How to grow a wildflower, in three steps

How to grow a wildflower, in three steps.

Step 1: First, acknowledge that you are the wildflower.
Prepare your soil. Clear your environment of everything that doesn't serve you. If you have never gardened before, this may be the hardest part. You may need to till the area, dig it all up, and say, "good riddance!"

Step 2: Sow the seed. Cast the spell. Literally, spell it out.
Make a wish. Make a list.

Step 3: Soak yourself in sunshine, daily.
Grow. Reach for the sun. Grow against all odds. Grow, grow, grow!


  Me, with matilija poppies.

Me, with matilija poppies.

Writing a list is like casting a spell. I think of writing lists as like sowing the seeds of my dreams.

Let's take a look at how I'm growing...

Seven things I have done this year, so far:

  1. I've gone hiking, at least once a month!
  2. I've donated to multiple charity causes. I use DonorSee, which is a wonderful app that makes donating directly to a cause very easy, and instant - and you get visual updates on the impact you've made. I also donate monthly to the Whole Planet Foundation (microlending to empower people) and Whole Kids FoundationWKF supports healthy eating education (for both students and teachers). Many of my local schools have school gardens and salad bars from this foundation. Great stuff.
  3. I passed the Cicerone Beer Server exam, and I also passed the BarSmarts spirits and mixology exam!
  4. I'm a cheesemonger. I specialize in cheese, that's my job. This year, I've been promoted to team educator (with a raise), and then months later, I got another raise! It's been a pretty lucky year, financially. I also won $200 for a costume contest at work (I dressed up in a handmade Rubik's Cube).
  5. New skill I've learned: Drawing. I was asked by my dearest friend to illustrate a book that she wrote. How could I not take the challenge? Teaching myself to draw has been a slow, tedious process - but I'm quite proud of how far I have come, considering it's been less than a year!
  6. I've brushed up on my math skills. I've been taking Khan Academy's World of Math challenge to practice all the math concepts I've never been exposed to. It's been as much of a skills challenge as it's been a personal challenge (all of that self-doubt and fear of failure, I'm plowing through.) I highly recommend Khan Academy for learning: it's fun, it's free, and there are so many subjects to choose from.
  7. I started this blog. I am now a webmaster. It's wild!

Three wishes for the rest of the year:

  1. Keep learning. Learn about plants, herbs, math, science. Learn about myself.
  2. Keep living. Explore. See the world. Experience it all.
  3. Keep growing. Like a dandelion, break barriers. 

Growing freely...

Solstice Canyon in Malibu
  Solstice Canyon in Malibu, CA

Solstice Canyon in Malibu, CA

Two Souls
Chuck and Paula
  Bunker Hill Park in Downtown Los Angeles

Bunker Hill Park in Downtown Los Angeles

Claremont Hills Wilderness Park
  Claremont Hills Wilderness Park in Claremont, CA

Claremont Hills Wilderness Park in Claremont, CA

  Seeds, at the TerraVita Herbal Symposium.

Seeds, at the TerraVita Herbal Symposium.

  A bouquet of Stinging Nettles

A bouquet of Stinging Nettles

  Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden in Claremont, CA

Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden in Claremont, CA

  El Dorado Nature Center in Long Beach, CA

El Dorado Nature Center in Long Beach, CA

  El Dorado Nature Center in Long Beach, CA

El Dorado Nature Center in Long Beach, CA

  Houseplants (and Pierre) in the bathtub

Houseplants (and Pierre) in the bathtub

  Terranea Cove Beach in Rancho Palos Verdes, CA

Terranea Cove Beach in Rancho Palos Verdes, CA

  Herbal walk in Laguna Coast Wilderness Park, Laguna Beach, CA

Herbal walk in Laguna Coast Wilderness Park, Laguna Beach, CA

  The views from the place I call home: Long Beach, CA

The views from the place I call home: Long Beach, CA

Long Beach Mural
  John Gerard's "The Herball" (1633) at the Huntingon Library San Marino, CA

John Gerard's "The Herball" (1633) at the Huntingon Library San Marino, CA

  My cat, Camellia.

My cat, Camellia.

  Bob Baker Marionette Theater in Los Angeles, CA

Bob Baker Marionette Theater in Los Angeles, CA

  My first elderflower sighting, signalling the beginning of Summer.

My first elderflower sighting, signalling the beginning of Summer.