Wednesday, November 18, 2015

New Lady Pillows Ready For Christmas

 The big season is just around the corner so I have been
painting away to put new lady pillows up in my Etsy shop.
Have been enjoying some nice sales recently as clients look
for something fun for their girlfriend Christmas presents.

Each pillow is hand painted and a one-of-a-kind gift
and some of the smaller pillows might make fun
stocking stuffers.

This is the new group of sculptured small pillows
that look fun sitting on a desk or bureau.
Who says art has to hang on a wall????

Stop by and say hello to the "girls."
 This is a new lady at Priscilla Mae...
Her name is Gigi and is a lovely mysterious femme.

I love her quote on the back of the pillow...
I got heels higher than your standards."

See Gigi here.
And of course, dear sweet Manon.
She flies out of my shop within days of being put in my shop.
Manon has always been one of my favorite ladies.

Her quote is a nice Paris thought...
"Some may dream in color...
I dream in Paris."

See Manon here.

I was devastated to hear about the events
that occurred in Paris last Friday.  
I have walked those streets where the horrible violence
occurred and watching TV just didn't seem real to me.

My thoughts and prayers are with all the people
in Paris and France.  They are a resilient people
and shortly, we will see Paris rise again.

Monday, November 2, 2015

Wisdoms From A Grandmother Before Her Death

It's Sunday morning and I am lying in bed reading from my iPad
and drinking my first cup of coffee when I come across a Facebook
entry from a friend.  The title of the article she had 
uploaded from a blog called Marc and Angel was 
"12 Things My Grandmother Told Me Before She Died." 

I am totally intrigued.  Aren't we searching to learn
why we are here and how we are to live this thing called life?
Someone before her death shares what she has learned 
 from her own story and I can't pass this up.  
Will she have the answers I am looking for?

There is a wisdom in aging and these 12 items inspire
beautifully what is important in life.  What I loved about
this particular Grandmother was that she kept an inspirational
journal.  In this book, she would jot down ideas, thoughts,
quotes and anything that moved her.  I too love the power of
journals, although I don't religiously write something everyday,
I do religiously go back to the process when I am feeling
stuck or at odds in my life.

Here are the 12 things this wise Grandmother
left for her grandson and 6 photos of beautiful
women still living inspirational lives.

Faith Winthrop - 81 year old jazz singer

1.  Breathe in the future, breathe out the past.

No matter where you are or what you're going through, always believe 
that there is a light a the end of the tunnel.  Never expect, assume, or demand. 
 Just do your best, control the elements you can control, and then let it be.

2.  Life CAN be simple again.

Just choose to focus on one thing at a time.  You don't have to do it all, 
and you don't have to do it all right now.  Breathe, be present 
and do your best with what's in front of you

 Vanessa Redgrave - Italian Vogue

3.  Let others take you as you are, or not at all.
Speak your truth even if your voice shakes.  By being yourself, you put 
something beautiful into the world that was not there before.

4.  You are not who you used to be, and that's OK.
You've been hurt; you've gone through numerous ups and downs that have
 made you who you are today.  Many things have happened over the years 
that changed your perspective, taught you lessons and forced your spirit to grow.  
You are still the same person, just a little stronger now that you were before.
 Iris Apfel - stylish maven

5.  Everything that happens helps you grow, 
even if it's hard to see right now.

Circumstances will direct you, correct you and perfect you over time.  Hold on to hope.  
The tiniest thread will twist into an unbreakable cord.  Let hope anchor 
you in the possibility that this is not the end of your story ... 
that change will bring you to peaceful time.

6.  Do not educate yourself to be rich, 
educate yourself to be happy.

That way, when you get older you'll know the value of things, not the price.  
You will come to realize that the best days are the days when you don't 
need anything extreme or special to happen to make you smile. 
 Appreciate the moment.
 Twyla Tharp at age 70

7.  Be determined to be positive.

Know that the greatest part of your misery is determined not by your 
circumstances, but by your attitude.  Smile at those who often try to 
begrudge or hurt you, and realize they can't take anything away from you.

8.  Pay close attention to those you care about.

Sometimes when a loved one says, "I'm okay," they need you to look them in the
 eyes, hug them tight, and reply, "I know you're not."  And don't be upset if some
 people only seem to remember you when they need you.  Feel privileged that 
you are like a beacon of light that comes to their minds 
when there is darkness in their lives.
 Lauren Hutton

9.  Sometimes you have to let a person go so they can grow.

Because over the course of their lives, it is not what you do for them, 
but what you have taught them to do for themselves that 
will make them a successful human being.

