Hello Grouse!

History has a way of repeating itself, they say, and while it’s mostly noticeable in obvious things, like politics or fashion, it’s also often a present occurrence in daily life. Why am I talking about this, you ask? Well, here’s my little story:

Several years ago, when we were still new to the Maritime provinces, the Mr. and I were out and about for a drive, exploring our new area. We came to a fork in the road. To the left, our usual destinations. To our right, a road we’d never taken. So, right we turned. about 2 minutes into our drive, we came across a pigeon flopping around the road with a visibly broken wing. We pulled over, I got out with a bag or a towel or something along those lines, and as gently as possible, caught the pigeon and brought him home. We set him up in our sun porch in a box, cleaned his wounds, gave him food and water and hoped for the best. Well, to everyone (else’) surprise, Pidgeols made it! He eventually graduated to a box perched on the top of the porch and he spent his days hoping around the grass or walking along the roof. Eventually he began to fly, and just before winter, he flew away, never to be seen again.

This week, while working at the Little House, we decided to take a coffee break, and, since the power is currently not hooked up, that meant a little run into town. On the drive back, I commented that we’d never been up the road that forks to the right off our street, so we decided to take a little exploratory drive. About 2 minutes into our drive, we spotted a Grouse sitting on the side of the road, scruffy, but very much alive. We slowed down, and I hoped out, bag in hand. As gently as possible, caught the Grouse and brought him home. We set it up in our front porch in a box and gave it food and water.

Anyone seeing a pattern? Just in case, I italicized the similar bits 😛 Anyway, it has been several days and Lady is doing significantly better. Her(His?) wing doesn’t seem broken, but looks sore and her back is a bit raw. As of Friday, she has graduated from her box to my (well ventilated) green house so she can move around and pick around in the grass and dirt. Her balance is still a bit off, but she is far more active and lively than when we found her. When she appears to be fully better, we will take her back to the Little House and release her. There are dozens upon dozens of Grouse there, so hopefully she will feel at home.

Meet the Grouse!

The more I see this bird, the more I think it’s a male..and to add insult to injury, I named the poor thing Lady!

A thrifty haul!

For as long as I can remember, thrift shopping was part of my life. My mom would hit up the local Saint-Vincent de Paul thrift shop for the 8$ bag days and come home with loads of great finds, much to my dismay. I loved most of what she got me, but I was always worried that someone from school would recognize her there, and (god forbid!!) know I was wearing second hand clothing!

Well, I’m proud to say, those days are behind me! I’ve grown up and learned that thrift shopping is FANTASTIC!

Check out some of our more recent scores!

Volcom Faux-Leather shoes

Firstly, my pride and joy! I wasn’t actually in need of new shoes, and honestly, it was not love at first sight. They caught my attention, but it took me a few minutes of eyeing them before I decided I liked them, but when I did, oh boy did I ever start to like them!!

Turns out these(practically brand new, maybe worn once?) bad boys are Volcom faux-leather and retailed for $75USD. I paid 4$CAN.

Beatbo!

Secondly, this hella-annoying buddy; Beatbo! Baby Bell and I had actually spotted him at Walmart before Christmas and she loved him, but I could not bring myself to spend 50 dollars on him. Well, the Mister was working out of town and dropped into a few thrift stores while he was there and found a brand new, still in the box Beatbo for 7$ and snatched him up. My ears have been bleeding to the sound of ” When my tummy turns red, say something!!” ever since, but my Baby Bell enjoys busting some new moves to his tunes when she isn’t smashing his buttons, so totally worth it.

For some reason my picture wouldn’t load so this is a link to the little fella.

Winter boots

About 6 years ago, my mom picked up a pair of good winter boots that I’ve been wearing every winter since. They have taken a beating and I was starting to think it was time for some ”new” boots..which for me means within the next 3 years or so, I should probably get some. Haha! Well, I won’t need to shop for new boots after all!! Hurray! The Mister found a nearly brand new pair of winter boots in my size for 3$ and brought them home to me! They fit perfect, are warm, and the best part, they have hook&loop(velcro) closures rather than laces! It’s not that I can’t tie my boots, but it’s so annoying when your laces come undone in -20 weather and you have to take your gloves off to tie them back up and freeze your fingers in the process.

**Note: I was meant to do this post a few months ago and have worn in the boots significantly since I got them**

**Note2:The kitty did not come with the boots. haha! :P**

There are so many more finds I could share, but those are the ones from this week. I’m so proud of our finds, perhaps I’ll make these posts a regular thing!

Handmade and Thrifted Christmas

We’re two days into Spring and most people do not want to hear about Christmas, but I have exciting news! This year, we’ve decided to do a Handmade and Thrifted Christmas!

Like many of our grand-parents, my grandma used to spend all year making Christmas gifts for her 10 children, and come Christmas day, each kid was grateful for the gift they received. I love that! Of course it’s pretty great to unwrap a big shiny, new and fancy item come December 25th, but that’s not all it’s about and I’ve been craving a simpler lifestyle and tradition. I ran it by hubby and he agreed that it could be fun, and significantly cheaper, which is a bonus during a period of heavy renovations! Here’s what we decided to do:

We will continue to fill our stockings with the regular stuff we normally do ( small and useful things, edibles, toiletries) and we will be aloud to buy 1 new gift. Everything else will be handmade (by us or locally) and/or second hand( thrift shops, yard sales, Kijiji, swap groups, antique shops, etc.).

