Monday, May 18, 2015

Hiraeth



I found this on pinterest, and made me think of all the times I miss places of my past - places that were never my home, places I'm sure I'll never return, places I've been to in my dreams and places that are so etched in my memory that even when I'm driving down a street I almost think I'm there again. 

I'm an ultra sensitive person, which I really don't like and have worked on it forever. When I moved to Mississippi it was like a shock to my system. The landscape was so different from what I was use to. Gone was busy Route 1 with car dealerships and pizza places or the hidden treasures of Stony Creek and Pine Orchard where I use to swim and find seashells as a child. Replaced was the Gulf Coast, the Antebellum homes with the sweeping, hauntingly beautiful Spanish Moss trees. I tried to find familiarity in a place that was so unknown to me. Growing up by the water, I found solace in walking along the I-110 boardwalk, with the ocean and glittering casinos in the background. 


After awhile, I found little places that made me feel comfortable: namely my room where I had all my fairy statuettes on my window sill and a poster with a blonde pin up I got in Kerrville, Texas on my wall. I still remember the way the outlets I worked at looked at dusk, or the way the living room looked when I first walked in. Or the way the kitchen floor felt on my legs when after some devastating news, I sat on my back against one of the cabinets and called my mom crying. The way the light fixture looked and how the sun came in through the blinds, casting striped shadows. I still remember the way the laundry room smelled. I remember seeing the most colorful red, pink sunsets I ever seen in my life.

Even back in Connecticut, places I still go to now, the memory of what it was like when I was younger still feels like a piece of my home. My grandparents have a beach cottage tucked away in Mansfield Grove and playing outside with my cousins under the sun, the way the sand felt - the creak of the patio swing all has been cemented in my mind.

In so many ways, the places I've been and spent time in and laughed and found beauty in have all been places I felt at home with and at the same time, they are all places of my past. I have found myself over the years, looking at my phone or out the window, looking for places to go when I need to be present where I am. I love traveling and finding coffeeshops with amazing 7 layer bars and cappuccinos or boutiques that have handcrafted jewelry or abandoned docks that you can sit on and watch the boats and sun set. But I also learned to make a home with the people I love, with where I am, and to continue to strive to make a happier, healthier better life in the process.


Monday, May 11, 2015

Spring Style

My favorite season is FINALLY upon us! And even though I have this sneaking suspicion that it will really feel like summer, I love Spring style - the light colors, the florals, the feminine details. Here's my favorite looks of the season so far



Okay, I'm not sure if I have the guts or the body to wear this outfit, but I adore it. Maxis tend to be problematic for me since I am so tall they often hit a little above the ankle. The boots are killer but I think a little too cool for me, and for the top? I'd need a black cardigan to cover it up. But for those who can pull this off: Kudos. I love it. The top is from Nordstrom and the rest can be found at ShopStyle.


I love this look, very Dirty Dancing! From the pink skirt to the white lace top, perfect for a Spring party! Courtesy of fashforfashion !



I love this beautiful white maxi dress, simple yet stunning. You can find it at ModMint along with some other gorgeous clothes and accessories!


This Chiffon butterfly maxi dress is just too breathtaking. I just want to be in and twirl, twirl, twirl. From Luulla


This sunny, yellow dress is from O'Neill!



To Be Your Own Soul Mate


  I consider myself a nostalgic person, always looking at old pictures, sifting through memories with a glossy filter over them. I try to remember them as more magical and beautiful as some really were. This comes to relationships too. It's easy when you miss someone to remember the times you were sitting outside in the sun listening to reggae or playing each other songs before bed or drinking smoothies in the morning and commenting on how it's finally warming up. 

     Sometimes it's easier to forget the blizzards, the times when you felt alone in their company - the person that's suppose to give you love. You push aside the times you get scolded at for just wanting a hug or the times you just want to feel not alone and scared but you fall asleep alone watching someone's back moving slowly up and down - while they breath softly and comfortably as they sleep. You are alone in the same bed, but it might as well be on another island with your insomnia, and thoughts and loneliness. You can't make someone else your happiness. You have to be happy on your own. Those are things we are told, and those are things that are true. 

