Jammin’ with Nature & Rich Red Hues of July

I must admit. I have been stuck not knowing in which direction to take this blog post. June has come and gone. Being in transition confuses me. Am I writing from who I want to be and where I’d like to take my life?  Am I expressing what I feel and think in the present? I realize I ought to begin somewhere and  am certain you all have been there in some form or another. Just do it. Don’t over think it. What ever it is. Easier said than done. My nature overthinks. Not sure what I expect to accomplish, but with courage and motivation, one foot in front of another, we move ahead. Often, when listening to the silence, a sign, an omen, a guiding light appears. Cloud formations for instance. I’m certain there are distant messages within those cloud formations and they are telling us something.

This summer has been filled with a variety of temperatures, beautiful sunshine, weather drama including micro bursts of rain,  balancing  the heat of the day into the nights.  The word balance, I use here, due to my fear of another fire driven summer as the one in 2016. I am grateful that it is not. I love this one. Hark! Loving clouds and rain. I took a FaceBook quiz just the other day to determine where I should reside based on their questions.  I got Seattle! I’ve never visited, but it is definitely on the list. At present, I am enjoying my escapes to the beach, soaking up the sun, and grounding myself in the refreshing salt water on the North Shore. Somehow, I’ve always gravitated North and not towards the Cape. Ever.  The frigid water is always a challenge, numbing the feet and ankles, seemingly not to warm up until well into August-just in time for the disappearance of the greenhead flies. Back on land away from the roaring ocean waves, we see a tinge of the beginning of Autumn preparation.

JULY’S RUBY REDS

So for the moment I will share what I am loving: libations and food. Instead of the blood orange mimosas I have been craving, a seasonal substitution was called for, because blood oranges are not in season. I used a splash of pomegranate/blueberry juice with Veuve Clicquot. Festive and tasting delicious, with just the right amount of twist on a classic glass of champagne, the drink satisfied my passion of the moment. The hollow flutes look so statuesque with the bubbles dancing and rising within.

Accompanying these beautiful drinks, I created two different salads with  a dinner of Middle Eastern inspired marinade over chicken wings.  The first one below, was  from a photo I had seen, so I HAD to try it.  You just have to remember not to slice all the way through the tomato, otherwise you’ll ruin the concept. So simple to create.

Slice a juicy red, orange or your choice heirloom tomato nearly to the bottom. Insert pre-sliced mozzarella rounds, fresh basil leaves, small dollops of pesto, drizzle with olive oil, sprinkle black pepper all over, then drizzle a very small amount of rich balsamic on the dish. Let stand and serve at room temperature. Delectable. Try it!  The other red base dish I’ve made recently is another sort of salad which actually worked well with the dish below. This time chick peas and roasted grape tomatoes are the main characters.

I slow-roasted an entire pint or maybe it was two of grape tomatoes. Add olive oil, crushed garlic and a little salt. Set oven at 200 degrees. Roasted them for nearly two hours and no, they did not burn to a crisp – shocking! They caramelized by themselves and basically tasted like candy when done. I realize there is a slight redundancy in the ingredients, but in all honesty, it doesn’t seem like it when you are actually enjoying it. Here we have a red wine vinaigrette which melds the fresh flavors of this hearty salad. One can of chick peas drained and rinsed, half of an English cucumber, quartered, half of an avocado, cubed, lots of fresh basil, black pepper, little French sea salt, and of course those roasted little red tomato critters. Mix together and add the vinaigrette. Done.

WHY EAT RED?

Such a great question. When you are eating vivid or saturated colors, it truly feels like it is so good for the body! Obviously I’ve combined a fair amount of greens in the mix too.  It is a known fact, however, that red foods are the new Power House of nutrition. There is a true cornucopia of red foods, such as strawberries, cherries, raspberries, beets, tomatoes, radicchio, apples and cranberries. The list goes on. Red fruits and vegetables are loaded with powerful and healthy antioxidants, such as lycopene and anthocyanins, which fight heart disease and prostate cancer while decreasing the risk for stroke and macular degeneration (the leading cause of blindness in people 60 +).  Tomatoes are loaded with potassium and vitamin C which also protects the heart.  Beets are rich in folate. They are all so positive for the body and the mind. The deeper and more saturated in color the better!

WHY WEAR RED?

July is filled with red. Beyond the scope of food, of course, is the month’s classic birthstone is the Ruby. I have never met a soul who doesn’t favor this stone and this color. The color resonates well with everyone and looks good on everyone. The color is stimulating and fun to look at. Imagine wearing it! Before I continue on the traditional July Birthstone, I wanted to share this newly discovered interest- July Birthstone alternative – Opals! I had no idea the Zodiac shares this stone with other birth months such as October, Libra; November, Scorpio; March, Pisces. I never gravitated towards opals until I found the ones pictured below. Seems like each stone tells a story. Certainly each one is unique. The varying degrees of greens here remind me of my cooking. Whenever there is red food, I find green, too! The two are opposite one another on the color wheel.  Just look at how happy this necklace is!  I named her Calliope. The description and price: https://www.nymphjewels.com/listing/546145435/calliope-triple-strand-necklace-of-opals

And seriously, why wear red?  Red is associated with power, love, nobility and the new one is – (scientists claim) attention to detail. Red is typically known as a sexy color. Red is also the color of energy, passion, action, ambition and determination. Of course, Rubies will vary in tones carrying a little blue hue within them.  Red signifies a pioneering spirit and leadership qualities. It is confidence inducing, helping ban the characteristic of being shy.  This is the color of physical movement, awakening our physical life force. As with gemstones, color can certainly have an effect on us. The color in either apparel or in gemstones can stimulate deeper passions in us such as with love and sex on the positive side.  In China, Red is the color of good luck. In the Indian culture, red symbolizes purity and is often used in wedding gowns.  Red boosts our physical energy levels, increases our heart rate and blood pressure and prompts the release of adrenalin. This color is fast moving, promoting a need for movement and action. Red relates to physical desire in all forms; sexual, appetite and cravings. This intense color means a passionate belief in any issue or undertaking which can include passion for love or for hate.  That said, I present my new collection of rich red hues of July: RUBIES.  Now aren’t they a feast for the eyes! All of the descriptions and pricing information can be found on my site  https://www.nymphjewels.com/shop   I love piling the stones and see how they fall together and how they fall is how they play. The vibe is a very happy one. Don’t you agree?

And for anyone making a trip to New York City next month, I will be exhibiting at N Y Now -Accent on Design Show at the Jacob Javits center with as much jewelry as I can fit in our Pop Up Booth. The invite is below. Would love to hear from you and seeing you would be even a better treat!

Enjoy this glorious summer weather, eat your greens and reds, while wearing them. Watch your moods alter towards a more positive day when you do. Your heart will sing!  It has been my pleasure in sharing everything with you. I hope you had fun too.

Yours in joy,

Dava

 

 

Awakening the Senses

No doubt, Spring has arrived. Ready or not.  Slightly resistant of the notion, personally, since as I’ve gotten more mature I embrace fall and winter. But it’s the time to embrace and not hold back. Make way for what wants to enter. Clear the space. Spring is here!  And here we have Wisteria, Italian style.  The color is simply divine. The species is rather invasive. I wanted to begin my post with nature, as always, and thought this was a great way to sum up Spring’s arrival via a shot I took in Italy. Welcome to this journey.

Below we see the unusual cypress trees indicative of the Italian countryside. I love them! When I shoot photos, I just go with my instincts and what captures my eye.

Easter has come and gone, but I spent my time in bed with a flu that I never saw coming. The trip to Italy this month I pretended to be my end-all, be-all. The trip with answers. My salvation.  Enlightenment. Or so I thought. I am on the up from being so far down, hallucinations during the night and all in a numb yet feverish state for more than three nights in a row. In retrospect, I think it was a mind altering drug. Not. I now realize my body shut down. Had no choice but to embrace hiding from the 80+degree days Easter Sunday and Marathon Monday. Simply hiding. Tossing and turning within my deep charcoal linen sheets enveloping me in within this tumultuous turmoil of fever. Thank God for grapefruit juice and blinds. This too, shall pass. I digress.

