Thursday, December 3, 2009

perfect stranger

“in three words i can sum up everything I’ve learned about life: it goes on.” ~ robert frost

i’m a fan of mr. frost. i have been ever since one of my english lit classes at the W dissected his poem “the road not taken” in an eye-opening way from which I swear my passion for choosing the path of most resistance was born. however, it’s always refreshing, especially in my life now – my busy, city, northeastern, always pensive life – when I meet a rare human being that is a stranger only until a handshake.

so it goes with the fireman pete my sis + i met at pastis this afternoon who reminded us of frost's quote. a man who believed so much in the restaurant’s bananas foster that he bought a plate just so we could have one bite. a man that insisted that drinking champagne alone was bad luck, so he purchased us another glass (when we were just splitting one). a man that told us that according to him + the bartenders at pastis, the three best sounds in the world were: 1. an orchestra tuning up 2. a plane taking off + 3. the popping of a champagne bottle (our #1 choice but to each his own….) and then explained these were so because they signified something exciting was about to - or already - taking place. a man that toasted to my sister’s new life in the city + my future in boston. a man that without a missed beat, offered a hug when we parted. a man that I know in my bones, somehow someway, my path will cross with again – after all, as pete said, “the world is round.”

thank you pete. for the champagne, the kindness, your passion for new york and most importantly, the renewed love in humanity that is sometimes much needed.

i received a fortune years ago that i keep taped to one of my journals so it stays close to my heart + thoughts. it simply states: i believe in mankind. and it’s true, i do. but only because of people like pete.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

give some (as in, thanks).

my sister rattled off her thanks this AM for raleigh's skirt! blog. she also shared a few things she'll miss this year, being away from home (as in where the heart is) and family, for the first time.

at george pr, we too shared our top 5 things we're thankful for. so it's only fitting that i wanted to write down some thoughts here - it is, after all, my favorite holiday. i could do a list - yes i could, but i am gracing you instead with a fantastically cheezy poem. :) be thankful.


i’m sitting down, on the day before, looking back at the year
and thinking of how fast time has gone by, and the season is finally here.

remembering thanksgivings from the past, shared with friends + family
i’m picturing faces and places and times that are all so important to me.

dishes + decorations at the house, smells of food and glasses of wine
hugs + kisses, laughter + smiles, and loving chatter warming this heart of mine.

i’m thankful for family, friends and food, but so much more than that.
i’m thankful for the world around me, my home (as in apt.), my hood, my cat.

i’m thankful for this holiday and each memory from the past
for the rest of the year, after this one meal, these thoughts, this love, will last.

it keeps me close no matter how far, i am from said family + friends
i’m mostly thankful that i have all these things to be thankful for as this day ends.

happy thanksgiving!

Monday, November 9, 2009

diving right in

just when i'm excited about turkey, cranberry sauce and picking out a christmas tree on black friday, i see this:

and this:
and this:

immediately i want spring break, summer days on the beach and trips to the caribbean. e and i met the creator of this charleston-based line, marysia swim, on our honeymoon. she and her hubby were there celebrating 5 years, and joined us on snorkel and off-roading expeditions in the BVIs. i was wowed by the swimsuits that she had for each occasion - simple, classic and sexy. now this new line is even better - it's her 2010 resort summer collection and it proves to be equal parts sexy and sweet.

so maybe november is the perfect time - with the holidays around the corner and all - to have these three suits on my wish list. the sexy string, the super cute high-waisted bottoms (that i'd mix with the ruffled string top in a pinch) and a sleek, classic one-piece. without thinking twice, i'd toss all the old-faithfuls i'd been keeping around for lack of better options.

we talked of meeting in 5 years on another island in the caribbean, and if we do, i want to be wearing one of these beauties.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

i remember driving

every time i hear "fast car" by tracy chapman, i turn it up and sing it...LOUD. even if i've reached my destination, i'll sit in the car until the end. that song just does something to me. i can't explain it. but i like it.

"and i had the feeling that i belonged, i had the feeling i could be someone, be someone."

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

my november must-have

please get me these...stat.

jbrand 901 legging in olympia.

