the daddy fly and the larvae and the baby that hatched out

Our days have finally become consistent once again after the big move and I can assure you it feels so very good.  Little boys that are rested.  A mama that occasionally has a moment to gather her thoughts before the scampering feet arrive.  A home with everything in its place and a place for everything (ok, maybe not everything).  A general feeling of rhythm, routine, and calm has come over this home and I quite like it.

Part of that has included a waldorf inspired circle in the morning.  Though I never believed I would have the tenacity to keep something like this up, it has become a part of our day that I truly treasure.  It gives my boys at least an hour of focused mama time where chores are done together and where I don’t try and pick up around their play.  We dance, we sing, we play hand games, we do yoga, we recite simple poems/verses, we paint, we bake bread and generally have a good time.  And though I do indeed admit a full on love affair with the waldorf philosophy, truth be told my boy feels the same way about something else, he loves letters!  I have put no emphasis on them whatsoever yet he hardly draws a picture without declaring it looks like one.  “It’s a half an “A” mama!  It’s an upside down “M” mama!  It’s a “T” for uncle T mama!”, he announces.  And the list goes on and on.  While I believe that literacy begins with a love of stories rather than a focus on phonics, I can’t deny my little one of something so solid that he feels inclined towards.  So I have begun teaching him a few letters here and there, basing a couple unique projects around them, and sometimes picking up a book that happens to have a story with that certain letter’s involvement.

For instance



Flying Miles


And we read Fledgling and made fairy wands and built an incredible fort (one whom I enjoy being in so much it deserves an entire post of its own).  Overall it was a lovely week.  I feel certain this inclination towards letters will be something he dives in and out of during his preschool aged years, but I don’t intend on putting all our focus on them either.  I believe his imagination will be best preserved through play and storytelling and movement and adventure and life in general.  And we will continue to do lots more of that too.


Oh not much has changed over the last two decades.  I believe my imagination has been preserved quite well.  I use to play pretend teacher on a regular basis making intensive “workbooks” for this pretty lady when she was Miles age and now look at her;  All grown up sitting on my couch loving my boy.  These two they are something else I promise you.

The Trembling Earth

Some memories are sparked by a photograph or a conversation.  They are bright and vivid and you can recall them quite easily.  There is no mistaking where you were or who you were with, they are tales told over and over again throughout the years.  Other memories are more illusive.  They are stored only in the form of scent and sound.  More often than not you hear a song or smell something cooking that reminds you of something, yet you just can’t place your finger on it.  But other times you take a deep breath in, close your eyes and nod in recognition.  For these times there is no doubt that your olfactory system is alive and well.

Ten years ago, I was in the same place that I was this weekend.  I huddled amongst knobby knees of cypress trees. I spied the wings of interesting birds that swooped low tempting treacherous gators to have a snack. I hiked on top of the peat bog that squished like glue between my toes.  I ate delicious food cooked over a fire.  I paddled in canoes with people I love.  I listened to owls and the chorus of other eery sounds during what I thought was the quiet of the night. Just like I did this weekend.

This black tea water, the smell of the earth, the sound of a canoe paddle swishing.  There are only a few memories I hold as dear as these.  

Ladies and gentlemen I present to you The Okefenokee-

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Weekends with no obligation, nothing to do but be together in the calm of the wild, those are my favorite.  It was an honor and a pleasure to bring these three boys to a place that taught me so much.  I hope it did the same for them.  

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On one side of the Suwanee everything remained intact, exactly how it has for the last several millenia.  You can easily envision The Native People of the land peering out from the ancient stoops.  Without much effort you can practically see the look in an alligators eyes that reminds you that they actually roamed with the dinosaurs.  This place is sacred and powerful.

But just the same, so delicate.  On the opposite side of the river this trip, I saw solid devastation.  It took my breath away on a bended knee.  I can only imagine what the men and women who have worked and traveled there for 30 or 40 years felt as the trembling earth incinerated three years ago.

If anyone understands the dynamics of fire and the necessity of it, it is my husband.  He is a forester and has seen her perfectly control the land in many stands.  There is no denying on the whole humans are confused on such a subject.  It seems backwards to do anything but put out the flames, but if this is what we choose to do, then we are creating a ticking time bomb.  A fire will strike through lightning if no human can get to it first and torch the place down.  Brush, small trees, and other invasives need to be kept at bay.  They do serve as temporary shelters but in the end they are just fuel for the fire.  The Okefenokee was no different.  Yes, they did controlled burns but not enough of them.  I am sure they would have liked to do more, but with budget constraints and the number of employees that massive chunk of land was just out of reach.   But not for mother nature.   In April 2011, with a sever drought and a thunder and lightning storm the fire began.  Even after the licking flames were put out the peat smoldered for over a year.  You can see a bit of the massacre here.


It is not all so bad.  There are a few “mother” trees, scraggly looking living Cypress standing alone amidst acres and acres of singed black stalks indicating a sure recovery one day.  Animals still roam the area and truly don’t seem to mind.  I am sure the woodpeckers of the swamp quite like all the hollowed out trunks.  Less work, more meals I suppose.  The swamp still holds its ancient magic.

