Sunday, November 30, 2008


hmmm...excited that it is time for december views again. my camera has been in great use lately and here's some of what i've been seeing.

Saturday, November 29, 2008


i'm in my beloved portland. sigh.

ever since the first moment i came here i've felt at home. there's something about this city that feels so familiar...people look familiar to me too. and since vancouver, in all its glory and in all these years i've been there, still doesn't have that sense of 'home' for me, it becomes even more apparent what does and does not feel like home.

and i'm lucky enough to have family here, so i try to take a trip whenever i see a possibility. and its been way too long since my last trip. so happy to be home.

highlights thus far:

~going to the fat fancy store. they are only open one weekend a month, and i'm so happy it was this weekend. scored a few vintage dresses and a gorgeous coat! plus it felt so lovely to be in a place based around gorgeous plus sized vintage clothing. loved it. it totally made my day!

~lunch at por que no with my sister. the last 24 hours has been a mexican food bonanza...and if i just leave off the cheese, it makes me a happy gluten~free girl. we don't have good corn tortillas in canada, and they kinda taste and feel like they would have wheat in them, but don't....makes me feel like a digestively~normal person.

~touring our favorite neigbourhoods, cute shops, vintage stores (don't ask me how many more vintage cameras i got today...but they were such good deals i couldn't resist) and there seemed to be good deals everywhere. yummy.

~portland has the best coffee i've ever had. its stumptown coffee everywhere. i love a place that has really high standards for coffee.

tomorrow we're going downtown which is a part of portland i haven't been to much.

if you've been here i'm all for suggestions of things to check out here!

Sunday, November 23, 2008

4 beautiful things

~another gorgeous video by my super talented friend caroline.

~going to a unicorn birthday party this weekend. complete with pin the horn on the unicorn, a unicorn piniata and goodie bags containing magic sparkles. and no this wasn't a kids party. it was beyond beautiful.

~going to the east side culture crawl (an art studio tour) and the new sketch i bought from one of my favourite local artists jordan bent. also that he had a klezmer band playing in his studio during the tour.

~this song and video (and the idea of singing so loudly in the middle of the woods...i wanna do that)

my days have been a mix of being sick and in hibernation and of going to every social event i can to be sure to see everyone i can before i leave for the holidays. as well i'm continuing the seemingly endless task of culling my belongings....which is going really well and feels so good. somewhat without words lately (as well as having lost my voice today) i'm looking forward to december when darlene is bringing back the 'december views' in which one can join the task of blogging pictures rather than words.

so there they are. 4 beautiful things.

Saturday, November 15, 2008


two weeks ago i made a surprise decision to go on a cleanse. i gave myself about a day to eat whatever i had that i would soon be parting with and then went for it. i did this cleanse way back when i was 16, and did it for a number of months and after the cleanse i felt the best and healthiest i have ever felt in my adult life. and i'm ready to feel like that again.

so, i'm saying bye to dairy, sugar and fermented foods. seeing that i already live gluten free, you'd think that i'd be in a complete world of depravation and have nothing to eat, but really its not true. honestly, i'm just putting in even more effort to make food for myself and most of the time i feel pretty blessed that there is so much i can eat.

i though i might share a few of the things that are keeping me feeling like i still have quite a delicious world of food ahead of me.

~larabars. they don't contain any sugar or dairy and have so many amazing flavours...i'm mostly smitten with pecan pie and peanut butter cookie flavour though they all are quite scrumptious.
~stevia. oh stevia, i'm not sure i'd be able to do this without you! stevia doesn't spike blood sugar or feed candida, so its safe for those who can't have sugar. i'm using unsweetend almond milk and adding a bit of stevia to it makes it much easier to consume!
~kale. one of my favourite things to eat right now is kale cooked up with a whole bunch of garlic and shallots. so scrumptious. having salad with no dressing (as most have sugar and vinegar) doesn't make me too happy, so kale is taking its place in my life and i'm lovin' it!
~vega protein powder. i've been using this protein for years and nothing will sway me from it. it is made of pea, rice and hemp protein, sweetened with stevia, has lots of fiber, digestive enzymes, probiotics and i think it tastes mighty good. i use the plan flavour. add some blueberries and almond milk and it's an ideal way to start my day, have as a snack or drink during one of my night shifts!
~kinnikinnick yeast free, dairy free, gluten free rice bread. pretty much the only bread i know of that i can eat right now. corn thins are also making for a great bread substitute.
~squash, garlic, roasted root veggies (yams, beets, parsnips), granny smith apple, peanut butter and banana sandwiches...very thankful for all these things!
~books. healing with whole foods tells me everything i need to know about food, the complete candida yeast guidebook is my bible on the rules of the cleanse (there's so many variations on this cleanse), and the gluten~free girl book is my favourite, as shauna is super inspiring through sharing her excitement about what she can eat in her gluten~free life.

as inspired as i am feeling about food, the first portion of a cleanse is tough. fatigue and headaches are increasing as the toxins are being banished from my body. i'm feeling worse, but know that i will feel better in the long run.

and since i'm probably going to be on this cleanse for a while and surely i'll get sick of smooties and kale, i'd love if anyone has suggestions on their favourite gluten-free, dairy-free, sugar-free things to eat!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

fear vs love

another reason why we need to chose love, not fear:

i live in a country where i have the right to marry who ever it is that my love~journey takes me to. I don't take that right lightly.

