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gofundme: Dixie Elbert

Hi friends, I need your help. My bestfriend’s mom, Dixie, who I like to call Mom2 is undergoing treatment for stage 4 lung and brain cancer. She is on round 3 of chemo and continues to beam sunshine and positivity. The radiation, chemo and associated costs are stacking up against their family when all they want to focus on is making her laugh and dancing to Bill Withers. They’ve set up a #gofundme to help them out and we would appreciate anything you can from $1 to saying a prayer. Thank you!  

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Hard boiled eggs and avocado 
Drinking: Water with a dash of this cucumber and lime syrup
Practicing: Patience
Mastering: Pottery. This week completes my first semester of pottery classes. I’m signing up for the summer class because it took me the entire spring semester to learn the basics and know what I was doing. Now it’s time to start making LOTS of pots to fill with cool plants. 
Learning: Spanish! I downloaded the free Duolingo app a couple weeks ago and have been trying to do at least 10 minutes a day. My husband family speaks spanish and I always feel left out when I can’t laugh along with the jokes. 
Trying: to be more active. Starting small with the 7 Minute Workout.
Playing: Last weekend I played Heads Up for hours after too many bottles of wine. We didn’t realize until the end that the app records video of the players trying to guess the word. They were very entertaining to watch the next day (don’t forget to hit save after each round).
Finishing: Agh. I would love to say finishing our apartment updates. My last project was patching holes and trying to smooth out some walls. After we had the professionals come in and do the big work, I thought I could tackle the smaller patches from watching them. Not so much.
Reading: Just started the Gold Finch but have also added these to my list: The Vacationers, The Secret Life of Violet Grant and The Interestings.
Remembering: My best friend is moving to Florida (where we grew up) so I was helping her pack yesterday. We found a box from high school of notes we had written each other. They were so entertaining and we were laughing for hours. There were lots of LOLs, “like” and boy problems. 
Wearing: I know they’re not the sexiest thing, but I’ve been wearing these overalls a lot. They’re so soft and comfortable. Sometimes I forget I’m wearing pants. 
Cooking: I cook with my money and help from Seamless. Occasionally I’ll get in the mood and turn to my food board but it’s usually something sweet.
Working: from my new office! I’ve been so busy that I haven’t had time to design it so everything just kinda got dropped in here. I’m trying not to rush when it comes to buying furniture and fun accessories (made that mistake before and it was not a good look). I’ll continue to pin what I want because that’s all I’ve had time for. 
Traveling: Starting to plan John’s 30th birthday. We’re going out to Portland!
Wanting: to go back to Bovina (upstate New York) and swim in our friend’s pond and drive along the country roads (as seen in the photo above).

Photo by: Katie Evans

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In no particular order…

I found myself with 9 freelance clients while still working my full time job. It got to the point where I was waking up early to work on client projects, then going into the office to do Gap work from 10-6 and then coming home to work on more freelance work until midnight. Weekends were spent at my desk or working at other friends and John was not happy about that. That schedule was on repeat for the last four months. There were two break downs filled with tears and frustrations, lots of fun work, long nights and longer days. It got to the point where I was way more excited about my own projects vs. my work at Gap so I quit my job to pursue my own work!

This past week was my first one back on the freelance wagon and it was so stressful. I said “YES!” to too many jobs. My dreams of leisurely mornings of going for a run and cooking breakfast were replaced with not showering and sitting at my desk for most of the time. Scheduling out clients and planning for future ones is something that I’m still trying to get the hang of. I made mistakes this week and have learned from them. Currently working on a new plan of attack. Any advice would be greatly appreciated. 

I’m turning my dressing room into my office. When I tell people this most say “You have a dressing room?” followed by “No, really! You have a room?”. I’ve found that most Brooklyn brownstones have these extra side rooms. Ours is 7’ x 20’ and it has a huge window. I’m sad to loose it as a walk-in closet but super excited to have a space to design, paint, craft and whatever else I want in. In the past my desk has been in the corner of the bedroom or living room. I’m looking forward to being about to shut a door for privacy and to not have to stare at my desk when I’m not working. I’ve been plotting and planning what my new space could look like. It’s currently painted with gray walls with some sad linoleum on the floor. There are dreams of painting everything white and starting fresh. Until I have time to actually put it all together I will just stare at my office pinterest board.

Finally. I don’t have much more to say about this but this past winter was really hard. I think everyone has been in the same boat. It definitely effect my mood and creativity. I can’t let that happen again. It was bad news bears. After I wrote this post about filling the apartment with plants to help lift my spirits, I booked a trip to Florida. That did help a little. Next year I will need to plan more of those. 

John and I got married in November 2012. We’ve had to keep all of our photos private because we were being featured in the holy grail of wedding magazines — Martha Stewart! It was so hard to not share with our friends and family but we didn’t want to spoil the feature. I’m so happy that it’s finally out in the real world. It was so satisfying to hold the magazine and flip through the (10) pages. More to come on that!

One of my favorites parts of going back to freelancing is the schedule flexibility. I have so many travel plans this year and I can’t wait to schedule more. I’d love to go out to LA and work with friends there, rent a pool house upstate and spend the week working by the pool. Dreams.

This spring I finally hired an accountant and an attorney. I also bought my first set of Pantone books. My very own set. I feel like such a big girl.

My friend Ben and I are taking a pottery class. It’s for 10 weeks and I’m so excited to spend time being creative off of the computer. Ben took the class a couple semesters ago and had so much fun with it. I convinced him to do it again with me. We’ve had two classes so far and I must say it is not as easy as it looks. And the next day my arms and back are so sore and I love it. 

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New York I love you, but you’re bringing me down

There are currently 50 more days until April 1. For me, that is the start of Spring and I can’t freakin’ wait. March is always a big trick. It’s still cold. I’ve been struggling lately with some winter blues and I’m ready to get out of this funk and into some sunshine. 

Every winter I always tell myself “next year you’re going on a warm vacation at the end of January or early February or both” and every year I forget to plan, work gets in the way, or I wait too long. That happened again this year and I swear it will not happen in 2015. Winter in the city is pretty gross and it’s bringing me down. There are those few magical moments when the snow is falling softly and but most of the time it’s harsh. Bone chilling cold, dirty snow, frozen sidewalks, runny noses, downed trains and bad attitudes. When I brought up my winter struggle to my mom she suggested turning all the lights on in my apartment. Thanks mom, but I have a better idea.


My solve for the moment is bring in some life to the apartment. Lots and lots of greens. This past weekend I had a shoot with my friend Luke for one of my freelance clients. It was such a good “pick me up” project. We were photographing beautiful flowers and lush greens all day. It felt like spring. When we were done I gave some to Luke and Jessica for their help and have placed the rest around my apartment. I just want to sit in my living room and look at them all day. I’m currently a very happy girl. 


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Snow Day

Last night we had some beautiful snow fall. This morning Penny and I went out early before any of it was plowed and dirty. She did not like it one bit. She cried like a baby and ran back inside. I snapped these from our apartment last night and this morning.