Saturday, November 30, 2013

Stories told ...

“There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you.” Maya Angelou

Hi dear readers. This is where I have been the last little while.

On mountain tops doing yoga ...
In supermarket parking lots looking up ...

Crashing wedding parties with great friends ...

In awe ...

Looking up at the moon ...

More awe ...

Looking up through teepees ...

Walking and breathing ...

Watching seasons ...

With my Heron friend ...

Just looking up ...

Thursday, September 12, 2013

The only truth is love ...

I have been thinking a lot about the state of us lately. Us. You and me.

I generally do not read the news, or watch it for that matter. I rely on conversations with people to inform me of things that are going on on the world. I do this because when I keep up with current affairs through the news system we have cultivated, I feel hopeless. I become overwhelmed with all the terrible things we are doing to our earth and to each other. I actually think this is the point of much of media. To dishearten us and to make us feel as if things are so huge, so bad that what we do as individuals, can make no difference. We rely on faulty governments, run by people with agendas that have lost heart ... lost sight. Sight of the fact that we are one family, living in one house. A living family sharing one living earth.

"God gives us love; something to love he lends us." Alfred, Lord Tennyson

Often times, we only realize what is important to us, when things we take for granted or love, are taken away.

We take for granted the fragile structure upon which civility depends.

We fight amongst ourselves and try to prove our points and impose our views on others. We are convinced we are right and try to silence or hurt those who differ.

Between agriculture disasters, human rights, technological espionage, pharmaceutical & agro intimidation, climate issues, mass extinctions, educational policies, population crisis ... I don't know where to turn.

We take and take. We pollute. We fight We destroy. We consume.

There is no way out for us. 
We are too many. Too damaged.

This is how I feel when I watch and read the news. I get caught up in it once or twice a year.

So I turn it all off and I go back in time.

I go and make bread with soaked flour. I make sauerkraut and take comfort in the fact that organisms older than man are still here and doing their thing for my kraut to be sour. I talk to my friends and family. I hug my husband and thank Creator for the privilege. I squeeze Napa. I fast to remind myself of hunger. I fast to slow down. I do yoga to remind myself of my body and the miracle of strength and movement. I meditate. I go see my farmer and butcher and fishmonger and listen to their wise words. I engage in my community. I work with my crystals and show tremendous gratitude for my beautiful clients. I knit. I turn off my computer. I garden. I scale down.

What I realize, is that there is no other way. We have to live smaller lives. Slower lives. Lives with much less consumer choice. Lives with depth and meaning. Lives where we are considerate and care for each other and all that lives on the planet we share. Lives where we care about the welfare of the animals and plants that we eat. Families and friendships have to mean something again. We have to be able to tolerate discomfort in relationships. We have to bring back eccentricity. Character. Honor. Valor. Curiosity. Respect. Diversity. Love. 

Could we even fathom only taking as much as we need?

We have to fundamentally understand that we are one unit. There is no separation. When we harm others we harm ourselves. When we silence others, we silence ourselves.  When we harm our planet we harm our home. The only one we have.

We have to love. To love our home, and all things in it. There is no other way.

The only truth is love.

It all starts, and ends, there.

Alright. I need a hot chocolate.

Join me will you?

Time to dish.

Cocoa with Saffron for your Soul

Here is what you need:
  • 1/4 cup of fairly traded dark cacao
  • A cinnamon stick
  • A pinch of saffron 
  • 1 liter of whole milk, full fat please 
  • Maple syrup to sweeten to your liking
Here is what to do:

Quite simply, bring the milk to a slow simmer & mix in all your ingredients. Allow to simmer together for about 10 minutes, stirring to make sure there are no cocoa clumps. Then remove the cinnamon stick and drink and contemplate what you love.

Peace & Love


Friday, August 30, 2013

Thank you Summer, hello Fall ...

There are many words in my mind. Many topics. Many feelings. Many things I have wanted to say here over the last little while.

