09/06/2017

How to Grill Lobster and Shellfish

The most difficult thing about grilling shellfish is to not play with the lobsters before you cook them. The technique is as simple as throwing them onto the grill. Our recommendation: buy lobster tails instead of the live crustaceans.

A grilled shellfish dinner packs in a lot of flavor with minimum effort.

Ingredients for 2-3:

4 lobster tails

10 clams

10 mussels

1/2 pound new potatoes

2 ears of corn

Fresh seasonal vegetables

Seasoning such as paprika, dried mustard and pepper

2 Tablespoons olive oil

Quartered lemon to serve

Directions:

  1. Soak the fish for 3-4 hours.
  2. Season with lemon, a  sprinkling of olive oil and your favorite seasoning or make your own with paprika, dry mustard, ginger, salt and pepper.
  3. Warm up grill to 350 degrees.
  4. Drizzle corn and fresh picked vegetables with olive oil, add seasoning and wrap in foil.
  5. Cook all food for five to ten minutes. Once the shells of the mussels and clams open they are ready.
  6. Serve with lemon.

What looks like an involved table setting could not be easier.

Resources:

Plates: Homer Laughlin

Grill: Weber

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09/04/2017

Shop the Indian Summer Look

We refuse to believe summer is coming to a close. There is no urgency to store away the sundresses and shorts. The grill’s covering is still gathering mold in the shed. The floors of the car are coated with sand. If you feel your summer gear was lacking this season, this is the best time to stock up with what you want and possible deals. It’s like buying Christmas decor the day after the holiday at half off and being fully prepared the following year. Here, we round up our wishlist favorites.

1. Native petite round towel 2. Bondi beach tent 3. Pagoda Kaeden umbrella 4. Santander Macrame Hammock 5. Beach cart 6. Carnival kite 7. Countryside gardening basket 8. Beach paddles

09/04/2017

Celebrate Indian Summer

For those who are not part of the warm-weathered privilege who either live in a mild climate or chase the sun year round, September is a crucial time to take in summer’s last hurrah. As a four-season dweller, customs like squirrels gathering nuts early and the thickness of a spider’s web are noted and feared. (All signs in the Farmer’s Almanac of a cold winter).

Beach Tent by Lovin’ Summer creates an instant campground.

The exchange between summer to fall may be the most spectacular period of the year. In our neighborhood you won’t see a countdown sign till summer ends but in spring they are prevalent. This is why being outdoors is a necessity.

Beaches are less crowded. Deals on summer necessities abound. You can still feel the rays of the sun before she relinquishes her power to another hemisphere and go home to an evening by the fire. Engage in a seashore outing simply but with verve and style by erecting a beach tent with nibbles and games. Just because the month may switch over doesn’t mean you have to.

Boat’s experiencing their own end of summer moment.

Create an end of summer celebration:

  • Postpone stowing away beach gear and make a trip to the beach for a more private experience than jostling for sand space.
  • Take advantage of end of season specials and stock up on those great beach pieces you had your eye on.
  • Pack snacks, games, plan a kayak expedition or just go on one of those endless, meditative walks. Make an effort to get in beach time before days become cooler and shorter.

Indulge on the last stock of summer fruit.

Resources:

Beach Tent: https://lovinsummer.com/shop/beach-tent/santorini-beach-tent/

Wategos Round Beach Towel: http://thebeachpeopleco.com/thttp://thebeachpeopleco.com/the-wategos.htmlhe-native-petite.html

Fair Trade Basket Bag: http://basketsofafrica.com

Colored bowls: http://www.boboandboo.com.au/

Adirondack chair: https://www.polywoodoutdoor.com

Lovin’ Summer sums it up.

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08/30/2017

Back to School – Back to Responsibility

Summer is loose with its liberal stance on iGadget time, bike riding until bed, eat-the-brownies-we-made-last-night-for-breakfast approach. Everything about the warm season is scaled back, including busy moms who also need a summer off from parenting. And then you pay for it… To avoid getting the new teacher phone call about your child, and I am not referring to the one where she breezily checks in to say what a delight he or she is but how they simply are, ahem, struggling to get back into the routine. Routine is a necessity in our young citizen’s life and if family holidays were not only spent on the shore but at home, you can always get back into the groove.

Prepare gear the night before to omit one stress on the first day, just nix the light saber.

