some things!

things giving me life lately:

– Alison Faulkner’s podcast

THIS BOOK. I found it in a used bookstore in Lawrence, Kansas and it is so cool visually and it hits so close to how I’m feeling lately (really, how I’ve been feeling for the last year of my life).

– herbal tea. is this adulthood??? I feel like herbal tea is the La Croix of the warm beverage world. it really doesn’t have much flavor, but I’m into it??? or maybe it’s just that I feel so adult with a thermos and tea?

so if you, too, want to partake in some life goodness, try any of those three things! (do I sound like an infomercial yet?)

also, some words from the author of that book above: “belong to yourself.” I like that. so much of life these days is figuring out who I am, but even as I’m in the process along the way I want to belong to myself, and be all of myself, as much as I possibly can. I think that’s where you find contentment and resting, even in the middle of searching and change.


these days

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^^^ Prospero’s bookstore the other night (a new favorite place in KC!)

things are interesting. it’s been weird not going back to school with everyone else that’s back in Utah. not as weird as I thought it was going to be, but still weird. sometimes I get major FOMO for all the cool things I hear about going on back in Provo.

it’s also weird being in a phase that, for the first time in my life, doesn’t really have a concrete end date. I don’t have an end date for living in Kansas City, I don’t have an end date for being an unmarried person, I don’t have an end date for…really anything. life feels different knowing that at this point any serious progression or movement is really up to me.

but! overwhelmingly, life is a good place to be. I really, really love it here. there are so many things for me to learn in every single section of my life, and I’m excited to see how everything plays out.

life update // martha’s vineyard edition

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Hey there internet world! It’s been a while! I’m currently on an island {like, literally} and the wifi situation has been lacking for most of the time that I’ve been here. But I finally got myself to the library and my laptop is drinking up this wonderful wifi and hallelujah the real world is back at my fingertips.

{Quick side-note/update for anyone who hasn’t talked to me lately} At the moment I’m spending the summer on Martha’s Vineyard working and having a complete party. My current job description is something along the lines of “Super Ice Cream Scooper / Barista / Pizza Server,” meaning that my boss owns an ice cream shop, a cafe, and a pizza place, so all of us here get to have fun switching it up working in the three different places. We get to live right above the shops, so a 30-second commute every day is pretty great. And we’re on an ISLAND, and basically it’s the best set-up ever. Also, I’m with some of my best friends, so you better believe we have a good time. I have silent-freak-out-moments on the daily when I get hit with the realization that this is reality. I’M LIVING ON AN ISLAND, also, I get to eat lots of delicious cafe food and TONS of ice cream and pizza. And making money. Also, having never had a job before where I earn tips, tips are now my second-best friend. Currently my best friend is this library with its wifi, but tips will probably go back to first place when I leave.

Okay, there’s the quick rundown. Basically, I’m living a dream. Dang coolest summer job ever. My apologies to anyone who follows me on Instagram, because you’re gonna get real sick of gorgeous island pictures by the end of the summer. If you’re not sick of it already, ha. Also, for people who aren’t sick of it yet, stay tuned for the end of this post where I’m actually including real live photographs, which is a big deal because photos are not my thing. I like words forever, but remembering that sometimes a visual is good is a tricky thing.

Actually, I have no idea where I’m going with this post. I’m just a little bit giddy at the moment because of said current wifi situation. And lately I’ve been having the itch to blog. Maybe it’s all the time that I’ve had to sit out by the ocean and contemplate life and all that jazz. Yeah, maybe something like that. So anyway, here I am. And I guess I’m going to ramble, because WIFI, and BLOGGING AGAIN, and getting random sounds fun. So here are some thoughts on life lately…

The lower-maintenance life is a good one. I’ve gotten good at washing my hair every other day instead of every day, which is much better for my hair anyway, plus it makes getting ready a lot faster. Greasy hair? Throw in a little dry shampoo and so what if it still looks greasy, because JUST PUT A HAT ON IT! Baseball caps…I’ve fallen in love with them. Also, my hair absolutely loves humidity. And that’s not sarcasm. Many tears will be shed when I have to go back to the dry west and try to do exciting things with this head of thin hair.

