Finding and creating adventures in everyday life.

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Fashion on Friday – First Real Snow of the Season!

Just a couple of outfits this week…

We had our first REAL snow in the night last night. My favourite moment of the day was putting the boys in front of a window, opening the curtains & seeing their eyes light up in wonder & joy as they looked out at the beautiful, white snow. I’ve never seen them get dressed so fast. They bundled up & we headed outside. I started shoveling the snow off the driveway while they played in the yard, but soon enough they wanted to join in & help me. We have one child-sized snow shovel – we definitely need to get another. My littlest used a regular kid’s shovel. It’s not particularly helpful when they help me, but it’s so worth it for the fun and I love that they want to help. When we finished up, they were ready to come inside for some hot cider. It was a lovely way to start the day.

Shrug: Torrid
Dress: Old Navy
Leggings: Walmart
Boots: Ross – love these boots!
Necklace: Vintage/Thrifted – one of my many owl necklaces.
Headband: Ross – needed a bit of colour for this grey & black outfit.
Funny Boy: God

Jacket: Target
Dress: Target
Leggings: Walmart
Boots: Ross
Earrings: Forever 21
Super Cute Kid: God

After running some errands this morning, we’re now snuggled up in the house & the boys are playing with an original Weebles Treehouse – one of my favourite toys as a child. A crock pot full of chili is filling the house with yummy aromas. It’s a lovely day indeed.


Thankful Thursday – Thankfulness Tree

We decided to start a new tradition this year. A Thankfulness Tree. For the month of November, everyday, each of us will think of something we are thankful for & write it on a leaf that we will attach to our tree. On each leaf, I also added the initial of the person who thought of it.

I cut a very simple tree shape out of brown wrapping paper & put it up on our game cupboards (Yes, two cupboards FULL of games). Then I cut out enough leaves for the entire month. Every evening after dinner, we each go around & say something we are thankful for. It’s been fun to hear what the boys come up with. Sometimes Zane needs a little help. Most times that we ask him what he’s thankful for, he says, “stars”. He always finds other things though.

It’s been good for all of us to take time each day to be thankful for something specific. Our lives are full of blessings – big (our house) & small (butt paste), profound (God is our Provider) & mundane (roast potatoes AND mashed potatoes – Zane loves potatoes), but blessings all the same.

I am thankful that we have so much to be thankful for. I am thankful that the boys are learning to be grateful & to appreciate all that they have been blessed with. I love that all of Jude’s prayers start with being thankful.

As a worrier, pessimist, melancholic, I need all the reminders & help I can get of all that we have been blessed with. I am grateful that we have an entire holiday dedicated to being thankful. I am thankful for Thanksgiving! I’m looking forward to seeing what we come up with the rest of the month.

Here’s our tree & some of our thankful leaves.

Do you have any traditions around the idea of being thankful?

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Make It Monday – Sweater Clips & Coloured Pasta

I have so many Christmas projects going on! It’s fun, but it’s also a lot to keep organised. I also won’t be able to share any of my Christmas present projects until after Christmas. I’ll have heaps to share after Christmas though so watch out!

A while back I made some coloured pasta. It’s easy to do & my oldest son loved helping out with it. It does involve food colouring, so make sure your zip lock bag is actually sealed before shaking it up. If you don’t, you might end up redecorating your kitchen in blue like we did! You can find instructions here. I’ve also done something similar with rice & it’s great too.  Zane wanted to make sure that the dinosaurs were the stars of the photo & not the pasta…

Anyway, we finally got around to doing something with some of the coloured pasta last week. We made simple necklaces. Good fun. I even made one & wore it all day – I felt quite fancy!

Last week I wore a denim jacket & accessorised with a DIY sweater clip. I love vintage jewelry & I think that clip on earrings are gorgeous. I do wear them as earrings, but I’m always looking for other uses for them. For the sweater clip, I simply used some chain I had on hand & attached it with jump rings to the earrings. Then I clipped the earrings on to my jacket. Super easy & I love how it looks.

Hope you find the time & energy to create something this week!


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Secondhand Sunday – November 13, 2011

Oh how I love to thrift. I love finding treasures amidst heaps of junk (which might just be someone else’s treasure!). I wonder about the stories behind what I find. Who owned it before me? Why did they get rid of it? What can I do with it?

Here’s a few recent finds…

I found these lovely handbags at one of my favourite local thrift stores, The Opportunity Foundation Thrift Store. I find that they have the best sales in town – regular percent off days & of course, their wonderful $4 per bag clothing sales once a month. The two smaller bags were $3 each & the large bag was $2! What?! Yes, please. I love the cool details on vintage handbags.

At the same store, not too long ago, they were having a random linens sale for $2 per bag. Bins & bins of sheets, blankets & fabric. Spread out over several bins I pieced together this amazing 80s rainbow sheet set. I love vintage sheets, and mostly just use the fabric for projects because it’s not easy to find complete sets. This set is for a double bed. We only have one double bed in our house & it’s in the Guest Room/Sewing Room/Library/Dress Up Room. Whoever comes for a visit next gets to enjoy these great sheets! When I was growing up, I really wanted to have rainbow sheets – I was a bit obsessed with rainbows. Now I have rainbow sheets!

I also love vintage suitcases. I love the really old wooden ones, the flowery 60s ones, the 70s vinyl ones & the hardcase 80s ones. I have quite a few, but they are a bit bulky & take up space. I also want to be able to see & enjoy them. I saw this idea on Pinterest to use stacking suitcases for storage. They also live in our Guest Room/Sewing Room/Library/Dress Up Room and I use them to store fabric for future projects. I think they look so cool.

Have you found any thrifted treasures lately?


