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Stamford, CT
Accidental lifelong resident of Stamford, Connecticut, and full-time working mom.
Recent Activity
Hellooooooo, new Fairway! The buzz is that the new Fairway, seen here in a quick snap taken while driving which I admit was horribly unsafe, will be opening sooner rather than later. That's good news. Stamford has never offered good, big, bright, clean, thoughtfully-stocked, well-laid-out supermarkets. Not in my lifetime, anyway, and I'm 40. And I love that it happens to be on Market Street. Well done, planners! So, welcome, neighbor. I have high hopes for you. Continue reading
Posted Jan 20, 2010 at Stamford Scribes
Oooh, a minty-fresh, shiny new year. Time to get underway on undoing all the damage that the holidays wrought. For me, that means reacquainting myself with my gym. I think I've been a member of every gym in Stamford over the years. Sportsplex, New York Sports Club (all locations), Stamford Athletic Club, Planet Fitness, whatever that place was next to Il Falco that was below street level, the little gym at the hotel on Summer Street. I may be forgetting a couple. I join, I go with varying regularity depending on how much I like the gym and how god their class schedule is. I think of all the gyms I've belonged to, I've liked Stamford Athletic Club the most, for its great classes (at least, it used to have great classes) and pool. But it's really expensive. I recently joined Underground Fitness here in Glenbrook. You've seen their signs all over town, imploring you to make Underground Fitness your gym. They've usually got some great deal or another brewing, but it basically boils down to forty bucks a month. Not too bad for this area. But I have to say: This is a great gym. I thought the signs... Continue reading
Posted Jan 3, 2010 at Stamford Scribes
I'm not a surfer. And I'm not a skater. But I was still pretty stoked to find Shippan Surf and Skate, a shop tucked behind a laundromat on Shippan Avenue near Cummings Beach. (Just look for the yellow surfboard near the laundromat, and head down the driveway.) Lots of great sweaters, jackets, accessories, and other girly-gifty things. I treated myself to a couple of great scarves. (There's a whole men's section too, of course, and surf/skate gear, but I didn't investigate.) Finding this place was a happy surprise; I had no idea it existed, but apparently they've been around since May. Continue reading
Posted Dec 10, 2009 at Stamford Scribes
Monday was a beautiful November day (as beautiful a day as late November can offer up, at least), and I had the day off from work. I decided a nice ramble through the woods was in order. I'm a member of the Bartlett Arboretum, so I thought I'd start there. I was greeted by a somewhat menacing sign: Bow hunters! Yikes! Thankfully it was well after 9 AM. The walk itself was lovely and relaxing: I got a good core workout from keeping my balance on the slippery leaves and leaping from rock to rock to avoid the mud. My walk at the Arboretum ended by the pond and Brookdale Road. I felt like walking some more, so it was with great glee that I spied a trailhead across the road. I had no idea that the Bartlett Arboretum is (more or less) linked to trails owned by the Stamford Museum! Have these trails always been here? Here's the answer (at least in part): It's a great add-on to a walk through the Arboretum (though not entirely back-to-nature: you do go alongside people's back yards for a stretch). SMNC's trails are very clearly marked and the trails are very well-kept,... Continue reading
Posted Nov 25, 2009 at Stamford Scribes
Make a Smilebox photobook I've lived in Stamford a long time. Long enough to remember when this was a place where independent storefronts could do well, before every mall and shopping center in America became exactly the same. It was back then that Stamford had two side-by-side shopping centers: Ridgeway and Town and Country. When I was a pre-teen, it was a huge rite of passage to be unleashed on these shopping centers with $10 or $20 of babysitting money burning a hole in your pocket. Eventually, Ridgeway became a more generic strip mall that is identical to those found in every other town across America, with the world's most insane parking lot, and Town and Country was razed to become a hotel. But anyone who lived in Stamford back then probably has fond memories of a few of the places within these centers—businesses that would be unlikely to thrive in today's consumer climate, with high retail rents that allow only big chain stores into accessible shopping center storefronts instead of a more interesting mix of chain and indie. So let's take a walk down memory lane; a walk that doesn't include having to navigate the currently insane Ridgeway parking... Continue reading
Posted Nov 15, 2009 at Stamford Scribes
Gorgeous! I love the geranium photo.
