Category Archives: Uncategorized

Honor your Birth

Screen Shot 2019-11-03 at 7.20.19 AM

With the clocks turning back an hour, I feel the shift toward the dark days of winter coming. We are exactly between Autumn Equinox and Winter Solstice, known as Samhain in Celtic tradition. The veil into the otherworlds becomes thinnest here. The leaves fall off the trees, and we can see things that were less revealed in the summer. I appreciate the call of this season to go within and expend less energy outward. 

Halloween symbols a time of communicating gratitude for the ancestors. I laid out photos, recipes, books, candles and music for mine. I spent the evening remembering those who have passed on with warmth in my heart. I watched old movies of my childhood so I could see my Grandfather playing the saxophone. When we remember them, we are feeding their spirits, wherever they are now. 

 When I lit a fire in the wood stove, I dedicated it to my Grandparents and their parents for giving me my parents, who gave me life. All the little details seen and unseen which give us life are amazing. Our births are such a gift. As my mentor, Darryl says, “It’s all about honoring our birth.” I am only beginning to understand this simple, yet deep statement. 

Screen Shot 2019-11-03 at 7.20.04 AMThe breath is a gift, giving us life in each moment without having to think about it too much. The Lungs are connected to Autumn, as is the Large Intestine. Like the trees releasing leaves, we are also invited to let go of what’s ready to be eliminated. Therefore, from a place of emptiness, there is enough space to breathe in new ideas, new dreams, new hopes. The spaciousness created through consciously letting go of old beliefs that do not serve us makes room for truth. 

What is your true heart’s calling? 

What is made visible when the old stories you’ve been carrying are released? 

How will you honor your birth?  

IMG_4761

The story I am releasing is….

  • I have to work hard to earn my keep (so outdated, so not helpful)
  • There is too much to do, no time to rest (so exhausting and who wants to be tired all the time?)
  • I’ll relax once I finish _____ (laundry, dishes, emails) Where’s the joy in that?

Whoever’s voice this is, whether a cultural expectation, a family member’s, or the inner work-horse, it’s just not nice. It does not leave any space for creative flow and joy. It may have served at some point to get good grades, finish a school project, or get a new job, but I am ready to let it go so I can step more fully into my truth, which is that I am completely worthy of deep rest, nourishment, and joy, RIGHT NOW. Not in a week, not in a month, not in five minutes. Now. 

What if  my life passes by and suddenly I look back from my deathbed and realize I’ve not been living in the present moment? All we have is right now. And, that is enough. I am enough. You are enough. We are all enough. There is nothing to prove anymore. Give it up! Go outside and dance with the moon if that is what you really want. 

You have the power, and that power is choice

The only one who can set you free is you. 

 

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Interview by ode boutique

Kristin Kelly of Ode Boutique, Northampton interviewed me for a class they graciously invited me to teach about Herbal Bouquet and Smudge Stick Making. Beautiful photos by Joanna Chattman.

Contact me if you ever want me to offer a class near you!

ode 2019 / 2020

You are a certified life coach, so an expert in the field of helping people live their best lives. Do you have some advice for us? 

I generally don’t give people advice, I mostly listen and ask questions that invite you to find your own inner truth. My favorite questions are: What are absolutely non-negotiable parts of your life that nourish your heart? What things can be let go of that prevent you from living your dreams? How can you make more space and time for those heart-feeding moments so that you feel deeply nourished and alive? 

What’s your spirit herb? 

Tulsi! I always plant more than I’ll ever use and surround my gardens with her sweet smelling nectar. Tulsi Holy Basil is delicious in all forms: tea, tincture, glycerine, honey, essential oil. I call her the Queen of Herbs. She calls forth abundance, love, and protection. People in India are said to adorn their doorsteps with the plants to attract bountiful harvests and health among their families. It calms the nervous system, aids digestion, is a nourishing adaptogen, strengthens the immune system and grounds frenetic energy. I drink the tea year round and sell it at the farmers markets so we can all share in her beauty. 

ode 2019 / 2020Is there a story behind the name “Sweet Birch”? 

