there and back again…

We went on a trip to the Bruce Peninsula over the Labour Day long weekend. I would love to show you the hundreds of pictures I took but that might be a bit boring… so I brought back for you highlights of the trip, which deserves a haiku (or three :D)!

 

Sunny, mossy trails

 

with mushrooms along the way

 

and tales of stone caves.

 

Wise words to ponder

 

as the creek led us to find

 

where the water falls.

 

Water clear as glass

 

beneath it, the past stood still

as the river flows.

 

 

 

 :D

I like writing haiku’s, even though I’m not very good at it. It’s like people breaking into songs when they’re excited. I break into haiku’s!

And I really wanted to bring back for you the sound of the creek, which we followed to find Indian Falls. Felt like I could sit on a rock in the middle of the creek and listened to it for hours and not be tired of it. 

If you mouse over the photos and click on the hyperlinked words you can read more about the places where the photos were taken.

It was overall a really cool trip! I didn’t expect to hike the Bruce Trail (I’m not a very active person), but I ended up doing a bit of that while getting to the caves. 

I would love to visit again, maybe in a year or so, because we didn’t have time to visit the Grotto and the Flowerpot Island, which has a small museum, light station, and more caves!

Have a great weekend, everyone! :D

 

 

 

 

celebrating summer solstice

… with summer flower photos! :D

(summer solstice was technically yesterday, I’m a little late, but it’s never too late for a bit of haiku-writing :D)

 

Ode to Summer Blooms

 

Flowers of summer

 

Roses, their petals falling

 

over my sandals.

 

Rainstorms, sun showers

 

here today, gone tomorrow

 

new blooms, a new day.

 

 

 Turn a street corner

 

outside doorsteps and small shops

blossoms line sidewalks.

 

 

Not great haikus, but it’s fun counting syllables and finding words that fit :D Although I’m actually rather pleased with the middle one about rainstorms and sun showers.

(Some people don’t write them this way, but I understand haiku’s as three-line poems with 5 syllables in the first line, 7 in the second, and 5 in the third. So there are actually three haiku’s above weaving between the photos.)

 

For our corner of the world, the first days of summer came with a heatwave. So if it’s hot where you are, enjoy the sun and summer blooms, but stay cool!

 

p.s. On a slightly related note, if you like poetry, check out my sister-in-law’s blog! :D She writes on many different topics, from reflective and insightful to hilarious — great reads!

 

 

 

 

 

today’s awesome news!

Did I tell you that I’m a big fan of haiku’s? And my multi-talented husband has recently won a haiku contest! :D

 

 

It’s a haiku contest about typefaces (or fonts). The typeface Mike wrote about was Ketchupa, and the host of the contest even made a super fun illustration to go with it! :D I love the small illustration for the grilled cheese and tomato soup! 

And I’m very proud of Mr. Mike! :D

 

Sending you warm wishes on a cool autumn day!

 

 

ode to snowflakes

I’m travelling up north this weekend. I imagine there will be more snow than we have here in the city. Which reminded me that I made these shrink plastic snowflakes during Christmas holiday, with tutorial from The Long Thread.

I first tried using the template full-size. I was imagining a dime-sized pendant, but it turned out a lot bigger than what I wanted, as you can see with my hand there (I had to remind myself that shrink plastic may seem magical but it’s not so magical that the snowflake would shrink from 4 inch to 1/2 inch).

The first try didn’t go very smoothly. A couple of the arms broke off as I was cutting, and I only had clear shrink plastic rather than frosted shrink plastic, so I had to sand it. The sandpaper I used was grey, and I made the mistake of sanding it after it was cut, so the grey sandy particles got stuck all along the edges, leaving the snowflake with a film of grey…

But I still like it. It reminds me of snow in the city, on the road and sidewalk, turning all grey and slushy as the cars go by and people treading through. I’m going to find a long chain to wear it around in the city :D

As for the small snowflake that I wanted… Learning the lessons from the first attempt, I shrunk the template by 50%, sanded the plastic before cutting it, and was extra, extra careful and slow when cutting the plastic. And finally I watched it curl and shrink in the hot oven… and suddenly I have a snowflake the size of a dime :D

It’s exactly what I’ve pictured in my mind. And none of the arms broke off. I’m quite happy with it.

If I could write poems, I would write an ode to snowflakes. They are breathtakingly intricate and beautiful and each is perfect in its own way, yet they’re here one moment and melted to a mere drop of water the next. I’m sure that it’s a detail purposefully made and woven into our everyday life to intrigue and inspire us.

