12 July 2012

Pablo Neruda

In honor of poet Pablo Neruda's birthday....

Tonight I Can Write

Tonight I can write the saddest lines.

Write, for example, 'The night is starry
and the stars are blue and shiver in the distance.'

The night wind revolves in the sky and sings.

Tonight I can write the saddest lines.
I loved her, and sometimes she loved me too.

Through nights like this one I held her in my arms.
I kissed her again and again under the endless sky.

She loved me, sometimes I loved her too.
How could one not have loved her great still eyes.

Tonight I can write the saddest lines.
To think that I do not have her. To feel that I have lost her.

To hear the immense night, still more immense without her.
And the verse falls to the soul like dew to the pasture.

What does it matter that my love could not keep her.
The night is starry and she is not with me.

This is all. In the distance someone is singing. In the distance.
My soul is not satisfied that it has lost her.

My sight tries to find her as though to bring her closer.
My heart looks for her, and she is not with me.

The same night whitening the same trees.
We, of that time, are no longer the same.

I no longer love her, that's certain, but how I loved her.
My voice tried to find the wind to touch her hearing.

Another's. She will be another's. As she was before my kisses.
Her voice, her bright body. Her infinite eyes.

I no longer love her, that's certain, but maybe I love her.
Love is so short, forgetting is so long.

Because through nights like this one I held her in my arms
my soul is not satisfied that it has lost her.

Though this be the last pain that she makes me suffer
and these the last verses that I write for her. 

27 June 2012

Nora Ephron

From 1988 when I first saw When Harry Met Sally (I've now seen it hundreds of times -- seriously) Nora Ephron has been my idol. Her wit and intellect and independence have been constant inspirations to me. Aside from the perfect When Harry Met Sally, her other films, screenplays, and books have served me well when I needed to be cheered or inspired or consoled. Her words and humor always the perfect dose of medicine. 

“You can settle for reality, or you can go off, like a fool, and dream another dream.” ― Nora Ephron

Source: nymag.com via Anlene on Pinterest

28 May 2012

Globe Trotting

Globe 'trotting' implies a bit more whimsy than this trip I am on actually embodies, but it's an adventure nonetheless. I will be posting every so often as the month progresses, but not nearly as much as in the past few months. The schedule of this trip is brutal and doesn't leave much time for idle reflection (although I do try....staring out of airplane windows or from the back seat of my car as it speeds through cities around the world, often frighteningly so!) I love this illustration for the trip that it suggests: an artist or writer or culture seeker taking only the essentials on a leisure trip to anywhere she wishes. Ah, someday...

19 May 2012

Connecting Thru MUSIC

PLEASE take a moment to visit this important campaign. My friends at Statement Arts have developed wonderful programs for New York area youth. This summer they have teamed up with the legendary Malcolm X and Dr. Betty Shabazz Memorial and Educational Center to run a free music and college preparatory program for 50 underserved kids. This is a much-needed program and will be a life-altering experience for these very deserving kids. 

18 May 2012

for Foodie Friday

(courtesy of TasteSpotting)

This grilled cheese sandwich looks amazing....
Avocado, arugula, and goat cheese. Speechless, really.

The good people of TasteSpotting celebrated 'Grilled Cheese Month' (who knew?) with these mouth-watering, gooey sandwiches. Where to begin... 

17 May 2012

Archive: foreign currency

Who doesn't like money? I'm sure we all have that little bowl or dish that collects our loose change at the end of the day, or a really long trip around the globe. Every time I get back from working in other countries I seem to have collected coins and paper money from just about everywhere. Sometimes I've run out of time to spend it before I leave; sometimes I save it because its just so beautiful. Our US currency pales in comparison to the artistic, colorful pieces in other parts of the globe. Below, my stash amassed over several years of international travel. Not a bad souvenir. 

Coin from China. This is one of many. I have no idea where in China it came from.

