Yes, it is sappy. But it is worth repeating: I am so grateful to the friends who have been by my side this year.

Anyone who has been through rough times knows that those are the moments when you really find out who your friends are. Some people disappear after muttering a few polite sentiments; some even blow up, releasing pent up hostility you might not have even known was lurking. No matter. With time, it all gets sorted out: either you decide some relationships are too toxic to carry forward, or you forgive, or at least forget. There is an art to letting go, though I am still looking for the instruction manual I misplaced.

Trouble seems to occupy more conversational airtime than happiness; think about all the time you spend complaining and bemoaning. When, come to think of it, was the last time I called a friend to exclaim gleefully? That'll have to change. In the meantime, here's thanks to all of you who have joined the conversation at Slow Love Life.

And thanks to my friend, the extraordinarily talented Frances Palmer, for first putting a camera in my hands. I visited her studio and her frozen garden last month, and recently asked her to create a limited edition of hand made holiday ornaments for readers of Slow Love Life. One's a zinnia, one a cactus dahlia; the petals go to the edge on one design, and are bordered on another. One even has a small pocket to hold buds or branches. The gorgeous snow-drenched flowers measure about four inches across.

I think these ornaments would make perfect hang tags for gifts any time of the year; I've got one hanging off a key on a cupboard. All are signed Frances Palmer on the back, with the words "Slow Love". You can buy the flower ornaments by linking here to Frances' website. I think anything handmade is the perfect way to express the values of slow love--and I'm glad to be able to share my enthusiasm with all of you.


Bruce Barone said...

And we thank you!

Madgew said...

It is wonderful reading your stories. Happy Holidays and a glorious New Year to you and your family and your readers.

SweetRetreat said...

We, the readers of your wonderful blog, are the fortunate ones. I look forward to each new posting and mix of readers' comments.

Very best wishes for a Merry Christmas and much health and happiness in the New Year..

Pamela Terry and Edward said...

Ooh. She makes the most beautiful things.
Those cake plates! Swoon-worthy.

mary said...

Thanks for giving voice to so many steps that souls are presented to climb. Some are easy; some are not.
Your blog lightens my day. Thank you immensely.

Karena said...

Dominique, I want to thank you for your insight, encouragement and support!

Frances makes the MOST lovely pottery!

Do come and enter my giveaway from Fifi Flowers $200 value!


Art by Karena

William said...

Those ornaments do look lovely, but to keep up with the trend I've recently gotten into the 'local' movement and so this year, to honor that, my ornaments will all come from the CVS or Duane Reade, each just blocks away from where I live. I'm very committed to the local/green movement, so this year it's CVS and Duane Reade for me when it comes to Christmas ornaments. Although Weston, CT is a scant 100 miles from NYC it seems a world away when compared with my local CVS which is just steps away. I hope everyone shops locally this year. The best thing is the ornaments from CVS and Duane Reade are made in China by children, nothing says Christmas like ornaments made by children. Today i bought a beautiful Charlie Brown Christmas Nativity Scene at CVS made of Thermosplastic Polymers by children in China - and NOT ONE TREE WAS FELLED for the creation of this beautiful ornament.

Lines of Beauty said...

Thanks Dominique. I look forward to what you have to share in 2011.

The ornaments are gorgeous. Oh la la!

david terry said...

Dear "William",

I just read your comment and immediately considered that you and I would probably get along.

Actually, I have a longstanding reputation (for whatever it's worth) as a designer of tres-original Christmas ornaments.

As my parents regularly remind me, I was in second grade when, carrying out the trash, I discovered that my wasteful and incredibly blind-to-beauty mother had thrown away an absolutely gorgeous, little pink plastic box. I distinctly recall being fascinated/delighted to find that, when opened, it revealed a very grown-up calendar on the inside of the lid. I retrieved it frm the garbage and, back in my room, decorated it even further with glitter and christmas ribbons...and I scrawled "Merry Christmas, Miss Peoples!" (yes, I still recall her name) on it. The next day, I made a big show of presenting it to her, in front of EVERYBODY (including "room" mothers who'd come to help) at the school Christmas party.

My mother got five or so telephone calls that afternoon before I'd come home from my grandmother's house.

Turns out that seven-year-old me had retrieved, decorated, and giddily (and quite publicly) given-to-my-favorite-teacher...the container for my mother's monthly birth-control.

This was in 1968 or so, and no one thought the incident was amusing.

Level Best as Ever,

David Terry

Cristina said...

they are beautiful and it's lovely to have them dangling from a cupboard key.

Dominique said...

Yes, nothing says Christmas like child labor, international carbon miles, and a little bit of lead and mercury thrown in to spice up the mix. But you didn't need me to tell you that, did you? Happy Shopping!

Dominique said...

Yes, nothing says Christmas like child labor, international carbon miles, and a little bit of lead and mercury thrown in to spice up the mix. But you didn't need me to tell you that, did you? Happy Shopping!

William said...


Yes, I know child labor, international carbon miles and a little bit of lead and mercury thrown in really do say Christmas! In fact with each Thermoplastic Polymer ornament made in China at CVS I buy I take great comfort in knowing that the money I am spending will ultimately be lent back to the United States by the Chinese to help support the really intelligent 'war' we are fighting in Afghanistan at a cost of 2.8 million dollars per week. It's my way of helping with the national cause and I feel like it's my way for giving back a little for the holiday season.

William said...

2.8 BILLION dollars per week that is.

Grace said...

Hi Dominique, thank you for sharing these wonderful works of art by Frances Palmer. Handmade pieces and handwritten notes are my favourite gifts to give and receive. I've bookmarked Frances Palmer as I'll make a point to check out her pieces the next time I'm in the US. From the website, her vases and bowls are just stunningly unique.

Letting go can be a difficult process. I hope you're able to soon...

Dominique said...

Gee, William, now that you put it that way....

And Grace, re letting go: I'll post my handy guide to purging next...So glad you like Frances' work. Perhaps she can open up new markets in China. I'll suggest it.

William said...


I think you are on to something with the idea of opening up new markets in China for these ornaments. Taking that one step further, you could suggest to Frances Palmer that she look into actually manufacutring these ornaments in China. China has developed some excellent plastic polymers in recent years that would seem to be a natural fit for the manufacturing of these ornaments. Yes, the ornaments would be somewhat toxic, but they would definitely be much more durable than terracotta. If the toxic gasses put off by the plastic polymer ornaments bother certain people they can just leave their windows open - that solves the problem.

Anonymous said...

Dear Dominique, I am so glad I found your wonderful blog. What I like the most about it is, you say it like it really is, like life really is. I will be looking forward to reading all from you in 2011. Take care and thank you, Hugs, Joyce

Anonymous said...

ps, I am all for a few real things, a few things stand out more. What I really like to do is buy 2 inch. wide red grosgrain ribbon from a craft shop, here in Ca. I go to Joannes, and tie bows around things I already have out. Looks Christmassy and can iron and use again for next year. And the cost is very small. Hugs to you, Joyce

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