18 April 2014

Spring, Sprang, Sprung

It happened, and now I'm blossom-drunk, wandering around with my head perpetually tilted upward.

The next few weeks are amongst my favorite of the whole year, based on nothing more than how my surroundings look and how they make me feel.

Also, unrelated but apropos to my current state of mind:

"The two most important days in your life are the day you are born and the day you find out why.
-Mark Twain

Enjoy the weekend, and happy Easter/Passover! We have zero commitments, which feels incredible. 

16 April 2014

Breakfast (+ A Few Links)

This is my current favorite breakfast, usually savored on the weekend when I have more than three minutes to prepare it. However, thanks to Passover and Easter, I have two random days off this week and was able to enjoy it yesterday morning alongside a cup of coffee and the howling rain-wind outside. Scrambled eggs, multigrain toast, avocado and sautéed leeks: so simple, so satisfying. I didn't butter my bread because I like having the flexibility to pile everything else on top.

Also, I truly don't understand how food bloggers operate. I was so eager to eat this that I literally took a single photo and hoped for the best before devouring the entirety of my meal. Doesn't the food get cold while they set up and style the perfect shot(s)? Do they throw it out afterwards? Do they actually plan on eating whatever recipe they prepare, or do they prepare the recipe solely for the purpose of turning it into a blog post? Eggs taste the most delicious when consumed as close to exiting the pan as possible (everybody knows this, right?), so these thoughts remain baffling to me.

And now, here's some unrelated mind fuel to accompany the palatable pleasure:

30 Things in 30 Years; "I would rather be in a room full of kings than be king of the room."

A Short Guide to a Happy Life; a particularly lovely excerpt:

"You cannot be really first-rate at your work if your work is all you are. So I suppose the best piece of advice I could give anyone is pretty simple: get a life. A real life, not a manic pursuit of the next promotion, the bigger paycheck, the larger house....Get a life in which you notice the smell of salt water pushing itself on a breeze over the dunes, a life in which you stop and watch how red-tailed hawk circles over a pond and a stand of pines. Get a life in which you pay attention to the baby as she scowls with concentration when she tries to pick up a Cheerio with her thumb and first finger....Get a life in which you are not alone. Find people you love, and who love you. And remember that love is not leisure, it is work."

The importance of Building a Good Name.

This made me cry (especially that last one, with the horse): The Five Days I Fell Hardest For My Wife.
"She is here. She is with me always. I will be alright."

Story time: I Am a Pizza (very wise words from a five-year-old).


Happy Wednesday, my friends. Hope you have a terrific day!

15 April 2014

Recent Work

A few faves from the latest session with two sisters I photograph every few months...

Some highlights from this cutie's 1st birthday session along the East River...

And this itty bitty in black & white, only 14 days young...

09 April 2014

Breathe, Stretch, Shake, Release

"There are things you can't reach. But
you can reach out to them, and all day long.

The wind, the bird flying away. The idea of god.
And it can keep you busier as anything else, and happier.

I look; morning to night, I am never done with looking.

Looking I mean not just standing around, but standing around
As though with your arms open."

-Mary Oliver

My classroom just adopted hermit crabs. They're abnormally large and a little bit stinky, but the kids love them and I love watching them love them. I ordered ladybugs, and caterpillars too, because I'm probably crazy, but today marks exactly eight weeks until the end of this school year, so yeah.

I've been lost in my own thoughts more so than usual, thinking about how stunningly beautiful words can be, and how I don't use the especially beautiful ones nearly enough: halcyon, murmur, ripple, quintessential, treasure. My very first post on this blog originated because of beautiful words, did you know that?

I need a haircut. I'm newly infatuated with this lipstick (#030 smitten). This commercial is awesome. This article about coffee is fascinating. And lastly, for today at least, you'll be okay

Photos // Summer 2013 // Washington Square Park
(Or, when the earth was lush & green & flower-filled, because we're still waiting for spring over here)

02 April 2014

Emma // West Village

"A great photograph is one that fully expresses what one feels, in the deepest sense, about what is being photographed." 
-Ansel Adams

I don't think there's any single subject I enjoy shooting more than my sister. I hope you are able to see my love for her here.

