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To feed my garden with gratitude throughout the cycle of life allows an opening to understanding the many gifts through the presence of sacred reciprocity.

To live without something for a time offers a gift of profound reflection in the mundane of daily life.

I speak through my own perception and never claim to know the truth for another.  These are reflections and stories that i share and i hope they will inspire another to ask the questions that may unlock their most beautiful inner knowing.

Perception

my youngest nephew, while in the car to my new home, exclaimed "this is not where auntie lives" my sister, his mother asked "where does she live?" he answered "in the woods!"

He sees me.

I am allowing myself to be seen.

Yes, this is it- when i am feeling home within myself  i allow myself to be seen.  There is a confidence, an inner knowing that shines through my being.  Be-ing.  When i choose to belong, i am no longer invisible to those who want to see me.  I am no longer invisible to myself, no need to protect that part inside, as the deep healing slowly churns through each step, each action, each offering.

To feed my garden is to feed my inner soul.

the two are one.

Sacred reciprocity

To feed the Waters with my gratitude is to feed my deepest dreams.

I see now, why i sometimes go to this place and at other times shy away.  I shy away from my own beautifully deep depths- the waters of life, of memory, of darkness.  I feel it is a dipping in and out that allows for movement within.  This shying away from myself is coming to light- as i feed the potential of my innermost dreamings.

Sight and sound of the rains from where i sit, at this moment, soothe.  It is a time of inner reflection that draws me to write.

To gift a place with my clear intentions to heal, through physical work to relieve a mighty Douglas Fir from the old vines of an ivy that cling tightly.  I, first, must cut through the thorny thicket a pathway to Grandpa Fir.  I am remembering Jyoti's words "Don't get in front of the prayer!"  This is an ongoing project and Grandpa Fir understands this.

Gratitude.

I will return this evening to light a fire, to sit with fire, in council.  To sit with fire- is to court the ancient ones- to listen in to the ancient stories that may lead to cultivating traditions that nourish a new, emerging culture.  Ground presence allows for inner council to be heard- the ancient stories live within me- my task is to drop into that place of deep listening.  The messages are waiting to emerge.

What resides in this deep well of nourishment?  What can i offer, without saying more than i can know- as it is ever emerging?

The questions and answers reside deep within us- it is in the doing, the being that the memory emerges.   A memory of a 9 day silent retreat where i learned to let go of the thought processes 'to know'.   We had the opportunity to ask questions and sit with the assistants, so one day i wrote my name on the list of those who requested to speak with them.  I had a question.  I sat and through the day, in my sit- the answer came through.  I erased my name from the board.  This happened the next day in same fashion.

Learning that the questions are an important aspect to growth and learning that i need not seek outside myself for answers.  Dialog and conversations with others spark a more full experience as i began to realize that i didn't need to know everything and that there are many answers to the questions of wonder and wandering.

Rain clears the air, feeds the soil with moisture, draws me inward to a fertile time.

In my unpacking and sorting of things i had not seen, for the time i had been nomadic, i found the recipe for banana bread that i used to make, regularly, many years back, the butter in this recipe can be substituted for an alternative to make this bread vegan. Many years ago i had the job of baking many loaves of banana bread for a neighborhood gathering place called Travelers, in Seattle- through the year that i loved this task, the recipe changed to what i now share with you.   As i began to mix the ingredients this morning, memory flooded in and a warm smile came through.   A slow process of melting on low 1 cube of butter (or butter substitute) with 1/4cup brown rice syrup all the while bringing to a boil in another pan 3/4cup water to 1/4c ground flax seed (stirring so as not to burn the bottom) and in a large bowl 2 1/2cups flour, 1 tsp salt, 1/2tsp each baking powder & baking soda.   Add 1/4-1/2tsp cinnamon*, 1/4tsp freshly ground nutmeg* to the flour and gently blend the dry ingredients.   Add 1/4tsp cardamom* to the water/flax pan and while the two pans of wet ingredients are cooling, in another medium bowl smash 3 bananas (carefully to leave some chunks).   Add the flax to bananas and gently fold, then pour in the butter-syrup and mix all together.   Return to the bowl with dry ingredients and make a volcano like hole in the center and slowly pour wet ingredients into the center.   Take your time and with a rubber spatula gently fold and scrap and fold the dry into the wet, turn the bowl and scrape and fold.   Do this until all dry ingredients are mixed with wet.   Doing this slowly without over mixing will produce a light and airy batter. Sometimes i add a squeeze of lemon juice to the batter and lightly fold it in (this is optional)right before i bake.   This recipe amount fits perfectly into a loaf pan, grease the pan with butter or the like and gently pour the batter in.   Bake at 350 and in 40 minutes test for clean toothpick, if batter sticks to pick, continue for 5-10 more minutes.   When baking is complete, set pan on cooling rack- cool for 5-10 minutes and then turn pan on its side and in 5 minutes slip bread out of pan and continue to cool upside-down so it doesn't sweat.   When almost cool (because warm banana bread is the best!) slice and add topping of your choice and enjoy!   Can be stored at room temp.

*spice measurements are approx, and of this mix the cardamom is most important ingredient :)

The bread is baking now and the smell fills the kitchen, so beautifully as i gaze out at Douglas fir, moss covered, bare branched big leaf maple and alder. The sky opens up this time of year, as fall transitions to winter this place feels more spacious, lighter- even on a day with clouds.