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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

Saturday, April 25, 2015

Also considering...

Besides the pink fawn lilies at Annie's house,
(you can read about that here)
I also went out to have a look at an incredible display which happens
every year at Old St Mary's church in Metchosin under the sheltering Garry Oaks...
The grounds are a flood of tiny white bells...
 What a restful place to lay...
 Carefully mown paths are cut just wide enough to stroll amongst the multitude of beauty
Joining the lilies are throngs of bluebells, pink bells, camus and native bleeding heart...
During this time there is a fibre arts show inside the little church
called 'Consider the Lilies' and I always wondered why they called it this.
So I went to Goo U (google university / aka the internet ) and found 
this verse from the bible...
 "Consider the lilies, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin, yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these."
  
The next day on my walk down the road, I also considered the hawthorn and the crab apple...
 What a plethora of blossoms there are that whirl about in the spring breeze
 these promising first weeks of spring!
Oh, and don't forget...always fun to find a good rusty bit of an old truck in the bush!!

Friday, April 24, 2015

Etsy finds...

There's something special about getting a package in the post.
In this day and age of online, digital bla bla bla it's so nice to 
see a hand written, brown paper parcel in the mailbox.
Especially when it has that big gold Royal Mail stamp on it!
...I'm always intrigued by the return address' in the UK...
Maybe it's the child in me that thinks of Dr Doolittle's house in Puddleby on the Marsh.
Maybe the actual place isn't the storybook English village I imagine but it's fun to think that.
I just sent off a sculpture to an address of 7 Horsecart Lane...How pretty does that sound?
Anyway, back to my package...
I love when someone take the time to wrap up their product in a pretty or interesting way...
You would think I ordered the finest linen in Provence the way its wrapped.
But alas! it is one of my favourite things to do sculptures on...
Antique wooden bobbins from England!
Have a look in Brocanteart's shop if you are at all interested in vintage
decorative antiques, textiles and haberdashery (love that old world word!)
If they could only talk...
Maybe they would tell the tails of the grand fabric mills that once dotted the
countryside of the UK.
(image from Henry Clark on Wikipedia of the Gilford Mill in Northern Ireland)
I love a thing with history...
They are perfect little stands for my felted pieces...
(...who have since gone on to other places.)
Two days later I received another package of something else I couldn't resist on Etsy...
Again, packaged in a gorgeous little morsel of a box...
Reminded me of something my grandma would have kept a precious ring in...
In this case it was this lovely resin cameo...
Delicate shades of carnelian and ivory...
This from a seller who has all sorts of cool vintage treasures...
Have a look here
Pinkys of Saratoga Springs in the US.
So there you go...a few great little finds from our beloved Etsy packaged with care and thought!

PS
(If you have any nice wooden spools you might want to de-stash in exchange
for a sculpture, let me know!)

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Hello Beautiful...

Today was Earth Day.
It was a beautiful day on the Island 
and when I woke up this morning and turned on the CBC,
they were playing a Sarah Harmer song about the Niagara Escarpment.
How fitting.
Our Earth is indeed in trouble and we have many miles to go in order to 
help fix things, slow things down and stop things from the cycle of destruction.
Of this I am more than aware of.
But call me a Pollyanna, an idealist, an optimist or whatever but today
I am celebrating the beauty.
I'm bound by the beauty.
I'm in awe of the beauty.
I'm inspired by the beauty.
I went for a visit at good friend Annie Boquist's house down the road...
I've written about Annie and her husband David 
and the amazing things they've done on their property here and here
and so here I go again.
Because they make the world beautiful.
We need that more than ever.
Annie has spent many, many years cutting back invasive species and aiding in
the propagation of the rare pink fawn lily or Erythronium revolutum.
I find that second word quite interesting because right now and for some time,
there has been a green revolution.
Like minded people are planting, growing, harvesting and caring for our natural world.
There is evilness and ugliness enough in this world and inevitably I here about it somehow,
but in my own way I am cultivating goodness and positive feelings
 by being with people like Annie in her pink fawn lily haven...
I am not ignoring the terrorists, the murderers or the pedophiles who rob this world
of safety and love but instead I feel I belong to a collective consciousness of peace and hope.
 "there's a natural mystic flowing through the air"
Bob Marley
Two other friends have come to visit Annie today and we all take a walk to marvel at this tiny  sanctuary by the creek...
The sunlight is lending gorgeous light to the forest...
 Fists of sword fern unfurl in the warmth...
...we head back to the house to have a peak in Annie's studio...
It's like a mad watchmaker/toymaker/magicians lair with ingredients to 
guide the imagination to conjure up...well...things like this...
Made from gourds Annie grows and all the marvelous bits and pieces in her studio.
Now, we mustn't leave without mentioning Marjorie.
Little, tiny legged Marjorie, who kept up with us like a trooper,
who now feels left behind...
"don't worry sweetie! we'll let you in!"
Safe and sound...
And indeed this part of this beautiful earth is safe and sound and peaceful and beautiful.
Thanks again Annie and David.

(thanks Gillian and Dianne for the visit and laughter too!)

Sunday, April 19, 2015

In the midst...

I wake up now very early to the songs of robins.
They are the first birds up and the last to go home.
The light creeps in around 5:30 or 6 am and if the weather shows promise,
I am up and ready for tea....
The sun is waiting for me in the kitchen and streams through the window by the sink...
 
It's still a difficult thing to get used to the quiet void...the space that was Griffin...
But I'm getting through it and starting new routines...
I have my big mug of tea and venture out for a bike ride.
This morning I took some time to admire those beautiful blossoms on the apple trees...
And the little olive green warbler in the budding maple tree
announcing himself to the world this morning!
Down behind the trees in a little swamp, I stop to marvel at the back lit shapes
of last years cattails...no doubt nesting material for this years broods...
I know these are favourite haunts of the red winged blackbirds who
hunker down below the reeds to shape beautiful nests of grasses.
They blend in so well with their environment that it's easy to miss them...
...but if you look very closely and be aware of the chipping warning calls of the male bird...
...you may catch a glimpse...
I only stay a moment or two and use my zoom lens to have a peak from a safe distance...
The female has gone off to have a break or a drink so she's not there for the time being.
I spot another nest in the brush, built of the usual moss, mud, lichen and twigs and just
for something extra special...some blue bits from an old tarp!
After I take a few shots I carry on and as I look back I see the female blackbird come back to the area
to resume her duty as a patient mother, warming her eggs in preparation for hatching.
And I resume my morning as a girl who misses her walks with her dog.
I ride along the paths we used to walk finding a different way to greet the day.


(It's been a month now since Griffs been gone so a little reprise of his lovely face is in order.)