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Posts Tagged ‘orange’

Are You Living a Blue Monday?

Monday, January 13th, 2014

How’s this for a Monday morning pick-me-up? I just read that the third Monday of January is the most depressing day of the year. It’s called Blue Monday. And it has nothing to do with the phases of the moon or the weather.

blue mondayBy the third Monday, over two weeks of the New Year have passed and you have already lost track of the resolutions you made. Remember those promises to yourself- exercise, read more, spend more time with family, etc., etc. Another new start and you’ve veered off the path to a successful new year. Humph!

Stop putting yourself down.

Besides, today is only the second Monday of the month.

The perfect day to assess if that resolution was right for you.

If you’re finding it difficult to maintain a new behavior, it’s because your reason for staying the same as you are is too strong. Ask yourself what you get from not exercising, from watching TV instead of reading, from working or being with friends instead of being with your family. Whatever behavior you resolved to change is too important to your current sense of identity to easily alter it.

In order to bring on lasting change, you must first see yourself as the person you want to become. Imagine every detail of what your life would be like as the person who has made this change. Each time you’re tempted to not do what you say you want to do, ask yourself what would your better self do. Bring a clear picture of that you into your mind. You don’t have to be accountable to anyone else. “To thine own self be true.”

You have the next seven days to practice being that new you.

On Blue Monday you can smile with satisfaction. No reason for you to be depressed.

You are living the dream!

“There is no blue without yellow and without orange.” Vincent VanGogh

When Drama Delights

Tuesday, September 24th, 2013

The Autumnal equinox signals the beginning of Mother Nature’s most extravagant color spectacle of the year. As daylight hours fade, ordinary frocks of green worn by deciduous trees magically transform into golden, crimson and bronze gowns that shimmer in rays of sunlight.

MH900407575All the rainbow colors we have explored each month of this year- red, orange, yellow, green and blue, paint the scenery of trees and sky on an autumn day. The color of September, indigo adds the necessary drama for this season of contrasts.

How brilliant the colors against deep indigo clouds of a looming storm!

Many representations of the rainbow omit indigo and transition directly from blue to violet. Pity. Indigo has a history as rich as its hue. Its roots are Indian as the name implies, the word indigo meaning “from India.”

We shall follow the indigo trail on another day. For today, appreciate the drama she provides as you enjoy the autumnal splendor.



“Delicious autumn! My very soul is wedded to it, and if I were a bird I would fly about the earth seeking the successive autumns.”   George Eliot



June the Month of Excess

Sunday, June 23rd, 2013

The summer solstice of June guarantees excessive daylight of the longest day of the year. At no other time is the color green in nature so extreme.

vine leaf backgroundTraveling to northern climes, the color of June is unmistakable. Here, long rays of the sun coax leaf laden trees and dense grasses to display an exuberant hue I’ve missed in Key West.

Sure, palm tree fronds are green, as are the leafy backdrops to colorful hibiscus and bougainvillea. Yet, when the climate never changes, neither does the perennial green. The eyes get accustomed to the same multicolored views every day.

After months of bare branches and dried, brown landscapes, when bountiful warm sunshine calls all living things to “grow, grow, grow,” the enthusiastic summer celebration begins, clothed in resplendent green.

More daylight.

More green.

More reminders to notice life in vivid color.

Take time to see and appreciate the vibrancy of all living things- and that includes you. The sunshine is calling you to grow as well.

At this halfway point of the year, we are also half way through the rainbow colors of the year. We began with the warmest hues, variations of red, orange, and yellow.

As this month comes to a close, watch as the lively green becomes more subdued. Prepare for the cooling influences of the rainbow colors yet to come.  As with any excess, it is tempered by contrast.


“What is one to say about June, the time of perfect young summer, the fulfillment of the promise of the earlier months, and with as yet no sign to remind one that its fresh young beauty will ever fade.”

Gertrude Jekyll

We Live in the Golden Age

Thursday, April 25th, 2013

April is the most transformational month. If you’re in a Northern climate, the white and frozen ground is, one day, revitalized green with perks of lavender crocuses and happy daffodils flourished with a bloom of amazing color.

Not yellow.

And you wouldn’t call it orange.

daffodilsThat special color is reserved for April, the fourth month of our year long color journey. We began with the palest pink of January, the luscious red of February, and morphed, rainbow style, into outstanding orange during March. Let’s not hurry April as she takes center stage with the fascinating hue, reserved for a precious metal.

