The Magic Onions http://www.themagiconions.com Handmade for the Natural Home Fri, 20 Jan 2017 18:02:56 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.7.1 40695292 Waiting For Something Increases It’s Value http://www.themagiconions.com/2017/01/waiting-something-increases-value.html http://www.themagiconions.com/2017/01/waiting-something-increases-value.html#respond Fri, 20 Jan 2017 18:02:56 +0000 http://www.themagiconions.com/?p=22266 It snowed yesterday and everything is once again covered in a blanket of powder-white snow. It’s magnificent. I seriously can’t get over how beautiful it is. I walk out over the squeaking snow and smile with joy, thinking to myself how lucky I am to be here in this very spot at this very time.If you want to read more...click here

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It snowed yesterday and everything is once again covered in a blanket of powder-white snow. It’s magnificent. I seriously can’t get over how beautiful it is. I walk out over the squeaking snow and smile with joy, thinking to myself how lucky I am to be here in this very spot at this very time.

In fact, I’ve been complaining lately that it hasn’t snowed enough! Can you believe that? My Good Man and I have a joke that we should have moved to Alaska. To think that we were apprehensive of living in the snow and cold weather… it almost put us off moving to this beautiful part of the world. Now, it’s our favorite FAVORITE thing. We can’t imagine loving another season as much as we love the winter in New Hampshire.

I remembered something important yesterday, while waiting for the snow… that waiting for something makes it even more wonderful when it comes. You see, I’ve been LONGING for fresh snow, for days and days, wishing so hard for it to fall and, when it finally did, with huge snowflakes floating slowly onto the ground, it literally made me feel jittery with joy! Exuberant and exhilarated with the wonder of nature and the magic of life! I felt like a child on Christmas morning… literally… I had a distinct memory of what it feels like to have truly waited for something magical and have it actually arrive. Pure, happy, giddy joy!

I rediscovered that when we are made to wait for something, it’s value to us increases. I’ve been pondering on this today and reminding myself that herein lies an important aspect of parenting that I need to reclaim.

I want my children to feel excited with life. I want them to experience real joy with what they have. I want them to know how lucky they are. I want them to feel the magic and wonder of getting something they have really waited for or worked hard to get. Yet I seem to have fallen into our modern paradigm of giving them so much, too much… they want/we give. We rarely let them experience the challenges and then magic of waiting. They want lego, they get lego. They want chips, they get chips. They want new paints, they get new paints. When they get the lego, chips or paints so readily, we see that they don’t feel the gratitude we expect them to feel? In turn, we feel disappointed in their lack of thankfulness. We might even get angry with them. ‘Do you know how lucky you are to have so much?’ we might ask. They shrug in confusion.

What yesterday reminded me, was that we are largely to blame for their apathy. We don’t allow them to long for much. We don’t let them experience the challenges of working really hard for what they think they need. We don’t even think they truly know what they want as they get so much.

So, kids, I’m sorry-not-sorry, but things are going to change a little here. We are not going to mindlessly get or give anymore… we are going to wait and work for the things we want. It’s a good thing, I promise… we will all feel so much more joy and gratitude for what we have.

 

Snow in Wilton, New Hampshire -- www.theMagicOnions.comSnow in Wilton, New Hampshire -- www.theMagicOnions.com Snow in Wilton, New Hampshire -- www.theMagicOnions.comSnow in Wilton, New Hampshire -- www.theMagicOnions.com Snow in Wilton, New Hampshire -- www.theMagicOnions.com Snow in Wilton, New Hampshire -- www.theMagicOnions.com Snow in Wilton, New Hampshire -- www.theMagicOnions.com Snow in Wilton, New Hampshire -- www.theMagicOnions.com Snow in Wilton, New Hampshire -- www.theMagicOnions.com Snow in Wilton, New Hampshire -- www.theMagicOnions.com Snow in Wilton, New Hampshire -- www.theMagicOnions.com Snow in Wilton, New Hampshire -- www.theMagicOnions.com Snow in Wilton, New Hampshire -- www.theMagicOnions.comSnow in Wilton, New Hampshire -- www.theMagicOnions.com

 

Blessings and magic,

Donni

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How To Make Wet Felted Rocks :: Needle Felting Tutorial http://www.themagiconions.com/2017/01/make-wet-felted-rocks-needle-felting-tutorial.html http://www.themagiconions.com/2017/01/make-wet-felted-rocks-needle-felting-tutorial.html#comments Tue, 17 Jan 2017 12:00:02 +0000 http://www.themagiconions.com/?p=22179   On cold winter days like today, when (alas) it rains instead of snows, the best thing to do is to take out my (huge) bag of wool and get creative… it felt like a wet felted rock kind of day, especially since I collected a bunch of river pebbles on our hike yesterday.  If you want to read more...click here

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Tutorial How To Make Wet Felted Rocks with www.theMagicOnions.com

 

On cold winter days like today, when (alas) it rains instead of snows, the best thing to do is to take out my (huge) bag of wool and get creative… it felt like a wet felted rock kind of day, especially since I collected a bunch of river pebbles on our hike yesterday.

