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currently // on independence and new york and the like

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reading all the new york city books i can get my hands on.

craving travel. europe sounds like a fantastic idea right about now. ukraine, anyone? and new york too {but that’s pretty much a given}.

also craving the mountains and the forest and nature. and trying to figure out how i find it enjoyable to swim in high mountain lakes created by snowmelt, but when our water heater stops working and i have to take a freezing cold shower i can barely bring myself to stick a toe in. {mini-story: then the plumber comes and fixes the water heater and all seems well in the world until your roommate comes home later and the whole apartment smells like gas, so there’s a slight concern that your house is going to explode (is that a thing?). and she calls management and they look at it and the pilot light has gone out but the plumber can’t come back until tomorrow so that means no hot water at least until tomorrow morning. and i haven’t washed my hair since sunday because dry shampoo is great and the low-maintenance life is the best, although it’s getting to the point where it really needs some shampoo. plan of action: go on a killer run in the morning, jump in the shower as soon as i get home so the cold water feels excellent. end of mini-story.}

watching this commercial over and over again. dang. NYC + style + mindblowing-ly profound copy. plus armani has all these other short film-esque commercials in this series that are so. good.

remembering just how much i love writing. and reading. and remembering that it’s so important to fill your days with what you love.

working on feeling adequate with independence. it’s hard when you live in a culture that is constantly pushing dating in your face, but for right now i think there’s something so great about being strong and confident and killing it at life because you love yourself. and Heavenly Father has it all worked out. :)

learning patience in all things. and contentment. and happiness in the details.

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have a rad rest of your week! {photos taken on a roommate excursion up by aspen grove a couple weekends ago. utah rocks at nature.}

{love, tessa brynn}

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Other places to find me:

Bloglovin’ >>> Life and Loveliness

Instagram >>> @tessabrynnk

Twitter >>> @tessabrynnk

Pinterest >>> Tessa Kohler

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a normal beautiful day

Sometimes it’s easy to get lost in the mundane, in the typical and normal and very much regular that is all around. The same routines, the same classes, the same people, the same clothes, the same hair.

But then every once in a while, there’s a day like today, where goodness, the world is beautiful. So dang beautiful and refreshing and full of life. When you decide to walk a different way to class, and the trees are gorgeous, and so are the people, and then there are some new faces! And you notice the life and personality in everyone, just by walking past them.

Then there’s the best hour-long break yet this year, where every attractive man in the entire universe seems to be in the Wilk. And there’s music playing, and then Chick-Fil-A with Mikelle and then, oh hi, there’s my attracive TA {Caroline and I are currently fighting over who gets to marry him}, and just LIFE.

Then special relativity madness in class for an hour, where my mind is blown but it’s the greatest thing ever. No chance of switching majors, but the basic concept is quite interesting.

And Pandora Radio, you are my best friend. Forever and always.

And then this evening I had the greatest walk home from campus. There’s a definite difference between the before-class-walk, and the between-class-walk, and the after-class-walk, I’ve decided. I love my evening walks home. Lately I seem to be doing a lot of going home around 5:00ish, when the sun is barely starting to set, and the way the light streams through the trees and filters into pools on the ground is just glorious. Campus is relatively quiet, so I can really hear myself think without worrying about navigating around the masses of people that are everywhere during the middle of the day. My route home takes me to the southwest corner of campus, which is fairly brimming with trees and other similar nature, plus there’s the Maeser Building, which is beautiful and stately all on its own. Anyway, all of those lovely bits of the world were present on my walk home, and it was so good. I’m determined that when I leave Provo someday, I will have a plethora of soaked-up life moments stored in my memory, and also here on this blog, of my days in this little corner of the world.

On another note, because this is going to be a post that is, once again, full of the random, here are some various thoughts on life lately…

Latest observation: I love passionate people – people that are so obsessed with what they do, that love their major {and the rest of their life, too?} with all their heart and get so excited whenever they talk about it. Fingers crossed that I get into the ad program, and then I’ll feel like I have full license to freak out over all the cool stuff I get to do. I’m kind of at that point right now, but then there’s that nagging voice in the back of my head, ‘um, what if you don’t get in? then you’ll seem a tad bit lame getting so excited over consumer insights and branding and such?’ But then, heck yes I’m going to work my tail off to get in, so hopefully I’ll kill it per personal determination and all will be well in the world. Enthusiasm is the best.

