i get tired too!

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Only this little candleholder friend is constantly happy and smiling.

Last night I was heating up leftovers for our supper. I said to Adam, “Sometimes I want us to have kids, but other times I’m really, really glad we don’t. This is one of those times.”

“Why?” He said, likely thinking, what sort of nutty thing is she going to say now?

I said, “I’m just tired right now, and I don’t really want to deal with anything. And if you’re a parent you kind of have to.”

In the world of social media, blogs, constant news and entertainment on the TV, and all that, I think it’s easy to feel like everyone else is go-go-go, never resting. Especially if you are self-employed or want to be, or have a side project that you do in your spare time. I often feel that “voice in my head” going: “why aren’t you doing more?! You should be more motivated, you should be more like so-and-so. Keep your house cleaner, squeeze more productivity into every spare minute, try harder!”

But… yeah. No.

I get tired. I watch silly shows on TV. I say “fuck it” about things, let them go. I take pride in my work, too, but I am not perfect. By no means.

Here’s a song I listen to when I need a positive bouncy dance in the kitchen, like this morning when I’m going to get a whack of dishes done before heading to school, dishes I’ve been ignoring for a few days. I’ll be powered mainly by loud music. Go Friday!

Posted in Day to Day Life, Leah's thoughts, Women + kids, Work | Tagged , | 1 Comment

thoughts from the storm

 

 

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The big three-day storm we just had knocked me for a loop! That, and the fact that I was sick with a cold all during it, too. And, the fact that classes at school end in three weeks… that is blowing my mind! I feel not ready at all, and also somewhat ready, to be out at my work term and out in “the real world”, whatever that is.

(How I feel about it changes pretty much every ten minutes.)

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Facing my fears of machinery and messing up: running the snowblower was actually really fun.

Anyway, this whole time that the three-day, early-April ice storm was raging and people were tweeting and Facebooking about it, I kept thinking of this phrase that I wanted to make into an image or a status update, and share, but which I didn’t because I honestly don’t have the energy or the patience to get into an online debate about climate change. But here’s what I was thinking: Mama Nature, being all like, to people: “Dude, I warned you about climate change. Don’t act so freaking surprised that it’s actually happening!”

I mean, right? It seems like there is still a giant elephant in the room when a “weather event” like this happens. We’re all amazed by it, we all comment to one another how crazy it is, and that’s where the conversation stops.

photo-3Maybe because beyond that, beyond commenting on the craziness of the weather, we honestly just don’t know what to do. It’s like maybe if we wait, climate change will just go away, just solve itself. Like the stuff in the junk drawer in everyone’s kitchen.

Personally, I hate even talking or thinking about it, because I feel like Debbie Downer when I do! Like a big “whomp whomp” noise should play when the subject comes up. It’s no fun!

But after a big storm like this one, its like the elephant in the room got mad and decided to start running around in circles. Hard to ignore that for very long! But it sure would be easier to go “la la la! this isn’t happening!” than to try to wrestle that angry elephant and get her to stop smashing everything in sight. I get it.

Anyway, I’m not really sure how to wrap up this post, so I’ll just end it here.

Whomp whomp.

(Oh, dear.)

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four simple goals // “move more” update

movemore1 movemore4My doctor once said to me, “The medication you take is great for your anxiety, but for the mild depression you sometimes experience, really, exercise is just as good as this medication.”

That was one of those things a person says that sticks with you. That was back in November of last year, and it’s the main reason why I made the effort to get to the walking track pretty much every day. The days were short, I was really feeling the lack of light, and I knew that exercise could really make a difference. Like, as much as a pill could. That’s powerful!

And it did make a difference, and it still does. So that’s why one of my “four simple goals” at the beginning of 2014 was to move every day. 

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One thing I did to help myself with this goal was to print off a one-page calendar of the entire year. (I got it from here.) Then, each day after I’ve gone for a walk or done yoga, I take a crayon and make a mark on that day. The colour is random and just whatever crayon I pulled from the box. This way of tracking it was inspired by Elise (of course! She’s my hero) but I have to say, it’s really making a difference. To be able to see at a glance how much I’ve been moving, really helps me keep my momentum up. (You can see her post on running, and see how she tracked stuff, here.)

