Mary Parker's Antique Store & Home
Mary Parker's Antique Store & Home
Floral: Denys Mertz & Stephanie Tarrant
Photo: Stephanie Tarrant & John Sims
New Orleans, LA
June 23, 2018
April 14, 2018
showing up for your friends is important
so here are some photos of the summer.
Texas looked exactly how I thought it would. The moonshine in Mississippi poured expectedly, and the group of heathens I traveled with took care of me.
We left Chicago two weeks ago, though it feels like it's been months since I've returned. I can hardly remember the daily punches, insightful thoughts, memorable moments or much of the trip at all since most of it was spent drinking on top of smoking on top of more drinking.
I still haven't been able to shake the feeling of home that I found in new places: something I must have found within myself on the road that escapes me even in my own loft, or my parents house.. Something I can't explain much at all.
The weeks leading up to the trip were long and stupid, and the week following has followed suit. I'm still broke. I'm still restless. And I'm still consumed with thoughts of leaving.
I thought I'd have much more to say about Morgan Freeman's bar, or the toilet paper you can't flush at Willie Nelson's dive, or Deak, or the South or my life, but I don't. I hardly wrote anything while on the road, and I don't have much insight to share here.
But I do know it was worth it, and taking opportunities to travel matters. Aside from my first ever PTO/Friendsgiving trip in 2014 which resulted in my shitty termination of my first full-time job, I have only traveled for work, and occasionally allowed myself to play.
So, my hope for this year is to travel every three months, knowing that I know I can save $550 working part-time with inconsistent pay and unreliable clientele. Because even if I didn't find all the answer I sought, or write as much as I thought, the memories I have are golden, and those alongside me are now family. And taking one trip isn't going to fix my depression or eliminate negative thoughts or fill me up higher or make life easier or get me a fucking job, but it did remind me how good I am at traveling and making a home out of reclaimed material, champagne in plastic cups, pints of slaw and a cargo van.
Sometimes we gotta be uncomfortable in order for growth.
Here I am; I am growing.
It would be difficult to describe the joy and excitement felt in the Anna Held Floral Studio without mentioning the struggle and patience it took to get here: days away from a grand re-opening that took two years and some change to plan.
The Edgewater Beach Apartments was built in the 1920s, a woman named Anna Held opened a flower shop during a bygone era and Beth Tenney, my godmother, has been designing some of the most beautiful floral arrangements in the historical landmark for over 30 years.
Two years ago, new management, lease negotiations and building code left us with a single choice: move down the hall, abandon the marble soda fountain where beach-goers and Chicagoans took refuge and build a new home out of a vanilla box, the commissary. The apothecary cabinets, the original marble fountain and a few silk flowers remain in the vacant storefront that housed neighborhood gossip, fed the elderly residents and documented the height lines of every peewee who grew up in it, myself included.
When you drive past the big, pink building on Sheridan and Bryn Mawr, the words "Breakfast, Soda Fountain and Flower Shop" still read clearly facing northwest, but as of August 2015, we've filled the windows on the south end of the symmetrical, historical enchantment that belongs in a Wes Anderson film.
And sure, it has been somewhat of an Irish funeral. The locks have been changed, our etchings and notes have been painted over and sometimes I see the lights on. People still come in and ask for coffee, look for cookies and make sure to mention how much they liked the old space better, but the new studio fits us. A vision to focus solely on art and flowers has come to life.
Now, the walls of our studio are filled with artwork and our vintage cooler is full of flowers, but redefining our identity took effort. We've slowly gained walk-in traffic, fought off maintenance problems and broken a vase or two. But now, here we are, and we invite you to come take a look.
So this Friday, October 9th at 6:00 PM, we will be hosting our official grand re*opening party featuring the work of local artists, delicious bites and familiar faces. We will raise a glass and bid farewell to our past in hopes of making way for a locally-owed, bright and busy future.
These are photos of Ball State University's campus from various locations and angles. The photos were for a Ball Bearings Magazine story, the student run campus mag.