Welcome to Margica's Notebook!!!

My aim for this blog is to share with the world my inspirations, stories, and thoughts behind my jewelry shop on Etsy, Margica.

Two Hands + One Creative Mind= Margica

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Little Blue Chip

"Look, look under that rock, in the water is something blue, do you see it?" My daughter was pointing into the wave. I reach and here it is, a chip of porcelain with a beautiful cobalt blue glaze. Now this is interesting, and I smirked because I knew that this was special.
"What do you think it is mom?" My daughter asks me.
"Well," flipping the piece in my hands and turning it towards the sun to have a better look at it, "why don't you try to feel it first? This is not a piece of bone china, but it is light as a feather, chalky white on the back, and to me this looks like a fine quality piece of porcelain. It looks very old. Let's see. Who used cobalt blue glaze in the old days? This chip is not made recently obviously. It could be a piece of Dutch china, after all they did colonize this part of the world and brought here plenty of Delft pottery. It also could be English too. They began to use blue cobalt glaze in the 1800s, or it could be Chinese. However, I tend to believe that it was manufactured in Delft. This cobalt blue color is very special. As you can see the chip is flat, and it could be from some sort of a plate, not a vase, or a cup. Anyway, think of it as a tiny token of history. What you have now in your hand, is a true conversation piece, and you and your girlfriends could play Nancy Drew to figure out it's history and origins. Isn't it mindblowing to figure out who were the people that manufactured it, who were the people who used it in their daily lives, and of how it came to end up here in the Atlantic waters, on the New York Gold Coast."
  Some time ago, I listened to the New York City leading hurricane historian Nicholas Coch, a professor of coastal geology at Queens College, discussing about the beach findings at Rockaway beach with a team of students. With that occasion, he realized that the artifacts washed ashore were coming from the only island that had been swallowed by the ocean on the night of August 23, 1893. That night a devastating category 2 hurricane made landfall close to the NYC. The following morning, August 24, Hog Island had dissapeared. Now you have to know that a large sand barrier island began to raise during the Civil War times, and that barrier island was named Hog Island. It seems that the Native Americans used the island to raise pigs, and later people had built inns, hotels, and used the island for sunbathing like a resort area. Now what if that little chip was part of a plate somewhere on Hog Island. Its not impossible, no?
 "As a matter of fact, you and the girls can research further on the history of Hog Island as well as the surrounding area. You can learn from this little blue porcelain chip; more about the history of these shores than I can tell you now. Think about it, very few New Yorkers know about the existance of Hog Island, and many more when asked about it will just shrug their shoulders and say, 'Why should I know? I wasn't born then', and sadly enough not many are interested in learning the history..a chip of what?"

 To make it even more interesting I mounted this little blue chip on a piece of mother of pearl, and secured it with a crocheted silver wire. That's how the little blue porcelain chip became a beautiful piece of jewelry, a true conversation piece that will spark many interesting discussions. It is a piece that long after I will move to the Rainbow, it will help my daughter to teach her children how to keep an open eye and mind for precious treasures like this and spark the imagination.



Sunday, July 17, 2011

What A Beautiful Day!!

What a beautiful July day! Perfect beach day! In the morning I called a dear friend of ours, "Aunty J" as my daughter calls her, to join us for a lazy day under the sun. We like to spend our lazy beach days on the part of Long Island that used to be called the "Gold Coast".  We discovered a more secluded stretch of beach, not too crowded, but where you can relax an unwind yourself away from the frenzy of day to day life. Swimming in the cold sea water is so refreshing, what a total bliss!! I wish I would be able to do this every day.
  Late afternoon the tide receded and we took a long walk along the shore combing it for treasures. You never know what the sea may bring you.

  Today we found a few awesome sea glass pieces, and some very interesting stone pebbles. Coming home I felt inspired to make a new pendant for my daughter as a reminder of the beautiful times that we spent together like today. I call it Sea Angel. Happy and smiling with a twinkle in her eyes, she gave me a hug and a kiss while whispering in my ear, "Mom you are the best! I'll treasure this forever!". Need I say more?
 What a wonderful day!!

Our beautiful sky at the beach.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

High Five

    I arrived from work today, parked my car, took out my groceries, and wrestled to find my keys to open the front door to the apartment building. As I was talking aloud to myself, and yes using my tush to actually push myself in, I heard, "Hey!" a shy voice sounding from the mailbox area, "It's a hot day, no?". Oops! I was caught in the act talking to myself by one of my neighbors.
   "Oh hi! Yeah that's summer in NYC. Hot and sticky."
   "You know..." Her voice continues, "I just mailed you an invitation, did you get it?"
    "An invitation?" For a moment I froze in thought. My lettuce escaped from one of my bags, and here come the tomatoes rolling down the lobby floor. What a mess.
    "No, no I didn't. Not yet." I picked up the bruised vegetables, carefully put them back in my grocery bag, and I entered the mailbox area.  "What invitation did you send me?"
     The voice suddenly had a head too. A pretty freckled face with two vivid hazel eyes.
    "To my wedding, of course!"
    "To your wedding? Congratulations! When is the happy event?" I asked. Well, you have no idea how light I suddenly felt. A wedding? No kidding. That's good news!
     I met this girl a few times before in the elevator, she moved into the building last year, and we exchanged the usual morning and evening greetings. In December the first snow arrived, and I helped her to shovel her car out of the largest heap of snow you can imagine. Later that day she knocked at my door, and brought a beautiful assortment of herbal teas, with a cute 'thank you' note. My daughter was back from college for the weekend, and we invited her to join us for dinner. That's how we got to know her better.
    She moved here from Cleveland, OH and works as a dental assistant in the city. As a young girl, she was eager to meet new people and make new friends. I invited her to also join us the following day to go shopping at the best place in Forest Hills: Austin Street. We shopped at Eddie Bauer, Banana Republic, and the girls had their hair cut at one of the hair salons. In other words we had a great day!
    Just before Valentine's Day she knocked at the door again, and asked for my advice. She had a new date and wanted to look special and beautiful.
   "As a present for the occasion, a good luck piece, here is a necklace that I made. Hope it will bring you joy, and don't forget, invite me to your wedding." I finished with a joke. We both laughed, and as I gave it to her she gazed in awe and appeared touched by the gesture.