The Church. It’s Palm Sunday. I am in Florence. For the second trip from our home base of Montecatini- Tuscany. The highlight of my trip to Italy, in all honesty was the serendipitous discovery through the scent. Incense smoke from the cobblestone back streets in Florence, not far from the Santa Maria Train Station, leading my sister and I towards this elegant antique structure. The the overpowering fluid scent moving with intoxicating lure through the air – beckoning a surprise discovery. Here comes the mystery…..Embarking on this beauty and spirituality in this environment.

Palm Sunday 2017 Florence. Love. Heart opening.  The scent of Frankincense filled the Church’s entirety. Oh Bless.

We took part in Palm Sunday Mass, in Latin, like eras gone by in the US. The experience and the authenticity of  church, the nuns, looking like a painting, the architecture. I  was transported to another century. The history was soul grounding. Aren’t the ladies gorgeous?  Their graceful voices filled with melody envelop the entire church. The scene below I captured with my phone  during mass. A no no. But look at them! This scene looks like a painting. Their cloaks so majestic! This Latin mass set the tone of the day trip to Florence for me.

As we left this beautiful scene behind us, we ventured out by foot into the tourist driven scenes around the city of Florence. I placed my eyes and camera to work, seeking new discoveries and nuances along the beaten path. No stone left unturned. Taking nothing for granted. The history and age depicted below from a simple shot of these weathered shutter doors spoke to me of their years of wear and oh, what a beautiful patina tones.

OH the architecture with effortless beauty and stature. I recognized various tones of Ochre sprinkled throughout the country as its signature color. The rustic buildings and terrain lend themselves to these earthy tones.

I never tired of seeing these colors everywhere. The building below is a bit more elaborate than those above, regardless the natural age and beauty took breath away.

Food, Glorious Food

I wish I had a bevy of photos portraying the amazing food we had, but much to my dismay, the food was not that at all. It seems to me that there are more Italian restaurants with better ambiance here in the United States. And you can be sure you will not have to listen to the likes of Joe Cocker or Elton John while dining, as we did there in these very brightly lit rooms. WHAT THE HELL? I say. And no, we were not in tourist areas. We found little places family run, speaking next to no English. No candlelight. Just artificial flowers and ghastly lighting! Crazy!

The pasta was light, certainly delicious, but what’s with the lack of vegetables on every single menu? This  dish below was the best one on the entire trip. Succulent. Fresh wide pasta tubes crawling with seafood. Simply delicious! Not to mention the Tuscan wine we had to accompany our meal. Just a delight!  So wrapping up my trip, I will say that I missed having vegetable options, and am perplexed as to the void of them. Upon my return home, I hightailed it to Russo’s market in Watertown. I was immediately elevated back to a level of sophistication, in-depth produce offerings and fresh pastas unlike I’d ever seen. Alas it IS Spring.

I am totally perplexed as to the absence of all vegetables in Italy. Not in the street, on the menus, no where in sight! Perhaps it was the region we visited. I am not certain, but I do know this – here, they prominently thrive and exist.  I am very grateful and blessed to be a part of this earth here in New England. You serve us well! Spring represents many things, but in the realm of food, as the soil becomes richer and richer in nutrients, the spring bounty awakens. Artichokes and asparagus are the most obvious foods that represent Spring to me. Stuffing artichokes is a ritual I grew up with. It was our holiday food. I celebrate many different holidays with this beautiful vegetable. Slightly complex, but worth every moment. The Romans and Greeks advocated the medicinal and health benefiting  qualities of this thistle.  The high fiber content not to missed either.  The antioxidants and vitamins also offer vitamin C, vitamin K, rich in the B complex not to mention high in potassium. They need some time to prepare, but worth the effort. I love to sautée them after they have been cut in quarters and trimmed, with shallots, garlic, olive oil, salt and pepper. They are delicious one leaf at a time. The stems are especially hearty and fibrous.

Mushrooms on the other hand are plentiful at Russo’s market. They have so many varieties, and in all honesty- slightly scary to me since I am unfamiliar with many of them. The concept of foraging mushrooms turns me on, but that is not my calling. I’ll leave that to the pros. Radicchio, baby lettuce and fresh asparagus below in major abundance. The bitter deep red leaves of radicchio just taste so good raw, or grilled. Have you ever tried to grill them? They take on a very nutty flavor. Drizzle a little olive oil, salt, pepper and just a dash of balsamic before they hit the heat. I’ll show you a salad I conjured up in celebration of my return from Italy below, using escarole, radicchio, clementine slices and black Moroccan olives.

This salad was so refreshing, especially after the absence of raw vegetables. The colors, textures and  the taste was spot on, balanced and divine. Oh did I mention shaved fennel? I’ve posted the dressing recipe in the past, I believe. Please for pardon the repeat. 4 tablespoons of red wine vinegar, 2tsp dijon country style mustard, 2 minced cloves garlic, 2/3 cup olive oil drizzled into the mix. Add a small amount of cracked pepper. Voila. Done.

Marilyn Sang ‘Diamonds Are a Girl’s Best Friend’

There you have it! Spring has sprung. April. The month of Diamonds. The birthstone for April. Clarity. Purity. Diamonds glistening in the sun, catching the light with grace. The healing properties of this magnificent stone are abundant. Diamonds truly are the symbol of purity. Their white light can help you bring your life into a cohesive whole. They bond relationships bringing love and clarity into a partnership. This stone has been the symbol of wealth for centuries. It is a stone of manifestation, attracting abundance. Diamonds are also well known to impart fearlessness, invincibility and fortitude. Diamonds clear emotional and mental pain, reducing fear and bring about new beginnings. This is a highly creative stone stimulating imagination and inventiveness. Happy Birthday you April babies!  One of my new pieces, AMODINI,  shown below looks like a relic from the Victorian era.  The multi strands of hand cut amethyst stones are wire wrapped making the connection. I’ve attached a locket as the pendant, swinging from a diamond bale which is held by all 5 strands. A halo of diamonds surround the enclosed locket. The circle measures 1.25″ and the necklace is 17″ in length.

Diamonds are a girl’s best friend! They simply make you feel good and rich when wearing them. Anywhere on the body!  For some reason, I’m favoring the circular shape, so here are a pair of diamond disc earrings, PRAMA, suspended on 18k gold earwires. These babies are 15mm and ready to order. I have 11mm in stock. Aren’t these dangle and drop earrings gorgeous?

And let me introduce to you a brand new piece featuring a circular Sunburst with a dangling tourmaline in the center. The piece is suspended from black onyx, spinel, lava and olive wood. The only color visible here is the subtle blue tourmaline. It was shot in early morning light against my zinc desk. Soon enough the weather will break and allow me to shoot outdoors once again.

This Diamond Sunburst makes me think about the sun growing higher in the sky, as the season sets in. Summer will be here before we know it. It’s time to embrace the warmth and all of the newly sprouted plants. Our souls are also sprouting. Remember that. We are living creatures with awakening senses. Time to celebrate our renewal!

I hope you enjoyed this blog journey.

Yours in joy,

Dava

 

January 2017 Anew

Celebration brings happiness, glee and joy. Welcoming the New Year, 2017, with open hearts reflecting its very feeling. The prospect of fresh ideas and possibilities which lie ahead provide positive attitude and hope. The new moon brings about new beginnings. We open our souls to what can be. We open our minds to alternative thoughts which we may not ever consider. Living in possibility means that we can approach life from a different perspective than what we may be in the habit of, or accustomed to. The Moon has several phases. Some people are sensitive to the point of actually feeling them. We are in the First Quarter at this time. Or at least we were, when I began this post. This month is flying by – despite the frigid weather we are experiencing.  I have fallen in love with this notion, surprisingly, as I’ve grown older.

