Weekend in Instagram

I had every intention to have a real post for you today with real pictures, but last night instead of coming home and editing pictures I came home and read nonstop.  See, I've started A Song of Ice and Fire series by George R. R. Martin and I'm almost done with Game of Thrones (the first book).  And to say I'm a little absorbed in it would be an understatement.  Antoine can confirm that there have been many instances in the last couple weeks were I'm reading and refuse to stop while he's trying to talk to me and then I get all agitated because he's talking and therefore interrupting my reading.  Geez, the nerve! So, long story short...I didn't edit any photos, so here's some Instagram photos of my weekend to try to make up for it!
We started our weekend off by taking Cheese to daycare...and taking a little family photo of Cheese and his weird parents!  He loves going to daycare, even though it doesn't look like it in this photo (he's just trying to act cool).  After we dropped him off at daycare we went and got some breakfast and ran some errands before we headed off to the Krohn Conservatory orchid show.
The orchid show was, again, like crack to me and a total sensory overload.  I mean, look how pretty!!

After the orchid show we headed home to make a late lunch for ourselves, mixed greens with pears, walnuts, pan-fried goat cheese and my favorite strawberry balsamic (from Maple Grove).  I got the idea of pan-fried goat cheese from How Sweet It Is, and I'm so glad I tried delicious!

Saturday night Antoine went to a friend's birthday party and I decided to take it easy.  I spent the evening listening to some of my more girly records (see: The Way We Were in the photo...Love me so Streisand!) and reading Game of Thrones (see: addicition).

The little crane mobile that I hung in the guest bedroom (where the record player is).

Sunday morning when I woke up this guy decided to climb on my back and hang out.  So rude!

Sunday was a total lazy day around our house.  We spent the day finishing off Breaking Bad (I know, it took us forever!).  All the while, this guy snoozed on my lap!

That was my weekend, it was pretty lazy what can I say!  Hopefully in the near future I'll actually get to editing the photos that are on my camera...but I'm not making any promises because I really want to finish this book and then I'll likely want to start on the next one ASAP!


Coquette Patisserie in Cleveland

After our blissful trip to the Cleveland Botanical Gardens, Amanda and I were in the mood for a snack.  She hadn't had any birthday cake yet so that was an obvious must!  She mentioned a little patisserie that had opened recently near by, we glanced at their website and we were sold!  Within a couple minutes we were making our way to the Coquette Patisserie.  It took us some time to find parking but it was totally worth it.  The shop itself is absolutely adorable...
 I mean, how cute is that!?

We decided to share a couple of their amazing looking cakes and a small french press of coffee.
 So pretty!  We ended up getting (clockwise from the top): the pear pinwheel, the Queen of Sheba, and the chocolate triomphe.
 We were both actually a little wary to dig in because it all looked too beautiful and perfect to eat!  The Queen of Sheba (with the fleur-de-lis) was this first one we tried and turned out to be our least favorite.  It was good, but once we tried the pear and the chocolate triomphe it was blown out of the water!  Amanda loved the pear the most, while I was absolutely crazy about the chocolate triomphe.

Look at that!  I was expecting a dense cake like the Queen of Sheba, but when I dug my fork in I was surprised to find a soft white cake covered in a fluffy chocolate mousse covered in a creamy, rich ganache topped with candied hazelnuts...WOWZA!  So good!

If you find yourself in Cleveland anywhere near the university or the museums I would definitely recommend you stop by and try one of their delicious and perfectly constructed goodies!  They also offer a cheese and a charcuterie plate, a selection of beers, and wine and champagne.  It'd be a great spot for an afternoon snack with your best lady friends or a sweet spot to stop for dessert on a date!

Well, with that, happy Friday everyone!  I gotta say this week felt both short and long to me; the first half of the week flew by but the second half seemed to crawl.  I'm very much looking forward to the weekend!  Antoine and I are heading to the Krohn Conservatory orchid show, which I'm insanely excited for, and then I'm hoping to spend a good deal of the weekend relaxing and maybe reading.  What about you?  Any fun plans in the works this weekend?


Cleveland Botanical Garden's Orchid Show

This past weekend I drove up to Cleveland to spend time with my best friend and celebrate her 30th(!) birthday.  I left the plans totally up to her, wherever she wanted to eat and whatever she wanted to do.  We started off with lunch at a pizza place, just down the street from her new house in Tremont, called Crust.  We decided to share a medium Spanakopita and it was delicious!  Good flavor and the crust was awesome (hence the name, I guess)!

Then when I asked Amanda what she wanted to do next she said, "I thought maybe we could go to the Cleveland Botanical Gardens [which I had never been to and she had only been once before], they are having their orchid show right now".   Umm, what?!  This sounded like an activity for my birthday, not hers!  But I wasn't going to say no to orchids, I mean, we know how much I like love orchids!  But I warned her just how much I was going to geek out...little did I know the vast quantity and variety of orchids the CBG packs into their orchid show!  I think my brain might have exploded from all the orchid-awesomeness.  Just see for yourself, but be prepared for an orchid extravaganza (and this is me editing myself significantly)...

