Tuesday, August 30, 2011

finding my rhythm


i am on holidays in ontario
to celebrate
(and decorate and photograph)
the wedding of owen's sister becky.
there are lots of us staying at John's parents farm house
 here in rural ontario.

it is hot and clear
and there are crickets and chickens and peacocks
and fields of corn and a babbling creek
we are sleeping in bedrooms that once belonged to
children and have treasures still on the walls and sitting on shelves.
the kitchen is crowded and full of many conversations
and lists of wedding plans are found
everywhere

and in the middle of this
i am finding out
alot about myself
and how to find my rhythm.
rubbing shoulders with beloved family members
is a sure way to feel connected.
yet,
sitting outside alone
is also a sure way to feel connected
there is a balance between coming together
and being apart
i felt awkward this morning when i really
wanted to be alone
for just a few moments
but once i allowed that to happen
i reilized that i had so much more to give
when we were all together again.

i am seeing
that i need a balance
of outside and inside
together and apart
just owen and i
just hannah and i
just i.

for some people i think it is easy to do what you need to do.
but for me,
as someone who is always observing and registering
the moods and needs
 and feelings of those around me
i am unable to sometimes think
 about what i need
what is it that helps me balance my day?
without the distractions of work and home,
vacations can show us who we really are
underneath the busyness.
i am discovering a me that i didn't know existed
and i think i like her.


Saturday, August 27, 2011

sorrow and joy



oh the mixed emotions of a life fully lived.

we just got news that
owen's beloved Poppy
(his grandpa)
passed away today
most unexpectedly.
there are hot tears and healing music filling our home this afternoon

in just a few hours
owen's family, hannah and i
board a plane
for Ontario
to celebrate
the wedding of his sister Becky
to her beloved John.

-life is always changing -
be open to what it brings you
and find the gift
no matter how deeply buried it may be.




Friday, August 26, 2011

Thursday, August 25, 2011

grateful thoughts!

i have super talented,
 generous friends who bless me
 by sharing their talents and love with me

my kitchen can go from hurricane to
clean in less than 10 minutes
(i am very grateful for this - i need a clean kitchen)

every day owen calls me at lunch and
we have a five minute
love fest

sweet peas and balloons and streamers
are all blowing in my garden right now!

i am starting to get a wee bit excited
for our trip to ontario on saturday

my instagram blurb book
is so
delightful
i am in love

happy mail!

i have so much to be grateful for.
i bet you do too!


Wednesday, August 24, 2011

today.


today i feel
like there is too much to accomplish
and i am not very full of
patience and grace.
i feel like
i need to compulsively write
lists to keep myself from panicking
about all that i
need to be doing.
need to be doing?
really,
when one stops and thinks about it
there is very little that we actually
need.to.do.
there are lots of things
that help keep our live more orderly
and help us meet our goals and responsibilites
there are many many things
we want to do.
but when i start panicking
about simple joyful activites
like
ice.cream.parties
i know that there is something out of balance.
when my body starts
screaming for the very food that will make me sick
i know that i need to stop and breathe.
no more  running around in never ending circles -
no panicking about made up expectations
no more busy projects.
i just need to do what needs to be done
and trust that the rest will take care of itself.
it always does and always will.
today
is
one of those days where i need to be reminded
to stop.
 do what needs to be done.
 breathe.
 trust.
let go.
 enjoy.
today and tomorrow will take care of themselves.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

pulling up the covers...


sometimes it is so easy to pull up the covers
so to speak.
to pretend that there isn't a small voice of concern
speaking to us
or there isn't a  behaviour that we really are uncomfortable with
or perhaps
there is our intuition
tugging at us quietly
requesting an audience.
sometimes
it is simpler,
it seems at least
to hide from from the truth
by being extra busy
or extra loud
or extra quiet.
sometimes
we think that the situation or concern or problem
will just go away on its own.
even though we have tried this strategy many many times
often with the same result,
we somehow trick ourselves into taking the
easier route.
avoiding the hard conversation or the  lifestyle change we may need to make
or the stretching and growing that will come
when we pull the covers off of ourselves and
truly see.
earlier this year
i was working really hard at being more authentic
with myself and those close to me.
it has not been a perfect process
and there are times when i
am
right back to where i used to be
but in some areas of my life
the cover pulling
was telling.
i learned so much about myself
and i can see the value
in really being authentic.
there is a freedom that begins to develop
and that frees up space for other growth and opportunites to flourish

it takes a whole lot of trust in myself though
and that is often where i stumble.
but i am also learning that it is okay to stumble
as long as i pick myself up, brush myself off,
 try again,
and not
 retreat
 under the blankets.




