Monday, October 31, 2011

Balance ~

Sometimes, it's the little people who remind us of the big things in life.

I'm going to start maintaining a bit more balance in my every day.  

It's definitely a must for overall happy.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Wishful Thinking {a birthday wish}

Today, my little brother turns another year older. 

I'm not sure he realizes exactly how much he means to me, but I believe I'm the luckiest sister in the world.  

He's one of those perfect ones.  Even though he is younger, I've always looked up to him.  His kindness, pure goodness, nonjudgmental thoughts, and his deep devotion to all those he holds dear to his heart, are what put him high up in the saint category. 

He also can make you laugh until you cry, and he has this insane ability to problem solve anything and everything {which has always drove me mad...I didn't get this gene!}.

We are opposites.  We are similar.  We are siblings...a bond that I cherish and consider to be one of the greatest gifts of my life.

Happy Birthday Jamie ~ you make this world a better place.

[image via here]

Monday, October 24, 2011

Grape Crush ~

Friends, the harvest/crush was everything I had hoped for...and a tad bit more.  Being surrounded by the glorious beauty of vineyards, fresh air, and fun-loving friends was a total added bonus to the amazing awe that filled my soul as I helped harvest 1,000 pounds of cabernet sauvignon grapes.  I literally caught myself grinning from ear-to-ear as my bin grew full and my hands were soaked in fresh grape juice.  For those few hours, I was in harmony with nature and nothing else mattered.  

We picked, we laughed, we ate delicious local food, and we crushed {a hand-cranked machine de-vined the plump, juicy grapes}, and we tasted...oh my goodness, I've never tasted grape juice so incredibly amazing.  If I were not into delicious wine, I would say forgo the fermenting process and just indulge in the purity of the first stage of crush.  Wow! Oh how I wish I could share a glass with each of was that amazing.

So if ever given the opportunity to offer free labor to pick grapes, take it.  I guarantee it will be a moment in time you will never forget.

[Reverie-Daydream Images]

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Wishful Thinking {a guest post by la la lovely}

I’m a huge fan of Melissa’s.  She is sweet and soulful, and I’m pretty certain that if we lived close by we’d be great friends.  I’m so excited to be a part of the Wishful Thinking series as it gives me a chance to put paper and pen to my flittering wishes. . . .

I’m a fan of wishful thinking.  Any kind of wishing works for me. To wish with words, to wish in thought, to whisper wishes in your heart.

As a kid, I was the wishing type.  I even had a wish book, from time to time, where I penned my whims, wonders and wants.  It was easier to wish then, at least, more freely.  But deep down I’m still a wishing kind of girl.  I wish for all sorts of things:

A rainy day in an old house with an even older book.
A walk along the moors in England. 
A cup of tea, a pen, and a notebook.
A walk along the beach with my near and dear.
A family that stays close, always.
Getting lost in the shops of Paris.

But if I were to share with you the one wish that I can’t shake these days it would be this:

To take my, not so little,family across the sea on a bit of a journey.  To look, to learn and to experience life in a different way.  Not only would I love to travel Europe with my husband and children and let them soak in the history, the art, the different way of being and doing, I would love most to live in a different culture for a years time.  I have always loved England (and always will) but in recent years I’ve somewhat cheated on England and have fallen for France.  I find myself ever fascinated with learning and living in the French culture, as well as learning and speaking a new language.  As difficult as it may be, not knowing what people are saying sounds enticing at times.   I’d love to escape the everyday and live in the un-ordinary.  My heart pretty much skips a beat at the possibility of it all.  I cannot even begin to fully imagine the memories that we would make and the stories we would tell forever after.  The way we would rely on each other, grow together and know each other would be, perhaps, the greatest gift.  I’m not always entirely courageous and, in fact, if someone gave me a big check and said, “go,” I’d probably have to push myself to really actually do it.  But this is the one thing I would want to try if there were no limitations and no fears.  And I’m trying, more than ever, to live that way these days.  I heard someone say, “It is better to feel fear than it is to feel regret.”  And I’m trying, truly, to embrace fear these days and kick the regret.

There are so many people I see that are out there living what they dream.  They just do it. I, of course, think of Gabby / Design Mom, and her sister, Jordan / Oh HappyDay who are living abroad with their families.  They’ve given me a visual of the possibilities of living in another country, and with a large family to boot (Gabby has 6 kids).  When I think something like this is an impossibility or only a silly wish of mine, I always think of them and think, “why not?”  When someone says, “you can’t do that!” my new response is, “Who says?” 

I say it’s time to wish big again.  When your little, you wish big and sadly when you’re big, you wish little.  Well, I’m for wishing big when you’re big.
So what I see is a pretty little home not far outside of Paris.  Quaint and cozy and severely chic.  I see four little la la’s running about in fields of flowers.  Coming in for a chocolat chaud by the fire.  I see us all wandering the streets of Paris on the weekends and practicing the language we are all learning on our weekdays.  We visit the art museums, old buildings, fanciful shops and we eat divine food everyday (because it is plentiful), we ride bikes from here to there and hop on a train at our hearts beckoning and ride off into the sunset to discover yet another country and culture. We live an adventure, together.  And together, we learn to adventure more. 

Trina, Trina, Trina!  We share the same wish, and I believe if we both support one another and voice this grand wish, it will definitely come true.  There is power in numbers, non?  With a blog named la la Lovely, one can rest assured to only find the loveliest of delights lingering beautifully within Trina's posts.  I'm giddy just with thoughts of meeting her next year at ALT, for she is one of those really good ones that you want to befriend.
[images clockwise 1,2,3,4,5]

Monday, October 17, 2011

If the shoe fits ~

Lately, it seems we have been wearing a lot of different shoes.  Trying on all sorts of new adventures, dipping our toes in the waters, and seeing what feels right. We are continuously evolving, open to endless possibilities.  

