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30 December, 2010

Resolutions Achieved

Every year around this time, I sit down with a mug of tea (with milk, of course), looking through last year's resolutions, checking off the accomplished and making a new list for the coming year. I have a tendency to be harsh on myself, but a look at what I accomplished in 2010 is a much needed reflection of my capacity to succeed when I put my mind to it.

In 2010, I....

Managed (finally) my finances

Left a horridly abusive job (a la Devil Wears Prada)

Navigated the daunting world of the unemployed

Was accepted to graduate school

Traveled to Armenia

Traveled to Europe

Painted more frequently

Dabbled in freelance writing

Went to New York City

Visited friends in Washington D.C. and Georgia.

Kept up with my obsession to learn new languages

Took more videos

Spent more time with my family

Blogged more

Learned to be more open with the love of my life

Had a Valentines Day Date (My first ever!)

Celebrated a very special one year anniversary

My resolutions for 2011 are hefty but, with a rather large dose of determination and perhaps a false sense of confidence, anything is possible!

Chicago In The Wintertime







29 December, 2010

Does Santa Make Second Rounds?



I saw these shoes today. They are heavenly. The price is not.


27 December, 2010

J.K. Rowling at Harvard

Many of you may have already seen this video, but I just discovered it and found her message so powerful, I had to share. Happy Tuesday!

J.K. Rowling Speaks at Harvard Commencement from Harvard Magazine on Vimeo.

Needle and Thread


Your love
Should never be offered to the mouth of a
Stranger,
Only to someone
Who has the valor and daring
To cut pieces of their soul off with a knife
Then weave them into a blanket
To protect you.

Hafiz

This quote takes my breath away. And makes me realize, again, how lucky I am to be loved by a man beyond measure, with a magnitude so forceful, so encompassing, that there could never be enough thread for a blanket that goes on forever.

24 December, 2010

Gingerbread House














(Gingerbread house made by my incredibly talented Mom and sisters. Photos by (not so talented) me!)

Joyeux Noël !

Snow is falling in light flurries, delicious smells waft from the kitchen, presents lie wrapped under a glittering tree.....Christmas is almost here.

Wishing you all a Christmas filled with loved ones, delicious food, and JOY.

20 December, 2010

O Gather Me the Rose

O gather me the rose, the rose,

While yet in flower we find it,

For summer smiles, but summer goes,

And winter waits behind it.


For with the dream foregone, foregone,

The deed foreborn forever,

The worm Regret will canker on,

And time will turn him never.


So were it well to love, my love,

And cheat of any laughter

The fate beneath us, and above,

The dark before and after.


The myrtle and the rose, the rose,

The sunshine and the swallow,

The dream that comes, the wish that goes

The memories that follow!


-William Ernest Henley

(via)

19 December, 2010

Uncertainty

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The past few months have been ones of adjustment and I have found myself sad at times, frustrated, unsure of what lies ahead. Somewhere along the road, I lost sight of what life is truly about. I had plans for my life, and life wasn't cooperating.

The fact is, life isn't about planning, nor is it about certainty or reaching certain milestones. Life is about living, now and in the moment because ultimately, the only certain thing about life is its uncertainty.

Today I read a few old e-mails from people who were once a part of my life, and looked through photos from my travels around the world, of old friends, random acquaintances. I remembered warm summer nights in Madrid, making new friends in Montreal, watching futbol in a piazza in Rome, and so much more. Remembering those moments, I felt a rush of nostalgia that was almost painful. A nostalgia not so much for the people I've met or the places I've been, but for that feeling of being alive that is so hard to feel in the mundane nature of every day.

Last summer, I spent a few weeks in Europe by myself. Boarding the plane, I felt a rush of anticipation - unsure of who I would meet or even where I would stay, the possibilities were as endless as the vast expanse of sky visible from my small window.

I need to learn to embrace that uncertainty in my everyday life with the same gusto as I do when I travel.

(via)

16 December, 2010

I Belong To You/You Belong To Me


Adesso no, non voglio più difendermi
Supererò dentro di me gli ostacoli
I miei momenti più difficili
Per te

There is no reason, there is no rhyme
It's crystal clear
I hear your voice
And all the darkness disappears
Everytime I look into your eyes
You make me love you

Questo inverno finirà
And I do truly love you
Fuori e dentro me
How you make me love you
Con le sue difficoltà
And I do truly love you
I belong to you, you belong to me
Forever

Want you
Baby I want you
And I thought that you should know
That I believe
And you're the wind that's underneath my wings
I belong to you, you belong to me

Ho camminato su pensieri ripidi
You're my fantasy
Per solitudini e deserti aridi
You're my gentle breeze
Al ritmo della tua passione ora io vivrò
And I'll never let you go
L'amore attraverserò
You're the piece that makes me whole
Le onde dei suoi attimi
I can feel you in my soul
Profondi come oceani

Vincerò per te le paure che io sento
Quanto bruciano dentro le parole che non ho più detto, sai...

