griffith woods in july

In Griffith Woods, the birds hop from tree to tree and the bells of nostalgia ring. Here, I find reminders of my own childhood — the light, the warmth, the way Alberta flowers are growing from the ground, the distant sound of creekbed water rolling over fallen logs, the sense that nothing matters, yet everything does. I could spend many hours here and I would still want to spend an hour more. To be away from the world as we know it, to set this brief life as something good, to wake as if waking from a fever and to find myself in these woods, how could I want anything else?
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Tomorrow, I will be leaving for Hawaii with my mum. Hawaii in July was never something I planned, only because the winters here can be harsh enough, if I were to ever dream of a holiday, it might be to escape the winter's bluest days. I am feeling a bit strange about missing out on the garden or the singing gigs that seem to come in double during this time, but I am also feeling a slight twinge of guilt for worrying about these things that come to mind at all. How often in my lifetime will I get to adventure with only my mum by my side and the taste of mangoes from the tree? Isn't it just like a human to find reasons to worry or complain when everything is actually quite good and lovely?

I will leave C behind. I will leave my banjo behind. And the snapdragons too, but it has been so long since I left the city and I know it will treat me well to do so.

If you want to follow along,
I will be posting on my instagram!

outfit details: winners blouse, good looking objects leaf earrings

at life's crossroads

The sun is doing a dance between cloud and open sky. I should be so glad and feel as if I am a part of it all, but I spent the morning crying which made the sun just a soft spot for drying my eyes. Some people will tell you that you need reasons if you're going to be crying but the truth is sometimes crying is just a human way of saying "look after yourself." Many a dream or idea was born out of the badlands of a crying bout, it is a certain kind of reaction that happens when hearts and heads meet. Today, it was no other than feeling like I have so much to be done and not knowing how I will get to it all. How does one measure the day with just the right amount of work and rest so you can carry on happy as a fat caterpillar on its way to becoming a butterfly?
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Below the lilac tree, honeyed light colors my hair red, a color that used to sit on top of my grandmother's hair but we never had the chance to meet. I wonder what she would say to me now. Perhaps, she would say something along the lines of worry less and live more. It takes time, these things we do, these meanings we try to uncover, these dreams we try to pull out of the ground, but there is an art to befriending time in such a way as to not fear it, but to welcome it, an art to keeping time without wishing it away.

I know the nasturtium is growing wide-eyed and able, the snapdragons are climbing, the marigolds are already tall, and I remember how long I waited for this. To be able to rise in the morning and walk barefooted into the backyard. To look for hummingbirds and bees and all sorts of signs from the living. It is not yet over for us — even when it feels like it is as your eyes fill with salty water, you're just a human being and what you do with that both wicked and beautiful understanding is

 up to you.

outfit details: topshop embroidered jeans, thriftstore blouse & sunhat
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banjo and the lilac tree

I trace lilacs as they grow by the hillside, a hundred or so poems for those who survive. I move from one to the other like I have done so many summers before. I bite the air and when the sun meets my arm, it feels like somebody loves me despite any failings or misfortunes one may think I have. The sun does not care to remind me that I have had bad days or how I have ignored the doorbell when it rang or how I have wondered what the point of something was even if it meant everything to somebody else. No, the sun just lifts its head and in doing so, gives rise to a joy like no other.

Knowing how many days I have lived without the warm sun or the lilac tree blooming makes me clutch to the moment, these moments, where I know so well that it will all inevitably come to leave me behind. What was once a bookshelf will soon become dusty and the spines of the books will no longer open without the crackling sound of pages touching pages. Where there was nothing, there is now something. Where there was something, there is now nothing. Such is the way of our strange, strange lives.
 