   I know I'd love to find a soul mate but at this juncture in my life, when I look back and see common threads of relationships - the emotional abuse, the control, the sadness - I realize there is something I'm going for that is completely toxic to my heart, my mind, my spirit and only I can work on that, alone.  So my soul mates will be coffee shops with journals and pens by my side, sitting on the floor of dimly lit bookstores with a dress covering my legs and ankles with books all around me full of pages of worlds I have yet to learn about. I'll find soul mates in the shade of a beautiful tree or the magenta's and pure whites of a beautiful flower. I'll find love in lacy parasols and my feet in the sand of a hidden beach, or my feet in sneakers ready to run - to build strength in my body and heart. Sometimes in life you have to be your own best friend, but you always have to be the one that loves you, no matter how hard that can be sometimes. You'll find love with another person one day, until then, coffee shops, and lilac gardens and rummaging tag sales for antique perfume bottles can be your love. It can be a beautiful love that helps you become a strong, better you that accepts a love that is kind and gentle.




Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Best Of My Love

          


              It's hard writing a post about a relationship that's still in progress, or under construction, or just on shaky ground. It hasn't ended so you can't sit back and sift through the good and bad like they are Polaroids. It's not comfortable enough where you can finish what you have to write and know that as Guns n Roses sang "If we could take the time to lay it on the line, I could rest my head just knowin' that you were mine".  I accept this challenge, though, to describe a love in my life the best and most lyrical way possible.

       We were friends first, bonding over Magic Hats and music under starry Spring nights in river-front New Haven. I had a lot going on in my head, as did you and to getaway for awhile, to laugh and dance (usually to music I didn't like) was vital. I could leave my sadness at home and just go out with a summer dress and sandals and come back smiling - that I could - for a couple hours leave all the baggage of my life at the door. One of the first times we hung out, we and a group of friends went to Providence to see a jam band you really liked. I dyed my hair pink and I wore a black dress and pink scarf and some long necklace. You said you liked my style. Maybe it was all game. But It made me smile. It was hard for me to smile and laugh much, then. I stole a daffodil from your lawn once and texted you about it, and you texted me back simply "You can have whatever you want". 


   Over time, like many summer friendships, it started to fade into the background as we both pursued other relationships. Those didn't work and as the summer faded into fall, I found myself alone. I would read books under the warm Autumn sunlight on the Guilford Green, I'd take pictures of abandoned beaches, foliage, pumpkins, sunsets. I'd eat tofu scramblers alone or drive along the prettiest roads in Madison listening to The Rolling Stones. I wasn't lonely, I was in a spot in my life where I was growing. I let the toxicity of my past relationship go and was embracing a calmer life.  And that's where, somehow, you came back into my life. We talked a lot about life and relationships and started spending more and more time together. By Halloween we were "official" (although after the age of 25 does anyone really need to ask "Will you be my boyfriend/girlfriend?). I was dressed as Cinderella and had a good amount of Magic Hats so it seemed like a great idea. I still think it was a great idea.

      But all relationships have their complications.. Once the new year hit, we broke up. It seemed 2015 had a whole lot in store for us though.. 
 Eventually in life we all have to keep moving forward. You were there for me, you were, and I remember my mom being concerned about my health. Her caring nature made me think how little I had seen her. I'm at the age where I should be well out the house but every night I kept thinking I missed her. I'll never forget the phone call that she was unresponsive. I rushed to Yale ER and called you ten thousand times, updating you on every little thing. I couldn't think of a more supportive person. My mom had two brain aneurysms and was in the ICU for two weeks. I stayed at your house, depleted, barely getting any sleep or nutrience. You were a godsend. We'd both see my mother. The first time was tough then it got easier, we'd all laugh and joke. You eased my mind. We seemed to finally have a rhythm, It seemed like me and you and us together every day was meant to be. My mom got stronger and stronger each day and I felt better and better. Every night, we would smoke and listen to music and you'd act out music videos and I'd laugh and laugh. It felt so good after this year of loss and family emergencies to be silly and to feel in love.


