Today I begin the 100 Happy Days challenge. I just watched David Letterman’s tribute to Robin Williams. Robin was a hometown hero, spending his childhood in the same place as I. His wife asked that people remember him being happy, and how happy he made them. I want to do this challenge to honor his memory, and truly enjoy the happiness that he struggled to find. The Happy Days name coinsidence is a fun connection :) 

After watching two very moving videos about men struggling with ALS, I am overcome with happiness to be healthy, and to be blessed with a future. So, today, I am happy to be healthy.


"Anytime compassion can be contagious, it’s a good thing."

- Robin Williams, reddit AMA

Living in Manhattan, space is a quite limited (and that’s an understatement). I recently moved to my 430 square foot  apartment and downsized considerably, so many of my craft supplies got tossed or donated. Everything had to go except for the essentials (like glitter!). 

I was surprised to have a tiny nook of extra space in my Hemnes wardrobe, and it seemed quite luxurious to turn it into a fun storage area: a craft cubby.

STEP 1) Buy fun sheet of paper from a craft store or get a roll of cute wrapping paper. Cut it to fit the back panel and adhere (I mounting squares)

STEP 2) Set out the items that you have and group them in like piles (identify a couple items that can be hung and set aside). Find quirky decorative containers for each and place them on the shelf: vases, baskets, votive holders, etc.

STEP 3) Place sticky hooks on the walls where you want to hang scissors, glue gun, or other items. If they don’t lay flat, get “S hooks” at the hardware store for under $1 and that’ll get things to lay flat against the wall.

STEP 4) Slap flat items on the wall using Velcro. I have a decorative calculator I access often I velcroed to the wall. In college, my roommate and I often lost our remote controls and it really helped to velcro the thing to the wall next to the TV. Basically, velcro can be your best friend.      


"What matters in life is not what happens to you but what you remember and how you remember it."

"All human beings have three lives: public, private, and secret.” Gabriel García Márquez: a Life

Sex is the consolation you have when you can’t have love.” Memories of My Melancholy Whores

“It is not true that people stop pursuing dreams because they grow old, they grow old because they stop pursuing dreams.” 

“He was still too young to know that the heart’s memory eliminates the bad and magnifies the good, and that thanks to this artifice we manage to endure the burden of the past.” Love in the Time of Cholera

“She would not shed a tear, she would not waste the rest of her years simmering in the maggot broth of memory.” 

“Freedom is often the first casualty of war.” 

On Fidel Castro: “A man of austere habits and insatiable illusions, with an old-fashioned formal education of cautious words and subdued tones, and incapable of conceiving any idea that is not colossal.”

“She discovered with great delight that one does not love one’s children just because they are one’s children but because of the friendship formed while raising them.”

“Age has no reality except in the physical world. The essence of a human being is resistant to the passage of time. Our inner lives are eternal, which is to say that our spirits remain as youthful and vigorous as when we were in full bloom. Think of love as a state of grace, not the means to anything, but the alpha and omega. An end in itself.” 


Solving the Nurse Shortage Crisis (Infographic) | Veterinary Technician

6 (Very Different) Factors Why There’s a Nursing Shortage in the U.S.


"The United States the highest child poverty rate of any developed nation except for Romania."


Invisible Child: Dasani’s Homeless Life

Fascinating read.


I am super under the weather. I couldn’t stomach the idea of eating, but knew a brothy soup would be bearable. Luckily, my friend Lauren had linked me to a delicious onion soup recipe on a blog we both love and I had gotten the ingredients to make it. So, I mustered every ounce of energy I had to do the super easy prep:


  • 1 red onion
  • 1 white or Spanish onion
  • 1-2 Tbsp butter
  • Splash of EVOO
  • Pinch of salt
  • Reduced sodium beef broth (4-6 cups, depending on how concentrated you want the flavor)

Written instructions

  1. Slice 1 Spanish or white onion and 1 red onion thinly
  2. Put the onions in a soup pot with 1-2 Tbsp butter and a splash of EVOO and salt. Let it get brown and delicious on the stove for over an hour, stirring every 20 minutes or so. It starts to smell amazing just 10 minutes in!
  3. Once the onions are brown, add a splash of red wine (and chopped mushrooms if you’re so inclined, but I didn’t). Let that cook for 10 minutes.
  4. Add 4-6 cups beef broth & let it cook for 10+ minutes (simmer to keep warm until you serve, or eat right away like I did). 

New Yorkers are known the world round for being rude and ruthless. I spent the past 36 hours in New York and saw so much kindness, many of which were random acts. To spread the love, I wanted to share what they did with you.

1. Cabbie Kindness After a 7-mile walk around the city looking at apartments in the bitter cold, my realtor was going to treat us to a cab ride back to the office. Upon entering the cab, she noticed the meter wasn’t on and told the cab driver. He said he was going to take us to our destination for free because it’s on his way home. He wouldn’t even accept a tip, just insisted on wishing us a happy new year. (Greenwich Village to Chelsea)

2. Welcome Drinks My friend’s cousin (who I essentially just met 30 minutes earlier) picked up the tab for not only one but both of my glasses of wine. (Upper East Side)

3. The Fallen Wallet Walking down the street I saw a man grab a woman’s hand to stop her as he bent over quickly to pick up her fat check book that had just fallen. She clearly hadn’t realized it had flopped out of her purse and he didn’t hesitate to give it back despite how easy it would have been to keep. (Upper West Side)

4. Travel Tips From a Stranger to Avoid Fees I found an apartment I loved on Monday and was in the middle of the invasive, expensive and extensive application/rental process on Tuesday. Due to a mix-up along the way, I was going to miss my original flight on American Airlines. I called to rebook, anticipating at minimum a lengthy and painful pleading process since I had already checked in. Instead, the woman said I needed to talk with the Aadvantage desk, and offered me a tip to avoid fees. (Her expert tip: There was a weather notice in Chicago, so she told me to bring that up and ask to rebook on a later flight for that reason. It worked!)

5. Above-and-Beyond Realtor I understand that realty is a service industry and realtors usually work weird hours. However, the realtor I lucked out finding was available at all hours of the day, was extremely friendly and honest, and worked with her team and the landlord from every angle to help me get the apartment I really wanted before I left town. On top of getting the lengthy process done in record time (working nights weekends and holidays), she also got me a discount on rent. Her name is Etie Kahn in case anyone else in New York needs a real estate agent!

I am so happy to be moving to New York, and love all the good vibes all around. Mental note: I need to sign up on NewYorkCares.org so I can volunteer to do things like walk dogs the shelter my friend Lauren does and keep the good vibes flowing.