from the road…

We are on the road to home at the moment, which is incredibly snowy and treacherous to say the least. It is quite the winter wonderland, but when you’re stuck driving in it {or stuck being a passenger, as my case happens to be} it’s actually kind of the pits. WHERE ARE THE SNOWPLOWS? I can’t help but wonder, and other {irrational} thoughts such as, WHY does winter exist? and WHO ON EARTH EVEN LIKES SNOW?!??

More often than not when things are out of my control I say peaceful things like “everything happens for a reason” or “no worries, it’ll all turn out okay in the end”, but today’s drive is one of those situations where I’ve gone between wanting to cry and feeling like I’m going to throw up.

{I can be dramatic sometimes. I hope you knew.}

Luckily, it’s fairly easy for me to bring myself back to an at ease state, so I decided to take control of the situation and snap a few photos for the old Instagram, visit my Pinterest app, and listen to some Christmas tunes {the first of the season for me!}. Also, a dear diary entry nearly always does the trick. Already I feel a thousand times better.

And just look at this! Clear roads! God bless the snowplows and salt trucks and GOD BLESS NEW YORK!


2 hours to home! It will be a Happy Thanksgiving, indeed. :)

field notes.

by Jenna Kutcher via Society 6


Last Tuesday I went into the hospital for outpatient sinus surgery and came out {hopefully better} on the other side. To make a short story short, I do not have a sense of smell. I’ve mentioned my lack of smell briefly in this post, but it’s not something I casually talk about often, or hardly ever, so a lot of people that I know have no idea at all. About 2 years ago my sense of smell slowly faded {reason unknown, but all signs point to severe allergies and sinusitus} and since then I’ve been through lots of appointments and tests and scans to try to figure out what the trouble is.

I had a MRI, which was scary. And then a CAT scan which showed a LOT of inflammation in my sinuses, completely blocking my sense of smell. For a long time I was just satisfied with the fact that I did not have a brain tumor, but more recently I considered options to try and fix the problem, or at least try to help it best I can. I changed my diet, which did help with my allergies, but still my smell did not return. And so, I opted for surgery– Balloon Sinuplasty which is a minimally invasive and fairly painless procedure, and hopefully {fingers crossed!} will help bring my scent back soon.

Since this was my first time in the operating room, I thought I’d jot down a few field notes on my experience, as it was overall a pretty okay adventure for me.

I arrived at the hospital at 2:00 for a 4:00 surgery which was late considering I couldn’t eat after 12:00 the previous night. I was hungry, but kept myself busy enough during the day to not think much about it. I also couldn’t drink any liquids, which was a pain, but fine. My mom came in to town from Syracuse to drive me to and from the surgery and also just to be around during the days following. Zan would have taken off work if she hadn’t come to visit, but I liked the situation as it was– there’s nothing like your mom taking care of you, am I right?

There was a complication with one of the surgeries scheduled before mine, and so I actually had to wait until 6:30 to go into the operating room! The waiting was the pits, but I felt like I was in good hands, so my anxiety level was low. About an hour before I went into the operating room the nurse and anesthesiologist came to visit me, asking lots of questions about my allergies to certain medicines and also getting me all set up with the intravenous, which, a short time later caused my blood pressure to drop/severe dizziness to happen. Whoa! Within seconds the nurses came rushing in to pump some fluid through me and after a minute or so it seemed I was back on track and better than ever. An adventure, indeed!

I really loved all the doctors and nurses– they were so kind and reassuring. I just felt safe and calm the whole time, even when I didn’t {if that makes any sense}.

When the surgeon and the rest of the team came to wheel me to the operating room I was ready to go. The operating room was big and blue and very bright. Much brighter than Grey’s Anatomy I was sure to tell everyone in the room {my most specific connection to a surgical environment, I obviously had to bring it up}. Best show ever, I also stated, and though I didn’t get any comments , I did catch a few smiles. I still felt calm and safe and ready and as I was being given the anesthesia I simply remember thinking, here we go! Before I coughed in the medicine and blacked out.


