Friday, April 22, 2016

a gathering of kindreds

A gathering of kindreds. April 2013 moon cloth.

Kindly green person in my garden.

April 2016 moon cloth.

Dandelions in the garden wondering where their bee sisters are.

Bowl of full moon goodness.

First hibiscus blossom of the year.

Weathered tree stump, a spell the earth has cast.

And lastly, this quote that explains everything about are the spell the universe has cast. ~Phyllis Curott

Friday, April 15, 2016

promise & pain of spring

I'm crocheting around my phone cord for fun and also to distinguish it from the others (I use the term crocheting loosely). There are too many charging cables at our house -- why does the shape have to be different for every chargeable device, I wonder.

Violet blossoms are especially abundant this year. I picked quite a few the other day, a good thing because we are expecting 14" of snow over the next few days. Here I made a salad with violet blossoms, tender baby kale leaves growing on second year kale plants, arugula and feta cheese drizzled with olive oil and a bit of violet vinegar left from last year. 

Violet flowers on a violet plate, flower-topped paperclips, and a tiny 9-patch I stitched a while back.

Vinegar was made. Violets are good for soothing both named and unnamed grief -- more about violets here and here. It's called fairy vinegar because violets crossed over from the fairy realm. That's what I believe anyway.

I read recently that the season of Spring is both promising and painful. I'd never thought of it as being particularly painful...until this year. Now I get it. Things end, things don't come back, things die.

The bees died. Just like that. One day they were fine and the next day they weren't. I want to blame the wasp takeover of last fall but really can't say for sure. I've cleaned and scraped propolis, wax, and more from most of the 30 frames inside the foundation boxes and am now hoping to attract a swarm. If not, I'll try to purchase a colony from a local bee supplier.

That's where the promise of Spring comes in. And I'm ready. xx

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

egg spell

An egg spell. During the dark moon I wrote my deepest desires on the egg and tomorrow on the new moon I will plant it in the earth. To mark the spot and nurture growth, I will plant pansies over the egg. I realize that everything I desire, I likely already have. But a simple ritual awakens and stirs a part of my being in a way like no other. I call it magic.

Knitting is like growing cloth. I've been growing dishcloths.

And planting a few pansies in a mossy basket.

And planting potatoes in a periwinkle potato bag for the first time.

I love this writing by Wendell Berry, a gift for you today. xx

Sowing the seed, my hand is one with the earth.
Wanting the seed to grow, my mind is one with the light.
Hoeing the crop, my hands are one with the rain.
Having cared for the plants, my mind is one with the air.
Hungry and trusting, my mind is one with the earth.
Eating the fruit, my body is one with the earth.
                                                               ~Wendell Berry

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

moon clouds

We've had a heatwave here -- it was in the 70s again yesterday so I watered all the recently-planted trees in our yard. Last night I went outside to walk around and take photos of the night -- the sky was cloudy but the full moon shone brightly through them.  Then during sleeping hours it started snowing and it snowed all day long today -- we have over 19" of snow! Heavy wet snow I might add, I tried to keep the house on the warm side in case the power went out.

The moon cloth I worked on this afternoon reminds me a little of those moon clouds or even a moon halo. It's an older piece that doesn't require anything from me other than a needle and some thread, no decision-making required. Which can be so nice.

Now is the time where the edges of winter and spring (or summer and autumn) overlap. A spring snow clearly fits the description but I'm thinking about what other edges might overlap, both literally and figuratively....

Wishing you a happy spring and may mother moon shine brightly upon you. xx

Saturday, March 19, 2016

spread the love

It happened over two weeks ago on caucus night here in Colorado. I handed my driver's license to the man in charge of my precinct. He coughed all over it, signed me in, and handed my license back to me. Then he took my hand (horrors) and wrapped an ID band around my wrist. I was stunned, I wanted to find a bathroom to wash my hands but the place was so packed I literally couldn't. So I thought to myself do not touch your face or ears (viruses can enter through the ear canal) and wash your hands first chance you get. Well, I got caught up in the excitement of the caucus and totally forgot to wash my hands until I was already back home having a glass of wine. Exactly one week later, I got sick with a cold. Exactly one week after that Jan got sick. Now we're both down, although I'm ahead of him and beginning to see the light. I tell us both that it's good to rev up your immune system like this once in a while.

