Tuesday, January 21, 2014


As a child, I was gifted many little envelopes and preciously folded pieces of paper filled with seeds from my grandmother Isabelle who was a botanist. 
It was not until I read Seedtime by Scott Chaskey and heard his interview with Stefanie Sacks on Stirring the Pot that I had a full appreciation of the many gifts that my grandmother had given to me. 

It was as if a light bulb went on in my head and my heart. I saw my grandmother's legacy in a completely new light and my appreciation for her presence in my life deepened. 
Seedtime is a similar gift, but it is for all of us. This is an important book that we must share with our friends, families and communities. It is deeply meaningful and masterfully written by a luminary in the fields of organic farming, poetry and botany. 

Last year, Scott asked if I would be interested in submitting some of my work to Rodale Press for his book on seeds, and as I recall, I said "yes!" in the blink of an eye.
I am deeply honored that my photograph of a milkweed seed is on the cover of Seedtime. The seed came from a pod that was collected at a nature preserve along Accabonac  harbor in the Springs, East Hampton, N.Y. It was photographed in natural light on a precious piece of black velvet in the Winter sunlight. 
This book is a beautiful and poetic exploration of the history, husbandry and promise of seeds. It is a celebration of the very essence of the cycles of nature. As I read each page of this book, I felt that I was going on a journey through time, from the ancient tombs of the world to the current accounts of GMOs and how they are impacting our agricultural industry.

The very first sentence of the first chapter reads…

"Encapsulated in each seed is a story, a story held in a state of rest until released. Only with significant patience and effort can we interpret this language, which gradually is revealed as the cotyledons, or first leaves, unfold from a seed's invisible center."

In this book, there are many gorgeous and poetic sentences that ask for us to put the book down, if only for a moment, to relish in the cadence of the words and take in the magic of Scott's vision and lyrical expressions.

There are many curious and amazing historical details about ancient seeds, Native American traditions and the evolution of seeds through time. Scott masterfully weaves personal stories, personalities of plants, along side important information about botanical history. 
I have been deeply moved by the sincerity and the depth with which this book was crafted and published.
Rodale Press did a lovely job in the design and printing of this book. It is a book that you want to hold and read with time so as to savor the depth and richness of the words.
Thank you Scott for sharing your magic with us!
This book may be purchased locally at Canio's book store in Sag Harbor, N.Y.

It is also available through Amazon books.

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Saturday, January 4, 2014

The Courage to Heal

The snow has made the light particularly beautiful here in the woods, and while the air has been crisp, there has been time for many hours of reflection and internal stillness. In my quiet time, I have been exploring the topics of courage and healing. I have been remembering moments in my own journey when I followed my heart onto a new terrain and trusted my internal compass to lead me in the right direction for my highest good.
In my own process, the greatest moments of courage were initiated by stillness. It takes a very brave heart to open up to the of healing trauma of any kind and wounds that are sometimes inherited by our lineages. Along the journey, many may stop. It requires steady patience, inspiration, hope, and great self care. It also requires a community of loving and supportive people who understand what it means to the person on this deeply personal journey.

As Dr. Peter Levine so elegantly suggests, we are naturally 'restoring our bodies to goodness'.
In the new year, it is my intention to bring together a larger community of likeminded people that understand this critical work especially in these  turbulent times. Creating a safe space, or sanctuary is the first step to healing work. Our nervous systems settle with more ease and grace when we are comfortable.

Healing trauma is a sacred process.

 In our current culture it is often difficult to take the time to allow our nervous systems to truly heal.  We often need a lot of space in our lives for much needed stillness and integration of the work. We are delicate, yet resilient. In my current study of healing trauma through a three year training of Somatic Experiencing I am learning so many new aspects of our system and our amazing and often mysterious capacities to heal.
As I move through the grace of this training, I too am being transformed.

Once someone commits to this path, miracles can happen. But this process may take time, often years. There are moments of challenge and there may be internal activations that require attention in our lives. It also requires the slowing down to listen to the subtle needs of our bodies.
We must also have safe environments where the people around us understand that we are in a delicate and meaningful process. We often come to this path because there were aspects of our lives that were not working for us, we may have been in pain or we felt the pull to experience life more deeply. 
During this time of exploration, we are committed to living in the land of the heart and exploring the terrain of the body. 
The heart, is the Emperor in Chinese medicine. It may lead us along a new path if we listen to the whispering of the call.

In my personal journey, I have also found mother nature to be a beautiful healer. She frequently opens her heart to me and sends me courage through beautiful messages. It may be the unexpected arrival of a marsh hawk, a butterfly or the chance meeting with a beautiful lady bug.

For more information on this particular process of healing trauma, Dr. Peter Levine he has written several beautiful books and has also created a CD workbook.
To find a practitioner please visit: