Photos

FLORAL STRAWBERRY CAKE

22824D0F-E191-4789-B159-2AEE55FA4681.JPG

I was so thrilled to try out this floral cake pan from Williams Sonoma I saw awhile back and finally picked it up in the store. Williams Sonoma has such beautiful floral pans right now! I had my whole Sunday planned out. Wake up early, make chocolate Belgian waffles for breakfast, spend the day reading and writing, etc. I was quite excited for it all. Sadly, I woke up feeling absolutely dismal and exhausted. I couldn't get out of bed. It seems as if my thyroid issues are really catching up to me. I've been off the medication for a couple of months now and the issues are finally getting too much to bear unfortunately. Especially these last couple of weeks which has prompted me to make an appointment with my doctor to get my medication again. Sigh. I am not the best at keeping up with my health and there are periods when I don't take my medicine and then this happens and I get very sick. So, Sunday I could hardly keep my eyes open and stayed in bed falling asleep every so often and just feeling miserable mentally, too. V was very worried and finally made me eat something and then came back a bit later and told me to get out of bed and get dressed because we were going on a day trip and it was a surprise. This was his way of helping me. And so I did. We drove an hour up north and had lunch by the lake and then just drove back to the city. Thank goodness for people who care and take care of you. After that, I felt much better. Physically and mentally. So much so I was able to make the cake and I had a lovely Sunday after all. 

Currently I am sitting in my living room having a slice of it with a side of whipped cream and berries. It's making me feel very summery which is nice because it is actually 35 degrees outside right now. I just got back from my local bookstore where I picked up Float by Anne Carson. Really excited to go through this one because the format of the book is so interesting and brilliant. But Anne Carson is always brilliant you should know. April is Poetry Month so I will be reading even more poetry than I usually do and will try and share with you what it is I'm reading. Until next time!

17E67D5B-306E-46E3-AA21-7B2515840961.JPG

LIII

SPRING IS COMING

IMG_0745.JPG
6EC09C6E-D5A3-4D9C-9792-92D9DA6CA52C.jpg

Hello my dear readers, I am so happy that it is now March and winter is ending and spring will be here soon. Back home in Texas, it's already warm but here in the Midwest it is still quite cold and sometimes still snowing. Totally mind-blowing to me! It's March, where is the heat and the humidity?! I must say, I do miss it. I love winter. I love the beauty of the snow and the stillness and the quiet but it really does make you love and yearn for spring even more so. So I have just been waiting patiently for it. 

I have been keeping busy by reading a lot. In particular, I started a wonderful old book series that I had never heard of before which was odd because it's exactly the sort of books I read when I was a young girl. For some reason, this particular series and author escaped me and I discovered them while searching for another book to read. The Betsy-Tacy series by Maud Hart Lovelace. It's a series that follows best friends for life Betsy and Tacy from when they were very little to high school and takes place at the turn of the century 1900s. So so charming and very fitting considering it takes place in the Midwest and Betsy even visits Milwaukee so I really love that I came across the series at this point that I'm living here. I've been enjoying it so much that I don't want them to end. It's so refreshing to disconnect from this modern world and just lose myself in the simplicity of life in the early 1900s. And they have such funny sayings that it's very amusing!

I've read quite a few other books, as well. Besides the Betsy-Tacy series there has been Marlena by Julie Buntin, The Immortalists by Chloe Benjaming, Concluding by Henry Green, These Possible Lives by Fleur Jaeggy, Gift from the Sea by Anne Morrow Lindbergh, Dandelions by Yasunari Kawabata, The Hazelwood by Melissa Albert and A Good Comb by Muriel Spark. Currently reading The World Goes On by László Krasznahorkai, too. And a stack to be read on my side table. You can follow along with my readings on Goodreads.

Other wonderful things as of late: Planning a visit from my parents and our days together including a weekend stay at our favorite hotel in Chicago, The Thompson. Lots and lots of vintage findings like beautiful dresses and bags, writing letters to penpals, buying a new bureau for the bedroom and going to the ten year anniversary show in Milwaukee of Bon Iver's album For Emma, Forever Ago. I drank lots of wine and cried. 

xxx

As always, thank you for reading.

Mari 

LII

VINTAGE JAPANESE HOME

1.jpg

I always love a visit the Kunikuniya, the Japanese bookstore here in Chicago. It doesn't have as good of a selection as the one I went to while living in San Francisco but I always come home with something regardless! Also, I request any Japanese book and they can order and bring it in for me which is amazing. I already have a list to take them next time. This particular book I was so glad to have stumbled upon. Exactly my favorite kind of interiors. Vintage, dark, moody. The whole book is full of amazing photographs of the insides of a handful of homes along with text, which is in Japanese and I cannot read. I wanted to share just a few of these inspiring images with you. 

