Darling Hurts

Frequently when 7 friends get together to hang out, the only proof of their gathering is a bunch of chaos and a large mess for the host to clean up. My sister and I, got to witness a whole different set of results when we were invited to the Album release party for seven wonderful friends, more commonly known as, Darling Hurts.

The music that filled the air was catchy and playful. The lyrics were creative and thought provoking. I found myself getting caught up in the rhythm and beat of the music and then when I allowed myself to focus on the words being sung, I was delighted even more. The Lyrics enticed me down a path of creative inspiration. I found myself humming along to songs I had never once heard and feeling at “home” to songs I had only heard  once before.


Darling Hurts is leaving their mark on the music industry, and it is a very unique one to say the least. I have never heard a band with quite the amount of musical talent, as well as such unique vocals. The deep sound that the lead singer brings pares well with the soft sweet vocals of the two female artists.

John Santic – is the frontman and main singer and songwriter. He also plays the guitar with great talent.

Craig Bosnick – plays the drums and the banjo.

Rick Eitzen – Plays the Mandolin, ukulele, guitar and  vocals.

Alissa Chojnacki – Sings vocals

Christine Bunkowski – Sings vocals

Natalie Warkentin – Violin and vocals

Darren Elliot – Bass

Their name is what first caught my attention. My dear friend Alissa, is one of the singers of this group, and when she first mentioned to me that she was in a band called “darling hurts” I had to ask her about the name. There is a great explanation on their website (found here) but to share it in my own words, I would say that they like to derive their lyrics for their songs from the tension that is present when you say the words “darling” and “hurts” together. Finding the good in the bad. Finding the positive in the horrible. Finding the healing in the pain. This is evident in their poetic lyrics present in each of their well written songs.

We are so excited to share with you this musical talent. We truely feel blessed to have been able to hear them sing live. If you enjoy what you hear on their CD you will LOVE them in person. So much personality and passion put into each note, Darling Hurts is sure to go far. I know they have these two girls swooning for another album.

Check out this local talent and listen to them on Itunes and Bandcamp

You can also follow them on Instagram (@darlinghurts) and facebook (darling hurts) to stay updated on upcoming shows and musical releases.

Give their album “there was a spring” a listen and let us know if you are as in love with this Local Folk band as we are.


Tea Party Anyone?

Jessica Barr was such a treat to meet at the Abbotsford Bakers Market. Jessica has such a creative business that we would love to share with you.
My specialty is of course all afternoon tea treats, but I especially enjoy creating desserts. I love to turn anything from mini cakes to cookies into works of art. My favourite aspects of my business are decorating the desserts and laying the table. It’s all about presentation for me, and of course taste! My goal is to incorporate unique and bursting flavours into every afternoon tea. I also want everyone’s tea party to be everything they imagine, so I will help with anything needed to make that happen, from floral arrangements to finding the perfect venue.

Vintage Rose is also dedicated to accommodating all allergies and dietary needs. Having many allergies myself, I believe everyone should be able to enjoy a special treat despite their food restrictions! That is why we have vegan and gluten-free options and take any other requests.

Mention Feather and Mane on your tea party booking and receive 15% off !

Best seller at the Baker’s Market was the salted caramel macarons. The blackberry lavender scones were next in line. To enjoy these flavourful scones even more, add a dollop of clotted cream on top with some blackberry jam!
dsc_0597-1dsc_0579Vintage Rose Afternoon Tea comes from my love of baking and antiques. Why not combine two of my favourite things to provide people with beautiful tea parties that they can host right in their homes. My dream is to one day own and run a tea room, but not quite being able to make that happen at the moment, I wanted to pursue my dream with a first step. Working from home will also allow me to spend more time at home with our baby on the way!
I think everyone should experience a traditional afternoon tea, and I also believe that it should be served on real antique china. It’s just not the same without it!
Vintage Rose will be at the Handmade for the Holidays market hosted by Loving Local on November 19, the Richard Bulpitt Elementary Annual Craft Fair on November 26, and the Winter Chill Market hosted by Vancity Makers on December 2 and 3.
Check out the vintage rose tea!

heavy arms and full heart

He laid his head on my shoulder and squeezed me tight. I felt his legs tighten around my waist as I struggled to hold my 45 pound 5 year old while standing up. He whispered that he loved me as he took a great big sigh and let his body relax in my embrace. The music played all around us and in that moment I was flooded with memories of dreams and prayers I had had so many years ago.


