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Change…

I know I know, it’s been awhile since I’ve posted here.  Let’s just say the muse went on a vacation and she took a major sabbatical from my brain.  I don’t blame her.

Sitting here on this Sunday morning, I am looking around at all the trees, and noticing so many of them are still very green with most of their leaves still going strong.  And it’s October 30th *actually, it’s November 5th, it’s been a week since I typed this up and now I’m just getting to finish it *.  A bit unusual for this time of year, as the ending of the autumn season usually accompanies the falling of the leaves.  By early November, almost all the trees are bare. *actually, the trees are finally starting to change, and I have pictures of last Sunday versus this Sunday and see how they changed within 1 week*  And people say climate change isn’t real.  If people would stop for just a moment to see what our Earth is doing, they might actually agree.

(Our Sugar Maple)

(The Walnut Tree next door)

Change is everywhere in the air.  I am able to understand a little better now why I am feeling the blues hit me a little earlier than my normal time (which is usually between end of December to beginning of March).  The last time I felt the blues come on this early was 2008.  I was right on the cusp of a major life change.  The difference now than where I was in 2008, was that I am aware of the change.  Back then, my ego was still running the show, the MC of my life, so it allowed me blissful ignorance while I was doing my day to day activities.

The last few days I had been going over the life changes that were in store for me at the time I was unaware.  Who I was in 2008, is no longer on this plane of existence.  Like a leaf blowing in the wind before its final journey from tree to grass is complete, I said goodbye to that Bridget I once was.  Selfish, immature, narcissistic, egocentric, and living in the world of victim-hood, shedding those facets that made up of who I was, was challenging yet liberating.  I truly believed that once I shed that skin, the real Bridget would be out and I would then live my days in this new frame of existence.

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How silly I was to think that was to be the last change!

Yes, its true, we shed physically every 7-9 years.  Astrologically speaking, we go through major changes every 17-19 years.  Right now I’m smack in the middle of my second nodal return.  Changes I am going through are enough to keep me on my toes.  Honestly, up until a few weeks ago, I thought I was in a good place in all areas of my life.  Sure, there is ALWAYS room for improvement, but I guess I thought the majority of my life was pretty much it, and I was pretty content with that knowledge.  Who would have thought my ego was still peeking through?

I have learned through grace and humility that ego does not like to be wrong.  It wants to win every time.  Ego will fight when you try to change.  That’s all ego knows.  Instead of fighting the ego, love it.  Bless it.  Acknowledge it.  Then keep moving.  Spending more and more time with ego will cause backwards thinking, stagnancy and despair.  I know because I’ve done it.  That “Stuck” feeling we get from time to time?  Depression?  Anxiety?  That’s all ego is.  When we step away from it, we come closer to our true selves.

If you are a follower of me on Social Media, then you probably saw a post not too long ago about me feeling a shift of my Spirituality.  For almost 2 decades, I have felt a kinship and a love for Earth Spirituality.  Being in Communion with God out in Nature proved to be one of the most intense and deep loves that I felt in a long time.  When I officially walked away from the Catholic Church on December 21, 2012, I truly believed I found where I was supposed to be.  I studied so many religions and faiths over the years, Earth Spirituality was most definitely *the* path I felt called to be a part of.  And for over 20 years, it’s where my heart lied.  Until recently.

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Now, don’t get me wrong, my heart still lies there, just like it still lies with Catholicism in some ways.  When you emerge and align your body, mind and soul with a particular faith, you go all in.  Your whole world becomes taken over by it.  It’s literally like falling in love with someone.  Butterflies, a longing to be a part of them in every way.  I truly believe that’s how a person feels when they delve into a life change they have been craving to be a part of.  All the endorphins are finally released, creating a euphoric high within you.

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This is precisely how I have been feeling when I allowed myself to dive into Hinduism.

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What’s funny, is that for some time now, there were signs that I never bothered to take notice of.  From listening to Hindu music, Bollywood, just my overall love for Indian culture, yoga, meditation, Tibetan prayer flags (both Hindu and Buddhist) at home and at work, my sudden love for Lakshmi. Buddhas all around my home and at work (yes I know that’s Buddhist but humor me here).  Yes, the signs WERE there.  But I chose not to listen or look at them.  I had always been interested in Eastern Religions, as they go further back than Christianity and most other modern day religions.  But lately, Hinduism has been catching my eye, and most importantly, my heart.  Would you believe who I found in Hinduism?