I wish I were in california right now so I could join in the marches and protests protesting the right for all people to marry in that state being revoked. I fully believe that things won't stay the way they are....i believe that the way I believed (and no pessimism could sway me) that Obama would become the next president. Because it has to happen, because its time for change. Because Hope can trump Pessimism if we try hard enough, because Love can swallow Hate whole if we try hard enough. This setback has motivated people who believe in LOVE to take action. Like this video (if you have 6 minutes to spare i highly recommend watching the whole thing...its so well said). Love trumps all else, it counteracts the reasons why people voted for prop8. When it all comes down to it, don't we all just want to be loved in this lifetime?

Monday, November 10, 2008

living in love

i heard someone say this the other day 'i want to live in love not in fear'. those words have been sinking into my skin and have become a bit of a mantra to keep me present during my days. almost everything in my life that I am not content with is based around fear, whether its worrying if i will find love again, body image, social acceptance...all stem from a place of fear. so i've been trying to put this practice whenever i start feeling the fear rise up.

there are days that i just feel the essence of love, breathing it in and out, feeling in my heart that i am smitten though there was no object of my affection prompting that feeling at that time. on those days i find it so easy to be present, to give, to connect. but these days come and go. i just hope to find ways to bring myself to that place. and sometimes it might be like my morning run was today...brutal and hard to keep going but once you push through you just get to a place of calm and just experience it.

its the way this sentence calms me. 'i will live in love and not fear'. for each of us it may be different words that bring us back to the path we want to be on. right now, right here...i think i've found mine.

***it feels peculiar to write this after spending 2 of the last 5 years in a depression. now that i feel relatively happy most days, i'm seeking even more happiness, when in the past all i wanted was to not feel sad. but we deserve all the happiness we can manifest for ourselves in this lifetime***

i took this photo for the courageous living project which is organized by the lovely kate swaboda (who's blog is wonderful. i really love her honesty about her journey...i think she's very courageous). i've been painting quotes that move me on my mirrors for a long time and am enjoying a revitalized focus in mirror messages! i encourage you to try it! I have this message on the full length mirror that stands near where i get dressed. its a great reminder to be kind to myself when i look in it.

yesterday i read this post called ...the next single thing, by jen gray. now, its quite often that a blog post nearly brings me to tears, but this one brought me past the verge into full on tear~land. she wrote these words that speak to my heart so strongly right now. to take the next step that keeps me true to my heart, that aligns me with love and spirit...and trust that all will work out. her reminder that
"if you knew the final destination, you would rush to get there and miss really crucial scenic routes along the way" was just what i needed to hear right now.

"love is at the end of this trip.
i promise you that.
and i swear to god you will never
be so thankful and so aware of
how this journey will give you your life back.
the true life you were destined for"

these words get me all choked up every time i read them. love is at the end of the trip and love is here now. it always was and always is here. i spend so much time worrying/fearing that love will elude me, pass me by, never find me. the thing that speaks clearest to my heart right now is to leave that fear and try, and then try harder, to find the love that is here in my life already, that is here in my every day, that is here in me.

Thursday, November 06, 2008

three very beautiful things

1. that u.s. citizens came together and elected a truly moving new president (thank you, thank you, thank you)!

2. this beautiful video my lovely friend caroline made (and there are more videos of gorgeousness on her youtube page).

3. the wonderful leonie's new creative goddess e-course. i can barely wait for it!

Saturday, November 01, 2008

behind and ahead

some moments this week it felt like i'd jumped back 2 or 3 years.
like i didn't know how to say no, or stand up for myself, or express my boundaries.
and it brought back a wee bit of that sadness that took so long to get rid of back then.

but i do have these skills now. its not the way i live my life anymore. so i put on my rubber boots and walked through that messy mud of who i have been to where its okay to be the woman i've become, even if she still doesn't know exactly who she is.

at the same time as jumping backwards, i'm also floored at how much i've gone forwards. i did a family photoshoot with one of my favourite families in this city, and was recalling our shoot last year (which was soon after i had gotten my DSLR). i had been super hard on myself last year after the shoot, didn't feel like i did a good enough job...rather than just letting myself be exactly where I was...a beginner. and this year, after a year of practice and more photoshoots than I can count on my fingers and toes, we had a really lovely time and got some great shots. and it wasn't perfect. its so challenging to shoot so many people at once, getting three kids under the age of 5 to focus on the camera at the same time (but they were troopers). at one point we went inside for hot chocolate and coffee and when we came back out I forgot to change the ISO back (which made the quality of the photos poor until I remembered to change it!). but i've gained enough confidence in myself and my photography in the last year that I'm going to give myself credit for how far i've come and not beat myself up for the fact that i still have a ways to go. thats why I love this art form....its continually confidence building and humbling and the same time!

are you giving yourself credit for how far you've come and letting there be kindness towards yourself in the ways there is simply just room to grow?