I’ve spent the past year curating my life a bit. I hate the word curate… it’s become overused (especially by both brands and bloggers, am I right?) but I couldn’t think of a better way to describe it. Spending more time with fewer people, cultivating deeper and more meaningful friendships. This isn’t very easy, especially in New York where the hustle + bustle can be a bit much. Sometimes I’ll go weeks without even seeing my sister, which I really hate. But I’m trying, and it’s getting easier to say no to the nonsense and focus on the things that actually matter.
My friend Aly is one of those friends who I wish I could see every day. Unfortunately she lives across the ocean, in Northern Ireland. So instead, we text pretty much every day. I decided it would be fun to surprise her for the fourth of July, so off I went. If you’ve never surprised a long distance friend, I highly recommend it… it’s a lot of fun. I planned it so that I could crash her family vacation… up on the coastal town of Donegal, Ireland (which is one of the most beautiful places I’ve ever been and somewhere I’d always wanted to go.)
Aly is also incredibly talented. She took all of these photos while we were at Narin Beach in Donegal, and is an amazing artist. My own home is full of her “scribbles” as she calls them (I have 3 prints + one original!), and she also has a print shop. She painted the beach we were at below (available here)… isn’t it amazing?
She captured it so perfectly.
Oh and she’s a mother to two boys too (two of the sweetest boys in the world, I might add…) When I complain about being busy, I think about Aly and shut my mouth.
Aly, me, and our other friend Emma have this fun little imessage chain and talk pretty much constantly. The conversation ranges… usually matters of the utmost importance. Selfies, nonsense, and the overuse of the #gwyneth hashtag. We also share our dreams, bounce around creative ideas, and help each other think stuff through for our own respective businesses. The other day, our conversation was pretty exciting. I was telling them about the results from my BaubleBar collection, Aly was talking about the painting commission she’d just received, and Emma was sending us photos from her upcoming handbag line. It was really inspiring to see everyone doing really great things.
photography by Aly Harte.