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Harvesting Elderflowers and Building Good Things

This morning I woke up feeling wobbly in spirit. Anxious, unsettled, uncertain. So I did the three things that always help:

  1.  Have a good cry.
  2. Talk to Bear.
  3. Go outside and make something beautiful.

It’s hard to keep feeling wobbly when the tears are out, the struggles are shared with someone who cares, and your arms are full of elderflowers.

So I take a deep breath and press on, because that’s what bravery is, one foot in front of the other, breath in, breath out, gaining courage from the good people and good things around me.

It’s funny to me how we don’t give each other courage by the things we’re mastering, but by the shared heavy sighs over the things we aren’t.

Finances. Relationships. Kids. House. Work. Health.

I’ve been so comforted this week by conversations with friends as we talked about how most of the time most of us are just trying to survive, just trying to earn enough to pay the power bill and (maybe) buy new underwear, just trying to do what we can to help our loves feel safe, loved, and happy, just hoping to have a few precious moments to ourselves where we can restore our spirits before the next emergency demands our attention.

And that’s bravery too. Staying in the life we have when it’s hard and scary and overwhelming and we’re exhausted beyond measure, working hard each day to make it a little better, a little happier, a little more stable.

I’m so thankful we don’t have to do life alone.

I have a tendency, when life is hard, to hibernate. That’s good, for a little bit, but then I need to get up and get out and connect with people, real people, people who love me and like me loving them.

It’s those connections that breathe life back into life. Those visits of laughter and crying, those emails of commiserations, those text messages and phone calls that talk about who’s vomiting now, who got/lost a job, and what on earth we’re going to make for dinner. Those little nothing conversations that mean everything because they say, “You’re not alone. I’m here. Life sucks, and it’s beautiful. You’re crazy and I love you.”

So we cry, we breathe, we talk with safe people, and then we get back to building good things.

Today I’m harvesting and drying elderflowers because it makes me happy to see bundles of these lacy blossoms all over the veranda. And because one day soon I’ll be able to sell parcels of these beauties in my tea shoppe market stall, which in turn will pay for food for our animals and food for us, and continue building goodness into our life here. That makes me smile as I cut and gather, wash and dry, store and package, brew and sip.

I’m also doing it because elderflowers are so nourishing to the body, helping it fight off colds, ease sore throats, and combat hayfever.

I’ve been able to go off allergy tablets completely since drinking elderberry tea this year, and I’m excited to see the effects of elderflower tea, which some believe to be even more potent.

Now I’m heading outside with Bear to plant two more grass gardens for our chickens, and harvest beetroot and purple carrots to roast for dinner.

What good things are you building in your life today? xo


PS – If you’d like to learn more about making your own herbal remedies, click here for my book: “herb & spice: a little book of medieval remedies.”

PPS – I’ll be sharing some exciting news and special deals for my newsletter subscribers in the months to come. If you’d like to be on the list, click here to subscribe. 🙂

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Rambling Tart - Thank you, Cris. I have lavender right beside me, and it is a wonderfully calming thing. 🙂

Cris - Lovely post such gorgeous flowers. I hope you are feeling better. Please also try lavender is a calming soothing beautiful flower. Wishing you a happy week. Take care. xoxo Cris

Last post: http://photosbycris.blogspot.com.au/2017/09/yoins-tops-lookbook.html

Rambling Tart - Your day sounds so beautiful, Jan, in spite of you missing out on your favorite Thai Spring Rolls. 🙂 I hope your mosquito-eating fish flourish!!!

Rambling Tart - Can you believe it, Liz? I was astonished!! 🙂 Smiling big and thinking of you. xo

Rambling Tart - It truly has, Jill, and I’m so thankful YOU stopped by to share such kind and encouraging words. 🙂

Rambling Tart - Thank you, dear Cheryl. It was a good and healing week. xo

Rambling Tart - I’ve never heard of tissue salts, Tandy! I will email you to find out more. 🙂

Rambling Tart - Thank you so much for the hugs, Kankana. They make everything better. 🙂

Rambling Tart - Thanks so much, Amanda! How lovely to have elderflowers remind you of such a happy time in your life. 🙂

Rambling Tart - You are so right, dear Velva. XO Good people make life so beautiful.

Rambling Tart - I LOVE that you shared this story with me, dear Anna! What beautiful memories you have. They made me smile so big. 🙂 I too wish you were closer. I’d have you over as often as humanly possible. XO

Anna @ shenANNAgans - Beautiful Krista, I’m sending you hugs and loving your advice for a heavy heart.

I shall tell you a story of Elderberry Champagne as it’s one of those really young childhood memories. I remember driving in a “ute” with my Momma and her friend on a country road way up in the hills and we found all these pretty elderberry blossoms that even us kids were allowed to harvest into boxes. When we got home the blossoms were hung on the rails in the shed and the next day a sweet sugary concoction was made and the flowers put in the big tubs. We came back days later and all the parents drained the sweet liquid and bottled it. I remember another time having a taste of the Elderberry Champagne and thinking it was delicious. I love childhood memories like that of my country upbringing when families got together to bottle stuff, so your making great memories there my friend. Wish I lived closer to come visit. Have a wonderful week my friend.

Velva - Krista, I have learned at the end of the day its all about the relationships. So glad you have bear, wonderful friends who continue to inspire and comfort you.


Amanda - Oh, these photos are just beautiful – and remind me of all the elderflower flavoured drinks I enjoyed on our recent holiday in Scotland. It has such a delicate and delicious flavour.

Kankana - (((hugs))) Hope you are feeling better now. It’s nice to talk these out and then go distract our mind with things we like to do. Those elderflowers are so pretty 🙂

Tandy | Lavender and Lime - Have you tried taking tissue salts? Kali phos is great for anxiety. I find this remedy to be great when I wake up feeling a bit wobbly. Big hugs 🙂

Cheryl - Those elderflowers are so beautiful! I hope your week ahead has many joyful moments as you take a few moments here and there to nurture yourself in the beauty that surrounds you.

Life Images by Jill - Sorry to hear that you are feeling down, but you have brought joy to us today knowing we are not the only ones that go through bad patches. I hope the good cry, the talking, creating aomething beautiful and drinking your elderberry tea has helped lift your spirits. Take care. Have a fabulous week ahead, and thank your for stopping by my blog last week.

Liz (Good Things) - Oh, you already have elderflowers?! It’s snowing here right now, so cold. Keep smiling lovely Krista. xx

budget jan - Today we went to the market. My favourite Thai food stall wasn’t there. That’s the first time it’s not been there. I love their Thai Spring Rolls! We bought small ground covers for an area at the front of our house where we hope to put a japanese style sculpture. It will be simple with the sculpture and then very low growing gold coloured ground covers. Then we bought some fish to put in a large pot in the garden where I’ve been growing Rice Paddy Herb amongst other things. They can eat the mosquito larvae as well as food we purchased for them. I hope they survive. They look happy so far.

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