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(Yup, that’s right….that’s Jesus)

The only thing I’m not sure if I feel comfortable with is the idea of an incarnation of Shiva, or Guru.  It’s different from being a Karmapa (a living incarnation of Buddha). There are many representations of Shiva who are considered enlightened Masters or Swami’s.  Sadly, I have read many of them have controversies that are aligned with them.  From overcharging people for retreats/enlightenment courses (some can run around $10,000 a week), to sexual assault, and deception.  I learned long ago that all religions have their bad eggs, so I shouldn’t be surprised by what I found.  One teacher I have found I feel connected to, and although his name isn’t without some controversy (that later proved to be false so please don’t go trying to dig stuff up, I already did my research), he came into my dreams this past week and told me to come to his Ashram.

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(Paramahamsa Sri Nithyananda otherwise known as Swamiji)

I was like, “What the heck is an Ashram?”  I had to Google it when I got up the next morning, and found it was a monastic community-like place where you go to pray with him. I’ve been reading up on his words and teachings, watching his videos, and quite frankly, there’s so much that he says that correlates with Jesus, it’s almost freaky to think they are kindred souls.  What I found was fascinating.  So many people have the impressions that Hindus believe and worship idols.  They do not.  They believe in ONE God.  One Divine Creator.  And within God, there are many dieties, enlightened masters, gurus, teachers, however you want to call them, that are the physical representations of God.  That they ask not to be worshipped, but to be called upon to help aid in our prayers going to God.  Sounds a lot like the Saints and Angels, doesn’t it?  The fact remains is that even practicing Earth Spirituality, I found Jesus, who has always been there since Day 1.  Moving onto a new path, I find Him again.  How Lakshmi is the representation of the Blessed Mother.  Different culture, same soul.  Does it mean I need to go back to Catholicism?  Heck no.  I love that I can continue to explore my profound and devout love through different cultures and different paths.  As I’ve said so many times, there are MANY paths to the top of the same mountain.

In the end, I feel that my journey in life is taking me down a new road.  I do not know if it will pan out, but I do know that in order for me to know, I need to do the walk. Bless.

 

 

 

 

 

Feeling the Welcoming Shadows of Lammas…

First off, I cannot believe it is July 6th. I haven’t written in a long while, mainly it’s because I haven’t had moments like what I am having now.  I’m actually on vacation, or what we 9-5’ers call “Staycation”. I am home currently in my bedroom, lounging in bed, at 1:40 PM. The temperature outside is 95 degrees Fahrenheit and all my phone says is “Very HOT”.  No kidding.  Summer is in its full and unforgiving swing, with temperatures sweltering and the humidity sometimes unbearable.  I equally love and hate this time of year.  Our Independence Day celebrations here in the United States are FINALLY over, and hopefully our doggie Linus VanPuggle will fall back into his normal pattern (we had first-hand knowledge of what fireworks do to pets, and our neighbors setting off theirs at all times of the day resulted in our pup vomiting, shaking, dry heaving, and all other sorts of crazy anxiety-ridden ailments.

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(Fireworks and Pets DO NOT MIX)

On top of that, we had some pretty crazy stormy weather move in a couple days ago, which prompted our pool to change to a pretty color algae-green.  Yuck.  So, my boys and I are stuck indoors today while our pool is getting its much needed shock treatment to get it back to it’s pretty crystal clear blue.

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(Before the storms)

But as someone who follows the seasons (as you know), even with the heaviness of the heat and humidity, I can already FEEL the change in the air.  I knew this would happen since we had an early Spring.  So, naturally, the smell in the air is incredibly intoxicating with the musty scent of woods and grass, acknowledging that although Summer is very much the in season right now, Autumn is beginning its whisper.  And why wouldn’t it?  Just as it is in October we are wanting the Winter holidays, then in January, people start wanting Spring.  And it April, people long for the long Summer, so by July, Autumn is beginning to beckon us.  It’s who we are and we should NOT ignore the most basic of our bodies calling.  I talk about this every year and yet it still is important to mention.  Before religion became a “thing” in this world, the people ONLY had the Sun, the Moon, the Stars and the ever changing seasons.  Traditions and Spiritual paths are all based on this. Why we continue to fight this, I’ll never understand.

