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last things

(this was written back in October, but I just rediscovered it on my computer and it felt like something that needed published)

tonight I started “Gossip Girl” because Britt and I were talking about it in Brooklyn last week and I became aware of the fact that I might just have a gaping hole in my teenage-hood. also she something about how when they were producing the show they did major ethnographies to figure out what upper east side teenage life was really like, which is super rad.

life is at a weird phase. i feel like I’m in-between. i’m feeling antsy and restless, but i’m not at the point where i don’t want to work, so that’s good. it feels like there’s something more coming, maybe soon. because sometimes this “i’m going to get to new york city” mentality is a little lonely. ha, and sometimes you need a 40-minute mental break for the first episode of Gossip Girl.

i have a hunch that today was the last experience-able fall saturday. meaning the last one before it’s too cold to be pleasantly outside. so when i should have spent all my minutes doing homework on my bed, i ran to Swig for a Dr. Pepper and took my hammock and my homework to the elementary school field that was home to a few solid hammocking sessions this summer. it’s weird to think that i’m living a series of “lasts” again.

technically this was my last homecoming week. weird. I might have not actually participated in any of the homecoming activities (whoops…the intentions were there a year ago…), but it was still the last.

there’s this AJR song that I just turned on called “come hang out.” i just turned it on for the first time since probably the summer. it has this one line – “yep, yep, I’m gonna miss this someday.” and I’m already feeling it.

but back to lasts. mostly last Provo things. the last Provo fall. the last Provo Canyon leaves. I just had my last Provo summer. soon my last Provo Halloween will be over.

this place has been such a good home for the past three years. I grew up here. I (somewhat) figured out so many of the goals and ambitions that I have that are so integral to who I am now. my feminist side came out here. my career woman side came out here. new york city became a reality here (thanks, advertising!). i met my best friends here — friends of a caliber and kindred spirit-ness that i would have never ever imagined that i would find.

so many good things. moving on is a good thing, but I’m so grateful for all the goodness that has been life these past few years.

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some pictures


enjoy some randomness from life lately. it’s a good place these days.


because when you discover lighting that makes you look like the sun-kissed babes you are, you don’t let that opportunity slide by.


meet sylvia, my creative outlet.

IMG_0314IMG_0298IMG_0320 2

the ajr concert was lit. (in the very mormon implication of that word)


i found this house on my run today. it has a bookcase on its porch, so i think should be friends with whoever lives there.

ajr has a song that says, “yep, yep I’m gonna miss this someday.” life feels so normal and mundane right now, but i think i’m going to miss it when the next phase happens.

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in the details


not my photo, all credit goes to (the best stock photo site. ever.). i’ve been antsy for Oregon (really for any kind of travel), so this is currently the my phone wallpaper. anyone want to take me with them to the coast??

life is a good place. and i say that all the time, but it really, really is. things are looking up, but even if they weren’t looking up life would still be a good place.

in the temple today i was reminded that Heavenly Father is in all good things. the past month (probably even couple of months?) have been really tough, and i found myself really straining to make sense of the Lord’s hand in my life. but looking back i am able to see all the tender mercies—all the small details—that have helped get me through. lovely parks. sunshine. random snow. new music. a calling. books. notes and texts from loved ones. strength. and maybe most of all, incredible friends.

when i was searching for a large life-shift as evidence of the Lord’s love for me, i didn’t realize that love being manifested every single day in the small pieces that have helped me dig deep through this time and grow in the ways that i’ve needed to. life gets hard so we can learn and grow and move closer to being the person that we have the potential to be.

and faith—even a little bit of it—brings so much strength.

mosiah 4:9 will forever be one of my favorite scriptures: “believe in God; believe that he is, that that he created all things, both in heaven and in earth; believe that he has all wisdom, and all power, both in heaven and in earth; believe that man doth not comprehend all the things which the Lord can comprehend.”

everything is under control. everything happens for a reason. i’m so grateful for that knowledge.

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summer is good.


good things of today:

– Spotify curated playlists

– the temple with grandparents

– Bombay House

– options.

– my brand spanking new dinosaur library card

– reading Mansfield Park on the lawn by my apartment

– good people

– the most perfect weather

– the spontaneity that only summer can truly afford

{We’re just trying the blog thing out again because, you know, why not?}

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{random, mostly unrelated photo because blog posts need photos, right? but it’s an exciting photo because my hot best friend got married yesterday! aren’t Mikelle and Aubrey straight babes?}

Hi there! Welcome back to the blog. Yup, haven’t posted on here in over a year, what up?!

I’m in a weird phase of life at the moment. I kind of feel like I don’t really have a purpose. I mean, I kind of do, but I kind of don’t. I just don’t have one “thing” to focus my energy and emotions into at the moment, and I usually have something like that, so I’m a little lost.

