Tuesday, September 2, 2014

BEST. SUMMER. EVER?


Last night I was laying in bed, browsing Instagram and trying not to think about how hot it was in my room. Nearly every post was a glowing, sunny photo lamenting the end of #summer2014 or some thoughts on why this was the best summer ever. At first I thought, well that's a mighty tall order—what about all those summers when we didn't have jobs or homework or bills or multiple expensive wedding gifts to buy? 

But then, like a true seasonal masochist, I began to troll back through my photos from the summer. Beaches. Road trips. Old friends and new. Many, many cocktails. Oceans on either side of the continent and blissful brides and grooms. True, this was actually a sad, destructive summer for the world at large, but in my smaller little life that kept on going, it was pretty spectacular.

While I choose to believe that the season isn't technically over until September 22nd, I still feel like there was a magical quality to the past three months of "official summer." The weird thing I find is that often times, there's a cosmic synergy to things like good weekends, bad work weeks and fittingly, epic summers. I hope yours was fantastic too, and that you get to live it out a bit longer, as I plan to.

LET'S REFLECT ON THE BEST OF #SUMMER2014...



I know it sounds kind of silly, but cutting my hair back in June was one of the best parts of my summer. As you might have read in my blog post, I really feel that women's hair and how they feel about it plays a large roll in personality and confidence. After chopping off six inches or so (and then another two just six weeks later), I felt sexy, playful and just cool. It set a whole new tone for my summer style—and I may never go back to long locks again!


I may not have made it to The Hamptons this summer, but spending three days in Ocean City, New Jersey with five of my favorite New York girls more than made up for it. Thanks to GM's Drive The District, we were able to pile all our weekend bags and bottles of rosé into one fabulous Chevy Tahoe, and enjoy the shore on our own schedule. From lazy beach days to croquet on the lawn and chasing the sunset with the windows down—it was an epic summer weekend.


It pays to have friends from fabulous places, especially when faced with an entire season in the urban jungle of New York City. Tully is from the sunny, stellar town of Newport Beach, so on a whim we decided to decamp for California to celebrate the 4th of July. Bike rides, Mai Tai's, home-cooked meals, boats and beaches were the only items on the itinerary—all of which were executed to perfection.


I want to do a complete post on this experience soon, but for now, I'll just say that being a bridesmaid in my dear and darling friend Alex's wedding was one of the most fun and special experiences of my life. There were many reasons, including the fact that it was my first time being in a bridal party. The wedding also took place in Sun Valley, where, as most of you know, I have grown up visiting and continue to do so every year. Alex is the same way, which is a part of why we have remained friends since kindergarten. We both treasure this place, which made every event that weekend all the more special and emotional. She and I caught up over drinks last week, and couldn't quite believe the whole thing was real. Like I said, more on this later.


As I mentioned in this post, being able to return to McCall, Idaho after about a decade was one of the highlights of my summer (and year, to be sure). It's one of those places that makes my heart ache just to think about, and I hope that I can return again, soon.


Ah, home. I hadn't spent time in Seattle during the summer months since before I moved to New York—so being back in the prime weather of August was a dream. I got to drive my 1997 Ford Explorer with the windows down and the radio cranked, take more than a few dips in Lake Washington at my neighborhood beach club (above), and spent a ton of time just relaxing (eating & drinking) with my family. While I still don't think I could move back there now and be happy, I am always filled with nostalgia and slight heart pangs when I see Mt. Rainier in the distance.


Over two consecutive weekends in Seattle, two of my oldest friends married their dream girls. It was such a blast to marry off these amazing guys in the company of people I've known for more than a decade. I feel so blessed that at the age of 28, I can still get together with my friends from both grade school and high school—and actually enjoy the adults they have become. Some of us have stayed closer than others (and even ended up in New York), but all it takes is a few throwback songs and some late night skinny-dipping to feel like it's 2003 all over again (but with better haircuts). PS: Here's what I wore.


The city! Even with three whole weeks away, I certainly spent the majority of my summer in Manhattan. Anyone you ask will tell you this was one of the best summers we have had in ages. The temperatures were mild and sunny days abounded—allowing for picnics al fresco on the West Side Highway, long walks from the East Village to TriBeCa, and most recently, rooftop drinks at The Met (one of my favorite "hidden" bars in the city). Though it was interrupted by a rather ferocious downpour, the Veuve Cliquot Polo Classic was the perfect kickoff to summer back in June. Another one of the best local activities I discovered this summer is the floating party known as The Honorable William Wall. (Just click, trust me.) We threw alex a #minibach party in June, and that experience was a highlight of the weekend. 

Was this your best summer ever too? Tell me a story!

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