Showing posts with label Italy. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Italy. Show all posts

A Door - Focus on Life: 2014 - Week 36

Our topic for September for the Focus On Life: 2014 Weekly Photography Challenge is


and for week 36 Sally prompted us with

 'A Door'

Well, if you didn't already know, I'm a bit obsessed with doors.
I've got a 'Door Porn' board over on Pinterest 
that helps feed this obsession. 

So, when we got the prompt for this week I thought, 
"Yeah Baby! I'm not gonna have any problems with this week's prompt!"


Other than the grocery store and my house, I haven't gone far this week and didn't manage to capture even one photo of the cool doors I saw down in Mexico last weekend. (really?!?)

So, I leave you this week with one of my favorite door photos of all times.

Italian villa in Sommocolonia, Italy. Photo by Michelle Buettner

This beautiful home is in a little hilltop village called Sommocolonia
above the village of Barga in Tuscany, Italy. 

Sommocolonia is a magical place. 

When I die my ashes could be spread up on the hill, underneath the remains of the magnificent stone towers where the memorial plaque to the Buffalo Soldiers of WWII hangs, and I'd be eternally happy. 

This village is 'A Door' to another world.

 Simplicity rings through out this beautiful hilltop village, behind each door, and welcomes you with open arms. 

I'm excited to see what simplistic doors the other participants were able to capture this week.

Until Next Time,
Peace, Love and A Door to a Simple, Peaceful Place!

**I posted early because I'm down in Tucson at the Fall G&LW Gem Show tonight!
I'll try to visit and comment on every one's posts on Sunday!**


Focusing on Life: Week 31 - Hues of Blue

For week 31 of the Focusing on Life: 52 Photos Challenge, Sally, over at The Studio Sublime, prompted us with
"Hues of Blues"
"There are so many meanings behind the color blue, but the one that seems to be the most prevalent is that blue is a cool and calming color. This week, take time for focus on the beautiful hues of blue."
Since blue is one of my all time favorite colors, I thought this would be a snap. But I was totally wrong. I found nothing blue. At least not when I had my camera (or my phone) in hand.
So, I got creative and decided to show you what
Blue means to me,.....
Hues of Blues = Fun!  The hues of blues in these beads and fibers are calming, yet fun to me. My favorite go to color. And of course, blue pearls are a signature favorite of mine !
Hues of Blues = My Soul's Love.  A feeling of "I am home" comes over me, producing an awe, a calming and a peacefulness that is only satisfied when I am in the midst of the sea,...or ocean.
The Pacific Ocean from the Coast of California and the Ligurian Sea, Italy.
Hues of Blues = Universal Guidance. When we were a bit lost and I silently asked God/The Universe to show us the way to our hill top rental home in Tuscany,  this little blue-eyed beauty showed us 'the road home' to the house (and to the housekeeper - his owner). It was a magical 'sign'.  Especially since Siamese are my favorite and my first kitty looked just like this one!
Our Blue-Eyed Angel Guide!
And then there's the
"Hues of Blues" that Rock Your Soul!! 
Okay - well, they're more widely referred to as the
Sounds of Blues
but this Kenny Wayne Shepherd instrumental,
"While We Cry"
is one of my all time favorite songs (ever!)
and I wanted to share it with you! 
Kenny Wayne Shepherd - While We Cry
(You're gonna want to turn this one up!)
Please hop on over to The Studio Sublime and see what  "Hues of Blues" every one else has snapped this weekend.
You'll be sad and 'blue' if you don't! :-)
Until Next Time,
Peace, Love and Hues of Blues, Baby!!

Focus on Life: Week 9 - Knock, Knock!

It's week 9 of Sally Russick's weekly photography challenge

"Focus on Life: 52 Photos".

Here's what Sally wrote to us for this week's prompt:
Knock, Knock!
A door opened and I went through it.  ~Temple Grandin~ 
"Let's open some doors to see what awaits us on the other side.
Is it a door that holds opportunity?  A door that holds a story?  Is it a door you have been hesitating to open?  Is it a gate to a new life?  A door to a new adventure?  Is it a door that holds a memory?  Is it the perfect door for a simple picture?
You have arrived at the door for a reason,
open it up and step in!"

Oh my, if I needed a prompt to photograph a door!

Along with flowers and a few other things, doors are my favorite to photograph!

