Hello! It’s been a while.

I have come back from the blogging dead! Quite frankly, I am terrible at keeping anything close to a consistent blogging schedule. At my current rate, I will have written 10 blog posts by the time I’m 35. I’m here to update this virtual space with some of what I’ve been up to since last July.

Screen Shot 2015-09-24 at 9.10.29 PM

The photo above is a lovely view of Brooklyn from the very top of the Freedom Tower. You can see where my apartment building is situated in the Financial District. We live on the 34th floor! Fancy! I live with my boyfriend, Justin. He is my best friend and has brought an indescribable amount of joy to my life since we serendipitously met on the internet last summer. We have big plans and are slowly but surely becoming the coolest kids on the block.

IMG_3815.jpg

He’s so cute! We went to one of his fancy work events a few months ago in Tribeca. I bought that expensive dress to wear and then returned it the next day. Adulting is hard!

Living in New York City is exactly what I hoped it would be like and yet nothing I ever, truly imagined. Who knew I would find such comfort and joy in smelling other people’s garbage on the street every day? The incredibly loud honking (that we somehow hear from 34 floors above the street) sounds to me what one may consider a lullaby. There is certainly a fair share of strange in this city, but it still feels unreal to me that I get to live here. Justin and I have endless lists of things we want to do and places we need to explore. There is SO MUCH TO BUY and everything is painfully expensive. Sometimes I feel fancy and brave. Other times I feel uncool and super poor. It is a dramatic existence. I have, however, mastered the ‘I know exactly where I am and how to get to my preferred destination’ while sneakily looking at google maps every 7 seconds to make sure that Whole Foods is in fact in the direction that I am walking.

IMG_3475.jpg

Now, if I may, I will ramble about my apartment. If this is boring, please feel free to skip this post. For now, this is the subject that my brain wants to type about. I dream of pillows. Honestly.

Our decor changes frequently (of course) but this place truly feels like home. There will be many projects and purchases to come. We get the most incredible light from the two huge windows in the apartment. We are SO LUCKY.

IMG_3339.jpgI have managed to keep SO MANY plants alive! 2016 is the year of adulting done right, folks. I’m getting there.

IMG_3895.jpg

The most recent pictures of the apartment that I have are from when I documented our holiday decor! The white tree strikes again! It’s a real crowd pleaser. The apartment is tiny but comfy. It fits us perfectly. We are remarkably organized people (mostly). Our clever furniture enables me to continue to hoard weird things like vintage linens that aren’t the correct size for our bed and my extensive stationary collection. IMG_3537.jpg

We painted one wall in our bedroom black. It is super moody and cool. There have already been some big changes to our bedroom since this photo but the general vibe is the same. We have the most work to do in our bedroom in terms of design and functionality – and hopefully, if I can get my shit together and frequently update this bloggity blog, I will share our progress with the world. We need a new mattress, potentially a new bed frame, new bedding (maybe?), a different chair for my desk because the one pictured is stolen from the kitchen table, lots of art, more pillows? Oh! And a rug. We’ll see.

IMG_3689.jpg

This is our unfinished but deeply satisfying bathroom gallery wall. Our bathroom is unreasonably large and it was begging for a collection of quirky art. There is about 10 inches that still needs to be covered by frames to the right of these frames but with my professional photography skills, I was able to center the gallery wall and pretend that the project was finished! We painted the bathroom a really deep teal color – very mermaid-like.

IMG_3163.jpg

Quick subject change! I am officially one semester into my career in student affairs. I made it! This is the RA staff at Pace – they are such fantastic student leaders and I am so lucky to be learning from them as I figure out life as a professional staff member. The 19 RAs that I directly supervise are so inspiring and extremely hard working. I am beyond excited for the upcoming semester – I feel so much more prepared to be intentional and developmental with my supervision.

IMG_3733.jpg

This gecko tank is noteworthy and a great way to end this blog post. This particular situation is a great representation of what life can be like as a professional residence life staff member. You must expect the unexpected at all times. A (less than kind) student moved out of their room (without notifying my staff) and decided to leave their gecko behind. After we were notified, it became my responsibility to foster this abandoned gecko in my office until we could figure out what to do with him! Poor guy! Speaking of my office! I am in the midst of an extremely fun office makeover – lots of furniture rearranging, painting and styling has happened. I will be taking many photos and hope to document it here in the future. I feel so strongly about creating an office space that is an expression of who you are – I think that students respond well to authenticity.

