Friday, November 30, 2012

Last Day In November

Weather over sea
Every time the rains return, which is pretty much every other day, I'm always kind of bummed with myself for not going on a longer walks/stargazing/fall cleaning in garden when the weather was nice.
Which is totally silly, because I was doing other things like working and going to yoga and dance practice.

I have a lot of this kind of weird guilt about stuff I'm not doing, even as I'm doing other, equally important things. Guilt about not writing when I'm gardening, guilt about not gardening when when I'm writing, guilt about not reading when I'm doing yoga. Wow. That sounds really silly now that I wrote it down. Anybody else ever experience this?
sleeping on papa's coat
Today I took it super-easy, reading favorite zines and magazines and blogs and planning exciting Finn-meals. I even drank coffee, a rare treat (unless I'm in California at Missa's house! ;)
morning light
The morning brought a Christmas package from my mom with Finnish magazines, chocolates, tights (how mom!) and an advent calendar, right on time for the first of December.
moomin friends
The other package was an early present for myself, a new moon calendar from Jen Lorag's awesome shop.
We are bleeding next year
I had one this year too and not only is it an amazing women's health tool, it's pretty as a blossom too. Since I was already paying for shipping, I couldn't resist adding one of her Tarot patches of my favorite card The Star. That completes my "wise-woman corner" courtesy of Missa, with a God's eye that she made, a tiny St. Frida Kahlo altar, a Blessed Virgin tile and a pine tree tile. Pretty stoked.
Spiritual Window
I love Jen's thank you note, don't you?
Supporting Witches in business
 Of the beaten track
Not to be deterred by the rain, I went for a little walkabout, with my new waxed (and thus water resistant!) canvas Barnacle Bag rucksack from my friend Lissa. Click on the link to follow Lissa's adventures. I often forget about her blog, since I get to see her in person, but she has such a great eye for photos and finding the beautiful in the ordinary.
I've been a fan of her bags for a long time, but have been biding my time for the right idea and style of fabric and when I saw this red striped one I knew it had to be mine. Actually I was quite torn between it and a blue polkadot one, but I'm now that I have it so happy with my choice.
My bag is in a new style she's developing, with leather straps with studs instead of cotton and snaps, lighter weight canvas and canvas straps too. I love it. It's awesome to know what you have something that will last through the seasons, for years to come. I feel lucky to know such an awesome artisan. So long canvas totes, see you in the summer!
Big friends
It was so fun to wander in the woods in the rain, with water dripping of the trees and everything humming with it. There are mushrooms everywhere!
they are umbrellas They don't have umbrellas Ravine
The woods are so bare this time of year, with the thicket dying down, that you can actually see through them, follow the forms of the land and perhaps even wander off the trail.
middle size friends
drinks and treats
On rainy days we drink so much tea. Just cup after cup. Floral tea, women's tea, rooibos, peppermint...
 a day
With more free time on my hands, I've been trying to experiment more with cooking different things and really challenge myself. I love cooking for my family, but since my husband is a good, uncomplaining eater, I often find myself making the same favorite dishes over and over.
This measuring cup saves me
So today, as I was asking if he could pick up some bread from town, it occurred to me that perhaps I ought to just make some. Finnish cookbook in hand I successfully turned out potato flatbreads, or perunarieska. In spite, of course, our silly American oven and baking sheets. Four years in this country and baking with propane still perplexes me. Maybe I'm the silly one?
Happy guilt-free rainy days, friends!
It's raining on Orcas!
Ps. Lissa is hosting a sweet handmade goods giveaway on her blog. You can check it out here.


  1. You live in such a beautiful part of the world! Your mum is so sweet for sending you a gift pack and I love your new goodies:). I'm a tea addict, I simply cannot bear an empty cup either:)

  2. Gorgeous forest pictures! And you get such charming things in the post too.
    I get that same weird guilt as you, so don't worry, you are not alone! Sometimes too at the end of the day I get a sort of related feeling of regret that I didn't get such-and-such a thing done, even though I was busy doing other things all day that were just as important and just didn't have the time. But now that we've come out and named these weird worries, maybe we can get rid of them too?

  3. Yes yes, I believe you and I have talked about the guilt we feel with things we're not doing (I say "talk" when I mean "leave comments in each other's blog posts," because I consider these forums to be a mode of conversation, yes?). Especially in the winter months when I have pent up energy I wish I could spend outside, and then I regret not doing more. I may never get over the guilt, but I feel I'm getting better at seizing opportunities and reveling in the present.

    Yay mushrooms! And tea! And thanks for the link to Alchemilla. Her work is beautiful!

  4. Thanks Milla for your kind words~ made my afternoon, The bag looks great on you, so happy you have already taken it out for an adventure! I burned my right hand bad this morning on a scorching hot cast iron, so no sewing today just mad men extravaganza. See u soon!

    xoxo lissa

  5. Beautiful and awe-inspiring, as usual. The Northwest is forever the best place to live, ever. I love your rucksack, and it's always nice to know of local/handmade stuff, especially in the holiday season. And as for feeling guilty about what you're not doing...I experience that every day of my life. So don't feel silly--you're not alone.

