Four > she's the birthday girl!

How do four years hold so much... heavy with rich memories, laughter, lessons (and lunacy).
Yet they disappear so quickly like rainbow coated bubbles from the playful blow of a child's wand.

We are richer for these four years.
We celebrate our darling daughter.
The silly, playful, dramatic, sensitive, creative spirit that she keeps growing up in to.

Happy 4th birthday you sweet lil' imp!

Mel ;o)


The perfect palette... picked!

Just thought I'd quickly update you on a successful colour crush I've found here.

You all know how much I love turquoise anything by now right?

But picking the perfect paint tone for this was like nailing Jell-O to a wall.  I'd stare for ages at the colour decks where I work (Benjamin Moore) and continually waffle between: "too blue" "too green"  "too bright"  "too gray".
Honestly, I'd be my own worst customer for making a choice of paint colour!

Sometimes the real trick is to find something else you love that's already in the colour you crave (a scarf, a painting, a piece of pottery) then find the paint chip to match it.

Voila ~ the perfect turquoise for me!
I got slap-happy with my paintbrush and brought this old wooden high-chair back to life.
Scuffing it up after ward for that yummy distressed look. 

Now that I've finally settled on a paint colour, it actually was the perfect pick.  It already goes with a lot of the turquoise pops of colour in our home... even the kid's room curtains.  So I'll be splashing more of it in there.
It even matches the tone of my turquoise/wood earrings I have for sale.
 So.. that's something.

For anyone wanting that perfect bold pop of colour... here's my top pick:

I wouldn't paint an entire room in it.. just highlight pieces.

A more subdued antique tone that I would love on our walls would be HC-144 Palladian Blue

Gosh, I am such a colour geek.
What's your perfect palette?

Mel ;o)


Give a girl a camera...

Here she is ~ our little budding photographer.
She snaps a quick candid of her family.
Captures all the golden leaves falling around her.
Stalks the boys in her life.
And like any good blogger.. takes about twenty pictures of her feet.


A sip of cider and catching up..

Oh hiiii, yes, we're still alive and well here!
Thanksgiving has come and gone here last weekend.. and I'm still sipping cider and nibbling leftover ham.  Most of the leaves have fallen around here, though a few trees are still ablaze against these rainy grey days.

Things I'm thankful for right about now:
+ a hot soak in the tub.
+ kids that are equal parts mischief and hilarity.
+ books that feed my soul.
+ hot chocolate with gooey marshmallows.
+ conversations with my man.
+ friends within walking distance.
+ washed dishes.
+ rain against the windows.
+ the sweet hallowed silence of evening.

Just to name a few...
..oh, and a sweet baby GIRL kicking gently from my belly! 

Hope the week is being sweet to you friends,
Mel ;o)


craft'spiration: The Quiet Time book.

Hello lovelies!
Today I have a beautiful example of crafting GENIUS to share with you guys... so as you can imagine ~ it was not created by me.  My super skilled seamstress pal Jackleen put this amazing 'Quiet Time Book' together for her wee kids... and I kind of wanted to keep it and play with it all myself.

Check out her mad skills for detail here:
A tree: every leaf flap lifts to reveal a special critter or stitched flower!  A tent: zips open with a funny critter to tuck into the sleeping bag.  

Shoes: you can tie those laces repeatedly.  Car: finger puppet drivers to pull out on a string.
Balloons: snap on, snap off.  Rocket: slides up a ribbon to the planet.
Furry friends to chat with.
Peek-a-boo girl: magnets in hand/eyes!  Marble-maze: push a marble around the path.

I know right?!
I probably would have done one page and gotten overwhelmed.. but she whips off amazing creations all the time. (Yeah, including my wedding dress!).

Thanks for sharing your crafty inspiration here Jackie!

Hope you're all inspired,
mel ;o)


tour the nest: bathroom makeover.

Well what do you know.. this preggo mama mustered up the hutzpah to repaint our bathroom this past week!  I thought it would be fun to show you the colour transformation here.
 If you recall from the past house (nest) tours, our bathroom used to be a dramatic dark brown.
Throughout our house, you'll know that I am a fan of COLOUR.  In fact, I would never have considered myself someone who could go 'grey' or 'off-white' with wall colours... but I'm happily shocked pleased with this soothing result.  Granted, I still plan to paint that brown high chair a wild turquoise real soon.... muahahah).

