The Girl Who Cried Cous Cous

First and foremost… Happy birthday to Lily and Claudette! My girls turned 3 on Earth Day! We celebrated with a cake that they could not eat. Ok, maybe it was just an excuse to bake a cake and eat it. Anyway, Happy birthday girls!


Now, onto food and clothes…

I don’t wear shorts. EVER. Not even to bed. Prior to, say, 1997 I spent many a summer a’sweating and a’suffering in long pants. Jeans… Khakis… I’d be so hot and uncomfortable that I’d often suffer from the vapors ala Scarlett O’Hara.

Then came the advent of the capri pant.

Was I excited that there was finally an end in sight to my long-pant-wearing-awful summer quandary?? Hell no! I thought they were hideous! Who in their right mind would wear these hideous cropped knickers??? I remember seeing a girl at the mall and mocking them with some friend – Jenn? Kristy? Jessica? I can’t remember which, but I do remember that all of them, and myself, thought capri pants were just absurd when they debuted.

And then 6 months later I owned 10 pairs. I’ve never looked back, and I’ve never swooned from the oppression of ankle length pants in the height of August again. And, thus, I learned the most important lesson of style: Never say Never.

When I started to shop for my wedding gown in 2007 I had no idea what I wanted. I did know that I wanted to wear WHITE, I did NOT want strapless, and I wanted something plain and simple… Well, here I am, in my strapless, ivory, fully beaded gown…

Now, when I see a new trend that I think is silly, or that I think won’t suit my body type, I try and keep an open mind and make my final decision when I’m in the fitting room. Until recently I prayed every night to Jesus that the skinny jean trend would disappear. I’m a meaty size 8 Italian girl. My legs are, at best, average length. But I tried on this magical pair of DKNY skinny jeans, and they’ve become a staple of my wardrobe. They’re like big denim spanks for my lower half, but stretchy and comfortable. I honestly think they make me look several inches taller, and 10 pounds thinner. Jesus knew better than to axe this trend before I found these pants.


Here are two pairs of skinny jeans that I enjoy. The first pair, from Ann Taylor Loft, I’d obviously only wear if I was emaciated. But, hopefully one day I will be. The second pair is from Gap – they’re actually denim leggings. They’re a bit thinner than regular jeans, and are easier to tuck into boots. I may invest in them if I find $70 laying on the ground when I go to Waldbaums tonight.


The one shoulder top/dress initially reminded me of an 80’s superhero. Or The Flintstones. They’re actually surprisingly flattering if you have narrow shoulders. I own several. Try them!

This dress is from Piperlime by Postella. It makes me want to go to Cabo and eat a lot of tacos and tropical fruit flavored things. I’d probably throw a big brown belt over it, and wear it with flat brown sandals and some chunky bracelets.

This next dress is from Ann Taylor Loft (can you tell that I love that store?) I think its adorable. Perhaps I’ll buy it for Kristy’s engagement party.

The final trend that I originally scoffed at, openly and publicly, is the gladiator sandal. Last year, I didn’t understand why anyone would want to have the same footwear as a Roman soldier circa 300AD. Now, suddenly, I want to own several pairs. These shoes fall under the “I don’t think they will work for my body type” category. As I mentioned in the skinny jean portion of this entry, I do NOT have long, thin legs. These seem to be a necessity for the gladiator sandal to work (i.e. KK) however, I think that with a long dress or with a simple white tank and long, wide leg linen pants, I could pull off the flat gladiator sandal seen below, made by Sam Edelman, available on Piperlime.

These higher heel gladiators… well… I almost feel like I can’t move on with my life until I own them. I see them with jeans, skirts, dresses… I dream of these shoes, and in my dream I own them in all three colors, from Nine West:

I’m pretty open to trying new foods, as long as they are moderately healthy and vegetarian. Imagine my dismay when I longed to love cous cous, only to find out that I actually hated it? I made it for dinner a few weeks ago, per the package instructions, and actually had to throw it out and eat a cheese sandwich instead… I was so sad.

So, this weekend I revisited cous cous. I thought, how can I make this weird little grain taste decent? I thought and thought and thought… and then it came to me.

Butter. Much butter.

So, here is what I did. I made the cous cous (1 cup) according to directions, and set aside. FYI, this is regular old cous cous – not the flavored packaged kind which I’m now told is superior in all ways. I also made a cup of lentils, according to directions, and set those aside. In half olive oil and half butter I sauteed half a white onion and 10 pearl onions (both diced) until golden brown. Then I added two cloves of minced garlic. And some more butter, salt, and pepper. When the onions were brown, I added about a cup of diced fresh white mushrooms. Then these were cooked through, I added the cooked cous cous and lentils to this mixture and heated through. It needed something… so I added some more butter. Finally, a cous cous that I can get into!

I had it for dinner. I had a ton left over, so the next day we also ate it as a dip with tortilla chips! Even Tom ate it, so you know it was tasty. It might be on the menu for May’s bookclub, with pita chips…

So, if I’ve learned something over the years, its that some of the best things (clothes, food, etc) come in deceiving packages. Now go eat a bowl of cous cous and buy some skinny jeans. You won’t regret it…

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