come alive : marte from le voyage creatif


i'm so over-the-moon-ecstatic to introduce you to my incredibly creative norwegian friend, marte
{i call her marie, since my norwegian accent is, well, terrible}
she has been an incredibly refreshing and inspiring woman to have as a friend.
she makes jewelry that makes me feel both classy and earthy.
{which has made its way to stores in LA, south africa, and online here}
she tromps around her primitive cabin wearing wellies and cooking up classic norwegian cuisine.
she makes cheese. yes, you heard me. she makes cheese!
and if that doesn't make you swoon, this just might:
she travels the world over and over again. lately she's been posting about her travels
to malta, ireland, and {my very favorite place} the utah desert.
it just gets better: she owns and manages a travel concierge.
that's right. she's been everywhere. and she can tell you where you can find
the perfect little bookshop or the best place to taste the local cheese and the prettiest
little b&b you've ever set eyes on next time you travel, well, just about anywhere.
this talk about marte is making me desperate to make a visit out to norway just to stop in for a cup of tea with her.

so onward to marte's "come alive" list:

To come alive is a process I think truly kick-starts the day we realize we’re not fully alive, that we have more potential than we could ever hope for, and our desire to let our voice be heard begins to overcome us with great desire.
During life I’ve definitely felt both being whole, fearless and happy, and the feeling of fear. Fear of expressing my personality and talents, even doubting that I have any and hoping I could slip out the door with the cat without anyone noticing.

I believe every single woman has more beautiful gems hidden within them than we dare believe, and that the time to sing out loud, to give, share and blossom has oftentimes been postponed too long. The day to come alive is today;)
Here’s my little list of things that helps me come alive:

My beloved mother is a master at creating and spotting small happinesses, as she calls them, the perhaps cliché things that we can easily miss or forget to take time to notice or do.
Eating dessert first, walking without an umbrella in the rain, giving hugs unexpected and often to the people you love, eating chocolate on a mere Wednesday, walking barefoot on green soft grass, watching the sun rise or set, taking one day at the time and singing in the shower.
Be gentle on yourself!
Too often we women tend to be so hard on ourselves, me included. But talking down on ourselves will prohibit us from feeling joy for what we’ve actually created, accomplished or participated in.
One day I told my beloved mother on the phone that my boyfriend’s mother had asked him what I’d done with my life, as I’ve definitely not followed a traditional path to becoming an adult.
My mother and I talked a little bit on the phone about it, and one week later a handwritten letter came in the mail that opened with these words:
‘If anyone asks what you’ve done with your life here’s a list of all the wonderful things you’ve accomplished…’
Needless to say I shed a tear or two ;)

Learn from the past, plan the future but live the present. These are wise words that I’m sure we’ve all seen on a cheesy poster in some dull dentist waiting room.
My older brother wrote them down on a piece of paper, gave it to me and told me this would help me find happiness in life.
I took those words to heart at an age of 17, however, it took me another 14 years before I managed to start living by them more deliberately.
Learning from the past obviously means dodging some mistakes that could be lurking in our path, and planning the future will help ease our worrisome hearts and direct our steps.
But the biggest part of this quote to me is learning to live in the present. To really stop the clock, hop off the train, lower our gaze to see the ground we’re waking on and to avoid having our nose in the future. To smell the present is the only valid currency, it’s the only certain moment we have to come alive. This is the moment we’re given to blossom and to take deliberate deep breaths of life!
I know I need to learn to share more of my time, love and talents with other people. It’s amazing how much joy and love we can feel when we take the time to do something for others. After all we’re on this big world together and if we reach out to each other, not only do we become more alive, but we help others be able to come alive and blossom too.
One of the biggest changes in my life that has made me come more alive than ever, happened when I let go of what I thought I ought to do and started doing what I was passionate about. It has been a long process, learning, living and finding out what I love and who I am.
Quite recently I quit something I thought I had to do and wrote down on a piece of paper three things I was passionate about. In my case the note read: Food, travel and design.
Then I set off to pursue my passions and letting go of all the voices in my head that in a million creative ways told me how I wasn’t good enough and how it wouldn’t work etc. In ways I can’t really explain windows and doors started to unexpectedly open.
Hitting rock bottom can sadly be one of the best ways for us to awaken and help us come alive again.

The list could continue for a long time with things that have helped me come more alive, but I’ll end with this: Love.
Dare to love, completely, open and with no fear.
I can’t think of anything more important than love. As we learn to become more open, believe more in our talents and abilities it becomes easier to love others, because coming alive, to me, can in no way happen if I step on others or don't include others.
I believe the more I love, the more I dare to love however hard, painful or easy it may be, it helps me understand others, forgive and forget and hopefully in doing so, I'll learn to do the same for myself.
At the end of the day learning to love makes hearts come alive, and without a heart of love we cannot find true happiness and thus not truly be alive.

thank you so much, marte marie, for sharing with us such words that will inspire us to come alive for the months and years ahead! don't you just wish we could all spend a weekend with marte at her norwegian cabin? if we're lucky, maybe she'll invite all of us in...and i think she just might one of these days.

{all photos from marte herself...she just also happens to be a genius photographer}


Cassie said...

a very lovely list of ideas to come alive!

Tiffany Kadani said...

Oh goodness. What a beautiful post. Especially the one about love. So true.

the wild magnolia said...

There remain so many new thoughts for women to hear, life changing thoughts, from other women.

It was good to hear these words, I needed to know, my life is better for having heard. I will remember.

Thank you marte marie!

Thank you, for sharing.

Howie said...

Wonderful ideas. Thanks for making this list idea.

k said...

this was a really beautiful inspiring post, thanks for your amazing words :)

ilwen said...

I love your new series, it's very inspiring and beautiful :)

Lou Smith said...

I am loving these "come alive" posts - so beautiful, so supportive, beckoning us towards love - thank you x