Alright, so while my brain was literally on sensory overload and I couldn't stop saying "Ooh, look at this one!" and "Oh, I really like this one!" Amanda and I nearly poked our eyes/faces out...
In two different areas of their large glass house there were spiky/thorny branches growing out of the rocks right at eye-poking level, it was a bit terrifying!  Luckily we're nerds and wear protective eye-wear daily (and Amanda was looking out for me while I was geeking out over the pretty flowers!  Still, imagine a person holding their child right at their level and the adult looking left to the orchids...WHAM!! Thorn-stabbed!!  That does not seem at all safe.  

Seriously I have never seen so many different kinds of orchids in my life!!  It was magical!  But what made it more magical?!  Tortoises.
 Look at him snacking on that lettuce.  Isn't he so cute!?

Oh yeah, and there were cute, tiny little birds flying around and butterflies!
These were some of Amanda's favorites!  I couldn't really pick a favorite, there were too many!!

Most of the orchids above were scattered throughout the large glass house.  Inside the main building was a separate display of orchids in a variety of room set-ups, some of which were curated by fashion and interior designers.  They were all pretty cool, but I liked this simple display of orchids in ornate picture frames the best...

Whew!!  I warned you.  I went a little overboard, but I left in a euphoric state; blissed out on all the different varieties, colors, sizes, shapes of orchids.  The botanical gardens actually has several outdoor garden areas but since it was snowing we did not get to explore those.  I can't wait to go back sometime when the weather is nice to see the gardens and explore more!

A big thank you to my wonderful hlp, Amanda!  For suggesting the botanical gardens, for putting up with me while I have an irrational freak-out over flowers, and then for not leaving me there because I was acting like a giant dork and taking a photo of every orchid I saw!  Thanks A!  I do have a little more Cleveland goodness in store for you this week, so stay tuned.  And then this weekend I'll be going to the Krohn orchid show and unloading another huge batch of orchid photos on you have been warned!


A Layer of Ice

Spring is definitely trying to make a comeback!  It was gorgeous yesterday and it's supposed to be even warmer today (I wore a new pair of sandals I just got from Modcloth in anticipation!!).  Like everyone else I'm so ready for Spring.  Not just the weather, but the flowers and the green everywhere and the life.  It's one of my favorite things to see flowers start to pop up everywhere and bloom.

Today it's supposed to get up to 70 degrees in Cincinnati!!  Isn't that crazy!?  It's especially crazy when you think that a little over a week ago we were covered in ice from an ice storm.  I had watched it out come down from the window all morning, but then when the snow/rain/freezing rain subsided for a little bit I ventured outside to some photos (and miraculously I did not fall on my butt!).  Now, as far as ice storms go this one was pretty tame compared to what Cincinnati usually gets; we generally get more ice storms than snow storms, although this year has definitely been the exception!  But the affects were still cool nonetheless...

So do you have an fun plans this evening to enjoy the beautiful little heat wave?!  I think Antoine and I heading to the park for a picnic after walk, probably with the Cheese-man.  Should be fun!


Wintry Ault Park

This past weekend, right before the snow/ice storm hit, the weather was actually pretty decent.  Not as nice as the Saturday before, but still I'll take it.  I'm ready for Spring!  For the flowers and the green everywhere.  So, since Antoine and I have been craving Spring (like almost every other human out there) we headed over to Ault Park to take some pictures and walk around before running our errands...
There were a fair number of people at Ault Park that day.  Several people were out throwing frisbees around, a couple people were doing yoga, a bunch were just walking around and then there were a couple others taking photos, like myself.

A hornet nest (?) that Antoine found near the Rose garden.

Antoine also spotted a couple of trees behind one of the gardens that had just been chopped down and the remnants (large tree stumps, which I desperately wanted to load into our car) were just lying there.
From what I could tell, the trees looked to be pretty healthy, so it's a bummer they cut them down, but I wonder if it has something to do with Cincinnati Parks plan to add another garden to Ault Park (there were nearby signs illustrating some for the plants they plan to bring in).

Oddly enough, I think I might actually like the way hydrangea look like when they're dead more than when they are alive.

I'm impressed with how beautiful Ault Park's gardens are in the winter time.  While it's not as beautiful now as they will be in a couple months or even the summer, there are still gems to be found!

Happy Friday, everyone!  Any fun plans for this weekend?  I'm heading north to Cleveland to celebrate my wonderful HLP turning 30!!  Crazy that I met her when she was just 19 years old!  I can't wait to celebrate and have some quality girl time with her, I need it!  Have a good weekend.