One by One

Oct. 21st, 2012 07:18 am
impossibleway: (Sunset)
The table at breakfast

Seems a good time to count some blessings. . .

  • This was our table from earlier in the week.  We had Jamie Oliver's pancakes with yogurt and honey.  Willow adores this, I think because he cooks with his little girls.
  • The leaves are amazing right now.  I've got a full tank of gas and a drive planned for this afternoon.  My parents often say that they didn't need much when they were first married, just enough gas to get some place and food to take along.  So true.
  • I've got two dozen green, white and brown eggs from Aimee in my fridge right now.  I wonder if she knows just how much this means to me.
  • There are also four sweet Waldorf doll outfits taking shape from fabric she gave me for her oldest daughter's birthday in two weeks. 
  • My family is all still asleep.  My day starts best when I have some time to get myself together before they wake up.

A Daybook

Sep. 20th, 2012 07:42 am
impossibleway: (Boletes on the Ground)
Borrowed from [ profile] rowannrose.  Feel free to do one of your own.

Outside my window...

It is cloudy and cool.

I am listening to...

The dehumidifier beeping to tell me it's full.

I am wearing...

Long sleeves!  And wishing I had some slipper socks on.

I am thankful for...

Autumn's arrival.  And my neighbor's return home last week.

I am pondering...


I am reading...

A People's History of the United States by Howard Zinn.

In the kitchen...

It's quiet.  I think I need to make some tea.

I am creating...

Pants this week, after a long sewing break.  Two pairs for each of the children and a new warmer nightgown for Willow.

Toward a Living Education...

I am trying to get the children outside as much as I can and involving Willow in my work as much as I can.  A couple hikes this week, too.

Beauty in the home...

The Fall fairy with her gourds is waiting to come out on Saturday.  We are enjoying candles more now, especially Roan.

The Church...

Is in our home and hearts for now.

I am hoping and praying...

That Mike finds a new job soon.  We need a change.

A few of my favorite things...

Warm wool clothes, my Weleda lip balm, knitting mittens, quiet.

A few plans for the rest of the week...

A First Day hike for Autumn, another one on Sunday with a friend, and a visit to the cemetery with my grandmother to change out flowers for our family.

A picture thought I’m sharing...

On the wool blanket
impossibleway: (Wilson Bentley)

While they nap,
I remember things I don't want to forget.
I get a little lost and find my way again.
I drive in circles and say, "Ohh, so that's how it is."

While they nap,
we search for snow and find it.
I come back to Earth after weeks of having my head in the clouds.
We drive in circles just a bit more.
We extrapolate data and make just a little bit of sense.
Frivolity is what you make it.
impossibleway: (Wilson Bentley)
Mike's sister Mandy got us a Snoopy Sno-Cone Machine for Christmas and we've been using it to beat the heat (which shows no sign of letting up).  Our town has a beloved Snow Shack, but I could never find a flavor that wasn't super sweet.  So, Willow and I use Kool-Aid for our snow right now.  No less synthetic, well, maybe since there's no high fructose corn syrup.  It's human-powered, so you get exercise while grinding up the ice.

Turns out, one tray of ice cubes is enough to make two people quite cold after consuming it.

We had to go cover up with a blanket and read a book afterward.  Success!
impossibleway: (Ferny Mei Tai)
1 - Leave a comment, saying you want to be interviewed.
2 - I will respond; I'll ask you five questions.
3 - You'll update your journal with my five questions, and your five answers.
4 - You'll include this explanation.
5 - You'll ask other people five questions when they want to be interviewed.

My questions are from [ profile] rowannrose.

1. What was your childhood like? Do you have any siblings? Did you attend school or were you homeschooled? 

I am an only child, but I always wanted siblings.  My childhood was idyllic in many ways.  I spent much of it in my own make-believe world: playing outside, reading books, building tents in my bedroom and making enormous block "slides."  My parents left me up to my own devices much of the time and only my dad really played with me.  As I got older, my mother's emotionally abusive tendencies turned towards me.  God shielded me from her harsh behavior and I am able to leave that behind in my own home.  I attended public school and rode the school bus every year.  I'm not sure if that's the right choice for our family, or not.
2. What book (other than Holy Scriptures) has most touched your life and shaped who you are?

That's a really hard one.  I think that I have had a book for each phase of my life.  Right now, I'd say it's probably One Man's Wilderness or Where the Lilies Bloom.  Both are about self-sufficiency in difficult landscapes.  I tend to prefer non-fiction or, at the very least, incredibly realistic fiction.  I think, at heart, I am a lonely person.  Not a sad lonely, but a fiercely independent, resourceful person.