Waking up from surgery and the hour following was the worst part for me. My throat hurt miserably as well as my front teeth and my face. But slowly, slowly, after some much needed medicine and just a little bit of time, I started to feel okay again. Not perfect, but better. I had to wear a gauze under my nose for a few days, and will have to do a nasal spray to help the healing, but over the course of a week I have quickly come back to life. The healing should take 3-4 weeks in it’s entirety so right now I just have to keep up with the spray and wait and see.

The hard part is over, and now the hoping and wishing for smell is where I’m at.

Wish me luck and say a prayer will you? I’ll take all the love I can get.

living room love // steller stories

living room love // dear friend blog

Feels Like Home by Anna | dear friend on Steller Stories

If you click on the link above you can view a little tour of our living/dining room that I posted on Steller Stories today. I am so happy with the way the room came out. I feel like I’ve finally found my design style– and at last it feels just right. I have always loved interior decorating and design. Even as a little girl I would pour over home magazines and architecture layouts inside the books at Barnes and Noble. It’s just always been so fun to see the different ways people style their homes. My style has definitely evolved over the years, and I’d like to think I’m at my best stylist version of me yet. Every night I walk through the rooms of our house and sing, this place is my favorite, happiness in a home.

A little more on Steller: I discovered the Steller app last April {my first story was about the Golden Gate Bridge!) and then rediscovered it yesterday, and well, if you don’t know it yet, you should because it’s perfection. Such a simple idea with great layout options and clean simple fonts to add the details to your project— a new way of story telling through words, photos, and videos. I love it and I think you will too.

You can buy the Steller app in the app store to start creating your own, or find out more about it here. <— Be sure to view some of the featured stories while you’re over there. So many amazing stories! SO inspiring!


P.S. A little hint: I always use the
VSCO cam app to filter my photos
before I import them into Stellar.

P.P.S. If you have a Stellar account
leave your username in the comments!
I would love to check it out. xo

life in film // 02

FILM 02 // dearfriendblogFILM 02 // dearfriendblogFILM 02 // dearfriendblogFILM 02 // dearfriendblogFILM 02 // dearfriendblog

“Beach Days”
Good Harbor Beach
Gloucester, MA
August, 2014

Fuji Film Superia X-TRA400


This post is coming to you live from the broken heat and shattered dreams of my frigid old house. I’m being so dramatic about it, but you understand. Brrrrr. I’ve got the space heater mere inches away from me blasting out as much heat as it dares to give + these photos are a good distraction to the cold.

Good Harbor Beach is our old stand-by. Unless we’re feeling up for something new {which we’re usually not!} we head up to Good Harbor, our favorite of all the beaches on the North Shore. Everyone around here has their favorite– Singing Beach, Wingaersheek, or even Crane’s Beach {if you can deal with the Black Heads! AHh!} and they are all completely gorgeous in their own special way, but Good Harbor Beach is where it’s at for us. Every single summer it wins.

We know where to park without having to pay and where we like to sit in the soft sand. I love being able to walk the length of the beach and when I’m up for it, taking the trek through the low waves on the sand bar out to Salt Island when it’s low tide. The views are also my favorite which is probably why I have hundreds and HUNDREDS of landscape photos from over the years. It’s the same each year, the same each visit and yet, I continue to jam-pack my iphone with photos of this place. It’s just so pretty.

This particular trip was a challenge for me because with the Pentax you cannot go wild with the click. If you do, you’ll run out of film and you’ll surely be sorry. On this day I had to take my time and think about each frame that I was capturing— the sea of people you see when you first get to the footbridge, the gorgeous old house up on the hill, my sister and our friend Jordan walking out to the water, and the way the sand looks like glass at low tide… each photo has a lot of thought that goes into it, at least I tried to put thought into each one, and still I only came out with a few that I really loved. But then again, that’s the beauty of photography, you know?

Even if I just get one good one it’s enough. I captured that moment. That moment is mine.