5 Free DC Events That Happen (Almost) Every Week

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One of the things I appreciate most about DC is the seemingly endless list of events going on. Between outdoor concert series and events at the museums, there always seems to be something to check out. Whether you’re interested in art, working out, or good old fashioned drinking, DC has something to offer if you know where to look.

Here’s a few items on my budget-friendly bucket list this summer:

  • Free 3-mile “Sunday Runday” every Sunday 10 AM @ Union Market (NOMA): get your run on plus a free mat pilates class, and then head into the market and eat your well-deserved biscuit!
  • Free Comedy every Monday 8 PM @ The Passenger (Shaw): as the event page so eloquently states: “COME SPEND YOUR MONDAY’S WATCHING LOCAL COMEDIANS TALK ABOUT THEIR FLAWS AND INSECURITIES SO YOU CAN DRINK BOOZE AND FORGET ABOUT YOUR OWN!”  While this event is free, you do need to reserve your space in advance.
  • Free Summer Concerts every Wednesday 7 PM @ Strathmore (Bethesda): pack a picnic and trek north a bit for Strathmore’s Live on the Lawn concert series
  • Free Yoga every Tuesday 6 PM @ City Centre (Chinatown): hosted by CorePower, a free yoga series open to all.
  • Free Drive-in Movie Theater every few Fridays 7 PM @ Union Market (NOMA): free for walk-ups, $10 for cars in advance. You can bet your ass I’ll be there in a few weeks for Honey I Shrunk the Kids!

20 Light Spring Cocktails

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When I think about warm weather, I immediately think of eating and drinking outside with friends. I’m lucky enough to live in a building with one of the best rooftop views in DC, so it comes as no surprise that during warmer months I have people over at least once a week. Some of my most memorable nights from last summer were spent upstairs on the roof playing games or just hanging out, sipping on a new-to-us cocktail.

I rarely make the same drink twice (there is one exception), since there are so many interesting options out there that I’m eager to try. I’m particularly drawn to cocktails that feature ingredients I’ve never used before, like pea shoots, cava or matcha! While searching for recipes for new drinks to try, I aim to keep things on the lighter side without sacrificing taste. Some are twists on old classics, while some are a brand new mixtures of ingredients.

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Here are a few light, spring cocktails I’ll be trying out this year:

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Friday Mornings

I’ll tell you, these allergies kicked my ass this week. The weather forecast is calling for rain all weekend which I couldn’t be happier about (wash all that pollen away, pleaseandthanks). I’ve got a super packed weekend of March for Science protesting, birthday parties, a friend’s DJ set/art show, and more. It’s great to have a weekend off, but I also relish the weekends that are already packed to the brim with fun stuff. I can’t wait to kick it all off with drinks with the girls in a few hours somewhere that apparently specializes in frozen cider.

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“Girlboss” on Netflix premieres today
Wishing everyone the most fulfilling of weekends, whatever that means to you 🙂
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This past week…
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  • The Most Interesting Thing I Read | this NY Mag article about the quirks of female socialization and why we are drawn to certain types of women is fascinating
  • The Most Delicious Thing I Made | in an effort to proactivey waste less food, so when live gives you about-to-go-bad apples you make these
  • The Most Inspiring Quote I Heard |Stay around people who look more like your future than your past.” – personal trainer Anna Victoria
  • The Most Useful Thing I Listened To | this podcast with Tony Robbins’ son, Jairek. I listened to it twice and took notes, which never happens.
  • The Coolest Event I Attended | I bought tickets to a tiny, intimate show where the artist and specific location wasn’t revealed until the day before and it was SO worth it
  • The Most Adult Thing I Bought | suns out, sunscreens out with the help from these lightweight lipface, and everyday protections
  • The Most Excited I Am | I can’t wait to binge watch this Netflix series which comes out today 4/21 #GIRLBOSS

“If your Nerve, deny you— 
Go above your Nerve. ” – Emily Dickinson

Katy Pitkin   |  LinkedIn

p ::: 484.433.1076
t  ::: @katypit

4 Days in Napa Valley

I am finally getting around to editing these photos after a few crazy weeks! I have a million photos I took from these few days we spent in Napa Valley with our families just to watch Zach and Kimmy RUN A MARATHON! While I was pretty bummed about not being able to complete the race myself due to an injury, I couldn’t have picked a better place to be injured.

Here are a few of my favorite photos from the trip!

2017-03-05 09.29.13Saturday was the day before the race, we had a day to ‘take it easy’, carbo load, yet still explore Napa Valley. After picking up our race packets in the morning, we took a drive to Russian River Brewing, a place that beer folks tell me is the ‘mecca of beer.’ The weather was miserable that day, so we were happy to spend inside eating pizza and getting a taste of their infamous Pliny the Elder.

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2017-03-04 14.22.37Sunday was RACE DAY! We got up early, carbo loaded, and headed to the starting line. It was cold and rainy,  and the nervousness of the runners was palpable. Even with a stress fracture in my foot, I managed to run a mile alongside my sister before I had to call my dad to pick me up on the side of the road. I was pretty disappointed for an hour or so about not being able to finish, but once we all set back out in our orange gear to find and cheer on Zach and Kimmy, I was too excited for them to be sad!

