books

QUENCH

 

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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  • Clap along if you feel like happiness is the truth. @biltmoreestate
  • I had the most profoundly memorable experience today. The cookbook club at Haywood County Library (the county adjacent to mine) hosted me, and by hosted, I mean 12 ladies selected recipes from my book
  • 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.
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Recent Acquisitions

If you’ve been reading this little blog of mine for any length of time, you know I’m the sort of gal that typically likes to make things herself. Which is to say, I’d rather gather my own eggs, extract my own honey, make my own floor cleaner, and simmer my own mug of chai than purchase them. Sometimes, though, something comes along that gives me pause, makes me take note, and, on occasion, decide to go ahead and pony up the cash for the other guy’s version.

When Jen and I were recently shooting the images for my Homemade Irish Cream post on Design Sponge, she asked for a sip. Apparently she liked it, as her nearly immediate reply after taking a taste was “Trade ya some lavender bath products for a bottle!” Since my beauty regimen is super simple (apply SkinFare, morning and evening, wash my face with warm water, etc.), I was initially a bit leery of what these products might deliver, in terms of both ingredients and quality.

Jen, however, knows her stuff. She’s got a great eye for natural skin care and a beautiful complexion to prove it. After we finished shooting, she opened up a sample bottle of lavender salve, I took a whiff, read the ingredient listing, put some on my hands, and knew I’d found a winner.

Ever since, each night just before bed, I rub a bit of salve onto my lips and across my hands. The scent is perfectly balanced, not too heady with lavender like some products can be, and not so subtle that you’re nearly pressing your face into the product to find even the faintest whiff. The texture is creamy and substantive, just what you want to protect hands, elbows, and any other exposed bits during the ravages of winter (and beyond).

Jen carries these products, from New Mexico-based spa Los Poblanos, in her fantastically curated shop of leather goods, jewelry, and apothecary items, Cisthene. Here’s a description of the spa, from her site:

Los Poblanos is a historic inn, spa and organic farm in New Mexico. Their unique spa products are made from lavender from their own fields on a 1932 Garland stove. Lavender is one of the most ancient, and trusted homeopathic treatments for stress relief, restful nights and easing headaches.

Formulated by Los Poblanos owner, Penny Rembe to heal her rough gardener’s hands, this salve is a “miracle cream” and has rightfully earned cult-like status among beauty editors. Use it on rough hands, elbows and knees – it also soothes burns and insect bites. Rub on temples to relieve headaches or under the nose for insomnia. Made with beeswax, jojba oil, shea butter and lavender oil.

Like I said, I’m typically the DIY type. Some things, though, are just better left to the professionals. This little discovery is one of them. I invite you to check out Los Poblanos’ lavender line. I’ve taken to calling it “Ms. Jen’s Cream with Nite-Nite Juice” to Huxley. He approves just as much as I do.

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