ketchup

My grade 6 English teacher used to have a folder labelled “Ketchup” that had old worksheets for kids that missed a class and needed to do some catching up, and since then I’ve always thought it was a funny trick of a pun.

Anyway, what have I been up to? I was fortunate enough to find a job at a wonderful periodontal office, helping out at planning some seminars in the fall, creating some patient education brochures, and  generally solving certain problems which arise daily. It’s stimulating and challenging, and I’m really enjoying it!

That keeps me busy 9-5 most days, and the rest of time I’m reading, working on a few crafty projects (which I can’t talk about just yet…it’s top secret!), and preparing to move back to Kingston at the end of the month. It’s insane how close September is – only about 2.5 weeks away – and how much my routine is going to change again.

In other news, Dots and Loops has opened in Lunenburg! Check out their beautiful store pictures here. Many congratulations to Melanie and Stephen.

Lastly, to make up for the music I missed this Monday, one of my favouritest songs:

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peace

Photo by Ryan Coleman

Shortly after returning from my vacation, I was invited up to my boy’s lovely camp (Northern Ontario slang for cottage) with his family and family friends to celebrate his 19th birthday.

Up there on shores of Lake Huron, I spent five peaceful days without neither internet access nor running water. I finished three books (finally catching up with my yearly reading goals), floated on the lake, and just sat on the porch listening to songs from the 70s. I even woke up before 8am without an alarm! Bliss — well, except for the mosquitoes.

But I am back home now, a bit more tanned and a lot more rejuvenated. And the good news is I do have a few posts of things I want to share, including those East Coast photos I keep talking about!

Let’s make August a good month.

front page!

Earlier this morning I was excited to find a Statsy email telling me that I had been featured on Etsy’s Front Page! Although it wasn’t during a “peak hour”, it’s so immensely exciting.

It was a lovely treasury featuring shops participating in Christmas In July, an Etsy-wide event from (officially) July 14th-24th where stores have special offers or sales to encourage gift-shopping for Christmas early this month. Some shops run their sales for the entire month.

I’m participating with the code “CIJSHIP” for free international shipping on your prints! The code will be good until July 31st.

I will be leaving for Halifax tomorrow morning for my 6-day Maritimes trip; I will definitely come back with lots of pictures! My Etsy shop will be staying open so you can take advantage of Christmas In July, and I will be answering convos at least once a day, but all orders will have to be shipped after I get back in Toronto. Better get back to packing!

 

this and that

Spent two hours picking cherries from the backyard tree the other day. Sadly hat to trim down some of its branches, because it was starting to grow towards the roof and the eaves.

We also have a pear tree, and recently planted apple and plum trees. Yummy fresh fruit to look forward to!

The maritimes trip has been roughly planned out — we’ll be visiting Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, and PEI (staying at Halifax, Lunenburg, Moncton and Charlottetown) and spending a lot of time among beautiful scenery. The specific activities haven’t been mapped out yet — but they’ll have to be soon, since we’re leaving next Saturday! Some things we’ll be amiss to not do (like seeing the Anne of Green Gables House), but there are things that haven’t been set down in stone yet. 

I’ve also been working on my 100 things list — next up, #81: watch 5 documentaries. The truth is, I’m not a big movie watcher. I haven’t even seen The Dark Knight (I know, I know).

I have already acquired the 5 documentaries, largely inspired by Joanna Goddard’s recommendations and by the comments in that post. Can’t wait to watch and talk about them later!
 
 

looking to july

As June comes to a close, the summer is halfway over for me. I will soon have to start thinking about school again, selecting courses for my second year and moving furniture into my new apartment.

June has been good to me, even though starting a business can sometimes be an emotional rollercoaster. For those who know me well, I am infamously a Type A personality — I don’t just work on a project, I attack it. And I expect it to be successful. Immediately.

And so I’m continuously learning, and cultivating patience: patience with my work, patience with myself, and patience with the universe in knowing things will always turn out all right.

I am grateful for the successes that I have accomplished this past month, and grateful for everyone who has been so supportive.

Alright, end the sappiness!

A piece of exciting news, which I had alluded to earlier: my prints will be available at Dots & Loops Handmade when they open this July!

I was lucky to be able to meet Melanie and Stephen, the lovely folks behind Dots & Loops, earlier this week when they were in Toronto for the Design Edge Awards. I handed them a stack of INK ! STOMP prints, and am excited about their journey to Lunenburg, Nova Scotia!

Prints for Dots & Loops!

Dots & Loops will be the first consignment I’ve done, and I’m very excited about it — especially about the wonderful location, and other talented artisans who will also be represented there. In fact, I hope to be able to visit later this summer, as a trip to the Maritimes is in the works! It’ll be my first time in the area, and I’ll be sure to take lots of pictures to post.

Well, that’s all from me now — Happy Canada Day!

wholeheartedness

One of my favourite bloggers, Sarah Wilson, recently did a post about wholeheartedness. She shared the work of Brené Brown, whose TED talk I had previously watched.


Brown speaks about the necessity of vulnerability in fostering true connections, and true joy. She just exudes such authenticity.

“How do we learn to embrace our vulnerabilities and imperfections so that we can engage in our lives from a place of authenticity and worthiness? How do we cultivate the courage, compassion, and connection that we need to recognize that we are enough – that we are worthy of love, belonging, and joy?”

As someone who is definitely a Type A personality, this is something I’ve been working on for some time.

And the journey continues…

in challenge lies opportunity

Last night I was working on a new design — writing it out, transferring onto the linoleum block, and carving away. And of course, it didn’t occur to me anything was wrong.

Do you see it?

The problem is — you can read it, and you’re not supposed to. When creating the master from which your prints will be made (be it a copper plate, linoleum block, or wood block), the design you carve must be the vertical reflection of the design you wish to make. It’s common sense. Unlike previous designs, this time I had handwritten the words instead of using a computer program, and flipping the image on the computer.

And I didn’t notice it for over an hour.

I got upset. Much too upset. The boy tried to cheer me up, and I tried to stay positive, but for some reason it just got to me. How did I make such a stupid mistake?

I didn’t want to waste a piece of linoleum and thought that I should carve on the back of the block. However, I couldn’t do the same thing of carving around the letters again due to the block’s shallow depth, and simply didn’t have the patience.

So I decided to carve in the words, instead of around. This isn’t my usual style, and I was afraid it would look horrible.

But I tried it.

It turned out more beautiful than I could have imagined before.

Every challenge is an opportunity.

P.S. I’ll be listing this print, and 2 other designs, in lots of colours this coming week! Very excited. ETA: This print is listed and available for purchase here.

P.P.S I just started my Facebook page!