   Well, as you can see she will get married and it so happens that it will be with the very date she had that Valentine's Day. I made just one other, and named it Valentine. I told my daughter the news, and she just smiled and said, "High five mom!"


Sunday, July 10, 2011

Fontana di Trevi

   With all the "bad news" that the media is bombarding us, I just felt the need to cut it off. I wanted to watch an old movie, yes, romantic, a bit goofy just to lift my spirits and enjoy a lazy July afternoon. To let go of all the bad energy. Looking through my old tapes, yes, I still have my old VCR, I came across "Three Coins in The Fountain"-- Oh ho ho ho! What a story!! I bet very few people know the secret of Fontana di Trevi.
    Hundreds of tourists every day throw a coin, make a wish, but have no clue whatsoever as to why they do it. I was one of them long ago. Finding myself in Rome, spending time around the fountain, I followed all the others and made my wish, closed my eyes, and threw a coin over my head. Bocelli's voice filled the August air, the sun was high above, puffy cotton clouds reflected in the blue water, and pigeons were cooing. What a beautiful day. My wish came true and a year later about the same time I was in the same place once again, making my wish, and hoping from deep in my heart that it will become the reality one more time. Needless to say, somehow, somewhere, somebody heard me. And yes, my wish became a reality a few months later.
     Years passed one after the other. One Sunday morning, attending the mass with my daughter we heard our priest telling us the story of the Samaritan woman. Legend goes, that as a young and beautiful girl she married a wealthy general who died soon after. She remarried quite a few times and became a very wealthy, and influential woman. At some point in her life she became a Christian, left her palace, and traveled along the African-Mediterranean coast helping the poor, and gave away her money. Arriving in Rome, during the persecution of the Christians, as she continued her charities she was arrested by the Romans when she was in her eighties. Her punishment was cruel, and was skinned alive, with her skin thrown into the Tiber River, and body into a well. Years later a fountain was built on the site of the well, now known as the Fontana di Trevi.
      I know I remained so impressed, not only by the story, but by the understanding of why my wishes came true. The Samaritan woman continues to this day to fulfill the deepest needs from our hearts, of which we cast as a wish in return for a coin at the Fontana di Trevi. By giving a coin you replenish her wealth, so that she may in turn help others by granting the wishes to those who cast them at the fountain.
     Watching the movie "Three Coins in a Fountain", I felt compelled to create a necklace in aquatic colors, pearls, and silver.


Feel free to let me know what you think!

Thursday, July 7, 2011

A Mother's Prayer

  We are having a summer storm, thunder, lightening, and lots of water pouring down in a heavy rampage as if even the sky responds with anger at the news coming from my TV set. I do not feel very well, as a matter of fact, I found myself traveling back in time, more often that I would like. I see myself playing with my daughter when she was about two years old, having her in my arms I can even smell her sweet young skin, and I remember telling myself what a miracle that she is in my life. I was dealing at the time with the aftermath following my husband's death from cancer, trying to reinvent myself in order to be able to take care of her as a responsible parent. Yes, she is the apple of my eyes, the most important person in my life.
  I remember an image that I saw long ago in a documentary on PBS. This image remained with me since then. A snow monkey mother carried her dead baby for days as she followed her clan still fiercely protecting it, not ready to let go... What a powerful  message. Caylee Marie two years old was killed, by accident or by human hand; her smile and big eyes immortalized in pictures haunt the news every day. A woman who was supposed to be a mother failed miserably to protect her young life. I am not going to tell you more. You all know her name, you all know everything about the trial. What I am writing now is for me to let go of the pain that I feel thinking of the innocent soul, betrayed by the woman who was supposed to love and cherish her, and in the same time betrayed by our society. Yes, I feel pity for this woman who will never know the joy of real motherhood; of seeing her daughter grow up, blooming into a beautiful young lady as I have seen mine who is now eighteen years old. 
  All I can do is pray. Pray to God that he takes care of Caylee, and cradle her close to his heart. Sleep in peace Caylee and forgive us all. As I am writing this, the rain has stopped and the sky is clear. On the horizon I can see it. A huge arc, a beautiful rainbow comes as a sign from the heavens as an answer to my prayer.