Meditation


“The happiness of your life depends upon the quality of your thoughts.” 


Tray- West Elm (here)
Woman in Lotus position statute- TJ Maxx(sold out)
Lamp- Wayfair (here)




Kind people that read this blog I have been trying to get into the habit of regular meditation for years. I've had some periods where I got a rhythm going but then there would be some change in my schedule and I would stop. 






I've been trying to get into a meditation routine again recently and I've been using the Calm app pictured above to help me. I can tell from the app that I downloaded it sometime in 2016.  I seem to be using either a free or early version of the app because there's an in app message that notes there is a $59.99 yearly subscription free to unlock everything the app has to offer. I haven't pulled the plug on that yet. If I can stick with a routine I'll consider it. For now what I can access is more than enough for my needs. 







I've found that the best time of the day for me to meditate is early in the morning before I start my day. The app has a timed meditation section that ranges from 1 minute to 20 minutes.  I use the 5 minute option because anything longer than that and my mind starts wondering.  You can see from my stats that I did well in March and better in April.  My goal for May was to meditate every day which I did.  I set the same goal for June and I've been meditating daily even while on vacation. 



So now for the million dollar question. Has getting back on a regular meditation schedule helped me? Yes it has. I definitely feel more relaxed as I go about my day. I also find myself returning back to those quiet moments in the morning when things start to get hectic. Now let's be clear my mind still races for some of the five minutes while I'm meditating. But I've found that the more I practice the less that happens. Hopefully I can eventually go a full five minutes without any stray thoughts and then bump up to 10 minutes of meditation daily. 

If you've tried meditation I'd love to hear what did or did not work for you.



Stardate:180010.06


Majorelle Garden - Marrakech, Morocco











I set a goal to see this garden in this post (here.)  It took me about two years to get there. I try not to over think things but the older I get the more I realize that if you want something the first step is to articulate what you want, the next step is to take the time to figure out what it will take to get what you want, and the third step is to act.  Those steps take time. Some goals will take a lot longer than others and there will probably be some set backs along the way.  Sometimes I get to step two and realize I'm no longer interested in that goal. (Insert shrug here). That's life though.  I know a lot of people stress step one which makes sense because it's important to be clear on what you want. Step two is important as well because it's always helpful to have a plan but for me step three is where the magic happens. You have to act/try/move/take that first step towards that journey of a thousand miles and all that jazz. I mean you can have your goal tattooed on you(This is a judgment free zone) and have a plan co-signed by the greatest minds around but if you don't act nothing is going to happen. As we approach the half year mark for 2018 I hope that you find what you need to move towards your goals. 

So what about the garden?  It was cute. I got there early in the morning. I think I was one of the first people there which was great because I was able to take a ton of pictures before it got crowded. It was very peaceful and picturesque and I was able to take my time and walk around for about an hour. After that the sun came up and the tourist buses pulled up and it was time to go. Before I left I went to the Berber Museum in the garden. As it was explained to me, Berbers are an ethnic group indigenous to North Africa. Berber culture in Morocco can be traced back thousands of years. The Berber language is still spoken by many Moroccans. (One of the hosts in the riad where I stayed spoke Berber, French, English and Arabic). The museum was divided into sections on domestic life,  ornaments and jewels, and costumes and finery. I really enjoyed the museum. Unfortunately pictures were not allowed but I found the photos below online. Get into those coats and those head pieces. Le Swoon💛. There was an extra fee to visit the museum. If you find yourselves in that neck of the woods though I highly recommend you take the time to check it out.

See you guys on the next post. Thanks for stopping by!








Stardate:180005.05

Happy World Book Day !


Source 


Hello,

I hope you were able to get some reading done today on World Book Day. Yours truly did not but there's alway tomorrow. I was able to finish The Night Circus by Eric Morgenstern this weekend and I started The Incredibles by Meg Wolitzer.

In other exciting news Barnes & Nobles in the US is starting a new free book club (here). The first meeting is on May 2nd and the book is The Female Persuasion by Meg Wolitzer. I signed up by calling my local store and giving them my email. Now all I have to do is buy the book and read it before May 2nd 😆.  Wish me luck!