 

Tutorial How To Make Wet Felted Rocks with www.theMagicOnions.com

 

Do you see my new table. Oh. My. Gosh. Isn’t it wonderful! I turned 44 last week and this was my gift. Sometimes My Good Man hits it out of the park. The blues, greys and teals are so lovely against the naked wood and it’s the perfect balance between chic and rustic, don’t you think?

 

Tutorial How To Make Wet Felted Rocks with www.theMagicOnions.com

 

A set of felted rocks to match it was definitely in order. Not only are felted rocks so lovely to look at with a wonderfully woodsy look, I often use them as a natural diffuser for essential oil. A drop or two of oil onto my felted rocks and the wool sends healing and calming oil molecules into the air. Teddy’s class has been battling flu, so my preferred oil at the moment is ‘On Guard’… a protective blend that is an immune booster and has so far kept us all flu free. I’m a doTerra Wellness Advocate, so if you want to chat with me about how oils can help your family, please don’t hesitate to contact me. If you want to simply buy an essential oil (like On Guard) or find out more about why I love doTerra oils, I have a whole PAGE full of oil information.

Hmmmmmm… it smells soooooo good here… with hints of clove and orange.

 

Tutorial How To Make Wet Felted Rocks with www.theMagicOnions.com

 

Felted rocks are super easy to make. All you need are some river pebbles, wool roving in your favorite colors, a felting needle, soap and warm water.

I recommend getting your wool roving  and other felting supplies from a gorgeous shop called A Child’s Dream. They have a HUGE selection of wool with so many beautiful colors to choose from. Their Corriedale wool is a great choice for this project as it is easy to wet felt and produces beautiful felted rocks. Don’t be too shy to browse around as they carry all sorts of other awesome crafting goodies.

Simply cover the rocks in wool roving, wrapping them tightly and wet felt the wool around them using hot soapy water and agitation.

 

Tutorial How To Make Wet Felted Rocks with www.theMagicOnions.com

Tutorial How To Make Wet Felted Rocks with www.theMagicOnions.com Tutorial How To Make Wet Felted Rocks with www.theMagicOnions.com Tutorial How To Make Wet Felted Rocks with www.theMagicOnions.com

 

I love putting little white veins onto my felted rocks. The white lines make the felted pebbles so wonderfully realistic and extra special. I use a needle felting needle to secure the veins in place.

 

Tutorial How To Make Wet Felted Rocks with www.theMagicOnions.com Tutorial How To Make Wet Felted Rocks with www.theMagicOnions.com Tutorial How To Make Wet Felted Rocks with www.theMagicOnions.com Tutorial How To Make Wet Felted Rocks with www.theMagicOnions.com

 

Couldn’t resist showing you the colorful toadstools I made the other day to match my new table too… and a little robins nest too.

 

Tutorial How To Make Wet Felted Rocks with www.theMagicOnions.com

 

After felting the wool over the pebbles so that it covers the pebbles tightly, the colorful felted stones become smooth and dreamy with such a lovely texture and weight in your hands when you hold them. You won’t want to put them down.

 

Tutorial How To Make Wet Felted Rocks with www.theMagicOnions.com Tutorial How To Make Wet Felted Rocks with www.theMagicOnions.com Tutorial How To Make Wet Felted Rocks with www.theMagicOnions.com Tutorial How To Make Wet Felted Rocks with www.theMagicOnions.com Tutorial How To Make Wet Felted Rocks with www.theMagicOnions.com Tutorial How To Make Wet Felted Rocks with www.theMagicOnions.com Tutorial How To Make Wet Felted Rocks with www.theMagicOnions.com

 

I sometimes use my felted rocks when I meditate too. When I’m not feeling like ‘still’ meditating, I spend my 20 minutes balancing the rocks on top of each other enjoying the gorgeous essential oil scent they effuse. Have you ever done this? It’s an awesome way to center your being and clear your mind of daily clutter. It’s not as easy as it looks and requires patience and perseverance.

