Life Lately ::

Loving :: the nip in the air this evening and the promise of cooler weather to come.

Making ::  eleanor field satchels and arcadian lunch totes. Also, in the food department, granola bars and cucumbers.

Drinking ::  white wine. don’t hate.

Waiting :: for school to start people.  it cannot come soon enough.

Wondering :: if the behavior of my 12 ear old is even close to normal. He wakes at noon, dines on pizza bagels only, and retires to watch The Office at any chance he gets.

Feeling :: a bit overwhelmed but also extremely excited. dream following is hard people, it is not for the faint of heart. but sticking with it seems to be paying off.

Enjoying :: the garden harvest. tomatoes are coming!

Worrying :: about whether I am the dumbest person I know?  will I measure up? will I be invited to the party?  I wake up each and every morning excited and rejuvenated. I go to bed wondering just who the hell I think I am  ?!?  unstable much?

Reading ::  the ikea catalogue. it’s more of a visual read.

Playing ::  rummikub. finally, a game I like. the kids hate it. of course.  

Eating ::  guacamole.

Dreaming ::  of financial freedom. where mister witt and I spend our days together. He can push the grocery cart while I check the list …

Wondering ::  what the back to school dinner theme will be this year.  wondering when i will lose the kids in defining characteristics in which i think they should embody. any suggestions for going into 7th grade? i am starting to think about rolling dubies and serving 40’s … i know it’s extreme but it is not far off folks. How and when do you decide to share with their darling faces the harsh realities and super important choices that lie ahead. AGAIN, fail on the part of my pregnancy books that mentioned none. of. this.  read about our wholesome dinners of school years past here & here & here.

Working :: on being a human being. all day every day.

Longing :: for mister witt. are you aware, that this world sets to pull us apart from the hours of 8am all the way until 5 0’clock at night? it is barbaric if you ask me and I simply will not stand for it very much longer. also, cozy fires.

Embracing ::  the annoyance of having 4 people trying to talk all at once. it’s family. I love them.  it’s family. if i didn’t have them it would be super quiet and that would be awful. right? the quiet? awful.

right?

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i love you all. xo

Worth.

Forward ::

I must write at least ten essays a day. All up in this head of mine.

I write them on my morning run. In the shower. While I am driving. Sometimes in the super market. When I am sewing, when I am cooking, when I am cleaning. Basically if I am breathing I am writing.

There are lots of words and punctuation. Tons of periods and commas. A few question marks.

Sometimes its about me. or mister witt. or the kids. Sometimes its about the world or money or faith or lack of faith.

Somehow. The pen never seems to hit the paper. 

I wrote this essay weeks ago. In a moment of searching. I had not found the courage to post it until I read this essay today, by fearless warrior writer Glennon Melton. So whatever. Maybe I will be a writer for a minute today … and this is what I might look like when I think about that.

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I have no idea what my value is. What my worth is. What I bring to the table and what I should expect in return for it.

This can spawn a conversation that could be held regarding many things, over many moons. I will avoid discussing how I see my worth as a person, wife, mother, daughter, sister, friend, or even  stranger you may pass on the street… for time sake really. I shall simply hone in on what my contemplative mind is currently enwrapped.

Artist. Maker. Job. Money.

Story goes :: An artist, of any sort really, who creates and sells their wares, might meet an interested party and say, “come look, see what I have made! Isn’t it wonderful? Yes, I think so too.” Then they might go on to say, “well, I put quite a bit of time into this and I do think it is magnificent. I will sell it to you for x amount of a lot of dollars, and that my friend will be a bargain!”

And they will sell it. And they will get what they ask for it. because they know their worth. 

Now. I will make something. I might be approached by a potential customer and it goes something more like this … “Hello. yes, I did make that. And  “yea, it’s okay. There a few stitches that are not in line. And I might make it a bit bigger next time. I guess you can buy one. I’ll give it to you for like 20 bucks … or maybe you should just have it. Yea, just take it. It’s not worth that much anyway … I have only been sewing for like twenty years and searched like mad for that material and stayed up all night making it just so … go on, take it. “

End story.

