appy Easter! Although we had a very grey and rainy Saturday in New York, the city was filled with warm weather and plenty of sunshine on Easter. Thank goodness because we were due for a nice day and some promise of spring! On Saturday, I woke up bright and early, after having worked until 3 a.m., to hit the wedding shops, determined to find a dress. This whole dress shopping thing is supposed to be the most fun part of wedding planning, but for me, it's been just a pain. I really don't enjoy sorting through hundreds of dresses and trying things on one after the other...everything starts looking the same. I didn't have an "ideal" dress in mind, but had some sense of the shape and style. Too bad there are thousands upon thousands of dresses with the same style, yet almost nothing that was exactly right. Until....I found the one. I didn't know it was the one until a few minutes after trying it on, then leaving the store, then coming back to try it on one last time. But my sister just fell in love with it and so did I. I can't give much detail about the dress (the Fiance reads this!) but I found it at a little french boutique in the East Village, Atelier Merciel. The designer owns the shop and will be doing the fittings, etc., and the seamstress used to do Vera's dresses so I know I'm in good hands. The bonus is that the fabric is all imported from Paris and the francophile in me was totally suckered into that notion. It's overbudget, but it's beautiful. And the best part? My mom will be picking up the tab on this one and she didn't really give me a budget (although, I obviously couldn't go crazy, nor would I) but that totally made me think....I'm going to get the dress I love. I was debating between this one and a $350 preowned David's Bridal dress, which is also gorgeous but I hadn't seen it in person. All in all, I'm very happy and things worked out. A group of passerbys saw me in the dress and started cheering and applauding, giving their approval of the dress...and I was sold. It was a moment.
In other news, today we had an easy day...went to Easter service in the morning, then grocery shopping for Easter dinner. Dinner involved a LOT of red wine. We used almost 2 bottles just for cooking. My sister made a "drunken" risotto and I made Boeuf en Croute -- beef tenderloin coated in sauteed shallots, garlic and mushrooms, wrapped in puff pastry. Very easy, very yummy, and very elegant. Click here for the recipe. Mine was a bit odd shaped since the pastry puff was not cooperating with me. But you can get it to look like a nice loaf or pie shaped. Highly recommended for a dinner where you want to impress while doing minimum amount of work. Warning, the prep time is a bit long (around 1.5 hours) because the recipe requires you to refrigerate the beef and sautee. I chilled them for about half the required time, and it was fine.