About jarofpennies

I am a single mom, working from home. I write about life and all the joys and suffering that goes with truly living. Nothing good comes easy, nor should we want it to, lest we fail to appreciate its value. Peace and love to everyone everywhere. ❤️

Something small…


One of my favourite… um… what exactly do I call him? Writer? Yes… but he does more than just write. Artist?  For sure… but then again, what is his medium? Pretty much everything you can think of, except maybe dance (though I haven’t had the pleasure). In any case, one of my favourite people-out-there-who-make-me-think-about-things-that-are-important-but-not-urgent”, is Austin Kleon

Perhaps you’ve heard of him? His tiny book, Steal Like An Artist, created a ricochet of thoughts inside my little brain like so many bouncy balls. I would say it was inspiring, except that, after reading it, I did nothing. Okay, so that’s not entirely true. I created a “Bliss Station”, which I sit at every now and again and rearrange my pencil crayons (and wipe off the dust). I also began writing in one of my many empty but lovely journals. I put up a few old watercolour paintings that I had done when I was a stay-at-home mom taking a night class at the local community centre. And I went out and purchased about $100 in art supplies, that have yet to be used! I know… typical!

Lucky for me, I subscribe to Austin’s Newsletter, so I get a little amuse-bouche of inspiration whenever I take the time to read it, usually when I get fed up with seeing so many unread emails sitting in that particular email account (which I use primarily for subscriptions). Today I clicked on his story about the movie Groundhog Day, a personal favourite of mine. The movie is worth watching, for many reasons (I won’t spoil it for you). But Austin recommends the movie for reasons altogether different than merely for the sake of entertainment. Go ahead and read it for yourself.

So, Austin, today this is my “something small”. Tomorrow I will sit my ass down at my Bliss Station and draw something, or colour something or who knows what. I guarantee you it will be small, and it will likely be awful, but it will be my creation.

The next day, I may just bake a pie… but just a small one!


Our First Guest


She is a lovely, sweet young Korean woman named Michelle (not her real “Canadian” name).  We met this evening and I immediately got a good feeling about her, in large part because she likes my dog.  And in small part because she hates bugs.  She would fit right in here!

But first, the requisite back story.

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Facing Forward


“If you can see your path laid out in front of you step by step, you know it’s not your path. Your own path you make with every step you take. That’s why it’s your path.”
Joseph Campbell

For as long as I am able to recall, September has marked for me the true beginning of a new year. A fresh start. A time to begin something, perhaps even reinvent myself. Anything is possible: good, bad, and just about everything in between. It is the point from which a new path may be taken and old baggage may be left behind, or at least those parcels that no longer serve me.

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heart on plate

Sometimes hunger has to be fed with love.”

My guy said this to me once, not realizing the impact it would have on my thoughts. With me, this is a regular occurrence.

Hunger and the yearning for love; are they really all that different from each other? Or are they really just the same thing, but with different imagery attached to each?

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“Save the pieces!!”

My first mosaic table

…my mother would call out to my brother and I whenever we were making a lot of noise, which was most of the time.

Every night after supper we did the dishes together, me with my hands submersed in warm soapy water nearly up to my armpits, he working a drenched dish towel over pale green Melmac plates, while we discussed things I can no longer recall.  Thankfully those plates were indestructible, since they often crashed to the floor.  But that wasn’t the point.  If anything were to be broken we knew to save the pieces, though we had no idea what for.

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New Directions


Compass at the corner of Broadway & Commercial

I walked off the train one evening and this appeared before me in the sidewalk below.

A message from the universe?  No doubt!


How did you get here?

Path to somewhere

“Where are you from?” It’s usually the first question I ask when I meet someone new. I was once told that in some cultures it is rude to ask this; it hasn’t stopped me yet. But it’s not enough for me to merely know the “where” of a person, and so what usually follows, time permitting, is by far my favorite question to ask: “How did you get here?” In my experience, it is the best way to get to know a person.

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