Wednesday, 26 February 2014

Time Away

I've taken a long time away from this space.  I've never been good at keeping up with things and obviously this was no exception.

I thought writing a blog would be fun.  I wanted to fill it with fabulous and interesting posts.  To have tons of followers.  To have beautiful pictures and useful tutorials.   The thing is though, I'm not a fabulous or overly interesting person.  Most of what I have to say will be interesting to no one outside of my immediate family.  I'm not a photographer and I'm not talented or creative enough to teach people how to do things. And truthfully, I'm okay with that.  A year ago, I wasn't though.

I felt like I needed to have everything together, to fill this space with posts about wonderfully structured days spent crafting and baking and learning with my well dressed and always clean children.  I felt like I needed my days to be perfect so people would want to read about them.  That is the point of writing a blog, isn't it?

Here's the thing though. My days aren't perfect.  And the harder I try to make them perfect, the worse they are.

So as I realized this, I began to let go.  And do you know what I noticed?  Our days sure aren't perfect but they have a lot of perfect moments.  Those moments are never the ones I wrote down on my schedule for the day.  I didn't plan to spend two hours in front of the fire reading The Long Winter with my 6 year old while the little ones napped.  I certainly didn't schedule 45 minutes to chase a rogue chicken back into her coop in the dark (and spending that entire time laughing so hard my muscles ached).  These unplanned, often messy but oh so perfect moments are the ones I want to remember.  They're what make our life interesting and special.  They're the stories we'll tell at family dinners for years to come.

I'm back in this space with a new perspective.  I want to document these imperfect days exactly as they are: messy, cluttered and full of perfect moments.  They're the moments that are often forgotten in the haze of sleep deprivation and never ending laundry pile.  They're also the moments that deserve the most recognition.

A lot has changed since the last time I wrote and now I'm excited to share it all.  Because there's no pressure to make it look any different than it really is: beautifully imperfect.

Tuesday, 26 June 2012

Crafting On: Reunited

Since we lost the baby, I've had no desire to do anything creative.  In fact, I resented those knitting needles and the skeins of sweet baby wool.  I shoved it all away in a closet and busied myself with other things.  Then I noticed how frazzled I felt and how easily I became overwhelmed.  Crafting centers me.  I need to create and be creative.

So I've pulled out my fabric.  I dusted off the sewing machine and I sewed.  I pulled out my knitting needles and some generic and safe white wool to make some bloomers for Amelia.  I am still hiding from anything baby related...that will come in time.

I am happy that I am back at it.  I needed to complete a project.  That feeling when you finally finish something you've been working so hard on is healing.  So I chose a big project that I've been putting off for months and I finished it.

It was simple and repetitive, just enough to keep my mind busy.  And when I finished it, I was able to cuddle up with my new quilt, a bowl of fresh strawberries and a good book.  It was exactly what I needed.

(I had a better picture but I accidentally deleted it...and it has rained since.  The colours look so off here.  Sad.)

Finally joining up with Nicole for Crafting On again! 

Monday, 25 June 2012


Its strawberry season.  Probably one of my favourite times of the year.  You just can't beat a strawberry, picked fresh off the plant, still warm from the sunshine.  

I love taking the kids with us to the strawberry patch.  I think its so important for them to see where food comes from and for them to be involved in growing, harvesting and preserving it.  It gives them a real sense of satisfaction when they get to be involved and they're always more willing to eat something they've helped to make.  Strawberries are the most kid friendly of crops.  They can be involved in every stage.  In fact, they can whip up a batch of freezer jam with almost no help from me!

So now we've got many lovely Mason jars full of sweet strawberry jam, there are bags full of frozen strawberries saved for winter smoothies and there are sweet, sweet berries in my yogurt every morning.


Friday, 8 June 2012

For my baby.

We were having a baby.  The whole thing seems a little surreal.  Having had 3 healthy, uneventful pregnancies, I think we stupidly assumed we were immune to tragedy. 

We went in for an ultrasound at 12 weeks.  Walking in to the room, we were laughing and joking with the tech.  He went to the same university I did.  We continued our conversation as he set up.  He turned on the screen, put the stick on my belly and stopped talking.  My heart sunk.  I knew.  Of course, I knew.  Where there should have been a beating heart, there was nothing.  Finally, he confirmed what I already knew.  The baby had died about 4 weeks before. 

