Friday, January 8, 2010

Au milieu de l'hiver, j'ai découvert en moi un invincible été - Albert Camus

Even in the midst of winter's chilling grasp, Albert Camus found in himself an immortal summer of joy. But those discoveries don't come easily. Long, colorless and quiet seasons sometimes force us to stop and ponder.

And when we have stood still long enough, stand back, and examine the situation, we can usually find a thing of beauty....

within in ourselves.

Like many of you, we are experiencing an extremely cold winter in the Midwest, and after living here several years, I have often wondered if there is any correlation between creativity, productivity and timeless beauty and the long months of standing still....

and waiting....

for our surroundings to thaw so that we can get our dreams and plans afloat

and blossom.

Many famous and influential artists and entrepreneurs have emerged from Minnesota, perhaps having had many a long and harsh winter to plow through and find that endless summer of creativity under the icy surface. The works of native Minnesotans such as F. Scott Fitzgerald

Sinclair Lewis

the beloved Charles Schulz

and many others, have added a texture of rich, cultural artifacts that have contributed to our lives. ALL of us have an invincible summer of joy within, waiting to come to fruition

from the pages of our daily lives

waiting to be turned and savored, page by page

in order to give us direction towards that internal, invincible summer passage that awaits us all.

Relish the stillness mes chères amies, for underneath is a wealth of textured loveliness that will remain a thing of beauty!

Bonne semaine, tout le monde!

Cast busts by Kathy Dalwood and antique French silk books found in the October 2009 post from Trouvais


Queen Of The Armchair aka Dzintra Stitcheries said...

Dearest Anita I am in love with this post, The Eiffel Tower, those books, WOW!!! We in the Land Down Under are having very hot days...but you know...I love it all!!! We have had a lovely reason for the season and am only now starting to catch up with everybody...Wishing you a beautiful weekend amongst that stillness you are having...Dzintra♥x

Unknown said...

There is my girl of my heart, dreaming, mind to the matter, typing out beauty for all...
This post makes me want to lift the blanket of snow and peek under. There, I could see the sun, feel the fuzzy bottoms of baby chicks in spring and smell the grass of summer.
I do believe snow is Gods grace to slow down, rest, ponder and dream. The wonder of winter seems to settle hearts down in a place called "peace".

A Bit of the Blarney said...

It is difficult not to feel the warmth of your words and pictures on this winter's day! I try to cherish the winter days as I do those of summer. Dismal though they may be, when the sun shines on the glistening snow I see those beautiful "snow diamonds." This was a beautiful post and it warmed my heart! Cathy

Stephanie @ La Dolce Vita said...

You are making me rethink my stance on winter! what a lovely post! (though I will continue my winter forays to greenhouses - so warm inside and too many photographic opportunities to pass up!) The Eiffel Tower, those lush books and sculptures ... beautiful ... simply divine!

claudie said...

I have yet to witness the Eiffel Tower with snow around it. Randy wanted to take me in March, but I just needed some of the Southern Sunshine on my face. I just let all the dogs out for a run, and the sun is shining here today with very cold yet crisp air. It's a lovely day.
I have friends coming over today to celebrate the New Year. They are old friends whom we love.
Have a warm day filled with sunshine from inside lol
Love Claudie

The Dutchess said...

Dearest..with the cold north wind blowing outside..(and in my house..Hilltop Hall is very old)..I feel the warmth of your words and the I travel with you to many beautiful places...I am sending a little mail later...Hug from all of us..T.D and company.

Angelsdoor * Penny said...

Dear Anita

What a great way to start the day!
Thank you for taking me along to all the wonders the world has to offer.. Images are beautiful!
Blessings, Penny

Presépio no Canal said...

Oh, Anita :-) I just love la citation :) It is from what book? :)

And I agree to you too ;-)

Thank you so much for this beautiful post :-)

Chemin des Muguets said...


Your blog is such a bright and positive place to stop, to reflect and to bask in all the beauty that you gift your readers.

Merci as always,


Fete et Fleur said...

