Of Shingles, Kayaks, and Kangaroo Paws

Ben hammered into place every last shingle of our Flower Essence building back in the summer of 2001. Over the past week, his siblings, Emily and Will, took up the charge to learn the fine art of cedar shingling.

Morning one and Will used that well positioned bike to put a bit of distance between himself and this project. It is, after all, summer.

Emily kept at it over the next few days and Jim decided to shingle the peak end of the shed because, “it was going to look shabby next to the shingle roof”. (Jim and I seem to have a harder time than Will remembering it is summer.)

Emily kept hammering away until it was all done.


One fine day, a shingling break was taken to kayak on one of New Hampshire’s many lakes an hour northeast of here.


This micro climate is much more like the woods of the Adirondacks and offered me a chance to visit with Flower friends that don’t live near the farm.


While some rested their hammering (and biking) skills, I explored the island where we had stopped.


The Wintergreen was just getting ready to bloom. When you crumple one of Wintergreen’s gorgeous shiny leaves, the lovely smell of Wintergreen oil fills the air. I love Wintergreen. Do they even make candy from it anymore?

When I was a little girl in the Adirondacks, I would pour boiling water over a jar containing Wintergreen leaves to make a lovely pink tea with that va va voom Wintergreen flavor.

In the above photograph, Wintergreen’s white Flowers are just about to open into their bell blossoms, Flowers so good at ringing in vibrational encouragement to be our zesty selves.


This is Dogberry or Clintonia borealis. It has beautiful lily like yellow blossoms in the spring and blue berries in the late summer and fall. I was a little startled to see its berries already so blue. Can it really be late summer????

Anyways, I think these berries, rising boldly and unapologetically up from the pine duff, dramatically suggest this Flowers vibrational strengths. Dogberry is an ingredient in our Separation mix and also our Outburst mix. It has a very centering, clarifying, and strengthening vibration, making it a support to animals and people to find their strength and sense of purpose amidst chaotic situations.


Bunchberry is another beloved Flower in our Animal Wellness Collection mixes. The Bunchberry where we were kayaking no longer had its symmetrical four petaled white Flowers, but I think this orderly bouquet of berries and its symmetrical leaves suggest why we use this Essence in our Outburst and Separation mixes along side Dogberry.

While the white Flowers suggest its immense loving vibration, this organized even sheltered and contained arrangement of fiery orange berries suggests how it helps us to know how to contain and manage strong emotion.

Here is another dramatic example of this principle from a new Flower Essence I made this week.


This is Kangaroo Paw (Anigozanthes) a native of down under. It has pale brown kangaroo paw shaped blossoms emerging from fiery orange calyxes. This one is going to find its way into a lot of the Animal Wellness collection including Outburst, Run & Play, and Animal Emergency Care.

Can you see how its appearance telegraphs its vibrational strengths? The swift transition from fiery orange to soft tan Flowers suggests how it can help us transmute explosive situations into benign ones, move orthopedic injuries or other wounds towards rapid healing and dramatically turn a heated up situation into one of healing and calm.
It is so wonderful that this Flower and its Essence is now available to us on this side of the world, and so wonderful that each micro climate of our dear planet offers so many gifts.


Rhino Lives!

It’s been too long since we heard from Rhino, that noble friend of dirty dishes and tired mothers.

Good News!


Rhino not only lives, but he is on the trip of a lifetime.

Rhino has gone home to his true homeland.

Rhino is in Kenya.

And he is not alone.


He took some bears. Lots of bears.

Rhino departed for Africa with sixteen knitted bears. Once that afghan project was done and the afghans were on their way to Afghanistan, I couldn’t just sit back with empty hands during all the evenings when Rhino and the other men of the household were watching soccer, golf, the tour de france. Yes, yes, I could be in another room reading edifying literature, but sometimes I just want to sit with Rhino and company even when I have no interest in their sport du jour.

