tulips on the table & good news!

May tree blossoms from last spring sit in books and containers on the shelf next to our bed. They no longer carry that scent we have come to know as a sign of good things coming, but they'll do ever so slightly to make a winter less gloomy. Now, that the sun has woken from its seven month slumber, we can look to the trees and see new May blossoms forming like daybreak on our lids after what felt like long hours of not being able to sleep. I live for this time, as you know, and that is why I cannot go three sentences without writing about it. I have yet to discover a season that has ever felt as right as it does when the trees are alive like sonnets blowing in the wind. A sign of good things coming, no more winter howling, no more cheeks wet from longing for the raspberries or the honeybees, a banjo to ring out in the garden, and hands to pick flowers which soon will be growing. Spring brings with it a measureless peace and I dance such a dance when the warm sun is glowing.

Today, I celebrate, because we won the storyhive grant which means we'll be able to make a full music video! You wouldn't believe the goosebumps that fell onto my arm when I realized the news! I came running out of the bedroom and flopped onto the floor as if I had been transported back into happy childhood all over again and everything was as joyful as joy could be. I wish I could thank each and every one of you who voted, commented, and left your encouragement for the daunting task that was stepping outside of my comfort zone. I could not be me, be here, be as happy as I am today without you. 

So thank you, thank you, thank you!

outfit details: thrifted floral vest & hat, gift from shaela❤︎ dress, asos boots

my life in photographs

Do you ever wake up from underneath the blanket, only to feel a slight tinge of sorrow or regret and there is absolutely no cause for you to feel this way. That is how I met morning — slightly strange, slightly nervous, slightly curious with no need for it, as if I said something wrong the evening before but I know I couldn't have. Honeyed light pours through the kitchen window, a coffee maker makes sounds I can hear, dried snapdragons are in view, dogs who are snoring, what could it possibly be that brings me to a mood that is not a celebration of all that this is? Perhaps, it is not a good time to ask, just a time to go on as I do.
 My weapon of choice. The banjo. The reason I ever began singing and ringing out what grows in the bones and the mind and the belly of a human. If it weren't for this moon shaped machine, I could be traveling through this wide unknown world less sure and certainly less satisfied.

When the world looks like roses before you.

I've been thinking of the mountains and how we are nearing the time where wildflowers start to sprout and paint the wild brush that is a mountainside. I grow tired of the city even though it does have good offerings of it's own-- music, people, pipe dreams being born, but I need that wild kind of strangeness and aliveness that seems to only exist when I am not here. 'I am mountain bound' might very well be my favorite sentence in the English language. After, 'I brought you snacks', of course.

Here I am with two dried bouquets, one is bright with snapdragon flowers and the other, made up of leftover plants dried over winter.

Can somebody send a little springtime to my neck of the woods? I want to adventure, catch a glimpse of flowers, toil in the soil, but May begins and although the may tree buds are starting to green, I just want them to bloom because when they do, I'll have more than dried snapdragons and leftover petals to grin upon.

I slept in until 11 am for the first time in years. Then, I was greeted by a warm plate of food made by a kindhearted woman I call my mum. Feeling lucky to be living today. Feeling well enough to take up singing and dancing through these halls.

When I entered the storyhive competition, I was rattled with shakes and uncertainty if it was something I could do - asking for help, asking for votes, talking about myself and my dreams for one week straight. I mean it when I say, I don't want to be a mosquito buzzing my way into your feeds, taking you away from your day, putting a microscope on me, but I now know that the weight of dreams is lifted and softened when you let others help you, confide in you, and love you. I have lived my entire life with the back of a turtle shell, always hiding, always believing that I was unfit to be loved, but the truth is as true as the sky can be blue, there are people in this world who want to lift you up.

From where I sit, I can hear the black capped chickadees parading from treetop to treetop as if the whole world is theirs and something in me says that it is and I am just here visiting. Before I could truly know the beauty that is birds singing on a warm weather day, I had to hear the crows echo through the chimney as I shivered and sighed at the length of a winter. We earn our seasons here, so every drop of sunlight counts. Like memories do. Like life does. Like seconds appearing and disappearing. Like remembering your mother's voice. Or that time you stayed out on the hillside until morning. It is seeing the geese finally return or letting lemonade sit on your tongue. It is the way dust shows on the window and the sight that is dandelions growing from the ground. In you, there is a certain kind of knowing and if you listen to it, you might one day hear it say "you're just visiting, so sit slowly with that which one day you will live without."


StoryHive Music Video: How Long Blues

 This is How Long Blues. A song I wrote that tells of the ache and wonder which exists in us all when we are mistreated by the ones we love. Being an artist in this day and age of videos, of being online, of having to dig through the roots of what makes you and sharing it with the world by the click of a button it is downright spooky and I have jumped into it head first today.

I entered a creative grant competition curated by Storyhive with a music video pitch directed by filmmaker and friend, Gillian McKercher. What could be more knee knocking, goosebumps standing on the arm, inner voice doubting you than this - having to tell you that I *need* votes if we are to make the pitch you see below into a full length music video.

What this means:
 You can vote once a day - every day - at the link here until Monday, May 1st noon (PST)
You can share if you're so inclined (it helps!)
If I win, I can promise you that I'll be bouncing from wall to wall and not only will we be given a monetary grant that will take this pitch video and turn it into a proper music video, but we will have put a notch in the ever-so-terrifying quest that is making it as an artist.