For me, they all hold a story, a secret, an opportunity,  some mystery, security, a new beginning, a special memory.

I call this  "Doorway to the Sea".  It is in the Cinque Terre Region of Italy.
The Ligurian Sea is on the other side. 
This is by far, my favorite photo I've ever snapped of a door because
being here was a dream come true and this is where I go when I day-dream!


Doors stir this fascination in me that I can't quite place
and trigger emotions that elude words.

These are the front and back doors to my sister and brother-in-law's cabin.
Not only do these doors lead to one of my favorite places on earth, inside these doors are some of my best memories and it's as close to "home" as I can get.
Inside these doors I feel safe and secure, comfortable and inspired.
Oh, and of course I use the back door - you read the sign, right?? :-)


Doors have all these textures, colors, and styles.

Then there's the materials,...wood, metal, stone, glass.
Each one unique. Beautiful in it's own way.

And, no matter where your travels take you,
you can always find a door.

We were walking in Venice at night and rounded a corner and
look what door if saw!!  It wasn't so much this door that caught my attention. 
It was what was inside this door that I longed to see!
Ah,...a "missed opportunity" as the Swarovski
store was closed, but the photo opp was not to be missed!


I snapped so many door pics from my trip last fall that I thought my sister and brother-in-law were going to schedule and intervention.  Follow this link to view a blog post on some of my "Door Porn" as I call it.

These doors hold mystery. We all wished we could peek inside. They are my symbol of Tuscany.  This home is located in the small hill top village of Sommocolonia, above Barga. I've photographed these doors (this house) more than any other doors ever!

The doors I have pictured here today for you are just a few of my collection, along with their special meaning to me.

 Do doors hold a special meaning to you?

This is probably my second all-time favorite door photo I've ever taken.
It was taken from inside the church on the highest hill in Barga, Italy.
It represents "the world out there".  The beauty to be seen and appreciated.
The history to be cherished and preserved.  The adventure and opportunity that awaits.
There are days when I go here in my dreams too,...I walk outside this church and
stand in the warmth of the bright sunlight and breathe in the surrounding beauty.
Outside this door I am at peace, and so is the world. 

Please step on through to the doors that the other
photo challenge participants have posted over at The
Studio Sublime today.

Until Next Time,
Peace, Love and Meaningful Doors!

Focusing on Life - Week 7 - Beauty of Flowers

It's week 7 of Focusing on Life: 52 Photos

This week Sally's prompt for us was
"Beauty of Flowers"

"This week take a moment to bring a little happiness
to your soul and enhance your well being.
Take a moment to enjoy the beauty of flowers."

I Enjoy Snapping Pics of Flowers!!

No prompt needed on this one!

However, with the freeze a couple of weeks back and the one this week as well, our rose garden is 'rose-less', and there's no other flowers blooming at the moment either, so I'm sharing with you some of the flowers I've captured in the past.

Click to Enlarge Photos

These are from my backyard, from the White Mountains of AZ, from San Onofre Beach on Camp Pendleton in California and from my trip to Italy last fall.

Sommocolonia, Italy (Tuscany)
Yes, I have a slight flower obsession.

 It's as bad as my obsession with snapping pics of doors, locks/keys and door knockers. 

Can you tell?! ;-)
"Just living is not enough.
One must have sunshine, freedom, and a little flower. "
~ Hans Christian  Andersen ~

Until Next Time,

Peace, Love and Flower Power, Baby!!


Click HERE to go to the Studio Sublime
and check out all the other lovely flowers today!!

Door Porn!

Click here to see
My Bead Table Blog Hop
from Saturday, October 13th.

Happy Sunday Folks!

I have what some people might refer to as a slight obsession with photographing doors (peeling paint, rusty key holes, iron work and all that yummy stuff that goes with doors.)

Click to enlarge photos to see details ;-)
While I was on vacation last month I had the most wonderful opportunites to snap a bunch of photos of some of the above mentioned subjects.

Yep, I went to Door Heaven!!

Oh, the textures!  And the colors,

And the intricate details,....OMG!!

The angles at which I was able to take photos wasn't always my first choice, nor did they all come out the way I wanted them to - but at least I have them. 

Napoleon's "Boat Park" Door - Venice, Italy

If not the way I want them on my computer,
I have them the way I want them in my mind!! ;-)

This was one COOL Cat!!

I'm linking up with I Heart Macro over at
Studio Waterstone today.

