Sunday, April 5, 2015

One Year Home...Home?

  It's a very awakening moment to hold still and ponder the happenings of my life these last years.  The gradual change of self as I shift between adventures on the other side of the planet, and betwixt the boring days when you hold secret hopes of adventure knocking unexpectedly upon your door to carry you away, just as the Grim Reaper would visit you in a furious flash changing everything you know in one instant.  Life, instantly altered, never to be the same.

  Daydreaming of an adventurous rescue is about as useful as pouring over all your past lives in a photo album and thinking to yourself "I wish I had..." or, "if only I had known."  It's pointless, and before you know it, you have fabricated an entire scene of unreality, and wasted minutes of your time imagining something that will never exist, then those moments are gone, leaving you exactly where you were before the self-derprecating flood took over your mind, but you are now also missing moments of your life, where you could have been doing something with yourself.

  The last year of my life has been golden.  I spent last summer working for my fifth season for Peaceful belly Farm, a 60+ acre organic farm, to which I owe much thanks, gratitude, and health.  My bosses and co-workers are close friends with which I endured many hours of sweat, blood, tears, sunburns, and miles and miles of outstretched smiles.

  I perfected my crafting of pepper ristras and other artistic food based endeavors as I spent my days picking flowers for a living.  Think about that for a moment.  I go to work, pick flowers all day long, make beautiful arrangements for weddings, and bouquets for local markets and stores. I had the wonderful opportunity to create the dining ambiance for one of our Farm to Fork dinners in which a 5 course meal is paired with a local wine and served at a banquet table positioned in the center of the flower field.  Nature displayed her beauty as the sun set beyond the foothills, candles were lit, and Josie, my boss, sang an aria to the dining patrons.

Carrying the main course from the barn to the flower field during the Farm to Fork dinner.

A garlic braid incorporating sage, lavender, zinnias, poppies, safflowers, and blak-eyed susans.

My amaranth and mushroom habaneros chandelier and gourd candle holders.

I made these wooden flower boxes and included peppers, eggplant, basil, and fennel into the arrangements.

 During the summer I had the blessing of teaching canning to a few friends and had the most wonderful afternoon of canning peaches with my sister, mom, and grandmother.  This was truly a memorable bonding experience I cannot put into words.

  I attended two weddings in the rugged mountainous glory that makes Idaho a place people find, and never let go of.

  During the fall I travelled to Kentucky, Tennessee, and New Mexico, crossing off three states I had never previously been to.  The hollers and forests of Kentucky are earthy smelling caverns I would love my body to be swallowed up by, after passing on from this life.  It seems like if you laid down long enough, mother earth would welcome you back to her roots and embrace you back into the soil, enveloping you in mossy arms and blanketing you in a quilt of leaves.

Trying my best not to fall

Becoming closer with nature everyday.

 While in New Mexico my Step-sister and brother in law took us on quite the adventures, spelunking in caves, to my first live away football game, (which I have to admit was actually quite a great time), to giving us a private tour of the mammal collection at UNM.  A privilege indeed!

  During Christmas I took my grandmother to see Santa, which, without going into personal details, was clarifying for my soul, and hers as well.

  I spent Christmas visiting my dad in Howe, where I grew up.  This is the scene I get from the living room window.  Up one of those canyons I broke my tailbone in a freak sledding accident, which is still proving to be quite painful 3 months later.  Note to self, watch for rocks!!!

  This brings us fairly up to date.  Since winter isn't a time for farming, at the end of every season there is a mad dash to find a job and I am lucky to have found the perfect fit at a restaurant whose practice centers around locally and ethically source food.  I took over co-managing the worm composting bins in the basement and have had a wonderful time feeding what would be food waste, to 60 pounds of red wigglers, collecting their castings, and last weekend when the Boise Farmers Market opened up, brought it full circle as I sold worm casting to local gardeners, returning composted food waste back to the earth.

Teaching my niece the wonders of worms! And probably getting a few cool auntie points in the process.

  So, last year, I was on the polar opposite end of the earth, changing everything about the way I perceive life.  This year I tried my hardest to find my niche while being here at "home", and just about the time I started to feel as if I were myself again, while still carrying the lessons and memories of what I have learned these last years, I was approached with an opportunity, that happens to reside in Alaska.  I was torn.  I keep wondering when I will start to feel "settled" or better yet, when I will feel content "settling down", which is a concept I struggle with, and often don't understand.  After much deliberation, I have decided it isn't often that adventure approaches you and beckons your company.  More often than not, you have to go looking for it.  In the meantime I keep waiting for something that clearly hasn't come, so in the meantime I will wander.  Perhaps one day amidst the wandering I will find a reason to throw down roots, and say "Adventure has taken my company along many journeys and roads, and I thank him for that, but this is my new adventure, here in rooting down, to somewhere or someone, and I will be content staying for a while."

 So, I wander, with eyes and heart wide open, excited for what happens next.  Alaska, lets dance.


  1. It is always great to read you. A wonderful life for a wonderful person. You are so inspiring☺
    Thanks Sara

  2. Great update. Love reading about your adventures. Looking forward to posts from Alaska. Two of the people I've worked with have accepted jobs in Denali for the summer.