Getting our Baba Yaga on

I never thought I would aspire to be Baba Yaga what with her rather formidable house on chicken feet ringed in glowing skulls and her unpredictable decision making. However, there is something about Baba Yaga that feels aspirational. She is completely her own person and makes choices from her own inner compass. What’s not to love about that?

When I was in my twenties, an older relative said to me that women who tried to live within the values of the culture were doomed to depression as they got older. She said going outside the boundaries of the culture as in going eccentric in our choices, was the solution.

I didn’t quite trust this relative. She seemed locked in her own struggle about who and what to appease. The demons of our family drove her both to an enormous worldly career in the tradition of patriarchy and also drove her to drink. Where did authentic, outside the box choices show themselves in her choices? I wasn’t sure they did.

Even as I was uneasy about her, what she said rang true to me. Since a small child, I had been in my own struggle to live outside the bounds of my family’s values. It had already been an epic war with so many skirmishes, victories and defeats. I wasn’t sure the battles, inner and outer, would ever end, and her example didn’t fill me with optimism. Perhaps now, I could meet this relative with more compassion and not the frisson of fear I felt then, as I heard her wisdom yet saw how bound she still was. Perhaps now I could console her that patriarchy can and will be dissolved completely.

Yes, our old nemesis patriarchy….. familiar in its constraints, golden in its worldly promises, rigid in its rules and inevitably leading to train wrecks. We have long been lulled by its familiarity and the promises of rewards if we follow the rules and stay in the boxes we’re assigned. We’ve also been encouraged to see the train wrecks as aberrations not the logical consequences of stifling choices. But our own hard earned wisdom and Baba Yaga’s says differently.

That’s the thing about dismantling patriarchy. It’s been hard work. Still is hard work. Sometimes our doubts about the wisdom of dismantling patriarchy have made the process worse. Sometimes we’ve had brilliant breakthroughs and had a chance to catch out breath. We’ve gone forward and backward in demolishing the whole thing. Really, is it any wonder we aspire to badass Baba Yaga? She just gets it done. Full stop.

Baba Yaga exemplifies igniting the divine spark within us all into a total inner fire of complete authenticity. So much for daily and tiresome dismantling of each chain of patriarchy. So much for stomping out little fires of goal orientation, perfectionism, hierarchy and other insidious illusions. Here’s to Baba Yaga who is herself without clutching onto anything else. She flies off in her mortar and pestle as the spirit moves her. She lives her own moral code that comes right from source. There are no cultural filters slowing her down. She is free and unburdened.

This is aspirational to me. She doesn’t make eccentric choices for the sake of eccentricity or to establish herself outside the culture. These would be actions that involve the culture. The Baba Yaga I aspire to listens to her own heart and following her inner wisdom without constraint. When we do this, we naturally leave the confines of a patriarchal culture which stifles us into diminished roles and stereotypes.

Nestled in our heart’s truth, all things are possible. We can embrace our inner Baba Yagas and find a totally authentic way forward. Patriarchy would tell us becoming our authentic selves is a move towards anarchy and chaos. That is just the way patriarchy keeps women doing too much and cleaning up all the messes. This is bull. It is in living in alignment with our inner selves that we join a collective unity as Divine beings. Living as our authentic selves is the harmony that blows patriarchy right out of the water and reveals it as a passing illusion that at long last holds no sway.

Living as our authentic selves ushers in a new way of life. And yes, I think it is women that have to be the leaders here. We have been enslaved the most by patriarchy, so as we give it up and live authentically the whole thing flips. Viva the flip!

Here are some Flower Essence suggestions for our flight into freedom

The Sacred Feminine– This deeply layered combination mix helps us birth our most sacred and eternal self. It’s time for this birth, nothing can stop it now, but this remedy can midwife us through so we feel loved and supported during the birth.

Hops– This one called out to be included, explaining it supports immense spiritual leaps, the kind so vital and possible right now because of the light pouring into the planet.

