community · family

Dreams Do Come True #heart #spirit

The giving and receiving of gifts is not one of my Love Languages.

(In case you have no idea what I’m talking about, you can read a mini-summary of Love Languages in this old post.)

The whole ritual of gifts is, from beginning to end, stressful to me.  I get extremely stressed when someone watches me open a gift.  I worry about what my expression and body language will tell the gift giver about what I think of the gift.  I also worry that my worrying will prevent me from having a genuine reaction to the gift, so that even if I looooove the gift, I’ll end up flashing the gift giver an awkward smile instead of a genuine grin.

Ugh.  I can’t imagine any overthinker really enjoying the process of gift giving.  There’s too much to overthink.

I also get really stressed while considering what to buy for others.  I don’t like this about myself, but I get extremely overwhelmed, especially during the holidays.  There’s no way I can come up with a perfect gift, that is thoughtful, generous, and is something the person would never buy for themselves (my three key factors for an awesome gift) for EVERY SINGLE PERSON I buy gifts for!  I also hate the obligation of gift giving.  I love when no gift is expected and I can surprise someone with a gift I know they’ll love.  But that’s not the case during the holidays.  And the pressure that I have to buy SOMETHING gets in the way of my capacity for being inspired to buy something meaningful.

I don’t share this particular anxiety with a lot of people.  If I really let loose and share my internal monologue related to gift giving, I get a lot of weird looks and sympathetic smiles.  Because, this is madness, right?  The giving of gifts is supposed to be joyful.

Yeah.  For me, not so much.

However, when I DO buy a present that someone loves, I feel absolutely delighted. (This happened during Christmas 2017 and it made me SO happy!) And when someone manages to get me with a gift that’s thoughtful and surprising, I am overwhelmed with gratitude.

Tee knocked it out of the park this Christmas:


There’s a long running and biking trail that cuts right through our property.  And, coming in spring 2018, there will be a Little Free Library right here at Wild Peace Farm!


I Heart NY #heartsoulmindbodyspirit

For the past eight years, I’ve been promising Tee that I’ll take her on New York City adventures, helping her to get to know my hometown.  Worst New Yorker ever – no adventures have been had!

Well, that’s not exactly true.  We’ve had mini-adventures – seeing a play, visiting friends – but there is SO MUCH exploring to do in New York, and I have been such a slacker.

Redgreen and Violet-Yellow Rhythms, Paul Klee

A few weeks ago, Tee and I realized that we only had a few more weekends free before we are occupied by farmers markets every weekend until November.  We decided to visit my childhood best friend (CBF) and her husband and daughter in their brand-new home in New Jersey; their daughter is an adorable two-year-old with gorgeous eyes, amazing bangs, and the most amazing laugh in the world.  We also spent Saturday in the city enjoying some playtime, just me and Tee.  🙂

We got into Manhattan at around ten in the
morning and spent a while wandering around Central Park, and then met up with some of my loveliest friends at the Plaza Food Hall, which is a food court in the Plaza Hotel that I did not know existed.

(IMPORTANT SIDEBAR – for lunch, I ate a crepe with lox and cream cheese.  I also ate lox for Easter breakfast the weekend before.  I am obsessed with lox.  I love lox.  Why don’t I eat lox every day of my life?)

After lunch, Tee and I spent the rest of the afternoon at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

When I lived in Boston, I visited the Museum of Fine Arts regularly.  I knew the museum layout by heart, and I loved going back with out-of-town guests to show them my favorite paintings.

Fighting Cows, Franz Marc

An added bonus was that visiting the MFA would almost unfailingly inspire me to write.  I’d wander a little – I’d visit my favorite artwork – and inevitably, I’d find a bench and plop down with my journal to jot down some thoughts.

If you ever find yourself dealing with writer’s block, get yourself out there and explore the creations of others.  Art begets art.

The same was true last weekend.  We wandered through the modern and contemporary art rooms, and I found myself scribbling down ideas for short stories and blog posts every few minutes.

Long story short – if you’re trying to write, go to a museum.  Allow the creativity of others to invigorate you.

Hot Still-Scape for Six Colors – 7th Avenue Style, Stuart Davis    (Doesn’t it make you want to dance?!)
family · relationships


There’s been a lot of #heart food in my life recently.

-One of my AmeriFriends (I’ll call her Squid) came up to visit from D.C.!  We spent Friday evening eating tapas and catching up, and on Saturday she joined us at Wild Peace Farm for sunshine, swimming, and soul-soothing physical labor.heart

-One of my best friends in the world (no code name yet) has moved to Maryland for two years!  This is an amazing treat for me.  I moved to Maryland seven years ago and I expected to be here for four months.  Then I met Tee and slowly settled in, but for several years felt the absence of having a really wonderful close friend nearby.  The longer we’re here, the bigger and more wonderful our community becomes – but it’s really special to have a close friend just a short drive away.