Toggle Commented Oct 29, 2009 on Fall has arrived and gone ... at Stamford Scribes
1 reply
I like print. I'm in the magazine business myself, so when I heard there was a new Stamford magazine in the works (to be published by Moffly Media), I thought, "Hey! Print! Stamford! Sign me up." I have the premiere issue. It's certainly pretty. Very glossy, some great photography and illustration. And kudos to Moffly for having the cojones to launch a print magazine about affluence in this day and age! But I wasn't really thinking, I guess, when I subscribed. I'm not exactly Moffly's target demographic. I'm not going to drool over pages and pages of photos of people attending benefits. Personally, I'd rather read about the agencies and organizations that the benefits are benefitting; they strike me as more interesting than the photos of the smiling, well-turned-out people who are chit-chatting and sipping beverages on their behalf. But that's not Moffly's beat. And I'm not going to earmark the page that tells me where I can buy a $1,850 mirror. And that's what Moffly's magazines are all about: celebrating luxury, high-end, affluent lifestyles. I was hoping, I suppose, that their Stamford offering would be a tad grittier than its sister publications—much like Stamford itself. And there's a bit... Continue reading
Posted Oct 28, 2009 at Stamford Scribes
I like to hold a book before buying, too ... when I can. But as a busy working mom, I really rely on online booksellers to buy books for myself or for other people. Often I get it into my head that I need to have a particular book for my son, Sam. Usually I get this notion at an off hour, such as 11:00 PM on a Sunday. It's likely that I'll forget that I want to get him this book unless I jump online and get it. If I'm buying books for our own use, I use a service such as, where I can buy a used book and help a cause at the same time. If I need a gift for someone, Amazon and its free shipping are the way to go. If I have to wait until I can get to a bookstore, it might never happen. Having said all that, browsing in a bookstore is a luxury that I fully embrace whenever I can. And when I do, my first choice is Barrett Bookstore in Noroton Heights. The people there are friendly and helpful, and there's a big Golden Retriever who is friendly (but perhaps not as helpful). It's become Sam's and my tradition to go to Barrett to buy him a book after each of his haircuts (which we get next door at Johnny's). I also love those all-too-rare nights when I can get out of the house after Sam's asleep (er, leaving him with my husband, of course) and leisurely trolling the stacks at Borders or Barnes and Noble, coffee in hand.
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This past weekend, I did something I've meant to do for quite some time: I checked out Lakeside Pottery. The last time I tried pottery was about 10 years ago. I took a class through a continuing ed program that was not Stamford's. The instructor had little interest in helping out beginners, so I spent a lot of time poking aimlessly at lumps of clay. A very different experience at Lakeside Pottery, for sure. Instructors Patty and Morty were friendly, encouraging, and very clear in their instructions. I left feeling empowered, energized, and excited to go back. Lakeside is offering 6-week classes over the winter; I may very well sign up for one, if I can figure out the logistics. photo from City of Guelph, Continue reading
Posted Oct 19, 2009 at Stamford Scribes
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Oct 15, 2009
This past week has been Fire Prevention Week, which means there's been plenty of fire-themed activities around town. This weekend, several local firehouses held open houses. We hit the open house at the Springdale Fire Company today. Now, I'm no connoiseur of fire station open houses. In fact, I used to have to be excused from Fire Prevention Week assemblies in elem entary school because I was terrified of the films and of the soot-covered toys that had been rescued from tragic home fires. But the Springdale Fire Company really turned out a smokin' hot event for kids. Sam took a ride on an historic fire truck, "drove" a school bus and learned how to evacuate a school bus, operated a fire hose to put out a "fire" in a play house, and bounced in a bouncy castle while his parents munched on hot dogs. There was also a smoke trailer to teach kids how to safely evacuate in a fire emergency (this would have given me endless nightmares as a child; I'm sure my mom is cringing just reading this!), but Sam's too little for that. But he did take a couple of turns at the fire hose. He... Continue reading
