Google+ What I Made Today: June 2015

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Busy-ness, Breaking and Blessings

June has been exceptionally busy. For me. Filled with events and workshops, comings and goings, garden demands and wild-harvesting, deliveries and doings, forgiveness and gratitude, associates and friends and loved ones.
No matter how I slice these experiences, Nature is present. With this realization, I was inspired to make myself a botanical Spirit Bundle, and figured if I'm making one, why not a few extra?
Today they get unwrapped and sit atop mugwort stems in the solar dehydrator for a final kiss of sunny drying.
I've been harvesting my local allies for food, craft fodder and Medicine. Today I have more Saint Joan's wort and violet leaf to harvest... among other botanical allies.
I was blessed over this past weekend with an intimate workshop to share the simplicity and empowerment of making one's own kombucha. This experience offered an opportunity to re-meet (that's right, re-meet) a lovely local woman who, as serendipity would have it, raises angora rabbits to spin her own fiber and consequently has a bunny "waste" management challenge. And there I am... with my compost. So bunny "waste" has been added and the compost pile turned for the first time this season. Connections/relationships steer it all!
I was blessed with some art time over the weekend. Craft time, too.
And actually began a new spread in my art journal. Such amazing Medicine this is, giving mind and heart to the busy-ness of June and to the coming of July, a TaB (Take a Break) month for me, with only a few external commitments, and lots of time and space for Me, my gardens and preserving, my wild-harvesting, my herbs, my art, my loved ones. And my spirit. I especially look forward to rekindling my relationship with my botanical ancestors in some very intentional ways.  When lay it out like this I wonder: What exactly is it from which I'm breaking? And I smile and feel ever so blessed.
I invest this final day of June in setting the tone and rhythm for the month ahead as I look forward its full arrival. I'll be kicking off the eve with a grilled feast of homegrown and local deliciousness, served outdoors, and tomorrow will be shared with my spouse and playtime at the studio, and Thursday's activities depend on the weather, yet will wind down with a visit to the opening reception for J. Timothy Quirk's wonderful art project, "Our Stories," for which I feel sweet gratitude in having been included.

So whether I'm busy or breaking, I do feel blessed. Challenges and all.


Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Myself Ripe, Real and Ready

Another busy week. 'Tis the season! I was away from my gardens and studio this past weekend, attending the International Herb Symposium. I learned some new stuff, make no mistake, and received validation of personal theories and practices. I was challenged and my brain got to bend and expand. My heart too. I had at least one AhHa! moment, though I'm still prettying-up my notes and who knows what will strike me as I continue plowing through them? I had fun, met folks from around the globe, made new friends, sang and listened and witnessed. I got to give and receive countless hugs, and simply... to Be in the presence of exceptional greatness ~ individual and collective.

I felt the familiar tribal-embrace that I'd not felt in more than a few years. I felt it deeply. And at the same time felt a deep loneliness too. I realized, with a distinct conscious awareness, that the call to return to the full service of my Rooted Ancestors was Real and Ripe. I suspected as much, and have been returning to those roots and realigning my dedication since my mother's passing, but now... now it's time to ratchet it up.

It's uncertain where this call will lead me, but this week I've rededicated myself to morning ritual that is already opening my eyes and my heart to potential. Potential to add value to this skewed world we share. And I am grateful.

Strolling in Witness around my little acre is on my agenda for this morning, along with planting more seed and transplanting more seedlings. And as I tend to this nurturance I will express my prayers to be a worthy witness to the song of the plants, my botanical allies, the Rooted Ancestors, so that I may be their voice in these strange, disconnected times we live in.

And in these realizations, rediscoveries and revelations I see a garden of toil and ecstatic delight. And like the calling, I am Ripe and Real and Ready.


Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Charmed Blessings

It's been a busy week, and then some, and it ain't over yet. Monday kicked off with tying up loose threads and recovering from a wonderfully busy weekend at Whiting Mills' Open Studios. I did manage to start harvesting some beautiful Trifolium pratense, a practice that will continue on dry days throughout the season.

