The best resource for great local shopping!

There is amazing stuff close by – local artisans and independently owned retailers, cool things to do and eat, and great charities to support. It’s good for the economy, the environment and the soul.

Monday, February 28, 2011

Trash or Treasure

Trash or Treasure began as an idea when Katie started setting up house her own for the first time. "Not having a lot of money, I found that my options were hand-me-downs, Ikea, or thrift store finds. Over increasingly frequent trips to Goodwill and the Salvation Army, I became addicted to the adventure of finding new uses for other people’s cast-offs. Now this has become something I love to do, not just for myself, but for friends, family members, and the occasional paying customer, too! "
We love that concept at 100 Mile Finds - re-purposing is both easy on our resources and allows for the talent of the re-purposer to shine through.  Having recently renovated and spent some time looking for household items, you can't help but notice the quality of materials that is being used for mass produced new furniture is not so great - and who wants to be inhaling all that glue that goes into it.

 This mirror is a great example of the cool finds Trash or Treasure re-makes. It's a modern take on a vintage piece that you won't find in every other condo. 
And according to Audrey Hepburn:
“People, even more than things, have to be restored, renewed, revived, reclaimed, and redeemed; never throw out anyone.”
Welcome Trash or Treasure to 100 Mile Finds!

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Family Fitness and Fun for March Break and Beyond!

How Things Used to Be – Only a Few Short Decades Ago (Only 4 Short Decades Ago!)
When I was young, my father used to joke around with us children and say “When your mother was pregnant, she must have been startled by a kangaroo because you children never stop bouncing around!”
All the children in my neighbourhood were active.  We ran endlessly around the neighbourhood playing Hide & Seek, the older boys played Football on the street in the summer and Hockey in the winter.  The girls did Gymnastics, swinging like monkeys on the Monkey Bars and Swing Sets and doing cartwheels and handstands on the grass.  What we all had in common was that we never stopped moving and we could all see our ribs.  We would rather run than walk and were constantly being told to “slow down”.  There was only 1 chubby child in my entire school - although ironically by today’s standards, he would be considered a “standard size” child.  There were only a few kids’ movies that you could watch at the cinema and there wasn’t too much to watch on TV - not that it mattered because we were only allowed to watch 1 hour of TV a week, and we exercised that right by watching Saturday morning cartoons.   
During university I knew I wanted to be a teacher and I worked and volunteered in different children’s programs.  The children were as active as I had been as a child – nonstop running around and having fun.  There were 1 or 2 children whose parents packed their lunches with just a few too many treats and they were a few pounds heavier than the other children but still just as active. 

How Things are Now – The Huge Generation Difference 
What I find astonishing about children today, is how inactive and unhealthy they are.  I currently go into daycare centres, schools, youth groups and yoga studios, to teach yoga to children.  I have been working with children my whole life and the trends in this generation of children are disturbing.  These are some of the surprising things I have witnessed, heard and have been asked by children:

-In a daycare at 9:30 in the morning, children ages 2-4 telling me they are tired after doing 3 yoga poses – less than 5 minutes of activity.
-Children ages 2-4, who I have been seeing on a weekly basis and who have learned the names of the yoga poses from the "What I Can See, I Can Be" yoga book -  request the “Mouse Pose” (Child’s Pose) before we even begin the yoga class.  When I ask why they want to do that pose, they inform me that they are tired – and I can see that they ARE physically tired.
-Children ages 4-5, after a few minutes of moderately active yoga, asking to stop because they are starting to sweat!  This is something that they haven’t experienced before and they are not use to sweating and find it uncomfortable.
-Going into school classrooms and seeing children ages 6-9 with stomachs that look like “Muffin Tops” or “Pot Bellies”, similar in size to men who have well developed “Beer Guts”. 
-Going into elementary schools and discovering 1/4 to 1/3 of the children are either overweight or obese, have laboured breathing just sitting or standing, and are inflexible. 