 

Tutorial How To Make Wet Felted Rocks with www.theMagicOnions.com

 

Happy crafting,

Blessings and magic,

Donni

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Snow, Glorious Snow http://www.themagiconions.com/2017/01/snow-glorious-snow.html http://www.themagiconions.com/2017/01/snow-glorious-snow.html#comments Sat, 14 Jan 2017 22:26:47 +0000 http://www.themagiconions.com/?p=22215 Gosh, it’s beautiful when it snows here in New Hampshire. All around, it grows super quiet and peaceful. And then gentle snowflakes fall like confetti, covering everything in a blanket of white magic. The snow tickles our noses and lands on our eyelashes. And then it sparkles in the sunshine. It squeaks under our feetIf you want to read more...click here

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Gosh, it’s beautiful when it snows here in New Hampshire. All around, it grows super quiet and peaceful. And then gentle snowflakes fall like confetti, covering everything in a blanket of white magic.

The snow tickles our noses and lands on our eyelashes. And then it sparkles in the sunshine. It squeaks under our feet as we walk.

Sometimes the snowflakes are fine like powder. At other times they are so large that we can actually see the intricate snowflake designs with our naked eyes.

At night, the streetlamps cast an orb of glowing snowflakes in the darkness. The tree branches become laden with an outline of snow.

When we were contemplating moving here, many people warned us of the snow. ‘Have you ever lived in snow?’ they’d ask. ‘No,’ we’d answer nervously. ‘Good luck!’ they’d say. It nearly put us off.

Now, half a winter in, snow is our favorite thing of all.

Do you love snow?

Blessings and magic,

Donni

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Our Healthy Homemade Granola Recipe http://www.themagiconions.com/2017/01/healthy-homemade-granola-recipe.html http://www.themagiconions.com/2017/01/healthy-homemade-granola-recipe.html#comments Wed, 11 Jan 2017 11:00:26 +0000 http://www.themagiconions.com/?p=22157 As many of you know, my mom was recently diagnosed with cancer.  A million hours of research later and I can no longer ignore the devastating impact sugar is having on our health as a family and as a society. I’ll come right out and say that I am a life-long sugar junkie (as areIf you want to read more...click here

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As many of you know, my mom was recently diagnosed with cancer.  A million hours of research later and I can no longer ignore the devastating impact sugar is having on our health as a family and as a society. I’ll come right out and say that I am a life-long sugar junkie (as are many of my family members too). And I’m proud to announce that I have kicked sugar to the curb (as has my mom who is also kicking cancer to the curb as we speak).

While we have eaten healthily for many years (we eat locally, organically, grass-fed), I’ve been reluctant to face the fact that sugar is all that bad. I have always loved chocolate and cookies, sweet coffee and cakes, doughnuts and juice and yes, even soda.

Denial no more… SUGAR IS BAD!

The crazy thing is that when you actually start to pay attention to the amount of sugar you and your family are consuming, you’ll be shocked! That bowl of healthy yogurt I used to give my daughter for breakfast contained 4 teaspoons of added sugar. Our bread contained one teaspoon a slice! And the healthy granola we were eating contained more sugar in a serving than, wait for it, a can of coke! Wow… that was a surprise.

So, in and effort to reduce our sugar intake, I have started to make most of the food we eat. Now that I know how much sugar they hide in even ‘healthy’ foods, I’d rather make them myself so that I can drastically cut down on our sugar intake AND add better choices that will fuel and nourish us throughout the day.

Here is the granola recipe we all love. It has no added sugar and is packed with nuts and seeds for a great start to the day.

We add a little maple syrup for sweetness and love being mindful of our endeavor to cut down on sweetness. What has been amazing to us is that what we thought was too little sweetness at first has now become even too sweet sometimes. The less sugar we eat, the less we crave.

 

Healthy Homemade Granola Recipe.

 

Healthy Homemade Granola Recipe : www.theMagicOnions.com

 

Ingredients :

6 cups of oats
2 cups of sliced almonds
1.5 cups of pumpkin seeds
.5 cup of sunflower seeds
.5 cup of cashew nuts
.25 cup of flax seeds
2 Tbsp of sesame seeds

Healthy Homemade Granola Recipe : www.theMagicOnions.com Healthy Homemade Granola Recipe : www.theMagicOnions.com Healthy Homemade Granola Recipe : www.theMagicOnions.com

 

Instructions :

You can simply throw all ingredients into a large bowl, mix thoroughly and voila!

We like it all to be lightly toasted and so I toss each ingredient into my pan in batches and toast on a light heat until slightly golden. Then I mix them all together in a large bowl.

That’s it! Easy!

Healthy Homemade Granola Recipe : www.theMagicOnions.com

I keep it in a large container on the counter top. Teddy LOVES it and often pours himself a bowl throughout the day as a snack.