Sooooooo, I found another knitting project called Mother Bear. Mother Bear sends these little knitted bears to children in Africa and other countries throughout the world. I started a collection of bears to send to Mother Bear. Then when Ben and his girlfriend Megan got the opportunity to go to Kenya to help build a school outside of Nairobi, I decided to give the bears into their charge to share as they wanted.

Imagine Rhinos delight that Ben’s latest travel plans included Africa.

Imagine my delight at thinking of all the little bears I had knit being given to children by Megan and Ben.

So here they all were this weekend, right before they left for the airport. Rhino is perched on Ben’s shoulders in his typical supervisory role. Megan and Ben are preparing to stuff the bears in their suitcases.

Can’t wait to share the photos of Rhino, the bears, Megan and Ben in Africa.

Life is good!

Sorry About That!

So sorry about the site going down!

So sorry also about those creepy ads!

We didn’t receive notice from the server that we had to renew the domain name. This could be because of our spam filter threw out the reminder or simply because, as webmaster Ben believes, this is probably the way the server makes its money- selling ads that are posted when someone doesn’t renew their domain in time, thus allowing other companies’ ads to benefit from our web traffic.

When the server took down the site, not only did they posted those charming photos and ads for massage oils and such- apparently thinking that Flower Essences are something best used in Las Vegas…. but they also said it would take them 24-48 hours to put our site back online after we had paid the fee….. Hence the thirty six hours or so of underdressed ladies.

Since its not a process that takes any time to put the site back up, Ben theorizes that this delay tactic is another way the server benefits from customer lapses. The longer the site is down the better for these other advertisers.

Again, heartfelt apologies for this. We paid up for the maximum amount of five years so as to avoid this problem for as long as possible.

And about those smarmy cheesecake shots that the web server posted as ads……This is the only kind of cake we want on our site



What can I say, Strawberry Raspberry Blueberry Berry season is an excuse for desserts and whipped cream. This fabulous six layer wonder was created by Ben’s friend Megan.

And if we have to stoop to cheesecake shots, let them be like this one of Riley, naked, with a Flower Essence at his side, living the life of Riley.

Berry Good


Konigin von Danemark Rose was the last new Rose Essences I made this summer. Here she is in her early morning glory. Isn’t she gorgeous? Now I will sit with the Deva of Konigin von Danemark Rose to find out what she has to say about her Flower Essence. Then she will be added to the research list and made available to anyone who wants to work with her Essence.

Over time, as we work with her, we will learn more from this Rose from further conversations with her, from our experiences with her Flower Essence, and from what you tell us about your experiences with her Essence. When I go to rewrite the Guide sometime in the next year, I will see if the Angels overlighting our Flower Essence collection want to move Konigin von Danemark Rose out of the relative quiet of the research list to the main line up.

Sometimes a new Rose Essence will get added right away to our existing mixes as was the case last summer with Madame Hardy Rose. She was added to our Grief & Loss mix because of her vibrational gifts of consolation for those who lose a lover, a cherished friend, or beloved place. Only time will tell how these lovely new Rose Flower Essences and other Flower Essences of the summer of 2007 will be used.

I find that the Flowers that call out to become new Flower Essences each growing season are often very appropriate Essences for the vibration of the present times. They often become a part of our mixes or become immediate “frequent flyers”, flying out of here as fast as I can bottle them. Nature wants to support us fully in our spiritual journies. Bringing particularly helpful Flower Essences forward for our use is one way Nature does this.
I know I have dwelled on the Roses lately, but when the Roses bloom each summer, it is a consuming experience. I can never imagine being able to let them go without a lot of angst. They are so compelling in their beauty, vibration, and fragrance.

However, as they begin to go by, many other wonders fill the garden and there is not as much need for regretting their departure as I expect.

One specific reason for this is berries. July is all about berries and small fruits. I love this, because I love berries and berry picking. In fact. my hands are stained with raspberry juice as I sit here typing. It’s another overcast Sunday, but you can’t keep the raspberries from glowing.

