Finding Hidden Beauty In Upstate New York

By Brie

I have slowly over time become a woman of simple means. I literally own only five pairs of shoes. Give me the outdoors with a full moon in a star studded sky and a hot cup of tea, barefoot in my yoga outfit and I am blissful. Let me dabble in my essential oil blending and leisurely read my favorite perfume blogs and I am happy.

My teenage daughters, on the other hand, are a completely different story. They think of themselves as fashionistas, makeup artists, manicurists and budding perfumistas. If they could, they would arrange marriages to Birgit’s sons so as to inherit her gorgeous Hermès scarves and vast perfume collection!

So imagine my surprise and thrill when their recent interest in photography sprung forth these meditative pictures of nature from our backyard in upstate New York.

A little visual treat from my neck of the woods….enjoy!


IMG_2217Editor’s Note: Many, many thanks to Brie and her daughters for the beautiful photos, they fit wonderfully in the Hidden Beauty series. I truly enjoyed them and I’m sure many others will too. As for the marriage arrangements – preliminary negotiations have begun. 😉

Brie’s thoughtful post made me think: Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we created a little archive of beautiful spots from all over the world here on OT? I’d love that. How about you?

If you want to share your photos or ideas for the Hidden Beauty series, please don’t hesitate to contact me under olfactoria at gmail dot com. I would be delighted!


About Olfactoria

I'm on a journey through the world of fragrance - come with me!
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56 Responses to Finding Hidden Beauty In Upstate New York

  1. Ines says:

    The photos are lovely – it’s a always a pleasure to get to know another place, even if only through photos.
    So, naturally, I think your idea is great. 🙂

  2. Vanessa says:

    I like how there are blue skies, snow AND autumnal leaves. I bet that crow is as baffled about our weather at the moment as we are, having just shivered through Easter Weekend!

    I will try and find a beautiful shot of Stafford – it’s possible, but you have to hunt and you have to angle the shot very carefully to avoid the McDonalds or the gas showroom next to Britain’s largest half-timbered building, type of thing.

    • brie says:

      Indeed, Vanessa, the weather here in NY has been completely unpredictable but I am happy to say FINALLY warming up with less and less a likelihood of snow.
      PLEASE send pix of my favorite country in the whole wide world (I love everything British 🙂 !!)

  3. BrittandCourt says:

    Thanks for posting our pictures 🙂 !!!
    And your scarf collection is AWESOME!!!

    • Olfactoria says:

      My pleasure! Thank you for making them.
      And thank you for the scarf compliment, I like them too! 😉

      • brie says:

        don’t even think about asking for an Hermes scarf! Your father and I are still wondering how we will pay for college for you both and your brother !!!!!

        • Kafkaesque says:

          This made me — quite literally — choke on my coffee. Hilarious. Brie, I loved the photos and the post. But it looks so…. brrrrrrr. Should I mention that I’ve worn a t-shirt for almost a month now? 😉 😛

  4. BrittandCourt says:

    Brie (aka-mom)
    Just for the record-nothing “budding” about our perfume interest…we ARE perfumistas….as your collection shrinks ours is growing 🙂 !!

    • brie says:

      this is very true and thank you for sharing all of your lovelies with your old mum!
      Now if only I can figure out a way to get you two up early enough to capture my beloved moon in a photo 🙂 !!!

  5. lucasai says:

    What picturesque photos are those! Lovely

  6. arline says:

    Very beautiful!!!

    I am a yoga teacher who relishes in her practice and appreciates the beauty of movement, breath and flow. I feel the joy within my practice of asana and meditation.

    I love nature and all the magnitude that she has to offer. I especially love trees, as they are tenacious and brilliant!!!!!!!


    I love clothes and shoes, as well as crafted furniture. Obviously my olfactory senses are tended to, as well.

    I have quite a collection of shoes, and most likely will continue to add to it, but in an artful way. I appreciate them all 🙂

    I do keep things simple in my decor, because I am a neat freak, and don’t like clutter.

    My collection of fragrance is miniscule compared to the perfumistas, but it brings me joy. Perfumes and essential oils are a part of my aesthetic and I appreciate the beauty they bring.

    • brie says:

      Oh arline! Aside from the shoe collection we have much in common! Yoga is relatively new for me (have only been practicing for 5 years and took a year break from active asanas when one of my autistic students pulled my shoulder out and I developed a condition known as “frozen shoulder”). And my girls practice as well…we actually attend a class together once a week. I keep telling Birgit that she must give yoga a try! (are you reading this , B. 😀 ?!!)

      • Olfactoria says:

        Of course I’m reading and yoga is very much on my mind these days. 🙂

      • Farouche says:

        I’m starting a yoga class tomorrow morning and am so excited about it. And Brie, I had “frozen shoulder” many years ago. It takes patience and hard work, but it will get better!

        • brie says:

          thanks Farouche! It has healed up quite nicely and I now have about 80% mobility. Thanks to the help of my yoga teachers, physical therapist and massage therapist I am back to doing handstands and headstands 🙂 !!! so excited that you are trying yoga! You will LOVE it!

