Feeds:
Posts
Comments

shutterstock_1598655364Monday afternoon, we said goodbye to one of our beloved pets, a long-haired feline named Turtle. Turtle loved her dogs, my husband, water play, movietime, and Friday night’s roast chicken. She joined our family fourteen years ago, her arrival wedged in between the last few days before my grandfather’s death, and the weekend I walked to receive my doctoral degree.

We’ve lived a great deal, since then. Our daughter has known Turtle her whole life.

The vulnerability researcher Brene Brown once said something to the effect of, our ability to experience joy is directly proportional to our willingness to be broken-hearted.

Oh my goodness, it hurts to say goodbye.  Continue Reading »

IMG_20191219_115324_031It’s that time again. I’m clearing out the vegetable beds closest to our house. I’m rinsing out my  germination flats with bleach, and filling them with seedling mix. I’m fondling seed packets, and paging through piles of seed catalogs.

What will I grow? How will it go? How can I work with nature, and what is beyond my control?

So much. So much is beyond my control. It’s dizzying, it’s terrifying, what’s beyond my control.

And on some levels, it’s simplifying. Continue Reading »

20200121_144504When I retired from my clinical role in 2019, I’d spent over fifteen years counseling clients on a variety of concerns, with a long-standing specialty in mindfulness-based eating disorder treatment. Training in self-compassionate awareness led individuals to develop a more positive relationship with food and their bodies.

Also, I adore food. I love growing, cooking, eating, reading, and talking about it.  Food is my love language. I’m at my happiest when I’m helping others reclaim their birthright of pleasure and connection with food.

So, in the face of the typical New Year’s resolutions that often focus upon what we shouldn’t be eating, and all of the associated “dangers” of food, I’ve put together this short list. Continue Reading »

20180312_140503

From Embracing the Good, a chapter in the Mindful Self-Compassion Workbook (Neff & Germer, 2018):

“Savoring involves noticing and appreciating the positive aspects of life – taking them in, letting them linger, and then letting them go. It is more than pleasure – savoring involves mindful awareness of the experience of pleasure…” (p.161)

Let’s be honest. How often do we miss opportunities to savor because our minds are nowhere to be found? To be distracted, to wake up breathing this morning (hooray!) and yet to find ourselves pulled in a hundred directions before our feet hit the floor – welcome to the experience of being human. So it’s for good reason that we call this the practice of mindfulness, the practice of mindful eating, the practice of savoring. Guess what? We get our whole lives to strengthen these skills.  Continue Reading »

Return home

20200128_092605

It’s been a week, hasn’t it? Sometime last night in the midst of intense neck pain and overall muscle tension, as I was throwing back chocolate and contemplating getting another glass of wine, I woke up.

I wasn’t happy to return, honestly. My body hurt and I felt about a hundred things at once, as the fictional boy hero Ron Weasley expressed incredulity about (although you don’t need to be a Hermione to know that yes, humans are complex and capable of feeling conflicting emotions). I’ve been bouncing around for a few days now, kind of like a ping pong ball (or really, a bowling ball), crashing into anything and everything in its wake. A recipe for shame, of course, because then I must be a bad fill-in-the-blank. Round and round we go.  More chocolate, please. Continue Reading »

Thanks to my Mindful Self-Compassion (MSC) training over the past couple of years, I’m quicker to reach for self-care strategies when I’m feeling bereft and hopeless. Instead of “checking out” (like I did last night), I look for opportunities to pause, and re-connect. What always sustains me is nature, especially edible gardening, cooking, and food stories. 

I’ve been meaning to watch The Biggest Little Farm for quite a while, so I dove in this morning. What follows is not really a coherent blog post but rather a series of thoughts that arose. Continue Reading »

20200106_124441

Twenty years ago, I didn’t know the difference between annuals and perennials (hint: the former dies off each year, the latter returns), or how to grow vegetables. Twenty years ago, I was newly married, saving up to buy our first house, a fixer-upper that would exhaust most of our (very limited) time and money. Plaster and lathe, exposed wires, and vintage linoleum, oh my.

But the joy and wisdom that came from cultivating my own little garden? Abundant.  Continue Reading »