Some Campfire's Love Poem Weary child, as evening casts your shadow long across this pebbled bank the sun, who held your face in daytime, selfless omnipotent illuminator who only told you true for all of your life who kissed your cheeks and showed you how to plant your feet down and how to lift them up again weary child, the sun is fading. Draw near me now in reflection and be held almost whole in this unsettling hour. Elizabeth Keefer, May 2021
If the title of this post looks familiar to you, you are very observant and deserve a high five.
Back at the beginning of this year (January 2nd to be exact) I shared some very different pictures of this tree in a post called LIRIODENDRON TULIPIFERA IN SNOW
Well, it’s May…
The snow has melted, the hot sun is making regular appearances again, and wouldn’t you know it, this Tulip Tree is now in full spring bloom.
Liriodendron tulipifera, aka Tulip Tree or Yellow Poplar, is native to Eastern North America (far from where this one is planted) and is the state tree of Kentucky, Tennessee, and Indiana.
Tulip Trees bloom May through June.
Big showy yellow flowers banded in bright orange at the base of each petal.
What a gift to witness these blooms! Almost surreal looking.
Generous cups of cold sherbet, vanilla and orange…
Perhaps a shaded feast for some lucky pollinators on a hot day.
As colorful as they are, it’s easy to scan the tree and not see the flowers because they don’t open up until after the leaves are fully formed, and by then they are fairly tucked in and hidden.
I’m glad I got a chance to snap these photos; I’ve never seen a Tulip Tree bloom and I was excited to share it with you. 🙂 For reference (for myself as much as anyone else) I took these with my old Pentax K-500 with an inexpensive CPL filter.
What’s blooming in your world? 🙂
Long before I opened my eyes to the calm blue light of tent walls dotted with sunlit glassy raindrops, the honking of geese overhead stirred me to consciousness and a sleepy smile spread across my slightly chapped lips.
These early morning moments are what I camp for.
Waking up in a tent to the smell of wet earth.
Crisp air nips at my cheeks and reminds me of my vitality.
The sounds of animals bustling around me on a thick carpet of damp ponderosa pine needles reminds me I am but one part of a large web of deeply connected beings.
Waking up to a new day alongside non-human siblings – the grasses, the trees, the bugs, the birds, the deer, the rocks. Whew! What a privilege.
First camping trip of the year… CHECK!
How beautiful is that fog rolling off the lake? 🙂
Stay curious, friends! ~ EK
I squatted down to adjust the height of the lawnmower and the entire butt of my pants split right out! Down the middle and to the side in the shape of a crooked “Y” – I wasn’t mad, I look forward to big mends like this.
I used a pocket from a retired pair of light blue linen pants that belonged to my husband and a handful of colors of linen thread. The pocket was a nice upgrade from a regular fabric patch; now I have a good place to tuck my gardening gloves in a pinch.
I loosely reinforced the edge of the hole with running stitches before pinning the pocket over top, edges folded under and pinned flat. I worked the perimeter of the pocket with hand-stitching until satisfied. Simple enough!
Below is a recent picture of the original knee patches after about a million washes and rough wears…
On an average day I’m wearing an outfit like this: heavily patched pants, long sleeves to protect my arms from the sun, no-frills Casio watch, wool socks with sandals or boots (depending on the tasks of the day) and a me-made wool sun protection hat. It doesn’t get more “me” than this look right here. 🙂
These pants have developed a spirit of their own. I can’t head out into the yard to work, or pack my bag for a camping trip without them saying, “Hey! I want to play, too!”
And who am I to deny them the rigors and grit they so crave?
Shucks… a pair of pants after my own heart ❤
With love! ~ EK
My primary interests this spring put me outside for long stretches of time, subsequently exposing my skin to the sun more than I’d like: hiking, camping, landscape photography, fishing, gardening, etc.
I wanted to create a custom-fit sun protection hat for myself that ticked all of my “must have” boxes:
- 100% natural domestic wool with natural lanolin retained to increase the inherent moisture-repellent properties of minimally processed wool
- Comfortable custom-fit cap intended to wear over a thin scarf or bandana for added sun protection of ears and neck
- Dense, totally opaque fabric to maximize sun protection and reduce the risk of picking up ticks in my hair while in heavily forested areas
- Secure/heavy enough to not blow away in the wind without being overly warm
- Extra wide, semi-firm brim extending wide enough to protect my neck, ears, and entire face from the full noontime sun
- Cute, homey, forest-dwelling-mushroom-spirit-vibe
- Inspired by my own previous design for this felted wool cloche
- Designed to felt naturally with wear over time
Crocheting is old hat for me (har har! I’ll never pass up a good pun) – I picked up some of my favorite wool yarn and a hook, threw a few stitches into a magic ring, and an hour later we had the start of something promising…
Once I was satisfied with the fit of the cap portion, I moved on to the brim with the intention to try the hat on every few rounds until I was satisfied with the width of the brim and the amount of sun protection coverage for my face and neck.