2.jpg
3.jpg
4.jpg
5.jpg
6.jpg
7.jpg
8.jpg
9.jpg
10.jpg
11.jpg
12.jpg
13.jpg
14.jpg
15.jpg
16.jpg
17.jpg
18.jpg
19.jpg
20.jpg
21.jpg
22.jpg

LI

FLORAL ARRANGEMENTS

B63BFD15-B875-4FEF-A1C2-C81EE393B42E.jpg
E1DFEF4D-B898-45B4-B53E-D1E576476670.jpg

A floral arrangement from local florist and purveyor of beautiful special antique objects, Alt's. Alt is a florist, gardener, antique finder and collector and a custom builder! His place is a one stop show for everything. Fresh flowers, unique antique pieces...even a good conversation. It was one of the first places I discovered in my neighborhood of Walker's Point when I first moved to Milwaukee. And how fitting it was. Everything I love in one beautiful store. I was in awe when I first walked in. It's such a special place, unlike anything I've ever been in before. Really it felt like I had traveled back in time. Every corner filled with curious looking antiques and flowers hanging upside down from the ceiling to dry, plants everywhere. It's really the loveliest experience walking in. 

Luckily, it is a short five minute walk from my apartment and so I go there quite often to look at what new antiques he's found and to pick up a floral arrangement. I love fresh flowers but I have such an affinity for dried flowers, as well. Everlasting bouquets. I love that I can keep them for such a long time, as I never get tired of them anyway. Yesterday I stopped in and picked out a few stems of dried florals and leaves that caught my eye. Then he found me a vessel amongst his collection that would be fitting and created a really beautiful piece. This is what I love about it. Going in and seeing what he's got, perusing the store to look for a vessel that catches your eye. He has so many different kinds of vessels, all antiques, all unique. And then, right then and there, he creates something stunning. 

5BBE98FA-24D6-4832-8C5E-11339E2EF208.jpg
0F564448-FE23-47A6-BC9B-3D06E7518CA3.jpg

 

//

 

This next one was the first arrangement I ever got from Alt's, more than six months ago. It's still just as beautiful and still on my coffee table in the living room.

 

103882A5-92E0-4926-BFF4-983545016233.jpg
FFFA398B-5D1A-4B27-99F3-DF4549BF81E3.jpg

//

 

These arrangements I made myself with dried florals I picked up from Alt's. I had three ceramic vases by Judy Jackson I wanted to fill. I also still have these decorating my bookshelves.

 

28F2364D-1C1E-4FC5-9D9F-A0E56EA28929.jpg

XLIX

 

 A SNOWY DAY IN JANUARY

7FC384DE-AECE-4120-85E5-B80BE7EA5A6A.jpg
 

It's a beautiful day today and I was sitting here enjoying peaceful music and occasionally glancing out of my big windows and watching the snow fall. Watching snow fall is such a rare thing for me, still a new experience and so I find it extremely calming and meditative. I have been here in this new city in the Midwest for more than six months and winter has been here since December but this is the first real snow fall, a first experience in my life. Lots of firsts this past year and more to come I'm sure.

I feel like I slipped away from many things I loved doing, things I didn't even do often even before but always meant to and slowly diminished even more once I moved here and started this job I have that is crushing. You tell yourself how you want to live your life yet your life passes by with really no change. Sigh. I don't want that any longer. I want to to delve back into my creativity and artistic practice. I would like to write more here and by hand in a journal. More memory keeping and photo taking. And, of course, always books. Books and poetry.

This morning we had breakfast at my local French restaurant. I had Pancake Néelandaise, a dutch style pancake topped with lemon curd and mixed berry coulis and blueberries and powdered sugar. It is probably my absolute favorite breakfast. We have been home for a few hours and I took a nap but it's still early in the day and there are some things I'd like to do before the day is over. Finish the book I have been reading, book notes I need to write down, art journaling. There is some wonderful lemon chicken and broccoli pasta waiting for me to eat. V made it yesterday from an Ina Garten recipe, came out deliciously, a new favorite dish.

CAE3852C-FB5A-4EFE-9B67-EBEA0147E93E.jpg
                                                           I have been living in this Lauren Manoogian + Pansy set.

                                                          I have been living in this Lauren Manoogian + Pansy set.