Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Life changing

Let's talk about something I haven't talked about on this blog.  In this virtual space, I write mostly about our homesteading life, which is meant to educate and inspire you.  I love being of service in this way.

But there is another huge love in my life, my real soul's work, and that is helping people change their lives as their transformative life coach.  I especially love working with mothers.

There are so many women who are suffering, and you might be one of them, or know one of them.

You might be hurting inside, sick and tired of repeating the same old patterns over and over again.  You are hitting a personal glass ceiling you can't break through, and you don't know why.  

For some of us, it's about being completely stressed out and overextended, feeling like we can never catch up, never measure up to our ideals of being the perfect mother/wife/daughter/friend.  We believe we are stuck and have no choice.

Some of us believe we have to put ourselves last, put other people's needs above our own, constantly abandoning ourselves and resenting everyone else.

Many people don't even know what self-care looks like - the kind of radical love for our own self that will propel us into thriving in life.

For some, it's never finding a fulfilling love life.  Many people believe they can never find the right person, that love is not possible for them.  Or if they are in a relationship, they are not happy with the person.

You probably read this blog because you are drawn to our lifestyle, you connect with us on some level.  Many of you come here because you get inspired and like the positivity.

But can I tell you something?  Despite all the positivity on my blog, despite looking like living a dream life, I used to struggle with depression and burn-out.

Even after reading dozens of self-help books, going to counseling and psychotherapy for years, and "working" on myself diligently, I still felt that things weren't right, and I felt guilty about it because my life was pretty great.

I felt unfulfilled, stressed out, depressed, anxious, resentful and completely overextended a lot of the time.

I carried a lot of guilt about my mothering.  I had all these ideas in my head of how I wanted to mother and be present for my kids, but I often felt resentful, unfulfilled, and even (gasp!!!) bored when taking care of them.

When I found Claire Zammit's Feminine Power work, I immediately resonated with it.  I took her seven week course, which changed my life because it got me in touch with a younger self inside of me that had gotten neglected all my life.  This younger self believed she was not wanted, not good enough, not worthy.

Things shifted for me dramatically when I applied the tools I learned.

I then took the nine months mastery course, which went much deeper into this work.

After that, I took the leadership course.

And then I got certified as a Feminine Power coach and have been coaching women ever since.

My clients' feedback has been incredible.  Their lives change when they coach with me, in as little as two months.  I get teary reading their testimonials.

You can read some of the testimonials here.

This is incredibly powerful work, and having someone hold a safe container for them while they shift their identities is a huge honor.  

I offer a free intro session via phone, and if you feel called to going deeper and finding out more, please head on over to my website and sign up for a free session.  I would love to partner with you, to help you midwife your potentials into this world.

I have a limited amount of free intro sessions available, so if you want to explore with me, claim your free intro session now!

PS: Yes, this is me in a summer dress in the snow, in very, very, very cold weather with a big Northeaster blowing in.  Steve and I did a photo shoot to show you to shake things up a little!

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

How to make your own liquid laundry detergent

If you are aiming for a more natural, self-sufficient life, want to save money, and be in charge of your own health, it's time to start making your own laundry detergent.

It's so easy! Easy, easy, easy!  And fast!

Most store-bought laundry detergent is full of weird ingredients, some of them known cancer causing agents, filled with harmful chemicals and unhealthy fragrances.  Even when you buy the "natural" stuff, it's loaded with many unrecognizable ingredients.

Here's the secret.  All you need to get clean, fresh, good-smelling laundry are a few ingredients:

1) Natural bar soap (such as Fels Naptha or Doctor Bronner's)

2) Borax (20 Mule Team Borax is available in most grocery stores in the laundry aisle)

3) Washing Soda - not to be confused with baking soda!!! (Most stores carry the Arm and Hammer brand)

4) Water

optional: essential oils like tea tree oil and lavender, or lemon if you like that smell

If I were really dorky, I would do the math and figure out how much cheaper this is than store-bought laundry detergent.  All I can tell you: it saves you a lot of money.

I have a family of five, including two very, very active teenage boys, and one tom-boy girl, and we have a homestead with lots of dirt, mud, grass stains, dust, sweat, birthing fluids, manure... you get the picture.  Plus, our kids are homeschooled, so they are outdoors almost all day.  

