My Favorite 2018 Memories

Happy New Year! I hope your year is off to a good start so far.

I’m still wrapping my head around the fact that it’s 2019. I was abroad for the turning of the new year and just got back last week, so I’m still in the process of reflecting on the last year and setting intentions for the new year.

Speaking of reflection, I enjoy looking back on the year and reminiscing. Here are some of my favorite moments from 2018:

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May: I visited Italy for the second time and had the most amazing trip. We were in Tuscany for about 5 days staying in a couple villas, and then spent 2 days in Rome. It was glorious and I hope to have another fantastic trip like this in 2019.

Philadelphia Wedding 2018

June: I traveled to Philly to attend the wedding of one dear college friends. A lot of my other good friends from college were there too, so it was a mini reunion. I’m so happy I got to see them get married and celebrate their special day.

Swedish Festival New York

June: I had no idea that there’s an annual Swedish Festival in New York. I went for the first time this year and spent the afternoon picnicking in Battery Park, eating herring, and watching many flower crowns go by.

Fourth of July Pie

July: As per tradition, I made a berry pie for the Fourth (this one was a combination of strawberries and raspberries). I spent the day at my friend’s house eating so much food, and then we were treated to a surprise firework show once it got dark.

Coney Island

July: I went to Coney Island for the first time and had so much fun! I can’t believe I’ve been living here for over 7 years and hadn’t been before.

Seinfeld Baseball Game

August: Did you know that every year there’s a Seinfeld-themed baseball game at Coney Island? I took my second trip to Coney Island to watch the game with a huge group of friends and we had the best day. And it was my first time seeing a baseball game in person.

Queens Wedding 2018

August: I went to other wedding, this time in Queens, to see these two cuties get married!

Governor's Island

August: On a summer Friday, I took the ferry across to Governor’s Island for the first time. It was pretty hot that day, but it wasn’t very crowded, so it was nice to explore the island. We also rode bikes around the island (and I couldn’t remember the last time I was on a bike). I had a blast! Lots of firsts this summer!

Rockaway Beach

August: I managed to squeeze in a beach trip right before the end of the summer. It was my first time at the Rockaways and catching the ferry over was a lovely way to get there. We made it to the beach relatively early and were able to claim a good spot for our group. The weather was pretty perfect too. All in all, it was a great beach day.

Photoville 2018

September: I rode a bike down to Dumbo. It was my first time riding on the streets of New York, which was rather nerve-wracking, but also fun! We also visited the Photoville exhibit in Brooklyn Bridge Park, which was pretty cool.

Brooklyn Block Party

September: My friends had a block party on their street in Brooklyn and invited us over. As you can see, the silly string battles got a bit out of control!

Woodstock, New York

October: We took a little road trip up to Woodstock. It was my first time in upstate NY and it was so nice to get out of the city for a bit!

Turning 29

November: I had so much fun celebrating my birthday this year! I kept it low-key and just did dinner with my bf and drinks at a cozy bar in Brooklyn. It was simple and I got to spend time with my favorite people, which is exactly what I wanted.

Patrizia's

December: I celebrated Friendmas with some friends, which involved bowling at Gutter and dinner at Patrizia’s. Such a fun day!

Funfetti Birthday Cake

December: We celebrated my bf’s birthday. I made him the funfetti cake above and I was pretty proud of how it turned out!

Tell me: What are some of your favorite memories from 2018?

Film Photo Diary

brooklyn bridge park yellow flowers

I bought my first film camera a few months ago. I’d been thinking about trying out film for a while, and I spent several weeks researching what camera would be best for a film newbie. I ended up buying the Canon AE-1 Program from a very nice guy on Craigslist. The camera was in excellent condition, and he even threw in a few rolls of film and a teleconverter too.

I was surprised by the weight of it when I held it for the first time. I was expecting something lighter, but it’s actually really solid and sturdy, which is nice. I can see how these cameras that were manufactured in the 70s and 80s have lasted so long. I love the design of it too. It’s a beautiful camera.

twin star orchards apple picking brooklyn block party

The great/scary thing about film is that you just have to shoot and hope for the best. No taking dozens of photos of the same shot, because film is not cheap! It definitely made me more precious and more considerate of each shot.

It took me a couple months to get through my first roll of film and I was so excited to develop them. I really thought there was a good chance that they’d all turn out to be horrible. In reality, there were a few duds, but most of them turned out much better than I thought.

The color and quality of the photos is just so lovely and shooting on film is a nice change of pace from my DSLR. When I had the film developed, I also got some prints and man oh man, professional prints are so much better quality than Walgreens/CVS prints.

brooklyn book festival 2018

clinton hill

For my birthday last month, I received another film camera, a Nikon point-and-shoot. This camera is quite different from my Canon film one. It’s much more compact and more automated. It’s so portable, which is really convenient, and it’s been fun trying out a different camera. I just finished my first roll in the Nikon, so hopefully I’ll get those developed soon and see how those photos compare to the ones taken on my Canon.

I’m starting to develop a little camera collection, which makes me really happy. Now let’s end of a shot of a delicious pizza, shall we?

speedy romeo's pizza

 

Currently 06.

Death_to_stock_photography_bonus_floral_6

When you’ve been gone for so long, it can be difficult to come back. But I figured, let’s just dive right back in!