Stardate:180023.04






Empties



I don't know what it is about looking at other people's trash that's fascinating but I'm just as guilty as everyone else when it comes to liking these kinds of posts. I don't think you are an official blogger until you've done an empties post. So here I am seven years into the game with my first one.  As I've mentioned before I don't like to be rushed I like to pace myself 😑.  I would start to save my empties in anticipation of one day doing a post like this and then I would get annoyed by the collection of what was essentially trash and throw them all away. You see I may be a theoretical minimalist but I am firmly against clutter. I made it to this point without throwing anything away by deciding to treat the empties as if they were part of an art project. Yes I lied to myself to make this happen. But in my defense and to poorly paraphrase a very famous person..."Art is a lie".

Let's get to les déchets (According to google this is trash in French because you know my art is fancy).




Un: Fragrance

First up, and you had to know this was coming is what I've decided to label fragrance. I love my candles. My grocery list( here) for life is a loaf of bread(Ezekiel), a container of milk(almond) a stick of butter, and a candle usually Diptyque.


  • Diptyque Rose Delight was reviewed here. The candle from that post is pictured above. 
  • Chanel Beige was reviewed here.  The bottle from that review is pictured above. 
  • Antica Farmista was reviewed here. The bottle from that advent calendar is pictured above. 
  • The mini Diptyque candles were part of the 2017 Diptyque advent calendar reviewed here.


The Diptyque Rose candle is sold out now but I liked it so much I ended up buying two more of them. Chanel Beige was so good I used it down to the last drop. I would definitely repurchase it. I haven't yet because I wanted to try some of the other Chanel exclusive scents. I picked up Chanel Jersey a while ago and the plan is to get Coromandel after that. The mini Diptyque candles are very cute. I've never seen them sold separately though. The Antica Farmista room fragrance in Prosecco was amazing. I've already bought one more. The notes are citrus, apricot, passion fruit and sugared black currant. One spritz gives an instant zest to your room.

                     
Deux: Face


  • Kiehl's Skin Brightening Exfoliator here
  • Clinique Broad Spectrum SPF 50 here
  • Murad Intensive C Radiance Peel here
  • Clinique Even Better Moisturizer SPF 20 here

I would repurchase all of these except for the Kiehl's exfoliator. It was just okay. It kind of lingered in my shower for months before I finally used it up. I picked up the Clinique SPF 50 at JFK airport on my way to Morocco last year. I liked that it wasn't greasy and left no white cast. I've been using some products I have from another sunscreen brand lately but I would definitely repurchase this one again if I was on my way to a subtropical African country in summer and realized I forgot my sunscreen.  The Murad peel took me a while to finish because I used it sparingly. I'd estimate that I had it for about five months and it wowed me every time I used it. It's strong though so I wouldn't recommend it for any one with extremely sensitive skin. Last but not least is my ever faithful Clinique Even Better Moisturizer SPF 20. I always find my way back to this product because it works for me. With regular use it lasts about 3 months. 



Trois: Body 


  • Fresh Sugar Lemon Bath & Shower Gel here
  • Origins Ginger Burst Body Wash reviewed here
  • Origins Whipped Body Creme Ginger Souffle reviewed here
  • Aēsop Geranium Leaf Body Cleanser reviewed here
  • Diptyque Satin Oil for Body and Hair reviewed here

I would repurchase everything here and I have. I love all of them. I think the only one I haven't done a full review on is the Fresh Sugar Lemon Shower Gel which smells exactly like sugar and lemon. It rinses clean but doesn't dry out the skin and it leaves the shower smelling fabulous. 

And there you have it folks my first empties post! Let me know what you think.




Stardate:180009.04


Diptyque Vetyverio





Since today is National Fragrance Day I thought it would be the perfect day to share this post.
Diptyque describes Vetyverio as a woody fragrance that's a mixture of vetiver from Haiti, turkish rose and carrot seed. I don't think I've ever noticed carrot seed as a perfume note before but I'm telling you it all works beautifully. I got the toilette(1.7oz/$90) and the matching candle(6.5oz/$65) from my local Space NK. On me the scent stays close to the skin and lasts about 1-3 hrs. I got Vetyverio at the start of winter and I'm still reaching for it as we enter spring. I think the EDT would be a great all year scent for those who like their woodsy fragrances on the lighter side. 

