folded grocery list.

"Will you whisper softly into my ear, 
all of the words that I need to hear, 
and I will love you even in your darkest hour, 
my dear.
And when the music begins to fade, 
taper, drift away, 
will you still dance with me anyway?
For our time together will surely 
slip from our hands, 
quietly, strand by strand, 
but my memories will be as many as the sand.
Then I will sit by the old oak tree, 
just as I promised you I would be, 
and I won't cry for you, 
but for me, 
because it is you that is finally free."
© Katie Daughtry 2013

...written on a folded grocery list.


card playing: a photo essay

Do you have a favorite card game?


You know that thing you're sure you'd suck at? Try it.

So often, we don't allow ourselves to even try something because we're sure we'll fail. Maybe once upon a time when we were small, we took one lesson or twenty lessons and then we stopped. Or maybe we just never let ourselves try it at all.

For years I've been afraid to even try to learn to play an instrument. I told myself music was not my thing. I had no sense of timing, no idea of pitch. I'd be awful; I was sure of it. I used to play piano, and trumpet, and characteristically, I'd quit both.

Even when I tried to learn the ukulele last year, it didn't stick. An uke is meant to be sung along to, and I can't carry a tune. So I didn't love it; I couldn't play well besides some pretty rad Hawaiian strums.

My school has a graduation requirement of at least one music class (among other classes). I'd have to take either chorus (that was definitely a no; I've got an awful voice), beginning orchestra, or beginning band. I took band, and chose the trumpet, and honestly, what's happened is the last thing that I expected. I fell in love with music.

I fell in love with harmonies and the way notes form sounds that fill my chest with a wonderful sort of ache. And best of all I discovered that I'm not even half bad, that I enjoyed playing and counting and exploring notes.

So, moral of the story, cliched as this may sound: don't be afraid to step out of your comfort zone. Try something new you'd never imagined yourself doing. Don't tell yourself you'll be bad at something before you even consider it.
And, as spring begins - this season that we like to associate with new beginnings, hope, freshness - there's no better time to step up and do those things you've been afraid to try. Who knows? You may even find a new passion.


Good Bread

“‘A loaf of bread,’ the Walrus said, ‘is what we chiefly need: Pepper and vinegar besides are very good indeed.’” - Lewis Caroll

LOAF OF BREAD: a recipe

3 cups lukewarm water
1 1/2 T. granulated yeast (2 packets)
1 1/2 T. course salt
6 1/2 cups flour 

I always thought that bread was a ridiculously long, difficult process, but I was wrong.  this was my first time making bread, and it was really simple, and totally worth it.  

+  warm the water slightly, pour in a 5-quart dish(if mixing by hand, or a mixing bowl for your mixer), and add in the packets of yeast. 
+  don't bother to stir, add in the rest of the ingredients (flour, salt)
+  mix with a big spoon, or the bread hook on your mixer until completely incorporated, but you don't need to knead. 
+  cover with a cheesecloth or loose lid and let rise for 2 or more hours.
+  spray your dish or baking sheet and preheat your oven to 425 F.
+  cover your working surface with flour, and coat your hands.  
+  create four loaves of bread from your dough, simply forming a ball, pinching the dough together to form a smooth surface.  
+  place loaves in or on your baking surface, and let rise for another 40 min. 
+  when done rising, pat surfaces with flour again and cut cross-hatches on the tops of the loaves.
+  place a dish with 1 cup of boiling water in the bottom of the oven, and then put your sheet of loaves on the middle rack.
+  bake your bread for about 30 minutes, until the crust is nice and golden, and firm to the touch.  
+  break it open and slather it in butter or jam or honey or vinegar.  

Share with friends, family, and eat a lot of it yourself.  there's something about homemade bread that is spectacular.  



women are rad.

Today is international women’s day. I’ve been really lucky that for most, if not all of my life, I’ve been surrounded by strong, incredibly intelligent women, and without them, I wouldn’t be the same person I am now. 

