Wednesday, February 29, 2012

I LOVE Etsy!

I recently helped my friend Ronna open an Etsy shop called CinnamonGirlStuff, which she has been busy stocking.

Check out my Etsy shop too, Cricklewood. I am working on more things to add to it.

I am a HUGE fan of Etsy. I do almost all my gift shopping there and, knock wood, have yet to have a bad experience.  It is full of beautiful hand-made items from around the world (nothing mass-produced!) as well as vintage items and craft supplies. Shopping on Etsy is my own personal rebellion against big-box stores and buying "Made in China" junk (hard to avoid these days!)

I really hate shopping, so I particularly enjoy being able to sit at home and do almost all my Christmas- and birthday-gift purchasing online. And yes, I buy things for myself there, and I've noticed I get a lot of compliments on anything I get from Etsy.

I also love selling stuff there. Overall, just a great experience. If you've never checked it out, drop by. I swear there is something for everyone there. It's great supporting the artists, artisans and craftspeople who sell their work through this online market.

Here are some of my favourite shops

And oh so many more!

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Some smart cookies out there!

Okay, you had some very creative guesses as to where we've been since February 16th, but only Jono and Kjelle Bus guessed correctly: we've been in Mexico City and Oaxaca!  We flew home to Ottawa yesterday, where we had to clean several inches of snow off our car in the airport parking lot! We were travelling with our friends from Nova Scotia and we had an excellent trip. Photos to follow in the coming days (apologies to my Facebook friends who have already endured them!)

The above pic was taken at the butterfly conservatory at the Mexico City zoo. This was our third trip to Mexico. In 1990, Gordon and I took our first trip together as a couple, to Playa del Carmen in Mexico (before it got swallowed up in the Mayan Riviera and was still a sleepy beach with palm-roofed cabanas!) Two years ago we visited Mexico City, Puebla and Veracruz. This time we especially wanted to see Oaxaca, with its many artisans and tasty food.

Our friends boarded our dogs and did daily in-home cat and critter care twice a day while we were gone. As a bonus, my friend Ronna came over a couple of times to give all the kitties some extra-special loving. Her beau Richard took photos and Ronna sent them to me while I was away, which made me very happy! Here are my cats getting spoiled rotten with love from Auntie Ronna... (Julius was camera-shy!)

Miss Emily, growing like a WEED!

As you can see, the cats LOVE Ronna!

Alex really enjoys being brushed.

Naomi loves upside-down cuddles.

Emily has a new nickname: Schtinkface! (Did I get that right, Ronna?) She likes to play hard-to-get.

Naomi loooooves her Auntie Ronna.

As does Alex!

By the way, the turquoise-covered skull in the last post is from the museum in the former monastery at  the Church of Santo Domingo de Guzman in Oaxaca. It was found in Tomb 7 at Monte Alban in Oaxaca.

Mexico has been getting a lot of bad tourist press lately, completely blown out of proportion in my opinion. I have never had a problem there (and we stay away from places like Ciudad Juarez!) The people are quite wonderful and we always have a great time visiting our neighbours to the south. I've been to Guatemala, for frig's sake. Mexico is a piece of cake. Great people!

More photos to come!

Guess where I've been?

Okay, I've actually been on holiday in another country for the past eleven days! I scheduled a bunch of posts before I left, because I don't like to advertise to the world when I am away. :) Some of you know where I was, but for those who don't, this pic is a clue.

Any guesses? :)

Monday, February 27, 2012


Miss Emily is getting quite a lot of ginger in her coat!

She is also getting quite a lot of nicknames. Emmalou, Emmalouche, EmmyPants, Emerson Trousers, Emerson Pantaloons, Embolism, Ebola (Gordon doesn't like those last two!), EmmyLemmyLemmy, Emeelia, EmmyGurl, Emmenthal, Cheeky Monkey, Bad Kitten, Hellion, Naughty Thing, and many more!

Sunday, February 26, 2012

The kitty girls

Naomi, sweetest cat ever, and a Tortie! Who woulda thunk? She pretty much lacks any Tortitude!

But Miss Emily more than makes up for that! Behold the future ruler of our farm.

Naomi is looking none too pleased, but she has been very patient so far.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Fun in pants

Contrary to what you might think, Naomi and Emily love each other. It's just that they enjoy occasionally whapping the crap out of each other!

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Wednesday, February 22, 2012


Okay, standard disclaimer: I hate this freaking wallpaper. One day it will be gone...

I had three cats littering my work table the other day (which was a pigsty to being with!)

Julius checks out Emily checking out me!

Things then got REALLY kitty congested...

Emily loves nothing more than to jump on Naomi and wrap her paws around her neck. Naomi is tolerant of but not exactly enthralled by this behaviour.

"I'll just slip right under that little monster!"

Julius likes to watch. Ahem.

Emily gives Naomi a little pat on the rump to send her on her way.

Then Emily and Julius look with alarm at Naomi's butt. Perhaps she just let off an odiferous gas bomb!

Emily really wants to knock Julius around the way she does with Naomi, but he is having none of it.

I cleaned up my table after his....

What you can't see is the two dogs on the floor. I vacuum in here A LOT.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012


I have a new friend in the kitchen.

Meet my Scottish oatmeal spurtle!

It's used stir oatmeal and prevent it fro becoming lumpy (those are sliced bananas I just stirred in, not lumps!)

I got it at the Cattails Woodwork Shop on Etsy.

Once the oatmeal was done, I got out some of the maple syrup I helped my friend Eugene make last spring.

Gordon enjoyed oatmeal with bananas, coconut, pecans, cinnamon and syrup.

No lumps! Nummy!

Monday, February 20, 2012

Mr. Handsome

He may be 12 years old...

...but Julius is still one handsome fluffy boy!

 And he knows it!

Sunday, February 19, 2012


Sophie says our cats have been getting too much blog-time lately, and she wants her moment in the sun.

"Uh oh. I think there's a cat behind you!"

"Never mind. It went away!"

Sophie is nine years old and mostly yellow Lab. She was born on a farm and adopted by another family, along with Tristan, before both dogs came to us at age 5 as the result of a family tragedy. Sophie is extremely sensitive, loyal, obedient, and wants to please. She is my heart dog and I love her to bits, even though she has become a little too diligent with the alarm barking lately. "Someone's here! SOMEONE'S HERE!  Barkbarkbarkbark! Somebody just drove up!"

"Oh wait, it's just Daddy. Never mind!"

She's a good girl and bilingual! She understands commands in French AND English.

I love you, my Sophie!

Saturday, February 18, 2012

More snow dogs!

We took the dogs snow-shoeing the other day.

I think Tristan heard a meadow vole under the snow. They are hardy little creatures who tunnel around under the snow in winter. I often see their footprints leading to drop-holes in the snow.

Sophie hears something too!

My pretty girl. Hard to believe she's nine now. She hasn't slowed down a bit.

Unlike Tristan, who likes to take breaks when we go out for a walk! He is nine too.

And he always loves a good roll on the ground, in any weather.

"Make sure you get my best side!"

Wild turkey tracks next to old dog tracks. Or is that old old dog tracks?

I love the light in winter. The snow is covered with a thin crust of ice from recent freezing rain.

Drop and roll!

A boy and his dog!

It's great having these three to snowshoe with.

Tristan is getting white around the muzzle.

And I think these are crow tracks.

Love my almost-daily outings!