joie de vivre-- a cheerful enjoyment of life & an exultation of spirit.

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Wit & Whistle.

Alright my fellow note-takes and list lovers, prepare to join me in one giant swoon over Wit & Whistle's beautiful line of handmade Jotters-- I just can't get enough. What more could a girl ask for to have on hand when those moments of inspiration strike?

I've been a long time admirer of creative designer Amanda Wright and all of her unique and oftentimes quirky creations, but I must admit, I think these are my new favorite. For more inspiration and paper good goodness check out Amanda's shop and her beautiful blog as well!


Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Bookstore Buys.

Friends, I am a sucker for a good book. And by a good book, I mean one of those really, really good books. The kind that completely consumes you and keeps you hanging on by the tips of your fingernails as it drags you into the wee hours of the morning, prying your eyelids open because it can't possibly let you fall asleep until you know how it  all comes to an end. Oh, that feeling of getting lost between the pages and forgetting the real world exists for a while. It's just the best. Don't you agree?

Well, it's books like that the get me in trouble when I happen to find my way into bookstores. There's something about that never-ending quest for a new discovery that keeps me roaming and weaving through rows and shelves for hours. It thrills me to no end & it never gets old. Not surprisingly, that's precisely what happened Sunday afternoon when I somehow found myself in front of McNally Jackson down on Prince St. in SoHo. I'll be honest here, it was game over from the start.

Well, two and a half hours later and $80 poorer, I emerged from deep within the bowels of a bookworm's dream with the following in hand--

In Search of Lost Time, Volume One: Swann's Way, by Marcel Proust
Independent People, by Halldor Laxness 
The Ecstasy of Influence, by Jonathan Lethem
(Plus another little book & a card for momma d. whose birthday happens to be on the near horizon!)

I'm hoping if you happen to have read any/all of the above you're currently feverishly nodding with approval over there. Yes? Good. I thought so.  Whittling the initial stack of about 9 down to only these 3 was not the easiest process, so I'm hoping my decisions were sound.

Any other books caught your attention as of late? Classic favorites that you always turn back to? Share below!

Monday, February 27, 2012

Mixtape. (No. 4)

Hello, hello! My goodness it's been a while. Has anyone yet discovered where time seems to slip away to when we least expect it? Sorry for my absence-- I hope you've all been well as I've attempted to restore some order to my little corner of the world.

After an incredibly jam-packed & wonderful few days with Marie, Matt & crew in town over the long weekend, last week was quickly consumed by a work trip, an onslaught of meetings, and far too little time to pop in and say hello. Upon returning home last Thursday night to a giant pile of mail, a list of errands a mile long, the admittance that it had in fact been 10 months since my last haircut, and the realization that my broken iPod was leaving my half-marathon training in shambles, I embarked on a weekend-long journey to attempt making some positive strides towards equilibrium again. Thus here we are, with an entire week having disappeared and it being yet another Monday. Oh, life. (Cue deep breath).

But hey, it's a new week and I've got a good feeling about this one.

I've got lots of fun posts for you all planned for this week, but for now, I wanted to leave you with the following mix I've had on play in the corner all day-- thank goodness for productive Mondays. Enjoy.

She Got the Honey -- Mat Kearney
Hello -- Tristan Prettyman
To a Poet -- First Aid Kit
Lost In My Mind -- The Head and the Heart
Pitter-Pat -- Erin McCarley
July Flame -- Laura Veirs
Something In The Water -- Brooke Fraser
Rush Apart -- The Rural Alberta Advantage
The Broken Ones -- Dia Frampton
Lose Some Time -- Grace Potter & The Nocturnals

Friday, February 17, 2012

Happy Weekend.

Words cannot even begin to express how absolutely thrilled I am for this weekend to be here. Of all the weekends that I've had to look forward to since moving up to the city this past summer, it has been having a weekend like this one upon us come to fruition that I have been looking forward to most. And why might that be, you ask? Well-- a very special someone finally happens to be coming into town!! (As does her equally wonderful boyfriend with a carload of friends in tow, no less!!)