A lot of the dialogue surrounding international women’s day includes conversations about feminism, and traditional gender roles, and the way women fit into society. I don’t want to talk about that though. I want to talk about my mom. 

“Her grandkids are friends with the Kardaaayshians,” she said last night, and I started laughing so hard that tears traced tracks down my cheeks. I can’t count how many times things like that have happened, like when she said something funny and followed it up with, “don’t you dare tweeter that!” Or the time she told me that she’d rather look at Adam Levine than listen to him sing. My friends would talk to me about fights they had with their moms, the tears, the screaming, and I couldn’t comprehend having a mom who wasn’t also my best friend. 

I remember the first time my mom made me cry. It was eighth grade, and I was going to be late for school because I hadn’t printed a paper the night before. She started talking to me about responsibility, about procrastination. My over-tiredness combined with her scolding pushed me over the edge and I walked to the car that morning, five minutes late, still crying. Looking back on that now, what amazes me most is that I was fourteen before an interaction with my mother made me cry. 

She told me a story once. We were at coffee with my best friend, and I don’t remember how this came up, but my mom looked at me nervously before she started talking to my best friend. “I know I’ve never told you this, Katie, but when I was in high school, I used to fight with my mom all the time. We would have these long, drawn out screaming matches until our throats were sore, and because of that, I never ever wanted to have daughters.” Here we are though, almost eighteen years after she gave birth to her first daughter, and she’s one of the people I trust most. 

When I think back to my childhood, all my memories have her in them. Maybe not as the main character, but she’s in all the memories. Like when I was seven and we had spent a long, exhausting morning shopping for shoes, and she took my siblings and I to Febo to get ice cream for lunch. We sat outside Febo and ate ice cream and fed french fries to the pigeons and that memory is clouded with happiness. Or another time, when I was eight, and I learned to say panda in Dutch. I came home from school that day, excited to tell her, and all I remember is the look of pride on her face. Or when we were moving back to America from England, and three of my siblings went home early with my grandparents, but I was the one who she trusted to help take care of the baby. I was only ten or eleven and it wasn’t even that big of a deal, but I felt so honored and mature that she picked me. Or when I was fifteen, standing in the airport at a gate to a plane that would take me to the Atlanta airport where another plane would take me to the Paris airport and another plane would take me to the Middle East for three months. I didn’t make eye contact with her while I waited to board my plane, because I knew that if I did, I would see her start crying and I would start crying myself. 

I remember a few months ago. I slept in the loft that night. Right before she went to bed, she came out of her room and saw me curled up in the bed. “What’s wrong? Why are you sleeping out here?” she asked, and I started crying, and she held me while I explained that I didn’t know how to be happy here, so far from home, and there wasn’t anything she could say to make me feel better, but she held me and she comforted me and that was enough. 

My mom has always been an example of the kind of woman I want to be. The kind of woman who says, “I bet I could fix that,” instead of asking for help. The kind of woman who knows she’s right, but has the grace to admit it when she’s wrong. My mother is the reason I learned how to change a tire, how to check the oil in my car, how to do so many other things so that I’m not dependent on anyone to do them for me. She makes me want to be a better person, and I love her with all of my heart. 

Happy international women’s day. 

What women in your life do you look up to? 


what do you desire?

There's a recurring trend in today's society- we think too much and do too little. We think about what we'll go to college for and base our decision on success, we think about what we could do but we never do it; and I'm tired of all this thinking and wondering and worrying. I just want to write books and make things and live in the mountains in a little white house with hard wood floors and lots of light and is this too much to ask for? But really, there's so much emphasis on sustaining our $4 coffee miserable lives and less emphasis on doing what we're passionate about, what we desire. Alan Watts said it best:


What do you desire?
What makes you itch? What sort of a situation would you like?
Let’s suppose – I do this often in vocational guidance of students. They come to me and say, “Well, uh, we’re getting out of college, and we haven’t the faintest idea of what we want to do.”
So I always ask the question, “What would you like to do if money were no object? How would you really enjoy spending your life?”
Well, it’s so amazing. As a result of our kind of educational system, crowds of students say, “Well, we’d like to be painters, we’d like to be poets, we’d like to be writers. But as everybody knows you can’t earn any money that way.”
Or another person says, “I’d like to live an out-of-doors life and ride horses.”
I said, “Do you want to teach at a riding school? Let’s go through with it. What do you want to do?”
When we finally got down to something which the individual says he really wants to do. I will say to him, “you do that, and forget the money.
Because if you say that getting the money is the most important thing, you will spend your life completely wasting your time. You will be doing things you don’t like doing in order to go on living that is to go on doing things you don’t like doing. Which is STUPID!
Better to have a short life that is full of what you like doing than a long life spent in a miserable way.
And after all, if you do really like what your’e doing, it doesn't matter what it is, you can eventually become a master of it. It’s the only way to become a master of something, to be really with it. And then you’ll be able to get a good fee for whatever it is.
So don’t worry too much. Somebody’s interested in everything. And anything you can be interested in, you’ll find others who are.
But it’s absolutely stupid to spend your time doing things you don’t like in order to go on doing things you don’t like and to teach your children to follow in the same track. See, what we’re doing is we’re bringing up children, and educating them to live the same sort of lives we’re living in order that they may justify themselves and find satisfaction in life by bringing up their children to bring up their children to do the same thing. It’s all wretch and no vomit. It never gets there!
And so therefore it’s so important to consider this question. “What do I desire?”


It's time we stop thinking too much and start doing more. So, what do you desire? 



a challenge

Don't think I don't notice it: the rushing; the planner filled to bursting with todos, half of them unnecessary; the sorry I've just been so busy excuses. I mean, I get it. I've been there, done that. But what is life if it's just an endless cycle of hurrying to finish one thing so you can rush to the next? Learn to say no. Schedule time to do nothing, to just sit. Who will notice the grass growing and flowers budding and clouds moving if you don't? The blurry mass of people watching their feet hurry on the sidewalk certainly won't. Will it harm to you to slow down, to eliminate some of the harmless busyness? No, not in the slightest. Leisure after work is nothing to be afraid of; narrow your schedule down to only the necessary tasks, do them well, and leave it at that. Quit talking about how busy you are and meet that friend for coffee, take a walk around the neighborhood with no distractions, spend an evening on the couch with a book and some chocolate, or heck, take that trip to Europe. I dare you.



hello march

We've made it through February! One of the toughest months in the year, I often think. This song plays in my internal jukebox throughout the month -- it's an achy tricky month. It's been a busy month too -- as our offline lives become richer, our posting here becomes sparser. We've all been up to exciting things lately though, and we're ready for a spring of fresh starts and sharing more here.

Libby has been spending too much time dancing in strobe lights, and writing more short stories, and studying.
Hannah has been taking beautiful photos, singing, and making movies.
Carlotta has also been enjoying snow, and also sunshine, and her new chickens!
Abbey has been feeling giddy, and sick, and also weird about the fact she's not on a bus.
Katie got accepted into Pratt!!!
Kendall has been watching spring begin, shooting film, and writing lists.

Katie, Kinga & Lillian have been busy & beautiful too.

What about you?


a question

someone asked me this question a few weeks ago and I haven't been able to stop mulling it over. so I wrote about it.

+ in a subway station in berlin with music from an electric guitar floating through the air and the rumble of the city beneath my feet

+ when I came home from a trip and my siblings screamed and hugged me so tight there was no breath left in me and the tears just came out of nowhere and spilled over as the crickets chirped their song

+ reaching the the summit of a mesa after spending all morning climbing it and even though it was only seven hundred feet high, I stood at the very edge and I swore I was on top of the world

+ getting up early and catching the train for the first time by myself, then showing the conductor my ticket when he walked through and even though tons of kids my age travel alone all the time I felt strangely grown up and powerful

