Food + Drink + Friends + Family + HOUSE: Newburgh + I Love the Internet + Life + Health

A sleepover party at my house.

I know, this post is a bit overdue! Chances are you’ve already heard on Twitter or seen another blog post, but two weekends ago, I hosted a sleepover party at my house with Victoria, Lisa and Jenna. I’ve never had so many overnight guests before! We had such a wonderful time. I wish I had more photos to share, but for some reason I tend to not think about picking up my camera when I’m with friends. I wish that weren’t the case, because it’s so nice to have visual memories of time spent together.

Breakfast on Sunday was exactly how I like it to be: perfect tofu scramble, collard greens, bagels from Beacon Bakery across the river, vegan sausages…and plenty of coffee, of course. There are fewer things that make me feel happier than preparing food for people and feeding them in my home.

On Saturday night, we all made ancho lentil tacos together. It was truly a collaborative effort (FYI, Lisa makes a mean guacamole!), and it felt really good to have a bunch of people in my kitchen. It’s hard for me to let go on control sometimes and allow guests to help me (even with stuff like washing dishes!), but I forced myself to just let it go for the weekend—and it was soooooo worth it.

We ate dessert (coconut milk ice cream and cookies!) in the garden. VERY exciting! We’ve been working on the garden for years now, and a lack of time, budget and resources have meant it’s been very slow going. Until that weekend, I’d never really spent any time in the garden just relaxing and enjoying myself. It’s only been a place for hauling, digging and sweating. The garden is still far from being done, but I’m glad I didn’t label it off-limits—something I tend to do with parts of my house that aren’t “perfect.”

(Hanging up those globe lights helped a lot. They’re just $12 cheapies from Target, but they added so much cozy atmosphere!)

I can’t say enough how much I love my friends. Having so much time together just felt right. I’d met all of them before, but being all in one place at the same time was very special. It wasn’t about networking or blogging or work or any of that stuff. It was just about talking, relaxing, watching movies, eating, staying up late and being friends. I didn’t want to say goodbye.

It’s funny, people are so critical of Twitter and blogs and how the internet supposedly takes us out of “real life,” but if I’m speaking truthfully, the internet (Twitter in particular) is the reason I actually have any semblance of a real-world social life. I’ve made a lot of friends online over the past 15 years, and a great many of them have become very real parts of my life—online and off. (And before the internet, I made lots of friends through writing letters with penpals.) Some of us just aren’t good at getting to know new people face-to-face. I’m one of those people. And that’s OK. Most of my friends are like that, too.

Lisa, Jenna and Victoria each wrote a post with pictures about our weekend together. They’re all much better photographers than me!

1. New York weekend at Lisa Congdon’s blog, Today is Going to Be Awesome.

2. Slumber party weekend at Jenna Park’s blog, Sweet Fine Day.

3. Unexpected guests at Victoria Smith’s blog, sfgirlbybay.*

*Victoria actually took a WHOLE BUNCH of photos from all over my house, so it’s sort of like an updated house tour. I know I’m kind of stingy with photos of my house lately (I guess because I haven’t been working on many projects), so if you’d like to see how it looks these days, head over! This is the first time anyone other than me has photographed my house, and I’m honored that Victoria found my home worthy of sharing on her beautiful blog.

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  • Reply Katherine June 4, 2012 at 9:39 pm

    I hear you on all of the control issues around home being “perfect” before guests are allowed. I’m learning to get over it. I cooked Thanksgiving for about 15 people 2 years ago – before our floor was done, before any living room furniture, before the guest bath was finished – and it was the most fun that I’ve had in this house.

  • Reply victoria June 4, 2012 at 9:44 pm

    ah! good times indeed had by all (even doing the dishes!). ;) xoxo

  • Reply Adriane /// The A & B Stories June 4, 2012 at 9:46 pm

    Aw, it looks like you ladies had such a lovely time! You must be the best hostess ever :)

  • Reply Allison June 4, 2012 at 9:48 pm

    Adult sleepovers are so much more fun than they were in junior high. I just had one this weekend (I moved under less-than-happy circumstances, and a real housewarming party seemed inappropriate).

