Tuesday, April 26, 2016

front garden plans

Currently working out my summer garden. I know that I want something that has a wild English garden type of feel (the cottage version, not the prim and proper manicured version).

This is what I have as a layout:

Now I just need to figure out what plants to add into the mix. I have hostas already in the garden running along the driveway (see the rock/circular plant section) and some lavender in the section below the porch/house section. We also have some ground covering artemesia (I can't remember which variation). Our soil is loamy (clay) raised beds are necessary.

Aside from how daunting a new garden project feels (kind of like scrapbooking did when I started), I'm trying to figure out how too integrate the hosta river rok line into the English garden so that it flows nicely. Mr Faye thinks we should run rocks in front of the "wild" garden to pull it together. I'm not sure if I like the idea. But even more than that, I'm just having a hard time visualizing it, which is why I tried an app to create the image above. Unfortunately the app can only do so much to help with that and has limited plant options so I can't pull together the plants I'd like. All I can recreate are colours and textures to some extent.

This is the kind of look that I have in mind. With ferns and hostas on the side of the house because we don't have much light there (added problem, our neighbour put up a 6 foot fence along the side of his house so that cuts the light even more).

Or maybe this:

Slowly but surely, I'll figure it out. Of course, then there's the question of soil to go with it all. I'm going with the premise that rich and well drained should hopefully cover all the bases and be a good neutral.

With all the overtime I've worked this year, I have most of the summer off so I'm looking forward to the garden adventure.

I'm also chipping away at the broken finishing that was done to our stairs, like a coat of finishing concrete over the concrete.  It was done poorly and has been chipping ever since so now I'm removing it (quite labour intensive) so that I can stencil my stairs.

These are some of the looks I'm considering. I think I'll stick with a grey backdrop with a white stencil as it won't be overkill and take away from the flowers. I love tiled stair mosaics but Mr Faye made a good point when he noted that all the snow shovelling would kill the tile work:

I'm eyeing up the stencil on the bottom right I think but the site has so many amazing stencils that I'm going back and forth. I love the colours, which I think is what is drawing me to this particular design.


Friday, April 15, 2016

this morning's little ironies

Do you ever wonder at the fact that we spend countless energy and parental shaming telling parents they need to clip in and harness our children just so to ensure their safety only to put them in school buses with no seat belts?

This morning I was struck by the irony as a bus lurched forward, children balancing their way down the aisles, as the vehicle started moving. 

Something is seriously wrong when parents are shamed for the car seat choices yet we turn a blind eye to society's choices when we entrust them with our children. 

Monday, April 4, 2016

working the work

I've been reading Ophiel's The Art of Astral Projection and am quite enjoying it. Definitely a recommended book, despite some of the chattiness of the text. I think he makes some great points for consideration. 

I've been meditating in is the act of patience and diligence while learning the craft.  Far too often, as he himself notes, it's too easy to get derailed in a practice because it doesn't come easily, is too much work or we muck up while learning it. 

I catch myself falling into this trap all the time. And yet, it's only in making mistakes that we learn. The road to success isn't paved in ease, it's paved in failure (so to speak). 

So I'm walking my route every day, noticing the details, working the system in order to master the craft of astral projection; working the little system. 
My husband looks at me like I'm crazy as I ponder the details of our stairway, but it's all good. Just you wait till my astral spectre freaks him out! 

Kidding. 😉

Thursday, February 18, 2016

gratitude mala practice

So I came across this idea that I just love in one of my facebook groups and I'm totally jumping onboard with it. The idea is to do a daily gratitude practice using a mala style prayer necklace or bracelet.

So I went hunting for the perfect mala style bracelet (not 108 beads because honestly I want to be setting myself up for success not failure... logging 108 gratitudes in a day is a bit cray cray if you ask me even if it's a beautiful intention).  I knew when I went looking that I really wanted a lotus on the bracelet as the lotus represents a lot of things I hold dear to my practice and spirituality, from the idea of beauty rising from the muck to as above so below. That helped narrow the search significantly, thank the gods, as there are a lot of malas on etsy (who knew).

I found this beautiful Canadian shop, kisii, and ordered the bracelet above. Yes, I realize that it's not a traditional mala, but that's ok because it was the idea of the mala prayer bracelet not so much the official mala that drives the practice. There was also another shop, Saltspring Malas, that was absolutely gorgeous but above my price range for the moment. I kind of love that the 2 shops (real traditional etsy vendors, not, based on what I can tell, China resellers) were Canadian. Shout out for my fellow crunchy Canadians!!!

I'm super excited for this practice as I think that it has the potential to bring mindfulness about my aspirations and goals for the year, as well as a gratitude meditation/practice into my daily life.

Once again, thank you interwebs for bringing some awesomeness into my life.


Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Candlemas and Word for the Wheel

February has been an insanely busy month. Good but busy.

I'm still working my way through my word for the wheel, thinking about how I'm going to manifest heart in my daily life in relation to this turn of the wheel.

Candlemas is for me a time of beginnings and setting intentions that reflect my values. I've been stewing on what that means for me as a practice this sabbat, slowly percolating on it in the background.

Mostly I want to make sure that I remember to stay open and keep room for those I love in my daily actions. I can easily start shutting down when I feel overwhelmed or stressed. I tend to let my friendships and general partnerships feel like a burden instead of a joy when I'm not careful. I need to be mindful about not doing that and not allowing things to feel complicated when they're really not.

So this month, instead of moving away, I've been trying to lean in when I start finding myself pulling back. Earlier this month that meant choosing to invite a friend and her daughter over for a sleep over instead of staying home and potty training. This week it's meant starting a texting conversation with one of my nearest and dearest friends who lives on the other side of the country. It also meant calling my Grandma and just chatting because she's great and I love her. It meant buying my students Valentines lollipops just to say thank you and telling them that I appreciate them. It meant baking chocolate cupcakes for my husband because he loves chocolate cake (I don't like chocolate cake). Or putting down my phone in the evenings to play puzzles and ball and train and drawing happy/angry/sad/confused/scared/surprised suns and stars for my son. It's meant reading Love You Forever even though it makes me cry because that's what Little Faye wants.

It's also meant reading an esoteric book that has me reacting constantly out of trust that there is a reason for the reactions and that there's something in it that while provoking to me is something that I need to work through. It's forcing me to look more closely at why I react so strongly to Judeo-Christian mythology but not other myths that sit uneasy. I'm trying to remember that my pathworking won't always be easy and that sometimes I need to trust the process by embracing what comes my way. Don't get me wrong, my inner brain rationalizes my discomfort and tries to wiggle it's way out of it but I was given this book for a reason and I need to trust the process. This is not easy for me. But often the things I struggle the most against are the things that I end up enjoying the most in the end. Hermetics in general tend to fall into this category and this book looks at a lot of Hermetic knowledge, so....

I'm also dragging my butt to the gym and working on eating better. Mind, body and soul seem to be the theme for my word this spin around the sun. I've said it before but yet again I am reminded of just how much I need physical activity to burn off energy and work out tensions in order to allow for the good stuff to come through.

I've even made more time for scrapbooking and art journaling. It's not as much as I used to do, but it's more than I've done in a long time.

This month I'm leaning in with love so that I live a life that embraces open heartedness and trust. That I give out what I want to get back and trust that it will be returned.

How is your word practice going? Are you working on a word/intention/resolution this year and how does it look in relation to your spiritual practice?