Wednesday, August 7, 2013

a little romance

Disclaimer: Laura and Andre are getting married in three short days and I'm feeling saccharine. I find these photos of sleeping couples to be ever-so-romantic. There's so much to explore and admire.

also, on a evening not so long ago when I may or may not have been on a major hormonal kick and was feeling particularly maudlin, this BuzzFeed roundup inspired some serious bawling. enjoy :)

Friday, July 19, 2013

happy friday!

Hey friends! Hope you've had a fun week and have an even more fun weekend ahead of you. I'll be helping my friend Katie celebrate her 23rd birthday (it's been seven years since Wesley and I baked her a "You're Adopted!" cake. Wow.) and serving some bar food and drinks. Also, I'm looking forward to hosting one of my childhood mother figures, Linda (in the middle in green), who'll be visiting from North Carolina. Here's some fun reading material.

now I know where I'll be staying when I go to Las Vegas.
Answer "no" when Black Acre Brewing Company (of Indianapolis) asks you if you're 21.
Speaking of Hoosier pride, let's talk about fracking.
Johnny Depp becomes 1,000x cooler
I've always loved Lewis Hine's work, and to see Joe Manning taking it a step further is awesome.

Friday, June 14, 2013

happy friday!

Image source unknown

Welcome to summer. Because last summer was the summer of engagements, 2013 is the summer of weddings. Considering the volume of events I'm attending this summer, I've taken a sublet in the midwest to cut travel costs and enjoy a more laid-back season than NYC offers. (Love them I do, but sometimes even New Yorkers need to take the chill pill.) In addition to all the weddings, I'm also looking forward to eating lots of fresh garden vegetables like the ones above, campfires, lakes, pools, live music, boating and time with all my midwest friends and, of course, my awesome family.

Here are some delightful summery posts from the around the web...

Sangria recipes.

summertime. sexy as ever.

I've got my eye on this sunscreen.

A sticky talking point for anyone who loves quinoa.

what happened to boys and cars?

a friendly reminder (a) to cut up your six-pack rings and (b) of the amazingness of nature

& for anyone in the northern Kentucky/southern Indiana/southern Illinois area or for anyone who just really loves the blues, the WC Handy Blues and Barbecue Festival is happening this weekend and promises to be ah-mazing.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

supporting actresses

Image via The Lab Magazine

Image via Pinterest

Image via BuzzFeed

Have you noticed how sometimes the best friend in movies can steal the whole show? I've had longtime love for Judy Greer, whose salty performances have graced movies and television for more than 15 years, from What Women Want and The Wedding Planner to Archer and Arrested Development. And Broadway. (BuzzFeed knows what's up.) The Lab Magazine quoted her last year saying, "I like to ground my characters. I really try to do that." (Also, I have to share— I actually had the thrill of seeing Ms. Greer out and about in a cafe in the West Village last year!)

My newest favorite supporting actress is Lake Bell. Girlfriend's got a fabulously lyrical name, she's gorgeous and she's super funny. I first saw her playing the supremely unlikable Agness in It's Complicated. More recently, she played the delightfully awkward potential girlfriend to Ashton Kutcher's leading man in No Strings Attached. (Noted: I found this to be a surprisingly honest movie, despite its chick-flick status. My favorite part was Ashton Kutcher's character making a period mix for Natalie Portman's character. Just adorable.) Back to Ms. Bell, though— the newlywed (to Scott Campbell) is also an animal rights activist. *applause*

Anyway, kudos to these women for their skill and ability to truly own their roles. Looking forward to their next projects!

Lake Bell with her dog, Margaret
Image via

Image via InspireMePlease

Image via Oracle Fox

Monday, June 10, 2013

Should I get a bicycle?

Jennifer Aniston, image source uknown

For years I've shaken my head at my cycling friends and kept to the sidewalks at a safe distance for judging bicycles as annoying and a lot of hassle.

But I'm really getting over the subway. It's not like it was ever charming, but after almost a year of rattling trains, it's just grating. I've spoken with New Yorkers who bicycle the city, and they love it. I'd love to feel the liberty of cycling wherever I go, no longer having to worry about crosstown busses or wait on platforms with no idea if a train is even coming.

My main hesitation point— in fact my only hesitation point— is safety. I love everything about the idea besides the fact that bicycles just aren't as safe as I'd like them to be. Sometimes I squirm when I see New Yorkers zipping down avenues among Manhattan traffic with no helmets and their eyes on their iPhones, texting without even a glance up, touching their handlebars casually with their left hands. Needless to say, I don't anticipate being that girl. I just need to practice being among traffic, wear my helmet and have faith. (Plus, Joanna offers heartening input to that conversation.)

