my work with the eighty twenty.

The Eighty Twenty Magazine

This past December I worked on a special project with The Eighty Twenty, an online magazine written by and for women who ultimately want to live the best balanced life possible. I consider myself one of those woman and have enjoyed following the magazine since it’s debut last winter. I love the diversity of the site— from practical advice to personal essays, there is truly something for everyone. When Jenna came  to me last fall and asked if I would photograph the magazine’s first ever digital issue, I was thrilled. What an honor!

The magazine is finally here and it is amazing. 38 pages of essays, recipes, heath tips, and more. A true labor of love as I watched these fabulous women in action— they poured their hearts into this project and it shows.

Available for purchase here.

(You will LOVE it.)

Overheard over New York

IMG_4180.JPG

So here I am delayed at the airport {again.} This time I’m much more relaxed about it all, since the only place I’m going is back to my own bed. The ride home is never as exciting as the one there anyhow. The first leg of my flight flew into New York, and so this is where I’ve been spending my Friday night. Not the worst place in the world, I guess. {Positivity, people! I’m trying!} As we flew into the city the little girl sitting behind me perked up in the best way. She was so quiet most of the flight I hardly knew she was there, but as soon as we came into New York she came alive with excitement. I felt it completely, as much of what she was saying I was thinking too. I think she was about 4 or 5 years old, which made it all the better. So good that after the first few giddy exclamations I decided it’d be fun to start writing her words down…

On our first view of the city //

“Look! There’s lady liberty!”

“This is amazing!!”

“It’s so BEAUTIFUL!!”

On looking up to the sky //

“Look at the moon. A little sliver you can wish on.”

And back down again towards the ground //

“Oh, the city lights from so high… It looks like the biggest Christmas tree ever.”

“Look at the twinkling lights in the park. Aren’t they pretty?”

“I bet the cars are like, that plane is so close to us! Are we close to them? More than one foot, I guess.”

“Now we’re definitely so close to the water right now. If we were a bird we could splash right in.”

On a smooth and happy landing //

“Ahahahahah!” {Giggling so good.} “That was awesome.”

IMG_4181.JPG

I feel ya, kid. Straight up magic.

//

“I look out the window and I see the lights and the skyline and the people on the street rushing around looking for action, love, and the world’s greatest chocolate chip cookie, and my heart does a little dance.” Nora Ephron

these days.

anna's home {dear friend blog}

Today is the start of my February vacation and I could not be more pleased about it if I tried. Teaching is wonderful, but free time is my love language– even if the winter snow is doing a fine job of keeping me indoors!

These days have been filled with lots of wedding planning and LOTS OF SNOW. We’ve had 4 snow days and two delays just in the month of February. I cannot believe how much snow we’ve gotten in such a short period of time. It’s CRAZY! Yesterday I was scrolling through my instagram feed and one of my Boston friends {I forget who!} wrote “and on Sunday, it snows.” which is just the honest to goodness truth. Once a week we get a blizzard!

So far we’ve nailed down all the important stuff as far as our wedding goes. We’ve got the venue, the photographer, the band, my dress (!!), I sent out our Save-the-Dates and this past weekend we went home to Syracuse and met with our caterer. I made a wedding website with info for our family and friends, too, which might have been the most fun of all. You can view it here if you’d like. :)

Today I’ve spent the day drinking coffee, listening to Pandora through our kitchen speakers, moving the laundry along, and packing for my 4-day trip to Florida, which conveniently starts tomorrow— just as I was feeling the snow start to weigh me down. I’m going to visit my friend Caroline who lives in Tampa and just had her first baby. Little Henry! I can’t wait to meet him!

What are you up to this week? Is it snowy in your neck of the woods?

{I am going to try to bring some warmer rays back from the sunshine state if I can!}

the story of us.

engagement !

Zan and I have been together for almost 9 years. 9 years is a long long time, but somehow for us, the timing’s been just right. We met in college my senior year, his junior, a few months after I’d broken up with my college boyfriend. I was in that sweet spot in time, where I’d just started to get over the boy, and was really having the time of my life with my friends. That senior-year, out-every-night, singing-and-dancing-all-the-time-with-your-girls kind of fun. The dreamiest senior spring I could ever imagine. The good old days and then some.

Zan liked me straightaway, and I thought he was kind and good looking, but the timing at that point just wasn’t right for me. We went on a date, we hung out a few times on weekends, but I did not want a boyfriend, simple as that — my heart was just not in it.

I graduated, came to Boston, and for awhile that was that.

engagement !

Two of my closest friends from college were one year younger than I, so the next spring I took a trip back to school to visit them. We danced and sang and clinked our cans like most college seniors and newly graduated people do and then one night while I was there I ran into Zan downtown at the bar. Did I remember him? Oh yes, I remembered him. And suddenly, instantly, just like that, he was someone I was excited to see.

But the real question is, did he remember me?

{Oh, he definitely remembered me.}

engagement !

The lucky part of this story besides meeting each other again, is that Zan is from Boston, and I was living in Boston. A place I wasn’t originally from, but a place I really wanted to be.

Lucky me, lucky us.

As soon as he graduated and moved back home we started hanging out all the time. Nights and weekends and so much of the in between.

The rest is kind of history. It’s a lot of years, so there are a lot of memories. We’ve traveled together and spent summers together, we know each others families and each others friends. We fit together in the best way we know how and being each others person has just always made sense.

engagement !

A lot of the time, especially in more recent years, there’s been the never ending question:

“ARE YOU GOING TO GET MARRIED?”

Dear Lord, if I never hear that question again, then getting married is reason enough. {KIDDING!} I was never anxious, but other people got me feeling that way at times. It only ever bugged me because other people were thinking it, saying it, asking it. My close friends were always gracious—God bless them until the end, but last summer there was one week I got that question from different people almost every single day. {I know the intentions are all well and good, but it’s a fairly annoying question to those of you out there wondering.}

I knew Zan was it for me, and worrying was something I just didn’t have in me to do. “You do you” I always say. And I’ll do me and we’ll do us.

Plus, Zan is my person. Always has been. Always will be.

engagement !

On New Year’s Eve we decided to throw our usual small get-together. For the past few years we’ve ditched the whole “going out” idea and truly embraced the “staying in”. We take a drive into Boston and walk the city for First Night. We make lots of food. We drink lots of drinks. We celebrate another year.

This year’s NYE went down just like always. We went to Wegmans during the day to get all the food and we cleaned the house like mad. Then, as we got ready to go out in the cold I said to Zan, “We can stay in if you want.” to which he replied, “Oh, no, I want to drive in to the city.”

Well, okay sure! I thought. Let’s do it.

I honestly didn’t think twice about anything, not even when we were crossing the bridge in the Public Garden and Zan turned around and said he wanted to go take a walk down by the Swan Pond {“Oh there’s nothing down there,” I said}. So when he got down on one knee and asked me to be his forever my heart stopped for a good minute {and went to heaven I’m pretty sure} before I could take a breath and say YES. {also, I asked “Is this real??” a total of TWO times before I un-blacked out and came to. :) }

engagement !

We walked the city hand in hand after that. Talking about everything and how it all came to be. We told our families and they cheered, we stopped by my sister’s and she cried, and the party we had at our house that night was filled with the most joyous people on earth. HAPPY 2015, we all cheered! The happiest New Year yet.

And so we’re here starting the next chapter in our adventure — we’re getting married and planning a wedding and it’s really truly the most fun ever.

Just like it always has been, just like I knew it would be.