Category Archives: Green Divas

Mother Nature’s Armagarden☘️of Weeds

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Hiya Hearty Tree Hugging Souls🌳 

Abundance is Mother Nature’s middle name. Her mantra. Her loving law. She blows my mind with the ongoing giving. And whether we mindlessly mow her down, pave her paradise and put up a parking lot, she sends her troops up from the depths. To shelter and shade us, feed us and breathe with us. What a gal. Cut, crush or whack her weeds, she keeps growing.

She’s made for-giving. 

Her Armagarden. To save us all🍃🌸

The weeds that our culture wages war against? I’m eating them, because they’re generously growing like, well, weeds! Can’t stop them! No work required. They’re totally tenacious and extremely nutritious. They aren’t put off by concrete, tarmac, mortar or brick. They grow right past pesticides, pollution and planetary changes. Gaia’s graciousness reminds me there’s hope, despite our copious misdeeds against Her and each other. Thank goddess she rocks the green arena.

A few years ago hubby noticed (read: complained) that I was joyfully gobbling our garden goodies, but I wasn’t helping with the maintenance. Busted. Frankly, it’s hard for me to weed. It’s challenging to bend my joints, but more than that, I feel guilty yanking out any growing thing. Who am I to decide who stays and who goes? (I sidestep this rule for poison ivy, however. Read my post here if you’ve ever tangled with that bioch.)

My weeding aversion brought on daydreams of a miraculous maintenance free garden. No tilling. No trouble. Just our Gentle Blue Giant offering a cornucopia of food – where all grows in harmony and I don’t have to argue with Eden🌎

It’s happening. 

Yellow wood sorrel – leaves, flowers, pods & stems all edible!

When I finally began Googling those indestructible “weeds” I found that a low-maintenance garden was already nipping at my heels. Dandelion, plantain, purslane, violet, lambsquarters and yellow wood sorrel (in the photo – the bright green ‘clover’ that tastes like sour apple – delish!) 

I started by adding 2 big leaves of dandelion to my morning smoothie. I braced for the bitter. But it happily blended with the banana. Next day I put in 5 big leaves. Still fine! I added a small bunch of sour wood sorrel. Awesome! I read about plantain and easily identified it (it’s EVERYWHERE.) I tentatively tasted it. Very fibrous with a slightly mushroomy flavor. I threw that in too!

Plantain leaves & tall seed shoots, all edible!

And all the while, hubby and I were still enjoying the smoothie.

I soon found a succulent weed called purslane, which I’d cursed over the years because it joyfully crawls along open dirt beds, minutes after you till the garden. I’d like to be THAT unstoppable. Purslane is another nutritional power-plant, with more omega-3 fatty acids than any other leafy vegetable. It can be added to salad, stir-fry, soup or smoothie.  

I kept adding more weeds each morning, getting increasingly excited by my low-maintenance, organic, FREE FOOD grown by the goddess. My daydream was manifesting. 

It didn’t take long before my anti-lawn-mowing campaign began.🌿

Bill was not on board. The increasingly overgrown look was worrisome. 

We compromised. The wondrous weeds got the witness-protection-program within the three garden beds PLUS the two hidden corners of the house (which had a prosperous overgrowth) PLUS I got dibs on a long patch of “lawn” alongside the house, which was making way for weeds. Everything eventually gives way to Pachamama’s powerhouses. And there is still plenty of lawn. 

That could change. (Check out this podcast from my favorite Green Diva Meg on the hot topic of lawns! I have a guest spot at around the 24 min. mark…)  

How has our society gotten it backward? We plant grass, which we cannot eat, and we water, preen, pay and spray to keep that lawn luxurious. Meanwhile we battle the generous weeds which actually feed a vital hunger. 

Recently, I was just about to pull (cringing) a tall and lanky number out of the garden. But I stopped my unconscious rampage and consulted Google. 

Lambsquarters – young leaves are slightly silvery and soft. Bigger leaves pictured here.

No. Way. It’s edible. It’s lambsquarters and can be eaten like spinach! I have a garden of it. We’ve been unable to grown spinach nearly as successfully… and that was when we were TRYING. These sweet shoots are doing it pro bono. No problemo. I swear I hear them applauding me for throwing in the trowel.

“These humble edibles are packed with adaptogens—that is, they’re crucial to helping our bodies adapt to what life throws at us. Wild foods not only retain the vitamin and mineral levels that nature intended, they also carry critical survival information in their cells. When we ingest them, the wisdom that’s allowed them to thrive out in the elements becomes a part of us.” ~Anthony William, author & medical medium

Years ago, when I studied macrobiotics, I loved the idea that we not only get the nutrition of the plants we eat, but we also receive their radiant, invisible, indestructible life-force. Awesome. These wild delights have seen many, many seasons and navigated through drought, flood, freezing, scorching & mowing, but they still thrive. The plant DNA gets stronger and it passes its immunity & resilience on to us. To us! L’Chiam. 

What did we do to deserve this Motherly care and cooperation? Just by being born into a bod, we are worthy of Her love. We do not have to toil to earn it. Creation knew we’d need sustenance and support. Even though weed shake Her off and refuse Her gifts – She’d still offer and celebrate the miracle of our life, like any loving mom. The miracle of animals. Insects. Weeds. And for all of us sweet heathens, we have a Mega-mama overflowing with love. And groceries for ingrates. 

