January 2015













…tho’ I had hoped to begin the year here as I mean to go on (posting more simply and more often), a few days after my last post tragedy struck in our hen house. And it struck not once, but twice over a matter of days…in spite of reinforcing walls, new precautions, everything we could manage…

It is still hard to share about. If you’ve read this blog for very long, you will have seen what my “little women” mean/meant to me. We’ve never lost a hen to a predator in the hen house before…never lost them to anything but old age or mysterious hen illnesses since our earliest days when a neighbor’s dog caused much sadness with our first flock. So….it’s been a deep shock, tho’ I suppose it shouldn’t have been. We’ve actually been very lucky. I just got so used to swinging along with Jane, Gwyn and Maya for the past four years. Used to them murmuring to me and me murmuring to them…watching them, tending them…eggs were really the least of it.

After the second attack and hours working on the hen house again (mostly my deario), we felt very confident about its safety, but I wasn’t feeling keen on Audrey’s being all the way in the paddock…alone. My feelings became moot when we found Audrey roosting that first evening alone just outside our front door on the porch railing. Message received.

I quickly made a makeshift roost in the vestibule between my studio and the music room, while she remained nestled next to the little cedar tree on the porch. By the next evening, when she appeared on the front porch in the late afternoon, Audrey had a proper roost (Doug’s perfect and prompt handiwork) and we watched in curiosity and some wonder as we opened the door and she walked unerringly (if slowly, but turns and all) into the vestibule. She is there now, third night in a row and we shall see how it goes. I’ve had to reassure some that I am not turning into one of “those chicken people”…just feeling very tender towards her. And to myself, too, I suppose…when I am not feeling regret and loss. It is easier knowing she is near and safe, and not having to visit the scene of the calamity.

Taking Audrey’s lead, I am working on putting this behind me…and looking ahead…and will soon be back here with lovelier things to share…



The door to the New Year is truly open now…this is a photo of mine just after the strong, cold wind blew it open as I stepped into the living room after arising late in the morning after last night’s festivities. Ok 2015…you’ve got my attention!”








I wrote those words on New Year’s Day, but I didn’t share that we had actually arrived home at 2 o’clock in the morning, hours earlier, to an open front door. That first time, I hurriedly ran to the back door to “let out the Old Year” as we’d always done growing up. I figured the New Year had been anxious to get in and had probably been having a high ol’ time in our house for a few hours, at least. Then when it happened again the next morning, I wondered if it was a sign? A sign other than the obvious one that our old door needs some attention?

Regardless of the door and the winds, it hasn’t at all been a bold or dramatic beginning to the New Year. My energy has been low and my spirit quiet. There are no big plans being made, I don’t have a word for the year (not that I ever do!: ), and I am happy to wait to for my goal-setting and calendar-filling to begin next week with the lovely business group I belong to.

All of my New Year’s clean-sweep energy thus far has been focused upon removing obstacles (mostly the tiny, frustrating, modern-world sort) and clearing the way…for what, I am not quite sure…that will come in its own time. For now, it feels just right to spend peaceful moments becoming aware of what hasn’t been working, and where the little stresses originate. Then making lists of how to make it all better. And finally taking step after tiny step on the list. It feels hopeful and good and just fine that it is all rather humble and tedious. There is nothing shiny or brave going on here, but it is exactly what I need to do.

I expect to spend much of January in this mode and will be sharing my process at Wisteria & Sunshine when I return to my regular posting rhythm there later this week. And together, there, we will move through the foundational things and eventually on to the more creative, interesting steps. So…no lovely photos yet of collages, or pin boards or daybooks. I am sure you don’t want to see photos of me deleting Pinterest pins and email inboxes, thwarting spammers and updating my computer. But there have also been Christmas walks and so much time spent enjoying our especially gorgeous tree. I don’t know if I will be ready to give it up when the Twelve Days of Christmas are over…it is so wild and beautiful! And some of the clearing has included finishing up the Christmas treats (nearly there!).

Now I recognize that I am enjoying a sort-of St. Distaff’s week, lots of rest and pleasure, with some determined accomplishment also going on. How nice that illness didn’t precipitate it, as it often does this time of year…just a longing to go through the door of the New Year a little less encumbered, with my mind lightened and my hands empty and open…

P.S. Just as I was typing those last words, the door flew open again!