Our Year on the Farm – 2015

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I had fully intended to upload these photos to the blog, but mistakenly uploaded them to the main Light Footsteps website. Instead of doing everything all over again, I hope you’ll hop on over to see this post in its entirety – I think you’ll truly be inspired by our 2015 on the farm!
Come join us next year!

Light Footsteps

I’ve been taking these last days before the New Year to slow way down, reflect, and dream of what I’d like to manifest in the coming year. After the fast-paced preparation for the holiday season, this time of quiet reflection is essential and has been bringing me a lot of joy.

It makes me wonder — how can I keep this appreciation for quiet reflection alive throughout all of next year?

Today I began going through some of our photos from the year and I have to say: none of the reflecting I’ve done comes close to the way I feel after going through our photos.

Wow –  we have accomplished A LOT.  It’s so hard to realize all that is going on when you’re in the midst of life.  Looking back, I feel such joy at what we manifested this year and the beauty of our life.  I couldn’t…

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A dose of sunshine

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We recently returned from visiting family in California for a week.  We had a wonderful time sharing in each others company, and it was fun for Baby LF to play outdoors in a different climate.

Here in Ohio, we still try to get outdoors every day even if it’s snowy and cold, but she really enjoyed this new type of outdoor play.  When temperatures were last warm here, she wasn’t quite old enough to enjoy sitting with a shovel and bucket.

She especially took to the ocean water and it had me wondering if she might be part mermaid.

Maybe some of you who are also in the thick of snow will enjoy seeing the sunlight and warmth.  (Which, funny enough, we often heard was “cold” to them – in the 60s at times – ha ha!).

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Prevent Colds & Flu with DIY Elderberry Syrup

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There are so many great ways to support your winter health with herbs.  Starting with simple dietary additions (like garlic!) and ending with soothing choices to make your cold or flu more tolerable and shorter, herbs are my go-to for prevention and treatment.

One of the tastiest herbal allies, however, is the elderberry.

This shrubby perennial plant has been used as medicine for centuries to support health and well-being.  I often see it growing naturally in moist soils, but it has also historically been planted at the edge of gardens as the protector of the garden.  Even its name, Elder, speaks to its wise and respected role in our collective medicine chest.

Elder’s lacy, delicate flowers, and bright purplish-black berries can both be used for their medicinal properties.  The flowers are diaphoretic meaning that they help to lower fevers by inducing sweating.  It is a common ingredient in many cold-care tea formulas.

The berries are rich in vitamins C & A, flavonoids, phenolic compounds, beta-carotene, iron, potassium, and phytosterols.  They are often used in prevention and treatment of colds because of their ability to boost the immune system.  As an antiviral, they are helpful in treating upper respiratory viruses including colds and flu, but have also been used in treatments for other viruses such as herpes and shingles.  Elderberry’s effectiveness is not just an “herban” legend, but its ability to reduce the duration of the flu and to fight viruses has been published in a number of scientific articles (links to abstracts in the resources below).

As a food, elderberry can be consumed as a jam, wine, or in pies, but it’s easiest to use as preventative medicine or for treating cold and flu when made into a tasty syrup.  Luckily, it’s really pretty easy to do, too!  I even made a handy graphic . . .

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Monday’s Walk

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We’re still following the rule that we must go out for a walk as long as it’s over 20 degrees.  Today we actually saw temperatures in the 30s and the sun shone at times making it a lovely day for a walk.

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Happy Ostara (+ some ways to celebrate)

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Happy Ostara! Today is the Vernal Equinox, a time when day and night are equal and we are headed toward longer days in the Northern hemisphere.

We are officially in the midst of Spring, even if it doesn’t quite feel like it yet in your neck of the woods.  The days are definitely getting longer and the signs of spring are all around!

Will you be doing anything to celebrate this time of rebirth, growth, and promise?  Today is a great day to do some spring-related activities and crafts! Continue reading

Gratitude Sunday (3/9/14) on Monday

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The weekend was so full that I was unable to put this together yesterday.  However, I’d still like to share what I was grateful for this past week!

Joining with Wooly Moss Roots to celebrate Gratitude Sunday.

G r a t i t u d e  *  S u n d a y
{Sunday’s heartfelt tradition. A time to slow down, to reflect, to be grateful. A list of gratitudes.} 

This week I am grateful for…
  • Celebrating birthdays with family (three of them!).  Seeing my brother and his wife in town for the festivities and visiting the Botanical Gardens, too.
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Gratitude Sunday 3/2/14

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Today I’m joining with Wooly Moss Roots to celebrate Gratitude Sunday.

G r a t i t u d e  *  S u n d a y

{Sunday’s heartfelt tradition. A time to slow down, to reflect, to be grateful. A list of gratitudes.} 

This week I am grateful for…

6 Ways to Stay Happy Until Spring

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It’s the time of year when people start counting down the days until spring.  I begin hearing a lot of complaining about the cold, the snow, and winter in general.

I understand. It definitely will be nice to feel warmth, wear sandals, and get into the car without scraping off ice.

However, we’re doing ourselves a disservice to wish away the rest of this season.  Despite how it might feel, winter will end, and there are even ways to enjoy the rest of it.  Continue reading