But I don’t really write poems. The best I can do is some feeble attempts at haiku (although I quite enjoy it :D). But I do enjoy reading poems very much. And I’m happy that my sister-in-law, who is a very talented writer, has started a new poetry and writing blog, so now I have a constant supply of poems to read :D

So, travelling, snowflakes, and poetry. I thought I would sum it all up with this poem I read on Lil Fish Studio. I was very moved by it when I read it, because recently I’ve found myself in the same place, travelling along and then coming upon a forked road, trying to make the best decision, trying to find the best way to use all the gifts I have been given, and feeling rather helpless wallowing in my own indecisiveness.

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth.
Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same.
And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.
I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I–
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.
- Robert Frost, 1915

 

(The poem itself has nothing to do with snowflakes, but note the author’s name!)

So, see you in a few days! I’m bringing Zumi with me to the north and hope to bring back some nice photos. Thank you for visiting and have a wonderful weekend!

the travelling Zumi

While travelling south for Christmas, I took some pictures with the Zumi. They had a lot more snow this year than we do in Toronto.

And now, it’s time, for a haiku:

Silently it lays

 

Glittering, swirling, it drifts

 

across miles between.

***

And along the way, lovely frosted trees as well!

 

 

 

And this is our journey back into the city — bumper-to-bumper on the highway! And no snow, just rain. Welcome to the city, it said.

 

But rain did not dampen our holiday spirits and we had a great time travelling nonetheless :)

May the new year brings great adventures and new inspirations! Best wishes for 2011!

weekend in flying colours

It was Thanksgiving weekend and we left the city to visit families. We also visited the chip trucks by the water and a country fair in a nearby town, and I took some photos with the Zumi. I’m rather pleased with how old-fashioned the pictures look, especially the ones at the country fair. I also took a lot of tree pictures as we drove home, and of course a sunset picture from our west-facing balcony :) The colours are just amazing.

I felt kind of bad that I’ve been neglecting my pink point-and-shoot since Zumi arrived, so I’ve been reassuring it that I still like it very much because it takes great indoor pictures and pictures of people, and it lets me see what I’m taking a picture of, which really helps with composition. Here are some proud products of the pink camera over the weekend.

And now, a haiku:

The weekend flew by
and now we are home again
full of thanksgivings.

Happy Tuesday! :D

 

 

 

Tourist for a day, with haiku’s.

A couple of days ago I travelled to a part of the city that I don’t visit very often to hang out with a friend.

Look! Rice noodle rolls,
hand rolled and sprinkled with shrimps.
Peanut sauce drizzles!

Hello there, koi fish.
Swimming amongst the pennies
in the neon lights.

Oh, what lovely street!
Sidewalks lined with summer blooms
and not a raincloud!

When in doubt,” she says,
over tea and maple fudge,
“pinkie out, my friend.”

Beaming white flowers,
unfazed by hot sun, standing
head high and chin up.

Not as brave, we two!
Sought refuge in cool lounge
and chocolate bloom.

For my beloved,
a delicious souvenir -
green tea KitKat bar!

Journey home melted
green tea sugary wafer.
Tasty nonetheless!

Cheers! :D

Adventure in dough

Recently I was given a cookie mold with lovely teapots in it…

… it even came with a booklet with cookie, salt dough and beeswax recipes… (and a pig on the cover, eating watermelon!)

So, today I decided to test out the cookie mold with the salt dough recipe from the booklet…

1. I mixed some cinnamon into the dough to give it some colour and texture. Then I pressed it into the mold with the heel of my hand (as per the booklet’s instruction).

2. Dough, pressed.

3. Dough came off the mold pretty easily. I cut them apart with the back of a butter knife.

4. I then placed them on a silicon baking sheet to make sure that they wouldn’t stick. They were going to be tree ornaments so I cut a small slit at the top of each with the tip of a butter knife for ribbon.

5. Baking… at low temp. for a long, long time. (about 2 hrs. Probably not the smartest thing to do in a small apartment in the middle of summer, but lingering aroma of cinnamon was nice.)

6. And the moment of truth! This is the one that turned out the best, I think. I was disappointed that the salt in the dough seemed to have risen to the surface during the baking process, and so now we can’t see the cinnamon :( I should have remembered this from previous dough craft attempts!

Surely there is a way to prevent this salty crust from forming? Hmm… need to find out. But I’m going to paint this batch of ornaments, and will keep you posted about how it goes!

I still have half a batch of dough left (my hand got a bit sore from pressing dough into mold), so I think I might make some owls, like this one I made years ago…

And now, a haiku to summarize today’s adventure:

Flour, water, salt

Where did the cinnamon go?

Great fun nonetheless.

From the garden: A haiku

Fiery bloom standing

Fire petals beaming

Golden trumpets a-swaying

with songs of crickets.

****************************

This is actually my first haiku attempt. We were watching Veggie Tales: Sumo of the Opera today and I felt very inspired.

Tomorrow I’m going to take a mental health day aka craft day :D My plan is to slightly alter a shirt and try out a cookie mold. So, more about crafts tomorrow!

Wishing you a fabulous week ahead!