om mani padme hum

but my words become stained with your love.

you occupy everything, you occupy everything.

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the prodigal daughter returns.
om mani padme hum
Yeah, so I'm back! Innumerable changes have occurred in the past few months and whatever was blocking my creativity has been freed and I'm feeling the energy flow through me. I haven't had heartbreak in a couple of years and that seems to be the best catalyst for writing - in my case, anyway. I won't wax poetic or philosophical or political in this particular entry, but I hope to in most, because that's what I want this journal to be about.

I've been keeping a paper journal in which I write ferociously, but I want to share my words instead of obscuring them with the cover of a notebook. It's somehow comforting to know I'm being heard (or read in this case). I've been wanting to do some spoken word, as well, because it seems a lot of my poetry flows better when given breath and brought to life.

Chattanooga is treating me well and I have an incredible job as the Communications Assistant in the Women's Study Department at UTC that I got after a stint at the local natural foods store (now there's a story waiting to be written). School is moving along, but I'll be 25 by the time I graduate and by then I'm certain I'll be completely burned out on academia... even thinking about graduate school makes me anxious and drains my energy! Around the time I graduate, though, I'm getting a fairly lofty inheritance from my recently deceased grandfather and after paying off student loans, I want to travel a WHOLE LOT. I'd like to do some sort of long-term (6-12 months) globe trotting, especially in Asia and South America. The one constant in my future has always been the Peace Corps and I still plan on doing that after volunteering with WWOOF for a bit, hopefully abroad as well. It must be all the Sagittarius in my chart! :)

The last few months have been rough at times: my grandpa in Texas died in a freak accident in late July and my grandma in Pittsburgh (the one who lived with us) was diagnosed with brain tumors around the same time and passed away mid-September. A few weeks ago my cousin tried to kill himself, too, and a bunch of people in my family lost their jobs due to the shit economy we have at the moment. My love life is simply ridiculous, as I'm sure you've guessed. I'm not terribly close with anyone yet in Chattanooga - I have many acquaintances, but few people I've really clicked with. Robert (aesiron) is definitely my closest friend in TN and I'm very thankful I met him; he's been a great help in many areas, from driving me to get my computer fixed to comforting me in my times of pain. Anyway, it's never easy, I suppose, and I'm trying to learn what I can from all the experiences. It's always a process of growth!

I hope everyone is doing well and on their proper life path (or at least attempting to get there); I've missed some of you and I only wish I could remember everyone's user names! Alas!

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We've had 1 and a half wwoofers come through and work on our farm. I say half because one woman wasn't a woofer, but stayed and worked like she was.

Both were very different, but good experiences. Reading the profile pages, it seems like several farms have had negative experiences. That or high expectations, heh.

Doing an exit interview with our actual official woofer, I heard mostly what I expected to hear. I also learned what we would emphasize as important and unique about our situation to future wwoofers.

Having said that, our farm is the most relaxed about length of stay in a 50 mile area, so I see why we got a hit early. To people passing through, our farm is a tempting stay.

Any tips or specific points of advice? What did the official woofer learn from her experience, if you don't mind me asking? :)

In our case, this wwoofer was just passing through. She was here to spend a few days not traveling and hopefully make a little money busking. The busking didn't pan out, so she left a couple days earlier than she was planning.

So had just finished a longer stay at an established farm, working side by side with other people. In our case, we're just getting started, and since all of us have jobs that take us away from the farm, we had a lot of solo projects for her to do. We said this up front, but I'd emphasize it again to a new person.

A lot of farm work is digging holes, moving heavy things from one place to another, and making sure all the heartbeats are taken care of. Anything past that is romanticizing, and that kind of work has to appeal as much as one's vision of farming as a way of life.

i'm so glad to see you back in livejournal! hope to hear many more updates, especially those in the philosophical and poetic kind. hoorah! =]

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I didn't realize you were that close! How wonderful! I'd love to finally meetcha, and that little dumplin' Gage.

Glad to see you on LJ. I just can't muster the enthusiasm for Facebook.

:D And right after I told you I wasn't going to add anyone else but you, too... Heh.

And you friend the beaner on top of that. He's going to get a swelled head, but not the same kind he usually gets when he talks to you.

I'm so glad you're back! I've missed you, E! &hearts

I've missed you, too, dear Miss Dillie!

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