Monday, August 22, 2011

patience and grace


two words that are hard to live out sometimes
two words that i am blessed to have extended to me
daily
by my dear loving husband
two words that i need and want to extend to others
oh
how tricky is this yo-yo life of living with others
how tough it is to remain constant, unchanging
solidly grounded
when the emotions and behaviours and attitudes
leap and jump and spin and tumble
all around me
all the time
add to that any sort of external stressor
and there is the makings for
a whole lot of conflict
but instead
slowly and steadily,
sometimes moment by moment
i am trying to choose to respond
with patience and grace
remembering that anything we are experiencing
any situation
is temporary and organic and is going to
look very different even moments later
responding with patience and grace
allows for relationships to remain unbroken
for tempers to remain calm
and for words not to have to be taken back
because really,
who likes to have to take words back?
i need to have an anchor
something that grounds me solidly to
my truest understanding of myself
and
i need to ensure that i am really
truly not going to be tossed here and there
by the fluctuating behaviours and words of others.
i wish it were as easy as it sounds.


Saturday, August 20, 2011

my list


on my birthday i made my list
and then forgot about it
but yesterday while i was cleaning
it was there waiting for me.
43 things i would like to do before
my next birthday.

-the list-
host a dinner party
volunteer
grow perfect tomatoes
paint a BIG canvas
find my tribe
go on an art weekend
whiten my teeth
lose ten pounds (and then gain it back?!)
learn to swim
getaway to Seattle with Owen
girls time away with hannah
family weekend away to Wilderquest
BBQ a roast on a rotisserie
buy Vaya pretty dresses
keep writing snail mail
make Maddy's mom a scrapbook
go on an all day hike
tea with my mommy
tea with Corrie
paint rocks for the garden
learn to cook Indian Food
     make coconut milk ice-cream
(it was unpleasant-must try again!)
go on a picnic
sleep under the stars
play with glo sticks at the beach
call an old friend
paint my toe nails bright pink
wear more dresses
get a tattoo with owen
(this has since been taken off the list-bad idea we decided)
learn to make delicious suntea
eat more veggies
shop at the farmer's market as much as possible
walk when i can, instead of driving
visit lisa in vancouver
journal more often
wear high heels
( i can't make this happen kim - i try but it just doesn't work out to well!)
buy/grow myself flowers 
go on a train trip
do a photoshoot with ridiculous amounts of balloons
camp!
celebrate Canada Day
(didn't happen- sad face)
collect mismatched china dishes
(started!)
go to a yoga class

Friday, August 19, 2011

from a friend.


when i have a house of my own
i will plant many, many
hydrangea bushes
and rambling rose bushes too.
there will be butterfly bushes and lavender trails
and smooth polished stone circle to sit upon.
the garden will be riotous with colour and smell
deliciously
chocolate cosmos, star gazer lillies
lilac trees
perhaps there will be a pond
or a babbling stream
certainly a hot tub!
and a fire pit to warm my toes at.
but for now,
i will get my hydrangea fix
from a dear friend
who regularly picks blooms for me.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

extreme optimism..


"Let us rise up and be thanful for if we
didn't learn a lot today,
at least we learned a little,
and if we didn't learn a little,
at least we didn't get sick,
and if we got sick,
at least we didn't die;
so,
let us all be thankful"

this made me laugh...
and i posted it on my fridge and everytime i read it
i feel cheerful inside..
it made my family laugh too.
laughter is good.
\

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

invisible..


i think blogging every day helps me
not feel invisible.
there needs to be strategies
in place
for me to feel connected
in a meaningful way to the people that are important to me
outside of my family
and being i work at home
that connection needs to be intentional.
so,
blogging is my way of feeling like i am having a good little
heart to heart each day with someone special.
the funny thing is i write for myself -
deliberatly not getting caught up in
punctuation and sentence structure.
i just tend to sit down,
choose a photo that
"speaks to me"
(because they do)
and type out a few honest, unedited thoughts.
as for you who are reading them,
i figure that the only reason you would read my blog
in the first place
would be becasue you care for me at some level
and therefore, i am succeeding in
staying connected.

