sunday at the beach

Graham and I wandered through Nonesuch Books today – scouted out a few good reads (here are some great book recommendations from NPR) –  then made our way down to Higgins Beach to watch the waves roll in and the surfers all bundled up in their hooded wetsuits:

It was a brisk, windy, gorgeous day and all the surfers we crossed paths with said it was really warm. (!) I’m on-call for my first Maine birth so I was especially appreciative of Higgins today – of having such a spectacular place be so close, allowing me to be within a few minutes of where I need to be should that call ring in. And what better place to reflect on bringing a new life into the world?

Hope you’re enjoying the weekend too!


book report

These are the books that my boyfriend’s mother and grandmother lent me this weekend:


Yes, really.

Both women are avid bookworms and each independently happened upon a novel that they were nice enough to share with me. Hilarious.

childhood: the reading list

The kids I nanny for range in age from toddler to tween – making the books we read together especially appealing because I get to bring over all of my favorites for them to borrow, rather than just a few of a certain realm.

This is the overall favorite of the group at the moment:


And my all-time favorite list:


What are your favorite kids books?

internet finds

I would love to reupholster a big comfy chair like this one that I found at design*sponge. Back at Yoga Tree in SF we had a sad fraying office chair that I reupholstered with an empty burlap coffee bag from the sweet people working down the street at Ritual Coffee. Where else can you score such great material and enjoy a latte that looks like this?

(and that’s my weakness peaking out on the red plate – vegan doughnuts)

Canning! This photo is from Katy Elliott’s jam-making endeavors that she wrote about here. I’m looking forward to two upcoming canning sessions – both with my mom and then with Graham’s mom in an effort to put a dent in her bumper crop of raspberries. Opening a jar full of summer jam in February? Oh yes.

Ashley English over at Small Measure totally sold me on this book and now I’m itching to check it out.

And a sweet sweet act of kindness written about here that I found from a post by Joanna at A Cup of Jo.

Asparagus Spirituality

“From the outlaw harvests of my childhood, I’ve measured my years by asparagus. I sweated to dig it into countless yards I was destined to leave behind, for no better reason than that I believe in vegetables in general, and this one in particular. Gardeners are widely known and mocked for this sort of fanaticism. But other people fast or walk long pilgrimages to honor the spirit of what they believe makes our world whole and lovely. If we gardeners can, in the same spirit, put our heels to the shovel, kneel before a trench holding tender roots, and then wait three years for an edible incarnation of the spring equinox, who’s to make the call between ridiculous and reverent?”

Barbara Kingsolver

from Animal Vegetable Miracle

what I’ve been reading:

Guide to Childbirth– A beautiful book written by an awe-inspiring woman.

The Birth House– One of the best novels I’ve read in a very long time. I absolutely devoured this book.

Winter- I pick this one up every year, open to any page, and enjoy it like (and with) a good cup of tea. (Slow and peaceful) When read cover to cover it just doesn’t resonate as well.

Spiritual Midwifery– Another one from Ina May, I first read this during doula training and pick it up every now and again, to thumb through the dog-eared pages. The language (I felt a rush coming on… it was so psychedelic) is interesting- good for a giggle and change of mindset.


“I live in nature where everything is connected, circular. The seasons are circular.  The planet is circular, and so is the planet around the sun. The course of water over the earth is circular coming down from the sky and circulating through the world to spread life and then evaporating up again. I live in a circular teepee and build my fire in a circle. The life cycles of plants and animals are circular. I live outside where I can see this.  The ancient people understood that  our world is a circle, but we modern people have lost site of that. I don’t live inside buildings because buildings are dead places where nothing grows, where water doesn’t flow, and where life stops. I don’t want to live in a dead place. People say that I don’t live in a real world, but it’s modern Americans who live in a fake world, because they have stepped outside the natural circle of life.

Do people live in circles today? No. They live in boxes.  They wake up every morning in the box of their bedrooms because a box next to them started making beeping noises to tell them it was time to get up. They eat their breakfast out of a box and then they throw that box away into another box.  Then they leave the box where they live and get into another box with wheels and drive to work, which is just another big box broken into little cubicle boxes where a bunch of people spend their days sitting and staring at the computer boxes in front of them. When the day is over, everyone gets into the box with wheels again and goes home to the house boxes and spends the evening staring at the television boxes for entertainment. They get their music from a box, they get their food from a box, they keep their clothing in a box, they live their lives in a box. Break out of the box!”

– My favorite excerpt from The Last American Man by Elizabeth Gilbert

current inspiration


“Don’t look at your current situation as a hindrance to living the way you want, because living the way you want has nothing to do with how much land you have or how much you can afford to spend on a new house. It has to do with the way you choose to live every day and how content you are with what you have. If a few things on your plate every season come from the work of your own hands, you are creating food for your body, and that is enough. If the hat on your head was knitted with your own hands, you’re providing warmth from string and that’s enough. If you rode your bike to work, trained your dog to pack, or just baked a loaf of bread, let it be enough.

Accepting where you are today, and working toward what’s ahead, is the best you can do. You can take the projects in this book as far as your chosen road will take you. Maybe your gardens and coops will outgrow mine, and before you know it you’ll be trading in your Audi for a pickup. But the starting point is to take control of what you can and smile with how things are.”

– Jenna Woginrich