It helps that I was already walking pretty much every day — I didn’t just start this habit from scratch on January 1st. But, I must tell you that my daily exercise is sometimes strenuous, sometimes not. Sometimes it’s only 15 minutes eked out on my lunch break or after classes. But every little bit counts, and every little bit feels good.

movemore2I also got back into doing yoga. I think it’s important, with movement and exercise, to find the things you love and then do that. Swimming, biking, exercise videos at home, whatever: as long as it makes your body feel good, then it’s the right thing.

And use inspiration, but be smart about it: if your inspiration is making you feel bad about yourself, instead of pumped and excited to exercise, then it’s probably not the right inspiration. I like this gal (shown above) because her body looks like mine: meaty, round and curved. (I’m not trying to put down the ladies who rock a slim body, I’m just saying, my body shape isn’t the majority that you see in fitness mags, but really, my body will likely always be curvy, no matter how fit it is.) And, because she’s an amazing yogi who can do some crazy poses.

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Also I find that making a playlist and doing my yoga to that is fun. My yoga teacher Sherry leads her class to music, and not just light flutes and gongs, but stuff like Bon Iver and Lorde, and fairly loud. I was used to taking classes in silence, so at first I thought I wouldn’t like it. But it turns out I do. It adds to the yoga practice, boosts my energy, and it feels cool to do sweeping arm movements and flow into postures along with a great song. And when I’m doing yoga at home by myself, the playlist helps me to stay focussed and not get distracted and start picking at my toenails or leave the mat to start a load of laundry.

movemore5And lastly, I’m trying to get out and do more movement with other people. (This is my friend Katie and her little girl Rory, when we went for a walk at Point Aconi a few weeks ago.) The time flies, for one. It’s fun, for another. Humans are social, and we’re meant to move. Doing both at once, well, it feels good in our brains and it feels good in our bodies.

Something I’d like to add to my exercise regime is strength training, like with weights. When I have a bit of extra money I’d like to sign up at a local gym and spend a bit of time with a trainer, learning the right way to use the equipment to feel even stronger, and to make my body and my mind feel even better.

I also want to have more mini dance parties to shake myself up when I’m sitting at the computer too long!

Overall, movement feels good. That’s what it comes down to. I’m creative, and I’m entering a creative industry, hoping to work in it for many years to come. My best ideas come when I’m moving and using my whole body, so I’m going to keep doing it.

What movement do you love?

Posted in Active living, Day to Day Life, Health, Outdoors | Tagged , | 3 Comments

Cape Breton Colour Week // rainbow

CapeBretonColourWeek-GridSo that was fun! Last week I did a colour a day, inspired by my fave blogger, Elise Blaha Cripe, who did a colour week in 2011. I’d been thinking about it ever since! I love the idea of going on a photographic scavenger hunt to boost my creativity and focus my eye.

The first day of my colour week I was really excited about it, the second day still mostly excited, but by the third day I had lost some steam. There was also that gross two-day storm in the middle, too, so I was storm-stayed in the house and not all that happy about that. But I’m glad I kept with it and kept taking the pictures and looking for the colours, because at the end of the project, putting this grid together of all the pictures made me really happy! It’s funny how by themselves, each picture isn’t overly remarkable, but all together they make something beautiful.

Overall the project reminded me that happiness comes down to what we choose to focus on. The elements for happiness are there, all around us: loving people, good food, clear skies, a good home. Making the choice to see those things, well, it can definitely be hard sometimes, for sure. I get that, and I feel it, often.

This project taught me that it’s still worth it to work on my “choice muscles” and choose to see the good things, because those things add up, and come together to make an overall beautiful picture.

Colour Week individual posts: red, orange, yellow, green, and blue.

Have a lovely Monday.

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Cape Breton Colour Week // blue

capebretoncolourweek-blue01This is a card my friend Julie in Ontario sent me. I love it, it feels so springlike. 