    And as someone who has been in various online-based fandoms since I was a teenager, I completely agree about the Internet. It has made a massive, for-the-better difference in the person I am.

  • Reply Jenna June 4, 2012 at 9:54 pm

    Anna *is* the best hostess ever! YAY.

  • Reply Dori June 4, 2012 at 9:57 pm

    Your backyard looks like the perfect place for long, relaxed conversation.

  • Reply Allyson V June 4, 2012 at 10:06 pm

    Oh my goodness, what a meeting of the minds! And just across the river from me :) Looks like it was a blast, and your house looks absolutely gorgeous in everyone’s photos!

  • Reply rena June 4, 2012 at 10:37 pm

    wah, super jealous of your weekend! next time, next time :)

  • Reply Lorie June 4, 2012 at 11:09 pm

    I think it is fine you didn’t take a lot of pics. Someone pointed out to me a few weeks ago that sometimes you miss the actual moment by always being behind the camera. I mean, sometimes I am trying to snap a picture and get video of my kids all at the same time! It is a hard balancing act b/c I love and adore pictures and the memories that are attached to them and at the same time seeing it behind my camera isn’t the same as just watching… Sounds like such a fun weekend and I love your garden and lights!

  • Reply Martha June 4, 2012 at 11:49 pm

    I keep seeing a Minneapolis jeweler’s work—Annika Kaplan—and wondering if she’s the same person that you often mention (Lila Rice I see over at sfgirlbybay). I thought I’d pass the name along just in case you hadn’t seen her work yet. She and Martha M. both sell at and you can see more of Annika’s work at

  • Reply kelly w June 5, 2012 at 1:39 am

    did you color your hair? I’m looking at Lisa’s photos. Taking into consideration your aversion to showing your skin, I reckon you must be the one in jeans (walking across the bridge). But she’s copper-haired!

    • Reply Anna @ D16 June 5, 2012 at 2:38 pm

      Just the ends! You can see a better picture in this post.

    • Reply kelly w June 10, 2012 at 12:49 pm

      I totally read that post when you posted it– I don’t know how I missed your COOL HAIR! It looks SO SO GOOD.

      Was actually thinking about your haircut yesterday (after leaving my own hair appt, with stylist who is becoming less-fantastic as the years pass) and wishing I could get away with something similar. I’m completely courageous with color, but less-so with cut.

  • Reply Grumble Girl June 5, 2012 at 8:39 am

    Oh, how lovely, Anna!! So jealous too… glad you had a blast though, relaxing and sharing your space – that’s what homes are for, right? Enjoy everything, girl… hopefully we’ll find each other like this one day before we’re all old and whatnot – you should visit me. xox

  • Reply Sherry June 5, 2012 at 11:30 am

    I have those same lights in the yard and I love them! Sounds like you had a wonderful time, and by the looks of it some amazing food!

    I totally agree about the internet. The people I interact with everyday in “real life” are nice enough, but most I just don’t click with. I think the internet makes it easier to connect to people who share similar interests, and I don’t feel those interactions are any less meaningful just because they aren’t always done face to face.

  • Reply Uncle Beefy June 5, 2012 at 11:38 am

    Looks and sounds all super lovely, Anna. I hear you on the ‘control’ thing in the kitchen and the ‘off limits’ in the house. I’ve also had those moments when you just let it go… and it’s refreshingly nice and relaxing, huh? Good times. :)

  • Reply sierra June 5, 2012 at 3:44 pm

    I loved this post! I have been “fans” of your photos on instagram, and actually found Lisa and Victorias blogs through yours! I’ve been a “creeper” around here for a while and this post inspired me to leave my first comment. I love what you said about how so many people see the social media networks as taking us away form personal connections. I totally agree, I have met some amazing women through my blog and my etsy shop, ladies who I never would have come across otherwise, and who now I am proud to call my friends!

    P.S. I am in constant awe of your fashion/home/food porn pictures…keep it comin’ lady! I love it!

