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Monday, December 21, 2009

Winter Solstice Musings

Winter Solstice was only meaningful to me on a rather "intellectual" basis when I lived in the city. Each year, as Autumn days drew shorter and evening commutes occurred more and more in the dark, I vowed to "pay attention to the seasons" and aspired to live a life in tune with natural rhythms. I was only ever marginally successful. These last two years, since living in rural Alpine, Oregon and growing a garden, the seasonal changes have become very real to me. The sun is setting these days at about 4:30 here, and doesn't rise again till about 7:30. I am acutely aware of just how few daylight hours there are and eagerly await the turning point of Winter Solstice. Even though winter will still have its grip on things  - weather-wise, I know the days will start getting longer and for this I am truly grateful.

I know many of you who receive these posts from Chris' and my garden blog are probably faced with your own winter blues these days. Even if you live in a city with its artificially extended day-light hours, you can't help but be affected by the turning seasons, the dour headlines, economic stress and other challenges of being human.

I send along this slide-show I put together with a song whose lyrics are meant to inspire you to keep looking for simple ways your bliss and gifts can intersect with the world's need. (link below)

"Light is returning,
Even though this is the darkest hour,
No one can hold
Back the dawn." Charlie Murphy

The Forest of a Million Trees

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Food Bank - Christmas Eve

Hello neighbors in the Willamette Valley,

It is a pleasant coincidence that the Monroe Food Bank will be open next week on Christmas Eve. What better time to share from the blessings each of us have been given with those who may be less fortunate at this time. The Food Bank will be open from 10:00 to 12:00  on Thursday, Dec. 24 in the garage and covered car-port behind the big, white Methodist Church in Monroe. Farmers/gardeners, if you have a surplus of potatoes, winter squash or other bounty from your garden, these donations would be welcome. I can't imagine many people's winter-crops survived last week's freeze but greens, beets, carrots or other fresh produce would be a special treat for those at the food-bank, at this time of year.

Canned goods, and dried goods and other commercially prepared foods are all welcome as well.

Thank you for your generosity and may this season of light touch you in miraculous ways,

Llyn and Chris
Alpine Food-Sharing Garden