christmas 2013

IMG_6021IMG_6013IMG_6018IMG_6024IMG_6020IMG_6026IMG_6041IMG_6046IMG_5999IMG_6000IMG_6002IMG_6003IMG_6008IMG_6011IMG_6012

Advertisements

delights of 2013

For me, the end of a year and the beginning of a new one always brings a bit of mixed emotions. A little bit exciting, a little bit daunting. 2013 was such a special year for me. Reflecting on some of the highlights the other day as I browsed my photos from the past year helped me realize that you never know exactly what’s coming, and that’s part of the fun. And that sometimes what feels like a failure or scary in the moment, actually turns out to be a positive or lead you down a path you might never have tried otherwise. So, in no particular order, here some of my highlights from 2013. photoboothengagement-EditDan and I got engaged. It makes me tear up a little (trying to hold it together, I’m currently on a plane) to think about. Our engagement was so sweet and special, and I don’t know if you’re supposed to say this, but I just love my ring so much! And the engagement, of course, led to the beginning of wedding planning, dress shopping with my mom and girlfriends, an engagement shoot, and asking our loved ones to be a part of the wedding. For this reason alone, 2013 will always be a favorite. IMG_0149Photography. Being a freelancer and starting my own business is challenging, but I’m finding my way and am so grateful to have a job doing something I love. I’ve had some really cool opportunities come my way this year, and I’ve worked with so many lovely and creative clients. My photos were published in the LA Times, Bon Appetit, Los Angeles Magazine, and Angeleno Magazine. And many of my headshot clients signed with new representation and received countless auditions based on their new shots. As with any creative field, it’s a journey not a race, and I’m excited to continue to learn and expand my technical skills, as well as stay creative and see things in a new way.  IMG_6524-EditThe Whaling Club celebrated one year. When Dan and I started The Whaling Club we didn’t know what would happen. Would people like it? We quickly learned the answer was yes, and we’re so happy for that! I can’t wait to see where The Whaling Club takes us this year, but we have a few ideas in mind. Thank you to all of our 2013 guests, the writers who have featured us in their publications, Chef Frank Anderson for joining us over the year, and Sarah Mullin for her ongoing illustrations.

I booked a co-star in my first pilot. The best part was being invited to attend the network table read. I felt like skipping the whole time! And I worked with some of my female comedy idols. grush ss-2Margot and I created “Margot & Marie”! You can watch all the episodes of Season 1 here. Working with Margot on this show has been so rewarding, and there’s more to come. IMG_2046Mexico. Dan’s parents took the whole family to the Riviera Maya to celebrate their wedding anniversary and vow renewal. We swam with sea turtles, lay on the beach, snorkeled, and spent a very memorable day in Tulum. facebookSpank Show. One of my goals this year was to write a sketch show with my hilarious and talented friend, Tim, and put it up at Upright Citizens Brigade. We put a lot into it and it felt AMAZING to perform. Tim is a gem of a person and performer, and the brilliant Drew Droege directed. Our friends came out to pack the house and laugh when my wig flew off!IMG_9658Weddings. We went to a lot of weddings this year, and I’m not just saying this, but each one was really special and unique to the couple. I know it’s partially because we’re planning our own wedding, but I really loved seeing all the details each couple and their families chose and focused on. The majority of these weddings brought me back to Chicago to reunite with my girlfriends and get a little extra time with my family. IMG_5163And of course, everything in between… Caitlin and Emilie coming to visit me in LA. Seeing my brother’s beautiful musical. “Matilda” on Broadway with my parents. Quality time with my Grandmom both at her house in Connecticut and at Thanksgiving in Chicago. Dinners at Bucato, Longman & Eagle, The Publican, The University Club of Chicago, Hartwood, Baco Mercat, Bar Ama, Water Grill… Quiet nights at home in our apartment. Our first Christmas Tree. Bootcamp getting me out of bed in the mornings. Weekly improv practice with my team. Auditions. Watching Downton Abbey with my family. A day trip to Santa Barbara. Camping in Ojai. Ivan & Alyosha at the Troubadour. Support of friends near and far. The love and encouragement of my family.

Happy New Year to my little group of readers out there! I appreciate you stopping by!

the whaling club IV

three-cocktailslogomenuThis was possibly my favorite Whaling Club yet (although I’m sure I say that every time)! We had a really special mix of people who’ve joined us before (thank you!!), as well as new faces. Dan and I were talking about the night a few days later, and he said this thing that I’ve been thinking about ever since: he analyzes and rethinks the cocktail menu over and over, so that the people drinking the cocktails don’t have to. I thought that was such a perfect way of describing what we hope to create with The Whaling Club; an evening with cocktails that are simple, delicious, but executed as perfectly as possible. And, hey, I certainly don’t complain about being a taste tester along the way.dan-bar-doubleIMG_3145IMG_3141IMG_3157fizz-matt-doubleThere was a touch of romance in the air, and we tried to embrace a little bit of that in our photo booth, flowers, and cocktail selection. Sarah Mullin’s drawings for the menu were incredible and detailed as always, and my two best friends flew in Manhattan for the weekend and got to experience their very first Whaling Club.IMG_3113IMG_3146frank-kitchen-doubleIMG_3168IMG_3202manhattan-doubleIMG_3198girls-group-doubleNext month is sure to be extra special (hint: oysters…Frank Anderson…), so if you’re not on our mailing list and would like to receive invites, comment below or send an email to reservations@thewhalingclub.com.girls-three-pbIMG_1513brian-jackie-doubletiy

merry merry!

merrymerryI’m on the plane headed back to Los Angeles after a luxurious trip back to Chicago. I’m always emotional saying goodbye to my family, but I am really excited to see Dan, and my Grandmom is sitting next to me! She’s coming out to stay with my Aunt Amy and Uncle Peter who live in LA too. The week home was very relaxing. I slept in every day, wore my pajamas until the afternoon, and ate my parent’s amazing cooking. I meant to take even more pictures, but I was having so much fun I just wanted to be there enjoying the moment. You can see more on my Instagram.IMG_0151^traditional English trifle with homemade custard and sherryIMG_0157IMG_0164IMG_0162IMG_0161IMG_0169^we managed to use this twice this season!IMG_0172^I got this cheese slate for my parents last ChristmasIMG_0175^Bouche de Noel (Yule Log)

Hope you had a very Merry Christmas!

happy holidays

happyholidaysI’m on the plane headed home to Chicago for Christmas where Mom, Dad, Willyman, Grandmom, and girlfriends await. I’ll be missing my best friend Caitlin who will be in CO for the holiday (we grew up across the street from each other), and of course, Dan, who’s headed back to the east coast to see him family. Last night Dan surprised me with a Pendleton blanket, and I’m currently obsessed. That guy knows me so well. With my new blanket, the tent Dan gave me for my birthday this year, and a January calendar that may actually allow for two days off in a row together (!), I think a camping trip is in order. I’d love any suggestions! I’ve heard good things about Ojai.

2012 has been an incredible year. Dan interviewed for a job on my birthday in March, got the job, moved to LA a month later, and in August we moved into our first apartment together. I took Blogshop and launched my photography business, and have been thrilled by the support and response from friends and clients. I spent a luxurious week in the Outerbanks with my family (and the weather was perfection!). I spent two incredible months writing and creating characters that culminated in a show at The Groundlings–some of the most fun I’ve ever had in my life. Dan and I created The Whaling Club, which continues to grow and challenge my creative side. The first of my group of girlfriends married her high school sweetheart, and their wedding was beautiful and so special (we also got to eat at Next on that trip!). I pumped myself up and found courage while dancing to Beyonce. And we re-elected Obama!

2013 you have a lot to live up to! Yet there’s already so much to look forward to. I’m excited to have a strong team supporting and working with me on my acting career. My best friends, Caitlin and Emilie, are coming to visit LA in February! Dan and I are planning a getaway up to San Francisco. I hope to visit New York, see my brother’s talent in action, and visit friends and family. And there will be a lot more dancing to Beyonce, duh.

Happy Holidays! Cheers!

the coupe

Dan and I have been prepping for an intimate cocktail event we’re hosting at our place this weekend, and it’s got me romanticizing about Speakeasys and classic cocktails. There really is something so special about sipping a well made drink, the weight or delicacy of the glass in your hand, while surrounded by friends, interesting strangers, or just that certain someone. My favorite end of summer drink was a shaken fresh mint daiquiri served in a coupe glass…and lots of champagne! (all photos found on Pinterest)

wall art

I’ve been doing a lot of googling and store searching for art work and prints to fill up the apartment walls, as well as going through my own photography and deciding what I may want to print and frame. I’m working on a frame wall for the living room that is clean and colorful. For the bedroom I’m looking specifically for art that will support the gray/blue/nautical direction we’re brainstorming. Below are a few that have caught my eye. I’ll be adding more to my Pinterest board as I discover them! It’s so hard to choose just a few!


pink circle wall art from west elm (on sale in the store!)|coffee chart print from pop chart lab|sea dog print from Sarah Burwash on etsy (first seen at b for bonnie)|original dandelion wish photograph|summer city photography from Ciao, Chessa! on etsy|los angeles poster from ork posters!

new home

Dan and I signed the lease for an apartment in this cutie yesterday! I’ve always said when I moved into an apartment with a washer/dryer in unit I’d know I’d “made it”.

Dear World,

I’VE MADE IT!

Love,

the crazy lady who can’t wait to do laundry

We also have an adorable little patio and separate dining room to host dinner parties galore. I’m feeling very inspired by this new space, and have been madly pin-ing on Pinterest. I am dreading the actual packing and hauling, of course, but at least Dan is here to do it with me. Also, if anyone spots a chic fire place screen that isn’t boring or right out of your Grandma’s house, help a sista out and send it my way!

Fairfax

My home will be changing next month. Dan and I are moving into our own place, and Allison is moving in with our friend Miguel. Allison and I will have lived in this apartment for exactly two years. I loved this apartment, and even though I’m really excited to start this next little chapter with Dan and build our home, I’m going to miss so much about this place. Like, I don’t think it will be as funny to text Allison from my bed when she’s not one wall over! That being said, I know Allison will be over at the new place (hello, we have to watch The Bachelorette together), and I’m sure there will be lots of sleepovers. Most importantly, we’ll still be there for each other the way we are now, I just may have to get dressed to have a big cry instead of standing in a robe in our hallway. Dan and I are looking at apartments in our current Fairfax Village neighborhood, as well as further east. Keep your fingers crossed for us that we find a place we really love! Here are some photos that remind me of the neighborhood and my current LA home.
Coffee Commissary
our alley
Canter's Deli
Dan's Schwinn
Fairfax
rootbeer float
Short Order
dusk
Allison
Family
LACMA
orchid

welcome home

Dan has officially lived in LA for just over two months. Now that he’s here, I can’t imagine how I went so long without him on a daily basis. It’s as if he’s always been here, and yet every morning when I wake up there’s something special that wasn’t there before. I made this little video using the 8mm iphone app the day Dan moved here. In a way, it’s the beginning. Hope you like it!