Monthly Archives: September 2013
First of all, a huge thank you to Erin for featuring me in this space. Erin and I have been friends and neighbours-in-our-minds for a long time, and reading her blog always grounds me and resonates with me; I am continually inspired by her soul-baring honesty.
September has always been a time of change, renewal, and beginnings for me; so it feels right that this year it marks a new change in my life: starting my own creative business.
For the last seven years I was a graphic designer. Before that, I was in school for seven years to get into the field (a degree in fine arts, followed by a diploma in graphic design). Somewhere along the way, I became disillusioned with the industry, and realized there was a creative part inside of me that wasn’t satisfied. Though I was designing, I didn’t feel that I was creating. I had lost my passion for my work. That was a scary realization. It took traveling around Asia for 6.5 months to realize that I couldn’t come back and be a graphic designer. But at some point over the trip, that stopped being a scary thing. Why not do something different? I realized that up until that point I was looking for permission to change paths. But really, starting my own Etsy shop is just a new direction on this same creative journey. The path I’ve taken has led me here. It couldn’t have happened any other way.
So now, when my head and sketchbook are bursting with new ideas, I can run down to the sewing machine and get to work. Working with new and upcycled fabrics, I create Wee Fabric Houses with lots of tactile details, a variety of fabrics, and even hand-painted details on some. Each house is unique and tells a story. For instance, the Wee Hobbit House has some laundry on the line out back, beside a rake and broom (with bristles made of twine), suggesting that perhaps when he isn’t curled up in the velour armchair beside the fire, or taking a little stroll down to the river, that he likes things quite clean and orderly.
Other than this patchy, appliqué style of house, I make another style using fabrics custom-printed with my own illustrations. There’s a Birdhouse with a little chickadee resting inside the soft, felted nest, and judging from the wall of family portraits, this particular chickadee comes from a rather regal lineage; and a Japanese Teahouse, which opens to reveal a little table and cushions overlooking a zen garden. There’s a Gingerbread House in the works as well as a new line of hand-puppets to appeal to littler folk, both of which will be ready in time for the Holidays. It’s fantastic watching the houses and puppets take shape, and exciting to imagine how they’ll ignite the imaginations of all ages.
PHOTOGRAPHIC PRINTS – Amberlea is offering FREE SHIPPING on her photographic prints until Sunday September, 22nd, 2013!
01) the words mike has been searching for to describe me in all our years together.
02) this is one of the most delightful things I’ve ever seen.
03) trying to come up with pretty and functional ways to keep our indoor firewood.
04) i keep meaning to do this!
06) want to try this simple, yet gorgeous batik
07) my love for crows grows with each day.
08) channeling my inner camp girl and re-teaching myself how to make the classic friendship bracelet.
09) the original roots flat bags are perfect in every way. I wouldn’t mind if Santa brought me this one for a splash of happy colour.
inspired by miss fawn.
go gently + be wonderful
I would have to say that our first official day of homeschool was a great success. Mike took the day off in advance as we wanted to do something special to kick it off. As it turned out, our local homeschool group began organizing a field trip to a local farm for a little tour and pizza lunch. It sounded perfect.
Though this is the year that Poppy would be starting kindergarten, it sort of felt like Silas’ first day as well. And the beauty of homeschooling is that he will be just as involved as he is ready to be. The morning was a perfectly cool and overcast. They donned their new-ish clothes and mostly empty backpacks for their traditional first day of school pictures as Mike and I pondered just how grown up they are both looking these days.
Then we were off to meet the other families at Magnificent Hill Farm. We were happy to see a large gathering of both familiar and new faces there. We started with a tour of the grounds and gardens which included, veggies, fruits, mushrooms, bees, rabbits, frogs, and turtle eggs. We then crossed the road and picked apples for the goats and cows and visited the chickens, geese and pigs. We captured a “class” photo in front of the sign and moved to the outdoor kitchen for tea, coffee, and juice while the kids headed into the gardens to harvest fresh food for the meal.
They made the best tasting pizzas in their outdoor kitchen and pizza oven as we all wondered why on Earth we didn’t also have an outdoor pizza oven. The kids played, rolled, chased, laughed, asked questions, helped, and gobbled their fair share of pizza while the parents chatted about their plans for the year.
We were happy to see our kids, full of confidence, as they moved to the front to get a better view of things, play with the kids, and taste the things they were offered from the garden. It warmed my heart when Poppy found a dandelion and made sure to find Silas to share it with. They really do love each other wildly and it makes me so glad to know they will be together on this journey.
I won’t lie, when the day started, Poppy was determined that she would be going on a yellow school bus and to regular school (her only experience with school in The Magic School Bus), but on the car ride home she decided that our car and homeschool was her preference.
The next day, we traveled to meet with the surgeon who will be doing my c-section and we found out that our little family will officially grow to 5 on September 26th. Despite the nearly two hour wait, the kids played with the toys and each other happily the entire time and the receptionist commented on just how wonderful they were to be so patient.
This morning, it seemed fitting to focus on the letter A as we headed out in the early morning to pick apples. Our kitchen is scented with apples and cinnamon as they dry in the dehydrator, stew on the stove for applesauce, and beg me to make an apple crisp.
Yes. Our wee little homeschool smells mighty divine today.
This feels right and good.
go gently + be wonderful
On Sunday we celebrated the day, three years ago, that this wickedly handsome, crazy smart, fiercely intense, wildly imaginative, first class snuggler of a little boy joined our family.
The day before the four of us went to the movies for some popcorn, Planes and lunch out. The day of was a simple one with two sets of grandparents, a mama-made Very Hungry Caterpillar cake, temporary tattoos, and a Spiderman backpack filled with the superheros he loves so much.
Oh, these pictures and milestones that keep reminding us of just how those long days turn into short years.
And Motherhood breaks my heart once again.
go gently + be wonderful