A few minutes amongst these canes and…


There is a big bowl of berries. The dogs wander along at my feet snarffling the lower berries and I pick the ones on top. It works for everyone.


The gooseberries are coming along and will need to be picked soon.

The red currants are ready too. When I was a child, we made red currant and red raspberry jelly, a natural pairing since they ripen at the same time. Nowadays, our raspberries get consumed before the jam or jelly stage, leaving only the red currants for jellymaking. Red Currant jelly makes a lovely colored jelly of the intense red you see here.

It looked like we were going to have a bumper crop of sour cherries, so good for pies. However the birds noticed the bumper crop the same moment we did. I asked the birds to leave us the cherries and also hung little foil pie plates to rattle and shine in the tree, hoping that would keep the birds away.

I should have known it was hopeless when the birds didn’t even leave their snacking on the cherries while I was tying the pie pans in the branches next to them.

Today, I estimate there are maybe twelve cherries left in the tree and a lot of fat and sassy birds nearby.

Twelve cherries do not a pie make. Additionally, I am delighted to know that I have to get the ladder out to take down all the foil pie pans I carefully tied all over the tree.

Having no faith in the birds willingness to leave any of the other fruits for the rest of us, I have wrapped the ripening blueberries in netting. The fabric store only had pink, blue, and purple netting so its quite a colorful as well as color coordinated sight down in the blueberries. One I hope the birds are enjoying.


Birds are not the only creatures intent on eating more than their share. I replanted the beans three time due to voracious slugs. By the third planting I was pretty much planting whatever bean seeds I could lay my hands and what I laid my hands on were pole beans not bush beans as planned.

I only noticed this yesterday when I saw that the beans that had survived the slugs were not behaving like tidy bush beans but were clamoring all over each other with vine like tendrils. I stuck all the poles I could find in with these beans. There weren’t many poles and a lot of the poles were stunted little things. I hope these pole beans turn and climb this motley collection of poles anyways, but I could certainly understand if they refuse to do this. I imagine they would prefer sturdy tripods or corn stalks for their climbing.

I also must have reached for the wrong packet of Zinnia seeds when I planted the Zinnias too. I seem to have only planted ORANGE Zinnias. They do look good against the Red Shiso so I am not so sorry about this goof. Here is a sample row with the Red Shiso in the background.

And here is the Red Shiso making a beautiful start in this lovely spiral formation. Healthy Red Shiso! That makes up for every slug and sassy bird at the farm!


Project Man, his Spouse and Son

Sunday afternoon and Project Man was busy…….

Yup…..He’s home for the summer……… This means his nail belt is seeing serious action. Here’s a shot of May May in her supervisory role while Jim works on project uno, a renovation of the woodshed.

We’ll put the firewood under this new shed roof so that Jim can make the woodshed into storage space. I am excited because I figure this woodshed roof will be a great place for a couple of big flowering vines or climbing Roses. Jim is excited because he’ll have space for the lawnmower and won’t have to move four hundred of my garden related items to get it in and out of its space as is the case now.

On the other side of the gardens……

Ben has begun to get his test grapes from the pots where we have been growing them the last year into the ground. He’s building the needed post and wire structures for the grapes to be trained on as he goes, so it is taking awhile to do.

Meanwhile, this project fervor rubbed off on me and I went to the barn overhang to make more of a mess on top of Jim’s lawnmower. I hoped to assemble a few new beehives in case we get any swarms and need more hives. I got a little fancy on myself ordering some new hive parts.

Some of these parts, like these slatted bottom boards that give the bees more ventilation in the hive and makes them like their bottom hive body better, went together well.

Some not so well. Here below directions mentioning pieces I did not seem to have show off bent nails and wrecked wood from my many attempts to assemble these hive tops.


After several hours fighting with the directions and strangely mismatched pieces for the telescoping hive tops, I left project man and son to hold down the projects on the farm and beat a retreat to a chair in the garden to read a book. May May even came off shift to join me. She too had had enough of Sunday projects.