what makes the gardener garden

A dozen leafy plants begin to blossom out of the valleys I made in the garden — everything is alive and then suddenly, it's not. Is this what makes the gardener garden? Is this why we rush to the raspberry bush and eat the pulp of watermelon so hastily as it drips from our chin? I sit where blades of grass grow like a long distance friend showing up for a short but happy time, they are here underneath the naked sky and I relish in knowing how beautiful this is to me.

I wander to the watering hose and fill my bucket till it weighs like a full grown dog leaped upon my lap. I use all of the strength I've ever known to lift it. I water the flowers. My arms twitch. I find a sense of motherhood by carrying a heavy bucket to give life to delicate living things. Other times, I feel like a hurricane, swishing and sloshing as wobbly me carries the bucket from the hose and into the garden, losing most of the water along the way. There are little things in the daylight of June that make even the most melancholy of my moods disappear and seem forgotten until darkness comes around again. I understand myself best in the world of shoveling soil, carrying buckets of water, and being hugged by the electric blanket we call summer. I see everything as it is — short lasting but bright like a life well lived.
In the mornings, I rise like my feet are on a trampoline, eager to see the ground below me from way up high. I run outside to witness if summer is still here. "It's only just beginning, Amy." says C. I doubt him, I need my own proof. I look at the garden, my flowers are still growing. I put my feet upon the blades of grass, it still feels warm. I look towards the sky and see a dark cloud coming from the west, "Is that winter, already?" I keep to myself. I know in my head, winter is closer to yesterday than tomorrow, but still I am afraid of being left by the sun. These days of watermelon pulp and raspberry picking are sweeter than the candy I grew up eating at the gas station down from the school.
Let me stay here in the sun all day, let me press pause.
  The Outfit
Skirt – Oasap
Blouse & Hat Value Village
Holt Renfrew Bow Belt  Value Village
Shoes An online store that doesn't exist anymore. If you find a similar pair, let me know!
The Location
Ravine behind my home


wear love now

When I first started writing for my blog, I never imagined anybody would come here to visit. I thought of my blog in the same way one might think of their journal or a library book clung to their chest. This was a private place for me to talk to myself through words and photographs. I came here only to make sense of the world I was living in and to discover who I was. I didn't know it then, but my tiny orb in a milky way of blogs and internet homes has become a integral part of what keeps me fed and happy in the mornings. I love running to a field to take photographs, I love cursing the sun when it's too bright for the lens, I love looking at clothes with the eyes of an artist "How could I paint this skirt into an outfit?" "What hat should I wear?" "Today, I think I'll dress like a 1930's farmer. Tomorrow, I'll dress like a debutante." I especially love the emails, letters and friendships that have budded through this space. 

Some people will never understand what is joyful about taking photographs of yourself and sharing them with others through a blog. Sometimes, I don't understand it either, but for the most part, I do this because it makes me happy. I'm not here to riddle myself into needing an answer to why artists paint, singers sing, poets write or bloggers blog. We do it because it makes us happy. I think that is enough. Six years later and I'm still coming here to make sense of the world around me and to discover who I am. I feel vulnerable here. I feel safe here. I feel as if the life I live when the computer gets closed is a world made better by having this blog. I want to take a moment to thank you for visiting, for commenting, and for taking time out of your daylight and moonlight to connect with me. 

Another joy brought to me through this blog is the introduction to artists and women who make a living through their art. I've never known how to be good with my hands or by pulling threads through needles, but it makes me glad to be able to share others talents with you. This heart-shaped & polka dotted dress was a gift from Becca. She has her own Etsy shop appropriately titled wear love now. All of the clothing has been upcycled using repurposed materials in an eco-friendly way. She is as sweet as they come and I'm happy as a baby getting a bite of apple pie to share her creations with you. You can follow her instagram here!

  The Outfit
  Dress wearlovenow
Tights We love Colors
Boots gift
The Location
Ravine behind my house


The season of festivals

The month of June marks the beginning of a season where life can be seen everywhere — in the birds fixed to twigs on the way to their nest, in the blade of grass that springs about your feet, in the sound of running water, in the sprinklers and the gardens growing high towards the sky. I sit on the back porch with my computer and a coffee, I write until I need a break and when I do, I walk to the garden to admire it and then I close my eyes while the sun warms my hair. I think about nothing, only the lilac bush and the electric bees in the distance, feeling calm and covered by sun becomes my full-time hobby.

June also marks the beginning of festival season, a time for the joyous occasion that is music and life coming together underneath a warm sun. I am happiest when I am listening to music, especially when the artists who create it are only 10 feet away from you. When it comes to dressing up for festivals, my belief is that you should always wear something colorful and comfortable. If you're spending all day in the hot sun, you'll want to wear an outfit that is easy to run around in.

I recently teamed up with CrossIron Mills to create my own look inspired by festival fashion — they gave me a gift card and asked me to visit at least three stores to create the look. My mum and I decided to make a date out of it and spent the whole day happily buzzing about like bees, trying to find the perfect outfit for a day at the Calgary Folk Fest. I came upon these easy-to-bounce-around-in overalls at Guess, the blouse and kimono from American Eagle, the flowery hair piece from H&M and the sun shaped heels from Arnold Churgin. This outfit would make one especially blissful on a breezier day or when the sun is hiding behind the clouds. Festival season, I'm all yours.

The Outfit
Blouse & Kimono American Eagle
  Overalls – Guess
Hair accessory H&M
Shoes Arnold Churgin
The Location
Ravine behind my house


a few proud flowers

 Several times a day, I look to where the sun is pointing and I put my body there. I could sit underneath the sky for hours, even when it's warm like a kettle after it coos. All I need is a few proud flowers, a cold cup of water and a spot in the shade for when my cheeks turn rosy from the sun. I don't want to miss anything, not the ladybug, not the bare sleeve, nor the green foliage that lights the forest like moon shimmer on a boat at sea. 

Here and now, below the June sun, I gather lettuce from the garden and soon after, I am counting freckles in the mirror. I count which ones were here in the winter, I count which ones are newly made. I keep myself busy in ways I never do in the other seasons. I pull weeds from the garden, I visit my friends where sunlight falls, and I sing outdoors where the voice sounds best. I belong to this season the way bones are meant for dogs to chew or baby breath is meant for mothers to cling to. Here and now, where the sky is bright and the banjo is strung, beauty and happiness is all around me.

When is your favorite season? I can never fully decide between the garden planning and little sprouts of springtime or the full grown flower bed of summertime.

 The Outfit
  Skirt Pink Champagne Vintage
Blouse & Hat – Value Village
Banjo – Dogwood Banjos
The Location
Edworthy Park, Calgary.
Flowers from my garden, cosmos and dusty millers.


my life in photographs

It's the most wonderful time of the year for gardeners and those who stop to smell the flowers and pick them for pressing. I'm already on my way to having a jack-in-the-beanstock sized collection of hard covered books filled with flowers & leaves.

I have been busy trying to write songs of my own. The hardest part of songwriting is knowing when your song is complete and ready to have wings.

The gourd banjo alongside poems written on recipe cards by my grandmother. These scribbled notes and songs are my way of calling out to her and imagining what life could be if we had met. It's funny to think how paper and ink are here to outlive us all.