+ sitting on a bench in front of the eiffel tower and crying

+ standing in the cold ocean, letting the current suck at my feet and knock the breath out of me

+ stargazing with my best friends in the middle of the road, the sky velvety black and the concrete warm from the day's heat

+ being carefree and forgetting about the future and acting like a little kid and not caring about anything except the present



the lake, the cabin, the fields

I live in the literal centre of this continent, snowed in from every direction. Consuming excessive amounts of Vitamin C, curling up in sunbeams on the living room floor like a cat, and watching these videos are my saving graces during this fifth month of winter. If you're feeling a little chilly, go ahead and visit one of my summer homes:

(watch all in HD here)

The lake:

The cabin:

The fields:



definitions of love

 photo love_zps1bddd302.jpg
I have loved, I have been loved, I have never been in love.

I have been stricken by an overwhelming, profound thing that could be described with too many adjectives; a pressure in my gut; a profound realization; a gratefulness; a joy; a sense of forgiveness. My love is for my family, my friends, my dog, my hobbies, my passions.

And even though love is defined as a deep affection for someone, I think it's something deeper; a feeling that you can't quite put your finger on. I can describe what love brings, what it makes me feel, but it takes a far more skilled writer to touch on the essence of love. All I can say is it is happiness, but not always, it is understanding and mistakes and sometimes failure but usually forgiveness. It is something quite beautifully human, and I cannot imagine living without it.

What is your definition of love?



poetry : do you wonder?

do you know what it's like to
tie your heart to everything you carry?

i picked it up when i was little,
it came along with trying to be older.
it's always to late to realize

it's too late, right?


do you know how it feels to let it go?
slip from your shoulders.

a blanket?

why always a blanket?
like letting go. it makes sense do you --

i wonder.

good. you were almost too late.

for what?

then what?

xo, h



It had been over half her lifetime since, but she kept lists and handfuls of things she remembered.  It began with glass doorknobs, and continued like this:  the small black-and-white tiles that made up the bathroom floor(always chilly in the early mornings), golden yellow kitchen walls (many breakfasts), ugly green carpets that were thick with dirt (before they were removed and left by the lightpost where the trashcan sat on the street), the radiator with the white metal box covering it (sitting, winter mornings, warm feet, book in hand).  She could pluck the little scraps of information, as they lazily floated through the air.  The list would continue on: windows (painted shut), third story attic (filled with boxes), deck, hard wood floor, green walls.  But a gust of wind came through town, for a whole year, and all the little pieces flew out(business class).  She stumbled for three months then, before realizing that they were gone.  


the vision of rest

Some words to reflect on from Wendell Berry's book of poems Clearing (a highly recommended read).


words for love

Margaret Atwood once wrote The Eskimos have 52 words for snow because it is so special to them; there ought to be as many for love. Whilst maybe there aren't that many synonyms for love, there are most definitely hundreds of different interpretations of what love is. There are stories about first love, lasting love, unrequited love, passionate love, platonic love, and so many more.
Below is a small selection of some of our favourite love-related literature  What poems, essays and stories would you add?

If I Had A Daughter

Barnheart by Jenna Woginrich | The History Of Love by Nicole Krauss | The Secret Keeper by Kate Morton

Mad Love
The Thousands Of Quiet Ways
The Birthday Present by Polly Samson

poems by Andrea Gibson | Marvin Bell | writingsforwinter | Bob Hicok |


a mixtape for february

These are just a handful of our February anthems (there were so many, we had to narrow them down) - the sounds and lyrics that make us think of certain somebodies, cute stories that have us giddy-dancing, and cuter stories that have only happened in our daydreams (our inboxes have been filled with both lately). Grab some chocolate or cinnamon hearts and maybe some tissues and have a listen to our big pile of mush. 


staff picks: valentine's edition.

Our email threads this month have been full of lots of giggliness, cute valentine stories, and gushing about proposal videos. Enjoy this month's staff picks.

Will & Charis get married.

A love poem, and another.

love story, and another.

Read my lips: chocolate tea.

