Recommend Reading from 2015

The upside to over-traveling is that if you do your laundry before you leave one city, you can just wear other clothes for the three days you’re back home, and then you’re ALREADY PACKED for the next trip. (Don’t forget you learned that gem of a pro tip here, folks.)

In related news: I am a ridiculous person who scheduled five trips in one month.

I’ve spent most of my train rides and airport downtime revisiting all the great things I read this year to make a reading list you can use during your own holiday travels. So open a bunch of tabs, flip your phone to airplane mode, and do not recline into your fellow passenger’s small sliver of remaining personal space. (Don’t be dick this holiday season, y’all.)

Just like last year, I kept a running list over the last twelve months and then slashed said list in half. All of them are available online for free and my attempts at categorization are kind of a joke. Enjoy!

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The Best Things I Read This Year

Back in my pre-teen LiveJournal days, everyone kept running lists of the books, movies, and televisions shows they consumed each year. We set arbitrary goals for each category (25 books, 50 movies, etc.) and tracked them all in a sticky post pinned to the top of our journals.

I’m not really sure why we did this, but I always liked it. Partially because it allowed me to quantify things that otherwise can’t be quantified. (If I can put it on a list, I’m being productive! It wasn’t a waste of time!) I haven’t updated my LiveJournal in years, but I remember how much I liked being able to look back and remember books or movies I loved but had already forgotten. (I’m perpetually that person who gets asked for her favorite movie and rattles off the same three titles she’s been recalling for years, even if she hasn’t seen them in just as long.)

These days, I don’t consume nearly as many books or movies as I used to but I read a shit ton of blogs, articles, and the like. I tweet the ones I love and share favorite passages on Tumblr but most of the things we read online are here today and gone tomorrow. I think that’s a shame. Some of them are fucking awesome.

So, without further rambling, here are the best things I read this year. I collected them all in an Evernote over the last twelve months, revisited them all while traveling earlier this week, and have collected them here for your enjoyment. All of them are available online for free and in their entirety.

(This list would probably make a great companion for your flight/train ride/drive home this week. Just saying.)

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Happy Halloween from your childhood faves

Halloween has been over for three whole days now. If you’ve managed to avoid the following Christmas onslaught so far, congrats. You deserve all the half priced candy you can get your hands on.

I heard my first holiday song while snagging last minute costume props the night before Halloween so I admitted defeat early. Adding insult to injury, it started snowing before I even put on my costume Friday morning. It was only the lightest of flurries, but they were followed by hail and some crazy Day After Tomorrow type shit. So much for fall!

My office originally planned to go with a “children’s book” theme for Halloween but that got hijacked pretty quickly. Janeen was obviously Max from Where the Wild Things Are and Andrew was Smalls from Sandlot (aka someone who waited until the very last minute to pick a costume). Not pictured: Penny Proud and the Gingerbread Man.

I went as one of my childhood favorites, Harriet the Spy. No one over the age of thirty-five was familiar with her but I bonded with a bunch of nineties babes over the Nickelodeon movie.

Does anyone else remember those bright orange VHS tapes? I wore mine out.

Happy Week #1

My friend Elizabeth has a newsletter called little happy where she sends out a short anecdote (and funny YouTube video) every day. I enjoy reading it in bed before I get up every morning and it’s a good reminder to focus on the happy parts of my day.

So often, I only remember the bad ones when I look back at a week. Unless the happy thing was a Big Thing, it fades from my memory. I wanted a way to collect these happy moments and remind myself that things are good even when bad things happen. So I think I’m just going to do a roundup every week on this blog, primarily for me but also to share exciting things I find that might make you happy too.

Here we go!

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In which I try to be a wedding photographer

Happy Monday, y’all! I kinda can’t believe it’s time for a new week (or October, tbh) but here we are. I spent most of my weekend in celebratory mode, as two different friends picked this weekend to tie the knot with their long-time partners. I also added “wedding photographer” to the long list of creative gigs I’ve tried over the years.

When Julia and Eric asked me to photograph their wedding, I was simultaneously honored and horrified. I mean, what if I fucked it up?? It’s not like you can ask the priest for a do-over if you miss an “I do.” Julia was a photographer herself back in the day so that added an extra layer of anxiety, but not enough to say no.

Luckily, Julia and Eric were the perfect first couple. They are both very laid back and that carried over to their wedding day. “I know what we look like,” was her go-to phrase all day. They didn’t want a million different poses, just a few shots of them and their families.

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