The critical point above, for me, is the statement :: because they know their worth. What I want to know is HOW and/or WHERE in the hell did they find it?? I would travel, far and wide, looking under rocks and up on rooftops for it. I would hike mountains and swim oceans ( and I hate the ocean) just for glimpse at how they harness that power.

But alas, like just about every. thing. else. I already know where it is.

The lamest place ever.

inside myself.  >>insert eye roll-gag reflex-hand to forehead motion here <<

It’s lame because that is where it always is. And it can be so tiresome to look there. With all the self doubt and what if’s in the way. I think I’d rather stick 1000 needles in my eye then go back in there.

But as I muddle thru the internal rubbish, in search for self worth through Making, I have realized this :: it is a journey. and a long one at that.  and even though it seems to have been excruciating at times, even now, today… all of it has brought me to a surprisingly happy place. And after fifteen + years as a Maker I have finally decided that I do, in fact, belong.

2014 has brought me this :: my beloved waxed canvas. delicate linens. rad zippers. and gusto. I plan to ride this momentous wave one creation at a time, one sale at a time, one I-found-my-worth-moment at a time.

Shit’s good people. Plain and simple. & I love you all … xo.

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I also started drinking iced tea … Maybe self worth is secretly in iced tea?

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TEN

10 things about Gabrielle on her tenth birthday …

1.  She was born on the summer solstice which somehow I believe, greatly impacts who she is as a person. Bright and happy, full of light.

2.  She loves ballet. Like loves loves it.

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3. She loves to swim. Way more than the rest of us.

4. She seems to have a brand new soul. One that is completely untainted by past hardship. It is quite something.

5. Her favorite city is Paris, the birthplace of ballet. I cannot believe she was there just a few short weeks before her 10th birthday. She requested a Parisian breakfast on the morning of the 21st.

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6. She loves her brother. She loves everyone really, but she loves him in such a genuine way. I am grateful for the moments when they truly enjoy having each others company.

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7.  She can be extremely chatty. gab gab gab gab gab gab gab gab gab. gab.

8.  She is quite bright and is becoming more articulate with each passing day. Noah has always been the more studious of the two where Gabrielle has always flourished in art, music, and dance. It is exciting to see her thriving in academics as she approaches fifth grade. I should say, she is well-rounded.

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9.  She is messy. Messy as they come. Stuff shoved under the bed, clothes half hung up, wet bathing suits thrown on the carpet floor … food. food in places it shouldn’t be.

10. She loves fruits and veggies. Like give up cake and ice cream for strawberries and carrots. Like pass the meat (for as long as I can remember) and gimme the broccoli. Like eat 100 pieces of watermelon and have room for the kale. I love that about her.

aaaannndddd … she is just about as adorable as they come.

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Happy 10th birthday wonderful girl. You are such a joy my dear and I love you oh. so much!

xo, mom

Anyways …

My Grandmother was here this weekend. She is eighty 5. She came to tell us all about her recent trip to Russia.

When she comes, conversation turns intense. Straight away. Every time.

We talk about life and death, religion
and science, souls and spirituality, happiness and despair. Past and present, future and fear, self-doubt and hardship.

During one particular chat, we both agreed that is it quite hard to be a person on this planet, living this life. That self doubt is a constant for both of us. We were both surprised at the others admission as well as relieved. Relieved to know that we are not alone. Not alone in wondering why everyone else seems to have it so together. So together that we feel like we don’t measure up.

How ’bout that.

We are not only not alone, but it doesn’t seem to get any better, even with age.  But that is okay. It is okay to realize that this is part of the human condition. To recognize such things about ourselves is vital. Vital to feel fear, accept fear, and continue on anyway.

My grandmother was afraid of some aspects of her long journey to Russia. She sat with that fear a good long while.  accepted it. and carried on with the journey despite it. And you know what they told her?