The best thing was talking about copywriting in my ad class last night, with that other voice in my head saying, ‘yes yes yes I am a writer and I can make pretty words happen and life is great!’ Although I’m still thinking more brand strategy than straight copywriting, but it feels good to know that I can also maybe do the copywriter thing. And we were talking about this kid who is a copywriter and apparently reads 5 books a week and that helps him be so good, and that gave me the itch to read books again. So new life goal: READ! I think that people that are well-read are rad. They’re pretty much my favorite. I love the idea of being able to talk about random interesting topics all the time. Yes, life goals.

Also, I’m turning hipster. At least mentally. My current wardrobe isn’t letting me, since everything that I currently own fits under the category of “classy classy classy.” So we’ll see how creative I get. But the hipster mental inclinations are there, so thanks Provo. And I’ve decided that advertising is a hipster major. I don’t know how, but somehow the majority of the ad majors are hipsters. Hipster seems to be like a disease – you immerse yourself in that culture {*cough* Provo} and then you catch the bug.

On the subject of drastic appearance change, I want to dye my hair, which is a big deal. I think the whole dark-roots-light-blonde-on-the-rest look is the coolest. But then I take a look in the mirror and heck no way am I giving up the hair that’s on my head right now, because I actually really love my natural hair color, but then again, a hair change would be kinda fun. Give me a few years and then maybe I’ll finally convince myself. Or maybe after I get married? So not for a few years then haha?

But Provo is so great. I love living in a place where everyone dresses nice, and everyone is ridiculously friendly to the whole world. And then the thing about passionate people – Provo is chock-full of enthusiastic people, and I love it.

And lastly, for your viewing pleasure, being a pre-ad major has helped me develop a love of great commercials, so y’all can check out my personal favorites, if you feel so inclined.

^^^these North Face ones make me want to go have an adventure in the wilderness right. now.

^^^just lovely.

^^^dying. So funny. “I’ve already had like four babies…” ahahaha…

{love, Tessa Brynn}

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

Bloglovin’ >>> Life and Loveliness

Instagram >>> @tessabrynnk

Twitter >>> @tessabrynnk

Pinterest >>> Tessa Kohler

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normal days

today was a quality one.

morning: wake up at 6:15 to go running with 2/3 of the roommates, which was a normal run + hills, but mikelle was also on some sort of crazy running drug that hyped up our pace {super great, by the way}, so that made life fun. and the world at that hour of the morning is so crisp and clean and fresh and goodness, i need to find a way to get myself outside that early more often. and that feeling you get after a good hard run in the cold is my favorite.

ha, then by the time it got to 11:00, time to go to class, it felt like i’d already been up for an eternity. like, did we go running yesterday? or was that really just this morning? productivity..it’s growing on me.

then evening: the weekly roommate date with mikelle, that we’re turning into a tradition. yes, we walked all way to the end of the world from our apartment just to get gyros from the Greek food truck {the only reason i’d consider living at the riv} and Swig. s o  g o o d. {also, swig is super dangerous because it’s so delicious and their soda isn’t as carbonated, i’ve discovered, which is why i hate normal soda…so that all basically means that i’m hooked.}

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gyro.

then to top off the roommate date we had some good old fun with midterm studying. meh. ha, the kids in the library probably thought we were ridiculous. we figured out that us + caffeine = waaaayyy too much for any normal person to handle. no worries, we were on that one floor of the library where talking {and laughing a ridiculous amount} is allowed.

so yeah, provo life is pretty rad.

these are the lovely, random college days that i’ll remember when this life season is over.  i’m grateful for simplicity and laughter.