Oh..
Want you
Baby I want you
And I thought that you should know
That I believe

Lampi nel silenzio siamo noi yeah
I belong to you, you belong to me

You're the wind that's underneath my wings
I belong to you, you belong to me

Adesso io ti sento
I will belong forever to you

(I really recommend listening to this song. Even if you don't understand the Italian (the English lyrics above are part of the song, not a translation of the Italian parts) the melody is so moving and dual combination of vocals from Eros Ramazzotti and Anastasia are phenomenal. Not to mention their live chemistry....sizzling! Listen to it here)

I Want One

14 December, 2010

Frustrated.


Since starting graduate school, I moved back with my parents to save money. In the meanwhile, my love moved here from New York and is living with his brother in the city. We have plans to move in together around summer.

After a year of a long-distance relationship, what more could I ask for than being in the same city, seeing each other a few times a week and having plans for our own place in the very near future?

Well, my parents complicate things. While his parents are more relaxed (he is the youngest of three, after all), welcoming and have basically made me feel as if I am already part of the family, mine are super conservative and are taking their time in accepting him, regardless of the fact that he is EXACTLY the type of man they have always wanted for me. Of course, they are very nice to him and my mom has made no secret of wanting us to get married ASAP.

And there's the problem. They basically won't "officially" except him until we're engaged. This means no sleeping over at his place, no displays of affection between us when near my parents, etc. etc. On one hand, I understand. I am the oldest of three girls and this is a first for my parents, not to mention precedent for my younger sisters. On the other hand, its MY life and its not as if I'm out every night with a different man. He has talked to my dad and told him that he will marry me and love me for the rest of my life. I thought that would break the ice but words, it seems, are no match for a ring on my finger.

All I want is to be able to, at least once a week, fall asleep in his arms and kiss him good morning.

The saying goes, parents know best. But, ultimately, they are human, like me, and prone to errors in judgment and to being stubborn and unreasonable. I don't think they are taking the right approach to this and I doubt our relationship will be the same for it. It is so, so frustrating having to put my life on hold while I am living under their roof.

(via)

09 December, 2010

Exhale

Four papers done, one to go. I've already crawled under the blankets, and the candle next to my bed is slowly spreading a warm vanilla scent through my room. I'm going to watch old episodes of The Hills (don't judge....after a combined 80 pages of bi-variate regression, conflict analysis, state-building and genocide, I need mindless programming to slow my mind down). I'm so, so tired but it feels good.




Sidenote: I discovered this incredible Polaroid application via Jenni's blog (ahhhhmazing blog, go and read it now!) and have been obsessively converting my photographs to Polaroids since. As if I needed more ways to procrastinate.

06 December, 2010

Letter to the person who hurt me the most

To be honest, there isn't a person who has hurt me the most. In my life, there have been a few people who have disappointed me, lied to me and even betrayed me. The worst were those that hurt me for no reason at all, but who managed to make me feel I deserved it. Ultimately, I learned to give myself worth and not rely on the actions of others to measure what I deserved but, rather,to measure others against what I deserved. Sometimes, when I think of a particular time I was hurt, I feel a tiny pang but it quickly goes away. That is what life is - a series of joys, hurts, achievements, disappointments - without pain we cannot measure pleasure.

And though it is right to forgive, I don't think a true hurt is ever forgotten.

Testing

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05 December, 2010

Words

I am obsessed with learning new languages.....and this is why:




04 December, 2010

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas...

Last night, I came home to find a package waiting for me. It was from wonderful Holly, who was my swap-mate for a calendar exchange hosted by Caroline, of I Am A Greedy Girl. Despite my anticipation, I hesitated to open the package - it was so beautifully wrapped!


I opened it carefully and was absolutely smitten with the lovely calendar, elegant card and an adorable little "A" stamp (perfect for holiday card stamping!).



Then, this morning, I woke up, opened my shutters and saw this.



Presents and snow....and its not even Christmas yet!

Is it snowing where you are?

03 December, 2010

Happy Friday!



I'm sitting outside of Spanish class, studying (clearly) for the final exam. Ahead lies a weekend full of writing, a week of meetings with professors and then, a sigh of relief and quality time with those I love.

But today, as soon as the exam is over, I am heading to spend the evening with my love. And homework is not invited.

Have a lovely weekend!

(via)

01 December, 2010

I Feel Like This


Two more weeks until the month long winter break. Two torturous weeks of never-ending paper writing and research. This is the time when I really have to remind myself how much I hated corporate life. Two weeks of madness for something I love versus a lifetime of enslavement - there's no competition, really.

But that doesn't mean I won't be complaining for the next two weeks (and baking to procrastinate. note to self: baking powder does NOT equal baking soda).

(via)