I think you're rad.

Hello. Also, I love you.

Make a wish DIY bracelet.

Let's all write love notes and letters to our crushes.

Unconventional compliments.


Salted caramel brownies, perfect for Valentine's Day.

The longest married couple in America.

Quiet love.

Five ways to love.

Gorgeous sculptures by Takanori Aiba.

Have a happy weekend from the entire Fernweh staff!


living passively vs. passionately.

there is a gigantic difference, living passively or passionately. for a while I had a hard time choosing between the two. there are so many passionate people who either fall flat on their face pursuing that passion or completely change their mind on how they feel the very next day. so instead of trailing along behind them, I tried the passive lifestyle, regarding everything with a yes, no, or whatever, displaying no emotion or strong feeling toward anything at all. getting through life relying on the music I listened to and the books I read to speak for me, feel for me. not becoming attached to anything or anyone was the easy way out because, frankly, it hurt less; and, frankly, my heart was whole, unbroken. it was also cold and untouched. but once upon a time a girl dreamed about writing books and creating magazines and becoming a role model and reaching out to those without a voice of their own and giving them one. and this girl realized spending her nights dreaming of what she could do in this world while spending her days doing nothing at all and loving nothing at all and hating nothing at all and feeling nothing at all would, in turn, create nothing at all and be nothing at all. to be passionate, burning with love for life and people and purpose, will cause immense heartbreak, pain, disappointment; but living passively will not change the world. there is a choice, with two very different outcomes. and it is true that living passively opposed to passionately is safer for the muscle we call a heart, but is an emotionless life a better life to lead? is our purpose to die with a heart intact and untroubled? I certainly hope not. I hope to leave a piece of my heart in every place I go and with every person I meet. I want to die knowing I loved with everything in me and crushed into a million little pieces by the beauty of this world we live in. what about you?



a semi-autobiography in eight parts.

I. You write him a postcard. "I don't know how to tell you but I'm finally letting go," it says. The postcard is from Paris and when you finish writing it, you slide it back into the drawer with all the other words you never said. You ask your empty hands if this means you are letting go. Everyone memorizes the backs of their hands, but you'll never know your own as well as you know the scar like a poem permanent on his thumb.

II. You like tea more than coffee but you drink coffee because on days when you relent to a cup of tea you become afraid that you're turning into your mother. You drink it anyways and remember the best moments of childhood.

III. At night you run your fingertips across your ribcage and wonder about all the words that don't live there yet. You're bad at commitments but sometimes when you read Mary Oliver you sigh in relief. These are words that could rest on your ribs forever.

IV. You grow playlists slowly on your computer, choosing the songs carefully. You're trying to bring that feeling back with the music. Maybe nostalgia is the closest you'll ever get.

V. You told her once that you were bad at goodbyes. All this time later, and it's still true.

VI. You type fast, "maybe someday," and hit send.

VII. You ask your hands again what it means to let go.

VIII. The tea water is boiling. Your hands still don't answer.


the moving words of nicole krauss.

The weak yellow light of lamps during the dusk of two in the morning has seen me awake, reading "just one more" chapter of this book. I can hardly stand the thought of it ending, and so I go back, I read again, I mull on the words much like I imagine a philosopher would, but in the end, it's the honesty that gets me every time. Six books hold the only pages I've cried in, and while I'm only halfway through this one, I've already cried twice. There's a bittersweetness to Nicole Krauss' words, an intrinsic poignancy, and a heartbreakingly beautiful depth. I cannot recommend it more. And while it's out of context (it's on page 38 of my copy), this is one of the paragraphs that felt like home and goodbyes and the last morning in a place you love, all at once.

