Week 10 – Make a Dreamcatcher

Activity: Making a dreamcatcher

Where: At home!

Cost: $46 from Sloan Dream Kits off of Etsy

The Story: Dream catchers are one of the most fascinating traditions of Native Americans. The traditional dream catcher was intended to protect the sleeping individual from negative dreams, while letting positive dreams through. The positive dreams would slip through the hole in the center of the dream catcher, and glide down the feathers to the sleeping person below. The negative dreams would get caught up in the web, and expire when the first rays of the sun struck them.

I’ve always loved dreamcatchers, and can remember having one in my room hanging over my bed even as a little girl. I love the legend behind them, and the idea that my bad dreams (plenty of these in the past 6 months!) can be trapped and carried away by the morning light. I decided this week it was time to take a break from outdoor adventures, and get my craft on again, so I checked out DIY Dreamcatcher Kits on Etsy, and found this little guy to try out:

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So as complicated as it all looks, once I got started (and watched a Youtube video lol) it was actually super simple to put this beauty together! I did have to do the threading/webbing 3 times because I did it wrong the first time, and it unraveled the second, but third time’s a charm and I had the hoop ready to go!

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I’m not kidding, I still look at these pictures and can’t believe I did this lol! Such a fun venture into creativity that didn’t have me ripping my hair out (for once). So web completed, time to tie the pieces of lace and fabric provided and start making the streamers:

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The finished product still makes me smile every time I see it, and the pictures I’ll post really just can’t do it justice! If you’re crafty at all, and enjoy the idea of having a dream catcher, I totally recommend you make your own! Mine still needs some feathers glued on (didn’t have a glue gun last night, but I’ll grab one), but otherwise, here’s the finished product:

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And here she is hanging up over my bed (excuse the terrible lighting, but it was like 10pm):

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The Verdict: I would definitely do this again! To be honest, I’d probably source my own materials because I think choosing all kinds of fun, vintage fabrics and lace from second hand stores would make this even more fun. The gal who sold me this kit is Canadian, which makes her super awesomely friendly, and she actually sent me two kits instead of one so I’ll get to working on the second one soon! Head’s up to everyone, I just booked the most awesomely amazing adventure for the week of August 17-23 so stay tuned for that! In the meantime, I have something active up my sleeve for next week! XO

Week 9 – CAMPING!!!!

Activity: Go camping with the ladies

Where: Knights Beach Resort in Dunnsville, ON

Cost: $60 per night over the Civic Holiday Long Weekend

The Story:  Okay, so I’ll start by saying that I don’t really feel like car camping is “real” camping, but that opinion may be a direct reflection of how my ex felt about it. I have been on numerous car camping adventures in the past, and many portaging ones as well, but the one thing I realized while deciding on this week’s activity is that I’ve never camped without a guy being there! After coming to this realization, and chatting with my two partners-in-crime for the weekend who also had never done an all girls camping trip, we decided we could totally do this!!

So one of the scariest adventures on my list is a solo camping trip in the interior of Algonquin Park, but I’ve slotted that as one of my last adventure’s because I really think I’ll need to work up to it. In the meantime, I decided to take baby steps this weekend and hit up a camping resort, which was basically the equivalent of camping in a parking lot with every amenity you could imagine at your finger tips lol. There were still some awesome adventures though, so let’s start from day 1.

My friend and I rolled into the campgrounds around 1pm on a holiday Saturday and were met by hundreds of people camping on every flat surface this campground had to offer. In truth, we’re pretty sure they oversold their sites because we LITERALLY got a “campsite” on a grassy patch that is one of the seasonal trailer owners parking spots lol. They had to move their car so we could pitch our tent. My initial annoyance wore off though, and we decided that this kind of randomness would make things even more fun. We quickly got to work pitching our tent, and within about 5 minutes of having it set up, this happened:

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Not even kidding we sat in the car for over an hour waiting out the storm, but then the skies completely cleared up so we got into our bathing suits, and hit up the beach which was really the #1 reason we had chosen this campground – it’s right on Lake Erie and the swimming and sunning is spectacular. This is what the afternoon looked like:

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So things were definitely looking up at this point, and after enjoying the sun for a few hours we decided to head back to our site to get the fire going. Now because we were truly camping in a parking space, we needed to MacGyver up a fire pit, and apparently safety was a HUGE concern for me, because we ended up taking great precaution to ensure we didn’t start some enormous camp-wide fire. This included collecting a bag of sand, large rocks and a bag of gravel from the road to build our perfect fire pit. Now my friend made some serious magic happen putting everything together, and our fire pit ended up being legendary…please note:

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It lit right away, and we were off! Cooking up some chicken weiners (that kept rolling right off our skewers into the fire) for all of about 5 minutes before we were back to square one…freaking rain…

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Yup, that’s me holding an umbrella over the fire and likely subjecting myself to the first stages of carbon monoxide poisoning…nevertheless, I think we each got one hot dog down and obviously this was the perfect time to bust out our ample supply of fabulous camping drinks. Within a few hours we were greeted by our other friend who rolled in around 10pm, and we decided to hit up the campground’s Saturday night entertainment – an 80s dance party with a band called The Crimps.

I’ll skip through all the fun details, but let’s just say it was a great night and we made a bunch of new friends, danced our butts off and had a little karaoke sing-fest after the band closed up shop for the night. It was a seriously great time, and all three of us crashed hard from day 1 of camping!

Fast forward to Day 2 aka Sunday, which ended up being pretty dreamy…gorgeous blue skies, 6 hours at the beach, picnic lunch, drinkies, and hang time with our new friends. We spent hours in the water (let me just say Lake Erie has some crazy wave action happening!), and just really relaxed and enjoyed ourselves. We were fed, we had shelter that didn’t collapse on us…we were really making things happen!

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It was honestly a lot more of the same for the rest of the trip…we definitely had some terrible weather on Sunday night that required us to take refuge on the porch of one of our new friends’ trailers, but we didn’t let some crazy old rain and gale force winds phase us! No bigs, right?!

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So yeah, great time, great friends, great NEW friends, so much laughing, many hashtags, we ate, we slept, we drank, we survived (in spite of no less than 5 people commenting on how LITTLE gear we had with us lol), and we are totally capable of rocking out a girls-only camping weekend!

The Verdict: This is something that will happen on the regular for years to come, I have no doubt. It’s cheap, it’s easy, it’s incredibly fun, and I think we impressed a lot of people with our mad female camping skills. Nothing says survival like camping in a resort with a restaurant, bar, bingo hall, general store, and full washrooms, right?! You might actually think it does if I’d taken the time to tell you about my Titanic-esque freezing cold shower…I’ll save that for another day…XO

It’s a big day up in here…

Okay, so I realize that I still owe you my weekly adventure from last week (it’s coming!) and I’ll have another one for this week in a few days, but I need to take a minute to just write about today. So I haven’t seen my ex-husband in like, 6 weeks. We had a huge blow out on June 30th, and haven’t seen each other since, which I have to tell you, has been DELIGHTFUL. Not even kidding, a few months ago if you’d told me I wouldn’t be seeing him or speaking to him for that long, I probably would have had some kind of crying meltdown, but I cannot express enough how amazing this time away has been for me!

As you read in my Vegas adventure blog, that trip was super transformative for me. I came back feeling truly happy, and ready to conquer the world…and my divorce. I have not been happier than I am now in AGES, and it’s been such a great place to be. Being able to authentically look forward and feel GREAT about where I am, where I’m going, and that I’m going it alone is something that I could never have imagined happening so quickly, but I think taking an honest look at what my relationship looked like, and how it was holding me back has helped tremendously. I feel so incredibly FREE, and while I’m sure I’ll have my moments as things get settled with you-know-who, I really feel like I’m through the worst of it.

So flash forward to today, and I have to see him. For like a whole day see him, while he clears out all his stuff from my parents basement and garage. I’ve spent the past week utterly dreading the thought of having to be in the same 5km radius as him, but I woke up this morning feeling like this is just one more obstacle I need to overcome on my journey to independence and freedom, and I’m totally going to be okay! And you know what? I totally was okay. We were civil, we communicated when we needed to, and it wasn’t nearly as bad as I had imagined it to be. I will say that going through boxes and finding old love letters, anniversary cards and gifts was an unexpected challenge, but it’s all part of the process of closing one chapter of my life and opening another, which brings the promise of so much greatness. Okay, signing off for now…time to crash after this long ass day! Til tomorrow when I hit you up with last week’s Week 9 adventure! XO