My Favorite Teas for the New Year

January is fast fading away. Our winter weather has finally returned in full force, with deep freezes at night and bright, cold days. I’d love another snow storm to cover all the ice, but for now, we’re enjoying the starry nights and sunny days. Yesterday, we took the kids ice skating on our beaver pond….

So I Finally Ditched My Smartphone

It’s weird to think of off-grid life with a smartphone, isn’t it? When we first moved to our land, in July of 2010 smartphones seemed like just another annoying fad. We drove to local cafes when we wanted to check something online. I wasn’t freelancing, Seth wasn’t selling his art, and only about 20% of…

Wintertime Puppy

Yesterday, friends from Ohio brought us a puppy. Actually, they brought up two puppies. One for us, one for a friend. Puppies are expensive around here. Too many people paying too much for faux-kids maybe? Whatever the cause, finding an affordable puppy that will fit in well with our life was a challenge. But in…

January Books

Last January, I started a reading challenge that took me from Sigrid Undset’s disappointing Kristen Lavrensdatter to Jean-Claude Schmitt’s fascinatingly dismissive “Ghosts in the Middle Ages” before the insanity of Spring: 2020 had me curled up by the fire with Tolstoy, Rilke, and the letters of Dostoyevsky. It took me a few months crawl out…

The Virtue of Revolt

I have a tall church-candle burning on my alter and Epiphany water from 2020 warming on the stove, with which to wash the walls. There is a thrilling pile of books on my bedside stand.. Life goes on as usual, with cozy mornings, slow evenings, and the eternal joy of my towering trees; but in the webby nooks and crannies of my life, there’s a disquiet.

Nourished Health

Last night, I sat up late with my books and papers all around. My husband was camping in the January snow, the kids were tucked into the big bed – sleeping cozily; while I was making charts and lists and filling my mind with images of a peaceful, abundant 2021. As I was planning, I…

A Word for the New Year

I’ve got all my journals and notebooks spread around me this evening. There are orderly lists and quickly jotted notes; two abandoned pens and one with lovely, dark ink that I’m still using. It’s almost the new year. I have a word for the year and a neatly-written list of goals for 2021 set up…

Christmas Gifts

I’m almost certain Seth won’t be reading this before Christmas. Almost… But I’m so proud of my herby wines, I just can’t resist sharing. It’s been an emotionally draining autumn and winter. The house is cozy, but the world outside is a tempest. In our little house, we can feel heavy winds shake the canvas….

Brambly Yurt

I’m not the best homesteader. The blackberries spread themselves into my garden each summer, the geese escape to forage from the neighbors whenever they can, and every winter I find an uncompleted list of “foods to put by this summer” at the bottom of my book pile. I have big plans, weak follow through, and…

Reading List

I’ve been reading a lot these past few months. Early in the lockdown, I turned to old favorites – it’s nice to have old friends beside us in new situations. Kierkegaard, Camus, Tolstoy, and my beloved Rilke were there for me during those stressful spring evenings when I marveled at the speed of oppression and…