How is it already November? This past year has flown by. I keep seeing statuses on Facebook from friends and colleagues about the one year anniversary of hurricane Sandy and how it affected them, and it made me stop and think.

Besides the obvious physical destruction it brought to everything in its path, the storm also created a lot of changes in people's personal lives. Just like a new moon (pardon my astrology), it brought problems to light and caused major switches for so many people. Relationships were solidified and broken. Friends opened their apartments to friends as a place to shower and charge phones. Obstacles presented themselves with work and work environments, including even a magazine folding and a full team of editors (and many of my friends), getting laid off in the midst of the storm. And Brown and I? The storm was weirdly a catalyst for good.

Sandy actually gave us a chance to hit the pause button and step back from our exhausting pace of life. Brown and I had just returned to the city after my friends' wedding and I stayed his apartment to weather out the storm. What was to be only a couple of days quickly turned into a couple of weeks. Unable to go back to my apartment because of transit issues and not working due to my office building suffering major damage, I stayed at Brown's, keeping busy with kitchen projects and working remotely. Soon his apartment became "our apartment" and "home", and our cohabitation started to solidify. We began talking about the future and how there had to be more to it than our daily stresses and dissatisfaction with our jobs.

Stress baking kept me busy and sure beat the ramen and beans we'd stocked up on.

We plotted grand schemes of moving and starting fresh, Brown in non-profit work, me with making my ice cream full-time. A short list of cities came up and we were filled with equal parts of excitement and fear. We were both sure and unsure of what we'd gotten ourselves into. Were we ready? Were we crazy?

Obviously, we didn't end up moving (but it's still in the cards). It was a crystallizing time for us, though, where we stepped off one track and onto another. We ended up moving in together, traveling the US for inspiration and meeting different makers and entrepreneurs, starting our blog, and forming the foundation of what will become our business. I see myself, friends and family one year later; we're all stronger from this storm- it tested our boundaries, sanity, safety and sense of normalcy. Some came out ahead and some are still feeling the storm's negative effects. Brown and I are fortunate that we didn't endure the same hardships that others did, and are now firmer believers that there are silver linings to every cloud. I reflect on how it swept so much away, but in our case, we don't miss what it took.-- Red

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