about nell

I’m nell.  I’m in my early 30’s, living the life with my husband in the Brooklyn, NY.  I was born and raised in a small town in Massachusetts, went to college at Indiana University where I studied Journalism and then moved to NYC, where I’ve been finding and making my way ever since.

This blog was born as a result of a life transformation I started back in 2009 and am still undergoing.  In April 2009, I left my promising ad sales career after 8 years because I wasn’t happy.  I was good at my job and enjoyed my success, but I knew it wasn’t right – it wasn’t who I wanted to be.  My amazing, supportive, adoring husband encouraged me to find my bliss and that’s been my assignment ever since.  Despite the fact that I miss my paycheck, I have never been happier and I’m proud of my (brave? crazy?) decision to drop it all and start over focusing on the nell I want to be.

So what is my bliss you ask?  Well… I am a lover of life!  My mom always teased me that Cindy Lauper’s song “Girls Just Wanna Have Fun” was my anthem.  Since I’ve been given this gift of free time to determine my new direction, I’ve been throwing myself into photography (and a bit of cinematography), food (cooking, eating, CHEESE) and writing this blog, which has become nellsdish.com.

If you’ve been following my blog from the beginning, you saw me through my 365-day photo project.  I started the project in April 2010 to help me practice my photography and take it to a new level.  Every day for one year, I shlepped my camera around with me and took thousands of pictures.  After hours of editing (and often obsessing), I chose my favorite photo from each day and posted them to this blog to share with all of you.  NYC, Brooklyn, Bahamas, Oregon, Sonoma, LA, San Francisco, New England – this project followed me everywhere – and because of it, I started regularly recording my thoughts and musings and nellsdish became a daily diary of sorts – something I grew quite attached to.  I realized during this time that I thoroughly enjoy writing – especially when I can just be myself and share what’s on my mind.  I also learned a LOT about photography and about cameras and camera gear, computers, editing software and even cinematography!  And to top it all off, I now have a substantial body of work that I’m incredibly proud of.  What started as a crazy fun little experiment proved to bring tremendous value to me over course of the year.

Oh yes… and then there’s cheese.  Follow my bliss?  Well… my bliss is cheese.  Every time I bite into a ripe, creamy piece of cheesy love, I’m transported to my happy place.  And the more I learn about cheese, the more in love with it I become.  Cheese is tradition.  It’s history.  It’s wholesome, earthy, nutritious food that has been made for centuries on little farms in little towns all over the world.  It’s such a rich subject to study – like wine – there is so much to learn and the more you learn, the more you realize you hardly know anything at all!  But I’m learning – and I’m loving it.  Last year I completed a three-month internship in the cheese caves of Murray’s to take my cheese education even further.  Now I’m proud to say, I can walk into a cheese shop and recognize by name (and sometimes by milk-type and flavor profile) nearly every cheese in the case.  This makes me very proud.

And now, I’m embarking on my biggest adventure yet.  Back in July my husband and I learned the happy news that I am pregnant with our first child!  Becoming a mother is something that I’ve always wanted and looked forward to (I get a little teary just thinking about it).  Knowing that we are bringing a child into the world has made me want to be an even better person – it’s making me want to discover and pursue even more passions; to identify my dreams and go after them.  I want our child to grow up thinking… “damn… my mom is AWESOME!”  I want to infuse him (yes – it’s a boy!) with a sense of adventure and discovery, awe, wonder and an appreciation of all things delicious and beautiful.

So welcome to my life and I hope you enjoy reading along.  Your support and feedback completely thrill me and keep me inspired to continue sharing!  Thanks for visiting nellsdish.

Email me with any questions or comments at nellsdish (at) gmail (dot) com.


15 thoughts on “about nell

  1. The Dish of life is best served warm; to breathe in all the wonderful aromas and beauty that life has to offer. Your journey to find you is a very inspiring one we wish you much happiness and offer our support in any way. Mindy and I are honored to call you family and Adam isn’t so bad either. We look forward to our journeys intertwining tonight at the premiere of “Hello Lonesome”, we are both very honored to be a part of Adams big night!! Much love to you both Brent & Mindy

  2. Wow Nell I’m so very proud of you. I always knew you had the qualities to be someone great, and the courage to do what you love. I hope it takes you far in life. This blog inspired me. I will be coming back to find cheese to pair with my new love (wine)…….I wish you continued success and happieness!

  3. Hi Nell this is Zita from Northern Lights. Adam suggested to me to check out your blog. And I have to say I love it. I specially admire that you take a picture everyday and you do it with so much grace and love. I have everyday meditation practice so I know how challenging these every day commitments can be.
    Wish you all the best!

    • Thanks for visiting and thanks for the sweet comment. I’ve tried meditating before but haven’t stuck to it (it’s HARD) – but that’s something I’d like to start practicing more of. One big commitment at a time I suppose. 🙂

  4. I envy for your courage of leaving your career. I think I’m about to do the same in the near future, too. I don’t think I’m happy with my job. I need to find and do things I love. Life’s short, isn’t it? LOL

    Nice to know you.
    Please keep in touch and will be waiting for your new pictures.

  5. Hi Nell,

    So glad that you’re back! I’ve missed you! Here’s to turkey. Have you checked out the Barefoot Contessa’s turkey loaf? It’s one of my favs. xoxo


  6. Dear Nell,
    I just wanted to write you a quick note to tell you that Steve and I have been thinking about you and sending you happy thoughts. I haven’t commented before, but I’ve been reading your blog from the beginning and thoroughly enjoying it. Your thoughts make me smile and I’m wishing your son a happy, healthy and safe arrival. love, Jen Smith

    • Hi Marcus! If you’re looking for any kind of cheese I’d always try Murray’s on Bleecker st in the village.
      That’s where I learned pretty much everything I know about cheese! Good luck!

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