Friday, October 29, 2010

Love this site! Restoration Hardware

This beautiful chandelier is made from a reclaimed french oak wine barrel

I came across a catalog in the staff room at work today for a store called Restoration Hardware. I've come across some of their stuff on my random online adventures however I didn't quite get what it was that they do. Once I looked further I realized the true beauty and quality and fell in love. Restoration Hardware began nearly 30 years ago when out of frustration, founder; Stephen Gordon was restoring his Queen Anne Victorian house in Eureka, California. Gordon spent days finding authentic period hardware, lighting fixtures and finishes, Gordon found there were a lot of people with the same problems. I love this company that reclaims old metal, iron and wood items and restores them into gorgeous furniture, lighting, hardware and other accessories.A bench created from a centuries old wooden sleigh! WoW!

Love This Site!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Joy Blog...Crafting

Not my pizza, but similar to the one I made the other day

“There is only one of you in all time, this expression is unique. And if you block it, it will never exist through any other medium and it will be lost.” — Martha Graham

When I was a child my mother was always creating and crafting something. She was a quilter, a knitter and a sewer. She made all of my halloween costumes with her sewing machine, funny now that I think of it I always envied the kids with those plastic store bought costumes. She made all of our birthday cakes, fabulously decorated. She always made sure that we were the kids that brought the awesome treats to our classes for all of the holidays, like pumpkin shaped chocolate pops at halloween. The list could possibly go on and on for this whole blog. However, my point is, I didn't really get how truly special that was until now that I have kids. I remember my mom and I would stay up late making christmas chocolates and candy like chocolate covered cherries and "turtles,"and I recall how joyful it was. As, I got older, my mom would try and teach me other more difficult crafts like sewing, knitting and eventually folk art painting and I didn't get it, I wasn't interested at all. Now that I am a mother of two, I find that I am slowly but surely finding the absolute joy in crafting that my mom knew for all of those years.

As a child when we went shopping with my mom, we would say "mom can we buy that?" and she would say "I can make that." And she did. The other day while browsing on my favourite website etsy I realized that I was no longer shopping, I was gathering ideas because I realized that I too "can make that." Funny how you swear you wont be like your mother, and once you have your children you start to hear your mother in you own thoughts all the time!

I have been busy with several crafts lately, unfortunately my dear camera is being serviced so I can't show pics of some of my latest projects. A couple days ago, browsing on etsy, I saw that felt play food is the latest thing. I got some coloured felt and began creating a felt pizza for my children's "house" centre. I spent all morning sewing the crust, sauce, cheese and toppings together with loving care and I was thrilled! Best of all, the kids totally loved it. I lost all sense of time as I was creating, expressing myself through this medium has brought passion and joy!

Soon as my camera is fixed I will post some of the great ideas, that are super easy and mostly quick crafts. In the meantime, check out this awesome blog for great ideas.

P.S. Thanks Mom!

Sunday, October 17, 2010

A Sense of Order

“If you want a golden rule that will fit everything, this is it: Have nothing in your houses that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful.”
-William Morris

So I haven't posted for a while, it's true. I was unable to get a clear focus, and was drawing a blank whenever I sat down to blog. I took some time to get quiet, to read and get things in order. I feel like I cleared my mind (as well as my home) of a lot of cobwebs and I'm ready to share some things I learned. One of the simple abundance principles is ORDER. I didn't really get how significant this principle was until my plumbing went last week and our basement was soaked, we had laundry from 2 weeks piled up in every corner, I was washing the kids underwear by hand, dishes were piled up on every counter and stuffed in the dishwasher. I didn't even want to go home. Home was the enemy.

This disorder in my home started to show itself in my whole life. I went grocery shopping and realized I didn't have my bank card and I started digging through my purse, pulling out crunched up old receipts, old candies, Ruby's hair bows, papers embarrassing! No bank card anywhere, a whole cart full of groceries that I had to walk away from. I cursed and swore to myself as I walked to the car, people must have been thinking "Crazy woman." I get in the car and the stupid bank card was sitting right on the seat. This is just a small example. There were about a hundred small things just like that happening to me.

The plumbing got fixed finally, and we are still doing 8 loads of laundry a day to catch up. However, soon as the dishes were cleared and the washing machine was fired up again, I felt a sense of relief. Order is now my best friend. So, each day, I choose something to tackle. A closet, a toy basket, a drawer, a cabinet, something to put in order. I re-organized my medicine/linen closet the other day and everything is perfectly sorted in little bins, old medication is tossed out. When I came down with a cold this week, it was such a joy to pull out the perfectly organized basket and find exactly what I needed without having to sift through a billion things that shouldn't even be there to get to what I want.

So what does an organized physical environment have to do with your mental or emotional self? Said perfectly by Sarah Ban Breathnach: "How can we focus our attention on what's truly important when we're half-crazed because we can never find anything?" This I have realized is SO true. How can I sit down and blog about the important things in life if I am half-crazed from trying to sift through the messes all day? I'm learning to let go of "stuff" and simplify because I have to. I have made several trips to the nearest thrift shop to drop bags of things off. I am clearing out what isn't useful or beautiful. My sanity is returning with everything I toss in the garbage or recycling bin, or every bag that gets thrown into the thrift store. Even if it's something that I purchased with the best intentions or with the best label on it. If I haven't used it in the last 6 months or if I don't think it's beautiful, it's gone! Do try this at home! It will change your life.