Well. 974 words later and I remember how wonderful it feels to vigorously type some self-indulgent paragraphs about my life! It is a very cathartic journey. Thank you for reading!

Standard

Life lately.

Before I begin this particularly sappy post about the people I love most in this world, I want to disclose how I came to sit in this Starbucks. There are HUNDREDS of Starbucks located in this city.

I wanted to sit and drink coffee and write this post in a location that was not my adorable apartment. I asked Google and I found a sweet blog that rates every Starbucks in the city and has them organized by neighborhood. SO GREAT. If you are interested in reading about some stranger’s opinions on the Starbucks of Manhattan, click here! The Starbucks that are located in the Financial District (where I live) all close surprisingly early. After 30 minutes and one cold brew coffee later, I had to leave my first location and move to a Starbucks near Union Square that is open until midnight. Great success! I am now drinking my second coffee of the evening and am ready to write about some of my more recent life experiences. I am extraordinarily caffeinated.

One last caveat – the format for these life lately posts are going to be bulleted lists. Cool? Cool! Let’s do this.

IMG_2453IMG_2421

  • My (temporary) apartment is located directly adjacent to a Baked by Melissa. I have lived here for a few weeks and have yet to step foot into this tiny cupcake peddler. Let’s see how long it lasts. I want to talk about my temporary living situation and what my permanent plan looks like. The trouble with my permanent plan is that I’m not entirely sure what it is (just yet). There are a lot of moving pieces (literally). We are waiting on our new residence hall to be completely finished so that I can move in OR someone else can move in and then I will move into their current space. I hope this happens soon because I am DYING to take all of my beloved items out of storage and start nesting REAL hard. I am secretly thankful for this weird time because I have more brain space to soak in this incredible city. Meticulously obsessing over where my ceramic dogs should be located in my apartment will come later. This is a good thing. For now I am living in the guest apartment on Fulton and it is the most adorable space with a chalkboard wall and a great view. I love every second but I miss my kitchen table. And my books.
  • It is incredible how quickly things happen in our lives. I talk about feeling lucky all the time – this is different. When we are holding hands walking through this beautiful city together, I have a hard time keeping it together. This city is more beautiful because of him. My blog may morph into a public expression of my obsession with this city and this human. I’m not sorry.

IMG_2147IMG_2143

  • My storage unit! My beloved furniture! I figure I’d show you where all of my belongings are hanging out while I wait for my permanent apartment move-in date. Not pictured is my pink couch that was purchased after this photo was taken.
  • This photo of my empty apartment is so bizarre. If you visited my apartment in New Brunswick, this picture is probably weird. Or maybe it’s just me. I had to go on a recon mission to find the table, chairs and coffee table that I scattered around the building when I first moved in. This place is unrecognizable to me. I’m glad the Wall Self-Storage truck made it into this picture – driving that thing was quite a memorable experience.

IMG_2047IMG_2463

  • It has yet to hit me that grad school is over. I have so much free time and it feels unnatural. I hope I can lure these cuties to me with promises of city adventures and tasty water. Do you know how tasty New York City water is? It’s very tasty.
  • Ugh. My family is so cool and so beautiful. I snapped this candid photo of them walking in front of one of our favorite local places to eat and drink things. My brother works there. I miss them so much (and my mother of course, although she is not pictured). I can’t elaborate on these feelings because I will tear up in public. The people of Starbucks don’t need that kind of drama in their lives. Instead, we can focus on how stupid cool they are and how excited I am for them to stay with me all the time. Crossing my fingers that my siblings will land the raddest jobs after they graduate and will live in the city and we will play all of the time.

IMG_2223IMG_2410

  • Oh, Martin. We spent an entire day in the city a few weeks ago (before I moved in) and ate great food (ramen) and saw a broadway show (Finding Neverland). I think this photo was taken at the show! I have no idea how I am going to function (both personally and professionally) without interacting with him on a daily basis. He is moving to Ithaca in a week and although we will both be residents of New York, it will be quite the voyage to visit one another. We will make it happen.
  • This blurry picture of Laurel (my sister’s girlfriend) and Justin makes me so happy. My sister and I were embarrassingly terrible at corn hole (bean bag toss?) but it was pretty cute nonetheless. We all spent an entire weekend together a few weeks ago and it was quite lovely. We must do it again soon. I think we are going to see Matt & Kim with them soon in Philly?!