Monday, October 26, 2009

the family stone

mostly a reference to the diamond that has been passed down over the years to lucky recipients, today, that's not the case. today, i think of the rock that played a giant role in holding our family, extended and immediate together so well - whether she knew it or not. always updating everyone who entered her door with news of 2nd cousins and great-grandchildren i may had not yet met. mrs. sally beale was certainly the stone that many in our family leaned on and she sure had the strength to hold us all up. crisp fall days like this one haven't been the same in four years. they conjure memories of childhood, final days and change. they remind me of the state-of-mind i used to have, and make me thankful for the outlook on life and actions in it i began taking. crisp fall days like this one make me thankful for all the family stones, my mom, dad, sister and e - my rocks - that i have.

"oh, all that i know there's nothing here to run from. cause here, everybody here has got somebody to lean on."

Saturday, October 3, 2009

walking on a dream

cheers to my sis who's making the move to nyc tomorrow. she hasn't just chased a dream, she caught it and i couldn't be more proud. looking forward to having her closer, sharing some north eastern quirks with her and seeing the smile on her face as she lives out her life in the city that never sleeps.
best of luck ab!

we are always running for the thrill of it thrill of it
always pushing up the hill searching for the thrill of it
on and on and on we are calling out and out again
never looking down I’m just in awe of what’s in front of me
-walking on a dream, empire of the sun

Wednesday, September 30, 2009


look at this set-up in the cambridge common. i pass by it each time i walk to harvard square. it's a pretty large area where grass gives way to cobblestones and stone benches surround the statue in the middle. it's actually lit up year round which i think is fantastic because christmas lights make most everything better. when i first moved here i remember seeing some people playing croquet under those lit trees. last night was the first time i actually paused to take it in, instead of nodding as i walked by, so i had to capture it. you may not be able to see them, but leaves are already on the ground.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

greatest hits edition: friendship

i'm letting marvin gaye and tammi terrell inspire me this afternoon. as they spin around on vinyl, singing some of my faves (and arguably some of the best songs ever), i'm thinking of the people that are all i need to get by, those that i'll climb the highest mountains and cross the lowest valleys for. the ones that i build my whole world around because, there ain't nothing like the real thing.

and i'm thankful.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

a southern saturday

hello southern sun - the origin of my sunny outlook on life. a week is never long enough. i'm (wonderfully) wasting away a perfectly good saturday with family, friends and cocktails in a city i miss often.

cheers to my sis (who's nyc-bound in less 2 weeks) for her creative collaboration and execution of a fantastically fashionable evening on fayetteville street last night. cheers to my gram for giving me a humorous outlook on most things (and people) that pass my way. cheers to long-leaf pines, sweet tea, krispy kreme doughnuts, poole's mac & cheese, biscuits and...home.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

a walk down memory lane

i can't remember my first memory. not because i can't recall many things that happened from my childhood moments, but simply because i can't recall which of these moments i...remembered first. i don't know who i got my memory from, but it's sharp. i can remember things from conversations that took place months, even years, ago. i can remember the weather of certain days in my past, the order of events (significant and not) and i can remember the face of almost every person i've ever met - even if i can't place them at first, i eventually do. names, however, are lost on me.

in all honesty, it's a quality that probably drives my closest confidants insane. but i've always looked at it as a blessing. i take those memories and review those moments often, making a movie of my life so far. i play them to songs, i tag them with matching pictures, i write about them. so that one day if it's in my cards to slowly forget those times, i can read about them. or at least look at the pictures.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

forever my friend

it only takes a few days with some old friends to realize that no matter the life you've built for yourself in a new home, there are some people and places from your old one you just can't get enough of. so went the weekend that e and i shared with some nc friends of ours. the best part about it: we laughed about the past, talked about the present and anticipated the future, knowing that we'd be doing the same thing in the years to come no matter how long the roads were between us. cheers to those kinds of friends.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

2L makes me one elle.

today's e's first day of school...again. after making him pose for an awkward back-to-school picture (taken on my bberry for lack of finding my actual camera...) i sat and reminisced about the year to come. the next few months will be filled with assigned reading, law review work and required on-campus collaborations. for all those who said the first year is the hardest/busiest, they hadn't met e. the man will no doubt work hard to become something great. and i'm proud of that. so quick reminders of the friends i have, the ones i haven't yet made, the new work i've begun and the chance to live in-the-moment here in a city i've come to think of fondly, are what i carry with me today.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

my endless inspiration

nobody knows you the way you know you. but i think i do.

in one word: love.