Yet here we are.

The last few days I had delved hard into the bedroom I share with my husband.  When we purchased this home a little over 9 months ago, neither of us had really any vacation time left.  So, I made a promise, that in the upcoming Summer, I would have a “proper” vacation, walking away from all work related calls, emails and the like, and settle on holing up in my home to do some proper nesting.  We went from a severely cluttered home to a “somewhat” cluttered home.  Trust me when I say, I feel like I’m living in a castle compared to what it had been!  We still have a lot to go through, and next month we are holding a massive yard sale to say buh-bye to those items no longer needed in our lives.  Anything we don’t sell, we are donating, or giving to my in-laws to continue to sell.  Either way, they are not coming back into this house.

I will say, I am rather bummed I cannot be outside right now, I know my plants are in need of my care. Sadly, my health and the outdoors in this type of weather don’t mix, and I don’t want to risk getting more sick. One can only hope we can get through the heat wave, and if not, I will continue to seed and plant, until Mother Earth tells me to settle in for the Winter.

Speaking of my garden, she’s not doing so well.  And as this is our first year here, I’m not surprised.  The ground is extremely brittle with areas of clay.  So, when watering, it just runs off.  I know it’s going to take another good year before I have good enough soil to get a better harvest.  My original goals of a decent harvest are continually being thwarted by this heat and the fact I get full sun for most of the day.  So, I really can’t water my plants after 7AM or they will get burnt by the sun.  Add the fact our house sits in what feels like a man-made wind tunnel, gardening this year has been completely exhausting.  And while I know the haters are laughing under their breath and desperately wanting to tell me “I told you so”, I know deep down it’s going to be okay, and that I just need to keep going.

(Sadly they don’t look this good anymore)

Kinda missing the Summer of 2014, now.  (For those on the East Coast of the US, it was the coolest and nicest Summer on record)

So, today I am painting.  Not walls, but canvasses. The Muse has been harnessed for a long time, sacrificing her time for a more rigid lifestyle of being an adult. The promise I made to myself when on this “vacation” from work to de-clutter my home, it was to de-clutter EVERYTHING.  So today, I am making space for my head and the right brained little girl who has been patiently waiting on the sidelines to come out and play.

(Couple little things I played around with today)

As I look outside and see the thick haze of the air, prompting the weather guys to issue a necessary air quality warning, I sit inside the imitation coolness of air conditioning, I quietly acknowledge change is indeed in the air.  This year in particular has gone incredibly fast. Which only solidifies my continuing argument that we are never guaranteed the next minute, and we can never get back the one that just passed. Be in tune with your breath.  Be in tune with your change. It’s who we are, it’s how we are. I for one, welcome the upcoming quieter time of the year.  But in the meantime, I will continue my lounging session for the day, before gearing back up to de-clutter more things around my home tomorrow.

The Season of Lammas is approaching.  Can you feel the shadows of the season coming?

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Be The Change – A Q&A With The Bohemian Hobbit…

Every week, I receive many messages asking me the really big questions. Some family, some friends, some complete strangers who are new to my website. I thought this would be a great idea to do a quick Q&A on everything.
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(Some before Mabon House and last autumn when I was lining the gardens for next years sowing)

#1. Where did you get the idea of starting a Permaculture Garden?

Well, this goes back to 2005, when I began my first garden in my home when I lived near the mountains. I had a small herb garden as well as a “normal” vegetable garden. I didn’t have Permaculture in my mind until a few years later, but at that point, I had left the home I was in, divorced my husband, and then started living in a series of apartments for about 7 years. It was when I moved to my last apartment in 2013 when I made the decision to start learning and educating myself in Permaculture Principles. I didn’t even think it would work, until a small tomato plant in my little hovel of a space, not only produced thousands of little cherry tomatoes through December of that year, but spawned at least a dozen new plants the following April.

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(My rogue tomato plant that spawned a dozen more plants the following Spring)

#2. You were never someone who liked gardening let alone spend lots of time outside. What happened and what made you change your way of thinking.

