A Little Piece of Paradise

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Today has been a bit of paradise. Its fascinating thinking about what paradise is. How extravagant or simple it can be. Today I awoke to the snow falling softly outside the huge windows of the room we are staying in. As I sat the in the quiet of the morning a natural meditation took over. My mind slipped into the billowing movement. As the hour passed as the land coated with white. I just watched with a hot cup of coffee in my hand and Dean Everson playing in the background as my husband slept. I was Calm.

That started the day, readying me for a walk in the snow with the pups who seem to thrive in this air and on this land. My little “Shy”ann aggressively and fearlessly running back and forth exploring every corner and my 14 year old Mojo trotting like a puppy down the driveway and into snow drifts, looking back at me with what seemed to be the biggest smile. They too are at peace, enjoying the simplicity, the quiet.

Next a lovely breakfast, meditation and then off to explore. This is a new area to us on the other side of the Mohonk Preserve, in High Falls. Our goal was to hit one of our favorite wineries in Gardinar, Robibiero for a glass of wine where we sat looking out past the deck to the falling snow. Worried about our senior car getting up and over the mountain we found a different route that took us through High Falls Center and though Rosendale…OMG! Quaint, lovely old time charm, we can’t wait to go back and explore in the warmer weather.

After a quiet glass of wine and talks of what we want, we headed out for a special dinner at Chez Jeanette. This was an absolutely one of a kind experience! Amazing food, the menu prepared for us specifically, incredible atmosphere and a lovely host. A little piece of paradise in the middle of New York.

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This has been a weekend about enjoying the quiet, taking in the air and being creative. It has reminded me that paradise isn’t a place but a state of mind and can be found in the simplicity of a little studio, overlooking a driveway covered in falling snow, in the happy trot of an adored pet and in the sound of a husband learning the banjo. I’ll admit the dinner was a happy bonus.

Right now I am so grateful, especially the simple things.

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Author: The Gift of Being: On Art, Life & the Process of it All

Nichole Donje is a multi-disciplinary artist, activist and leader. A philosopher and self-exploration addict, Nichole is currently working on two books of art and poetry FINDING TRUE NORTH and LIFE POEMS. She is a visual artist and photographer. Nichole founded the highly regarded New York City based independent theatre company TAPT/The Artist’s Playground Theatre, in 2006. Serving as TAPT’s Artistic Director, Nichole works diligently to support new and forgotten works that help shape the way we view the world around us. A recognized leader, Nichole serves as Vice President of the Board of Directors for The Players. The Players is the oldest theatrical club in the country founded by such luminaries as Edwin Booth and Mark Twain "for the promotion of social intercourse between the representative members of the dramatic profession and the kindred professions of literature, painting, sculpture and music, and the patrons of the arts". A key influencer of the Players current revitalization she has become an advocate for the art and livelihood of a social club. The Players not only honors yesterday’s and today’s luminaries of the performing arts, but also brings back the forgotten art of face to face relationships. Nichole is a member of SAG-AFTRA, LPTW/League of Professional Theatre Women and The Players.

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