Wintergreen– Personally I feel a lot of the territory of leaving patriarchy is saying NO. Wintergreen helps us abandon our doormat tendencies once and for all and find the strength to say NO when we need to (which is a lot more than patriarchy would like). This is also an excellent remedy for those who say, “I’m sorry.” all the time. We have been trained to apologize for being! Enough already.

Cosmos– Sometimes our heart burns with the knowledge of what we know and feel, but it is hard to express these truths in words and actions. Cosmos deeply encourages and supports this self expression.

All Ego Contracts Null & Void– Sometimes I think our egos are just ideas the culture has dumped on us. So time for us to dump all these bindings and find the freedom to be who we are.

The Alignment Garden– This works so well in combination with All Ego Contracts Null & Void because it aligns us with what is there after we dump the ego crap. This is our wondrous, expansive, infinitely precious true self.

Kirengeshoma– This one has been a bit of a sleeper on our shelves and that’s a crying shame. I think Baba Yaga must have had a big patch of Kirengeshoma next to her hut. It helps us know our truth and decide what we want to do with this then do it .

To find our freedom, Discernment is so vital. Check out all the suggestions under discernment in the Flower Essences for Common Concerns document. Here are a few that jump out as particularly relevant.

Puenta La Reina– Discernment about who really supports us and our spiritual work. It’s time to get real about this. Think Baba Yaga level discernment here.

Thistle, Thistle from Omey Thistle from Crete (also Scotch Thistle from our Additional Flower Essences list) Discernment about boundaries. (Yes, we deserve them).

ManjarinThe Essence of discernment in our collections. Among other things, it helps with discernment about what is actually going on, discernment about red herrings (patriarchy gets us with a lot of these) and discernment about what actually feeds our soul AND WHAT DOES NOT.

Pavonia Spinifex– Helps us discern lies and helps us handle lies and stay in our truth and face the lies with poise and equilibrium.

Alpine Forget-Me-Not– Discernment about what is our business, what is Divinity’s business and what is some one else’s business. This is where patriarchy has gotten us particularly confused as it helps patriarchy to have us tied up taking care of stuff that is not our business versus living our truth.

Fly be free!

Daily Life Post Eclipse

The eclipse brought the country a collective moment of focus on something bigger than ourselves. We looked to the skies together, and at least for that moment, we forgot our bickering. What a lovely preview of coming attractions (Yes, I still believe greater harmony is being born in us right now, and we will find our way to conscious unity).

Three staff goddesses headed into Vermont to experience eclipse totality. Sam went to Burlington. Jen went to Barton. Vicki went to St Johnsbury. Each reported a collective gasp when the eclipse went total. All three loved the feeling of unity and shared amazement. They were positively glowing when they came into work the next day.

My immediate family stayed at the farm. Five year old Henry sang a song about freedom during the peak moment. We all wondered what he knew that we didn’t. We also ate Paul Newman Oreos as an eclipse like snack. This could explain the freedom song as Henry had about twelve cookies, but I think it was more likely him sharing New World wisdom with us.

Going on an errand into town an hour before the eclipse, Jim noticed forty plus Teslas waiting to charge in nearby West Lebanon. It looked like many of these folks would be watching the eclipse from the charging station. Traffic was also backed up on the two main highways going north.

I hope everyone had a good sense of humor if they had to watch the eclipse from the shoulder of Rte 89.

The return home for eclipse travelers proved equally if not more eventful. My son Ben was heading north into Vermont at 12:30 am. Traffic was stopped on the highways going south and there were more than sixty Teslas at the charging station.

Sam, Jen and Vicki managed to get home by traveling back roads, but Sam still spent three hours traversing the first ten miles out of Burlington. Despite the traffic, no one had any regrets.

I wonder how this eclipse will mark our transition to a New Earth? So much light is pouring into our light bodies and our world, and we are poised to make the transformation. Will this be the event that we look back on and say, yes the floodtides of a new humanity were revealed then. I hope so.

