There’s School Tomorrow! Now that you’re dug out…time to get all your errands done!
Like going to the grocery store, the pharmacy, maybe pick up some Valentine’s Day gifts. I, ahem, may or may not have eaten some intended gifts during the hunkering down time. Note to self – next year buy non-consumable items like the ones at Linden Square. Don’t worry – they have chocolate, too.
Roche Brothers and CVS are both in Linden Square which makes shopping there practical, too. Here is a lovely gift-buying guide to help you with some ideas. Just don’t get snowed in and decide you are going to keep them for yourself – more snow coming on Thursday – you may not have time to replace them, and for goodness sake, don’t get edible gifts! Check out some sweet ideas below and then scroll down to see what else is happening in the Square. I got the sweetest newsletter and copied it for you – you are welcome.
Shop our Sweet Deals and Gift Ideas.
We promise we won’t kiss and tell. Enter our Valentine’s Day Sweepstakes
by Feb. 14 to win one $25 gift card from Sara Campbell and Tobey Grey. No purchase necessary to enter; must be 21 years of age or older.
Heather Moore “I love you” Charm, Sterling Silver and 14k Yellow Gold $1,040
Private Collection 14k Yellow Gold and Pave Diamond “X” ring $1,410
Rebecca Lankford Yellow Gold and Pave Diamond “XO” Bracelet $385
Suzanne Kalan 14k Pink Topaz and Black Diamond Studs $616
When my children were little, I was in Wellesley every week for my wonderful Tuesday playgroup and I was introduced to Roche Brothers for groceries, but really, I went for the drummies, and the Linden Street Deli for fantastic sandwiches. Then when Linden Square was added, I still went for drummies groceries, to The Cottage for lunch, or to work at Starbucks, and to pick a baby gift at Magic Beans and I knew there were other shops there – I just hadn’t explored them yet. So when I was invited to explore Linden Square as part of a blogger event, I said yes without even checking my calendar.
Our first stop, Roosters, a charming men’s grooming center (shaves, haircuts and more) where they handed me a straight edge and let me shave a person’s face balloon. I was nervous at first and although I did lose the straight edge in the towel – only once! – my instructor was kind and patient. I really liked how the warm wood of the shop gives it an old-timey feel. This would be a great gift for Dad or your father-in-law (I’m adding it to my best gifts to give) and a great father-son outing for big boy haircut time!
Nest up was Tobey Grey Boutique and I did know this was here because I managed to fall into a pre-inventory sale here this past summer while I was supposed to be working with Leah, but I digress. Great graphic tees with positive messages, super well-fitting jeans and a slew of yummy cashmere sweaters and pretty, flowy tops.
Then on to CERI Boutique for more fashion and accessories. Another gorgeous store with some sweet jewelry and accessories. I like the little bags and am buying a few to fill with fun things – maybe make a winter survival kit with lip balm, hand cream, a headband, and some cozy socks or mittens? There were too many pretty clothes to try on in the time allotted so I’m heading back next week.
I have friends who take classes here – really fit friends, I might add – and I have always been a little intimidated by the idea of a mirror and a barre – but not after visiting Pure Barre! The staff is warm, enthusiastic, welcoming and reassuring that there are accommodations made to the program for all fitness levels and abilities and even injuries. I have been wanting to up my work out routine for a while so this looks like a great place to try that.
Sara Campbell was our next fabulous stop – what a pretty store! Gorgeous sweaters, dresses, gifts, and at a variety of price points – an incredibly helpful staff. We met the store model who was a lovely spokesperson and Shift Your Style was running a pop up and they can help with anything from closet editing to dressing for a special event. I was actually complimented by their stylist on my color choice of sweater and scarf – wow! and to think I was going to go with a basic black sweater.
One of my favorite toy stores has long been Magic Beans. This lovely local shop always has toys of great quality and their staff is friendly, well-trained and incredibly helpful with suggestions for gifts. Take my recent assignment – get Legos for a 6 year old. Easy, right? Umm, no. Have you seen the vast array of Legos lately? I was out of my depth until I asked the salesperson for advice. I knew only Lego and something possiblt artic. Suffice to day, all set! And good that I know my nephew doesn’t read my blog because his present is pictured below.
Changing it up and moving onto home decor, next stop Bonsoir Fine Linens. Our group watched in amazement at the napkin folding demonstration and I even tried it despite my skill set normally limits me to folding napkins into rectangles. And I could do the fancy folds, well, one of them. And I do so want this shiny gorgeous table runner for the holidays – it adds a touch of glam to any table. Another gorgeous store with a great variety of items in all price ranges – gorgeous candles and ornaments to full bedding sets. I can’t wait to try out my new mad napkin folding skills on my unsuspecting family.
Next stop, adorable Kenzie (formerly Kenzie Kids) a terrific shop for tweens. It’s a great place to find occasion dresses, shoes and accessories that aren’t too much for a tween (you may not be ready for the juniors department, I know I wasn’t). The day to day wear is cute as a button but on trend in a way you and your tween will appreciate. They even carry women’s clothes now, too, and I really like this beautiful Bogner coat modeled by the incomparable Charlene DeLoach from Charlene Chronicles. This coat is luxe enough for her new website, Cleverluxe! And they had donuts for us which, yes, I tried, and yes, they were worth it.
