I am heading to North Carolina for almost a week to spend time with my grandmother, dad and other extended family. I almost didn’t make this trip but sometimes your heart just tells you you need something and you are compelled to override your head. This is one of those times.
I love an easy outfit, and this hat + linen top + pleated short was just that. I have had this linen shirt for at least 5 years now and it is holding up surprisingly well. It used to be exclusively reserved for NYC summers and vacation, but since moving to LA I reach for it constantly for an easy beach/workout clothes cover up or just a casual weekday look. Paired with these new-to-me vintage shorts I felt put together but simply styled which left room for my new hat, which is both a showstopper and incredibly practical.
This year for my annual 100 day project I switched things up from my usual mindfulness challenge. I have been looking to reduce my waste and particularly use of single-use plastics, so I decided to use this as an opportunity to do so.
Each weekday I chose one single-use plastic item I but with some regularity and research alternative products that would produce no plastic waste, and minimal waste generally. I documented each of these in my Instagram stories, but for posterity I want to share that research here. I will call this series of posts my journey to “Plastic Freedom.”
I am sitting on the beach right now about 20 minutes from home and I am so happy I made it here. I was one decision away from deciding to spend labor day in the studio all day getting ahead of a short work and travel week.
It is so easy for me to choose work over rest and recreation. Ironically the whole reason I work is so I can have more rest and relaxation in the future. But what my mindfulness practice has taught me is that the most important thing is the present and taking time to rest and enjoy now is more important than attempting to secure it in the future.
Okay, now I am putting down my phone and getting back to watching the wave and feeling the breeze on my skin.
In 2019 I have three focus areas, all of which I hope will help me pace myself during what is bound to be a busy year…
Embrace the process
This year I want to embrace the process in my creative work, work as an entrepreneur, and spiritual work. Truly all aspects of my life.
Rest Intentionally (not just when exhausted)
I want to take more time out to rest my mind and body and not feel guilty about it!
Stay Grounded in Faith
I want to nourish my spirit and give my buddhist practice more attention. My faith is the pivot point from which I make all decisions so the stronger that is the more confident I am in every aspect of my life.
It is 2019. Even though I have been looking forward to the new year for weeks now, it still feels odd that we are here. Maybe it's because it seems like just yesterday I was writing my 2017 version of this post, or maybe because I have so many long term goals coming due in 2020! Either way we are here and I am going to share with you how I felt I did sticking with my theme for last year and my resolutions.
2018 was the year of courage for me. I went on (and on) about it in my post without revealing what exactly I have been summoning courage for. Well if you've been following along with me on Instagram you probably know I started a business last year. And it was bumpy to say the least. Venturing into something brand new and public facing can shake ones confidence to the core and it took a whole lot of courage for me to stand up to my insecurities each day and plow forward.
A+ I am very proud to say 2018 was a year of creation for me. I started Two Days Off and began thinking creatively to design the clothing line and solve entrepreneurial problems. I invested my time and money into this part of my life and it feels great.
habits and routines
B I stuck to many of my intended habits this year, like hydration, meditating, and maintaining a skincare regimen (woohoo on this one!). All in all I made progress but there are a few habits (like taking time to rest and unplug each week) that could use more work.
B+ I am probably most proud of this one because I have made lot of small but thoughtful changes in my consumption and the products I use. On the household front I have realized it isn’t as challenging as I thought it would be to reduce my waste and begin eliminating plastic. Similarly with my toiletries I started to take a pause before replacing a product to make sure it was something I did need and if there were lower-waste options available (something in glass I could buy, a dual-purpose product, or if I could buy it in bulk). I also started to reduce my dependence on Amazon because I loathe the excessive amount of packaging they use to ship products. Some of my favorite low-waste solutions I started using includes Who Gives A Crap recycled toilet paper that helps build toilets in underdeveloped places, and napkins from fabric scraps. I also started carrying reusable utensils and straws on outings and trips (although I really should just keep them in my purse all the time). Although I do think I have made great strides, I could have done better with food. Last year I began relying on Trader Joe’s pre-packaged meals much more in the past (not cooking as much was a trade-off for working full time and starting a business), and that is something I want to tackle this year hence the B+.