They told my Grandmother that she was an inspiration. Being the oldest traveler on the trip seemingly without fear to go such a great distance. That she seemed to have it all together.

She says to me, “I’m a God Damn inspiration Brittany!” >insert fist pounding the table here<

It is in that spirit that I dedicate this short family video to her. Not only for the help in facilitating our travels there but in encouraging us to go everywhere. To go anyways. To go always …

England 2014 from Brittany Witt on Vimeo.

Abroad.

For those of you who may not know, The Witt’s went across the pond for Ten. Whole. Days. 

How does one even begin to describe, in written word, such an adventure?

Where do I begin?

How do I tell you ev.er.y.thing???

I don’t. It’s impossible. So I am simply going to make a list because I love list making and it seems effective.

Let us begin …

1. Doors. I would move to England for the doors alone. You don’t even want to know how many pictures of doors, digitally and mentally, I hold in my possession.

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2. Breakfast. It was long and chatty, with coffee and bread. In a kitchen that feels like home and visiting that fills you all up until the next time.

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3.  My Dad & Sue’s house. Tucked away in a small village, it is quiet and quaint, beautiful and artsy, cozy and fun … it’s pretty much the tops.

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4. Bikes.

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5. Chequers. The pub that has the most amazing indian dishes, delicious red wine, & where my dad plays his guitar on certain Wednesday nights.

6. Pubs. They are fun. Especially when your dad is a regular and you get to see the locals. In the same chair you saw them last time. 2 years ago. Amazing.

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7. Cambridge. Eating at Bill’s in Cambridge to be exact. And the magnificence of the colleges, cobblestone streets, cyclists, outdoor markets, local maker craft shops … it is all so fantastic.

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8. Tom and Tina. Sue’s Nephew and his lovely lady. Such fun those two.

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9. Walking the Dyke. yep.

10. Ending up at the fair.

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11.  The ruins.

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12. Neon. I was especially excited to be able to see Sue’s artwork on display at one of the College’s in Cambridge. Her work is so inspiring and I so loved our own private tour of the pieces with the artist herself!

The 1st one pictured below :: her mum.

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This next one was inspired by our Gabi, for she went on a little stint of saying this very thing when she was around 3 years old ::

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13. Not commenting on which side of the road folks were driving on. Mister Witt and I made a valiant effort not to say and/or ask anything stupid.

14. The cows. they are different from Vermont cows.

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15. The flowers.

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16.  The apartment in Paris. Words cannot describe.

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17. Taking a seat at the foot of the tower. Red Wine. Fresh Bread. Fromage. Waiting for it to shine.

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18. Being there with Mister Witt. And my Dad.

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19. Riding the Eurostar under The Channel.

20. The. Parisian. Ballet. Probably the most fantastic performance I have ever seen or will ever see in my life. Not only was the dance captivating but the energy of the audience, rhapsodic.

21. London. A personal favorite. I could/should live there.

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22. The Tate. And the story of how Sue was part of a filming project there before it was what it is.

23. Flying. I’m not afraid anymore. Much to my surprise.

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24. This car.

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25. Wally.

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26. Gabrielle

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27. Locks of Love.

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28. Noah. And his teeth. I know this picture is a bit … close up. But it is documentation and all, I don’t want to forget.

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29. The Bread. Baked by my dad, in his kitchen in England. Nothing has ever tasted to good.

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30. Jay and Sue. Their Hospitality. Generosity. Genuine kindness and loving nature. You showed us the most unimaginable time. A time that we will hold in our hearts forever. We thank you kindly, for everything.

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The end.

Post Script :: This Juice. God I love bits in my juice. It is so. much. better. then pulp.

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Spring Garden …

Once upon a time, Mister Witt and I thought we would like to try our hand at farming. Being a couple of city kids … ahem, suburbia kids … I am not sure if we really knew what that meant.

What we did know is that we wanted to grow our own food and live closely with the land.

baby steps ::

Spring 2014 from Brittany Witt on Vimeo.

