Friday, December 10, 2010

Weekend Sales

This saturday I'll be vending at the A Little Bird Told Me... Sale, hosted by Karin and Greg of Little City Farm. The sale goes from 10am to 4pm, and will include vendors such as

Once Upon A Tree - fine wood turnings and wooden bowls made of local and reclaimed wood

Sew Oiseau - reconstructed wool clothing for kids and adults

Homestead Herbals - soaps, teas and natural herbal goods

Sarah's Kitchen Gardens - garden aprons and garden supplies

...and other great hand-made things, such as organic baby play quilts, jewellery, infused oils and vinegars, sock monkeys, vegan baked goods, organic preserves and more!

The sale goes from 10-4pm.

Visit Little City Farm's website here:
or their blog here:

Also: this Sunday I'll be at the Bizarre Bazaar, held at Cafe Pyrus, across from the Charles St. bus station. The sale goes from 12-5.

Here's a sampling of what I'll be selling both days:

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

"It may be that when we no longer know what to do we have come to our real work, and when we no longer know which way to go we have come to our real journey." - Wendell Berry

Monday, November 29, 2010

Stitch n Kitsch!!!

This coming saturday (December 4) is Stitch n Kitsch. And I'm a vendor! (this excites me more than the exclamation marks can say) If you're in the area, definitely come out. It's going to be awesome!!!

Sunday, October 31, 2010

moss terrariums

I spent this Sunday afternoon along the banks of the Grand River, foraging for moss with my hubby.


To make these lovely little things:

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Sunday, September 26, 2010

I feel like I’m losing myself. I’ve quickly transitioned from a summer fraught with wedding plans, family stresses, and a job that had me crying at my desk every day into a fall that has me worried, sick, and crying in my classes every day. I feel like I’m being tested: do I trust myself (my body, my heart, my mind) or do I trust the perspective of the people around me? I think the answer is both, and that is the problem.

It’s clear that I need to sacrifice something, but what should I choose? Should I sacrifice the things that are most life-giving to me, for the next eight months, for the sake of a piece of paper that may or may not be useful in the end? Or should I sacrifice my credibility in the eyes of the people I love in order to recover myself? I need to make a decision, and I’m running out of time.

Someone close to me told me this week that I’m never happy, that because of my inability to finish things I will never be taken seriously, and that maybe school just isn’t for me (which I translated as: I’m stupid). This person had very good intentions, but their words were wounding. The morning after talking to them, I awoke sick, took the day off, and fully intending to do schoolwork wrote a picture book instead. The story is about a little girl who is continuously being told to do things she doesn't want to do, and always does them because she is fearful of disappointing the people around her. Then, one day, she just can’t do it anymore. She decides to trust herself: to trust that she knows herself best. And then she slowly begins to reclaim herself. I need to trust myself right now. I know in my heart that none of what this person said about me is true. Rather: if I’m not happy, if people don’t take me seriously, and if I’m floundering in school, it means that I haven’t found my place yet.

Can I be true to myself and continue on this path of finishing a diploma for the sake of having credentials? I think I know the answer, but am terrified of acknowledging it.

Friday, August 27, 2010

on being messy

Yesterday I read this passage in one of Anne Lamott's books:

"Tidiness suggests that something is as good as it's going to get. What people somehow forgot to mention when we were children was that we need to make messes in order to find out who we are and why we are here."

This makes me feel much, much better about my life.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

A Case of the Grumps

I’m grumpy. The truth is, I’ve been grumpy for at least a week. Probably longer. And it’s not like me to be grumpy that long. If I could guess at the reason, I would say it has something to do with sitting in a window-less, soul-crushing office every day of the summer with an the air conditioner that’s convinced we live in the tropics. And I have a feeling that if I dared to look underneath the growliness, what I would find is an unanticipated disappointment with my current career choice… But this post was meant to try and cheer me up. So: instead of thinking of all the things that make me grumpy, I’m going to think of all the things that make me happy. Here are some of them:

1. The smell of my husband on the bed pillows.
2. Reading a good book until 3am knowing full well I have to be up in a few hours.
3. Finding a particularly good spot in the library, at one of the big wooden tables, near a window.
4. When there is no conceivable way to avoid rain puddles: putting on my rain boots and embracing them instead.
5. Drinking coffee with my grandparents in the mornings.
6. Hugs from my little brother.
7. Knowing that my last day of work is tomorrow.

There. I feel happier.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

a vindication of my late night reading...

Some nights stay up till dawn,
As the moon sometimes does for the sun.
Be a full bucket pulled up the dark way
of a well, then lifted out into the night.


Monday, August 2, 2010

Reader, I married him.

This weekend Joe and I got married. It may have been one of the most beautiful days of my life - something I didn't expect. We said our vows in a field in West Montrose (so says the registry) in the rain. And afterwards we danced the night away with all our loved ones at St. John's Kitchen.

The law is love. -Rumi

Thursday, March 25, 2010

These are magnets in the women's washroom at CJI. I am aware the creepiness involved in sneaking a camera into the washroom... but I simply had to do it.

My time spent at this organization, and in the prison especially, has really affected me. Some lessons I'm learning are as follows:

1. Always reflect. Always. I need to continuously challenge my notions and judgments.

2. Take people seriously. When I don't believe someone, ask myself why. Respect people's stories.

3. Respect people no matter what: what they've done; whether they make me feel insecure; if they've hurt me, or others.

4. Be present.

5. Recognize that people have a past, a present, and a future.

6. Forgive. Don't seek revenge, seek transformation.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Clay Creations

School seems to have sucked up all of my time these past eight months, but I had some time last week to do some mucking around with clay, and these are the results:

rings: black and white stoneware, glazed

pendants: black and white stoneware, wheel thrown, carved and glazed

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

invite the devil to tea

In my meditation class tonight, I mentioned to my teacher that I was having a hard time being mindful because of some pain in my back. She told me to “invite the devil to tea”. What she meant was to welcome and consider the pain, and then to see what happens when you do. I was thinking about it afterwards, and comparing it with my initial reaction of getting annoyed - angry even - because this little spot in the middle of my back wasn’t allowing me to concentrate on breathing and relaxing. And I realized that this little bit of advice was actually really profound.

In the cafe recently, there is a customer who comes in just to pick fights. When he walks in the door every shift, I feel my body grow tense as I brace myself for the cruel words and yelling that will inevitably ensue. At first I used to get angry, and ask him to leave. I've transitioned to confronting him, telling him his actions aren't appropriate, and then repeatedly asking him to leave as he yells awful things at me while customers watch, leaving me shaking afterwards with the upheaval. I have been trying to figure out what exactly I could say or do that would make the situation different, but have come up with nothing, and always resort back to the same way of coping.

"Invite the devil to tea." After thinking on her advice about the pain in my back, it seems to me, rather than getting upset or angry in any situation, to instead allow it to happen and focus on being present in it. What would it look like for me to welcome the cruel words of this man, to really consider him, what he is saying and why? Even more, what would it look like for me to "invite to tea" all the things that really anger me? Scare me, even?