This is purslane – leaves & stems are edible :)

This is toxic spurge

Before you leave – a note of caution – purslane has a look-alike called “spurge,” which is toxic (it causes vomiting etc – luckily it tastes so bad that people don’t tend to swallow it!) If you look at pictures on the web, you’ll be able to see the difference between the two. Both have reddish stems, but purslane has thicker leaves, like a jade plant. Spurge leaves are thin, lay flat and grow neatly across from one another on the stem. Some have central red spots. Double check and go slow. And, of course, before you start eating any weeds out of your garden or lawn, be sure you’ve positively identified them.

And then enjoy Earth’s lavish abundance!

My friend Kathy Kane sent me this tidbit – the word vegetable comes from the Latin vegetare: to invigorate. I can dig it!

We are surrounded by energetic abundance, and although some days it may feel like the cash flow is low, we’re actually rolling in the green 😀

Yours in tree-hugging,
garden-loving gladness,
☀️XOXOXO
Weenie Greenie Julie

P.S. If you’d like some guidance and cheerleading with your smoothie-making, weed-gobbling or any other healthy & happy goal you’ve been dreaming about, I’m offering a ginormous 40% off any coaching package with the coupon code soul40. Check them out here. Or Email me and we’ll set up a free call. (40% off will be reflected in the shopping cart.) Let’s fall into fall together! I know weed be a great powerhouse pair :) You’ve got nothing to lose and energy to gain. Let’s create your version of an Earthy-crunchy Eden☀️

 

 

What’s The Dream Your Soul Dreamed For You? New PODCAST❤

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FUN NEWS!

Megan McWilliams Bouchard (my BFF from eons ago – well, 1st grade, in this life anyway,) and I are collaborating on a new podcast, The GD Spirit Pub!

Our pilot pubcast is ready! Come listen to our tales of spiritual seeking (and sucking) and how our crazy choices at the Spirit Pub (while drunk on bliss) are turning out! It’s anyone’s guess – an ongoing mystery-thriller-tragedy-comedy with/for our earthy crunchy soulmates. Join us for a pint of joy and to enlighten up!

For more about the Spirit Pub and why we might choose a life on the rocks, read my new post below ~

I’m not, yet, “living the dream.” My fantasy life would be filled with total ease, unbridled joy, financial security, friends, family and daily organic smoothies at my ocean-front villa. Including a prosperous, spiritual, inspirational business that contributes to a brighter world. And I donate my energy and overflowing abundance to wondrous causes that make a dynamic difference on the planet. 

But that’s not my reality. 

Then it hit me like a forgotten love bomb – maybe I AM living the dream! Not the aforementioned money-filled Margaritaville, but the unstoppable dream my soul dreamed for me. The gritty one I chose from the Spirit Pub where I’d (willingly, joyfully) wake up on earth and promptly fall fast asleep to my true self. Where I’d be deaf, dumb, blind and stretched beyond all boundaries, through fear, loss, grief and dwarfism. Where my greatest self would dare me with the ultimate challenge . . . to forget my light. And yours. To walk in the deepest dark.

Then slowly, painstakingly, arduously . . . we’d get glimpses of the dream. The movie we wanted to create, here, and the bliss we’d temporarily leave behind. 

So scary! So exciting! What incarnation were we thinking? Maybe there’s nothing to lose and plenty to gain. We’ve got an eternity to play with. 

But. As I struggle to make peace with myself, my responsibilities, family, friends, health, purpose, work and unpaid bills, how can I be living the dream? The unbearable shadows? Messy relationships? Judgment? Rejection? Hatred? War? What kind of cray-cray cruel dream could THAT be!?

The edge-of-your-seat kind. The plot-twists-from-heaven kind. The leap out-of-your-skin-suspense kind. The super-hero-action-packed kind. The standing-ovation-at-the-thrilling-finale kind. The happy-ending after-all-the-mind-blowing-drama kind. The buttered-popcorn kind.

How long will it run? Who will stay by our side? Will we be safe? Where are we going, after all is said and done? Not knowing the ending feels nerve-wracking and inhumane. But as the excitement grows, so does the engagement, expansion, resolutions and redemption. They are the gifts – the inspirations. The life-changing journey reveals the light we never lost. 

Our fragile humanness cannot always grasp how the dark can bring strength, appreciation, wonder and grace, but our soul got the memo.  

We’d be creators without a clue. No idea how to drive our dinghy. Out of control. Walking across coals. Trial by freaking fire.  

Until we learned to let go. Surrendered to the bigger dream we dreamed. From our godlet visions. Our home away from Home. Then the creation would be in greater hands.

But amnesia would strike again.

We’d prowl like panthers, black as a nightmare, stalking the dream we once knew. Getting lost in a secret riddle. Obliterating our human hearts. Waiting for the dawn to break us open. 

Not just once. But every day. 

Each sunrise would give us another crack at being luminous. Being present to the fullness of the dream. Not just tropical drinks with an umbrella. But the yin, the yang and the yikes.

The contrast would elevate us, urging us to keep climbing the mountains we chose. We knew the view would be worth the bruises, Ray-Bans, and getting burned. 

We’d forget the sunscreen. 

Believing would be the balm.

When the old victim stories grow tiresome. When the anger becomes pitiful protection. We’re softened by the soul’s dream – forgiveness and joy creep back.

Before technically creating my Kokomo, I’m realizing that this IS the dream ~ the uncharted course my soul eagerly endorsed. Including the ups and downs. The stepping on pop-tops. I came for the whole shebang. 

I’ll look back and swoon over the the thrills and spills. I’ll think it was everything I dreamed. Sans the villa. I’ll be smitten with the love and won’t want to leave the pool party. I’ll be ready to dive in all over again.

I’m living that dream.
And so are you.

With love, and flip-flops,

p.s. for more about my Spirit Pub adventures, check out this past post :)