 

Healthy Homemade Granola Recipe : www.theMagicOnions.com Healthy Homemade Granola Recipe : www.theMagicOnions.com Healthy Homemade Granola Recipe : www.theMagicOnions.com

 

We had our granola when we celebrated Kitty’s 13th birthday last week.

And don’t you just love the sweet bowls Santa brought us for Christmas?

 

Healthy Homemade Granola Recipe : www.theMagicOnions.comHealthy Homemade Granola Recipe : www.theMagicOnions.com

 

Here are some of our other favorite recipes.

Blessings and magic,

Donni

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Waldorf Everyday http://www.themagiconions.com/2017/01/waldorf-everyday.html http://www.themagiconions.com/2017/01/waldorf-everyday.html#respond Mon, 09 Jan 2017 15:39:45 +0000 http://www.themagiconions.com/?p=22146 I’ve started an Instagram tribe for us called @Waldorf.Everyday and I hope you’ll join in. It’s a collective window into our everyday Waldorf and simple-living Instagram posts so that we have a place that connects us and brings us all together. To have your Instagram posts featured, simply tag them with #waldorfeveryday . Each day,If you want to read more...click here

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I’ve started an Instagram tribe for us called @Waldorf.Everyday and I hope you’ll join in.

It’s a collective window into our everyday Waldorf and simple-living Instagram posts so that we have a place that connects us and brings us all together. To have your Instagram posts featured, simply tag them with #waldorfeveryday . Each day, I’ll choose a tagged post to feature along with some meaningful words to inspire us. I’ll tag you in the post, of course, so that other Waldorf and simple-living friends can follow you too.

Be sure to follow @Waldorf.Everyday on Instagram so that you don’t miss a single beautiful community post.

Here are some recent postings from @Waldorf.Everyday ::

 

Music in Waldorf Education :: Discovering Waldorf :: www.theMagicOnions.com

 

I would teach children music, physics, and philosophy; but most importantly music, for the patterns in music and all the arts are the keys to learning.
Plato

Creativity Waldorf Education :: Discovering Waldorf :: www.theMagicOnions.com

 

Whatever you are physically…male or female, strong or weak, ill or healthy–all those things matter less than what your heart contains. If you have the soul of a warrior, you are a warrior. All those other things, they are the glass that contains the lamp, but you are the light inside.
Cassandra Clare

 

Nature in Waldorf Education :: Discovering Waldorf :: www.theMagicOnions.com

 

Here is this vast, savage, howling mother of ours, Nature, lying all around, with such beauty, and such affection for her children, as the leopard; and yet we are so early weaned from her breast to society, to that culture which is exclusively an interaction of man on man.

Henry David Thoreau

 

Knitting in Waldorf Education :: Discovering Waldorf :: www.theMagicOnions.com

Learning to knit is FABULOUS for kids. It engages both sides of the brain, has children working from the left to the right and in a circular manner, which helps children with reading skills. There is a ton of counting, skip counting, adding, subtracting, and patterning involved with knitting – and if you are anything like me, a whole lot of problem solving too. Knitting is rhythmic and calming and has been shown to be very beneficial for hyperactive children.
@howweelearn

I hope I’ll see you there.

Blessings and magic,

Donni

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Fairies And Magical Discoveries http://www.themagiconions.com/2017/01/fairies-magical-discoveries.html http://www.themagiconions.com/2017/01/fairies-magical-discoveries.html#comments Fri, 06 Jan 2017 21:31:21 +0000 http://www.themagiconions.com/?p=22111 I am loving living here. New England is such an awesome place to find oneself. Not only is the landscape utterly picturesque, wild and untamed but the little towns and boroughs, dotted all around, are quaint and whimsical, each one with it’s own unique charm and character. Brattleboro, Vermont, is an easy 3o minutes driveIf you want to read more...click here

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I am loving living here. New England is such an awesome place to find oneself. Not only is the landscape utterly picturesque, wild and untamed but the little towns and boroughs, dotted all around, are quaint and whimsical, each one with it’s own unique charm and character.

Brattleboro, Vermont, is an easy 3o minutes drive from Keene. It is a pretty little New England town, nestled beneath Mt. Wantastiquet, with a vibrant and trendy Main Street full of eclectic bric-a-brac shops and fun thrift stores. I’ve had many memorable days browsing the shops and enjoying a delicious latte and apricot shortbread in the town cafe.

And each time I visit, there is always something new that catches my eye. Look what we stumbled upon on my last visit to Brattleboro with dear friends, Yvette and Catherine… the most magical window display I’ve ever seen! It would have rivaled Harrods of London. Whimsical fairies, dressed in silk and gossamer. They were enchanting, faces full of character and charm… some with transparent wings and others with golden crowns. It felt like we had found a window that glimpsed onto the pages of an ancient Brothers Grimm fairytale book. The details of each masterpiece was quite spectacular. There was a little frame that read that the dolls were the work of Anna Brahms and I realized that I’ve been crushing over her work on Etsy for years! What luck to stumble upon them in the flesh! I’ve included a video of her process at the end of this post so that you can see how wonderful she is.

