June Roundup

Some food for thought and some food for… food.

Summer is in full swing here in NYC, and with that comes an outpouring of energy from seemingly every corner of the city. June flew by (as time has a habit of doing during warmer months), but I’m doing my best to stay present and enjoy every moment. Here are some reflections from the last month, as well as a preview of the next.


This past month I celebrated ten years of living in NYC — an anniversary that, it's been said, means I can now call myself a “New Yorker!” To celebrate, I threw an admittedly over-the-top party — complete with formal dress code, DJs, a photographer, party favors, and even a personalized pizza. I never celebrate my birthday and I’ve never dreamed of having a traditional wedding, so it was the first time I got to bring together all of my (NYC) people in one place. I had the BEST time.

Photos by Jade Greene

One of the things that made me especially happy is that after the party many people reached out to say they feel inspired to celebrate non-traditional milestones of their own now. It reminded me of a customer who purchased a necklace a few years ago to celebrate her design studio’s fifth year in business. I admired (and still think it’s so cool) that she A) didn’t wait for someone to buy her a piece of jewelry she’d been eyeing, and B) decided to commemorate an accomplishment that had personal significance to her.

It doesn’t have to take the form of jewelry and you certainly don’t have to throw a ridiculous party, but I do think there’s value in appreciating the accomplishments, people, and moments that matter to you — regardless of whether they’re traditionally celebrated.

Engagement ring by Milton Glaser 💅🏻


I’m a sucker for a “self-help” book, and the one I most recently finished is ‘Four Thousand Weeks: Time Management for Mortals’ by Oliver Burkeman. I picked it up impulsively in the bookstore, thinking it might help me plow through my endless to-do lists more efficiently or master my calendar. Instead, the book was not so much a key to productivity, but almost the opposite — it shifted my perspective to embrace the finitude of time and all of the things we inevitably cannot do because of these limits.

One of the concepts I learned from this book (that I can’t stop telling everyone about, including you now too) is the distinction between “atelic” and “telic” activities. Atelic activities are things you do for their own sake, as opposed to achieving a distinct goal or creating a predetermined outcome — this latter description would be considered a telic activity.

So, for example, an atelic activity might be hanging out with your friends or playing basketball simply because you enjoy it. If you’re playing basketball with the sole intention of getting drafted onto a professional team, however, that would make it telic. The spoiler alert is that having a telic approach to all of life’s endeavors sets you up for a lot of disappointment, and is a whole lot less enjoyable.

I couldn’t help but relate it to my own experience of starting to learn Spanish this year. When I first began, I was often frustrated at how distant becoming fluent — my “distinct goal,” in this case — felt. I didn’t feel like I was learning fast or “well” enough and felt a sense of stress and urgency as I studied. Now, I have a totally different approach.

Instead of having fluency be my only marker of success, I’ve decided to focus on and enjoy the process of learning a new language — regardless of whether I ever reach full fluency or how fast I’m progressing. This new approach has made the experience of fumbling my way through learning a new language so much more enjoyable. If I do become fluent one day then of course that’s amazing. But I am no longer judging the value of my time spent learning this language based on a potential future “failure.”

Of course, a life well-lived probably includes a mix of telic and atelic activities. But in general, I think I skew quite heavily to the telic side, so I’m trying to introduce a more “atelic” approach to other areas of my life (including running this business!).


As a complete non-sequitur from the headiness of my previous two items, let me introduce you to my latest snacking concoction: a single Trader Joe’s Super Seedy Cheese Snack Bite wrapped in 30-month aged prosciutto.

That’s it! It’s perfection. You’re welcome.

(I promise it tastes better than it looks)


You might remember my friend Adriana Gallo, who made an appearance in my inaugural January Roundup. I’m slightly breaking the roundup format to share that she will be co-creating a dinner with Cody Moy at SEY Coffee in Brooklyn on July 19. The dinner — a seated four-course meal — will combine and remix Italian and Chinese dishes, ingredients, and cooking methods.

In their words, “the meal presents an ongoing exchange between Moy and Gallo and their shared culinary practice in conversation with SEY’s approach to sourcing and production, all respectively informed by a rigorous research, relentless iteration, and cultivation of community.”

I’ve had the privilege of cooking with and eating Adriana’s food on many occasions, and I’m so happy to be able to share an opportunity for others to experience it for themselves. You can learn more about the event and purchase tickets here.


As you may have already seen, prices of many Abel pieces will be increasing starting Wednesday, July 10th. I made the announcement in a video on Instagram last week, and wrote a more in-depth article on the thought process behind the decision that you can read here.

Repricing is something I’ve resisted doing for a very long time and is going to require a huge “mindset shift,” as a jewelry mentor of mine said. It’s hard to put a price on your own work, especially when it’s a price you might not be able to afford yourself.

Despite the internal dread I feel ahead of the increases, I know that it’s what is needed to ensure the sustainability of Abel — both from an operational standpoint and from a values perspective.

I also have been feeling very grateful for the kind and supportive response I’ve received from my community. Thank you so much to anyone who’s left a comment, sent a message, or placed an order. I can’t express how much it means to have you standing behind me, especially when running your own business can often feel quite lonely. I am so thankful.

As always, I’m here if you have any feedback or questions about anything. Thanks for reading this particularly-wordy roundup, and remember to stay hydrated out there!