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Other places to find me:

Bloglovin’ >>> Life and Loveliness

Instagram >>> @tessabrynnk

Twitter >>> @tessabrynnk

Pinterest >>> Tessa Kohler

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so i realized i still really like blogging

today’s been a good day, and pandora is doing fairly decently on its music selection at the moment, and i could definitely be studying, but who in their right mind wants to study? so why not blog, i say? let’s just pretend that the three midterms i have to take this week aren’t really a thing…

{side note: no capitalized letters on this post because i’m not feeling it, so why conform to societal standards?}

recently i’ve come to this great realization that i. waste. so. much. time. {ha, and here i am blogging…don’t you dare say anything} but really. for one of my classes i had to record every time i use media for four days, and then do a media fast for 24 hours {so, so rough!}, and then for another one i had to record what i do with every minute of my life for a whole week {well, approximately}. consensus: i have a ridiculous amount of free time in my life, and i really can fit everything in my current schedule…except for the little tiny habit that i have of checking my phone every two seconds and sitting on facebook and instagram and all that loveliness. it’s quite disgusting how much time i waste. also, thank you general conference for the re-clarifying and refocusing. i’m so grateful for this past weekend – goodness, i needed all that so much. so, new life goal thanks to a variety of sources and some solid personal pondering: PRODUCTIVITY. and HARD WORK. and giving it my all. because you better believe i’m going to kill this semester so dead it won’t even know what hit it. i’m grateful for the affirmations this weekend from the Holy Ghost that i can do it, if i do it all through Christ.

{again, don’t say anything about me blogging when i could be studying, because there is a time and a place for everything, and in the past few days i’ve done decently better at limiting my general time-wasting, so i’m gonna let myself blog}

also, other news, i decided that i really like blogging, just for the fun of it, and i think it’s ridiculous to stress out about posting regularity, and having perfect content, and who even wants to think about SEO? um, not me…is that bad? anyway, i realized that i just love writing random things about random bits of life. so if you think it’s ridiculous…then you can just take a trip to a very far-away place where you never have to look at my rad posts ever again. like the north pole. because they probably don’t have wifi up there. so just go there.

i just really, really love writing, and being myself in my writing, and having a pretty place to put my writing, plus the occasional pictures i take. i blog because words are beautiful, and life is beautiful, and both of those should be celebrated. so there’s that.

in other news, today was good. i’m sitting here eating delicious chocolate chip cookies from my wardies, so that’s pretty great. plus today also involved spontaneous taco bell with Caroline, and some equally-spontaneous chocolate chip scones courtesy of Caroline, oh and i also got a call for a job interview which is pretty great and fingers double triple crossed it works out because this female over here is in serious need of some employment. and after i mention all the desserts i had today, the gym this morning was also pretty stellar haha. and i also had some fun experimenting with the “a beautiful mess” photo app this afternoon, so that was exciting…

an old photo from a good day...i was so exhausted when i took this picture, but it was new york, so who cares?

an old photo from a good day…i was so exhausted when i took this picture, but it was new york, so who cares?

this is henry, our basil plant. he's the bomb. also some cactus plants that belong to caroline's sister...i think?

this is henry, our basil plant. he’s the bomb. also some cactus plants that belong to caroline’s sister…i think?

 and provo is barely creeping its way into fall, hallelujah! actually, i’ve decided that autumn is a much classier, much more refined way of saying it, so i’m trying to train myself to say that instead of fall. caroline and had a photo adventure on campus on the first day of fall, even though the trees weren’t quite all the way autumn-ish at that point.

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because i literally cannot do anything serious in the world of posing...

because i literally cannot do anything serious in the world of posing…you would think caroline would’ve rubbed off on me by now…

so yeah, i’m a fan of flats and lip stick and striped dresses {somehow i’ve found myself in the possession of THREE striped dresses…yes, they are all different, i promise, even if my roommates sometimes don’t believe me. and they’re the best. my roommates and my dresses}.

yeah that’s life right about now. i’m quite enjoying the life of the provo world, off the fake, beautiful island, and far, far away from martha’s vineyard society.  it was lovely for a summer, but i’m not going back to scooping ice cream anytime soon. now it’s on to thinking about next summer’s adventure…can i get a new york, anyone??

i’m grateful for stellar roommates, and an adorable apartment, and wonderful music, and a friendly ward, and attractive blonde gentlemen all over every single inch of BYU campus {i’m not even kidding…just come here and behold for yourself!}. this weekend was also a good one for turning over a new leaf in the contentment world. it’s way too easy to get into a funk where you wish you had a boyfriend or a fiance or a husband or a baby or a NYC apartment or a job or whatever the current desire is, but this weekend i was reminded that everything will happen in its own time, and there is a reason and a purpose for everything, so let’s just be patient for a sec. everything is quite very much under control, i promise. :) i’m grateful for peace, even when life doesn’t make sense and isn’t always quite at the level of working-out-ness that i wish it was at.

hugs and kisses, kids. if you stuck through the ramble, go buy yourself a slice of cheesecake.

