I never thought we would see spring emerge after the last snowstorm we had in March and the heavy downpour from the last two weeks. Yet almost in a blink of an eye, signs of spring are simply everywhere from the birds chirping in the morning to the crocuses and daffodils blooming everywhere. I love spring, the renewal of life, the longer days, and the warmer temps.
Like the other seasons, spring acts as a milepost that marks where we are in life — another winter under the belt, another summer to look forward to. Yet what’s most prevalent in my mind these days is the unstoppable forward motion of time. Five more years before Chiara goes to college, eight more years before Ines leaves. While a lot can happen during that time frame, I know the remaining time I have with my girls will go fast. Slowly, I’m learning to let them go as they prepare to take off and begin to define themselves in relationships and roles outside our family.
A few weeks ago, Chiara performed with her guitar ensemble at Merkin Hall in the city. It’s the first time that the ensemble played with an orchestra and I must say the whole experience was quite amazing! Not only was the music they created that afternoon rhythmic and melodious but the ensemble members got to see what it was like to play with professional musicians on a renowned concert venue. I can’t sing enough praises for these kids, this guitar ensemble, who had put countless hours of practice yet never once forgot to laugh and have a good time together. So much of what the group has become and now embodies is the result of their guitar teacher’s passionate teaching style and unrelenting dedication to these kids.
Apart from the music, I have to say that my other favorite part of the afternoon is seeing my friends’ children come out to listen and support Chiara. The concert lasted for two hours, a long time for these kids, yet they sat patiently and respectfully while trying to choose which music they liked the most and mimicking the conductor’s moves. It’s this kind of support from friends where I, and I’m sure Chiara as well, feel loved and supported.
Lately it seems that I’m obsessing quite a bit with interiors and home design. While we’re all a little HGTV-obsessed in my household where we critique home layouts like a national sport, I think all the binge-watching has helped refine my vision for what I want in our house. I’m slowly editing, getting rid of things that no longer reflect our aesthetics, and replacing them only with objects and furniture that we love. Personally, this meant getting rid of our old Pottery Barn dining set and replacing it with timeless midcentury dining table and chairs that can be passed down from one generation to the next. I’m done with bulk — all I want are sleek, well-designed chairs and tables in our humble abode.
Going to the Architectural Digest Design Show in the city, courtesy of my favorite artist Hollie Heller, is a bit to blame for my current design obsession as well. Walking through the show and seeing the newest design trends and innovations will make any girl want to redecorate, refine and tweak what she’s got at home. Some of my personal favorites were the light fixtures section along with the art/furniture and kitchen show areas.
…my little helper and partner-in-crime
…Hollie Heller’s booth that showed her newest creations
The last thing that’s fueling my design mania is this blog, www.thesocialitefamily.com, and its recently published book. I literally can spend hours perusing through different posts from this blog and dream of various spaces I can see myself in. Socialite Family’s design philosophy is boho Parisian chic but I think there are certain things that transcend geographical boundaries and work in many places. Check out the site and tell me what you think…
I love those fashion articles that advise you on how to dress according to your age. It’s not that I heed every single thing that fashion gurus say I should wear. For me, it’s simply a fun reality check to see whether or not I’m breaking some silly fashion rule at whatever life stage I’m in. For instance, I loved it when beauty advisers used to say no long hair for women over forty, as if we’re all supposed to chop off our locks and sport an Annie Lenox ‘do the moment we hit the big 4-0. I did that look in my teens and there’s no way I’m going back there again…
So when I saw this article last week, I was a little intrigued. I guess I never gave much thought to decorating based on age. Buying the stuff you love and surrounding yourself with them were always my guiding principles in interiors, not age. But then, I thought about it a little further. We DO decorate by age, unless you’re one of the lucky ones with unlimited funds to buy what you love at a young age.
The fact that I hardly had any money for furniture in my 20s dictated my apartment aesthetics of mostly Ikea and hand-me-down furnitures. And, there’s also the fashion trend at the time. In my early 30s, there was a lot of Pottery Barn-inspired pieces that I was attracted to and grew out of in my 40s. Now that I’m close to another milestone in my life, I’m more drawn to pieces that have longevity, more estate pieces but of the mid-century kind, that I can hopefully pass down to the girls one day.
How do you decorate?
30s and beyond decorating
Those times when I feel like crawling underneath a rock and hiding from ugly things around us, I think of these girls, of the strong women who came before me and the courageous women who stand with me to fight through our current battles.
I can’t think of a world without women, can you?