of course,
i am also blessed with a few dear friends
who drop in unexpectedly
often for less than 10 minutes or so...
you are littele rays of sunlight in my day!
and get to see me at my best and worst
depending on the moment.

so yea,
that is why i am here every day,
usually just after lunch,
typing quickly and happily
reaching out to my little world
and reminding myself that
i am still here.
not invisible.
i suppose some of us would like to be invisible
and unseen
and i too often want to retreat
but for me
for my personality
that retreating and hiding
 is not helpful for extended periods of time.
i need
this.
for myself.
and that is okay.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

thankfulness list!

the garden is awash with pink!
extra long sleepins on the weekend
almond milk and a straw
extra hands to help me with my little ones
clean kitchen floors
couch time with owen in the evenings
holidays are only a week and a half away
sunshine - glorious sunshine
walks at the beach
fresh garden veggies for dinners
groceries in my fridge
texting
pretty dresses

Monday, August 15, 2011

slow change...


my pumpkin is changing
slowly...
getting bigger and rounder
and now that i have put him right side up
the yellow flat side is
fading and becoming round and green.
by autumn the pumpkin
will have turned a brilliant orange
and it will be hard for us
to remember what it looked like
way early this summer
as a bright yellow flower.

i am changing slowly too
figuring out how to live in this new body of mine.
i wish i could say "new and improved"
but that isn't the case.
more like
new and cantankerous
sensitive, moody,
prone to outbursts of random nonsense
but
this is my reality
and i am adjusting
to the fact that
pain and frustration and illogical reactions
are the way it is going to be for a while longer.
i don't like it much at all
but i know that i need to care for myself
both the easy and the hard parts
and i know that i need to make allowances for myself
but not too many.
every bite or sip i put into my mouth is either going to
agree with me or not, regardless of what it is or isn't
and i find myself whispering
"please be nice to me today..please"
because i think whispering is kinder than yelling.
i am trying to figure out how to manage this body of mine
without it spilling over and affecting everyone else in my family
and that is tricky.
gideon notices that my dinner plate is often empty and this worries him.
hannah has almost stopped asking how i am feeling becuase she just doesn't want to hear the answer.
owen tells me often that he wishes more than anything to be able to help me feel better.
living with a chronic condition
that i never really thought was going to be chronic
is way tougher than i thought
and i have a stronger sense of admiration for the people who
battle for years with illnessess that don't go away.
and so like my pumpkin
(which i think is so great!)
 i am changing
coming to terms with this body of mine.
(that has only taken 15 months!)

i am fortunate to have lots of sunshiny days
mixed in with the gray and barren ones...
perpetual summer mixed in with a seemingly long winter.



Saturday, August 13, 2011

it was a two friend day...(but only a photo of one)



She is a friend of mind.
She gather me, man.
The pieces I am, she gather them and give them back to me in all the right order.
It's good, you know,
 when you got a woman who is a friend of your mind.
-Toni Morrison-

(thank you my two favorite K's)

Friday, August 12, 2011

two things


this little person brought so much joy and sweetness and love
to my house for the past two weeks...
i am going to miss her!

and
 HAPPY FRIDAY!!!!
have a weekend that amazes you!

Thursday, August 11, 2011

a little bit...


i had a little bit of sugar today
not too much..just a few pumps
in a grande shaken green tea at sbux...
but a little bit is all it takes...
now i want a whole lot more than a little bit.

a little bit of grumbling
seems to grow into a whole lot of complaining
and a little bit of doing nothing
soon becomes a great big bunch of lazy.

a little bit of dreaming can become a catapult of new beginnings
and a little bit of forgiveness can soon crack wide open
and spill all over with goodness and grace.
a little bit of seeds can transform a barren patch of dirt
and a littel bit of bubbles can make for a very happy day.

a little bit of giggles can become a full body belly laugh
and a little bit of kissing can lead to a whole lot of love.

i think i need to make sure i  pick the right little bit...


Wednesday, August 10, 2011

bounty


daily suprise visits from Kristin
fresh fruit in abundance blended into delicious smoothies
vases full of purple flowers
kisses and hugs
peas from the garden
conversations

my life is very full!