{love, tessa brynn}

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39 hours in the best city ever

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So one time I went to New York City and fell in love. And even though I had to leave and go back to normal life, I kept the love up with pinning all the New York pictures on Pinterest, and listening to songs about New York on repeat, and writing all about New York here, and reading all the beautiful books about New York in the world, and I knew I’d go back.

And then somehow I ended up on the east coast for the summer, and when you’re on the east coast for a quick moment, why not venture down to the best city in the universe? It was a quick trip, but it was so, so, so fantastic. I didn’t get to see everything that I wanted, but I figure I’ll be back again eventually, so I have plenty of time to finish my bucket list up, right?

And now prepare yourself for the most photo-heavy post I’ve ever written, because I WAS IN NEW YORK CITY. {Give me a minute here first, though.}

We are now the masters of public transportation…well, almost. There were about fifty times that we almost didn’t make it, but everything worked out in the end. For example, on step number 1 of getting there, we just about missed the ferry to the mainland because this is Martha’s Vineyard and this is summer and I swear the whole world wanted to ride the bus that day and take their own sweet time doing it, which resulted in an arrival at the ferry after the final boarding call, and a crazy sprint with our suitcases to the boat…but we made it! So that’s good. I would have been severely depressed if we missed that darn ferry.

After the island bus, and then the ferry, it was the bus again to Providence, Rhode Island, and then finally New York City. One of my favorite parts of the entire time was that drive right before we arrived. It was nighttime and we kept passing office buildings and I was pretty sure we weren’t to the actual city yet but the promise of what was so close to me – something that I’d been dreaming of seeing again for three years – kept me on the edge of my seat and my eyes glued to the window to catch the first glimpse of my city. And then there it was, in all its nighttime glory. And I couldn’t stop smiling. Also, everyone else on that bus was so quiet, and calm, and collected, and I swear no one else was freaking out, so the five us had a silent little freak out session in the back two rows because how can you arrive in New York City and not freak out?

The bus took us right into midtown, passing the temple, and skyscrapers that got increasingly taller and fancier. When we got off and took the escalator upstairs, we walked out the doors, straight into midtown, with all its flashing lights and taxis everywhere and we were in the city air and it was lovely.

That night we walked around a bit, ate some street food, and took a taxi (!!!) to our Airbnb apartment in Brooklyn that was so nice and air-conditioned and quiet and right next to the M train and in a sketchy part of town but it had a fire escape right outside our bedroom window, and that charming fire escape made up for the neighborhood in my heart.

The next day and a half was crazy, and wonderful, and full of the Guggenheim, the 9/11 Memorial, Wall Street, Century 21, Urban Outfitters, bartering in Chinatown, gelato in Little Italy, bomb Italian food for dinner in Midtown, 4-story Forever 21 in Times Square, the M&M store for a quick moment, Central Park, the Met, the upper east side, Shake Shack, and then a hurried taxi to pick up our luggage and get back to the bus terminal in time to leave at 2 pm. And now here are all the pictures that I promised, so I’m going to mostly be quiet while you enjoy them.

subway life

subway life

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Frank Lloyd Wright did a decent job on this one

Frank Lloyd Wright did a decent job on this one

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the time I got us on the train going the wrong direction and we took a visit to the Bronx for a minute before going alllll the way back down to Wall Street

the time I got us on the train going the wrong direction and we took a visit to the Bronx for a minute before going alllll the way back down to Wall Street

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I have a thing lately with cool mirrors. So the mirror in Tiffany's? Sure!