  • Reply sandra June 5, 2012 at 4:07 pm

    looks like you had such an amazing time together with lots of giggles :)

  • Reply Lena June 5, 2012 at 6:21 pm

    So jealous of all those ladies! How lucky they are to stay at your house! You are not by any chance looking for a Swiss vegetarian student pen pal?;-)

  • Reply Cz June 5, 2012 at 11:29 pm

    OHHHH Where is the yellow / silvery strip artwork from in your bedroom? It is divine!

  • Reply Erin June 6, 2012 at 4:51 pm

    Saw this and thought of you :)

  • Reply Nina June 6, 2012 at 4:57 pm

    How is your hedgehog doing?

    • Reply Anna @ D16 June 6, 2012 at 7:08 pm


    • Reply Nina June 10, 2012 at 6:54 pm

      Yeah :) Didn’t you haveone in the backyard? Or was it some other species?

      • Reply Anna @ D16 June 10, 2012 at 8:34 pm

        OH!!! You mean Haggis the groundhog!! I actually haven’t seen him yet this summer, but he did dig a few fresh holes. ;)

  • Reply Cortnie June 6, 2012 at 11:15 pm

    Oh, I love having friend time like this – it really is essential to one’s happiness! (as well as food and ice cream)

    I understand about the control thing – I have it too. But darn if it doesn’t feel good to let some one else wash the freakin dishes.

    I’m glad you had this time with your friends. I’m off to look at their blogs now….!


  • Reply Melanie June 7, 2012 at 8:15 am

    Looks like you had a wonderful weekend! Like you I love my internet friends – I’ve met some amazing like-minded people online (including one of my very dearest friends, who I had friends in common with as a teenager but never met until after we got chatting on twitter a couple of years ago!)

    I’ve also fallen in love with your house all over again after seeing Victoria’s pictures, and I’m now feeling inspired to get my little flat looking nicer!

  • Reply Jess the Chipster June 7, 2012 at 10:28 am

    What is this tofu scramble, and how have I never heard of it before?

    Your sleepover looks rad. I can’t wait to move out and have intimate dinner parties. I will probably have to take a week off work to plan my housewarming party, when I have a house :(

    • Reply Anna @ D16 June 7, 2012 at 3:48 pm

      Jess, there’s a link in the post to the tofu scramble recipe I used. :)

  • Reply @byebyebirdieuk June 7, 2012 at 3:27 pm

    have loved your blog and admired your style for the longest time. then i spotted your gorgeous shoplifters framed print and well you now are elevated to an even higher level of esteem. we are sporting a somewhat more modest queen is dead print in our kitchen at the moment (in honour of her maj’s jubilee celebrations!). so hats off and much style kudos to you.

    ‘hand it over, hand it over, hand it over’!

    • Reply Anna @ D16 June 7, 2012 at 3:49 pm

      Scroll down to the previous post to see an even more majestic Morrissey poster hanging in my apartment bedroom!

  • Reply Lena June 17, 2012 at 3:17 pm

    Hi Anna,

    I fell even more in love with your house after looking through Victoria’s photos. Where are the (new-ish?) blankets on the living room sofa and guest bedroom bed from (the geometric patterned ones with strips of indigo in one)? They are amazing.

    • Reply Anna @ D16 June 17, 2012 at 6:51 pm

      Thank you! They are Malian mud cloths. If you search on eBay you’ll find lots of beautiful variations!

    • Reply Lena June 18, 2012 at 9:12 pm

      Thanks Anna!

  • Reply Amanda June 21, 2012 at 9:45 am

    I adore your style, I was brought to your blog whilst looking at images of *Hot Orange* lipstick but stuck around, NARS looks good on you btw. Vegan cooking, Morrissey, The Cure, David Lynch ya-da Ya-da. Pretty cool!

  • Reply Christina July 8, 2012 at 2:48 am

    Where are those cool wooden candleholders from?

  • Reply lauren bradshaw July 18, 2012 at 9:01 pm

    I’ve been following you and your house for so many years and it was fun to look through Victoria’s photos and see it again in a new way. Just as beautiful as ever. More beautiful really! Keeps getting better with time.

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