Monday, December 31, 2012


I have been drawn to nature the last few days, wanting to be among the beauty and simplicity of Mother Nature. I can say without a doubt this pull comes from the inner reflection I have been moving towards as we approach the end of this year. This pull has found me hiking, running, playing, tracking, and sitting in nature, being, breathing and taking it all in as I look back on the year.

I have found a common thread throughout my reflection, one word that keeps coming back to me...connection. This year has been a wonderful year of connection on so many different levels.

Connection to you, my "community". I could never have imagined the friendships I would develop through this space. It has been wonderful getting to know you, your families and connecting with you.

Connection to old and new friends. This year has seen a deeper connection among people I have called friends for years. We have connected on different levels and this has deepened the mutual respect, love and friendship we have. New friendships have been fostered this year as well. Friendships with like minded people, people who I can be "me" around and who offer no judgement, just a hug and smile.

Connection to this earth. Nature has always been a special place for me, a place I can go to to think, make decisions, breath, relax, slow down and just be. This year I have heard her calling me, more often, to connect, to experience her beauty, her magnificence and her strength. I have answered her call and with it a deeper, more intense connection has developed, one which I plan to explore throughout 2013.

Connection to myself. I  turned 40 this year, which turned me inward earlier this year to look deeper at what I want the rest of my life to be. It forced me to really look at my life, and the life I am creating with Justin and Reece. We want simplicity. We want slow. We want to be active participants in life, our life. We want to experience our time here more fully, with laughter and love. We want to wake up each and every morning with gratitude for this life, the one we are creating. After all the deep inner reflection I felt a stronger connection to who I am right now and where I (we) are going.

Connection to Reece. I am not sure if it is mama instinct, the deeper connection I have with myself or the time Reece and spend in nature together...maybe it is a combination of all three. My connection to him, this little being, it is incredible and seems to grow stronger and deeper with each passing minute. It is an amazing connection I am so very grateful for every day.

2012 has been the year of connection. Each and every connection, new ones and ones that have deepened have made this an amazing year. I am feeling so much gratitude for all this year has offered me and I look forward to 2013 and where it will guide me. I have a deep sense it is going to be a good one.

Happy New Year!

Friday, December 28, 2012

These Days

Fun filled post Christmas days...hiking, playing in the snow, games, more games, 
and laughter, lots of laughter.

Have a wonderful weekend!

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Feeling Full

A solstice day hike up our quiet road

Beauty is all just have to open your eyes

This little soul fills me with so much joy!

Our solstice fire

Candles lite from the solstice fire to light the way into our home for dinner

A little hike to feed the birds...we had to share some gifts with them

A Chistmas Eve hike...notice the difference in snow between the previous picture and this one.
This picture is not far from our home, the other, closer to the lake and a little south, no snow there.

Christmas Eve by the tree

Merry Christmas!

A little Christmas snuggle

There's a fullness resting in my heart today.

A fullness which stays with me as I go about these days.

Days past have been filled with:
nature walks
memory making

This fullness finds me slowing down,
letting it sink deep,
reminding me that this moment,
right now,
is most important.

I hold this reminder close.

I will let the fullness rest a while longer. 
I will feel it deep inside,
then release a breath
and smile.

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Happy Holidays!

Wishing you a holiday filled with peace, love and joy.

Love and best wishes from my family to yours.

Friday, December 21, 2012

Happy Winter Solstice

"It is a time to celebrate the rebirth of the sun. 
Since the Summer Solstice, the days have been getting shorter and the nights longer. 
Now at the Winter Solstice, the shortest day of the year, the opposite is true, 
where the days are now growing longer, and the nights shorter. 
This is the time of year, when the Earth is pregnant with new life. 
Full and ready to give birth to the sun once again." 
~ The Magic Onions ~

Today we will be celebrating the return of light by heading into the woods for a nature walk. We will walk, take our time, breath, be and enjoy the beauty around us. Later this afternoon friends will join us at our home where we will offer up gratitude for the year that was and open ourselves up to what the new year has in store for us.

I am also holding a sacred space for the mamas. We will create releasing bundles, gather around the fire and one at a time throw our releasing bundles into the fire, releasing things, thoughts, feelings we no longer wish to carry with us into the new year. Then together we will offer up gratitude with some herbs thrown into the fire and finish by holding each other; our arms supporting each other as we welcome our families to join us at the fire. We will gather as one family around the fire, to welcome back the light.

Each family will then light a candle from our solstice fire, which will be brought into our home as we continue our celebration with dinner, an indoor fire and I am sure some wonderful conversation and lots of laughter.

We will let the light of our celebration guide us on this dark day, and let it continue to be our source of hope, peace and love for the coming year.

May you find peace today, and enjoy the return of the light.

Happy Winter Solstice!

Thursday, December 20, 2012

The Power of Children

There is nothing quite like spending time in nature with children, and yesterday I did just that for my Touch the Earth program. Children are natural explorers. They are drawn to things we adults walk right by. They force us to stop, to look, to listen, to be in the moment with them. Spending time in nature with them opens my eyes even more to the world around me and fills me with so much peace.

Last year after we took our Christmas tree down, we moved it to the back deck and decorated it with treats for our feathered friends. We called it our Giving Tree and we replenished it regularly so our friends were never hungry. I thought this would be the perfect activity for my little nature explorers yesterday. After an opening song and our welcome circle we ventured down to the water, the kids were feeling the pull of the water as soon as we arrived. After some rock throwing it was off to find the perfect spot to hang some treats.  We rolled pine cones in lard, dipped them in birdseed and then hung them in trees. We are pretty sure the birds are going to love them.