3. Do you have a "dream home"? If so, what is it like?

My dream home would be about 1500 sq. feet and made of straw bales.  I'd like unfinished wood inside and very simple furnishings.  I'd like three bedrooms and maybe a room to sew and keep books.  I'd make my own curtains and there would be plenty of windows.  I think it would be in an open meadow somewhere in the foothills of a mountain.  It might be here or it might be farther West.  

4. Where have you traveled and what was your favorite place to visit?

Firstly, I've been to these National Parks.  In addition, I've traveled to England, France and Italy.  I've been to a fair number of states along the Appalachians and as far West as the Four Corners area.  I've been hiking on hundreds of miles of trails in our area and there are many spots that are special to me for one reason or another.  I'm not sure I've been to my favorite place yet, but if I had to choose I'd say Mesa Verde, for its incredibly different landscape.

5. Where do you see yourself in ten years?

I have no idea.  Really.  And that's okay with me.

So, go ahead, comment and I'll give YOU five questions! :-D
impossibleway: (Once)
Seems like all my friends have gone off and had babies in the past few weeks.  I could probably tell you about 15 people who had or are very near to having babies.  Of course, I can see how that would make a person busy.  ;-)  Anybody left out there?  If you are, consider yourself tagged for this sweet meme I took from Ginger's place. :-)

If I were a month, I'd be... December.

If I were a day, I'd be... Saturday.

If I were a time of day, I'd be...7:00 AM

If I were a font, I'd be... Tempus Sans.

If I were a sea animal, I'd be... one those critters living near the hydrothermal vents.

If I were a direction, I'd be... North.

If I were a piece of furniture, I'd be... a porch swing.

If I were a drink, I'd be...a margarita.

If I were a gemstone, I'd be... amber.

If I were a tree, I'd be... an oak, except for that whole increased risk of being struck by lightning thing.

If I were a tool, I'd be... a hammer.  I'd hammer in the morning, I'd hammer in the evening...

If I were a flower, I'd be... a trillium.

If I were an element of weather, I'd be...snow.

If I were a musical instrument, I'd be... a banjo.

If I were a color, I'd be... green.

If I were an emotion, I'd be... joy.

If I were a fruit, I'd be... a blueberry.

If I were an element, I'd be... on the stove?  Seriously, this one is out there.

If I were a car, I'd be... a hybrid.

If I were a food, I'd be... lasagna.  Or maybe an enchilada...  It's too close to supper time.

If I were a movie, I'd be... Once.

If I were a place, I'd be... a windswept hillside on the Blue Ridge Parkway.

If I were a material, I'd be... wool.

If I were a taste, I'd be... yummy!

If I were a scent, I'd be... detritus.  Who doesn't want to smell like the woods?

If I were a room in a house, I'd be the... kitchen.

If I were a dessert, I'd be... pumpkin pie.

If I were a body part, I'd be... feet.

If I were a song, I'd be sung by... Dolly Parton.  Why not?

If I were a bird, I'd be...a cardinal.

If I were a gift, I'd be... practical.

If I were a city, I'd be... Asheville.

If I were a door, I'd be... open.

If I were a pair of shoes, I'd be... hiking boots.

If I were a season, I'd be...autumn.

If I were art, I'd be... this.

What would you be?

Ten Things

Feb. 24th, 2010 03:22 pm
impossibleway: (The Little House)
A list of ten things that make you happy is floating around blogland these days, so I tagged myself.  I'm feeling rather happy lately, so it shouldn't be hard. Maybe it's because March is just a few days away. . .

  1. Apple Cheese Pancakes from the original Moosewood
  2. Tea tree oil wafting upstairs from the washer
  3. The bag of salt sitting on our front porch
  4. Bulbs poking up in our neighbor's flower beds
  5. The Waltons on DVD, early seasons, please
  6. Homemade wine from Jim and Carrie
  7. Having a toddler who enjoys her new-found skills
  8. Seeing grass again
  9. Looking in Willow's mouth and finding molars!
  10. Our new antique dresser--our bedroom feels so special now!
And if you read this blog, consider yourself tagged!  I'm very democratic about these things and can't stand to leave anyone out.  :-)
impossibleway: (Tulip Tree in the Hemlock)

