Life Lately

a new year

2011 has come and gone & what a year it’s been. I started + ended the year in Chicago, became a vegetarian [again], changed the name of my business, booked a few photo shoots, made some wonderful new friends, discovered a love of sparkly nail polish, finally had my entry painted [I will share photos of my apartment next month — promise!], traveled to New York and am in the process of launching a new website. The last part of that sentence makes me so unbelievably happy + still feels a little surreal.

I am sure most of you can relate to this, but I struggled with where I want my career and life to go this past year. I know I haven’t really mentioned this, but I have been in a long distance relationship for an entire year now. It isn’t easy but is definitely worth it. I have become a lot more independent and am learning more and more about who I am.

And here it is. My recap of 2011.


Went sledding for the first time.
Got the flu for the first time. Was sick 1/2 the month.


My first blizzard.
Started my color POP series.
Photographed my first event at Kenmore Studios.


Got my Canon 7D!
Renamed my business & redid my site
First newborn photo shoot.


Flew to LA to say goodbye to my sweet little Dex. Lost him to FIP.
Jodee came to Chicago.
J came to Chicago.
Weekend trip to LA. Visited my favorite beach town family.
Arranged a blogger meet up with 16 blog girls at Rockit.


Flew to LA on the 13th for 10 days + stayed for a month!
2 trips to Santa Barbara.


My sis came to Chicago!
Architectural tour
Drinks + fireworks at Trump
Green City Market
Found a pre-cancerous mole on my back. Wrote this very important post.
Launched Sun Savvy with Alison!
First engagement photo shoot.


Another trip to LA.
Taste of River North.
Concert in the park with Sarah.
Randolph Street Market.
Celebrated 1 year in Chicago with friends at Citizen.


Another trip to LA! J + I drove to Summerland + SB.Visited my favorite beach town family.
Randolph Street Market with Lesley
30+ hours of meetings over the next 3 weeks. And so it begins…


Rented bikes with Sarah
J came to Chicago for my 29th birthday
Won the Randolph Street Market Vintage Vernacular contest!
Styled + photographed our first feature for The Everygirl
Randolph Street Market [again]
Weekend trip to LA


Bought our domain for The Everygirl!
Another photo shoot for Jess LC.
Cut my hair. Again!
Another weekend trip to LA.
My friend Jess came to Chicago.


NYC to shoot a few features for The Everygirl
Finished the design of our website
More photo shoots
First snow
J came to Chicago for Thanksgiving


Painted my entry
Photo shoot on the 8th
Announced the upcoming launch of The Everygirl!
Threw a last minute holiday party.
J came to Chicago for Christmas.
Redesigned my blog + website
The pup was featured on People Magazine’s website


While I do not usually have any crazy resolutions, my goal has been to make it to Paris + London by the time I turn 30. Yes. 30. Who wants to meet me in Paris for my birthday this September? Other than that, I would obviously love to see The Everygirl become my full time job this year, and more than anything want it to inspire all of you! Do you have any goals for the new year?

For anyone who might be interested, here are my recaps for 2009 + 2010 

Wishing you all the very best in the new year! Your support & friendship mean so much to me. I hope you know how thankful I am for each & every one of you. xx

Leave a comment
  • Danielle- it's been quite a wonderful year for you and I'm so happy to have gotten to know you a bit during it! I loved how you recapped everything here…makes me want to go back and highlight my year like this too. I wish you all the best luck in 2012! I know it's going to be a fabulous time for you! xo

  • This is probably one of my favorite posts! I love the look back. I cannot believe you met Jenna Lyons. So unreal! Ive been a reader of your blog all year but have especially loved getting to know you during the blog design process. Not only are you so genuine and sweet, but you're incredibly talented. 2012 will bring you a lot of success- I know it! Happy New Year Danielle!

  • What a wonderful year! I spent the better part of my morning writing down all the fun things that happened each month during 2011. I'll be posting them on the blog later. Great photos & cheers to 2012!

  • Ah, Danielle! I love this so much. Except the Dexter part. That makes me so sad. But I'm really excited about The Everygirl!

  • Such a fabulous post! Happy New year to you and Buddy. And P.S., totally understand about the long distance relationship, I did it for a while.

  • like i said on twitter… such an amazing year for you! and what beautiful pictures along the way. seriously… this is all from a 7d?? cos ill buy it tomorrow!

    is the elephant in your entry?? you need to stop teasing us with your apartment!! im sure it looks amazing!!

    HAPPY NEW YEAR!! cant wait for the new year and everygirl!! 😀

  • Danielle, I can't tell you how happy I am that we have gotten to know each other this year. You are always such an amazing sounding board and I have come to appreciate your insight and honesty into pretty much anything and everything! Cheers to a fabulous 2011 and an even better 2012. I can't wait to see what's in store!! Big hugs.

  • What a fun look back! You've been an inspiration to me this year, and I look forward to the launch of The Everygirl! Here's to an amazing 2012!

  • wonderful post! So many amazing things you have done this year! Cannot wait to see what else you do this coming year!

  • just discovered your blog now.
    and what a great post i was introduced to. so inspiring:)
    happy new years!


  • Congrats on all of your extraordinary accomplishments this year!! You are one amazing gal to admire and inspire!! Can't wait to see what 2012 has in store for you! Happy New Year, Danielle!! <3 and lil Buddy, too 😉

  • Huge congrats on a truly amazing year! You have much to be proud of. I cannot wait for what you have in store for 2012 and for the launch of The Everygirl! Hope your back is feeling better!



  • You had a great year Danielle! I have to admit, I adore your hair and wish I had the guts to do it. Maybe one day 🙂

    Happy New Year!!

  • What a beautiful post and recap of the year Danielle. Happy New Year! Paris and London are some of my favorite cities and you will love it.

    This inspires me to do this in an album as a gift for my hubby in the new year and to document before and after the baby arrives in 2012.


  • What a lovely post. So nice to meet you just found your beautiful blog and so happy I did. I have enjoyed looking around and I'm now following you, if you find a spare minute hope you visit me sometime and follow back so nice to meet new friends. Sending you special wishes for a wonderful New Year I’m looking forward to keeping in touch in 2012.
    Always Wendy