When I was launching the business in 2014, I asked the spirits of the land where I was living at the time to tell me what I ought to call it. I sat on a little hill overlooking the river and closed by eyes for a while. When I opened them I noticed that all the saplings surrounding me were Sweet Birch – Betula lenta. “Sweet Birch!” I said out loud. Then, I heard a rustling in the woods below and watched a black bear walk across the path I had taken. Well, that was plenty of confirmation for me! The business was to be called Sweet Birch Herbals and I would be walking the path of bear medicine, or the healer who uses herbs for her wellness protocols. 

Who or what has been your best teacher? 

My best teacher has been the plants, of course, and those who pass down their wisdom in verbal / written form such as Chris Marano of Clearpath Herbals, Jade Alicandro Mace of Milk and Honey Herbs, and Margi Flint of Earthsong Herbals. But, if the books and people don’t carry the information in the moment, I always refer to the plants themselves. We talk daily and they direct me in how to facilitate healing in the highest realm for my clients. They want to help us so much and are always waiting to be called on for healing. Giving back to them by offering tobacco, or a strand of my own hair is how I thank them for showing up. 

ode 2019 / 2020Talk to us about your goats! 

Before my passion for herbs came along, I worked on a small dairy goat farm in the Berkshires. That’s where I fell in love with homesteading, herbalism, making cheese and raising food from the Earth. 10 years after working at the farm, I finally acquired two pregnant goats from the woman who taught me everything I know. They give me over a gallon of milk a day which I turn into fresh chèvre, feta, and yogurt. They help keep the weeds down and give fertility back to the soil. Each morning after milking we walk up the hill to pick blackberries. Stella has discovered that the berries are just as yummy as the leaves! And, Carmen likes her head scratched daily by me. They show me what it means to be a tribe, or a herd. When I walk, they follow. When they need more hay or fresh water, they let me know. 

Your blog, Farmingforjustice.com, is so inspiring and honest. What are you working on for your next post? 

Thank you. It’s 10 years in the making, first post was at the goat farm in 2009. The blog keeps me rooted in written word, which grounds me into expressing what matters most when times feels chaotic and unknown. My next post is never know until I get inspired to write, so I’m not sure what will move me next. I feel most inspired right now by the beauty of the harvest! Peaches, berries, herbs, flowers, milk, honey, all the many facets of life that keep on giving to us year after year. I harvested 100 lbs of peaches from one tree yesterday. I almost cried thinking how this one tree had so much energy and sweetness inside its roots to grow that many delicious peaches. 

ode 2019 / 2020Why does one burn a smudge stick? 

Burning smudge stick is a reminder that I am rooted in the Earth and have the capacity to clear away anything that does not serve my highest self in each moment. I try to smudge myself each day and especially after any challenging experiences that stress me out. It’s always a good idea to smudge your home and bedroom when people move in or out because we want to keep our energetic fields clear and open to allow in what serves our hearts. As an empath and healer, gunk gets stuck to me and I have to be careful to keep my energy clear so I can help others and not get stuck in messes that are not mine to clear up. 

You seem to notice the world around you sending you signs. What is a recent message from the universe? 

In this moment of writing this, the message I hear is TRUST. Trust your inner guidance and the spirits of the plants, animals, ancestors and any other guides. We are all surrounded by allies in the spirit world. These allies want us to call on them, honor them, thank them, and listen to them. Get to know your guides. Plants and animals are powerful allies waiting in the ethers for us to open up to them. 

What guides you? 

My animal guides are the Owl and Snake. They are a funny pair. Owl carries the snake by its talons to get places via air, and the snake grounds the owl into deeply transformative places on the Earth. They work together and keep me highly entertained. Right now, they are saying, “Come outside and play with us, it’s so beautiful out here!” I am grateful for the opportunity to answer these wonderful questions, and they are right, I have to get off the computer and enjoy the clear sunny day. 