Per my Internet research the founder of National Fragrance Day is unknown. Somehow it was decided that the world would celebrate fragrance on March 21st. My best guess is that date probably usually coincides with the start of spring. If you're interested I have a blurry "moody" night time shot of my perfume collection after the break. Not pictured is the Chanel Les Exclusifs in Jersey I picked up at the beginning of the year to replace my Chanel Beige(reviewed here) that was down to the last drop. I was taught that perfumes should be stored away from light and areas prone to temperature fluctuations.(See here). I keep my perfumes in the medicine cabinet of a guest bathroom that doesn't get much use. 

What scent are you reaching for lately? How do you store your fragrances? 



Diptyque: Rose Delight Candle

Diptyque Rose Delight (6.5 oz/$68)




Happy Valentine's Day!

This years Diptyque special edition rose candle is Rose Delight. It's described as a mix of rose petals, honey and lemon zest, and was inspired by the dessert Turkish delight. The lemon note is the most prominent to me. The throw on this is strong without being cloying. There's also a powder like quality to the scent that makes it very soothing. It's a great bedtime candle. I think a Rose Delight bath oil with the same notes would be amazing. And that's coming from a girl that prefers showers to baths.

The packaging for these special edition candles is usually lovely and this year was no exception. Although like most Diptyque fans I'd love for them to offer another hand painted candle like they did with Rosa Folia pictured above. I think Rose Delight would be a good option for any one looking for a unique take on a classic rose scent.  The standard 6.5 oz I have pictured is still available at Nordstrom (here) and online at (here).

Stardate:170014.02


Chanel Spring-Summer 2018 Neapolis Collection



On the nails: Giallo Napoli

On the nails: Nuvola Rosa 

Chanel Lip Balm and Powder Duo - 410 Rosso Pompeiano/$37

Close up of the balm to the left and the powder to the right


On the lips- #410 Rosso Pompeiano


On the nails: Arancio Vibrante




The inspiration for Chanel's Spring/Summer 2018 collection was the city of Naples. The birthplace of their Global Creative Make Up Artist and Color Designer, Lucia Pica ( I like the name Lucia).
The bright nail polishes were the first to catch my eye.  Let's talk about that yellow. I read on
Chanel.com that it took some work to get the yellow just right. I appreciate their efforts. Giallo Napoli is the best yellow nail polish I have ever used. Wearing it was like carrying a very cute puppy around. Everywhere I went someone stopped me to compliment the color. I usually change my nail color every week but I wore Giallo Napoli for three weeks straight. It was that much fun. The next fan favorite was the pink nail polish- Nuvola Rosa. It's a sophisticated light pink that would be flattering on a variety of skin tones. Chanel makes some of the best red/orange nail polishes and Arancio Vibrante is an example of this. It's a rich and creamy reddish orange that screams bring on the sun. All of these colors wore like iron with minimal tip wear after seven days.

Now the lip balm and powder duo Rosso Pompeiano is interesting. As it was explained to me by my friendly neighborhood Chanel counter lady you apply the balm to the left first, and then layer the powder. The powder can be layered over other lipsticks and/or used as a blush. I've been using just the balm layered with the powder in the compact. I like that I can layer the powder lightly and get a nice stain or build it up for a fully pigmented pout. The color is a matte powder so this is not for when I'm having an especially flaky lip day. Also, because it's a powder if you drink anything you are going to have to reapply it. I remember wearing this for the first time at work and thinking in the morning, yesss this is a "lewk". That same day I was on my way to lunch after having had several cups of tea. When I looked at myself in the rear view mirror I looked like I had been drinking Kool Aid.

I think Ms. Pica hit it out of the park with this collection. The colors are perfect for spring and summer. My favorite item is the Giallo Napoli nail polish. What's yours?

Stardate:170005.02