When I write about silly things like my antics in the gardens, it’s not that I don’t think both very positive and very challenging things are going on here on earth. Its more that sometimes I feel the only way I can help is to lighten things up with my silliness. I also don’t think my opinions about anyone or anything but my own foibles are much help. In any case, my own dirty laundry is keeping me quite occupied with not much energy to spare for other people’s dirty laundry. Today’s dirty laundry included a full set of clothes covered in more garlic spray…. If I miss a plant even for a single night, a team of deer find the plant and gnaw it to the ground overnight. I have to keep going over and over the perennials with the sprayer so nothing is missed. What with winds and a crappy spray nozzle, there is ALOT of blowback.

So today, no crowd at the Tesla charging station, everyone keeping their distance from me and my eau to garlic, potatoes still sitting on the kitchen table and a modest day weeding with about a quarter of the Roses weeded, pruned and tied up for the season. Better yet, the tilted frog fountain is still shooting water from its mouth so I will call this day a happy win. I hope it was for you too.

The Mad Dash of Spring

Perennial beds well sprayed with garlic spray to keep deer out

Order of operation is a big focus in spring. I try to juggernaut around the property from task to task with maximum efficiency. If I go down to the compost pile to dump weeds, I dump the weeds then fill the now empty wheelbarrow with sifted compost from the adjacent ripe compost pile and take this black gold to a waiting bed which I prepared earlier in the morning.

If you catch me standing in the middle of the garden looking spaced out, it’s probably because I am lining up the tasks in my head. Bing bing bing. Or I am simply spaced out. Or I am recovering from yet another hour using the garlic spray tank.

I’m also big on multitasking. If I am carrying one thing from here to there, I add other things going the same way to save on trips. Say for example this morning when I picked up a half dozen broken down cardboard boxes to use for mulch, a sledgehammer and a flat of Sweet Pea babies in one trip because they all needed to go to the vegetable garden.

Today I began what I thought was going to be a streamlined pickup and drop off smoothly accomplished…….then life or spring or being human pulled me up short and showed me that maybe I should slow down. Maybe I also sometimes often always need to make two three four trips not one trip. And maybe I should plan on accomplishing one or two tasks a day not twelve.

You see, the Sweet Peas which HATE to have their roots disturbed (and I mean SERIOUSLY HATE THIS) were the casualty in this morning’s overly ambitious three item pick up. Their flat flipped as I carried it to the vegetable garden and all the babies got dumped on the ground. Profuse apologies were offered as I scooped them up, planted them with love and bitter regret then watered them in with Green & Tonic AND Emergency Care.

The thing is, I have an elegant erroneous idea in my head about the time and effort necessary for every garden task and I am completely mistaken about my ability to execute a plan…….. then reality enters the picture.

Today reality showed up in spades. Not only did the Sweet Peas get dumped, but a task I thought would take five minutes, nearly finished me off. There is a frog fountain in the Arbor Garden. Several days ago when we still had snow, I cleaned out the ornamental pool where the frog fountain burbles away all summer except when the pump gets clogged, a dog jumps into the pool for a swim and disconnects the tubing or someone trips over the cord that frequently unburies itself and this unplugs the pump. As I trotted by the pool this morning, I thought I’d take “a few minutes” to get the pump on the frog fountain going.

Such optimism.

When in the history of humankind has a water pump for a garden fountain functioned properly on the first try? In a word, NEVER. The few minutes ticked into an hour as I fussed with the pump, but then with the pump finally functioning…. I found myself wrestling to get the water tube in place on the underside of the concrete frog that composes the fountain. Quite simply I lwas overmatched for the job. In my flawless mistaken memory I have easily positioned the rocks underneath the fountain and then attached the water tube to the fountain itself without problem.