We sang a little song to the birds, hiked back, celebrated and shared our gratitude and finished with another song. It was beautiful, as always.

After the tragic events of last week, my soul needed this time in nature with these little ones.  Fyodor Dostoyevsky says "the soul is healed by being with children", I wholeheartedly agree. The sparkle in their eyes, their spirit for life and the joy in which they go about their day, it is beautiful and gives me hope. Hope that we, as a "community", can find our way out of the darkness of this time and into the light.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Handmade Homemade Christmas

A little felted owl, fingerless mitts and cowl...all for me :)

All the hand knits ready to be wrapped for gift giving

Reece's new kitchen, made with love by Justin

Orange spiced smells heavenly

Peppermint lip balm

Lemongrass, lime and wintergreen body butter

Living simply, in tune with the seasons and close to the earth.

These are words I think about often. I hold them close. I use them to help guide us as a family. I say them out loud when I need to remember why we live the way we do.

And it is these words I think about as we approach the season of giving and sharing. Over the years our gift giving list has gotten very small. We have stopped the excessive buying of the past. We have stopped giving just because and give because we care, really care. We give because we want to. We give gifts we have made, with special thought about the person receiving it. We keep the season simple, but filled with the things we love....time together, family, love, nature, giving and sharing.

With that in mind this Christmas is no different than last Christmas, it is filled with lots of handmade homemade goodies for those we love. It feels oh so good to make something from scratch and share it with those who are special to us.

It may not be the Christmas everyone dreams of, but for us it works. It feels right for our little family.

Joining in with Ginny and Nicole.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Make Someone Smile

It is difficult for Reece to grasp the idea that there are families in our world, our country and our community who live with less, not by choice, but by circumstance.  Over the last few weeks we have had conversations about why we purchase food for the food bank and why we dropped off hats and mitts to a Christmas charity drive on the weekend. I can tell from the expression on his face my explainations mean very little to him. I realize words cannot adequately portray to him the need of these families, it is not part of his little world and so very difficult for him to understand. I do know this will be something he gains an understanding about as he grows up, as his eyes are opened to the world around him.

Until then, I can begin to show him how we help others, how we can show love and compassion for those in need, and how we can bring a smile to someone's face with a simple act of kindness.

So, we will shop for food, we will donate items to families in need and we will jump in to volunteer when we are called upon, and when he asks why I will simply say: "to make someone smile".

Monday, December 17, 2012

Moving Slowly

We are relaxing into all that is this season.
Embracing the darkness of the days,
Enjoying the peeks of sunshine through the clouds.
Spending time in nature connecting to something bigger than us.
Paying attention to the things important to our family.
Stopping to enjoy the moments in the here and now.
Slowing down to breath, to be, to love.
We are moving slowly through our days,
Sharing this wonderful time of year.

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Peace, Love and Light

Holding those who are suffering pain, fear, anger and sadness close to my heart today. 
Wishing them peace, love and light during this dark time.

Friday, December 14, 2012

{This Moment}

{this moment} - A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.

If you're inspired to do the same, leave a link to your 'moment' in the comments for all to find and see. Inspired by Soulemama.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

More Kisses

Me: "You really need to stop growing, you are getting too big."

Reece: "It's okay mom, I will just give you more kisses."

Oh yes, my little man, more kisses would be wonderful!

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Yarn Along

All the Christmas knitting is done!!!! I finished up my hubby's hat this weekend and stuffed the knitted horse for my niece. Both projects turned out perfectly.

My needles didn't rest for long though, I cast on another pair of fingerless mitts, this time taking Tracey's advice and using a smaller needle and voila, they fit!!! I am working on mitt number two, and hopefully will have it cast off by the time you read this.

Doula reading is slowing down, I am finding with the holiday season approaching studying is taking a little bit of a back seat, and that is okay with me. The little break will be good and I will be ready to get back at it after the holidays.

I started this book on the weekend and I love it. It reinforces the choices I have made on my mothering path and also gives me so much more to think about. And my issue of Taproot arrived on Monday, so you can be sure I will be diving into that this week at some point.

What are you knitting and reading?

Joining in with Ginny and Nicole.   

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

A Day with Friends

Good morning ducks

Feeding the sheep

Katie and one of her pigs

The sheep escaping from the barn :)

Wool ready to  be washed

Wool being soaked

Wool after a few rinses, one more to go

Reece trying his hand at carding wool

Our carded wool!

Dying wool with turmeric

Katie giving us a little lesson on spinning

Hello spinning wheel

Reece giving spinning a try

Yesterday we had the amazing opportunity to spend the day with some friends on their farm. We joined six other mamas and their children for a tour of the farm, saying good morning to the ducks, feeding the sheep, milking a goat and watching the pigs devour their breakfast. The kids had a great time and we moms did too.

Once the farm chores were done we were welcomed into Katie's home for a day of wool fun. We washed wool, we carded it, we dyed it and we tried spinning it. We are all newbies trying things out for the first time, we had some successes and some...oh we need to work on this a little more. Spinning is not as easy as it looks.

The kids played, the moms chatted, we played with wool, we enjoyed a pot luck lunch and we shared time together. It was a perfect day.

Thanks Katie!