Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Small Town Pennsylvania

Soon I will tell the tale of the final installment of the Honesdale trip, featuring the Pennsylvania countryside.

But first, an adorable kitten! Bailey belongs to Annie. He’s a cat model.




Ok, now I will share our Sunday drive in the countryside. It was so incredibly beautiful and peaceful!

There were rustic farms and perfect yellow fall flowers everywhere we looked. I even caught a butterfly in its actual habitat (the Smithsonian was not quite as natural…), and there were stone walls that looked just like the ones we saw in the English countryside so we could pretend we were back there, which just happens to be one of our favorite things to do.












Thank you Honesdale, for being so cute and awesome. (And of course, to Annie for getting the Highlights internship and letting me come visit!)


*song = Pumped up Kicks by Foster the People (I love me a good song with a solid whistling section!)

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Honesdale! Featuring Highlights, Aliens & Dinos


Installment two of my trip to visit Annie in Honesdale! Honesdale is the small town of 5,000 that is home to Highlights magazine, and it is adorable. Below is the some evidence.

1) There are lots of cute restaurants on Main Street, like this French Patisserie. There was also a heavenly, warm chocolate croissant that was devoured too quickly to be photographed.




2) There are awesome antique shops… where Star Trek characters live?  We wanted to buy the funniest one and then carry it around town to take pictures with soooooo bad!





3)There’s a magical place called Maude’s Alley, that features a delicious bakery and two stores filled only with things I wanted to purchase.



4)There are buildings with really cool architecture. Note super cute church, and the YMCA that looks like a castle.



5) Train tracks, which are always fun.



6) And of course… Highlights!! Where Annie is doing the most awesome magazine internship.



Annie has a dinosaur friend at work. First he tried to eat us…


But then we got along famously.



This is me trying to take over Annie’s desk because her job is so cool.


Fin. (Until the next post!)

*song = Get Better by Mates of State

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Philly Philly Philly Philly Philly

This weekend was fabulous because I finally was able to go visit Annie in Small Town Pennsylvania! It was magical.

I’m far too tired to edit all of the pictures of our adventures right now (you may have noticed that I was also too tired to come up with a decent title for this blog post), but this weekend was too much fun to wait any longer to share some of it with you. So, I give you documentation of the beginning of the journey – Philadelphia.

Annie is a kind soul, so instead of making me ride the bus all of the way to Honesdale both ways she drove the long 2 1/2 hours to Philly to rescue me on Friday. And as a result we got to play there, see some historical sites and eat Philly Cheesesteaks! Always a good thing.




Visiting the Liberty Bell and Independence Hall was a must.




As was eating delicious sandwiches,


leaning on brick walls and hugging old looking lampposts,



and striking random photos. (Traditional poses can be overrated)

You should also check out my blog post from last year’s Philly trip, because it features some of my favorite photos from last summer. And because I say so.

More pictures from this weekend will be coming soon!  Think small town cuteness, outer space antiquing and ninja kittens.

*song = Let’s Fall Back in Love by Slow Club.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Remembering Ten Years Ago


It’s unreal that it’s been so long. It still seems unreal that it ever happened in the first place. I think that might actually be the best word to sum it all up – unreal. I remember my mom saying that the morning of Sept. 11 either she or Amber had been flipping through the channels on the TV before I woke up and had passed over the footage of the twin towers because they thought it was a movie. It just wasn’t something that could even be considered real. But it was real.

I think everyone has a story, and when you start thinking about that day you just naturally feel a need to share the way you experienced it. Because even though not everyone was there, it still had an impact on everyone. 

My first sign that something was different was when I came down the stairs to go to school. I was 12 years old, and I was getting ready to go to Five Oaks Middle School. It was actually going to be an exciting day for me – before school I was finally getting my first pair of contacts. But when I woke up and went down to breakfast the news was on, which was unusual for my house in the morning, and the most terrible footage was playing. It was unreal. The day still went on, but it seemed somehow tainted. It was a beautiful September day, and the sky was the most perfect shade of blue. But the fact that everything looked so perfect when everything was so wrong seemed somehow cruel. The beautiful potential of that fall day had been shattered, marred by a much more horrific reality. I still went and got my contacts. I watched the news in the waiting room at the Kaiser optometrist. I watched the news at school, on a TV set up on a rolling cart in the library. I watched the news when I got home. Partially because I’ve always been a news addict, but I think we were all glued to the news. Because if this could happen, what would happen next? What would the next days, weeks and months hold?

And things changed, but they stayed the same. What did Sept. 11 really mean? I went to a Smithsonian exhibit this week where at the end they asked visitors to write down how Sept. 11 changed their lives. I think that’s something we’re still trying to figure out. Maybe we don’t think about it explicitly every day anymore, but the consequences and implications of what happened are still playing out.

The picture above is one I took last year of a 31-foot piece of the broadcast antenna from the North Tower, as on display at the Newseum. Below are some pictures I took this week at the American History Museum. They had an intimate showing of some artifacts from the day, and since most of you aren’t here to see it I thought I would share the experience with you as best I could.



Pieces of Flight 93 recovered from the field in Pennsylvania



A crushed door from one of the first fire trucks to arrive


A clock that stopped when the Pentagon was hit


A piece of one of the planes that hit the Twin Towers

Also, here’s a link to President Monson’s guest blog for the Washington Post on 9/11 and spirituality. I think today is a fitting day for some reflection.
*song = Yellowcard’s Believe, which was written in honor of the firefighters and police officers who lost their lives trying to rescue people in the towers.


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