Category: Boston Love

Thinking of Autumn Gets Me Every Time

Changing Seasons | GetsMeEveryTime.com

This year, the changing of seasons are really hitting me hard. Here in Boston, it’s in the high 70s one day and all 50s, all the time, the week after. I’m all like, “woah, what? no transition?” But I’m OK. Bring it on, fall.

The temperature change has less to do with fall’s effect on me. I’m actually enjoying piling on the layers. It’s become my physical armor. To protect me from the cold. To hide the grief and joy and all the emotions which I am working through.

Frost warnings aside, the actions of fall seem to be what getting to me. It’s fall’s trees shedding their leaves. It’s fall’s acorns being carried away for storing. It’s fall’s grass fading to some shade in between green and brown. It’s tough. Knowing that fall leads to a seasonal death of life as we know it. No more bluebirds in the birdbath. No more chipmunks chasing each other through the backyard.

Simultaneously though, I am finding hope in these passings. I know that the upcoming dormancy of winter must happen for life to spring forth in just a few short months. It’s a reminder that nothing is forever. That it’s a cycle. Life is a cycle. It’s not just one journey, but a series of journeys that take us places and bring us right back, still the same, but somehow changed.

Eight Years Get Me Every Time

Skyline_BostonGMETHappy Labor Day, guys!

Here’s hoping you had a great long weekend. Today, I’m celebrating our (last) day off (as two) and along with it, eight years in (greater) Boston. Eight great, wonderful, amazing, long, short, life-changing years.

Instead of recapping my 8 years here, I thought I’d give you guys my eight reasons to love (greater) Boston. Some are quite obvious. Others, maybe it’s just me.

FreedomTrail_BostonGMET1. History: it’s everywhere. A trip down the Freedom Trail teaches you about a lot of it, but it’s all over greater Boston.

Mass_BostonGMET2. Seasons: After growing up in a place where we basically had two seasons, warm and hot, I’m in love with all of Mother Nature’s glory and the seasonal wardrobe that goes along with it.

Sports_BostonGMET3. Sports: I might not cheer for all the Boston/New England teams (You can’t take the Pittsburgh out of the girl.) but I love that we have access to professional sporting events year round. And I love the way this city gets behind a (winning) team.

Holidays_BostonGMET4. Shopping: From every major retailer to small shops like Pod and SOWA, you can really find everything you need.

MBTA_BostonGMET5. Transportation: If you live here you know we all have a love/hate relationship with the MBTA. But, live in a city where public transportation isn’t so great and you’ll appreciate even more.

6. The Burbs: I just made the jump last year, but I already/so far love living outside of the city yet so close to it at the same time.
Boats_BostonGMET7. Water, water everywhere: the above photo was taken on my lunch break. Because most places in the city you can go for a short walk and see some body of water, be in the river, the harbor, the channel, etc. Love it.

8. Eating Up: I haven’t written about every single place I’ve ever eaten (that’s a blog in itself) but you know from the all the food Instagrams and posts like Cutty’s and Jimmy’s Bar that I’m not one to turn down a good meal. And there are plenty of those to be had in the Boston area.

There are so many great reasons to love Boston and New England and I can’t wait to spend (at least) the next eight years getting to experience all of it.

Three Years Get Me Every Time

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Today, I’m raising a toast to three years of love, growth, smiles, tears, laughs, moves, friends, family, travel, hugs, kisses, Boston, marriage and Mr. GMET.

Three years ago we were saying “I do.” Three years ago we were enjoying a HOT spring day. Three years ago we were eating burgers, fries and chocolate chip cookies.  Three years ago we were toasting our marriage with OKC-style lunchboxes. Three years ago we were dancing the night away.

Thank you to each and everyone of you who has made the past three years so very special. Here’s to many, many, many more with the whole gang.
wedding2PS. photos by the wonderful Bob Perachio.

French Macarons Get Me Every Time

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Do you ever look for signs of things to come? Say for instance, spring? I think it’s fair to say we all do. My favorite sign of spring for years has been one that comes before trees bud and crocuses come up. It happens usually before all the snow melts and before the winter boots have been put away. It’s the squawk that makes you turn your head to the sky. Geese. That familiar “V” appears in the sky and you know that we’re inching ever closer to spring as the annual migration begins.

