100-mile Earrings by Indigenous weaver, Shirley Brown

I was expecting glass jars with cotton beards and raisin oatmeal cookies when I attended the craft fair at Mt.Pleasant Elementary yesterday. Instead, I met Shirley Brown, a cedar bark weaver and jewelry maker. A year ago, before I’d heard of things like the WhoMadeMyClothes campaign and the True Cost Documentary I probably would have admired Shirley’s […]

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Things that inspire me to write #23: The Ocean

“They see the sea, They hear its roar. There is something special about the shore. It soothes the spirit. It clears the mind. You can leave your cares and worries behind.” — The Berenstain Bears: Go on Vacation Just spent a morning at the beach with my toddler and though it was cold and windy and […]

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Things that inspire me to write #40: VanDusen Festival of Lights

I may not believe in Santa Claus anymore and those carols they have been pumping into Winners for the entire month of December are definitely starting to irritate me and I never did much care for candy canes so why would I want one in my mocha–however last night I discovered my Christmas magic. Once […]

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Things that inspire me to write #41: Snow

I seem to be dwelling a lot on one of what is often considered to be the utmost in boring of subjects: the weather. However, after lamenting about the lack of snow I feel it is my duty to recognize this morning’s frosted flake windfall. It snowed. Yes, Vancouver’s rainforest climate was blessed with a […]

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Things that inspire me to write #44: Christmas lights

My city seems to be growing wetter and greyer and slimier by the day. Sadly, that magical thing called snow which wraps the world in a blanket of blemish hiding, fuzz-ifying white perfection rarely visits Vancouver. But thankfully, we do have Walmarts and Home Depots and thus, Christmas lights. Somehow those five dollar strings of electric-infused wire […]

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Things that inspire me to write #58: Gingerbread Lane

Little knitted booties, paper and ribbon greeting cards with hand-dyed envelopes, double dipped, cashew dusted truffles. December is definitely the king of arts and crafts–and there is no event which takes it to the extreme like Vancouver’s Gingerbread Lane. Hosted at the Hyatt Regency Hotel, its a veritable feast for the creative appetite  featuring some of the most elaborate,  finely crafted and just plain […]

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Things that inspire me to write #60: this leaf

I have just arrived at my sister’s house  this fine November morning–which is no small feat. From my Vancouver apartment, the drive to her suburban house is almost an hour, and today included several freeway exits, non-stop pelting rain, and a whole lot of fat and gusty wind. And through it all, this little guy […]

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