I have wanted to talk about cities and how we forget what we're made of.
To talk about farms and futures.
Not being able to get butter from grass fed cows here in Montreal.
Crystals and energy.
Local herbal teas that I make.
How change takes place. 
Goat necks.
Cow necks.

And I intend to talk about every single one of these things.

As soon as I am back.

I am off dear readers, to recharge after an exceptionally busy summer filled with amazingly spectacular healing arts clients, #365daysofyogaadventure, local herbal teas (TWO WEEKS AWAY!!! :)), crystals, drums, meditations and lots and lots of food from the heart. I am off to the ocean to park my behind in the sand, inhale that ocean air and fill my brain and heart with beauty.

Thank you Summer, hello Fall.


Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Rainy days and cows ...

Sitting here, warm and toasty in the kitchen, feet cozy and looking out the window (and typing...typing also) on what is our third day of rainy weather (with no end in sight, I'm afraid) I'm going to declare something to you. Here I go. You see... I have this thing for rainy days ... and cows ... I really do. People scowl. They complain. They hunch. They take up umbrella wrestling. They give stink eyes. It's June, they say. It's summer, they say. I'm moving, they say...
Well... I fly in the wet face of such sun dancers, (with galoshes on) and say, not me, dear readers. I completely love these days. I love the sun too, don't get me wrong, but these days, they are a little gift.  I miss them so much in the winter and I am thrilled at the first hint of drops, the soft gray light, the rolling thunder, the change in air. In my world, there has always been something magical and calming in the sounds and stillness of a rainy day. The patter of drops against the window. The muffled sounds of tires across asphalt. The swishing sounds trees make as they sway in the wind, leaves dancing delightedly. And everything is so green. Alive and growing. 
Water is a life giver, a cleaner, it moves things along.
If you are in the countryside, rainy days bring a green beyond words, droplets everywhere reflecting life, quiet animals and tiny birds shaking off wet wings. The air is filled with humidity, the scent of earth...
Oh, what? Yes, yes ... the cow thing... yes ...
Well, believe it or not dear readers, I really do have this cow thing. I rarely come across a cow in all of his (or her) splendor, where I do not stop to say hello and admire. Yes, I talk to cows. I wave at them and smile. I love them. Everything about them. The way they stand, sit, chew, swat flies, nurse young ones, flare nostrils, poop ... I love to see them in the different seasons, landscapes ... they are just so perfect ... I just want to stay and look at them forever. Now put rainy days and cows together .... whoa.
So that's kinda' the cow thing... which also translates over to a sheep thing but that's for another time ...

An open window brings sounds of droplets and smells of cool earth ...

Everything green rejoices ...

Cows! My lovelies ...

Look at them ... look at the little one in the center ... look at her ... ouff aman aman ...

They are so the best. I love them.




Sheep. Next time ...

Look at them ... bebeks ...


I've written about rain quite a bit. Like a lot. It's contemplative weather. It's also the perfect time to bake a beautiful loaf of the best bread ever and eat it straight out of the oven, warm with lots of butter.
Isn't it? :)
Time to dish.

The Best Simple Bread Recipe. Ever.
The second rising ...
Fresh out of the oven and brushed with goat butter ... I am telling you ...
Cooling ... hard to resist ...
Sliced and curvy!

At last ... we are together ...

