Saying Goodbye

284 :: Nasturtims

We are saying goodbye to the garden for the next two weeks. I love this time of year so much, and it is hard to leave, knowing that these nasturtiums will likely not be standing tall when we return.

They’ve given us their spicy sweet all summer long. Wandering around the garden, I gather one last bouquet and inhale deeply before we adventure off across the Atlantic Ocean.

Sage

277 :: Sage

Kneeling down
in the sage
after nighttime revelations,
headaches and sick toddlers,
rain for days,
cold and wet and lovely
and always
so many gifts outside
beckoning us to come
and gather.

“You make it too easy”
he said.

Too easy?
Should I reject “too easy,” I ask;
should I stay inside, withholding,
rather than walk into the wet, wild world
calling with rain?

October Green

273 :: Wooded

Bringing in the house plants that spent the summer outside; wondering at how much they’ve grown; getting soil all over the kitchen table and floor and counter . . .

271 :: Succulent

274 :: October Poetry

274 :: Maybe the Last Bouquet?

The greenhouse seed babies are thriving and this little man has been busy making a mud pit full of “hot cocoa” just outside the door. I’m thinning and he’s brewing; so come on over for some cool microgreens and warm drinks! I love gardening in this giant terrarium on the cusp of autumn. It’s such a paradox to watch new life burst forth as everything else outside slows down and lets go.

272 :: Back to Work in the Greenhouse

276 :: Mud Land

Fermentation Family

265 :: Fermentation Factory

Last fall I wrote a piece for Wild + Free on fermenting with children. It is one of my favorite articles I did for the magazine because everyone in our family helped with the photos, the recipes, and the fermentation! One year later, everyone is gathered around again, making a new ferment: Giardiniera. Jeffrey’s endless enthusiasm for fermentation experimentation is contagious. I think we are raising a whole brood of wildcraft makers and brewers.

266 :: Harvesting Wild Grapes

After the Giardiniera project, we made wild grape soda: one of our September traditions and favorite ferments!

266 :: Wild Grapes

268 :: Wild Grape Soda

Four Season Gardening

255 :: Greenhouse Love

With many thanks to Boppa and Uncle Scott we moved the greenhouse to its new fall and winter home. Ellen is giving it a thorough washing before we fill it with lots of compost and plant it with greens. This will be our first year attempting to grow in all four seasons in Northern Michigan! Jeffrey and I were inspired by listening to a podcast with Elliot Coleman, and now here we go on our first winter gardening adventure . . .

Home Again

247 :: Home Kitchen

We spent August away from home, in a little house on the other side of the county, while we rented our house out (to seven different groups of guests). It was equal parts wonderful and ridiculous. But one of the best parts? Coming home again. There is no where else I would rather be tonight than in my home kitchen, chopping up veggies from our beloved garden for the people I love.

247 :: Time for a Work Break, Papa

My Desk with Little Hands

244 :: My Writing Desk with Little Hands

my desk with little hands
and rose petals
because I want to remember writing here
at Old Gousty
with a view of the woods
Mary Oliver by my side
and rose petals
from roses Grandmommy brought me
and brought me again.
candles for night writing
and an old photo of Maude Louise
(my childhood Airedale)
all of this waiting for me
after Wallace falls asleep
and rain is drumming on the roof
quietly luring me
to my desk
to write.

236 :: The Roses

240 :: Rose Petals

242 :: More Rose Petals

Old Gousty August

213 :: Always Acorns

I’m catching up on photos from this glorious month, and I’m going to let Mary Oliver do the talking tonight . . .

216 :: Legos

In Blackwater Woods
By Mary Oliver

Look, the trees
are turning
their own bodies
into pillars

of light,
are giving off the rich
fragrance of cinnamon
and fulfillment,

and long tapers
of cattails
are bursting and floating away over
the blue shoulders

of the ponds,
and every pond,
no matter what its
name is, is

nameless now.
Every year
everything
I have ever learned

in my lifetime
leads back to this: the fires
and the black river of loss
whose other side

is salvation,
whose meaning
none of us will ever know.
To live in this world
you must be able
to do three things:
to love what is mortal;
to hold it

against your bones knowing
your own life depends on it;
and, when the time comes to let it go,
to let it go.

214 :: In Forest with Book

211 :: Giant Sandbox

212 :: Young Artist at Work

215 :: Flying with Uncle James

217 :: Meditation

217 :: Dark and Sunny Woods

218 :: Hers

219 :: Visitor

226 :: Nearing Dusk

227 :: Old Gousty Stump House

224 :: That Morning Light

224 :: Monitoring

226 :: Those Hands

226 :: Nasturtiums

227 :: Little Gousty Library

228 :: Cousin Love

228 :: Bud Buddies

222 :: August Glow

225 :: Papa

225 :: Water Cousins

229 :: Berry Hands

229 :: Berry Girl

229 :: 35 Pounds of Talk

229 :: Family