Ten Favorite Photos From 2022

I know I say it at the end of every year when I’m putting together my final reflective posts before I take a little break for New Year’s Eve/Day- especially when it comes to this type of post in particular- but narrowing down hundreds (if not thousands) of photos from a year’s worth of travels and adventures is extremely difficult. Fun, for sure- but difficult!

Condensing all of 2022 to only ten photographs proved to be even more challenging than 2020 and 2021 had been simply because I really did the absolute most this year. From multiple trips around the country, visiting both beloved and brand new locations, reconnecting with longtime friends and loved ones I hadn’t seen since before the pandemic began and embarking on new projects that have kept me busy and thoroughly entertained (who knew I’d love hosting a podcast so much!)– 2022 was all about going bigger and bolder, taking risks and trying new things- and I was fortunate enough to capture so much of it with my camera!

Reviewing all of the photos I took this year from New Year’s Day through as recently as this past weekend has been a bittersweet reminder of just how far I’ve come since the events of early 2020 when the world was collectively turned upside down for everyone- and it makes me hopeful that I can continue to have just as much fun, if not more so- in 2023.

As always, links to the posts with more information about the locations/pictures themselves will be listed below- but without further delay- here are my β€˜Ten Favorite Photos” from this year!

10. “Howdy, Boston Calling!” (June 2022)Although I had gradually been returning to live music as early as the Fall of 2021, it wasn’t until this past Summer when I got to make a triumphant comeback to my favorite local three-day festival- Boston Calling! Working a couple of the days on behalf of indie617 right around Memorial Day weekend gave me the opportunity to interview incredible artists/bands, indulge in some renowned festival food and beverages, hang out with longtime friends- and catch sets from some of my favorite artists like Black Pumas, Dutch Tulips and Run The Jewels.

The highlight of my weekend, however- was finally having the chance to see Orville Peck perform live. When his set was threatened by inclement weather as a thunderstorm and torrential downpour barreled down on the Harvard University Athletic Complex- causing everyone to seek shelter in a nearby stadium- my heart sank. But, by some miracle- the skies cleared just in time for Orville to take the stage and pull off one of the best, most energetic and well-received performances I’ve seen in a long, long time. I was awe-struck, and managed to snap this quick picture in-between singing along and dancing. It’s nowhere near as good as the professional photographers who were on-site that day- but I love it just the same!


9. “Welcome to Silent Hill…” (February 2022) Perched atop a nearby hill that overlooks my entire town is the famed Poet’s Seat Tower. Since moving to the Pioneer Valley back in 2019, I typically stop by in the cooler weather (i.e. Fall and Winter) to take in some breathtaking views during brief hikes around the area- or marvel at the LED display placed at the very top of the tower during the holiday season.

Following a few days of warmer weather back in February, however- the endless views of the valley were obstructed by some of the heaviest, thickest fog that enveloped Greenfield and Poet’s Seat as the blankets of snow and ice began to melt. When I stopped by to take some photos of the tower looking a little more ominous than usual given the gray skies and surroundings- I ended up being the only one on the trail- which made for an eerie afternoon.

But given that ‘Silent Hill’ has been one of my favorite horror video game franchises since I was in my early teens- I actually really, really loved the view!


8. “Do You Want to Build a Snowman?” (January 2022)When I returned to Maryland shortly after the New Year began to babysit Haven and Archer while Andrew got acclimated to a new shift at his job, none of us counted on being caught in the mother of all blizzards just hours after I’d set my suitcase down in the guest room. The snowstorm, which dumped a few feet of snow and ice on their cute little town- happened to be the kids’ first significant snowfall since moving to the area from Las Vegas in 2021- and to say they were fascinated and overjoyed by it was an understatement.

I took this photo from their back window just as the storm was picking up strength, and whenever I look at it I think of the kids wanting to go outside and make a snowman, and snow angels, and snowballs (and also Andrew and I getting stuck on one of the roads on our way to pick the kids up from daycare and him having to dig us out with whatever he had in the car at the time.)

Being there for their first “snow day”- and making them hot chocolate afterwards- is something I’m so grateful for. I’ll cherish that week forever!


7. “I Get My Glory in The Desert Rain…” (April 2022)From a East Coast blizzard to Springtime in the desert, April saw me making the first of many trips out West this year- heading to Las Vegas for a long weekend of sunshine, drinks/dinner with friends and catching a set by The Killers at my favorite casino on the strip!

This mini-vacation also allowed me to make one of my favorite drives through the desert from Vegas to Southern California- with stops in Baker, Riverside and San Bernardino- but the highlight for me has always been pulling over to take pictures of the abandoned motels, gas stations and closed up roadside oddities along the way. Doing so during peak heat hours is always a little risky in regards to sunburn or dehydration- but I snapped this picture at one of the many desolate and long-abandoned exits heading back to Las Vegas following a desert shower and as the sun was starting to set- meaning it was refreshingly cool outside.

The gas station is unsurprisingly covered in graffiti and partially collapsed- but I love that sign oh so much. I just wish it still lit up.


6. Return To Texas (November 2022)Another extended weekend out of state happened as recently as November when I ventured back to my beloved Texas for a quick getaway with Troy, this time to Houston- where we did some sightseeing in the days following a class he was teaching at a local medical center. On our to-do list during our trip was seeing James Turrell’s ‘Twilight Epiphany’ in person and up close at Rice University as he’s one of Troy’s favorite artists.