IMG_2470I will leave you with this picture of my family. When I write about feeling so lucky and so happy, these people deserve all of the credit. My parents have always told me to dream big and work hard and that anything is possible. Moving to this city on my own and starting a life here has been one of my wildest dreams. And it is a real thing that is happening to me. Insane.

Thank you for reading. Tune in for more dramatic expressions of love and gratitude next week.

Standard

Hot child in the city.

I am moving to lower Manhattan and it feels like a dream.

IMG_2196

I start my first full time job (!!) at Pace University on July 1st and have been staying at my parent’s house since I graduated from my masters program a few weeks ago. During this very welcomed time off, I have been relentlessly shopping and collecting delightful items that will live in my new apartment. Needless to say, I will not have as much space as I did in New Brunswick. I have wasted no time obsessing over the minutia of decorating a small space and deciding which items (that I already own) deserve to come with me to the city. I have a few weeks left at home to browse my favorite stores! I hope to write a few posts about my thrift store trips and show you what I loved and didn’t buy and (of course) what ended up coming home with me.

I think it’s wildly important to disclose to the public that I am living in and supervising a residence hall that happens to have an Urban Outfitters in it. You read that correctly, folks. THE FIRST THREE FLOORS OF MY BUILDING IS AN URBAN OUTFITTERS.  WHAAAT?!

IMG_2213

Please keep me in your prayers.

Okay! Here are four items that stayed at Good Will for another weirdo to love and purchase.

IMG_2168IMG_2167

IMG_2163 IMG_2162

  • Grandmas are just antique little girls… uh, what?! How hilariously weird and silly! Not necessarily something I should be spending my money on. Oh well!
  • That mug was very sweet and I probably should have bought it. I have an extreme tolerance for other people’s germs and dirt but the inside of that cup was in pretty bad shape so I left it behind.
  • This Bob Marley inspired tiny box was fun! I thought about buying it for my office – students need to be reminded of this pretty often. It is a mantra that I live by!
  • I have deep regret that I left that cat plate behind. It’s so ugly that it’s cute. I’m not particularly fond of cats in real life but on glass plates – keep em’ coming.

Hold on to your seats, ya’ll. I have accumulated a rad collection of items since I’ve been home. They are all glorious additions to my life and I think I’ve hit a successful streak of shopping and I have no intentions of slowing down. WOAH! I’m intense.

IMG_2149

There is a very high probability that you are less enthused about this drawing of a woman than I am. I AM OBSESSED WITH IT. She looks like my aunt. She is a 1970’s beauty and I think I’m in love with her. This is big frame. It’s not in great shape but I think I’ll leave it because I like the brassy color on the edges. She is groovy as hell. I want to be surrounded by groovy things at all times. I bought her at Good Will for $14.99 (a little steep for Good Will but well worth it in my unreasonable mind).

IMG_2320

Now that we’re talking about my unreasonable mind, I must show you this chair that I purchased (at Good Will for $8!). This bad boy may end up back at Good Will if I can’t find an upholsterer who will charge me less than $500 to make him look like the beauty I know he is on the inside. I am going to blame Emily Henderson for this one (because we are long-time friends, of course) (I wish) .. I know in my soul that she would have bought this chair and would have had it upholstered in a perfect colored velvet to use in one of her projects like The Fig House. I am going to upholster this chair whether my bank account likes it or not. I’m thinking hot pink velvet. I will show you the vibe I’m looking for (below is a picture of the Oh Joy studio that Emily Henderson designed). Hot pink velvet, man. Gets me every time. Oh! I should mention that this chair spins 360 degrees! It is RAD.

maxresdefault

IMG_2307 IMG_2328

I bought the glass head from Pier 1 for 20 bucks. I am not proud. I couldn’t help it! Look at that thing! There are so many surfaces that would benefit from housing this glass head. Ha! The melamine plates are sort of creepy (do people really separate their food like that?) but they are the absolute perfect color. I bought them at the Point Pavilion Antique Center across from the gym that I go to on Arnold Ave! It is an enormous store (if you go, you need at least 2 hours). They were $6 for the set (I think). The black ikea vessel (vase?) was $3 from Good Will – it has great lines and I don’t have many black accessories. I’m into it.

