A few things.

Hey folks. 

I know it’s been a while.

Last time I posted was in Autumn.

And I happened to be in a ‘Verizon zone’ and was able to post from my phone.

An Autumnal moment in the cathedral. I admit to rarely taking the time to walk around the farm to visit everybody. 

‘Everybody’ being all the babies, all the seeds I happened to have the good fortune to touch and plant some time before.

All the plant-beings in the cathedral I planted.

I write that to remind myself, because I find that I forget. And start to doubt my doing any things of benefit.

Although it’s raining as I poke at my little phonefacekeyboard, this photo was taken after the first big snowfall on November 22nd.

We got more snow during that snowfall than the entire last Winter.

I’ve housesat for various kitties…

Some who love their kale…

Some who like their space…

Some who look very sweet, but are like the The Oatmeal’s whiskey cat.

I’m very grateful for the cozy homes, for the use of laundry, for the connections over the years.

And as I watch the miles tick on, I’m ever grateful I was able to purchase a car back in 2001 that is still running.

Many miles gone by, many years… learning to drive standard in hilly Ithaca was humbling, and driving out to California cemented the training.

It’s been over 10 1/2 years since returning to Ithaca.

There’ve been many jobs.

After one of my employers was suddenly let go after a downsizing, I was laid off this past summer soon after moving.

It really knocked me out of orbit. Seeding (and cats. and family. and friends.) was one of the few things that helped keep me (sorta) steady.

(That’s me, btw. It was taken by one of the on-farm interns & he shared the photo with me.)

And that’s Sebastian, the ginger tabby with the tiny meow and a huge purr.

I applied to a LOT of jobs. 

Some of which I was qualified for, some not.

Eventually I picked up part-time work with a friend who grows sprouts.

These usually live outside in a greenhouse, but there was below-freezing temperatures, so inside they came, where they got ‘a little leggy’.

Still just as tasty, though.

It seems to be a good fit. 

It’s mostly behind the scenes, and all three of us get along, and it’s pretty mellow while all the work gets done.

The above photo is along my most favorite (and to my mind, most beautiful) road in the county back in October.

I’ve been trying to ‘get behind myself’, and so despite all the inner-critical-voices/chorus, I had cards printed up of some of my artwork…

I worked with a woman-owned printing company in town, purchased 100% post-consumer content recycled envelopes…

Found some nice glassine sleeves (which were probably meant for candy…) to protect each card & envelope pairing…

And with some freely offered new (recycled content!) food containers & paper, made up some packages to sell at the credit union’s holiday craft fair.

I didn’t take a photo of the table with all the cards, unfortunately.

But to my surprise & delight, with an email and two Facebook postings about the event, a whole bunch of friends came out to support my work.

I was really blown away by all the visits & support.

I’ve never really had faith in the artwork that comes through me.

But I started to question: what if I just trusted it… let it be what it is…

It’s far too easy to compare myself to classmates who have work at The Whitney, or The MOMA. Or places like that.

The art that comes through me simply isn’t like that.

I’ll admit, I still think of leaving. Of moving somewhere else. Try to find a place where the rent isn’t so high. Or where I don’t have to run into people who aren’t really friends anymore because I said something or did something that upset them.

I’ve thought of moving to go back to school… maybe for biology… or phytotemediation… but that takes a lot of math & chemistry. Which I basically suck at.

And the truth is, i love seeds.

Maybe that knee-jerk reaction will always be to move, to run.

Aversion is so my go-to habit.

I’m so grateful for the friends who are still my friends despite my (very) imperfect ways.

I wish I was perfect, but I’m not.

I’m trying to befriend myself, with all of my imperfections.

This year I’m going to try to drop the whole trying-to-be-perfect thing. It wasn’t such a conscious thing, and I’m not succeeding at it anyhow, and the attempts at it seems to just create more tension inside.

A sort of letting-go practice. Or allowing. Or awareness, I suppose.

To quote my Yaya, “who needs it?”


I know I’m leaving out a lot, but engh. It’s okay.

