Monthly Archives: May 2009




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moving through and beyond the self doubt
all of you kind mamas and readers who gave nothing but love and encouragement
a homemade deodorant recipe that actually works!
poppy cake's stories
white and green
lilacs {though we have none flowering in our yard this year}
tamari almonds
new curtains
plans to drop down to a single car household
new and existing members of "it begins with a colour…"
watercolour journals in progress
mike's support and this effortless love
more garden events to happen this weekend
plans for a green bedroom
potato roti
yummy cookies to be made this afternoon


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New ground

In the last week or so, I have been struggling with a feeling of time running out; clocks ticking.  In Canada, we are blessed with a full year maternity leave in which I receive about 50% of my regular pay from the government.  Pretty sweet deal.  I have decided to take this year and create a new way of making money while being a stay at home mama.  It is incredibly important for me to raise Poppy Anne {and our future children} myself.  I know that this isn't everyone's dream, but it is mine.  I love being home knitting, sewing, baking, decorating, gardening, loving, and homemaking.  I have no need for travel or expensive toys so long as I can have this.  I am content in this life if I can just be a mama at home.  Sometimes, at the risk of not sounding like the feminist I actually am, I wish we were in the fifties when a woman working outside of the home was an anomaly; when one income was enough.

A few weeks ago, I decided to take a bit of a leap and request a vendor application to have a booth at this year's Peterborough Folk Festival.  Today I received an email containing the application and fee information.  If I have my cheque to them before June 13th it is a mere forty dollars to participate.  I am thinking of selling some of my photos, handmade magnets {an upcoming tutorial for you friendly readers}, hand bound journals, silk screened objects, jewelry {which is currently in a local yoga studio}, and perhaps some homemade lotions, lip balms, body scrubs etc.  If this goes over well, I may jump into my own etsy store.  I would love to publish some sort of book.  I have also considered, once I attain a steady amount of readership, taking on sponsors for this blog.  Everything takes time and right now it feels as though that is slipping through my fingers more quickly than I ever thought possible!

But lets get back to the Folk Festival opportunity now.  It frightens me.  You see, I have always walked safely around the perimeter of the artistic circle; always admiring and wishing, but never really believing that I could one day participate, let alone make any sort of profit with my artisitc dream.  I am being honest when I tell you that it stirs up a mix of emotions and deep rooted self doubt.  There is a nagging part of me that doesn't think I can do this and there are times, such as these, when the want and the doubt wrestle tirelessly.  What if no likes it?  What if don't sell a thing?  What if it {I'm} not good enough?

So, I am going to take this opportunity to jump in with hopes of greatness.  Old habits and thought processes die hard, but with perseverance, they do indeed die.  I am realizing that the secret to living the life you want is to live as though you already have it.  Doing rather than over thinking.  Getting out of your head and into the task.  Wake up and move your hands and feet.  Explore and try despite not being perfect.  Shut off the mind gabble and listen to your heart.  Forget time lines and end products.  Worry not about the long term and live spontaneously.  Take more risks and road trips.  Reach out.  Allow it to take you where it will and enjoy the ride in the meantime.  Life and dreams are really that simple.  Allowing life to flow as it always has and always will.  You don't have to know or control the outcome; that isn't our problem.  Our only duties in this life are the doing the trusting; until one day we wake up and realize that we are, in fact, exactly where we are supposed to be and, although it may not be where we thought we would be, it is even better than we had ever imagined for ourselves.

What will you jump into today.


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Now that everyone has had a chance to get warmed up with our little photo hunt, I thought I would add a little twist with a colour combo!  Just as the title suggests "it begins with a colour…"  I plan for this project to grow and challenge us.  I will contiue to search for new ways to look at and redefine what may otherwise go unnoticed.

White is everywhere; a symbol of purity and innocence.  A crisp white shirt with tattered demim.  White sunglasses on a sweet summer day.  White curtains on breeze.  The colour that reflects all others.

Green is life, growth, and health.  Budding trees and bare feet in lush grass.  Signs of hope peeking through dark soil in a garden. 