The past months have been full of lots of things not working out. And now I’m sitting here Provo in May without a job, without an internship, without any dating prospects, without any advertising projects, one best friend just went on a mission, and another best friend just got married. Whooooo.

The past few months have been hard. Lots of small but drastic changes, lots of growing pains.

I’ve learned a lot though. And I’m still learning. I know that there are ways for me to learn and grow in this phase of life that are necessary for me to become the person that I have the potential to become. Except that doesn’t make it much easier haha. But I’m grateful for that perspective.

I was looking through my unpublished posts a while back and I stumbled on something I wrote that I think is semi-profound. (Heck, I feel like everything I used to write was at least semi-profound, if not super-profound haha.) This was a thought I had in Relief Society that I jotted down:

“Look for the evidence of the Lord in your struggles.”

{goodness, where on earth did the Tess go that wrote things like that on the regular???}

So I’m trying to choose to look for the light and the good things and the meaning. The Lord’s hand is in all things—all things.

Another reoccurring thought I’ve had recently is that with all the things aren’t happening for me right now, none of it is divine oversight. It’s not like Heavenly Father just forgot about me, or let things slide a bit while he’s focusing more on other people. None of it is oversight. It’s all part of a beautiful, complete, perfect plan. I’m grateful for the knowledge that I have of Heavenly Father’s involvement in our lives.

Things will work out. Doors will open. In the meantime, I’m so grateful for the lots and lots of good things—for the best friends ever, and the temple, and sleep, and summer, and Spotify, and oatmeal, and a car, and Provo, and books. Life is really so good. It’s filled with so much light and tender mercies are so real. And my best friends are doing incredible things! Missions and marriage are awesome, and I support them 100%, don’t worry. :)

This post isn’t super well-constructed, but I kind of just wanted to write a few thoughts. And I deleted my email list (whoops, sorry friends!) because it makes me feel semi-weird to think that some people get my random deep thoughts sent to their inbox. Not that this blog is private or anything—anyone can read it and that’s totally fine. I just haven’t posted in eternity and it felt a little weird. Mostly I’m just writing for myself, so I don’t care much about followers anymore.

So yeah, life is weird and kind of rough depending on the time of day, but mostly good. And I really do think good things are coming. Lots of things can be good if you just look at them in the right way.


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because I love my life

Guys. Advertising is just so cool. SO COOL. I can’t even handle it. And holy cow, I haven’t posted here AT ALL the last few months, but last semester was crazy, so sorry about that. You’re getting no promises, but at least here’s some semblance of a post.

And I don’t have time for a lot of words now, but I just want to tell the universe about how advertising is just so cool. It’s pure brilliance, and it’s so fun, and I just love it.

I’m so grateful I’ve somehow stumbled onto this thing that I love so much. A year ago, I had no concept at all of the radness (sure, radness can be a word) of the advertising world. I was in such a different place in my life, it’s crazy. Not a bad place, just way different, with different goals and motivations and ideas about where I wanted my life to go. But things change, thank goodness. And I’m in love with where I am now. I’m so grateful I somehow found advertising, and somehow got into one of the top ad programs in the country, and I’m so grateful for all the opportunities I’ve already had, and that I will continue to have.

I’ve learned so much about myself in the past 8 months or so. It’s pretty much the coolest thing in the world to hear my professor say things in my ad class right now that completely resonate with the inner part of me that very few people ever get to see. I see all these connections to personality attributes I’ve developed all my life, and it’s the best thing ever to see that those random quirks {ex: people watching and conversational writing and loving NYC primarily because of all the humanity} actually have a place and a use in a career. A legit career. I can be creative and intelligent and sometimes casual and do all the thinking about people’s motivations all at the same time, for the same goal. It all fits together, and I love love love it.

Life is just so rad. So, so, so great. Human truths and consumer insights and account planning are the coolest ever. I just want to talk about it all to everyone. My friends are going to get real tired real quick of me spouting off advertising excitements. Whoops, sorry guys.

I feel like my life is just exploding into this beautiful, rich mixture of things I’m in love with, and continuing to fall in love with, and I’m watching it happen right in front of me, and it makes me so giddy. I have the best friends, the best family, the best major,  some great opportunities, and some incredible truths keeping me grounded. I’m absolutely amazed by how incredible the Lord’s ways are.

Also, last thought: change is annoying, and uncomfortable, but it leads to incredible things.


Other places to find me (a.k.a. let’s be friends!):

Bloglovin’ >>> Life and Loveliness

Instagram >>> @tessabrynnk

Twitter >>> @tessabrynnk

Pinterest >>> Tessa Kohler