, where the best version of the family is presented (generally speaking of course, and only because the stresses of daily life aren’t typically in play while on vacation). This particular home had piles of heart shaped rocks, no doubt collected over the many years, as well as beautiful driftwood scattered on the dining table as a centerpiece, and as accents elsewhere.

Cherry Republic in Glen Arbor was really cute and charming, though a little tourist trap-y, but that’s ok, and to be expected. Michigan’s cherry scene is something, apparently. We tasted a few delicious things and left with a sixer of cherry lambic and a cherry pie to eat back at the house.

We explored the various towns like Sutton’s Bay, Glen Arbor, Northport, in addition to Leland, and were thrilled to find accessible beaches and harbors in all of them. We spent a long time on a beach within Sleeping Bear Dunes National Park, where the boys drew in the sand and enjoyed a rock throwing competish, while I tried to put them all in my pockets. Naturally, Ryan was snapping away with his DSLR.

Michigan is all about promoting their waters as “unsalted” and free of sharks. I’m cool with no sharks, but I love my salt, so I brought my own. #BYOS #GetFoxSea #ABP #AlwaysBePromoting

Cold and windy November was so lovely and delightful, I’m not sure we’d be able to handle the charms of the warm, in-season months!

So yeah, as cliché as it may be, we’re pretty smitten with the mitten…

Cape-ing

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A brief glimpse at my 40th summer on Cape Cod with my family...

Road tripping with new t shirts and Cape Cod mood rings, culminating with brunch at Cafe Chew as soon as we're over the bridge.

The Fox boys lived their best beach lives, splashing around at low tide, learning how to skim board, painting their toes with glitter polish and eating plenty of sweet treats. The one thing they did not like was our annual Lobster Night. Said PCF through tears, over and over again, "those lobsters didn't deserve to die!"

I tend to chronicle vacations by the foods we consume, but I think that's pretty normal, right? Afternoon tea at The Dunbar, date night at Pain d'Avignon, almond croissants at Happy Fish, homemade lobster rolls, Scott Cakes in P Town and CBD infused iced coffee were some of the delicious highlights this summer, and most summers. Though, the CBD coffee was certainly new and wonderful!

I spend much of my time on Cape Cod snapping pictures that will sustain me year round. Beach pix and selfies plus snaps of my favorite spaces and souvenirs make me happy when I'm landlocked and dreaming of the sea. 

Sea you later, Cape Cod! 

Reset Needed

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I always say swimming in the Atlantic is like a breath mint for my soul. I'm fairly certain I came up with that on my own, but I could be wrong. Anyway, the cool, crisp waters shock my system, in such a good way, resetting me, giving me a fresh new perspective just when I need it, that I find myself craving that feeling all year long, when I'm far away from the ocean. 

In this moment right now, I need a little reset. I went into my 40th birthday feeling fantastic, really loved and appreciated, and at peace with my current path. It's crazy though that in just a few days, that feeling has been replaced by something less welcome - doubt and wariness. I'd take a chilly dip in the ocean in a heartbeat right now.

Though I do post a lot, I don't often actually pour my heart out online. While I'm not likely to start doing so, I do feel compelled to vent a little bit...


And then I didn't.

A couple of weeks have passed since I wrote all of the above. I'm revisiting this now, remembering how I felt when I wrote it, and feeling quite relieved those feelings have dissipated. I'm coming off a lovely weekend, re-energized and re-inspired, so perhaps that's why I'm feeling great. But is this just a band aid? Or was the wariness just fleeting? I seem to think I'm a generally happy person, though my face doesn't always express that, apparently.

In the next couple of weeks, I'll be balls to the wall (is there a more femme version of this saying?) busy with my own personal tasks, kids camps and serving as their chauffeur to and fro, work assignments and just f^ck!ng living my life, before heading east for our annual pilgrimage to Cape Cod, so I'm guessing my feelings will mostly be a blend of frenzy and excitement. 

