Wednesday, October 26, 2011


this dandelion installation may be one of the loveliest things i've seen in a long, long time. it's beautiful, isn't it?


Friday, October 21, 2011

what are you doing this weekend?

happy friday, friends! how were your weeks?

mine was busy. after a fantastic monday off, i jumped right into an events-filled work week that's going to continue straight through tomorrow night. not that i'm complaining; everything i've been to has been fun, and tomorrow night's soiree -- which is cocktails, dinner and an auction -- will, i'm sure, be no exception. (plus, it'll give me a chance to wear my favorite hot-pink shoes. awesome.)

and aside from busy, things are good right now. in fact, i feel so content that i'm holding my breath a little as i type that, afraid that putting the words out there is going to jinx everything. (a silly but real fear, isn't it? say you've felt it before, too.) that's not to say that everything's perfect -- it's not. just that i'm at a point in my life where i feel safe and and balanced and happy with the way a lot of things are going.

and of course, the absolutely gorgeous fall weather we've been having this week contributes to that, too. there've been moments when a breeze has blown in through the open lanai or i've stepped outside my office and the air has felt so amazing that my heart swells and i feel so much i can't even describe it. sarasota is always beautiful, but especially so at this time of year, and that beauty -- coupled with the good feelings already swirling around inside of me -- makes for a very full heart.

so this weekend, before and after my event, i'm going to try to take advantage of the weather in every way i can. i'm also going to try to read a little, spend time with friends, clean the house, plan next week's meals and get organized for a trip out of town the following week. and i'm looking forward to all of it.

how about you? what are your plans? let me know, and i'll see you back here on monday!

the photo above is from the dairy queen pumpkin pie blizzard ice cream date i had with my friend steph last night -- so fun catching up over pumpkiny goodness.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

retro soul.


i've enjoyed mayer hawthorne's music for quite some time now -- i think i first discovered him via one of itunes' free downloads, but i quickly found out his other songs were worth listening to, as well. and i've been playing his latest album, how do you do, pretty much nonstop since getting my hands on it last weekend. so here's a little musical snack for you on this thursday afternoon: hawthorne performing "the walk," off the new album, on conan this past week.

who have you been listening to lately?

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

loving: long winter farm's perfume oils.

recently,  after realizing that my dresser had become a graveyard for almost-empty perfume bottles, i ordered a couple of perfume oils from long winter farm. because i'm a sucker for anything peony, i chose that scent immediately; i also decided to order the honeysuckle scent because it's one of favorites and never fails to remind me of the best of florida (just like orange blossoms).

the perfume arrived yesterday, and i am happy to report that both scents more than live up to my expectations. the peony is sweet and heady and very true to the scent of the flower itself; the honeysuckle is a bit milder but equally similar in scent to its flower.  i have a feeling the honeysuckle will quickly become my everyday scent; i'll save the peony for those occasional nights out on the town.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

feeling rosy.

i had the best long weekend ever: it included time spent with family and people i care about in some really lovely places. the photo above is the sunset over castillo de san marcos in st. augustine last saturday night; the sky turned this amazing shade of pink that made everything look rosy and beautiful. i keep looking at it and thinking of memories of the weekend and smiling.

more to come soon, friends, including a great etsy purchase and a little giveaway (!), but until then: have wonderful tuesdays. i hope the world looks rosy for you, too.

photo by me

Friday, October 14, 2011

what are you doing this weekend?

happy friday, everyone.

how were your weeks? mine was extremely busy, and while there were a couple of low points, the high points more than made up for them: i'm soon to be the owner of my very first kindle* because i was employee of the month three times (my bosses are seriously awesome women); i attended the opening night party for the ringling international arts festival, met tons of super talented artists and performers and was arm's length away from mikhail baryshnikov(!) for quite a bit of the evening; and someone delightful mailed me some crazy-hard-to-find missoni for target notebooks that he hunted down for me after i told him much i loved my chevron-stripe clipboard.

i'm heading north this weekend -- first to my parents' house in orlando, then to one of my favorite florida cities, st. augustine, then back to my parents' until monday night -- and i know there's probably going to be a mix of emotion; i haven't been there since my grandmother's funeral two weeks ago and i know my mom is still feeling pretty sad. but she and i have plans to go to the farmer's market, see a movie and find our favorite cupcake truck, and it will be just nice to just hang out with her and my dad. i'm looking forward to it.

until next week, tell me: how were your weeks? and what are your plans for the weekend?