Image source unknown

So here I am, reconsidering the bicycle with fresh eyes. I've realized that my first adult bike (from my freshman year of college) was way too small for me, which explains at least part of why it was so difficult for me to get into the groove of it. When I sat on a cruiser at Dan's Competition, it felt great. Now, because I am still 23, I'm shopping Craigslist. Do you have advice for finding a great used bike on Craigslist? Also, any particular advice for shorter people? My legs are not long, and that seems to be one of my major difficulties with bikes is finding big enough wheels that still allow me to balance on my toes when I'm not in motion.

Image source unknown

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

just around the next bend...

Image source unknown

There's an aroma dancing through the window I have thrown open to the spring-fresh Upper West Side  courtyard that is my present backyard. It's the intoxicating, simultaneously thrilling and relaxing aroma of meat on a grill. It's specific— there are burgers somewhere close by, and even though I'm now vegan, the aroma still inspires me to close my eyes, breathe it in, let my mind wander in the direction of summer, jumping into pools, sweating even when the sun's not shining, wearing sandals and sundresses. Even though the light is still spring green rather than the deep golden yellow of a midsummer sky, the fact that I can sit here in my nightgown with the window open and not shiver is what has my attention. The big trick is to be here now. It's all we've got.

Image source unknown

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

may day

Image source unknown

Welcome, May. Today, Kamilla and I ate a Park Avenue lunch in the sunshine and May breeze. Then I walked home through Central Park. It was quintessential and delightful and a fantastic way to welcome this sweet month. Hope you have an equally reviving May Day.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

the diver

congratulations to James Lancett and Sean Weston on this beautiful, creative little diversion. #daymade

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

omg, bangs

Image courtesy of YouBeauty

It seems like every time I get bangs, I immediately remember all the reasons I don't want bangs, but I just keep seeing styles I love. Our First Lady debuted fabulous new fringe just a few weeks ago (generating buzz even the president couldn't sidestep, even if the FLOTUS herself is calling them a "midlife crisis"). And I've been catching up on Glee, in which Lea Michele rocks some sweet long bangs. I often use Kate Hudson as my hair inspiration, and even she pulls off bangs with hair similar to mine. (Also noted, every other woman in Hollywood. I said it three years ago, and I'll say it again: ScarJo rocks 'em hard in Lost in Translation.) I think Lea Michele's face shape is similar to mine in some ways— we both have squarish jawlines. Should I do it???

The thing is, bangs are kind of high maintenance. I keep thinking about walking down the avenues with wind blowing and messing up my bangs. Plus I don't have a straightener right now, so it might be kind of a hassle to deal with them without that advantage. Bangs are undeniably youthful, even when they're simultaneously sexy and/or sophisticated... with an already childlike face, would bangs be too much?

Image courtesy of Styleite

Image courtesy of Curvio
I love how Lea's bangs have little pieces on either side that are just a tad longer. You can see them better in this picture:

Image courtesy of Friendly Creationss

Image courtesy of Wet Paint

Image courtesy of Posh24

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

grapefruits & greyhounds

Photo source and credit unknown

The first time I rode an airplane, I was barely a month old. We went to Florida to see my Grandma Bette and Granddaddy, and my brothers Chris and Wes. I spent what feels like half my childhood in Florida, and we still travel there frequently, because even though Grandma now lives in Indiana, Chris & Wes are still there. Grandma and Granddaddy had orange and grapefruit trees in their backyards, and I loved the oranges, but I could never get on board with the grapefruits. They were bitter and lingering and I couldn't figure out why anyone would eat them. Back in Indiana, my Grandpa Edsel showed up frequently without announcement to deliver produce to our front door, usually from his own garden. But sometimes, after a trip to Florida, he'd switch around his routine and instead offer some seashells he'd gathered for me on the beach (along with wire on which to string them) and some Florida-fresh grapefruits. I remember once sitting on our back deck with one of the grapefruits he'd brought and being surprised by how sweet it was.

Still, I never really made grapefruits a part of my life until this year. It all started New Year's Eve, when Lynn suggested greyhounds, one of her favorite drinks. We got some yummy, organic grapefruit juice from Bloomingfoods and mixed it with vodka, and the result was delightful. Somehow, the bitter of the grapefruit and the bitter of the vodka made each other tastier. Plus, the color was just so pretty.