*photo credit: lindsey marla photography

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

falling into place

coming off of a fantastic mini-vacay in nyc with my sister always makes adjusting to the real world a little harder than normal. not to mention that today's a little bit cooler (i know, i know, i AM up here near canada you say...) and i'm reminded that the dog days of summer are slowly ending. despite my love for the fleeting season, there's always a voice in my head and heart that's ready for fall. i've already transitioned my normally-nude mani into deep, dark berry and the september issues of my favorite mags are rolling in which have me craving some fall fashion. no matter how old i get, i always get that back-to-school feeling which keeps me young at heart.

some of my to-dos for the final quarter of 2009:
1. a visit from old friends
2. fashionSPARK in raleigh, nc with goods
3. passion pit/phoenix concert in central park
4. moving sister up to nyc
5. a killer halloween celebration (of course)
6. a yummy thanksgiving
7. reuniting with friends and family in december

of course that's not all, but it's a start. and it's a good reminder that good things are to come, right in time.

Friday, August 21, 2009

red hot

sometimes when i know nothing else, i know that a red pedi will look even better in the morning against my all-white bed. and even in the 95-degree weather (and that's just outside our apt...) that's making me sweat profusely, i feel chic.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

picking up where we left off.

i've been neglecting my blog - and the voices in my head that tell me to make sure to catalog certain events/things/people. so i need to shape up or ship out.

it's been a beautiful few weeks here in cambridge, and i've been selfishly soaking up the sun and time with my hubby before the craziness begins. with e back to work on law review assignments and prepping for OCI next week, i'm slowly reminded that our summer of love is turning into fall. but just like autumn leaves...

year two is underway and our home isn't so "new" anymore. i've said goodbye to wedding planning, a life-long last name, a friend and a few initial plans. but i've said hello to a whole lot more. and if i've learned anything by now, i've learned that plan b is sometimes the best. although this fall will give the last a run for its money as far as busy goes, i'm looking forward to it. if i meet as many new people as i did last year and have as much fun, then this gal will be just fine.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

making music

a big thanks to my friend susannah that seems to always share some goodness, i finally can put faces with the harmonious sound of the children singing backup on passion pit's new album, manners. i'm a sucker for a kid's chorus in a song anyway - there's a power behind their voices that you can't get from anything or anyone else. but this goes beyond that. these are kids of different races, sizes, homes, all coming together to do the same thing - make beautiful music. they sing the likes of cool musicians from tori amos to passion pit, but perhaps it was their version of the cure's 'pictures of you' that got me a little teary-eyed.

you can see it in their faces and their body language - these kids are loving what they do. a great reminder that the arts have an amazing influence in the lives of little ones and that we all, in schools and homes, should nurture those talents.

thanks sue!

Friday, July 17, 2009


i remember exactly the first time i heard cat power. it was at a late-night party, back in wilmington. i was graduating in just a few weeks and song after song of beautiful music filled the kitchen. i touched the ipod to make it light up so i could read the name that this heart-stopping voice belonged to. then and there began my obsession with chan marshall and cat power's album, the greatest. (it doesn't hurt she's uber chic - her bangs, black wardrobe and marlboro-infused voice just amplify the bad-ass appeal).

i took this album with me across the pond to russia and london that summer. falling asleep many nights listening to her soothing voice and letting the lyrics personally touch my soul. i finally saw her perform this album that following october and was not disappointed.

today, more than three years later, i finally purchased the greatest on vinyl. marshall's voice was made for it. i can listen to this anytime and it mellows me. takes me back to the spring of '06 and my life before it became what it is today. back when i 'lived in bars,' needed 'living proof' and was asking myself, 'where is my love.'

there are other cat power albums and each is good. but this one, this one is the greatest.

