The Amber Show

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I Found Myself; I Was Under a Lot of Hair

If you follow me on Instagam, you saw the photo I posted of me about a year and a half ago on my birthday. My hair was absolutely perfect, and I was growing it out for my wedding. By the time the big updo happened it was so long that, straightened, it reached almost to my waist.

I’d never had hair even close to being this long before, and I was so excited about how pretty it was, both in the updo I wore to get married and in the rest of my life, but I was also super annoyed at how tangled it always got, because I’m way too lazy to comb my hair out every day. So really, it was only pretty if I spent a lot time detangling which I never did because I work from home, and I spent most of the time looking like I hadn’t seen a shower in ages.

Posting the photo inspired me, and I called to make an appointment for next week. They happened to have a spot today, so three hours later I was in the chair.

There was one tiny moment right at the beginning where I worried about regretting it. Having long hair was my dream when I was a little girl, and through careful use of products I had finally able to grow it long and healthy, without it breaking off into a frizzy mess for the first time. It was gorgeous, but it wasn’t me. When she finished, I grinned in the mirror.

“There I am!”

It was fun to be a bride, it is better to be me.

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Good Enough?

We are thinking about beginning the process of becoming parents kind of soon.

All summer and all fall we’ve be doing stuff like our annual apple picking trip, or hanging out at the park with the dog, and going, “This would be so much cooler if we had someone else hanging out with us, too.” and I keep trying to convince myself it’s not the right time but I know that it probably won’t ever be quite right, and maybe now is actually a really great time?

I’m not sure where we’d stick one in this apartment – or even if the size of our apartment will disqualify us from adopting in the first place, which I’m sacred of – but New York City has a wonderful history of its inhabitants tucking babies into cozy corners and getting along just fine, and anyway, we won’t know anything different. The amount of space I don’t need to be happy continues to stun and thrill me as we nest into our 360 square feet of living space, and anyway, I’ve seen enough of life to know that you can just let some things work themselves out the way that they need to and it will be alright in the end, even if that means the baby has to sleep in the kitchen.

And since the world moves in mysterious ways, I’ll officially put it out there: you know of anyone pregnant who is looking to have their baby adopted by a completely secular, pro-vaccination, anti-circumcision, dog-having, silly song-singing, of course you’re going to college, books-in-every-corner family, you can put them in touch with us.

We are a lot of fun.

photo by Laura Pennace

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I Will Be Interesting, I Will Be Interesting

“You should blog about sitting in front of your computer willing yourself to be interesting. I believe you would make that interesting.”

This is what Gavin said to me two days ago, when I lamented that I signed up to write one blog post per day but am actually the most boring person ever right now. And the thing is, I actually think my life IS interesting, but only to me, at the moment. I mean, all I do is work, and I love it, but trying to make my Pinterest board into a valuable marketing tool isn’t exactly riveting.

Traditionally, this space, “the Amber Show”, has been about me and not what I do for a living, but now I am now one of those people – those gloriously happy and simultaneously stressed out people – for whom work and life blur completely, and business victories spark the same level of joy in me that personal ones do.

“I’m not a business man; I’m a business, man!”

Thanks, Jay-Z. I feel this way, too.

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The OK Cupid Profile that Landed Me a Husband

Never before seen outside of OKCupid, presented in all of its slightly awkward glory. Feel free to steal lines as you’d like. This shit works. (Good luck trying to top my username, though.)


Username: CozySweater


I am happy, warm, independent, gracious, fun, adventurous, sensual and curious. Also ferociously loyal.

Sometimes heels, usually Chucks. Sometimes pretty dresses, usually an old hoodie. My Liz Lemon streak is pretty strong, and my dance moves are done with enthusiastic abandon. My love of terrible jokes is unparallelled.

My purse always has band-aids and birthday candles, just in case, and I handwrite letters regularly. Second-hand bookstores draw me in every time, and I am excellent at checkers and kissing.


What I’m doing with my life

I’m a photographer. Love it.

Otherwise I’m trying new wines, making playlists, strolling through the city on beautiful nights, going to the park with my dogs, and drinking small-batch drafts in fun bars with good friends.

Putting new stamps in my passport is really fun for me, so I’m hoping to meet someone who loves to travel.

I’m really good at

Fixing socially awkward situations, identifying constellations, opening prosecco, catching sparrows trapped in apartments (you’d be amazed at how much this comes up), packing for two weeks in a carry-on, flipping pancakes, parallel parking, and puns.

The first things people usually notice about me

“She looks like a good hugger”. (I am.)

You might notice my rack as a close second. Not to be crass, but it’s pretty fucking spectacular.

Favorite books, movies, shows, music, and food

Books: My shelves are filled with well-written fiction, non-fiction books addressing human nature from interesting perspectives, and memoirs by smart people.