Excuse me while I take 30 seconds for a much needed, crazed happy dance.


So, what's on the agenda for the visit from the best friend who has yet to visit my humble abode or grace the borough of Brooklyn with her presence? Well, dear friends, you'll just have to wait until next week to find out, but I can assure you, it's going to be a marvelously wonderful weekend indeed.

Wishing you and yours a fabulously long weekend as well.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Kinfolk Magazine-- Honey Harvest.


Was SO excited to open my mailbox on Monday morning to discover that my first issue of Kinfolk had arrived-- hooray! My heart and soul have been captivated by Kinfolk since its first issue was released this past Fall and the more I've seen, the more I've fallen in love. At its very core, Kinfolk is the "marriage of an appreciation for art and design with a love for spending time with family and friends". It's a celebration of small gatherings done the way they ought to be: simply, uncomplicated, and less contrived. It's an effortless harmony beautifully displayed across 144 pages of photographs and featured stories. And my goodness, it's simply divine all the way through.

After spending a wonderful two and a half hours Monday night curled under a blanket and getting lost in the pages of this issue, I could quite literally go on forever about the magic within every feature and photograph that I came across. However, there is one story in particular that I am absolutely smitten by and just had to share: Honey Harvest. Something tells me the photos and video following will speak volumes on their own without my aid. I hope you enjoy.

Honey Harvest from Kinfolk on Vimeo.

All photos above by Leo Patrone, via Kinfolk

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Weekend Recap (Part II).

There are so many thing that I have come to love about this city, but I would be remiss if I didn't give a particular nod of acknowledgement to all of the incredible markets that we have access to on a year-round basis. From the dozens of farmer's markets to the little street corner stalls collected in abandoned lots to the food festivals and the fleas-- there truly is no end to the spaces and places to explore. It's fantastic. And, lucky for me, one of the city's most famed markets-- the Brooklyn Flea-- happens to take up its winter residence just a few blocks from my apartment. Convenient, huh?

Housed in the old Williamsburg Savings Bank (an absolutely stunning building with merit enough to warrant a visit), The Brooklyn Flea is comprised of 3 packed floors of stalls, vendors, and wares. Stepping foot into this market is a little like opening the Pandora's Box of treasure trunks-- I can't even begin to tell you some of the gems that are buried within the racks and under the piles. Here are a few snapshots from my visit last Sunday:


As a bit of a side note--for those of you for whom shopping tends to bring on a pang of hunger, you'll also find a food court of sorts down in the lower level vault where you can camp out at picnic tables covered in red-checkered cloths and enjoy the delicacies of a never-ending rotation of famed local food vendors. (Did I mention that I happened to catch a glimpse of a few cases of glistening Donut Plant treats beside a table full of fresh Red Hook Lobster Pound lobster rolls this past Sunday? Yes. I'll be going back on an empty stomach next time.)

In any case, next time you find yourself with a free weekend afternoon, swing on by the Flea and take a few hours to explore. I promise you won't be disappointed.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Happy Valentine's Day.

Happy Valentine's Day, friends!
Here's to spending today amidst the best of company-- surrounded by love, cheer... and lots of wine. 

Monday, February 13, 2012

Weekend Recap (Part I).

Well, it was a marvelously quiet weekend in my little neck of the Brooklyn woods-- no guests, no alarms, no plans, no nothing. And my goodness was it wonderful. After a slew of weekends filled with dear friends in town and lots of exciting adventures scheduled here and there, having a quiet weekend to myself is exactly what I've found myself needing for a while now. Well, mission accomplished.