IMG_2313IMG_2311

I have plans to make pillow cases using fun vintage fabric and I like the idea of having a tiny pillow (perhaps placed surreptitiously on my pink velvet chair). I bought this at the Point Pavilion Antique Center for around $3. The fabric is from the same store! The blue floral is actually a flat sheet and was $5! The blues in the sheet don’t necessarily match my life but I like having it to use for future ~picnics in ceNtrAl paRk~. The orange floral fabric is a few yards and was $20 – it is in great shape and can be used to upholster something if I feel so inclined. Hey now, I am officially a fabric hoarder.

IMG_2315IMG_2314

I’ve been searching for bed linens that make sense to my deranged brain and Orla Kiely was the clear answer. These were not thrifted but are totally worth the money because Orla Kiely is magic. This is a duvet cover (which I typically avoid) but the pattern and the color are too good. It is the exact vibe I want and need in my life and on my bed. I have to decide if I want to keep my bed super plain and just use the shams or start searching for pillows to match this cutie. We shall see.

 IMG_2302 IMG_2303

I am a HUGE FAN of macrame. It is truly beautiful and not at all fussy but really suites the groovy vibe I’m going for in my new apartment. I found this piece at the antique store in Point (where I got a lot of my other stuff). It was $20 and extraordinarily worth the money. Especially considering the fact that I was going to try to make one myself, which would have been time consuming and would never have come out so beautiful. I added the second picture for scale purposes. It’s a great size. That fuzzy pillow is at my parent’s house and I want it real bad.

IMG_2176

This one is a big deal. It is a pink midcentury modern couch. And it was $20. I have to take better pictures of it once I clean it up a bit and remove the skirt that is covering the gorgeous midcentury legs. This picture was taken as I was calmly explaining to another woman that I WAS BUYING THIS COUCH, SORRY, PLEASE STEP AWAY. I sat on it for 10 minutes deciding if I should buy it and when I locked eyes with an innocent passerby who (probably wasn’t even interested) I ran to the counter and told them I wanted it. I never said my process was pretty or fair.

IMG_2323

This getup is so damn cute that I had to include it even though it is not home decor. I bought it at Dry Goods in Manasquan for $26. Their vintage section is DIVINE. It is two pieces and I want to wear it every single day of my life.

I’m still searching for a desk chair, a bed frame, and dressers (among other things)! My eclectic masterpiece is underway, my friends.

Thanks for reading! -Alexa

Standard

Apartment Tour Part 1

My snow day behavior defies rational logic. I am wildly motivated by wintry weather. Today seemed like a great day to tidy up a bit (errr, a lot) and post some pictures of my apartment.

My living room/kitchen is where I spend most of my time and it is a very happy place.

IMG_1280

IMG_1296

IMG_1303

IMG_1283

It isn’t easy getting a good picture of this seating area near the window! All of my pictures are dark and terrible. The huge window is wonderful but also challenging – my iPhone isn’t cutting it. Oh well! Hopefully you can tell that it is a pretty cute spot even though the lightening is awful. You should just come over and see for yourself.

IMG_1281

I LOVE bar carts. I can count on one hand how many times a month I use an item that lives on this bar cart. However, it makes that corner so very festive and worth the prime corner real estate!

IMG_1299

IMG_1306

Please note the appearance of another bar cart in my home. What is wrong with me? NOTHING. BAR CARTS ARE THE BEST.

Okay. The next few pictures are a bit odd and perhaps a little TMI. I know that if I was in your house, I would want to know what the inside of your closets look like. I’m nosey like that! I think it’s wildly interesting to see how people organize their lives and what lives in their secret drawers. Clearly, I have no secret drawers or closets.

IMG_1301

IMG_1302

IMG_1297

Is this just a me thing?

On to the bedroom!

IMG_1268

IMG_1270

More closet pictures! Maybe I should color coordinate my closet…. Do you color coordinate or arrange your closet by like items? Closets are great.

IMG_1272

I desperately want a new bed spread. The red/blue combination is what I had in my undergrad dorm room for many years and it was grandfathered into this bedroom. What an awkward sentence! I’m keeping it. I would like to get rid of all of the red. When I move into my new apartment next year, you better believe my bedroom will get the TLC it deserves.

