I want to start out by saying that this piece will be the exception to future posts on this site. The intent is for this platform to be one that showcases itineraries, experiences and strategies for living a "big" life, rather than a personal narrative (in fact, I would like for this to have as little to do with me as possible - more on that later). Before we dive right into it however, I do feel it's crucial to have some context into who I am, as I'll be writing from my own experience + perspective, which are bound to be entirely different from your own - as they should be.
At the time of writing this (Feb 2022), I am freshly 25 years old, living my last week at my parent's house in NJ before moving into Jersey City with my boyfriend of two years next week. When the world shut down in March 2020, I abandoned my NYC studio, flex-wall apartment that I shared with two other roommates in FiDi to find respite at my parents' house in suburban-NJ. I stayed on and off and eventually moved into a 2 bedroom apartment with one of my roommates in LES to commute to my office a few days a week beginning in July 2020. After getting a new job in October 2020 that did not require me to be in an office, I got a subleaser and headed to my parents' permanently until the lease was up, and up until now I've stayed since to make it easier to move in with my boyfriend when his lease was up in February 2022. [Updated] As of March 2022, we've officially moved into our little 2 bedroom apartment in the Paulus Hook area of Jersey City and we could not be happier.
To be quite honest, the last two years of my life living through the COVID pandemic have not only been the quietest and slowest few years I've ever had, but also the most grounding and fulfilling. I've been able to really spend time at home and in my own head, exploring who I am and what makes me feel my happiest + most authentic self. During this time, my travel-filled life was forced to a halt and I instead got the pleasure of finding fulfillment and happiness from the "littlest" things - whether it be a take-out dinner or virtual date night - thus the Disco Frank mantra and brand were born. Now, as I prepare for my move, I feel present and content with who I am and the fact that a chapter of my life is coming to an end just as a new one, with new characters, experiences and places is about to begin. My hope and my goal for myself is to be able to hold the same contentment and inner peace as life gets back to "big" and "busy" again, as I've lived these past few years and to be able to promote others to do the same,
You might wonder what makes me qualified to write about any of this, and the truth is that there's nothing that makes me any more or less qualified than anyone else to share my own personal recommendations, experiences, and advice. I feel proud of myself for the life that I've lived [and am currently living] and I feel motivated to share what has brought me here with others. Growing up in central-NJ, I did VERY minimal travel and exploring - our family took one vacation every 4 years to Club Med in Sandpiper, FL. For my 16th birthday, my uncle took me to Hawaii and that trip became pivotal to the person that I would become. Soon began my obsession with planning my own trips and outings, and before my parents could blink, I was moving across the country to attend college in California. Between my freshman year of college (2015) and 2020, I lived in California, Italy, London and NYC, I traveled to 26 National Parks, 19 countries and 36 states and I began to explore my own backyard with the same bewilderment and awe as every exotic place I was blessed enough to visit. But Disco Frank is not just about travel and big trips. It's about every little thing in between.
For as long as I can remember, I've had a neurotic quality about me that has made it nearly impossible to focus on more than one thing at a time, to break a train of thought or to be spontaneous, which makes it all but surprising that I was officially diagnosed with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) in 2021. It's something that should by no means be glamorized - it has hurt many of my closest friendships and relationships as my need to control every aspect of every situation can be all consuming. It is practically impossible to work through certain situations until I finish the one I'm currently working on, which presents an entirely different set of challenges. All of this to be said that as part of learning more about myself, I've also learned that if ANY good comes of my struggles with OCD, it is my absolute knack for research, planning and organization. I have every thought and every second of my day written out and planned to a T, which can be a real pain in the a$$ for everyday life, but has presented itself in extraordinary ways as it relates to my attention to detail in planning travel, day trips, events and outings. This knack is what I hope will transpire into Disco Frank's impact.
My hope is that Disco Frank will be more of a lifestyle than anything - that when people think of Disco Frank, they'll think of belly laughs at impromptu outings and barefoot walks home. Memories to last a lifetime with people that make an impact. It's about experience the full range of the human experience and not waiting for the weekends, or certain milestones to live a life that feels fulfilling (hello Jenna Palek's Fun on Weekdays) and finding a community and personal style that makes you feel proud of the skin you're in. It's about celebrating every moment in life and throwing out the idea of being ""basic" for one that's about owning the person that you are and the things that make you feel alive - even if it's being a "woo girl" or someone who goes ALL out for their birthday every year. If those are the moments that make you feel alive and present, then those are the moments that I want you to live within. To this extent, I chose the cover photo for this post based off of one of my happiest recent memories - a night out with my best friend. We were early to our dinner reservation so had an impromptu photoshoot in an empty parking garage. Though it may be nothing to others, the fully body laughs and giggly glances that we we shared in those moments running back and forth between the camera and our silly poses was a core memory that I'll never forget - it truly was a disco moment in the detail of life.
That being said, Disco Frank will always only be about my own personal experiences and recommendations. I will not be sharing places I've never been, outfits I'd never wear or menu items that I've never tried, and I'll never share opinions that are not fully my own. Though I want these moments to speak for themselves and to be completely separate from Kaity, the individual, the recommendations will be from a NY-area based individual who acts as a tourist on occasion in other destinations and should be taken with a grain of salt as such. I am 25 years old, I have a dog, and a boyfriend. I love fashion, event planning and interior design and I have a natural creative flair. I have many good friends and family that shape who I am and what I experience and am able to write on behalf of. As much as Disco Frank is not about me, these factors have a massive impact on the content that I experience and am able to produce. I will always be transparent and authentic and I hope to inspire you to do the same and find your own stories and experiences to reflect on within the context of your own personal reality.
If you've made it this far, thank you so much. I'm so excited to embark on this journey with all of you. I welcome your feedback and recommendations. I cannot wait to show you how I put a little disco in the details of my life and see how you each do the same. & finally, to this new chapter, I love you already -- XO, KG.