The fascinating paradox in Florida is that in spring, the leaves turn a golden hue and fall to the ground like bountiful piles of shimmery coins. Immediately they are replaced by fresh verdant green leaves to decorate the bare tree limbs.

Autumn transforms to spring and totally bypasses winter. I’ve gotten over my need to personally experience the four seasons. It’s not for everyone but it suits me well.

No matter where you are, April’s unique color contribution to spring warms and delights. Just look at last golden rays of a sunset. All the earth is embellished with the color of golden promise.

A glow that forever reminds us of the richness of life.

“All theory, dear friend, is gray, but the golden tree of life springs ever green.”
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

A Year of Color, Month Three

Sunday, March 3rd, 2013

Just as with anything new, the year began with the delicate hue on the very top edge of the rainbow. A wisp of color, pale pink to introduce new possibilities and our color journey this year.

Next, the intensity of commitment described by February's radiant red, the color of love. There is no turning back, this year is vibrant like the most dominant color on the crest of the rainbow.

Close-up of a gerbera What now, with March? The longer days, the warmer sunshine, the grip of winter subsiding, we are encouraged by the next phase of color, brilliant orange. How appropriate for March, as orange is joyful and happy. Think of your own appreciation of this month's activities.

Spring break.

Flowers peaking through the cold ground.

Colorful clothing emerging from your closet.

Orange is the color of hospitality. This month create a warm and hospitable place in your life to celebrate how far you've come so far this year.

We've many more colors to experience, yet savor this month of new growth and bask in the orange glow of your accomplishments.


"When you squeeze an orange, orange juice comes out- because that's what's inside. When you get squeezed, what comes out is what's inside."
Wayne Dyer

Friday By Any Other Name

Wednesday, November 21st, 2012

Color schemes and combinations have always described various Holidays. I just read an article about the Thanksgiving color palette. Seasonal and comforting. Soon red and green will replace the gold and orange of the harvest season. But this week we have also have a day dedicated to everyone's favorite non-color, black.

Black Friday is on the lips and on the sale flyers of advertisers everywhere. At this time of the year that reminds us to be grateful and to share all that we have, before the leftover turkey is cold, we run to stores and to the computer or iPad to acquire even more.  Through our efforts, commerce is emboldened before the end of the year, and the term Black Friday aptly describes the day of transition from red ink to black ink on the bottom line of retail outlets. Bean counters rejoice.

Black Friday even has a uniform of the day. And of course, it's black. Black sweatpants, leggings or jeans ensure a comfortable shopping experience and are rugged enough to survive the narrow escapes from errant shopping carts and the sprints down aisle three for the four AM time limited bargains.

The drink of the day is also black- coffee, the blacker the better. Black Friday takes stamina, endurance, and nerves of steel that only this inky beverage can deliver. Double espresso if you dare. True believers forgo the latte till the end of the hunt.

And let's not forget the Black Friday mask. From lack of sleep and the frenzied pace, out pop dramatic black circles under the eyes. As sweat accumulates on the determined brow,  mascara runs down the face, extending the signature mask's visage below the cheeks. The face of a warrior has emerged.

Every color deserves its day. Even black, the somber, serious and powerful color, black. But on this Friday, so described as black, remember that black is also elegant. Carry with you on Friday, the elegance of black in all you dealings with others.

And most importantly, reserve these nourishing leftovers from the day before, thanksgiving and gratitude for all your blessings.


"People think that everyone wears black in France: in fact they all wear grey." 

Jean Paul Gaultier

Sunset Sonata

Saturday, October 13th, 2012

We look at the infinite colors that surround us, the clothes, the cars, the electronic gadgets. Take your pick. It seems our color choices are unlimited.

Still, nothing amazes me like the display of color presented to us only once each day. The sunset array of fabulous color. Perhaps so we don't tire form the sight, many dusk hours are cloudy and gray, especially in fall and winter. All the more joyful when we are treated to this colorful spectacle in October.

Notice the trio of colors, blue, red and yellow. From these three primary colors, all known colors are born. The combination of any two create orange, green, violet and beyond. How appropriate to end the day with the beginning of all colors.

At various times, the sunset paints magically with these hues to produce the nightly colorful progression from early dusk till the sun sets upon the water with the seldom seen "green flash" as it dips beneath the horizon. The ensuing color show lasts until darkness takes over the sky.