Movies: I love going to the movies! Small-town comedies, indie films, and dark comedies. At home, with popcorn and a blanket for cuddling under.

Music: My favorite Beatles album is Revolver. My music collection is huge; I’ll tell you more in person.

Food: NYC has tons of restaurants, and I’m excited to try everything at least twice. I grew up in Connecticut, which means I have a deep appreciation of diners and strong opinions about lobster rolls.

Magazines: Esquire. The New Yorker. I get weekend delivery of the New York Times and spend Sunday mornings in bed with ink all over my fingers.

Podcasts: This American Life, the Moth, Savage Lovecast and Risk!, which I forget not to listen to on the subway and turn into that crazy person sitting alone, laughing hysterically.

The six things I could never do without

My brilliant friends, art and learning, my dogs, the internet (and tabbed browsing), coffee, and something to read (that nerd in the bar with a book is me.)

And bonus: A cozy sweater (of course!) I am forever cold.

I spend a lot of time thinking about

“I know that the molecules in my body are traceable to phenomena in the cosmos. That makes me want to grab people on the street and say: Have you HEARD THIS?” -Neil deGrasse Tyson

I don’t believe in anything that doesn’t hold up to scientific testing (exception: Having someone who cares about you kiss a boo-boo. That totally works.) The magic of real things – friendship, love, whiskey and outer space – is more than enough for me. In other words, please don’t ask what my “sign” is. (I don’t know, and doesn’t matter.)

On a typical Friday night I am

Doubled over laughing with my amazing group of friends. Sometimes we’re hanging out at my house – I have a fire pit for making s’mores and a cozy living room set up for conversations – or at the usual place down the street.

I typically like dive bars that serve free popcorn with the draft beers, but every once in a while I want a drink at one of those dim cocktail bars with the fancy ice, “mixologists” in suspenders, and cocktails made with a stupid amount of care.

The most private thing I’m willing to admit

I can only watch The Walking Dead through my fingers.

You should message me if

You want the secret to an excellent OKCupid photo or the perfect high five.

You’re going to ask me out *right away*. Texting/emailing/flirting via email with strangers is SUPER WEIRD for me. Just ask me out in the first message (I’ll do the same, promise!) and we’ll get together and talk in person. Because this.

You are…

… fond of dogs (I have two older rescue mutts. They are amazingly friendly and sweet.)

… in possession of a current passport (seriously; “no passport” is my only flat-out deal breaker)

… showing your face in at least one of your profile photos. I’ll get to your torso in due time. (aww yeah.) (air hump.)

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Looking Back at My Goals for 2015

In January, I picked three big goals for year and wrote them on the back of my paper calendar.

1. Get at least two blog features

2. Sell wedding albums.

3. Book ten big weddings.

I managed to get two blog features, both in Simply Elope. You can see my feature on Colm and Marie who eloped to Central Park and read my five best eloping to New York City tips here, which got shared on Facebook 45 times. Not too shabby.

There were a LOT of albums sold. Because I can over-analyze anything to death, I realized pretty quickly that if I spent too much time researching every single option and every single album company available to wedding photographers I would get overwhelmed and stuck, so I just jumped into the album game for the first time this year and opted to figure everything out as it went along. It’s been messy and hectic, but at this point most of my elopement clients and virtually all of my big wedding clients are adding albums to their wedding packages. This makes me happy; it’s more money in my pocket, and it’s so fun to get them back from the printer and ship them off.

Maybe it’s just me, but often when I start “selling” there’s the “does this make me a slimeball?” question feeling, but in the case of upselling my clients on albums, I genuinely, sincerely believe that everyone should have one, so I’m able to sell them easily.  It feels only amazing and good to look a client in the eye and say, “This is a good price on a great product that I believe you should have. Your grandchildren will thank you. In fact, look how much I love my own grandma’s wedding album.”

Yes to wedding albums.

And finally, I booked eleven big wedding this year so NAILED IT. My goal for 2016 is fifteen, which feels impossible, but which my entire life’s experience tells me is not. I have two officially on the books right now, so thirteen more to go. Tell your friends.


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My Stripper Pole

Happy November. This year, for the first time in a long time, I’m doing NaBloPoMo.

I haven’t been blogging that much here. For one, business has been my main focus, but really, the wind went out of my blogging sails for a while these past few years. Getting divorced meant there was so much I didn’t want to talk about, because you can’t talk about it without sounding bitter or angry, and then falling in love is so highly personal that talking about it seems gossipy and cheap. The past three years have been a whirlwind, and I’m still unpacking them and wrapping my head around them, and looking down at my wedding ring and going, “Holy shit. I am really fucking happy.” But it’s not the happy like frosting all sugar and air and singing at the top of your lungs wasted on cheap vodka; it’s happy like a great sweater on a cool day and really expensive pinot noir.

I’ve been so buttoned up, too, but I’m going to start stripping here this month.

It’s probably going to get awkward.

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