Monday, July 13, 2009

here comes the sun!

for one to survive a new england winter, one is told to think of the new england summer - for it is surely worth the wait. with a winter of record snowfall, this summer followed suit with both record rainfall and cloudiness.

but finally, FINALLY, we have some sun. for the fifth day in a row i have every window in the house open letting the light (and the 65-degree breeze) in. it's a day that if it were august, i'd go ahead and wish it were fall - i do love fall fashion - but i have to take advantage of these few weeks where i can actually wear some of the summer favorites i've had in my mind all those winter months. floral dresses, shorts, wedges, white jeans, my romper...

i love a rainy day, but only because there's promise of sun on the other side. and there's nothing like a sunny day (or stretch of days) to help mark a new beginning. i plan to bask in this sunlight all day, inside and out, while singing one of george harrison's finest contributions.

Monday, June 22, 2009

it's island time!

ten days in paradise wasn't enough - but it was just what we needed. i don't think i can remember the last time eric and i had nothing to do but hang out and pass time with each other. it was grand. we adopted an "island time" frame of mind and enjoyed cocktails, snorkeling, cooking and laying in the sun - all day, every day - staring out at the most beautiful beaches. (well done, fletcher, re: honeymoon destination).

despite my attempts to beg and bribe eric for us not to leave the BVIs, i was forced to trug to the car, bags in hand, and wave to the bright blue waters as we departed from our little bungalow. our little island oasis had become our home. this corner of the world excluded blackberrys, gus, a schedule and bad moods, and it was hard to go. i didn't know what would be waiting for us back in boston, of course it would be nothing different than when we left, but i wasn't ready to return to it.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

please come to boston for the springtime

when i first announced to my parents that eric and i were heading up north, my dad recited this to me. it's just one line in one stanza of one (very sad) song, but it's stuck in my head over and over. and now, as i walk around cambridge and even the city, more than ever.

this being my first spring here i'm seriously taken back by all the color. it's not just green anymore, it's pink, purple, yellow...gorgeous. it's fragrant. it's bright. it's breathtaking. this has been my "longest" spring by far - my trips to nc in early april jump-started the season while it was still bare here. but now, every tree, every flower, every thing is in bloom.

i'm walking down the sidewalk and freesia hits my face. not that i care. i'm thrown off course on my commute to stare at tulips and try to decide which color is the best: hmmm...i love hot pink, so that one's my favorite. no, no, that purple is so vibrant. that red with feathered tips? yep. it's like that. and i want to be out in every second of it.

so, i find myself thinking of this line and wanting to tell my friends, my family, pretty much everyone, to please come to boston for the springtime.

see for yourself below.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

if you like fish & grits

or, in my case, shrimp & grits. which is exactly what i plan to be getting at this spot when i'm brunching in charleston, sc one week from today. but let's not get ahead of ourselves...

heading to nc on tuesday to finalize wedding plans and soak up some sun on the very sand we'll be getting hitched on in five (count 'em, five) weeks. then down to charleston, sc for a ladies weekend. looking forward to saying "ta-ta" to my bachelorette life, speakeasy style.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

running on empty

a little more than a month of no writing and those who know me well would think that i might have some built up emotional tension in my brain. however, the truth is, i've been running my own 26.2 mile(stones). between website updates, media calls, event show-flows and taking in all the general excitement of the marathon, my down time, if you can call it that, has been filled with finalizing details for bridesmaid dresses, invites, portraits, bridal showers and the big b-party. as i walked home last night in the later hours of the evening - but early enough to still have a bit of light (i've been waking up before the sun and going to bed way after the sun sets for about a week...) i looked up and my eyes were greeted with green.

somewhere, in between the cold january nights, thigh-deep in snow, with doubts of actually making it through the winter, and that very second, it had become spring. not just spring - but late april. and i couldn't help but realize - as i often do - that this was just the way it was going to be now. life was just going to move fast. and immediately i was thankful for my ability to always immerse myself to the extreme in every moment.