The photo of the Eiffel tower in the snow took my breath away! Anita, these images are spectacular! I've been thinking of you and Mr. B as winter rages around you, stay warm and safe.


{Bellamere Cottage} said...

My sweet friend........

Just sitting here, waiting for my creativity to BURST forth...........still waiting...........still waiting. :-) It's cold and dreary here.......Not nearly as chilly as the midwest, but damp and yukky, for sure. I'm feeling lazy and slow......and not terribly productive. I'd better get some zip soon though, I have a long list of things to accomplish before summer.

I simply adored the chandelier in the van. What an interesting photo.....I think I'm going to copy that one and save it......

Big 'ol hugs!

LiLi M. said...

Ah Bonjour Anita! What a great post again! I am still hoping that I can DO something this winter! My cold in the nose, which I thought I recovered from, developed in a cough, into a stomach flu and after that I had ophthalmia. Great start of the year! On the bright side: Nobody had time to put away the Christmas tree and the weather is quite cold and snowy at the moment, so it is great to stay at home, being still in the Christmas mood! Time flies, even if you don't do anything, but if you enjoy the time and company, it doesn't matter. Enjoying posts of great blogging friends is always fun and I want to thank you for that again. Have a lovely weekend, bisous ma copine, LiLi

desde my ventana said...

Grand post avec de belles images - une vue merveilleuse de la tour eiffel - et avec des chauds mots dont ils invitent à profiter de l'hiver et à réfléchir.
Je te désire un bon dimanche,


desde my ventana said...

Tu es toujours si gentil. Je suis sûre que tu dois être une grande amie de tes amis.



Plumrose Lane said...

What a beautiful posting Anita, it's always such a delight to visit your blog and I've now added it to my list under my new persona.
Thank you for 'warming' my heart as always ~ ♥Sharon

Debbie said...

Anita, beautiful post. Love all the photos ... can I live in your world? LOL!



Tara said...


One of my favorite quotes is frm john Lennon where he said in order to be able to give out youe have to take in...and that means saturating yourself with the stillness of winter and seeing where it leads you creatively!

Unknown said...

Ahh, but I do my best work in the winter months when I feel the chill of the season. Of course living in so cal makes it a little easier. And when summer comes to my dismay...I want to be a slug and stand still...perhaps that's when my creative juices start up...they just don't kick in till later...

love, bunny

Tristan Robin said...

Ah, I took my time and enjoyed each word and photo in this post! That shot of the base of the Eiffel Tower is so dramatic - and I love the photo of the stranded chandelier truck! LOL

What is that gorgeous piece of embroidery in the book? Is it part of the book, or laid on top? Whichever, it's exquisite!

It's cold here too - and I'm not a huge fan of cold. Usually, here on the Atlantic, we don't get the frigid temps we're experiencing this year. I'm spending my time in the studio. I won't even go out of the house unless the dog absolutely insists that it's now or never!

Keep warm!

deb famularo said...

wow. You have such a way with beautiful words and beautiful photographs, and uniting them together! I always take with me something from your posts and that is so awesome. So funny, since it's been cold here, I've been inside more, and I have designed more this past week than I have in the past few months! So there is something to be said for that I guess! love to you, deb

Simplement ... said...

Ma très chère Anita,
Le climat poétique que tu distilles sur ton délicieux blog est un véritable enchantement ...
Au coeur de l'hiver s'y attarder est un bonheur.
Je t'embrasse et te souhaite un très beau dimanche.

Teacup Mosaics said...

Anita, Creativity is truly like a spring awakening. Currently I feel doses of spring in my mind as the wind blows cold outside. Beautiful post! Stay cozy!

Bonnie said...

Hello dear Anita, such a lovely way with words and the images so beautiful. You are causing me to dig deep into that creative well of mine.

Have a lovely Sunda, Bonnie

The Victorian Parlor said...