My other guide is Grandma Moon. She is wise, stern, and playful. She directs me toward the feminine energies that are being forgotten. Listening to her reminds me of the power of the Divine Feminine inside each of us and how we need it to sustain our communities during the changing times on the planet. We live in a very hyper-masculine culture that encourages excess yang. Grandma Moon calls forth balance between the yin and yang. I thank her for that. 

ode 2019 / 2020What’s in your tea and who are you drinking it with? 

I just made a cup of Restoration Tea from Full Kettle Farm in Sunderland – nettles, mint, goji berries, milky oats, red clover, raspberry leaf. It’s a nourishing infusion that can be sipped every day to restore the kidneys, build up the nervous system after stress, and replenish after physical or mental exertion. 

Cold season is coming up. What should we stock up on? 

Immune Boost Tincture with Astragalus, Reishi, Ginger, Echinacea, Turmeric, and Licorice Elderberry Syrup Fighter Cider Murder of Colds Tea from Full Kettle Farm Elderberry Bliss Tincture with Hawthorne, Rose, Cinnamon, Ginger, Tulsi and Honey 

I have these every week at the Tuesday Market downtown Northampton and online

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Foraging with Goats

49EB6D2A-A4A9-4532-9FB6-A837C1F1DE2F

I have not written in far too long. I almost put it off another week, but as I lay napping in my bed a few minutes ago, a big spider ran across my brow. I woke up and felt its legs running over my skin and saw it jump off under the bed. Spider medicine is about sharing your story through the written word. Weave your words into the web of life to find meaning. So, here I am, Grandma Spider. Thanks for sending me the message loud and clear.

Summer feels like it’s rushing by and one of my daily chores is milking the two lady goats. At first, I saw milking as a chore, but now I understand it is as much for them as it is for me. We need each other, not only for me to feed them and for me to receive their milk, but for companionship and connection. It is not just a transaction, it is a relationship.

The goats are showing me how grounding routine can feel in this fast paced world. After morning milking, I take them for a walk. Today, we walked up the hill and discovered ripe blackberries growing wild along the path. As I gathered the delicious bounty, placing each berry into my, thankfully, blue t-shirt, I listened to the sounds of the goats chomping on leaves.

IMG_4723

The satisfaction of harvesting food from the earth for nourishment is like no other. To be in direct relationship with nature brings me home. I felt like one of the goats, part of the herd, foraging in the brambles for tasty treats. When we walk together, they move slower wanting to stop and munch. I always feel like I need to get somewhere, hike the mountain, rush back home to tackle the long list of “to do’s.” I was completely immersed in this precious moment on the hill, time was non-existent. How I yearn for these moments, so quiet, connected, and calm.

Also, blackberries have thorns. Therefore, I couldn’t reach in and pull off handfuls. I had to gently pick each one and carefully navigate the prickers. Yet, another message from nature to slow way down and be patient.

The goats are teaching me to pause and notice the abundance right under my nose. Everywhere they look they see food. If I can get out of my own head, then I notice it, too. We are surrounded by food and medicine in these forests and fields of Western Mass. Abundance surrounds us, and we are so very blessed.

IMG_4713

Thyme and Olive Oil Chèvre inspired by Susan at Rawson Brook Farm, Monterey, MA

Goats are also super sensitive, so when I feel stressed, they feel it, too. Lately, I’ve been feeling like there’s never enough time so I rush around doing a million things at once. “Rushing is violence,” I hear from the lyrics of Rising Appalachia. When I breathe deep and sing to the goats, they relax and let down their milk. When I am cranky and yelling at them for kicking the milk bucket over, they tense up. We’re all one, I guess. They are such great teachers.

Off to hang the feta cheese and make blackberry frozen yogurt!

1 Comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Blog’s 10th Anniversary + Goats!

IMG_4093

This blog was inspired ten years ago, when I embarked on a journey to learn about homesteading, farming, and raising goats for cheese and milk. I took an internship at a small goat dairy farm in Monterey, MA with Susan Sellew. I left college life behind, and moved into a log cabin surrounded by tall white pines and blueberries. My new teachers were the plants, animals, and Susan.