IMG_1269

That poor mirror is on its last leg. HA! I crack myself up. It’s actually on its last three legs. I will have to make a game day decision when I move if I want to fix him or throw him out. Poor guy. The vintage flag is pretty delicious. My mom and I found it at an epic garage sale a few years ago. I know – that polka dot wall. Dang, it’s so cute. It is so exciting when you have a vision and it comes to life exactly how you imagined it. The polka dots are pretty happy.

I would like to share some pictures of my kitchen, guest room and bathroom (maybe not my bathroom?) but they are not super beautiful at the moment so I will be back to share those soon! I am curious if you are interested in where I bought/how I acquired some or all of my stuff.. I have posted about my thrifting adventures so it is no surprise that a lot of the stuff that I own was thrifted. If it wasn’t thrifted, it is probably from Ikea or Target or bought from a rad stranger on Craiglist. If you are interested in where I got a specific item, please comment or ask me in person or call me? COOL!

Thank you for reading. I appreciate you.

Standard

Hello March.

I have provided some riveting radio silence the past few weeks (sorry). Unfortunately (for me mostly), blogging has fallen to the bottom of my to-do list. I am hoping to give this space some more TLC now that my classes are winding down and I have submitted many applications that were hanging over my head.

I have been meaning to share some photos of my apartment since I began writing this blog! My apartment is a really special space and it deserves some digital documentation. I have lived here for almost 7 months and have continued to design and redesign these rooms! I’m going to post a more in-depth apartment tour soon but for now, I will share a few sneak peaks of some of my favorite corners.

IMG_1231

This wall of books makes me pretty darn happy on a daily basis. There are some books that I am less proud to display (cough cough Twilight). Regardless, I am so thankful for this shelving that provides a proper home for (a portion of) my book collection.

IMG_1230

How stinkin’ cute are my parents at their senior prom!? And the couple on the stump! This is an ideal situation.

IMG_1226

This is a slightly awkward photo of one of my kitchen cabinets. I love collecting cups/mugs/glasses. I try really hard to give myself specific guidelines when purchasing vessels for liquids but they are just too easy to love.

IMG_1254

Here is another picture that solidifies my lack of photography skills. I collect embroidered art and love the idea of displaying it somewhere that it will be appreciated regularly (mostly by my male friends, hehe).

IMG_1232

Faux taxidermy is my jam.

IMG_1229

The title of this book is too real. It deserves a special spot near this delicious deer that I bought at the Brooklyn Flea last summer. I also bought that sand timer at the flea!

I have also been meaning to post about a quick project I did the other day when I was snowed in! Rachel Denbow inspired me to embark on a weaving adventure and I am SO glad that I did. I want to make 400 of these.

First, I made my own loom with a piece of wood and some nails!

IMG_1027

It’s fairly hard to explain the process so CLICK HERE if you are interested in trying this for yourself!

IMG_1029

IMG_1030

IMG_1031

IMG_1040

How beautiful is this!? Weaving is incredibly gratifying and much simpler than I imagined. I am excited to try again!

Thanks for reading ya’ll. Apartment tour coming soon!

Standard

Gone Thrifting.

Over the past few weeks, I have collected some pretty special items to add to my ever-growing collection of objects. I really enjoy objects. I like people more, I promise. In the past I’ve shown you all of the things I didn’t buy but loved – this time around I’ll just share what I did take home.

I’d like to think it is fate that the two closest Goodwill stores happen to be less than 10 minutes away from both my parent’s house and my apartment in New Brunswick. Fate.

IMG_0856

(The Goodwill near my parent’s house! It’s huge! I’m in love!)

IMG_0867

This is an Isaac Mizrahi plate! For 3 dollars! My heart! This beauty can be used as a serving plate or propped up all pretty on a plate rack or on a bar cart!

IMG_0871

This little plant pot is from Ikea! I am now on the hunt for the perfect (fake) plant to live in there. I can only handle fake plants. I’m pretty good at a lot of things but I am not good at keeping plants alive. The pattern reminds me of Orla Kiely and is why I couldn’t leave it behind. I think it was 4 dollars! Not bad! I’m sure it was around $10 at Ikea! We also have to talk about the sweetest piece of art in my parent’s house featured behind my pot. My parents are the best humans.

