may love prevail.

Coffee cup

I spent most of last week in San Francisco - one of my most favorite cities. I ate delicious food. I drank fabulous coffee (the Gibraltar is my new favorite thing). I walked soooo much (20K steps on Thursday!). I met with clients who are also friends. I spent time with a friend who I've known since high school. It was a good trip

I returned home on Friday evening, and Dan informed me that he needs a break from our relationship. 

It was that sudden, and that unexpected. And yet...thanks to a super high intuition radar...I was not surprised. He was strangely absent from connection during my trip. Something is brewing, I thought.

I cried. I asked all of the questions - why? how could you? when did you stop loving me? I called/texted his Mom (sorry, Iris). I called/texted my besties, my tribe. I cried some more. I talked with my Aunt Betty. I talked with more friends. I drank wine. I watched Grey's Anatomy. And....I cried

When Dan and I first started dating, I told him that I wanted to "live and love in the light." It's a Scandal reference, and it was important to me. I wanted to be public about this relationship. I wanted to share it with so many of the people who have been there for my journey. I made the decision, early on, that I would celebrate this relationship publicly, and deal with the fall-out if I needed to. 

On Saturday, when the reality set in, I realized that I needed to deal with the fall-out. It's a little ridiculous. He shut off my access to his Google Calendar. I changed my FB relationship setting to "it's complicated" & deleted my profile pic. He changed his setting to single. That stung. I followed suit, and added a FB status "announcement." Love in the age of social media takes a lot of maintenance. 

Loving in public means leaving in public. 

I am not going to tell you his story, b/c it is not mine to tell. I am going to tell you my story. 

Seven & a half months ago, I fell for a boy with a fresh tattoo who was wearing a blue gingham shirt. The moment that I laid eyes on him, I thought "oh boy, I'm in trouble."  Love at first sight. I fell, hard. We dated. We met each other's exes. We met each other's kids. We traveled. I met his family. We shared hopes & dreams, calendars & commitments. We each stashed a toothbrush at the other's house. 

And all along, people said "You look sooo happy!" and "You're happier than I've ever seen you." 

They weren't wrong. Dan and I had soooo much fun. We laughed. We celebrated life. We loved. And.....we knew that life isn't easy, and love isn't perfect. Please know this:  Dan is an amazing guy. He has his issues, his baggage (don't we all?)...and he needs space to deal with that. I am still his #biggestfan. So. I had a choice. I could choose to fight that. To rage. Or I could surrender. I could honor the request for space, and do my best to support him on a journey that I know all too well. 

I don't think that my choice will surprise you. And so, this is what I want you to know...

We did not "break up"...b/c we are not broken. Yes, I am heartbroken...but he also broke my heart open in a way that it hadn't been in years. He showed me what it's like to be so very happy. I love every single one of you who has told me "it's his loss!"....and you're right, it is. But it's also mine. We are both #brilliantsexy - a hashtag that we agreed upon early in our relationship that means that we are equally awesome. Dan has asked for what he needs, and I have chosen to say 'yes' with grace & kindness (most of the time). In meditation this morning, I asked for love & light to surround him. I will continue to ask for that

I randomly chose a passage from A Year of Miracles as I sat, and of course, it was perfect...

Creation itself is a thing of love, and where there is love there are always miracles. Anything is possible where there are no impediments to love. No matter what illusions of the world may rage, I believe in the possibility of infinite possibility. Miracles are built into the nature of the universe, and I am open to receive them. May love prevail in myself & others. 

So much gratitude for everyone who has reached out with loving thoughts (and a heaping dose of gratitude to those who went so far as to ask "Okay, so who do I need to kill?"...love you, DV!) Please do me a favor and extend those loving thoughts to Dan, as well. #lovewins

You're the best.