Rawson Brook Farm became home for over two years. Each day I gardened, milked goats, made cheese, and raised chickens for meat and eggs. I upheld the philosophy that if I were to eat meat and dairy, I had to know how to raise it myself. Our idealistic young minds are too often taught to ignore our dreams and get real jobs. Instead, I chose to deepen my connection to food and all that sustains me.

IMG_4163

I fell in love with the rhythms of homesteading. How each plant and animal nourished my body, in exchange for consistent attention to patterns of life and death, and a good bit of hard work. I don’t even really feel it’s work when the animals and plants are offering us so much. It’s a collaboration. The goats taught me how to be present, live in the moment, and have a little fun.

Ten years later, I invited goats back into my life on my own homestead. Susan offered me two pregnant does in April that kidded in May. Carmen and Stella each had two boys. They are all healthy and get along for the most part, though who can blame the mamas when their boys drive them a little nuts with all their head butting and humping each other. It feels like I have a daycare program when we go for walks, all the little kids running around each other, jumping, bleating, snorting, humping, and chewing on fresh leaves.

It brings me so much joy watching how much goats love uninhibited play. It’s not like they are asking themselves, “Am I being too wild right now? Should I tone it down?” No! They are full on learning how their little bodies work on this earth. Within seconds of being born they are walking, nursing and wagging their tiny tails. At one week they’re already sprinting up and down the driveway bouncing off each other’s backs. It’s a great way to start the day.

I am grateful to Susan Sellew for inviting me into her world of goats. Now, we get to text funny goat videos and medical information back and forth. Whenever anything out of the ordinary happens, I tell her and she always replies with a calm response that makes me remember that I am doing the best I can and the rest is up to mystery.

14136A57-C0B7-40FA-80BD-964B7543BB74

What does this close connection with the natural world teach me? I continue learning over and over how wise and intelligent bodies are with the complete knowing of how to heal. We have to trust in the time spirits. I always wanted to raise goats of my own, but I had to learn other things before rooting into the homestead. We never really know how long or why certain things happen. There is great freedom in patience, perseverance, non-attachment, remaining open to things not going the way we think, and living in the moment.  

We’ve come full circle on the blog post with this being the 10th year anniversary of Farming for Justice. Thanks for reading and enjoy the beautiful fresh green spring!

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

The Great Remembering

65F72431-A9F9-4F59-B3A0-09D658F5D4F9

This post was inspired by a dream I had last night in which I gave birth to the most beautiful baby girl. I held her and she was precious, innocent, pure. The love I felt was so pure I could not imagine feeling any other way about her. When I woke from the dream, I realized this baby girl was probably me, since we’re usually working out something about ourselves in dreams no matter who the people appear to be. What if I felt this pure love toward myself, I wonder? What would the world look like if each of us loved ourselves and one another the way we love innocent newborns fresh from the womb?

Enough of this scarcity mentality that reinforces those beliefs that “you are not enough,” “only if you do this then you can get that,” you would have it all if you were better at….”

This structure of sabotaging beliefs are false and come from a society rooted in male domination and capitalism. There is actually no end goal to be reached when everything will be just dandy and all your dreams come true based on your performance. I don’t know what happens after death, but I do know that heaven can exist right here right now on Earth. Everything is a choice.

What if we already do have it all? 

What if there is nothing to prove? 

What if everything in your life is a gift that deserves to be recognized?

Last night I posted two photos of myself on social media. I very rarely post photos of myself because:

1) I don’t want to be that woman (judgement of you, therefore judgment of self)

2) I’m not photogenic (old line of shame I use when I don’t want my pic taken)

3) Fear of really being seen because I may not be what you want to see

4) Only super pretty girls do that and I’m only kind of pretty (if you get me at the right angle)

5) I’m not an attention seeker. I’m above all that and I don’t seek your approval to feel good about myself (bullsh*t – I have insecurities, clearly)

The photos are out there because I wanted to show more of myself to you. I want to learn to love all parts of me. I am thinking about the yin and yang inside of me and want to let go of my insecurities around being seen.