The blanket of snow that fell the other night was like an angel appearing from the skies above. The peace and quiet that resulted in the weather was such a gift. Listening to the quiet drop like a feather blanket in the dark on Saturday night brought delight to my soul. The message was loud and clear, if given the chance to really quiet the mind and absorb the messages from above. Such peace and possibility. I now realize why I love the four seasons; winter brings a strong message to me.  At mid-month, the Full Wolf Moon appeared on January 12, at 6:38 am EST. All Full Moons culminate all things new, as we build our dreams and goals for the year 2017. Mesmerizing. Especially to wake up to the moon, as the sun creeps rising from the opposite side of earth.

I saw this poignant message today. It resonated. January is a wonderful month to begin this little exercize. Don’t be scared. It will help you learn more about yourself, calm your inner soul as well as stimulate the untapped within. 

For me, 2017 means discovering the pleasures and nuances of spending time alone.

Living with Red in January

Let’s talk about January’s birthstone. Garnet. Derived from their Latin name granatum… meaning “seed of the pomegranite”, garnet obviously references the color of this fruit. Garnet inspires love and devotion. It balances the sex drive and alleviates emotional disharmony. Deep red garnet stimulates the controlled rise of kundalini energy and aids sexual potency. Garnet clears negative Chakra energy and is very useful to wear in times of crises. It activates and strengthens the survival instinct, bringing courage and hope to bleak situations. My pic stitch above reflects four different pieces of healing gemstones from Nymph. http://www.nymphjewels.com/shop and here is the link to the entire collection I’ve uploaded thus far. The deep rich tones of these garnet stones are captivating.  Below are “lentil” garnets, slightly faceted combined with the rarely seen Tanzanite ( periwinkle) and a huge Herkimer Diamond.  Another gem using garnet.

I’ve paired translucent rutilated quartz with garnets because of the contrast between the two stones. It allows your mind to rest from the juxtapositioning of the deep hues and light. It also represents clarity which I wrote about at length last January. (http://davamuramatsu.com/clarify-your-mind-body-soul/)

Red is the color of fire and blood, so it is associated with energy, war, danger, strength, power, determination as well as passion, desire, and love. It is emotionally a very intense color. It enhances human metabolism, increases respiration rate and raises blood pressure. Enthusiasm enhancement. Red is the color for the base or root chakra. This chakra is located at the base of the spine and allows us to be grounded and connect to the universal energies. Groundedness, trust, and belonging lessen feelings of mistrust. Gemstones that will aid the Root chakra include lodestone, ruby, garnet, smokey quartz, obsidian, hematite and onyx.  Red is described as warm, vibrant and intense. It is an exciting and daring color, but also evokes the feelings of love and comfort. Grab your attention red – the reason it is used in traffic signage and for fire trucks.

Drinking this color with your eyes, is very stimulating. Drinking red wines are a healthy way to get the antioxidants in the body. Eating red foods, same thing. Regardless of the intake, it embues the sense of heightened awareness and of importance.  Digesting red foods – the new powerhouse of nutrition. Strawberries, beets, rasperries, the list is emense. Eating by color. Red foods are packed with a variety of pwoerful antioxidants. They have been shown to help fight cancer and heart disease. Peppers, cranberries, pomegranante, cherries, and red skinned potatoes are some of the red foods to try. Let’s not forget tomatoes. I made a salad just the other day using both strawberries and tomatoes. At first I thought it was odd to mix strawberries and the tomatoes, but with the baby romaine, and the tuna salad with ample celery, and my home made dressing, it was deliciously balanced.

January is the month to begin your new regime. What do YOU want for yourself in 2017?  It all begins with YOU. We have heard this so many times. It’s time to SHOW UP fully. How would you like the world around you to perceive you? Your image is frontal. It’s what people see upon their first glance. I don’t care if it’s a lazy Saturday morning, and you need to run out of the house for milk. SHOW UP. Take an extra measure for your hair, makeup – even just a touch. You never know who you will meet! I often tell clients that change can happen as often from the outside in, as from the inside out. Don’t deprive yourself of the elements you need to create an impression, which gives you a presence – especially for yourself!

So don’t wait to buy the scarf you love or the earrings or the purse if that color is speaking to you. Your soul is begging you to have it. If you deprive yourself of that notion, scarcity sets in and you will spiral downward into a place where you stop caring. If you don’t care, no one else will care. You’ll be sending a negative message to all those you meet, and yourself, about your lack of self-worth.

 

2017: Live Fully. Live with Intention. Live Joyfully. When your heart soars as a result, your contagious energy will spread all over. Watch for the perpetual energy you’ve created!

I hope you’ve enjoyed this journey. Please share yours with me! I’d love to hear from you.

Always in joy and style,

The Season of Vibrancy and the Great Pumpkin

Summer, I’m so sorry to see you leave! Actually, I lied. I am thrilled to see you fade. Your presence, these past several months, conjured way too much havoc on my soul. Too much heat. Too much fire. Not enough water. “Completely out of balance,” said my soul. I love you Summer, but am happy you’ve disappeared. For now. Sun, you are beautiful, especially during your sunrises and sets. You offer such pleasantries morning, noon and night.  The sunset below was on  the Fourth of July glowing over the Boston skyline.

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Autumn, you are more than welcome!  Nothing stagnant about you. You are feisty as you move and change. You’re air brings a sense of crispness and finite freshness every day. You’re offering of such radiant colors  appear to be overflowing from a cornucopia.  The Autumnal palette is  captivating and  visually addicting. Everywhere you look this time of year, there is a promise of vibrancy and intesity. A visionary or artist’s most desired dream.img_3486

I am in love with you, Autumn. You offer so many different elements which enamour me. You are easy to embrace. You’re knack for titillating the senses, despite the time of day inspires me. Early morning- crack of dawn beauty the most subtly obvious. With it, comes  Dew. Fog. Clouds. Haze. Mist. The photo of the candles below portray our newest addition to our candle series. This collection is entitled VAPOR.  They are $30 each. 60 hour burn time. Beautifully packaged, and poured here in the US. These soy candles have a cotton wick, offered in 4 different scents.  Each one more delicious than the next. Here are the titles, their tag line and scents.

Dew- Glimmers of Promise- olive, lavender, eucalyptus, hayacinth

Fog- The Mystery of what’s Hidden – cassis, citrus peel, fir

Cloud- a hint from the Sky- lavender

Haze- Before Clarity Comes- cedar, jasmine, fig

Mist- A light kiss at Dusk – A light kiss at Dawn- cucumber, watercress, mint

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In keeping with this season’s tricks are not only the great Pumpkin, but also some beautiful specimens of Squash. And so the story begins. Pumpkins and Squash are a fruit. They are nutritious, and versatile. They offer seeds, flesh and flowers all of which are edible and rich in vitamins. The notion of carving pumpkins into jack o’ lanterns  originated in Ireland hundreds of years ago. Back then, potatoes and turnips were used to carve them. When the Irish immigrants arrived in America and discovered pumpkins, the Halloween ritual was born. The photo below shows all sorts of squash and pumpkins. All are edible.

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Pumpkins and squash are low in fat and sodium, high in fiber. They are good sources of Vitamin A, B, iron, protein and potassium. The varieties of these fruits seem to have increased in recent years. Each year, they seem to become more and more elaborate. Who knew?  Cinderella Pumpkins, Cinderella Squash, Blue Doll Pumpkins, Fairytale Squash to name a few. All unique in character.

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The tonal offerings during this wonderful season never cease to amaze. Down below are what is known as Porcelain Blue Doll pumpkins. These exotic, eye-catching beauties are a haunting shade of blue with deep-set crevices distinguishing their personality.

