books

QUENCH

 

HANDMADE GATHERINGS

 

A YEAR OF PIES!

 

HOMEMADE LIVING: HOME DAIRY

 

HOMEMADE LIVING: KEEPING BEES

 

HOMEMADE LIVING: CANNING & PRESERVING

 

HOMEMADE LIVING: KEEPING CHICKENS


Instagram

  • What better way to clear out a case of the Mondays than a giveaway?! See that lovely locally-made wooden bag dryer there on my wall? Want to win one of your own (you do, trust me)? Pop on over to small measure to enter. Link is in my profile.
  • This guy right here? While he might be growing bigger every day, the truth is that becoming a mother has helped me to grow. To be more present. To be more patient. To be more empathic. As I tell all my soon-to-be-mama friends, parenthood is the toughest work you'll ever do, with by far the biggest payoff. The lovin', and the learning, are so, so good. Happy Monday, friends.
  • Today was a good day. This view, from the top of our road, certainly helped make it so.
  • I think the 48-hour flu I've been fighting has finally succumbed to my assault of grapefruit seed extract, osha root, propolis, elderberry syrup, Oscillococinum, apple cider vinegar, rose hips, hibiscus, ginger/lemon/honey/cayenne tea, and neti pot with goldenseal tincture. I don't take getting sick sitting down. And now, a winter storm, possibly. Bring it, I say. Happy weekending, friends!!!
  • This guy.
  • I've been waiting, for a book like this, to come into my life. Whoa. Picked this up a few weeks ago at @screendoorasheville as a New Year's gift to @glennbenglish. Just started reading it myself and it couldn't possibly be more of what I need to see, right now. Completely on point, wholly attuned to what I'm presently sensing and curious about and inspired by, and infinitely humbling.
  • Warm enough today to play soccer down in our lower field, do a bit of weeding in the garden, and push a nearly-too-big 4 year-old in his
  • New year, new moons, new calendars. Right on, right on.
  • @shelterprotectsyou has been posting images of the wedding she and @sheltercollective had here in September all week. They built this altar for the ceremony, and it's still here, just past the house, on the way to the chicken coop. We pass it every day. Some days, I casually note its beauty and the way it feels like an outdoor church here in our forested cove. Other days I barely register it as I scurry about, doing this and that around the property. Today, though, in the stark, grey, drizzly setting, it was quietly regal. Happy to have had her visuals prompt me to stop, look, and listen to this physical testament to love.
  • The chickens told me they much prefer the rain this week to last week's frigid weather, thank you very much. I couldn't agree more.
  • These potatoes @tableasheville changed my culinary life. They called them hash browns, but they were unlike any I'd had before. Par-baked perhaps, smashed into halves I'm guessing, and then roasted and maybe finished with a quick fry in the skillet and scattered with large sea salt granules? Whatever the method, the result was a creamy, yellow center and a crispy, salty exterior. Quite possibly the best hash browns I've ever had.
  • This caramelized cinnamon citrus

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Monthly Archives: June 2010

Purple Mountain Majesties





The Lavender Festival did not disappoint. We enjoyed fair weather, delicious food (now that I’m eating poultry, I sampled the lavender & citrus chicken salad sandwich. Holy wow!), and the company of fine friends. Only 364 more days until purple, fragrant bliss can be ours again (this time, with Nugget in tow!).


*To view more images from the farm, check this out.

Top Of the Pops

To the good looking feller on the far right, here’s to you. A true bar setter amongst Dads. If you lived closer, I’d bake you some rice pudding and we’d camp out and watch “Goonies” and “The Birdcage” (“Come on, Gloria!”). ‘Til then, know that I love you and am eternally grateful to have scored such an awesome Pop.


*My dashing Pop, shown with his seven siblings (he’s the second oldest; Lynn, the oldest of the bunch, is seated on the far right. On the back row, from the left, are Lloyd-one of “the twins”-, John, Pete-the other twin- and Bobby-aka “Rooter.” Meg is seated on the far left, next to Kay. What a great bunch of aunts and uncles! And looking so fly!).

Bug Off!

Happy weekend, everyone! My “Small Measures with Ashley” post is up on Design Sponge. This week’s topic discusses all-natural, homemade insect repellents. Don’t be a schmuck like me and wait until after you’ve been assaulted all over the lower half of your body to make my “Mosquito Mist.” Do. It. Now. In fact, make some for Pop to show him you really love him, while you’re at it.


We’re off in less than an hour (with this guy and this gal) to one of my favorite annual events, the Mountain Farm Lavender Festival. There will be goats and chickens and lavender fields and blueberry bushes and labyrinths and mountaintop views and ponds and farm buildings packed with lavender foods (lemonade! cupcakes! ice cream!) and body care items. It’s my fourth year attending and I’m totally pumped.

After that, I’ll dash back into town for the last of the organic gardening classes I’ve been taking with Beth and Christopher out at their farm. The topic is on integrated pest management, which I’m always hankering to learn more about. This awesome buddy will be meeting me there. The day promises to be grand, on all accounts!

Have a magical weekend, and don’t forget to give a shout out to Pop tomorrow. If yours is anything like mine, than you are a very blessed individual!

*Image from here.

One Door Closes…





This week marked the end of an era. We wrapped up photography for the fourth book in my “Homemade Living” series, “Keeping Bees.” That means that I’ve officially toiled (lovingly, of course) through four books in just under two years. Researched, assimilated, experimented with, propped, photographed, edited, copyedited, proofread, and fretted over four books. And now, it’s done. Hear that, eye twitch? You can stop your jumpiness now-or, at least, you can take a breather until Nugget arrives in early November.


It’s wild to think that, from concept to completion, my team at Lark Books and I have pulled this off. It’s been an extraordinary gift, not just in terms of finding work doing something that I love, but one that has allowed me to discover and flourish in something that excites, inspires, and compels me to keep learning, keep growing, keep reaching out to the wider community to find solutions for living a more sustainable, homemade life.

I’ve got ideas galore for more titles in the series. We’re waiting to see how the first two do, though, before signing on for more. In the meantime, I’ll flip through the completed books, smile and marvel at what a committed collective of individuals can achieve, and feel grateful for all that is and all that’s coming. Oh, and get ready for the other door, into motherhood, that’s opening wide in a mere 4 1/2 months!!!

You Never Know



You never know who, or what, you’ll find creeping, crawling, slithering, sliding, pouncing, prancing (mostly just Dexter), hopping, buzzing, or otherwise maneuvering around the English grounds.


We found this prehistoric looking fella Monday evening. We’re quite certain it’s a snapping turtle, but it sure does look like an alligator-dinosaur hybrid to me!