Monday, December 12, 2011


It never seizes to amaze me that I now live somewhere where there's daylight in December, even sunshine and not an inch of snow on the ground. Where there can be T-shirt days in midwinter. I know that down here winter is only supposed to begin at Solstice, but I cannot help but think it the season's midpoint, the moment when we're halfway to spring.
Speaking of amazing things, the generosity of folks who've never even met me in person, always brings tears of utter joy to my eyes. Last month when I wrote that I was ill, a lovely reader, gypsy vintage seller and woman of the woods, Sheri, offered me a remedy in the form of a medicinal mushroom, Chaga, which grows on birch trees in her Northwoods, much like in my native land. In Finland, it is known as Pakurikääpä, an ancient folk remedy.
Upon receiving my contact details, she then promptly shipped me not only the dried Chaga, but an array of other lovely goodies, mushroom-themed clothes, two lovely mushroom mugs and this gorgeous paisley skirt among them. Receiving this her package was a medicinal treat in and of itself.
Wondering what those magical looking winter fruit hanging behind me in the tree are? Custard fruits. Apparently you let them go to where they seem almost rotten, soft and gooey and they taste like custard. I can't wait to try mine.
Togehter, these little blessings and surprises make me smile.
After gathering such fruit and relishing Sheri's healing tea, I came home to yet another gift, from these shores this time.
Smelt! A tasty little fish that a friend has been gifting us with. Like most little fish, best rolled in rye flour, white pepper and salt and fried in butter, then gobbled whole, bones, tails and all.
Without a computer to record my thoughts on, I've been doing a lot of silent meditation, painstaking writing on paper and revitalizing my typewriter skills. I try to look on these too as a gift, though I feel my creativity a little impeaded by this lack.6448130835_caea552a63_z
For a few weeks I was able to journal and meditate in this lovely space, new to me, though close to my own home. A beautiful, mysterious piece of land that will soon belong to some young next door neighbors, who might just be open to bees in their orchard. Having them around feels like a gift too.
Though there are plenty of young folks on the Islands now, a big change from when I first came here, not many live in our immediate neighborhood and we're looking forward to spending more time with them at their magical digs.
Their property is bathed in light, its beautiful cob-structures inspiring dreams of one's own little cob house someday, artistic, inexpensive and gorgeous.
As we enter the Solstice/Christmas/Birthday season, I cherish these last quiet fall days, time to observe and experience deeply, to craft and ponder.
The unexpected gift of the moon's sickle, or a flock of Junkos in the field...
Happy December!


  1. It looks like you're feeling better? Glad to see if it you are!

    That house is pretty amazing. Hope the new neighbors are awesome.

  2. Lovely pictures! That house is amazing!

  3. I love the flow and harmony of your pictures. Girl , you look great!

  4. that skirt is the shiiiiiit. and i have something for you, so keep your eyes out. more gifts!!!

  5. Glad you're feeling better and feeling the love. What sweet gifts! Such beauty this season. We live in the Appalachians and we have only had two inches of snow this year; it's been unseasonably warm here. Last year about this time, we had had several snows. Ooh and lovely wild fruit. They look like our persimmons.

  6. Oops. That was supposed to say such beauty in your area this season. Here it's been wet and muddy!

  7. What a sweet little place that is...i literally thought to myself, oh, i wish we could move there. Glad to hear you are better lady!!! Bit of a worry there for awhile. That smelt looks so fresh and healthy...we went to the beach the other day,and a man dove to find a giant starfish for his daughter, it was lovely and floppy and so spiky... i was most impressed though, with him telling her to put it back in the water in a spot where there were less people. xx

  8. katselinkin flickrin puolelta aiemmin tuon pikkumökin kuvia.ihastuttavan näköistä.
    Suomessa on tänä vuonna ollut aikalailla pakurikääpä keskustelua,jopa ihan valtamediassakin.
    Helsingissä sataa vettä,mutta heti jo 100km päässä on lunta.
    Onneksi jouluna pääsemme maalle ja savusaunaan:-)

  9. You are a gift <3 I miss yoooooouuuu!!!

    Yay, for wondrous and healing mushroom-themed packages and new young neighbors with magical digs! Happy December indeed :)

  10. Sweet Milla, you brighten my day. Stay in good health. Sending some LOVE your way,xoxo.

  11. Smelt! Jealous! I love those little fish. We used to catch them when I was little, all of us in a family, about a dozen with adults and kids and we'd all settle in to catch and clean and cook them all and feast together. Ahem. Enthused about smelts I am. That skirt is awesome! How awesome to receive such a wonderful package.

  12. Glad to hear you're feeling better! What an awesome mushroom healing package! I was totally wondering what that tree was behind you- glad you mentioned it.... have you tried the fruit yet?

  13. I want to live in a place like that, it's so beautiful! Your pictures are always so peaceful, I really look forward to reading your posts about your island life:)

  14. that house is a house of dreams! the island never ceases to amaze!

    (can i ask what the young people on the island do for work? always curious about these things in relatively remote locations.)

  15. but I want to move into that magic home and be your neighbor...