Thanks to the Dads–Happy Father’s Day

Happy Father’s Day to all of the dads out there. Dads are pretty great–they usually get to the be the fun ones who say YES all the time and who act like kids themselves while playing with their little ones! They are the best hand holders, shoulder-carriers, chasers, cheerleaders, luggage luggers, bike leaders, river crossers, wave jumpers, tickle monsters, and more! I can’t believe it’s been two years since my husband celebrated his first father’s day, and my dad is celebrating his 40th (and 34 years of putting up with all four of his kids–I’m impressed!)

To DG–It’s been a year of adventure for all of us, and of accomplishment for you–and it’s been a joy to share both. Witnessing what a great dad you are with our daughter makes me feel very lucky…I can’t wait to see how we handle the chaos of two little ones this fall! Happy Father’s Day! xo

Announcing…Summer Sessions!!

June is in full swing! I can’t wait for warm toes in the sand, gentle sea breezes, incredible light, and SUMMER PORTRAIT SESSIONS-my fave! I’ll be on the road a bunch this summer and will be holding portrait and engagement sessions along the way at three of my favorite locations.


Nantucket, MA–June 26th–July 6th, August dates TBA
Madison, CT –July 7th–July 10th
Watch Hill, RI– July 24th–August 2nd

I hold only 2 sessions a day, one in the morning and one in the early evening to take advantage of soft summer light.
Any location can be accommodated…a beach, your yard, a lighthouse, farm, beach club, golf club, or on a boat– you name it!

All portrait sessions last 1-2 hours and you can expect about 50 custom edited images. This is a lifestyle session–I want to capture your children’s and family’s personality in a natural way. I try to let kids be kids and avoid a lot of formally posed photographs. I aim for real smiles and fun!

Session times are limited and fill quickly. I’m offering a special deal for first time clients and throwing in some extras in the spirit of summer fun!

Call 646.770.5905 or email for complete pricing and booking details. I look forward to seeing you this summer!

Urban Gardening 101–New York, NY

It’s the end of May, and gardeners everywhere are flocking to local nurseries and farms to choose summer plantings and become one with the messy soil of their backyard. As a city dweller, I only have a teeny-tiny piece (about 5 ft x 2.5 ft) of private outdoor space in my life–not counting the many gorgeous parks and river paths that are just outside of our front door and our beautiful shared roof deck. Since I love flowers and gardening, this might seem less than ideal, but I wouldn’t trade the urban bustle–not yet at least–for a suburban yard. (Would I take a huge outdoor city terrace? Sure, but I’ll keep dreaming!) I absolutely love the convenience of city livin’- from running across the street to the bodega as I’m cooking dinner because I forgot to buy milk, to walking my daughter to school, and having my dry cleaning, food, and EVERYTHING delivered right to our door. But giving up gardening space is the trade off.

However, each May I set out to beautify my sliver of outdoor space with window boxes. Some might not even call it a space– it’s the top of a big bay window (thank you architecture!) and is only accessible through our center living room window. Getting the flowers planted each year is a bit of an ordeal, one that causes many eye-rolls from my husband, but here’s how it goes:

  • I purchase the plants in Connecticut for the best selection and price (shout out to Moscarillo’s), load up our already jammed car trunk, and then drive them back to our urban digs 4 stories up in the sky. Flower choice is also limiting, since our window is north facing and only receives early morning sunlight. I always choose jazzy colors, like orange, pink, and purple. Over the years, I’ve figured out what thrives best, but each year I’m tempted to get something new and different. And each year I learn my lesson–to stick to what works–three years ago, I tried rosemary, which I knew needed more sunlight, and two years ago I tried gerbera daisies. Both were an epic fail. This year I’m sticking to the classics: begonias, basil, a pretty creeping purple petunia (appropriately titled Callie Dark Blue after my daughter), and pink verbena. Ivy, mint, and impatiens have also worked well in the past.
  • In multiple trips, I schlep the flowers and bags of soil up to our 4th floor apartment (with help of eye-rolling hubby).  This year it took me three days to get to the planting, so the flowers ended up in our bathtub for a bit, where I could easily water them and not make a mess!
  • Once I’m ready to dirty up the living room, I place a clear painting tarp down on the floor, so I can make a mess on it while planting, and then roll it up for easy cleanup. I carefully maneuver my three planters inside through the narrow window. Regretfully, I’ve left them out all winter and they’re now filled with dead plants and rock hard soil. I empty them, aka, messily fill a garbage bag with last year’s summer color and happiness, which are now bone dry and sad.
  • I fill the boxes with good, fresh container soil, and then carefully arrange and re-arrange where each plant should go. The water reserves on each box have to face the front center window for watering access, while the plants that spread have to go on the outside so they can grow gracefully over the edge of the bay window. The basil must be in the exact middle where it’s easily accessible to cut from my center window, and where it will grow tall enough to block our view of the ugly 1960’s building across the street! It’s a lot of planning, but once it’s all figured out and color coordinated, I go ahead and dig in.
  • Watering. There’s no way around it, it’s a total PITA. I have no water source in the front of our long, narrow apartment, so I fill gallon milk containers and 2L soda bottles in our tub and then huff them out to the living room. This usually results in several trips each week and lots of dripping water on our shiny new hardwood floors. I dream of having a hose! Because of this, I use special window boxes that have a water reserve area in the bottom. These also come in handy as we vacation a lot during the hot summer months and I know the flowers can hold out for four-ish days without me having to harass a neighbor to water our plants.
  • Final step: enjoy! All summer I can reach out the window and snip basil for fresh pesto, lemon mint for homemade lemonade, or simply smile at my own personal splash of color that accentuates my view of bustling Amsterdam Avenue.