Back in NYC, I was on the phone with Lynn while searching for grapefruit juice in Fairway, and Lynn suggested I just get a couple of grapefruits. I did, and I'm  converted. Love them. I've discovered that part of the trick is to peel away the very thin skin between the sections of the fruit. That's where the really bitter flavor is. They're my go-to evening snack.

And next time I'm wanting to mix a cocktail, I'll definitely be going for a greyhound. They'd be perfect poolside, and even when it's not summer, they kind of make me feel like it is.

Image source and credit unknown

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

exploring nyc: nice matin

Photo courtesy of Grub Street New York

One thing that's thrilling about New York City is the endless string of opportunities to discover new people, places, things. Like lots of freelancers, I'm drawn to cafes where I can connect to WiFi, have a cup of tea and not get dirty looks for sitting with my laptop open in front of me. As a server myself, I'm particularly cautious to not overstay my welcome. I like to sit at bars so I'm not occupying tables, and I try to order something every hour and leave a nice tip. (What goes around comes around, right?)

My newest haunt is just two blocks from my temporary home on the Upper West Side. It's Nice Matin on West 79th Street and Amsterdam Avenue, located below the Lucerne Hotel. It's been a great atmosphere for writing and editing— perfectly my style. Located on the corner, it has huge windows along its peninsular walls, offering wonderful perspective on the gorgeous Upper West Side. The light inside, supplied largely by naked bulbs, is bright and golden, making it feel warm and cozy, but its sweeping, curved bar, high ceilings and sprawling dining room, along with those windows, keep it from feeling stuffy or cramped. The playlist is a healthy mix of French and instrumental jazz (I love Shazaming the stuff I don't know). The clientele are chatty but not distractingly loud.

In summary, it's fabulous. I highly recommend it.

Where the guy in the black is sitting is exactly where I've been parking with my laptop this week. It's a great stool :)
Photo courtesy of Centsational Girl

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

writing in the new year

photo of me by my friend Griffin Norman, September 2012
earrings and necklace by the excellent Laine Benthall, tee by Everlane

It's now been more than a year since I graduated from Indiana University and effectively stopped blogging. They tell you that it will be, but it doesn't make graduating from college any less of a doozy of a transition.

A few months, I had the great privilege of being able to meet, in the flesh, for the first time ever, one of my greatest inspirations, Ms. Joanna Goddard of A Cup of Jo. I met Joanna, and also Sharon of NYC Taught Me, at the bake sale they hosted at Dwell Studio in SoHo to benefit recovery efforts for Hurricane Sandy. It was a positively gorgeous day— the sun shone so warm I took off my sweater and frolicked around Lower Manhattan (which finally had electricity again, thank God) in my tshirt. As if that feeling of liberty weren't inspiring enough, Sharon and Joanna offered me encouragement to start blogging again, and, heartened by their kind words and sweet smiles, I'm back to blog.

Here's where I am:

I am 23. I surf sofas in the center of the world. I serve tables in the West Village and struggle to pay my bills. I'm a photographer without a camera, a worker without sleep, and I feel as though I have barely a friend in this massive city.

Month by month, it gets better. I find my footing more sure, even as my direction still seems vague. One of the more exciting projects of this past year has been the Stringer. the Stringer is an online literary magazine that my friends Jami and Julia and I started as our writing group faded and our mutual interests in creative careers joined forces for something bigger. In December of last year, I was in a funk, and Julia practically dragged me to join her writing group. I was reluctant. I didn't like the idea of pressure to write or sharing my writing with strangers. But somehow, one evening, I found myself parked in the Starbucks cafe in the Barnes and Noble in Evansville, Indiana, with my laptop in front of me and surrounded by four women, only one with whom I had any personal relationship whatsoever. I began, for the first time since that past summer, to really write. I began to write about my three months in New York, interning for Glamour magazine, living in the West Village. The group dwindled and swelled over the winter and spring months, but, ultimately, by June, our six was three: Jami, Julia and me. Throughout those summer months, the three of us met, sharing what we knew and what we didn't know, on paper and, often, in uproarious conversation, during which our laughter bounced off the various cafe tables under our coffee cups, ricocheted off the ceilings and filled the venues we frequented. We vented about men, jobs, futures and pasts. We laughed a lot, but we also cried.

As I return to blogging, I'm making a resolution. I resolve to live in the moment, to experience each moment, and let it be. From what I've heard, it's worth a shot.


Here's wishing you and yours a beautiful, peaceful, prosperous, loving and joyful year!

War is over (if we want it).