gift guide #1 // gold foil

We all have that one friend who is just a little extra. Let them shine as brightly and glittery  as they want--their light is why you keep them around, after all! 

just my type: handmade design

I've always been in the "I'd rather it look a little handmade than perfect" camp. But a little messy doesn't mean it can't still be beautiful! It's messy because it has heart. I want to see the stitches that hold together a design. Sterile design has its place, but it's not my go-to. As long as the message is clear, give me all of the handwritten type, quaint inconsistencies, cut-outs, and brushstrokes.

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perfect places

We have officially been in New York for a month and I'm already trying my best to carve out my "places." I had a lot of places in Portland, and the city got smaller each time I found a new one. Of course New York City is much larger than Portland, but in some ways, it feels smaller, since I can walk everywhere and don't have to cross bridges or residential areas to get to different neighborhoods. West Village, East Village, Soho, Chelsea--it's all within walking distance, and so much to see, do, and eat. Emphasis on the eat part.

A few routines have been put in place since we've arrived and gotten settled in.

Last Thursday Pierre and I walked with Ted to get coffee at Think (our go-to) and to bring him to class. After he went inside, I finished my coffee on a bench in the courtyard and watched everyone trickle into the building. It was nice to see the smiles Pierre brought to their faces! Afterwards, I brought Pierre to the dog park across the street at Washington Square Park, where Pierre was a lil' wallflower of a pup. He had a few spurts of energy, but mostly kept close to momma. I vowed to make this dog mom/son date at least a weekly occurrence, since Ted has this early class Tuesdays and Thursdays and I don't have to be at work until 11.

Oh yeah! I have a job now! I work at a very cute dog boutique in the East Village that I get to walk to from home. It's a pretty sweet deal. I'm already planning Pierre's Fall wardrobe.

Another Tuesday/Thursday routine: the GYM! I know, it's hard to believe, but I'm really trying. The fact that the gym is literally nextdoor is very helpful. And by trying I mean totally bribing myself. I literally give myself a sticker for every five minutes I work out so that I can "earn" money to go shopping for new clothes. I have to treat myself like a toddler to get myself to do things I hate... It's a struggle. But hey--I AM getting better at doing the dishes. So ya know...I'm getting there.

Also: Thirsty Plant Thursdays. We have plants! They are all still alive (so far).

Another thing that needs to become routine: getting cocktails at this place.

nyc: first impressions

We out here! New York City is now our home, somehow. It seems a bit hasty, committing myself to a city as high-maintenance as the Big Apple after one whirlwind of a five-day trip. It kind of feels like marrying someone I had a fun, but stressful date with two years ago. Against all odds, I think it's going to work out.

We really hit the jackpot when it comes to neighborhoods. We are smack in the middle of the Village, which is home to dozens of restaurants, coffee shops, bars, and shops. It's enough to keep us busy for the next three years! Washington Park is only a couple of blocks away, paving the perfect morning walk for me and Pierre. I'm absolutely smitten.
I've ventured out on my own a few times now, and have survived! It feels very impressive, although I know that it's not that big a deal to the countless strangers and pups I've passed. It's been sunny and humid most days (although right now it's raining), so I've been hiding behind my sunglasses, quietly ogling at every new part of my daily life: the beautiful buildings, the expensive menus outside restaurants, the chic outfits of passerby, the heaps of garbage on the side of the street, the adorable dogs...

A few NYC firsts:

Pierre's first New York pup pee (outside Think Coffee, where I bought my first NYC nitro cold brew because you can take a girl outta Portland...).

Our first family walk through Washington Square Park, where I acquired major heart eyes for our new neighborhood.

My inaugural black and white cookie from Sweets by Chloe, where I realized vegan sweets can be just as tasty as non-vegan sweets.

My first rat spotting and my first public urination spotting. Enough said.

Here's to many more firsts! XOXO Gossip Girl