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My favorite recipe is roasting these fruits. Either butternut squash, or pumpkin diced small, piled onto a foil lined cookie sheet. Add diced eggplant, sliced fennel, mushroom medley, tomatoes, garlic and shallots minced. Sprinkle a generous amount of olive oil over the mixture, along with basil, oregano and parsley, French salt, black pepper.  Roast at 350 degrees. The flavors will meld together. While they are all roasting, be sure to turn gingerly with a very large spatula in order for the flavors to become dispersed evenly. Voila. I made this the other night, and a few days later added cooked long grain wild rice to the vegetables. The texture took on a new presence, and the flavors got sent into another dimension. Absolutely delicious!  Try it! The photo below shows butternut squash medley mixed with wild rice, boasting flavor and texture.

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OCTOBER BIRTHSTONE… You lucky Librans! You get to choose between the traditional Opal and the alternate Tourmaline. Opals are beautiful because each gemstone is adorned with a one-of-a kind color combinations. Tourmaline is one of the most radiant gems in the market. It is a bit more contemporary with out the old lore as many other gemstones carry. Tourmaline is known as the peace stone. It is known to dispel fear and create a calmness for the wearer. It promotes inspiration, happiness and builds confidence. Available in a myriad of colors and various tones of greens, brown, aqua, deep teal, and rose-pink, red, violet, orange yellow and black.

img_0538 Fresh off the press, may I introduce you to Delilah.  18k gold, tourmaline briolettes and a large rutilated quartz creates this beauty. This Nymph piece will delight your eyes and adorn your neckline. The various tones of these faceted  gemstones dance around and in between each golden bead. The clasp in the back is also 18k gold. There is something so magnetic about this necklace. It is 16″long, and has the fluidity of a knotted strand of pearls. https://www.etsy.com/shop/nymphjewelry

img_0564I leave you with the following thought. Thank you, Mr. Rumi for your inner kindness and wisdom.

screen-shot-2016-10-20-at-11-53-04-am I hope you’ve enjoyed this journey. If you are interested in purchasing any candles, or gems, please feel free to contact me! I look forward to hearing from you.

Yours in joy,

Dava,

A Trio of Inspiring Journeys

What winter? This season has definitely made it easy for us to move around  in an uninhibited fashion. This rare weather has cooperated with us resulting in less fear around falling icicles or black ice, just to name a few. As a result of this mild winter I’ve been fortunate to experience the ease in traveling. No storms brewing to delay flights etc. The first journey, begins with the New York Gift Show Accent on Design, held in early February. People shop and scout replenishing their empty stores as a result of the Holiday mayhem. They are creating while re inventing their look for the season upcoming. The same holds true for those with e-commerce sites. It’s always a thrill to help these buyers and possibly inspire them to purchase items they may not have known existed before! This is a very creative period for us.

For this season,  we went with a malachite effect on the walls.  The deep green hues were applied in a way that gave the walls an authentic gemstone like effect.  This could  very well become our new signature color. We basically created a 4 day Pop Up shop. Then the tear down. The complete process is a lot of work, but very fun, stimulating  and inspiring – especially seeing  the buyer’s positive feedback. Our wares include hand-made brass table top utensils, seen below, several candle collections, skillfully crafted make up brushes, porcelain cell plates as seen on the top shelf in the rear of the booth, to name a few. I begin to wind down, and travel back to the Boston area once the show is over. Then the processing order time frame begins.
IMG_3587Three days later, I wind up in a place I have promised myself for years to attend. This year I did.

I found myself in 87 degree dry heat amidst the mystical gems of the Tucson Gem Show. The vibration and frequency from this show continues to resonate within me.  I think the crystals were performing their magic! I know I felt it! How could one not?

The single terminated crystal quartz  display below is one of millions shown. These are the most common type of crystal, with a single six-sided point at one end. They are used to charge the chakras or to disperse negative energy. Crystals remain extremely popular for their beauty and therapeutic healing properties. Clear quartz crystals hold the vibration of White Light. As we open our higher chakras we become receptive to that Light and to the crystals that embody it.

IMG_1130On my journey, the next discovery was such an unexpected find. As many of you may know, I have been incorporating Herkimer Diamonds into my collection of Nymph. They are diamond like, due to their natural facets and their clarity. How do they grow? I wondered. What does it look like?

IMG_1077Here, above you can see a large chunk of Earth. The Herkimers have lodged themselves into the crevices of this mass. They are discreetly suspended within the crevice. I have an example of this at MATSU so you can actually see it with your own eyes. Herkimer Diamonds are raw quartz crystals mined in Herkimer, New York. Believed to be nearly 500 million years old, each stone naturally formed with eighteen facets, six sides and two points. The diverse crystal appears with a number of mystical inclusions, adding to their value and character. These stones are ascension stones. They can take you to the highest spiritual vibration possible while still being in your physical body. This stone energizes, enlivens and promotes creativity. Below I show a finished piece of jewelry as an example. From Earth to  body adornment. These beauties swing from 18k gold ear wires. They catch the light with every movement. These are available with many more styles on their way. If interested please contact me!

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The grand finale for me was my acquaintance with this enormous gemstone. Cool to the touch, feeling a sense of security and magic all at the same time, as I hugged this beautiful rock.

IMG_1187Time to go. Heading North by car, it was impossible not to gain sight of the terrain. So different from the East Coast. Dryness, cacti and arid vegetation all over and forever it appeared.  I had the sense that John Wayne or Clint Eastwood were about to gallop out in front of my car on a horse being chased.  To my disappointment, this did not occur. Instead I feasted my eyes on all of the  new scenery and simply enveloped the vegetation. I knew Sedona was near, but it wasn’t until the car seriously approached these majestic mountains that I was completely awestruck. Looking like an oil painting, I had to pinch myself into reality. And, yes it was indeed real. This trip was so inspiring on many fronts. So much beauty, right here in the USA. Before I take you back to

IMG_1332           East Coast reality, please allow me to share this unique dining experience in Sedona. Driving by, my eye caught this amazing rustic structure. It sits high up on a mountain and if that isn’t enough.. the spectacular views from the veranda and dining room makes a creative canvass for the unusual them and menu. MARIPOSA;  A Latin inspired grill captivating nature surrounding the grounds as it also entices the stomach. It was truly a delicious experience. I strongly suggest you visit this or any of Lisa Dahl’s other dining establishments when in Sedona. You may click on the link http://mariposasedona.com for additional information. The food, views, service and hospitality was spectacular. I grew very fond of JB Mariposa’s Maître d’ rather quickly. His gracious demeanor and charm was just enough to inspire me to share this with you. Screen Shot 2016-02-25 at 7.58.24 AM

And the view from the veranda.. Simply breathtaking!

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Next up: Fashion Coterie. Market for Autumn/Winter 2017. Back to East Coast fun.

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With arrivals beginning in late July, I chose the hues, shapes, textures and styles for the next season. Ordering 6 months out. I was so excited about the tones I saw. It’s been a while that deep midnight blue has appeared  in fashion. I was delighted to see it in the collections done  by most of the designers I was attracted to. You can expect seeing that tone again at MATSU, in combination with Ochre, Deep Green, Bordeaux, some bright shots of deep Pinks, and finally harmonizing all the tones a deep Charcoal Grey appears. Harmony! Look at the bevy of color below. These scarves are all designed in Paris, made in India. They each tell their own story.ImageOn the Nymph front, I would love to share one of my newest pieces. It’s a locket filled with diamonds! I’ve paired it on a simple sterling silver oxidized chain. The choices are 18 or 32″. A small garnet briolette is the “garnish” accent for this piece. It’s brand new, as I’ve just turned out another collection. Most of it is complete, just waiting for the weather to break so I can shoot outdoors. Do you like it ? It’s royal, rich and brings creativity and enhancing the new directions your goals are to take you.