A journal entry from December 9, 2001 reads the following:  Me and Molly went on a hike this afternoon in the pouring rain.  It was so so so so much fun.,  I love the rain.  I suppose it’s because everything gets really quiet and it is just so relaxing.  Me and Molly rolled up our pants and hiked into the woods.  We hiked until we got to the tree that grows sideways like this:  (I included a little drawing 🙂  We climbed until (an arrow pointing the exact location) then me and Molly fell off.  Then we talked and talked until I was so cold.  But we talked about some awesome stuff.  I am inside by the fire tonight, its nice because its raining tonight too.  Also, about the adventure with Molly in the woods, we got lost.  And well, we found our way back purely on instinct.

Instinct huh?  This just makes me laugh.  But perhaps its true, perhaps the peat laden land brought out the best in me, gave me some directional instinct to follow.  Or perhaps I was just a silly  little girl, with all the hope in the world.

one day my sheep will come

A weekend in the waiting for well over a year now, due to my forgetfulness and outright missing of it the first go around, finally arrived.  The Sheep to Shawl on Oatland Island.  The rain came down, but not before a good bit of fun was had.

IMG_1061 IMG_1063 IMG_1066 IMG_1067 IMG_1069 IMG_1070 IMG_1071 IMG_1074 IMG_1081 IMG_1088 IMG_1097One day my sheep will come.  If I have to be an old lady, so be it.  I too will be caressing her knatty fur while snip snipping away.  Teaching my grandkids (if it comes to that) to card the wool then tapping away on the pedal of spindle.  My boys, my Lee and this lady here had a glorious time.  There were rainy wagon rides, downpours under tin roofs, dutch oven corn bread slathered in honey, and many many questions asked to men and women tending to the fibers.


days like this were made for ice cream

This past Sunday there was warm sun, so toasty my biggest boy wore shorts; Amazingly sweet friends, full of laughs so good we recount them again and again, a giant puddle, crazy boys, and a few sandwiches.  What more could you ask for?

IMG_0205After so much goodness, I couldn’t imagine it getting any better.  And then a suggestion was made that was so grand, I am sure this dear couple couldn’t have guessed the repercussions could be so vast.

Ice Cream.

I am only human.  I eat healthy, for the most part.  I actually enjoy my baked goods de-sugared (sometimes), but when it comes to my ice cream?  I am a sucker for the real thing.  No substitutions.  No strings attached.

And this man has got it right.


The Ice Cream Stop feels like a bar for kids.  He knows all the regulars orders by heart, he calls the babies by name, and he welcomes everyone with a grin form ear to ear and a grandiose hello as they walk in the door.  This is the spot.  I promise you.  I believe there was no less than two dozen flavors of the creamy goodness, and there were other indulgences as well…


The walls were perfectly coated in a smattering of smiling faces both of the human variety and the canine alike.  


There is a perfect little corner dedicated to keeping the half pints among us content and happy giving the mamas and the papas adequate time ooh and ahh over their selections.


He offers drive in movies on the weekends.  Free.  He supplies old-fashioned hot dogs and drinks for a minimal charge for those who please.  There is even a Tuesday afternoon story hour (12:45) followed up by a free cone.  I believe I found my newest version of heaven.

  I believe a few boys did as well.

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And despite my clear and obvious reasons to avoid food dyes, I thought today would be a good day to just let it be.  And it was.

Once home, there was no stopping them.  Those boys passed out cold.  We placed our sleeping babes cozily in bed, dried out those soaking wet shoes and basked in our sweet tooth loving glory.  


My kind of day.

ps.  those boots are hard core, are they not?

its been raining and pouring

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This week was marked in a few really rainy stormy days.  The clouds rushed by our heads so quick there wasn’t even enough time to muster up an animal or a face in the fluffy whiteness up above.  The air is so thick and humid right now.  The trees and vines are drooping low to the ground from all the weight.  And everything, I mean everything is a green so shiny it takes your breath away.  Around here the trees grow a spectacular fern on the tops of every branch and twig.  When its dry they look like they have all but died out, but then just a touch of rain and they perk right back up again.

Just like that.  


The rain didn’t stop us though.  It couldn’t.  I didn’t have a choice.  Being in the house for several days straight with these two is not an option.  Not that that sounds appealing anyways, but that is besides the point.  So, we donned our rain gear and dutifully headed outdoors each day, rain or shine.

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A three-year old excels in the uncomfortable.  They seem to not even notice.  They are quite alright with sopped up socks and tiny gnat bites.  It is just not important.  But, a one year old?  Their preference is to dive bomb in every puddle they see, face first, for the first ten minutes you are outside and then insist you hold their muddy, sticky, soaking wet selves the rest of the morning.  I know better than to just change them, for that would be all the encouragement to just do it again.


Poor little guy has been through the ringer lately too I may add.  He took a solid spill off our back porch steps yesterday leaving him beat up and bruised all over.  And of course, he already hurled himself off the couch to split it open a bit further this morning.  Sigh… crazy kids.


Seems that the rain brought in more than just green ferns too.  The world is coming alive, and with a vengeance too.  There is nothing subtle about the spring around here, though the climate may be warmer all together.  


No no, the grass all of a sudden needs to be mowed, wildflowers swish at your knees, and birds come flitting in flocks upon flocks.  All at once.