7. There is a photograph of my mother than no one has ever seen.

In the fall, my mother went back to England to start university. Her pockets were full of sand from the lowest place on earth. She weighed 104 pounds. There's a story she sometimes tells about the train ride from Paddington Station to Oxford when she met a photographer who was almost completely blind. He wore dark sunglasses, and said he'd damaged his retinas a decade ago on a trip to Antarctica. His suit was perfectly pressed, and he held his camera in his lap. He said he saw the world differently now, and it wasn't necessarily bad. He asked if he could take a picture of her. When he raised up the lens and looked through it, my mother asked what he saw. "The same thing I always see," he said. "Which is?" "A blur," he said. "Then why do it?" she asked. "In case my eyes ever heal," he said. "So I'll know what I've been looking at."

nicole krauss, the history of love

xx h


seasonal rituals

Rituals are a beautiful thing. Even though new things bring excitement, rituals ground us. They instill a familiar wonder in each heart by knowing--and anticipating--the rituals each season holds.
Spring is the time of freckles beginning to dot my face and doing school outside and simple meals outside under the shade of a tree glowing with pale new leaves.
 Every afternoon in the summer, when you can practically feel the sun burning your skin, I go to the pool and read. Afterwards, the long summer-night rituals begin: looking for fireflies and batting away mosquitoes and staying up a bit longer to catch the coolness of the darkness.
 Fall rituals consist of slipping into new routines and the first fires, small and smoky. The leaves change colors--or sometimes not, depending on the kind of year that's been had.
 Winter rituals are beautiful if you know where to look. Underneath pale skin lie deep thoughts and warm bowls of soup for what seems like every meal.
And before long, right when you think you can't take another one of those terribly short cold days, you start almost-spring rituals of lengthening days and looking for budding branches and opening windows a crack to let in the fresh breeze. Then the spring cleaning bug hits and when you look up from scrubbing, airing, and dusting, you notice that a new season has pushed through the grayness and arrived and whole cycle starts all over again.


on learning to love where you live.

Fernweh means an ache for distant, a craving for travel, an insatiable desire to get out and see the world. It means wanting to be somewhere else, and for the first sixteen years of my life, I'd say it fit me to a T. I was always complaining about the Texas heat, promising I'd leave as soon as I could. Begging my parents for trips: "can we go to Boston, how about LA?" Signing up for camp at church so I could add a few more states to my list.

Recently I was re-reading my journal from last summer, a summer defined by traveling, and I came across a line that struck me, that made me stop. "I am always looking for a way to leave," I'd written. "What I really need, I think, is a reason to stay."

And do you know what? Somewhere since then, in between Saturday mornings spent at the farmer's market downtown and Friday night football games yelling our lungs out, in between watching the sunrise at cross country practice and sitting in the passenger seat of my friend's car on the way to school after late start breakfasts, in between magnificent concerts and funny stories we'll tell in twenty years and writing an immeasurable amount of words just to figure it all out, I think I found a reason. 

More than one, maybe. A million reasons to love where I live, a million reasons I belong. A million reasons to stay. They're all wrapped up in the sunset and the skyline and the roads I take to school each day, and more than anything, in the people. 

The fact is, I'll be off to college soon enough, most likely living somewhere completely new. I have plans for this summer that involve new countries and new states and I'm excited. Traveling will always be a part of me, and even though I no longer constantly want to be somewhere else, when I get the chance to explore, I'm going to take it.

But right now, when I'm here, I aim to enjoy it. Because here is a pretty great place to be. 

there's no place like home.

p.s. hey...it's been a while, hasn't it? 


wanderlust in our DNA

I like to think that there is something in our blood, our souls, our very beings that make so many of us so in love with new places, so eager to travel and visit and explore. But there is something equally rooted that instills a love for our hometowns or at least our homes - the places we were born and raised. And no matter how fervently we dream of far-away cities, maybe the most beautiful thing of all is our own towns. (A video I put together):

I'm Kinga, a video-maker - because it combines my two passions, photography and words - and a blogger. I write, I read, I over-think, I dream of living across the ocean in London while learning to love the city I live in. (You can frequently find me here, on my youtube channel.)


staff picks

+ This colouring book
+ A rad canoe trip video (above) by a friend almost makes me wish it was summer. 
+ This smoothie makes a good weekend breakfast.