For a little over a decade, I have been going through what would be called a massive and intense spiritual transformation. Realizing that my love for God was able to span from religion to religion and culture to culture. What transpired from that was a remarkable breakthrough of spiritual understanding. It began with a walk in the woods. And before I knew it, the more I walked, the more I saw. There’s a big difference between looking at something and actually SEEING something. For so many years my eyes were open but I was fast asleep. Now that I am awakened, every time I am within the elements of nature, I get butterflies in my belly, the same kind of butterflies one would get when you are falling in love. And I have totally fallen in love.

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#3. You have a reputation of starting so many things and yet not completing them. What makes you think what you are doing is going to be any different?

This is actually a very good question and I can’t quite answer that. Human behavior suggests that leopards don’t change their spots, and being at 42 years old, I have inhabited a personality that most people claim will never change. But I beg to differ. I wish sometimes I could have the ability to have people jump inside of me to feel what I feel, and see what I see. Maybe then people would understand. I cannot tell you what the future will bring. And I have learned to stop listening to people who choose to continue to look deep within the past. I HAVE to live in the now. Live for this moment and nothing else. If I continue to make decisions based on my behavior as a child or teenager or a young woman for that matter, I would probably go nowhere. Part of the amazing evolution of the human body, mind and soul is just that. We evolve. We change. Everything from our environment, our likes and dislikes, our motivations and our fears is what makes us do what we do. For me, I cannot make it any more clearer than right now when I say I am not the little girl I was. I am not the teenager. I am not the woman I was a year ago. I change each and every day. And it’s one of the things I love most about myself. I refuse to accept that people cannot change. I am living proof that idea is dead wrong.

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#4. What do you expect to get out of this project?

This is actually my favorite question. My hopes is that I will be starting a revolution in my area. I know my friends Jacqui is in her revolution on the West Coast, and Colette is in her revolution in Ireland, and then my friend Dan De Lion has his revolution across the river in New Jersey. I want to be a beacon for people who want to learn what people did before the modern times took over. I want to bring back Home Economics to the Schools in my area, and hopefully branch out. I want to work with the school district and be an aid to students who want to learn about Permaculture. Not only that, I want to be able to feed my family, friends and anyone else who is interested. Supermarkets and Superstores have taken over the food economy. Small artichokes for $2.50 a piece? $.99 for a cucumber? $2.99 for a small bunch of green onion? $6.00 for a small bag of potatoes? This is what our world is right now! And it needs to change. And I’m tired of hearing people complain and saying a change needs to be made, yet no one makes the change. I finally decided, I’m going to be the change.

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#5. Who is your Inspiration?

Quite a few.  First and foremost, Gaia, or as many would call her “Mother Earth”. Other would be Jacqueline DuBois and the Mother Moon Monastery and Herb Farm, Colette O’Neill from Bealtaine Cottage, and Dan De Lion from Return to Nature.  Each one of them has created a revolution of life. Of rebirth.  I read all these blog posts, messages, watch their videos, and privately messaging.  They are amazing people.  Can you only imagine how amazing our planet would be if we had more Jacqui’s, Colette’s and Dan’s in the world?

#6. What about your family?  Don’t you think it’s a little selfish that you finally get a yard for them to play in, and you’re going to use it up with your gardening?

Sigh…Sadly, this question was asked by at least a few people.  And when you ask a question like that, sure, it kinda makes me look like a nasty mum who won’t give my children the area to play in.  So let’s break it down, shall we?

I have two boys.  They will be 14 and 12 this year.  Neither plays sports (unless re-enacting WWE moments aligns with that). My plan is a 10 year plan.  By the time the back area of my property will no longer be “playable”, my “children” will be well over into their 20’s, and I’m pretty sure they’re not gonna care what good ole’ mom has in store for the back yard.  In fact, we have a 16 foot above ground pool back there.  I think I would commit a cardinal sin if I took that down, so I think I’m safe.  Please also remember that directly 8 steps across the street is a football field’s worth of ground.  Plus the partially finished basement that is my boy’s headquarters, so I think my boys are okay with places to play.

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#7. Say it’s 10 years from now.  How do you see your life?

