Welcome to December. It’s my birthday month. It’s the holiday season. It’s the second year of pandemic holidays and uncertainty. And, it’s the start of people talking about hustling for end of the year and setting goals for next year. If you’re anything like me (an empath), you might be feeling a lot of things. One, similar to NOvember (thanks, Steph, for the reminder), December can be full of nos too. No to toxic relationships. No to overcommitted schedules. No to forcing yourself to accomplish things because the world tells you the year is ending and you should (unless that is part of your job, then you might have to do some of it). No to goal setting for 2022 if you’re not in the headspace to do that.
The older I get (which harhar, my birthday is in three days), the more I realize that I don’t want to do anything out of a feeling of obligation anymore. Life is too short. Do things you love, surround yourself with people who love and support you, and don’t waste your time with things that make you feel like you’re just holding your breath.
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Complete and utter disbelief that it is December. I started this post in November but didn’t have the capacity to finish it, and now it’s December. Unreal. I had a conversation with my sister over Thanksgiving about how hard it is to sit down and write, and she talked about the importance of being still in her writing process. The simplicity of that resounded loudly with me. I’ve struggled to write a lot in the past two years because there has been very little stillness in my life (and in my mind).
After enjoying a lot of delicious food on our 10-day trip through Central Italy, I’m trying to get back on track with normal meals. One of the things I loved most about last week is how we indulged in multi-course meals and tried so many different things. Fried artichoke? Don’t mind if I do. Roman-style artichoke? Why not? Three desserts in Bologna because they all look delicious? But of course.
While I don’t feel like I overindulged (from a diet standpoint) by any means, long leisurely meals are not a regular occurrence over here, and I spent the first few days after Thanksgiving break realizing that I didn’t need any food at all, lol.
Water and red wine. I am nothing if not predictable. I was hoping it would get cooler and I could pop open a bottle of a smoky Roccafiore wine we purchased on our last trip to Umbria, but alas, I’m still wearing shorts and dresses without tights… The Prova D’Autore will have to wait.
I’m re-reading The Stolen Lady. I bought this before hopping a plane in October, and I found it captivating. It goes between DaVinci’s Florence (and the painting of the Mona Lisa) and France in World War II and the Louvre staff protecting the art work. It’s fascinating stuff, especially given how much time I’ve spent in Florence and Paris.
Finding Joy In:
The soft light of the Christmas tree. There’s just something I find comforting about sitting in the dark, with only the trees, and enjoying the quiet. I still love reminiscing about all our adventures through all our travel ornaments. They are some of my favorite souvenirs we’ve started collecting.
The fact that I got to spend so much time with my sister last week. Because of our age difference, we didn’t grow up together. It was the longest that we’ve ever spent together in one place. My cousin was also there, and though I spent more time with her growing up – she was often a surrogate big sister – it was very special to be able to share some amazing moments and memories with her as well. Family always feels like such a complicated dynamic for me (because it is), but for a week, parts of it felt very normal to me, and I found a great deal of comfort in those moments.
I think I’ve mentioned the Marta Scarampi capes monthly and I finally used her annual sample sale as an excuse to buy one. I bought the Stacie Flinner x MS navy cape with a belt and I’m obsessed with it already.
It’s been the perfect balance between my light coat and my winter coat. It works really well with my favorite Wolford body suits (and leggings) and with jeans.
I also finally bit the bullet and purchased the Max&Co runaway coat in this gorgeous blue color. I’ve been obsessed with this coat since I saw it on Kate Middelton. It’s generally impossible to find in the US.
The short runaway coat is also on sale here! I have been trying to buy this coat for a year. Though I didn’t get it on sale as I originally hoped to do, I DID get a VAT refund on it, so that feels like a win.