On this beautiful and sunny day (right before a hurricane rolled into the South and delayed a bunch of flights!)– we were two of a handful of people who had come to see the exhibit, which made for some fantastic pictures in and around the area. This one is the best I took, I think. The display and the campus itself were so absolutely stunning!

Anytime I’ve ever been to Texas I’ve always had such a fun and unique time- and this first trip to Houston was no exception! I’d love to go back someday!


5. Stopping to Smell the Cherry Blossoms (April 2022)April of this year saw me returning to Maryland in order to surprise Haven for her 5th birthday, flying in and out on the same day to bring her a present and have some cake. Since I had caught a red eye to Washington D.C. that morning, however- I had a few hours to kill before the birthday party was set to begin and I was scheduled to pick her up from school with Andrew’s parents.

I used the time to do some sightseeing in and around the nearby monuments and museums- and although it wasn’t quite time for the cherry blossoms in the area to be at their fully-bloomed beauty, I did capture some photos of them in the early stages of opening up- with this tree in particular having the perfect view of the Washington monument behind it.

That day was so unbelievably fun and exciting that nobody seemed to mind the occasional Spring showers we got throughout the afternoon.


4. A Haunting in Connecticut (March 2022) This past year saw me spending a lot of time in some of my favorite parts of Connecticut, like Pomfret and Woodstock- often traveling over the winding, scenic back roads to get coffee or go shop for antiques. On one of those aforementioned winding, scenic back roads is an abandoned and very much dilapidated farmhouse resting on a hill top that is a “blink and you’ll miss it” view from the roadway.

My long-time love affair with abandoned buildings and old fashioned architecture has me wanting to buy the house and fix the place up so I can throw extravagant parties and decorate it for the holidays- while another part of me thinks it’s perfectly lovely the way it is- even if it’s more than likely going to be torn down if and when the land it sits on is sold.

I’m hoping I can learn a little more about it’s history in 2023, and maybe get some more up-close photos of it!


3. Burning Ring of Fire (September 2022)In the Fall of 2022, I had made another voyage to Las Vegas to see more live music, spend time with Andrew and the kids in their hometown where they were visiting for a few days- and go on adventures to places like AREA 15 and the Valley of Fire when Troy came to town for the weekend. While I captured so many beautiful moments during that weekend- it was the shots I took in Valley of Fire that still make me gasp at it’s beauty to this day.

Narrowing down the photos to just one from that afternoon almost made my brain melt a little bit, but this view of the sprawling desert- taken from the front window of a cabin built within the park back in the 1930s- has consistently been my favorite. The park went on forever, as far as the eye could see- with mountains of varying shades of oranges and reds, wild horses and goats running around, and historic/nature-made markers and marvels. Driving through the valley and performing brief hikes (to avoid heatstroke!) was hands down one of my favorite things I did in 2022- and maybe one of my favorite things I ever did, period!

I can’t wait to go back!


2. The Most Beautiful Wedding on the Most Beautiful Day (June 2022) In the Summer of 2022 I had the extreme honor and privilege of being my cousin Paige’s Maid of Honor in her picture perfect Western Massachusetts wedding to her wonderful husband, Brian. Every aspect of the weekend-long celebration, although meticulously planned down to the very last little detail- was so much fun, so laid-back, and unbelievably gorgeous- from Paige’s dress, to the wedding cake and flowers to the venue itself. My girl knows how to do it right!

I snapped the photo above the day before the wedding when our party had met up at the venue near Mount Tom in Holyoke to do a run-through of the ceremony proceedings before we headed out to the rehearsal dinner and for some drinks. The sun was only just beginning to set, which made for a perfect view of the Pioneer Valley below.

I’m still in awe when I look at photos from that day!


1. “When You Wish Upon a Star…” (June 2022) And finally, one of my favorite photos of this year came courtesy of one of my favorite vacations from the Summer when Troy invited me out to California to stay with him so he could take me to places like Santa Monica, Beverly Hills- and Disneyland! I’d never been before, so we made a full day out of it- arriving to the park just as it was opening for the day and staying long after the gates had closed for entry at midnight.

We’d showed up with a plan and were able to go on pretty much every ride we had interest in- some more than once- but Troy was adamant that I see the nightly firework display outside of Cinderella’s castle- and it was spectacular! I snapped this photo during a ‘Lion King’ montage- and I love that you can see the projection on the entire castle.

It was legit the perfect day- and ended with us getting matching Mickey & Minnie ears to wear on the ride home!



And there it is! My ten favorite photos from 2022- such a beautiful and vast countdown and collection of trips, milestones and memories from what has been a life-changing year for sure. As difficult as it was to narrow down so many snapshots to just ten and then put them in order- I think I did a good job and I truly enjoyed looking back on my posts and adventures!

I’m going to have my full recap of 2022 from start to finish up and published at the end of this week along with a glimpse into my New Year’s Eve/Day plans- which I’m so very much looking forward to!

Until then!


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Hi! I'm Ashley. I'm a blogger and a radio personality with a makeup and shoe addiction based out of Boston and the Pioneer Valley. These are my (mis)adventures.

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