Kitchen / Garden / Sanctuary - Urban Homesteading to Nourish Body + Spirit

Month: July 2012 (Page 1 of 3)


At our new house

Could it be true?! My spirit is absolutely dancing for joy that we are only a couple days away from having a beautiful house, yard, and my gardens!!!!

Above is the room that will be my new studio… I love the East light that floods in. Perfect for morning tea (from an antique creamer on this particular morning, since everything else is packed).

Our apartment is pretty much all packed up… and I’ve spent the last couple nights at our new house, staying with my kitty (she comes with the house!), and Mom and I have been cleaning together like crazy women during the day. Mom and dad really like their new place, even though it is a bit of a shocking ‘downsize’! They’ve been there for a couple nights already.

Talk to you in a few days, after we move!


Summertime Manifesto

Different from a to-do list, a manifesto is the ‘long view.’ It reminds me of my priorities at present.

And rather than a lengthy list, I feel that simpler is better.

If you wrote a Summertime Manifesto, what would it say?


Mine says:

– Slow. It. Down…

– Do more art.

– Above all, simplicity.

– Lie down more.

– Body first. Give it the chance to heal.



Featured on

Bonbon Break

I’m humbled that a groovy new website,, asked me to be a post contributor. My Bugbath post is featured in the Backyard section of their website this week.

Check it out; it’s a neat place, and there are so many articles there I want to read!

A little bit about it:

Here at Bonbon Break our mission is twofold; To introduce blogs that are extra special, in an easy and fun format for busy moms looking for a moment to themselves; And, to provide a place for bloggers to showcase their material in a way that respects and honors their individual sites, creative rights and content.



Gratitude Sunday * July 22, 2012

~ I’m once again joining Taryn over at Wooly Moss Roots in her Gratitude Sunday tradition. ~

Gratitude Sunday is a time to slow down and remember those thankful moments that graced our week. One reason I love keeping a daily gratitude journal is because it helps keep things in perspective for me. Each Sunday, I open my journal and share some of those moments with you here. If you’d like to join in, just leave a comment!

Gratitude is powerful energy. I love hearing others’ gratitudes!



– Cool, fresh night air after a rain storm.

– Crickets close to the open window.

– A bath.

– Finding freshly fallen apricots on the sidewalk to satisfy my hunger during an outing.

– Slow mornings when I need them. Sometimes it takes a while to get my energy going. It’s so nice not to have to force it in order to show up at a job.

– Stumbling upon a fascinating documentary on PBS called “Summer Pasture” about a young, nomadic Tibetan family with an infant daughter. We were riveted.

– A nice week. Fairly chaotic with all the packing and details associated with moving, but still a nice week.

– Making good headway in packing up everything and cleaning this place. I’m especially thankful for the coincidental discovery of a bunch of good moving boxes and packing material in a nearby alley, and my mom for transporting it to our apartment. Thank you Mom! They have been invaluable.

– My garden and how it’s doing so well…

– Those incredible garden tomatoes! Sliced garden tomato, organic avocado, sea salt. OMG!

– Seeing, again, a family friend from New Zealand who my mom has known for 40 years. It was so nice to see him again, even for just a short time.

– Birds singing. It was eerily quiet this morning when I awoke, and I realized how much I cherish the constant background of birdsong, even if I’m not always consciously aware of it.

– My family’s great appreciation of my garden produce. It warms my heart that they all love it so much.

What about you? What has been on your gratitude list this week?


Around the Garden – July 19th

Yesterday was a special day. July 19th is the official death date of my best friend Sonja. It will forever be “that day.” It’s been eight years since her death, and finally it doesn’t hurt anything like it used to. That awful pain has released its grip on me. I acknowledge the date with sadness, of course…but the sting of it has largely gone. If I pause to remember that terrible phone call, and the sequence of it all and how I felt, it still hurts very much. Of course it does. I’m sure it always will. But it doesn’t clutch me and drag me to the underworld like it used to; I feel so much more in control of the memories and my emotions about it all.

If you are currently toiling through grief, it is a very hard path. And it will get easier. It doesn’t seem like it ever will, but it will.

When I was in the middle of that searing grief, I was convinced it would never end. It did. You will never be the same person after a journey like that (you’ll be stronger, for one thing), but the pain will let up.

So yesterday I spent my July 19th working in my flourishing garden. What an uplifting, life-affirming way to spend that day! It was very hot, in the upper 90s, but the clouds moved in which made it much more bearable. And my strong, healing body held up so nicely, even in that heat… even through six hours of hard physical work. Instead of feeling miserable in my body, I felt strong and healthy and agile. After more than two solid years of feeling like absolute shite, I had sadly forgotten what “normal” feels like. I’m getting re-acquainted with normal!! It was so enjoyable!

Anyway, here are some pictures:

[left to right] Jaune Flamme, Black Russian, and Black Cherry heirloom tomatoes:

The peach on my 3-year-old tree is getting bigger!

I grew some Black Kabouli bush garbanzo beans this year as an experiment. It was a success, and it told me what I needed to know. They’re very easy to grow, even in areas of lower soil fertility and water levels. I haven’t yet cooked them up, but overall I’d rate them as ‘8.5/10, would grow again.’


Everybody needs… places to play in and pray in, where nature may heal and cheer and give strength…

– John Muir


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