Peaceful Skies

Green Hill Farm I often listen to Pandora’s symphonic music station while I’m in my makeshift art studio.  It’s relaxing and helps my right brain to engage while I’m working on a painting.  Recently, I heard the beautiful “Flower Duet” from Lakmé—a three-act opera composed by Léo Delibes between 1881 and 1882 and based on a novel by Pierre Loti. You’ve probably heard this lovely, ethereal music—either at the opera, or perhaps, you’ll recognize it as the boarding music of British Air. Anyway, I thought it accompanied this peaceful scene from Green Hill Farm perfectly. I hope you enjoy the music and the view! Have a wonderful day!

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Grace

Green Hill Farm November 2019 “Within sorrow is grace. When we come close to those things that break us down, we touch those things that also break us open. And in that breaking open, we uncover our true nature.” ~Wayne Muller I took these photos one misty day in November last year. It was late afternoon, and I wasn’t looking forward to walking my dogs, Bizou and Dash in the cold, damp, gloomy weather. But, to my surprise, when I reached the top of the hill and turned around, I saw the most striking view…sunlight, engulfed by heavy grayness, cascading warmly over the mountain. I stood there, marveling at the lovely glow, trying to figure out from which direction the sunlight was filtering through the clouds to produce this cheerful rainbow. It appeared to come from no where. Although the sun was not visible, there was still light, warmth, and beauty. And, this uplifting moment of grace, filled me with joy. “Grace” by Tonya Rieley Hengerer God’s way of Reminding us to embrace Acceptance and faith, thus Creating Empowerment to overcome obstacles. Wishing you a wonderful week full of grace!

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Cheerfulness

“Cheerfulness,” 14 X 18, acrylic on canvas by Tonya Rieley Hengerer “Daring enthusiasm And abiding cheerfulness Can accomplish everything on earth Without fail.” ~Sri Chinmoy I love England, especially the Cotswolds, and one of my favorite places to spend an afternoon is Kiftsgate Court Gardens.  It’s located very near Hidcote Manor Garden and is situated above the village of Mickleton in the county of Gloucestershire, in the far north of the county close to the border with both Worcestershire and Warwickshire. The gardens, famed for its roses, are the creation of three generations of women gardeners. Started by Heather Muir in the 1920s, continued by Diany Binny from 1950, and now looked after by Anne Chambers and her husband. Kiftsgate Court is currently the home of the Chambers family. My painting, “Cheerfulness,” was inspired by a photograph I took during one of my visits to this lovely garden. *As always, lots of gratitude to my friend and art instructor, Janet Wimmer for her input and guidance. 🙂 Wishing everyone a wonderful day!

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Honey Hen: Little Chicken, Big Impression

*This is a post I wrote several years ago about my pet chicken, Honey. I’m sharing it today as a reminder of the many beautiful lessons I’ve experienced since having this little hobby farm.  Having just fed the barn kitties, I headed toward the chicken coop to gather eggs.  On the way, I stopped and looked up, closing my eyes. I stood for a moment, letting the warmth of the afternoon sun wash over me.  When I opened my eyes, I saw an autumn sky that was clear blue with wisps of clouds like white gossamer.  The burnt colors of foliage lining the sheep paddock caught my attention; too little rain late in the summer had muted the usual fiery, fall palette.  It was still a lovely sight, and it was perfect weather for Honey Hen to be outside in the fresh air.  But then, I remembered. Honey Hen, a pet chicken unable to walk well or lay eggs anymore, had become part of my day-to-day routine.  Although she didn’t have perfect mobility, Honey was still a fairly healthy, hearty bird.  She enjoyed being outdoors in her favorite spot near the corncrib that Great-grandaddy Rieley built as well as pecking at clover and fanning out her wings in the sunshine.  Everyday I prepared a plate of fruit and vegetables for her–especially when she couldn’t go outside.  On warm days, when Honey was able to go out, I constantly checked to […]

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Up All Night

Green Hill Farm   “Vulnerability is the birthplace of innovation, creativity and change.” ~Brené Brown   “But there is a special kind of gift that came with embracing the chaos, even if I cursed most of the way. I’m convinced that, when everything is wiped blank, it’s life’s way of forcing you to become acquainted with and aware of who […]

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Berry and Red Wine Sorbet

A wonderful combination of berries and red wine, this easy and elegant sorbet has aromas and flavors of blackberry cobbler and strawberry preserves.  So refreshing, it’s the perfect light ending to any holiday meal. Plus, it’s a great way to use up leftover wine. 😉   Berry and Red Wine Sorbet: *Use organic ingredients whenever possible. Makes: 12 Servings Makes:  6 Cups Prep: 20 minutes Stand: About 1 Hour Freeze: Overnight Ingredients: 1 pound fresh strawberries, chopped 1 pound fresh blackberries 2 cups sugar 1 1/4 cups dry red wine 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar 1 1-inch piece fresh ginger, sliced 1 teaspoon good quality vanilla 1/2 teaspoon salt Whipped cream Black pepper (optional) Ground cinnamon (optional) Method: –In a large saucepan combine the first eight ingredients (through the salt).  Cook and stir over medium-high heat until fruit softens and sugar is dissolved. –Remove from heat; let mixture cool to room temperature.  Remove ginger slices; discard. –Working in batches, transfer wine mixture to a blender.  Cover and blend until smooth.  Strain wine mixture to remove seeds. Transfer blended (seed free) mixture to a 13 x 9-inch dish or pan.  Cover and freeze overnight. –When ready to serve, scoop sorbet into wine glasses.  Top with whipped cream and sprinkle with black pepper or cinnamon, if desired. Nutrition Facts: (Red Wine Sorbet) Per serving: 208 kcal, 3 g fat, 8 mg chol., 102 mg sodium, 41 g carb., 3 g fiber, 38 g […]

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The Weekly Bleat: Harmony and Joy

Green Hill Farm Scottish Blackface Sheep Summer 2020   “…with an eye made quiet by the power of harmony, and the deep power of joy, we see into the life of things.” ~William Wordsworth   “Each of us literally chooses, by his way of attending to things, what sort of universe he shall appear to himself to inhabit.” ~William James […]

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Never My Love

Farmgirl Green Hill Farm 2019 Photo Credit: Alison Creasy Photography     “The most powerful relationship you will ever have is the relationship with yourself.” ~Steve Maraboli   “Miracles can be found in the most unlikely of places. I found the light not by swimming to the surface, but by letting myself drown in the seas of my deepest fears. […]

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