Shawna and I go to a lot of restaurants. Some are chef’s tastings or new seasonal menu previews and others are full service meals or grand openings. It’s always an interesting assortment of guests and we often wonder afterwards who created the guest list. We leave with lots of new Instagram followers and some of them, we might never run into again. It’s a fun way to meet people who love the food scene here in Westchester and try some new places out, that we can in turn share with our readers. One “Westchester foodie” that we have seen at a number of events is our Westchester Woman Wednesday for March. Her name is Aleesia Forni and she a journalist for the Westchester Business Journal and the Westchester WAG Magazine. Her food photography skills are incredible. She’s one of the rare foodie experts who actually uses a real camera, instead of using an iPhone with filters. Because of the work that she does, her IG account is amaaaazing– See for yourself by following Aleesia on Instagram at @AleesiaEats
So we decided we wanted to get together with Aleesia and talk about food, dining and just “good eating” in Westchester. We met for dinner (most Westchester Woman Wednesday meals are lunch) due to Aleesia’s busy work schedule. She has a job that any one of us would love. Between the WAG Magazine and the business journal, she’s busy with pretty awesome assignments. We knew she was not from the area, but we learned over dinner that Aleesia is anything but a Westchester native. She grew up on a farm in Ohio, attended Ohio State University and wound up in moving Westchester after a short time living and working in Virginia Beach. Her longtime boyfriend John has been with her every step of the way, each following their own career paths and building their resumes since college. Their choice to live in the Peekskill/Montrose area was based on their shared interests. They wanted to find the balance between city and country life. In one hour they can can enjoy a sporting event in NYC or find themselves on hiking trails in the mountains.
Aleesia is not what we’d call “moms like us” but she’s a dog mom. A really good one, actually. Without being married or having a child, she already has a college savings account for her first child. (I think I about fell off my chair at that one actually…) Her dog is her baby for now and she’s factored into her budget, one day a week at doggy day care because she realizes the importance of socializing her dog. And yes, we asked, the dog also has pet insurance. Why? Because she’s researched it and realizes that it’s worth having. It’s safe to say that she’s uber-responsible and what one would call a “conscientious consumer.” No fancy doggie clothes or impulse buys for this dog. On my best days pre-age 30, I don’t think I was ever this logical.
So what does she do for fun in Westchester? Certainly not what I would have guessed. She has a Pinterest Group! (I glanced over to Shawna for a reaction and realized that she had no idea what that even meant. I told her it was like Girl Scouts for GrownUps.) They meet once a month and work on things they found on Pinterest pages. The group consists of 10-15 women, who found one another on Meetup.com. They knit, make crafts or other projects that have caught their eye. They meet once a month and take turns supplying materials and space. I’m certain that Shawna and I will visit one of these groups at some point.
By the end of dinner, I was not sure if I had even covered all of our topics. I had stopped writing and just listened! I think we sort of did….although, a very different conversation than we had over lunch with our January and February friends, Cassandra and Julianne! Our car ride home from dinner was spent talking about post-college days and how neither of us lived or worked the way Aleesia does. The shared opinion of these two moms is, her mom must be proud!