I’ve realized over the last couple of years that trying to stay current on social media, even just for business reasons, was eating up enormous amounts of my writing time. Recently, I’ve decided that it’s long since time to return to writing and give social media a backseat. So here I am, blogging again! I’ll no longer be on facebook, but you’ll still be able to find me on instagram, since I can’t resist posting pictures of wildcrafting finds, the beauty of New Mexico, all things herbal, and of course, the occasional picture of Rhiannon or Wolf…. and in the not too distant future, this very wiggly baby currently still tucked away in the womb.
Coming back to the blog, I realized that it no longer truly reflected my work, life, or passions. While my excitement for herbalism hasn’t diminished over the year, my ways of practicing and perceiving herbalism over the years have certainly shifted. I’ve renamed the blog to be Enchantments: Healing Roots, Backwoods Victuals, & A Faerytale Life, to give myself more room to talk about the foods I love, many of which are rural and rustic dishes that are a part of my Appalachian heritage, often integrated with the Slavic and Scandinavian cookery that I’ve been studying for the last decade. I also want to delve more into mythic story, and especially how they can assist and guide the herbal practitioner. And of course, I love my strange and diverse life here in the wilds of the Gila with my family, where we still live completely off the grid and without hot/running water, and can’t help but share some of the highlights of the peculiar challenges and delights of it all.
I’m 17 weeks pregnant now, almost halfway through! This pregnancy has been a great joy thus far, and also a great challenge. In part because of my ongoing nausea and exhaustion, but also because of the lack of accessibility to good information/care, that is especially relevant in my very rural area, but also clearly a common part of pregnancy in the United States for many women. More about that in a future post, but I had hoped that more had changed since my first pregnancy nearly two decades ago…. and it probably has in certain areas of the country, but when you want to see the real state of the nation, the place to see it is almost always in rural (or inner city), impoverished areas, often especially those without a white majority.
As our cabin renovations take shape, we’re almost to the stage where I can move some furniture in, and start decorating and otherwise preparing for the baby! I’ve tried to be very patient, but I’m afraid the nesting urge is now causing me to stamp my foot and tell everyone to please hurry. This is especially true since we’ve been so blessed by the gifts that some of you have so sweetly sent our way. Baby shopping is fun, but it will be a great deal more fun to think of each of you every time we wrap the baby in a gifted blanket, or warm the little one in a handmade hat. Likewise, I look forward to the day when I can the little beast where each item came from, and tell them about the person who sent it just for them! The recent Good Medicine Confluence definitely slowed down my progress on thank yous but I’m still working on them, and in the meantime, I hope you can feel our gratitude and love!
It’s fire season here, so the gardens and woods are sadly dry and somewhat barren, but I’m always amazed at what does persist and live on, the hardy Monarda pectinata insisting on blooming in the dry sands of the mesa regardless of the lack of water, the Datura digging deep into the soil to unfurl it’s violet tinged trumpets each evening. And of course we do baby a few plants through the seasonal drought, including our lovely little Pixie Peach that is even bearing a few small but tasty fruit! Since we don’t have a well, it’s challenging to prioritize our water usage, but I always try to save some for my favorite herbs, at least enough to keep the Lovage and Sage and Lemon Balm going until the rains fall again.
While I wait for those much needed monsoons to blow in and turn the canyon green again, I’ll be rambling on about brambleberry pie, herbs and pregnancy, and even a bit about our Wolf and I’s wedding, which turned out so much more beautiful and meaningful than I ever could have mentioned. Not least because of the love and help of more than a few special people.
Until then, if you want to follow me on Instagram, you can find my account under Faerythorn
And for those of you who have recently asked about the baby registry, here’s the link! Kiva’s Baby List