Pin Ups and Link Love: My Favourite Things This Week

A huge thank you and internet hugs all round for the amazing comments (both on the blog or individual emails) that I got after getting really honest yesterday. I teared up reading some of your words. While I know that I am not the only one going through this; it was so, so good to hear your stories and what you are struggling with, too. Not because I’m glad others have these sorts of challenges, but because personal struggle inherently feels isolating precisely because we don’t talk about it much. I’m responding back to everyone, hopefully before the weekend is up.

My Favourite Articles and Links This Week

Here are six ideas on sparking happiness. Especially useful read if you are feeling like life is not that awesome at the moment.

How to plan a vacation. I’m a big fan of the tip that involves ‘packing a uniform’. Helps keep packing under control and you always look pulled together.

Assuming you are not going away with small children, here is a great idea to add depth, meaning, and art to your vacation- keep a journal while on vacation. I totally want to do this. But then again, I want to do everything.

If you are trying to put yourself out there a bit more, here is a good read about getting outside your comfort zone.

I loved this poem about raccoons by Dani Couture. Toronto has a lot of raccoons that cause all sorts of havoc, and I secretly love those little masked bandits.

My Favourite Pins This Week

Pin Ups and Link Love: Lemon Zucchini Cupcakes |

Lemon zucchini cupcakes! I love cake with zucchini in it. I pretend its all about the veggies but really I’m stuffing my face with cake. It’s the definition of win-win. Pinterest link is here, and the original recipe is here.

Pin Ups and Link Love: Veggie Lovers Pasta Salad |

I love pasta salad, but only when it has truckloads of veggies in it. Not those wimpy kinds that are mostly noodles with a few flecks of bell pepper. This salad is the pasta salad of my dreams. Pinterest link is here, and the original recipe post is here.

Pin Ups and Link Love: Rustic Floral Display |

I love summer flower bouquets made from garden flowers and wildflowers. It’s like a visual meditation, just looking at them. Here is a great guide for putting together a rustic floral display for your home. They are calling it a wedding flower guide, but that seems far too narrow of an approach for this. Pinterest link is here, and the original post is here.

Pin Ups and Link Love: Crochet cats |

I regularly find myself saying this, but I swear one day I’m going to learn how to crochet! And when I do, I’m crocheting these adorable kitties first. Free pattern, too! Pinterest link is here, original post is here.

Pin Ups and Link Love: Travelling with Yarn|

And this is totally me any time I spend a night anywhere but my own home. Pinterest link is here, and while the source is clearly this site (they were smart enough to include their address in the image!), I can’t find the direct link on their site.

Have a wonderful weekend, everyone! I hope the sun is shining and you are feeling content.


  1. Jane   •  

    I love the 6 ideas for sparking happiness article, especially the one about avoiding jealousy – it’s so hard in this digital age to avoid feeling like everyone is accomplishing more and with more grace and aplomb than I am! Looking around my messy house full of WIPs right now . . .

    Oh, and that lemon zucchini cupcake recipe looks so yummy! I think the zucchini in my fridge right now may not become a tomato-zucchini bake after all.

  2. AngelaH   •  

    I always want to keep a journal on vacation, but it never seems to happen. What has worked better (so far) is bringing a day-planner (I like the small Moleskin ones). I just write point-form notes about everything we did each day, on the date in question. It’s not as nice as really digging into how I feel about everything, but it does help me keep everything straight and, later when I’m looking at photos, it’s enough to job my memory. Plus, it’s less daunting to write a point-form list at the end of a busy day than it is to try and find time/space to write thoughtfully about the day.

    Also: That uniform tip is genius. I also end up packing ridiculous things that don’t match or work together, usually because I have this idea that a vacation wardrobe should be more fun than what I wear everyday. But, then I arrive and end up stressed out about how nothing matches and all I want to wear is my usual stuff. Haha.