Thanks for the inspiration I needed so desperately today! As I sit here with a cup of Earl Gray and Vanilla tea with Vivaldi playing in the background the smells of bread baking in the oven waft through the air. The temps outside have risen to the low 30's so needless to say I will spend my day inside organizing my supplies to begin my artwork for this year. The books you featured in this post have inspired me greatly:). As for the pictures of the Eiffel Tower (I say it 'en francais' as I type this but do not know the proper spelling so I don't dare attempt it:) in the snow I realize those are some of the most beautiful pictures I have ever seen of this French icon.



KeKe said...

I love the images...Yes, I think hunkering down to hide away from the cold weather helps one to be more creative. Less time is spent being busy and more time is spent being contemplative indoors, enticing our creative desires.

I'm am almost finsihed with my first theatre. We are working out the details of adding the mechanical parts to it...It should be finished soon, and then I will post a picture...maybe even a video (If I can figure out how to make one~) :)

Creations by Marie Antoinette and Edie Marie said...

Beautiful post Anita,
I think you may be right.When cold and stuck indoors...Create.
Love the print of the Eiffel Tower.And those books are just gorgeous.
It is unusally cold here also and thats rare for down South.I've been stuck inside and going stir crazy.I did finally do a post.First one I did since two weeks before Christmas.Thats terrible of me.

Creations by Marie Antoinette and Edie Marie said...

Hello Anita,This shows you where my head is of late. I forgot to finish my comment...LOL.I just want to say I wish you and your sweet hubby a Happy New Year and may this year bring you all the best it can offer,
XXOO Marie Antionette

Crystal Rose Cottage said...

Hi Anita....What a beautiful post! You are always thought provoking! We are definitely under a frigid blanket of snow here in Ohio too! Stay warm, my friend!~Hugs, Patti

Charlene said...

Oh the photo of the Eiffel Tower in the snow was divine!!!!!!!!! And the whole post wonderful!!!! I am so glad I popped over for a visti tonight. STAY WARM & CREATE! Thank you for the stimulation of the mind & creative mojo! Hugs! Charlene

Charlene said...

Thanks for your sweet words. You ought to come south & go to Petticoats & Parasols with me in April. Check out the post! I'd love for you to join us. It will be amazing & WARM! I'll give you a quick lesson in speaking "southern"! Hugs! Charlene

Unknown said...

My goodness, but you certainly do have a lovely blog! It's a real pleasure to read and to view, I'm so glad to have found you. :-)

You have a new fan tonight!

Have a wonderful week ahead,

Marie said...

AS I began your post I immediately thought of a few romantic movies that fall completely into line with what you wrote.

Something about being in with no where to go makes a person think and begin to express themselves where they otherwise might not.

May be, I need to be locked in more often!


Unknown said...

Lovely sentiments and photos!

LuLu Kellogg said...

The photos of the Eiffel Tower are simply breathtaking.

I am hibernating right now as we are also having extremely cold weather. Yesterday it was 17 degrees here and I am not used to this kind of weather...ick!

I hope you have a wonderful week dear one.


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Rattus Scribus said...

Dear Anita,
I love the quotation from Camus, and you words that follow. It says something about how we can find something beautiful even when anyone one of us find ourselves in "the winter of our discontent," or that character can overcome circumstances for peace and happiness.

Beautiful words and pictures.


"Create Beauty" said...

Anita, these images are so beautiful, as are your words. So true. When summer comes it is so much harder to stay inside and be creative! I love what Jacqueline said here also...

You are such a wonderful writer, placing thoughts on paper that describe so beautifully, and your images go so well with your words of beauty.

What a blessing to visit, as it always is! ~ Violet

BonjourRomance said...

Bonjour Anita,
How lovely, the photos and the words. Enjoy the winter stillness my friend!

Rosemary said...

Hi Anita,
Great post as always!!
Lovely photos of France, and I love the chandelier in the van!!
It's warm here I'm afraid! Hope you had a nice weekend.
Chat soon,

Unknown said...

Just popping back over after you left such nice comments on my blog. :-)

To answer your question, I honestly have no recollection how I found you last night. Sometimes I just get lost deeper and deeper in blogland, clicking on one link after another. I like to think it was a very happy coincidence!

