August 31, 2012

What I Love About Me ~ Marisa of Shades of Monet

what i love about me


this summer, i am hosting a new weekly series called the what i love about me series. my vision is to get a variety of women talking about their favorite part of themselves. It could be a physical quality, an awesome ability, personality trait, etc. :)

i hope to help reverse negative conditioning from society, and promote women realizing and celebrating the positive aspects of themselves.

read on about this week's amazing woman, marisa of shades of monet.




~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

What I like about me? That is the question. When Chantilly first asked me to join in on this series, I was honored but also a bit baffled. Not that I don't like anything about myself, but I guess I just didn't figure that it would be so difficult to talk about it in a post without feeling like I was completely vain or something. Why is that? I do believe it is because sometimes we just don't give ourselves enough credit.

I am a musician. I pretty much so have been for most of my life when I began playing the piano at the ripe old age of 5. The music thing just kind of stuck and became a safe haven for me during the ups and downs and twists and turns in this game of life. When you look at my life, I am a wife, a mother, perhaps just an ordinary but quite content gal who writes music for fun and adores vintage pianos, learning new instruments, coming up with quirky little arrangements of my favorite songs, and totally thinks sitting down and playing Beethoven is the best thing ever. I love this about myself, but I will admit that it has always been a bit hard to claim because I'm not a pro, I don't play in a formal band, and I really have never recorded any of my music. But nonetheless, it still doesn't change my love for playing music and my knack for it. It makes me a happy girl and fulfills a pretty big part of me. So that is what I love about myself. Whatever you are awesome at whether it be art, music, design, writing, etc, etc, etc always give yourself the credit you deserve. We each have unique gifts and talents, and that's what makes us pretty darn cool if you ask me.

marisa wilam

xo, Marisa
The Shades of Monet Chronicles


chantilly

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August 30, 2012

the little things

well what do we have here?! another style post. i'm super proud, since i only usually get around to doing one per week.

outfit 3
photos by matt baxter

outfit 2


it's been weird getting back into the groove of things since camp ended. i went back and re-read some of the blog posts i had done before i went. i seemed so much more together. i had some idea of the direction i was headed in in terms of this blog, and even with my life.

my routines are messed up now. everything's topsy-turvy.

outfit 4


but perhaps that's a good thing. maybe that's exactly what i needed. and i know it's one of the reasons i wanted to go to camp in the first place...

to get some perspective.

i'm not sure i found what i was looking for out there. it's quite possible that i found something completely different than what i was looking for...

outfit 1

outfit 5


sunnies- beacon's closet
scarf- vintage
dress- thrifted
belt- thrifted
knee socks- c/o we love colors
moccasins- minnetonka

outfit 6



chantilly

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August 29, 2012

reading terminal market

i've got a LOT of photos and stories leftover from camp. for the next few weeks, get ready for some tales from this summer that i was too busy to tell as they were happening :)

reading market 1

reading market 2


on our days off, most people were obsessed with having adventures in the surrounding cities. there were a lot of international staff, who i think saw camp as a way to see/ experience the united states. i can see why they were eager to flee the second they had free time.

i usually preferred to stay on camp- relaxing from the rigorous schedule, and taking in the calm surroundings. however, on this day i chose to go to go with some friends to reading terminal market in philly.

reading market 4

reading market 6


i've been to philly twice, but have never visited here. it reminded me of quincy market in boston, or pike place market in seattle... a bunch of stalls where you buy various things. it was mostly food, but you would also see things like the honey products, or flowers above. it was really cute!!

i snagged one of these red velvet whoopie pies, which i was really excited to try. sooo good...

reading market 7

reading market 9


we then went to the philadelphia love statue, i think specifically to take this photo!

in order: lynnette, justine, elana, me. and darius taking the picture :)

reading market 8




chantilly

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August 28, 2012

blue skies are coming

after yesterday's loaded post, i'm trying to get back into the swing of things around here. and so i bring you... my first style post in two months!!

totally exciting, right?!

urban outfitters swedish hasbeens chantilly
photos by matt baxter

urban outfitters swedish hasbeens chantilly


the genius who took these photos is matt- a videographer i met while at camp. we offered him our couch for a few days, and he's been taking some sweet shots of me to return the favor :)


urban outfitters swedish hasbeens chantilly


as is the norm with my friends, i asked him to snap a few quick photos of me when we were out together. usually i get a slightly perplexed reaction, but he knew exactly what i was going for. he directed me quite naturally, and it turns out he's great at "finding the light."

i kind of want to purposely delay all his flights, so he'll stay and be my personal photographer forever.

so selfish.

urban outfitters swedish hasbeens chantilly

urban outfitters swedish hasbeens chantilly


shirt- ebay
shorts- u.o.
hat- u.o.
suspenders- borrowed from matty b.
bag- beacon's
laptop bag- brooklyn industries
sunnies- block island
shoes- swedish hasbeens for h&m


urban outfitters swedish hasbeens chantilly

urban outfitters swedish hasbeens chantilly


it's so good to be back, although i really miss camp :(

boo-hoo.



xoxo!


chantilly

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August 27, 2012

being back

so here i am. dreading writing this post, signifying my re-entry back into the "real world."

not because i had a bad experience out there in camp-land. on the contrary. i actually have so many feelings and thoughts about it, that it's hard to put into words..

i'll try anyway.


butterfly


before i left for camp, i was in a groove. i finally started to feel like i was getting somewhere... where? doing what? i don't know. i was developing the friendships i'd always craved since i moved to the city. my career path started looking up. although not exactly where i wanted to be, i was moving.


but something was wrong.

life felt like trudgery. i was constantly drained. i hit a wall, and had been pounding the pavement for so hard and so long, i needed a break.

then appel farm said they wanted to hire me. i was overwhelmed with the feeling that i should take the job. i felt the universe was telling me i needed to go. i wanted to teach music, and thought it was a good excuse to leave the city and be somewhere beautiful for two months. i wanted to learn new skills, practice, and write.


performance 1


my experience was nothing like what i thought it would be. it centered around two things that i did not expect:

~ relationships
~ pushing myself to my limits.



the first week was completely overwhelming, and set the tone for the rest of camp. thereafter, my time was not my own. it was dictated by a tight schedule that kept us busy from the moment we woke, to when we fell asleep.

so many people. so many conversations. so many different opinions, personalities, and things to say. meals to be eaten within 20 minutes. rules to remember. activities to do.

no.

free.

time.


then... after awhile came the drama.

in any close-knit group of people, this is inevitable. you would make ten new best friends in a week. then someone would sleight you. some stupid thing or another would happen, and those relationships would turn into resentments as quickly as they were made.

bitches scorned




but more importantly, there were the kids.

rock band 1


they terrified me at first.

they ended up stealing my heart.

some of those kids- i feel like i love them even more than the adults i would spend every night socializing with. they were so, so, so SO, SO, SO talented, and surpassed my expectations every time they played a note. impressed me every time they got up on that stage.

and everything i'm talking about right now, and the love given and received within the past two months has everything to do with them.



~ in the end, i got to know more beautiful humans than i ever would if i'd stayed stagnant in my apartment, crouched over a laptop.

for instance- see this guy jumping with me? that's jamie, one of the other guitar instructors. we hated each other at first. but through lots of time and patience, really respected and loved one another. he's wonderful, and i never would've known that if i let my initial impression dictate my opinion.

he'll go back to the uk very soon. i miss him dearly.

jumping 6


~ in the end, this experience has renewed my hope. reminded me that life is an adventure, and not something you just tolerate and trudge through until you die.

~ in the end, i realize people are capable of doing so much more than they give themselves credit for.

~ in the end, the crappy experiences were still just as valuable as the good ones.

and all that drama that i mentioned before? gone. none of it mattered. we were all so excited to have known each other, and to be a part of something so wonderful. it was put aside for something better: love. beauty. hope.


~ in the end, i feel great about life. and for the first time in a long time, that it's all going to be okay.



jumping 1

jumping 2

jumping 4

dodge's market 2



i feel privileged to have been a part of this experience.

i loved getting to know every single person i met.

i would not change a thing.

and i regret nothing.


♥♥



chantilly

♥ listen to my new record on bandcamp
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August 18, 2012

What I Love About Me ~ Laura of Violet Bella

what i love about me


this summer, i am hosting a new weekly series called the what i love about me series. my vision is to get a variety of women talking about their favorite part of themselves. It could be a physical quality, an awesome ability, personality trait, etc. :)

i hope to help reverse negative conditioning from society, and promote women realizing and celebrating the positive aspects of themselves.

read on about this week's amazing woman, laura of violet bella.




~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

One thing I love about myself is that I can look in the mirror and see my mother. Losing my mom 4 1/2 years ago is the hardest thing Ive ever been through. But as time goes on, I am reminded on a daily basis how much of her I have inside of me. From the way I look, to the things in my heart. I love that I can witness these resemblances in myself. I love that I have so many of her amazing qualities, like being someone who can be a good friend. Caring about people. Caring about the earth and the animals. And most of all, just loving. I feel blessed to carry pieces of her with me throughout my life.


IMG_5522web

IMG_0955web



It wasn't really until after she was gone that I realized how much like her I am. And there isn't any other person on this earth I would want to be like, as much as my mother.

IMG_9510



Laura

chantilly

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August 16, 2012

taking a break...

almost, maine
photo by graham zinger

i had to learn five new songs for the show i was in a few nights ago! in the photo above is my friend john, who asked me to provide the house music for the play he directed- almost, maine. i sat on the side of the stage and played guitar and sang in between acts. it was a huge hit ;)




with that said, i think i'll need a wee bit of a break from the 'ole blog for a week or two.

the past few weeks have been really overwhelming. i have so many posts just waiting to be written. there is so much i want to tell you about everything...

however, the minute i get to a computer i can't write. i've been completely absorbed in "camp" mentality, and my brain is just dead, dead, dead. i've met so many people. i've had so many experiences, good and bad. i feel totally re-arranged. and in a way, i almost feel like i've forgotten who i am. but did i ever really know?

i do feel bad, since all my posts have been scheduled, and i basically feel like i've been phoning it in all summer. i've also seen my readership slow as a result. you guys deserve better than that. so rather than doing a bunch of half-assed posts, i'm going to regain my energy and come back when i'm feeling less stressed.

i believe i've got one more "what i love about me" post ready. then, i my estimation, i'll be back after a week or two :)


love.

xx



chantilly

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August 13, 2012

six flags

recently the whole camp had a trip day, and the oldest group of kids went to six flags. i haven't been to a theme park in years. at the time, i was feeling worn out by all the work i was doing, and wasn't enthusiastic about the idea of going on tons of puke-inducing rides.

but it turned out to be REALLY fun! the girls convinced me to go on a roller coaster called el toro for our first ride. i definitely felt like i was going to die. it was awesome.

six flags 13

six flags 3

six flags 4


the most death-defying roller coaster in the park was called kingda ka, which goes up in the air, and falls vertically for 456 feet. i could not bring myself to go on that one, but they had fun doing it :)

six flags 6

six flags 7

six flags 1


we couldn't believe how stoned this big stuffed penguin looked... he even had red eyes.

six flags 8


on these little adventures, i keep forgetting to take pictures of people/ have people take pictures of me. here's a cute one of one of the campers pretending to be a unicorn :)

six flags 9


chantilly

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