+ Kendall discovers a tea brand that shares her affinity with literary quotes.
+ She also Googles 'Andy Warhol cats' and that is why we love her.

+ Hannah Banana has made this banana ice-cream three times.
+ Quiet World by Jeffery McDaniel

+ Leave it to Katie to introduce us to these cool Berlinese sculptures
+ Art by Marc Johns
+ Sundry Sullen's collection of New Zealand photographs



I carry my words in coffee mugs and paper cups.

if I could, I would sit down with you over coffee.

buy you your favorite. grande caramel frapp? it's on me. prefer a green tea? there's no trouble. missed breakfast and want a caramel roll? just ask. the line winds slowly around counters piled high with travel mugs at the peak of too-expensive to splurge on. scattered conversation floats around the room, interrupted by the hum of coffee and the taps that come from a generation glued to their phones. we wait until they call our names or yell our drinks. nod to the baristas. mumble a hurried thanks with grace as our hands hold the $3.49 cups.

settle down, let me tell you a story.

the tables are taken, so we sit by the window. the leather chairs are perfect to sink into, and I have a week's worth of worries to unload. our words spill easily and we stop only to sip cooling cups. outside the sky is grey, the world washed of color. but here, it's almost easy to forget that winter has us in its white folds. there are colors not colors and warmth not from the sun.

how is life?

you say.

and I smile.



the bridges

Here's to the bridges. To the ones that towered above our frozen heads, skating the Red River at dusk. To that one we laugh about sometimes, coated in its acrylic profanities. To the ones we burned, crossed, and will cross. 

A late happy new year to you all.


Five Stories from a drawer-ful of dreams

Story One: Grand-canyon stamped paper bag.
She wished that she could lean over the edge, lean until she just tipped off the edge, and flew into the canyon.  The sun was dipping lower, dripping its red glow into the deeps of the canyon.  A girl sat on the edge, making some nervous, as she sat, converse-clad feet brushing little pebbles off the edge.  She scribbled into a well-worn notebook, perhaps stories of her adventures far from home, or heart stories of the one she wished had come with her.  The sun made it’s final goodbye, and she pulled her sweater sleeves over her knuckles, and hopped up as the bus pulled up to the stop.  Tourists waiting at the stop got in, and she glanced once more at the canyon deep, then turned her back. 

Story Two:  Figurines from a tea-can
When they were little, grandma would pull out the little tin full of tea-figurines, the little creatures that came in the tea-tins.  They made a most delicious sound as they stumbled out of the tin.  They would line them up, two by two, telling stories of how they got to the Ark.  The elephant was her favorite, and the monkey, his.  And each time they left, they kept one, tightly clutched in little palms. 

Story Three:  Wrist Band from a late night
“Mini golf first” they shouted as they all hopped out of the various cars and made their way to the entrance.  Each was clad in jeans and sweatshirts, but hair was fancy, and makeup was extra-special.  Stars cluttered the sky, and a night chill made them pull their hoods on and sleeves down their arms.  Each received a wrist-band.  He wrapped hers around her wrist for her, and they hurried off together to get their golf clubs before the others did.  It was a night of dancing on the green, and singing loudly.  They laughed and raced go-carts ‘til the sun came up, and as the sun rose, she tucked the band into her drawer of dreams. 

Story Four:  Key Card from a long-lost Adventure
She couldn’t remember why she had slipped the card into her wallet, and it made her sad, to think that something once so dear had been forgotten.  She flipped it over in her palm, and tried to think.  Each key-card she kept seemed to be bittersweet, the distance tearing holes in happy times after they had happened.  It could have been a destination, or a midnight stop for rest, but she couldn’t remember, and she found herself tucking it back into her wallet, knowing that she couldn’t throw it out.

