A Year of Picnics


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  • That feeling when the folks youre a fan of becomehellip
  • Rough day yesterday Alistair has had a vicious head coldhellip
  • Letting the light in Both kids have head colds Hearinghellip
  • My homesteading gateway Getting a flock of backyard chickens washellip
  • These are the days we wait for all year thehellip
  • I like to imagine that in addition to we fourhellip
  • In the past week and a half I have bakedhellip
  • Babys first snow Underneath this bear suit are red andhellip
  • I am very easily satisfied A blazing fire in thehellip
  • Carpe diem Seize the day When I first watched Deadhellip
  • I generally dont like to traffic in absolutes but Ihellip
  • We introduced solid food to Alistair today June 30th washellip
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Dark Rye + Pivot

Dark Rye
Heeeeeeeey, friends! Since we last chatted, I have: weathered a snowstorm, in two rounds, witnessed my sweet boy go from being happy and upbeat and making his father and I a pretend pizza at a restaurant to being 103.5 degrees F and afflicted with a sudden onset of stomach flu for 24 hours, and gone to Austin, TX and back. Things have been all kinds of busy.

And I’m busy again this morning. Snowstorms + stomach illness + unexpected travel plans= getting behind on work. I’m also about to wake Huxley up to get him ready for Starseed. I’ll write up a whole post about our experience there (I talked about it several years ago, right around when Huxley turned 2), but this will be his first real day there. He and I visited and observed the program three weeks ago, but today is his first full day. Starseed is an incredible Waldorf-based outdoor experiential preschool located in a yurt, and all over 90+ glorious acres, at Sacred Mountain Sanctuary. The best part? It’s literally on the mountain ridge behind our house! As the crow flies, it’s about 1/2 mile away. As the road rides, though, it takes about 6-7 minutes to get there. More to come!

Otherwise, what I really wanted to tell you about this morning, the reason I set my alarm to wake up early and am already drinking my coffee (chez English is typically a late-to-rise household), is that the episode Dark Rye filmed about me will be airing on the Pivot channel today! Dark Rye is Whole Foods Market’s online magazine and now, since getting picked up by the new cable channel Pivot, a t.v. show. It’s also the reason I travelled to Austin last week. Whole Foods was having a private event for all of their store managers nationwide. They host this event every three years and it’s a big endeavor, with talks, workshops, films, and demos happening all over the city.

Since Dark Rye made a film about me, they asked if I might be able to fly down and do some sort of DIY for the event. The word is still getting out about Dark Rye, even within the company itself, and they wanted to have some of their film’s subjects demonstrating for the staff whatever it is they do, or write about, or sell. I made butter! A lot of butter! And then I turned that butter into compound butters, including honey, orange & lemon zest, fresh basil, and fresh dill. Good stuff.

Dark Rye will be airing on Pivot each Wednesday, at 9:30pm EST/6:30pm PST . Meaning my segment, part of their “Gather” episode, will be on tonight. Exciting! If you have Pivot, check ’em out. Pivot is part of Participant Media, the company responsible for such movies as: Food, Inc., An Inconvenient Truth, The Cove, Good Night and Good Luck, Syriana, Lincoln, and The Help.

Alright, I hear the sound of tiny footsteps on the stairs. Gotta run! Oh, and if Pivot isn’t available where you live, you can still check out Dark Rye online. Their newest issue, Revival, just came out for spring 2014. They’re producing some incredible profiles of folks, in a wide range of disciplines, from food, to jewelry, to furniture, to liquor, and so much more. The quality of their productions is ace, so much so that they won a James Beard Foundation award for “Best Food Group Blog 2013.” Kudos, guys! Job well done!

11 Responses to Dark Rye + Pivot

  • Tracey says:

    So many wonderful things are happening in your world Ashley. Well, except for the stomach flu, that’s no fun.
    I just checked and I do get Pivot and am looking forward to seeing your show. Congratulations.
    Have fun today at Starseed.

  • Jen says:

    What a lovely video on Dark Rye! Glad you were able to go to Austin and had a great time – and super glad Huxley is feeling better. We had the same stomach flu in my house last week, YUCK!

  • Terry Lillie says:

    What a wonderful show…we love it!! Can’t wait to see your big night tonight. :) I recently purchased a couple of your books (chickens/dairy) and they are wonderful. I can’t wait for a Year of Pies to arrive.


  • Melanie J. says:

    Hey girl! Just watched your segment on Pivot/Dark Rye, congratulations! Such a great reminder how a little effort produces something so wonderful, whether it’s gifts or hosting a gathering. Great job!

  • KC says:

    What fun Ashely! Austin I’ve heard from my foodie cousin who lives there is a really great place. :)

  • Joyce says:

    I just watched the video and it was great ! I’m so proud if you! It’s nice to take a peek into your backyard.

  • Kimberli Loveman says:

    Love love love your writing, shares, and wonderful segment on DarkRye!!

  • cheri says:

    Congrats! What a week. Sounds like life is good.

  • Alicia-Marie says:

    From the video: “The better you treat other people, your family, and the planet the closer you kind of get to these glimpses of…I don’t know, you could call it the divine or spirituality.” Wow, that is an awesome outlook, Ashley. Thanks for sharing :).

  • emma says:

    Hi from England! Wow what an amazing blog,thank you for sharing X

  • Cassandra Jones says:

    What a wonderful idea. The video was great, I enjoyed the idea of having friends over to learn together about something. Often times my friends will want to try something I’m doing. I give instructions and then they are off from there. I learn best by doing. The next time they want to try something Im doing I think Ill hold a small gathering and “teach”. Thanks for the idea:)