Category: Life with J&M  |  View all recent posts

Fri. Apr 18, 2014 by Mary    Life with J&M

Friday Randomness...

A few of the random musings on my mind lately...

*Last weekend, we started off cleaning out a closet which turned into us cleaning out my entire office. No joke, we filled up an entire weekly trash bin, an entire weekly recycling bin (the huge, blue stand up kind), and sent three bags of stuff to Goodwill. It is crazy how much stuff a person can accumulate! My office already feels lighter & more productive for doing it!
*We leave next week for Antigua! There are visions of floppy hats & frosty fruity drinks already floating through my mind.
*My Senior year of college, I met with my advisor before my last semester and we realized that I had already met all of my major's requirements a while ago but I was 19 credit hours short to graduate. So I either had to take all 19 hours in one semester or do classes over the summer. That didn't sound like any fun at all so I went for all 19 hours my last semester! To make it all fit into the schedule, it ended up being the most RANDOM stuff. Things like Italian II (even though I'd never had Italian I), Intro to Dance, Non-verbal Communication, Statistics, Metaphysics, and An Independent Study on the Philosopher Rousseau. I think that's what they call a well-rounded education.
*I'm terrified of snakes. Terrified of them. Put it this way, if I had been Noah the snakes would have been given wrong directions to the ark. In all the time I've lived in Connecticut, I have never seen a snake here and I had started to convince myself that we were indeed living in the promised land. But a couple days ago we went hiking and we saw not one, but TWO. I've already begun making plans to move.
*Noxema is my face wash of choice. Every time I smell it, it reminds me of high school & summer.
*I shoot 90% of my images vertically. I have to constantly remind myself that I can hold the camera the other way too.
*I think it would be awesome to visit Alaska & kayak up to a glacier. But I'm not going to lie, all of those pinterest pictures of the guy in the kayak with the whale right underneath totally freak me out. Do you think that's a real thing? If the whale knocked you out of the boat, do you think he would then come save you Free Willy style? Because that could be cool.
*It's April, which means it's almost May, which means it's almost MY BIRTHDAY!! :)
*Watch this video of golden retriever puppies. Thank me later.
*Speaking of, I think our dog is anti-selfie. Because every time we try, this is what we get.

Happy Friday y'all!

And as an extra Friday bonus, anybody who signs us today for our May 8th J&M Lighting Intensive in New Haven can take $150 off with the code "JM150" !! See you there!!

Thu. Apr 17, 2014 by Mary    Life with J&M

Marantz House Project: The New Spring Mantel

I knew it was getting really bad when even Justin was starting to make comments.

We were sitting on our first floor couch the other evening, about to wrap up work for the day, when he said it. You know we still have garland and glittery Christmas trees up on our mantle and it's now APRIL, right? Yeaaaaa....about that! See we had taken down the tree and the outside decorations a long time ago, but I left the mantel up. In February I argued that the decor was more "Winter" than "Christmas specific." In March I argued that as long as there was snow on the ground (and there was!) it was still relevant. But now, now it was April. April and the sun was shining. April and things were starting to bloom. April and there were Easter egg wreaths in Home Goods.

April and my season of denial finally had to come to an end.

So we hit up said Home Goods, by passed the aisle of Easter egg wreaths, and I set about to making our Spring/Summer mantel. We knew we didn't want to spend a ton on it & if we could we wanted to repurpose things we already had. So we invested in a big silver mirror and some small flower arrangements (I LOVE having fresh flowers in the house but they die way too fast....Home Goods actually sells some pretty convincing fake ones that are really nice!), and we went to work. We already had the candlesticks, the mercury glass votives, and the wreath. This is what we came up with and I have to say I'm really proud of it! In person, it just makes the whole room feel lighter & airier. Way more April-esque.

Which y'know, should at least get me through to October. :)

Happy Thursday y'all!

Thu. Apr 3, 2014 by Mary    Life with J&M

Five Things #1

Ahhh yay. Well here's something new!

Five Things is a brand new blog series we're trying out starting today, that is basically five little snippets into what's making up our lives lately. Stuff we're loving, places we've been, places we're going, things that are on our mind, tv shows that we're obsessed with. You name it! It's just five things that are making up part of our world right now. And then in another week or two, there will be five more. You see how this works! :) Let's give it a go!

**And a huge shout out to the lovely Emily at Cupcakes & Cashmere who gave us this brilliant idea! Her awesome blog is definitely making up part of my world lately! You should definitely go check it out!

{My latest obsession: water w/ fresh squeezed lemon in it AND this awesome mason jar water bottle from the Pursuit 31 Conf. Is anybody else obsessed with this stuff?}

{Making the photographer's hardest decision: D4 or iPhone. #instagramproblems. PS: You can follow us on IG HERE!! }

{It's official. I will never ever EVER get tired of our front porch view. Putting "watch more sunsets" at the top of my to-do lists this year!}

{Weekend plans: flying off to Denver to teach all weekend!! Looking forward to meeting some ahhh-mazing people & putting this book to good use!}

{True that! Lighting another's fire only makes your light burn brighter b/c of the way you rage against the darkness. Make sparks fly friends! }

Happy Friday!

**So tell us, what do you think of this fun little new series of ours? And are any of our Five Things, some of YOUR five things that you're loving right now? Tell us about it!

Sun. Mar 30, 2014 by Mary    Life with J&M

Marantz House Project: The New Bedroom Sitting Area

Happy Monday friends!

