Renewed Energy & Focus For 2013

Hello everyone. I am back in the saddle again! Thanks to so many of you for reaching out and wondering what (on earth) I was up to and asking when I was coming back. All is good, friends! I just needed some more time to get back to normal after an insanely busy holiday season for the store and my family. Thank you for thinking of me though.

I am also busy working on a couple of big new projects — you will of course learn here first.

So, not starting a new year without some serious focus and a few new resolutions.

1) Think Green

After spending some time before Christmas with my Dear Mom who sadly is ailing and seeing my extraordinary Mother-In-Law having a mini stroke on Christmas Eve (we had Ambulance people dancing around the Christmas Tree – thankfully it all ended on a positive note!) 2013 will be the year when I take better charge of my own health. I am already fairly active, healthy and happy but I can do so much better. An energy filled green smoothie (min. 16 oz all organic greens + berries – no fruit) in the morning is now as part of my morning ritual as brushing my teeth!

2) Embrace Emerald Green

The Yellow Brick Road leads to Emerald City.

It works for me that Pantone announced “Emerald Green” as the color of the year. Finally they got it right. I love that color! (Always wanted a sassy, modern evening gown in Emerald Green. Perhaps this will be the year.).

To add a little bit more Emerald Green into my own home, I purchased this print on Etsy – a loosey-goosey, fun cameo portrait drawing. I find the illustrator Kathryn with hhop so creative and fun. Of course I ended up buying other things as well!

3) Don’t be a design/brand snob (Note to myself!)

I am proud to say that my absolute favorite daily china right now are these practical gray-blue, glazed stoneware dishes (Dinera) from Ikea! I love the color, the look, the material and the price. Come on, the large bowls are $12.99 for a set of four! You could not entice me away with anything fancy from Bergdorf Goodman. I swear this is better!

I also snapped up this pretty velvet-like pillow at Ikea for a song (here in our family room). There was just something familiar and calming about it.

4) Less stuff

Filling an entire cart with gray-blue china might not go hand in hand with wanting less stuff in the house. January is usually the month when people do some serious personal and home cleansing. I am hoping 2013 will be the year when I start really thinking through every single purchase. Do I Need It – do I Love It? And with everything I buy, AT LEAST two things need to go (yep! friends, charity, dump whatever — but they are not staying!).

In 2013 I will strive for piece, calm, serenity and a happy, healthy heart. And with all that renewed energy, I also hope to give more to you! What are your personal commitments for 2013?

Hugs to you all. It’s good to be back.

Image no. 3 via Katie Rosenfeld Design, no. 4 via hhop, no. 5 via Ikea , no. 6 + 7 via Splendid Willow.



  • Delishhh says:

    Welcome back! Emerald green I love. Great new year commitments, I need to make some for myself!!! So glad to hear the mother in law is OK. Very scary!!
    Love the painting and the ikea bowls are fabulous!
    Happy new year!! Hugs!

  • Hi Mon! Welcome back..you were missed. The holidays can do that to us..takes to time to bounce back and recooperate. I like your ideas for 2013…..one of my many is to buy only what is really needed aka less stuff (hope I can stick to it)! Hope everyone is on the mend health wise..and wishing you a year of health happiness and new adventures (sounds like that is happening)!

  • Franki Parde says:

    I “spotted” the Perfect emerald green accent wall at IKEA a year ago and must have walked past it a dozen times. While I’m not a “green color” person…that particular emerald green works SO WELL with everything!! The grass IS greener!! franki

    Splendid Willow Reply:

    Nice to hear that you are an Ikea shopper too! (: Hugs to you Franki. Mon.

  • Happy New Year, Monika. I like your goals for the year. I only have 3 “goals” this year…planning and planting parts of my yard, entertain (simply have friends and family over) more often and one other, which at this early hour, I can’t recall…must check my list! :-)
    I’m glad your “moms” are okay.

