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When I started my retirement travels - the first of which was my solo overseas trip to Italy in 2009 - I wanted a way to share it with family and friends as it happened. Hence, "My Travel Journal". However I realized I wouldn't always be on a trip and wondered what to do with the blog in between times. My daughter pointed out, wisely, that travels can also include trips to the kitchen to try a new recipe, trips to visit family, trips to my neighborhood Starbucks, or a fun day trip with a friend. You're welcome to join me on any of these journeys!

P.S. I've set up separate pages for each of my major trips (see tabs above).

I recently added an "Italian Word a Day" thingie which shows up at the bottom of every page. You see the word and can click to hear it pronounced. I've been enjoying it and I think my accent is improving as time goes by.

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April 07, 2012

What to do while I wait?

I always have this problem when I've spent many, many long hours, days, weeks, planning, researching, comparing lodgings, flights, thinking maybe do this, maybe do that and then suddenly, one day I'm done.  And it's not time to leave yet!!

So thought I'd a couple of things I've been doing and you'll see how at loose ends I am.

I think I posted a picture of the beautiful bird that Chris and Heather gave me as a birthday present.  Well, I found the absolutely perfect shelf for it this past week and then it laid around for a while waiting for me to figure out what to do with it.  I got started on that a night or two ago and have many pictures to share with you because once I started trying it various ways, I just kept thinking of more ways.  I know definitely where I'm going to hang it - just have been trying various things with it and such.

In this first set of four pictures, you'll see the gold-framed tiny painting (which Chris gave me) of a cherry stem and a blue and tan ceramic plaque (which I bought from a local artist) in two of them.  Those two pieces were hanging one above the other on the little wall where I'll now have the shelf and bird with whatever I decide on.  First, here's the wall I'm talking about with a little of the surrounding area - just pretend you don't see the bird on the shelf - enlarged views of that come next.

So, now that you're totally in the picture, see what you think of all these different possibilities.

On the left - a little marble vase and an egg (not a real one) that I think I bought once when I was with my sister.

On the right, a matrushka doll from a set of fifteen that January gave me one year for Christmas.  The biggest one is so big I can't get my hands around it good enough to twist the two halves apart.  I told January that this time I had to very gently drop it on the floor to get it apart!  I was pretty pleased with both of these, the one with the doll more than the one with the vase.  But I thought "hmmm...what else could I try?"

Again, the vase and egg with the ceramic plaque - that's a tree with hills and sky.  And, the hand wouldn't be a permanent part of the display (tee hee).  But that was a real benefit of all this trying of things.  I learned to set the timer on my camera so I could toddle over and hold up the plaque before the camera took the picture!  Nifty, n'est ce pas?  And, doll and plaque on right.

Next, we have a painting (for want of a better word) that I bought from a local artist and absolutely love but had never yet found a spot for it.  The birds are painted on an old piece of music!

And again, shown with the doll (she's moved to the left side) and the vase.

And I really like this also - the colors are good together and it finally gets my singing birds displayed.  But I'm not real sure about the bird against the black frame, although it doesn't look so dark when you actually are looking at it.

Next just one shot of the bird on the shelf with vase and egg and nothing on the wall.  Well, there's a picture hangar and when I sent all these photos to Chris and Heather, Chris e-mailed me back that the hangar was a nice touch - gave it an avant garde look!  Ain't he funny?

Then, late that night I suddenly thought "Oooh, I know - I'll try it with  a handpainted painting of Tuscany mounted on a pin that Chris gave me and that I've had mounted into this frame which I'm pretty sure I posted about once upon a time.  The frame was one of two that my mother had forever and at some point - probably when she moved - I said I'd take them.  They had little ceramic painted tiles in them, but the paint had been chipping off over the years so I took them out, put some cross stitch fabric on a backing (who knows why) and mounted two little ceramic quilt pattern magnets I had.  They stayed that way a long time until one of the magnets fell off and broke and then the empty frames got put away.  So I remembered them when I decided I'd like to have the pin mounted so I could still see it even if I wasn't wearing it.  Phew, long story.

 This is a close-up picture of it.

Again, the hand is not part of the arrangement, nor is the top of the picture hangar poking out above the frame.

Still the vase and egg and still the little Marushka doll (back on the right side where she belongs!)

So right now, I'm leaning towards the Marushka doll and either the three singing birds or the tiny pin.  What do you think?  I ask because if everyone writes back to tell me, then that will give me something else to do as I wait and wait and wait...

Actually, I'm working on a miniature project too (for the first time in quite a few years), and so I'll post about that in a few days.  And by then it will be mid-April and I'll only have another couple of weeks til I leave!!!  And I have a show I want to go watch, so I've not proof-read this.  Let me know if there are any glaring errors.

Bon soir, mes amis!


Diane Adams said...

Hmmm. Well I lean towards setting #1 using the Marushka doll and setting #3 using the vase and the egg. But thats just my opinion.

Elga said...

Mary Lynne, the arrangement that I like best is the one with the ceramic plaque, the vase and egg, somehow all those earthy shapes seems to go together the best. I am curious to see what Chris says.

In exactly 8 weeks today we are going to the fair in Rheda, so looking forward to it, see you then.

Chinch said...

I have to discuss this by phone -- it's just too many options although I do have two conflicting favorites that I'd discuss the most. Good to know you're keeping busy :)

Christopher said...

I gotta say, the small size of the pin frame is my favorite... Scale-wise I think it is the best fit. But I like the bird theme that arises from the sheet music print... But maybe if it was mounted slightly left of center? I don't like the cardinal's head running into the dark of the frame or print... I think that is why I like the pin hanging---it gives blank wall "canvas" for the cardinal to "show off"

Mary Lynne said...

Oh, dear - everyone is going to say I'm playing favorites. :) But I have to say that for the exact same reason he gave, I'm pretty much in agreement with Chris. It really makes a difference having just wall behind the cardinal. I was worried that it might seem too small, but like Chris, I like the smallness of it with the grouping. The cherries frame was actually slightly wider than the shelf and that bothered me a little. And, finally, I had the pin hanging on a narrow wall in my bedroom all by its lonesome and kept wondering what to hang with it. This takes care of that problem and I've decided that the cherries and plaque which were together in the living room will now be together in the bedroom where the pin was hanging.


And thanks to all for (and those who just e-mailed) for making this a fun project. :)

P.S. - you're right Elga and I am really looking forward to it also. And for me, 4 weeks from tomorrow I will be on a plane to Nice, France!!

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