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Our Airbnb was smack dab in the middle of our own private vineyard

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I loved the wine-themed street names

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We may have quickly stopped at a winery while Kimmy and Zach were between miles 16 and 23 🙂

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2017-03-05 12.29.27They did it! Kimmy and Zach ran through sun, rain, hail, rain, sun, wind, and some more hail for 26.2 miles. They did such an incredible job and both had huge smiles on their faces afterward. After heading home for a bit, we enjoyed a lovely celebratory dinner at Farmstead at Long Meadow Ranch (where I sadly forgot to take photos). After heading home for a few beers in the hot tub, it was early to bed.

2017-03-05 08.15.23Monday was our last full day in Napa,  so we set out exploring the variety of wineries Napa Valley has to offer. We started at Clos Pegase, which is known for their art, estate wines and “luxury hospitality”. Since Zach’s parents have been members for years, we were able to score a private wine tour of the property which included wine tasting in their caves!

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Looking great post-race!

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Afterward, we explored Dutch Henry Winery which was the smallest winery we visited, and reminded me of Austin with it’s chicken coop and picnic tables. After a delicious lunch at Gott’s Roadside (get the fries!!), we sipped on some bubbly at Domane Chandon and finished off the day at the best winery of the day: Artesa (great hosts, i n c r e d i b l e wines).

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Napa, we had a great time and will be back soon!

 

Gift Ideas for Valentine’s Day

Whether you celebrate Valentine’s day or not, this is a year when we especially need to celebrate those we love more than ever. It’s silly that we dedicate only one day to this, but February 14th does act as a helpful reminder when we’re so easily wrapped up in our day-to-day lives. In past years, I’ve hosted Galentine’s Day brunches and spent the weeks leading up to Valentine’s Day writing to my best girlfriends, sending little gifts to them to tell them how much they mean to me. I plan to do the same this year. Zach and I also will be carrying on our tradition of eating pizza and drinking wine, which I’m also looking forward to.

Here are some items I’m considering gifting this year to inspire your own Galentine’s Day gifting.

  1. a card for that [new] special someone you met on tinder
  2. nourish your own body with this sweet smelling body polish
  3.  a simple but sexy mesh bra that you’ll wear well past valentine’s day
  4.  give the gift of relaxation with this chic and sturdy candle
  5.  finally start planning that trip you’ve been talking about
  6.  hop aboard the essential oil train and uplift your drink, bath and life
  7.  everyone deserves a little “lol” with their morning cup
  8.  a pretty little coin purse for a night out with the girls
  9.  for everyone’s favorite cat-lover friend
  10.  flash your heart hands with this lovely little patch
  11.  this delicate but structured bracelet would make the perfect gift (hint, hint)
  12.  this refreshing drinking vinegar would make a great gift for almost anyone
  13. the perfect card to send to your long term besties

Women’s March on Washington

Like me, if you’ve been in DC the past few days, especially anywhere near downtown, you’ve noticed a certain palpable buzzing in the air. This nightmare is finally feeling real. We all obviously knew that this day would finally come, but in a way I think a lot of people like myself (likely as a coping merchanism) pretended it was further away than it truly was.

D-Day is upon us, and this Friday Ivanka’s dad will be sworn in as the 45th President of the United States. It’s a tough pill to swallow, and if you’re like me, it’d be wise to bookmark this list of all the bars in DC that will have extended hours this week (to those bars pledging to stay open 24 hours, my soul thanks you in advance).

I hope to see you on Saturday, fired up and ready to go.

1. Register to attend: If you’re planning on attending the march in any capacity, please help them get a headcount! This is super easy, and extremely important for organizing logistics and helping marchers keep comfortable and safe. Also while you’re at it, consider making a donation.

2. Make a packing list: thankfully, the weather is expected to be relatively mild this weekend, but there are still a few things you should pack. Think: water bottles, your most comfortable pair of Wendy Davis walking shoes, lots of snacks, wipes for the dreaded porta potties (PS: this made me laugh).

3.  Create your bomb-ass sign: having trouble coming up with a sign that’s Insta-worthy? Dome is here to help you out. They created a few incredible free protest signs, like the one pictured above. My biggest challenge this week is picking which one because I’m in love with them all.

4. Spread the word: have you let you social networks know why you’re marching yet? Who or what are you marching for? Someone who fought before you? Someone who couldn’t stand up to march? Whatever the reason, get it out of your head and into the universe. Don’t forget to use the hashtag #WhyIMarch.

5. Watch this 6-minute video outlining the history of Planned Parenthood because it’s really important.

6. Start. Getting. Angry. we’ve got some work to do.

Thursday Things

My soul had other plans. Reminding myself to bring back into my daily practice of being present, that I need to be tender with myself. We are imperfect beings, growing and changing everyday and a little tenderness is like water, cleanses, nourishes, and allows for the clarity to set in.