I do a lot of laundry.

A five gallon bucket like this lasts me two months, and it costs mere cents to make.  

In terms of cleaning power, this stuff works.  Our laundry gets clean and smells fresh.

How to make liquid laundry soap

I use little scraps and trimmings of my own home made goat milk soap, but you can easily get Dr. Bronners or Fels Naptha soap.

1. Grate one bar of soap (about 5 ounces) with a fine grater, or even do it in the food processor to chop the pieces nice and small.

2. Put these small soap pieces in a pan with 2 quarts hot water and stir constantly so the soap dissolves completely.

3. Put 4 gallons of hot water straight from the tap into a 5-gallon bucket.

4. Into this bucket with hot water, stir in 2 cups of borax and 2 cups of washing soda until it's all nicely dissolved.

5. Put the dissolved soap mixture from the pan into this bucket and stir well.  If you want to, you could now add a few drops of essential oils.  Lavender and tea tree oils are nice, because they also have antimicrobial and antibacterial properties and smell good.

6. Label this, cover the bucket and leave it sitting overnight.

7. Stir or shake it up every time you use it.  Use 1/2 cup or 1 cup per load.

That's it!  I told you it's fast and easy, didn't I?

Why don't you whip up a batch of this and let me know how it works for you?

Sunday, January 1, 2017

Happy New Year 2017!!!

I spent the day before New Year's draped over the toilet boil, throwing up.

I bet a lot of other people did the same thing on New Year's Day morning, but their retching came from over-enthusiastic alcohol consumption on a New Year's party.

Mine came from good old stomach flu.

Alas, I feel better today, January first, 2017. And it's starting out absolutely beautifully, eight inches of newly fallen snow, and sunshine. SUNSHINE!

Lured by the magical white landscape, I put on a hat and jacket and dragged my body outside.  I hadn't eaten anything in 24 hours, so I felt pretty weak, but who could resist an opportunity to take photos of this?

On my stroll outside I discovered that the kiwi trellis collapsed under the load of heavy snow.

I also noticed that the greenhouse plastic had given away in some places.

And the outside swing by the trampoline, where we like to sit in summer, sported a huge white blanket.  I hope it won't collapse, too.

I just wanted to drop by here, queasy stomach and all, to wish you a happy new year.  I hope it will be a good one for you.  I hope all of humanity will unite to make the world a better place, as cliche as this sounds. 

But you know, we have work to do.  Let's do it!

I think this year will be an exciting and productive one for Marblemount Homestead.  We scheduled all our courses and retreats for this year, so watch for an announcement.

We also have another exciting announcement in a couple of weeks, so watch for it as well.  It's totally aligned with my soul's work, and I'm so thrilled I'll get to tell you about it soon!

I will leave you with an image of Steve, the best Daddy ever, and Eva.  When I was sick, he spent hours reading to her, taking her for walks, and coloring with her.  Such patience, such love.  He's my man, and he's the best one.

Friday, December 30, 2016

Homesteading in paradise - December highlights

Dear friends,

I had so much fun putting together this month's short little video about highlights on our homestead.

This month of December has been magical.

Watch our homestead transform from green to winter wonderland!

Click here to watch my movie.

Have a wonderful rest of the month and a happy start into the new year!

Monday, December 26, 2016

Holy Daze

I don't know about you, but in my life, Christmas can be a little tricky. I used to dislike this holiday, because of childhood stuff and weird expectations. For many people, family relationships can be weird around this time, standards of perfection running high, the stress of Christmas overshadowing its holi-ness.

This year, Christmas was perfect.

It was super mellow, starting early in the morning with some gorgeous back lit trees studded with diamond frost, a good cup of coffee, and all three kids well behaved as can be, taking turns opening presents, savoring the moment.

In fact, little Eva was so worried about getting coal in her stocking that she didn't come downstairs in the morning, although she could hear the voices of the rest of the family. When her brothers went up to fetch her, she confessed that she didn't know if it was morning already and feared it was still bedtime, when we older ones usually stay up later.

She didn't want to piss off Santa.

The kids were happy about their presents and shared nicely, and Steve and I kept smiling at each other, feeling the blessed-ness and gratitude of our lives.