Story Five:  Postcards from a summer cabin
She was a lonely soul, tired out, and wishing for a rest.  The summer came as a relief, then, as the lake became closer.  There were nights of reading in a hammock, campfires on the beach, and tea in a soup bowl.  The creaky old rowboat served as her trusty craft, and she would sit in it, lazily rowing in circles in the center of the little lake.  The fish glittered by, under the surface.  She imagined herself stories for them each, and watched them carefully, leaning over the edge of the boat.  It was a summer of sandy socks, and swimsuits, and drying out on the wooden raft.  On the picnic table sat three postcards, and she tucked them into her book, to remember the summer days.  

Hello, I'm Lillian.  I'm seeking to live fully this life-adventure I have before me.  I love rain, and winds in my face.  I am a child of the oak and maple forests of the east, of rich trees and secret rivers, rushing, cold.  I love writing words: the true and make-believe, I love capturing stories of all kinds.  I love photography, food, and napping on the kitchen floor.  

lillian rachel


wishful thinking.

I wish it was summer again. I'm tired of the too-short days and the darkness at 5pm and the cold. I'm tired of it all. I wish I was back in Indiana, down at the river, in a canoe in the middle of the summer. But instead I'm here, flipping through pages from the beginning of last year, remembering what it felt like before I made all those memories. January is good for nostalgia. 


At a local art museum, there's a quiet corner where the walls are painted white and everything that's not painted white is a window. The windows are floor to ceiling, curving out over the gentle rolling Oklahoma hills. In the afternoon, the most magical light comes in and you can stand by the windows and feel like the world's at your feet. Maybe that's why I like it so: not necessarily the view, but the way it makes me feel to stand there in early January with the whole year ahead of me. It's a new year and a time for fresh starts; make the best of it.



a hello.

I'm really not good with introductions.
"Hi, how are you? I'm fine, thank you for asking. It's a pleasure to meet you."
How impersonal, how ordinary. I'd really like to not be impersonal, and especially not ordinary.
So hello, friend, my name is Katie Jo, commonly referred to as Katie Josephine. I drink coffee like water and practically eat books because they're much more interesting than food. Leggings, button ups, and over sized sweaters are taking over my closet. My iPod is constantly playing a mix of The Lumineers, Of Monsters and Men, Mumford and Sons, Imagine Dragons, Phillip Phillips, Lana Del Rey, and Birdy. My heart is bound to the woods and headed for the mountains. I have a weird fascination with birds and trees, I have no idea why, although I think it has something to do with their being closer to the sky than me. My camera is somewhat glued to my side, but no more than my notebook; either way it's probably unhealthy. You may have seen my lookbooks around- an idea I came up with to express and vent my creativity for your enjoyment. I'd be happy to explore the world with my notebook and camera and nothing else, but I do suppose I would miss my loved ones. Home isn't a place, it's a feeling, it's a warmth that cannot be replaced. I hope to one day see my name in print, on the cover of my novel. It's really wonderful to be here, and I'm so happy the Fernweh girls asked me to contribute in this new year. Don't be afraid to say hi, okay?

katie josephine


happy new year

This time last year, I was dancing round the kitchen as I hit publish on the first post. Twelve months on, and I'm just as excited about this venture of ours.

The past year has been wonderful. We've shared some beautiful stuff here from our team of staffers (some of our most popular posts include an essay about flirting with French boys, interviews with talented folk, and some incredible photoessays) and there's been some outstanding guest posts too. There have been the loveliest tweets, the kindest emails, and a general feeling of some sort of community growing, not just from Fernweh, but from everyone's blogs that are slowly coming together and building a supportive place to share our art and our stories.

This year, we're expanding our Fernweh community too. We're introducing three new contributors;Kinga, Lillian, and Katie. They are wonderful girls, each with their own unique creative pursuits, and we're excited to see their contribution each month. We are also hoping to share more guest posts from our talented readership (you!) this year.

But overall? We want to share more about feeling at home, and how sometimes home isn't where you are right now. We want to talk about a hunger for travel, and we want to photograph the places we grew up in. We want to build up this community.

So here's to 2013, and all the community, support and friendship just waiting to be shared.