Summer update and Boosh!

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Well in to August I feel like the summer is just flying by.  Most of our days have been spent with a quiet park wander, collecting acorns, sticks and stones and visiting with my grandmother.  I am also in the midst of writing my Live Small Town Fall piece and starting to think of back to school and fall projects!

A lot of heavy feelings have surrounded me lately so I have been putting extra energy in to the ups of everything.  Making goodies for people here and there, slowing down to enjoy nature in all its beauty, snuggling my kiddos a little longer – and Wally dog too!  Even in the thick of it there is something to smile about.

I also had a FANTASTIC experience with Boosh recently – they make and sell natural lipstick here in Ontario, Canada!  If you haven’t heard of the brand look them up on Instagram or Facebook!  I purchased the lip plumping balm and it seemed to take a long while to get to me but I couldn’t even remember when I ordered it so I sent an email just to ask.  Sarah replied so quickly and pleasantly eager to help.  Canada post was just slow (typical 😉 ) and it arrived the next day!

I love this product SO much!  It has the nicest cool sensation and keeps my lips so soft.  I am a pretty plain person and wear minimal make up but this will be something I use often.  I also have my eye on Nova – a light colour I think will be perfect for just a little something when the mood strikes.

If you like lip colour check out the bold and subtle choices available and support a wonderful small business.

I will leave it at that, on a high note and with a reminder to be a kind human.  It really makes all the difference.

JESSICA

 

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Recycled Easter Eggs!

It has been a while since I last posted so I thought I would hop on by and share the Easter Egg craft the kids and I did in preparation for our egg hunt!

I was out the other day and noticed the traditional plastic empty eggs in a store  – the kind we always used in the past to fill with goodies – and I started to think of how they wound up in the garbage more often than not.  So I started to brainstorm a way we could avoid using these eggs from now on.  After a look through my miscellaneous craft supplies I saw a pair of weathered egg flats and thought they would be perfect!

After some thought as to how I would use them I separated the compartments, trimmed off any excess material and what I had left was several halves for the kids to paint!

Both Lilah and Max were excited for this part!  They love painting and usually end up with 1/2 of it on themselves 😉 .  We had a conversation about why reusing these eggs is a good alternative to plastic which they understood and even wowed me with some of their own facts!  Lilah piped up that the plastic eggs would take hundreds of years to break down if they did at all.  It is amazing how aware children are of the environment and the issues at hand.

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My next task was to figure out a way to easily join the halves after they had been filled.  I experimented with holes on either side to pull strings through which proved to be a challenge and not very practical.  So I opted to tie a string around the ends of the eggs to keep the halves together!

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Now we have a bakers dozen of recycled eggs to use in our egg hunt!  They might be a little lumpier looking but they will do the trick just fine!

There are so many ways to lessen waste this Easter!  Little cloth bags can be used to place treats in, festive shapes like bunnies or eggs can be cut out of felt and sewn to create little treat pockets and old baskets can be thrifted to collect or package Easter treasures instead of buying a new ones!  These are all good ways to avoid extra plastic (and other waste) winding up in the landfills and can be reused annually.

I hope you enjoyed our project and that Easter is lovely for you all!

JESSICA

 

 

 

 

Days like this

The other morning I was startled awake to Max’s cries.  He was sick and a mess so I sleepily stumbled in to the bedroom to assess the situation.  After getting him cleaned up and settled we headed back to sleep only to be woken up by the alarm clock for school 20min later.  Once again I picked myself out of bed and helped Lilah get ready for school and out the door in a timely fashion.

I’m not a morning person by any means.  I’m also not a night person since having kids… I fall somewhere in between.  10am until maybe 5pm is when I meet my best self.  All other hours have varying levels of exhaustion.  Having a sick child just adds another bump in the morning routine which lucky for us isn’t that smooth as is.

As hard as these days can be I am actually kind of thankful for them.  On these days several positives happen.  One being that I am forced to slow things down.  All plans get cancelled or rearranged and I’m ok with that.  It also gives me the time to snuggle and tend to whomever is under the weather and well… one day I know they won’t be so interested in having their mommy wipe their nose or tend to their fevers.