   10.   Sometimes getting the results you crave means stripping      yourself of people that don't serve your best interests.

Allow space for those who support you in being the absolute best version 
of yourself.  It happens gradually as you grow.  You find out who you are and 
what you want, and then you realize that people you've known forever don't see 
things the way you do.  So keep the wonderful memories, but find yourself moving on.
Helen Mirren

11.  It's better to look back on life and say, "I can't believe 
           I did that," than to look back and say, "I wish I did that."

In the end, people will judge you in some way.  So don't live your life 
trying to impress others.  Instead live your life impressing yourself. 
Love yourself enough to never lower your standards for anyone. 

12.  If you're looking for a happy ending and can't seem    
              to find one, maybe it's time to start looking 
for a new beginning.

Brush yourself off and accept that you have to fail from time to time.  
That's how you learn.  The strongest people out there - the ones who laugh the
 hardest with a genuine smile - are the same people who have fought the 
toughest battles.  They're smiling because they've decided that they're not 
going to let anything hold them down.

Many thanks to Marc for sharing these words of wisdom
from his Grandmother.  What a lovely legacy she left for him
and ultimately  for us.

Monday, October 26, 2015

Winding Paths Through The University Of Toronto

 Yesterday was an absolutely glorious Fall day in Toronto.
I just wanted to be outside walking where ever my feet would take me.
Luckily, I live less than 10 minutes from the University of Toronto
but I sometimes just forget that it is there.

It's a University in the heart of Toronto and most of us only see
it from the streetscape as we make our way around the city.
Yesterday, I followed the winding paths through the buildings.

This is the Philosopher's Walk that winds past the Royal Ontario Museum,
the Royal Conservatory of Music, the old Planetarium and Trinity College.
When my son was young, we would pack a lunch and sit on a bench
listening to the music majors practice piano.
 This was a new pathway for me....
not a soul in sight.... an escape from the city bustle.
 University of Toronto is made up of several colleges.
This is one of the dorms of University College.
No one around here either ....
guess they are all studying??
 A quick game of soccer for a group of university boys...
This is the Quad of Trinity College where my son attended.
Their sister college is Oxford in England and Trinity has the feel of an
old English university.  At dinner, the students have to dress in 
black robes.  When you see them walking to dinner, it is
like you are watching a movie.

The Quad is usually filled with kids
taking a break from studying but no one was around yesterday.

University of Toronto has some gorgeous places
to explore but you just have to follow the paths into 
the inner sanctum.

Priscilla Mae et al

Meet Sarah.
She's a new fashion maven in the shop.
Sarah is wearing a black beret with rhinestones
and a painted veil.
The quote on the back of the pillow says....
"Beauty begins the moment you 
decide to be yourself."

See Sarah here.

Saturday, October 17, 2015

Street Art Of Quebec City

 There is something special about the French culture that
celebrates art in all areas of their life.  Whether in France or
even Quebec City in Canada, art is incorporated into all aspects
of living .... even along the streets.

This was my favorite sculpture along a city street in a
residential area of Quebec City.  These femmes look like they
are enjoying their book and their previous French lunch.
 The beautiful metal chairs are in a park just across
from the train station.  They are haphazardly placed around the 
park so that you can sit in a group or on your own for a little "me" time.
The chairs are fixed to the ground but their placement is so lovely
to see in this intimate park.
 The chairs are sponsored by a local citizen in honor of a loved one who
has passed on.  Beautiful quotes along with the loved one's name
are found on the seats of each chair.
What a wonderful way to be remembered....
 In the old town of Quebec City, fun art installations
can be found on many of the beautiful old buildings.
These street guards in their yellow and black glory are
haphazardly placed on the outside of the Museum of
Civilization and wrapped around the corner of the building.
 And talk about city pigeons.......
There's a big problem with these grandiose city birds on the
corner of a street filled with restaurants.  Guess they are
waiting for someone to open the Campbell's soup.
 Our hotel had cascades of white plastic flowers and leaves in front.
The building was a bank before it was renovated into a lovely
boutique hotel.  Hotel 71.  Beautiful rooms, friendliest staff and
delicious food, especially the very nice breakfast served each morning
made Hotel 71 a wonderful place to stay.
 Wooden flowers
sprinted up in front of the hotel windows.
 Fun geometric structures were set up along the
old paved streets that you had to walk through to get to a
new area to explore.

If you live in North America and a you need a quick fix of
French culture, grab a plane to Quebec City.  The Canadian
dollar is below par these days which makes this escape
a very reasonable but enjoyable holiday.  

It's like having a little bit of France in our own
back yard.

A bientot.