Hello again! While I haven’t had energy to write in this space after long play+farm+work days, I did take some photos and wanted to share a glimpse of the magic that has filled our summer. For starters, this barefoot garden fairy in jammies during a golden rainbow sunset. And I have to point out the shade covering with the red roof — someday, this is going to be my studio and I’ll be creating art with this lush, green view out my window. Baby steps.

After a lonnng drought, this year we were blessed (and surprised) by monsoon after monsoon which nourished our spirits (and skin!) and transformed our garden and landscape. I never tire of the Tibetan-like mountains growing in our backyard.

It’s funny how every year we get equally — if not more — giddy over our first fruits! We learned less is more, for us, with tomatoes in the greenhouse. Two plants are perfect for us. I also discovered why my cucumber plant was gigantic and covered in flowers but had only 2 fruits. Pollinators were not finding their way into our greenhouse…so I opened another window screen AND I buzzed around, painting each female flower with a male’s ‘paintbrush’. (I didn’t know the females all come with a teeny tiny fruit, like an egg, waiting to be fertilized!) By the way, have you seen this???! Still, other mysteries were left unsolved.

In August, Tulsi and I took a homesteading workshop at the Lama Foundation. I loved gathering with so many others geeking out over worms and compost, live bacteria, poop, and strange smells. We made kimchi and our own sourdough starter with Sandor Katz. It was great energy going into the harvest and preserving season!

I was especially proud of my cabbages! Which I then turned into quarts and quarts of sauerkraut that fill a shelf in our fridge. And just last week, we harvested our first 4 GORGEOUS (and decadent) winter squashes! They are almost too beautiful to eat. (Almost.) About 2/3 of our onions are now braided and hanging to cure, under my red studio roof. And aren’t these the happiest, most colorful beets?! Many are now pickled and canned, others are waiting to bake, and about twice as many are still maturing.

I think this season (our 6th) has been our best yet! Why? We were more relaxed (and experienced) and didn’t stress over weeds. We didn’t grow massive amounts of cut flowers, but our house was always full of bouquets. And we seemed to grow the right amount of everything. I think we have a TON of food for the winter (loads of squash and roots that we can store and don’t have to preserve NOW) and we didn’t waste any food. That might sound funny, but it happens! It can be tricky knowing how much to grow of what. And although I am not a Queen Preserver like some friends of mine (they are AMAZING), I have preserved a LOT already and a sweet variety. I learn more each year! (Of course, I need to figure out how to finish on canning days by bedtime so Tulsi and Patrick don’t have to migrate to the tent. Ha.) I’ll try to post a final tally later this Fall of what I preserved, and please, please share what you have preserved! Sometimes I don’t know ‘what’ to preserve!

I love this last picture. It is a seed pod dangling from a Cleome/Rocky Mtn Bee Plant. One of our favorite ‘to-do’s’ this time of year is collecting seeds. We have thousands, millions, billions of seeds stored in jars to plant and to share. It reminds me of the infinite possibilities in life, if we give our attention and love to our intentions.

We have a few weeks of exciting travel coming soon — Colorado, Chicago, Madison, St. Louis, and Maryland! I’ll share on the flipside. I’m also blogging (most) Fridays at motheringwithsoul.com if you haven’t wandered over yet. I hope you are enjoying garden goodies, too, and enjoying your Fall! It’s my favorite time of year.