LIVE the Dream in 2015

I really can't begin to compete with all the words of wisdom and eloquent sentiments filling the webworld right now. Nevertheless, I still feel the need to contribute my own humble thoughts on the new year stretching out before us.

Foremost is the hope that somehow we can remember to find common ground with our fellow humans, so that we can find peace and work towards  justice. Let us cherish what really matters, and build strong bonds of connection. May the coming year be filled with vibrant good health for us and our loved ones~ which directly leads to my personal anticipation of growing another bountiful garden!

Food is the central point upon which my life revolves, and growing much of what we eat provides not only our daily sustenance, but daily joy and satisfaction beyond measure. Sharing more meals with others will be something I'll be working on this season~ there is so much abundance! This year also holds for me the challenge of finding alternative work to farm work, and the promise of an exciting new chapter. This change for me is monumental, and I admit that I'm scared. I am digging deep for the courage to endure, and trusting that I will find just the right place to continue my journey doing meaningful work.

January is filled with dreams inspired by the possibility of a fresh start, ripe with potential driven by our resolve to try again, fueled by our passions and limited only by our imaginations. 


               Goal for 2015: LIVE the dream!

The return of the light

A  kobocha squash 'sun' with shadow is encircled by gleaned rosehips,  garden dug carrots, the last stored peppers, and blueberry leaves radiating out in a sunburst pattern. Yellow big leaf maple leaves form a blanket beneath with black velvet fabric representing the long, dark nights of winter.  

The winter solstice marks the beginning of winter, it's true. But rather than nestling in for a long winter's nap, I instead gain a heightened awareness of the extra moments of light each day, finding myself lost in dreams of seeds sprouting, visualizing the next season's garden and busily filling my head with planning. It's a conscious effort to stay present in reality of winter's embrace. Sigh. Followed by a deep breath. (see previous post if you missed it)

But, as I am SO fond of saying, it's all about BALANCE.

And so, my plan is to allow myself some adequate steeping time, to better savor the resulting, more deeply flavored days of wintertime. Fire is my self prescribed therapy (and part of age old Solstice traditions) for slowing things down and settling into an introspective trance that provides some soothing, gentle guidance in just BEING for a time. 

This is winter's gift to us if we are mindful and fortunate enough to be able to slow the pace, nourishing our previously harried, rushing, production centered selves.

May this winter solstice find you some time to wonder and wander.


Whatever your traditions, rituals or beliefs are during this winter season, the busyness of preparations can begin to overshadow the merry, jolly, peace on earth good will toward men. 

If you can allow yourself to get into the natural rhythm of the season, the shortening days actually lend themselves to a slower pace that allows for some reflection and time for rejuvenation balanced with fellowship and breaking bread with others that is very different than the frantic pace that can sweep us along in it's swift current . 

So here is a gentle reminder to slow down,  take a deep breath, and remember your intentions. Then adjust your expectations, reprioritize, and carry on.


As our kids were growing up, I worked on customizing Christmas into something meaningful for us, a sort of hybrid of what I liked and wanted to keep from my child-hood combined with other traditions that appealed to me, largely borrowed from ancient Solstice rituals.

Over the years, some traditions endured while others fell by the wayside, influenced by a combination of expectations, fluctuating finances, a scrooge among us, personal moral values/ethics, and the sometimes irresistible pull of ~ consumerism. 

The approach of this winter season finds me continuing to strive for  a meaningful  balance. So far, the recipe consists of generous amounts of breathing outdoors on daily walks,  joy, hope, trust, love, wonder, music, peace and believing.

Use the power of belief to accomplish what needs to be done, from finishing a short term project, to completing a monumental achievement.

Hope is the foundation upon which to build our daily lives and work. It nourishes our spirits, illuminating the path ahead.

TRUST is an affirmation that allows change to happen, possibilities to be realized, and miracles to unfold. Trust trumps fear, when transition threatens to paralyze you. It instills confidence.
It is the gentle reminder to move with intention towards what we want the world to be.

I'm  still tweaking it; come by for a taste, and together we'll create something delicious!

All components  are available as both cards and prints for sharing at

Hop fever

Hops are beautiful.

Hops are easy to grow.

Hops smell wonderful. 

Hops are a great relaxant. Hops make my favorite beer an IPA.

Plus, the word 'hops' can be creatively woven into seemingly endless plays on words, if you're into that sort of thing, (which designers of IPA labels obviously ARE.) 

I have a tendency to take life too seriously, so I've embraced hops to assist in coaxing my inner child to come out to play.

Here are a few shots of the designing process of my most recent Etsy shop listing, Hoppy Holidays.

and more Hoppy Birthday wishes created this summer from our own crop of freshly harvested hops, and now available in my Etsy shop.

You get the idea.