Today we have for you another installment of the Marantz House Project: the new sitting area in our bedroom! Piece by piece this house is actually starting to come together!

Our master bedroom actually makes up the whole third floor of our house, so we have a ton of space up there. There is this very cool area in the eaves by the picture window that is the perfect spot for our king sized RH sleigh bed and the built in dressers. And then on the other end we have the master bathroom. But right in the middle there is this very cool open space that was just begging for some attention. The previous owners had installed a stone gas fireplace right there, so we've thought for a long time how great it would be to have a cozy sitting area there so we could hang out together & sit by the fire before going to bed. And....we finally got around to doing it!! Here's all the info:

Couch & Curio Coffee Table: Ikea
Number Pillows: Pottery Barn
Polka Dot candle: Kate Spade (a gift from our good friends Ashley & Jeremy)
Pink candle: "Mums" from Yankee Candle
French Country House book: I *think* I got this at Anthropologie a few years ago
Photo display: frames from Ikea, ahhmazing photos from Jose Villa
We have this hope as an anchor print: Jordanne & Ryan


Tue. Mar 25, 2014 by Mary    Life with J&M

12 Things You Might Not Know about Justin & Mary

Good morning friends!

We are are just settling in back at home after an incredible two weeks in Germany & Austria. We're doing things like unpacking suitcases, going grocery shopping, and opening a TON of mail, all while battling the urge to take a nap every fifteen minutes from this crazy jet lag. It is SO good to be home, sleep in our own beds with our own pillows, have wifi & cell service wherever we go, and catch up with all of our favorite shows (Bones, Nashville, House of Cards) that are actually playing in...get this....ENGLISH!! Amen! For two weeks straight, everything we watched was dubbed in German, and the scary part is I was actually starting to follow along! So we are loving being back to everything we're used to at home, and at the very top of that list....Mr. Fluffball himself, Cooper!

In the mean time while we get back into the swing of things, we thought it would be fun to do a post of 12 things you might not know about us! Y'know, in addition to my ability to pick up German at super human speeds. danke very much :) Here we go...

1. Justin & I met through online dating. to be precise. He winked at me first & I winked back. That was on a Tuesday. On Thursday we met for coffee (which is how we told everyone we met, including our parents, for a solid year). On Sunday we went hiking (which is maybe not the wisest thing to do with someone you've just met on the internet...y'know go off to a secluded location). And that was pretty much it for us. We've been apart about a total of two weeks since then. In June that will be 10 years ago. The cool part of the story is that neither of us had ever internet dated before and we were the very first people we met in person. So yea, you could say it worked for us!

2. Justin does 85% of the cooking in our relationship. He's just way better at it. Even when we cook together, he pretty much keeps me to the boiling of water and the occasional chopping of vegetables. But nobody, and I mean nobody, can pour a glass of wine like I can!

3. My love languages are gifts and physical touch. Justin's is cameras.

4. We have a lunch spot. A place we got almost every day during the work week for lunch. It's a hot bar/salad bar where you make your tray & go up to pay. Every time we have this routine. Justin stays to weigh the food & pay and I grab two forks, two knives, and napkins and go to make our table. Every time I do it, I feel about 80 years old. And I imagine the wrinkly old us still doing this when we're that old.

5. Going to the movies is one of our FAVORITE things to do. Our favorite movie candy of choice is Junior Mints or Reeses Pieces paired with popcorn. We have to have the sweet/savory combo.

6. My favorite movies ever that I could watch over & over (or what we call "desert island movies") would have to be October Sky, The Rock, Armageddon, National Treasure and It's Complicated. Justin's would be Superbad, The Social Network, The Secret Life of Walter Mitty and Moneyball. That boy could seriously watch Moneyball everyday for the rest of his life and be happy.

7. Eight years ago if I had taken either of the offers at law firms in London or NYC, I would have been working in the "private client department" which basically means divorces & prenups. Instead, I became wedding photographer spending time with people on one of the happiest days of their lives. I can think of no other comparison that more aptly describes what those two diverging paths would have looked like in my life.

8. At our wedding, Justin & I named all the tables after photographers who inspire us (Cartier-Bresson, Brady, Avedon & in Mary Ellen, which incidentally also happens to be my middle name).

9. Our first dance song was "These are the Days" by Van Morrison. Our cake was alternating layers of raspberry chocolate ganache & caramel apple cider cake. My dress was a ball gown Reem Acra that was so big that I actually couldn't fit down the aisle side by side with my Dad & he had to walk a little bit in front of me. Our getaway car was a 1952 Black Cadillac limo. Our cocktail hour had a fiddle player, cornbread, and blue & gold signature drinks (an homage to my WV roots).

10. The day that we went to get Cooper & I very first met him, I picked him up....and he bit my ear with his little baby puppy teeth. That's when we knew it was love.

11. One of our other absolute favorite things to do together is to go to the spa. We've been going since we first started dating and have probably been to 50 different spas at this point. Our favorite is still the Top Notch Spa in Stowe, VT.

12. Whenever we're going somewhere, Justin drives 99.9999999% of the time. And I'm just fine with that. It's not that I'm a bad driver or can't do it, he's just better at it. Plus we live in CT where the drivers are certifiably insane. And anyway, I would rather be in charge of the radio. :) But I do try to drive that .00000001% of the time, just so I don't completely forget how to do it.

Happy Tuesday friends!

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