Begin by helping them prepare their backpack with its new supplies, help them choose their clothes, and make the last days of summer vacation count by planning structured activities. They will find enjoyment in being a part of the process and excited for the New Year ahead. Also, if they try to smuggle their light saber into school as my son did, make it funny and suggest that a new teacher may not be as receptive to their aspiring Jedi ambition on the first day.

Resources:

Backpack, lunch bag: https://us.soyoung.ca

 

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08/25/2017

Back to School Supply Shopping – Make It Fun

Amazon was a South American region back when I went to grade school and school supply shopping happened after the first day, checking off items from a Xeroxed list. Now it’s pre-ordered, with online updates, specific brands, and a calculated depth to your pre-sharpened pencils. While I didn’t go to school carrying a pail with a piece of chalk and turnips for lunch, I do feel the generational gap kick in.

Securing school supplies doesn’t have to be another September task like warding off lice. I remember the excitement from choosing folders with your favorite cartoon character, colorful erasers, and pencil cases that would accompany the school year with me. Now it’s as impersonal as filling-out a medical form.

Bags by Built are both durable and can be used for a variety of needs.

This year I will stay true to the list (it’s not right for my son to be targeted as the rogue school shopper based on his mom’s views) while adding a few extras so we can add another memory to the ephemeral grade school years. Here, we supply a round up of products that are both school approved and of top quality and style.

Backpack, lunch bags and snack bag: http://www.builtny.com

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Paper folders: http://www.officedepot.com

Scissors: http://www2.fiskars.com/

Pencils: http://www.dixonticonderoga.com

Colored pencils: http://sargentart.com

Post It Pads and labels: http://www.post-it.com/3M/en_US/post-it/

Books: http://www.scholastic.com/home/

Activity books: https://usborne.com

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08/18/2017

Before & After – Adding a Dining Room Pendant

A single wall construction home in Laguna Beach follows the charm of this surf culture town. Central air is an extravagance when you can simply open the doors for that canned coastal breeze.

A neutral yet modern double cylinder pendant seals the look of this small dining area.

Temperatures rarely venture into extreme highs or lows and if they do residents revel in having a quaint taste of another season. The climate translates to the home, where interiors follow the laid back “shoe optional” approach.  Lighting, however, fits a more basic need. Moving into my Laguna home and the previous dweller, one of those earthy types who kept wild animals as pets, did not have a dining room lamp among other necessities. While I am a follower of organic style and going braless at Coachella, I do find lighting necessary in terms of effectively seeing your food and adding an easy stylistic element.

Choosing a pendant was a combination of statement piece yet neutral since the dining area is part of the overall common room. This double cylinder pendant by Oilo Studio  works with its scale, simplicity, modernity and neutral color.

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08/11/2017

Ultimate Guide to Resort Town Shopping

The time has come in your vacation to investigate town, usually between beach and dinner. You navigate a sidewalk with other tourists who share a reddish tan that happens when you fall asleep to the ping ping of a Kadima ball in the bright sun. The town charms with a hotel that hosted famous Colonial folk. Cafes decorated with local art. Stores merchandised for the season. Some shopkeepers let you browse with a drippy ice cream cone, the window lists their other resort locations: Nantucket, Palm Beach, East Hampton…

Here, we cultivate highlights from resort establishments, hocking everything from cocktail attire, sustainable flip flops and shot glasses with the town’s zip code.

 

  1. Navy Canvas Tote 2. Watercolor Waves Bag 3. Beach Volleyball 4. Embroidered SkipJack Key Fob 5. Intergalactic Bath Bomb 6. Marine Blue Handwoven Throw 7. St. Barths Tunic in Sailing Stripes 8. Roses Quilt 9. Original Salt Water Taffy 10. Scotland Nation Airlie Sweatshirt 11. Trucker Hat 12. Beach Towel in Mega Joyride 13. Fallera Azure Women’s Mule 14. Backpacker Cologne 15. Deer Valley Mountain Legging 16. Laraju Elephant Printed Silk Scarf/Throw

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08/05/2017

Travel – Chatham, Cape Cod, MA

We reach the final leg of our trip in a Jeep weighed down with too many people, beach gear, unzipped bags and many towels since our rental does not provide them. The main road that takes us to our cottage is not cluttered with commercial behemoths. There are antique stores in historic homes, hardware stores hocking rain barrels, fishing outfitters and a nature center that hosts midnight walks along the seacoast. This could be the scene of a summer experience decades ago but it’s not. We are in the town of Chatham, plotted on the elbow of Cape Cod, Massachusett’s arm.