Tuesday, August 9, 2011

prickly thorns

i have been treating myself poorly these past few days..
prickly thoughts to myself and unkind words about myself to my family
and i am noticing that when
i speak and think unkindly towards myself
i become prickly to the people around me...
the ones that are closest to me at least...

i figure that when i become aware of a problem
it must be getting pretty bad because i don't know about you
but i tend to live in a bit of denial about who i truly am.
so,
i have become aware of the negative self thought
and self talk and that it is spilling over into my home life.
and also i am becoming  aware of the fact that i am actually
being a bit of a pill to my dear husband.

so,

i have decided to pay attention to my wise self
who is telling me to
be gentle, and loving, and graceful
and forgiving
towards myself.
i am trying to listen to my wise self
who is telling me
that i hurt more than myself when
i berate myself, or devalue myself
i am hurting those whom i love very much
and those who love me very much.
i am going to work hard
at stripping the prickles from my self talk
and instead
think gently about who i am.

i have a quote beside my computer that says
"only speak words that make souls stronger"
and i try hard to practice this with those around me
but i haven't been practicing it with myself at all.

so today
i am starting again.
today
i am telling myself that i am an alright person.
i am pretty good at my job..
and i am great at juggling the demands of my life
i also take a decent photo
and i can keep my white couch pretty white!
there.
that's enough
without making me feel uncomfortable!

be kind to yourself today dear readers!
(and no, i don't know why there is a wierd square in the photo.)


Monday, August 8, 2011

thinking outside the box..


i learn alot from the little people i spend my days with.
and in particular this little miss challenges me
almost daily with her out of the box thinking.
can you tell by this photo that we are colouring?
yea, we are.
well the rest of us at least.
she turned the round crayons into thrones for her princesses.
we were happily colouring
and all of a sudden she lines up the crayons,
gets this "look"in her eye and announces to anyone who will listen,
which is often me,
that she NEEDS the princesses...
so off she runs into the house and returns
sets them upon their thrones and happily spends a good long time.
we happily coloured right beside her.
this is not an unusual occurance..
lacing cards in the shapes of animals become fish being dragged
up to the imaginary boat,
anything that holds water becomes a tea party
and i am privilidged to always be invited.

sometimes, honestly this creative, make something different
than all the rest
can be challenging.
sometimes i just want her to do what everyone else is doing.
then i stop myself and remember
that
1. that's not how it works at my place so why is this bugging me
and
2. creative play is vital to so many other parts of our lives so i should be celebrating

all of this pondering about a three year old somehow trickles up into my thinking
and i start wondering about myself and the rules or expectations
i place on myself and my family.
do the things we do make sense?
do they need to always make sense?
if i trust a 3 year old to know what is best for her
(and i do believe when it comes to play choices, she absolutly knows best!)
why don't i allow my teenagers or myself the same trust?
we don't have alot of rules in our house
and most of them make sense
and aren't based out of fear or convenience for me
(which honestly is probably why it can be frustrating when Maddy wants to do something
completly different all the time- convenience for me)

but there is this one rule...

 no one is allowed to go to Thetis Lake
this is just the way it has always been and
the boys never challenged me.
Caleb, curiously enough, didn't start going until after he moved out?!
this summer
there have been numerous attempts to have me change my rule.
and i have.
today!
today i reilized that my children are not going to behave
differently at Thetis than they are at Langford Lake
and if i am concerned about their behaviour
location isn't the biggest problem.
so the ban is lifted!
they are pretty pleased:)

Sunday, August 7, 2011

today.



                                               
                                                                                                                                                                                                              

"This is the beginning of a new day.

You have been given this day to use as you will.
You can waste it or use it for good.

What you do today is important

because you are exchanging a day of your life for it.

 When tomorrow comes, this day will be gone forever;
 in its place is something that you have left behind...

let it be something good."

-author unknown-


 

Saturday, August 6, 2011

giving thanks...


glorious weather all week long:)
spontaneous tea with a dear friend this morning
2 hours in the hair chair and looking more civilized
suntea
supportive, supportive husband
date night somewhere warm and sandy tonight
fresh salmon in the freezer
the happy thoughs that jam making season bring
a clean living room
sleeping in on the weekend
yummy smelling body.hair products that are "friendly"
the security of being deeply commited to my man
cosmos blowing in the garden
a pumpkin!
fresh sheets (this is often on my grateful list i think)
photos...always photos...it was a great photo week
courage in the face of adversity...
(wondering when i will feel better...really when?)
lists


Friday, August 5, 2011

fabulous friday

i am breaking with my blog format and posting more than one photo..somewhere inside of me this is bothersome because i like the continuity of one histimatic print to go with my thoughts...but today was fabulous and these photos tell that story:)







happy friday everyone!