Then, while on Cape, I'll be so gotdamn happy, literally chilling my bones in the ocean, so that'll be great. But what comes after? Sadness because I'll be heading back west, but anticipation for this year's Middle Waves music festival? Who the hell knows... We're all just guessing at what comes next, right?

What was even the point of this post? Venting, I guess. That, and really wanting to submerge myself in icy cold waters.

Five Days in NYC

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Last September, I won a lottery for the chance to purchase four tickets to see Hamilton in New York at face value (!!!), ahead of the general public. We picked a random date in June and excitedly anticipated our trip for months. In the few weeks leading up to our date at Richard Rogers theatre, my husband discovered he needed to be in NYC for the two days prior to our trip, so we switched some things around and got a very full five days in the Big Apple. Behold,  photographic evidence below...

DAY 1

We arrived in New York super early on Wednesday, so we had plenty of time to check in to our first hotel (we stayed in three hotels during the trip and it's a long, boring story) and get to know our temporary neighborhood.

Ryan snapped this amazing shot of the city from our hotel window.

We snagged excellent coffee and a tasty breakfast of a hazelnut croissant and avocado toast (we went splitsies-halvsies) at Blue Bottle, then took in the sights of the World Trade Center area. We visited Ground Zero just a few months after the 9/11 attacks (we were in college back then) and I remember how dusty everything was, and how the silence was almost deafening. There were crowds and crowds of people looking at the wreckage but no one was saying a word. I recall ducking in to Century 21 just so we could hear the sound of people talking again. Seeing the area cleaned up, fully functioning (even though some construction is still going on), along with the striking and sobering memorial, was so moving.

Ryan had biznaz to take care of so I walked around on my own (the Irish Hunger Memorial is so pretty), got a fun manicure and enjoyed a nice long, boozy lunch. It's fun to date yourself sometimes.

When Ryan and I reunited, we dined on sushi at Nobu and spent a little too much coin on craft cocktails.

He may look nonplussed in this photo, but I swear we had a nice evening. He was plussed, I tell ya. Plussed!

DAY 2

We woke up super early for a walk across the Brooklyn Bridge, something I'd always wanted to do, but which was never convenient during any of my previous NYC trips. The temperature was perfectly crisp and the views were amazing. I wonder if people who commute over the bridge each day take it for granted?

But first, coffee.

I enjoyed a blowout at Dry Bar while Ryan was in his final meetings. There is nothing as wonderful as having a great hair day. 

One more selfie, this time with a bit of makeup on my face. I feel compelled to publicly celebrate any and all good hair days!

Once Ryan was officially done with work, we set out for lunch at Ladurée, a heavenly visit to Clare Vivier and 12 miles of walking to all the major sneaker head shops (KITH, Extra Butter and Alife, saving Flight Club for the next day).

We then checked into our second hotel in Midtown. After putting my legs up a wall for a smidge, we ventured out for some street pizza (Joe's - if it's good enough for J. Lo, it's good enough for me) and to see the riot of neon colors at Times Square - again, something I'd never experienced during any of my trips to NYC.

DAY 3

We woke up early to sneak in a quiet breakfast together before my brother and his wife arrived. We walked through Central Park, took pictures at Strawberry Fields then had some cocktails at Tavern on the Green, toasting to the start of our kid-free weekend!

We walked so many miles, we felt we totally deserved a treat from Georgetown Cupcakes while shopping in SOHO, before checking in to our third and final hotel.

*Not pictured: Our surprisingly delicious lunch at a Mexican restaurant somewhere along Church Street. I wish I'd snapped a picture or at least written down the name so I could visit it again some day. #regrets

DAY 4

The day finally arrived! This was the day we'd see Hamilton.

Ryan snapped this photo through the very small opening of our (third) hotel window on Saturday morning..

After listening to the soundtrack for over 2 1/2 years, I couldn't contain my excitement. I took my time getting ready after breakfast, treating myself to multiple masks and resting my tired, sore feet.

