December 30, 2011

Baja's: Bordering on Brilliance - Orange, Conn.

The utterly fantastic carnitas plate,
found in Orange, Conn., of all places.
(Tortillas not shown.)
You may recall that I’m a huge fan of San Diego – where fresh, authentic, delicious Mexican food can be found at a moment’s notice, whether it’s at the fabulous restaurants in Old Town or among the most random of food trucks by Ocean Beach.

Unfortunately for me, Connecticut is not known for its Mexican cuisine. Living in central Connecticut, I often lament the fact that finding decent Mexican fare remains a never-ending challenge.

Hence, this is why I will happily take a 45-minute drive down to Orange, Conn., for the best Mexican food I’ve found yet in this state.

December 16, 2011

The Art of R&R - New Britain, Conn.

Me, marveling at the museum's giant wall o' color
(made of paper and plastic cups painted in bright colors and
nailed to the wall by the thousands), by Lisa Hoke.

The holidays can get a tad overwhelming.

Particularly if you're, say, hosting a big holiday dinner, having family and friends from out of the state stay over, or trying to fit in all the last-minute shopping, gift-wrapping, and cleaning around your day-to-day life.

I'm doing all of the above - and let's just say I was in dire need of an afternoon filled with nothing but peace and quiet.

For you Connecticut peeps, it may come as a surprise that of all places, Hard Hittin' New Britain offers just such an oasis.

My husband and I recently ventured to the New Britain Museum of American Art, a great spot to spend a relaxing couple of hours just ... unwinding. Here, you can take in the art at your own pace, check out whatever exhibits interest you, wander around the outside grounds to see cool pieces of sculpture, and, perhaps, find a bit of inspiration and calm.

Today's Stefcations Highlights:
  • What You'll Find: A wonderful place to de-stress during the holidays. 
  • Where You'll Find it: The New Britain Museum of American Art
  • When to Go: Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Fridays 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Thursdays 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.; Saturdays 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Sundays noon to 5 p.m. (Closed Mondays!)
  • Cost: Admission is a super reasonable $10 per adult and free for kids under 12. Senior admission is $9, and student admission is $8.

December 10, 2011

Keepin' It Regal - Mashantucket, Conn.

"Royal Tea," indeed.
Delicious sandwiches and sweets served
at Foxwoods Resort & Casino's Royal Tea,
part of "Diana: A Celebration."
Perhaps some of you can trace back your ancestry to an illustrious line of aristocrats – earls and duchesses, kings and queens, and the like. Much to my chagrin, it appears I am not one of these people.

Just the same, don’t let this stop you from getting up close and personal with the dazzling tiaras and brooches, royal wedding gown, and other amazing treasures that once belonged to the late Princess Di – all on display for you to ogle through the rest of this month and on into the new year.

Foxwoods Casino in Mashantucket, Conn., is currently featuring “Diana: A Celebration,” an exhibit open through Jan. 15 that offers a look at a breathtaking collection of personal items from Diana’s life – from photo albums, home movies, and school report cards from her childhood days spent at Althorp Estate in England to the awe-inspiring tiara, earrings, and gown (complete with its 25-foot train) that she wore on her wedding day.

Today's Stefcations Highlights: