Friday, April 26, 2013

Happy Weekend

(love love the work of Tim Walker, British fashion photographer)

Hello friends, did you have a good week? Mine was alright, I'm just happy it's ending in sunshine.  I'm looking forward to a weekend at home with my plants and a stack of library books because I'm 80 years old and I don't care who knows.

In the meantime, here are a few things I'm loving this week:

+ Yesterday I bought a mini gold resin lion head for my bedroom wall, 100% serious. It was the best decision I've made all week.

+ In the news: the George W. Bush library was dedicated in Dallas, TX yesterday and 5 present and former presidents were all in attendance (not something that happens often!). The Washington Post has a gallery of images of the presidents hanging out together. In my humble opinion, it says something good about our country when its former leaders can come together in such a peaceful and friendly manner, despite vast political differences. I also thought President Obama's remarks were gracious and kind.

+ This recipe for rosemary flatbread crackers from Gourmet magazine was in our newspaper this week. I can't wait to try it!

+ Have you seen this human chair prank? Both hilarious and terrifying and I may never trust chairs in coffee houses again. (via Hello Giggles)

+ Speaking of things that are funny/scary, Jillian shared this photo with me of a dog wearing a horse mask identical to the one I wore on Halloween.  Obviously I'm getting a dog right this minute so I can recreate this moment.

+ "Wolf" by First Aid Kit - listen here

Have a good one my dears.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013


Today I'm inspired by the color yellow.

Yellow is the color of the room I slept in at a friend's house in Switzerland.  It's the color of the summer breeze that ruffles the little hairs at your temple.

Yellow is the sound of a little kid's belly laugh.

Yellow is the taste of the first bite of a croissant fresh from the oven at that boulangerie just down the street from your apartment in Paris.  Which is funny because yellow was also the color of the baker woman's hair.

Yellow is your fingers absentmindedly tapping out a tune on the steering wheel on a late afternoon drive.

Yellow is a cat nap in the sun.

Yellow is the grains of sand you find at the bottom of the suitcase you just pulled out of the closet, reminding you of the last time you were at the beach.

Yellow is the perfect balance of sweet and tart.

If yellow were an musical instrument, it would be an acoustic guitar.  Or a xylophone.

Yellow is found in spring, summer, and fall, but rarely in winter.

Yellow is the color of a Thursday afternoon.

Yellow is a big grin at an inside joke.

Yellow plays well with others but is good on its own too.

Yellow is honesty and confidence and optimism. It likes to be comfortable but isn't afraid of adventure.

Today, I feel yellow.

Images: lighthouse // two girls // wildflowers // living room // fire escape // striped hallway // beach umbrellas // taxis // balloons // billy buttons // vintage peacoat

Monday, April 22, 2013

A Beautiful Texas Evening and A Minor Feud

Back in February, I found some rolls of film in a drawer and took them to be developed.  Because I took a film photography class all throughout high school, these random rolls of film pop up more frequently than you'd think. Due to my lack of foresight, however, I never mark the canisters so it's usually a gamble as to whether or not there are any photos on them.

This time I totally lucked out.  I completely forgot that I took my Minolta with me when I went to Texas last year. One warm April evening, I brought it along on an after-dinner stroll with Jillian and Zippy, the rabbit.

I miss those gorgeous evening skies:

The field next to the apartment complex.  I'm sure this will all be developed into housing or shopping complexes before too long but I sure appreciated taking daily walks out there.

Bluebonnets and little yellow wildflowers, as far as the eye can see.

Zippy was not as enthused about being out in nature as we were, for two reasons: 1) she was not a huge fan of being on a leash and 2) she was also not on board with leaving the comfort of the towel Jilly carried her in. In this photo she was totally giving me her "did you want me to romp in the fields like a common bunny? lol no." face.

"Fine, I will at least sniff this flower if it means you will get the camera out of my face."

"Ok, I'm out of the towel and I tasted a blade of grass. Let's go, I have a huge stack of paperback books to chew on before bedtime."

Alas, we tried, but you can't reintroduce a rabbit raised in the lap of luxury to the wild and expect her to go for it. It took quite a few cilantro leaves and an hour of nervously chewing on the living room baseboards before she calmed down. The next day when Jillian went back to work, Zippy gave me total attitude all day, like she was blaming me for our little excursion. Then she chewed through my computer power cord out of spite. Ugh, drama.  I moved out a few weeks later.

Ok, I'm exaggerating. I did move out, but it wasn't because of Zippy.

Or was it...?

No, it wasn't. I can't lie to you guys, you have such trusting faces.
Zippy and I are totes fine now, we're both over it.  I didn't even make her pay for the power cord.  Now she has to share a house with a really excited dog named Charlie so I'm sure she's way too stressed to think about old grudges.

And that's called karma, Bunzilla.

Friday, April 19, 2013

Postcard Exchange

A couple of months ago (has it really been that long?), the fine folks over at 20 Something Bloggers arranged a random postcard exchange among its members. I signed up, eager to get to know my fellow bloggers (and add to my postcard collection). I was a little disappointed at the response, however. Out of the four people I sent postcards to, I only got two back.

Rather than stick a stamp on a picture of cornfields (i.e. the majority of postcards depicting my home state), I was inspired to create my own.  Staples Copy & Print center allows you to upload your own image to its site and they will print out professional-quality postcards for you.  You can pick them up at the nearest store location or have them mailed to you.  Using an image from the Hubble telescope (all of which are public domain, how cool is that?) and one of my favorite encouraging quotes, I created this image in Photoshop:

Within an hour I was picking up 20 glossy postcards from my local Staples. Then it got me thinking.  How fun would it be to exchange postcards with my readers?

If you're interested, use the 'Email Me' link in the sidebar to send me your address and I will send you a postcard.  No obligation, but I will send you mine in exchange if you want to return the favor. Later, I'll post a picture of all the postcards I receive.

If you are a Creative Challenge winner and interested in receiving a postcard, I already have your address so you can just leave a note in the comments below.

So what do you say, friends? Let's brighten up each other's mailboxes, shall we?

Friday, April 12, 2013

Guest Post: The Gnarly Whale

Hello friends, today's post is brought to you by a super cool husband and wife team who sell all-natural, eco-friendly bath and body products, called The Gnarly Whale. Just so you know, I'm not getting paid to promote them, but when they put out a call on their Facebook page for guest posting opportunities, I jumped at the chance. Who doesn't love to support small businesses that do are trying to do good in the world?

I'll let Ashley explain more. Read til the end for a little extra something!

I'm Ashley from The Gnarly Whale - an all vegan, eco-friendly minimal-ingredient bath and body shop. I am SO excited to share all of this with you as this business is what I do - day in and day out - and to be able to share something I'm so passionate about is truly a privilege for me.

The Gnarly Whale launched in October 2012 from a dream that I was unsure I would ever fulfill. I approached my husband about starting it as a hobby, needing something else to focus on while I was designing and consulting. By the end of the year, we both realized it was never meant to be a hobby. It was never meant to be a small side project. Instead, it was meant to change our lives and restructure our dreams. And that was exactly why I'm here today, sharing our story and even asking for your help after you get to know us.

About Us
We're a husband and wife team doing what we love to do and hoping that some day, doing what we love will be enough to financially support our entire family. Our dream is to someday relocate ourselves and our business to Florida to open up a shop oceanside. We know that this dream will become our reality as soon as we can afford the cost of relocation and the cost of doing business in Florida where there are much stricter guidelines for cosmetic type businesses. Until then, we're focusing on growing our brand awareness and our current product lines.

About Our Brand
All of our products are 100% vegan and cruelty free. We’re tree huggers ourselves so we made sure that all of the ingredients used in our products are completely vegan and have not been tested on animals. Final product testing was also done on humans. Most of our printed materials (business cards, postcards, etc) come from recycled paper. We also use reusable packaging when we mail out our orders whenever possible. Our hope is to leave the Earth a little better than when we found it and provide our customers with a way to do the same.

In the almost seven months we have been open, we already have plans to work with an international retailer to carry our products and will be featured in two celebrity gifting suites this year: The Primetime Emmy's and The Cannes Film Festival. Our current product line includes: hair detangler, beach waves, body and face scrub, body spray, shampoo, and lip balm. In the future, we have plans to include a child product line, a pet product line, soap, skin care, and various other hair and body products in the future.

And here is how you can help us make all of this a reality. We've asked Intuit to grant our small business wish and we're hoping we can get enough votes to win the money to expand our product line, purchase better equipment to speed up our manufacturing, and to put towards the cost of relocation. All you have to do is take a couple of seconds, click the link, and vote once a day. And if you really think our story is worth it, share it with you friends. With your readers. With your family. With your neighbors or co-workers. Shout it from the rooftops if you like us that much.

Anything you do to help is appreciated. No matter how big or small of gesture, we're grateful for you even taking the time to get to know us and our dream. And if you'd like to connect with us further, we'd love to hear from you! Follow us on Twitter. Like us on Facebook. Send us an email and say hello. Or even stop by our shop.

Thank you in advance for anything that you do!

- Ashley and Nathan

Awesome! I'm excited to try out their products, especially the Beach Waves spray. Just out of the kindness of their hearts, The Gnarly Whale is offering Hither & Yon readers a discount to use in their shop, how cool is that?

Use the code HITHER20 for 20% off your order!

For my international friends, they also ship to Canada and the UK.

Thanks for taking the time to check them out! Please vote to help grant their wish, it only takes a couple clicks! :)

Thursday, April 11, 2013


"I was Prince Edward Island born and Prince Edward Island bred and when I die I'll be Prince Edward Island dead..."
Amazing how just a few lines of a silly old song can bring back such memories. Have I ever told you about Prince Edward Island? 

Well, let me tell you. My maternal grandfather was born and raised on this beautiful little island, nestled above New Brunswick and Nova Scotia. He became an American citizen after he met and married my sweet Bostonian grandmother and has lived mostly in the States since then.  After their children grew up and moved away, my grandparents purchased a small plot of land in his childhood province and built a cottage just a mile from the sea in Point Prim.  They spent nearly every summer for almost twenty years in this cottage.  Though we usually lived quite far away, my family would take the occasional trip up there and spend a couple weeks with them.  One of my earliest memories is standing on the deck of some distant relative’s fishing boat, watching the men toss lobster crates overboard and then heft them up again later, full of dripping seaweed and squirming crustaceans. 

It was the beginning of my deep abiding love for the ocean and also the beginning of my complicated relationship with seafood.
But I digress.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

25 Awesome Things about My 25th Birthday

1) This party hat, which I wore unashamedly. I even posted this picture to Facebook, with the caption "wearing this all day and no one can stop me".

2) The subsequent photo my dad sent me of himself at the airport, with the exact same caption:

He is such a riot.

3) The fact that it was Saturday. Which is the best day of the week, obviously.

4) The constant stream of social media notifications. Say what you will about the "happy bday" message from people you barely talk to throughout the year, but I totally dig it. It's like walking down a digital receiving line in which people I know remember and acknowledge how awesome I am. And everyone who doesn't acknowledge on the Internet is dead to me, of course. 

5) Having all the right ingredients to make a lemon and sour cream cake (recipe here).

Friday, April 5, 2013

Happy Weekend

 (from my favorite scene from Breakfast at Tiffany'sSource

Oh weekend. I'm going to be honest, it's been a rough one this week. I've been struggling with my anxiety lately and it doesn't seem to be getting any easier to deal with.  It's too easy to get stuck inside your own head sometimes, you know? But enough negativity, it's my birthday tomorrow and I'm ready to enjoy myself!

In the meantime, here are some things I've found interesting this week:

+ Finger food fit for a queen - can someone organize a tea party so I can make these Black Raspberry-Brie Bites?

+ The Nocebo Effect. A very interesting article on how we (aka me) can actually worry ourselves sick. WebMD is the worst thing ever. (via The New Yorker)

+ A chromatic typewriter. This is one of the coolest things I have ever seen.

+ The Art Toast Project. Ok ok no THIS is the coolest thing I have ever seen.

+ I don't know why I'm suddenly so obsessed with ombre but this dip-dyed t-shirt looks fun and easy (via Wit & Whistle)

+ Ever since I saw The Perks of Being a Wallflower this song has been stuck in my head:
  Come On Eileen by Dexy's Midnight Runners on Grooveshark

Hope your weekend has sunshine and (hopefully) spring-like weather!
Take care of yourselves.

design + development by kiki and co. creative