Seven blue things I love, inspired by Ginger.
  1. Clear blue Autumn skies, made more vivid by blazing leaves.
  2. Willow's sweet blue corduroy pants, behold the power of hand-me-downs. :-)
  3. Our retro blue butterfly glasses we use for iced tea.
  4. Our piano bench/footrest/coffee table that I re-covered in blue fabric a couple weeks ago.  It's great to rest my tired legs!
  5. Mike's blue Walgreen's shirts--because it means he has a job and we have health insurance!
  6. Blue blazed trails that lead to the AT.
  7. The beautiful blue mountains of home.  If only I could ramble them forever.
Can I say that I love this photo that Mike took this past week?  Despite having sickness in the house, we've really taken in the fall color this year.  Willow and I sat on the grass on the rock while Mike got to take in the view.  The mountains this time of year really make my travelin' foot itch.

impossibleway: (Hooded Girly with Basket)
impossibleway: (Tulip Tree in the Hemlock)

The End.


Jun. 28th, 2009 06:44 pm
impossibleway: (Peace can do better)
Reply to this meme by yelling "Words!" and I will give you five words that remind me of you. Then post them in your blog and explain what they mean to you.  Thanks, [ profile] rowannrose!

There is nowhere else I'd rather be than young in the mountains--it is a complexly beautiful and sad place, full of color.  I spent my teen years trying to eradicate myself of any Appalachian accent, but really, I've always gotten the "You ain't from around here, are ye?"  Well, I am and this is the best place on Earth.  Its seemingly isolated life teaches me lessons about the diverse needs of our world and the unity of the human experience.  I wouldn't trade any other place for where I'm from.

Earthen Living
Life is an amazing balance and it has long been my calling to inspire those around me to make simple, deliberate choices to be better stewards of God's world.  Earthen living is about remembering the land that feeds us and working to find our own ways of loving it.  Some days it means hanging laundry outside or shopping at the farmers' market and other days it means standing up at a meeting and saying what's on your heart.

When I was a child, I'd drool over the backpacks in the Camp Trails catalog.  I'd find secret places in the snow at the Old Davis Homestead and pretend I was miles from home.  For me, hiking works as a metaphor for almost any journey in life--optimistic starts, boulders to climb along the way, well-earned rest at day's end.  Hiking taught me that the trail must be taken as a moving whole, instead of a destination.

I was born to be a wife and mother.  It's broadened my view and helped me to be secure in my beliefs.  It is daily yoga for the heart.  Motherhood is, perhaps, one of God's greatest inventions and the most important work I'll ever do.

Awhile back, I was out sweeping the porch when our particularly watchful neighbor remarked about the peace banner on our door.  "It's a nice idea," he said, and went on in the same grain, talking about how it wasn't a realistic ideal.  Makes no difference to me.  This is, after all, the Impossible Way.  My dad said this about pacifisim: 

Enjoy your freedom and desire for peace.  I hope no one spoils it for
you.  There are many reasons for war and none of them are valid.  Jesus
clearly says that there will be wars until the time of his Kingdom on
Earth.  But his message was one of peace.  Your politics are fine by me.
I am glad that you have a passion for what you know is right.

impossibleway: (Mama with Willow)

We ate at Chik-fil-A after every single midwife appointment.  That place never gets old.  I'm surprised Willow didn't come out with a waffle fry for an ear.
impossibleway: (Best Resting Place)
So I was sitting here trying to order some photos of Willow from Walgreen's for my mom and. . . Willow fell asleep.  This is a rare occurrence round these parts as usually she nurses to sleep.  Now what?

Well, I guess it's time to stop feeling like I don't have time for things and just get them done.  There's tiny laundry to fold, blogs to read and sunshine to enjoy.  I'm glad that all of you still like me despite my differences from many of you, though I'd say it did not come as a surprise at all.  After changes, we are more or less the same.

The sun is out today and it is near sixty, so I am very happy.  I've continued with my spring transitions around the house and even vacuumed today.  It is good to be normal/weird again.  I don't have a lot to say, but I do have some things to share.  First a few linkies that I've been collecting in my bookmarks that will soon join their buddies on the sidebar:

A LEGO a day--perfectly funny action shots of LEGOs going about their business.
Eyes of Wonder--this blog offers simply wonderful reflections of a mother of many, with beautiful photos to boot.
Little Cabin in the Woods--the blog of a family who just happen to have their own sweet little Willow, recommended by [ profile] asourceofjoy 
Berlin's Whimsy--a great craft blog by a mom who's starting her life new again

And also, some long-awaited Willow shots:

Power to the people, right on!

impossibleway: (Willow in the Sling)

Week before last, we were blessed with the gift of going shopping for some goodies for Willow.  I always loved wooden toys when I was little so we swung for a four dollar kaleidoscope shaped like a mushroom.  I've been going all [ profile] mikecnichols  and having fun experimenting with photography. . .