 The gardens are picking up momentum, offering me opportunity for daily harvests as I continue planting. I remind myself that this momentum fires up and excellerates, so I mentally prepare.

 Some plants are already hitting their stride and preparing for their next phase of life, like these egyptian (walking) onions. My small patch of chickweed, which I'm tending with expectation for expansion is almost done flowering and seeding, and is preparing for her summer rest before returning later in the season. Lucky little wench. Yet, she, like the onions, remind me: All things in their own time, space, and at their own pace.

This reminder comforts and calms me, as I push on to complete a busy June schedule, knowing that July is a TaB month for me ~ a "Take a Break" month ~ where I scale back workshops, events and other offerings as I turn my focus on home, hearth, me. The hop strobiles will likely make their appearance during my TaB month. How fitting.

 There's not much time for making art, though I still exact some discipline to journal and sketch. When my waking-day begins to fade, I enjoy evening strolls around my little acre... my little manor... around the spaces I call my little meadow, my little forest. The experience is, to me, a form of creation, of art. And I offer gratitude, deep and broad, for this blessing.

As the week winds down, I will wind up. I'll be hitting the road before the crack of dawn on Friday to pick up my dear friend, Kim of Raven's Edge, LLC, to head north and east to attend the International Herb Symposium. For years I've longed to attend this. For years I've had other life obligations. The source of those obligations has moved on, and I find myself able to feel my roots again, to sink them deep, to grow, blossom, fruit and reclaim some desired sweetness in life. And again: More gratutude.

I live a charmed life. It's not an easy life, as some folks perceive, yet it's a life I dream, do and manifest... and I wouldn't have it any other way.


Saturday, June 6, 2015

Ready for Whiting Mills' Open Studios and Block Party Event

Today I'm making myself busy at the studio. Tomorrow too. Because this weekend is the June Open Studios & Block Party at Whiting Mills in Sunny Winsted, Connecticut.

I'll have fresh herbs available, limited edition elixirs and soaps, tinctures, balm samples, smudge sticks, artful creations and more. I'll be serving herbal tea, herbed water and kombucha. I'm hosting a Plant Swap, a studio Door Prize, and two nature-inspired visiting artists: Art Barker Photography and Garden Art by Claudia.

If you're anywhere around the lovely June hills of northwest Connecticut this weekend, please stop by for a visit ~ and to partake of the talents, inspirations and festivities going on at Whiting Mills this weekend!

Gotta giddy-up!


Monday, June 1, 2015

Aunt Mary's Sweet Geranium Spray

This is a simple spray I've been making for years. It was inspired by my Aunt Mary, a woman of great heart and humor. Its fragrance is light and crisp, clean and airy, words that seem fitting to Aunt Mary's spirit.

Yet the inspiration for this spray was born from a memory. Years ago I was shopping with my mother and her sister Mary in some funky little artist coop type of place, somewhere around Amherst, NY. Mary discovered some scented sprays, one of which was geranium (and another, carnation). She declared in that moment how much she loved the scent of this plant and she began spraying herself, the air, my mother, me ... even the salesclerk ... all the while laughing and enjoying that magical moment.

I also recall wandering her gardens with her as she would pluck a leaf, massage it a bit, and inhale the fragrance. Deeply. And then she'd invite me (insist, really) to do the same. 

To this day, whenever I catch the scent of geranium I recall the playful Spirit of this very playful woman. I created this spray with the intention that it carry a bit of that playful Nature as well as the clean, crisp scent of natural geranium into your home and into your heart.

And this is another botanical creation I'll be featuring during the Open Studios & Block Party weekend at Whiting Mills in sunny Winsted, Connecticut. If you're in the area ~ stop by June 6 and 7 to check it out ~ and all the other amazing talents!