September 30, 2011

Upstate of mind

 A couple weekends ago we took a little roadtrip to visit some places upstate. Ithaca, church history sites, and Niagara Falls (which I've been spelling wrong my whole life).  So fun!  I love weekend trips with my little family.  Joe and I thoroughly enjoyed just driving and talking, having uninterrupted days together.  We loved watching Ellie discover new things, the weather was beautiful, the air was fresh - I know I'm rambling, but seriously, this trip was just the refreshing break we needed as a family.

We went up mostly to check out Cornell University, in the hopes that we may one day spend a couple years up there.  I fell in love with Ithaca, New York.  IN LOVE!  I am not in love with the fact that I loaded my first roll film incorrectly and I'm pretty sure all my black and white photos from the trip will be no-shows.  BUT, to make up for that bummer, here are some digital snaps and a list of all the things I found to love about Ithaca - in no particular order of course.
  • the landscape (clean clean air, wildflowers, so many trees)
  • waterfalls and hiking trails just begging to be explored
  • quaint, quaint houses everywhere
  • charming downtown area with shops, live music, great atmosphere
  • shopping - would you believe it? Ithaca feels like it's in the middle of nowhere, and yet it is so much easier to get to Target, Payless, Taco Bell (you know I love it) and a number of other stores than it is here in Manhattan.
  • friendly people everywhere  - I forgot how nice shopkeepers could be
  • farmer's market - it's huge from what I hear
  • community garden AND a children's garden (cuter than I can stand)
  • roller derby - advertised on a hand-painted sign
  • foodie paradise - glenwood pines, collegetown bagels, purity ice cream, Ithaca root beer (and that's just one weekend)
  • awesome science center
  • apple harvest festival
  • winter sports (this is Joe's thing, but I could give it a shot)
  • public pool with a water slide
  • vineyards and orchards everywhere
  • fireplaces and wood burning stoves
  • Cornell campus - so so gorgeous
  • garage sales and antique malls - it's embarrassing how much I love this stuff
Do you see it, friends?  Do you see how Ithaca and I were just born to be together?  Is my enthusiasm coming through the internet strong enough?  Wow.  I love so much about being in New York City right now, but this little vacation showed me that I have got to get away more often.

September 23, 2011

Fashion Friday: silly styles

Guess who found last year's Halloween costume and insisted on wearing it for most of the day?
And guess who refused to go to church without BOTH teddy bears?
A friend who saw us said, "Sometimes it's just a two bear day."
So true.

I'm so glad to have this little girl in my life.  Seriously, I would be lacking in joy if I didn't have a teddy bear toting, zoned out strawberry baby to hang out with each day.

Hey You!

Dear Able-Bodied Man who refused to help my 7-month-pregnant-self get the stroller up the stairs at the train stop,
Jesus says I should love you, but it's hard sometimes.
Real hard.

I still love NYC.  For so many reasons.  But some rainy days just really test my patience.

September 15, 2011

Summer's End

Summer 2011 was great!  I think the best indicator of our summer success is Ellie's adorable sandal tan - I'm going to miss it when it fades.  Governor's Island was at the top of my Summer To-Do list and we all really enjoyed it.  It was the perfect mish-mash of random cool stuff.  There were historic houses, children's art projects, lots of grass for running, trapeze classes to watch, and a yoga festival.  What a unique experience we had, so close to Manhattan yet so far removed.  We plan on returning, next time with bicycles to cruise around on and money for ice cream.
Please excuse my total lack of control with the exposure.  I love my Instax mini, but I'm still figuring out how to use it. 

Summer 2011 - you were great.  Thanks for the adventures!

September 12, 2011


I have plans for more posts on this blog very soon - but I just put up some photos I'm quite proud of on my photography blog.  Head over and check them out.

NYC friends - these pictures have got me itching to get out and have a photo adventure.  I need to shoot more personal work.  Who wants to come?  We could give ourselves a theme, a location, and make an afternoon of it.  Come on!! It will be fun.

September 2, 2011

Family Vacation 2011: Bear Lake (part II)

I had intentions of shooting some personal work while we were on vacation.  You know, early morning walks along the shore - landscapes and details.  But it turns out I was way too busy sleeping in, eating milkshakes, hanging out in the sun and playing cards to make time for photography.  So all these pictures are pretty much snapshots for the benefit of our family history.

While at Bear Lake, we celebrated Nate's 5th Birthday.  There were water balloons, cupcakes and presents!
Ellie was pretty sure water balloons were the coolest thing anyone had ever given her.
Nate received some pretty great gifts AND a birthday kiss from Eleanor.
Of course we had to take a photo of the whole group.
This vacation was so much fun - I can't wait for next year!
Aside from the hair and skin tone (give me a break, I live in NY), I think Sean and I are starting to look more and more alike as we get older. 
Sometimes it freaks me out.
Smile real big if you love Bear Lake!

Family Vacation 2011: Bear Lake (part I)

This was our second annual Hardie Family Vacation that we started doing each summer with Joe's parents and siblings.  Coming from a family that never really did extended family vacations, I happen to think this is the best tradition ever!  Last summer we kicked it off in Branson, MO which is where Joe's parents spent their honeymoon and where they took a number of trips as a family growing up.  This year the location was Bear Lake, ID.  My sister in law Mandee's family has a cabin up there and we had SO MUCH FUN!  It was definitely one of the highlights of our summer.  Here are some photos to show you what we did.
There was a lot of time spent out on the lake.
I stayed in the boat and shot photos, most everyone else enjoyed wakeboarding.
worst photo-bomb ever!  Sorry I missed your big jump, honey.
Becca and Joe working it like models in the back of the boat.
Gracie had some solid runs on the wakeboard.
After capturing one wipe-out, I finally understood the real joy of photographing water sports.
Becca still managed to look decent, even in a life vest that was 10 times too big for her.
Then it was Carl's turn - and boy did he give us a good show!
Then Dave turn a spin on the slalom, but the rest of the time he was driving the boat.
Thanks Dave!
Hands down, my favorite person to watch was my brother Sean.
He had the best wipe-outs ever and his facial expressions were priceless.
Seriously, I've never seen someone biff it on a wakeboard the way he did.
These photos make me laugh every time I see them.
There's something so great about seeing your little brother like this.