When I come to the lilac tree, I come to know all there is to know about living. It happens until it doesn't. The lilac is blooming until it is not. Your love is here until it is gone and so I drift, I drift and I drift until there is nothing else to do but untie my shoes and watch the tiny purple buds once attached to the tree fall to the grass and go away with the wind. One day, that will be me, that will be you, but not yet, there is still living in our lungs and lilacs growing on that tree. Summer afternoons with a banjo bigger than my pocket, what will become of the hazy sun and the little green sprouts that line the backyard garden? What will be loved and what will be forgotten?

outfit details: eshakti custom made dress, savers/thrifted sunhat
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5 goals for June

The golden light of June is upon us and I am not sure if this is the best time for me to be making a list of 5 goals as I have been given to the grumps all day. Or, maybe, it is the perfect time to make such a list as life continues on despite the mood you find yourself in and sometimes the best way to fight the blues is to find new things to live and hope for. Here are my 5 goals for June. 

What are yours?
  1. Finish the vegetable garden. I have been a little behind in the garden this year - despite the fact that I write of it and talk of it so often. I could have swore yesterday was the first of May and now quite suddenly, the calendar says it is June. Time, remove your sneakers please!
  2. Shoot the How Long Blues music video. Just typing that sentence gave me goosebumps of the happy variety. I will be posting behind the scenes stuff on my instagram if you are interested in following along. Mostly, I'll be pinching myself to make sure it is all real.
  3. Spend as many daylight hours as possible underneath the sky. June can be a treasure trove when it comes to exploring, so I want to tuck myself into those warm sunbeams and live live live!
  4. Bake a chocolate cake. I have been craving one for the last few weeks and there is nothing that can compare to something homemade.
  5. Press wild grasses. I often find myself pressing flowers, but this year, I want to try to learn the art of pressing wild grasses, too.
How are you?
Tell me of your dreams, your goals, your plans, your curiosities   

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the good thing about living

 In the belly of a may tree, there is a certain kind of fragrance that feels more like forgiveness and so it drifts from the bough and onto the hair of those who walk beneath it, as if to say "despite it all, you're still something worth holding, worth loving, and worth knowing." I see the garden, I see the cherry tree, I see the little buds where Saskatoon berries are soon to fall, and it is just like the world has put words to a melody you have always wanted to sing but the hum wasn't enough to make a song out of it. I can imagine the cotton dress somebody's mother wore when she walked by trees such as these, rich with the daylight and promise of what places she could one day find herself in.

I wonder how many women have looked at the may tree and said "now, this, this is beautiful" and then went on to pick petals to put into glass jars so they could rise in the morning with something that was theirs and yet, still, like an open window to let sunlight through, belonged to everybody who was there. How many humans have we walked passed on our way to a mailbox, or the grocery store, or the woods who have stood where we stand now with thoughts that look just like ours.

But they don't say it.

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Yesterday, I had tears in my eyes, they rolled from my face like wet cloth on a clothespin and I couldn't make out which flowers were cherry blossoms and which ones were dandelions. I could hear the ice cream truck merrily going off in the distance, but it has never sounded so sad, so unfamiliar to me. When your vision is blurred from crying eyes, it is a lot like being held together with sticky tape and not glue or muscle. You cannot see what is ahead of you, only the saddest feelings surface. After a certain amount of feeling hopeless, I closed my eyes and the song of every bird in the neighborhood started to mute the sad that was an ice cream truck's attempt to make me realize how I am not a child anymore and yesterday, I was not a child, and tomorrow, I will still be the adult version of me. The neighborhood birds chirped on as if it say "despite it all, you're still something worth holding, worth loving, and worth knowing."

If you are reading this,
let it be known
let yourself
be
It is okay to cry
In fact, it helps build muscle
heart muscle
so when your vision is blurred from crying eyes
you can still see cherry blossoms
and the tall grasses where dandelions grow
you will wonder where the time has gone
when an ice cream truck pulls into your neighborhood
but that is okay too
just because
they tell you you're an adult, now
doesn't mean you cannot have a dance floor
under your bed spring
or
ice cream
on the tip of your tongue

the good thing about living
is not that it ends
but that it has not ended
yet.

outfit details: emily and fin dress, smithbuilt hat, winners shoes
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