family life

don’t give up

“When things go wrong as they sometimes will, When the road you’re trudging seems all uphill When the funds are low and the debts are high, And you want to smile, but have to sigh, When care is pressing you down a bit– Rest if you must, but don’t quit. Life is strange with its … Continue reading


trying to capture the charmed life

I’d found a folded paper on the floor of the school desk ahead of me. It was a poem written in calligraphic script. “If I had to raise my child all over again, I’d build self-esteem first, and the house later. I’d finger paint more, and point the finger less. I would do less correcting … Continue reading


the not so big house concept: doing double duty

“Our homes have grown larger in part to accommodate all the activities we engage in (along with their related furnishings). Rather than building a room for each function, the Not So Big House proposes that we think about ways spaces can be shared. Allowing areas in a house to “moonlight”–making one space serve more than one … Continue reading

family life

easy birthday planning in THREE steps

I’m an earnest birthday party planning mom. Nowadays, are you allowed not to be? It’s not been my kiddos that have expected me to outdo myself each year. And it’s certainly not been my husband. He’d keep it super simple and just give a gift, a smile and let them choose supper. I’m the ying to … Continue reading


the Not So Big House: variety of ceiling heights

“High ceilings are often considered more desirable than low ones, but high ceilings are often more impressive than comfortable. What’s important is not the overall ceiling height; it’s the proportion of the ceiling height to the other dimensions of the room that makes it comfortable or not. By varying the ceiling height, spaces are enlivened … Continue reading

family life

maya angelou on teaching our children solitude

Our North American culture teaches us to love public attention, and naturally, our ego enjoys it. It teaches us that extroversion is favourable, even necessary and healthy. It teaches us that constant activity equals importance, value and purpose. So we keep busy, and tell ourselves that what we do is extra-specially important. We search for … Continue reading