P.S. If you are interested in collaborating on a lifestyle portrait session, I promise I can love on you too.

27 March 2014

Flowers & Tea

These are a few of my favorite things.

I splurged at the flower shop. When I walked in and caught sight of buckets overflowing with lilacs, ranunculus AND peonies, my heart came very close to stopping. While organizing a kitchen cabinet, I found this pouch of tea leftover from a wedding we attended last summer. I think I probably hid it in order to be surprised later.

Gratification, pure and simple.

26 March 2014

March 2014 Self-Portrait: Slow Down, Baby

Contrary to my hopefulness projected in February's portrait, there are no blossoms yet. Bummer. I've been on spring break these past two weeks though, which provided a much needed respite from routines and commitments. Sometimes, you just need to press the pause button on life.

I spent a few days with my mom on the Cape last week and used the 4-hour solo car ride each way to unabashedly belt songs off-key while pondering every possible thought under the sun. Since returning, I've balanced my free time between a bit of photography-related work and lots of unscheduled nothingness. I was purposeful in choosing not to fill up this break with lofty ambitions, planned rendezvouses or multi-page lists: so far, it has felt so nice to just be.

I've felt my personal style shifting slightly in recent months. Since taking up yoga in January, I've transitioned to wearing a more comfortable everyday uniform: black leggings with flowing wraps or long cardigans over simple but structured t-shirts. I'm in the process of completely clearing out my closet and am feeling pretty ruthless about what stays and what goes. I find myself thinking that I'd like to stand in front of it when all is said and done and be able to pair any single item with any other item to make a suitable outfit. Succinctly, I'm keeping only classics that meet this criteria: 1). fit well; 2). make me feel good; and 3). don't require major upkeep (who likes ironing?). I've never been super high-maintenance and I'm beginning to realize that my wardrobe doesn't need to be either.

March is over in five days. While I'm eager for the lighter spirit and sweetness that accompanies the months ahead, I also can't help but think about how important it is to embrace a slower pace and mindset. Before we know it, December will be here and we'll all be scratching our heads and wondering where 2014 went. I don't want to live my life waiting for the next thing.

Country artist Trace Adkins croons a popular tune called "You're Gonna Miss This," the lyrics of which I've considered a lot recently.

You're gonna miss this
You're gonna want this back
You're gonna wish these days
Hadn't gone by so fast

These are some good times
So take a good look around
You may not know it now
But you're gonna miss this

Something for all of us to mull, I think

25 March 2014

Exotic Fruit-Tasting At Home

Our grocery bill at Whole Foods was a solid $50 higher than usual this week because Tiho lingered in the produce aisle and proceeded to pluck every single fruit he's never tasted before into our cart. I was skeptical but intrigued: we usually stock up on apples, bananas, mango and an assortment of berries.

After unloading the bags at home, I retreated into the living room to settle in with my usual time-wasters when I heard Tiho say, "Hey, come back in the kitchen! We're having a date!" 

An exotic fruit-tasting date in our kitchen at 4 PM on Sunday afternoon. Yes.

We tasted everything before declaring Passion Fruit the unanimous winner (even though it marginally resembles boogers when sliced open). While I nibbled (and documented), Tiho basically pounded, resulting in plenty of residual juice and seeds all over his facial scruff. Sexy!

Dragon Fruit (below) was deemed the prettiest and tasted milder than I'd imagined...sort of like a lighter variety of kiwi. The biggest surprise was Rambutan (above). It looks like a sea urchin/spiky tropical bug but contains a sweet grape-like fruit on the inside.


While I'll still choose a strawberry any day, I had a lot of fun on our spontaneous at-home tasting date.

For reference, the fruits we purchased include: Rambutan, Pear Cactus,  Kiwano (horned melon), *Cherimoya, Dragon fruit, Passion fruit and *White Thai Coconut.

*We haven't yet sampled the Cherimoya or Thai Coconut because they need a few more days to ripen. I'm sure we'll find some time to crack 'em open later this week!