Supporting A Friend’s Breast Cancer Battle

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October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. There are many terrific events to raise funds and awareness but what can you do when this disease hits close to home? Approximately 1 in 8 women in this country will develop invasive breast cancer during her lifetime so chances are, you know someone who is or has been affected by it.

When breast cancer hits close to home, one of the best ways to help is by supporting a friend or relative through her chemotherapy treatments. But what can you do to make a difference?

Help with Meals

Whether a single person or a mom keeping everyone fed is a great way to take one more worry off a loved one’s plate. Use the free website Meal Train to set up a schedule that lets friends and family sign up to deliver meals.

Buddy Up for a Chemo Treatment

Sometimes it helps to just have a friend sit with you during what can be a painful, scary and sometimes even boring process.

Pick Up the Phone

Maybe cooking a meal or attending a hospital visit is out if you live far away, so call! When you do call, make it a point to talk about normal stuff. Talking about the disease is not always required and sometimes a break is just the thing. Allow your friend the space to talk about what they feel like talking about- or clue them in on what’s going on with you. Having someone to listen, even if you can’t provide a solution, is still helpful.

Hire a Cleaning or Landscaping Service

Even in the best of times, caring for a house inside and out can be exhausting- even more so during chemotherapy. Consider hiring a local cleaning person or service for a house once-over. If the lawn needs mowing or raking, see if you can enlist some neighborhood kids to pitch in and get it done.

Laundry Never Sleeps

Another task that’s high on every to-do list is laundry… because it never ends! Next time you go over to the house, throw a load of laundry in the wash and don’t leave until it’s folded and put away. Or, if you know mom is going to be out at doctor’s appointments for the day, grab the dirty clothes that morning and return them cleaned in the evening.

Make a Chemo Go Bag

Find a cute tote bag and fill it with items that will take your friend’s mind off her illness. Crossword or sudoku books, warm socks, a cozy blanket or sweatshirt, chocolates or hard candies, adult coloring books, headphones and tissues.

Help with the Kids or Pets

Offer to drive the kids to their activities or have them over for play dates. Take the dog for a walk or help with dog or cat food shopping and litter box maintenance. Any extra time your friend has to recuperate from chemotherapy is definitely welcomed, plus it gives the kids (or pets) a change of scenery.

Send Gift Cards for Restaurants or Gas

This is an especially good item if the trek to the hospital is a long one. A gift card makes it easier to eat on-the-go without having to pack food each time or get take-out for nights when preparing dinner isn’t in the cards.

Encourage your Kids to Reach Out to Her Kids

Battling breast cancer affects the whole family, especially the kids. Suggest that your kids do something kind, like have her kids over for a play date, draw them a picture or even pick out a small gift for them. This lets them know that people are thinking about them, too.

Finally, remember that cancer can be a long battle. “A lot of people are there at the beginning of the diagnosis wanting to help, but they may quickly fade away. Remember that this is a marathon and stay with your friend throughout the process in whatever ways you can.

11 Best Outdoor Dining Patios in NYC

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Hudson Hotel Midtown

Outdoor Dining Patios

Fall is the perfect season for dining or drinking outdoors in New York. I’ve chosen 11 sensational spots for dining as if Manhattan is just the most glorious backyard you’ve thrown together for the occasion.

Hudson Hotel

What do you get when you mix a garden-centric patio, your childhood home, and a boho finish? The Hudson Hotel. (PRO TIP: They light candles around the entire patio at night). 

HUDSON HOTEL | 356 W 58th St, New York, NY 10019

Ingos At The Highline Hotel

Tucked in West Chelsea on 10th & 21st, you’ll find an iconic building under a canopy of trees. Grab an umbrella-shaded table in the front garden for the countryside feels.

THE GOLDEN HOUR | CHELSEA 180 10th Ave, New York, NY 10011

Ladurée SoHo

Cue pastels, fresh macarons, and cherry blossoms. Nothing screams Autumn like a seat at the picturesque Ladurée in SoHo, and the desserts don’t hurt either.

LADURÉE NEW YORK | SOHO 398 W Broadway, New York, NY 10012

Shake Shack In Madison Square Park

What’s better than custard, fries, and the beautiful views of the Flatiron Building? Take a seat in Madison Square Park and welcome the best people watching in New York City.

SHAKE SHAKE | FLATIRON Madison Ave &, E 23rd St, New York, NY 10010

Narcissa At The Standard, East Village

The Garden is The Standard’s snug patio in East Village. Even the name sounds like an oasis. Add a cozy atmosphere & you have the perfect post-work brew or Sunday hideaway.


Clinton Hall

Aside from the famous Doughnut Grilled Cheese, Clinton Hall’s beer garden is simply good fun. Giant Connect Four, life-size chess, and all the board games your heart desires.

CLINTON HALL | FINANCIAL DISTRICT 90 Washington St, New York, NY 10006

Brookfield Place

Walk through Brookfield Place’s back entrance, and you’ll come across a plethora of patio restaurants overlooking a harbor on the Hudson, which makes for a perfect Happy Hour hub.

BROOKFIELD PLACE | TRIBECA 230 Vesey St, New York, NY 10281

Boat Basin Cafe

If casual dining is what you want, then that is what you shall get. Overlooking the Hudson, Boat Basin Cafe feels like a cape getaway. (PRO TIP: Try catching the sunset over the river).

BOAT BASIN | UPPER WEST SIDE W 79th St, New York, NY 10024

Stone Street Tavern

Found in one of the oldest parts of the City, Stone Street Tavern is located on an idyllic cobblestone street with picnic tables galore. Grab a pint and enjoy the company.


Grand Banks

Step on-board the oyster barge, where summer takes its lively form. Aboard this wooden schooner, you’ll find panoramic views of the Hudson. Take a vacation, without leaving Manhattan.

GRAND BANKS | TRIBECA Pier 25, Hudson River Park, New York, NY 10013

Bocce Union Square

If you don’t feel like dealing with the hustle of Central Park, Union Square Park is calling your name. Great atmosphere, cocktails, and every pizza your heart can imagine.

BOCCE | UNION SQUARE 20 Union Square W, New York, NY 1000

Are You Following Me? An Instagram Giveaway #LoveHartshorn

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Instagram is a favorite of mine for inspiring images. It motivates me to post our most stunning images as well as events, offers and so much more. I’ve been working to create a feed that reflects our studio and families and as a “Grand Opening” I want to share it with you!

I’m offering a complimentary Fall Session to THREE lucky families. (Value $495)

Fall Session GIVEAWAY!

Win a Fall Park Photo Session and a custom 8×10 print from Hartshorn Portraiture! We will choose 3 lucky winners at random- to enter follow the instructions below:

1-Follow @hartshorn_portraiture on Instagram
2-Tag 2 friends on the post
3-Share OUR Instagram contest on YOUR Instagram feed with the hashtag #LoveHartshorn on your page for an additional 2 entries!

Winners will be announced on Monday October 7th on our Instagram page.

Things you should know about a session with Hartshorn

  • We can shoot in multiple settings around NJ and NY- and we have a daylight studio should you wish to be photographed indoors
  • We are happy to offer you a pre-session consultation (by phone or in-person at our studio in Hoboken) to chat about the images you hope for, what to wear, and questions or concerns you may have.
  • We do a reveal of all the images in our studio in Hoboken to personally guide you through the best photos. We make it a “date night” with wine and nibbles so you can relax and enjoy your family portraits.
  • Once we’ve shown you the images you can choose one for your custom 8×10. We will also give you a social media sized file of that image for sharing with friends and family. You may also choose to purchase additional prints from the session.

Questions? Feel free to call us at 201.610.1199