IMG_8670What would my blog posts be if I didn’t add some nutrition? I made this last night. Salmon in Parchment. The flavors simply melded inside the parchment. Cooked at 375 for about 45 minutes. The original recipe from Martha called for leeks. I thinly sliced leeks, tiny red tomatoes, shiitake mushrooms, added fresh tarragon, black Moroccan olives, salt, pepper , olive oil, drizzled white wine, sealed the paper with – staples, and voila! Delicious. All the flavors permeated together and the end result was simply amazing! Served with sautéed okra with garlic and shallots accompanied by wild rice. Yum!

IMG_1609 I started out with a shorter concept, but it kept growing. How can I leave anything out ? I can’t! My goal was to share my experiences with you, and I hope you enjoyed them. I look forward to hearing from you all!

Can’t wait to see you again in my shop once my abbreviated hours are revised. Until then feel free always to give me a call. I am happy to meet you at 92 Boston Post Road, in Sudbury. Here is my number. 617.510.6369

Yours in joy and style,

Dava

The Cornucopia of Life

Late Autumn is here; nearly over. The golden, brick and brown hues of the leaves fallen to the ground and crisp sounds of the dried leaves underfoot, triggers childhood memories. The distinct scent of autumn satiate my senses as I stroll outdoors soaking up the invigorating air, enjoying my environment. Screen Shot 2015-11-15 at 9.30.31 PM

The focus this month are appreciation and gratitude as we prepare for our Thanksgiving Holiday.           The word, humble stirs within. This is one of the most reflective holidays, planning our time with family and friends. Gathering, cooking, eating and playing, the day is filled with bounty. This is the true Cornucopia of life. This beautiful word is derived from Greek Mythology. It is the goat that suckled Zeus, and broke off becoming filled with fruit. Eventually, folklore wise, this horn would be filled with what ever the owner wished. The other term it came into being known as is a Horn of Plenty.Screen Shot 2015-11-20 at 1.19.55 PM

I rarely have the pleasure of actually seeing a Cornucopia any more. The art of this centerpiece can easily be created, with little imagination, time and treats of the season. A bevy of seasonal food pouring out from the horn. A feast for the eyes, heart and stomach.

The two foods I find essential for creating a unique meal, with depth and meaning are figs and olives. The two were discovered in ancient times, with much presence and symbolism. Olives
Image-2  are regarded as a symbol of peace and wisdom. The olive is associated in spiritual workings with bringing happiness, purity and harmony. Olive trees provide food, nutrition, timber and  medicine since ancient times. Moses referred to it as “the tree of life”. Italians have been known to hang an olive branch over the doors of their homes to ward off evil spirits.

Olives are rich in Omega 9 monounsaturated fats, minerals, such as potassium, calcium, zinc and phosphorous. They are also rich in vitamins E,D & K.  I’ve been enjoying cooking with them in combination with both African spices as well as Italian herbs. Chicken dishes are the best with them as an added pop of surprise. By adding them to dishes, they create another dimension to the food, and my absolute favorite this time of year is bringing fresh figs into the mix.  Figs. Aren’t they beautiful? Design by nature.

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Figs are a symbol of peace, plenty, and prosperity. They are an ancient fruit, cultivated for centuries and celebrated for their intense nourishment. Full of fiber, copper, vitamin B6 and potassium, they are  regarded as a sacred symbol. Allow me to dissect. The seeds are delicate, edible and abundant. Fig seeds signify universal understanding, unity and truth. Just think about those tiny little jewel toned specks unified in their purpose of creating more life. The tear drop shape body of the fruit itself, fills the hand with softness and subtle sensuality. The photos below reflect before and after. They are in their natural state, then I’ve sliced them drizzling olive oil and cracked pepper. They now can roast for about 20 minutes at 350. Wonderful accompaniment to salads, the deep pot chicken I referenced above along with the olives. Just luscious!Image-3The season brings us joy, and appreciation. It is the beginning of gift giving season. I am so happy to present some new products in MATSU now. More to enjoy, and enhance your meals. A great alternative to gift giving. Aged for 10 years, Balsamic Vinegar imported from Italy. $36. I suggest putting it to the creative test by chopping shallots and placing them in olive oil, heating until they pop. Add several tablespoons of Balsamic to it, with some herbs and whip as the heated olive oil mixture combines with the vinegar. Makes a great marinade and vinaigrette.
Limited Selection of delectable Olive Oil:Limited Selection Olive Oil imported from Italy $46.Use for dipping as is, or to enhance any meal.
Butcher Salt, with herbs laced through the heft grains of French Salt.Flavor packed Butcher Salt $24.Use on meats, fish, vegetables. Roasted or saute’. This salt is packaged in an industrial wood and metal 4″box. Included with the sea salt are rosemary, thyme, sage and marjoram.  These items are true enhancements to any meal, as well, as for your health.
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Apropos to Thanksgiving week, and prelude to the Holiday Season, allow me to introduce a few pieces from the Cornucopia Nymph Collection! Here I’ve used pearls with delicate brass strands, citrine chunks and Tahitian pearls, knotted Tahitian pearls, green garnet, Tahitian pearls and garnet accents, lastly a Medieval Diamond Sphere on 30″ chain, again garnet accent. All rich with healing properties, and characteristics determined to adorn not only your body, but your soul and spirit.Image-7

In addition to the jewelry above, I have embarked upon a new form of designing, using natural gemstones right from Earth. These are naturally terminated – meaning uncut, not dyed, appearing in their natural state. Organic beauty. These are pendants, worn on a short or long chain. The yellow stone up front is Apatite, the fireball sphere is Hessionite Garnet, the Peacock colored stone is fluorite, and the other two which look like ruby, are in fact, raspberry Garnets.                      Cornucopia at its best!IMG_0376

News Break: TRUNK SHOW at Exhale Spa, 28 Arlington St. Boston will be held Friday, December 4, Saturday, December 5 and Sunday, December 6!.  I am thrilled to revist. It was an unfortunate set of uncontrollable circumstances due to severe flooding this past weekend that they had to shut down the entire facility. Stay Tuned for emailed invitation. And so until then, I will hold a Trunk Show at MATSU. Can’t wait to see you in either or both locations.

Wishing you all a Cornucopia of happiness, joy, peace and appreciation for this holiday season and into the new year!

Yours in joy and style,

Dava

Harvesting the Senses

Hello everyone! As summer winds down, the time is right to observe a slight chill approaching, shorter days and lots of bounty in the food arena. This time of year gives us the opportunity to squeeze in outdoor activities, as we enjoy the lazy hazy hot sizzling summer days dwindle. We have had a glorious Summer, weather wise, certainly no shortage of Vitamin D! These past few days, however, have delivered an edge, with the skies opening right up. The over due down pour is so refreshing. I was able to capture the rain drops on my windshield yesterday, delighted with the results. Not exactly sure what it is that allows concentration to come easier when 
IMG_9535the sky reveals clouds, mist, fog and rain rather than the relentless blaring sun. But it does. The time will be here again soon enough, so for now we celebrate the harvest abound. I start with something I can’t recall ever seeing until this trip to Russo’s in Watertown. Such fun! The rich colors are so inviting. What I did withIMG_9531these orange plum tomatoes, is slice and saute’ in olive oil, several cloves of chopped garlic, fresh basil, salt and pepper. It made a wonderful rustic “sauce” served over fresh pasta. Simple. The next recipe I’ve been making several times a week just because tomatoes are addicting this time of year. IMG_5871The photo above reflects a baby heirloom tomato medley, chopped English cucumber, small amount of chopped celery for more texture, capers, lime, cilantro. The “dressing” is nothing but 1/4 cup of olive oil heated with chopped garlic, and my new twist is adding shallot also. It gives the dish a rounder flavor. Squeeze the lime on the vegetables while the heated oil does its thing; run outside to my herb garden, and slice a big bunch of cilantro with scissors; slice it all over the bright contents in the bowl. By now,the
 chopped shallots and garlic  pop from the heat in the oil. Let it sit for a few minutes. Add crushed salt and pepper, then pour the oil mixture over the contents in the bowl.. Using salad servers, mix it well. refrigerate. Then pull out at meal time, and snip some fresh chives over it. Delicious!