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I can say, I think we’ve almost made it, you guys. Not only are the geese getting rowdy, but here in Boston, more and more food trucks are coming out of hibernation. And this year, already, I can tell my favorite truck, a new one at that, is Cameo Macaron.

Macaron3I ordered two dozen of these guys and Cameo Macaron founder Kinesha Goldson personally delivered them for National Macaron Day. I gotta say, those colorful tasty little cookies cannot be beat. And since they’re naturally gluten free, I’m going to tell you to go get your own, buyer’s keepers.

Good news, guys. Cameo Macaron is now operating a weekly schedule. Starting today, you’ll be able to spot that pink truck around town. Check the schedule or follow on Twitter to find out where and when. And don’t forget to follow Cameo’s Instagram for some eye candy that will leave you chasing this pink truck across Boston.

 

 

Buying a Home in (Greater) Boston Part 2 Gets Me Every Time

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Hooray! You’ve got your budget under control. Or at least, you’ve seen what affordability looks like in a spreadsheet. Bonus, you can see where your money is going each month and how much you are (should be) saving. Now what?

Well, in the great greater Boston area, it’s time to talk the first “L” of real estate. Location. Location. Location. And in Boston, we have more than a few to choose from. In the city? Or out of the city? North, south or west? Commuter Rail, T, Bus or Ferry. So, why not start with narrowing it down by area?

BostonBurbsGMET

Some of the “community” lines on this map are a little off. But, then again, ask 5 different people what exactly the “North Shore” or the “South Shore” entails and you’ll get 5 different answers. Amiright? Also, there are many great towns not on this map. Andover & North Andover are missing for example. And, I’m no expert on Mass geography, so if some of these ‘burbs names are off, I do apologize.

When we started our search, we started with two very basic questions:
– North, south or west?
– Boston city limits or not?

We answered the first pretty easily. Although many people I know (through work) live on the North Shore, Mr. GMET grew up in Metrowest. Coupled with that is family proximity—his family lives in the “Blackstone Valley” region and I have extended family in Rhode Island. So, south it was.

The next question was one we didn’t figure out for a while into our search. We wanted to be close to the city, so we looked on both sides of the line, including towns like West Roxbury, Hyde Park and Milton in our initial search before we really focused in on one town.

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How’d we narrow it down? We looked at a ton of stats and ratings. City-Data is a great starting place. Simply type in a town and you’ll get the median age, home price, income and more. Greater Boston Suburbs is another one if you’re looking to move beyond Boston. We looked at how long our commute would be on the Commuter Rail if we lived away from the MBTA bus/T. It turned out to be shorter than our typical commute on the Green Line, no surprise there.

IntheCarGMETSo, armed with our narrowed down list and a bunch of research, we jumped in the car a few weekends in a row. We looked up the name of a restaurant in each of our top towns and headed out. We ate in each town, walked around the area where we ate, then drove through a few neighborhoods. We wanted to know what we were getting into, of course.

Finally, after figuring out our budget, we knew we were looking for a little more than a starter home. (We call it our “forever home.”) So, in addition to all the specs and stats, we also started looking at grown-up things like school rankings. Yes, we are that forward thinking. Keep in mind, we started this whole research and budget process more than 18 months ago.

All of these factors helped us settle on Milton and Dedham as our two key markets that we wanted to explore. Next up? The “fun” part. Exploring actual homes. Stay tuned.

Buying a Home in (Greater) Boston Gets Me Every Time

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I have never lived in a house/apartment/dorm room for more than five years. To some, that sounds awful. But for me. It’s been great. Why? Because I’ve gotten to decorate a new bedroom (when I was a kid) or a whole home (on my own) every five years or so. And that means that I’ve even had purple and black carpets in two of my many bedrooms. Yes. Purple carpet. Every girl’s dream. And black carpet. Every teenager’s dream. (Shout out to Mom & Dad.)

Needless to say, I couldn’t be more thrilled that we now have a home that we’re planning on staying in for the foreseeable future. (forever and ever.) And the fact that it’s taking me longer to decorate is A-OK because I have all the years in the world to do so.