Sill So Regal!
If you get the chance, hop on over and check out all the super-cool macro shots that people have posted  - they're always drool-worthy!

Until Next Time,
 Peace, Love and Door Porn!


When In Rome,...or Venice!

So, the vacation has come to an end.
The little village of Sommocolonia, near Barga, Italy in Tuscany where we stayed.
The sights, sounds, smells (except for all the cigarette smoking) and photo opportunities were amazing!!
Colosseum - Rome, Italy. Photo by Michelle Buettner
I will be posting some great window displays every now and then over the next few months as inspiration with everything from jewelry, shoes, purses, fashion trends - the awesome ways they display products - you name it!
Yes, I found the Swarovski Store in Venice, Italy!!
I'm not really jet-lagged. I thought I would be but luckily I think I figured out how to program my body and brain.
Italy really is this beautiful.
Sommacolonia, Italy  (near Barga in Tuscany)
I'll have my Etsy shops back up the 1st week of October is all goes well. I don't have all of the new designs I wanted to have finished done yet, but hopefully I'll have a few for you.
Pretty Blue Turquoise in One of the Shops in Venice.
I felt right at home!! ;-)
What have you been up to in September?  Have you transitioned into Autumn yet?  Do you enjoy this season and all it's fascinating colors and jewelry styles?
Until Next Time,
Peace, Love and Returning Home!

Tempo di vacanza!

Well, I'm officially outta here!

I'm on a jet plane headed for Italy with my sister and one of my girlfriends. 

We're meeting up with my brother-in-law (who's been hiking the Swiss and Italian Alps this past week!) in Venice tomorrow morning.


I'm actually freaking out! Twirling my hair with both hands (which makes it hard to hold that pre-flight Bloody Mary!!), I've got butterflies in my stomach, tears in my eyes and my heart's beating way too fast! 

I've got Dean Martin singing Sott'er Celo de Roma on my iPod, Paulo Coehlo in my back pack (The Alchemist), way too many clothes in my suitcase and my camera on my hip!

We're staying at a quaint little hotel in Venice that my sis's stayed at before. We're taking the water taxi over to Murano (Glass + Beads = Sweet!), going on a gondola ride (of course!) and walking some great little paths along the canals.

After Venice we're headed down to Tuscany. Barga to be specific. The most Scottish Village in Italy. Seriously - look it up!  (I'm so psyched about this part!! You have NO idea!!) We're staying in an old farm house that's pre-WWII and survived what so much of the village did not. 
We'll be taking some day trips - one of which will include driving over to the Cinque Terre and hiking the hill top towns over there (Yes!  I get to see the water,...and a beach!!) and possibly visiting Siena and San Gimignana and going to a winery (oh yeah baby!!).
After that, we'll all be heading down to Rome and staying in a friend's apartment which is situated in an area that's close to the Colosseum and all the other goodies Rome has to offer.  I'm excited to get some really cool pics of all the amazing architecture and ancient ruins!  Oh, and we're going to an opera while in Rome. I know - pinch me now!!

Then there's that little nagging thing in the back on my brain that keeps the tears right there on the verge of spilling over and running down my cheeks, boys will not be with me. (insert sad face here!!)

I can't tell you how much I am going to miss them. And it's not only the fact that we'll be apart longer than we've ever been apart before,...but it's the distance. Oh, geeze,...the distance. My stomach is in knots, and the butterflies are fighting and knockin' each other around in there!!  Holy Cow - this is the most difficult thing for me right now, you really have no idea!
But, I know I'm going to have fun. And, I'm with family so it's not like I'm with people I haven't traveled with before or anything like that for goodness sakes. And they're fun people to hang with, too - that's for sure. So, I know I'll be fine. More than fine,...I'll be in Italy with my sister!  OMG!

A long time ago, probably between 15 to 20 years ago, Marsha and I said that we'd someday to go Italy together. Well, today's the day!
I'll be silent here on the blog until the last week of September. I'm not sure I'll even be able to post to Facebook or anything like that (all kinds of iphone/Verizon drama!!). I know I won't have email, so there will be a lot to read when I return home! LOL!! 

I hope you all have a fabulous next couple of weeks and I'll be sure to post pics upon returning.

Until Next Time,
Peace, Love and Sitting Under the Tuscan Sun!
(oh, and fulfilling dreams!!)