Friday, 28 February 2014

{this moment}

{this moment} - Inspired by Amanda Soule at SouleMama
"A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. If you're inspired to do the same, leave a link to your 'moment' in the comments."

Friday, 21 February 2014

Green Confession Time

Now that my youngest daughter is toilet trained I have a green confession to make: I used disposable diapers on my daughters.

My middle daughter wearing a
one size pocket diaper.
I love cloth diapers and used them with all three daughters. I bought my first set of prefold diapers before my oldest daughter was born, almost nine years ago. This was a bit of a challenge at the time because the only store where I could buy cloth diapering supplies was in the only baby boutique I knew of in the city. This was before we were inundated baby boutiques and I remember people wondering about spending money in an overpriced baby store when I could just shop at Babys 'R Us. It was the same store where I bought my first sling, and some people were surprised I would spend $50 on "a piece of cloth".

My cloth diapering stash is quite large. I have several dozen prefold diapers, half a dozen or so diaper covers, perhaps a dozen one-size pocket diapers, micro fleece and hemp inserts, a dozen or so cloth training pants, Snappi diaper fasteners, two diaper bag wet bags and several laundry bags for soiled diapers. There were the occasional times (like traveling) when I used disposable diapers when they were infants and toddlers, but my older two daughters were largely exclusively cloth diapered.

But with each one there reached a point when I started using Pull-Ups along with the cloth training pants. My oldest was out of diapers fairly quickly so this stage was quite brief. With my middle daughter, however, it felt like toilet training took forever (actually it did - she wasn't out of diapers and training pants until three and a half years old).

Enter my youngest daughter.

Continue reading at The Green Phone Booth>>>

Friday, 7 February 2014

{this moment}

{this moment} - Inspired by Amanda Soule at SouleMama
"A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. If you're inspired to do the same, leave a link to your 'moment' in the comments."

Knitting Is Good For you

Make things you can wear!
My grandmother taught me how to knit when I was young, although not as young as she was when she learned. In England at the time they taught all girls how to knit when they were five years old, and it was a lifetime passion for her. I like how knitting (among other crafts) links me to my mother and my grandmother, and other women through the ages. Over the years my love affair with knitting has waxed and waned, depending on the ages of my kids and the time I could devote to it, but I always end up coming back to it. I am by no means an expert; I would call myself an advanced beginner as I have never made myself a substantial piece of clothing like a sweater.

Over the past decade knitting has gone through a bit of a surge in popularity, with young people, including men, and even celebrities openly engaging in the fibre arts. It goes along with the resurgence of homespun pursuits of do-it-yourselfers and hipsters. Everything old is new again.

Knitting isn't just for girls anymore.
As my grandmother did with me, I am attempting to pass along my love of knitting to the next generation. I gave my daughters yarn and needles for presents two Christmases ago, and every so often they will sit down with me and knit a few rows. I am also sponsoring a knitting club at my school, teaching interested grade five, six and seven students how to knit basic projects like scarves and soft toys. I am pleased that there are even a handful of boys in the club.

So why bother teaching people how to knit when cheap clothing is everywhere? Yarn is expensive and knitting is time consuming. It is easier, and less expensive to just go and buy something machine made.

I believe that knitting is healthy for people, the community and the environment for the following reasons:

Sunday, 2 February 2014

Card Making Fun

True to my nature as an all or nothing sort of person, I have been a bad blogger recently because life and other activities have been taking my focus away. My obsession over the past couple of weeks, in between getting over a lingering cold that decided to set up shop in my chest and throat, has been making cards. I have been making cards for at least ten years now, thanks to some friends and fellow teachers who got me hooked. One of those friends is now a Stamping Up rep and she keeps us well stocked and up on the latest card trends.

This year my one little word is make because I value homemade things. I hope to do a post per month on the latest things I'm making and enjoying, so for January I thought I would post a selection of cards that I've made recently. 

Making cards isn't particularly green, given that I buy new card stock paper, embellishments, inks, pens, glue and various adhesives. I could use more recycled paper and upcycled materials from around my home. However, I use as much of the paper and paper scraps as I can. I believe that making and giving my own cards has a personal touch, which is important to me. 

Most of these cards were inspired by ideas found on Pinterest, where I virtually hang out quite a bit. I get inspired by all of the creative people out there and it get my juices flowing to make. If you hang out on Pinterest you may have seen some of these ideas. A link to my card board is here.

I love the blended sunset colour of this silhouette card using
the bird builder punch from Stamping Up.

I love the owl punch, also from Stamping Up, because
of the multitude of ideas you can make with it.

This is for my middle daughter's birthday.

This minion card is made using the owl punch
(see above). I haven't added a sentiment yet.

This is for my youngest daughter's birthday.

It's always good to have girly cards ready in this house.

Another card using the owl punch (see above).

I'm obsessed with the Keep Calm memes, so this stamp set
was a must for my collection. 

I've knitted little heart thank you cards for people
who donate yarn to my knitting club. The pattern
can be found here.
I always forget to make cards for men so here are two
attempts at more masculine cards.