My goal was to finish the hat completely in time to bring it with me on a weekend camping trip.
I finished just before bed the night before we left and snapped a window-lit selfie as the sun went down to commemorate.
This hat is a delight! Truly one of the best things I’ve ever made, all crafts considered.
It fits my outdoor needs exactly, which means I will treasure it and wear it for years to come.
This feeling; this is whole point of slow craft. ❤
As it turns out, an unintended benefit of my new wool sun hat is that it helps me hid from neighbors and sip my tea in peace…
Anti-social sun protection…
But as always, my anti-social inclinations are betrayed by a big grin and friendly disposition. 🙂
My new hat even matches my favorite self-drafted knit shawl.
This look is giving me amateur mycologist, forest dwelling Carmen Sandiego vibes and I love it.
*singing to myself* – “Where in the woods is, EK Sandiego?”
‘Til we chat again, EK
Rainbow sherbet at Dry Falls.
What was once the worlds largest waterfall 10,000 years ago, now barren remnants.
Part of the channeled scablands of eastern Washington.
Happy fluffy signs of spring 🙂
For those of you who wanted to attend my live donation-based workshop but missed the date, you’re in luck!
Below is a truncated video recording 🙂
If you found the information in the video helpful and would like to leave a donation in support of future community classes and workshops you can do so via PayPal here: https://www.paypal.com/donate?hosted_button_id=XBA2TKLQ83WFU
**If you’d like to be notified of future events in advance, please subscribe to my (non-spammy) newsletter below**
Thank you and we’ll talk soon, EK
Witnessing the Breath: a guided relaxation practice – Plumb
Plumb | to adjust or test by a plumb line/to be exactly vertical or true
Episodes of this podcast include personal reflections, rich community conversations, and simple practices for cultivating emotional resilience and navigating life mindfully, wholeheartedly, and with purpose.
Be well! – EK
***Registration for this event has passed***
This Sunday, April 11th at 1pm PST
In this 1-hour educational workshop I’ll share tips for developing a yoga practice at home, the benefits of using various props in your practice, and discuss some common household items that can stand in as alternatives to commercial yoga props.
Sliding-scale, $5-$15 suggested donation however no one will be excluded for lack of funds.
All experience levels are welcome and no special preparation is required.
To register for this pay-what-you-can virtual event: https://zoom.us/meeting/register/tJYkcuqtrj8iGdfBnWlQSVquf71uD1izGoWa
February Self-care care packages are now listed in my shop. A short video detailing what all is included in this month’s care package can be found below.
I might do these monthly or seasonally as I have time and resources, and depending on the response.
All the best, Bette
Per request via Instagram.
Made with gluten-free oats, nuts and seeds, coconut, dried fruit, and wellbeing-supportive, adaptogenic herbs.
Tropical Fruit Granola
- 3 cups gluten-free rolled oats
- 1.5 cups chopped raw walnut pieces
- 1 cup shelled raw sunflower seeds
- 1 cup unsweetened dried pineapple, chopped into small rough bits
- 1 cup unsweetened dried mango, chopped into small rough bits
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon ginger powder
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 5 tablespoons natural liquid sweetener such as maple syrup or honey
- 3/4 cup coconut oil, melted gently
- 1 tablespoon powdered Ashwagandha, I like this one (optional)
- Gomasio seasoning/Japanese Sesame Salt (sesame seeds and roasted salt, also optional)
- 1/3 cup dried shredded coconut would also be good but I didn’t have any (optional)
Preheat the oven to 250º and set aside a baking sheet. In a large bowl combine the oats, walnuts, sunflower seeds, cinnamon, ginger powder, and Ashwagandha (if using) and stir thoroughly. Add liquid sweetener and vanilla extract to the bowl and stir again. Add melted coconut oil to the bowl and stir again until all dry ingredients are coated evenly. Pour mixture onto a baking sheet and spread with a spoon until evenly distributed. Bake at 250º for around an hour, stirring every 20 minutes to prevent burning. Once the granola is finished but still in the baking sheet, add dried fruit and even sprinkling of Japanese sesame salt (if using) while granola is still hot and stir around once more to combine. Allow the granola to cool completely on the cookie sheet before transferring it into jars or storage containers. Feel free to store it on the counter at room temperature if you plan to eat it quickly, or in the fridge for 2 weeks.
I make granola often because it’s cheaper than store bought, I can control the amount of sugar in it, and it’s nourishing, light and easy to pack on a hike.
What kind of granola would you like to see next? Peanut Butter and Popped Sorghum? Pistachio Ginger?
All the best, Bette