Great question!  Thank you!  I see my life as this: I am 24/7 within the homestead.  I have a polytunnel in the yard somewhere so I am able to have all year around gardening.  I see myself with gray hair, dreaded and braided, wearing peasant skirts and a funny straw hat. My Bohemian Hobbit’s name will have been trademarked, and I am selling my teas, tinctures, infusions, soaps, salves, oils and herbs.  I will have a Front Porch Farm Stand that will be up and working between May-October.  I will be speaking at assemblies at schools on sustainability.  Chefs from local restaurants come to my home to get their food for the day.  My husband and I are working from home and making a living working the homestead.  I am providing sustenance to the local shelters and food pantries.  All with a cup of tea in hand!

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A Hobbit Homeowners Love of Tinkering Around…

This past Monday, I looked at my calendar and notice I had a vacation day on Friday.  This was welcomed with open arms and a happy heart.  I can’t remember why I took the day off, and quite honestly, I don’t care.  Going through the whole “change” with my body in my 40’s, along with my autoimmune issues, my short-term memory is all about shot.  I can honestly say I do not mind one bit for my lack of memory today.  Although I do apologize if I was supposed to do something. I guess I just was supposed to be where I was most needed today.  At home, in my little nest.

 

 

Finding the little things that help bring out the character of the gardens…

Mother Nature bringing out Her luminous beauty…

Mum Gaia, Mother Earth, she has MANY faces…

No matter Her face, no matter Her symbol, she is in the end, our Mother.

Every Spring, Mother Earth opens up Her eyes in glorious wonder…

 

And Her sweet, warm breath allows the chimes to ring in rejoice…

I love my home.

I really do.  I love being home and having this domesticated yet wild fervor buzz inside of me, giving me such euphoric joy it’s hard to go to sleep at night.  Even though it rained for most of the day, I found myself busy as a bee both inside and out, bringing more life into this little dwelling.  OUR little dwelling.  I wish people could feel what I feel sometimes when I tend to each room, giving it the character it wants to be.  I don’t make the rules.  The rooms make the rules.  I simply am just their task mistress…

And in the end, pure eclectic bohemian magic!!

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Bealtaine and Open Circles…

So, once again I have found myself in the throes of more blogs that are *not* quite complete yet, and like the squirrel from the movie “Over the Hedge”, I can’t seem to keep in place for more than 5 minutes!

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This is MY time of year.  It’s funny, as much as I LOVE LOVE LOVE autumn, and the ability to see our shadow self more, becoming internally reflective, there is NOTHING to me better than Spring.  That “smell” in the air.  The feeling of the long awaited wild grass growing before the first cut.  The little Purple Deadnettles sprouting up EVERYWHERE that make my backyard look like a magical fairyland. Same with my Dandelions.  See, at Mabon House, the invasive “weeds” that drive other homeowners mad are actually welcome in my home.  Did you know that Dandelions and Purple Deadnettles have more antioxidants and alkaloids that help symptoms of cancer, IBS, and other internal nasties?  That things like Stinging Nettles and Plantains that grow like wild along sidewalks and the edges of driveways are actually amazing for your skin? Stinging Nettles alone have actually more Vitamin C than Spinach and Kale COMBINED!  

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And yet, people look at them and spray chemicals to get rid of them.  Sigh….But we’re getting there, folks. More and more people each day are finding out that we have SO much that will take care of us right at our feet!  This is just one of the reasons why I love Spring.

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Here’s another thing:  And actually, I have been hesitant to bring this up because sadly, it is a controversial issue in certain areas of my life.  But in an effort to continue being authentic and real, I need to break out of the shell that keeps me shielded from such controversy.  

Two years ago, I created a community.  A community of like-minded people who wanted to learn more about the path I follow.  And although last year was a little bit of a hiatus, we have come back stronger than ever!  And although we are down a few people, whether it was due to people not being a healthy fit for the community, or those who just fell out of community and I haven’t heard from them, those who have consistently been in contact with me have come together and we actually have a stronger and healthier community than I ever truly expected.  And in 6 days, we will be celebrating our 3rd annual Bealtaine celebration.  See below some pictures of this amazing community through the years…. 