An antique store seen on route to our cottage.

A Cape experience and there is no preoccupation with such things as matching your pool float to your bathing suit and securing appointments for an onsite hair stylist to prep you for an exhausting roster of fabulous events. We omit any scheduling to follow the simple offerings the town provides. Ridgevale Beach is in walking distance. There are plenty of restaurants. The main supermarket and fish stores provide local ingredients for meals at home.

Typical day at the local beach.

In town they have the expected tourist destinations—art galleries selling aerial shots of the ocean, Cape merchandise, trendy clothes designed by entrepreneurs who gave up corporate life to follow their dream, cafes that freeze extra coffee into ice cubes, choice of ice cream and fudge shops and more than one knitting establishment. On a morning when half our household made their tee time, we explored the two block town. An excursion where Cape appropriate trinkets were bought. Ate more ice cream, cookies, Italian ice and candy where I thought tongues would permanently stain blue. We gave in to the impracticalities of resort living. By the end of the trip there is life reassessment and talk of starting a clam bake outfitter.

Walk away from the crowds for a vacant plot.

In the dramatic shift from August to September the town’s tourists return to routine life, leaving the Cape’s most spectacular month. Days have the perfect ratio of crisp to warm temperatures, cool evenings, no crowds–an ideal time to clear the mind and draft a business plan.

The view from Chatham Pier and Fish Market.

Places to eat/market:

400 East Restaurant & Bar: A bulky menu that serves everything from nachos grande to broiled scrod, tuna poke and ribs.

Candy Manor: An old-fashioned candy shop who homemade fudge and bins of candies.

Chatham Pier & Fish Market: Buy the catch of the day with on site entertainment provided by frolicking seals.

JoMama’s NY Bagels: Servicing our morning needs with great coffee and bacon, egg and cheese bagels.

Kream ‘N Kone: Fried fish selections, Cole slaw and soft serve ice cream in a family friendly atmosphere. Take out or dine in booths from plastic trays.

Marion’s Pie Shop: The morning line moves fast for coffee and all kinds of pie, even clam.

Buffy’s Ice Cream: In town, jovial pink setting, with a menu of flavors and soft serve.

Schoolhouse Ice Cream: An assortment of homemade flavors and other ice cream shop favorites.

Sundae School: A chalkboard lists innovative flavors you can create into a sundae with hot caramel, pineapple and other toppings.

Places to shop:

Ducks in the Window: If you are in the market for a rubber duck, this is the destination. A collection of rubber toys, candy and trinkets where shoppers inspect wares like displays in a gallery.

Fat Face: BoHo, urban sweatshirts and cool clothing in a hip corner store. The helpful salesgirl gave us the store’s background about British designers with the ideal to sell t-shirts and naming the store after their favorite ski run, but we were too busy inspecting the merchandise to catch it all.

J. McLaughlin: In even preppy resort town you can count on a J. McLaughlin for stocking up on pretty printed dresses, swim trunks and accessories.

Jack Wills: Come here for classic styles like striped teas, kick please dresses and wardrobe basics with an updated take

White Marlie: Designed tees, suits, hats and hoodies that offer a more styled assortment than a touristy shop selling Cape Cod emblemed clothes.

If you have any questions regarding your Chatham trip, please email us at jdemontravel@ducksgoose.com.

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08/02/2017

Best Travel Apps for Grownups

If the most fun you’ve had this summer is cooling off in the kiddie pool it may be time to get away. A proper trip, where you discover a new place or eat something so delicious the taste will be imprinted to memory. Travel can do everything from restore well-being to giving kids a summer that involves more than making some really cool sand art.

Before you hit the road, load up with apps that will facilitate travel needs.

 

Though traveling can come with some challenges. There are endless car rides that turn a vehicle into a mobile prison. Or trying to get by in a foreign territory without having to pantomime a lunch order. We uncovered apps that will cut through the tests of travel and build on your vacation experience.

HipMunk – Hotels and Flights

HipMunk is your virtual travel agent that will find the best accommodations, transportation and tour packages at an affordable price. Whether you have a getaway in mind or want HipMunk to find one for you, be prepared to sift through plenty of alluring options.

TastySpots

While we have sampled our way through every food app, what makes Tasty Spots so palatable is that it is intended for the foodie with I-really-ate-there reviews, pictures and content. The app will find a restaurant, help you order the best meal, and you can set up your own profile.

Walk Jog Run GPS Running Routes

For the exercise enthusiast, avoid getting lost or following a hotel map when drafting your workout route. WalkJogRun uses a phone’s GPS with millions of worldwide running notes to establish a customized route.

Glympse

It’s one of those group travel challenges–someone wants to go shopping while the other rather hit every tourist attraction at record speed. A difference in itinerary does not mean you can’t meet up for a drink. Glympse reunites parties by safely sharing your location.

Postino

When sharing your vacation on social media becomes too impersonal, revisit the classic custom of sending postcards but with an updated twist. Positino allows you to send real, tangible cards. Simply take a photo, select a background, write your message and for $1.29 the high quality customized card is sent between 2-5 business days. Sure beats finding a post office and licking stamps.

Mobile Passport

Want to feel like a VIP when you enter that dreaded moment at the customs line? While you don’t have to know a senator or titled official, Mobile Passport will certainly make you feel like you do. Officially authorized by Officially authorized by U.S. Customs and Border Protection, the simple process involves filing your profile, submitting answers regarding your trip and scanning your travel docs. The app will allow you access through U.S. Customs and Border Protection in over 20 major destinations.

Google Translate

Speak in your host country’s native tongue without having to take a lesson. Google translate is your app translator, which is the best way to connect with foreigners and navigate countries through language. You can even use your camera for a nifty text translation.

Waze

Waze is a navigation app that is far more than punching in a destination for directions, it is your virtual traffic guru. While turning off the highway and hitting a string of country roads that may make a simple trip seem like an epic odyssey, Waze will get you there faster by using driver shared traffic info.

Sit or Squat

Until apps can figure out a way to bypass rest stop visits, we must depend on public restrooms. Avoid that scary moment when opening the door of a pubic restroom—Sit or Squat is a handy app developed by the clever folks at Charmin with a listing of user generated reviews for over 100,000 bathrooms nationwide. Though it’s always a good idea to pack that handy roll of toilet paper.

whats app

If you go into shock when you receive a data usage email alerting the added cost from all your use of data, cut around that expense with What’s App, a free communications app.

Minube

For the traveler inspired by the beauty of a destination and insider info, Minube is an artistic compilation of user-generated photos and tips that allow you to sample a destination well before you hit the road. There are also recommendations based on your travel criteria and an ability to create a travel scrapbook.

 

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07/27/2017

How to Frame Art Online

While you may have graduated from taping posters to dorm walls, professionally framing your art and you may feel the pinch of your student loan days. There is a way to avoid pricey framers by taking the task into your own hands.

Framed art adds polish to a space.

Art is key to a personalized home. Beautifully framed portraits style a space. Even something like a diner receipt can look like a gallery piece when framed correctly.

Keep the look simple by connecting color, addressing scale, and avoiding clutter.

What to consider? Sizing and scale for impact. Color and how it relates to the room’s theme. Selecting the right art to frame, such as memorabilia, prints or your own art, which is the most personal expression a home could have.

Online resources can help you frame those artistic mementos easily and on a budget. Matboard and More, a custom online framing company, was especially helpful in processing our required needs via cyber communication.

10 Steps to framing gallery art on an artist’s budget:

1. Decide on the art and use a tape measure to size your desired frame and mat. For photography, there are many online photo sites where you can develop your film in a variety of sizes. The art work can be sent via email or direct to vendor.

2. Choose from a selection of frames.

3.  Keep your hands and work area clean.

4. Tape art into mat.

5. Slowly peel off protective sealer from plastic frame.

6. Insert plastic into frame, then add matted art.

7. Add foam board backing.

8. Before closing tabs, make sure the area is free of dust. The sealer attracts dirt easily.

9. Close tabs.

10. Hang frame.

 

Resources:

Online frame company: matboardandmore.com

Photography online lab: Nations Photo Lab

Love Story Never Ends art: Tuvalu Home

Window seat fabric: Robert Allen Design

Alassis over-sized candle: Chesapeake Bay Candle

Beach blanket used as throw: John Robshaw

Seahorse pillow: Chole and Olive

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