Posted Oct 11, 2009 at Stamford Scribes
While Irene spent her weekend taking in the symphony, I spent mine shepherding my determinedly enthusiastic little boy through the Stamford Historical Society's annual "Touch a Truck" event. Unfortunately, the rain started pouring down just as we arrived. Still, a cheerful Stamford firefighter gave Sam a fire hat, explained this year's Fire Prevention Week theme, and helped him climb up into the truck. Sam also checked out one of the Glenbrook fire station's historic trucks, which had no roof, so he sat right on the wet bench. Just like actual historic firefighters would have had to do on a rainy-day call! Meanwhile, even the most truck-enthusiastic adults huddled under a tent. The weather was a bummer, to say the least, as this event is a great one for the Historical Society. The good news for Sam was that there wasn't a whole lot of competition for coveted behind-the-wheel time, since most [sane] people bolted when the rain started. Continue reading
Posted Oct 6, 2009 at Stamford Scribes
There used to be a small branch of the Whitney Museum on the ground level of the Champion International building. I remember in high school we had an assignment to "go to an art museum" (I don't remember any other details of the assignment) and that was pretty much the only game in town if you didn't have time or train fare or ambition enough to head into NYC. I wonder if we could draw a new small branch museum into town again? We have plenty of big empty spaces, after all.
Toggle Commented Oct 1, 2009 on Kandinksy at the Guggenheim at Stamford Scribes
1 reply
Reading the Advocate online while sipping coffee is one of my daily rituals. And one of my daily indulgences has been to take a peek at the Advocate's Topix message boards, where our fellow citizens anonymously rant about the Mill River project, volunteer vs. paid firefighters, school redistricting, the superintendent, the mayor, overcrowded multi-family dwellings, and more. While Topix can be a forum for the aggressive, it doesn't exclude the passive; if you dislike a post, you might select a cheerful little peanut or flame graphic for "nuts" or "incendiary." If only real life were that simple. Don't like what your coworker is going on about? Here's a little peanut sticker for your lapel, sir. 'Nuff said! Alas, no more will my eyes bug out over the madcap ravings of other Advocate readers, because the Advocate has apparently tuned into the fact that the Topix message boards are a playground for Teh Crazy. They've discontinued the relationship. I admit, I leaned on Topix for a peek into people's experiences with the public schools in particular, since I have an almost-three-year-old at home. I learned a few things; many people did provide useful information and thoughtful posts. But I'm not entirely... Continue reading
Posted Sep 30, 2009 at Stamford Scribes
More than 70 years ago, Whitman Bailey sketched a view of Church Street in Glenbrook, in which both the artist and a marvelously-hatted woman are gazing toward hope. Or, rather, toward Hope Street. What might they have been thinking? Bailey's accompanying essay reads, "Old Church Street, which dates back to those days when this highway was a rural winding road, is now one of the busy centers of Glenbrook, for on this present thoroughfare is the large and attractive building of the Union Memorial Church and also numerous up-to-date stores lie within a stone's throw of this immediate neighborhood." He concludes, "Although Glenbrook has grown extensively in the past 10 years, it is still a friendly little village and a place where one always loves to visit." Yesterday, I stood in approximately the same spot and captured the same view. I wasn't wearing anything nearly as fabulous as the woman in the hat, though now I think I have my fall fashion wish list set. But I was gazing toward Hope Street, and thinking about the neighborhood where I now live. So for my inaugural Stamford Scribes blog post, I thought I'd build a bit upon Mr. Bailey's Glenbrook musings.... Continue reading
Posted Sep 27, 2009 at Stamford Scribes