Sunday, April 29, 2012

Self Portrait Saturday

For those of you that don't know, I'm absolutely obsessed with The Wonder Forest, a sweet blog by the lovely and super talented Dana. She's got everything from DIY crafts to blog advice to hair and makeup tutorials. Jill of all trades!

Anyway, she's just restarted her Self Portrait Saturdays project - one to help gals feel more comfortable in front of the camera and comfortable in their own skin... gorgeous. I was a little nervous, mostly because I hate 99% of the pictures of myself that exist, but I figure what better way to get over myself than with an army of beautiful women beside me.

Aaaaand, Dana has partnered with two more gorgeous girls with gorgeous blogs: much love, illy and manzanita to make the magic this week.

With that, I give you, my first Self Portrait Saturday submission... on Sunday. ;)

I took both of these on my iPhone - shocker. B had the Nikon, so I had to be creative on my own. 
The first is in the Japanese peonies in the Brooklyn Botanical Garden, and the second is me self shooting in the lens of B's aviators.

So head on over, girls. Link up and share your beauty with the internet at large. Don't be afraid. You've got this.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

new york beauty

First of all, every single morning, as I walk to the train in Brooklyn, I see this:


and I think that it's an elephant.
this too...


EVERY MORNING without fail, I think, "Shit. That's an elephant."
I guess somewhere in my sleepy brain I know that it is, in fact, not really an elephant, but it does surprise me every. single. day.
I think that means I need more sleep, and that people in my neighborhood have too many motorcyles laying around.

anyway, the point of this post....

I have a really excellent little gig on Tuesday nights that starts at 7pm. This means that I have an hour to walk 20 blocks from work to the east 60's. Clearly not a difficult walk, and through a generally 'untraveled by me' part of town. So, last evening, I took my time strolling up Madison Ave, listening to Jason Mraz, and really looking around me. And then, I started snapping pictures. It was beautiful.

view up madison ave

"by appointment to the queen of hearts"

Nothing says perfect day like staring in the Cartier Bridal windows.

All the upscale shops close by 6pm, so it's basically tourist free - just people leaving work on the streets once you get passed 59th St. The walk is quiet and serene, and makes me really love New York - even for just a few minutes.

Of course, there's always this...



Monday, April 23, 2012


I know you've all been freaking out missing it.
Or not.
Look, it makes me happy... don't burst my bubble.

On with the Monday Meows!
This weeks lols from cat vs human ... the owlet's fave.

Truly, I think the human flavor must add so much.

The key to triumph over satan?

I play this game all the time.
I wish I could learn.
I don't.

This is most excellent!
Although I picture both of my cats trying to kill us in our sleep...
not just one.

Also, I wish to own this. My birthday is on November 24th. I probably can't wait until then. I will accept gifts for any major bank holiday. Additionally, most religious holidays. Also for no reason. Whatever works.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

love springs [eternal]

I'm sipping red wine left over from dinner, watching hockey in the dark while B cuddles down with the dogs in bed, and I'm ready to share something life changing from last weekend...

Lets talk about spa, baby.

As I mentioned in my last post, I got to hang out with my dearest old friend EE to celebrate the anniversary of her birth. For the record, so glad that you were born [before me], EE.

Thanks to her awesome wife, LB, we were sent to Bedford Springs to do girly things like get facials, massages, and eat our weight in awesome food. Check, Check, and Check! That joint is gorgeous.

all of these were taken in the bug with the top down!
And that's just the outside. Would you like to go in? Yes? Thought so.

vanity in our bathroom.
it pleased the 10 year old girls inside of us.

our room!

full length mirror!
hello inner 10 year old, why don't you go twirl!

caught you EE!

the beds look like they want to hold you
and do they ever.

Even the freaking hallways are gorgeous:

en route to the spa.
it's like a greek temple.
I would live there.

I loved this wallpaper so much that I commented on how much I loved it...
every time we walked passed.
Food? Gorgeous.
Breakfast in bed? Don't mind if I do!
even after 20 years of friendship, we're still as cute as we were in 6th grade.
EE is as beautiful as ever!
Please bear in mind that I hadn't had a lot of sleep in the days prior to this mirror snap.

It was so amazing to settle back into a routine together. Putting on makeup in the bathroom mirror together, sharing secrets without a second thought, and finding out that - even though life has separated us by several hundred miles, and time has aged our hearts and minds, deep down we're still the same girls that shared secrets in our childhood bedrooms, and we are just as similar as ever.

Through all the talking and sharing, I realized that while so much has changed in our lives, circumstances, and zip codes - I still recognized my oldest soul friend. And I will always love her.

That realization, and this sign, were the very best part of the weekend.

Love you EE.


Thursday, April 19, 2012

you can always come back home.

This is the house that I grew up in. My family hasn't lived in it for over a decade, but, in some small way, it will always be home. I had the chance to go home last weekend to surprise my oldest friend, EE, for her birthday. It was wonderful to see her, and see her wife and family that I love like my own family. When asked if I wanted to do a drive by of my old house, I was excited! Of course I did!

There are a few things that have changed, of course. The huge tree that shaded the entire front yard, where I used to lay with my first love, my gorgeous dalmatian Murphy, is completely gone. The stone that I painted with our house number has vanished. The lamp post that EE banged her face off of in our junior prom pictures has been torn away. The bench that I sat on, wrapped in an afghan, and cried after my serious high school boyfriend left for college has moved from the yard (where the lamp used to be) to beside the kitchen door - too close to the house to have real privacy. The neighbors that I knew are all gone, but the bike path by the hydrant, that JY and I wore down (and then one neighbor took a chainsaw to, in the rain, in a classic "disturbia" moment) over years and years of middle school adventures, is still there, looking very much the same, despite the chainsaws best efforts.