How Did this Happen?
Children have been negatively impacted by the increasing love affair our society has with technology, TV, the car, and processed and fast food.  Children are given access to and are encouraged to play games on the computer and on hand held electronic gaming devices.  They have a plethora of TV shows and DVD movies to choose from, which can act as a babysitting service for parents needing time to get chores completed or supper made.  Children are driven everywhere, with some parents feeling like they are a limousine service.  The convenience of fast food restaurants and easy-to-pop-in-the-oven prepared foods from the grocery store are too tempting for tired parents to resist when they are in a hurry and need to feed hungry children.                                                                

How We Can Ensure Our Children Stay Healthy for a Lifetime
To turn this trend around, it is first going to take a dawning of awareness and slowly awakening to the fact that there is a current children’s health crisis occurring.  Once we are awake to the fact that “Children being overweight is Not OK”, (just as it is Not OK for children to be underweight and malnourished), we can then start to make some changes.  It is going to take a conscious effort in our homes and in our schools.   It is going to take conscious effort by every mother, father, grandparent, daycare provider, school teacher, and youth leader.
Children are taught what to value and children learn to value what adults’ value.  To save this upcoming generation from a life impaired and impacted by obesity, Type II Diabetes and Heart Disease, it means that adults are going to have to get active with their children!

How Adults Can Lead By Example
Yoga is an excellent activity to do as a family because it can be a “Whole Family Affair” done by all generations – children, parents, and grandparents.  Children as young as 2 and Grandparents as old as 102 can all participate.  This intergenerational activity doesn’t require any special equipment, can be easily done in the living room, and can be easily incorporated into the daily routine.
Just like brushing teeth is taught to children as a daily activity, starting or ending the day with “Family Yoga Time” can be made to be part of the daily routine.   Yoga is the perfect activity, compared to what faces most Hockey Moms and Dads -  getting up to drive their children to a 6:00am hockey practice, standing in the cold arena holding onto a cup of hot coffee trying to stay warm, and watching their child get pushed around the rink.
Leading children by example and doing yoga with them every day can help ensure your children stay active and healthy for a lifetime.

Bio:  Janet Williams is a Certified Primary/Junior Teacher, Yoga Instructor and the author of the book “What I See, I Can Be:  A Guided Yoga Flow for Children”.  She has created easy to use resources for teachers and parents so that they can do yoga with their children in schools and homes. 
Facebook Group: “Childrens Yoga” 

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Tips and Trick for surviving March Break!

Tips and Tricks for surviving March Break!

First I would suggest getting the in-laws to take the kids for the week while you head off to somewhere fantastic and completely unfriendly to kids. If that doesn't work out...

Whether we're staying at home or heading off to a sunny destination far away I always get some new books and a new game for the week. If you are staying around town, you can actually make an activity out of purchasing the items, thus killing time now, and later! I know, brilliant!

Make a day out of it!
Have you heard, Roncesvalles is open to 2 way traffic and there is 3 hour free parking!
Scooter Girls has an amazing selection of toys & games to choose from.
Another Bookshop is in Roncesvalles too. They have tons of cool books for all ages.
You could catch a movie at the Revue Cinema too! Now you just have to figure out where to have lunch! There are a ton of cool stores in Roncy. Across the street from the Revue is a beading store, depending on the age of your kids, you can pick something up and make it later.

Have some fun stuff planned!

I find I don't feel so guilty about television being watched or video games being played if I've got something planned or if we've been out all morning.
  • Wise Daughters Craft Market is offering a Stuffies workshop on Tuesday March 15th, from 10-12pm, ages 5+. They are also offering a Sock Creatures workshop for 8+ on Thursday March 17th, from 1-4:30pm. Learn to Knit workshop is offered on Friday March 18, 1:00-4:30pm 6+. There is lots of cool stuff for grown ups too. Last time I was in there they had sock monkey making kits, that could be a great little something to pull out when the kids look bored!
  • The Handwork Studio has some great PDF's that you can purchase and then make at home. They have DIY Start Baby Kits and Baby Gnome Kits, each with enough to make 10 or more. Do I hear 'fabulous playdate idea'? If you've got an eco-friendly kid that is crafty they also have a PDF for make wool dryer balls! I know, very cool!
  • Debra from Vintage Paper Parade has a great blog! She's always sharing cool ideas that she does with her kids, from party themes to Valentines Day crafts. If you're the crafty type, have a look, I'm sure you'll be inspired!

The coolest March Break camps ever!

