Goodbye August

Even before the end of August, we could feel the summer fading. The nights are cool enough to cook indoors, and the mornings are cold. We wear sweaters in the morning while eating oatmeal sprinkled with cinnamon and dotted with new apples. The first morning of September dawned colder than any morning since May. Despite…

Stocking the Medicine Shelf: Oregano Oil

It’s mid-July, and no one is thinking about illness. Summer is the season of skinned knees and bug bites in our family, but I can feel winter approaching even now. I don’t know if this deep-rooted anticipation of cold is just a hang-over from last winter or a portent of blizzards to come, but it’s…

Maple Sapping

We tapped the trees last weekend. My husband went out in snowshoes with buckets, spiles, and drill to welcome early spring. The snow is still so deep, and the nights are cold, but we’ve been told that this week will be warm enough for running sap. It’s a late season, I’m expecting the whole year…

Storms

The other day, the winds picked up and snow came tumbling down to cover the whole world. It was bitterly cold, the snow was icy and hard, like little frozen pellet that beat on the roof. It sounded like rain and we spent the day in the house. The fire burned hot all day against…

Winter Skincare: Where I am, and Where I’m Going

Maine winters are hard on skin. My hands and face especially struggle against the cold winter and hot stove. I’m a careless stove-tender, and my fingers are singed often. I also seem to have slow circulation so my skin is definitely not at it’s best in the slow, sluggish months of January and February. But…

Renewal

How was your 2018? Full of challenges and struggles? Full of unrealized dreams? Yeah, me too. 2018 was a rough year for a lot of us. For some, most of the struggles were frustrating and exhausting. They forced us to reach out, ask for help, and accept the generosity of friends and family. Last year…

Healing, Hot Drinks for Midwinter

We are gathering around the stove more and more often these days, for tea and coffee, and other soothing cups. We cradle our mugs in hands streaked with soot and ink, sipping drinks that comfort our hearts and hands, souls and bodies. We’re a coffee family in the mornings, or late at night, and sometimes…

End of Advent Devotions

We’re nearing the end of the O Antiphons, the nights are at their longest, and the days are all too brief. I’ve been praying the St. Andrew Novena this month, and it’s become a part of the season. I pray it when I’m driving, when I’m washing dishes, when I’m feeding the stove. I end…

Vintage Tables and Houseplants: Winterizing the Yurt

The maples around us are bright red and yellow; Even the oaks are starting to change. The ferns are rusty gold all down the path to the beaver pond. We’re stacking wood and planning for winter’s bacon. The whole world smells of October. Inside the house, we’re shifting furniture and hanging curtains – getting ready…

Today:

Feeling: cool, tired, grey-moody under the slowly changing leaves. Anticipatory – autumn is here. Seeing: Serious-eyed kids tallying numbers, chewing pencils, sipping tea; and the dog’s reproaches rising from the sunlight as she watches breakfast dishes soaking. Lists and papers, pens and ink-stained fingers. Monday-things. Listening: To Friday I’m In Love, almost done; I really don’t care if…