A shot of the kids, one of the final winter photos of the shop.


It’s been many months since I did weekly updates, mainly because we seem to be endlessly pedalling towards the end of the tunnel that is eternally just out of reach. Perhaps it was a good practice while I had it going, a chance to ruminate on what was going on. In any case, we’re back in an official lockdown, so I suppose the wheel of fortune continues to spin.


Life seems to be malfunctioning lately, and we’re all waiting for the reboot. A year into the pandemic and various states of lockdown and we’re still figuring things out. Seasons change and swell and warp and we’re just doing the best that we can.


At the tail end of winter, Naomi ate an icicle hanging off the back of the Subaru. She was so casual about it! Crunchy, she said. Caleb didn’t even, apparently, seem concerned about stopping her. They were both in the backyard, waiting for me, negligent parent, to get my things together and to lock the door, and Naomi literally put into her mouth and consumed a piece of ice hanging off a car, our car, in our backyard. And it’s moments like these that make me consider not only am I entirely unfit to be a parent, but what’s the point of even trying. But as the kids get older and more independent and come up with crazy ideas, I am grateful for these seats, to watch them argue and chase each other and share snacks and negotiate turn taking. Assigned to sweep they instead practice sword moves and I watch in admiration as one of them ducks behind a pillar with the sign reading watch your step!


We’re now well into spring, warm days and buds on plants and trees. Even the indoor plants seem to be sprouting, fuller, greener. We usually head into the shop on Sundays, when the team is all off, no one there to witness the general chaos.


It’s a bit demoralizing, still, even after these months, to walk into the shop after it’s been closed for so long. It’s relatively neat, but shelves have been raided of organized displays, and there’s dust building up in places that are normally well-trafficked. We re-opened for a brief period this summer and the team made a collectively monstrous effort to clean and move furniture around and get everything back on display and ready for browsing without touching. And then we closed again, and now here we are, things slowly deteriorating as we restock into the back warehouse to try and consolidate everything, tables taken over for sorting and counting tasks.


But, at the very least, in the quiet of the shop on a Sunday morning, we get a chance to notice the light, the plants calmly drinking it all in, to putter around in the drawers. The plants are indeed thriving, their leaves occasionally stirred by not wind but a child waving their broom around. Perhaps not thriving, given my uncoordinated attempts to prune and water regularly, but green with tiny leaves occasionally unfurling.


I’m sure it’s a metaphor for life, what happens when humans take a step back, and yet we miss you all.










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April 13, 2021 — Liz Chan


Lisa RR

Lisa RR said:

We really need spring flowers!
Spring is feeling like a reboot, especially as more people get vaccinated.


Sarah said:

Always enjoy these blogs Liz. This entry has got me thinking rather philosophically about life so bear with me for a bit of a ramble :P

I really resonate with these :

“endlessly pedalling towards the end of the tunnel that is eternally just out of reach.”


“Life seems to be malfunctioning lately, and we’re all waiting for the reboot.”

For me, I’ve been dealing with that for a while with living with chronic illness before this whole thing. So actually this pandemic and lockdowns etc has been somewhat of a chance for the average healthy person to develop an understanding of what my life’s been like for many years.
That feeling of life being on hold, on pause, and yet carrying on without you… and also when are you ever going to reach the end of the tunnel!? At least with this thing it’s everyone going through it, it’s been a change having others in the boat with me so to speak. Some silver linings to this whole thing!

On an unrelated note, I just found out my best friend who lives in Toronto lives only 19 minutes away from your shop according to google maps. I’m out in BC but one day I’ll be able to visit her and visit your shop too!

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