Wednesday, March 28, 2012

A Good Monday Morning

Look what I found on the street curb Monday morning.  Just waiting for me to drive by and claim it.

This was my first time claiming something I have found on the side of the road.  I have always felt a little weird doing it but this time I really wanted this.  Of course, it didn't fit in the car so Mike and I had to walk about two blocks, not far at all, each way.  I have to admit the way home seemed a little longer but I wasn't about to complain since this had been my idea.  Quinn complained for me instead when he fell down and skinned his knee, yelling, "I didn't even want to come and get it!"

When I initially saw it, I immediately thought of using it as a display unit for my soaps when I do craft shows.  However, I realized as a tried unsuccessfully to squeeze it into the trunk that that wasn't going to happen.  I believe the previous owners used it as a potting table so it is a little dirty.  Nothing that a good wash can't take care of.  A little TLC.  I have plans.

To make the morning even better, when we returned home, I learned that I had won a hand dipped indigo-dyed tote bag from bookhou.  Can a Monday morning get any better?!  I made Quinnie high-five me which he did because by this time he had forgotten about his scraped knee.

As much as I want to start cleaning my find, my spare moments this week are going to be spent preparing for the Mamas and Chicks show this Friday, March 30th in Oshawa.  It's my first show of the year and I am really looking forward to it.  If you're in the area, pop in and say hi.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Pacing Ourselves

We seem to move at different paces when we are in the woods.  Well, the three of them dash along the path, on a mission to get as far as they can.  I saunter along behind.

Looking.  Listening.

Regardless of our pace, eventually we all stop to take it all in.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

A Space of My Own

In the clutter that makes up life with two Lego-obsessed boys and two parents who aren't the best at putting away said clutter, I have managed to carve out a space to call my own.  A space where I can store soaping supplies, cure soap, package soap.  It sounds very utilitarian and it kind of is but it is also more.    Although located in the basement, it has a beautiful sunny window.  Nestled among the buckets of vegetable butters and jars of oils are little bits of things I like to look at although I also like to look at jars of herbal-infused oils.  I thought I would share some of my studio with you.

dried lemon and lime slices

soaps curing
packaged and ready to go
thrift store find.  I'm looking forward to displaying my skin care products on it  at the first show of the season
essential oils
monster-in-progress and my aunt's vintage suitcases
a small collection

The pretty tea cup watercolour is by the talented Char.  Some of her custom artwork can be found here.  I'm hoping to pick up another one the next time I see her.  (Hint, hint, Char.)

So there you have it.  A peek into the place where I spend the part of the day not spent with the boys.  I think it's important to have a space, if not a room, of one's own.  How about you?  Do you have your own space?  If so, what do you do there?

Thursday, March 8, 2012

In a Name

A lot of thought goes into names, you know.  I think of the time we spent choosing names for the boys before they were born.  I think of the names we had chosen if we had had a little girl.  I even think of the time I spent thinking of the perfect name for my stuffies when I was a little girl.  Big decisions because once a name is chosen, it so rarely is changed.

My name has always been my name.  I can't imagine having any other name.  When Mike and I were married almost 14 years (!) ago, I chose not to change my surname for several reasons.  First, I am a feminist.  Not the man-hating type.  The type who believes in equal rights for both sexes.  I simply did not understand why I should have to change my last name.  Mike agreed.  Phew or that would not have been a good way to start off "happily ever after."  Secondly, I hate paperwork.  Do you know how many forms I would have had to fill out for something I didn't want to do in the first place?  I neatly sidestepped that little pile of bureaucracy.  (I had no idea that I couldn't spell "bureaucracy" until this very moment.)  And thirdly.  Well, the third reason is the sentimental reason.  My birth father has not been a part of my life since I was 18 months old.  Aside from my height and my freckles, my surname is kind of the only thing he gave me.  So there you go.  Why i still have the name I was born with it.

A lot of thought also went into choosing a name (On a Branch) for my soaps.  There have been times when I have regretted the name, most often when I compare myself (shameful thing to do by the way) to other soap companies whose cute, perky names bounce and roll off your tongue.  (Can something bounce and roll at the same time?)  Then I remember the moment when the name came to me.  I happened to look out the window and saw a sparrow perched in a tree and realized, as the wind blew, how tenuous his grasp seemed to me and yet, there he sat. Rooted firmly but ready to fly at any moment.  It was how I felt at that moment.  i think it is how I feel most days.

Monday, March 5, 2012

Each Day

I am a positive person and since I became a mother, I think I have taken an even more positive outlook on life -- an "enjoy the moment" outlook, you might say.  For example, there will always be dishes to wash but a  little boy may not always want to read a book with me.   There may be numerous household expenses, some yet to be known, but I have my two boys and husband, a beautifully worn home and food on the table.  But it wasn't until this morning, when  Margie shared this video, that I realized how much I had been taking for granted.

It was the words ( to paraphrase) "live each day as if it were your first and your last" that really struck home with me.  Everyone has heard something similar -- live each day as if it were your last -- but those words never really rang true with me.  For me, they implied jumping out of a plane or some other such activity for which I have no desire to experience.  I like to live simply and quietly so why, on the last day, would I want to live differently?  But to live each day as if it were your first and last?  Well, that is to live quietly and simply but with your eyes open.  Taking it all in as it is given to you.  That's something I could use a little more of.

The boys watched some of the video with me, mostly the time-lapse photography.  They weren't too interested in listening to the words.  A part of me wanted to tell them, "Hey, this is what he's saying . . ." and then I thought, maybe I don't need to tell them.  Maybe that is how kids live each day anyways.  And rather than telling them what was meant, they can see me living each day like that as well.