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HANDMADE GATHERINGS

 

A YEAR OF PIES!

 

HOMEMADE LIVING: HOME DAIRY

 

HOMEMADE LIVING: KEEPING BEES

 

HOMEMADE LIVING: CANNING & PRESERVING

 

HOMEMADE LIVING: KEEPING CHICKENS


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  • Local friends! I'm chatting about my book
  • Round and around. The goods tunes don't stop when Huxley's cousins Sam and Zeke are visiting (he calls them his
  • Such a thoughtful birthday gift from @melissaweisspottery. Been using it every morning to get sugar from the sugar bowl out for coffee. Thanks, sweet friend!
  • If you're going to help a friend with wedding planning, then this is totally the view you should have whilst doing so. Lovely afternoon sipping hard cider, eating hush puppies, and helping @shelterprotectsyou plan, with @thecuriouseye @forvillagers @toandfromwithlove and Claire Hummel at the Grove Park Inn.
  • Bonsais, I love you. @thencarboretum
  • Wild berries for breakfast, with French toast. So, so good.
  • Quilts of flowers, from yesterday's @thencarboretum excursion.
  • Misty, magical day for strolling at the N.C. Arboretum.
  • Happy Friday, friends! Got a new
  • The Land of Sky, indeed.
  • This amazing pile of all organic produce hails from Hominy Valley Organic Farm, a gorgeous plot of earth just down the road from us. Tom's prices are astoundingly good (he posts a weekly listing of what's available on his FB page). If you're in the area, Fridays are open farm days for purchasing produce. If you go, please do tell him I sent you!
  • The amazing Dave Bauer, mastermind and baker extraordinaire behind @farmandsparrow and @allsoulspizza, cradling some precious loaves for yesterday's River District Tailgate Market. Easily the best bread (and pastries, and pizza!) I have EVER had!!!

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Monthly Archives: November 2010

Paying It Forward

Happy Friday, everyone! My “Small Measures with Ashley” post is up over on Design Sponge. In advance 0f Thanksgiving, I’ve been thinking a good deal about gratitude and thankfulness. Accordingly, today’s post discusses “paying it forward,” or returning a good deed done to you by bestowing kindness, thoughtfulness, and courtesy to those we interact with in the future. It’s an idea I can’t get enough of.


We’re taking it easy again this weekend chez English. I find that passing the days at home with my little guy and his Papa (who told me the other day he’d like Huxley to call him “Daddy-O”) provide more bliss and love than I ever imagined possible. It’s chilly outside, but with hot tea, delicious meals, and tons of snuggling, we’re all toasty inside.

I have two questions for you, and they’re completely and utterly unrelated, so hopefully there will be enough variation between them for some of you to have suggestions in each camp. Here goes:

1) I’ve been inspired to learn how to both sew and knit now that I have a little guy. I’d love to hear your suggestions on books for beginners on both topics (also, Asheville area folks, if you know great people teaching classes on either topic, clue me in, please!).

2) I’m looking for a good holistic infant/toddler/child care book, one in line with my own natural way of healing ethos. Have any suggestions?

I hope your weekend takes you away to exactly where you most wish to go! See you soon!

*Image from here.

Dairy Rappers Delight


Absolutely adoring this video. Dairy farmers promoting sustainable farming practices while making farming chic, modern, and especially gorgeous (because, hey, that’s how it is in real life, right?????).

I’m especially fond of Ms. Exceptionally Lovely Farmer when she raps “In my wax coat and boots, I’m proper Farmer Giles; Now look, you urban folks have stole our style.” So true. I love how farm clothing and gear have become fashionable in city settings. In so doing, it seems to validate the entire renewed interest in agriculture and nature and food cycles and systems and hand-crafted, handmade, home-spun modes of living so prevalent today.

For those of you curious about the lyrics (which are both hilarious and yet simultaneously quite inspiring, as Yeo Valley is clearly making serious strides in their attempt to tread lightly on the soil they toil), check out this link.

Big up your chest!

My True Love Gave To Me


This week I’ve dealt with the emotional and physical challenges that come from sleep deprivation, caring for a tiny newborn, pain while nursing, the physiological pendulum swing of hormones that accompanies the shift from pregnancy to nursing, and the continued challenges of anemia and wound healing following our wild birth.


I’ve been weepy and then euphoric, irritated and then blissed-out. I’m fairly certain it’s just the baby blues, but we’re taking note of everything and discussing it with my midwives (btw, on a health update, we did learn yesterday that, in addition to Huxley’s awesome weight gain, my blood pressure has gone way down-yeah! on the path towards being preeclampsia-free!!!-and my liver count is climbing steadily upwards!).

Hubs, in his eternal patience, wisdom, and love, gifted me with the above card/art piece yesterday. It couldn’t have come at a better time. He is, at this very moment, mounting it onto a piece of weathered metal so that I can gaze contemplatively at it whenever I find myself needing a boost.

Spouses like mine are more than just life partners, they’re true friends. Thanks, sweets.

Wabi Sabi

Hi everyone! My “Small Measures with Ashley” post is up over at Design Sponge. Today I’m examining the Japanese aesthetic philosophy of Wabi Sabi. I’ve long found its values to align with my own, its worldview to be one which embraces the sort of comfort and acceptance that I espouse, and it’s recognition of the inextricable link between humans and the rest of the natural world to be truly inspirational. Plus, I think it’s cool. There, I said it.

Have a fabulous weekend. We’ve got a whole bunch of nothing planned. Well, not exactly nothing, but no plans to go anywhere. Tomorrow a wonderful woman from the Asheville La Leche League is coming over to help me work on latch issues with Huxley. He latches (boy, does he ever latch!), only it kills every time he does. I know that this will all get easier in the coming weeks and months, but in the meantime, his tiny mouth feels like a vice grip each time we nurse (which, at his age, is a lot; a whole lot). Still, I’m committed to it, especially after learning yesterday at our 3-week postpartum visit that he’s now 6 lbs., 7 ounces, so he’s clearly getting enough nourishment! Plus, his, ahem “output” is vast. Hubs refers to him as “Sir Poops A-Lot.” ‘Tis true. He’ll be Hercules before we know it!

Sunday my mom is coming over again to spend some q.t. with her grandson while I (hopefully) luxuriate in a hot bath and sip calming tea. Of course, as with all things lately, I’m not letting myself get too attached to that idea…you know, “best laid plans” and all…

Wherever your weekend takes you, here’s hoping the destination is a bliss-filled one!

*Image from here.

Eyes Wide Open





Huxley is finally ready for his close up.


That last one has “please don’t eat me” written all over it, no?