  • Hi Mon
    Best wishes to your “Mom’s” for health and happiness in this new year (I can relate here) and hugs right back to you!
    Don’t you just love Ikea for their inexpensive little gems? When our son was living in Vancouver BC, In one shopping trip we outfitted his entire apartment,it was such fun.
    We’re starting the new year on a health kick too, healthy eating and regular exercise for both of us- what’s your recipe for your healthy green smoothie? Take care,
    Sarah XO

  • leslie says:

    Welcome back! So sorry to hear about your MIL .. that must have been scary. These things seem to happen when we least expect them to and have a profound effect on our outlook on life. Your green smoothie sounds great. I’ll have to share my recipe at some point.

    Lots of green in the beautiful Emerald City:) Stay warm and looking forward to hearing about your new projects.

  • Joe Clarke says:

    Welcome back Ms. Splendid. You have been missed!

    The portrait drawing is terrific. I might need to pay a visit to Ikea soon!


  • smoothies! yes. every morning for me (nonfat yogurt, frozen berries, spinach, chia seeds). i will always miss you. even when you are spending your time honorably and respectfully (and that most def happens when we step away from the laptop, girlfriend!). i like the new print. emeralds is the name of the song son Luke wrote and recorded for his girl this christmas. :)

    this is the time of year when i too get down to bizness with organization. hoping my sis, the queen of order, is going to help me out this year.

    sorry to here about your moms and hope things will stabilize.

    love to you, sis.


  • Welcome back, Monika!!! You were definitely missed, but I so understand that the end of the year seemed crazy busy. I, like you, am making my health my number 1 “job” this year. I started in December (kind of crazy) working with a wellness coach b/c I needed that extra kick to get me going. My diet has changed, my workouts have gotten harder…but I feel better and stronger.

    Wishing you health and less “stuff” in the year to come!
    xoxo Elizabeth

  • I am so glad I was able to see this post! I”m very glad you are back and it is always encouraging to hear about other people’s plans to be healthier. It is definitely something I’ve been thinking about as well and trying to stick to but it’s always encouraging to hear it from others! So sorry about your ailing mother and your mother in law’s mini stroke. Very scary, indeed! I’m thankful it wasn’t a bad one! I sure wish we had an IKEA here but we don’t…may have to drive to Atlanta for that! I’m actually in the process of cleaning out and buying less myself! I truly love this idea…..until it comes to my own shop and then I want people to buy and buy! What to do? Oh well, I’m actually buying less and less for the shop as well! Take care and I hope your week is off to a great start!

  • Tracey says:

    Oh that stoneware is so beautiful, love the color. I’m proud to say that I started juicing this year …… will do my best to keep it up. I’m sorry to hear about your mom and your mother-in-law’s stroke. Things will get better for 2013 …… I just know it! Looking forward to all of your future posts!

  • Hello sweet Monica, and Happy New Year to you! I am happy to learn that you have so much planned for the year. I’m with you on emerald green. Love.
    I need some of the energy she have.
    Happy Tuesday.

  • Ivy Lane says:

    Happy New Year! I am going to strive to MAKE time for family and friends. My work (real estate) pulls me in many unexpected directions throughout the week….I am going to take control and schedule “appointments” with my family and friends… A movie date, dinner, lunch..DAY OFF, all will be “scheduled” … Last year I was guilty of moving off “appts” with my loved ones…no more…THEY are going to come first in 2013! Yoga is new for me..been practicing for about 4 months..going to keep that up… so good for the body and soul! And YAY for emerald green!

  • Sorry for all the illness and emergencies over Christmas. I can’t imagine watching a loved one slowly slipping away!

    As for those dishes, I need a new set, and glad you are happy with yours! Hope you have a fabulous year my friend. I am teaching full time still – life just has a funny way of throwing curve balls just to keep you on your toes! Hoping ONE of these days we can meet. I still have 2 pairs of your boots in my closet!

  • Karena says:

    Mon so glad to see you back again. I think your thoughts for the new year are wonderful. I am also thinking hard before making ANY purchase!
    Also I will have more Artists Features.

    So sorry you had a difficult holiday…

    2013 Artists Series

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