    I’m in the midst of planning our honeymoon, and now I’m thinking I should start thinking now about the clothes I want to bring… Sigh. So many lists to make 🙂

  3. Marcy   •  

    I wanted to comment yesterday but just couldn’t get my thoughts in order! After reading all the great comments I just wanted to add from a farther perspective. FOR ME ONLY, when my son was only a few weeks old, I was trying to do everything but go to work (which I did until one week before he was born) and I was getting very frustrated. I wanted to visit friends and show him off, do all my craft stuff, all the time taking care of a household with two teenage step kids and my husband. I had to step back and tell myself that my son was my first priority and if I had to put something aside for a while I could do that, and when he was a little older go back to them and give myself “me time”. It worked for me. I was much more relaxed and did go back to all the things I wanted to do after he got into preschool. I did not have another baby for many reasons, all of which don’t matter now. That baby is now 37 years old and I don’t regret one second of time I devoted to him. It worked FOR ME and for him. Everyone has to do what is best for themselves. I am not preaching, just sharing, which brings me to my last comment. Your post was so sweet, tender and honest. It touched me so deeply that you shared your innermost thoughts and fears. Being authentic and open is, in my mind, the best way to have a fulfilling life, and I appreciate that you shared it all with us. Thank you! You will find the right path for you and your family.

  4. Kat   •  

    That raccoon poem was delightful-we have a few in my neck of the woods, and I’m constantly charmed by them. And that pin about bringing yarn on a trip is absolutely me as well-my general packing rule is 100g per day, with an extra 100g just in case of emergencies, which is still usually too much, lol.

  5. Valerie   •  

    I had been knitting for 45 years and wanted to learn something new, so I took up crochet. Crochet is much, much faster. You can crochet a washcloth in about two hours and crochet a hat in maybe an hour more. A crocheted lace shawl takes about half as long as a knitted one.This would be good for you as you can accomplish something while your children nap.
    The major problem with crochet is that there aren’t nearly as many nice crocheting patterns as there are knitting patterns. You could fix that.

  6. Wanda   •  

    So I crochet and I’ve done a fair amount of amigurumi – but I have not seen the pattern for these cats before!!! Oh my…. I think I know what I will be spending some time on this weekend, if I’m lucky. I will need to make one to look like each of our cats – sooooo adorable!!!

  7. STefanie   •  

    Those lemon zucchini cupcakes look good. I wanted to try some zucchini infused recipes this month but totally forgot because Costco didn’t have any. Maybe next month. I love that kitty pattern. I think I pinned it some time ago. I should make some for my Jellybean and Cupcake. They are dying for kittens but since the 9 year old is allergic, it’s a no go in that arena. Glad you’re feeling better after the last posting catharsis. I’m glad you got great feedback and are armed to figure things out for your ohana.

  8. Jess   •  

    I love the first article, everybody needs reminders about the fact that you’re in control of your destiny! Also, those zucchini lemon cupcakes look delicious :)!

  9. Sierra   •  

    I think those cupcakes need to be made! And about the yarn packing…yes, so yes.

  10. Ginette   •  

    I just read a book in French talking about a woman who gets too much involved in helping everybody but no one think about her… She quits everything and finally puts her foot down… What a great story and it reminds me when I decided that it was enough of doing everything and no thank you!!

    As long as you love what you do it is ok… I always prioritize my relationship with my husband and our daughter, and I made sure that I had an hour every day for myself… Reading, knitting, cross stitching…

  11. Barbara   •  

    I make a pasta salad like that at least once a week during the summer. It’s easy to use whatever vegetables and fresh herbs are in season, or in my fridge, and I can make it a full meal by adding a can of beans or some feta cheese.

  12. Tahnee   •  

    Ooh the statement about wanting to learn to crochet is so true for me too. So many cute patterns, when will I take my time to learn doing it already?

  13. Danette Bartelmay   •  

    Well, that’s definitely how I pack yarn!!! 😉
    Love those kitties… you come visit me… I’ll have you crocheting in a weekend!
    I just might make some of those muffins for you while your here too.
    And we might try that pasta salad and we’ll arrange those gorgeous flowers too….

  14. Bronchitikat   •  

    I’ll definitely be trying the pasta salad, though perhaps without the courgette/zucchini as H doesn’t like them. Mind you, I do a courgette cake he does like. Kinda like the cupcakes but in one piece and without the frosting. Time to get in some courgettes and bake one.

    Think I’ll put those cute kitties on my Will Do Sometime list too.

    And there is much to be said with being content with what you have, particularly these days when we can be bombarded with ads for so much we don’t actually need.

    BTW – aren’t the kiddos growing. Lila is a proper young lady now and James . . . sitting up. He’ll be walking any day soon. Enjoy the rest of your maternity leave, and the rest of the summer with both of them. All too soon they’ll be wanting to be off doing their own things, not hanging out with Mom!

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