Yin and Yang are the parts that complete the whole. Yin can be interpreted as receptive, watery, wondering, being, that inner place we go to when we daydream. It’s often referred to as the feminine, but our society has placed so many negative associations with being feminine if you are a male that I am careful with this word. We all have both yin and yang qualities.

Yang can be interpreted as active, fire, doing, outward energy we put toward getting stuff done. It has been referred to as masculine energy, but again, careful, because of what society has deemed wrong with being too masculine as a woman or not masculine enough as a man. We’ve got some healing to do here as a culture that is founded on the patriarchy.

Yin and yang are not binaries or opposites as the English language attempts to relay, they are part of the whole and we need both. We cannot know darkness without light, calm without chaos, movement without inactivity, silence without noise.

IMG_1177

How can I fully accept my non-conforming habits and desires with all the messages whirling around women to be sweet, kind, nurturing, smart but not too smart, funny but not offensive, and athletic but only to be slim for men to like my body? I realized how much I judge various parts of me as too feminine or too masculine. Even as a CIS gender heterosexual white woman, I struggle to remember I am whole and enough.

After a walk to clear my head yesterday, I sat down next to my cousin who said to me without even knowing where my thoughts had been (because women are usually pretty damn psychic), “Hannah, I can never really describe you to my friends. You’re just you. The moment I think I know everything about you, I learn something I never would have imagined.”

As a young girl I loved physical activity, sports, pushing myself to the limits and doing “boy things.” Whatever that means. I also loved snuggling with my mama, playing dress up and painting my nails. At some point I had to decide which way to go for society to accept me as woman. Instead of conforming, I listened to my heart and chose to ignore those voices as best I could and do whatever it takes to BE ME. 

It ain’t easy! I get off course, lost, forget, and end up in places I’d rather not be. This year for me is about Homecoming. I bought a house as a single woman with a vision for gardens, healing, community, peace, rest, and belonging. I am learning what is truly means to come home to myself. Who is Hannah, really? I can never fully know, that’s the beauty of the Great Mystery, but I am always open to discovering more and more. And, right now, I know, I am enough. I am completely whole, pure, and lovable the way a baby is when she is born.

I strongly urge us to be who we are, without caring constantly about what others may think. No one really is watching, and if they are, who cares? I fully embrace the “masculine” and “feminine” qualities which I refer to as Yin and Yang. There just ain’t one without the other. Each one makes a whole. Have love and compassion for all parts of you. Be true to you. Get sh*t done then take a bubble bath. You deserve to know the REAL YOU. We all do. Show us. Show us your darkness and light.

IMG_3614

What we are looking for is already inside. It’s all right here waiting to be acknowledged. Wholeness is achieved when we love all parts of ourselves. Don’t identify too much with any of the parts of you that you uncover because we’re always changing. Be open to the transformations.

IMG_1585

Who would you be if you didn’t care so much about what others think? 

Who would you be if you didn’t put yourself into a box and tie a rope to the wall so you’d never leave it? 

Who are you, no part left out? 

Who are you when you believe you can fully embrace all of you?

You already have it all. You were born with it. Life is about remembering all we have forgotten since birth. Take off the masks and dance in the moonlight until dawn if that is who you are! Cheers to releasing binaries and calling in being, belonging, and wholeness.

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

PS: Join me on the Journey to Wholeness! I’m offering a series of workshops at my home this spring and fall. Learn more & apply online at sweetbirchherbals.com

Rooted & Rising (1) copy

 

 

1 Comment

Filed under Uncategorized

The Heart Protector

Screen Shot 2019-02-21 at 10.15.04 AM

I write a lot about opening the heart, but there’s something crucial about protecting the heart, too. Our physical hearts are wrapped in a sheathe called the pericardium. In Traditional Chinese Medicine, this is known as the Heart Protector.

While we open our hearts, it’s equally important to protect ourselves from unwanted energies and forces. Who says we have to be open and receiving all the time? As a woman, I have learned over and over again that it is not wise to allow any and all energies into my body. To be in my center, I get to choose what comes in and what goes out.

