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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, December 31, 2012

Heading into 2013

Susan and I wish you all the best in 2013! I'm sure some of you have new years resolutions, as do I. I always resolve to get into better shape, eat healthier and of course shop as local as possible!
This year is a bit different for me, I turn 50 in August and I feel like I have a, not so long list, of things I should have done, that if I don't get done now, who knows if it'll ever happen! I'm not thinking about getting to Australia or anything like that, it's little things. I always thought I would be a knitter, I'm not! I finally learned how to knit a few years ago, but I certainly haven't mastered the craft. I always thought I would be a card player too. I know euchre, hearts, and cheat, does that make me a card player? I never learned to surf either! Hmmm... Who knows what 2013 holds for each us. I do know that the now time to take your life by the tail and swing it!
Happy 2013, be safe!

Monday, December 24, 2012


I am lucky enough to be charged with testing worldPRODUCTS and letting you know what I think. Borden Communications gave me a worldPRODUCTS trio which includes a bottle of worldCLEAN, worldPROTECT and worldBELEIVE. I also got to choose my own worldBLEND, I choose worldBLEND 5 worldYUM, their newest blend AND I received a jar of worldREPAIR.

Myself, my 12 year old and 14 year old daughters all suffer from sensitive skin. It shows up for each of us in different ways though. For me my scalp is really sensitive, I spend a fortune buying different shampoos and hair care products always looking for something that works but doesn't cause me to break out in hives. This year my 12 year old started to really break out on her forhead, we finally realized that she was allergic to the shampoo she was using. My 14 year old had perfect skin right up until the time she started using cleansers! Eventually we realized that she also had sensitivities to skin care products. I also get really dry skin on my legs and back and it drives me crazy.
I've found some international brands that work pretty well, but you know me, I'm always on the look out for a local brand that can take care of my needs. If you've got issues like ours you will know how unbelievably expensive it can be. I can't tell you how many barely used shampoos, conditioners, styling products and skin care products we have at our house.You can imagine how excited I was when Megan from Borden Communications asked me if I wanted to try out the worldPRODUCTS!


It really has been worldPRODUCTS to the rescue. First I must say I LOVE the worldYUM scent. I'm one of those people that has to have a shower in the morning to wake up and the worldYUM scent really gets me going! One of the coolest things about the worldPRODUCTS is there isn't separate hair and body products, it's all in one. I've been using the products for several days now and my hair feels great, it styles well. My skin is definitely more hydrated and I can tell you my husband must be thrilled that I'm not begging him to scratch my back in that hard to reach spot! I'm also one of those people that loves to have a bath in the evening. I use the worldPROTECT in the bath and my skin is so much less itchy. I can leave it in my hair as a conditioner and it activates my curls AND I can use it as a make-up remover. I can feel my bathroom getting bigger as I type!
The worldBELIEVE is amazing for chapped lips, hang nails and I've been using it on the 12 year old's forehead and even when I poke her in the eye trying to apply it, it's really helping soothe the agitated skin. I just noticed on the website that it also can be used for your hair to remove static and frizz and add shine! It's in a tiny little jar that could fit into the smallest of purses.Last but not least I want to mention how green these products are. I save this for the end because as far as I'm concerned even though I am always on the lookout for eco-friendly products I don't really care how green a product is unless it is doing the job I bought it for. Having a product have multi-functions not only makes travelling easier it cuts down on packaging and is therefor better for the environment. All the worldPRODUCTS packaging is 100% recyclable. Buying something locally made is better for the environment too. After putting together a blog last week about what ingredients to avoid in everything from cosmetics to seafood, I really believe that to ensure our long term health we have to use products like worldPRODUCTS and I think it's especially important to introduce these products to young woman who are just starting to create a beauty regime for themselves.worldPRODUCTS gets two thumbs up from me! 

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Xmas Pondering - How to Lower the Bar

Great article in the Globe and Mail by Adriana Barton today about Christmas Dream mythology,

"There’s something about Christmas that makes normally sensible parents go all Martha Stewart, determined to conjure up a magical holiday for their kids....However, setting the bar too high for the “most wonderful time of the year” may be a perfect storm of magical thinking, fear of disappointing loved ones, overindulgence in booze and tight quarters with family members who never did learn to get along.  “Our expectations are unrealistic around family, around the holidays, around what’s going to happen or should happen,” she says. “When we start going down that path, we’re in for trouble" says Renee Trudeau, a life coach based in Austin, Tex."

The article goes on to talk about how lowering our expectations and prioritizing traditions we actually enjoy might bring us a little peace.  We have lots of avid crafters who enjoy the site - let that be your thing.  But let go of also being the perfect baker, daughter, and Santa's sexy little elf if that is not your schtick.  Here's the top 5 things I can think of that keep me sane:

1. I accept that I will be tired on Christmas Day because I still get excited on Christmas Eve. Oh well, hopefully I have more energy on boxing day
2. No matter who is hosting, help in the kitchen.  It's actually kind of fun to cook with someone else, and there are leftovers the next day, so you will get to sit down.
3. When one of your relatives is getting under your skin, think of the alternative.  It is only 24 hours.
4. Being a teenager at Christmas is hard. They are still mourning the magic of Christmas morning just a few years ago.  And even when your Mom thinks she is buying you cool clothes, she probably isn't. It's hard to fake it.
5. Go for a short walk to clear your head.  It is peaceful outside.

The frenzy is just one more week - you'll get there.

Monday, December 17, 2012

Organic? Sustainable fish? Cosmetic ingredients?

In the spirit of making a list and checking it twice, we've put together a bunch of must-have lists to take shopping with you.
Making an educated decision about what you should be buying for your family has never been more important or confusing than it is now. We've tried to go to reliable sources and gather information that will help you feel more confident about the purchases you are making for your family. Vegetables and fruit, meat, poultry, dairy and seafood. Is there a way to look great without applying harmful ingredients? Can you get your house clean without putting your family's health at risk? How can you shop "Canadian"? We've put together a bunch of lists that you can add to your "list" apps and if, heaven forbid, you're not app savvy, we got a wallet card you can print out! 
Organic: There's the dirty dozen of vegetables there are too many sources to name.If you can only afford or want to buy some organic veggies and fruits these are the ones to buy.

The dirty dozen
  • Peaches
  • Apples
  • Sweet Bell Peppers
  • Celery
  • Nectarines
  • Strawberries
  • Cherries
  • Pears
  • Imported Grapes
  • Spinach
  • Lettuce
  • Potatoes
Fooducate a really cool website out of the U.S. shared the Clean 15! Keep in mind that Fooducate is an American website and the food standards there are quite different from ours in Canada. Also bear in mind that many food advocates would not include corn in a list of clean vegetables because of the GMO aka chemical links. So for our purposes it's the clean 14! These are veggies that if you are picking a choosing what to buy organic, these ones don't need to be organic, conventionally farmed is fine, just remember to buy local if at all possible.

The clean fourteen
  • Onions
  • Pineapples
  • Avocado
  • Cabbage
  • Sweet Peas
  • Asparagus
  • Mangoes
  • Eggplant
  • Kiwi
  • Cantelope (USA)
  • Sweet Potatoes
  • Grapefruit
  • Watermelon
  • Mushrooms
What about seafood? I've chosen "David Suzuki's Top 10 Sustainable Seafood Picks" as my guide. There's a great pdf that you can download for your fridge. The David Suzuki Foundation website is an amazing resource. I encourage you to check it out. I've also just downloaded the SeaChoice app for my iPhone. I haven't used it yet, but it looks promising.

10 sustainable seafoods
  • Farmed Oysters: Oysters farmed worldwide in suspended culture systems
  • Sablefish: Canadian Pacific or Alaska using trap & bottom longline
  • Swordfish Harpoon: Canadian and US by harppon or with a handline (not a longline)
  • Pacific Cod: Alaska by bottom longline, jig or trap
  • Sardines: Canada & the US Pacific by purse seine
  • Farmed Clams: farmed worldwide or wild, handraked ones from the US
  • Albacore Tuna: caught in Canada and the US Pacific by troll/pole as opposed to longline
  • Dungeness Crab: trap-caught in Canada, California, Oregon & Washington
  • Closed Containment Farmed Salmon: farmed salmon raised in the US using closed containment systems
  • Spot Prawns: Canadian Pacific by trap
For what kind of meat you should be eating I took most of my information from the Canadian Food Inspection Agency's website. To start it's really important to make sure that you are buying Canadian meat. If you can only afford to buy one meat product that is organic, buy organic beef! Chicken, pork and turkey are safe to eat when they are traditionally farmed. Same with dairy. Here's a link to a blog I wrote a little while ago giving you a bit more detail on that.

If you want to make sure you are shopping "Canadian" you should be looking for "Product of Canada" first "Made in Canada"second and "Designed in Canada" third. These are guidelines for food labels and advertising put forth by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency to help Canadians have a clear understanding of where the products they are buying are manufactured and produced. The Competition Bureau of Canada is responsible for enforcing the guidelines set out for the labeling and advertising of "non food" products.

Buy "Product of Canada" first, then "Made in Canada" second

I know that I'm also concerned about what cosmetic ingredients I need to stay away from. As my daughters get older and are being introduced to "beauty" products I'm want to make sure that we are making educated choices that won't compromise their health in the long run. I found this amazing site, Gill Deacon wrote a book called There's Lead in Your Lipstick and she also has a wallet card that you can download from her website so that you have the list of ingredients that you want to avoid and a list of companies that she has deemed as "safe". It's amazing to me that it is common knowledge that there are all these ingredients that we shouldn't be using and yet it's really hard to buy products that don't contain them.

Here's Gill's current list of toxins to avoid.

Benzoic acid
coal tar
cocamide DeA
Diazolidinyl urea
FD & c
FD & c (colour + number)
mercuric oxide
mineral oil
Peg (1,4) lauryl ether
Placental extract
Polyethylene glycol (Peg)
Polypropylene glycol (PPg)
Propyl ester
Silcone-derived emollients
Sodium laurel sulfate (SlS)
Sodium laureth sulfate

Cleaning products is another category you need to make sure is green. Here's the list of dangerous ingredients to look out for. This is one of many lists available, it is from I wanted to introduce you to a bunch of different sites, but I gotta say the David Suzuki site has the best lists I could find. Some other great sites to check out are and

Household cleaning ingredients to avoid
*Poison, corrosive and Irritant are words to look for.
*2-Butozyethanol also known as 2-BE, butyl cellosolve
*Coal tar dyes
*MEA (monoethanalomine), DEA (diethanolamine), TEA (triethanolamine)
*Nonylphenol ethaxylates (NPEs)
*Quaternary Ammonium Compounds (Quats)
*Silica powder
*Sodium dichloroisocyanurate dihydrate
*Sodium hydroxide (lye or caustic soda
*Trisodium nitrilotriacetate

Send us an email at and we'll send you the word doc to create your very own wallet card to slip in your wallet. If you print it, then flip it and print it again you've got 2 double sided cards, one for you and one for your best friend!  If you've got an iPhone/Smart phone with a "note" app you can copy and paste these lists for easy reference.
If you know of any other great sites leave it in our comments box and we'll update the blog.
Happy Shopping!

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

aoid jewellery

Still thinking about that perfect gift for that special someone?  Prefer to not get into a fistfight in the mall parking lost?  New vendor aoid jewellery may have just what you are looking for.  Pieces made with sterling silver (.925), 10-24K gold, authentic and natural gems, Swarovski crystals, pearls, and a variety of other high quality materials.
For example, this Lapis Lazuli and Chrysocolla gemstone, with sterling silver edging comes on a  22”(56cm) chain - just $32.  Historically, Lapis Lazuli was a favorite stone for amulets and ornaments such as scarabs in Egypt, and powdered lapis was used as eyeshadow by Cleopatra.

Or for your sweet, this pendant called 'Wrapped Around My Heart' is made with sterling silver wire, on an 18" (46 cm) Sterling Silver chain for $24.

Each piece locally and lovingly made.  Welcome to 100 Mile Finds aoid jewellery!

Monday, December 10, 2012

More mall-less shopping

Had a great time yesterday popping into the Wandering Winter show at the Gladstone, Artscape's Xmas market at Wychwood Barn and the 401 Richmond St. show.  Lots of great new artists, and several 100 Mile Finds vendors showcasing their wares.  I am always so impressed at both the products and the thoughtful displays that vendors dream up.  Can't wait to invite more of them onto the site and introduce you to them.
So, if the stress of the mall is not your thing, try taking the street car across Queen West.  There are loads of independent retailers selling locally made artisanal items. The Drake General Store is a great spot to find that hard-to-buy-for present (there's a warehouse sale too at 442 Dufferin St., Unit 1 until Dec. 16).  Made you Look showcases very talented local jewellers, and Fresh Collective has a great pool of locally designed fashion.
There are quite a few pop up shops too, if you can take an afternoon to stroll, I am convinced that your shopping will soon be done.  And imagine - you get fresh air and exercise too. 

Monday, December 3, 2012

Bark'n Up the Green Tree

OK, as a relatively new dog owner, I find myself eating crow as we add Buddy to our Xmas list.   I am sure Buddy would prefer to be the one eating that crow, but instead I find myself looking for something a little less smelly to give to her as a Xmas treat.
New 100 Mile Finds vendor Bark'n Up the Green Tree has lots of ideas for your furry four pawed friend. 
Bark'n Up The Green Tree was founded to provide a healthy/green alternative for pets and pet owners.  Their full product lines include:
The Barkery, consisting of dog treats that are all natural, free of preservatives, dyes, fillers, and needlessly added sugar and salt.  "At first glance our treats look like human food (so careful when there are toddlers and teenage boys around).  We offer delightful cookies, muffins, pup cakes, and wheat free treats"
Earth Mother and Sweet Pea collections offer apparel, toys & beds. 
Earth Mother offers eco-friendly beds, leashes, collars, sweaters & toys hand-crafted from up-cycled & re-purposed materials.
 Sweet Pea products are fun, colourful and full of energy. Hand-crafted with new fabrics & findings into bandanas & fancy collars.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Bunny Safari Pottery

Welcome to 100 Mile Finds Bunny Safari Pottery.  According to the innovative artist behind the scenes,
"From functional ceramics to photography, I present to you my creative musings. All of my work is designed and created by myself in my studio or during my travel outings throughout the globe.

I am a full time potter when I am not chasing after my very active kidlet.  I live in a great community in Southern Ontario called Guelph, which is full of very creative and inspiring artists, musicians and community activists. I also have an addiction to photography which I am currently adapting into my ceramics. I photograph my work in clay, the people that I love and things in life that cause me to take a second look".
Check out the Poe Collection inspired by that wiley raven.  And this yarn bowl would make the perfect gift for the knitter in your life.

 Bunny Safari Pottery is available at Vessels/Whitestone Gallery located at 80 Norfolk Street in lovely downtown Guelph.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012


Bags have been prominently featured in the blog recently.  And why not - they always fit, they don't sass back, and they carry our most basic of needs (lipstick that is).  CocoBags is a new 100 Mile Finds vendor that makes such a bag with panache.

For example, this messenger bag is for bike couriers with a certain je-ne-sais-quoi.  Beautiful cotton twill printed fabric exterior with matching cotton twill lining. Padded with felt interfacing for comfort, and protection of contents. Double and triple stitched for durability.

I particularly love this little red number - LOOK at the colour.  Trendy color block design in cotton twill, and woven cotton check with contrasting plum twill cotton lining.  Perfect to spice up your favourite black and grey outfit. 

CocoBags also loves custom orders, contact them directly.  And by the way there are also some pretty sweet beaded jewels made by CocoBags that you could tuck into one of the pockets of these bags.

Monday, November 19, 2012

arianne lim

Who wants a coach bag when you could have something so original that there wouldn't be a knock off??  Newest 100 Mile Finds vendor arianne lim could make you a bag to show off.

In her words, "my pieces are made to add colour, fun, & drama to your everyday outfit.  pair them with your white tank, jeans, & heels for a chic-lunch-date-with-friends look or wear them with your LBDs & LWDs for a night out on the town, romantic dinner dates, cocktail parties, & weddings". 

These bags are beautifully crafted and the inside is as delightful to the eyes as the outside, each lined with complimentary fabric.  And arianne lim does custom orders, perfect for your wedding party.  Now that is part of the bridesmaid outfit you could definitely wear again!
We are happy to welcome arianne to 100 Mile Finds.  To locate her bags in the non-virtual world, find them in Toronto at Arts Market
1114 Queen St. East, Toronto (East of Pape Ave.)
Wed-Fri: 12pm - 6pm;  Sat - Sun: 11am - 6pm

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Shop local at the Wandering Winter Craft Shows

November 24 & 25th
The Magic Pony, 680 Queen St. W.
December 1st
The Cameron House, 408 Queen St. W.
December 9th
The Gladstone Hotel, 1214 Queen St. W.

This is the 3rd year of the Wandering Winter Crafts Shows in Toronto. Emma Smith of has come up with a great idea by creating a sort of  Pop-Up Shop/Craft Show event. It gives customers several chances over the busy holiday season to shop local from some truly amazing vendors. Over 4 dates in three locations, with more than 30 artisans, it's going to be amazing!
Thunderpeep Designs
You can find some gorgeous jewelry, beautifully made home accessories, hand painted t's, adorable kids clothes, yummy treats, and tons more. Thunder Peep Designs will be at the Magic Pony. I know there is someone on your list that will appreciate her witty, whimsical cards.
Jack & Willa Designs will be at the Cameron House & the Gladstone Hotel. They carry an adorable line of children's clothes. The sweetest kimono's, dresses and onesies around!

Join us in supporting some truly amazing artisans that just happen to be local! Happy shopping!

Monday, November 12, 2012

Arlumizu Designs

 New 100 Mile Finds vendor Arlumizu Designs is on a mission - "to inspire people’s senses by surrounding their world with comfort, bringing warmth and beauty into their homes, and therefore fulfilling their dreams with my creations and designs.  I do this by re-purposing luxurious designers’ fabrics, that are only available to the Trade, and have been discontinued by the European manufacturers, saving them from ending up in a landfill site."

 The Arfina Tote bag's outer fabric is 100% cotton and soil/stain resistant. The lining is a textured silk.  It has an outside zippered pocket & two other pockets inside. The bottom is textured faux leather & has silver feet attached which holds it above the surface preventing damage from dirt or moisture.

The Manu clutch bag is made from upholstery weight fabric. The lining is a polyester fabric. It has a front decorative button in a beige colour. This striking clutch bag can be worn from day to evening.

Items featured can be purchased directly from the site. Welcome to 100 Mile Finds Arlumizu Designs.


Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Healthy Elements

Healthy Elements on 100 Mile Finds creates infused oils and vinegars that we can vouch for, having tried it myself.  Combining organic herbs, fruits and imported spices to enhance the flavor of foods, Lucy creates unique combinations of infused products to enhance your cooking.  

And they are very pretty making excellent gifts.  Pictured here are herbed salts and herb infused oil - yum!
Healthy Elements has created "unique combinations of flavorful foods for the soul, and scents for the mind.  Balancing these products to enhance one's palette, with just a pinch splash, drop or drizzle, your taste buds will love it!"   

Find Healthy Elements at the Etobicoke School for the Arts Craft Fair on November 17.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Toronto Waldorf School's annual Arts & Crafts Fair

Toronto Waldorf School's annual Arts & Crafts Fair
Friday November 16, 2012 6-9pm
Saturday November 17, 2012 10am - 5pm
Admission is $5 for adults, children under 16 are free - includes re-admission and parking

Always a fun family event this year the Toronto Waldorf School's 21st annual Arts & Craft Fair will not only be held on Saturday November 17th from 10am to 5pm as usual but they have added Friday night, from 6 to 9pm. Friday evening you can enjoy the unique hand crafted work of over 50 juried aritsans while enjoying live music, dessert and coffee. Sounds very civilized to me!
Proudly showcasing the hand crafted work of over 50 juried artisans, you will have the opportunity to shop for quality, unique toys, pottery, jewellery, wood products, home decor, clothing, photography and more.
Saturday there will be Make & Take Craft workshops going on throughout the day, everything from candle dipping and dream catchers to basket and wreath making.

The Organic Village Market will run from 8:30am -1:30pm on Saturday and the event is "enviro-friendly" so bring reusable shopping bags. There will be limited childcare available on Saturday too!

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Chef Gabriele Ferron at Butcher By Nature

On Friday November 9th between 4pm and 7pm,
Butcher By Nature will be hosting a tasting of various risotto dishes prepared by Master Chef Gabriele Ferron of  Verona, Italy.

For me, there are certain dishes that you order in restaurants, they are just too much work to make at home, risotto is definitely a restaurant dish. I LOVE risotto but as far as I'm concerned, it takes way too much effort on my part, especially when the end result isn't guaranteed!  "Don't stir my rice. It's too delicate." music to my ears.

Master Chef Gabriele Ferron known as the "World Ambassador for Rice",  is renowned for his obsession with risotto. He wants to save us from the labour of risotto! "15-minute risotto, so you can spend more  time living!"
Also known as the "King of Rice" Ferron is a rice-master chef, he mills his own rice at the Antica Pila Vecia farm, just outside Verona, Italy. His empire includes a production company, two restaurants, and an academy. His product lines include risotto, rice grissini, rice biscuits, pasta made from rice flour, rice polenta and more. There are even gluten-free and celiac options available.

Ferron rice is a high quality cereal which creates supreme rice products and tasty, nutritional dishes. Among the wide variety of products manufactured by Ferron there are two different kinds of rice, Carnaroli rice and Vialone Nano rice. Carnaroli rice originated from cross-breeding Vialone and Lencino rices and is now regarded as the best rice in Italy. The superfine, larger grain rice stays firm and distinct making it perfect for robust and delicate rice dishes including salads, risottos and timbales. Vialone nano rice is minimally processed so that the natural starches are preserved, producing a rich, flavourful & creamy risotto. Retaining more vitamins and minerals, it is a healthier alternative to other commercial products.

Join the folks at Butcher By Nature on Friday November 9th between 4pm and 7pm when Master Chef Gabriele Ferron prepares his organic Vialone Nano with different organic meats offered for sale at BBN. Sounds like we've got dinner covered!

Monday, October 29, 2012

Gifts of my Hands

And it is a talented pair of hands in Nici Shipway.  Nici gave up her job as a a behavioural therapist who worked with autistic children (thank you Nici for your previous efforts in this field, btw, I am sure you have made a difference to many children and their parents) to focus on a different kind of creative endeavor.  Gifts of my Hands is the company under which Nici sells her unique jewellery and accessories.

Nici loves weddings - her one-of-a-kind wedding bouquets can be kept forever.  And she will help you accessorize with her fascinators and custom jewellery.  What a great way to add a twist and make that special day your own.  Nici loves to work with brides to be on custom orders.

If there is not a wedding in your near future, Gifts of my Hands jewellery pieces include this Golden Snitch necklace.  I think this would make an amazing gift, and at $20 it's a steal.

Welcome to 100 Mile finds Nici.  We can't wait to see what those amazing hands create.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Our Friend Karyn's Story

When Toronto mom Karyn Stowe was diagnosed with breast cancer four years ago, she looked everywhere for a realistic and child-friendly resource to help her three young children understand the various treatments she had to  go through.  All the books Stowe found were so overwhelming and scary she decided the only solution was to write her own.  Today, Stowe’s The Kids’ Guide to Mommy’s Breast Cancer – a positive, easy-to-understand resource for young families living with breast cancer – is available across Canada.

Based on the original stories Stowe wrote during her treatment, The Kids’ Guide to Mommy’s Breast Cancer features carefully selected images and text that are hopeful but realistic.  The Tips section contains helpful suggestions on how parents can use the books as well as ideas on how to talk to your child about breast cancer.  In the Treatment section, each treatment is explained in its own separate chapter so it can be read in any order and if, and when, mom faces it.  The Finished Treatment section looks at the many lifestyle changes that often take place after a cancer diagnosis in a kid-friendly way.
Stowe’s book went from dream to reality because of the support of Rethink Breast Cancer, a Canadian charity that runs a number of programs specifically for younger women affected by breast cancer.   In addition to providing Stowe with invaluable support during treatment, Rethink offered a Booby Innovation Grant to breast cancer survivors who have an idea that will  help other women who are diagnosed with breast cancer.  Stowe was selected as a recipient of the grant and she immediately started working on the book.

“In addition to helping children understand the many changes that are happening in their families while mom is in treatment, this book also helps women and their partners see what lies ahead of them,” says Stowe.  “It also helps friends and neighbours explain to their own young children why their friend’s mom has no hair or why their family is cooking a meal to help them.”
The Kids’ Guide to Mommy’s Breast Cancer is available at on-line booksellers (including Authorhouse, Chapters, Barnes and Noble, and Amazon).  Limited copies are also available through Rethink Breast Cancer and cancer care clinics across Canada. A portion of all proceeds will be donated to Rethink Breast Cancer.  For more information, and to see a preview of the book, please visit

Monday, October 22, 2012

100 Mile Halloween Ideas

Halloween is really just an excuse to feature these talented vendors with FUN kids' products. Play me Mama Crafts makes delightful childrens' playclothes that could be ramped up for Halloween. Who would not want to be a fairy or superhero for the day?

Or, if pre-historic strikes your fancy (and I am thinking the fire-breathing variety), Fancy Pants Kids has just what you need. Short or long tailed dragon outfits that will be fun to play with the other 364 days this year.

And don't forget, Goodwill,  Double Take and The Salvation Army stores have great new and used costume  ideas and supplies.  It makes you feel much better to contribute to their bottom lines than the next chain store.
Make Dress Up more than just Oct 31 - it's fun all year round.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Made By Hand Show is OCTOBER 27th, 2012

Just wanted to correct my typo, the Made By Hand Show is October 27, 2012, rather than the 17th as originally posted. Sorry about that!

Made By Hand Show, October 27, 2012 at the International Centre

Designed by Craig Ewing
Judy Cogo Designs
The "Made By Hand Show" officially kicks off the Holiday buying season this year. With almost 200 vendors, each selling hand made items, there is no better place to start your holiday shopping. Once again the show is being held at the International Centre in Mississauga in Hall 6. With plenty of free parking, free swag bags for the first 100 customers this show is always a huge hit. There are door prizes, and raffles, balloon animals and face painting for the kids and shhhhh, a surprise Princess visit!

The main reason to attend this show though is the vendors.
The list of vendors is outstanding! Suzie Saxx will be there. Handcrafted and painted bags made right here in Ontario. Made of 100% natural, 10-12 oz. cotton. These bags are perfect for grocery shopping or heading for a day at the beach, and everything in between. Suzie has great laundry bags and BYOB bags too. Definitely a booth worth stopping by.

Another favourite at the shows is Warm Fuzzies. Gen makes beautiful hot water bottle covers in adorable animal and fantasy characters. They would make the perfect gift for a small child, teenager or just about anybody, any age that's ever needed or might need in the future,  a warm cuddle when they are feeling down. Gen also creates a bunch of felted toys for the young and young at heart.

Looking for Christmas cards? You've got to drop by thunderpeep designs booth too!

Details by Donna

It's impossible to do justice to all the amazing jewellers that will be at the show. Here's just a peak. Details by Donna will be showcasing her gorgeous polymer clay jewellery. Don't forget to stop by Designed by Craig Ewing and Judy Cogo Designs booths too, both are pictured above.

Sally Skirt by Isa Te's Designs 
Last, but definitely not least I want to mention Isa Te's Designs. Each garment Ingrid creates is made from repurposed & vintage fabrics. This might be the booth to stop by to get your shopping started by picking up something for yourself!

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

How do you like them Apples?

Apple picking and eating is one of my favourite October things to do in Ontario.  If you have not made a trek this fall yet, here are a couple of great sites to get you inspired. has a listing of many spots all over Ontario.  Included in the listings are fun family places to go with corn mazes and pumpkin patches (oh yeah, there is another special occasion coming at the end of the month...) There are also tips on canning and freezing with some great recipe links. has lots of listing for the immediate GTA.

Unfortunately the early warm spring and subsequent freeze did a number on the blossoms (and the crop this year), so you might want to check in with the orchard before you make the trek.  "The “good” news is that the apple trees which lost their buds this year put all their energy into growing and that will likely mean a “bumper crop all over the province” next year, says Tom Chudleigh, 72, whose Chudleigh Farm in Halton Hills has been operating 55 years"

Here's a guide to some of the best types you can buy for cooking and eating.
And if all you need is the visual, Anne Henvey has Apples of the Rainbow that will have you thinking October all year.

Monday, October 8, 2012

100 Mile Experiences

Much of our focus here at 100 Mile Finds is to bring you unique, local artisanal products that you won't generally find at a big box store.  We do feature 'unique' services on the site that we think are off the beaten track. When we originally started the site, we recognized that all services are local, so we thought it was important to not become another service directory.
That being said, I love the idea of giving an 'experience' as a gift.  My husband still says that the acrobatic flight he took from the Toronto Islands was one of the best gifts he ever had. And it supports the local economy.  And it does not come with excessive packaging.

I know we are all familiar with Groupon (and yes, we have heard from lots of retailers that these 'deals' come at a loss to them), but I can't help but mention Living Social.  The website is American, but you can be alerted to deals in your area.  The deals featured are all services/experiences - from B&B stays, dining, horseback riding to Puppet Theatre workshops.  Recently I saw a deal for 12 Kung Fu classes for $12!
Clearly the businesses want to get you in the door and hope that you will use them again.  I think it is a great way to try something new - who knows it may become your next passion. I recently bought a deal to do a paddleboarding lesson on Lake Ontario from Bluffers Park. It was great fun, and it got me out of both my neighbourhood and comfort zone.  Anyway, could not help but pass this along.  There are so many local things to do.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Hot New Stuff at 100 Mile Finds

We are so lucky to have an ongoing fountain of inspiration here at 100 Mile Finds.  Vendors come up with new items every day and we continue to be amazed at the talent we have so close.  We wanted to highlight a few new 'favourite things'.

Ginger Art Lamps has a fabulous black and white shade featuring New York City (more than 100 Miles, but iconic none-the-less.

Blissful Sew has come up with this great care seat organizer that you can make yourself.  We know it is impossible to reach back and pass the book to the little person strapped into their seat.  This is one sanity saving item.

And yes, the big shopping holiday is still pretty far, but these items might help you feel like one of those really organized people.  Eco-Parent's Holiday Giving Issue focuses on how to buy "better" over the holiday season - however you celebrate! Buy better, rather than more, and using your dollars to do good, will be featured. We love that.
And Mummi-Quilts recently posted their holiday table runner/cloth napkins.  That will make you feel prepared.

Monday, October 1, 2012


Kid Culture will be hosting the First National Costume Swap Day™ in the Junction on October 13th, 2012. The swap starts on September 30th.
Are the dark corners of your storage room a little spookier than usual? Do they come complete with piles of too small, underused or long-forgotten costumes, bits and bobbles of Halloweens past? Do you have no desire to spend tons of time and money fighting the crowds (and your kids) to score another costume that will end up in that cob-webby pile?

Kid Culture, Fancy Pants Kids and Play Me Mama Crafts have a fun, economic, creative and light-on-the-earth solution for you – the first Junction Costume Swap as part of National
Fancy Pants Kids
Costume Swap Day Canada.
We’ve got your back in the costume department this year. Spend a fun early October Saturday afternoon with other parents and kids looking to discover some great finds and get rid of that never-to-be-worn again (by you) box of costumes, accessories and more in the spirit of upcycling.
“Everyone has a stash of costumes from Halloweens gone by that they don’t use any more,” says National Costume Swap Day organizer Robin Rivers. “We’re putting those old costumes to good use and making them new to you while helping families save money and live lightly.”

The event will be held from 10 a.m. till 8 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 13 at Kid Culture, 2986 Dundas St W Toronto, ON. Costumes and accessories to be swapped can be dropped off at Kid Culture from Sunday September 30th till Friday October 12th.

How it works: Bring your clean, gently used costumes to exchange and trade into the store from September 30th till October 12th. You will get an exchange ticket in the shop for every costume you bring in that allows you to go home with a new-to-you costume for your kids the day of the swap. No costumes to trade, no worries you’ll be charged a flat fee of $5 at the door (cash only) and you can pick out a costume.  Proceeds will be benefitting The Salvation Army Evangeline Residence.

Organizers are also asking that you bring a new or gently used children’s book for Bookhunters.  Get all of the details on the local costume swap and find out all the details on this national movement at The Junction Costume Swap is a part of National Costume Swap Day Canada celebration where communities throughout the country are helping families save money, create a
stronger sense of community and live lightly on the Earth this Halloween.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012


Andrea Sadgrove is the creative force behind Liligo, which is her business that makes earth-friendly clothing for children aged 12 months to 5 years old.  Andrea has been sewing since she was 10 years old - her first collection was for her Barbie dolls.
She has since blossomed into the creator of Liligo, started in 2009.  Selling at Craft Shows, Andrea noted that her most popular dressed were made from vintage bed sheets, inspiring her to collect more vintage fabric.  Her clothing is now made from recycled vintage fabrics, organic cotton printed with environmentally friendly inks, or a combination of both.

And of course it is not worth buying just because the clothing follows the three Rs - it is very cute.  Can't wait until it is time to buy that next 'little girl' gift.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Toronto's First TradeSchool!

Mary from Wise Daughters Craft Market is involved in this really cool initiative, Trade School Toronto! From Saturday September 29th to Wednesday October 3rd there will be accessible workshops available at several locations in the Toronto area. The line-up consists of everything "from crafting to economics, bike maintenance to the tar sands, spoken word to book binding, finances 101 to how to use an iPad..."
Trade School breaks down the financial barriers by running the workshops exclusively on barter. Anyone can teach a class and students can sign up for classes by agreeing to bring barter items that the teacher requests. How cool is that?

The first session of Trade School Toronto will include 30 one and a half hour workshops over the course of 5 days. The workshops span a wide range of interests, everything from arts and crafts to technology and business. There are two workshops being hosted at the Wise Daughters Craft Market in the Junction (on Quebec just south of Dundas St. W.) on Sunday September 30th. Lee Hicks will be exploring the creative practice of book-making from noon until 3:30pm. After that Mary Breen herself will be offering a class in Beginner Needle Felting from 4pm until 5:30pm.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

COCO Crafted Organic Chocolates - made in Canada

Flavour Bursts

It’s OPEN! COCO Crafted Organics Chocolates can now be found at 365 Jane St., just south of Annette St.They are not only carrying the best organic chocolates I’ve ever tried, made in small batches so they stay fresh THEY’VE GOT ICE CREAM too!

Deborah won my heart over when she started helping Santa with beautiful chocolate Santa’s with a note from the man himself. The chocolate was fantastic, the note was hand written in a scroll and little gold dust spilled out when you cracked Santa open, magical! 
Chocolate Shoes
Her “Flavour Bursts” make a great hostess or teacher gift, with Chai, Fleur du Sel, Lemon and Chili flavours it’s a true grown up treat.There’s her practically world famous Chocolate Shoe that you’ve just got to see. It’s a perfect size 6 woman’s shoe, handmade of organic chocolate, in milk or dark.Drop by and check out the store. You can head over to Outhouse for a morning hit of espresso or for some lunch, then head over to COCO’s Crafted Organic Chocolates for some dessert (you’ve got to take something home for the family too)  just north of Annette St. there’s COCO’s Closet, they’ve got some fabulous vintage pieces and then you can check out the new hardware store on Annette, just south of Jane. Soon there’s going to be a Queen Margherita Pizza at the corner of Jane and Annette where you can stop for dinner too!

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