Late summer boasts Harvesting, and appropriately named, I have concluded my latest collection of jewelry from Nymph. Allow me to introduce HARVEST.ImageThe Moody Blues sang “as the reds, browns, golds of Autumn lie in the gutter dead”; I add greens to this mixture. This collection is not shy of bold color nor pendants. They all feel like talisman to me. Your body will find comfort in these shapes and tones as the energy  speaks to the heart and  root chakras. Above you can see how much I enjoy shooting the gemstones on natural elements usually found in the woods behind my place of dwelling. Some of the pendants are adorned further using the halo treatment of diamonds surrounding the large gemstones.  Above, you’ll see aventurine, hessionite garnet in a couple of pieces ( very autumnal ), tanzanite mixed with citrine, african turquoise mixed with olive wood, holding a very large faceted topaz drop, triple strands of 31″ long brass and sterling silver giving way to the most magnificent rutilated quartz ever and in the center bottom row, is a newly learned stone for me Pietersite- it’s held with hessionite garnet and olive wood. Pietersite is known as the stone of vision. It is also a stone that resembles a thunderstorm bringing cleansing energy to aid one to create change.  Pietersite is known to help make an energetic connection to one’s deeper spiritual inner self. All of the pieces above and any of them from my collection speaks messages, sings tunes, and enlightens the mind and heart. Once you touch – you’ll see exactly what I mean. All are on display now for you to play with at MATSU, 92 Boston Post Road, Sudbury, Ma. 01776. Just call for an appointment. My hours will be back to normal after this coming weekend. Everyone is somewhere, other than here. Traffic differs so much to that of Newbury St back when!

 I’d like to complete my post this month with two “events”. The first is by introducing something I’ve been asked to replicate now for years… I did it. In the form of a Candle.! My signature scent will now be available in the form of a soy base candle, poured here in the US., hand packaged in Sudbury, and brought into your life.  60 hour burn time. $58. Available late September. DAVA.Candle1‘d a v a ‘ as appropriately named, you’ll discover once you smell this amazing scent. As described on the box; Hints of sandalwood, exotic spice and fresh air collide to create a rich and earthy fragrance conjuring a sensual and meditative state of mind.  

On September 20th, I’ll be holding my first event this Autumn. BOOK SIGNING< READING & SPIRITED DISCUSSION at Matsu, among all of the new merchandise in for fall! If you’d like to read this Memoir written by Diane Fraser, I’ll have it in store for purchase or you can go to Amazon. Growing Up Super Heroes. You will never take anything for granted in your life again. This book is very powerful, and I promise Sunday, September 20th will also be insightful. 11-4. 92 Boston Post Road.

 

Thank you for joining me on this journey. I look forward to seeing you in store and at this event very soon.

Yours in joy and style,

Dava

Summer Jubilee in July

Upon the start of  writing this blog post, I heard the soft pitter- patter  of  Summer’s rain, as it hit  the nearby ground and roof surfaces. It’s always a refreshing sense to hear, feel and see amidst the perpetual heat. Nature needs the water, as do our own bodies. As a result of rain, Earth is replenished, blooms flourish. I welcome the grey skies, it gives me permission to relax indoors and go about my chores what ever the bucket list of them is at that time. Sort of like an abbreviated snow day, during this wonderful sunny summer. Still, I feel the calm the rain brings, and simply love it among the misty skies of grey.  On this rainy day,I accidentally happened to have created this design with a water bottle. The little nuances nature provides. Serendipity.FullSizeRenderHad I not been fully present, I would have yanked the Poland Spring bubbly bottle off the counter of slate, placed it back into the fridge and missed this beauty. Note the clear reflections in the distinct shapes of water.

I honestly don’t know what it is about water that  soothes so much. Gentle  harmony, perhaps?

The sounds of a waterfall, the beauty of the brook babbling over small and large rocks, the resonating tone of the ocean waves crashing down upon one another.  We are surrounded by these innate sounds and acts of nature.. which I  especially  notice not living in the city, any more. I find respite from these natural performances. I am not really sure how it is possible,  having type A personality, I can decompress so very quickly at the beach. It never fails to disappoint. Ever!

I share a photo from one of my several excursions this summer on the Plum. Plum Island, that is. It’s a smaller beach than the vast beauty at Crane, in Ipswich, but I rather fancy the intimacy here. The sand is darker and coarser. I leave completely rejuvenated. Always.IMG_8923It is unfortunate, however that the glory of the summer months on the North Shore is rather abbreviated from mid July to nearly mid August. Why?  Beasts of the North East. That’s why. What am I referring to? Greenheads. That’s what.  The ground of salt marsh is springy, sort of like walking on a lumpy trampoline. Water oozes through the tufts of matted grass. Apart from an occasional deer, assorted birds, turtles maybe an otter, the Greenheads dominate this territory. They are very hungry, and their main source of desire is the blood from humans. Not a pleasant situation. They are so determined and can make your vacation a nightmare. Nothing can keep them away. Deet which is one of the primary ingredients in bug spray won’t do the trick either. The stuff is bad enough for your skin, but honestly? It won’t work.Screenshot 2015-07-13 13.47.35Despite the beautiful intense emerald-green head stay away!  Time to head to the beaches on the South Shore. You have been warned.

On a delicious note: Look at the yummy treat I had the privilege of trying this weekend. Small  delectable chunks of parmesan and romano cheeses. Drizzled with honey, and sprinkled with fresh black pepper. Creating this dish is so easy, The longer it sits at room temperature, the more flavor with each bite. Serve with olives, and crusty Italian or French bread. Perhaps even a strawberry.IMG_9012It is such a joy experimenting with the flavors this season has to offer. Colorful berries are bursting with flavor. They just are ready to be picked and served. They really do want to “show off” their magnificent vividness right now. A very dear friend mentioned  of blackberries, and peaches. I took it upon myself to experiment with this colorful contrast and created a salad. I added baby arugula, mozzarella balls and fresh chives. Look at this beautiful bounty. I substituted white balsamic for red wine vinegar. IMG_9027A lovely, light, yet provocative vinaigrette.  Using Country Style Dijon, salt, pepper, and 1/3 cup olive oil that I had sautéed with fresh chopped shallots. These little devils simply swam in the olive oil on high, the moment they began to burst, I removed from the heat. In the mixer, goes the mustard, about 5 tablespoons of vinegar, salt, pepper, a dash of oregano. Then whisk in the olive oil permeated with shallots.IMG_9022 Doesn’t the golden color look inviting?  This salad dressing is light and can be used on a bevy of summer dishes.