This is one of the cards that didn’t make the cut. But it’ll become mail to someone.

Wishing you gentleness and steadiness, a sturdy ballast for all to come.

Thanks for reading, for your encouragement, and for whatever acts of creativity you can get behind yourself for.

(Or with. Goodness I was never good at grammar…)

Wishing you all well.

May the planets smile kindly on you all through 2017.

About Marneymae

small organic farmers are my heroes. has a deep appreciation for clean, running water. keeps a digging fork in the trunk of my car to move dead animals off the road. View all posts by Marneymae

19 responses to “A few things.

  • smilecalm

    wonderful story
    of making through
    in beauty
    despite such difficulties!
    may your new year
    bring more ease,
    joy & resilience
    to your garden, david ๐Ÿ™‚

  • aro

    This is beautiful, Marney. Dare I say, perfect. Because perfect is being yourself and that is what this is. Please don’t try to be anything else. You are loved. aro

  • Aniiyah Klock

    Oh Marney, I just adore you. We are ALL imperfect Perfect beings. And the seeds, what wonderful work. Being connected to new life, something that will sustain others. Wow. Important! I did not make it to your art sale at Alternatives, I was out of town. Been traveling a lot to take care of my Mom who is out of state. But I WAS routing for you! AND, we have some canned venison for you! I would love to get together and have some tea, here or anywhere… You tell me whats easiest for you. Happy New Year!! Its gonna be FANTASTIC!! I just know it!

    • Marneymae

      Thanks for your never ending enthusiasm, Aniiyah!
      And thanks for thinking of me at the sale.
      I still have something for you, though I don’t know how long such things keep (I’m embarrassed to write.)
      Still, would be nice to catch up some time.
      Happy new year to you & all of your family as well (two & four legged.)
      Virtual hugs in the meantime.

  • Chris Lumley

    Lovely pictures. I’m sorry you lost your job, sprouts must lack variety by comparison. You are no more imperfect than the rest of us, and are aging far better than most!

    • Marneymae

      Thanks for kind reply, Chris.
      I suppose a better way to word it would have been not so much perfectionism, but a strong desire (read: tightly wound) to not mess-up or make mistakes.
      Which happens, regardless of how anxious I am or not.
      As for sprouts, it’s become my steady (p/t) job, as the seeding is seasonal & wont start up again until late February.
      As for aging, I think it might have something to do with a relatively low-key lifestyle (read: sorta boring) and I think not drinking or smoking or having kids (bc so much energy goes to the child) has a lot to do with it.
      But there are still plenty of wrinkles & grey hairs & creaky knees & the like.
      It was nice to know garlic braids happened again this year.
      To hear about it from Sara was really nice.
      Virtual hugs to you.

  • Carol A. Hand

    Lovely photos and reflections, Marneymae. Your artwork is exquisite, and your gardens so healthy and beautiful. Sending you my best wishes for new year that supports your many gifts.

  • Minnesota Prairie Roots

    Welcome back to blogging, Marney.

    What a beautiful introspective post. I now know so much more about you. What a grounded and creative soul you are. Your art reflects your spirit, your appreciation for the earth, yourself. You must continue to create art and not doubt that you are one gifted artist. For art is a gift. To yourself and to others.

    If you love seeds, and you do, then that is what needs to be your life’s work. Forget other pursuits. You need to be where you are happy.

    You know yourself well and it seems to me that you have chosen well in your life’s journey. May peace and contentment fill your New Year.

  • BroadBlogs

    “This year Iโ€™m going to try to drop the whole trying-to-be-perfect thing.” I need to do the same thing. Causes me a lot of distress and anxiety. Happy New Year to us both!

  • abusymom

    Love your post. ๐Ÿ™‚
    Have a great year ahead!

  • ginoforgeorge

    Hi Marneymae,

    Thanks for liking my recent blog. You really cannot move from your world. Take it with you somewhere ? There is something special about your world that I can see in all your pictures. Please be happy.. George

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