Well, it seems like I just can’t quit this blog yet. Every time I think I’m ready to let go, something just holds me back. I’ve been thinking a lot lately about how I missed writing and having this creative outlet.

So, I’ve written a new post for the first time since January. I can’t promise that I’ll stick to any sort of posting schedule, but I do have a few ideas circulating for new posts. For example, I enjoy writing down my thoughts about the books I’ve read and having those reviews to look back at. I’m working on writing reviews for all the books I read since my last books post, and plan to share those on the blog in the coming weeks (check back on Friday for the first one!).

Listening: Ever since I heard it on Insecure, I’ve been listening to it nonstop: “Make it Out Alive” by Nao (feat. SiR).

Watching: I just binge watched all of Sharp Objects this weekend and holy cow. It was so good. All of the acting in that series is superb, but Amy Adams just really blew me away. The raw emotions she portrays in her character, Camille, are simply heartbreaking. And that final episode had me shook. I read the book several years ago, so in theory I knew how it was going to end. But I didn’t remember all of the plot, so the ending totally caught me off guard. That was really excellent television (beautifully shot and edited), and it’s well worth a watch.

Reading: Social Creature by Tara Isabella Burton. It’s about a woman named Louise, who lives in NYC. She meets a beguiling young woman named Lavinia, who invites Louise into her rich and glamorous world. Louise and Lavinia’s friendship is fast and intense, and they may not both make it out alive… I’m enjoying this so far. I understand the kind of person that Louise is, so I’m really curious to know what happens to her.

Eating: I’ve been working on changing my eating habits and trying to eat healthier. I tried the keto diet for a couple weeks, and I’m working on a whole post about that because it was quite the interesting experience for me. Do you guys have a resource you use for easy, healthy recipes?

I’d love to hear about any life updates that you feel like sharing in the comments below. Also, does anyone have any upcoming trips planned? I’ve got a couple things cooking on the backburner, but still need to finalize some plans.  I definitely have the itch to take another trip or two soon!

(image via Death to Stock Photo)

Capsule 01.

black lives matter, resist, not my president

image via Walid BERRAZEG @bazingraphy

The morning after the election, when I saw the results confirming that he’d won, I was in shock. I called my dad in tears that morning because, when I don’t know what to do, I turn to my parents. I felt ill, drained, and afraid.

I felt the same way on Tuesday night when I came home from work and read about Trump’s press conference. I read about Trump doubling down on his statement about there being “many sides” to the violent white supremacist rallies that took place in Charlottesville over the weekend. I shouldn’t be surprised at this point, right, because we knew that Trump was racist. Yet, a small part of me still is. Maybe I’m more of an optimist than I thought. Or maybe it’s because he’s not even trying to hide it at this point, to deny that these horrible beliefs are his beliefs.

It’s hard not to lose all hope in these moments. If Trump’s remarks on Tuesday made you feel small, like you didn’t matter at all, you’re not the only one. But then I remembered what my dad told me on November 9th: “We have to keep going.”

I’m going to hold on to the good things. Actually, I’m going to seek out the things that bring me joy, because there is a lot of doubt, fear, and uncertainty in the world right now, and not enough joy.

When you were in grade school, did you ever have to make a time capsule? I did, and I remember taking great care when selecting the items that went into my collection. In that same vein, I’ve titled this post “Capsule” because it captures a few different things that are on my mind at this moment in time.

In the spirit of keeping on, I thought I’d share a few links that I’ve enjoyed recently. I hope you find the articles interesting and if you’ve made it this far, I want to thank you for reading my ramblings (always, but especially today).

Food x Film

You’ve probably seen those short, food video tutorials with a bird’s-eye view (usually on Facebook, right?). Well, food stylist David Ma took that concept one step further and imagined what these food tutorials would be like if directed by famous directors. The results are absolutely delightful and spot on. I hope he adds more directors to his series!

All About the Stars of Insecure and Queen Sugar

I’m an avid watcher of both Queen Sugar and Insecure. There is so much heart in the Bordelon family in Queen Sugar and I see some of myself in the character played by Issa Rae in Insecure. Here are some really great profiles about the actors on these shows, including this article on Kofi Siriboe, this one on Yvonne Orji, who plays Molly on Insecure (did you know she was a comedian first??), and this one on Issa Rae.

LOLOLOL

This article about the various styles of online laughter is so interesting. It’s fascinating to consider how formatting really changes the meaning of the laughter. Now I’m wondering when I started using “lololol” instead of “lol.” What’s your preferred style of laughter online?

THANKS, BUT NO THANKS, TO HBO’S CONFEDERATE

Ta-nehisi Coates has done it again. His article on why we shouldn’t give HBO’s Confederate a chance, even though it hasn’t aired yet, is well worth a read. After the events of this past week, let’s just say that I’m less interested than ever in watching a show about an alternative history in which the South won the Civil War.

TARGET LOVE

Target is debuting a new clothing line and a new home decor line this fall, and the goods look good. I should probably just start setting aside a portion of my paycheck now… I’m excited about the home decor products in particular because I think I’ll soon be working on another round of decorating my apartment. I’ve been in my place for over a year and the main wall in my bedroom is still completely blank!

(image by Walid Berrazeg on Unsplash)