So here it is dear readers. The bomb bread. You make it by hand, no machine and it is so easy. The actual work time is 15 minutes. The rest is waiting.
Here is what you need:
  • 6 cups of really good, organic white flour (or you could do half white, half whole wheat)
  • 3 tablespoons of local honey
  • 1 tablespoon of sea salt
  • 2 tablespoons of grassy olive oil
  • 2 packages of instant yeast
  • 2 1/4 cups of very warm water
  • Melted goat butter, just enough for brushing the loaves
This is what to do:
  1. Mix 3.5 cups of the flour with the honey, salt and yeast in a big bowl. As big as you got baby! Then add the warm water and stir well, with a wooden spoon (or whatever spoon floats your boat) for about a minute until everything is smooth. Then, stir in the rest of the flour, one cup at a time, until you have a rough dough that is easy to work with.
  2. Flour your counter top or other workspace, then on your dough goes for you to lovingly knead it for 10 minutes. You'll know  it's ready when it is elastic and it feels bouncy in your hand. When ready, place it in a oiled bowl (big one) and it's rise time! 40 minutes in a toasty place (I put mine in an oven that I had pre-heated to 175F.
  3. Now is the time to grease the loaf pans. 2 of them. I grease mine with olive oil.
  4. Punching time! After 40 minutes, take out the bowl and punch down the dough baby! Not insanely hard, now is not the time to get out your aggressions... just enough for it to flatten. Then divide the dough in two, flatten each half with a rolling pin (or your hands, I do mine with my hands, like a pizza dough) until you have a rectangle of about 18x9 inches.
  5. Rolling time! Starting at the short end (the 9" end, to state the obvious) roll your dough up tightly, pressing down with your thumbs to seal after each turn. Pinch the edge of the dough to seal after each turn and when you are at the end, fold the ends under the loaf.
  6. 2nd rising! Place your now dough log into your pans, seam side down and use a knife to slightly mark the top of the bread on the diagonal. Then, brush it with the melted goat butter. Oh yeah baby. Let it rise for 35-50 minutes.
  7. Now, oven at 425F and bake! For 25-30 minutes depending on your oven. Check it at 25 ... it should be golden brown and hollow when you tap it. As soon as it comes out of the oven, brush it again with goat butter! Quick!
Let it cool and then slice it up! It is so good dear readers. I know the instructions are a bit wordy but I promise you it is so easy to do and so amazingly good you will thank me.
I'm off to the cycle now ... all this bread ... and butter ... thighs expanding ... totally worth it ...

Friday, June 7, 2013

Fly? Is that you? ...

My my, how time breezes by. Truly. I thought I would post a couple of photos since so many of you have been asking. Thank you for asking :). I love you dear readers.

Here are a few of the things that have been happening around here ...

Fire & Flowers during my Spring Flower Fire Ritual ...

Birthday parties old school style ... walking in a big group was the best!

Feasting with family for the beginning of the Spring season. How blessed we are.

Some pretty awesome sheep were seen on a ranch outside Montreal.

Our front flowers went up. How much joy they bring ...

On another amazing drive to visit this awesome lady, this was seen. And it was so true :).

A beautiful little family was spotted in the spoiled rotten dog's domain ...

These ladies threw an amazing party for this wine ...

Napa napped. Bebek.

Bees and flowers ...

Ruth and her husband make this honey on their farm Hunter Honey Farm. They don't have a website. They are the best.

Supper in the sun, by the river, with above-mentioned awesome lady. I love you Kim. So lucky to be carrying her teas.

River power in Eganville. It was such a beautiful force.

Some pretty kick ass salad was had here.

Gardening a la Oana ...

Napa napping. Can't get enough.

Crystal circles and rituals. The most beautiful ever. Part of massage therapy work with some of my clients.

Last one. I swear!

Yoga in Knowlton. Part of my #365daysofyogaadventure. Love it here. I'm on day 136 baby! 

There was a water "crisis" in Montreal for a few days. I thought I would collect ...

This was the new water while I was waiting ...

Was pretty thirsty for the new water ...

Amazing piece by these amazing people at this amazing place.. It was stunning.

Anniversary's were celebrated.

Seeds were celebrated ...

Much champagne was consumed at this incredible new place in Old Montreal at a super cool event thrown by this amazing lady.

Napa with her plants.

This little guy popped up to say hello.

Lobster carnage at my in-laws. They are the greatest ever.

Fly? Is that you? #flykiller