inhale...exhale...relax your shoulders...repeat as often as needed

Friday, December 30, 2016

Hymn #1 A Prayer For This House       Louis Untermeyer 

May nothing evil cross this door 
and may ill fortune never pry 
about these walls may the roar and rain go by

By faith made strong these rafters will 
withstand the battering of the storm. 
Though all the world grow chill will keep us warm.

May peace walk softly through these rooms, 
touching our lips with holy wine 
until every casual corner blooms into a shrine

With laughter drown the raucous shout 
and though the sheltering walls are thin 
may they be strong to keep hate out and hold love in. 

Saturday, December 24, 2016


here is a lovely vermont holiday story written and read by willem lange.

i invite you to brew a cup, snuggle up and give it a listen.


Tuesday, December 20, 2016

blue and whites

so many of my favorite things in one place...
homegrown, hand dyed indigo, scavenged birch bark and balsam needles from our very own trees. 
...and more paper white bulbs brought up from the root cellar 
(can there ever be too many?), 
blooming in the west facing windows,
overlooking the green mountains of vermont.

a meditation in spare simplicity.


the solstice is near. 
to you dear readers...

Sunday, December 18, 2016


erin elizabeth potts
who died seven years ago today at the tender age of 18.

do not squander love, friends.

and remember that 
"e"very day we wake up in this world is a blessing, 
filled with possibilities.


Thursday, December 15, 2016

hunkered in

This is what hibernation looks like at our house. Cold and frosty outside, cozy and light inside.

I made a pot of soup with leeks dug from the garden last week and homegrown fingerling potatoes brought up from the root cellar. Roasted squash and steamed grains and dark greens are on heavy rotation for suppers. I baked a big batch of granola on Monday and stewed some dried fruit (recipe from Laurel's Kitchen), both delicious on plain yogurt. We bought a carton of citrus via a local fundraiser and the grapefruit and oranges brighten our breakfasts.

Blooming Christmas cactus, paper whites and amaryllis bulbs just beginning to show their green shoots decorate the windowsills. The Meyer lemon is getting ready to bloom it's fragrance in our bedroom. I love seeing the beautiful blue green acres of balsams from our windows.

The snow comes across the valley in a gray curtain nearly every day. The bitter cold and fierce winds are more the hallmark of deep winter, but they are with us now. Tomorrow's high temperature is forecast to be 9 degrees. The bird feeders are aflutter with chickadees, goldfinches, nuthatches and other brave little birds. Interconnected animal tracks in the snow look like lace from the upstairs windows. 

We eat by candlelight at breakfast and supper, the days are so short right now. The light of the full moon on the snow illuminates the landscape and creeps into the house in the middle of the night.  

Laundry dries on wooden racks, humidifying the dry indoor air. Slippers combat the daytime thermostat set at 65 degrees, blankets and quilts fend off the 62 degrees at night. I brew Russian caravan, kukicha twig and green tea. 

Bits and pieces of sewing projects litter the dining table along with postage stamps, envelopes and strapping tape. Our mailbox is a friendlier place these days, with more than junk mail and bills to offer. Packages show up in the breezeway now and then. It's feeling a bit more festive each day around here. 

Dear readers, what does hibernation look like at your house? Or maybe you are in the midst of summer where you live...

Sunday, December 11, 2016

outdoors::indoors #2

-zero degrees and frosted crab apple trees at dawn this morning.
-cozy wilma dozing in yesterday's late afternoon sunshine.

Saturday, December 10, 2016

just a year ago and now

december 6, 2015
december 9, 2016
last night i hosted book club here at our bit of earth.

patience, dreams, hard work, cooperation, gratitude, 
lifetime choices based on intention, 
dang good luck, team work.




Thursday, December 8, 2016


::Tomorrow's low temperature may be 11 degrees F, so I thought is might be time to dig the last of the leeks from the snowy garden beds.
::These little whirligigs are nostalgic reminders of our family's youngest days, when all four kids were wide-eyed in December. The clementines make me think of Mr. Edwards and the treasures he brought to Laura and Mary.

What are you noticing today, friends?

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Monday, December 5, 2016

pull up a chair

It's been snowing since early this morning. The quiet and peace is wrapping itself around the house. This season, so filled with precious light and illumination, feels even more magical here in Vermont. 

Inspired by the mood, I stitched this "star-of-wonder-north-star" ornament today. And I am rereading Snow Child. My mug is filled with steaming cider. 

There is shelter here friends. Come on in.


Friday, December 2, 2016

don't forget...

...that sometimes in the midst of change and upheaval
it's healthy to take a break.
skip the news,
take a walk,
light a candle,
take deep, long breathes,

and exhale.


let things go for a bit.


Thursday, December 1, 2016

world aids day 2016

Today I am remembering all the young men we lost when I worked as a volunteer in the mid-80's. AIDS was rampant and scary back then. I learned so much about compassion and grace from those guys. And courage. 

I still remember each of them. 

Progress has been made, for sure, but a cure is still elusive. 

There are so many things that can get in the way of a long and healthy life.  I see this every time I walk into the hospital as a volunteer chaplain. Truly, sometimes life can seem like a crap shoot.

The one thing I am sure of is the power of love. It's a powerful force and perhaps our greatest hope.

I invite you to walk into the month of December with me...filled with intention to greet each day, each person, each situation as the sacred gift that it is.