I love winter. Short gray days and long nights. It’s quiet calls to me, crawling under down blankets. Be still, be quiet, sleep. Look within, stay inside. If you look closely at the natural world around you, you’ll find it hibernates, rests and heals. I love to light candles, build fires, paint in the studio, read books. Putting up Christmas lights brings sparkle into the dark. Winter is the time for self care, get a massage or 4, take baths, get a facial. Do the things that make you feel well cared for, pamper yourself! Winter is the season that tests our patience and teaches a more wonderful lesson in fully appreciating and participating in the season we are in. I don’t like to hurry through it, I’ve learned to soak up the down time, the quiet time and the time to take care of myself.
I make soups and stews, letting things cook long and slow on top of the stove, filling the house with those comforting smells. Citrus fruits from California are at their peak and they help balance fat that we eat in the rest of our diets this time of year. If you pay close attention, you will find that these are the things that you crave in the winter. It’s what I do to prepare for what comes next. Enjoy it!
Spring. Thawing. Green. Emerging. Renew.
I love spring! The word april comes from the latin word aperi’ re, TO OPEN. This opening happens in the garden, in the woods, and with each of us humans. Emerging from our sleepy state, everything begins to thaw and start poking their green heads up from the earth. Slowly, we start looking around, looking outward. Windy days threatening to blow winter out and spring in, days of freezing temperatures and snow. Springs reminder to take it slow, easing ourselves out into the world again. Opening slowly.
It’s a time for cleansing and clearing. Get rid of the clutter and make room for the possibilities that change brings. Some days, I might find myself feeling the full weight of responsibilities and life, gripping and clawing so tightly I feel myself fighting like crazy to be free, to get away to a different life!
Hello spring fever! Breathe deep, soak up the green, the new life. Let it begin to fill your senses and your spirit. In the kitchen, I am hungry for all things green. An herbalist named Culpepper wrote in the 1800s, eating young nettles in the spring will boost your immune system for the whole year, warding off colds and flu.
Summer. Explosive. Colorful. Bountiful. Alive.
Everywhere you look, a natural celebration of life. I love summer! The world is exploding with color and sound. The days are long and we are awake! We get up early and we stay up late. Our focus is outward and there is so much to absorb. There’s always something to be done now. Something to be picked, weeded, watered. There’s dinner to make and bbqs to be had! If you can’t make good food this time of year, you’re in need of some serious help. it’s the time of year for simple preparations and as little time as possible over a stove. It’s for cooking outside and eating under the stars. The bounty at the farmers market can take my breath away. The food is ripe and juicy and sweet and bursting!
The world is celebrating color and life in all it’s glory!
Fall. twilight. Orange. Cozy. Letting go.
The air is different. I love fall! A shift is happening and fall quietly approaches. It gently reminds us that we can’t live in summer always. We can’t live outside of ourselves all the time and live in balance. Quietly, fall brings us back inside. It’s time to put the gardens to bed, cutting things back, letting things go. It is the season of letting go. With the first frost comes an abrupt end to the colors of summer, time to move on. I begin to look forward to a break from all the outside work. I’m canning and freezing and preserving for winter. That’s what brings me inside. The days are getting shorter, the nights longer. As the wind blows the leaves from the trees, we eat winter squashes, root vegetables, foods close to the earth, warm shades of orange and they ground us.