Love Your Mother: An Etsy Mother’s Day Gift Guide

Nab mom some handmade gifts from Etsy this Mother's Day.

I had a business meeting recently and at the end my colleague asked, ‘So what’s new with you?’ 

I said soccer, gardening, and my love of the sun are keeping things humming along at home these days. That and a little trip with my kiddo and mom off-island for Mother’s Day. 

“When is Mother’s Day again?” A slightly panicked tone sailed out his lips. 

“This Sunday!” I grinned watching him squirm as only a forgetful dad can. 

“Thanks friend. Seriously, thank you,” he said as he walked away. 

If you’re looking for a fabulous gift for your mama, baby mama, baby mama-to-be or step-mama then Etsy is a fabulous place to start. Not to sound like a broken record for all of you who have been reading Anchors+Proteas for a while, but locally made, indie small businesses specializing in handmade goods are the BEST. On a holiday that’s full of gratitude and love, why turn to places like Hallmark and Walmart when you can nab a handmade treasure from a maker.

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How to Dye your Easter Eggs Using Common Kitchen Ingredients

Natural Dyes for your Easter Eggs using common kitchen ingredients

Hands up: who loved dying easter eggs as a kid? Remember the crazy colours your fingers would turn? Or how egg salad was a menu item for what seemed like weeks and weeks afterwards. None of that mattered. For a day or two you would have a collection of Dr. Seuss-coloured Easter eggs that you dyed yourself and then magically the Easter bunny came and hid for you, along with a few cavity-inducing treats. 

Last year, I was obsessed with trying to go au naturel. I had been on a tummeric smoothie kick and decided to try to combine my love of bright yellow with the power of my new wonder-herb obsession. I figured if my turmeric smoothie could stain my white shirts, maybe it could festoon egg shells. I also knew that purple cabbage was also a great natural Easter egg dye candidate. So what did I do? Enlist the help of my super crafty step mama and my other pal Pinterest.

While at my parent’s ranch for a brief visit, my stepmom and I filled every small pot she had with boiling water and various chopped, peeled, ground or grated brightly-coloured, vegetable matter. The result after an impatient three to four hours of egg dunking/soaking? Light coloured, earthy toned Easter eggs.

We tried to imprint the eggs with leaf patters by tying leaves to the eggs with string and wrapping in a layer of cheesecloth. It was kind of a fail, depending on which natural dye we used and the knot tiers tight-knot dying skills. But probably the most fun was the photo shoot and walking around the ranch collecting natural bits for our Easter lunch table decor (and photo shoot). To this day my kid still calls picking lichen, ‘searching for treasure.’ And yes, we have done this more than once (#hippieparenting). 

This year we narrowed down our natural dye adventures due to my significantly smaller pot collection and also left the eggs in their potions for 24 hours. HUGE difference in hue. I’ve included a few tips on the best common kitchen ingredients to use for dying eggs in my humble attempts two years running… Read more

Anthology ~ September edition ~ Getting Healthy

Weekend Anthology: September 2017 Best of the Net Micah. H

And just like that summer slipped through our fingers. No. Wait. It’s still here. Oh nevermind, it’s not. Welcome to the frenetic September weather on Haida Gwaii where there’s a little summer, a little fall and a heck of a lot of rain. Sometimes.

Regardless, life is still about beach meals, getting healthy, sandy toes, daily walks/hikes and laundry. Always laundry. And dogs. We’ve recently inherited two cuddly, messy, mouth-breathing, toddler-loving black labs. They are fabulous hikers but not fabulous mammalian snooze buttons. As in: my alarm goes off and I can’t hit snooze three times because the dogs wake up with the first buzz and then are panting and wagging in our faces well before the snooze alarm goes off. C’est la vie. Small trade off for having two fun, new, four legged September adventure buddies.

My besties continue to plan our 2018 Italy trip. We’re moving our big girls trip to June/July next year instead of May as originally planned. We’ll see. Fingers crossed we can all make it happen. In other words: save enough Euros, beg our partners to let us escape parenting for a couple shifts to sun ourselves silly while eating pasta, drinking wine and cackling like hyenas.

Speaking of mom jeans, I recently interviewed a denim expert for a future blog post (hint hint, watch this space for some CUTE goodies from an unlikely Canadian retailer). We talked motherhood and the horror of jean shopping post baby. Now I’m feeling pretty rad and actually not scared to shop for my next pair of denim duds.

On to some links now. Read more

Give Your Garden Some TLC: Transform Your Neglected Outside Space

Photo: Annie Spratt on Unsplash

Sometimes, you can spend so long decorating the interior of your home – making it a cozy haven where you can display family memories and travel mementos – that it means that your garden space doesn’t get given much thought. If the kids use your backyard to play it can become a little messy around the edges. Often this is when you start to have no inclination to get out there and enjoy the space. Therefore, a little Tender Loving Care in your backyard space could be just what it needs to make it a haven and an environment that can be utilized by the whole family.

Here are some ideas to help you to spruce up your garden space and ensure that it’s no longer neglected. Read more