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Travelogue Thursday: Once You Have Traveled


“Once you have traveled, the voyage never ends, but is played out over and over again in the quiestest chambers. The mind can never break off from the journey.” -Pat Conroy

This quote really struck me the first time I read it. I imagine I’ve read it again a hundred times since then. I find it so true that the journey continues in the mind, that the voyage never ends. I know for myself, the travels I’ve taken influence me to such a high degree – on all different levels throughout my day. While cooking I can be reminded of the smell of a noodle house in Japan or out on a walk around my neighborhood I can pause to find myself remembering the view from the top of Mt. Snowdon in Wales.


This is one reason why I like to keep little treasures from my travels in my studio. I have bird whistles from Nicaragua next to my candles on the mantle, a painted wooden mirror frame from Ecuador on the wall behind my paintings desk, and Mexican flower pots in my garden. I keep my drawing pens in a pottery container from Merida and use paints from Japan. I put flowers in a Turkish vase on my dining room table in front of a collection of tiles I bargained for in the Grand Bazaar in Istanbul.  The purple chair covers are handwoven textiles from Chiapas.


These small pieces I tucked away and carried home with me help fill my everyday life with the colors, textures and memories of the larger world.

What types of special things do you keep in your studio / creative place? What beautiful places do they remind you of?


-Emily Lupita


Emily Lupita

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Travelogue Thursday: San Luis Potosi, Mexico

Travelogue Thursday August 01 MEXICO

This week as I reflect back on my travels, I am so grateful for a very special journey I took with my mother to her hometown of San Luis Potosi, Mexico. We went there to visit my mother’s sister, my Tia Mago, and her brother, my Tio Lito. It was such a pleasure to witness my mother laughing & talking for hours over good food with her brother & sister. She hadn’t seen them in so many years, but they seemed to just pick up right where they left off. I also got to spend time with my cousins & their families on this journey, meeting many of them for the first time, and really cherish the days we spent together.

I especially love this photo of the three siblings at a candy vendor just as they discover their favorite sweet treat from childhood. “Dad used to make this!” they all three said, pointing to the pile of candy at the same time. “Remember?” And they started to share memories of my grandfather making candy in big copper pots. My Tia Mago placed a piece in my hand and said, “And now you can share this memory, too.” What a beautiful moment.

Not too long after we visited, my Tio Lito passed away, may he rest in peace. My mother told me that when she heard the news of his passing, she was overwhelmed with gratitude that we were able to go and visit, that she had these precious days to remember and photos of us together to treasure. I felt the same way.

This journey to Mexico remains as one of the most heartfelt trips I’ve ever taken. From it I am reminded that travel can give us the greatest gift of all…time together with the people we love.

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Travelogue Thursday: Ecuador

Travelogue Thursday July 25 copy

This Thursday as I think back on my world travels, I am reminded of my adventure in the cloud forests of Ecuador. This pristine natural area is beyond beautiful with its magnificent giant trees and bright pink & purple flowers. On our way to an amazing ecolodge called Bella Vista, I had the opportunity to zip line across the valley of the cloud forest. Our group climbed up the mountain to the first line, where a map showed the course – with a long series of zip lines stretching out zig-zag across the valley. The sign read, “Once you start, you must finish all zip lines to get to the pick up point. NO TURNING BACK!”

Taking the first leap was the most difficult. The first zip line was terrifying. And, if I’d of had a choice, I probably would have stopped there. But the sign told the truth; there was absolutely no turning back. So, onward I went, terrified and wondering how it was I had ended up in this particular place. I mean, how exactly did my body end up in a harness clipped onto a cable stretched above the trees across a massive valley in the cloud forest of Ecuador? It wasn’t until the third or fourth time that I was able to really pause and take in the scenery along the line. As I soared across the valley like a bird I looked all around me and it was truly breathtaking. I’ll never forget the freedom, the lightness, and the liberty of those moments up in the air with the clouds. Every time after that I got braver until on my final time I felt almost like I was meditating, completely calm and at peace in the air. I’m so glad I took that leap. I’m thankful there was no turning back.