yoga, a photographic demonstration

Here we are, before we begin practicing yoga.  There’s a lot of life here.  Lots of good stuff.  Plenty to learn, and room to grow.  But it’s kind of chaotic.  Unorganized.  Wild.beginning

So, we start doing some asana.  By “asana” I mean a series of physical exercises designed to stabilize and strengthen our bodies so that we can function on a higher level and fulfill our obligations without undue stress or pain.  We stabilize what is wobbly, strengthen what is weak, and stretch what is stiff.playing mule

Those exercises can by nature be a bit strenuous.

scything oatsscything oats 3

asanaBut in the end, we have this.  We are clean.  The question is – what now?clean and green

Something is bound to happen.  Will we return to chaos?  That would be easy.weeds long

Having lived long enough to know that we do not have control over everything that happens in life, we can now consider how to most effectively participate in the co-creation of our world.  If we cannot MAKE something happen, we can at least shape our response to life’s flow.  A good way to engage in this process is through pranayama (breathing exercises).  This work incorporates the bodily strength and flexibility gained in asana (physical exercises) and applies the power of the breath to our internal energetic system.  Breath is powerful stuff.  How we breathe can change how we sleep, how we wake, how we think, and how we feel, to name just a few.  It’s a long term project.  We might feel different after a singular practice, but we will feel VERY different after months, or years, of practice.

garlic planted


Pranayama leads naturally toward meditation and prayer.  It’s like a yellow brick road, or Hansel’s stones glittering in the moonlight.  The beautiful silent work of meditation, the powerful connectivity of prayer, are amplified by the practice of asana (to make our bodies comfortable) and pranayama (to turn down the static of our mental/emotional states).  Whatever our faith, our path to connect with that which cannot be seen, the deep attentive self-control and focus gained through this integrated yoga practice takes us deeper along the way.strawberry flower

monarch 1susanas9three peeksIt’s a work with no end in sight.  No kidding.  But it’s a good work, and the rewards are abundant beyond measure.robesoncukes and tomatoesglass gem grouptime 5

spring cleaning

old gardenComing up on 12 years ago, we mudded in our first garden in this hollow. To our surprise, it grew well. With a little help from our friends, we had some fresh food all winter and were ready to keep growing when Spring came. Year after year, our garden grew. We grew for ourselves, for our friends and family, and then for “our people”, the share-holders in our small CSA, starting with just about ten folks. The CSA grew to forty families at its peak, then we backed off. And backed off some more. Last year, we were back to just about ten families, right here in our home county.

But this year, we are letting go.

It is not easy to let go.pretty garden

I am one of those people who wants to do everything.

I want to be involved with my children’s education, here at home. I want to grow all our food and cook great meals from scratch. I want to be a good partner to my Fellow Man, a helpful daughter, a supportive sister, a loving friend, an involved member of my community. I want to pitch in twenty bucks to protect elephants, wolves, and endangered soil micro-fauna. I want to drive people to the polls. I want to say YES to every request to teach yoga in the surrounding communities. I want to knit a sweater and crochet baby blankets. I want to stir BD preps. I want to sing in the church choir, and some rock n roll songs too. I want to share and write out what is meaningful, enjoyable, and true for whoever wants to read it. I want to live and love and enjoy this excellent opportunity at LIFE.

And, this year, we are on the brink of some big changes. We intend to build a new home on our new land and get moved. In order for that big piece of work to happen, we (I) have to let some things go, and our little CSA is one of them.

We will still grow our own food, and probably too much of it. Old habits die hard. Anyone who comes to help me weed or hoe or harvest will be sent home with plenty. But we won’t be selling baskets. My heart breaks a little bit at this reality, but like so many heartbreaks, there’s an opportunity underneath it.splash

As Spring unfurls its green fronds, this is my exploration – how to move forward in a new way. How to keep what is truly necessary and good, let go of what may also be wonderful but not so necessary right now, making room for what is on the horizon. It is not easy, but it is good work for the inside of my head and heart.  It is work best done with a pack of seeds in my pocket (just not too BIG a packet) and a hoe in my hands.

However Spring comes in your neck of the woods – I hope you have good work, too.first daffodil

it’s about time

time 4It’s about time to dig those sweet potatoes.  Jewels waiting to be found under the soil.

It’s about time to throw a Biodynamic Conference.

It’s about time to mow down the rank growth of Summer, and feed it to the Fall. time 1

It’s about time to sow cover crops.  They need time to grow while the sun still shines.

It’s about time to be finished putting up food in the pantry and freezer.  Enough is enough.time 5

It’s about time to start eating some kale.

It’s about time to package up the seeds of the season.time 2

It’s about time to contemplate breeding the milk goat.

It’s about time to fix the chicken coop roof.

It’s about time to stack firewood, and cover it well, so it stays crispy dry.

It’s about time to pick up knitting needles again.

It’s about time plant the last of the cilantro and lettuce to see us into the winter.

And while I’m waiting for the watering can to fill, so I can water the freshly transplanted lettuce, I am tempted to walk away from the filling bucket, to use the time to do another thing on this endless list of things to do.  It’s about that time that a breeze hits my face.  The evening light sparkles through the trees.  My shoulders relax.  My spine lengthens.  I remember.  Once upon a time, I heard some wise men say that time is our own creation.

It’s about time.

It’s about time to just stand there, letting the watering can fill, with the sun and the breeze on my skin.

It’s about taking our own sweet time.

Making our own sweet time.

Making our own time sweet.

Oh, sweet time.time 3