Today this “easy task” was like wrestling lions in the coliseum. Rocks that hold the fountain in place slid out of my grasp to the bottom of the pool. After mucking around the bottom of the freezing cold pool to retrieve rocks and rebuild the platform, I was still left with getting the fountain working. It was like juggling a watermelon to get the frog flipped over, water tube inserted then flipped back in place and resettled correctly on the rocks. When completely wet and exhausted I finally got the frog cockeyed but spurting some water through its mouth with only a modest amount of leakage underneath the fountain, I heaved myself to my feet and went on with my other tasks, ignoring the fact that I now had odiferous pond slime soaking my shirt and pants. The dog didn’t care I smelled bad so why should I?

As my garden day ended, I vowed to slow down breathe, chill, hydrate, avoid pond scum and be human tomorrow. Then the mail arrived with an enormous box of seed potatoes. A whole garden is dedicated to potatoes this year, and of course it is not ready for potato planting. BUT THE POTATOES ARE NOW HERE! And in Ireland they have had their potatoes in since St Patrick’s Day and this is relevant because really our climates are sooooooo similar?

It is a real test of will for me to leave the potatoes on the kitchen table for a couple days until I can get the potato patch ready. It is a real test to IGNORE the potatoes and just do the other jobs planned.

Here’s my new list of goals for tomorrow, just modified in light of today’s misadventures and the arrival of the potatoes. Wish me luck!

  1. Cut back Rose suckers in Rose Gardens
  2. Weed Asparagus bed
  3. Finish mulching vegetable garden
  4. Weed Hollyhocks
  5. Transplant Snapdragon babies
  6. Cut back Thyme in front garden
  7. Leave potatoes on kitchen table

A Few Promises

This week, before yet another tiresome excessive seasonal snow storm dumped graced us with another foot of snow, Jim and I went to Boston’s Logan Airport to pick up our son Will and his family. They’d been on a five month trip to the Far East perhaps to escape our winter. Will, like many in his generation, can work from anywhere, so New Zealand, Indonesia and Japan were his young family’s homes for the winter. Or rather, most of the winter.

We don’t travel all that much these days unless you count trips to the compost pile, but we get to go to the airport frequently to pick up or drop off family travelers. We have always sailed into the airport, left beloveds off or picked beloveds up without any problems.

This time Jim was very focused on us parking in a cell phone lot while we waited for Will and his family. Why? I do not know. I suggested we go to the place where we always have gone in front of terminal E but no, we were going to a cell phone lot. This also seemed to require, in Jim’s estimation, turning his phone on IN OUR DRIVEWAY and listening to google maps all the way to Boston.

Will’s family’s flight was coming in shortly before 6 am so we were in the car listening to the dulcit tones of Google maps at 3:30 am. The insanity of listening to some fake voice giving us directions on roads we have driven for forty five years did not escape me, but I was co-pilot not pilot so I didn’t interrupt the google lady to express an opinion. Whatever.

Once through the Callahan tunnel and onto the airport loop road, the fun began. Or as my grandfather always said, “When you fall through the ice with your snowshoes, your trouble she’s just begun.” We knew right where terminal E and its parking lot for waiting in the car for pickup was, but apparently the google lady had a better idea. Soon we found ourselves looping on unfamiliar, outside the airport roads with the voice saying over and over to us “Make a U turn.” As the road was two lane with oncoming tractor trucks, this did not seem like a good plan. It was at this point I considered throwing Jim’s phone out the window.

Over the google woman’s voice I encouraged that person I was driving with Jim to just go to the lot across the street from terminal E as we had done for the past 45 years. After some “discussion”, we went to that parking lot and seamlessly picked up our dear beloveds. They were so tired that they probably did not notice that Jim and I looked a bit rumpled from our tiff.

We drove home without google lady and in the aftermath, it occurred to me I wanted to make the following promises.

  1. If you contact Green Hope Farm you will always connect with a human and never AI.
  2. AI will never write this blog or any other document coming from Green Hope Farm.
  3. All Flowers will be grown, harvested, made into and bottled as Flower Essences and shipped by humans not AI.
  4. Green Hope Farm will have as little to do with AI as possible.
  5. Photos will always be taken by a human and filters are never used.
  6. Next time we go to the airport, I will be driving and google lady will not be with us.