Magic and messes

Magic and messes : : Clean

Look beside the tree. Can you see her? Flying off to who-knows-where?

I took this picture in a place the kids and I have long called "the Fairy Wood" near my parent's cabin up north.

And it turns out we were right.

Because that's a fairy if we're ever seen one.

And don't you dare tell me it's an insect. Because frankly I'm needing a little magic right now. I'll take all the fairies I can find.

It's been an anxious week and a little fairy dust is good medicine.


I think I see magic wherever I look.

It keeps me sane to stay in touch with my blessings and not get lost in worry.

I know well how blessed I am – with love and safety and privilege galore. I get that.

It's just sometimes hard to remember that when you're swimming in too-much-to-do.


So it's magic or messes or both.

Usually both.

Magic and messes : : Clean

Magic and messes : : Clean

Magic and messes : : Clean

Magic and messes : : Clean

Magic and messes : : Clean

Magic and messes : : Clean

Magic and messes : : Clean

Magic and messes : : Clean

Magic and messes : : Clean

And yet sometimes I'm totally and utterly overwhelmed.

By the length of my to-do list and the limits of my budget, by the messes, the undone, and how simultaneously too short and too long some days can feel.

Mostly they feel short.


And I hope I don't ever come across as painting a picture of a perfect life here.

It's not perfect but rather a beautiful, scary mess made up of my own anxieties, worries, and limits jumbled together with the countless gifts and the blessings that I see every day. Jumbled up with all that magic.

There's always more of the good stuff than the bad. It's just the bad speaks with a louder voice, I think.

I've been anxious lately, feeling in over my head. Out of my comfort zone and skill set as a small business owner, a homesteader, a homeschooler, a writer.

As some days even a person I think.

Some days I feel buried alive in all the undones and I am certain that I'll never, ever dig out.

There is only room for so many irons in one fire and there are days when I struggle to keep all of mine hot.


And yet…

And yet.


Most days I get up early.

I come downstairs and turn on the tea kettle.

And I look out the window at the awakening world.

Yes, from there I can see my unfinished work in the garden and yard, but my eyes glance over them unseeing, searching. 

For birds on the wing and mist in the hills. For the magic I find everywhere.


Today there were oriels and sandhill cranes, goldfinches and robins – all singing their hearts out, somewhere lost in the mist.

Worries are always forgotten for tea and birdsong.


Soon the rest of the house awakened and we began our day.

Our messy, imperfect, and yes, magical day.


So if you ever feel things are perfect in my world when you come here to visit, remember cropping.

And know that probably what I come here to say is what I most need to hear.

A story of trust, of process, of presence. A story of embracing the imperfection and never getting lost in the need to do it all.

And the story that everything turns out okay in the end.



Because there is magic afoot.

It's everywhere.

If only we remember to look.


I hope you'll join me.

Join me in searching for beauty.

Join me in embracing the scary, messy, rich, magical, and imperfectly beautiful life that is yours alone.

Join me in setting aside all the worrying and fretting and struggling – if only for a moment – to see the magic that surrounds you.



Oh, yes.

I'd love some good company here.









12 thoughts on “Magic and messes

  1. KC says:

    I could see it as a fairy! Whenever I need a little magic I think about the human eye and how it has little rods that sense light and transmit that to your brain and some how your brain understands the color and light and shapes and helps you make sense of the world.

    Keep on writing beautiful things please. We all crop things out even in our daily conversation.

  2. Beth says:

    Have you read any Brene Brown? Like: The Gifts of Imperfection? Or seen her TED talks? She’s so good at seeing the benefits of being vulnerable. I think you’d like her about now. Please be gentle w/yourself. You’re doing so much. Is it time to do less for a bit? Less is more OFTEN…it just is so hard to know where to cut!

  3. Nikki T says:

    I just took a deep breath with you. Overwhelm has a slippery slope, but magic can be our lifeline. All it takes sometimes is a sprinkle of magic on top of the towering mountain of mess to change our perspective.

  4. Willow says:

    One of the reasons I’ve always enjoyed reading your writing Rachel, is your honesty and vulnerability. It is like catching up with a good friend, with heaps of inspiration and encouragement thrown in too! <3

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