March Break Toy Design camp - The Design Exchange
In partnership with Spin Master Toys, this hands-on design based workshop for young designers aged 7 to 10 will explore the world of toy design from concept to prototype.  Projects include Toys with Wheels, Stuffed Creatures and Things that Fly.  Participants will also meet with a visiting toy designer. Ages 7 - 10 years. My kids did a summer camp at the Design Exchange last year, I would highly recommend it.

Contact Katie Weber, Camp Director, for more information at 416.216.2138 or

Evergreen Brickworks - Green City Adventure
The March Break camp is five action-packed days in an enchanting city that most children didn’t know existed. They will take them into the ravines, follow the tracks of animals and look for their homes, learn about the emerging plants, play in creeks, make things with clay, build forts, and play games in the forest—the time-honoured traditions of childhood.  In addition, campers will learn how to grow their own food, cook on a campfire and bake in a bread oven. There are meal plans and extended care options too! Ages 6 - 10 years old. Contact

Pawsitively pets kids camp - Safari Zoo Camp
Ideal for campers that hope to pursue a career in animal care, welfare and/or conservation! It is offered to 6 - 16 year olds. There are full, half and two day options this March Break. I covered one of their camps for SNAP last year, it looked amazing!  Contact them at or go directly to their site (don't forget to mention how you found out about them)

Do you have any great ideas about cool stuff going on this March Break? Share with us, I LOVE it when people leave comments, absolutely LOVE it!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011


Voteza joined 100 Mile Finds this month and we are thrilled to introduce them to you.
Voteza is a unique Canadian online based store that specializes in one of a kind, eco-friendly products that have been created by hand (with love) for your pets and your home!
Their mission is to provide products that do not harm the environment but also meet  high standards of quality, durability and safety as well as being a unique and one of a kind design.  All of Voteza's  products are made from either organic cotton or recycled materials.  And all of your pets are unique, so contact Voteza for specially made custom products.
Their website is really cool too! Not only does Marijke sell her own stuff on the site but she will often features other artisans work, cool March Break camps for animal lovin' kids, and a whole bunch of other stuff. If you're an animal lover, check it out!

Monday, February 14, 2011

Christine Marie Ford - Fibre Art, Jewellery and Journals

There seem to be no limits to Christine Marie Ford's creativity.  From beautiful jewellery pieces and works to hang on your wall to truly original fibre vases and hand tooled journals - it is no wonder that Christine inquired if we had room for more than 40 products to be featured in her 100 Mile Finds store.
Here are a couple of sneak peaks - as described by Christine:

"Worlds Apart" Fine art Wallhanging
This piece is part of my "Transformation of the Spirit" Series. Although the piece is quite abstract, there is a celestial theme, like two planets used as a metaphor for two people who are worlds apart.

 Christine's Earth Goddess necklace features natural and earthy snakeskin jasper semi-precious stones and coconut shells.  I love this piece, somehow it is both formal and natural at the same time.

Last but not least, this gorgeous rustic leather travel journal.  If I get one do I get to go somewhere exciting?
Beautiful leather, over 200 pages and areas to record important information and documents.  A great piece to inspire you on your next journey.  And Christine has generously donated a journal to be used in a 100 Mile Finds promotion - so stay tuned for your opportunity to win one!  Thanks Christine, someone will be thrilled.

Friday, February 11, 2011

give away teaser #4: The Summer Before the Storm by Gabriele Wills

The Summer Before the Storm by Gabriele Wills This is another great addition to the best local give away ever. I loved this book. It is full of characters from several generations of a rich, powerful Toronto family who spends the summers at the family cottage on Lake Rousseau. There are lots skeletons in their closets, unrequited love abounds, love triangles and bitter disappointments threaten to keep you up all night reading. There are tons of historical references about that exciting time in history, as the first world war broke out, all from a Canadian perspective.  It's the perfect book to read up north if you get the chance. AND my personal favorite, it's the first of a series of three books. I love it when I can relax and read the whole book because I know there are two more waiting for me. Gabriele's store on our site is called Mindshadows.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

another 100 mile finds give away teaser...

