the midwife experience

I read the morning of Jaspers birth in a packet given to me by my midwife detailing some inspiration and instruction for birth and motherhood, that in order for baby to be born the pregnant woman must die.  This was dramatic to read.  But is somehow precisely how you feel in the wild throes of labor, like death is literally knocking at your door.  And now with some time in between the misty experience of birth and today I can see this means so much more to me than just the physical feelings of contractions.

Pregnancy is a journey, for some it’s a battle, for some an epic, beautiful vacation.  For me, it is a combination of the two.  And with each pregnancy, and each birth, I am transformed.  In the after math, days look so different, thoughts are altered, my life is completely new.  Each and every time.  My old life is something to mourn and something to close my eyes and smile a teary eyed smile at.  Having this advice delved out to me right before labor began, and then having it float into my mind now and then the last month, is something I can say only scrapes the tip of the pre-global warming iceberg of advice and comfort my midwife gave me through out this year.  Having these ladies by my side was a game changer.

At our one month appointment for our little Jasper Ray last week, with all kinds of kids running wild in her field, slopping up watermelon she just scooped out, while the mama’s were smiling, herding, commiserating, meeting, and embracing, my midwife said something I will never forget:

this is what I always dreamed of


me too i thought.

me too.

house crashing

Some days I can’t help but concentrate on all that is wild in our days, the things that are bubbling up out of hand: The state of our house for instance… replacing old carpets with wood floors + emptying the contents of the craft room = a terrifying mess, or the height of our laundry pile (it just so happens to be directly behind said disaster area and therefore quite out of reach and remaining just what it is, a pile), or the layer of dirt firmly packed across our entire house… it rivals the outdoors, I swear.  Sometimes, these hurdles are too much to jump and in the end the chaos of it all just brings us down.

Other days I opt to focus on only what I am doing right, the things that are running smoothly.

I know we excel at just being outdoors.  Things are always in order here, just as they should be.

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But when things get really out of hand, even a day outside in the elements doesn’t change our state of mind.  Sometimes we just have to pack and up and get out.  And yesterday, I did precisely this.  I friend-house hopped all day long, sharing meals and stories and essentially avoiding my own place of dwelling due to the unruly state of it.  These girls were the casing on my heart.  We left at 9 and didn’t return until almost twelve hours later.  It was absolutely wonderful.

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At the end of my friend house crashing tour, when laughing at my refusal to return home until after dark if only to avoid the sheer thought of it, the husband of one of my sweet girls’ simply said, “That’s what we have our tribes for.”  Truer words couldn’t be spoken.  

this moment

{this moment}

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{this moment} ~ A Friday ritual inspired by A single photo – no words – capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. If you’re inspired to do the same, leave a link to your ‘moment’ in the comments for all to find and see.

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Last week my devils in disguise decided to play “store” with the house phone.  I was cleaning, or nursing, or dozing and well, it was quiet… and so, I let it happen.  Lo and behold, as one would expect, the phone disappeared and as luck would have it the battery died.  I searched high and low to no avail, and despite my pleads to tell me every single location the store front had moved to, the owners could not find the important object either.  As you could guess, I have no cell phone reception here, and without the life line to call my mom available, things get ugly. A few days into my, I have not spoken to an adult in far too long mess, I threw what can only be referred to as an out right hissy fit and when no one responded to my sweaty eye bulging craze or even raised an eyebrow at my hollering, I sent them both outside.  In the rain.  Not my proudest parenting moment, I can assure you that.  But, thankfully, they don’t care about things so trivial such as a few rain drops, and promptly got involved in some sort of bike rally, but still… I ordered them out.  In the rain.

And it doesn’t end there…  Yesterday was long.  Long in the way eighties rock ballads are, and their hair too (click here for my favorite long hair reference, really I love these guys), oh it was just over the top.  I kept trying to re vamp the day with outings, and projects and snacks but the bickering wouldnt end, the famous “angry face” kept appearing, and I was losing. steam. fast.



just trust me. he was making the angry face.

The evening settled upon us, the biggest boys were outside eating blackberries, Jasper was tucked happily into the sling, and I was making carrot soup.  My favorite.  It is a favorite for all of us in fact.  I falsely believed I had things under control again.  I had great plans of a nice meal, despite the fact that it was one night in a long string of no husband until far after my bedtime was past.  Oh yes, this meal would go well, I willed the universe to appease me.  And of course, it didn’t.  It was loud, and messy and chaotic, and I will be one hudnred percent honest when I say I could not find the beauty in it.  Giggles sounded like fog horns, scampering feet felt like thunder.  Bath time only brought on more crazy.  Wet wash clothes were flying, baby was melting down, and I was tearing up.  When it was all over, I came down stairs, sat in our mud room, my sweaty bare back against the cool wall and did what any sane person would do; I pried open a cold beer with my teeth.  It was my only option.  (Haha just kidding I used a bottle opener.. but man that would have been cool)


Oh these days are not always rainbows and unicorns, though I truly feel like most of the time I can at least see one cantering in the distance.  But sometimes, just sometimes, it is all I can do to just flop into bed and hope tomorrow is different.  With rain in the forecast and a line up of crafts that would make Martha Stuart beam with pride, I think today just may be.




The garden is over run with weeds, leaves are powdery mildew speckled, and well the whole of it is absolutely out of control.  I have only stepped into the garden the last few weeks to attempt to snag out the beans and cucs and squash, or some herbs and such.  There has been little to no actual “work”, and I expected that.  I did.  But, the dreaming for next year has begun already.  I envision decking out the entire perimeter of the garden with pole beans and following suit with a circular set up for the rest.  And because we desperately need to fell some trees to allow some more sunshine in, I am thinking of placing some of the more sun thirsty of the vegetables, and the more space consuming ones too… (for example the pumpkins that are literally dripping form our fence) in the pasture below.  But for now, it is neat to watch things going to seed, looking like Dr. Suess illustrations, and its wonderful to see the excitement on the boys faces when I tell them to go harvest ALL THE THINGS!  Those purple cosmic carrots they have carted in, dragging dirt all over the place, have made some pretty out of this world soup too let me tell you… (oh please laugh at my lame pun).   And the boys eat it like its ice cream, so that alone is worth the work.

The only real task we have accomplished is to harvest and ferment all the cabbage then replace it with some late crop lettuce and spinach.  When the little sprouts showed their squiggly faces the excitement of spring jumped all around me again.  There is something very magical about seeing seeds turn into plants.

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Oh the garden… it is hard to believe I am figuring out the proper way to close up shop already.   The nights and mornings have dipped into the forties, we have been hunting down wood through out the forest to drag up to the woodpile, and I even had to take out socks to warm my little boys toes this morning…  autumn is surely approaching.  How is your garden?