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But first, on how we got here. Being a first-time home buyer can be crazy nerve-wracking. And being a first-time home buyer in a major metropolitan area can be even more of a nail-biting good time. The good news, there are endless options. The bad news, same thing.

Now since I’ve been through this, I figured I could offer a few tips with the old Boston touch. Today, the most important. The one thing you must do before you even start looking. Before your hopes get high. Make a budget. You gotta do it. It isn’t the fun part. But that’s for later. There are plenty of downloadable spreadsheets on the internet, but here’s a breakdown of ours.

HomeBuying

You might have more or less expenses, depending on your habits (Netflix, Weekly Dry Cleaning, etc..) but this is a pretty good start. And. Because I love ya, I’ve got a downloadable Excel version of our blank spreadsheet right here. It has two columns (now, renting and later, owning) and we calculated everything to be based off of a full year’s expense.

I’ve got some more Boston specific tips coming up soon too. Hold on to your house keys!

A Craft Show Countdown Gets Me Every Time

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You guys, I’ve been counting down to the Dedham Junior Women’s Club Craft Show for a while now. And it’s finally here! As in, tomorrow. Saturday. So, right now, I am busy packing all these little guys up. But, if you’re not busy tomorrow and you’re in the area, or need a trip out to the ‘burbs. Swing by!

I’ll have business card holders, pencil holders, ornaments, place card holders, wine stoppers and more! The holidays are right around the corner after all. It’s from 9-3 at the Dedham Middle School.

Here & There Get Me Every Time

HereandThere1

Well, have I been the worst blogger or what? So much has happened in the past few weeks and I’ve hardly filled you in on any of it. The first week of radio silence on the blog I was busy prepping for a show (more on that soon.) And then last week, there was so much happening in the news that I didn’t want to tear anyone’s attention (or myself) from it all.

So, to quickly recap… I’ve been making tons of custom Toyidermy orders. Enjoying the beautiful city of Boston as Spring finally makes it’s debut. Eating lots of yummy goodness from Matt Murphy’s (French Toast), our home (GF cheesecake bites) & Tatte (Nut tartes, above.) I also enjoyed the marathon from Brookline, including snapping this photo (below) of the mens’ winner. And lastly, working on some new projects to share in my Etsy shop too.

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That’s it for now! A HUGE thank you to all of the friends and family who reached out to make sure we were okay last week. We were reeling with emotions from shocked to heartbroken to sad to anxious. But we were merely bystanders to all the events. Those that were seriously affected are the ones that need our concern. You can help by keeping them in your thoughts, donating to the One Fund, and by continuing to visit Boston and support our local economy. We are happy to call Boston home and we’d love to have you visit any time (just not all at once!)

 

Snow Days Get Me Every Time

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So, faithful followers. It snowed. A lot. And then it snowed more. And the plows kept coming through. But my neighborhood still looked like this when I stepped outside as the last flurries fell on Saturday. Quaint, isn’t it? I could tell you all the scientific details about how much snow fell and wind speeds and all that, but, I’m not. Instead, just take a glimpse at my cute little neighborhood. All the snow. And David trying to figure out if/when we should dig the car out.snow snow3 snow4 snow7 snow6 snow8 snow9 snow10 snow11

*note, we have not dug the car out yet. don’t hate.

 

Charlestown at Night Gets Me Every Time

20130205-081246.jpgIf you live in Boston, or you’ve visited, you know that it’s a city of many neighborhoods. And though I’ve lived in the area for almost seven years, I fell like I have hardly glimpsed some neighborhoods—Charlestown is one of those. So the other night, David and I had dinner there and took a brisk, both cold and speedy, walk around “the town.” Some of the photos are a bit grainy, but I don’t even mind.

20130205-081252.jpgNow, if you’ve never been to Boston, the Freedom Trail is the red line of bricks that winds through the city all the way to Charlestown, giving you the opportunity to see the city and 16 historic sites along the way. It begins in Boston Common and ends here, at the Bunker Hill Monument.

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charlestown6Perhaps my favorite part of our stroll was looking back on the city. When you’re in it every day, you forget what a beautiful skyline you are actually sitting in, working, being a part of it daily.

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I’m excited to go back to Charlestown in the spring when it’s a little warmer. It also made me want to explore other neighborhoods. Who’s with me?