merry christmas

Merry Christmas all!! Even though these are traditionally my shorter posts, I love that after six years, I am still here to wish everyone a happy holiday! It’s an honour to still be writing my blog and hearing from those who are kind enough to comment.

We were able to go on a few outings this holiday season. The first one that we took Remy and Wilder to was called Glow.

Glow is an indoor light festival located at Prairieland Park. This was its first year in Saskatoon, and I’m guessing will have many more to come. It featured light gardens, a treasure hunt, food, playground, Santa Claus, live entertainment, and over one million lights!

A little more on the expensive side, it was still worth going at least once.

Next, we were able to go to the Enchanted Forest at the Forestry Farm.

This drive-thru holiday light tour is in its 21st year and has over 80,000 visitors per year. Every year features one new display.

Visiting the Enchanted Forest is something that Geoffrey and I have done every year since dating! Remy enjoys it immensely, but Wilder is still too young to understand what is going on. This was her fourth time going, and his second (we took him last year when he was two weeks old). She has already asked to go back again, so I think that we will go once more before they take it down in January.

Finally, we visited the walking light display at Pike Lake Provincial Park on Saturday. It was our first time going and it was just so much fun! The weather was somewhat warm and the displays, although not many, were very well done. You could also go ice skating, play crokicurl, gather around the bonfire, and have hot dogs and hot chocolate afterwards. Too cute.

Our family seems to change with nearly every Christmas picture. From a beardless husband and two dogs and a cat in 2013, to hair extensions and masks in 2014, a first pregnancy in 2015, our first baby in 2016, a second pregnancy and miscarriage in 2017, and finally, another new baby in 2018. Life has certainly been exciting over these last few years! I only hope that we will continue to love, learn, and grow in the New Year. You as well!

Happy holidays, and enjoy your time with friends and family!!

<3<3<3

Emory, Geoffrey, Remy & Wilder

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i’m still here

Hey everyone. I wanted to check in since going silent last month.

I hope that you’ve been having a great year, as short as it’s been. January has been a bit rough for us- between my husband being gone, tragedies with his work, sicknesses in our household, and a general feeling of sadness that I just cannot shake. Ordinarily, I am not this candid on my blog. Rather, I tend to save my true feelings for Instagram. However, I thought screw it. It’s time to be honest, and stop being afraid of what people might think.

I had quite a few mothers reach out to me in my last post regarding my miscarriage. Thank you. Thank you for being brave enough to share your stories, coping mechanisms, and more. I truly feel united to you all, and wish you nothing but the best. This is a safe space for those who would like to connect and tell their truths. I support everyone who wishes to do so, and will tolerate no hatred, bullies, or trolls. If the latter relates to you, your comments will not be approved nor read by me!

Looking back through my Instagram feed, I’ve noticed that since having Remy, my face has changed. I used to be a carefree and naive girl. Now, I feel like I physically, mentally, and emotionally am so different. I’ve grown up, and as such, my appearance has matured. I no longer try to look happy and perfect in my photos, but rather, have a look of contentment and solemnity. I also seem to never look at the camera, but to focus on Remy instead. This is not forced, it is instinctive. It is motherhood.

A few weeks ago I set out to capture a few outfit photos. I used to regularly feature my outfit of the day, and I wanted to try bringing that back. After looking through the images, I saw someone I didn’t recognize. My eyes look sad, my hair is its natural dark, and my smile is contrived. The images were so raw that I considered not posting them. Then, relating back to my second paragraph, I knew that they needed to be published. This is me in pain. This is me carrying on during the day as if I didn’t lose my second child. This is me in my current state. This is me needing to change. I’m going to stop putting myself last in our family and take the time to put effort into how I think, feel, and look. I’m going to do selfish things that make me feel like a normal person again. I’m going to colour my hair, get my nails done, and return to the gym. I’m going to stop suppressing my emotions and instead let them out. I deserve these things. We all do. We shouldn’t deny ourselves of self-care. I have for 2 years now, and it’s going to stop. This death doesn’t signify an end. This is the start of something new.

What do you guys do for self-love? What brings you back to feeling normal?

