Tuesday, December 10, 2013

DIY design

yessir. and i'm thankful every single day for it.

Friday, November 1, 2013

it takes three to make a thang go right.

man oh man i found this quote at the perfect time. after 8 years of being together 5.5 years in MA and 4.5 years of marriage, e and i are excited to be expecting our first bebe. we're excited and we're scared. like terrified.

over the last few months i've posted some thoughts and quotes about the route of life in general, taking chances and having a little faith. some of these i posted when i hoping to get pregnant, others i posted after i found out and was waiting, hoping, praying that all would go well in those first few weeks. but perhaps it's this write up that i think sums up my and e's feelings about our decision to do this thing.

i'm not saying we're great (although, i kinda think we ain't bad) but i'm saying that in order to BE great, to even approach that path, you gotta do somethings you're completely and utterly petrified of. for me and e, after moving away from home and leaving our family and friends, making the decision to stay away from home, and traveling to some cool places where we went on some questionable hikes, jumped off steep cliffs and snorkeled with barracudas, the next most-scary thing we could think of was switching it all up completely and making room for a third little beale-fletcher. there were many talks including phrases like "what if..." "but how do we..." and "will we still..." but ultimately e and i just knew what we wanted with each other and while we have NO IDEA what it will bring, we're pretty positive we'll find a really amazing piece of ourselves and our relationship on the other side that we didn't know existed. and that's what i'm pretty pumped about.

because i have been there before. i have done things i never knew i could, been places i never thought i'd go, seen things i never dreamed of seeing and because of all that, i've found pieces of myself that have helped me become a woman even bigger than i ever could have prayed to become.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

a little bit of everything.

this past weekend e and i headed down to NC to witness my good friend of 17 years, n, get hitched on the very sands we did. the ceremony was private and pretty, and the bride was pure perfection.

n has been in my life the longest of all my bff's. she knows much about me and we've shared stories, laughs, cries and dreams over almost 2 decades. earlier this year, i made my way to nashville to visit n during one of her travel nursing stints. while the slew of beers, line dancing and shots enjoyed late into the night revealed that we indeed held the same fire for a good party as we did when we met as young'ns, our conversations about present life and future goals proved we've certainly grown quite a bit. over a proper southern breakfast on sunday morning, n asked me about marriage. she wanted to hear my honest account of it so far - the good, the bad and the ugly. she had many questions and concerns that i remember having as a newly-engaged woman and a new bride, and i was happy to share my thoughts and even a few tips with her. for a couple of hours, between country ham and cups of coffee i opened up about what marriage was like for me and what nearly 4 years of the institution had taught and changed about me/my life. when n dropped me off at the airport for my flight back home, i hoped that i had in some way calmed her soul. bottom line, n was in line to marry a great man. one who would undoubtedly be an excellent partner to her throughout her life. and that fact trumped all of my advice.

a few months later i was honored when she asked me to write and read something in her wedding. i didn't have to dig deep, but i did aim to be as honest as i was that morning in nashville. i wanted to sum up not just what marriage meant, but love in general. i wanted to make clear how easy love is, as long as you understand it's very complicated. below is what i came up with:

Since the beginning of time, people have written about love. Those stories have appeared in great and simple works from the Bible to blogs. Movies have been made and songs sung, about an endless search for, a painful time spent in and a life-changing realization about, love. From a young age, we learn that love is where we came from. We’re surrounded by it and therefore set out to find it in ourselves and in another. And when we do – or even if we don’t – we realize it’s the thing we hope is around us when we die. It’s easy to spend so much time agonizing over this four letter word: What does it mean, where does it go, how do you know it’s real. But you can see it, feel it and, actually give it to someone else, which makes me believe love is so much easier than we realize.

Yes, it’s important to remember, love is patient and love is kind, but it’s also light and dark. It’s happy and sad. It’s exciting and it’s scary. It’s a whisper, it’s a shout. Most days fly by but some drag on. 

The fact is, true love is a little bit of everything. And today is your declaration to the world that you both understand this. Over the years, things will surely change but only because your love will grow to unimaginable levels. If you allow these transformations and accept the vulnerability that sometimes comes with this commitment to love, in return you will receive an undying satisfaction that you never could have dreamed of.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

arriving right in time.

so so true. i recently was talking to a friend about how sometimes i reflect back where i was and am really amazed at where i've ended up. many moons ago, there was a time this gal never dreamed of being a wife or living in boston or even working a steady 9 to 5. call it being young or, let's be real, stubborn...but i just couldn't fathom certain levels (OK, any level) of organized consistency in my life. i never would've paired myself with a harvard lawyer, waiting out the snow-filled new england winters only to enjoy long summer days on the cape or north shore (on our time off from the firms, of course!).

i was kinda obsessed with not having any direction so i could be open to it all. oh, young, crazy me (although, i think i've done good!). then, after meeting e, i kinda became obsessed about having a plan. i wanted to create a timeline for my life. (i found out quickly that's the biggest joke of all).

this recent move has had me reeling. have we over-stayed our time in boston? should we have bought a place? did we make the right decision about "this" and do the right thing about "that?" basically, i've been asking myself, "What are we DOING?!?" sometimes i feel that because e and i are certain ages or have been together a certain amount of time, there are certain things that we should be doing - or have done already. so i feel in some ways i'm back here again, wondering where we are going and wanting to find an answer.

this is a nice reminder that no one really knows. maybe there's a general direction, but the location or timing is never disclosed until, well, you arrive. so thanks to mr. watterson, i'm telling myself to continue taking it all in, in stride and right in time.

Thursday, May 30, 2013

lucky #4

today marks my and e's 4th anniversary, and i just can't believe how fast time has flown. it seems like so many huge things have happened over these 4 married years, (5 years since engagement/move to boston and almost 8 years together!) and i realize that it's true. 2 years ago e finished law school and last year he was sworn in. this year, in just 1 week we'll be leaving our home - all we've known up here and together - for a new place over in somerville. we're swapping some outdoor space for a bit more indoor room and we'll decrease our number of neighbors in the building from about 12 to just 1.

as we pack up 5 years of memories, i'm reminding myself to relish all we've saved, collected and been gifted. i try to push thoughts of how we'll never set foot in our first little apt once we leave on the 8th out of my head when they creep up late at night. i remind myself i've felt this before and i aim to focus on new beginnings on which we're embarking.

because we've been somewhat successful in our packing endeavors, this will be the first year we won't go through our wedding album and guest book, or watch our dvd. but that's just fine by us. we're ad-libbing by taking a detour from our traditions and spending a night out on the town in boston. knowing this won't be the last hiccup we encounter on our special day over the years, it makes me confident we'll be just fine when we do.

i look back on these past 4 years with pride knowing that they haven't been all rainbows and wedding cake but they've been SO much fun, surprising and definitely successful. they're only this sweet because i have my best friend and the love of my life who aims to make every day - not just this one - so special. i'm eternally grateful every single day for the partner that i found in e and most importantly for the the woman he's helped me become. but the biggest shout out goes to my sis, who was relentless in her determination to bring us together. ultimately, we're the product of her love. happy anniversary, e!

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

angels among us

i saw this on facebook and since i don't really re-post things on that outlet but wanted to share, i decided to do it here.

i've been praying for a handful of personal things lately but a few weeks ago, when i got some news about my dad that had us all possibly facing the big "C" word again, i dropped all selfish requests and focused on him. after 3 anxious weeks we got good news today about his health and i've never felt more sure of something bigger and better above me than i do now.

i don't focus on religion - more just spirituality - and i rarely ask questions like, "why" or "how" when it comes to down to things being just plain wrong. but i reverted back to some old ways (as in, those of a child) these last few weeks and was downright whining about how unfair this situation was. by no means do i think my moodiness helped turnaround this outcome, as i was raised to know you don't get what you want by pouting. but i do believe my hopes and prayers weren't ignored.

so when i saw this today, there couldn't have been a bigger sign that my thinking about that something bigger and better being out there was not far from the truth.

Friday, April 26, 2013


after the marathon tragedy, boston.com asked readers what they love most about this city. they received hundreds of responses, but posted a few on their site today. they're fun to look through, some are so simple, some more complex. but all holding a tone of true love for this "large town."

5 years ago i started this blog so i could catalog my time here. i read back on old entries often and think to myself how it's one very long love letter that traces my relationship with boston from meeting, through the first days of courtship to a full-blown love affair. i've recorded our "fights" through hard winter weather and rude encounters, and i've shared our apologies, acted out by the budding spring, trips to the cape, colorful falls and random acts of kindness.

there are so many reasons i love this place and i'm so thankful that i can easily refer back to most of them. but perhaps, more than any of these, i'll love boston most for showing me so many things that i'd never known about myself, this world and others.


Tuesday, April 16, 2013

i heart boston.

it's a sad day for boston. the images from the bombings on boylston street are simply horrific.

four years ago i was lucky enough to be a part of this city's internationally-renowned marathon. i'd never experienced excitement and pride like i did that day. watching the faces - of runners, volunteers and event planners - filled with accomplishment, knowing mine must have had a similar look. i spent the morning in the media room, missing out on the finish line celebrations, but in the weeks after the big race, i sifted through photos of runners crossing that famed line, their faces raised to the sky, right along with their arms. it was so moving.

the very next year, i took my friend april down to boylston st. to witness the runners first hand as they rounded that last bend before the final stretch. it was so surreal, watching people from all over the city, country, world...cheer on each and every individual that passed in front of them. it was the perfect display of the goodness of mankind and it restored the bit of lost faith in humanity that inevitably comes from living in a city.

there are plenty of images from yesterday of faces raised to the sky and tears in eyes, but, for the first time in 100+ years, they are just too much to bear. my thoughts and prayers are with the individuals and families impacted by yesterday's tragedy. and my heart goes out to boston, the great city that took this southern girl in five years ago, became my home and forever changed my perspective.

Friday, March 22, 2013

> love

this makes me think of e. regardless of the few encounters we had leading up to our official meet-cute at a unc game, e and i were not in love from the get-go. BUT that man kept coming up - either through conversations with my sister or through random run-ins and i knew he was supposed to be in my life.
i didn't know how or why, but i just knew.

for years to come and even now, but specifically for those first few years where dating can be hard and confusing and bumpy at times because it isn't perfect and people aren't perfect, this realization is what kept my perspective steady. i knew e was the one for me and that i was the one for him. i knew we would build something strong together, an unbreakable bond that certainly holds love but also something else, something i don't even know a word for. but whatever that is, that's what was there between us when i first saw e. love is easy and can be anxious. but this other thing, is patient but persistent, consistent and calming.

Thursday, March 7, 2013

right in time.

e and i have been talking about a lot of different things lately. family, home, work. we always do this, but there's more seriousness in our conversations now, with our realization that we are where we are in life and our want to begin to get where we'd like to go. it's scary.

maybe that doesn't make sense to anyone else reading this. and it doesn't make sense to me either most of the time. but something e keeps saying is that we just have to jump off a cliff and as long as we do that together, that's what it's about. he keeps telling me we have to take a leap of faith. i found this little wisdom gem today on another blog. i call it a subtle sign that some how, some way, in the midst of all my confusion, even though i can't see clearly at times,  i'm still on the right path. and i needed that.

Friday, January 25, 2013

winter woes

the last week (and even two) have brought a stretch of cold weather that e and i haven't faced in all of our five years here. it's been bru.tal.

over the past few winters, i've often found myself proud of how i've handled this season. i have come to find a happiness in the silence, the cold, the calm. and more than anything, i have become stronger solely because of these frozen conditions. withstanding new england winters wasn't just something i thought i could never do, it was something everyone who knew me was sure i wouldn't survive. but there's nothing like a little lack of faith to give you some motivation...

however, seeing that it's only january, my stubbornness is pretty much gone and i'm about to beg for mercy. our spring break to vieques in february can't come soon enough and sometimes, in the morning, walking through the city to get to my office by the water, it's unclear if i'll actually make it to that week...or spring.

i  know by now where new englanders - particularly those in boston - get their edge. this winter chill that's taken over the town can creep up in you, through your mouth, take over your lungs and send that cold rush right to your heart. to survive it, you can't steel yourself, it'll only turn that thing to stone. you have to accept it, take it in and wrap it up in the warmth you've carried with you since those last days of summer.

Monday, January 7, 2013

self portrait.

If I knew then what I know now, I would never have wasted even a single minute doubting my path. It may be human nature to question and doubt, but the older I get, the less I worry about anything. I can see life unfolding in divine order. And even in times of the greatest turmoil, I can stop, get still, and see with utter clarity: This, too, shall pass.

Because everything always does. Until finally, we do. 

No matter what you're struggling through -- no matter the pain or anguish -- you can go inside behind your mind and observe it happening to you. Whatever it is, it isn't you. You are the observer.
When you come to know this, you realize that even though the canvas of your life is painted with daily experiences, behaviors, reactions, and emotions, you're the one controlling the brush. 

What a wonder! It would have been nice to know this at 21. I could have saved myself a lot of heartache and self-doubt. But to fully understand, at any age, that you are the artist of your own life -- and can use as many colors and textures as possible (and erase when necessary!)... now, that's a revelation.

- Oprah Winfrey in her op-ed in the Huffington Post

this thought by Oprah is a great reminder to me today, this year and pretty much always. i feel that i'm fortunate to have gained great insight at a young age about how special and fun life is - even when it feels hard, sad, unfair or just plain tough. i truly look at every day as a blessing that holds great opportunity. i've always loved looking back and connecting dots that show a clear path to where i am now (most of those dots i was never able to see at the time), but over the past few years i've challenged myself to enjoy looking forward as well. these days, it's no longer a challenge, as these thoughts and day dreams of my future tend to flow freely.

i spent a lot of 2012 thinking about how far i'd come in so many ways and it was such fun thinking about how i'd gotten here. as the year rounded out and i was approaching my 30th birthday i started to reflect on where i was going in a very different way than i ever had before. i thought about what i started out to do in my life - personal and professional - and i assessed my progress thus far. there were times when i wondered if i'd strayed from my path or even, in more intimate moments with myself, abandoned the whole thing altogether. but i closed out the year and my third decade without a doubt in my mind that i'd done good.

i have many goals/resolutions for 2013. as i've mentioned before, i like to keep a list of no-brainers in the round-up to be sure and stick to good habits. but i've created a few that will no doubt bring some fun, wisdom and challenges as well. but my greatest resolution is not only to not doubt my path in 2013, wherever it may take me, eric, my career or our home. but to also not spend so much time worrying about it. i aim to use my colors wildly and freely and, as Oprah suggests, erase if needed.

here's to another great year!