City Gardening Tips:

  • Choose plants wisely- they should be hardy ones that don’t need a lot of attention and sunlight- they’re hard to get and a pain to plant, so make it count!
  • Use good soil, specifically for containers, and fertilize every few weeks.
  • Buy window boxes that have a water reserve.
  • Make sure the boxes weigh enough or are anchored, to keep them safe for pedestrians below.
  • Plant fresh herbs for use in cooking and summer cocktail. Farm to table? Try windowsill to table!
  • Enjoy the process–those splashes of floral color are your own small piece of summer happiness.



Fine Art Friday–Escape–Freycinet National Park, Tasmania

I can almost feel the rush of cars, trains, and planes all heading out of the city as fast as they can today, as people embark on the weekend that ushers in SUMMER. I’m happy to say that we are staying put this weekend, which I actually think will be the most relaxing thing of all!

Here’s to finding your zen/quiet spot of relaxation on this long weekend…Happy Friday!

After the Rain, Freycinet National Park, Tasmania, Australia, 2013

M-O-M–New York, NY

M–O–M=Master of Mania? Mom of Minis? Major of Minions? Hah, if only I could come up with a definition of a Mom; but really, it’s all encompassing and can’t be described, though this awesome/hilarious You Tube video on the World’s Toughest Job certainly comes close! If you haven’t seen it yet, you’ve got to take a peek.

Last year, I wrote about how the big and the small moments matter. So do the “good” and the “bad”. The other night, my daughter lay face down on our hallway rug, shirtless and hysterically sobbing. She was in the midst of an epic meltdown–the world was ending because it was time for bed and I had the nerve to try to brush her teeth, change her sopping diaper, and put on her pajamas. Through my seething frustration, I took a deep breath and thought to myself “God Bless my Mother”…mostly because I see so much of myself in my daughter–her desire to be independent, to stay up late, to negotiate all details of her life, to not miss out on anything fun. And because my mom smiles knowingly at my recent frustrations and shares that I used to be the exact same way! Lucky her. I always knew that being a mom was tough; but until I became a mother three years ago, I really had NO idea the kind of selfless love and unending patience that my mom has given to my three siblings and me for over thirty years. I’m definitely in awe–so thank you, even though thank you is not enough.


To my Little C,

Frustrating evenings and exhausting days aside, this new chapter in my life is humbling and challenging but also rewarding. I’m sure I’ll miss these little battles when you get older and need me less–when you might go to your room and want your privacy, instead of asking me to read “just three more books” or to sleep “just two more minutes” snuggled next to you. I savor those quiet moments in the dark when you clutch my face with both hands and say “mommy, you are my besssst friend.” Or when you get off the elevator at school, spot me in the crowd, and run toward me with wild abandon repeatedly shouting “mommy! mommy!” before planting a huge hug on me. There may even be future moments where I miss you wanting to sit ON my lap as I try to edit photos and send work emails (very effective for work productivity). But I’m still touched by how much you just want to BE with me. Hopefully I’ve got a few more years to soak it all up before the days arrive when you are embarrassed to be seen with me! Your heart melting moments of sweetness do trump your infuriating moments of defiance. And seeing the world through your enthusiastic eyes is truly wonderful.


So on this Hallmark holiday, I want to say thanks to my mom for being the best ever, and to my daughter, for giving me the gift of being a mom.

Moms- what has been your biggest challenge as a mom?
Kids–Is there anything you’d like to say to your mom?
Share it here in the comments!! 

Bottom photos by Clare at Your Life Through A Lens Photography