once upon a december.

halthegal december blog header.jpg

december came and went in a blur of snow flurries and icy road trips and a flight up north and reading and painting and desperately wanting to get locked in overnight at the met.

alas, i’ll just share some photo highlights because even i get dizzy re-reading my metaphorical journal of the month’s events.

i traveled to durham, nc for geekcraft expo and took my trusty sidekick rea along for the journey.

we stayed at a funky artsy boutique hotel (museum 21c, who had a rawther remarkable moose-made-of-shoes sculpture in the restaurant), and while day two of the event was cancelled for the snow storm, rea & i enjoyed a lovely day trekking through the brilliant snow (only to discover our beloved bagel place of the day before wasn’t open) and crawling back to our hotel cold and wet in order to get cozy for the remainder of the weekend with the stacks of books we both inevitably had packed.

i’m just grateful we’d eaten at viceroy when we got in friday night because it was delicious and as tasty as the decor was spectacular. (see rea overwhelmed there with my excellent ordering skillz?)

and that last photo is my reading chair at home, where my new ewok pillow (handmade by marvelous katastrophe ) is just as content as i am.

and mid-december, my husband and i flew up to NYC for two days because he had some work hanging in a gallery, so we went up for the opening reception.

the trip was full of bagels, and multiple visits to the met. i even got to go to mood (although i didn’t find swatch, i did get my obligatory “thank you, mood!” t-shirt.) it snowed in the morning on thursday which was pretty magical. and nathan & i like to dream of owning that green-roofed “house” across the street from our home-away-from home: the met. ;D

we also walked a few miles from our airbnb in nolita up to rockefeller center (totally walked passed gringott’s) to see the saks fifth avenue window displays (they also do a light show now on the exterior of the building now!) and that remarkable tree above the skating rink at 30rock. (pretty sure we were photobombed by the ghost of philip seymour hoffman.)

of course we rode the subway (where shoe-gazing started) and of course one uses one’s smart phone to plot the route from the bagel shop (black seed is my new fave!) to dominique ansel’s bakery. we ate take out slices on the sidewalk from prince street pizza like a couple of champs, and i brought home a mug from the little cupcake bakeshop (gracious, the brooklyn blackout cake was divine).

we’ll return in april as the hubs will be participating in a painting workshop and gallery lectures. so i’ll have the week to keep exploring all the things we couldn’t cram (FIT costume museum, for one; maybe some publishers for two) into a 48-hour visit in the city that never sleeps (but i kinda have to, sometimes.)

and the best way to sum up the rest of my month, is to visit halthegal_storyart on instagram. i read a lot. and even gave you the break down of the best-of-the best of the 164 books i read in 2018.

highlights for the rest of the year:

i won a ribbon at an occasion for the arts in williamsburg, va, the judge being the curator of the art museum that changed my life, so that was pretty nifty; this blog for more on that story)
i sold a DOZEN original faerie tale feet paintings
(and created five, six, seven, new ones? i forget.)
i participated in eleven art festivals and shopping events around the southeast.
we raised more than $300 for a title one school’s bookfair for kids without book money.

i launched the luxe faerie tale feet bookmark collection.
read 165 books (& re-read via audio another 35 or so).
designed my own website. (congrats! you found it!) ;)
and my art made its first appearance in a subscription box: my wonder woman journal painting for nerdypost‘s fierce females box!!
and all-around made some progress and i'm sure there are highlights i'm forgetting, but i can barely keep up, myself. 😅
2019 is kinda planned out, but i intentionally left space for surprises and adventures to come.

i hope your NEW YEAR proves miraculous.

happy reading. happy travels.

stay colourful.


hallie bertling