As you enjoy the presence of color in every thing you see, remember the gift where colors begin. The light of the sun and her nightly ritual to slumber. Can she compete with her awakening in the dawn? Ahhhh!


"There is nothing is more musical than a sunset. He who feels what he sees will find no more beautiful example of development in all that book which, alas, musicians read but too little – the book of Nature. "
Claude Debussy

For Everything There Is a Season

Saturday, September 29th, 2012

On an autumn drive, the deep green hillside is striped with russet, claret and golden hues. The brilliant sunshine warms the crispness in the air. At the top of the hill, a farmer’s market beacons.

Nowhere are the rainbow’s hues more plentiful than through the offerings of the autumn harvest. Red tomatoes, orange pumpkins, yellow squash, green Brussels sprouts, blueberries, purple eggplant. And, at the end of the rainbow of seasonal bounty, a bushel basket full of golden skinned apples.

Nature provides unlimited choices of color.

Are you limiting yourself to only a few?

It’s easy to fall into a color rut, always picking the safe, neutral colors for our wardrobe and our home.

Take your cue from nature’s most color rich season. Like an autumn tree whose job it is to be noticed at its best, add a flourish of crimson, an accent of gold to your outfit. Stand out from the crowd who want to blend in.

The most inviting tabletops are filled with appetizing color. Make your guests and yourself feel welcome by introducing new color at home. Hang a seasonal wreath of dried flowers and gourds. Cluster multicolored chrysanthemums by your entry for a color infusion when you walk in the door.

Color is meant to lift your spirits and delight your senses. Enjoy it!


“To be happy at home is the ultimate result of all ambition.”

Samuel Johnson

When Every Leaf Is a Flower

Tuesday, September 18th, 2012

It's that time of year again. With the change of seasons comes that dreaded task of retiring your fun summer clothes and pulling out your more serious fall wardrobe.

Maybe it's the fewer hours of daylight or the cooler temperatures, or the childhood memory of having to go back to school. Autumn days do seem more serious to me.

Traditionally, fall clothing's color palette is more subdued as well. Not so with nature. She goes out with a flourish, deep golds, russet reds and orange tinted bronzes provide a magnificent array of color this time of year.

Why shouldn't we be just as colorful?

This year, transition more slowly by keeping color in the forefront of your fall wardrobe. Pull out those heavier and darkly colored items from the back of the closet and lay them out on a bed. Before you you bury your summer clothes until next year, look at some new combinations.

Whites have already been tucked away (that old Labor Day rule), but let's reserve some summer fun colors long into fall.

  • Think pink to liven up those grey pants or skirt.
  • Vibrant yellow with jewel toned purple.
  • A pop of orange with navy blue.
  • Citrus green enlivens black.
  • And of course red, the always appropriate color for every season, is smashing with beige and browns.

Keep summer's colors with you until the snow flies. Those warm memories of a season passed will make you smile everyday as you get dressed.

Days are shorter and nights are cooler, but you'll be this season's colorful attraction.


"Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower. "
Albert Camus

I Saw the Face of Joy

Wednesday, July 25th, 2012

After more than twenty years of failing eyesight, my nearly eighty six year old father finally had cataract surgery on one of his eyes. A simple procedure you would think, but with unimagined results. 

Family and friends had tried to convince him year after year to schedule the very common procedure of replacing the clouded lens inside his eye with a new, clear version.

"I can see good enough."

"I'm too old to bother."

Our pleas became pointless. He was resigned to die with the same eyes he was born with- that is until a notice arrived from the Secretary of State's office. Before he could renew his driver's license that was expiring on his birthday, he would have to come in and take a test.

Reading the letters on an eye chart, he realized, would be impossible. Faced with the choice of having his wings clipped or his eyes repaired, he announced, to our surprise, the surgery that was completed yesterday.

Today, the eye patch came off.

As I looked at him, I saw the face of joy.  

There are yellows and greens and oranges and reds he has not seen in years. The sky is blue, not foggy. And white, so much white, that before he saw only as shades of gray. His dim and colorless world is suddenly full of life.

And so is he, full of life again. He has regained the exhilaration that only a bright, color filled world can bring. And being able to read an eye chart is a big plus, too.

The face of joy…in color.

Tell Me More

Mary Ellen Lapp reveals how the colors we wear, and the colors that surround us, even the color of the car we drive, impact out self image and affects how we are seen by the people around us.

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