And tiny hanger with the cutest clothes for kids ever. Their tagline is curated cuteness and I won’t even try to improve on that. Check it out.
then came lunch at The Cottage! What a lovely room and such delicious food. I love the stuffed avocado with chicken salad and hats off to Kim for remaining calm when I almost upended the entire table. One cool mama, that one. My phone was charging at the front desk – so accommodating! – during lunch so no food pics – it was all delicious and gorgeous.
I was also out of battery for Belle Sante but I am going back soon and will make up for it then. There was a prettily packaged gift card in my gift bag and I am going to use it toward one of their signature treatments. I have been to the Boston location – my mom took us all one year – and I can’t wait to try Wellesley, and maybe I should bring my mom.
Unleashed by PETCO dropped by at lunch with gift bags for our pets – am I ever going to be popular with my dog!
Then, off to dessert at IMPULSE but we were all distracted by the something shiny and didn’t really eat (although I did take a coffee for the road and a Quebrada cupcake for my daughter).
The Sisco & Berlutti line of bracelets are perfectly stack-able and a great gift. Started by two sisters from Westwood, these beaded bracelets are a fantastic gift. I also loved the Heather B. Moore line – personalized or stock items – these wonderful handcrafted charms are a warm and personal keepsake.
I missed getting a gorgeous updo at Salon Maleah (that was Emily Roach with her post here), but there was a gift card tucked in my gift bag so I’ll happily head back to Linden Square for some pampering!
So, a whirlwind day filled with laughter, shopping, great food and fun! And after this day in the Square, the well-designed Linden Square, I ran into Roche Brothers to pick up ingredients for dinner. No drummies, this time, though.
The place to go for great gifts for everyone on your gift list! Also Linden Square is running the cutest Elf on the Shelf Contest from December 1-19 (there’s still time!) Three people will win – so if you find him in any of the stores, take a pic and post on social media – the shoppers with the most ‘likes’ win! More info on the Facebook Page below for another contest, too! What fun!
This is one of the times of the year that I miss appointments, double book, and am overwhelmed. How is this different? Holidays may be over but there are school conferences, annual physicals and I’m still not sure what year it is. Really. I’m not.
So, what to do? Busy moms tend to put themselves last. What beauty treatments? What sleep? Somehow I always manage to find time to eat…but we’ll get into that later.
I am lucky enough to have great resources and sometimes I even use them properly. Go figure. My dermatologist, Krauss Dermatology, has a fantastic practice and a great blog that I check in with when I don’t quite know what to do but don’t think the problem warrants an office visit, well, at least just yet. I do not hesitate to seek medical advice, ever, and my dry winter skin is under control thanks to the recommended (and over-the-counter) Cerave lotion.
Research first and and confirm (and I know my health care professionals appreciate my curiosity even when they don’t agree with my self-diagnosis), with my doctor is my M.O. – just ask my very patient OB/GYN – nervous mom-to-be that I was, I used to mail him articles as an FYI. I know, right?
So Krauss Dermatology is the kind of practice you love to share with your friends – Excellent medical care, extremely professional and personable staff, and they’re philanthropic, too. Not only were they a donor for the annual Melanoma Foundation of New England Shades of Hope event this year but continue to donate to the Melanoma Foundation of New England for each Facebook like. Pretty nice.
Even nicer, they are giving away goody bags filled with sample sized products from their well-stocked sample cabinet (I know, I got to see it). There are three great goody bags so more chances to win! I also happen to know that they are running a special on CoolSculpting (FaceBook 50 is the code – let them know at the front desk to save $50 off your treatment)
I was invited to a blogger dinner to get a sneak peek at Justine’s Table in Wellesley (the soft opening was November 5) and am I glad I went.
The mood is already set when you walk in the door by the baby grand piano just before the bar. The bar that (conveniently) has a television for those subtle mid-romantic date sports score check-ins. (Yes, honey, I know that it’s important to you). The warm wood walls and fireplace makes the space feel as luxurious as a private club but without those pesky club dues.
That night, the restaurant was opened up to a group of about twenty local bloggers. We were treated to a sampling menu that was well-thought out, carefully crafted and delicious. I felt slightly guilty that my family was eating pizza while I feasted on lobster stuffed halibut, crab cakes and steak…but only slightly. Hmm…just remembered that the last time I went to a blogger dinner my family was at the neighborhood block party with pasta salad and watermelon. I sense a theme.
Our host for the evening, Joseph Pignato, was gracious, knowledgeable and generous. He shared a gorgeous bottle of his own wine, a Château neuf-du-Pape 1982 and it was outrageous. The liquor license is pending so for now it is BYOB, which is no big deal, people do it all the time on the Vineyard where dry towns are common…and if you are bringing bottle of Château neuf-du-Pape, call me, okay?
All of the food was fantastic, well-thought out and delightfully presented. The tasting menu started with a beautiful trio: classic clams casino, chicken skewers with a lovely mango salsa and sweet sugar cane shrimp (in a citrus butter). Yum.
This amazing start was followed by a fantastic crab cake, a lovely mixed green salad, baked stuffed (with lobster) halibut, grilled flatiron steak, mushroom ravioli with chicken breast and shrimp. It was delicious from the tasting trio to the creatively presented cheesecake (in a martini glass) and a perfect cup of coffee.
A perfect date night restaurant or family gathering place (there’s a terrific kids menu) and the spacious but cozy feeling (must be all the gorgeous woodwork) private room would actually hold both sides of our family!
Find Justine’s Table on Facebook for updates, better pics (sorry – only had my phone) and specials! Here is a link to the menu in case you are curious – Check it out – you’ll be glad you did.