Where in your landscape can you find these two lovlies nestled together?

P.S. Check out last week's awesome yellow submissions at Flickr

P.P.S.  Lovingly blogged at: minute musings, infinately learning, jo11931, escleali, minute musings, oh wow chronicles, of grateful praise and crunchy cursive.  Again, if I have failed to link your blog just leave me a note in this post's comments section.  If you have blogged it or do blog it from now on, please leave a link in the corresponding colour post and I can add links into the post.  

P.P.P.S.  If you are interested in joining this group we would be more than happy to add you!


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earth's best sundays




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It has been a bit of an eclectic,and scattered weekend.  Friday afternoon I spent a fun afternoon helping our friend Amanda of Django Mango take some new photos of her original and handmade creations {one is seen in the above photo}.  This is a link to her etsy site, but I will formally introduce you to her when the new website is up and running.  In exchange for the photo help she insisted she give me one of her oragami mobiles and a hand knit gnome hat for Poppy.

Saturday morning turned into an unexpected yard sale morning in which I scored an old green trunk, two lovely pieces of pottery and a flower/leaf pressing kit all for a mere three dollars!  There was a craft/yard sale being held at the olde jail museum in which Amanda had a table.  She surprised me with the most lovely old tin with a sparrow on it and filled with metal bobbins for an old sewing machine.  She said she spotted it on the way in to set up and grabbed it before anyone else had the chance.  It is just perfect!  I also purchased a sweet ribbon blanket which Poppy loves already from little jenny wren.  She uses some really great fabrics for her practical, yet pretty baby goods.

Feeling both enlivened and overwhelmed by all of the little and not so little projects I have begun.  The inside chores have taken a backseat priority in favour of outdoor love and improvement.  Cedar posts are en route this week along with the rototiller for the vegetable garden.  I have yet to plan out the companion gardening layout for this year's crop.

I broke ground and reclaimed a neglected area beside the deck by planting perennials, adding wind chimes, and scattering other found objects and seeds.  I have visions of candlelight and and fairy lights mingling with the plants for slow romantic outdoor mornings, afternoons, and evenings.  I see an old table and dinners under the trees; sun dappled morning tea with jazz music floating out the windows. 

I have a lovely idea for recording yearly gardening adventures as well as weather and yearly rainfall using principles learned in Rae's "Found Treasures & Handmade Tales" workshop . 

I have a plan to feature local artists and crafters that I know, adore, and enjoy in upcoming blog posts.  perhaps a little biography and interesting interview to get to know them.  It wouldn't be fair if I kept them all to myself now would it?! 

So many things on the go!  Recipes to search for, storage space to find for this year's much anticipated canning projects, a house to keep clean, dinners to cook, crocheting to be learned, photos to take, emails to return, a husband to love, a baby to nurture, projects to keep track of, pets to worry about, people to visit, future financial decisions to make, ideas to manifest.  But, wait, I am getting ahead of myself now. 

I am overwhelmed, but have also never ever been happier.  There are moments of worry, but then I am quickly reminded of the quote "Make a decision and the Universe will conspire to make it happen".  If just go about my business, be myself, follow my heart, do what I love and love what I do, then all of the hows and whens will fall lightly into their place. 

This is my breath and this is my pose.  In this moment I am right with the world.


P.S. Please stay tuned for more organized and cohesive posts, the second installment of "earth's best sundays", and next week's "it begins with colour…" treasure hunt!