After a solid night of almost 18 hours of sleep on Friday (yes, that would require me to fall asleep circa 5:30pm-- you are correct), I woke up Saturday morning feeling more refreshed & renewed than I have in months. With only my camera and a good book to keep me company, Saturday was then spent strolling through some of my favorite neighborhoods, from cafe to cafe, and without any concept of time. It was glorious. Here are a few snapshots--


1-- Spent the better part of the morning/early afternoon at one of my favorite little cafes in Brooklyn Heights: Iris Cafe. Aside from the exposed red brick walls, window-seat nooks, and overall decor being reason enough to camp out and stay awhile, the food (comprised of only fresh and local ingredients) is absolutely divine. Order me up an avocado sandwich and a tall glass of fresh pressed apple cider and I'm guaranteed to be one happy girl.
2 & 3-- Some shots from my stroll down Henry Street en route to...
4 & 5-- After having Brooklyn Farmacy & Soda Fountain on my to-do list for months now, I was excited to finally find myself with some time to dip in for a little treat towards the end of the afternoon. A family owned business located in a fully restored 1920s pharmacy, this neighborhood gem is not only a true throwback to another era, but it also served as the perfect place for me to waste some time on my lazy Saturday afternoon. And please, don't even get me started on how delicious that chocolate shake was. I can assure you, I was not disappointed. Mmm. Not one bit. 
6-- Finally picked up some fresh greens to spruce up the apartment a bit- huzzah! (Farewell shriveled Winterberry branches-- you were so wonderfully beautiful the whole two months that you lasted)

More to come with some snapshots from Sunday's visit to the Brooklyn Flea, but for now wishing you all a wonderful start to your week!

Thursday, February 9, 2012

In This Moment.

Where-- Perched cross legged at my desk in the kitchen
Enjoying-- A steaming mug of hot cocoa & loving the way I can feel the warmth spread through my limbs with each sip
Listening to-- The beautiful melodies in First Aid Kit's newest album, The Lion's Roar
Loving-- How the lit candle across the room is making the apartment smell of Spring
Hoping-- I'll find my first subscription of Kinfolk in the mail tomorrow so I can lounge in bed on Saturday getting lost in its pages with a cup of tea nearby
Grateful for-- The dishes being done, a clean apartment, and the rest of the night being spent exactly like this-- quietly

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

A Simple Life.

There's something so appealing to me about a life entirely different than the one I currently live. A life of simplicity, with a bit less outer noise & a bit more inner thought. A life that might look something like the images above, if that even makes any sense at all. I think I'd like it there, wherever there might be. It feels peaceful. Quaint. It even feels a bit like home-- as if a part of me has been there all my life.

Yes. I think I'd like it there.

Images above via here, here, here, and here.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Linus & Danielle.

I don't know Linus or Danielle, but golly I certainly wish that I did. After coming across this absolutely beautiful video of their wedding, my heart has swollen to about ten times its normal size with love and admiration for this couple. I don't know what it is about this video and these people and this wedding- but my goodness does it make my heart race. You can just feel the love here, you know? I mean really, really feel it. And not just between the sweet, sweet couple; but everywhere, amongst everyone, in every little corner and nook. Oh, it just makes me smile wide. What a special, special thing to be able to capture in its most natural and wholesome existence.

And my gosh, I'm sorry, but I just have to say it-- That. Barn. (Swoon.)

So, strange as it may be for me to post the wedding video of a couple I've never had the pleasure or good fortune of meeting, that is precisely what I plan to do. I hope you enjoy and are as inspired and touched as I was.

And to Danielle and Linus, wherever & whomever you might be-- I hope that your lives have continued to be full of as much joy, laughter, and love as this one special day most certainly was. I wish you a lifetime of health and happiness. Thank you, sincerely, for sharing.

linus+danielle • rainy barn wedding from Paperback Weddings on Vimeo.

Monday, February 6, 2012

Mixtape. (No. 3)

Happy Monday, friends. I can't believe it's already the start of another week, can you? After a busy, but incredibly enjoyable weekend, I've started this week off on a bit of a mellow note with the following playlist & it's proven to be exactly what I needed to ease into this work week.

