Monday, 30 July 2012

Go For Gold!

I love watching the Olympic Games. As a former athlete, I know that A LOT of hard work and dedication goes into getting ones body and mind ready to compete.  Watching these athletes, the best of the best, aways inspires me.  Their stories move me. Their determination motivates me.  And without fail, no matter what sport I am watching, I watch with tears in my eyes! 

It's not too late to get into the Olympic spirit. Here are some fun and whimsical items inspired by the games to help you, 
Keep Calm & Cheer On!
Get comfy and cozy while you watch the games in this Flag jogging suit by Ashish for Topshop.
During those nail biting moments, hold on tight to this fun pillow by KIJSA STUDIO on Etsy.
Show your Olympic spirit year round with this crochet necklace by violas boutique on Etsy.

Butter London
This Heavy Metal Collection by butter London lets you create your own podium style!

Thursday, 26 July 2012

Mod Podge

I did it! I finally purchased some Mod Podge.  I guess this was next step to becoming a legitimate crafter, ok, maybe not legitimate, but close enough!  It's no wonder that Mod Podge is a true crafting staple and no doubt found in every craft-onistas closet. This miracle 3-in-one product is a glue, sealer, and finish, all in one retro looking bottle. And that's not all folks - you also have a choice of finishes: gloss, satin, and even sparkle and fabric versions!  A whole new world of crafting possibilities has opened up for me. Cue heavenly music.

So for my first mod podging(?) I made a cute little frame for one of Ryan's friends who was turning 4.
I bought some pretty scrapbook paper, a wooden frame, a small wooden flower along with some sponges.

Another reason why I love this stuff, it's foolproof! Which is great for an unskilled and impatient diy'er like myself. 

And...voila! My very first attempt at Mod Podge was a success!

And to add a touch of personalisation, I added a felt K to the centre of the frame.

Plus, I made a cute little card, appropriately with 4 candles - yes, I even used Mod Podge to glue the candles on!

A fun and easy birthday present.

Now...what shall I Mod Podge next?

Monday, 23 July 2012

Slow it all down

Sometimes, the best days are the days where little gets accomplished. The kind of days where you aren't rushing to get things done or struggling to meet deadlines.  I don't have very many of those kind of days, but when they do come along, they recharge me. They inspire me. They make me appreciate everything that I have.   

slow it all down
take it all in
let it all go
open, open
Wendy Luella Perkins

Here's to slowing down. I think we could all benefit from taking a little more time to reflect, and truly ENJOY our surroundings and those we choose to surround ourselves with.

Here are a few images from our relaxing and easy weekend.

Stories in the Park at Skeleton Park

Followed by a dip in the wading pool

Cool dried leaf we found

Then doing what they love best - painting and creating.

I hope you all find some time this week to recharge and reconnect with what is most important in your lives.

Thursday, 19 July 2012

Trigger Happy

I have a confession to make. I have a slight obsession that may require an intervention.  It started out innocently enough, and now, as my husband would say, it's 'out of control'.  No, it has nothing to with my love of libations!  Hello my name is Beth, and I love to spray paint. 

To me, spray painting is like getting a tattoo - extremely addictive and hard to stop after one! The up side, it's pain free and commitment free.   

What can you use spray paint for you ask? Well, my dear friends, the real question is what CAN'T you spray paint?  The possibilities are seriously, endless. Thanks to the good people who manufacture this wondrous and instant gratification satisfying paint, there are numerous colours & sheen's to choose from so you can refresh and re-love almost anything (warning: do not attempt to spray paint animals or loved ones!). I know right?! Spray paint is truly amazing.

If I haven't convinced you yet to get out there and join the spray paint enthusiast club, then here are a few pictures of projects that I have found online.

fun colours

Here are some random items that I have spray painted.







 Now get your trigger finger ready for some unadulterated colourful fun! And I would love to hear what items you find to transform.

Monday, 16 July 2012

Cottage Time

It has been four years in a row now that we have rented a cottage in Prince Edward County.  Always a different cottage, and always in a new part of the county.

This year, we rented in the town of Milford - the cottage was Park Hall Farm.  It had an expansive back yard, spotted with apple trees and right on South Bay.  We were drawn to this property, for one, the waterfront, and two, the huge lot for the kids to run free!  There was a small guest house right beside the main house that we also rented out. So for the week, it was myself, my husband and our two girls, my sister-in-law with her son, and another couple - no kids - and I am sure after their week with us, they were thankful for that fact!.  (I mention this because the three previous years, we rented with my parents).  OK, so my parents came to the cottage for one night - clearly, we really needed them to stay longer!

As any other parent of young kids know, there really is no relaxing while on a family vacation (especially if the grandparents aren't there and willing to help out). Sure you can pack that book you've been meaning to read, but the chances of you actually getting to read a sentence is as likely as me getting paid to blog!

As I was packing the gazillions things we needed for our trip, I was thinking about all the fun we were going to have. The beaches we would go to. The games we would play. The food we would eat. And of course the wine we would drink!  But what I didn't think about, was that this week was going to be a HUGE change in "routine" for the girls. Well, for Ryan especially.  Segue -  Without going into too much detail, Ryan has been a challenge since birth. Nothing has been "easy". Nothing has come without a fight or a battle or a struggle.  She is under the category of the Highly Sensitive Child. For those of you who know what I am talking about, I dedicate this glass of wine, that is close at hand, to you.  All that being said, any change in routine for Ryan, no matter if we have talked about it, is anxiety inducing.  We do the best we can to surround her with things that are familiar to her, but it's never perfect. I am not going to sit here and complain that my life is tough, because believe me, I know we have it easy. However, there are times that when Ryan is screaming her head off because of a shadow, or if we can't find her stuffed animal before bed time, or if she doesn't like the smell of the room,the store, the food, or if a particular noise is bothering her - I want to cry myself.  If you have read any of my other posts, you will see that this hasn't stopped us from travelling. From changing up our daily lives. To getting out there and exploring new places and spaces.  We feel it's important for us as a family, and for Ryan to face her fears.

OK, back to the cottage.  What more could we have asked for? A beautiful place, great weather, privacy, and shared with family and friends.  We ate cedar plank salmon, steak, hamburgers, shrimp,  chicken, sausage, lobster, lamb, escargot, grilled vegetables, charcuterie, salads, corn, potatoes, risotto, bacon, cheese, bread...I don't recall eating any fruit or desserts. We did have a pie that I think was half eaten for breakfast on the morning we were leaving. Hey, there's only so much room in our bellies.  We went to a few local beaches including Point Petre, which is a local favourite, and of course we went to Sandbanks.  All in all, it was a perfect.

As our last night was upon us, so quickly and yet so slowly, we discussed our plans for next year. We looked at various different cottages. A good sign that we all had a wonderful time and were already looking forward to more time and memories, together.  As for Ryan, the only night that she slept well and slept in was of course on our final night!

walking back to the main house from the water.

My dad, big Andy and my daughter, little Andy, enjoying the sunset together.

Aunt Denise and cousin Liam

Favourite summer eats

Long Point Beach

We basically had the whole beach to ourselves.

More amazing food.

Trip to Sandbanks

Another pebble beach only 5 minutes away from the cottage.

Again, we had the beach to ourselves!

Our attempt at a family picture!

The final sunset from our amazing week at Park Hall Farm.