I have a thing lately with cool mirrors. So the mirror in Tiffany’s? Sure!

back to the place where I first fell in love with the city

back to the place where I first fell in love with the city

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swooning over Urban Outfitters. I got a rad hat here. also, photo charging stations are my favorite.

swooning over Urban Outfitters. I got a rad hat here. also, phone charging stations are my favorite.

Times Square for the win. Also, HAT.

Times Square for the win. Also, HAT.

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dead-tired at midnight in Forever 21 while my phone charges so I can figure out how to get us back to Brooklyn.

dead-tired at midnight in Forever 21 while my phone charges so I can figure out how to get us back to Brooklyn.

on the steps of the Met. not pictured: the acapella group singing right in front of us.

on the steps of the Met. not pictured: the acapella group singing right in front of us.

Then Mikelle and I skipped the Met in favor of a stroll through the Upper East Side, on the hunt for unique doors and elegant architecture and Shake Shack.

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And then just as soon as we got there, we had to go back to the magical enchanted island of Martha’s Vineyard. But you better believe I’ll be back! New York City, I love you, thanks for a swell time, and I’m not done with you yet!

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

Bloglovin’ >>> Life and Loveliness

Instagram >>> @tessabrynnk

Twitter >>> @tessabrynnk

Pinterest >>> Tessa Kohler

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a classy breakfast + more photos from island life lately

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Caroline and I spent our morning living the classy side of life, breakfasting at the “Behind the Bookstore” cafe here in Edgartown. I think I could definitely do the cafe thing – you know, where you have that one cafe in your neighborhood that you go to in the morning to sip your hot chocolate and check on the internet world and get a nice and easy start to the day. It sounds like a pleasant way to do mornings, right? When I live in New York, the cafe morning is going to happen. Caroline and I also decided this morning that we’re going to open a cafe in Provo with hot chocolate and steamers and oatmeal and baked goods and simple, gourmet sandwiches, so that’s a pretty good plan too.

This morning I sat and ate my breakfast BLT (bacon, lettuce that looks like it’s from my dad’s garden, quality fresh tomato, fried egg, and some sort of sauce, all on toasted sourdough, drizzled with olive oil…I felt all sorts or French or gourmet or something and it was great) and Caroline ate her corn cakes with fresh fruit and honey butter, and I finally bought a plane ticket home and did some online shopping and then we ordered a plate of beignets to share, with fresh apricot jam and homemade whipped cream on the side, and it was lovely. For reals, what kind of life am I living?!? It’s all so, so, so surreal. I’m so grateful for the chance to be here and live out pretty much all the Anne Shirley romantic daydreams I could ever come up with.

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Also, online shopping…such a problem. Old Navy and Piper and Scoot and I’m still in search of the perfect striped t-shirt and don’t you dare remind me about bringing all this stuff back on a plane to Utah.

And for the people in my life that are probably dying for more photos of my life {sorry parents…and sorry to everyone else who doesn’t care about seeing more photos of my island adventure}, here are some photos from life lately.

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^^^a little quiet section of beach I discovered on my run this morning. I’m a fan of the water and the sky being the exact same color. Thanks, morning.

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^^^my view yesterday from the shaded wharf while I tried to escape the heat and do some journal-writing for a while before work.

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^^^the typical forest view from my run on Saturday. The whole island looks like this and it’s gorgeous.

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^^^I discovered a farm yesterday, also on my run.

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^^^on the way to State Beach…also on a run

^^^Sengekontacket Pond, across the road from State Beach

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^^^the Edgartown lighthouse on Sunday evening when the weather was foggy. This is a ten-minute walk from my apartment (!!!).

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^^^a nice breather on the beach after work

That’s about it for the update for now. {Yay, I’m keeping up with blogging again!} Also, the NYC trip, yeah it’s most definitely happening now!!! Not next week, but the week after that. Be prepared for excessive photo-dumping here and on Instagram, and since it’s New York City, I have absolutely no shame in bombarding the world with my excitement. New York, I’ve missed ya, and you better be ready for me again in a couple weeks.

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

Bloglovin’ >>> Life and Loveliness

Instagram >>> @tessabrynnk

Twitter >>> @tessabrynnk

Pinterest >>> Tessa Kohler