We attend the church I grew up in. The church where I went to sunday school and ran around the same halls that my children now fill with laughter and their squeals of delight as they see their own little friends. The worship hall has the same feel, just different paint. I am reminded of my teen years, when I spent most evenings babysitting for families in my church as they went off to their bible studies or date nights. I would spend sunday morning cuddling other people’s children and feel so honoured that they chose to sit with me instead of their parents. I remember holding those precious children and dreaming about the day that I would one day hold my own.

That dream became a reality, and for a while my perspective had changed. Now holding a baby in church was no longer a decision I got to make. It was no longer a choice. I now I had to hold the baby. His tears and cries were mine to hush and control. His need for a nap was my problem. His full diaper was something I had to solve. The resentment started to build as each sunday passed. Why was I going to church anyways? I spent most of my sunday morning either in a separate room nursing my child or in the hallway pacing it to get him to fall asleep. I went months and almost years without hearing a sermon from start to finish. Gone were the days of taking notes and wondering how I could apply all I had learned throughout the week. Gone were the days when if I didn’t get a full night’s rest I would sleep during the sermon. (our little secret) My sundays had changed, and so had I.


Today, something in me had changed once again. As the music surrounded me and my 5 year old son clung tight, my heart started to break. Tears flooded my eyes and it took all that was in me to keep them from pouring down my face. My back was aching and my arms were tired but my heart was completely full. My boy is growing and I can not stop him. Soon I will be unable to pick him up. This hit me like a ton of bricks and I clung even tighter to my ever growing boy.

Yesterday we celebrated my son’s 5th birthday. Five Years of pouring my life into raising him and I couldn’t be more proud of who he is and what a blessing he is to our family. Five years felt like it took forever, yet it didn’t last as long as I thought it would. I noticed lately that the he is turning into a little man and not so much a toddler anymore. His preschool days are over and a new mature school age child has replaced my once adorable little “soother faced” son.

I am a little tired of hearing people tell me to “cherish these moments while they are young” but as I stand at the end of one stage and the beginning of another i realize just how true these words are. My son is reaching the stage where it is the end of a lot of things. He no longer needs me to rock him to sleep at night, he rarely needs a nap, he plays with friends nicely, he quietly does art or puzzles on his own, he goes to all lessons without parent participation and he goes to school. He is becoming independent. Not just independently playing in the next room for a few minutes, we have reached a whole new stage where I have to search for him when it is lunch, dinner and bedtime.


As I wiped those tears away this morning and hugged my son a little tighter, I realized that when one door closes another door opens. Although my sweet boy is no longer little, he is at a whole new amazing stage. He actually gets my lame jokes and thinks I am hilarious. He finds ways to be helpful around the house and even takes care of his younger sister in the morning while I try and sneak in 5 extra minutes of sleep. He is witty and kind. He is sarcastic and hilarious. He asks amazing questions and comes up with brilliant theories. He is always inventing new things or creating new recipes. He loves art, reading, and writing. He would live outside if I allowed it. He is a friend to all and my little social bee. As I mourn the loss of my little sweet baby, I also delight in the fact that I get to learn a whole new side of the amazing child God placed in my care.