Yesterday I was reminded of this lesson while meandering the streets of San Fransisco. I’m not really a “city girl,” but I can get down with the fast paced vibe for a few days. At some point while pretend dress shopping with a girlfriend, exhaustion suddenly set in. I no longer felt giddy and light hearted about the whole experience of make up counters and sparkly items that cost more than a month’s rent.

The disturbing reality of class divides in America hit me on the train out of the city. I looked around and saw that almost everyone was holding a smart phone in their hands, a young mother was asking for money, and a drunk man vomiting while mumbling words I couldn’t understand.

I took a deep breadth and felt my stomach turn. The nausea crept up to my throat. “Do not take it on, sweet one,” said a voice in my head. But, it was too late. The empathic healer that I am was filled to the brim with pain.

Could this be why so many people choose to numb out with alcohol, sugar, pain meds, opioids, weed, etc?

When I really looked around, I saw so much suffering. Yes, I know there is always beauty in each moment because there is no yin without yang, but inside the belly of the beast, my heart sunk. I now understand what “soul sucking” means.

IMG_1909How often do we take on energies that do not belong to us from others and our environments? 

If we allow ourselves to truly feel the pain, rather than holding it inside, then what is possible?

What does having a strong heart protector mean?

When we are awake and choosing not to numb out, we have to feel it, otherwise it gets stuck.  That night, instead of feeling it, I took a hot shower and got dressed to go out to dinner with friends, hoping to smooth over this deep dark grief creeping into my lungs.

Nope, I was wrong. The moment I got into the car, I became “sick to my stomach.” I asked my friends to bring me back so I could rest. Whatever I had absorbed that day was ready to come out. The nausea built up to my throat and I began to salivate.

In the moment, all I could think about was how to get well. Looking back, I can analyze it through a Chinese Medicine lens:

  • Chills entered the back of my neck – External Pernicious Influence (Wind)
  • Nausea and stomach fire rising – Rebellious Stomach Qi (Fire Rising)
  • Fast Heart Rate / Shortness of Breadth – Unfelt Grief (Heart- Lung Qi Protector)

I asked Spirit to guide me in releasing what was inside and not mine to hold. I tried to vomit, but nothing came. Instead, I found my finger pressing into a Heart Point near the wrist. It’s the same point that AirBands press, which are worn during travel for those who have motion sickness. These things rock, by the way! I wear them while flying and boating.

Within seconds, I felt my stomach Qi fire travel downward, which caused me to have to pee because the stomach controls fluids. I’d so much rather pee than vomit any day, phew!

I crawled into bed with a hot water bottle, wool blankets and ginger tea to Release the Exterior, or sweat it out. When something comes inside, before it gets too far, let it out through the skin. Bundled with the hot water bottle on the back of my neck and AirBands pressed into my heart (Shen Gate) point, I felt my spirit come home.

When my energy came back, I burned sage and palo santo to dispel any lingering unwanted spirits. I heard the voice from Spirit,

“You are an empathic being, and you must to protect yourself. Grieve and feel the despair of the world, let it move through, do not harbor it inside your body. It is not yours to hold onto anymore, it never was to begin with. Fill yourself back up with love and light, Sweet One. Have compassion for all beings, including yourself. It will not serve you or anyone if you take on what’s not yours.”

IMG_1627The various ways we take on pain manifests differently for each of us.

What happens for you when you take on energy that’s not yours? 

How does it manifest in your body?

How do you protect yourself from energies that do not serve you?

What do these experiences teach you? 

How do you balance loving compassion with taking on energy that’s not yours to hold?

What practices do you turn to for dispelling what’s not serving you?

IMG_1541A few tools I use for dispelling unwanted energies that I pick up from time to time:

  • yarrow flower essence for maintaining healthy boundaries
  • burning sage, palo santo, mugwort
  • a good cry
  • rage work (see previous blog post)
  • sweat it out with a hike
  • balance my attention by spending time in nature’s beauty
  • hot bath with epson salts
  • lemon water
  • connect with a friend to share what’s on my heart
  • music
  • activation statement: “command by body and being to release all that’s not mine and gift it back to the light of consciousness!”

