Monday, February 28, 2011

something you need to know...

It's meyer lemon season, and anyone who's spent anytime in California can attest to it. Attest to it with cases of lemons, with so many lemons they don't know what to do with them apparently, or so my bookkeeper tells me on a cold afternoon a few weeks back, a feeble attempt to brighten our meeting after disclosing our profit margins for 2010, or lack there of. Meyer lemon custard! Distracted and happy again!

So I had it in my head last week when planning a little dinner party. It appears that some travel and a bit of R&R has turned me back into my old self, the type of woman who can wake up to brave fairway at 8:30 am - on a Saturday whats wrong with me? a kid bombed me with animal crackers from his strategic position in a shopping cart - teach a class, give an interview, run home, and be coming out of the shower right as guests arrive. Dinner is served! And here's the game changer; dessert is also served. As in we make coffee and tea like adults instead of uncorking more wine and making an impromptu dance party.


Meyer Lemon Panna Cotta adapted from Annie's Pickins
Serves 6 – 8

1 envelope unflavored gelatin

1 cup + 2 tablespoons superfine sugar (this must be superfine sugar, not confectioners sugar)

1 cup whipping cream

1 cup Meyer lemon juice (I found that 4 juicy lemons squeezed hard did the trick, but buy 5)

3 tablespoons finely grated Meyer lemon zest

1 cup Greek yogurt

Sprinkle 1 packet of gelatin over 1/2 cup of cold water in a small bowl to dissolve gelatin. Bring Sugar and 1/2 cup of water to simmer in saucepan till sugar is fully dissolved. Turn off heat and add gelatin mixture, stirring until incorporated. Add cream, lemon juice and lemon zest. Stir and let cool slightly.

Wisk yogurt in a mixing bowl till its very smooth, then add the lemon/cream mixture bit by bit to incorporate fully. Careful not to overstir or you'll have lots of air bubbles in your panna cotta, not a big deal, just less attractive..

Pour into ramekins. Place ramekins on cutting board or tray, cover with plastic wrap and refridgerate for 6 hours or overnight.

This really is the perfect dessert to trail a hearty tomato or peppery pasta. It would be off the wall with some shortbread. And some lavender syrup or thyme.

This morning, with one meyer lemon remaining (that is after a pizza two nights ago with thinly sliced meyer lemons, black olives, rosemary, goat cheese, fresh mozzarella; I DIED) I conjured all the math I could muster to divide the recipe in quarters to make just two ramekins. And I adjusted slightly, a little less sugar, a little more lemon zest, a little more yogurt, 1/2 & 1/2 instead of whipping cream. So you know, the recipe is a bit forgiving. Unlike my cash flow.

Sunday, February 27, 2011

fuck, I'm glad to be a girl




- hired asheley full time, our second full-time employee (besides Eric and myself). so proud of this, and so grateful to have someone so talented, enthusiastic, resourceful and bright as part of our team. between deanna and asheley things are going to be insanely great this spring

- pulled off a beautiful job at the Guggenheim Thursday and am so excited to keep working with them on events

- spent 1 hour + trying on lipsticks in Sephora. Fucking love sephora, it's a great mid-week destresser. i emerged 100 dollars poorer and with swollen lips. fuck if i care, i'm sporting "dragon lady" this week, and it's hot. (DONNA - GO GET NARS DRAGON LADY)

- made a zillion deliveries - people are finally starting to understand that we deliver to midtown. but do they understand that it's actually US delivering to midtown, and that WE spend countless hours listening to bad hip hop whilst trying to desperately map a location of hale and hearty inbetween delivery #3 and delivery #4? thank god for the iphone

- busted my iphone, face first on a sharp corner of a cobblestone. do you want to know what it costs to replace the glass on an iphone? you don't

- first big wedding of 2011 on Saturday, congratulations J & C!

- Winter Wild class today, crazy talented group of women, wild and wonderful arrangements. truffled cheese and lambrusco. damn.

- Oh and a sweet reader from Jacksonville, FL came in the shop tonight as I was elbow deep in buckets and made my week. almost cried. it's because of you.


Friday, February 25, 2011


camaro 1975

So as you may remember Nicolette and I are hitting the road for CA in 2 weeks, and we've yet to establish ground transportation there. As we scour the internet for rental cars ("Convertibles-R-Us?) it occurs to me that maybe - just maybe - you are trying to unload your pristine, copper-colored 1975 Chevy Camaro in the greater Los Angeles area...?

How many flowers can I fit in a Chevy Camaro? A LOT.
Plus buying a car out west means we can drive it cross-country with ooodles of goodies from Annie's Annuals and Eric can have his Mount Rushmore heyday to boot.

I'm being dead serious - any good condition vintage wheels you're looking to sell, please email me.

Thursday, February 24, 2011






I have to run out the door - have given myself only until 7:30 to write this - but want to tell you a bit about these gorgeous strawberries-and-cream begonias I have, and how I wanted to make an arrangement with them - but didn't want to cut them up since they are so pretty. So I stacked an urn inside another urn, the bottom one has the plants; the top a floral arrangement. Problem solving.

In other news, I'm now on the advisory board of Garden Design Magazine! So thrilled about this....and about sharing bits of the magazine here.

Lastly, the weeks just fly by, and it's time again for free flower friday - comment to win some flowers delivered to you in Manhattan or Brooklyn tomorrow. We select a winner at random around 6pm tonight and will email the winner then. Good luck chickens! [HELEN #44 WINS!]

ah ha! 7:29! mark the calendar, sound the alarm, pop the champagne - meeting self imposed deadlines rarely happens...

Tuesday, February 22, 2011


burgundy cornflower


Were you ever tempted to eat a berry you knew was poisonous. Because you could. Because it was right there in front of you, and the act of simply throwing your head back and popping into your mouth was the simplest action conceivable in that moment...the precipice...

I had a dream last night that I was vacationing in a dinosaur park. There were little veloceraptors all over but they were friendly. Then I found one that had been spray painted - tagged with graffiti. Fucking tourists! I felt sad for him. Then he squatted to take a shit and I thought, ew, gross, dinosaurs.

Today's my day off.
I've been filtering through my Iceland images - two of those above are from the Botanical Garden in Akureyri. A larger post on Iceland coming soon over at the Little Flower School.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

valentines day

deanna lobster



Valentines day was such a whirr I didn't get any pictures of flowers, only of our lobster feast afterward. Love a good lobster. I could have eaten 5 lobsters that night. That's obscene, who could eat 5 lobsters?

When I was snorkeling I saw a barracuda. And ate a trigger fish.

Sea creatures have such funny names. Good night.

Friday, February 18, 2011

You should come visit our shop this weekend and see our insane poppy posse for yourself
...also our candles are back in stock...

Shop hours: Saturday and Sunday Noon - 6pm
147 Van Dyke Street

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Free Flower Drill - #22 WINS!




Comment to win flowers delivered to your door in Brooklyn and Manhattan tomorrow!
Good luck!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

bits of blue


in san juan


I finally make it up to my desk to some paperwork.
Filtering back through photos of warmer months in search of a particular picture for a proposal. I am really excited about this one, which means the procrastination level is off the charts. I always put of writing estimates for the jobs I really want. Similarly, I realize I never shower before I'm photographed. Just finished shooting a video for lucky mag and realized my hair looks like a god damn birdsnest.

Went to see Blue Valentine yesterday, can't stop thinking about it. The most beautiful movie. I just ...

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

magic, love, mystical visions

lighthouse vieques

I have returned from paradise and assimilated back into the routine of Saipua, what with its flowers, its dinners, its friends, girls, walks, wine, emails, plant watering, candle lighting.

Everything in my apartment smells like the sea. Shells and pieces of coral keep emerging from my pockets and unpacked bags.