The next photo reflects a tomato dish that I created last summer, and each time I make it, there is another revision. Cooking to me is rather like painting. It’s all about how I feel at that given moment, for what will predominate the dish. This one has oodles of chopped in half Cherub tomatoes in red and golden-yellow, chopped celery, chopped English cucumber, chopped fresh chives, capers, ground lemon rind from the whole lemon. The “dressing” is nothing but olive oil, once again with chopped garlic this time. I heat about 1/4 cup of olive oil, chop about 5 garlic cloves finely, and then heat it all. Once again, as the garlic begins to dance with the heat, in the pan, I pull from the burner. The results, I have discovered, are best when refrigerating upon finish, then pulling out about 30 minutes before you are ready to serve. Gorgeous!IMG_9033As we meander through mid summer, which I’d rather not end, find myself having to tolerate the sounds of the low humming compressor from all air conditioners everywhere I go. I don’t like them, use them or need it. I do look forward to air peace. The constant drone of the noise drives me utterly crazy. It fills my head with noise, and causes irritability. I  regretfully  admit.  Yes, perhaps that noise and the Greenheads are my biggest complaint about the summer months.  Hark! I peer outside my window in the evening, then run outdoors briefly to join the Fireflies. Any temporary discomfort I tune into,  fade as I dance amidst their magnificent symphonic light.  Mid Summer’s Night Dream: Fire Flies in July.Screenshot 2015-07-13 21.34.40

I do look forward to crisp air.  In my industry, July is the last of relaxation, in a sense, since it’s the precursor to Autumn.  Several capsule collections will be in store by end of August, beginning September. I truly am excited about this. Woman can not survive on gems alone. They certainly help, however in more ways than just one. A verbal tease of what’s to come; Rich Edwardian Velvet from Lilith, Sexy embellished bags from Jamin Puech, architectural taffeta from Matthildur, deep jewel tones from Majestic, frivolity from Lunn, to name a few. The photo below represents a piece from Icelandic designer, Matthildur. Just love her wearable taffeta fabrics! Her designs and fabrics really are movement inspiring.Screenshot 2015-07-13 15.13.44

I’ve been busy designing jewelry this summer. In my past blog journey posts, I usually discuss the stone of the month, this one being Ruby; July’s birthstone. However, we all know how in love with rubies I am, but I felt the urge to share something new. Upon several personal requests from clients, I am pleased to announce an edition to Nymph: Herkimer Diamond earrings. See description below.Herkimer Diamond EarringsIMG_6718These earrings are suspended on an 18k gold ear wire. They measure approximately 1/2″. As stated above, no two are alike, but I have calibrated the pair to become one in harmony with each other.
Herkimer Diamonds are actually crystal quartz, but their facets unique. They imbue the sense of diamonds. These raw quartz crystals are mined exclusively in Herkimer County, NY. They are believed to be nearly 500 million years old, each stone has naturally formed with eighteen facets, six sides, and two points (double terminated). While they are not actually diamonds, they earned this nickname for their diamond-like shapes. The diverse crystals come with a number of mystical inclusions, which add to their value and character. Each stone is uniquely formed.  Herkimer Diamonds are ascension stones; they will take you to the highest spiritual vibration possible while still being in your physical body. This stone energizes, enlivens and promotes creativity. They enhance telepathy, and memory. Herkimer Diamond is a detoxification stone. If you click on the link above the photo, it will take you directly to the site to purchase. You can also find them at my shop, MATSU. Check Facebook for summer hour revisions. IMG_8828

The little lace frock shown above is a wonderful accessory to wear over just about anything. It’s cropped swing shape is flattering. I truly look forward to sharing the Capsule Collections I have on order, which will begin to appear late August. From Lilith, I fell in love with this Edwardian Blue Velvet series, Matthildur has  ( Icelandic designer formerly ELM )designed a charming collection of wearable clothing offering ease and elegance in taffeta, and jerseys. Fresh from France, Jamin Puech never comes short in their signature embellishment styles in handbags, Majestic brought back bordeaux, which thrills me. Just to name a few  designers  I can’t wait for you all to experience these lush fabrics and unique designs in person, in MATSU coming this Autumn.

Please feel free to call for a private showing. I am also happy to offer hosting a party for you and your intimate friends at the shop. We can create something unique. I will be offering events, this fall. Stay tuned.

Enjoy this beautiful weather.

I hope you have enjoyed this journey, designed for you!

Yours in joy,

Dava


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

May Emeralds, June Pearls and Spiritual Antioxidants

The month of May is a whirlwind in contrast to the ever slow pace of  Winter months left behind. Seems like history now.

Entering late spring, the momentum and energy of the season, sparks our souls and anything stagnantly left over from where we were in the past.   Now sizzling with excitement and potential, in contrast, we can see how our minds glazed over during our long hibernation period. It’s easy to forget how greenery can be so inspiring, fresh and uplifting.  The flowering trees are icing on the cake. Such a wondrous contrast having cohabited with nature’s stark, naked branches as the result of the season’s natural full swing course. Welcoming the bounty, blooming in all varieties. Flowering trees such as the one below, are warmly welcomed as they create a canopy over the St. Botolph Street area. This intoxicating sight can transport you right off the city street.

IMG_4028In more rural areas, the color green is most prominent. All different values and tones of this earthy refreshing hue are apparent. Green is the color of renewal and rebirth. Representing harmony, balance and nature. Green symbolizes good luck and health. It has a calming influence, and promotes health and healing. People who love green tend to be loving and nurturing.

IMG_8595_2May’s birthstone is Emerald. Gem of Venus. The deeper and more vivid the color green, the more valuable,the stone. Known as the “stone of succesful love”, Emerald opens and nurtures the heart chakra. This stone is also known to release inner negativity you may be holding on to. Within nature, this wonderful hue exudes its color and energy of the green ray.  Emerald celebrates May.  Appearing in later Spring, everything is lush, especially after rain. The Nymph necklace below personifies the variations of colors within the stones, creating definition and dimension within this piece.IMG_4534Emerald enhances unconditional love, unity and promotes friendship. Serenity, intuition, intelligence, clear vision, truth and communication are all traits induced when wearing Emerald. The double strand Emerald necklace below reflects a slightly different cut than the smooth  graduated stones above. You can see a tremendous variation within the stones here, partially due to their cut facets. This piece has a focal pendant of pave diamonds in the shape of an Angel’s wing, encouraging new beginnings and freedom.

Available now, at MATSU.IMG_4492Continue to enjoy this Spring’s bevy of greens in nature, when walking in the woods, or driving your car. Don’t take it for granted! As the months glide by, late Spring into Summer, and the days become much brighter longer, we come upon June.The month of the Summer Solstice and the longest day of the year; June 21. This event is a couple of weeks away, but honestly, once the fire flies hit, it seems like time simply whizzes by! I am combining 2 months in this one blog post, because just that…. the month of June is already upon us. It’s magnificent birthstone is the Pearl. Spiritual Antioxidants! Look at the lustre, and the tonal variation of these Tahitian babies… just beautiful. Pearls have healing qualities associated with lunar energy, and is the gemstone of the planet MOON.Screenshot 2015-06-03 14.00.02

Coming in all sizes, colors and shapes, this classic stone is a sure fit as an addition into everyone’s wardrobe of clothing, or jewel collection. This stone is indeed an organic gem, created by living creatures. The only gemstone made by living animals, in fact. Harvesting Pearls from mollusks does not kill the animal. Saltwater pearls come from oysters and freshwater pearls come from the mussel.Screenshot 2015-06-03 14.18.45

One who wears or possesses a pearl enjoys the good fortune and is blessed by the goddess Lakshimi ( goddess of prosperity), lives long and acquires vitality and intelligence. Pearl signifies faith, charity and innocence. It enhances personal integrity and helps to provide a focus to ones attention. Interestingly, Pearl inhibits boisterous behavior. Purity, Honesty, Innocence, Integrity, Focus, Concentration, Wisdom…are traits of the mysterious Pearl.IMG_4854

The photo above is Tahitian pearl, with a couple of ruby accents sitting nearby, suspended from elliptical shape faceted green amethyst necklace. This piece is 22″ long. I love the combination of the stones, and the pearl. The deep colored pearl adds  natural serenity. Also available at MATSU, now.

The month of June is named after the Roman goddess Juno- wife of Jupiter and queen of the gods. Joyous June. Winter is gone. Summer is approaching, and so is the abundance of food, as we seek a lighter nutritional diet, and so may I present to you 6 Foods that taste better in June than any other time of the year. And so I begin.

Beets: available in different colors, high in fiber, having an earthy taste and a tinge of sweetness. Holding a high amount of antioxidants, as well as vitamin C.

