4 (Very Masculine) Environmentally Friendly Products for Your Home


4 (Very Masculine) Environmentally Friendly Products for Your Home

You are the hero of your life.

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In my inbox every morning when I get to work, there is a message titled Today's Gift. This one was especially inspiring as I am currently swimming in a state of limbo, sort of like walking through a swamp; I'm getting there, where ever there is, just very slowly. It takes a lot out of a person to mentally slog through a swamp that their mind can sometimes become.  

The important message of being a hero to myself no matter if anyone else notices my efforts very much resonates with me. 

You are the hero of your life.

Each of us plays the starring role in the drama that is our life. We co-create the script, along with our Higher Power. Sometimes we forget our lines, and so we improvise as best we can. We are heroes, each of us, as we move through the events of the day, refining our character and using our gifts to shape the action of every scene.

We can each be a hero in the drama of recovery. To the casual observer, what we do and say may not appear to be at all heroic. But we - as insiders who are only too well acquainted with our individual limitations - can appreciate and applaud a difficult decision or action.

When we accept our role in life, when we pledge to use our energies to do the best we can, and when we rely on our Higher Power for guidance and support, we will be well on our way toward recovering.

I can be a hero today, even if it doesn't show.

The idea that we can't determine our growth on what other people see on the outside is an important one; the work we have done may not be obvious to other but it can be obvious to ourselves.  And in the end that is all it takes to be your own hero.

She Wears Flowers in Her Hair

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For my wedding, I purchased gobs of faux flowers thinking I might use them to embellish pieces of the wedding, maybe the wedding arch in the arbor- which actually was completely covered with grape leaves, signs around the grounds - only had time to create one, the poles in the tent at the Commander's Mansion - there was way too much color going on after we were done, so not needed. Now I have a whole plastic tub full of $1 a stem flowers and nothing to do with them.  

Except, wear them in my hair! I started wearing the extra broken off stems from our centerpiece making during my wedding weekend, cause I couldn't bear the thought of them going to waste. I instantly fell in love with how the bright, vivid colors spruced up my dark hair, made my appearance come to life, made me feel a little more put together, like a great pair of earrings.  I have a little flower vase in my bathroom with a full spectrum of colors and styles from which to choose on any given day. Sort of like dress up.

So my new thing, that little something that makes me me is a lovely fake bloom stuck in my bun, my ponytail or behind my ear. Maybe I am out of fashion or behind the times, but I am not sure I care. It makes people stare, smile, maybe even laugh behind their hand, but only cause they don't have the guts to be a little daring in an adult world that seems to prefer leaving fanciful things to the young. I want to be known as She Who Wears Flowers in Her...and I do just because I can. 

Kerri Russell

Garcelle Beauvais 

Courtesy of Lulu's Hut

Photobooth Fun, Lasting Memories


One of today’s hottest wedding trends is the resurrection of family friendly photobooths. Originating in 1925, their curtained walls transport us back to the days of country fairs; I still have photostrips with my friends at the midway, and first dates on the boardwalk. Companies like Shutterbooth Boston offer guests and newlyweds the chance to show off their fun, wild side and take home a glossy photo memory at night’s end. Photobooth pictures can be a creative alternative to a traditional guest book, giving couples a laugh in years to come.  Add silly props, vibrant feathers, outrageous hats, oversized sunglasses and a moustache on a stick to guarantee a fabulous time, all caught on camera, of course.

The DIY photobooth at my recent Commander’s Mansion wedding was a huge hit with guests of all ages.  As a bonus thank you, we decided to include individual pictures in each our personalized thank you cards. Here are a few of the fun ones!

Best of Boston 2010

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Waiting for the Best of Boston edition of Boston Magazine is always fraught with anticipation for those who are potentially in the running.  Who has the best haircut, best brunch, best wine and coffee, best party 2010? The "Best of" seems endless! As a wedding vendor, it’s always exciting to see who in the Boston wedding community made the cut. Will it be friend, foe, or partner?  It is a close-knit community here so either way it is a win.

But as a bride, seeing one of your vendors being awarded Best of Boston is a swoon worthy sensation - and it happened to me! MY wedding florist was awarded Best of Boston. Not only was it a great choice on their behalf but it validated what I knew all along!  Hallie Krechevsky is a GEM! 

Hallie’s Flower Garden, nestled in the corner of Fromaggio Kitchen in Cambridge, home to a delectable array of artisan cheeses, is bursting with chroma, scent, texture, and personal attention.  Her shop a throwback to less hurried times when people ordered flowers in person instead of over the internet. I can only imagine this Best of Boston 2010  honor had something to do with Hallie's distinguishing eye for color, or her plucked fresh for the most lush, exquisite garden feel, or her unassuming, unrushed nature that makes you want to share your life story.  Her staff is just as attentive and knowledgeable and complete the Hallie's Flower Garden experience.

