Web Finds: Fall Edition

It is my favorite time of the year, fall. I love everything about the season, the weather getting starting to get cooler, the dahlias at their peak blooming time, the leaves starting to change, pumpkin everywhere and I could go on for a lot more reasons. What better way to kick off fall than with some of my favorite finds from around the web.

Courtesy pier1.com

Courtesy pier1.com

Pier 1 Imports Halloween Decor: Halloween is one of my favorite holidays, mainly for decorating reasons and I want basically everything that Pier 1 Imports has for their Halloween decor this year, especially all of the items with sugar skulls.Entertainment Weekly’s Best Fall Books: A collection of the 55 best books coming out this season. I’m looking forward to reading so many books on that list.

Travel + Leisure’s Best Cities for Fall Travel: While I may only get to one of the destinations on the list this year, New York City, I’ll be adding some places to my travel plans for hopefully next year.

Rise of the Jack O’Lanterns: One of my favorite Halloween traditions is Rise of the Jack O’Lanterns. This year they have expanded to two new locations, New Jersey and Boston. I go to the one at Old Westbury Gardens and it is amazing to see the works of art created out of pumpkins. This reminds me that I still have to buy my tickets for this year.

An Unexpected Visitor

Butterfly captured at Clark Botanic Gardens in Albertson, New York. Photo by Alyson Goodman. Cannot be used without permission.

While capturing some late summer flowers at Clark Botanic Garden in Albertson, New York a few days ago, a butterfly kept trying to evade my camera lens. Eventually the butterfly decided to not be so camera shy anymore and landed on the zinnia flowers I was photographing so I could get a few shots of it.

Butterfly captured at Clark Botanic Gardens in Albertson, New York. Photo by Alyson Goodman. Cannot be used without permission.

Hollywood comes to Long Island

Courtesy cbs.com

Courtesy cbs.com

This past Friday night, I had the opportunity to be in the studio audience for the taping of Kevin James’ new CBS show Kevin Can Wait. The best part of it is that the show is not taping in California, it is taping in Long Island, in Bethpage to be more specific at Gold Coast Studios, 20 minutes from where I live and around the corner from where I went to college. Kevin James is from Long Island and decided to film the show here which is the first sitcom to be filmed on Long Island.

A few weeks ago I found out that you could sign up for potential tickets to the show and since one of the tapings fell on my birthday I figured it was worth a shot and last week I found out that I would be going. Once they seated everyone they showed us the pilot episode that will be airing tomorrow night and it was so funny. Kevin James’ comedy special Sweat the Small Stuff is my all-time favorite comedy special, so I’ve always been a fan but you are laughing throughout the entire episode. After the episode ended they introduce all of the cast, which they ended up filming live on Facebook.

The episode that they filmed is the fifth episode and will be airing around mid-October. They filmed 11 out of 13 scenes on Friday, 2 scenes were outside scenes that were filmed a different day, but they play those back for you so you aren’t missing any piece of the storyline. In between scenes comedian Joey Kola entertains the audience and there is also a DJ playing music. Joey kept joking about giving us food and after we were sitting for about an hour he along with 2 cast members come out with these giant bags of candy for the audience. He also joked about giving us pizza and about a half hour later we were all passing plates of pizza around for people to take.

The episode was funny, it isn’t fabricated laughter you are hearing when you are watching this show. There is no laugh sign, they tell you if you think it is funny to laugh and I don’t know if I have ever laughed as much as I did that night. There was one scene especially which they had to shoot multiple times because we were hysterical and the cast could not stop laughing either during it. Some scenes were shot multiple times because they tried out different jokes to see which ones we gave the best reactions to.

After the show was over Kevin stayed around to sign autographs and take pictures. When it was my turn to go up I told him that he made my birthday incredible and he was like it’s your birthday, happy birthday! He is so genuine and down to earth, he thanked everyone for coming out to the show and took the time to meet everyone who wanted to meet him.

I highly recommend the show, it will definitely make you laugh. I hope it does well and gets picked up for a full season and more seasons after that because what Kevin is doing by having the show filmed on Long Island is great and I would love the opportunity to get to be in the audience again.

Web Finds

Some of my favorite finds from the web.

Courtesy riflepaperco.com

Courtesy riflepaperco.com

Rifle Paper Co.’s fabric line: I need a sewing machine now so I can start creating pillows with Rifle Paper Co.’s new fabric line. My favorites are the three different shades of the Rosa Floral fabric.

Creative Market’s 50 Design Blogs to Bookmark: Broken down into 10 categories including print design, photography and art and more I’ll be adding all of these to my favorites.

Cooking Light’s 100 Calorie Peanut Butter Cups: My favorite candy is Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups so I was a little skeptical about these but I made them the other day and they are super easy to make and taste amazing. I would do the peanut butter part first since the chocolate will start to harden as soon as you melt it. A tip I picked up from melting chocolate over the years, I always add a tiny drop of oil to the chocolate to help thin it out while melting.

Tropical Storm Hermine


We may still be dealing with the winds and eventual rain from Tropical Storm Hermine, but we could’ve been hit a lot worse in the part of New York that I live, so we are definitely lucky. After going through Hurricane Sandy you learn it is better to be safe than sorry. You monitor all the news reports to see what needs to be done and if you need to evacuate. Thankfully Hermine took a turn before heading up the east coast meaning that even though the storm was coming during high tide it wasn’t going to be as bad as originally predicted.

I live in a surfing town and when a hurricane or tropical storm is approaching, the ocean is filled with surfers and the boardwalk is filled with people watching them and the waves. The beach may have been closed to swimmers due to the rough surf and rip currents but there was barely a free spot available on the boardwalk. Hanging out at the beach is normal storm prep for us.