Posted in Blogging Break, Change, Earth, Eastern Shore, Exploring, Fire, Garden, Gifts, Life, Maryland, Mindfulness, Nature, Photography, Quotes, Spirit, Spring, Walking & Wandering

A hike around the ranch

Yellows and greens.
Yellows and greens.

As the biocentric view suggests, the garden prospers when control is balanced by equal measures of humility and benevolence.  A balance is struck.  Control, servitude, respect, imagination, pragmatism, an ecological conscience, compliance, and a certain measure of mysticism and altruism all meld together to provide nurturance.  Try to separate various aspects into their constituent parts — grant any one of them the status of fundamental gardening definition and one soon skews the entire process.  Put them together again in the service of the two-way street called nurturance, and we express the state of grace called gardening.

~ Jim Nollman, Why We Garden: Cultivating a Sense of Place, 1994

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Posted in Books, Earth, Eastern Shore, Exploring, Fire, Food, Gifts, Home, Maryland, Mindfulness, Nature, Photography, Quotes, Spirit, Spring, Walking & Wandering

A Meatless Monday Meal

Lots of cooking going on in my kitchen today.
Lots of cooking going on in my kitchen today.

Give two cooks the same ingredients and the same recipe; it is fascinating to observe how, like handwriting, their results differ.  After you cook a dish repeatedly, you begin to understand it.  Then you can reinvent it a bit and make it yours.  A written recipe can be useful, but sometimes the notes scribbled in the margin are the key to a superlative rendition.  Each new version may inspire improvisation based on fresh understanding.  It doesn’t have to be as dramatic as all that, but such exciting minor epiphanies keep cooking lively.

~ David Tanis, Heart of the Artichoke: and Other Kitchen Journeys

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Posted in Change, Critters, Earth, Eastern Shore, Exploring, Fire, Garden, Gifts, Life, Maryland, Mindfulness, Nature, Photography, Quotes, Spirit, Spring, Walking & Wandering, Water, Weather, Wonder

Earth Day

Spring awareness
Spring awareness

The longer I live the more my mind dwells upon the beauty and the wonder of the world… I have loved the feel of the grass under my feet, and the sound of the running streams by my side.  The hum of the wind in the treetops has always been good music to me, and the face of the fields has often comforted me more than the faces of men.

I am in love with this world… I have tilled its soil, I have gathered its harvest, I have waited upon its seasons, and always have I reaped what I have sown.

I have climbed its mountains, roamed its forests, sailed its waters, crossed its deserts, felt the sting of its frosts, the oppression of its heats, the drench of its rains, the fury of its winds, and always have beauty and joy waited upon my goings and comings.

~ John Burroughs

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Posted in Change, Earth, Eastern Shore, Exploring, Fire, Garden, Gifts, Life, Maryland, Mindfulness, Nature, Photography, Quotes, Spirit, Spring, Walking & Wandering, Weather, Wonder

The little things

Teeny-tiny flowers.
Teeny-tiny flowers.

‘Carpe diem’ doesn’t mean seize the day — it means something gentler and more sensible.  ‘Carpe diem’ means pluck the day.  Carpe, pluck.  Seize the day would be ‘cape diem,’ if my school Latin serves… What Horace had in mind was that you should gently pull on the day’s stem, as it were, say, a wildflower or an olive, holding it with all the practiced care of your thumb and the side of your finger, which knows how to not crush easily crushed things…  Pluck the cranberry or blueberry of the day tenderly free without damaging it, is what Horace meant — pick the day, harvest the day, reap the day, mow the day, forage the day.  Don’t freaking grab the day in your fist like a burger at a fairground and take a big chomping bite out of it.

~ Nicholson Baker

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