And about my background, I want to say it's from the background fairy, but I'm not sure. Let me check and get back to you.

Have a fab week!

Unknown said...

The Eiffel Tower looks so beautiful in these photographs and I adore the photo of the truck in the water with that chandelier. I love winter, but I haven't experienced the bitter cold that some places are having. Here in New England I think that it has been so mild compared to other places. Such a beautiful post Anita, as always. I love your words and the feelings that you can create using them and lovely visual vignettes.


Queen Of The Armchair aka Dzintra Stitcheries said...

Dearest Anita...thank you for the visit and for the link...I'm going over to check it out. I hope you are keeping warm in your stillness of we are sweltering down here...Have a lovely Tuesday, Dzintra♥x

Such a Wondrous Place this Faery Space said...

That is one of my favorite quotes. The music here and the pictures, the silk book, well... I just needed it all my friend. The warmth is coming back. Thanks for the thawing and the sprinkles of beautiful prose and love. Blessings.

anouk said...

I have just meet your blog, and I am really impresed, I adore it!
Kss from Spain

koralee said...

Oh how I so agree my friend...we all need some stillness in our lives..a time to reflect and ponder. LOVE YOUR POST TODAY...but I always love visiting you. Your images are inspiring. xoxo

La Petite Plume said...

Your Majesty,

Amazing amazing images!! My favorite is the Eiffel Tower in the beautiful wintery scene. Even in the grayest of images, it still manages to win my heart. I just love your entire blog and I look forward to reading many more wonderful articles here:))

Royal wishes,

deb famularo said...

Bonjour Anita,
How are you doing? Has the weather gotten any warmer up there? We've warmed up to almost 40 degrees! ha!
It is so bad, our crown molding is pulling away from the ceiling- lovely huh! So, speaking of pulling, we pulled our home off the market today. Long story short, the situation with Ky is much better- and that being said, we're better off staying put. I guess it wasn't God's plan for us to move cuz I believe if it was, our home would have sold by now. In any case, thanks for all your love & support through that! Maybe now I can relax and stop cleaning! xOxO deb

My Casa Bella said...

Hi Anita,
You always have the best pictures to compliment your posts, its wonderful. Always love visiting your blog and reading it.
Such a talented girl you are..:)

Angelsdoor * Penny said...

Dear Anita
I had to return for another visit. Your words warm my heart. Thank you for taking me along this beautiful journey.
Blessings, Penny

BonjourRomance said...

Just a quick hello Anita, sorry you had no place to leave a comment when you stopped by. All fiwed now, I have no idea what that was all about.
Hope things are going well with your Masters this week, been thinking of you!

Queen Of The Armchair aka Dzintra Stitcheries said...

Dear Anita...perhaps you could join in one time in the Sew is held monthly and this is my first time...Have a lovely weekend...Many Blessings to you, Dzintra♥x

Queen Of The Armchair aka Dzintra Stitcheries said...

You are very welcome Dearest Anita♥ Have a lovely weekend...Dzintra♥x

claudie said...

Bonjour Belle Anita ( I always think of my beautiful mom when I type your pretty name).
As for my camera, I own 2. One little pink easy to shoot Olympus FFE-340, and my heavy duty one, that I know nothing about. It's a Nikon with 3 different lenses. I should take a photography course, but I haven't yet. Now my BFF Julie has taken many courses. She's been teaching me when we get together. She's flying here in March and were off to Fla. I'm so glad everything is digital, or we would have to buy thousands of film lol
Oh as for the little "shadow box" you called it behind Mr. Snow Man? It's actually a frame that I found with "Jesus" in it. I kept the picture but put in a bold statement. It says "It's hard being a Princess" so me lol
Have a great weekend my friend.
Love Claudie

The Dutchess said...

O,And before I forget,please go to my Kindred Spirit list and click MOUSE MANSION....unbelievable..

Nishant said...

The wonder of winter seems to settle hearts down in a place called "peace".

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