  6. this post just speaks to me!!
    1. that calendar is GENIUS and i need one. are they still for sale? they don't seem to be purchasable from that link.
    2. i experience that guilt all the time! i call it 'pinterest guilt', which is that guilt you feel when you judge yourself in relation to all the amazing things everyone else on the internet seems to be accomplishing all the time, and berate yourself for not doing ALL THE AMAZING THINGS ALL THE TIME (when you can only do things one at a time and you have to appreciate how amazing the things you're doing really are!). the internet is great for motivation & inspiration, but it often makes me feel terrible, and i think we all need to get over this!
    3. i've been lusting over those bags forever and seeing yours may have just tipped me over the edge... the new style looks really awesome too.
    4. i lived in finland for a year on a high school exchange so finnish cuisine is close to my heart. i've made perunarieska before and it is tremendously delicious. now that i've seen this i think i will make some in the next few days. thanks for the inspiration!

  7. I feel guilty about things like that all of the time! I always think I'm not spending enough time making art, reading, practicing my ballet, doing yoga, cooking nice meals, actually doing some housekeeping, going on adventures, processing my photos, etc. It is hard to be a girl of many interests with so little time in the day!

    As for all of your mushrooms, I am thoroughly jealous. We have no mushrooms here anymore and my fiance and I were just talking about how much we miss it.

  8. oh yes! the guilt. although i find my guilt stems from what i consider wasting time, something that i can unfortunately say i am a master at! at least it sounds like you are doing something useful while feeling guilty :D

    i love lissa's bags! yours looks perfect on you especially among all the beautiful trees and mushrooms. the new moon calender is really cool. i might have to get me one of those and hang it next to my god's eye from missa which is hanging in my room next to the card you sent me with the braided girls.

    we watched if a tree falls last night. i believe you posted about it a while back right? it was really interesting. and i also just finished the most amazing book called proof of heaven. it's about a (former atheist) neurosurgeon's journey into the afterlife and it's fascinating. it's the first book in a long time that i have been able to finish! hopefully my reading dryness has come to an end!

    may many guiltless, cozy days be in your near future :D


    Hey, just sayin'.

    Yay for the wise-woman corner! What a sweet mom package. Clover loved the Moomin picture on it too, by the way.

    Bag envy! Bag envy! You are so cute tromping around in the rainy forest with your rucksack.

    Your flat bread is making me remember you and Clover in our kitchen, her little face and arms covered in flower. Her frantic rolling technique, haha, fun times <3

    As for the guilt, I'm with Anne, it's the "wasted time" that gets me too, though I suppose time wasted is also a matter of opinion.

    Well, I hope you haven't reached a saturation point with all the wonderful packages you've been receiving, cause there's more on the way ;)

  10. Umm, guilt YES. It's amazingly frustrating, and a good hint that we're not living quite as in the moment as we should.

    I love this view into what seems like very full days! All your cooking and tea resembles my day thus far, and your forest romps make me smile.

    You have GOT to be kiddin' me. About a week and a half ago, I bought one of those menstrual calendars as well, PLUS a "the moon" patch. Get out of my head, woman! (but really, don't).

    I'll echo Missa's sentiment; I hope you aren't all full up on mail. There's some making it's way across the sea to you!

    Love you!


  11. awwwww man, i've started treating myself with relaxation time as long as i get chores done. things got pretty pathologically lazy around here - now i promise myself coffee if i first pick up dog shit, empty the compost and water my tomatoes....then after coffee.....if i wipe the benches and clean out a draw downstairs - well then maybe i can waste some time on the internets. okay i'm obviously talking about a different reason for guilt than you are. but well, potatoes are potatoes yes? x

  12. The mushrooms look so lush and vibrant!

    Isn't it great using your money to buy something that will be well used? Though financial stresses are one of the hardest parts of adulthood, I get great pleasure from wisely managing my money (which certainly includes fun purchases!).

    I've been brewing up a blog post about the importance of steaming hot tea for winter health, this is giving me the nudge to get it done!

  13. Ah Milla, I know exactly the kind of guilt you are talking about - I used to feel it All The Time: guilt for not having walked outside on the hill when I was cleaning the apartment, for not having done some drawings when I was out on the hill for once, guilt for not having watched the trees open their leaves all day when I was working in the store, etc.

    I knew that it had a lot to do with (as Sara points out) not living in the present enough, but also with a hard-to-cure habit to start with whatever was not high on my list. If I really wanted to go outside, I would start doing the cleaning first... Etc. Then when the time came to go back to work at the bookstore, of course I felt guilty for not having spent hours outside as my heart really wanted to, OR not drawing trees and animals. Or not seeing a friend whose company I missed.

    When at last I began to indulge myself first, instead of going subtly but constantly against my deepest wishes, life suddenly (so it seems in retrospect) became more enjoyable and balanced: I truly enjoyed staying at home and cooking in my afternoon-lit kitchen, without regretting not to be on the hill at the same time, since the former day I had in fact gone walking there, or I was going the next day for real.

    Still, I often feel I don't have enough free time to do all I really wish to do - even if I am getting better at doing these things one at a time and living them in the present.

    So I guess the problem is that I resent the time wasted making a living... after that it's hard to choose during my days off (or in the evenings) between activities I enjoy, since I feel I should not have to cram every enjoyable, useful and important thing in the free time left. Including hours of contemplating the sky and the trees and the light - it seems I can never get enough of that.

    Speaking of which, I love these pictures of your rainforest :o)