On the low-maintenance track, who has the time and effort for real pants? I’ve sunk to a low place, friends, especially for Tessa Kohler, who lives for dressing up. But when you’re running around crazy for 7 hours a day scooping ice cream, who wants to wear anything but workout pants? Plus, that makes wearing jeans feel more fancy. At least that’s what I tell myself. But I’ve completely accepted the nice-shirt-on-top-and-stretchy-pants-on-the-bottom look when I feel like halfway trying. Yeah, I don’t fit in with any of the high society people on this island, but I’ve decided I don’t even care about trying to fit in with them anymore. When we first got here and had a week to explore before starting work, I tried the dressing nice thing, but life is too short to stress over fitting in with the upper class, right?

Books. I’m in a phase, and I hope it doesn’t go away. I’ve always wanted a personal library of some sort in my house someday, but I always figured the library was good enough for now and I’d start buying books later. But no, I have the itch to buy all. the. books. right. this. very. minute. The phase was triggered by my first trip to my boss’s father-in-law’s store {that’s a fun connection to explain in short terms} right downstairs from us, which is probably one of my favorite places on this whole island. It’s full of books and little random curios and found objects and I don’t even know how to describe the rest of it, but it’s paradise. Also, the music that he plays in there is Steve Tyrell and Michael Buble and Frank Sinatra and so I die partially because of that also. I’ve spent way too much time in there. Also, ha, I forgot to mention that it is chock full of unique books about New York City, so that’s probably most of the reason why I’ve gone crazy about it. And with an employee discount, I’m about ready to buy everything in there. I’ve already bought a decent armful of books and don’t you dare ask me how I’m going to get it all home in my two suitcases that were already packed full on the way here because they are beautiful books and I’ll handle that small issue when we get to the end of August. For now, my book piles will stay tucked under my bed for me to enjoy now and deal with later.

Guys, I am closer to New York City now than I’ve been in over three years and it’s killing me. There are five of us BYU kids here that pretty much spend all day every day together and we’re trying to plan a trip to the city. Holy Hannah, if we can actually swing this trip, I will literally die. I don’t think I’ll even be able to handle myself in the city. I’ll probably just sit myself down on the curb {which is kind of a nasty idea, when you think about it} and not be able to move because I’ll be so excited. It doesn’t help that I’ve been reading a plethora of books about NYC for the past month. Stay tuned for more updates on my potential trip to the best city in the world. Or maybe if it happens I’ll just die and then you’ll never hear from me again. That could very well happen too.

That’s about it for random thoughts at the moment. Actually, I could keep going on, but I’d better refrain because for most everything, you just kind of have to be here. Caroline and I are back to being roommates again, so hopefully her photography skills will rub off on me sometime soon and I’ll have some more pictures. Really, life is great. I’m on an island where everything is literally perfect. I’m sitting in a little library wearing lipstick, and I live across the street from the ocean, and we’re also a ten-minute walk from a sandy beach, and I can get $2 frozen lemonade every day, and I eat breakfast by the water on the regular, and I’m living with great people, and it’s so green here, and I have a stack of New York books under my bed, and I’m surrounded by classy people, and I’m just so grateful for the opportunity to be here. There are definitely downsides to being here, but above all that I am learning so much. Outside of learning how to work in an ice cream shop and a cafe and a pizza place, I’m having a grand time rediscovering aspects of myself that have gotten a little lost in the midst of the past year of my crazy life.

Life is awesome, y’all. We are all so blessed. And even though my pictures don’t do it half justice, in case you’d like to see what my current life is like, here’s a photo party for general enjoyment. Peace out, I’ll be back soon.

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Promise I actually took this, it’s not just from the internet.
Day one in paradise.
Day one in paradise.
The Valentine House and I match.
The Valentine House and I match.
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It take me about 30 seconds to walk here. My favorite breakfast spot is on top of that pavilion thing on the left.
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Taken on a Sunday walk with Caroline. It was misty and everything looked so green and I don’t know how to pose for photos so I’m pretending that this is an action shot and not just an I-can’t-do-anything-except-be-weird shot that Caroline happened to catch.
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Lonely beaches on cloudy days are the best.


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

Bloglovin’ >>> Life and Loveliness

Instagram >>> @tessabrynnk

Twitter >>> @tessabrynnk

Pinterest >>> Tessa Kohler