Welcome to another Subscriber Showcase!

If you enjoy adventure, courage and beautiful Italian architecture – you’re in for a treat.

Because this month’s inspiring creative is…

April Lee.  


Tell us about yourself, April. 


me. 7. 16. filter.Hello!

As a holistic life and wellness coach, I’m passionate about helping women rediscover their essence as they follow the path to their dreams.

I realize that may sound like a slick piece of marketing, but I mean it sincerely.

I recently changed the whole focus of my business to highlight the importance of dream-chasing-and-catching, because I myself am currently in the midst of fulfilling a long-held dream of my own. (More on this below.)

Previously, for some 20+ years, I’d counseled women with eating issues ranging from full-blown eating disorders to yo-yo dieting struggles and everywhere in between on the continuum.

My husband and I will soon celebrate 28 years of marriage. We have 2 fabulous sons (who are now 23 and 18).

One thing that has kept our union lively and healthy is our determination to avoid stagnation. In fact, we are getting ready to embark very soon on our biggest adventure yet.

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Tell us a little about your creative life, and why it’s important to you.

My creative life primarily revolves around my writing. I simply cannot process the world without pen and paper.

I keep a daily journal and a weekly blog, and I write a lot of poetry. I’ve also begun the process of writing my first book (about the dream mentioned above).

THE-ARRIVAL-August-1-e1467156429627My latest creative undertaking has been my signature e-course, THE ARRIVAL: the quintessential essence7 journey to making your dreams come true, which I am offering again on August 1.

My all-encompassing goal as an adult has been to understand, to connect to, and to embody my essence. My company, essence7 wellness, arose from this endeavor.

This course introduces and explores the 7 essential elements that make up my personal philosophy, my driving force.

I think existing in a curious, adventure-filled, dream-seeking manner is creative living at its finest; continuously coming up with creative solutions to whatever life presents.

I’ve applied this theory in many different ways throughout the years, such as: decorating different homes we’ve lived in, homeschooling my sons, handling situations involving conflict, traveling nomadically throughout the world, designing and running my own business, taking risks.

I enjoy leading a novel and vibrant creative life in whatever I do.

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Tell us more about your current creative adventure…

My husband and I are moving to Italy in September and refurbishing a 1920s Tuscan villa, which will serve as both our primary residence and also a retreat destination for my clients.

villa magnolia


We have been loosely planning this move since 2012, and are finally getting close to seeing the dream become reality.

It will actually be a combination of several different dreams coming together – living in Europe, opening up my home for retreats (which I call ARRIVALS), and renovating a large older house.

When I was a young girl, my mom and I would drive by stately homes that had been abandoned or neglected.

We’d gaze admiringly at the crumbling facades and imagine what once took place inside those walls.

I would often proclaim that when I grew up, I would “buy a big old house and fix it up.” I dreamed about lovingly restoring it to its former grandeur.

It became a theme in later years, and my husband even labeled our boxes “big house” the last time we stored our belongings.

Fast forward many years to 2015 . . . and house hunting in Europe!

After looking at hundreds of options (in several different countries, online and in person), we put an offer on a house in Portugal.

But after four long frustrating months, the deal fell through. It was extremely disappointing.

Then last August, the night before our 27th wedding anniversary, my husband found a house in Italy online – in our price range and in the architectural style we both love.

Italy had always been our first choice (and it is the country of my roots).

Up to this point, however, we hadn’t been able to find anything we liked that we could afford.

Until now.


villa magnolia entrance hall in the sunshine

No one has lived in Villa Magnolia for four years.

And this inkling of an idea began four years ago.

I like to think we started making our way towards one another at the same time.


In my most overwhelmed moments, as I prepare for this monumental move from the United States to Italy, I imagine my strong beautiful villa waiting for me.


villa magnolia portico


Only two more months until we are finally together. (I just wish my beloved mom could see it too. She passed away in 2002.)

There are so many other parts to this story, but I’ve taken up enough of your space and time.

I definitely need to finish that book . . .

• • •

Thank you, Danielle, for this opportunity to share my creative life.

And as I step into the vast unknown territory of my Italian adventure, I embrace these wise words of yours:

“But what if we can’t see a sure way, or we have no guarantee that things will work out as expected and make our precious efforts worthwhile?

twitter aqua

Faith is the powerful force that leads us to act in spite of uncertainty.

It’s the key difference between those who keep striving toward their goals and dreams, and those who give up – or never even begin.

Many of the world’s great creations, achievements, advances, and successes only occurred because someone took a leap of faith.”

Here’s to my leap!


april hugging villa magnolia

• • • 


Thank you, April!

I hope you enjoyed discovering April’s work, and please do check out her new ecourse.

She also has a blog post here with more on her exciting (and brave!) Villa Magnolia story.

(I’ll let you know when her book is ready!)

And if you’d like me to feature you and your creative projects in a future Subscriber Showcase – please just let me know.

Wishing you a wonderful, inspired and creative week,



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