The wall paint is Benjamin Moore's OC-28 colour named Collingwood.
(side-note: working for Benjamin Moore... I get to see first hand how every.body.and.their.dog is buying GREY paint nowadays!)  I don't usually follow 'trend colours' but this transformation was worth the sell out. ;o)
And yes, the built in soap holder is still a perch for my bird's nests.. and pottered birdie I made.

Our daughter gushed with delight at the "beautiful painting" and the "pretty smell" of the Aura Bath and Spa collection I was using... she's funny like that.

Our retinas are still getting used to how BRIGHT it is when we stumble in there first thing in the morning... but overall, a fresh makeover for our growing nest!

Any home reno's/decor on your horizon?

Mel ;o)


confessions [of a Mama] part.15.

This 'mama-gig' ain't for sissies is it?
Some days I feel like I'm in the right rhythm.. and we're all dancing in sunbeams and laughter.
Some days it feels like I've fallen right off the track and been run over by a hoard of zombies.

But you know, after almost four years of being a mama so far... I'm starting to discover what my biggest struggle is.
Not the pregnancy-go-pukey rides.
Not the breastfeeding-why-is-baby-screaming nights.
Not the sleepless stupor I still seem to exist in.
Not the potty-training-guantlet.
Not the tantrum-testing-throw downs to deal with.

Confession: my biggest struggle in parenting is me.
More specifically it's called the self-pity vortex.
Self-pity is a merciless beast.
A selfish, self-centered, Eeyore party for one.. and the cake is made of poop.
I've seen it raise it's ugly head throughout my life, sure... since I'm human and all.
But I've never experienced it's full choke hold so powerfully as when I'm mothering.

Because mothering in so many ways - is all about 'losing yourself'.  Your wants, your needs, your desires take the back-burner to the wants/needs/desires of these lil' people that now carry your heart in their hands.
Some days you just want to yank that heart back.
Just a little 'me' time, you say.

Today was one of those days.
The kids had co-conspired to take separate sleep shifts/whine+wail shifts so that I could grasp no moment of reprieve.  No indulgent moment of napping.. or 'me' time.
Mentally crumpling up my 'to-do-lists' which makes the day feel like a unproductive waste.
Thus, the self-pity vortex started spinning.
My teeth started gritting.
My words started spitting.
My thoughts started festering:
"Why am I stuck here (ouch!).. doing alllll the work (not true!)... never getting a break (lies!).. and what's the quickest way to post my kids for FREE on Kijiji??! (exaggeration)"!

Um, yeah, self-pity tends toward hyperbole... in that all things are SO extreme.. and that NO ONE else can know what you're feeling/facing right now... boo hoo hoo.

No matter how enticing these pity-parties seem to be at first, they always end in the gutter.
I'm a misery.  My kids see my at my worst.
(Oh, and let's not forget the extra round of guilt for being such a 'bad mother' that gives me a bonus spin cycle in the self-pity vortex).

So, here I am at my seeming 'worst' - that point where I start to convince myself no other Mom must feel this wildness of "I'm going to eat my own young" animal kingdom wildness - and I'm feeling pretty broken.
The kind of broken that produces the truest prayers.
"God, I'm a wreck here".
"God, I'm sick of wasting my time, and energy on self-pity"
"Teach me grace, teach me love, teach me gratitude".

Much like this incredibly practical book I'm reading states:
"God's love rescues us from self-love so that we will be able to love others".
Because in the end, self-pity is the deranged sister of self-love.
It keeps our focus inward... all about ME... and what I want from my life.
Motherhood is a call to selfless love that rises above our own navel gazing.
A love that gives and lifts and restores and teaches and builds into the lives of others.
God knows I need His grace to live that out each day.

Now, when I feel the self-pity vortex starting to spin... I fight back.
Don't waste my time.
Don't waste my love.
Keep me grateful.
Keep me grace-full.

Each day as mothers we are living out a legacy.
Will our kids remember us as resenting what they 'took' from us.. or remember us for rejoicing over what we gave to them?

Still learning here,
mama Mel ;o)