sometimes when you don't post for a year it means big things have happened. or, in our case, one very small thing.

this guy.

elijah paul harding
seven pounds, eleven ounces
twenty-one inches

i have lots of words swimming around in my head. there are so many things i don't want to forget. i don't think i've ever felt this much in my life. everything is magnified with this little person. it's incredible. and overwhelming. and awesome.

first up, his birth story.


stranger encounters

sometimes, i accidentally make eye contact with people. it has led to the following this week:

home depot: a much, much older guy started talking to me about his cabin and how it desperately needed a woman's touch and some photos of birds (but not of horses running across the sand), and also how he has a very sensitive nose and could smell if someone had chewed gum within the last hour. as i was edging away he told me "you're a fine looking woman. i'm not dead yet, you know" and then he winked at me. i think it was because i was wearing an argyle sweater.

post office: i was standing in line when the man in front of me turned around and shouted "you must be greek!"
me (after jumping back a foot because a man had just shouted into my face): "no, i'm not greek."
man: "ah, you are british!"
me: "nope. not british."
man: "and you say you are not from greece?"
me: "nope, never been to greece."
man: "i haven't either. never been to greece. just like you. i am from macedonia. MACEDONIAAAA!"
me: "oh... that's cool"
man: "yes, yes, i love macedonia. i am from macedonia you know."
me: "yes, you mentioned that."
man: "you know, alexander the great was from macedonia."
me: "i didn't know that. that's interesting."
man: "yes, you know, he was the greatest man in the all world. the greatest man! and from MACEDONIAAAA!"
me: silent.
man: "alexander the great, you know. you know alexander the great?"
me: "yes. he's... great."
man: "he's going to be great again, you know. you know he will again be the greatest man in the whole world. that's what the prophecies say. it's going to happen soon. yes, that's what they say. alexander the great from macedonia is going to be the greatest man in the world again. in macedonia. i am from macedonia, you know... you are greek?"
me: "yes! i am greek."

sometimes i feel just like the little boy in church who, when i smiled at him, whispered "please don't look at me". but at least there's always a story to tell.

but other times you meet the most interesting people. like the blueberry man angie and i met in bryant park while we waited out the rain. he has lived in the same tiny apartment for twenty years and develops his photos in the bathroom. he and his friends have gone to almost every movie at bryant park since they started showing them. that night he had brought freshly baked ratatouille. every year he harvests and photographs the blueberries in maine and makes his own blueberry jam. did you know blueberries grow like ground cover and are harvested with a dust pan thing? we didn't either. and he is planning on building a giant portable blueberry field as a museum exhibit. he was fascinating.

and, just for good measure, a random story. last month i dropped my ice cream cone at chick-fil-a. i was laughing but then randomly started crying (?) and the teenager walking around handing out mints felt bad and got me a new one. yes, i'm twenty-four. no, i was not too ashamed to accept the new cone. it was delicious.



two weeks-ish ago mike and i celebrated our fourth anniversary. four years married + four years pre-marriage = fewer and fewer years where i remember life without mike (which is great, because those years involved bangs fluffed to the sky, holiday themed braces, doc martens, and a lot more crying).

we celebrated a little early by heading up to boise to see the broadway tour of les miserables. we figured if we were going to drive five hours we might as well splurge to get good seats. i'm so glad we did. we sat on the front row about ten feet from the stage and were completely surrounded by the music and able to see every expression and detail. it was incredible. an added bonus was at half-time/intermission when we were able to witness packs of people pointing and gawking into the orchestra pit. sort of like the hippo exhibit at the zoo. super entertaining. after, mike was humming some of the songs. he won't admit it in public, but he loved it. and i love him for taking me to see it.

our dinner that night was a hilarious fail (i'll set the scene: middle eastern restaurant in a grocery store, rescue 911 playing on a vhs in the background, intense conversations about guild wars and fantasy personas from the girls behind us, and really, really dry chicken) so we tried again on our actual anniversary. mike chose Pallet, which was a thousand and seven times better. the building is beautiful and we had one of the best desserts we've ever eaten - a warm walnut shortbread with melted chocolate and caramel inside and ice cream with berries on top. mmmmmm... it doesn't beat the blueberry concoction in st. thomas, but i'll still dream about it for weeks.

a lot of my bfa friends think mike should be sainted for putting up with me. i would be the first in line to put him on the list. he's really patient, hilarious, thoughtful, and has never abandoned me when i've gotten myself into a tight situation... or two... or fifty. even at three in the morning. i never thought i would get married young. i was not going to be one of those girls. but clearly someone who knows me better than i know myself knew i would never survive past twenty without mike. he's still the best person i've ever met.


summer sabbatical

in junior high i discovered a beautiful thing: a mental health day. a day where i do whatever my brain and body needs most. sometimes it's judge judy or eight bowls of cereal; occasionally it's going for a long run or picking up a book and not moving until it's finished. whatever works to clear my head and help me sort things out. something different.

