Mother Nature moves at her own pace, slowly and simply, accomplishing what needs to be done. There is no hustle or bustle, she doesn't know what busy means, there is just the present. We have been working over the years to slow our lives down to the pace of nature, to allow Mother Nature to guide us, wrapping us in her arms and leading the way. It has been a pleasant journey, one that has opened our eyes to so much beauty around us, beauty we might have missed if we weren't moving at the pace of nature.
The spring season is in full swing in our part of the world. Migrating birds are returning, some just stopping over for a week or two before they head further north, some coming to stay for the summer. Butterflies and bees are fluttering and buzzing about, flowers are blooming, and the days are getting longer. We spend most of our days outside, in the garden, and find our way to the forest, both close to home, and a little further away, every day.
At the moment the forests we visit are coming to life. Trees are bursting forth with new leaves, ferns have unfurled and are reaching to the sky, wild flowers are peeking out, and wild foods are everywhere, free for the taking. Over the last few weeks we have been harvesting a variety of wild foods, for both medicinal purposes, and for eating. Dandelion leaves have been harvested and added to salads and smoothies. Dandelion flowers have been made into dandelion jelly, as well as set to infuse in oil on my kitchen windowsill. Plantain is there too, on the windowsill, infusing in oil, and will soon become a healing ointment. Our yard, and home is filled with the intoxicating smell of lilacs, and last week as we picked some to bring in the house, we also put some aside for lilac blossom jelly. Coltsfoot is infusing in honey for a lovely coltsfoot honey, which will be be stored away for those winter coughs and sore throats. Ramp season is finished, but we enjoyed it as best we could, and managed to tuck away some ramp pesto in the freezer. We have moved into garlic mustard season, and this weekend batches of pesto were made, and stored away with the ramp pesto in the freezer. And the nettles, goodness so many nettles. We have been enjoying them daily in smoothies, in our eggs, on our pizza, in our soups, and today there are five trays of nettles dehydrating, ready to be added to the apothecary, to be used for nettle tea.
Our yearly rhythm has been closely entwined with the pace of Mother Nature, and as we move into the beginning of Mother Nature's bounty, I feel like we are truly in sync with her, and her cycles, witnessing and enjoying the finer details often missed by most. It is a blessing to notice her, to sink into her rhythm, and allow it to lead us.