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Thursday, August 1, 2013

At the Moment I am...

1. ON THE MEND:

After I fell down ten days or so, while moving and carrying a heavy basket.
I had to take medicines and lay in bed for nearly three entire days. So annoying indeed.

Orange Marmelade in my favorite! I have been pampered by everyone after my little accident!
2. TAKING IT EASY:

As for the above point, I had to *stop* and *breathe* deeply, and take care of myself. I took a week off from painting, and started making a visual scrap journal (see point 3).

In the meantime, my Book of Grace has been returned after publication, and I am so excited to start using it!

My Book of Grace.

3. MAKING:

A discovery journal following my usual summer class, this time Lovely Notions.

Hope makes some of the most interesting and lovely journals out there, and her class sparked my interest. Of course I'm making my journal my way, but I'm really enjoying the inspiration and prompts in the class, and to see Hope's journal and watch her videos.

Clippings from old magazines and one of the heart rocks I keep finding.
Will dedicate one of the next posts to this journal.

4. SAYING:

Bye bye (with some tears) to my neighbor and artist friend, as I had to move away. 

We have had the most inspiring conversations over here.  We danced on the grass with the butterflies, we visited the most wonderful organic garden together, we spoke about introversion, about freedom (both in art and life), inspiration, Nature, self-care, passion, love and all things creative. She even convinced me to wake up at 4 am to see the fox which resides in the wood close to my garden! :=O

She got me completely, definitely a kindred spirit. 

Writing a farewell message on my friend's journal. There's something about brand-new journals, right? All of those fresh, blank pages to be filled with blessings, breaths and heartbeats.

5. SURPRISING:

My darling friend Federica, who lives nearby and I feel so privileged to call friend in my offline life too, with a watercolor lesson. 

We spent the most amazing day filled with smiles, laughter, simple pleasures, happy chats, ooohs and aaahs, sweet things- and enjoyed painting together on the wooden garden table among soft, gorgeous cushions she has made and lots of magnificent flowers!

She was so excited and happy to start watercolor, and you bet this filled my heart with deep joy.

Showing Federica how to paint in watercolor, enjoying the quiet and beauty of her garden.

6. GIVING MYSELF PERMISSION:

To wear red nail polish, for the first time ever in my whole life!
Thanks Vivienne for the inspiration, and for being such a wonderful guide towards self- love and self- care.

And of course, I am picking flowers!

7. FINDING:

Lots of interesting new (old) things while rummaging at charity shops, car boot sales, antique markets and jumble sales. I am a vintage girl at heart and I prefer to buy old, antique or second- hand instead of new. Call me romantic, but I love to be surrounded by things with stories to tell... Rust, wear and tear, holes and cracks not only add to the character, but also remind me again and again that I am perfectly imperfect beautiful!

After an epiphany a few months ago, when out of the blue I realized why I needed to be surrounded by old, imperfect things, and always incorporate them in my home decor and work, I discovered Brenè Brown, and was totally inspired! She gave words to my feelings. Thanks, Brenè.

Vintage Kitchen tins by Thyphoon. I've been drooling over these for years, and now I have a small collection myself I managed to find at charity shops and car boot sales. 

8. LOVING:

The journal Alisa made with the cover I created especially for her.

What a great piece! Seeing it I am thinking that it would be lovely to make more of these handmade covers to offer for sale in my little etsy art shop... what do you think?

Painted in original over a vintage book cover, it has become a stunning collaborative journal.

9. IN AWE:

Seeing lavender fields in full bloom, not far from where I live.
Isn't it incredible? We are in England and not in Provence!

At Snowshill Lavender Farm, England. Will dedicate a whole post to this breathtaking beauty!

10. JUMPING:

For joy! I am finding the most beautiful things over here!

I have such a thing for picnics, and although I have a picnic basket already, its content is all plastic and of the most ugly, mismatched colors! I couldn't believe my eyes when I found this blue one, intact, and never used. The porcelain dishes and cups are exquisite, the cutlery is "proper" cutlery and there are also two Thermos flasks and all of the containers for food and dressings.

I have plans to transfer all of the content in one of the baskets I already have, as it looks more functional than this suitcase (which of course I'll use to store stuff in my studio).

My hubby and I love picnics, and maybe I could use it also with friends or for my solitary expeditions?

Bargain picnic hamper from the 50s! It's brand- new, never used and so me!

11. PAINTING:

Sunflowers galore!
Sunflowers are among my favorite flowers, I think I have painted hundreds over my whole artistic career, with all mediums and techniques.

Just recently, I realized how much I do need yellow in my life! Of course, being an artist I love all colors (yes, also "non color"- black)... 

Yellow is so cheery and uplifting, especially after the cold months! I have always had a yellow kitchen/cream and yellow and I have lots of yellow clothing and accessories (boy I love my yellow shoes!). I have blue and yellow ceramic dishes, so Italian and with that charming "Positano" feel, and I always buy yellow flowers in Spring! And sunflowers during the Summer. Here I am, reaffirming my love for it by painting gorgeous, yellow sunflowers.

There will be sunflowers soon in my art shop! :)

Hope you're having a good Summer so far!
Monica x

14 comments:

  1. Beautiful post Monica ...enjoy summer Darling.....love ia...x!

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  2. Love your picnic set find! Hope you feel better soon!

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  3. Love your post! Love your sunflower! Get better and have a wonderful summer.
    Hugs
    Karen B. ~ Todolwen

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  4. I remember 100 yrs ago teaching a new friend to tole paint..and we would do that togther..lovely lovely..No longer in our lives..but those were nice days..
    I am gald your journal was so appreciated..it is indeed so very special:)

    Glad you have recovered..:)
    Cute pic of you Monica..happy:)

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  5. This is all so wonderful, your watercolors are so pretty! I also like hopes journaling and I can't wait to see more of your visual journal.

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  6. Your wonderful sunflower is the best summer wish for our holidays.
    Thank you,Monica :)
    Un abbraccio grandissimo
    Franca

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  7. Great post, Monica. Reading through it makes you feel good. Thank you for sharing the joy in your heart.

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  8. I've been away and had not read about your fall. I'm glad you are feeling better. Loved this newsy post about what's happening in your world.

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  9. Another wonderful post Monica... I love the way you have listed everything here - it truly is the things that seem the simplest that bring great joy.
    I hope you are feeling better soon - a fall is such a startling, awful thing...

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  10. Hi Monica, sorry to hear that you hurt your back. I glad your on the mend. Sweet that you have made some good connections so quickly here in England. The lavender farm looks incredible I really must go! and the sunflower picture looks very appealing right now! Enjoy the good things, Heather x

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  11. Monica I always love reading your writing. It is always so full of grace. To me it sounds as if you lead a fulfilling life and one that you love. I'm so sorry about you fall though and hope you are healing well.
    hugs...

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  12. I, too, am someone who loves the colour yellow. It seems to have an energy and sense of positivity about it.

    It's sad that you fell, but I'm glad that you used the time in ways that brought you pleasure and am happy that you are on the mend.

    Have a beautiful week.

    -Karen

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  13. I love the sunflower and the roses in the watering can too. I would love to find a friend like that. One of my friends is moving away so we wont see each other so much. This post made me realize that I need a friend like yours to share my love of painting and things like that. Someone to see often and do things with
    Janice

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  14. I just love ending my day reading one of your stories! Thank you Monica.

    Ciao amica,
    Suzanne

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Thank you! I love connecting with you!