In the 4 weeks before we discovered our baby had died, I had suffered from all the typical pregnancy symptoms.  I had even been to the ER for IV fluids because of my excessive morning sickness.  There was absolutely no indication that this was coming. 

I knew nothing about miscarriage.  I didn't know that I would have to carry my baby until it came out.  I didn't know I'd have to choose how that would happen.  I didn't know that my body would continue on with its pregnancy symptoms until it caught on that there was, in fact, no baby.  I had no idea. 

We chose to wait for the miscarriage to happen naturally.  It took 6 days after finding out.  Those were the longest and most awful 6 days of my life. 

On Tuesday, I started feeling cramps.  Desperately hoping that it was time, I called Ryan.

I was blessed to have it relatively easy on the physical side.  There was about 30 minutes of hard contractions.  Also something I didn't know; miscarriage is more than just a heavy period with a little cramping.  For me, it was just like labour. 

I sobbed through every contraction.  Where contractions had previously been a thing of joy, bringing me one step closer to my baby, these contractions brought me one step closer to good bye.  And I wasn't ready. 

After the baby was born, I sat in the bath tub and cried.  Ryan just held me.  It felt like his arms were holding me together while I wasn't strong enough to do it myself. 

I thought that it would be easy to say goodbye.  I'd had 6 days to prepare.  It wasn't easy.

My amazing midwife came over after.  She showed us our baby.  I saw the head, the spine, tiny arms and legs.  So tiny.  I had been afraid to look but now I'm glad I did. 

Since we said goodbye, I've had good days and bad days.  In my typical way, I joke about things and try to act as though I'm fine.  But I 'm not fine.  Not really.  In my heart, we are supposed to be a family of 6.  I look around and feel like someone is missing.  My arms feel heavy with the baby I will never get to hold. 

But life goes on and I throw myself back into routine because there is comfort there. My kids need me and I need them.  There peace in kneading bread dough.  There is joy in making necklaces with Brooklynn.  There is clarity in waking up before everyone else and just sitting still. 

Each day is better.  I hope that one day, I'll go the entire day without crying.  But I will never stop missing my baby.  And I'll never forget.   

Monday, 9 April 2012

One day...

One day I will:
  • actually get the hang of cooking a whole chicken (maybe even without gagging or cringing)
  • find an effective way of sweeping up rice...or even better, find a way of keeping it off the floor altogether
  • have a calm, happy, peaceful house for a full day
  • be dressed and smiling when Ryan comes home from work
That said, today is not that day.  So I'm throwing in the towel; we ordered pizza and put on a movie.

Happy Monday! ;)

Wednesday, 4 April 2012

Crafting On: Super Easy upcycled skirt

 I'll start with a SUPER easy upcycle project!  I wanted to ease myself its been a busy week!  This tube top is super cute but a) my girls don't wear tube tops and b) its much too big!  So I ripped out some stitches and removed the top half (stashed the buttons though!).  Because of the smocking, I really didn't have to do anything else!  Its a nice comfy skirt, perfect for playing in!

 I'm also working on a Fiona Romper for Amelia but I think I'm going to have to rip back up to the sleeve because I made some modifications without measuring.  Its looking a little large.  Too bad Weston can't rock a romper...

 As always, joinging up with Nicole at Frontier Dreams.  Go on over and check out what everyone else is up to!

Wednesday, 28 March 2012

An Upcycled Spring Wardrobe

 As always, I'm joining up with some wonderful ladies for Crafting On!

There's this thrift store just outside of town that does 5$ bags.  You get a garbage bag and fill it up!  I've never actually paid the full 5$ either!  I got all the things below for 4$!  Its like a crafter's dream!  I have big plans for that pile!  That stuff there is going to be (hopefully) the girls' spring wardrobe!  There's some stuff for Weston in there too...but I find sewing for boys much more difficult.  Anything but shorts and pants is outside my far!

 I started out with a simple pillowcase night gown for Brooklynn.  I think it is so pretty!  I love the dainty look, its extra sweet!  The tutorial, if you are interested, comes from here.

Then I did a simple pillow case top, also for Brooklynn.  I'm going to knit a little sweater that she can wear over strapless shirts to keep her shoulders covered. 

Finally, a skirt, made out of pj pants!  I just cut strips out of the pants, sewed them together to make a big piece of fabric and sewed a basic skirt!

I'm kind of excited to see what else I can come up with.  Refashioning is king of thrilling! ;)  Stay tuned for more!