Happy Monday!

It's a new week and I'm happy to have a fresh, clean slate to begin my work. I think most of us dread Monday mornings but I'm starting to take a different approach and appreciate them as being a new start to work on things that mean something to me and to reach specific goals before end of day on Friday. I'm working very diligently at becoming better organized, not so much in my home because I do well on that end -- but in my head, you know with scheduling and business management and such.

chandy love

But looking back, I had such a nice weekend, did you? What did you do? I had much to prepare for my upcoming e-course in January (registration begins today at noon EST here) which I'll be teaching with the wonderful Leslie Shewring who writes and styles her column on decor8, Color Me Pretty. I also had many errands to run, and of course I set aside time to play by reading and decorating around my home. I also attended an amazing festival. To say it was grand is to to call it simple. It was lavish. Beyond expectation, really. Imagine shopping in a very old castle in rooms such as this one shown below. That's exactly what I did with my husband and cousins. Here is but a glimpse.

Fest in the castle

Fest in the castle

Fest Highlights

chandy love

This all took place at a gorgeous castle which hosted a spectacular indoor/outdoor shopping and interiors show along with plenty of tents for eating, drinking, horse show-watching, fairytale-listening and other fun activities in nearby Bückeburg. Imagine the air cool and fresh, maybe in the 50s, with the smell of cinnamon, burning wood and fresh baked bread in the air and twinkle lights everywhere. A few of my impressions are shown above. I couldn't stop drooling over the assortment of chandeliers. And I really love how the plates are arranged over that cabinet and imagine doing something like this someday if I ever have the ceiling height to do so. It's so nice. I wish I had taken more photos but it started to rain and indoors the castle was packed -- plus, I didn't want to ignore my family by playing photographer/journalist.

driving home

And this is very random, but nothing I ever saw in the states (at least on the east coast, though we have one in Boston now), fields filled with wind generators. Here are a few, they make me think of giant pinwheels... I remember seeing them for the first time about ten years ago as I flew into Germany. I looked down from my plane and saw fields of them and thought they were so beautiful. I know, it's weird to talk so sweetly about a wind generator... but I think they're quite amazing. And if you've ever stood next to one, they are so enormous. I took this shot above yesterday from the car. It's also fun to the watch the license plates when I drive here. Yesterday I played a game, Guess the Plate. It's common to see plates from the Netherlands and Poland on the roads, but yesterday there were a few from France. The first thing shown on a plate is the colored strip with the abbreviated country name. For Germany it is D. For the Netherlands, it is NL and so on... The one on this BMW is German, the first 1-3 letters shows the abbreviation for the city where the owner lives (MYK which is Mayen-Koblenz), then a space with the rest of the plate number. If you live in Berlin, it would be B, if in Hamburg HH and in Hanover just H. I hope I've not bored you, but it's a good thing to know for when you are traveling in Europe and wonder where the drivers are from.

Cozy Winter Decor

And finally here we are in my cozy living room on Saturday morning where I put up my winter garlands which will stick around until Spring... These are handmade by Lobster & Swan. I took this photo after my morning tea and book reading ritual that I regularly participate on the weekends. I didn't bother to straighten the blanket or style the photo, I like to sometimes capture a mood and to me, this worked.

So happy Monday to you my dear friends. I'll be back shortly with some inspiring posts for you today.

(images: holly becker for decor8)