Emory

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my winter maternity photography

Winter Maternity Shoot - 20.1Winter Maternity Shoot - 1Ladies and gentlemen, I am so happy to finally be revealing my maternity pictures to all of you! My inspiration came from these photographs, as well as this photo shoot. I love outdoor photography, and was specifically wanting to convey the beauty of the snow on the landscape. I find that most winter landscapes appear so elegant and fragile, and I wanted that sense of delicacy and to be incorporated into my maternity pictures. I hope that you can also get a sense of that.

Winter Maternity Shoot - 15.1Winter Maternity Shoot - 18Winter Maternity Shoot - 8Winter Maternity Shoot - 9Winter Maternity Shoot - 10Winter Maternity Shoot - 19Here I am pictured at 7.5 months in my pregnancy. Have a lovely week, everyone. Happy Family Day, Canada!

<3

Emory

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outdoor maternity photos

225I have been collecting pins on Pinterest for a few months now of my favourite outdoor maternity photographs. Being a fan of landscape photography, I thought that having a maternity photo shoot outside would look spectacular. There’s just one problem, and that is battling the extreme cold in the middle of winter on the Canadian prairies. 

I know that we will get at least one warm day between now and the end of February. Until then, here are the photographs that will be going onto my mood board.

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I can’t wait to reveal mine to you!

<3

Emory

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winter succulents : how to care

Processed with VSCOcam with se3 presetBelow is a guide on how to care for your plants during the winter months.

Unless you are lucky enough to live in a location that does not fall below freezing during the winter, many of the most popular and beautiful succulents will need to be brought indoors for the winter. A greenhouse is ideal, but few gardeners have this luxury. Fortunately, most succulents can easily be over wintered indoors.

Succulents encompass a huge assortment of different plants, some of which have very specific needs. However, the tips outlined below will keep most of the commonly grown succulents alive through the winter.

Succulents often have a habit of becoming stretched out and leggy when kept indoors, resulting in weak and ugly plants by spring time. This can be minimized by taking into consideration three important factors when caring for succulents indoors during the winter: light, water, and temperature.

Light is Critical

The biggest factor in keeping succulents alive over winter is light. Too little light will cause succulents to stretch in an effort to get closer to the light source. Succulents, in general, thrive in full sun. This is difficult to provide indoors, but give them as much direct sunlight as possible. A south facing window is best, but east or west windows will work.

Fluorescent lights can be used, if natural light is insufficient. It is important that the plants be kept within 1 to 2 inches of the bulbs. Fluorescent light becomes practically useless to plants at more than 3 inches from the bulbs. Incandescent bulbs are too hot and give off the wrong spectrum of light for plant growth.

Succulents Need Little Water During the Winter

Succulents are always better off too dry, than too wet. This is especially true during the winter when the plants are receiving less than ideal light and cooler than normal temperatures. Keep your succulents on the dry side during the winter. Water just enough to keep the plants from shriveling. In a cool room, you may only need to water once every 10 to 14 days.

Be especially careful to keep the plant itself dry, especially rosette plants like Echeverias. Water will set in the center of the rosette and rot will quickly turn the plant to mush. Remember, the quickest way to kill a succulent is to keep it wet!

Cool Temperatures are Good

Most succulents do not need to be kept especially warm during the winter. The important thing is to not allow them to freeze. 45°F to 55°F is perfect. Keeping the plants cool will keep them in a semi dormant state. A warm location encourages the plants to grow and with the lower light intensity indoors during the winter, results in leggy plants. 

No Fertilizer Needed

Succulents do not need any fertilizer during the fall and winter. You want to keep the plants alive, not encourage them to grow.

These steps have worked very successful for me in over wintering Echeveria, tender Sedum, Aeonium, Agave, Aloe, Crassula, Graptoveria, Kalanchoe, Faucaria, Senecio, and others.

By keeping the plants bright, dry, and cool, they remain in a semi dormant state all winter, with minimal stretching. Once frost-free weather returns, the succulents can be returned outdoors for a summer of basking in the sun.

Words by Josh Spece. Photograph by Emory Ann Kurysh.

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