Update - I re-read this in the light of day, and fear that it may seem that I'm completely relaxed and zen about the whole thing. Not true. I dropped some things off at Dan's business yesterday (he wasn't there) and cried on the way home. I said not-very-zen things in text messages like "remember, you're the one who hates me, not vice versa" (note: he doesn't). I miss him. We are trying to stay friends, and I am focusing on that. 


2014 Project Life : weeks 40-42

2014transition

I will finish this project. I will finish this project. I will finish this project. I will....

2014week40

Week 40. Austin turned 18 (what??). I didn't include any journaling for these weeks, which feels okay right now. 

2014week41

Week 41. Funny how calm the color scheme ended up in this one. (This is how we roll is a Kelly Purkey digital stamp that I modified a bit.)

2014week42

Week 42. These weeks were filled with stories. Let's be honest...it's unlikely that I'll go back and add journaling, but it's possible.

My goal in the next few days is simply finish this album. It doesn't have to be pretty. It definitely won't be perfect. But...it will be done. And for a year where I fought Project Life? That feels like victory. 


celebrating the Solstice...

It's the official start of winter - the shortest day & the longest night - but from this day forward, we're headed toward the light. We celebrated with an impromptu (homemade) pizza dinner, a bottle of wine, and logs in the fireplace. After dinner, we both wrote down a list of things/emotions/reactions that we're releasing...and then tossed the papers into the fire. Although not exactly ceremonial, it felt good to honor the day with a ritual. We then settled onto the couch to get a little work done...honoring the intentions that we've both made to get shit done.

I'm spending the next two days in NYC, and then coming home for an extra-long holiday weekend. I'll carve out time to finish up #reverb14, December Daily, and Project Life. So ready for a creative clean slate. 

Happy Solstice, friends! 


glad tidings. comfort. joy.

It seems that after 20 years in New England, I've become conditioned to think of December as cold & snowy...so I'm a bit disoriented (happily so) to be in Florida during the holiday season. It has been the perfect way to hit pause on busy-ness and chaos. Great company, delicious food, sunshine, and laughter...that's what comfort & joy look like right now


thanksgiving in just a few frames.

I took my "big" camera out, with the intention of capturing the holiday in perfect exposure. The reality is that I was busy cooking...and talking...and directing the opening of another bottle of wine. So my grand plans resulted in less than a half-dozen photographs. 

Pies

We had pies, of course...and cheesecake bars, the most perfect artisan bread (if I do say so myself), a variety of a vegetarian-friendly sides, and a turkey for the meat-eaters. No one left the table hungry!

Sides

I had an able sous-chef who was only slightly distracted with a book...

Dan Holtz

and a sweet boy who reminded everyone that holidays are good for resting.

Bruiser

 I hope that everyone had a lovely day! 


road trip : massachusetts

Weekend road trips are for...lots of coffee, too many tolls, listening to (his) great music, and talking about life. 

Cardankat

Weekend road trips are for marathon IKEA shopping, wandering around Paper Source, late night PF Chang's, and well-deserved beers. 

Ikeadankat_bw

Weekend road trips are for soaking up the wisdom of Gabby Bernstein, voicing dreams, and making plans. 

Gabbydankat


2014 Project Life : catch up (& a missing week!)

I spent some time speed-Project-Life-ing on Sunday night - determined to finish off a few weeks that I'd started and planning to tackle the month of Sept in one fell swoop. For me, catch up looks like this: my "faves" channel playing on Spotify, a bold glass of red within arm's reach, grabbing photos from iPhoto without over-analyzing, and relying on blog & social media posts to fill in details that I may have forgotten. The result? Super simple weeks with minimal info...and that's okay

Week 29 PL

Week 29 - I included my How Are You? blog post b/c it really told the story that I wanted to tell for this week. 

Week 30 PL

Week 30. Note the lack of journaling. Should I add more? Maybe. Or...maybe these pictures are enough. That's the constant questioning, right?

Week 31 PL

Week 31. I do fully intend to add journaling to the sky on the photo in the lower left. This week was all about our visit to RISD. There's an insert that isn't shown - a simple, graphic greeting card from the school. 