Thank you


5 goals for April & May

 It has been a little quieter around the blog as of late I have been busy with music happenings and trying to put my head towards windows whenever there are signs of spring. I never did do an April goals post, so here I am now with two months at once. Setting goals seems so easy when you say it. Of course I will do that, of course I can do that, but adhering to them is a whole another story. So, here, we go:
  1. Begin the garden. I am so pleased to be able to finally admit that spring is here and gardening is about to begin. I need to weed, pull out leftover plants, prep, and make the soil sweet for planting this coming season.
  2. Share my music video pitch. I entered a grant competition with a kindred spirit filmmaker here in Calgary. The idea is that you make a one minute pitch video featuring one of your songs and then your task is to campaign for votes. The ones with the most votes at the end of it all will get a monetary grant to pursue a music video. In a world where making art can be equally beautiful and terrifyingly vulnerable, I will need all the help I can get because asking for votes has a tendency to make my belly fill with butterflies (!)
  3. Dry the carnation bouquet. There it sits, by the windowsill, held up in a blue vase the color of seawater. How beautiful it could be if made to last by hanging it upside down in the dark basement. There, it will dry and then it will forever remain in our house, much like the snapdragon one in these photographs.
  4. Go to Griffith Woods. I love this space, it smells of pine and sounds of bird chatter. I want to live in a world where going here before the sun rises becomes a habit. (Google, How do I get out of bed before 7 am?)
  5. Explore more places on foot. Now that the warm weather is rising, I have plenty of reason to see the world before me without getting into an automobile. There is something to be said about traveling on foot, it has a tendency to make you notice little things in a poetic appreciative sort - of - way.
How are you?
Tell me of your dreams, your goals, your plans, your curiosities

6 reasons for leaving your house

Today, let there be throats singing and minds twirling at the promise of springtime in the woodland. I, a natural homebody, have learned over time that I need both here and there in equal measure before I can say I feel good enough. Sometimes, I forget it because I am so used to longing for home when I am not home and then when I am here, I wonder how much better I might feel if I were there. A conundrum of the city dweller and prairie minded woman, I suppose.

I used to stay home every night, never leaving my own cocoon of safety, sacrificing friendships and time spent exploring so I could be by myself. I thought it was near impossible to bring this inner world into the outer world and so I feared it. I spent hours in my room, making messes, feeling warm in the cheek as I laughed at my own jokes and invented my own wellspring of fun. I did not need anybody else, for anybody else could mean expectations and expectations were dangerous for the creative spirit, or so I thought. It took two hands and one banjo for me to realize that leaving home could mean the difference between an echo and a song. If I wanted to sing and reach from the grave that is loneliness, I needed a place to do so and that place couldn't only be where pillows lie or dresses hang in closets. 

When I started leaving here for there, I realized just how much a human can take of breaking free from the starting point you cling onto because it seems easy. I will always be a homebody at heart, a delicate way of being inherited from my mother — but leaving showed me how far I could stretch to taste this life and at the end of each day, places are always made sweeter when it's not the only place you visit, a person always made wiser by doing what they think they cannot do.

From one homebody to another, here are 6 reasons why leaving your house can be a good thing.

  • You never know who you're going to meet. Yes — people can drain your energy reserves and make you want to put on running shoes and head for the hills, but they can also teach you, love you, and add birdseed and flowers to the unknown road that is life.
  • Leaving home doesn't have to be forever and life doesn't have to be measured by homebody vs those who appear shinier when around others. Know your own limits and stretch it ever so slightly so you can enjoy the best of each world.
  • Take a break from our own minds. Go to a coffee shop by yourself and eat a dessert, listen to the faintest sound of chatter, see how people are moving about, put your phone away and sit in that moment.
  • Inspiration can come from anywhere. If you are always occupying the same spaces, you are likely to have the same thoughts, exploring somewhere new can bring you all sorts of untouched ways of seeing the world. 
  • Adventure — whether in the woods or in the city, whether scenery or people, stepping outside of your comfort zone can kick start your heart and who knows what will grow from it.
  • You can always go home. Don't let anybody tell you that once you are out, you have to stay out. If you aren't having any fun, if anxiety is rising, or if you just cannot wait to hold the next chapter of a book or a film in your knuckles, go home. You tried. There will be other times and friends worth having will allow you to be you. 

To further prove how much I cling to home is to tell you how much trouble I ran into coming up with this list. If it weren't in argument of leaving home but instead for staying, it would probably come to 100 reasons or so. Now, I'm off to put the kettle on because home is where I'll be today.

Let me know your own reasons for going or staying in the comments - I am curious!

outfit details: thrifted value village blouse, montana tack store lace up boots, indigo chapters music notebook, shade of a bonsai constellation/zodiac brooch

a trip to the garden center

The garden center — known to me as the gardeners' version of a swimming pool or a lemonade stand. It is here where I could spend hours being pulled in by every petal and plant, as if my eyes only exist for the light of pretty things that grow towards the sun. Here, a blue print for happiness. Here, an understanding that rises in my mind of how to go on living without so much worry. As I run from flower to flower, I have no thoughts that my life could be written in lowercase letters, instead, I feel as though the very point of why I am here is this. I do not know what it is about my annual goal of planning the garden, sowing the seeds, and spending the rest of what I hope to be snow-less days tending to them, but I feel like all has been mended when I do.

As I am writing to you, the seasonal blues appear to have lifted, and so I have jumped from that thin trapeze directed by winter and onto a trampoline where dandelions and songs can sprout from. Time is strange and fleeting  — I hope as I grow older I can learn the way of not wishing days to pass just so I can be closer to daylight in the garden. A day is a day and so many fine things can be found there.

For previous visits to the garden center, you can look here and here.

outfit details: emily and fin dress, free people boots, thrifted beret and blouse
location ✈ Sunnyside Garden