Later on, I indulged knitting in front of the Christmas tree, while sun streamed through the windows.

I hope you felt some of this peace and deep gratitude as well.

I sure felt more of it later in the day, when the whole family went for a walk. By now, I should be used to all the natural beauty around us, but it still catches me by surprise on days like this, when the snow and frost transform everything into a magical fairy land.

Come with us and see for yourself.

I'm very, very, very thankful for these beings that make up my family.

And bacon, definitely bacon.  From our own pigs.  Yep.  It doesn't get any better than this.

Wednesday, December 21, 2016


Over the past couple of years, I've had the pleasure of getting to know fellow blogger, homeschooling Mama, and online workshop host Heather Bruggeman of Beauty That Moves.

She designs amazing seasonal online workshops, having to do with holistic nurturing, renewal, and inspiration.

"Hibernate" is her online winter workshop, which I have taken and loved immensely.  In Heather's words, 

"Hibernate is a self-paced, four week, online retreat - a place to celebrate the pause that wintertime brings. A place to linger through the dark and quiet, to welcome stillness, and allow time to enjoy home and hearth."

This year, I'm a contributor!  I'm teaching (video and ebook) how to make Chevre, and also contribute some awesome recipes (Cheesecake anyone? Marinated Chevre with herbs and olive oil!).

I invite you to head on over there and see if this is something you would like, knowing that I love it with all my heart and will participate in this year.

It starts January 16th, and lasts four weeks.

Again, in Heather's words:
"Each weekday will follow the themes Nourish, Gather, Refresh, Create, and Rest. Content will be delivered through our private class website in the form of beautiful mini e-books and videos. In addition, there will be an interactive community to share ideas and experience, if you choose.
You will find the days in a single week thread together with projects and ideas that compliment each other. 
Starting where you are, and working with what you have, you will pick and choose the projects, prompts, recipes and inspiration that speak to you."

On the agenda this year, we will learn how to:

  • do a House Blessing practice
  • make soap
  • make Tummy Soothing Ginger Drops
  • create cozy winter wellness recipes
  • make sourdough pizza crust
  • cook one pot recipes
  • celebrate Hygge (a Danish art of creating sanctuary and community)
  • make winter jam
  • make Chevre (that would be mine)
  • create Chaga Brews
  • make sewing and knitting projects

  • .... and more!

I would love for you to join us!

Saturday, December 17, 2016

My home-made honey nut granola recipe - who needs refined sugar anyway?

You know that our family loves to eat healthy, home-made food?  And that we don't want to pay lots and lots of money for it?

Well, when it comes to breakfast granola, you have to shell out a lot of money for the organic stuff.  I often wonder how fresh it is when I buy it in the bulk bins at our local food coop.

Do you have any idea how easy it is to make your own granola?

Here's the recipe I use and constantly modify.  You could use more or less nuts and seeds, and more honey or maple syrup if you like it sweeter.  You can add shredded coconut, dried fruit or raisins (but add the latter AFTER baking, otherwise they get rock-hard). 

Knock yourself out.

May your future be rich in granola.


  • 4 cups rolled oats
  • 1 cup sliced almonds
  • 1 cup chopped pecans
  • 1/2 cup sunflower seeds
  • 1/2 cup flax seeds
  • 1/2 cup pumpkin seeds
  • 1/3 cup coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup honey or maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • baking sheet lined with parchament paper


Preheat oven to 300 degrees F.

Put oats, nuts, seeds, and cinnamon into a big bowl and stir them together.

Melt coconut oil in pan.  Don't burn it!

When oil is liquid, add honey or maple syrup and vanilla.

Stir the liquid stuff into the oat and nuts mixture.  Mix well.

Spread on a baking sheet (with a rim so things don't fall off it) lined with parchament paper.

Bake for 10 minutes.  Then take it out and stir with a rubber spatula.

Bake for 10 more minutes.  Then take it out and stir again.

Bake it for 10 more minutes, but keep an eye on it, otherwise it will burn! 

Take it out and let it cool completely on the baking sheet.

Cooling it like that will make it chunky, which is nice.  

When it's cold, place in mason jars or suitable air-tight containers.  

Good luck keeping it around though.  When I make this, my family will devour it in two days.