“She was an American girl…”

Good Morning and Happy Friday, everyone!

It’s back to blogging for me after a few days off to celebrate the Fourth of July, spend some time with friends, and just unplug for a little while. As much as I enjoy putting together new content for Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays- sometimes it’s nice to just leave e-mails on unread for a bit and reconnect with nature and loved ones.

I highly recommend taking a break like that every once in a while! I try to do it once a month if it’s possible. It isn’t always easy- but it *is* always rewarding.

But these past few days have been a lot of fun, and I have the photos to prove it!

On Saturday, I headed down to Foxwoods for their annual ComiCONN Comic-Convention with my friend Evan to browse local artists/businesses and see some stars (also also eat the most delicious nachos and quesadillas at Scorpion Bar.) I’ve always been a bit of a Mohegan Sun girl- since most of my favorite bands/artists typically play there- but my first trip to Foxwoods in a long time didn’t disappoint. They’ve really done a lot with the place since the last time I was there and it’s very nice.

While we were there, I got to see/chat up ‘The Walking Dead’s Ross Marquand (he plays Aaron)– and he was an absolute sweetheart. He was so kind, funny, charismatic, and personable. That show might be taking all the wrong turns lately- but I’m so excited to see what he does next!

On Sunday, after running some pre-work week errands, I once again found myself in Western Massachusetts- this time at Ashfield Lake for the very first time with a friend of mine. We were desperate to beat the heat wave that has been mercilessly hammering down across New England for the better part of a week- and the water couldn’t have been more perfect. Not too cold, but not too warm after roasting under the sun all day. It was just right- and completely refreshing.

After we dried off, it was off to Amherst for dinner before I had to head back home and get ready for work.

The photo at the top of the post was taken right before we left the lake- as the sun was setting. One of Massachusetts’ hidden gems!

Although I had to work on Monday and Tuesday (and again yesterday and today)– the Fourth of July was spent in the wilderness. Specifically, in the White Mountains- where I spent the day hiking and swimming in streams, under waterfalls, and in lakes until it was time to head back into civilization, the city- and enjoy some fireworks and BBQ.

I especially love the White Mountains this time of year because it’s not ski-season, which means many of the busier areas and attractions aren’t as busy. I was able to rest and relax and just take in the sounds of the mountains around me until I had to rejoin Boston’s nightlife again. It was beautiful.

And now- back home and rejuvenated- I’m preparing for the weekend. After work today, I’ll be visiting a friend in Northampton before he takes the stage this weekend for a Summer-long theater project, and I’ve got a pretty great recipe up my sleeve that I’m excited to whip up tomorrow (and share next week!)

With that and a planned beach day with friends? It’s shaping up to be a lovely couple of days ahead!

Here’s wishing you all a wonderful Friday, and an even better weekend! I’ve got to get some work done before I take off again!

See you all on Monday!


– Ashley –

“Don’t go chasing waterfalls…”

Ew, it’s Monday again- and I’m bracing myself for a seriously packed workload at my office this morning. I’m hoping by this afternoon I’ll have finished most of my To-Do list and can breathe a little easier- but right now I know I’m going to be completely absorbed in my case files and my coffee for the next few hours.

I’m pretty tired this morning- and not just because of last night’s episode of “Game of Thrones”- but because I did a LOT of driving, hiking and swimming this past weekend- and my muscles aren’t letting it slide. I’m a sleepy, semi-sore mess and I can’t wait to get home after a post-work burger run with one of my co-workers so I can crawl into bed and get some sleep!

On Saturday, I ventured up North to the White Mountains- towards Mount Washington- when I was caught in a torrential downpour and one of the worst thunderstorms I think I’ve ever seen. Whether it was the altitude or the change in air pressure, I’m not sure- but the lightning was terrifyingly intense and the winds were strong enough to force me off of the road for a while until it was safe to drive again. I ended up parked near Cascade Mountain while I waited for the conditions to clear- which ended up being sort of a pleasant surprise since there is a gorgeous waterfall right there off of the roadway. When the storm passed, I ran out to snap a few photos of it before the downpour started again.

The rain didn’t let up- and it nearly followed me all the way home Saturday evening when I gave up on having enough visibility to safely hike any trails or cross any rivers. The conditions were just too dangerous at the time- and I’m hoping I can try again in a couple of weeks- weather permitting!

Yesterday was much more laid-back and the weather was infinitely nicer. With clear, sunny skies- I headed up to Singing Beach for a few hours to soak up the sun with friends. There was a street festival just outside the beach, too- where the local shops and vendors around Manchester-By-The-Sea gathered to sell food, jewelry, home decor, books, etc. Although parking was a nightmare- it was fun to have a look around before we headed out to grab dinner and a couple of margaritas in downtown Melrose and I started back towards my place to prepare for work this morning!

And now I’m here, sun-kissed and ready to snooze- but prepared to tackle the day as best as I can.

Here’s hoping you all make it through your Monday!

My friend was feeling cheeky yesterday at the beach and snapped this one of me.


– Ashley –