We arrived early, had time to take all the pictures we wanted and grab lunch before our matinée show. From the moment I heard the line, "My name is Alexander Hamilton", I had tears streaming down my face until well after the show ended. I recommend jumping through any and all hoops to see this show. It's amazing... Amazing.

After the show, we made our way to Momofuku for dinner, then to Milk Bar a few blocks away for dessert. It was all splendidly delicious (OMG - CRACK PIE). This day was one for the record books. #perfect

DAY 5

For our final day, we had one more coffee at our neighborhood Blue Bottle (it is so good, and I think I like creamer in my cold brew now), before heading to Brooklyn for brunch at a friend's restaurant.

The face I'm making is not my best, but I'm told I make it a lot... Something to work on, I guess.

We drank and dined at The Bedford on Bedford in Williamsburg. I highly recommend eating (and drinking) there whenever you can. 

Jalapeño margaritas so delicious, they deserve their own full sized photo. 

Pictured from left: watermelon & feta salad, risotto balls, the legendary mac'n cheese burger, pulled pork hash, chicken & waffles and truffle egg toast. So damn good.

After brunch, we strolled for a smidge before heading to the airport. I love the sights, sounds and (most of the) smells of busy city streets. 

Until next time, NYC!

One Big Holiday

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For my husband's 40th, we celebrated by traveling to the Dominican Republic for My Morning Jacket's One Big Holiday music festival. We went with another couple and had the best time relaxing in the sun, sand and surf by day then singing along with some favorite bands by night.

A selection of photos of our #OBH shenanigans follows...

Up at the @$$ crack of dawn to head south. I'm really just including these photos because the pink in my hair washed out VERY quickly, and these are almost all the pix of those lovely pink strands.

What could be better than back to back concerts in paradise? My Morning Jacket, Portugal. The Man, Sylvan Esso, Moon Taxi, Spoon, Nathaniel Rateliff and the Night Sweats, J. Roddy Walston, Preservation Hall Jazz Band (and more) did not disappoint. 

At check in, we were greeted by "tequila drink", a concoction of tequila, pineapple, lime and jalapeños, and something else, I'm sure. It was so delicious, they really should have given it a more creative name. We spent all week looking for that drink again, finally finding it at the thatched roof hut where we grabbed our hollowed out pineapples (you'll meet my pineapple in a second). Tequila drink out of a pineapple while sitting beachside was per.fec.tion. My husband and I will work all summer to replicate this drink. We will succeed, and I will share the recipe here.

Beach, please.

Beach, please forgive us. We humans need to do better.

I made friends with a pineapple! Every drink tastes better when consumed from a hollowed out, juicy pineapple (there might be a few exceptions to this, actually). Still, it was festive AF.

I brought some FoxSea products with me to use, then repurposed my soaking stones corked vial to bring back some of the DR's soft, soft sand.

The breakfasts were the stuff of dreams: a plethora of cheeses, fresh fruit, nuts and carbs, sweet carbs. Multiple drinks, too. Not pictured: the morning I triple fisted with a mimosa, a bloody mary and iced coffee. *Side note: I know Mary should be capitalized but I don't like the way it looks as part of bloody mary. It's my blog, I do what I want.

I always prefer savory to sweet, but oy vey, the dessert bar on the festival plaza every night was wonderful (especially after consuming unlimited dranks into the wee hours of the morning). 

The resort had 12 (?) pools for us to choose from, and we hit at least half of them, because swim up bars. #poolparty

I don't have many pictures of the music (I do have some vids but I'll spare you those), because we were too busy enjoying the music. We listened while in hammocks, enjoying cocktails from our cozy concert couch (we coined that term to describe the wonderful outdoor furniture ringing the festival plaza) and in the middle of all the chaos up front by the stage.

Perhaps I take too many pictures of my feet... ?

Here are my knees, though.

My narcissism is showing. #selfielove

And the reason for the trip: Mr. Ryan Fox. He's the greatest.

We had such a blast, it took me a few days to removed my concert/resort bracelets. #armfestival