IMG_0865

I am a sucker for all coffee table books and this one was meant to live in my house. And it was 49 cents! 49 CENTS! I should make a post about my favorite coffee table books. I’ll share some links now to satiate your burning curiosity (love,love,love and love).

IMG_0864

This is bar cart #3 that will live in my apartment. I am not ashamed of my bar cart addiction. I will not get rid of them. I deeply love bar carts and am SO EXCITED to start shopping around for accessories for this one. I am going to paint this cutie a shade of citrus green while I’m still home on winter break. I’m not entirely sure where this cart will live in my apartment but regardless, it was too good to pass up for 10 bucks. I’ll show you the color I’m painting it!

IMG_0872

It is seemingly perfect.

IMG_0797

How precious is this tea pot?! Man, what a good find. Goodwill is so good to me sometimes. I paid a whopping FIVE DOLLARS for these. They are stunning and I am so happy to own them. These guys may live on my citrus bar cart. We shall see….

IMG_0795

I bought this plate and I am judging myself a little for it. It’s pretty wonderful but I haven’t found a spot for it in my apartment and that is disappointing. Little plates aren’t the easiest things to use when styling a shelf or bookcase or bar cart (for me at least). I will report back when I find a rightful home for the Kennedys.

Those are my most recent finds while thrifting. All together I probably spent around 25 dollars! Not bad, eh? There were many things that almost made it home with me so let’s hope they found a happy home. Perhaps sending well wishes to inanimate objects is weird but I can’t fight it. I’m weird.

I will leave you with a picture of my cute boyfriend with shaving cream on his face from a silly game we played at the New Years party we went to (we won). I hope your 2015 is off to a great start! I’ll be back to share some of my resolutions soon! Do you believe in New Years resolutions? I think I do. Thanks for reading!

IMG_0817

Standard

Radio Silence.

I have emerged from my mountain of to-do lists unscathed! Holy busy, batman! This has been an incredible semester in so many ways.

After four weeks of radio silence, I would like to share some photos to [publicly] document what has been going on in my world. It is a beautiful life, my friends.

IMG_0444IMG_0454

I went on a wildly inspiring adventure to Baltimore with my friend Chris a few weeks ago to visit his undergrad and meet some really special people. The Maryland Institute College of Art is a place my heart will have a hard time forgetting. I would love to work there. We went to the COOLEST diner in Baltimore and had delicious milkshakes. The diner is decorated [floor to ceiling] in toys! I am so thankful to have friends in my life who are willing to share the things they love with me.

IMG_0551IMG_0512

This has been my most difficult [and rewarding] semester. Shout out to my Keurig for being my number one supporter through it all. JK. Only a little. This is a semester I will never forget. I have learned so much about what I am capable of as a student. My sophisticated planning capabilities [see photo above of the schedule Martin and I created for ourselves to tackle a paper] and my ability to function on very few hours of sleep has led me to the light. I am so thankful for the great people in my life who make it all feel like the greatest movie I’ve ever watched.

IMG_0508IMG_0536

There are so many wonderful people in my life. Shane and Elisa [RAs that I supervise] are two of the many reasons that I love my job so much. I feel inexplicably lucky every day for my staff and the crazy building that I oversee and the tiny apartment I call my home. It is hard to imagine leaving this place in such a short amount of time. So many feelings!

IMG_0505IMG_0506

I made some quick tassel garland a few weeks ago! My holiday decor is a bit nontraditional and this garland was exactly what I needed. I had this on a project list for so long and it felt great to make time for it.

IMG_0479IMG_0672

In the midst of the many midnight paper writing sessions and intense ResLife realities, I can’t seem to wipe this crazy smile off of my face [thanks to this human]. There is no one I would rather scream sing Backstreet Boys with or create endless lists of our favorite things.

IMG_0656IMG_0665

Our annual cookie night was this week. My [entire extended] family spends hours baking and singing and drinking and eating pizza. I am officially in the holiday spirit. This is one of my favorite traditions and I hope we never stop.

I hope to get back to a more regular posting routine now that I have some time for more fun activities. I think a blog-inspired New Years Resolution is in store for me…

Thanks for reading!

Standard