Fashion on Friday – 11-11-11

I love rediscovering my wardrobe as the season changes. I need to have a proper sort through my clothes to find those treasures lurking at the back of the closet. I also love coloured tights! They brighten cold days & keep my legs nice & warm.

I also love wearing more of my shoes! I definitely get tired of flip flops in the Summer. Boots, wedges, heels! I love shoes.

Shorts with tights is one of my favourite looks. Super comfortable & fun.

T-shirt: Target
Top: Torrid
Shorts: Source of Wisdom
Tights: We Love Colors
Wedges: Forver 21
Earrings: ?
Ring: World Market

I put the following outfit together in my mind, thinking it would be both warm & stylish. I put it on & it was absolutely warm & comfy & I thought it looked pretty good in the mirror. Then I took my pics & was sorely disappointed. I don’t think it’s doing me any favours & I wasn’t going to post pics, but I showed it to my Sister & she said it looked cute, so it made the cut this week. Besides, I wasn’t going to change it, because it is so comfortable!

Sweater: Old Navy
Dress: street market in London
Leggings: Target
Shoes: Payless
Hairclip: Claires

Can’t go wrong with denim & black – one of my favourite combos. Throw in a bit of grey & I’m very happy.

Jacket: Thrifted
Dress: Ebay
Leggings: Walmart
Boots: Ross
Hairband: H&M
Sweater Clip: DIY (to be featured on the next Make It Monday)

This is my favourite vintage shawl that I own & I own a few! I love the asymmetrical shape, the colour, but mostly I love the pom poms! It’s super fun to wear & keeps me nice & warm. I did some cat eye eyeliner for a 60s look, but I’m still not very good at it. I need to get some make-up skills!

Shawl: Vintage/Thrifted
T-shirt: Target
Dress: street market in London
Boots: ?
Tights: ?
Earrings: ?

Here’s to fashion inspiration from across time & geography & from right at the back of your closet.


Words on Wednesday – On Being an Introvert Mom

I’ve had these thoughts tumbling around in my head for a long time.  I know I’m not the first one to think about this or to address it. I purposely didn’t have a look around the interwebs because I wanted to get my own thoughts on “paper” before I started investigating the thoughts of others. I’m sure when I do have a look, I’ll find lots of helpful & intriguing ideas.

So I’m an introvert. That simply means that I recharge be spending time alone. It does not mean that I am shy. It does not mean that I am anti-social. It does not mean that I don’t need relationships.  It was fairly easy for me to be an introvert before I became a Mom. I had good relationships, but I could always find time to be alone.

Now I’m a Mom. One part of being an introvert Mom that has been a huge revelation is that kids are people too & being with them doesn’t really constitute being alone. I don’t know yet if my boys are introverts or extroverts, they both enjoy time alone, but they are both pretty social too. One of their favourite people to be with is me! I love that, but it can also be tough on me when I need to find a few minutes alone.

Being a Mom has widened my social networks. I have conversations with strangers in the supermarket, with people I might never have interacted with before I had kids & I am involved in groups that I never thought I would be involved in before I had kids. I love it.

I’m also a bit more isolated than I was before I had children. I used to work full-time, did lots of social stuff, went “out” a lot more. Now I’m a stay at home Mom & let me tell you, I stay at home a lot. I tend to be a bit reclusive at times & sometimes it’s just easier to stay at home than to load up the boys & head out – I never knew what an undertaking it was to go out with kids.

Relationships are incredibly important to me. I’m also not always very good at cultivating relationships. Given time, I can develop deep relationships, but as most Moms know, time is a rare commodity. My children have opened doors to relationships that I would never have developed before & I am so thankful for the Moms that I have met & gotten to know. It’s still a struggle at times to develop those relationships. I crave the interaction, the fun, the shared experiences, but I also have a hard time reaching out, putting myself out there & being consistent.

I am committed to doing better though. For my sake – I need my friends! I need new friends! I need deep relationships! For the sake of my boys – they need relationships too & they need to see real relationships modeled. Introverts can come across as being very independent & may seem like they don’t need much in the way of relationships, but don’t let our love of being on our own deceive you, we need people. We are all created to be in relationship.

Being introverted or extroverted is neither good nor bad – it’s simply a way of being in the world. It’s important to be aware of what you are. There are also differing levels of introvertedness & extrovertedness. Moms who are extroverts may find that they feel isolated too, not getting out enough & having face time with people.

We have this amazing privilege & responsibility as parents. When you have children some things seem easier & some things become a lot more difficult. Sometimes we do need to sacrifice our own comfort for the sake of our children, but at the same time, they need to see us caring for ourselves & making sure that we are healthy.

I know that I need to find that time to truly be on my own. I need it for my own mental health – I’m a better wife, mother, person when I get regular time by myself. It means that sometimes on the weekends when Zane has a nap in the afternoon, I head out the door to go thrifting while Jude & Colin hang out. It means that most weeks, one evening a week, you’ll find me at a coffee shop with a book or my laptop.  I don’t get time alone while I’m home with the boys so I have to make the time. This is actually a recent thing that I’ve started doing, I don’t know why I didn’t do it before – it’s amazing!

I’m married to an extrovert & we brought balance to each other’s lives. I’m so thankful that Colin gets me & understands my needs & helps me to find the time I need. It will be interesting to see on which end of the spectrum my boys fall.

So what does it all mean? If you have friends who are introverts, don’t give up on them. Keep asking them to spend time with you – they may say no a few times, but trust me, they want to make it work! Be persistent & consistent – go deeper. For those who are introverts, reach out, take risks, be vulnerable. Be persistent & consistent – go deeper!

One of my favourite places in the world. St Martin in the Fields Crypt, London. I don't have any recent photos of me being alone!