I'm overwhelmed this afternoon with the best news from friends, anticipations for a traveler, and all the catching up we have to do in the coming weeks. There is so much love I can feel.

While I was away I had a mystic vision of sheep and specifically sheep's milk ricotta. If you know about such things, lets talk.

I've missed you.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Free Flower Time


This is Asheley and Deanna taking over for Sarah while she's away suffering heat stroke in the tropics!

Hope you win! (And if you do, we'll need your e-mail address to get in touch with you, so please leave it with your comment. Thanks!)

Monday, February 7, 2011

a sweet deal

NEWSFLASH! took a break from snorkeling and petting baby octopi on a deserted beach to pedal down to the local D-Link on the island where the nicest people are letting me power up to the internet - all so I can bring you this very important announcement:


GOLD DUST, fools! On a rainy afternoon before I left I tasted them myself. The most perfect truffle ever. Monica who makes them has outdone herself!!! Deanna is waiting with her headset on, ready to take your order. This is especially targeted to the 6 men who read this blog! Get a plan Stan!

Can't wait to return and tell you more about my the meantime close you eyes and imagine you are here with me. I wish you were...

*The biggest thank you to my cupid angels; Deanna for running such a tight ship while I've been traveling and Asheley for being such a damn talent and making this beautiful flyer. Te echo de menos!

**MOM - we're not fighting too much, and Jesse only threatened to leave once, and that was after she discovered a lizard near her bed. Now she sleeps comfortably with a net. Love you.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

emily and alex

[Images by Dove and Sparrow]

Emily and Alex were married at New York City Hall just after the first of the year. (Remember? Back when snow was charming?) I adore these photos of them.

emily and alex

What it is about City Hall weddings? I find them so romantic. In a run to the judge and make it official sort of way. Throw caution to the wind, take the plunge sort of way. And if I may say, regardless of how simple - no matter how casual - how off the cuff...every bride needs a bouquet. EVERY BRIDE.

That’s why this happens.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Free Flower Giveaway


Call it a hunch, but I'm sensing you need a little something easy and wild in your life this Friday. Comment to win some free flowers delivered to your door in Manhattan or Brooklyn tomorrow...

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

warm up

What are flowers? I have not touched any in almost 2 weeks, and I'm not going to until the 12th or so. A self-imposed HIATUS! After a bad dream the other night Eric asks me if I'm worried about losing my edge. I considered this, then threw it out. Let me tell you something strange; being in Canada without internet, without email was a revelatory experience. I found I couldn't really even think about Saipua while I was gone. When I got back yesterday my mind switched back on with new ideas that could only happen after time away. [I want to throw a Valentines Day dinner party with LOBSTERS! Lemongrass coriander soap, Anise lavender soap with honeysuckle? Green chili coconut soup I mean soap? I want to start my own under-trimmings line! I want to open a flower shop in Paris with Nikki!] It's like I got re-booted!

My Hiatus continues. Tomorrow I fly to San Juan and then Vieques for some time away with my sister. Do you know I've never been anywhere tropical before?
I will pre-program some things for you.

And thank you for your kind comments about my grandmother. I want to be clear that she seems very content. The nursing home is a very nice one, with a thorough and loving staff (one nurse was learning some Finnish to be able to say I Love You to my Mummo). The emotional challenge I referred to has more to do with me accepting change. More on this someday. Until then Mina Rakastan Sinua...

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

If it was winter

Just back from a week in Canada, near Parry Sound. It snowed. Pipes froze. Holes hacked in the ice, sauna baths. Eric and I hauled a lot of buckets of water, a lot of wood. Practiced massage techniques on our sore muscles. Argued over constellations. Some more photos here.

The truth is it was an emotionally draining week for me. I helped get my mummo situated in a nursing home. Have you spent any time in a nursing home? Then you know. I was wheeling one lady back from Bingo and she accused me of being a woman-driver. I looked out the window and obligingly commented on the snow. She said she wouldn't mind the snow so much - if it was winter.