it's still cold here. and rainy right now. but the common areas are green, beautiful trees are beginning to bloom and bright flowers are rising up from the ground - sure signs that spring is here and reminding me that all things, in time, do pass. that includes winter.

that includes loneliness. and, that includes life.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

saturday morning tunes

an old friend in wilmington introduced me to ryan adams. he gave me the album, gold. i fell instantly - for his lyrics, his voice (ryan's - not my friend's...). another old friend taught me to appreciate vinyl albums. he taught me that all good music should be listened to on vinyl and most importantly, that the package that albums came in told a story that was just as amazing as the songs. "cd's," he said, "just aren't the same. look at this art!" he then shoved a led zeppelin album into my hands.

i opened up the ryan adams cardinology album that e got me for christmas for the first time this morning. i literally gasped as i pulled a translucent red record out of the grey and white packaging. i called eric's name - then remembered he was sleeping...

then i instantly remembered these two friends previously mentioned. i looked over the cover. so drab, busy with confusing lines that mimic images of fire and fear. on the back, a dark city with people hovered, afraid of a massive cloud rising up...everyone except a couple kissing in the back with a simple tiny heart floating above their heads. these album-cover-lovers have figured it out. in their dark, scary world, they managed to find each other. out of the darkness they are a light.

well done ryan.

check it out:

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

pride & prejudice

chapter 50, bottom of page 208 and top of 209 (in the paperback dover thrift editions):

elizabeth realizes that mr. darcy is the one.

*gotta love that moment in life.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

spring in my step

in between marathon planning and finalizing details for our may wedding, my head's filled with visions of blooming pink flowers and vibrant green grass, two beautiful compliments to the bright blue sky that always comes this time of year. well, this time of year in NC that is. during my visits back home and when the time's right in boston, you can find me in this:

it's my spring/summer obsession, along with liquid-drawn eyeliner and a perfectly pink pout (don't ask, just accept), and i'm almost certain that wearing it will make spring come a little quicker!

the clever name brings a smile to my face - a gentle reminder of all that we do.

Thursday, February 26, 2009


i understand cutting back on bi-weekly mani-pedis, lash tinting and electrolysis, but grab a bottle of essie, a tube of great lash and a venus razor people (or whatever you wish - these are simply my personal faves). just because the economy is going down, doesn't mean we have to:

maintenance people, maintenance!

Friday, February 20, 2009

the way i see it

this morning in the starbucks, while i was craving my daily shot of caffeine and all the glorious side effects it brings me, the man in front of me on my walk to the fixins bar jolted me out of my peaceful, cozy aroma-smelling trance.

his cardboard cup holder fell on the ground and he wound up - no joke - and kicked that thing right across the floor and under the bar of cream, sugar and spices. i paused. making sure that was all he was going to kick and surely not wanting to be the next target if it wasn't. what, may i ask, mr. burberry coat, is your problem on this friday against the post-consumer recycled cup holder and the poor people who made your grande-double shot-skinny-latte with a half shot of hazelnut and half shot of vanilla, or what ever ridiculous drink you made them create for you, at starbucks?

instead i asked, "was that necessary?"

Friday, February 13, 2009

dear love,

i want to say thank you for all that you do.

you make people beautiful. you make people laugh, cry, giddy, happy. you humble the proud, lift up the insecure. you promise people a new beginning but also beg people to face their past. you are spur-of-the-moment and constant. you feel amazing when we are first introduced and you feel even better when you become a great, old friend.

you are a hug, a kiss, a card, a talk, a look. flowers, dinner, a tease and comfortable silence. but in your truest form - the way for which you should always be seen and used - you are unconditional. you bring people together, help them find a common ground.

you tear people apart sometimes too. make them angry, desperate and mad. leave them scarred, alone, suspicious - crazy.

but i believe in you love. and i believe that you do conquer all. i am thankful that you've always been a part of my life. and i am most thankful that i've found you in another. i was born because of you and i would die for you.