I know that inside, there is a totally different landscape, that the pool table is probably gone, but I can only hope that the kids that live there get to experience half of the amazing experiences that I had growing up. I hope their friends are as loving and positive as mine were. I hope their parents are as willing to host every kid in the band for birthdays, graduation, and just random friday night parties. I hope they fall in love, and out of love, and in love again. I hope they find their very best forever friend. I hope they get ready for dances, especially the girls, and come down the staircase in their first pair of really high heels, praying that they don't fall in front of the cutest boy in their class. I hope they love their lives and hold tight to their friends, and remember that being unkind is a petty waste of time. I hope that they realize that there is life after high school, and don't lose hope when things get hard. I hope they dream about what being a grown up will be like while they play hide and seek in the attic, and lay on the grass in the backyard, staring up at the endless Pennsylvania sky, and realize just how lucky they really are to grow up in a small town.

And maybe, on quiet nights, they can hear the ghosts of my childhood playing silly games - like that amazing bat thing that EE and LJS used to do. Or maybe they hear the whispers from EE and me, giggling at all hours of the night, sharing secrets on whiteboards, crying over broken hearts and bad dreams.

This post really took on a life of it's own. I meant to write about my weekend with EE, but I think I'll leave it for next time, and leave you with my favorite picture of my first love that I have sitting on my mantle in my grown up nest...

Murphy with itty bitty baby Ellie.
He was so tolerant of her.
And always the most perfect dog.


personal jesus

He may look a little savior-like, but it's the music that saves.

Here's how I started my day today. Sheer perfection. Singing begins at 1:05.


Tuesday, April 17, 2012

a peek inside.

So, many of you (Yes, I'm looking at you Eva!) have been demanding to see the inside of the joint. I don't think it's ready to post pictures for all of the internet to see (judge), but here are a few little "in progress" moments of projects that we've been working on.

Now, before I post anything, I need you to repeat after me:
I, [state your name], do solemnly swear to not judge the nest by the amount of shit laying around and/or the cat hair on the floor. I acknowledge that when I come to visit, the owlet will have worked hard to make sure it doesn't look like she and B just moved in... because they did... and they're crazy busy. And my nest is messier [I don't care if it's not just SAY IT!], and I think cat hair looks nice against the wood floor. Amen.

On with the show...

So our living room area is painted grey (Manhattan Mist by Behr). We thought that we should have a little brighter accent color to wake up the grey a little bit, so this little inset square became cream (some cream color, also by Behr)

ignore the gross dirt on the grey... we fixed that.

and with a little canvas painting from Papyrus (this isn't the style we have, but it's the only one on the website) and viola! a little accent square!

It's pretty high up there....
looks weird from this angle.

We had two Ikea wall shelves that looked something like this...

Except they have a small bracket for the wall, they don't float. A hold-over from former roommate S, this pretty blue is pretty, but doesn't work for our color scheme. So what's a girl to do? PAINT!

I make home improvements look good!

B can only handle a tiny brush ;)

working working working...

Three coats of the same cream (I really need to look up that paint color) from earlier and VOILA!
Shelves above the TV for photo frames. Just making sure they bear weight.

remember how you said you weren't going to judge?
Stop judging the kissing bears.

Last few little projects.
Ben turned this Ikea bookshelf into this fab TV stand...

we're still unpacking... shhhhhh!

And then we needed more space (because we have too much crap) and we used the same expedit line to make a little wall unit here:

It's organized chaos

So, that's all for now.
We're currently working on painting our bedroom. And by we, I mean, I was away all weekend and B painted. Maybe, if I can manage to clean the counters, I'll show you the rest of the joint.

Until then!


Thursday, April 12, 2012

the long-term nest.

So, for all of you that don't know...
B and I bought a condo!
In Brooklyn!

It's pretty hard to take a decent shot of the Brooklyn Bridge
through the windshield.

Crazy, right? I don't think that I envisioned us as homeowners here in the city, where our little three bedroom condo cost more than my parents [very big] house.

I truly have no understanding of how we did this, but I'm really happy that we did. It's a little slice of heaven.

BUT, it wasn't all sunshine and daisies at first. My first few weeks were hard. My commute was longer (about an hour now), meaning I got home later. The neighborhood was foreign, and I had a remarkable difficulty trying to figure out how to go to the grocery store. (There are 100 "groceries" but not a single one had things I needed, like Skippy peanut butter, cereal, and cheese packaged in a way that I understand!) I was used to at least 2 "regular" grocery stores within walking distance, and now, there's one - but it closes before I get home from work - and the rest are FOREVER away. It didn't help that B was happier than ever, because when I'm down and totally overwhelmed, the last thing I want to see is him floating on cloud nine over his 30 second commute! I was sad. I missed Manhattan, and I just wanted to go home to my 20 minute commute with no transfers, normal grocery stores, and accessible peanut butter.

Really, isn't that what we all want?

As with all things with me, I eventually got over myself, stopped feeling so much, and starting seeing the good things. I had a home, that was mine forever. I was paying rent to myself (and paying LESS than while renting) every month instead of flushing a couple thousand dollars down the drain never to be seen again. My critters don't have to answer to a landlord - who would let anyone have two dogs and two cats? - eventhough they're no trouble at all! - and my little family has a place to truly call home until it's time to do it all somewhere else.

Welcome home, G family...
Welcome home.

Over the next few posts, I'll show you all of the projects we're taking on to make this joint into a home.

Until then...

The Sloth...

Not me...
This guy:

This sloth kind of feels like you should update your blog more frequently.
Yeah... I know.
Coming soon (like maybe by the end of the day)...

The first in a series about putting together our new digs
The reason I've been too busy to blog.

xoxo to Carey for forcing my hand (as gently as she's able)

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