Take Better Nature Photographs by Cultivating the Right State of Mind

Finding interesting, photo worthy nature moments is more about the state of mind you bring to nature than about what’s out there waiting for you! I’ve found that the optimal state of mind for nature photography is the same one I cultivate when looking for rocks for my natural jewelry or when looking for clothes… Read more »

Book Review: The Forest Unseen – A Year’s Watch in Nature

I love science books that read like fiction books! This one, The Forest Unseen, was written by a biologist, David George Haskell, on his experiences watching a “mandala” circle of old growth, Tennessee forest for a whole year. Each chapter centers around something that he sees happening in the mandala on a certain day and… Read more »

Cool Stuff I’ve Seen On My Walks

I always take my cell phone with me on walks, but not as a safety precaution. I like having it so that I can photograph those unexpected, funny and amazing things I see when I’m out and about. It’s like I’m collecting moments! It happens a lot more when spring’s creeping in because there’s just… Read more »

7 Hard-to-Kill Houseplants

I have a habit of wanting to nurture more houseplants than I really have time for, so while I don’t endorse the abuse of indoor plants, I have truly come to appreciate the species that are hardiest and can withstand a little (accidental) neglect. And what better time than now, in the middle of this… Read more »

We Started Building our House in Mexico!

My husband and I had a great time visiting his family in Mexico over Christmas-time! They live down near Salvatierra, Guanajuato in a little tiny rancho nestled up against an dormant volcano called el Cerro de Culiacan. The mountain is so much a part of their daily lives! So, the whole dream thing is for… Read more »

Natural Favorites: Hickory

You can do so much with a hickory tree! The wood is really great for woodworking and excellent for burning (hickory wood burns the hottest of our native hardwoods!) Hickory trees are also a source of food! If you can get lucky and find the right tree, that is. Yesterday, I thought I’d found the… Read more »

A Spider that Mimics Job’s Tears Seeds?!

I was harvesting Job’s tears last weekend and I found the most amazing little friend!  Here’s a little spider that mimics ripening Job’s tears seeds, right down to the pale green spot on his back that’s just like the pale green spot at the tip of a ripening Job’s tear seed!  He/she was eating an… Read more »

How to Make Fresh, Authentic Mexican Salsa (Pico de Gallo)

How to make a fresh, authentic, Mexican Pico de Gallo salsa (you know, the one they give you with chips when you're waiting for your meal!)

Pico de Gallo Salsa Base If you have a ton of fresh tomatoes pouring in from the garden/CSA/farmer’s market right now, then you NEED this recipe!! This is an easy, authentic Mexican salsa recipe called Pico de Gallo (which literally means “beak of the rooster”, but it’s a double entendre because pico can also mean… Read more »

How To Drill Small Beach Stones

Slate Petals river stone statement necklace by Jenny Hoople

Want to learn how to drill holes in beach stones? Well, I’ve got good news for you: drilling small river stones is easy and I’m happy to tell you how it’s done! I had been making this Natural Stone Jewelry for several months with pre-drilled stones that I purchased from fellow Etsy artisans. It took… Read more »