so, love, happy valentines day.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

north vs. south

today was the day that a distinct thing happened to me where i thought: "now THAT would never happen in the south." OK, maybe "never" is a strong word because while i believe in the goodness of people, some tend to prove me wrong from time to time, so we'll say "rarely."

i was walking out of the T and a man (we're talking 40s - 50s here) was about to walk into the same door. expecting for him to open it for me so that i may pass through (maybe that's my fault - expecting) he did not. he stood outside the door and waited for me to open it myself, then proceeded to duck through without so much as leaving a pinkie print anywhere on that thing.

so, it is today that i want to give a nod (yet again) to the land of southern gentleman who still open and hold doors for ladies.

in other news everyone's getting a taste of spring with temperatures in the 50s here. i have to say, it's quite nice and i'm having to look hard for the piles of snow and ice. i'm keeping my fingers crossed that the gods will continue to bless us right on into may :)

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

another day in the life.

welcome february! i don't think i've ever said that before. but i recently realized i made it through january of my first new england winter. it's far from over, but i'm confident i can make it. this month is filled with visitors, valentines and a ski weekend in NH - and it's sure to go by as fast as me going down those slopes in my pie-position. until then, today i feel (and look) like this:

Sunday, January 25, 2009

sing from the branches of sweet gum trees

last weekend eric and i gathered a few friends and went to the middle east to see a favorite hometown band of ours: the rosebuds. once introduced a few years ago, if we were in town in nc when these guys played, we were there. thank you sister for the tip on good music.

it's hard to choose a favorite song, just when you think you have one, they put out a new album with even better creations. back to boston, a family fave that's now symbolic of our life here, has become somewhat of a theme song and regular saying between e, alli and myself. however, listening to the rosebuds last week as they played get up, get out, what caught my thoughts wasn't just the danceable beat or the call to action that the lyrics demand, for people to get up and get out - whatever that may mean to you, it was this line: "sing from the branches of sweet gum trees."

enter grandma beale and walks in danville's ballou park with her and sister. back when i had soft blond curls. back when i had to hold not one, but two, hands to cross the street - my grandmother's and alli's. back when we used to pick up the gum balls that had dropped from the branches of the sweet gum trees that made up the park. branches we used to sing under with grandma beale.

and i thank them for that memory.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

people helping people

congratulations president obama! you, and the change that this country is confident you will bring, have arrived.

maybe it's just me, but today i've noticed more commercials filled with people helping people: pepsi, starbucks, wireless companies, all encouraging people to come together. promoting happiness, love, a new take on a brand new day but most importantly, assuring us that individuals can control the spread of each of these feelings...and more. just in case we weren't convinced after november 4.

perhaps it has always been there. but maybe now it's more believable.

we wanted change and it has come.

Sunday, January 4, 2009

dear 2009

first of all, welcome! now let's get down to business...

i will:
volunteer more
listen more
clean out my (and eric's) closets and donate unneeded things
be more patient
run another 5k (a gal has to start small)
help build a home
read up more on current events
throw more parties (i love seeing my friends have a great time)
GET MARRIED! (ok, not a resolution...but it is happening!)

i love a new year. and this year, being kicked off perfectly at msg in nyc, i have a feeling it's going to be great! i used to think new years were a chance to start over. but i've found, at least personally, they are a chance to add on. what will you do this year? where will you go? on december 31, how will you look back...and forward?

talking with a friend, she informed she had made a list of goals - not resolutions that she wanted to accomplish in her life then specifically this year. they weren't all necessarily end goals, some were steps that would hopefully get her closer to those things she wants to do and places she wants to be in 30 years. i smiled. i was glad i'd met this friend with my move to boston. it reminded me that good people - smart, caring, fun and motivated - are all over. it also presented me with my own challenge. i find it hard to plan way in advance as i am a fan of the present moment. however, i can make a list of serious and silly things that i'd like to see this gal check off throughout the year.

maybe it's finally getting rid of that pair of boots i just can't fit but that i keep sitting by the door because they look so dang cool, or maybe it's getting involved with tutoring kids or getting back to church. whatever it may be, i resolve to be the best i can be in 09 and offer that goodness to the people and places around me.