I have been spending a lot of time in my gardens.
The flowers are fabulous. Breathtakingly beautiful.
But, it requires a lot of work and care.
The vegetable garden has bloomed and now the
promise of deliciousness is growing rapidly!

I need to stop adding to this all the time, but
for the life of me...I can't stop!

Where have you been spending all your time lately?


A conversation came to my attention the other day.
A conversation between two of my new and somewhat casual friends.
They were talking about how immaculate my house and garden are.
That was the word they used.
Immaculate. {That noise you hear is the hysterical laughter of the inner me wishing it weren't true.}
They were wondering how I do it all.
In the end, one of the friends said, "I am such a failure!"
The person telling me about this conversation was very sweetly complimenting me and
my house and my garden, and believe you me, I'll take compliments any day of the week.
But. The conversation made me sad. Sad that a friend could think they are a failure
just because they can't live up to an illusion that I create every day.
Should I say to her, that unlike you, I am easily distracted by disarray. Right now? Right this
very moment I should be at the gym working out like I promised myself I would do. Or, better
yet, starting dinner {I have become very lax lately} Instead, I'm writing a blog post and that
means that I'll be in a huge rush later to throw together some kind of dinner.
I should be downloading pictures that my family wants to see. I should be taking Buddy for a
nice long walk by the water, But instead, I'm blogging. I should also be doing laundry.
I am overly organized. I love to write lists, but more often than not, the list never ends.
And, I cannot wait. Why put off until tomorrow what can be done today? How often have I
wished that I could. Don't get me wrong. I've got plenty of strengths, too. But, I really wish
that once in a while I could loosen up enough to relax, rest, and let things go a little bit.
But in the day to day, more often than not, I am doing a hundred different chores, lots of errands
and a couple of craft projects, and probably helping out a friend.
Now, if you find yourself saying to me - don't be so hard on myself, you've totally missed the
point of this post. I'm not dissing myself in any way, shape or form. I just wanted to tell you that
perfection isn't real. But I'm pretty sure you already knew that anyway. I don't do it all, and I can't
do it all - no one can, and I sincerely hope that I've never led you to believe that I do. No matter
what anyone's life looks like from the outside, no matter how pretty, peaceful or dazzling the photos
 you see here or anywhere else, real life has always got at least a few bumps and blemishes.
The gauge of life's success or failure is in how you live it, not how it looks.


:: The secret to radiant skin ::

The Secret to Radiant Skin

Have you ever wondered if there was a secret to healthy, younger looking skin? What if that secret was virtually free and easy to achieve? Well, the good news is that there is a secret, and that it is easier to achieve than you might think…it is called “Dry Skin Brushing”. The benefits of this simple “Home Spa Treatment” may pleasantly surprise you.
The Facts:
Or skin is the largest organ in our body, and after the liver, it is the second largest organ of detoxification that our body uses. In fact, the skin is responsible for eliminating one quarter of the body’s toxins every day. If our elimination is poor, these toxins become trapped in our system resulting in dull or tired skin, acne and clogged pores. Clogged pores are not just a cosmetic concern. Failing to rid the body of toxins can result in poor health. Dry skin brushing actually helps to eliminate these toxins by assisting your body to shed wastes, which in turn, helps promote overall health and vitality.
There are many benefits to skin brushing, a few of which include:

· Increased blood flow
· Cleanses the lymphatic system
· Removes impurities beneath the skins surface
· Stimulates digestion
· Stimulates nerve endings in the skin
· Helps improve the function of the nervous system
· Tones the muscles
· Helps to reduce cellulite
· Eliminates dry, dead skin cells
· Healthier, younger looking skin with a warm glow
· It is easy, inexpensive and invigorating!

In order to begin, the first thing you will need is a soft, natural fiber brush with a long handle so that you are able to reach all areas of your body. You can buy body brushes in most health food stores and department stores – one with a removable handle and a hand strap is a good choice.

Next, begin brushing. Always dry brush your skin before you shower or bathe; you will want to wash away the dry skin and impurities as a result of the brushing action. Begin with your feet and brush in a circular motion. Continue brushing up your legs, using long sweeping strokes, toward the heart. Repeat these same steps with your hands and arms, always brushing toward the heart. Brush your entire back and abdomen area, shoulders and neck. Use circular counter-clockwise strokes on the abdomen, following the flow of digestion.
Using the handle on the brush, brush upwards from the waste, up the back and down from the neck.

Finally, shower or bathe, using your favorite aromatherapy soap or bath oil. Pure essential oils can help to assist the detoxification process, while helping to relax and soothe your senses. After getting out of the shower or tub, gently pat your skin dry and massage your skin with a product containing pure, quality plant oils, such as Aromatherapy Massage, Bath & Body Oil by Gabriel’s Garden. If you have arthritis or sore muscles, try using either the Lavender Mint or Lavender & Lemongrass blend.

Clean your brush regularly with soap and water. Adding a few drops of lavender essential oil to the bristles before brushing will ward off bacteria while adding a bit of extra cleansing and pampering.

Important things to remember: Avoid any sensitive, irritated, infected or damaged skin and avoid facial skin as well. Never brush any skin that is sensitive or broken, such as skin rashes, wounds, cuts, and infections. Also, never brush an area affected by poison oak or poison ivy. Never brush areas with varicose veins.

For best results, add dry skin brushing to your daily routine. Any effective skin care routine will take about 30 days to fully see the results. For a complete lymphatic cleansing, perform daily skin brushing for a minimum of three months.


Happy Monday, friends. What did you all do this weekend? I had a quiet couple of days, which provided me the opportunity to dig into some of the de-cluttering projects on my to-do list. Phew…it felt good to knock some of those out! I was also brave and ventured into the backyard, in which everything is growing so fast it's hard to keep up with. Just as I was starting to feel overwhelmed by all of the work that needs to be done, and all of the weeds that need pulled, I spotted this single, bright pink bloom peeking out across the yard. It was growing out of a crack in the sidewalk of all things. I ran inside, grabbed the clippers and popped it into a vase. It was just what I needed to remind me of all the beautiful possibilities ahead…


enjoying my days...

Why, hello there.  Life has been so full and satisfying these days: quiet mornings with a mug of thick, hot coffee, days at work spent helping people and dreaming up new community events, lots of time on my yoga mat, and long meandering hikes on the many nearby trails. {with camera in tow} My evenings tend to consist of a simple, natural, wholesome dinner, a walk by the river, and usually a glass of wine enjoyed on the porch while listening to the sounds of nature, cicadas, and other night things... before falling into bed with the latest issue of Whole Living. I feel good, tired, and intensely grateful. Sometimes days go by that I don't even flip open my laptop. I know. And, I sometimes even find myself without my phone. I don't care. I just feel too inspired to be out there in the world, just soaking it all in.

I'll leave you with that. What have you been enjoying lately?