16 May 2012


Hotel Santa Caterina of Amalfi


It is Wednesday and we are halfway through the week. I don't know about you but I could use a little inspiration to get me through the next few days and into the weekend. (and then, for me, a month of international travel - more about that another time) So, to get us all in the fighting spirit  here are some iconic images from one of my all-time favorite movies - ROCKY! I love the story of Rocky Balboa. The ultimate fighter, both in the ring and out. 
This reminds me of George Bellows paintings from the early 1900s.

I channel these images on my weekly runs. Totally inspiring. 
Everyone needs a good coach.

15 May 2012

Purge and Breathe. Repeat.

Shelves were exploding in my closet recently. I woke in the middle of the night to the sounds of commotion. In a daze I wandered around my apartment until coming upon this heap of sweaters and t-shirts and leggings and so on... It was a long time coming and this was the impetus to finally -- reorganize my closet. Its a good closet and it needed attention. I spent half a day taking everything out, examining and trying on, and then tossing into yet another heap (now what do I do with that heap? audible sigh...), and rehanging, folding, sorting. It was a great afternoon. I was reacquainted with so many items I'd forgotten about. And, as I have managed to shed many many many pounds the past few months I was able to wear some of those "if only..." pieces I was ready to part with with. Talk about shopping your closet! 

These 'before' and 'afters' really do not do the job justice. Trust me...it's all good. 
And that red caftan....could you die? It is from India...one of my prized possessions. 

11 May 2012

Foodie Friday

For your weekend cooking adventures...

A few favorite food writers....Ruth Reichl, Alice Waters, MFK Fisher

Saveur Magazine and their favorite food blogs...

Food + Wine magazine. Be sure to check out their own blog, Mouthing Off.

It was a sad day when Gourmet magazine went away. Luckily they maintain a site with recipes, features, and blogs.

I love Jamie Oliver. He's just fun to watch and he makes food that's understandable. Buy his books. Watch his show. Visit his site.

I'm partial to Cooking Channel for foodie TV. The shows are specialized...and done well. And check out their blog, Devour, on their website.

For the adventurous eater, check out Lucky Peach. This quarterly journal is produced by McSweeney's and is the creation of acclaimed chef + restauranteur David Chang, Peter Meehan, and Zero Point Zero Productions, the team behind Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations.

A few more Blogs...East Village Kitchen, 101 Cookbooks, Griottes, Lost in Cheeseland, Smitten Kitchen...there are so many more

10 May 2012

Archive: bracelets

When traveling I very often find unique pieces of jewelry. I have a little collection of bracelets, necklaces and rings. I try to find pieces made from materials indigenous to the country or one that are commonly used by the artisans of a certain place. These bracelets are made of horn and come from Tanzania. I love graphic pattern and their edginess. They look strong and bold -- just how I feel when I think of Africa.
Arusha, Tanzania, 2011


This haircut...a few weeks traveling around Europe...books + art + music. Heaven.

09 May 2012

Let It Pour

It is no secret that I love the rain. And Paris. And the Impressionists. And Woody Allen. Herein lies a bit of all those wonderful things.

Paris Street-Rainy Weather, 1877Gustave Caillebotte

And...a little scene from Woody Allen's Midnight In Paris

Gil: This is unbelievable! Look at this! There's no city like this in the world. There never was. 

Inez: You act like you've never been here before. 

Gil: I don't get here often enough, that's the problem. Can you picture how drop dead gorgeous this city is in the rain? Imagine this town in the '20s. Paris in the '20s, in the rain. The artists and writers! 

Inez: Why does every city have to be in the rain? What's wonderful about getting wet? 

08 May 2012

flower arranging

This weekend, inspired by this post from goop, I bought bunches of light, pink, and cheerful flowers and greens at my corner bodega. It is so nice to have fresh flowers placed around the apartment. They bring in color and life and always put a smile on my face. And it does not have to cost a lot of money to make the most of what you pick up. I made five lovely little arrangements with less than twenty dollars worth of flowers. And no special vases necessary; I simply utilized saved glass jars and a vintage canister to hold my buds. So easy.
Two bunches of inexpensive flowers along with some soft, lush greens. The jars I have saved and saved. They've originally contained everything from red pepper spread to olive tapenades.
So simple...and sitting atop the trusty china.

Bunched and cozied up into a vintage tea canister.

The lot of them...Now scattered throughout the apartment

05 May 2012


How I'm starting my day... Coffee, of course. Normally I brew up a big pot of Zabar's blend but I ran out last weekend. So I rummaged around my cabinet and found a bag of beans I picked up on a trip to the Dominican Republic. A classic blend (but not as good as my Zabar's!). And I am continuing to use my china since pulling it out last weekend. It really is nice having it back in sight. 

And giddily enjoying Jazz Radio...set to Timeless Classics. It really doesn't get any better. 


04 May 2012

Sargent + Matisse

These ladies look to be enjoying their weekend. I intend to do the same.
Nonchalior (or Repose), 1911,  John Singer Sargent

Girl With a Fur Coat, Yellow Background, 1944, Henri Matisse

This week's favorite finds...

Here are just a few favorite discoveries from the past week. 
  • French clothing brand Sandro opens in NYC 
  • Domino Mag is back! This was always one of my favoriter design magazines. Looking forward to the new issue.
  • i've always loved Aqua's lines. I also have a thing for kimonos, caftans...all thing dramatic. Obsessed with this right now: Aqua Kimono Maxi Dress
  • i need this, yes need.... 
  • perfect for discovering + designing your next home proect

03 May 2012

Archive: cheese board

This adorable little cheese board was in the kitchen of my grandparents, Bill & Gertrude, for as long as I can remember. I discovered it recently at my Dad's house in Michigan and decided it needed to be with me. Coincidentally, I have a thick cutting board from my other set of grandparents, Marvin & Rita. Isn't it funny how this simple little household items can keep you grounded in your past? I love that. 

02 May 2012

And then this happened...

The face says it all. 
The Scream (1893), Edvard Munch

Yesterday here in New York City, a piece by French artist Paul Cezanne sold for a healthy $19 million at Christie's auction house. The work titled 'Card Player' is a study for a series (1890-96) by Cezanne called 'Card Players' and depicts his Aix-en-Provence gardener Pauline Paulet. The painting, a watercolor, has been lost since 1958; art history scholars only had knowledge of the piece through photographs until is resurfaced recently in the home of a Dallas, Texas doctor. The painting was purchased by an anonymous bidder, and so, this may be the last we see of this special work for quite some time. Take a look...
The Card Player, Paul Cezanne
The Card Players, Paul Cezanne

  • To see more works by Paul Cezanne, click here.
  • Take a look at the Cezanne collection living at the Metropolitan Museum of Art here in New York City. Click here.
  • Bring some Cezanne into your life. Browse the selection at ART.com.
One of my favorites...
A Modern Olympia, Paul Cezanne

01 May 2012

May Day

May 1st represents many ideas: springtime fertility, the Virgin Mary, the feast of Saint Joseph the worker, International Workers Day, and in Hawaii - Lei Day. Needless to say there is much to celebrate on this first day of May. Here in New York City the rain is coming down and although that doesn't make for a sunny start to this new month of May, I find it very soothing. I love the rain, washing away all the bad bits from days before and polishing the city, and us, for a new day ahead.

Source: art.com via Jennifer on Pinterest

Joan Didion's Packing List

Joan Didion's Packing List

30 April 2012

Always Inspiring

I am for an art ...

by Claes Oldenburg

I am for an art that is political-erotical-mystical, that does something other than sit on its ass in a museum.

I am for an art that grows up not knowing it is art at all, an art given the chance of having a staring point of zero.

I am for an art that embroils itself with the everyday crap & still comes out on top.

I am for an art that imitates the human, that is comic, if necessary, or violent, or whatever is necessary.

I am for an art that takes its form from the lines of life itself, that twists and extends and accumulates and spits and drips, and is heavy and coarse and blunt and sweet and stupid as life itself.

I am for an artist who vanishes, turning up in a white cap painting signs or hallways.

I am for an art that comes out of a chimney like black hair and scatters in the sky.

I am for an art that spills out of an old man's purse when he is bounced off a passing fender.

I am for the art out of a doggy's mouth, falling five stories from the roof.

How about a song...

To Start Our Week...

28 April 2012

Inspired by a post on one of my favorite blogs, The Simply Luxurious Life, I am spending my Saturday indulging in a few simple, formal and classic ideas to put a bit of flair into my life. 

I have taken down my old set of china and intend to start using it more often. Today I've started by having my morning coffee in that lovely little cup you see above. Is is not sweet? I've had this enormous (it serves 12!) set of china for  twenty odd years (yes, I got it when I was an infant) and really do not enjoy it enough. It has followed me from city to city, apartment to apartment, and held up quite well. So, today I will take some pieces out of the quilted storage bags they live in and let them breath and be put to good use. Even inanimate objects like to be needed. 

Jazz...sigh. I adore Jazz. Today the music will be ever present and drifting through my apartment via Jazz Radio, possibly my favorite app on my iPhone. Jazz Radio offers up all genres of jazz - classic, blues, bossa nova, and my favorite Paris Cafe. Heaven.  

Sorting out my bulging dressing room does not seem very 'luxurious' but it will be the means to an end of simplicity. There is a 5-tiered shelf in my closet that is so full it toppled over in the middle of  the night. A clear sign it is time for serious purging. As with most of us, I wear basically the same 10-20 items of clothing in an average week. So why do I have so much surplus? Well, this blog is called the JENsonian -- I tend to get sentimentally attached to most things, probably because I have moved around and traveled so much in my life. And that is wonderful, but these saved pieces need to be either  given to someone who will actually where them or stored away properly. That is the goal for today. To take a hard look at every little thing and decide where we go from here. (Hmmm...am I only talking about my closet here?) 

via The Simply Luxurious Life...I found this terrific blog from author Jennifer L. Scott -- (LESSONS FROM MADAME CHIC: THE TOP 20 THINGS I LEARNED WHILE LIVING IN PARS)

27 April 2012

Word of the Day....

Fecund (fe-cund) adj
1. Fruitful in offspring or vegetation: Prolific
2. Intellectually productive or inventive to a marked degree


Art History

Well, by now we all know how much I adore and obsess over ART. Here are just a few of the many beautiful art books I am currently lusting for. 

Degas and The Nude - works by the French artist Edgar Degas
SARGENT - One of so many great books on John Singer Sargent
George Seurat - The Drawings - stunning drawings by French painter George Seurat
Van Dongen - the works of Dutch artist Kees Van Dongen

26 April 2012

for Thursday...

Archive: Owl

Argentina is one of my favorite countries. From the people to the food (more delicious red meat than you knew you wanted - and you will want it) to the wine (I dream of Malbec) to the overall beauty of the landscape. This country has never failed to disappoint. Truly I could go on and on and and some point I'm sure that I will.

This charming little owl is an object I picked up near Bariloche, a beautiful town in the Patagonia region. Often referred to as the "Switzerland" of South America, Bariloche is most known for its ski resorts as it sits in the heart of the Andes, but is also surrounded by lakes making it a special destination year-round.

The owl lives in my kitchen, sitting next to my silver elephant. 

November 2009

"The classic beginner's mistake in Argentina is to neglect the first steak of the day." 
There are many more interesting travel + food posts on this smart blog.

25 April 2012

Archive: elephant

This silver elephant is very, very small. He came from the Pink City in India - Jaipur - a beautiful city known for its silver markets. I love this little guy. He currently sits in my kitchen next to a slightly larger Owl from Argentina. 

Silver Elephant
Jaipur, India 2008