Blogging about things that I love, make me happy, inspire me...and all while shamelessly plugging my photos and handmade goods!

Friday, March 26, 2010

My (Big Fat) Greek Adventure

2009 Wasn't very kind to me. It was a rough year, as far as relationships and money go. I was at a dead end job, my relationship was ending and I was suffering from depression.
Then one day, I received a check in the mail with a small inheritance from a distant aunt whom I never even knew I had.
It was such a blessing! I used the money to pay off my car, then I quit my horrible job and took off to Greece for a few weeks. It was incredibly liberating! I had traveled before but not on my own and it had been a dream of mine to visit Greece and see the gorgeous islands, the temples of the gods and home of the Olympics. I was always a Greek Mythology nerd growing up, so this added to my desire to visit.
The country was beautiful. The food was delicious. The people were kind. It was a photographers (or an amateur, like moi!) perfect dream!!

Here are a few photos I took from my trip...

*you can see more of my photos on my flickr site*

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Vision Board

I am a firm believer in the law of attraction and a HUGE fan of the vision board. Not only do they manifest the things you would like to do, be and have in your life, but they are also so much fun to make!
Just grab a pair of scissors and began going through magazines (or print them off your computer) and collect pictures of experiences you would like to have, quotes and articles that inspire you, add letters or photos of your loved ones, and anything that just makes you happy.

Here is mine...

My vision board represents all the things I love and want in my life:

Family and Friendship
Love and Happiness
Amazing experiences
and Peace of mind.


Monday, March 22, 2010

The Sea

 "It happened to me. It could happen to anyone at any time"
One of my favorite singers, Corinne Bailey Rae, has finally come out with a new album and I can't stop listening to it.
Almost two years ago she tragically lost her husband who died of a drug overdose. She went on hiatus soon after and it wasn't certain if she would ever come back.

The entire album is a lament to her late husband. One of the songs she wrote around that time was called I'd Do it All Again. It was written after an argument with her husband, Jason Rae, a gifted jazz musician who often played saxophone in her band. It was a testimony to the strength of her love for him, a song about how nothing, not his restlessness or the occasional rows it precipitated, could ever make her question that love.

I'd Do it All Again begins: "Oh, you're searching for something I know won't make you happy/Oh, you're thirsting for something I know won't make you happy…". It sounds now like a plea, a calling-out to someone to accept the life they have been given. "I just wanted him to be content," she says.

"It was written literally just after me and Jason had this massive disagreement, a big argument, a bad one," she says now, faltering. "Almost as he was leaving the room, I just sat down and wrote it. It's just about how I felt about him at that time. Even right in the middle of the worst times, I remember thinking that I would choose this exact life again, that I would do it all again. It was me saying, I'm not wishing myself out of this situation. I'm 100% committed to this person. I don't have any regrets about this relationship even though there are all these difficult times."

After his death, Corinne descended into the kind of raw, bottomless grief that Joan Didion describes so unflinchingly in her memoir. For a long time, she continued to refer to her late husband in the present tense, seemingly unable to grasp that he was gone for ever. About three months after his death, she tried to record some of the songs she had written, even turning up at a studio to meet a producer. "I laugh now at how deluded I was," she says. "I felt like everything would somehow go back to normal if I got on with things but, in reality, I was still in shock."

Then came the strange inertia that grief instills in those left behind, the long, terrible numbness that is, in itself, a kind of death. "I didn't do anything for a year. I mean, nothing," she says, still sounding as if she can barely believe it. "Everyone was asking, 'What have you done?' But I had nothing to show them. I didn't go anywhere. I didn't write anything. I didn't work. I sat at my kitchen table for a whole year, people came and people went, life drifted by. It was just bleak. Bleak."

"You find out there's a lot of beauty and grace even in the darkness. In the way people treat you, in nature, in the things you maybe took for granted. There is something miraculous that pushes you along, makes you keep going, makes you carry on. It's really about the mystery of that. In fact, the whole album is about that in a way; it's about loss but it's also about hope, about keeping going and trying to find that beauty."

The soul would have no rainbow had the eyes no tears.

 "Like all rehabilitation periods, grief is a time of patience and discovery. It provides reflection on the past, acceptance of the moment, and creative thought for the future. It allows family, friends, laughter, memories, and tears to bring us back to strength and steadiness, and it gives us time off from being perfect. At the same time, grief catapults change, forcing us to face pain at its source and find a way to move forward. We will never be the same as before, but we just may be stronger."

I have lost the love of my life.
Losing someone I love has always been my biggest fear, I never thought I could go on and continue living without that person.
I think about him every minute and I lose my breath every time, as though I forget to breathe. But my heart is still beating. I'm still here and the minutes keep passing.

I've decided to dedicate the next chapter of my life to turning things around, leave my broken world behind and become a more positive, more productive and more loving person.

I dedicate this blog to all the beauty, wonderful and positive things in the world. I plan to use this as my "meditation shrine" where I can come to focus and talk about all the good things in life. I hope those who are looking for an escape can come here and enjoy the eye candy and positive messages. I hope you will enjoy it as much I do.

x JennMarie

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Lovers Locks

There's a beautiful tradition practiced all around the world where lovers from everywhere unite to lock their hearts together, leaving these engraved locks as a symbol and throwing away the key.

The tradition came to Hungary in early 1980 when lovers began to clamp padlocks to a wrought-iron fence in a narrow street near the medieval cathedral. However, the fence soon became completely covered and no more padlocks could be added to it. The couples then resorted to putting love locks to the fences and statues throughout the town centre.

The tradition has spread around the World and is now quite prevalent in South Korea, Japan, Guam, Italy, Hungary, Latvia, Russia, USA etc.