All children are gifts. All stages are blessings. I realized today that I need to find the joy in letting my children grow up. For me, being a parent, should not be a burden or a job, but the world’s greatest gift. I do not want these beautiful memories to be all I have. I want my relationship with my children to grow and change as much as they do. Finding my place in their lives and knowing when to step up or step out. As they grow, so should I.

This was a lot to learn this morning, all from a single tight squeezed embrace from my growing five year old son. I am now a “five year Parent” so I should be changing too.



What stages do you miss? Which ones are you glad are over? How have you learned to let your children grow and let go?




Shayla's Sweet Treats

We have the pleasure of meeting Shayla at the Abbotsford Bakers Market and she is just one of those fun lively people you remember.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

1. what is your specialty?

My specialty is custom chocolates. I am able to match almost any theme or color. Customers can come to me with an idea and I recreate that using chocolate. I have matched party decor, business logos, or even drawn a child’s favorite monster truck!


2. best seller?

My best seller would likely be a toss up between Paw Patrol theme and Frozen theme chocolates.

3. how did you get started? what made you passionate about selling your item?

I saw the business for sale on a Facebook mom group! I am a certified event planner and knew that this type of product fit well with what I was already doing in life career wise. It also paired well with my love of art because it is basically painting with chocolate! As a mom, I also know about how difficult it is to find practical party favors for birthdays and my chocolate lollipops are great as giveaways at events of all types!

IMG_20160805_100534 (1).jpg
Who doesn’t love Paw Patrol









Thank you so much Shayla for allowing us to share your business with the rest of the world!

Check out the website and Instagram

SURPRISE: If anyone shares in the comments that they heard of Shayla’s Sweet Treats Via Feather and Mane they will get 15% off the entire order!

-Owl and Lion

Sprucing up on a budget

Oh man, sometimes I walk in the door after a long day and look around. Besides the mess of life, I sometimes feel bored or wish I had more feature pieces in my home. I honestly don’t want to spend the money to purchase form anthropologie or Urban Barn (though I have a few items I love from those places).

I found some great websites with some awesome ideas on cheap and easy ways to update your home.

  1. This one is the first site I found and loved. I am swooning over the Printable house calendar.
  2. change your chairs.
  3. Bedroom Headboards.
  4. make your own wall art!


Here are just some of my research on how to spruce up your home without saving up for it.

  • Owl

feature photo courtesy of https://www.google.ca/url?sa=i&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=images&cd=&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=0ahUKEwjW0o6mvo3QAhUKzWMKHQLtBKYQjB0IBg&url=http%3A%2F%2Fnurserydecorr.blogspot.com%2F&psig=AFQjCNFFR32kSAVX9cG78ubCN2tO98YR8A&ust=1478293386399223






Operation Candy Hand over


Last night I realized just how adorable my children really are. They came home with 2 giant bags of candy and were only trick or treating for 1 hour. The neighbors were clearly handing out candy like I was; 1 for the big kids, 3 for the clever costumes,  and 15 for those cute little toddling ducks, lady bugs, and firefighters.

As I sat and overdosed on candy last night, I thought about how I could not make this a habit. Putting the kids to bed early so I could eat all their candy probably is not a good life choice. Throwing it in the garbage is just not an option for this Dutch girl. So what can we do with all the halloween candy?

Here is a plan I made after a little google research.

  1. Sort all the candy and only keep the candy you and your kids will actually eat.
  2. put all the candy with peanuts (if not already in your pile) in a separate pile.
  3. Now with all the leftovers put them in a bag and decide what option works best for you of where to donate them.

Here are some ideas of where you can donate your candy (Make sure you call ahead of time to ensure they are accepting donations and ask which kind would benefit their program. Do not just show up and drop off. In most cases it will just get thrown out)

  1. Local Children’s Hospital
  2. Local Food banks
  3. Local Nursing Homes
  4. Local Churches or Synagogues as prizes for their youth and children’s ministry.
  5. Christmas Shoe boxes; operation shoe box or Metro kids located in Surrey BC


Good luck!