Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Terra Verde: A Good Blog to Check Out If You Like Simplifying Your Life

Angela with her husband, Michael
My sister, Angela Brown, does it all. Not only is she a successful business owner, graphic designer and marketing consultant- she somehow finds the time to bake her own bread, knit and crochet, make candles, sew formal dresses and quilt the scrap material into beautiful blankets and wall hangings. She reads classic literature, listens to NPR and decorates her kitchen like a vintage bakery. She is an expert on Victorian era history, keeps an herb garden around her house and is an exceptional photographer. Yeah, she makes everyone else look bad... but we love her anyways.

She has a really great blog, Terra Verde Online. Her blog is split into the categories of Simple Living, Arts and Crafts, Good Reads, Favorite Things, Wellness, Simple Holidays, Food, Simply Fabulous People, 1000 Gifts, Victory Gardening and Business&Marketing. Her articles range from practical how-to's to motivational insights on the world.

She also has a bridal website, TerraVerde Bride which includes anything and everything a bride could need to know to have a simple, fun, low-stress wedding. I'm serious, you can go fire your wedding planner now- this blog has everything.

I'm not even being biased because she's my sister. I don't even like her. I just follow her blog.

Jokes, just jokes.

I love her very much and we get along just fine.

But, seriously- stop what you are doing and go check out her blog because I'm sure you will love it as much as I do.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Candle making day!

I've been having a lot of fun teaching myself how to make candles.
The process was pretty simple. Essentially, I just boiled  the wax down (I had to break the wax into small pieces and put it in jars, and then put the jars in a pot surrounded by boiling water, protected by a dishcloth in between the jar and the bottom of the pot) and then put a wick in the candle after the wax had cooled a bit. I dropped a few drops of Vanilla to give it scent, but I think I could have put more in.
Over all, it was pretty easy (Although super messy!) and I can't wait to make more.

Friday, March 25, 2011

A Thank You Letter to My Mom/ Why Birth is Relevant to Me

Because of my mom's profession as a doula (A doula is a person who is trained to provide emotional and logistical support during the pregnancy, delivery or postpartum of a baby), my sister and I have been given a lot of knowledge about childbirth ever since I can remember. I knew about birthing postures and pregnancy exercises long before I was ever given "the talk". My mom also teaches natural childbirth classes, so models of pelvises and conversations about cervical dilation have always floated around our house. My mom was one of my main teachers growing up. Because I was home schooled more than I was in school, she was a huge influence in my education.

When I was sixteen, I asked my mom if I could go to midwifery conferences with her and attend births as a sort of an apprentice. Thankfully, I have the most awesome mom ever and she let me tag along. Since then, I have examined placentas, held hands during contractions and seen the most beautiful exchange of "first" meetings between the mother and the baby.

I have thought about becoming a doula or a midwife someday. I don't know if that will happen... but, at the same time, I feel that I could be a really great doula even if not as a profession. Wouldn't it be great if all women knew enough about birth to be a doula for their sisters, daughters and cousins?

My mom and I meeting Ina May Gaskin (world-renown midwife and childbirth professional) two years ago
I feel that this is an important part of my identity as a woman- even though I have not yet had a child. Additionally, this birthing community of doulas and midwives offers a lot of invaluable knowledge about female sexual health and protection. I feel that, as a woman, it is my right to know as much about my body as I can.

"We have a secret in our culture, and it's not that birth is painful. It's that women are strong."
-Lara Stavoe Harm

I have very little fear about childbirth and am looking forward to the day when I am a mother; partly due to my awareness and partly due to the support I know I would have from my mom and sister.

So, if my mom is reading this-
Thank you.

PS My mom, Jody Milholland, is a Bradley certified natural childbirth teacher and twenty one year doula veteran in the birthing scene. Her website is

Monday, March 14, 2011


I'm finding less wonder in brick and mortar the more I look outside my own head

Things are calm in my life, and I like it.