  7. CC says:

    What beautiful photos, Brie, thank you! Upstate NY has such beautiful areas. I have friends with a home in the finger lake region. Are you in that area of NY as well?
    I think photos from around the world is a lovely idea, Birgit

    • brie says:

      Actually CC I am further south…about a 2 hour train ride from NYC. I agree that Birgit’s idea of pictures from around the world is fantastic!!

  8. ringthing says:

    Brie and daughters, thanks for the lovely photos! Bare branches and fall leaves captured up close are truly beautiful. And Brie, watch your back! Lots of my perfume, jewelry, bags, who knows what else – it all kind of drifted into my teenage daughter’s possession. Not stolen, mind you, but she was a master at catching me at a vulnerable moment. Have fun. 🙂

    • brie says:

      Oh goodness, ringthing, I am laughing hysterically! Thanks for the warning but it has started already with the “borrowing” of clothes and then everything ends up in their closets! (and that also explains why I only own 5 pairs of shoes….we are all the same size so I borrow shoes from them as well 🙂 !!!) and I won’t even mention the perfume bottles that have been confiscated from me!

  9. Suzanne says:

    I enjoyed these beautiful photos, Brie. When I was in my 20s, I spent six years in a very rural town in Delaware County, NY. It was so picturesque – especially in autumn, when the Catskill Mountains surely has to figure among the most beautiful areas in the world. When I moved back to Pennsylvania and the show Northern Exposure became popular (yes, we’re talking long ago, in the 80s), I remember feeling that I had just spent six years in a Northern Exposure kind of town, because there were so many quirky and endearing characters there. I still miss that place.

    • brie says:

      We are not far from the Catskills but in a different county….my parents still can’t fathom that I don’t miss NYC and have settled in nicely here. I like the peace and quiet in the morning with all the birds chirping…surely you don’t get that experience in a large city! And you are a Northern Exposure fan! Watched ever single eposide twice!!!! (rented it years later from Netflix). Indeed the show was full of loveable characters but then again so is our little world of perfume bloggers/commenters, right?

    • brie says:

      Oh and I forgot to say that I love your blog…we share many favorite perfumes!

  10. Beautiful pictures, Brie! Thanks for sharing.

  11. Very good to know. And thanks for subscribing to my blog 🙂

  12. Tatiana says:

    Beautiful photos! Thanks for sharing.

  13. Tara says:

    Thanks to you and your daughters for these pics and an insight into your life, Brie. I love perfume but nothing quite gives me that sense of utter well-being that essential oils do. They are like natural magic potions.

    Birgit, I agree that photos of hidden beauty from around the world would be wonderful. We’d get to see a side of places that we wouldn’t normally get exposed to.

    • brie says:

      Tara- you are spot on!!! essential oils truly are “magic potions”!!! Do you dabble in blending as well?
      Tara I would love to see some of the hidden beauties from your parts!

      • brie says:

        You know in re- reading that last sentence it sounds a bit non G rated so I will re-phrase: “Tara I would love to see some photographs from the lovely hidden places you like to visit in your part of the world” There…that’s better!

  14. odonata9 says:

    Beautiful photos! I am originally from the east coast (MD) and now live in San Diego. I do miss the trees and grass and occasionally, the weather from back home so it’s nice to see. I’d love to see photos of where everyone lives! San Diego is of course beautiful in its own way, so I’ll endeavor to find some good hidden spots (not just obvious beach shots!).

  15. brie says:

    I am sure that you do not miss the crazy winter snowstorms of the northeast!
    I would love to see pictures from San Diego….even beach shots would be nice 🙂 !!!

  16. cookie queen says:

    I spent my 30th birthday, many years ago, in an old house, Nr Woodstock. Brilliant time. Travelled up there from the Vineyard, where I lived for a year. Nice post. I share a lot of things with my daughter. It is definitely another era. I never wanted my Mum’s clothes at least. Make up
    and perfumes …. well yes. 🙂

    • brie says:

      Wow cq you are quite the traveler! You were in my thoughts less than 20 minutes ago as I was preparing the family dinner I was thinking how wonderful it would be for you to pair your cookies with some gourmand perfumes… of these days I would love to try one of your cookies!
      I often shared clothes with my mum and for sure her perfume. My daughters are quite more stylish than I so I will often borrow some of their outfits. We are all relatively the same size so it does save some money in terms of shopping for clothes!

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  18. Undina says:

    What a treat! Brie, please thank your talented daughters for bringing these beautiful scenes to our eyes (I don’t remember when it was the last time I saw real snow – love it on pictures! 😉 )

  19. Very beautiful, Brie! Many thanks to you, Britt, and Court for sharing. I love upstate NY and you all have captured it beautifully.

    After reading Birgit’s call for a Hidden Beauty archive, I scrolled through my phone and found the following photos: A giant pile of burning trash in Williamsburg surrounded by FDNY, a car on fire in the East Village, city skyline at night taken from the roof of the Wythe Hotel, and an East Village side street covered with snow.

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