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Asparagus:  quite versatile. Baked, roasted, saute’d, or grilled.  High in Vitamins A,C E and K. Terrific in salads too. High source of folate and fiber. From the Lily family!Screenshot 2015-06-03 15.10.08

Garlic:  rather pungent when raw, but almost nutty if roasted, or grilled. High source of antioxidants, and a natural stress reducer. Boosts the immune system.Screenshot 2015-06-03 15.13.01

Peas: prevents colon cancer, osteoporosis, strengthens the immune system, prevents aging high in vitamins B1, B2, B3, B6. eating them raw, is best! they are like candy, only better.Screenshot 2015-06-03 15.10.41

Peaches: high in vitamins C and A, promotes healthy skin, reduces hair loss, prevents heart disease and obesity related diabetes, calms an upset stomach.Screenshot 2015-06-03 15.11.54

Strawberries: nutrient rich, packed with antioxidants, Vitamin C, immune system booster, fights bad cholesterol, wrinkle prevention, promotes eye health, reduces inflammation.Screenshot 2015-06-03 15.11.22So there you have it! A very edited version of something I am very passionate about. The topic includes nutritional qualities, color, nature, health and beauty. I hope you find the information helpful. Sharing this with you brings me pleasure. I ask that you do the same for yourself by sharing with your friends and loved ones.

Until we meet again, I thank you for reading my blog and invite your feedback. I also invite you to visit me at Matsu. Come on in with a question, or concern you may have in your life, feeling stuck, or trying to remove any other obstacles in order for you to become the best you can be. Gemstones do not lie. I am here to assist, and they are my tools. Their energy awaits. Color therapy, retail therapy. We can always experiment. Can’t wait to see you soon.

I’d also like very much, to thank all of you who came to support me, and my shop, the Astrologer and Tarot Reader on May 17th, at my Opening Celebration.  Your willingness to learn and explore makes me very happy. Keep curious. It’s healthy.

Stay tuned for the next gathering.

Yours in joy,

Dava

 

March Teases, Tickles and Tantalizes

The long-awaited thaw has arrived! Looking up into the sky early this morning, I saw a stunning sliver of the waning moon.Meansing, the moon is decreasing in size, moving away from the Full Moon towards the New Moon; a time for spells that banish, release and reverse; a time to break old habits or bad habits that no longer serve, including unhealthy relationships. This is the perfect time of deep intuition and a time for divination, a period lasting about 2 weeks. Taking advantage of this will create space for the next new thing wishing to enter your life but can only do this when a clearing is available.  The time for positive celestial influences  The time to reap the benefit of its state, and a time renewal. A time to review endeavors, correcting mistakes. Settle disputes and make amends. It might be challenging, but by taking things apart that no longer serve your soul; unnecessary negativity begins to dissipate, obstacles preventing you from moving forward become a force for this clearing/cleaning of the soul. Spring cleaning, if you will.  In shifting your mind from feeling loss, once you begin to feel the lightness in removing these obstacles, you will notice this sense of true rich gain!

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At this time, in keeping with the heavens above, I would like to  formally introduce to you our Celestial Candle Collection. Some of you may have already experienced these delectable scents. The elements have been  conceptually coordinated to their purpose in the sky. The collection exists of Stars, Sun, Full Moon & Crescent Moon. Individually hand boxed and painted; each box includes a RUMI poem. These soy based candles are $30 each, with a burn time of 60 hours.FullSizeRender

Stars; are the stuff we are made of carbon, nitrogen and oxygen atoms. The universe is inside us and outside. We are in it, and of it we belong to the skies. Scent: Siberian Cyprus, Moss and Cyclamen.

Sun: is benevolent, sustaining all life. Sunlight provides energy, clarity, confidence and fuel to grow, dispelling darkness both inside and out. Scent: Poppy

Crescent Moon: A time for planting seeds, for taking stock, letting go of old patterns that no longer serve, initiating the new. Scent: Olive, Lavender, Eucalyptus and Hyacinth.

Full Moon: When things come into fruition and emotions are the fullest. The full moon amplifies  these emotions and unveil what is hidden within ourselves, by providing the light for us all to see.  Scent: Cassis, Citrus Peel and Fir.

These candles are all available now at MATSU. Please come in and experience them!

Many feel January through March unnecessary, however, each month has its purpose. This one being the last of the Zodiac cycle; harmonizing all characteristics of the months prior. This one slowly burning a bright light, lasting longer day by day. This one holding a glimpse of optimistic hope as we anxiously await the first Robin sighting and long-awaited excitement at the thought of the first burst of life emerging from the frozen, snow-covered ground. Screenshot 2015-03-18 08.18.36

March is known for its swinging moods with varying degrees of temperature.

Gemstone of the month Aquamarine!

Aqua is the stone of courage. It soothes, calms and helps to alleviate fears. It is a natural form of anxiety release and also combats depression.It harmonizes its surrounding and protects against pollutants. In ancient times it was believed to contract the forces of darkness and acquire favor from the spirits of light. It was a talisman carried by sailors to protect against drowning. This stone gives support and encouragement to anyone overwhelmed by responsibility. It clears blocked communication as it promotes self-expression. Spiritually, Aquamarine sharpens intuition and opens clairvoyance.

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The birthstone of this mutable water sign is Aquamarine. Derived from the Latin word seawater. ( Aqua marina) Aqua is a combination of blue with a little yellow in it. It radiates peace, calm and tranquility. This is a color that recharges our spirits during times of mental stress. The color Aqua calms the nervous system and builds confidence. It increases the levels of creativity and sensitivity. Aqua heightens our ability to open the door to spiritual growth. How convenient, that this time of year, as much of a tease at it is, is truly the awakening of our spirits which have been rather dormant and introspective during this long ,long winter we now are just beginning to emerge from.

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This Spring is slow to come, but it is finally beginning to reveal itself. We are awakening our inner selves, and beginning to broaden our food and nutrition intake with more variety of what is available as the Spring arrives.  Asparagus, Brussel Sprouts, Fiddleheads and Okra are coming into abundance, but my absolute favorite are Artichokes! One of my Italian family traditions. I just stuffed them this week. Here is a photo of them, prior to prep.  From the Mediterranean and the thistle family,  they are loaded with fiber, niacin, Vitamin B6, Iron and Phosphorus. Vitamin C, Vitamin K, Floate, Magnesium, Potassium, Copper and Manganese.

FullSizeRender Simply cut off each tip of the leaves, slice the stem off also. Discard the leaf tips, but keep the stems.IMG_2161

They will accompany the Artichoke body in the deep pan to cook. All you need for 6 artichokes are the following:   1.3/4 lbs 93% lean ground beef, 2 cups of grated parmesan, 3 cups unflavored bread crumbs, fresh flat parsley, salt, pepper, garlic cloves, basil, oregano.

Brown the ground beef along with the  thinly sliced garlic. I use about 6 cloves. Then combine the remaining ingredients in a stainless bowl, or large deep pan and mix with your hands. Squeezing the ingredients together. The more you handle it all, the better they are mixed. You then will open each leaf and stuff this wonderful “stuffing” inside. Once completed, drizzle olive oil on the bottom of the pan, place as many artichokes as possible in the pan ( I use 2 large pans, 3 artichokes in each) then place the stems, at the bottom of the pan. You can also add tiny potatoes, mahogany carrots, or celery. These vegetables will round out the meal, but also take on the wonderful flavor of this terrific vegetable. Be sure to add water to the bottom of the pan and keep the flame low. The slower they cook, the better! Do not let the water evaporate. Keep adding as needed. They will be done in about 45 minutes. IMG_2172

 

Happy Spring everyone! Please let me know if you try my recipe actually, my Grandmother’s. I look forward to hearing from you, and also now that the snow is allowing us to open up our lives little by little from the dormant winter, I also invite you to visit me at MATSU located at 92 Boston Post Road in Sudbury. I am working on our Opening Celebration, which will be loaded with spirits, treats and soul tapping! Sunday, May 17th!

See you there, if not before!

I hope you enjoyed this blog on our journey into Spring!

Yours in joy,

Dava