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So yesterday was the final day of my Cape Breton Colour Week, and I was looking for blue.

capebretoncolourweek-blue03 capebretoncolourweek-blue04 capebretoncolourweek-blue05 My T-square, which I hardly ever use, to be honest. But it makes me feel like a pro, haha.

capebretoncolourweek-blue06This map was featured in the yellow post too. I have it on my office wall and I just love it.
capebretoncolourweek-blue07 I made this for a class project last year on Illustration techniques. It was fun, I love collage!

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Then once I got to school I went for a little walk. Shadows on snow are blue, right?

capebretoncolourweek-blue09 And the sky was blue for a little bit. capebretoncolourweek-blue10 capebretoncolourweek-blue11 capebretoncolourweek-blue12 These are proof prints for something I made for a fundraiser my class is doing next week. We’re doing a silent art auction at school to raise money so we can attend the Creative Conference next month in Sydney.

capebretoncolourweek-blue13 capebretoncolourweek-blue14 capebretoncolourweek-blue15 My favourite scarf is my blue one.

capebretoncolourweek-blue16 Then once I got home I went for another walk. It had clouded over and was snowing again. But I still found a bit more blue.

capebretoncolourweek-blue17 This looks grey but it was blue I swear!capebretoncolourweek-blue18And that’s that for Cape Breton Colour Week! I’m putting together a fun collage of all the pictures and I’ll have that on the blog on Monday, along with my thoughts on doing the Colour Week and what it taught me.

The other colours are here: red, orange, yellow and green.

For now I’m off to the market to get me some crepe-y goodness! Have a great weekend, everyone!

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Cape Breton Colour Week // green

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Yesterday I felt like I was coming down with a cold, the power was out, and the weather was just gross. (So windy!) I was a little bit discouraged. So I mostly slept. And then I went for groceries, and then we had to go get Adam’s truck, and a little bit after that the power came back on and life was good again.

In between all of that, I hunted for green.

capebretoncolourweek-green02 This is a cactus my grandmaman gave me years ago, in a pot that Adam’s mother gave us. In the left hand corner is the thank-you card from Lumiere, the festival I volunteered for last year. capebretoncolourweek-green04 This is a corner of a painting by my uncle’s wife Nathalie, who lives in Quebec. capebretoncolourweek-green05 capebretoncolourweek-green07 capebretoncolourweek-green08 capebretoncolourweek-green09 Yup, I’m that much of a dork that I have a “Think Cape Breton First” sign hung in my office. You can see me displaying this sign in 2012 at Kennington Cove, here.capebretoncolourweek-green10 capebretoncolourweek-green11 capebretoncolourweek-green12Detail of a watercolour painting by my friend Ann Hart. I absolutely love having original art in my home, and consider it a kind of richness. Today I’ll be hunting for blue – the last day of Colour Week! Hope you have a great Friday.

 

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Cape Breton Colour Week // yellow

capebretoncolourweek-yellow01 Yesterday was a snow day for most of the Atlantic provinces, including here on Cape Breton Island. I slept in and then worked in my office for most of the afternoon, as our power stayed on all evening.

capebretoncolourweek-yellow02 capebretoncolourweek-yellow03 capebretoncolourweek-yellow04 capebretoncolourweek-yellow05 capebretoncolourweek-yellow06 capebretoncolourweek-yellow07 capebretoncolourweek-yellow08 capebretoncolourweek-yellow09 These are some beautiful beeswax candles that my mom and brother made. Poster is this one.

capebretoncolourweek-yellow10 capebretoncolourweek-yellow11 capebretoncolourweek-yellow12 I opened up an old issue of the Jamie Oliver magazine for more shots of yellow.

capebretoncolourweek-yellow13 capebretoncolourweek-yellow14 I forget why I have this piece of a box of wine pinned up — I think perhaps its the font that I liked.

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This is from a print of a painting by Virginia McCoy.

capebretoncolourweek-yellow17I left my friend Haya’s Christmas card up because its nice for feeling joy all winter-long, not just at Christmas-time. Although, today when our power went out and it was getting cold in the house, I wasn’t feeling very joyful about winter! But it is back on now (hence being able to post this) and its warm again. Let the wind howl.

Today I’m hunting for green. Hope you’re warm and safe wherever you are!

 

Posted in Art, Day to Day Life, For Fun | 4 Comments