Posts tagged travel
maine or bust | image via: bekuh b.

In just a few short weeks we'll be hitting the road, bound for Maine! I'm so excited to escape from the heat of the city for awhile and spend some much needed time relaxing and enjoy the last dog days of summer. Our first stop will be Mt. Washington, New Hampshire before heading to the furthest reaches of Acadia National Park. A whole week of camping, hiking, swimming and lobster rolls await us.

Ryan and I made the decision a few years back to alternate our trips abroad with trips at home- There's just so much to see right here in America! After a lot of discussion we both decided a trip through New England sounded too good to resist- in high school I dreamt of becoming an art teacher and living in a hamlet along the coast.

This season has taken its toll on our nerves and stress levels so we're doing everything we can to maximize relaxation and minimize productivity during the trip; setting some pretty strict guidelines for ourselves:

  • No cellphones out on the campsite
  • We're using an actual map (!) to navigate our way north
  • No iPhone pictures or digital photography- all film all day
  • No blogs, just books

It may sound a little loco in today's digital age but we want to be 100% present with each other (and Nellie) for the entire trip. I'm hopeful it will renew our spirits and help reconnect us to nature. Vacation unplugged- sounds like a reality tv show on Discovery or something. - b.


In fall you do fall-things, or so I've been told. As daylight dwindles it's important to enjoy all those falling leaves and scenic views you hear people talk of. In our (Ryan & myself) case that involves weekend drives out of the city where there are actually trees and views to devour. On a recent trip we visited Foothill Castle, a rather stately home in Doylestown, Pennsylvania. A home so happily situated you would have thought the hills and woods had grown up around it and not the other way around.

Scroll down to learn more & flip through images...

Bult in the early 20th Century by Henry Mercer, Foothill Castle is a tribute to his life-long obsession with European castles, and his work in tile making (click the arrows above to see more photos of the grounds). Built from poured concrete, Mercer attacked the design on his own, without thought to floor-plan or traditional construction. Builders were tasked with making sense of his cryptic drawings and the result is a labyrinth of a home with 44 rooms and 200+ windows.

A majority of the furniture is built-in and generously covered in Mercer's tile collection. Sadly, they don't let you take photos inside, but to give you a taste- His collection is a mix of ancient tiles from the Middle East and Asia, Dutch tiles from several centuries, and his own handmade tiles from the Moravian Pottery & Tile Works. Every inch of the house is decorated in a different motif, with rooms named and situated to allow maximum light. 

Entirely intact, a tour through the house is like stepping back in time. Around every corner and false staircase you expect to meet Mercer's ghost! Oddly, the eccentric contents only serve to make the castle more warm and inviting to its guests. If you're ever in the area, be sure to stop in for a visit! What autumn things have you checked off your list this year? - b.

The Frick Collection, NYC | via: bekuh b.

When asked what I wanted to do for my 30th birthday, my mind raced with ideas from the expected (big bash - all the people) to the mundane (nothing). I don't particularly love celebrating my birthday and gatherings of any kind make me anxious, so after much deliberation I decided a weekend trip with just Ryan was all I really wanted. The destination? NYC.

Though I'm often in the big apple for work, I rarely get the chance to enjoy New York City as a tourist. We booked a fancy hotel room at the Lotte New York Palace and I pinched pennies for a decadent weekend of shopping, delicious food, and a visit to the Frick Collection. The theme of the weekend was without a doubt "treat yo self."

I went into it full force, with my arms wide open, but I was nagged the entire time by a sense of loss and melancholy. This birthday was a bit of challenge for me- I found myself questioning every choice I've made in life and will ever make, I scrutinized my (very) slowly aging body, and I examined my relationships from beginning to end. Isn't it funny how milestones do that to you? 

I attempted to drown out these feeling with shiny objects, breathtaking paintings, and the most perfect walk through Central Park. It was all beauty and wonder, but it didn't change how I felt. Not really. It wasn't until our last night in town that I finally snapped out of it. Ryan had taken me out to a special dinner and we were enjoying an unbelievable meal when I looked up and noticed his lips were swelling at an alarming rate. He was having an allergic reaction.

I nervously asked our waitress for the check and we made a mad dash out the door to Duane Reade for emergency Benadryl. I was suddenly consumed by laughter and concern as we made our way through the city. Laughter because the situation was so absurd, and concern for obvious reasons. After being reassured that the reaction wasn't as serious as it first seemed we headed back to the hotel to finish the night in.

I ordered chocolate gelato and mango sorbet and when the head-sized dishes arrived we stuffed our faces- Ryan starting to joke about his "Mick Jagger" lips. For the first time in weeks my thoughts were on something besides myself and I felt silly for the insecurities I'd been letting overcome me. All that is really important was in the room that night. Love.

So what am I looking forward to now that I'm thirty? More love. More living. More of this. - b.

PS- Ryan is seriously the best husband ever. I'd be lost without him.

lifeBekuh Browningnyc, travel