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...a glimpse into life on Vancouver Island, needle felting, photography, food, gardening, etcetera...etcetera
"Happiness always looks small when you hold it in your hands, but let it go, and at once you learn how big and precious it is."
Maxim Gorky

Friday, December 17, 2010

Song for Friday...for the skaters...

One of my great joys in life is skating outside in the winter...
We don't get to do that much of it at all around here ,but when I was a kid in Toronto, we used to go to the local park where they made a rink with lights and all!
Parents used to have to come and DRAG their kids home at night...
it's the best feeling in the world to glide on ice...even if you fall a few times...
Happy gliding, you lucky ones!
Have a great weekend!


Thursday, December 16, 2010

I've got mail!

The other day I received a package which I ordered off of Etsy.
I love how you just never know what the shop owner will do to make that parcel a little extra special.
Then I see that the gift tags I bought are even more lovely than on her site!
The gorgeous images...
The vintage feel she gives to them...
And the pretty ribbon, carefully chosen to match each one...
They are so beautiful, I can't quite use them yet so I've incorporated them into some of my Christmas decorating...
For now...
If you would like to see more of Brandy's pretty things, check out her shop...

Monday, December 13, 2010

An alternative...

Every year I struggle with the idea of what to do about a Christmas tree.
I grew up having the big cut tree with it's lovely smell and grand size.
The tradition of going to the lot with my dad on a snowy evening to pick one out...
the excitement of decorating with my brothers and sister and the thrill of seeing pretty wrapped packages underneath it on Christmas morning.
Then I grew up and had my own ideas about the whole industry of cut trees and how I thought it wasn't right somehow.
For a few years I would go out to the power lines, where B.C hydro allows you to take a tree (which they will cut down in the spring for maintenance anyways due to too many crowding the lines).
Truth be told, our house is small and I still am not completely comfortable with taking a perfectly healthy young tree for a few weeks and then out to the compost or burn pile.
So last year I started a new spin on things and have begun...
The Christmas chandelier!
 Quite simple, really.
I took a plant support (kind of like a tomato cage but made for large perennials), took the spikes which would normally go into the ground and wired them together like so...(usually there's 3 spikes)
Then I gather up whatever prunings I desire...(this year it's huckle berry and split leaf alder.)
Bundle them all together and wire them onto the support frame...
Next you add your lights...
Check out these beautiful lights...
No they are not hand blown amber glass...guess again!
Dried apricots! 
This was an idea my friend Irma saw a few years back and we've been spreading the news ever since.
Just put a tiny slit in it and slip it over the fairy light.
Then all that's left to do is hang said chandelier over your table or wherever you want and get your precious ornaments out to decorate...
Once again, another way to bring the light into the house on these short, dark days.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Diggin' it...

Today we celebrated my nephews 13th birthday.
Nick is into 'everything archeology', so when I saw this...
I figured there wasn't anyone else I knew but him who would really enjoy such a thing.
And so began the dig.
Even with his recently broken elbow, the enthusiasm was high...
Chipping, scraping, hammering...
 and brushing dust away for a good while until...
 There! Do you see it?!
The quest for treasure grows more and more intense...
Finally, after about an hour, not one but  4 artifacts are uncovered...
They are all made of metal, quite heavy and realistic...
Nick especially loved the coin.
After he uncovered them, all of the chipped away stone was crushed to powder and mixed with water...
Then he added his own artifacts...
Put it all back into a mold and it sits drying and ready for the next amateur archaeologist to find the treasure...
There's nothing like seeing the joy and passion this kid has for discovering.
His quest to learn will take him on grand adventures.
Happy Birthday Nick!

Shedding some light...

Last night when I got home from work, glass of wine in hand, dinner from the new Mexican take out,
I switched on the telly to find this...
I have to admit, I'm a sucker for a cheesy Christmas movie and this is about THE CHEESIEST!
So I decided while I was half watching, I would dig out these boxes...
The forgotten ones.
They sit up in the barn loft for most of the year, keeping the spiders and mice company.
Gathering dust from the summer heat...waiting for their time to shine.
Opening these boxes is a kick to the memory...
Trinkets, from near and far.
From the long ago and the not so distant past...
And so out they come for a month, brightening up the side board...
Sparkle reflecting fairy lights and candles...
Keeping the dark days at bay...
Thoughts of Christmas past brought back through a thin layer of glass...
New decorations, with their own stories to add to the box.
Out and about for another season to shine.