Inspiration, Monday's Pretty Things

MONDAY’S PRETTY THINGS :: From Sault Ste. Marie to Novi Sad

I haven’t done a Monday’s Pretty Things round-up in a while. In fact, if you’re a new reader you might not even know that Monday’s Pretty Things are, well, a thing! That’s just sad.  I’ve been collecting plenty of inspiration, I just haven’t been sharing it. (I’m sorry. Let’s end that drought now.)

Ten of the Snowiest Places in the World
Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan via Conde Nast Traveler: Ten of the Snowiest Places in the World

I’m shivering just thinking about the fact that I lived in one of the places on this list. Brrrr.

quitokeeto Modern Bamboo Steamer
Modern Bamboo Steamer via Quitokeeto

Utilitarian things like pots and pans and appliances should be attractive as well as functional, don’t you think? These steamers from Hong Kong are so pretty.

Le Dans la Camel and Off White Interiors
via the ever-lovely French blog Le Dans La

A space doesn’t have to have a lot going on to be beautiful. The unified color palette here is so calming.

David Fleck
Peter via David Fleck on Society6

David Fleck’s portfolio is full of gems. I spent a good twenty minutes browsing the other day, and enjoying all the illustrated details.

Novi Sad
Underpass in Novi Sad / Нови Сад

Images from the former Yugoslavia, or anywhere throughout the Balkans, Eastern/Central Europe and the former Soviet states fascinate me. There’s a sadness about so many of them, and yet such a poignant beauty. Like I wrote here, “it makes me very happy and it makes me very sad.” If you have any seemingly-everyday snapshots from those areas, favorite blogs or Instagram accounts, photojournals (like RFE/RL’s Picture This!) or anything else related. send them my way! They don’t all have to be epic — like these images of Communist-era buildings — I love a good peek into everyday life, too.

Christmas, Life in Photos, Travel/Moving

LIFE IN PHOTOS :: Christmas in Upper Michigan

Silhouette of baby in window of airplane

We’ve come back, on a jet plane, from our magical snowy Christmas in the north! And I do mean “north”. We spent the first part of Christmas vacation in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, which is literally as far north as you can go without being in Canada. Purdy neat dere, eh?

My dad’s brother has an amazing cabin there, situated right on a river, which is where we stayed. My youngest brother and cousins got the tree out of the surrounding forest just before we arrived. The river had even frozen evenly enough to make a perfect skating rink. And did I mention it snowed every single day?

Oh, I wish I were sitting by the stone fireplace right now, drinking bottomless cups of coffee. I already miss my family terribly, and we’ve only been back in Florida for a couple days.

Bokeh Christmas tree near window

Aveline in huge wicker rocking chair at cabin in Upper Peninsula of Michigan

Aveline in rustic cabin in Upper Peninsula of Michigan

Life in Photos

“Pick an orange, children!”

More than a decade ago, during an extended-family vacation to Florida, we stopped at an orange grove on the way to the ocean. Rather than gathering around an orange tree for a photo opp like my Michigan Grandma wanted, we cousins were running every which way. In an effort to round us up, she kept repeating, “Pick an orange, children! Pick an orange!” It was chaotic at the time, and honestly not very funny at all.  But once parts of the family had moved to places like California and Florida, where orange groves aren’t exactly exotic, the “Pick an orange” situation grew comical and became a family joke.

So, here’s Uncle Chet in Grandma’s yard in Michigan, saying, “Pick an apple, Aveline! Pick an apple! No oranges here. Just apples.” I was laughing so hard.

Here’s to carrying on legendary family jokes to the next generation.

Great Uncle Chet holding Aveline, letting her pick a young apple off a tree in Caspian Michigan

Young apple on an apple tree in Michigan

My Dad (Grandpa "Bumpa" Jim) and his brother Chet with Aveline, holding a small Michigan apple Aveline had just picked off the tree