IMG_1664There is a mountain of healing needed on this planet, so remember to protect your heart in the process and release the grief as it arises so you can show up more fully, in service to the Heart of the World.

 

3 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

Metamorphosis

screen shot 2018-11-11 at 11.00.41 amLike a caterpillar going into metamorphosis, I have been through a major transformational moment in life. This recap of 2018 emulates the power of trust, dreaming big, and choosing to say, “Yes, I am whole and completely worthy.”

Nine months ago on the Spring Equinox I wrote in my journal that I wanted to buy a home. I didn’t take the thought all that seriously, or get attached. From where I stood at the time, this dream seemed a long way away. Business was cruising, the gardens were blossoming and I liked my rental situation, enough. 

Six months ago on the Summer Solstice I shared this vision of a home and land with a friend in the Tulsi beds while we made a flower essence. Life got super rocky after that and everything about my housing situation combusted. “Be careful what you wish for,” rang loud in my ears.

The tides had shifted and psychic healers warned me about a major transformation taking place that would only lead me closer to my heart. Even while my heart carried deep pain and grief, I refused to close down and say, “Why is this happening to me?” Instead, I saw it as my heart breaking open while asking, “Why is this happening for me?”

On the Fall Equinox I visited a house in Ashfield that a friend told me about that wasn’t on the market yet. I made an offer, negotiations began, and no realtors involved, the closing took place on the Winter Solstice.

img_2657

Any doubts I had about the power of intention are now gone. As a single female deciding to buy a house, there were many fears and hesitations. It felt way to fast and risky, but there was a strong current underneath the fear that I could not ignore.

Walking with open palms each day, pouring water in the garden for the ancestor guides, filling out piles of paperwork for the bank and lawyer, writing enormous checks –  this current was a force I could not argue with. Everything about the home fit my wish list. Everything. This fate could not be ignored. I had to listen to the call of this home, to my heart.

img_2645

This morning, I look out over the hills as snow falls from the sky blanketing land which I now “own” and feel so much gratitude.  I put “own” in quotations because despite how society views land as property which can be bought and sold, I do not believe the Earth can be owned. The first thing I did upon arriving to “my” house was offer tobacco to the land and share:

“I do not own you. I release all ownership that has come before me and that comes after me. I am here to listen, learn, and be of service to you, land. I am sorry for the way we treat you, please forgive us.”

Immediately I felt a sense of relief in my body and the land. It was like centuries of tension began to soften. The “property” and I were meeting on equal ground. The more I surrendered to the land, the more I felt held by her. This is called being in relationship with land. I look forward to our evolution together in hopefully many years to come.

I call her Moon Castle. Inside this snow globe I am grateful for the many hands and hearts who made this “purchase” and transition possible.

  • The friends who lifted all the heavy boxes of glass jars
  • The family who believes in me
  • The wood from local loggers that burns in the stoves
  • The clean water that runs from the well
  • The fire that warms the hearth
  • The housemates who share this space with me
  • The food that fills my belly
  • The kittens who are tumbling around pulling Christmas ornaments off the tree
  • The forests, fields, barn and stream that have been here way longer than me
  • The chickens for living outside all year even in this blizzard and still laying eggs
  • The music and dance parties already had and more to come
  • The skilled professionals I call on to paint, install, repair and maintain the home
  • The perfect cozy space for my business where I can operate from
  • The willingness to listen and say yes

img_2634

What did I learn from this wild ride known as 2018?  I learned to deepen my trust of myself, first and foremost. From there, I surrendered to a force much stronger than myself. I opened to the mystery. I listened to my heart. I learned never ever give up on my dreams. When my dreams are in right alignment with the health of our planet, they will be supported in more ways than I can ever begin to imagine.

Thank you, 2018 and welcome 2019!

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized