When you see an elk, do you run TO or FROM it…

Fear is a strange thing. Sometimes the adrenaline can motivate you to do things you never thought possible. A few people thrive on it. Others freeze up and feel paralyzed. If you know Roda at all, when it comes to animals whether on the farm or wild and free in nature, she will generally embrace it. What’s that motto she says all the time… “Be Still”

Yesterday our fun traveler stumbled upon a wild elk in the Arctic Circle. I still don’t believe she’s in the Midwest, so for the remainder of the week, I’m going to act as if she’s near the North Pole given there’s snow in the background. She found an elk! Who does that? And she got close enough to take photos of it. Do you see those antlers? How would you have reacted? Run TO or FROM it?


I asked myself that question but decided I’ll be brave today. For me, it wouldn’t be an elk, it would be Roda’s bee farm (is that what you call it?)… for weeks, all she kept telling me is “I have to paint another hive.” Seriously… how many hives do you need? Those bees are demanding! I was once stung in the eye as a child while playing on my slide. A neighbor’s blackberry tree branches were within a few inches of the top portion of the ladder. The bee decided I had invaded its territory and wanted revenge, so my eye suffered. Years later, my dog, Ryder, chased a bee on the terrace and felt the wrath of the tiny little creature.

I don’t blame an animal for relying on its instinct to protect and defend. But if that were a bee hive I stumbled upon, I would definitely run FROM it. And so… every time my dear Big Sis tells me to visit the farm and put on a bee suit, I die a little inside. Maybe I can convince her to swap the bee for this elk, and I might actually not need to use my own instinct to protect and defend… ‘cuz I can be mean and scary if I need to be!

I’ve rattled on enough today. And tomorrow, I will give you all a break as I remember something about Roda pre-posting for a special occasion… REMINDER!  GrowingSelf will celebrate the beauty of fashion and nature!  You won’t want to miss the June addition of When Fashion and Nature Collide on Wednesday, June 20th!


The Arty Plantsman



Ramblings From Roda

img_4328Something happens to my brain, when I am preparing to go on vacation. I clean everything, to the point that the kids ask if the Pope is going to be visiting Indigo Acres. My very “Type A” personality becomes type AAA.  My normal busy days quadruple with tasks and chores.  I could give the energizer bunny a run for her money! I’m tired and filthy, to the point that if I were a bath and body scent, it would probably be titled,  “Weedy Poo”. Welcome to my life!  I love it!


To my defense, an amazing lady stays at our home and runs Indigo Acres while we are away. She is a saint! I want to make her stay here as smooth and relaxing as possible. I don’t leave our “Staycation” very easily, and honestly ask myself if the work to prepare for a vacation is worth it.  Knowing she is here, taking care of our critter family, does set me at ease. But why the serious push?

Honestly, I know the answer to my own question.   By the time I am on vacation, finally relaxed, it’s time to get back on the plane and return home.  The last thing I want to do is hit the ground running, as soon as I return.  Reentry can be painful!  I am determined to keep balance. Although going on vacation means family time and lots of photography time for me, it also is a time for renewal and restoration. When I return home, knowing that the human and animal houses are clean, means that I don’t hit that brick wall of reentry. I ease back in, with balance.


This is probably the last family vacation we will take for awhile. My oldest leaves for college next summer. (Let’s not talk about that right now) This is one of the many reasons why I’m going to embrace this time and enjoy every moment. I know that once I’m sitting on that airplane, my mind will clear and, although I will think about the animals, my main focus will be on my human family.

As much work as it is to prepare for leaving over 100 critters, I will embrace the gifts I receive from the journey.  I can honestly say that I am always filled with gratitude, when I return home to Indigo Acres. Our little farm is truly magical. Returning with a restored state of mind and balanced attitude, creates even more daily bliss. What a precious gift!

We’ve spent the past four years creating our “Staycation” here at home. But, I have to admit, taking a break from daily life allows me to appreciate it, even more, when I return.   So, while I am unplugged and enjoying an amazing adventure in the Rocky Mountains, I will rest.  My blog will rest, too.  But, I will have lots of stories and photography to share, when I return!

Over the next week, remember to take some time for you. Unplug and Just Be. It will be the greatest gift you can give to yourself…

Love Yourself…Embrace Yourself…Just Be You…



Roda’s Critter Connection

We had a new little friend hatch, yesterday!  This is a beautiful wheaten favaucana.  As you can see, she/he is very sleepy…

Well, Hello!
Waiting for a friend…


Happy and Fluffy!

We are still waiting for one very special chick to hatch.  Cross your fingers that something magical happens,in the next 24 hours. This little one needs a buddy!

Soak up the sun today and enjoy some of Mother Nature’s beauty!

Love Yourself…Embrace Yourself…Just Be You…