a work in progress.

Between stimulus and response there is a space. In that space is our power to chose our response. In our response lies our growth and our freedom.

- Victor E. Frankl

I came back home from Cambodia with a full head of steam. Inspiration and energy overflowing. Maybe it was the jet lag – maybe it was genuine excitement for the future, but for the first week or so I woke up early, finished a second European Union grant application for Protection for Juvenile Justice, (long distance volunteering continues) pushed out multiple resumes, finished art projects, and maintained personal health priorities.

And then I got a call back for a job interview.

Life stops. I re-focus, put on my game face and get ready to interview with my very first degree related job (an entire year after earning my Masters). Everything about this job seems perfect. Alas the stars align. Or so I thought.

Experience in the field? Check.

Genuine interest in the job? Check.

Organization that aligns with my personal values? Check.

Consistent salary? Check.

Job interview goes well. Check.

…follow up interview from said employer…

not so much.

And so the pessimism creeps in and dulls the light that was shining so bright – carrying me through these last few months of loneliness.

All I can do from here is understand that I have the best of intentions and rest in knowing that I can choose to continue the forward momentum – even it seems a bit crooked.

Maybe what I think I should be doing is a little bit different than what the universe has in store for me, but I promise myself – everyday I’m trying.

first day of school outfit.

Starting a new job (that I’m genuinely excited about) feels like the first day of a new school year. I’ve been collecting images for inspiration and reviving my wardrobe in order to put my best foot forward. Lucky for me, working in retail requires that I look the part & so I’ve been focused on selling selling selling on Ebay & reinvesting my profits into a new, aesthetically pleasing, fashionable wardrobe.  Here are some of the images I’ve been inspired by, & going forward I hope to capture some outfit posts that I’ve shopped for in recent days.

pictoral objectives.

Unfortunately I let my fear of needles interfere with getting a free flu shot at work the other day. And wouldn’t you know, I’ve got the flu. On the bad side, I’m sick, I missed a day of work, I can’t go running, I can’t enjoy a glass of red and I missed out on getting to wear my perfectly thrifted Roaring 20′s flapper costume to the Flight Halloween Party. But on the bright side (there’s always a bright side, right?) being stuck inside with little to no energy has forced me to slow down my restless mind and sort of meditate on my personal priorities. Most of them have been creative – I even managed to work on a half started watercolor that’s been sitting on my desk for over a month. In addition I’ve had plenty of time to mindlessly wander through inspiring images that help to spark the creativity.

A random assortment, but my thoughts this weekend have felt more like brainstorming than anything focused.

francophile.

The other day at work I was confronted with my first real-life quiz de francias.

A French man who spoke no English (seriously, not a lick) came into the bank because he’d lost a Traveler’s check, & he wanted to see if we could assist him in tracking it down. I could understand bits and pieces of what he was saying, but he was obviously distraught and speaking quickly. When it came to responding, I was truly disappointed in myself. I didn’t have the words much less the conjugation skills to communicate with him.

So recently I’ve been trying to integrate not only language skills into my daily routine, but also aspects of French culture in order to keep myself motivated to study.

Par (for) Example: Today Don & I had lunch at our favorite French restaurant, Brasserie Du Vin, and then continued the French themed Saturday by watching Prete-moi ta main (“i do”) a  light hearted French comedy starring Charlotte Gainsboroug.

Concluding the day with all things Francais, I thought I’d share some Francophile image inspiration.

French actress, Charlotte Gainsbourg

And her parents, Jane Birkin & Serge Gainsbourg

I plan on illustrating one of these for myself.

Can you imagine waking up to that view?

Doesn't get better than this.

I'd most certainly buy dried lavendar from Provance at the market.

This is what all city streets should look like.

Of course, if I lived in France I'd have a bike with a wine rack.

 I am decidedly obsessed with living in France one day, and the cultural fascination helps facilitate my drive to learn the language. Hopefully next time I’m confronted with a translation I’ll be pleasantly surprised but for now a glass du vin serves as the perfect study aid!

it feels like home to me.

It’s not easy living so far away from what’s familiar. Even if where you reside is considered paridise to many.

Which makes making our home personal. I’ve recently gotten the re-decorate bug, and here are some found images that are currently inspiring me.

you can never have too many books

wake up to this on the weekends

mustard, taupe & white

dark & eclectic palate

like the placement of the art

clean, with a masculine feel

always on the lookout for vintage luggage & trunks

dark intirior with natural light

the perfect bathtub

reading nook

a simple kitchen

 These are all, of course inspiration. When renting there are certain limitations – but these images deliver an aesthetic that feels comfortable & inspired and I hope to achieve a similar environment for our little apartment. None of these images necessarily convey a beachy, Waikiki style, but that’s ok – because if it feels like home to me – then it’s home.