this summer turned into one long mental health day. one day i'm busy and frazzled over projects and orders and deadlines and exhibitions and the next day... it's all over. i'm graduated. i'm done. there's time and space and no rush for anything.

i always thought i would start working full-time right away. i love working. i love money. it makes sense. but i needed time to slow down. to re-prioritize. to spend days writing and exploring and watching too many documentaries (walmart is evil. none of our food is real. too many kids are medicated. the government is corrupt.) i figured myself out a little bit more.

and that's how i spent my summer. it was glorious.

also, i joined instagram. a year late. my username is saramharding if you're into that.

one - view from hipster williamsburg where we ate and ate. two - hometown harlem. 
three - the laundry mat where you always came home with a story. four -  my favorite sign on the way to visit my favorite people at martha.

one - amateur night at apollo theater - people cheer! and boo! and drag them off the stage! two - belmont, where the boys bet and won... and lost.
three - awesome and amazing angie at dylan's candy bar - she's the best. four - rainbow candy is my personal heaven.

one - central park. two - waffles from the best food truck. 
three - delicious katz's deli with lyns and annie. four - NEWSIES! it was incredible.

one - the gugg - amazing exhibit all about texture. two - some of my favorite art from lichtenstein at the met. 
three - self-portrait at the clouds exhibit on the roof. four - view from the roof overlooking central park.

one - mood fabrics! we saw swatch... he looked slobbery. two - project runway with ang! so many stories. heidi is glamorous. i want tim to be my fairy godmother.
three - shakespeare in the park. four - september eleventh memorial.

one - grand central. two - inside, where lyns and annie and i ate four (five?) different desserts at once.
three - mikey at the mets game. there was loooooots of baseball this summer. four - public library. love.
one - i think this was st. patricks. gorgeous cathedrals everywhere. two - girls night with abbie! who is even more incredible in person. wish i got a picture with alexa... ang has incredible friends. and friends = desserts. three - diamond unicorn from tiffany's. i need it. four - the highline. favorite internship lunch spot.



somehow, my little sister kate graduated from high school yesterday. today, she turns eighteen! but for some reason i still think of her like a five year old. i guess that's what happens when you're the baby. since we're missing out on all the festivities and i'm not there in person to ramble (which i know my family is dying without) behold: a post all about kate.

kate is the only sibling who i remember being excited for. i was six, and before she came home i practiced the house tour i would give to her to introduce her to everything. specifically, all of jess's stuff that i wasn't allowed to touch and lara's ballerina music box. i was also determined to teach her to talk right away so she could tell me all about heaven before she forgot. but she was stubborn. i even tried the blink once for yes, twice for no idea. it didn't work out so well. mostly i was curious about unicorns i think. and if you got to eat ice cream.

kate used to be terrified of the wind. she would camp out in the basement for hours if it looked like a storm was coming. the other thing that drove her crazy (like full meltdown) was if our back gate was ever open. and with six older brothers and sisters i think we might have left it open on purpose once or twice...

she's always been super sweet and friendly. we went on a church history tour and she was five-ish. by the end of every tour she was up front with the guide, holding their hand and best friends. pretty sure we scored extra nauvoo bricks because of kate.

kate's never been afraid to be her own person. everyone else in the family played sports. steve, jess, and jeff played basketball. jenny, lara and i played soccer together. naturally my parents thought kate might be into soccer too. the rest of us were pretty competitive and played club/high school sports forever. kate was the opposite. she was the girl always waving at the sidelines, picking dandelions when she was playing defense, and skipping in circles with her teammate if they scored a goal. it was awesome. she's genuinely happy when other people are happy (even if it was the other team).

she's really smart. she was sort of mortified when we found out that she was academic girl of the year in ninth grade. she didn't want anybody to know. this year, she shocked us all when she was in the homecoming pageant as deca president. she was beautiful and funny and the whole time i watched her up on stage i couldn't believe it was my little sister. she does so many things that i would never have the courage to do.

it's funny that kate is the youngest, because she might be the most mature out of all of us kids and such a good example to all of us. it seems like she gets the short end of the stick a lot, but you would never know it from her attitude. she's going to uvu on a full scholarship this fall to be an asl interpreter. she's going to be amazing.

happy birthday/graduation katers!


opinions please.

i've had a really lovely cold this week that has resulted in watching a lot of terrible tv. like one tree hill. it falls into the it's-so-bad-it's-good category. and nothing goes better with poor acting than online shopping. this week the theme is furniture.

like this couch. i neeeeeeeeed it. the only question left before purchasing while it's like 72.89% off is which color?


or dark?


oh yeah, packing.

we leave for new york tomorrow. i'm debating between packing or just walking onto the plane with my summer reading list and buying a whole new wardrobe when we get there. lucky for me, mike is taking a nap right now and agreed that new clothes is a great idea if i would just leave him alone.


looks like i'm all packed.

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