For my own story, I had a wedding florist debacle and walked into see Hallie - the store is on the corner of the street where I work, - a little tentative but with a very clear vision. She and I talked for a while, she asked me about my fiance, how we met, our life plans - no one else had asked me that, only how much was my budget.  She got me and wasn't pushy about it.  And come time for the actual flowers, she actually purchased some from the wholesale market for our DIY projects, she was infinitely patient and flexible. I credit her patience and OK attitude with my ability to let go and trust. It turned out to be a perfect combination and now all of Boston knows what I know! Uh OH, secrets out!  Congratulations Hallie!

A vegan wedding cake? No, really? YES, really.


I have a love affair with Red Velvet cake, as in can't get enough, adore the flavor, texture, color.  It just looks and smells decadently rich, like good dark moist potting soil. Not that it smells like dirt but it is a grounded and savory flavor and when you inhale deeply, it fills up every possible nook and cranny, lingering for a sweet reward later on. But I am getting ahead of myself.

As we all know there are so many choices when it comes to wedding cakes. We have all seen the amazing creation by high end and expensive cake companies. Given my love affair with Red Velvet, you may be in slight disbelief that I decided to try a vegan wedding cake.  WHAT no EGGS, no MILK, NO BUTTER? Are you nuts? You will serve your guests flavored cardboard!  I choose vegan because of my excellent friend, co-worker and vegan baker extraordinaire Jack who would be dismayed at the praise I am going to lavish on his most incredible, absolutely gorgeous creation.   

Now I love Jack's baked good but at first, I had my misgivings. Well his cake may LOOK good but how does it taste?  A non-vegan hears the word vegan and thinks: BORING and TOFU. I am NOT about boring and I don't do Tofu. Funny thing is, Jack doesn't do boring either and after the cakes I've seen him create and the heaven sent delicacies I've tasted from his kitchen, I had to trust that it was possible.  I mean the man makes a chocolate ganache like you have never had in your life, we are talking GET YOU HIGH ganache.  He actually made me a birthday cake replica  as a test, so I knew I was in good hands.  The amazing thing about today's food is that it's possible to create cakes using non-diary items and it tastes just as good. 

Flash forward: Our wedding day, it is hot outside, still air under the tent, and there sits our vegan wedding cake in all her shining glory.  Will she withstand the heat, will her vegan-ness come though, i.e cardboard, will the scrolls Jack so lovingly placed on the sort of crusted over frosting stay put long enough to photograph?  My trusty baker friend had worked days to devise, create, construct a cake mounting plan, hours slaving in the hot kitchen and many more hours just for the frosting.   It sure looked good but looks can be deceiving. 

DJ annouces, "And now time to cut the cake." The moment of truth; after months of waiting, and talking and testing - Jack actually made a complete test cake in the event something happened to the real cake - collaborating about design, creating a recipe to achieve the correct taste....oh my god it was here and I was there with my new husband and then...we sliced effortlessly through that creamy off white frosting, which matched my dress by the way, and released that savory, decadent, rich soil smell I had been waiting for, wafting in the air around me as my husband gently placed a small piece in my mouth and I his.    

I closed my eyes and savored my Red Velvet bliss....
no vegan cardboard, no tofu, nothing boring in the least.

I don't remember much about my reception, the day flew by so fast. But I do remember it stopped long enough for me to enjoy a little slice of heaven.  It may have been the love Jack added - this was his present to us - that made it taste so sweet but let me tell you, if I ever get married again, I am going vegan all the way cause it is possible to have a great cake and be ethical in our food choices. 

It was almost, ok not really, fat free AND red velvet. My two favorite things.

Cake: Flour, water, soy milk, beets, undutched cocoa powder, sugar, white vinegar, baking soda, red food coloring, vanilla, chocolate extract.  
Icing: powdered sugar, shortening, soy margarine, vanilla, coconut extract, soy milk, corn syrup.


PS I talked to Jack who wrote up his own version of the Red Velvet 2010 incident.  He also said he used over 22 pounds of sugar for both cakes. Thanks Jack! 

And the show must go on...


So we got married, now what? Not that married life isn't great, although it is sort of like dating life only we wear rings and share money....sometimes.

My issue now is what to do with my time. My brain is constantly brain storming and therefore I have trouble settling on one task. I have a few business ideas, some blogs, some writing, some event planning, lots of wedding stuff on the brain. But I haven't even sent out thank you cards or put away wedding presents.  Truth is those things lack the creativity I am yearning for these days. Post wedding blues I guess.

I would love to turn this blog into an advice, life, love, relationship, recovery, empowerment column.  Is anyone reading? We will be traveling soon and I need an outlet for that initiative as well. And I have plans to extend my wedding and event planning work and freelance writing with Beantown Bride. So much to think about.

In the meantime, honesty, love and healthy words via my GF Laura who may have gotten them from Dr. Drew.