*i have said, frequently, that i'll embrace the printed page until it's literally ripped out of my hands, and that's true: i'll always prefer buy a book in print before i download it. but i'm so excited for my kindle because i really think it will be much easier to tote around than a huge stack of books. do you have a kindle/ipad? what is it like reading on it?

photo of fireworks exploding over the statue of david in the ringling museum courtyard on ringling international arts festival opening night by rebecca baxter for sarasota magazine.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

pie in the sky.

there are many things i love in life, but included in my top 10 -- and probably my top five -- would be a good dessert served in an adorable space alongside a perfect caffeinated beverage. so when i read this new york times article about melissa and emily elsen, two sisters who started a pie shop in brooklyn (and discovered that the article was beautifully photographed by todd selby), i was immediately intrigued. called four & twenty blackbirds, after the line in the childrens' nursery rhyme, the quaint little shop serves coffee and more than 50(!) pies per day -- and they're all handmade, from scratch.

i've always said that if i wasn't an editor and didn't love my job, i'd want to be a baker and own my own pastry shop (preferably with a side of bookstore). reading stories like the elsens' completely reinforces that idea, and in fact, when i'm at my parents' house this weekend, it's further motivation for me to hit up my favorite bakeries. just, you know, for future inspiration.

photos by todd selby, via the new york times

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

in repair.

friends, i have to admit: i am still working on trying to get it together. posting may be light this week, as i'm looking at a super-busy work week and then a long weekend out of town, but i'll try to drop in as much as possible, even if it's just to share a favorite photograph -- like this one, by olivia.

hope you all are having lovely tuesdays so far.

Friday, October 7, 2011

what are you doing this weekend?

i posted a comment the other day on anna's blog in response to her post about steve jobs' death, and i feel like this part of it -- the last paragraph -- sums up a lot of my feelings right now (it's also a bit of a reiteration of what i said earlier this week):

"my grandmother passed away last week at the age of 95. we were very close; she was an amazing woman: an educator and an advocate of social justice, but also someone who rode her bicycle well into her 80s and enjoyed bird-watching from her back porch. she lived a full, happy life, and she made others’ lives richer and more beautiful just by being here. when i found out she died, it felt like the wind had been knocked out of me. 
i felt the same way when i read the news about steve jobs (while browsing the internet on my macbook, appropriately). i never knew him — i was more acquainted with the idea of him, as most of us were — but i use his products all day, every day. and i feel like he gave the world the same experience my grandmother gave me. he made it better, more beautiful. richer. i love that the dedication on apple’s website says that “steve leaves behind a company that only he could have built, and his spirit will forever be the foundation of apple.” it seems so apt. 
it’s hard, personally, to lose two people who were so important to me, albeit in such different ways, in the course of 10 days. i feel like there’s a lot of grieving still to be done. but i feel like both my grandmother and steve jobs would want me — and us all — to move forward, to be better as a result of this experience. so that’s what i’m taking away from it all: move forward, and be better."

the weekend is going to be a quiet one; i really need to kind of get it together after living rather randomly for the past week and a half. my house is a mess, i need to do laundry and dishes, and i'd like to make some meals that will get me through next week (i'm thinking a big pot of hearty soup sounds really great). i'm also planning on going to the farmer's market and maybe doing some furniture rearranging in my house (my darling felines have clawed apart one of my favorite chairs and it either needs to be moved or replaced). there will be time with friends and time alone, and i'm looking forward to all of it.

how about you? what are your plans or the next few days? whatever they are, i hope they are lovely and autumnal. thank you from the bottom of my heart for all your wonderful comments this week, too -- they mean a lot (they always do).

see you back here on monday.

photo by *cinnamon. its title is "the swerve and the static"; isn't that pretty?

someone like you.

like most of the world, i was smitten with adele's 21 when it came out earlier this year -- i loved every song on the album, but "someone like you" stuck with me, as it did for many, many others. i've heard a lot of covers of songs off 21 and haven't been crazy about any of them, but this one -- by emily luther and charlie puth -- is really, really beautiful and i've been listening to it on repeat all week. i hope you enjoy it, too.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

