AM Notes is a blog & newsletter pairing personal passions with a knack for noticing things and sharing notes taken.

I simply can’t help myself.

I have an itch to scratch that is rooted in sharing discoveries in design; things that I like, I find useful, and beautiful.

It’s in considering placemaking, our built environments, community, and commerce.

It’s in discussing and supporting retail concepts and operations, both big and small.

And it’s in discovering and practicing ways of living intentionally within ourselves and with all of the above.

I scratched that itch for five years with a brick and mortar and online store called Port of Raleigh.  It was a special place for discovery, celebrating, and connecting via design and community.  The store’s mantra was Experience Your Everyday … a mini-manifesto for how the everyday things in our lives make up our everyday experiences and memories.

But the itch just kept getting bigger and stronger.  I wanted to share and do more.  I began to feel limited by the store’s physical space, operational considerations, and remaining time and energy for leaning into new pursuits.  All the while I was missing something else: writing.

Prior to the store I wrote a personal blog documenting my other small businesses, living and traveling overseas with my husband, and thoughts on design and life in general.  I missed the act of sitting down to write a stream of consciousness or share something like a place or product that I felt was worth highlighting. Over the few short years of writing I grew a small but engaged international audience.  I loved curating that digital space for myself and others to enjoy through my photography, stories, and projects.  Just as I loved curating my brick & mortar store with merchandise, art, and personal experiences.

In the process of closing Port of Raleigh, I kept thinking of the questions that I was frequently asked over the years …

How/where do you find/select everything?

What’s your background?

What are your thoughts/recommendations on [insert design/place-making/mom-life topic here]?

I’m starting/run my own store/product-based business and I’d love to get your advice/thoughts on …

The answers I’d give and the subsequent feedback taught me a lot.  And it all brought me back to sharing.  Sharing to make an impact through my writing, my work...and doing it all through my unique experiences and sensibilities.  Because each and every one of us has unique experiences and sensibilities, and a way to apply them!

AM Notes is a place for the kind of conversations I'd have in my store and more.  Sharing thoughts, ideas and stories on design, retail, products, trends, placemaking, and how we can best experience our everyday with it all.

I hope you enjoy these Notes in your inbox and any time you want to linger with them here on this site.

Thank you for coming by.

Me in NYC, August 2018. This buying trip (and having just learned that I was pregnant with our second child) sparked thoughts about what I really wanted to be doing, how, when, and where. It's beautiful how our lives can take their own time, even if it can be frustating to wait for the changes. Change is a constant and in retrospect, it most often occurs at just the right time.