Being a self-employed duo takes creativity, patience, persistence and lots of guts.  There is no financial safety net or trust fund that gets us through the rocky times.  It's the belief we have in ourselves, each other, and the dreams of what we can accomplish that keeps us going, re-creating ourselves, and working our asses off to remain in control of our own destiny.  

Every day brings a new challenge which forces us to learn new methods, take higher leaps, push the envelope a litter further, and try new strategies.  Some things work, others don't, but the key is not to let the feeling of failure linger for long.  Thick skin has grown, we polish it off, pick ourselves up and try again.

Some nights when the energy is drained, I think it might be easier if I punched a 9-5 time card, collected a steady paycheck and accumulated vacation days.  This thought is fleeting and rare, for the sheer joy of being our own boss, letting our creative juices flow without barriers, and knowing that at the end of every day, we did our very best and hopefully made a positive difference in some way or another, is what motivates us to keep moving along this chosen path ~ whether the shoe fits or not.

[Reverie-Daydream Image]

Friday, October 14, 2011

Evening Strolls ~

One of the many things I love about Europe is how people go out for evening strolls before or after dinner.  It's so civilized {and healthy} don't you think?  

Even with the recent time change and darkness blanketing the sky so early in the evening, we still try to make an effort to get out and walk around our little town.  

It's a whole new take on your surroundings when the light begins to fade or the paths are lit by the light of the moon.  Somehow, I believe these nightly strolls add a sprinkle of peace and calm to the day ~ an ideal ending if you ask me.  

[Luxembourg Gardens by John Singer Sargent]

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Wishful Thinking {a guest post by Poetic & Chic}

When Melissa asked me to do a Wishful Thinking post, I tried to think of something clever and transporting and unique to write about. And then I kept thinking…and nothing rightfully clever or transporting or unique came to me. That’s what you get for trying too hard, I suppose. So, in the end, I went with the simple and decided to ponder on the one thing I do a lot a wishful thinking over: a table. 

I live in a one-bedroom apartment. It’s not one of those “one bedroom apartments” that has an entry, a kitchen, a dining room, a living room, a hallway…and just one bedroom. No. I have a door that jack-in-the-boxes you right into the apartment – no greeting, no hello, no pause for breath – and you’re in it. All of it. My kitchen is an open-plan with a bar-style counter that opens into the main living room where I literally do all of my living. This living room seamlessly transitions between gathering space, reading nook, TV room, office, and sitting-with-your-feet-up zone. I say “seamlessly transitions” because it’s literally the same space where I do all of those things. I do have a bedroom though, which is where I get to sleep, and…

But back to the subject at hand.

Since I literally live on top of myself, having friends over for dinner or a movie requires some extra planning and engineering. Don’t get me wrong – I’ve packed about 40 people in this joint for cocktails, but sit-down dinners for more than two people usually mean sitting down on the floor and holding a plate of food in your lap. After I turned 30 this nonsense should have ended, but 5 years later I’m only just realizing that I, and my friends, deserve better.
I moon over tables. I come across images of tables in catalogs or on blogs, in a movie or on a website, and something gets me right in the gut. I want that.

To me a table is so much more than just a table - it’s an invitation. The very nature of a table is all about gathering: people, things, ideas, discussion. All of these things happen around a table. Inherent in its meaning and purpose is the idea of exchange and enjoyment. People eat food, play games, assemble puzzles, collaborate on designs, draw pictures, do crosswords, laugh, shout, sing, drink, create, and even fall in love, all around a table. 

Tables may seem hard, but they’re very flexible; there’s no size-ist attitude when it comes to a table. When you buy a table they give you the dimensions and tell you how many people it should comfortably fit around it. But, as we all know, it’s when more and more people start to squeeze in that the magic happens. 

Tables build friendships, ideas, businesses, and families. They also inspire. There’s nothing like a broad, flat surface to get the creative juices flowing. It’s just a simple plane, but it begs for color, texture, adornment, or to be just left alone in perfect peace. It can be carved and ornate, or as essential as an old door on a set of legs. It doesn’t judge. 

Living the way I do, I frequently think about a table of my own – how I’d use it, arrange it, put it through its paces, who I’d invite for dinner and what I’d make. If there’s anything worth wishing for, this is it.

Leave it to the clever Annie of Poetic & Chic to turn something as simple as a table into a magical, heartfelt wish.  I've never thought of a table to be of such importance, but now I get it.  Truly, a table is the anchor for so many wonderful moments, memories, and milestones in life.  Still shaking my head over Annie's delightful wish, but then again, she always seems to leave me in a trail of thoughts...the girl is good.  Visit her, I guarantee you will enjoy all she has to share.
[images via pinterest and anthropologie]

Monday, October 10, 2011


Ever since Swiss-Miss introduced an array of cleverly designed temporary tattoos, we have been hooked. 

They last for at least a few days and are definite conversation starters.  But then again, aren't all tattoos {permanent or non} attention getters?   No matter which side of the ink you are on, one thing is for sure, tattoos tell a story.  

What about you ~ inked or not? 

Monday, October 3, 2011

giddyup ~

This weekend was filled with all sorts of outdoor goodness ~ farmers markets, gatherings with new and old friends, small town parades and festivals, and a horse named Darby.

I can't stop thinking about this handsome guy.  So majestic and aged to perfection at 28 years of life, and oh those eyes just melted my heart.   Thankfully, Darby belongs to my good friend, Jacki, which means we can have a riding rendezvous often. 

Tell me, are you a rider or prefer to admire from afar?

[Reverie-Daydream Images]


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