-A valuable reminder. Aleksandra Zee, woodworker, shopowner, and self-described ‘one-woman show’

  1. We finally have a healthy house here after a week of lots of coughs and boogers. I impulse bought these at CVS earlier this week and probably will never be going back to regular tissues.
  2. Spent Tuesday night watching Obama’s farewell speech and feeling all the feels (sad, inspired, helpless, enraged, proud, etc.). I sure am sad to see this family go.
  3. Yesterday was a *big* day in terms of news (i.e. Rex Tillerson’s Secretary of State Nomination Hearing, Ivanka’s Dad’s first press conference in months). I was particularly moved by testimony that was part of Jeff Sessions ‘ Attorney General hearing, both from Amita Swadhin, a sexual assault survivor and also New Jersey Senator Cory Booker.
  4. Anthro’s spring arrivals like this and this are making me v happy, and wishing for some warmer weather (and more hours of daylight).
  5. Women’s March on Washington is in just over a week! Have you registered to go yet?

fall in ireland: dublin beginnings (part 1 of 2)

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i still can’t believe our 10-day trek across ireland went by so quickly! my parents, sister and i have been planning this trip for about 6 months. after many cross country skype dates between our family, we finally had the details of our trip nailed down. we decided to start our trip in dublin and then rent a car and drive around the country clockwise, driving a full circle around the bottom half of the country.

it was quite an ambitious trip because a lot of driving was involved, but i think we did a great job of delegating the appropriate amount of time in each place. we got to see SO much of the beautiful country. according to everything we read (and all the irish people we spoke to), we got so lucky with almost no rain and beautiful 60’s-and-sunny days every day of our trip save for the last day.

  • stay: 2 days | ashling hotel
  • don’t miss: guinness storehouse, kilmainham gaol, making conversation with as many lovely irish bartenders as you can
  • skip: one of the cathedrals
  • eat: a proper irish breakfast at the queen of tarts
  • drink: like the irish do (guinness). or if that’s not your cup of tea, anything from the francisan well brewery which is on tap most places

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our trip began in dublin where we landed at 6 am extreeeeemely jet lagged, yet excited to begin exploring. the first day we set off exploring the kilmainham gaol which was a great introduction to irish history and the city in general. it wouldn’t be a true trip to dublin without exploring the temple bar area which was fun to see, but would gladly never go back again. we had our first of many fish and chips (and guinness) dinners and called it an early night.

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the second day we were feeling a little more rested and hit the ground running. we walked the entire city starting with breakfast at the quaintest little cafe, queen of tarts. next, we walked over to christchurch cathedral and crypt which is the oldest church i’ve ever set foot in. the 1,000-year old crypt/museum was incredible, but extremely creepy. after christchurch we walked through dublin castle, st. stephens green (see the birds attacking us below) and trinity college to see their library as well as the book of kells (wow).

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our daytime activities ended of course, at no other than the guinness storehouse. coming from someone who is a passive lover of guinness, this was one of my favorite parts of dublin. the storehouse is in an absolutely massive building that literally takes up an entire city block in dublin. the tour was definitely setup to accomodate masses, but it was still so interesting to read about arthur guinness and the affect that he and his brewery have had on dublin, and irish culture as a whole.

after our big day of sightseeing and walking around downtown, we headed back to the hotel to get ready for a special birthday dinner for my dad. it was a “traditional” dinner with stories and folklore at the oldest bar in dublin, brazenhead. while it was a little hokey for my liking, it was still entertaining to be a part of. they had this adorable couple of old men playing music during dinner which was the highlight for me.

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most of the photos from dublin were unfortunately taken on my iphone. i discovered on our last day in dublin that what i thought was a complete camera meltdown was actually just a little dust inside 🙂 back to regularly scheduled schmancy photos in the next post…7

on our last day in dublin, i went for a run through the incredibly beautiful phoenix park. then we picked up our rental car, explored both the grafton street and o’connell street shopping districts, and ended with a ridiculously cozy dinner of champagne and mussels at a local pub near our hotel.

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^birds attacking us at st. stephens green 🙂

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upstate new york | labor day weekend

 

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even though today is technically the first day of autumn, i always consider labor day weekend the unofficial end of summer. to ring in the end of our crazy hectic summer, zach, maribel and i took a trip to upstate for an incredibly relaxing weekend with our parents a few weeks ago over labor day weekend.

zach’s hometown is about 3 hours north of nyc, and about an hour away from the saratoga horse track. we spent the majority of saturday in saratoga (the cutest little town), walking around and seeeing the sights, while also partaking in some horse betting activities. i can’t bet if my life depended on it, but i still had a great time hanging out and doing what i do best: eating and drinking.

the rest of the weekend we spent relaxing in zach’s parents incredibly beautiful and lush backyard, catching up with our families, and having some of the best italian food of my life (this is coming from someone born and raised in philly). i definitely didn’t take as many photos as i’d hoped, but here are a few of the good ones that i did manage to snap.

happy fall, y’all!

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grabbing coffee in downtown saratoga

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apple doesn’t fall far from the tree…
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how beautiful is zach’s parents’ backyard?! i also love that they’re all on their phones in this photo 😉
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for a few races throughout the day, we watched from the tv screen back by our table

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stud 😉

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