Of course, with such a magical window display, we had to visit inside the shop, Delectable Mountain Cloth. I’m a sucker for beautiful fabric and Delectable Mountain Cloth has no shortage of lovely colors and textures. The vintage button collection is something to behold too.

So, next time you find yourself in Brattleboro, be sure to look out for something magical. I know you’ll find it!

 

Fairy Doll by Anna Brahms - www.theMagicOnions.com Fairy Doll by Anna Brahms - www.theMagicOnions.comFairy Doll by Anna Brahms - www.theMagicOnions.comFairy Doll by Anna Brahms - www.theMagicOnions.comFairy Doll by Anna Brahms - www.theMagicOnions.com Fairy Doll by Anna Brahms - www.theMagicOnions.comButtons and Cloth Delectable Mountain Cloth in Brattleboro Vermont - www.theMagicOnions.com Buttons and Cloth Delectable Mountain Cloth in Brattleboro Vermont - www.theMagicOnions.com Buttons and Cloth Delectable Mountain Cloth in Brattleboro Vermont - www.theMagicOnions.comButtons and Cloth Delectable Mountain Cloth in Brattleboro Vermont - www.theMagicOnions.comButtons and Cloth Delectable Mountain Cloth in Brattleboro Vermont - www.theMagicOnions.com Buttons and Cloth Delectable Mountain Cloth in Brattleboro Vermont - www.theMagicOnions.com Buttons and Cloth Delectable Mountain Cloth in Brattleboro Vermont - www.theMagicOnions.com Buttons and Cloth Delectable Mountain Cloth in Brattleboro Vermont - www.theMagicOnions.com

Blessings and magic,
Donni

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Happy New Year from Snowy New Hampshire ! http://www.themagiconions.com/2017/01/happy-new-year-snowy-new-hampshire.html http://www.themagiconions.com/2017/01/happy-new-year-snowy-new-hampshire.html#respond Tue, 03 Jan 2017 15:46:45 +0000 http://www.themagiconions.com/?p=22075   Happy 2017!  May you have a wonderful year ahead, filled with love and laughter and lots of meaningful memories. May you find your happy place, may you be courageous in the choices you make and may you encourage your own personal growth so that you can leave 2017 a better, kinder and braver beingIf you want to read more...click here

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Snow Play in Keene New Hapmshire - www.theMagicOnions.comSnow and sunshine in Keene New Hapmshire - www.theMagicOnions.comSnow and sunshine in Keene New Hapmshire - www.theMagicOnions.comSnow and sunshine in Keene New Hapmshire - www.theMagicOnions.comSnow in Keene New Hapmshire - www.theMagicOnions.comSnow in Keene New Hapmshire - www.theMagicOnions.com Snow in Keene New Hapmshire - www.theMagicOnions.comSnow in Keene New Hapmshire - www.theMagicOnions.com Snow and sunshine in Keene New Hapmshire - www.theMagicOnions.com Snowboarding in Keene New Hapmshire - www.theMagicOnions.com Sledding in Keene New Hapmshire - www.theMagicOnions.comSnow Man in Keene New Hapmshire - www.theMagicOnions.comKitty photo - www.theMagicOnions.comSnow Play in Keene New Hapmshire - www.theMagicOnions.com Snow Play in Keene New Hapmshire - www.theMagicOnions.comSnow and sunshine in Keene New Hapmshire - www.theMagicOnions.com

 

Happy 2017!  May you have a wonderful year ahead, filled with love and laughter and lots of meaningful memories. May you find your happy place, may you be courageous in the choices you make and may you encourage your own personal growth so that you can leave 2017 a better, kinder and braver being than when you entered it. May this be a year where dreams come true and miracles happen.

Like so many of you, I’m happy to see the end of 2016. It turned out to be a rough year for me and I’m grateful that I can turn the page of the calendar and have a fresh new start… a blank slate of a year to fill with happiness and special times.

Some sad things happened to me in 2016 that rocked my world and took me to the very core of sadness. First my younger brother and then my mom were diagnosed with cancer. Him with colon cancer and her with ovarian cancer. If I were talking to you now instead of writing, I’d need to pause here for a while… and struggle to fight back tears… fight to regain my composure. The hurt is still so raw. Facing the mortality of those I love so deeply was (and still is) a terrible shock. I know I don’t have a monopoly on this kind of pain, but at the time, it surely felt like it. It tore me open, leaving me exposed to a relentless barrage of inconsolable heartache. Being thousands of miles away from them was dreadful, I could not even hold their hand or make them a cup of tea.

My brothers cancer was found early. He was operated on and the cancer was removed. He has been given a clean bill of health. He is a survivor. I’m so proud of him… his strength, his love for is young family and his unwavering courage. Well done, Al… you are an inspiration to me.

I traveled to Cape Town for November to be with my mom and dad and help them through the treatment decisions that were so scary to make. We were joined by both of my brothers and our family was together again for the first time in 6 years. So silly that it took tragedy to get us together. We won’t make that mistake again, will we boys! Being with them all was like a balm for our broken spirits. Love can heal.

I will talk more about my moms cancer treatment soon as there is so much to share. She has done remarkably well and we are optimistic that she is over the worst. She chose a carefully orchestrated program of alternative cancer therapies plus a mild form of chemo. Together, these therapies seem to have kicked her cancer to the curb. I am so proud of her and my dad for working diligently to build up her immune system and get her body healthy enough to fight this horrid disease. It is fighting and it is winning. We have learned so much about healthy living and have made many valuable changes to our lifestyles. We will no longer sit back and think that we are powerless in our own health. We have the capacity to say NO to the bad things and YES to the good things. All it takes is willpower and the dedication to seek out the truth.

On a happier note, we are in love with our new home state. New Hampshire is spectacularly picturesque and we are in constant awe of the sheer beauty that surrounds us, daily. Snow is now our favorite thing… it brings peace and calm to everything. And then, fun and excitement as we play in it. We love winter more than even fall and eagerly search the weather app for the possibility of snow ahead.

We live in a winter wonderland.

Blessings and magic,

Donni

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Around The World Fun For Kids http://www.themagiconions.com/2016/12/around-world-fun-kids.html http://www.themagiconions.com/2016/12/around-world-fun-kids.html#comments Fri, 09 Dec 2016 18:04:51 +0000 http://www.themagiconions.com/?p=22058 I’m very excited to showcase a special Magic Sponsor today… Around The World Stories. If you haven’t checked them out yet, please pop on over to have a look. I LOVE what they are doing so much. Many of us are trying to find healthy and worthy media for our children to enjoy… these delightfulIf you want to read more...click here

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I’m very excited to showcase a special Magic Sponsor today… Around The World Stories. If you haven’t checked them out yet, please pop on over to have a look. I LOVE what they are doing so much. Many of us are trying to find healthy and worthy media for our children to enjoy… these delightful audio stories draw young listeners into the fun adventures of children from other cultures and countries, bringing to life how they live, play, eat, think and learn.

Let’s hear more from the awesome Around The World Stories co-creator, mom and wife, Tania…

 

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Our parents and friends were stunned.

“So you’re going to quit your job and travel around Europe for a year …. to write children’s stories?”

I have to admit, when repeated back to us it didn’t seem like the most solid of plans. But that was the plan.

In June of this year, we left our comfortable home in Portland, OR, sold most of our belongings and my husband left his secure job as a U.S. diplomat to begin our adventures as travelers and storytellers. We packed one backpack each (quite a change from a house full of furniture, books and toys) and said goodbye to friends and family for the year.

 

rsz_family_at_austrian_lake

 

Starting Around the World Stories to create audio stories for children about other countries and cultures has been a dream of ours for a long time. Traveling and living overseas with our children has also been a dream. So we gathered our courage and did it all at once.

The plan was simple really: travel to 13 countries in one year and write four stories about each country — fun audio stories about what life is like for a child in that country. Each one of our stories is based in a city that we’ve traveled to, and the characters are based on real people we meet along the way — the Swedish magician in Germany, the Pétanque players in France, the folk band in Prague, the artist in Paris.

Admittedly, what we’re doing has an element of risk to it. We’ve always tried to teach our kids the importance of taking leaps of faith, as well as using the talents we’re all given or have developed along the way. We’ve talked about taking this trip for years, but it’s one of those things that could either be the subject of wishful conversation, or it could be real. How could we teach our kids to follow their dreams if we were to scared to do it ourselves? Our kids are learning that adventure is important, following a dream is important and not being afraid to fail is also important.

Traveling with three kids, and a dog, is certainly not easy, and we’ve had a number of hurdles thrown in front of us that have sent us on some detours. We’ve gotten lost countless times, we’ve twice had our Airbnb reservation cancelled on us the night before we were supposed to go there, we’ve had to sleep in our compact car (the five of us with dog) for a night because we couldn’t find a hotel. We’ve spent entire days chasing a decent wi-fi connection. We’ve struggled with the language barrier and have been misunderstood more times than I care to count.

But when we step back and look at the places we’ve visited over the past few months and the things we’ve done, we realize that we’re right on track.

We came to Europe for inspiration, both for our stories and for our daily lives as parents and homeschoolers. We biked 230 km along the Moselle River in Germany while exploring 1000-year-old castles and charming riverfront villages. We went to see the lavender fields in southern France in full bloom. We visited the homes of H.C. Andersen, Mozart, the Brother’s Grimm, Picasso, Van Gogh, and Anne Frank and learned all about their lives.

As we teach the kids, we’re learning so much as well — it’s impossible not to. We’ve discovered that road schooling happens every day all the time and it’s something that we all benefit from. We still do math and reading and history, but in an environment where the learning never stops. There are new languages, new cultures, new foods and new scenery. In between learning with math gnomes, block crayon drawings and ukulele practice, we are exploring castles, visiting museums and hiking in the Alps.

And when it comes time to figure out what the next Around the World Stories adventure will be about, there’s a pool of exciting experiences and colorful characters from which to choose, as well as endless things to teach about the countries’ traditions, festivals, foods and languages.

Even if we get diverted along the way, get a little lost or wind up sleeping in the car again, it’s all good. It’s all one great adventure — one great story after another.

Until the end of the year, we are excited to offer you a free trial month of our stories if you use the code MAGICONIONS1, or for $20 off our Full Story Pack (all of our 26+ stories up to this point with one more each week) use the code MAGICONIONS20.

To learn more you can visit us at www.aroundtheworldstories.com, or follow us on Facebook, Instagram or our blog. We hope you join us!

 

rsz_biking_on_moselle rsz_lavender_fields rsz_odense_denmark rsz_jumping_into_eibsee rsz_hiking_in_the_alps rsz_hc_andersen_museum rsz_dirndl_in_austria rsz_alpine_playground Around The World Stories

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Puppets in Paradise :: A Day In Vermont http://www.themagiconions.com/2016/09/puppets-paradise-day-vermont.html http://www.themagiconions.com/2016/09/puppets-paradise-day-vermont.html#comments Wed, 14 Sep 2016 13:22:22 +0000 http://www.themagiconions.com/?p=22038 New England is WONDERFUL. We’ve been here for 3 weeks… 3 glorious weeks of sunshine, nature and newness and we continue to be ever so excited for the adventures that each day invariably brings. For instance, it rained the other morning. We were sitting eating breakfast when suddenly it drew dark outside and an almightyIf you want to read more...click here

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New England is WONDERFUL.

We’ve been here for 3 weeks… 3 glorious weeks of sunshine, nature and newness and we continue to be ever so excited for the adventures that each day invariably brings.

For instance, it rained the other morning. We were sitting eating breakfast when suddenly it drew dark outside and an almighty din descended upon our little townhouse. We looked at each other with big eyes… What’s that?

RAIN??

Yes, it was rain, sheeting down in a torrent of the largest raindrops we could ever imagine. We could hardly see for the rain. It made the air thick and white. We ran outside, spreading our arms towards the heavens and let the sky drench us in all his glory. We felt excited and inspired, as if this marvelous rain had washed not only the leaves and trees but also our souls, clean.

Of course, we have experienced rain before… but the gentle Southern Californian kind. The kind one can miss, where minute droplets on the windscreen alert us to the fact that it is raining.

There was NO missing THIS rain!

And then, on Saturday, when we, on a whim, decided to drive 30 minutes into Vermont to attend a theater gathering called Puppets in Paradise.

As we set out, we were quite oblivious to the wonders that awaited us.

We followed the hand-drawn signs down a gravel road to park on the grass of a large meadow (I was thankful that my new car has 4 wheel drive!) and we then walked up the path into the most glorious gardens. Unbeknownst to us, we had entered the world famous property of gardening authors, Gordon and Mary Hayward. Their magnificent property is called ‘Paradise’… hence the day being called ‘Puppets in Paradise’.

Mary and Gordon’s special talent is using flowers and plants and other natural elements to make a myriad of delightfully intimate spots in the garden to sit and ponder.  On this day, each of these secluded areas had a puppet stand for a puppet show.

We watched each delightful show and the magical setting added to the enchantment of the day.

There was  a kite show in the greenest meadow.

A puppet mime struggling to catch a train.

A clown enchanted with paper cranes.

A naughty boy who reminded me of Teddy as he recited his lines of ‘I don’t care!’

Mother Moon who danced on the lake shore after everyone else has gone to bed.

And the children’s favorite, a cussing and cursing puppet who got stuck in the mud while a crow ate his hat and a goat stole his beer.

The day ended with a stop at the local farm stall to stock up on farm fresh fruit and a delicious Korean meal in the nearby Vermont town of Brattleboro.

Our one sadness is that we are without Matthew who has returned to California to tie up loose ends there.

Hurry home, Dad.

 

Puppets in Paradise, New Hampshire, on The Magic Onions Blog Puppets in Paradise, New Hampshire, on The Magic Onions Blog Puppets in Paradise, New Hampshire, on The Magic Onions Blog Puppets in Paradise, New Hampshire, on The Magic Onions Blog Puppets in Paradise, New Hampshire, on The Magic Onions Blog Puppets in Paradise, New Hampshire, on The Magic Onions Blog Puppets in Paradise, New Hampshire, on The Magic Onions Blog Puppets in Paradise, New Hampshire, on The Magic Onions Blog Puppets in Paradise, New Hampshire, on The Magic Onions Blog Puppets in Paradise, New Hampshire, on The Magic Onions Blog Puppets in Paradise, New Hampshire, on The Magic Onions Blog Puppets in Paradise, New Hampshire, on The Magic Onions Blog

We remain incredulous that we have found ourselves in this most magical land.

Blessings and magic,

Donni

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New Adventures : We’ve Moved To New Hampshire! http://www.themagiconions.com/2016/09/new-adventures-weve-moved-new-hampshire.html http://www.themagiconions.com/2016/09/new-adventures-weve-moved-new-hampshire.html#comments Sun, 04 Sep 2016 14:08:21 +0000 http://www.themagiconions.com/?p=22015 I have BIG news to share (oh boy, am I excited to tell you) … our family has officially moved to the beautiful state of New Hampshire! I can’t tell you how much we are loving it here. It is green and lush and full of life and vitality. There are oak trees everywhere, andIf you want to read more...click here

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I have BIG news to share (oh boy, am I excited to tell you) … our family has officially moved to the beautiful state of New Hampshire!

I can’t tell you how much we are loving it here. It is green and lush and full of life and vitality. There are oak trees everywhere, and maple and beech and ash. Their leaves are still bright green but the color of fall is creeping in like the cool morning air. We feel like we are in our own special paradise and Matthew and I keep pinching each other to make sure it’s really real. It is! And we have really done this!

We feel like we are back in England. Well, I suppose we are… green, historic, welcoming New England, of course!

There are trees everywhere, EVERYWHERE! I’m in a constant state of awe. I look up, I look down, I look around and, everywhere, there is color and life, teeming with joy and wild exuberance.

Matthew caught me in this photo, in sheer amazement in the beauty of the cathedral around me.

 

Nature Walk Photo, Keene, New Hampshire, on The Magic Onions Blog Nature Walk Photo, Keene, New Hampshire, on The Magic Onions Blog

 

Yup… we have embraced a new adventure and our lives are fresh and exciting once more.

We are so happy!

Teddy and Kitty have started school… Kitty in 7th Grade and Teddy in 4th Grade. For the most part, they have taken to this huge change with grace and eagerness. There have been a few tears of longing for familiar places and old friends but they have started to make new friends and even look forward to the new challenges that they know each day will bring.

 

First Day Of Monadnock Waldorf School, Keene, New Hampshire, School Photo on The Magic Onions Blog

 

Matt and I drop these two monkeys off at school each day and then we set out into the wild places to explore the beauty of the New Hampshire flora and fauna. There are wilderness reserves everywhere. We are like two excited little children discovering a wonderland. We have so much to learn… like the names of trees, mushrooms and birds. Our minds are expanding and so are our hearts and souls.

 

Toadstool Photo, Keene, New Hampshire, on The Magic Onions Blog Nature Walk Photo, Keene, New Hampshire, on The Magic Onions Blog Mushroom Photo, Keene, New Hampshire, on The Magic Onions Blog Mushroom Photo, Keene, New Hampshire, on The Magic Onions Blog Forest Photo, Keene, New Hampshire, on The Magic Onions Blog  Nature Walk Photo, Keene, New Hampshire, on The Magic Onions Blog  Forest Photo, Keene, New Hampshire, on The Magic Onions Blog

Forest Photo, Keene, New Hampshire, on The Magic Onions Blog Mushrom Photo, Keene, New Hampshire, on The Magic Onions Blog

Forest Photo, Keene, New Hampshire, on The Magic Onions Blog Mushrom Photo, Keene, New Hampshire, on The Magic Onions Blog Acorn Photo, Keene, New Hampshire, on The Magic Onions Blog Moss Photo, Keene, New Hampshire, on The Magic Onions Blog

 

Keep tuned for more details of our move and many more photos of our new adventures.

Blessings and magic,

Donni

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