KaleidoMoby--Willow's clacking fish

KaleidoNapper--what she's doing right now.

KaleidoTurkey--what we had for lunch. ;-)

KaleidoShroom--for sale here, multiplicity not included.

KaleidoPine--Willow's new stacking tree.

KaleidoKnisse--little corkin gnome. :-)

KaleidoConfusion--Willow was baffled by the camera.

impossibleway: (Default)

Where is your mobile phone? Walgreen's
Where is your significant other? Walgreen's
Your hair colour? Brown
Your mother? Outgoing
Your father? Introverted
Your favourite thing? Mittens
Your dream last night? Unknown
Your dream goal? Peace
The room you're in? Mike's
Your hobby? Knitting
Your fear? Conflict
Where do you want to be in 6 years? Further
Where were you last night? Couch
What you're not? Pregnant!
One of your wish-list items? Snow
Where you grew up? Redstone
The last thing you did? Nursed
What are you wearing? Not maternity clothes! (Sorry ;))
Your TV? On (blush)
Your pets? None
Your computer? Interesting (to Willow)
Your mood? Hopeful
Missing someone? Indeed
Your car? Sitting
Something you're not wearing? Maternity clothes!
Favourite shop? Earth Fare
Your summer? Long
Love someone? Indeed
Your favourite colour? Plaid ;-D
When is the last time you laughed? Noonish
When is the last time you cried? Yesterday

Really sums up how I'm feeling right now.  Okay, here's the obligatory mommy and baby shot--what a difference nearly two weeks makes. . .

Tag!  You're it!
impossibleway: (Autumn Fern)
[ profile] rowannrose  gave me the letter "E" for this simple meme.  If you'd like, comment and I'll give you a letter to post your loves.

Early morning :: The most peaceful time of day before everyone is awake.   Perfect for reading and reflection.

Eggs :: And all they're many uses--fried, french toast, ice cream, oohhh! and . . .

Eggnog :: My favorite Christmas treat, made at home and tasting nothing like the store stuff.

Extra produce :: People have been giving us a steady stream all summer and we've been putting it all to use--apples, green beans, tomatoes.  See Tammy's post about the Food We Don't Refuse.

Etsy :: This online network of handmade goods has provided much-needed income for the Nichols' Homestead.  [ profile] mikecnichols  made his first official sale yesterday--yay!

Eating for two :: As the baby gets bigger, I can't hold as much as I used to, but I'm still really enjoying being ravenously hungry and knowing it's going for a good cause.

Easter eggs :: Coloring them and hiding them indoors.  It's always been kind of chilly here at Easter, so we keep our eggs on the inside.  Then, we devil them!

Ecology :: What kind of naturalist would I be if I didn't use this as one of my letters"  Blame it on living in the most beautiful place on Earth--it just made me love the natural world.

Elsa Beskow :: Her children's books are just wonderful and seem to match up with all my favorite things, like. . .

Elves :: and gnomes and fairies and other forest frolickers. :-)

Happy Mid-Week and Late-Summer!

impossibleway: (Berries)
From [ profile] helenkosings, because I am awake and hungry. ;-)

The VGT Omnivore’s Hundred:

"Below is a list of 100 things that I think every good omnivore should have tried at least once in their life. The list includes fine food, strange food, everyday food and even some pretty bad food - but a good omnivore should really try it all. Don’t worry if you haven’t, mind you; neither have I, though I’ll be sure to work on it. Don’t worry if you don’t recognize everything in the hundred, either; Wikipedia has the answers.

Here’s what I want you to do:

1) Copy this list into your blog or journal, including these instructions.
2) Bold all the items you’ve eaten.
3) Cross out any items that you would never consider eating."

