Monday, December 15, 2014

Hooked On "Ethical Addiction"

WHAT IS an antique meat hook doing in a clothing store? It is just one of the eclectic artifacts mingling with the t-shirts in a new apparel store that has just opened up in the neighborhood.

Curious about the huge stuffed teddy bear sitting on an electric motorcycle and ancient Viking helmet showcased on a shelf, I learned that the local owner is not only a collector of unusual things but also incorporated a significant green theme to the family run business.

You can learn more about the company on their facebook page HERE.

Amid a reminder that electric run vehicles are viable, I found home decor, sports accessories and racks of clothing made from bamboo organic cotton. A film about bamboo The Wise Man's Timber shows its many usages HERE.

I like the idea of getting addicted to things that are positive for the planet and consequently ourselves and hope that this business flourishes.

Local businesses need community support and face great challenges with mammoth chain stores around every corner. Ethical Addiction and its passion for the natural I suspect will be left standing years down the road. I thought of them later when photographing evergreens at nearby Kwomais Point Park that survived a recent wild windstorm. Somewhere in the midst of the towering trees is smaller growth no less worthy of our attention.


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Copyright by Penelope Puddlisms

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Glimmers Of Kindness Along The Way

A ONE DAY snowfall last week melted slowly thanks to the chilly weather and lack of rain.

The slush we normally get in southwest BC after flakes fall did not appear, giving nature a chance to form glittery gems with its icy palette.

When the sun peeked through the clouds, pinpoints of light sparkled everywhere.

Sadly, I did not capture the effervescent qualities with my camera ... but I think we are all familiar with that special glow.

"Nature gives to every time and season some beauties of its own," said Charles Dickens who perhaps found crystallized snow as fascinating as the vibrant petals of summer.

When days get bleak and there is no sparkle, we cheer up the environment by bringing traditionally indoor decorations into the outdoors. Pretty baubles give passersby a lift on gray winter days, even though they are hollow.

There is a dim side to the approaching festive season that highlights materialism and focuses on unrealistically perfect conditions. The world can look contrastingly grim to the depressed or lonely who might have a hard time reaching out and could do with some kindness. The Dalai Lama said, “There is no need for temples; no need for complicated philosophy. Our own brain, our own heart is our temple; the philosophy is kindness.”

Kind volunteers from the Hospice Society set up a booth at the local mall. I made a small donation and was given a bird with lovely peacockish patterns. Although it has no glitter, receiving this handpainted gift brought out the sparkle in me.

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Copyright by Penelope Puddlisms

Sunday, November 30, 2014

Scrapbook Of Imperfect Leaves

SOGGY SPINES and skeletal leaves are everywhere in my world. The rainfall and time are slowly shredding the sopping wet autumn foliage above and beneath my feet.

When I was a child, I put the biggest and brightest leaves I could find in a scapebook ... usually for a school project.

Nowadays, my idea of beauty has broadened and I discover wondrous things in the tattered, torn and crumpled.

We are all changing like the leaves. This was me once (center, middle row with the sweater) in a classroom photo.

Confucius said, "Everything has beauty, but not everyone sees it."

Subtle patterns and textures eluded me in my youth when I prized perfect leaves and put them, like pinned butterflies, between pages of books.

On Saturday, the autumn phase was replaced by a light fall of wintry flakes.

In the front yard, snow snuggled into the holly tree that is leafy year-round.

Although some varieties of the leaf are prickly, they are also incredibly festive, long-lasting, glossy and green with clusters of bright red berries. If I were a leaf perhaps that is the one I should be.

Too hardy and needle-sharp to be trapped in a scrapbook, the holly leaf with its cluster of berries inspired decor at the mall for the holiday season.

An authentic looking Santa was at the mall. He gave me a wry smile as he kindly dealt with the children. Some were scared and a bit young to appreciate the bearded man who symbolizes a myth with a meaning that never grows old.

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Copyright by Penelope Puddlisms