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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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  • Sometimes being Huxley's mom means dressing up as Wonder Woman (to his tiny Batman) while feeding the wood stove, locking up the chickens, and helping @glennbenglish make dinner. Because, #mom.
  • I'll admit that it's pretty, but we three Englishes (and our feathered friends!) are SO very ready to be done with snow and frost and chill.
  • It's always a good day when @joythebaker stops by. Thanks for sharing food stories, sipping tea, strolling the property, and playing with our Wild child. Safe travels on your southern road trip, and beyond!!!
  • Was weeding the patio and looked up to find this little gnome picking daffodils.
  • Follow the red brick road? Indeed I did.
  • The best part of @fernworks and @killaspro traveling to Southeast Asia in January? The Thai food cooking kick they've been on since their return. Still thinking about these crazy delicious wings @fernworks made last night (using the recipe from @pokpokpdx). Thanks for having us over, buddies!
  • Back at home but missing this sight, from #selbygardens.
  • Family, gardens, and sea creatures are what characterized our time in Florida. I could stare at these exquisite jellyfish all day.
  • Nothing could be finer than to be back in North Carolina. Missed these mountains something fierce!
  • A late winter trip to Florida was exactly what we three Englishes needed, but we are glad to be headed back home to greet the spring in the magical mountains of western North Carolina.
  • Something wicked this way comes. At the Magic Kingdom. First time here as a parent. At Huxley's request, went on the Haunted Mansion ride first. Let the good times roll!
  • Surfside in Sarasota at the in-law's lovely home, light breeze, good reads, good times. Next, on to my dad's place in Tampa. Florida, you're doing good. Reeeeeeeeal good.
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The Kindness of Strangers

One of the best parts of blogging, especially as a full-time stay-at-home writer and mama, are the connections I’ve forged with other folks. Many of those have leapt the digital-to-reality fence, becoming meaningful friendships that I cherish deeply. Others remain strictly cyber (though just as significant), with our interactions occurring through keyboard clicks.

These friends that I’ve made, they’re a generous lot. They’ve sent us boxes of clothes for Huxley, toys for him, hand-knit hats for him, a calender for me, and so very much more over the years. Three new friendships have emerged over the past several months. Each of these ladies, through no prompting of my own, have graciously, generously sent us some of their creations, both through the mail and in person. Allow me to introduce you to:

Taryn: A small measure sponsor, Taryn lives with her husband, Jeff, and toddler, Bracken in Mapleton, Oregon. Their business, Wooly Moss Roots, sells handcrafted wooden buttons, herbal remedies, and woolen goods. Taryn was so very sweet, after Huxley’s accident, and sent along the Magical Healing Salve shown above to help his wound heal. And it’s working! We put some on each night before he goes to sleep, as he points to it and questions “cream?”

Molly: A local lady, Molly operates her business, Farmer Jane Soap, out of Fairview, NC with her business partner, Sydney. Their soaps contain about 1/4 goat’s milk per bar, with the remaining ingredients consisting of olive, coconut, and palm oils, natural fragrances, lye, and  bit of water. Molly is also a small measure sponsor, and sent me a sampling of soaps pictured above, along with a little lion bar for Huxley!

Stacy: A Seattleite, Stacy is a 5-grade school teacher by trade and a passionate urban homesteader by preference. She’s also the voice behind the adorable,  inspirational blog Seattle Seedling. I can’t quite remember how we connected, but we’ve been chatting for several months. She was recently visiting the area with friends and stopped over for a spell several weekends ago. During her visit, she gifted Hubs and I with the Washington state lavender (from Seqium!) and homemade Herbs de Provence shown here.

These gifts, thoughtfully, generously, lovingly given to us by women that I barely know, let me know that the tendency and inclination for kindness persists in this world. Long ago, I remember reading a quote from Anne Frank, the holocaust victim whose diary of a young girl was required (and terribly moving) reading when I was in high school. She wrote something along the lines of “I still believe, in spite of everything, that people are truly good at heart.”

So do I Anne, so do I.

7 Responses to The Kindness of Strangers

  • Stacy says:

    You’ve given me the gift of inspiration and education in ways you didn’t even know. :) I am equally grateful and so glad we’ve connected! xo

  • Thank you for introducing me to your lovely friends:) I know exactly how you feel, Blogging has created a very real, very inspiring group of like-minded friends for me, that I am so grateful for.

  • That is so sweet! I feel at times that blogging has become the new “pen-pal” connection. I have started meeting some lovely people, and our relationship has slowly extended away from the ether and into our immediate realities.

    Thank you so much for letting us know about your friends and their products.

    xo,
    Kristina

  • Melanie says:

    These relationships you speak of are what I hope to create through starting my own blog. I am extremely new to the blogging world and admiditly know nothing, other than I’m having fun slowly learning. Thanks for the inspiration and motivation!

  • Oh Ashley, this post nearly brought me to tears! I adore the quote at the end. Anne Frank is one of my heroes.
    I’ve received some unexpected gifts lately and it made my heart burst wide open. I’m constantly amazed by people’s generosity.

    So glad the salve has been helping Huxley! Bracken points to the salve on the shelf whenever he needs some, it always makes him feel better.
    If Huxley and Bracken meet in person one day, I’m sure they will have a lot of fun together. :)

    We’re so grateful to be sponsors on your beautiful blog and glad to know you. You have a bright Spirit.

    Keep shining!

    Love, Taryn

  • Love that farmer Jane soap! I’ve picked it up at our tailgate in Black Mountain and thought it was wonderful. Looking so forward to picking up a copy of your pie book soon soon soon!

  • Louise says:

    After reading through this story it is truly inspiring! I work for a team called American Bear where the originators have created a documentary about how the kindness of strangers has saved them throughout their travels. After spending several months working with this team, I am amazed every day at just how kind and thoughtful people can really be. We post these types of stories to our website iamakindstranger.com and I wanted to know you would want to share your beautiful story here as well! Thank you for brightening my day :)