Wishing you all my very best for a productive and joyful week ahead.

This House of Cards -- Jamie Mefford and Blue Light
Rochester -- Mat Kearney
Coachella -- Brooke Fraser
My Father's Father -- The Civil Wars
Winter Song -- The Head & The Heart
Rewind -- Paolo Nutini
Anna's Tambourine -- Carleigh Nesbit
Blood Bank -- Bon Iver
Almost Lover -- A Fine Frenzy
Bouncing Ball -- Honeyhoney
More Time -- Needtobreathe
Not Too Late -- Norah Jones

Photo above found here, via Wit & Delight.

Friday, February 3, 2012

Just Do It.

So I realize that it's been a long, long while since I've given any sort of update on how my half-marathon training is coming along (and by a long while, I should really say it's never happened). So, after a few weeks of hiding in a bit of a runner's slump, but managing to jump back on the horse yesterday to have one of my greatest runs yet, I'm feeling a bit inspired. Bear with me.

Well, I'm alive. Let's go ahead and start with that achievement. Which, minor as it may seem, I must assure you is a huge accomplishment considering how at the start of this journey, my attempt at running a single mile was probably the most pathetic display of human achievement known to mankind. More importantly, however, it's been 2 months and I haven't quit. And that, my friends, is worth a big huzzah.

I started off this whole process not really knowing what to expect. I knew running and I had a relationship a bit like water and vinegar, but I also knew that a part of me believed I could come to like it-- to actually enjoy it. I was motivated by the idea that at the end of all this I could potentially be in great shape, feeling confident, with all those superfluous benefits that us girls tend to get excited about when it comes to fitness. But more than anything, I was determined to prove to myself that I could accomplish this large, daunting challenge that I had boldly charged myself with. And I knew that I didn't want to let myself down.

And so I went forth. Excited (and desperately hoping) to conquer.

Well, it's been a process, I won't deny that. And it's taken time for me to get to the point where-- dramatic pause-- I'm actually enjoying it. Sure there have been days when lacing up my sneakers was the absolute last thing I wanted to do and days when sleeping in that extra hour was too tempting of an offer to refuse. And yes there have been weeks that I haven't been as good as I should about sticking to my calendar or I decided that because I was so far ahead of schedule I had earned the right to take a few days off. But there have also been days when I've arrived home, collapsed on the kitchen floor, exhausted, but so incredibly proud to have gone beyond what I had set out to do. And there have been feelings like that of finishing my first 6-mile run, when I truly believe in my ability to do this.  There have been lows, but there have certainly been highs. And the point here is this: I'm still at it, I'm still in the game. In the past 2 months, I've come to realize a lot about myself-- my abilities, my body, and my mind-- and who knows what life lesson is next around the bend.

So here I am, less than 2 months out from the big day-- March 24th, 2012. (I still can't decide whether it's more terrifying that I'll be running 13.1 miles in 6, short weeks or more alarming that the time it's taken to get me to this point has absolutely disappeared) So far, training has been great & I've gotten to a point where 6 miles feels somewhat comfortable (a fact which still astounds me). But I know these next two months are going to be tough. I've got many long, hard runs ahead of me and it's going to take a lot of patience and determination to get me there. But that's still yet to come, and my focus remains on taking each day as it comes. So for now, I'll just keep going... one foot in front of the other.

Happy Weekend, everyone.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

A Gathering.

Feeling totally inspired today by Nashville-based photographer Laura D'Art's getaway to Cape Lookout, Oregon. I just love everything about the way she's documented the day. And I do mean everything.


Oh what I would give to have my dearest friends close by with keys to our own little getaway car in hand. I could use an adventure into the wilderness with a trunk full of lanterns, blankets, and a picnic dinner packed away. It would be nice, wouldn't it?

Check out more photos from Laura's trip, here.