School Days + New Routine

FullSizeRender 22And just like that September is in full swing and fall routines have begun.  As much as I appreciate the consistency that comes with school days I would be lying if I said I am not missing the tiny voices -that drove me batty just last week 😉 – calling me repeatedly.  This year is especially strange since it’s the first time in over 6yrs I haven’t had a small child at my side day in and day out. I have already found myself asking the dog questions he cannot answer and pointing out adorable critters on our walks.  …Because my dog , Wally, finds humour in things like squirrels chasing each other through the trees as much as small children 😉 ….  Well he does show interest but that is just because he would love to pursue them on an instinctual level.

August seemed to fly by this year and the first day of school kind of snuck up on me.  One day we were planning our next adventure and the next we were waiting for the school bus!  Sending my son Max on the bus for his first day was REALLY hard.  He is still 3 and very small for his age.  The bus steps are his equivalent to climbing the escarpment for the rest of us.  But he did it and thankfully he didn’t look back because than he likely would have seen the tears in my eyes.

We are all fairing well though now that things are picking up and becoming more familiar to us all.  Max is finding JK a bit overwhelming so we are sending him part time for now with the support of his educators.  Making the transition a smooth and pleasant one for us all is our goal!

My daughter Lilah loves grade 1 so far though finds sitting a desk uncomfortable – because it is!  I think it’s awfully hard to concentrate when you’re sitting on something that feels like concrete but what do I know 😉 .  She loves the independence that comes with being in a primary grade and has made some new friends.

As  for me, I am regrouping right now and focusing on re-organizing all the things in the house – toys, books, clothes – pretty much everything I couldn’t do easily with the kids around.  My “to make” list keeps growing and with Christmas (yes I know it’s early) in the near future I have plenty to pass the childfree moments I now have.

The first week has now passed and we are all feeling thankful for the weekend to recharge.  Before we know it we will be in to a nice groove and I think we are off to a good start!

Happy back to school!

cbde7-jessica

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

For the love of hair + butterflies

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It was bright and cheery August morning, perfect for exploring nature so I headed out with the kids to the RBG to enjoy the gardens.  We walked past some gentlemen chatting on our way in to the gardens, said hello and carried on.

The gardens are exploding with life – full of butterflies, bees and other happy insects going from flower to flower carrying on as nature intended.  We are always on the look out for different bugs, plants and critters we haven’t noticed previously.  Today we took note in a wee little butterfly as it floated effortlessly (well in my mind – I imagine it actually takes a fair amount of effort on their part 😉 ) throughout mounds of summer blooms.

It was time for us to head on home so we said our goodbyes to the flowers, trees and insects and made our walk back to the truck.  We passed the same gentlemen as we returned and this time they commented on my sons hair.  He has a glorious mop of light blonde locks that he loves.  At first I thought they admired it but than it dawned on me that the general feeling was that I should be cutting it.  These men were not mean and I’m certain it wasn’t ill intended but it made me think of they way we as a society have raised our boys.

For the most part the reaction to my sons hair is really good.  I would say 95% of the time people genuinely love it and think it’s great that he has it exactly how he wants it.  But there is this other group of people who really feel I as a mom need to “put my foot down” and tell him his hair is unacceptable.  He is 3yrs old.  And even if he was 13yrs old, it is ultimately his hair and his body.  What am I supposed to tell him – your hair is too… too what?  Feminine?!  Because it is not.  And if that handful of people think there is something wrong with it, well than it’s on them and not me.

The sad reality is that when he starts school there is a very real chance some other child will make fun of his hair and he will want to cut it.  It hurts my heart to think of this possibility, to know that the words of his classmates will have an edge so powerful they just might alter how he perceives himself.

But this attitude is learned and we can change it.  It starts with acceptance.  Accepting that someone else’s attributes whether genetic or chosen do not affect your life in any possible way.  That long hair on a boy or short hair on a girl does not make one more feminine or masculine than the other.

So, I think back to that little butterfly and I envy it a little simply because it exists as it should fluttering about with no external criticism inhibiting it’s natural duties.  As humans I think we could all learn a lot from the butterflies that pass us by all summer long.  No matter their colour, size or shape they dance harmoniously over the gorgeous landscape.

If a butterfly choses to go left when the others go right it will be just fine.  And you know what?  So will my son and daughter and anyone else who goes against the grain (or with it!).  We are all in this together.

Go chase the butterflies!

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