I recently realized that I can no longer tell people I have been living in Los Angeles for "about 6 months." For some reason 6 months made me feel like I was still new here, fresh off the plane. But it has been 9 months, and pretty soon it will be a year! It's crazy to me how at home I feel here but also how new it all still seems. I still remember my commute to and from my lovely little apartment, the long waits for an elevator, and the casual conversations with our doormen like ti was yesterday.
Probably needless to say (because if you've followed along for a while you know how neurotic I can be) but I panicked a little about our new home still having so many unfinished projects. This past weekend I decided to start honing in on them which led me down memory lane (aka my camera roll) looking for inspiration. Thats when I decided to put my numerous photos of our old place to use.
Our apartment was a ~525 square foot studio on the 14th floor of a high rise in Battery Park City. Despite having only one window in the entire apartment it was very light, and despite being a studio we had little issue with storage space. But that could have been a product of both my partner being pretty minimalist and strategic with our belongings.
#Our14G on instagram
I loved our bed "room" and never had an issue with not having a wall or door, even when we had guests for extended stays. I think I just appreciated how minimal it forced us to keep the space, and how open and airy it felt. We had a high bed frame (where suitcases could fit beneath) and a king sized mattress that probably wouldn't fit inside most 1 bedrooms in NYC. We each had matching side tables and side table lamps and a long dresser facing the bed. The dresser was actually 2 ikea pieces we each had before moving in together (thats why his is more yellow-ish than mine!), but we didn't really care and I kind of like the sentimentality of the two coming together in our first home together. Lastly, at some point we added a small armchair and runner to this area to warm it up and give us an extra seat to gave out onto the river from.
Undoubtedly the best part of this apartment was the view onto the Hudson. It's what sold us on this space and it created our refuge from the business of the city.
Our mostly white minimalist spot didn't need much more decoration than it's single large window. Just look at how much the view would change from day to day and day to night.
Our living space was where we worked, relaxed and entertained (yes we entertained!). Along on side of the room was out couch and oversized ottoman, separated from the bedroom by a low bookshelf and plants. On the opposite wall were our desks and desktop computers that also served as netflix players.
Above is a similar floor plan to ours, the kitchen and closets are slightly different, but you get the gist. Adjacent to our entry way and kitchen we kept a small cafe table that was rarely used for eating and more for serving and collecting mail. We mainly ate at the bar or (admittedly) on the couch. I also included a gratutious bathroom pic, I think I took this when we first toured the apartment which is why the sole decorative item which I was obsessed with is missing, a mudcloth print shower curtain from Target.
And with that this walk down memory lane comes to an end. So many sweet memories from this home, now off to continue nesting in our new one!
I found this draft post, tagged with photos uploaded and the works scheduled for March 1st... 2017! What is even worse is that these photos were from my trip to Venice in 2013!!! So here they are 5 years later. and although they are not the best quality (yay for improving photography skills) let's just say this post is for closure.
My partner, his brother and I stayed in this cozy and eclectic apartment (Ai, Porto - Family & Friends) on the top floor of a typical residence near the University of Porto. Although the climb to the top is as grueling as the steepest of Porto's streets, the balcony and view from above was worth it.
Our hosts obviously took a lot of time decorating, and I particularly appreciated the lush plants everywhere, gifts of port and chocolate, and the design magazines throughout the apartment. The only possible downside to this spot is that there is no kitchen, but considering how much amazing food Porto had to offer this was not a problem for us at all.
All in all this was an place to write home about and made our time exploring Porto that much more memorable.
I don't think I have shared why I left New York City last year and moved to LA. And no one other than close friends has really asked... It is easy to say the weather and to be closer to the beach, but those things don't get to the heart of why.Read More