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Poppy fluff

poppy fluff
soulemama's kind words
family rock cookie recipe
a truck load of dirt
tiny book workshop
all of the kind and supportive comments and messages from new readers
plants to plant
the friendly sun
brainstorming names for aunt cheryls art studio
vegetarian naan bread pizza, sandwiches, and the like
junk food care package from newfoundland
new perspectives
mikey, always mikey
serendipitous dyptych with a kindred soul
ella and louis
amazing response to "it begins with a colour…"
janet's homemade cheese curd
memories of gramma
en route cedar posts and rototiller
oversized sun hats
wind chimes
a "just about" giggle



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{tiny book art by rae vyn}

::just one little bird::


::in the dark::

::reminding me::

::of things::

::i already know::

::but my heart::

::finds hard::

::to hold onto::


A few weeks ago we were invited by our new friend, Rae Vyn, to a tiny art show held at her shared studio space in Peterborough. It featured a few of her wonderful framed booklets that she hand crafts with love as well as the art of children who were participating in some of her creative exploration workshops.  I was immediately drawn to her work; so natural and eclectic.  Everything I aspire to be.  The root in which it is nestled was just a showcase, but she was happy when I requested to take it as a whole.  Her art is under priced and I told her so, but was grateful that I could afford a piece of her energy and art that resonated with something deep down inside of me.

Last night I was able to participate, with Mike and a nursing Poppy Anne in tow, at her workshop entitled "Found Treasures and Handmade Tales".  The space is warm and artistic; the teacher is kind and open.  She first taught us a few of the simple book binding techniques that she has perfected for her own art.  We then had free reign on books of poetry, found objects, varied papers and mediums, wire, yarn, a typewriter and, of course, her expertise.  There was even a kettle boiled and then forgotten amidst the creative frenzy and colour.  She is a wonderful art teacher and is all about the art process; staying detached from the end product; letting it evolve into something beyond your control.  My only wish was that we had more time to create.

Unfortunately, she nor the studio have a website, but if you are in the Peterborough area {or even if you're not} and are interested in taking one of her delicious little workshops you can email her at  Some of her upcoming workshops include: playing with paint, spilling open {a writing and art making adventure for girls}, open studio time, and painted floor-cloths to name a few.



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As I sat on the deck in the late morning sun, tea in one hand and a quiet cuddly babe in the other, I admired my patch of freshly churned earth.  I contemplated the cost and work of our progressing garden and wondered, though only momentarily, if it was worth it.  You see, this is not our forever home.  We are not on the "right" side of the bridge in this tiny town and our neighbours leave much to be desired. 

Our dream is to,one day, move closer to the Haliburton area where Mike works for the County.  We envision an old house overflowing with character and creaks; breathing fields and whispering trees; naked babies and candlelit nights; picnics under shade trees and many days of puttering.  I dream of a simple and old fashioned life; reinventing lost arts; learning forgotten trades; taking a child's lead and trusting nature.  We want to build a small castle, a legacy, to which our children's children can return to and discover while knowing where their roots lay; a place of comfort and home.

Although our yard is one wide open space of possibility bordered by some sizable trees, with whom I am quite fond of and friendly with, I often feel overwhelmed by the grand job it most certainly will be.  I have put off making the yard just as I would like it due to the fact that this space and home is temporary.   It is quite a silly way to live really; and not only from a gardening perspective.  I remind myself to think of the joy and adventure of beginning this process here and now.  

And so I will putter and learn, but most importantly, I will begin.  I will make the most of, and be happy for, what we have while we go after that which we wish for.  I will take this little plot of land and make it our own; find solace in the process and, when the time comes, let it go and begin again.


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This week we are on the hunt for yellow.

As spring creeps towards summer and buds turn into leaves, I am happy to see the once bleak landscape give way to colour.  Moods are brighter and life lighter when we can eat our dinner under a canopy of leaves with earth beneath our finger nails.

Last week, I surprised even myself when I looked around my world and made note of turquoise in the landscape around me.  I saw it on store shelves, in clothing, on the streets, and even in blogs who had no idea of our little treasure hunt!  It proved to be a powerful exercise with a great response.  Be sure to check out the submissions to last week's"it begins with a colour" challenge at flickr.  Also lovingly blogged at: the gennysent page, minute musings, conveniently simplistic, jo11931, and of grateful praise if I missed anyone, please let me know in the comments and I can add a link.


P.S.  Dad and step mom delivered our rich, organic earth late this afternoon!  We have some work ahead of us without a rototiller, but it is still early in this Ontario climate to do any serious planting quite yet, but stay tuned for updates.

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