 I been with someone too much like me, and I don't want that. I liked that you were different. You liked my weird and artsy thing. And I totally dig your vibe. I want things to work out and as of now I'm trying to write the best pages of us, not knowing if it'll be the final chapter or not. Life is complicated. I also know if you don't want that, I have no choice but to write my book alone. But I have faith in love, in better days, in writing and writing, and that life has a way of working itself out - sometimes the way we want, sometimes in ways we didn't realize. I know my heart is full of love and cherry blossoms and faith and guitar solos and unwritten pages. I hope those pages are about us, a good, harmonious strong us.  





Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Spring: My Life in Pictures

I'll be the first to admit once October hit, my writing and blogging took an intermission. There was new love, winter and the depression that sets in my soul, holidays, the prolonged winter, the stress of relationships, my health and loss, and my mother's serious health condition (more on that later) that has left me spinning and thinking 2015 has been pretty tough, but I'm glad I'm old enough/mature enough to handle everything in the best, healthiest way possible. At least, for the most part! 

My instagram, you can find me there, has been a consistent outlet for me. Here are the images of my Spring so far:


Me on Easter. The dress is Charlotte Russe. The pose is...well, I'm not sure.


Cherry Blossoms from the Annual Wooster Square Cherry Blossom Festival in New Haven this year.


I wore this to the New Haven's Quinnipiac River Fest this past Weekend. Black floral Kimono also from Charlotte Russe and the flower crown is from Forever21


Easter Gifts to myself: Bunny ears and Cupcakes and Cashmere by Emily Schumann and another flower crown all purchased at Francesca's



Beautiful blossoms over Wallingford, CT this past weekend!

What Has Your Spring Been Like??



*All photography by me, Courtney Grace Barrett



Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Winter: Life Through Pictures Part 2

March is here! With snow! And freezing rain! And cold! Will it ever end?

I hope so, I really do. I like the other 3 seasons New England has to offer but Winter leaves me cold, exhausted and uninspired. I feel like I'm always looking out the window daydreaming of another place.



February 4th - I went to dinner with wonderful mom and brother Paul (My brother Connor was working) and we had a nice dinner and my mom gave me a card and a new Alex and Ani bracelet with a funny monkey charm!


I love having time in the morning to drink coffee in vintage lace dresses. I had received Warsan Shire's Teaching My Mother How to Give Birth and Shinji Moon's The Anatomy of Being and they both have inspired, haunted, and illuminated my days and nights.


On my birthday, February 5th, I felt sentimental and looked through old Polaroids. 
Top Left clockwise: Me as a Baby, My Maternal Grandparents Paul & Pauline (R.I.P)
and my mother Melanie with me, Me sitting on my Mother's lap, and baby me and my dad laughing.



Up top: At Mohegan Sun! Birthday Dress courtesy of Joyce Leslie
Bottom: Me with Beautiful Birthday Roses!


Back to reality: Relaxing with tea and magazines with some of my favorite babes (Margot Robbie, Candice Swanepoel and Taylor Swift!)


Although it is not indictive of what's going on outside my window I had to snap these beautiful flowers at Edge of the Woods Market in New Haven. 


What does your winter look like?

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Winter: Life Through Pictures

        January and February (and yes even March) are my least favorite months. The colder and darker the months the less energy I get. Being so cold I don't want to ever leave my house. I'm trying to fight this lethargy and keep my life as active and as interesting as possible even if it means enjoying the mundane things in life!


I absolutely love these NorthFace boots I bought at Denali right in the heart of New Haven. Not only are they comfortable but they are durable. Last year I went through 5-6 pairs of boots that were inexpensive but cute. 


I'm loving this "C" mug I got at TJ Maxx...only 2.99!! 


New Year's Day. This was my New's Year Day. No deep thoughts or going to the gym, just me in a comfortable dress drinking coffee flipping through old vogues. Can you say bliss?


I went to get a mani/pedi done at my favorite Nail Salon - Sera Nails in Branford, CT. After I walked to the window and took this shot. I love how beautiful and quaint Branford's town green is. 


And my hands with my gel manicure, touching the freezing cold rail. Ah, winter!