Life Lately …

Getting :: ready for our trip abroad in just a few. short. days!

Loving :: Gabrielle in her new Hunter Boots.

Making :: lots and lots of pinafores!

Drinking :: coffee. lots and lots of coffee.

Waiting :: for my new travel cardigans to arrive in the mail.

Hating :: seeing Noah with the chicken pox for the SECOND time.

Feeling :: sore from cross fit workouts and spring sprints in the woods.

Enjoying :: new friendships. so much.

Worrying :: about my kids; their education, their place in this world, their future. always. 

Reading :: nada.

Playing :: catch up.

Enjoying :: planting, tending, growing a garden.

Dreaming :: of a new adventure.

Wondering :: if I will ever stay put.

Choosing :: happiness. every day.

Working :: on financial independence. slowly.

Longing :: for Mister Witt. Every moment he is away from me.

Embracing :: thirty 5

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Warm.

A warm breeze is blowing in our parts today. This inspires many things … like this here celebratory beverage ::

drink

Tons of ice.

Lemonade.

1 shot of your favorite Vodka … or not depending on your age, convictions, and/or time of day.

Delicious fresh mint.

Not rocket science I know, but not bad for a couple of squares either ::

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35 things …

…off the top of my head, in regards to Mister Witt, on his 35th birthday.

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1. His birthday is today, April 8th. He is an aries.

2. He has the same eyes as me.

3. He is a picky eater. More so then you would think, seeing that I have the reputation around here for only eating certain foods.

4. His favorite season is summer and he is currently counting how many he may or may not have left.

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5. He was born in the Sonoran Desert. He loves the feeling of a wide open sky. The kind that you can see for miles in every direction.

6. He makes up his own language. He lives in code terms. It wasn’t until I learned to speak in those terms did we became very best friends.

7. He is the funniest person I know, 2nd only to grandpa Jay.

8. He is a family man, to the very core of his being. All of his passwords contain the word family in them some way or another.

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9. He is a musician. He can play anything you put in front of him.

10. He is an amazing lover. I can say that here because we are both 35 now.

11. He shares my love for the number eleven.

12. He is quick to temper and even quicker to forgive, forget, and move on. He does not hold a grudge.

13. He gives of himself like no one I have ever known before. He gives to us everything from his time to every last cent he earns.

14. I am so in love with him that sometimes I feel as though I cannot breathe.

15. Sometimes I want to punch him in the face.

16. He let’s me cut his hair. And praises my efforts the whole time.

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17. He is terrible at correspondence. Doesn’t call. Doesn’t write. Nothing. Nada. I am the correspondence. 

18. He LOVES the Grateful Dead. I don’t know WHY, but he does.

19. He is very passionate about his interests.

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20. He loves my cooking, most of the time. And he always thanks me for my efforts.

21. He is so excited about growing food this year that he won’t. stop. talking. about. it. Like talking in his sleep about it.

22. He loves his animals and is super good at animal husbandry.

23. He is a writing a book. I can’t wait to see what happens.

24. He drinks his coffee black.

25. He dreams about going to Bora Bora. I hope I can take him there some day.

26. He loves watching The Amazing Race, that’s where he first decided that he loves Bora Bora.

27. He calls me his cuddlestick. He holds on to me as good as the day is long ;-)

28. He loves IPA’s. Like seriously LOVES them.

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29. One time, he was going to buy a gun from our neighbor. For protecting and all. He went over to see about it and when our friend took it out to show him he almost blacked out.

30. He is a pacifist.

31. He has the ability to laugh at himself and allows me to join in. We laugh a lot.

happy birthday darling. We love you very, very , very, very, very much...

32. He named his red prius Salsa Verde, and he will defend its honor to the end.

33. Thirty three was a really good age for him and it’s only getting better.

34. He made up a mating bird dance for me, oh my goodness you guys …

35. He is the very best husband, in all the land. I feel so. incredibly. lucky. to be his wife.

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end of list.

Happy Birthday Darling.