Fancy Pants Kids has been very generous with us. In this gift basket you will receive two of their crowns. A bright yellow polar fleece crown perfect for princes, princesses, super heroes, you name it. The natural brown vinyl crown opens up options to transform yourself into anything from a character in Peter Pan to a Indian fighting in the wild west to a gentle Indian princess. It's an amazing concept. Rather than give your kid a costume that turns them into something specific, the pieces at Fancy Pants Kids gives an amazing boost to their already active imaginations. Giving them a chance to realize their own dreams.
Check out our page 100 mile finds give away page to find out all the other cool stuff we are giving away! Don't forget to enter, I know you want to!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

another give away teaser

Magic & Mud: Fingerless gloves. These are a perfect addition to a pair of leather gloves on one of these bitter February days and great on their own when the weather isn't quite so unforgiving! They are somehow long and elegant while being fun and funky too! Michelene is definitely one of those artists that can spread her creativity from one medium to another. I'm a novice knitter and these gloves are beautifully made, that I can attest too for sure. I am lucky enough to have a bracelet from Magic & Mud that is one of my prized possessions! Check out the 100 mile finds give away page on this blog to see some of the other great stuff we are giving away! Enter NOW!

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Give away teaser - see what's inside

We are giving away a ton of amazing stuff all made by local artisans, authors, and  food producers. This is a great gift basket that you can share with your friends. Over the next few days I'm going to be sending out a couple of teasers with some of the amazing things that are in the gift basket. You can enter at the bottom of the page, go ahead, I know you want to!

Alli's Originals Key Charm Ring: We had this on display at a show just before Christmas we could have sold a million of them! They are 8cm in diameter and retail for $35. They are full of funky charms and georgeous beads and has several fun clips too. You can wear it as a bracelet if you don't have a purse. There's no way you're losing this baby in your purse. This one of many offerings!

Monday, February 7, 2011

Talisman Fibre Arts Studio Incorporated

I was so thrilled to see Mary  of Talisman Fibre Arts Studio Incorporated decided to join us here at 100 Mile Finds!  I met Mary at 401 Richmond at a show in December and was blown away by her work.  Mary combines technology (she manipulates antique photos on the computer, and outputs them on fabric) with old world craftsmanship (she meticulously stitches over the photos with embroidery thread).
"My creative process explores the strangers found in old photographs that I collect from various sources.  I breathe new life and meaning into forgotten identities.  My method of salvaging past memories takes on an intimate role - one of imaginary trust between my subjects in letting me gently pierce their souls with my needle and thread."

The results are astonishing.  When you see a show featuring Mary's work, try to get out and see it.  My words are not doing it justice.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Insight Health

Yesterday I had a great meeting with Eva Sue-Wah-Sing, she is a certified Nutritional Practitioner and the founder of Insight Health. One of the fantastic things about Eva is her amazing wealth of knowledge. I've done a couple of photo sessions with her and whenever I leave her presence I always know a lot more than when I got there!

Did you know that turkey is the one meat that you don't necessarily need to buy organic?  It's 'cause they are such damn hearty birds! it's true, - Eva told me

I also found out we should be using pans made out of surgical stainless steel! Yikes, I think that is an expensive discovery. I can't find any locally made, yet. So far Saladmaster cookware seems like your best bet! And yes, Eva can give you a demonstration, she is really excited about the product.

She knows where you can buy a cow! A whole cow! That way you don't need to be worrying about where it comes from and what's been done to it. Don't want a whole cow, get together with some friends and split a cow. Friends that split a cow have longer more meaningful friendships you know. Okay I made that part up, but it could be true! Great advice, right? She's got a chicken and turkey connection too!

One of the many coaching services that Eva offers is a pantry clean out! She will go through your pantry with you and let you know what you need to get rid of and what to replace it with. She's not big on throwing stuff out though. She suggests you finish what you have and then replace it with something more healthy. She is really easy to talk to about compromises and how to get to where you want to go.

You have to check out her website, Insight Health. She's got a retreat coming up in June and it sounds truly inspiring! It's the weekend of June 5th and there will be cooking demos, yoga, organic vegan meals, private consultations...

Her website is an amazing resource. It's got recipes, books for sale, she writes a blog...

Eva also offers a bunch of different workshops and classes, 'Hormones in Balance', 'Whole Foods for Whole Health' stuff we really want to know about.

All the best on this snowy day!