Things to love…

Cycle Chic

May 25, 2012

I love riding my bike. It’s not a dream bike, but it will do for now. I love the feel of sun and wind on my skin. I like to ride fast. I sometimes have the impression I am almost defying gravity. I like to smile when I ride my bike. I shock everyone by smiling at them. I am smiling at everyone and no one in particular–I am smiling at the world, life, myself. Riding my bike has helped me overcome a debilitating fear of driving a car. Now I  love it and drive with a smile! Such a miracle for me to be driving and  thanks to my bike. What other blessings are in store for me while I ride my bicycle?

I like wearing nice things while I bike. Not exactly skirts–they reveal too much when I’m speeding, but a nice shirt, nice jewelry, stylish shorts, effortless yet cute hairstyle. Do you ride a bike? What do you usually wear? What is your definition of cycle chic?

Happy Friday Everyone and Smiles,


This is my dream bike–in white and with a basket, looking elegant and casual at the same time. And retro.


Photo Credits: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6

Marta, appearing Fridays on the English Muse.

Categories: Fashion, Things to love..., Vintage | Tags: | 7 Comments »

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May 02, 2012

Hey there! This is Dizzy Lizzie again, and today I would like to tell you something about myself. I am the most restless person I know. I cannot sit still for a minute without doing something. Unless I am meditating… I can meditate for hours. 😀 So while I was driving to work this morning, I was stuck in traffic for a considerable amount of time with no music to entertain me, and I started playing music in my head. {Do you do this too?} Pretty soon, I started singing, but then this happened:

So me!  :)

For a moment, I wished that I was back in the ‘90s, with a mixed tape in my stereo. There is something so comforting about the variety and predictability that a mixed tape offers. My mixed tape for the quieter moments would contain these songs.

Mix Tapes (80s) fabric by pennycandy


Side A

  1. When the Music’s Over – The Doors
  2. In Bloom – Nirvana
  3. Don’t Rain on my Parade – Barbara Streisand
  4. Satisfaction – Rolling Stones
  5. Mother – John Lennon
  6. I Love Rock and Roll – Joan Lett and The Blackhearts
  7. Lean on me – Bill Withers

Side B

  1. Hey you – Pink Floyd
  2. Let me be your Teddy bear – Elvis Presley
  3. Bridge Over Troubled Water – Simon and Garfunkel
  4. Bohemian Rhapsody – Queen
  5. Wish you were here – Pink Floyd
  6. All Apologies – Nirvana
  7. Hello, Goodbye – The Beatles

Yup. That would be it.

What songs would be on your mixed tape if you could only make one? What are the things that would determine your choices? Would they be be the songs that you love, the songs that you are nostalgic about, the songs that match a certain mood, or something else? I would love to know!

Categories: Things to love... | 5 Comments »

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Happy National ‘Poem-in-your-pocket’ Day!

Being a bit of a (wannabe) bad-@ss ballerina myself, I have taken a particular shine to this one by Ruth L. Schwartz. Poetry-related holiday or not, I think I carry it around in my heart and soul. I just love the idea of finding yourself in a poem and anything that mentions a swan conjures up images of the ballet ‘Swan Lake’ for me. I just wish I were as cool as this feathered fowl.

The Swan at Edgewater Park

Ruth L. Schwartz


Isn’t one of your prissy richpeoples’ swans
Wouldn’t be at home on some pristine pond
Chooses the whole stinking shoreline, candy wrappers, condoms
in its tidal fringe
Prefers to curve its muscular, slightly grubby neck
into the body of a Great Lake,
Swilling whatever it is swans swill,
Chardonnay of algae with bouquet of crud,
While Clevelanders walk by saying Look
at that big duck!
Beauty isn’t the point here; of course
the swan is beautiful,
But not like Lorie at 16, when
Everything was possible—no
More like Lorie at 27
Smoking away her days off in her dirty kitchen,
Her kid with asthma watching TV,
The boyfriend who doesn’t know yet she’s gonna
Leave him, washing his car out back—and
He’s a runty little guy, and drinks too much, and
It’s not his kid anyway, but he loves her, he
Really does, he loves them both—
That’s the kind of swan this is.

That’s me- the Swan from St. Louis

Which poem will you be carrying in your pocket/ heart today?

Cynthia Gregory and Rudolf Nureyev (ABT) 1978

“A Bird may love a fish but where would they build a home?” …..Swan Lake!

see you next week– xo- Jess (that big duck!) from Bodies Never Lie

Categories: Things to love... | Tags: , , , , , | 2 Comments »

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Hey everybody! 🙂 Hope you’ve all had a lovely week thus far. This is Lizzie from Whims and Fancies writing to you in the wee hours of the morn because Tina is a taskmaster and she wants me to  publish my posts at 6 PM Pacific Standard Time, which is around 6 AM where I am at! Humph! (Nah, I’m kidding. That’s what technology is for. I, of course, write it ahead of time and schedule it for publishing.)

So, have you heard this Dinah Shore  song by Ray Evans and Jay Livingstone?

East is east and west is west

And the wrong one I have chose

Let’s go where they keep on wearin’

Those frills and flowers and buttons and bows

Rings and things and buttons and bows.

How perfect is this song! Any time I hear it, all I want to do is go where they wear frills and flowers and ring and things and buttons and bows! (These are a few of my favourite things!)