1. Venison
2. Nettle tea -- Still chugging the pregnancy tea!
3. Huevos rancheros
4. Steak tartare
5. Crocodile
6. Black pudding
7. Cheese fondue
8. Carp
9. Borscht
10. Baba ghanoush
11. Calamari
12. Pho
13. PB&J sandwich
14. Aloo gobi
15. Hot dog from a street cart
16. Epoisses
17. Black truffle
18. Fruit wine made from something other than grapes
19. Steamed pork buns
20. Pistachio ice cream
21. Heirloom tomatoes
22. Fresh wild berries
23. Foie gras
24. Rice and beans
25. Brawn, or head cheese
26. Raw Scotch Bonnet pepper
27. Dulce de leche
28. Oysters
29. Baklava
30. Bagna cauda
31. Wasabi peas
32. Clam chowder in a sourdough bowl -- It has to be in a funny bowl?
33. Salted lassi
34. Sauerkraut
35. Root beer float
36. Cognac with a fat cigar-- What?  Nothing involving cigars.
37. Clotted cream tea
38. Vodka jelly/Jell-O
39. Gumbo
40. Oxtail
41. Curried goat
42. Whole insects
43. Phaal
44. Goat’s milk
45. Malt whisky from a bottle worth £60/$120 or more
46. Fugu
47. Chicken tikka masala
48. Eel
49. Krispy Kreme original glazed doughnut
50. Sea urchin
51. Prickly pear
52. Umeboshi
53. Abalone
54. Paneer
55. McDonald’s Big Mac Meal--But, hey, there's still some time left to this pregnancy!
56. Spaetzle
57. Dirty gin martini
58. Beer above 8% ABV
59. Poutine
60. Carob chips
61. S’mores
62. Sweetbreads
63. Kaolin
64. Currywurst
65. Durian
66. Frogs’ legs
67. Beignets, churros, elephant ears or funnel cake
68. Haggis
69. Fried plantain
70. Chitterlings, or andouillette
71. Gazpacho
72. Caviar and blini
73. Louche absinthe
74. Gjetost, or brunost
75. Roadkill
76. Baijiu
77. Hostess Fruit Pie
78. Snail
79. Lapsang souchong
80. Bellini
81. Tom yum
82. Eggs Benedict--Does it count if I made Paula Deen's Southern version?  I think so.
83. Pocky
84. Tasting menu at a three-Michelin-star restaurant.
85. Kobe beef
86. Hare
87. Goulash
88. Flowers
89. Horse
90. Criollo chocolate
91. Spam
92. Soft shell crab--Sort of loud bendy.
93. Rose harissa
94. Catfish
95. Mole poblano
96. Bagel and lox
97. Lobster Thermidor
98. Polenta
99. Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee
100. Snake

Clearly, I need to get out more.  I do, however, really enjoy Bizarre Foods and No Reservations.  Time to go munch on leftover blueberry pancakes and bacon.
impossibleway: (Barefeet)

Mike told me a couple of weeks ago that I've aged.  Apparently, he was looking back through old photos and found this shot of us at the Sliding Rock in the Pisgah National Forest.  We'd been married less than two months and were working part-time then.  The day before, or so, we'd slid down the big rock face into the icy cold water.  I was the chicken who'd worn a life jacket and nearly hyperventilated on the way down.  We were surrounded by kids who'd made dozens of trips down the rock and were pumped for more.  Once was enough for me.

Three years later, I admittedly look a little different.  I'm a whole quarter of a century old, have one day of work left, and will be holding a baby in less than four months.  I still manage to make funny faces when my picture is taken because my being photogenic wore off at the age of ten.  Really, I was great until then. 

Twenty-four was a big year of preparation.  Twenty-five will be settling in.  I'll have three-ish months to get used to one income before the baby comes.  There will be a final summer of just being Mike-and-Brandy.  There is a freezer to stock and berries to pick.  There will be firsts like crazy and I will be here to see them all.  Lucky me. :-)

Now that I'm back from the break, I'll participate in [ profile] helenkosings meme, Six Quirky Things:
  1. I cannot sleep late, no matter what.  I might miss something.  Like breakfast.
  2. I cannot lie when it's the polite thing to do.  It just doesn't work.  Social graces seem to have escaped me.  So, I guess you know that if I say thank-you, I really do mean it.  Otherwise, the foot goes into the mouth.
  3. I won my best friend Becky by annoying her until she gave up and liked me.  Isn't stealing pieces of a person's flute in band at least slightly endearing?
  4. Cereal is my favorite pre-packaged food genre.  I can eat cereal until the cows come home, laugh at me for awhile and go back out to pasture.  Good thing I found Tammy's granola recipes.  I talk about them rather a lot, if you haven't noticed.  They'll likely save our budget in the coming months.
  5. My husband loves Dave Matthews Band like I love cereal and I do not.  Life's funny like that.
  6. For the first time in my life, I have no plans beyond December.  A month of back and forth, hemming and hawing, up and down, waiting and waiting, I've learned a lot about flexibility and zero expectations.  Probably a good thing, considering.
Now it's time to inaugurate a new year with a hot bowl of Cream of Wheat with maple syrup.  Happy Birthday to me!
impossibleway: (Hooded Girly)
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