Week 32 PL

Week 32. Don't love the rather dull color scheme - but that's what I had. That sunflower, though.

Week 34 PL

Week 33. I know, I know...it says week 34. Let's blame that on the bold glass? I'll fix it. Nobody panic. 

Week 34 is missing! It's okay - I'll go back & adjust

Week 35 PL

Week 35. One side + a 4x6 insert. Again - very little journaling. Perhaps the summer of 14 was just about the visual? This week wraps up August. I was feeling pretty weary of the "catch up" work, so I decided to tackle Sept in one fell swoop. Photo collage + hashtags FTW!

Sept PL

Hashtags - #sundays #nyc #girlswithgrins2014 #truth #fiction #manifestthatshit #miseryloves #hothipster. 

Keeping my eye on the finish line for this project. I'll catch up on October soon (yep, that guy makes an appearance again!), and will embrace what Nov & Dec bring. Even though Project Life hasn't come easy to me this year, I'm still super glad that I'm doing it.

I'd love to see more PL inspiration to give me some energy for the rest of the year. Please share your links in the comments! 


2014 Project Life : weeks 27 & 28

PL vol 2 cover

Volume 2 begins! I decided to just do a full image for the opening page. This is an awesome download from The 36th Avenue and it just so happens to (almost) match my bike! (font: Angelina)

PL Week 27

Week 27. My craving for a full page photo = satisfied. I really never tire of the waterfront. (fonts: CK Ali's Hand, Nexa Light)

PL Week 28

Week 28. I'm thinking that I'll add a few journaling strips to the cookie packaging - this recipe from Shutterbean has been my go-to for desserts this summer. Oh, and that's Austin's "do we really have to take a selfie??" face. That kid. (font: nexa bold)


2014 Project Life : weeks 22-26

I rarely re-do cards/pages in Project Life, but I did replace the memorial card in Week 21. I just wanted it to feel a bit more special, so I used one of Ali Edward's digi stamps (from way back)....

Memorial red-do

And then I moved on to June. I was determined to "catch up" so that I didn't start resenting this project. I know that we talk alot about this project being easy & no-pressure, so I'll be clear in saying that I wanted to catch up for me. I like my weekend ritual of working on the previous week - and the weekday ritual of posting pages on the blog - so catching up was important to me. 

PL week 22

Week 22. The picture in the top left is from Hope. She frequently texts me, and sometimes includes pictures from her tree-planting camp in Northern Ontario. She often says "this is for your Project Life thingy." Ha! Hello digi-stamp is from Pixels & CoEven though I was working through a month at a time, I still took the time to add small elements - I'm always super simple, but little details still make me smile. 

PL Week 22 close

PL week 23

Week 23. A super full week b/c I was in San Francisco for work (& friends). 

PL week 23 selfie

I started to just include this selfie, but then decided to make it more about what I was feeling as I headed "home" to the west coast. The quote is from my Pinterest "truth" board. I reduced the opacity of the photo to about 60% to allow the words to stand out. 

PL week 23 second pg

More Week 23. I miss you, California. 

PL week 24

Week 24. Not a lot of words, and I'm going to be okay with that. Quick trip to NYC. Loving that b&w conversions help to doctor up indoor lighting fails. 

PL week 25

Week 25. Busy. Sunsets. Dark & Stormys. Popsicles.

PL week 26

Week 26. I knew that I wanted to use a 6x8 page to end the album. I originally intended to do a full page photo - but didn't have one that was "worthy." So I opted for a simple strip of colorful photos, grounded by my beloved kraft cardstock. 

2014 PL Volume 1 end page

And that wraps up Volume 1 of 2014. It feels good. I closed with a few highlights using one of Cathy Zielske's Weekly Wrap-Up templates. I'll be working on the cover page for Volume 2 this weekend. 

Thanks for stopping by!