Songs, like all other art, perform such an incredible and irreplaceable function in our lives. They reflect our consciousness, as individuals and as a collective, and also guide and shape our thoughts. They make us better people and also tell us that there is another person separated in time and space who feels the same as us; someone who wants to go somewhere simply because there are buttons and bows and frills and flowers there. Sigh!

Hakuna Matata? 

Yeah. It’s our motto! 

What’s a motto? 

Nothing. What’s a-motto with you?

It’s a problem-free philosophy, really! How could you not laugh and sing along when you listen to this song

Aow, so loverly sittin’ abso-bloomin’-lutely still.

I would never budge ’till spring

Crept over me windowsill.

Someone’s ‘ead restin’ on my knee,

Warm an’ tender as ‘e can be. ‘ho takes good care of me,

Aow, wouldn’t it be loverly?

Loverly, loverly, loverly, loverly

Eliza Doolittle sang the truth of a lot of hearts with this one. Life’s simple pleasures… when songs celebrate that, they are rendered timeless. Listening to these songs, troubles melt like lemon drops and you really do start believing that the dreams that you dare to dream really do come true.

And I, for one, could dance all night listening to these songs.

How about you? What are the songs that take you away on a journey… that lift you up and make you more than you are on your own… that make you smile, make you weep, make you dream, and make you sigh…

What are your songs?

Photo Credits: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, and 9

Categories: Things to love... | 8 Comments »

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Hi, all you English Muse readers. This is Dizzy Lizzie from Whims and Fancies, an uber serious blog about cutting edge research in the arena of nanotechnology and the radioactive properties of Arginine. Yessir, that’s my blog! And I’m here now to talk to you about an equally serious matter. But before that, I would like to thank Tina for sharing her space with so many of us and giving us this fabulous chance to speak to all of you. Tina, you are kind and sweet and witty and pretty. You deserve many, many cupcakes. (If you knew me, you would also know that this is the highest honour that I bestow on people.) Now let’s get on back to our aforementioned serious matter, shall we?

Wanderlust! The word alone can cause many a heart to flutter and take off on a flight of fancy. Wanderlust is as strong an urge as any, and it leaves you yearning to tread paths, hitherto  beaten and unbeaten.  Wanderlust is insatiable; succumbing to it with a sojourn here and a voyage there always leaves you wanting for more. Wanderlust is a curse in those moments that you don’t have the means to indulge in it, but if you let those moments pass, it is a blessing like none other because it opens up a world of possibility that is waiting for you to take a step in. Jack Kerouac’s maxim was pretty simple. “Live, travel, adventure, bless, and don’t be sorry,” he declared. And truly, life is really as simple as that.

Someday, I hope to say that I have travelled far and wide, near and far. I hope to say that I have seen the world. I hope to have gone to all seven continents and to a hundred countries. I hope to have seen the length and breadth of my beautiful country;I hope to take a glimpse of her ephemeral soul.

Someday, I hope to have a house that reflects my meanderings to every nook and corner of this earth. And when I am old and grey and too creaky to skip, I hope that I’ll be able to sit on my rocking chair, look at my map walls and map doors,  and  feel blessed.

I leave you for now with words by Mary Oliver from her work “The Journey.”

But little by little,
as you left their voices behind,
the stars began to burn
through the sheets of clouds,
and there was a new voice
which you slowly
recognized as your own,
that kept you company
as you strode deeper and deeper
into the world,
determined to do
the only thing you could do —
determined to save
the only life you could save. 

I guess this is the best kind of journey that you could hope to have—one that helps you find yourself. Everything else becomes secondary in light of this.

Photo credits: adventurediva, Anita Waters, imgfaveJenny Komenda Interiors, Mimi Lou Shop, and Better Homes and Gardens (the last two images).

Categories: Things to love..., Travel | 14 Comments »

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Here it comes

Feb 25, 2012

Hello English Muse readers! I’m Karen from A Simple Cup of Tea and I’m happy to share a little guest post of my own with you while Tina is traveling.

Spring is coming. I can feel it in the air and I couldn’t be more delighted.

Don’t get me wrong, the temperatures in Belgium aren’t anywhere near real spring weather but the sun is shining and warming any face who turns towards it.

Even though it’s still way too cold to sit outside reading a book or having a picnic it’s definitely not too early to start planning spring shenanigans. The things I’m planning at the moment are my spring wardrobe (and a little bit my dress-list for a trip to London this summer), little adventure trips with my friends, picnics, bike rides and leisurely reading sessions outside in the park.

What are you looking forward to with spring coming up? Any to do-lists?

Picture credits: 1. 2. 3.

Categories: Things to love... | 4 Comments »

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Things to love

Sep 09, 2011

Some of the things on my wish list:
I especially want the new Design Sponge at Home book!

Marimekko… Mod Cat Bed…Nars Lipstick.

Ensemble Print…Collage Letters…Le Creuset.

Canvas Cart…Design Sponge at Home…The Catcher in the Rye iPhone Case.

Categories: Things to love... | 4 Comments »

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Things to love…

Aug 31, 2011

Just a few things on my wish list:
Thackeray’s Vanity Fair, Illustrated…Tovicore Leather Card Case…Red Embroidered Pillow Cover…
Little Blue Birds Studios’ Owl Art Print…Joe Vintage’s Restored Red Royal…LilyMoon Aviary Brooch…
Dolan Gelman’s Found Objects Collage…Claudia Varosio’s Annie Hall Print…Vintage Fan Art Print.

Categories: authors, illustrations, Things to love..., Vintage | 9 Comments »

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