I'm doing very little in between doses of elderberry or yarrow tinctures and quarts of medicinal herbal infusion -- unrolled a successful cotton/eucalyptus bundle, catching up on Season 5 of Girls and looking towards starting in on Season 1 of Poldark, sewing and knitting a little, arranging things...pinning down the March moon cloth, realizing how yuuuge that white quilt is and wondering how to fill it in. 

"May you be Light" -- Michelle wrote this on her blog and I love it so much I want to remember to think or say it to myself and other people. Silently or out loud, depending on the situation. To spread the love.

May you be Light. 

P.S. Lately I've been taking some photos featuring that beautiful hand-carved honey wand, today it is in the letter E in the word love. I keep forgetting to mention that it is one of my most treasured sacred objects, a gift from Nancy. Isn't it awesome? Nancy gives so freely in the true spirit of connection -- I believe her to be a psychic gift-giver. She just knows. 

Saturday, March 12, 2016

high hopes

When our Nanking cherry burst into blossom, I thought it wouldn't be too much longer now. And when the noisy cauldron of crows (I like cauldron as their collective noun better than murder) stopped coming for morning peanuts and in their place came a most well-behaved pair of chatty lovers, I thought hmmmm, we're getting closer. And most recently and not so happily, when wasps resumed their efforts to break and enter the beehive, I knew for sure that spring is over there just beyond that cloud of cherry blossoms.

It's time to finish up some projects to make room for spring -- two knitted ballband cotton dish cloths, another round on the January moon so I can move on to February and March -- and a few art journal pages. The moon page started out with a crescent moon but it seemed to me there needed to be a woman in the moon -- my first face and a wonky shape on top of it all. The other page has a head gessoed, sanded and ready to become a face -- intimidating for sure, but I'm learning from Taking Flight just how it is a winged creature comes to life.

The cover of my collage booklet -- I like that a beginning can be anything I want. I'm still working on the rest of this early spring booklet, it just doesn't feel completely personal yet, sort of hard to do with collage, I think. The pages need paint or something that comes from me and not just from a magazine but I don't know exactly what.

See that darling girl in the cherry blossoms? Her pollen baskets are filling up, there were dozens and dozens of honeybees in this bush today. No wasps that I could see probably because they were over at the beehive trying to get in. 

Of course, it can and will still snow anytime between now and May, but my hopes are building for the coming growing season. I want to give this little piece of Earth we live on my full attention and best care. To create a harmonious space for all creatures including the humans. And I want to listen and learn from the plant spirits, I always want that. Always, always.


Friday, March 4, 2016


The croci are in full bloom now. I love that word, my friend and I giggled about it last weekend and we wondered if croci was correct. I looked it up to discover that both crocuses and croci are indeed correct. The pronunciation of Latin words can be tricky but someone told me the key is to pronounce every vowel because there are no silent vowels in Latin. Not sure if that is always the case, but seems to be so with plant nomenclature. Of course I remember none of this from my own years of Latin in high school.

Today is Friday which the calendar designates as when to practice the Law of Detachment. It says allow yourself and others the freedom to be who they are. What a relief, self-improvement is such a drag.

These were my mother's angel cards before she passed. Each card has a positive message and the one I drew this morning, patience, has an image of an angel sitting and knitting. Sometimes I think this is how my mom communicates with me so I'm going to obey and unbury my knitting this weekend.

The Resurrection Plant has been a lot of fun for us to watch. I poured off the water and placed a tiny crystal in the center so now we can watch it curl back up. Returning to its dormant state is proving to be a much slower process than resurrecting was. This phenomenon can probably be applied to a lot of things.

A pretty golden rose oil is in the works and what remains will be just right for a few quarts of rose petal infusion -- pour a quart of boiling water over about 3/4 cup of rose petals, then infuse for 45 minutes before straining -- tastes good, nourishes the heart and strengthens the ability to love yourself. 

The last of the Gertrude Jekyll roses look yellow but are still very fragrant. The amount of petals I collected for drying last summer turned out to be just right -- I love it when that happens and nothing goes to waste.

Planning what and when to sow inside this spring -- I will be more organized than ever, I tell myself. If you have an iPad or tablet, I highly recommend the little Targus keyboard case I just got. The iPad tilts and swivels and folds forward or backward -- like a laptop only more flexible.

The political scene has reeled me in, I've been rallying and caucusing and donating small increments of money. The Law of Detachment says do not force solutions -- allow solutions to spontaneously emerge. Uncertainty is essential and is the path to freedom. Okay. Must remember this every day of the week.