See, my faith has gone far and wide and is made up of so much that sometimes I may burst!  From my Catholic Roots to my studies in Buddhism, Hinduism and Paganism, I have FINALLY found a perfect fit that makes up of everything that I am.  Taking in my Southeastern Pennsylvania Appalachian Roots, and my absolute devotion to the Indigenous peoples of my country, linked to my ancestral Celtic Roots, you’ve got Bridget.  And because of that, I realized I don’t need to wait until Sunday to celebrate or honor my Creator.  No, I celebrate God EVERY SINGLE DAY.

And although as a gardener living and breathing by the Moon phases, I celebrate the 8 Seasonal Holidays along with the traditional Roman Calendar Holidays.  So, if you are unaware of these holidays, it might explain the weird words I post on Social Media of something I’m celebrating, right???  But I digress…

On April 30-May1st, the season of Bealtaine comes upon us.  You may have heard the term “May Day”, which usually coincides with terms like “May Queen” or “The Month of Mary”….In many cultures, the month of May is usually represented by the Goddess Herself, in all Her miraculous and righteous glory.  Whether you are looking at The Blessed Virgin Mary, Isis, Elen of the Ways, Lakshmi or Kwan Yin, the month of May is all about the ladies and the amazing energy they have and bring to Earth.  It’s about Fertility, Love, Sex, Marriage and all that other good stuff!  In older customs, mainly in Western Europe, the traditional “May Pole”, a dance with ribbons and a large phallic pole, is customary in many celebrations.  For the Male Dieties, you have Pan, Herne, Hermes, and just so many more who represent the “Hunter” of the Maiden.  Ever wonder why most marriages are done at this time of year?  

For many gardeners and lovers of Gaia herself, Spring is about done and Summer is coming.  And in less than a week, Mabon House (my home), will be celebrating her first celebration in this home, with the community I began over 2 years ago.  Even with those no longer within the community, we may have more than we’ve ever had at any celebration ever!  

When I made the decision earlier this year to reopen the community I began a few years prior, after some toxic relationships were removed from the sanctuary people had grown accustomed to, as well as parting ways with those who didn’t see the community as a priority, I was hesitant that I would once again be taking on too much.  But, after the counsel of some of my closest friends in the world, it was said that the lack of community was being felt and people wanted it back.  After further reflection and prayer, I decided to reopen the community, but with stricter guidelines, to help alleviate any future headaches and negative energies that would come to pass,  

My closest confidants who know me better than anyone.

And check this out! We are expecting between 30-40 people!  YIKES!  But how incredible is that?????????  I remember our first Bealtaine, held at a friend’s house, located behind a cemetery and old haunting grounds.  Close to 30 people came, and it was truly magical.  Here we are two years later, we may be smaller, but the outside community, intrigued and looking to be educated on who we are, is what’s going to make this celebration even more special.  We are inviting family and friends who although may not follow the Earth path, but who are able to come see what the fuss is all about (it’s just fun, happiness, family, friends and music!!!!)

It’s been a long time since I’ve been truly excited for something.  Don’t worry, it’s not like I’m sitting in my own little barn of pity and complaining, no, it’s just that my whole life has been so inundated in just opening boxes from the move months ago, that it’s just going to be nice to relax and have a grand time.  

The carnal feeling of wanting to be outside, feet in the dirt, arms wrapped around a tree, and just SMELLING the air.  Tell me, have you ever noticed how INTOXICATING the air smells after a rain fall?  Like, near a nicely wooded/shady area?  I remember years ago being transfixed on a Muppet Show episode.  It starred Linda Rondstadt, and she sang one of her signature songs (and my personal favorite), “Blue Bayou”.  The setting was an old shack sitting upon a body of river on an early summer evening after a rainfall.  I mean, this was JUST a set design, and as a little girl, I was CAPTIVATED by it!  It almost felt “natural” for me to want to be near that.  Fast forward years later, adulthood in full swing.  I get SO excited when I am home and it’s going to rain.  Especially when it’s a tad bit humid out.  The smell in the air after the rain is INSANE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  There’s actually a name for it!

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Well, I could go on and on and on, but I’m obviously gonna need to stop.  There’s much to do and things to plan!  I look forward to showing you all how we do here in Pennsylvania!  Much love!