Waking up to a blanket of snow feels like a dream when you live in Asheville. We usually only get a handful of snow days every year, and last week, we woke up to one of those days. Within the same week, we were greeted by 70 degree weather. Mother natures offers lots of contrast, as does day to day life. Major changes can happen overnight, and we can either try to resist such contrast, or we can embrace it. The idea of contrast and change has been coming up a lot in recent meetings with my colleagues and supervisors. One of my fellow counselors always tells me: “roll with resistance”. When unexpected changes come up, roll with it rather than push against it. The capability to roll with resistance can depend greatly on our ability to give up perceived control over our environment. In many cases, the only true control we have is over our own reactions and responses, which can be used to create flexibility and balance when we are faced with difficult or unusual situations. Additionally, my supervisor recently advised me to let go of my expectations of certain situations, and challenged me to find ways to change my perspective and create my own ‘silver linings’, which is something I have been working on. Even when we are faced with darkness, we can bring our own light into it.
Truthfully, I was hoping that the snow would last longer. I definitely appeased my inner child: sledding, playing, and just taking in the scenery. When my toes were nearly frozen, I warmed up inside with hot tea and spent some time wrapping crystals. I was enjoying the quiet, vast energy of such a short-lived wonderland, only to see it melted away so quickly. It was then that I reminded myself of my ability to take control over my own reaction to the contrasting weather patterns. Rather than ruminate over the loss of the beautiful snow, I took advantage of the unexpected warm weather. I visited some of the same areas that were covered in snow just days before to capture the contrast (pictures below). In the end, I know that I feel happiest when I am living in the moment; when I let go of my expectations and constant planning, and embrace the contrast that life, and nature, offer to me.

& what a difference a day makes…

Leaves are Falling


We all experience valleys and peaks in life (both figuratively and literally), including the changing of the seasons. The autumnal equinox can be symbolic of both high’s and low’s. The days are shorter, the weather cooler, yet at the same time everything feels warm, cozy and colorful. As trees fall asleep, the leaves get more and more intense as it gets darker. Colder. Luckily Luke and I, along with our pup Molly, had a chance to catch the peak leaf colors of the fall season at one of my favorite and most beautiful areas of the Blue Ridge Mountains, Max Patch Mountain. One night in October, before the wildfires, before the burn ban, and after what seemed like hours of searching for the perfect campsite, we ended up in the middle of nowhere, in the middle of the night. We set up our tent in the darkness together. Cold and cozy. We awoke to the most beautiful sight of colorful changing leaves all around us. It had been too dark to really see where we had decided to set up camp, but it truly was picture perfect. After a campfire-cooked breakfast (part of which was stolen by an easily distracted hunting dog who wandered into our campsite), we headed down the windy roads to behold the the panoramic views of the red, yellow, and orange covered mountains at Max Patch. I was longing for a chance to unplug, to cleanse, reconnect with nature and with my partner, to feel the earth on my feet. Since quartz and calcite are both stones that have cleansing properties, I thought they would be perfect to accompany us on our weekend adventure. In somewhat of meditative state among the leaves, I got a chance to wire wrap them, a hobby and self-care technique that I often lose myself in. After a beautiful couple of days adjusting to the rapidly cooling weather, we finally warmed our fingers up with some local coffee on our way home, recharged and revitalized.