When I mentioned what we were doing to my mom, she got super excited and asked if they could participate too, and of course, the more the merrier! I love the challenge that comes with it. It’s the end of March and I am already busy working on several gift projects and hubby has already found a beautiful clock for my mom and apparently something for me!! I’m finding that much more thought goes into a gift when you know you’ll be spending many, many hours making it!

I know that someday the Littles will start to want things that we can’t make and probably won’t be able to find second hand, and I see no reason not to get her one or some of those items, within reason, but I also do not foresee going back to all store bought gifts after this year! I am enjoying this way too much to ever go back! I’ll share some of my projects as I finish them!

Do you do handmade gifts? Or have a gifting tradition? Share them in the comments, I’d love to hear what you do!

 

 

Spring is in the aiiir!

Daylight savings is here! Oh how it was strange to put the Little to bed with the sun still shining. She has not been feeling well for the last two days( a little something she caught from me I take it, I’ve been sick all week), so luckily she was exhausted and though she fussed for a little longer than usual, I can’t complain! I’m hoping the transition remains this smooth over the next few days.

Along with the sunny bedtime, the sun seemed brighter and warmer today, despite the biting -17 outside. I’m beginning to itch for cleanup again! The move is now just a few months away and I’m dying to de-clutter. Mom brought me some boxes today, so perhaps tomorrow Little One and I will go around and fill a few boxes with donation and yard sale stuff. The windows are screaming to be cleaned, but I will continue to ignore those for a while longer!

What sort of spring cleaning routines or tips do you have?

Being parents

Being a parent is not always easy. People have opinions and like to share them openly. Thankfully, I am blissfully unaware most days, but still I see, read and hear things that can sometimes creep into the deep depths of my mind and make me have some self doubt about my parenting skills.

Today however, I made a nice supper while my Littles scooted around the floor with mixing bowl, a wooden spoon and some flour. I could hear the biggest opinionated person in my life cringe in my mind, but I shrugged it off because I didn’t care that the flour was getting everywhere or that she was playing with something that was not a high tech blinking toy(therefore it must be dangerous). By the time Daddy got home and supper was ready, Littles had flour cakes to the knees of her pants and a huge smile on her face. She had explored and discovered, she had wiggled her little fingers through a new texture and even tasted plain flour. Mmh. So good.

After supper, before we headed up for a bath, Daddy sat the Littles in a cardboard box, picked it and her up and proceeded to pretend she was in an airplane as they “ran” around the dining room table Brr-ming and Eeeek-ing and chasing me along. I looked back as I ‘ran away’ and saw the biggest smiles on both their faces. The sheer joy on her filthy, well fed and played out little face. My heart melted and I knew right then and there that we are doing it right. We are raising our little girl the way we, as a family, should. There will always be learning curves, but we are raising her to our standards, with our values and that’s all that matters.

Fresh air and sunshine

Nothing makes a baby sleep like some good old fresh air and sunshine! While we had a very cold night(-20), today the sun was shining and it didn’t feel cold at all! Apparently it was still -11, but it really didn’t feel that way. When the Mister came home from work around mid day, we had lunch and then got ready to go outside, him to clear the driveway some more before the next snowfall, Baby Bells and I to snowshoe! We all bundled up nice and warm and hoisted the little munchkin up onto my back in her Bebamour carrier. Thank goodness for the Stonz booties we got off someone this fall, we tucked them inside her snow pants and they were nice and secure on her little feet, anything else would have fallen off before we made it to the edge of our yard.  Once she was all fastened onto my back, we went outside and Papa helped me into my snowshoes and off we went! We did not go far at all, but it was so nice!

We packed a trail around the outer edges of the yard and down into the front field before heading back to pack a trail toward the back field. Much to the dismay of our little dog, we didn’t actually tackled the back field, I had had the brilliant idea to play horse and ”trot” the last loop around the front field and I was really starting to feel the burn haha! Anyway, after about an hour of outside fun, we came back in and made hot chocolate and a bottle of milk and headed upstairs to get ready for nap time. It took her a surprisingly long time to go down for her nap considering how drowsy she looked, but now she has been asleep for well over a half hour( her usual max) snuggled up with her little lion man.

I really need to make a point of getting outside with her more often and for longer than just a little trip to the chicken coop and back! It’s fresh air and sunshine is great for both of us and the exercise is an added bonus for me since I’m the one carrying/pulling/pushing her, depending on the days and her ”mode of transportation” ha!

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A step in the right direction!

With the cold upon us and no heating set up in the ”new” house, renovations have been nearly at a standstill since we insulated the office nearly a month ago. It’s not that we can’t handle the cold, it’s simply that the temperature drops can cause condensation and ruin our work..so best to just wait it out a bit! Anyway, in the meantime, we’ve been busy in our heads: planning colours, choosing windows, drawing up plans for the barnyard, etc. Then, today the Mister logged into facebook and had a gander at a few swap pages and came across someone selling over 350square feet of good quality, nice oak coloured flooring for 140$. A small fraction of what we would be paying for new flooring! He quickly sent a message and as it turns out, the guy lives about 2 minutes away from my mom and dad, so we decided to kill two birds with one stone so to speak, and go pick up the flooring and drop in to visit my folks. I can already picture it in the living room and am so excited! Next step; windows!