"stay hungry. stay foolish."

my family has always been a family of mac users; we've had apple computers in our house since the mid-80s, back when it wasn't nearly as cool to have them as it is now, which is also probably why i always equate "apple" with "home." my first computer that was truly my own, the one i took with me to college, was my aunt's hand-me-down apple laptop; i then progressed to a cobalt-blue imac, then a snow-white ibook, and finally -- after a brief interlude with a dell -- i'm back to a macbook. we all use other apple products, too, as does almost everyone i know. to say that steve jobs' death yesterday is a loss for us, for our generation, for the world as a whole, is an understatement. he is one of those people who truly changed the world. he was a genius.

my name is megan, and i will always be a mac.

video: from jobs' 2005 commencement speech at stanford university. it's worth watching all the way through, i promise.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

baked! pumpkin-cream cheese danish.

i love when my real-life friends start blogs. my friend jennifer just started one that i read all the time, and my friend stephanie has been blogging since january -- the product of a new year's resolution that's gotten better and better with age. jennifer's blog, remember the pancakes, is a chronicle of her life as a wife and mom; steph's blog, over vanilla skies, is a virtual inspiration board of pretty photographs, thought-provoking quotes and mouthwatering recipes.

steph is a true foodie, one who actually cooks often and doesn't, like me, subscribe to what i like to call the "special k dinner." in my home, the special k dinner (cereal and whatever beverage i have on hand) happens at least twice a week; meanwhile, in steph's, she and her husband whip up things like coq au vin  and french onion soup -- from scratch! -- all the time. honestly, if steph wasn't such a wonderful friend and human being in general, i'd feel a little intimidated. instead, reading her food posts makes me feel inspired.

that's how i felt when i saw her recipe for pumpkin-cream cheese scones. when i feel any sort of emotion, i like to bake -- and i had company this weekend, company who happens to love pumpkin as much as i do, so i thought, why not?

let me tell you, this recipe is a keeper. steph's posted it in detail, complete with photos, over on her blog, so i'll direct you there. but if you like pumpkin -- and, you know, flaky, buttery pastry -- i really encourage you to make them. they're delicious. perfect with a cup of chai tea on a fall morning.

photo, my own; see a step-by-step photo tutorial on over vanilla skies.

Monday, October 3, 2011

thoughts on last week + committing to...

what a crazy week and a half it's been. i almost feel like the past seven days weren't real; i know i lived them, but i don't think i've begun to process them yet. and the strangest thing is that i don't feel overwhelmingly, heart-breakingly sad. i just feel different. maybe a little empty.

death is never easy, but my grandmother's, at least, was peaceful. she passed away at 95, in the early morning hours, in her sleep. she lived a full, rich life and she knew her family loved her.

and yet.

i can't imagine not walking the block and a half from my parents' house to my grandmother's. i can't imagine not finding her sweeping leaves in the driveway, can't imagine not seeing her perched in her chair at the kitchen table or sitting by her big bay window watching the action -- or lack thereof -- on the street where she lived for more than 40 years. i can't imagine her not asking me "how's school?", the words clanging together like metal wind chimes, even though i graduated from college six years ago. i especially can't imagine the holidays without her. i feel like, in the past week, my heart has turned a bit in my chest, causing the way i see things (because i really do feel i view the world through my heart much more than i do my head, for better or worse) to shift.

but i feel like, as unimaginable as it is not to have her here, i need to thank her for that shift, because i certainly think it's going to help me grow. i suddenly have this urge to do things that are completely new or unfamiliar, whether it's listen to a band i've never heard or redecorate my apartment or volunteer with a nonprofit or highlight my hair. i am very well aware that this is all part of the grieving process, but i am interested to see how these urges sustain themselves. i've said from the very beginning that 2011 feels like it's going to be a year that's defined by its thrust, by its momentum. i don't think that precludes sadness and loss; i just think it means that forward movement will always overtake them.

i'm going to try to keep that thought with me as i untangle the sadness and adjust to life without someone very special in it. and for this week? my one commitment is right up at the top of this post, and i think it's a pretty good one.

image via