Whatever is beautiful,
Whatever is meaningful,
Whatever brings happiness…
May it be yours this Holiday Season
and throughout the coming year.


Susan Tuttle PhotographySusan Tuttle PhotographySusan Tuttle PhotographySusan Tuttle PhotographySusan Tuttle Photography0Susan Tuttle PhotographySusan Tuttle Photography
Changing. Letting go. Life will do that. The seasons remind us that it’s okay. That everything has its time and way. What falls to the ground will find itself again in the great cycle of things. ~Jacob Nordby


Susan Tuttle PhotographySusan Tuttle PhotographySusan Tuttle PhotographySusan Tuttle PhotographySusan Tuttle PhotographySusan Tuttle PhotographySusan Tuttle PhotographySusan Tuttle PhotographySusan Tuttle PhotographySusan Tuttle PhotographyI uploaded my photographs to this post last night with the intention of allowing them to stand alone without written word, to share purely visual impressions with you. As the cursor hovered over the publish button, a gut instinct urged me to wait, informing me that there was writing to be done, otherwise I would miss out on the greater potential of this entry. I agreed, went to bed, woke up fresh, put pen to paper, and have been molding words like clay throughout the day, attempting to create a meaningful, beautiful piece of art, and now it is night again and I am tired but satisfied and happy as I add polishing touches to this final draft. The process of creating blog posts feels like gardening to me. Unearthing. Designing. Planting. Tending. Wondering. Listening. Observing. Nurturing. Waiting. Trusting. Discovering. There is much my heart wants/needs to say. Much the creative spirits around me wish to say. Much I want-need to think about, write about, learn about, and share. Much I experience in my daily living that I wish to shine a light on and appreciate, so that I may live fully with a grateful open heart. It is a blessing to be able to share these thoughts with you as I grow. In the words of Paulo Coelho, from his novel The Witch of PortobelloNo one lights a lamp in order to hide it behind the door: the purpose of light is to create more light, to open people’s eyes, to reveal the marvels around. And so, I light my candle and invite you to sit with me by the light of the flame…

Autumn sets my energy level on fire with a bounty of sensual gifts I desire to experience to the fullest: vibrant color which brings my soul to its knees as I witness its dazzling glow in the sunlight, its rich red wine and amber jeweled tones in the moonlight, and its deep-hued lushness when it is set against the haze of a Maine morning fog that slowly rises from the floor of the forest. My spirit is both awakened and soothed by the music of paperthin leaves rustling in brisk air that calls warm blood to my cheeks and invites me to move my limbs; to dance. I am made happy and light by the playful sound of crunchy fallen leaves underfoot; hypnotized by the smoky, earthysweet, melancholic fragrance that is released as they split into fragments beneath my step.

I sink into the comforting feelings that come with being wrapped in cozy wool sweaters and blankets, sipping hot cider topped with cinnamon and nutmeg, and warming my bones by the fire within our woodstove. I notice that harvest food creates a different feel inside my body, that contrasts with the lighter, more citrusy vegetation of summer. Earthy autumn squash, dark green leafy kale, creamy potatoes, and spicy parsnips create a rich, full, weighty, content feeling in my belly that relaxes my being and encourages me to move forward in trust towards the scarcity of winter (both literally and spiritually). I tend to make large batches of yummy food for my family this time of year, echoing the activity of my wild feathered and furry friends outside the door who are busily, urgently gathering and storing food for the cold winter months ahead. I’ve been creating butternut squash dishes and soup, pumpkin pie from scratch, roasted plates of potatoes, carrots, parsnips and beets, and blending healing batches of loose tea from the dried peppermint, lemon balm, and chamomile herbs I grew over the summer.

I am drawn to fuller, darker, more mellow scents that compliment the season and my mood… the holy primordial perfume of woodsmoke coming from our chimney, and the heady soulswirly fragrances released by burning incense of frankincense and myrrh, vanilla, clove, and dragon’s blood. I am bringing out spicy and smoky flavored teas from the back of the cupboard, like cinnamon apple, lapsang souchong, and chai spice. I am building woodsy personal alters of fresh pine sprigs, winterberry, acorn, and amaranth.

The mysterious power of Autumn brings forth memory of so many of my soul’s previous incarnations; in the forms of imprints and raw emotions that I can sense and deeply feel, brief clear flashes of recollection, and hazy, meandering daydreams that are familiar. The veil between the seen and unseen wears thin as mist in October. I can feel my spirit dancing with the spirits of the dead. The vibrations are high, making it easy to connect. It has been this way for me since I was a small child. There is something profoundly magical about this month that allows me to have a stronger sense of the love I carry in my heart for those in my soul family who are currently on the other side. Precious. Mmmmm. Soul sigh. There are so many mysteries, subjects, and stories to wonder about and enjoy, …speaking of which…

A stack of books I long to read are sitting, ready for my hungry soul to taste, savor, and receive nourishment from over the course of the long Maine winter ahead (Mmmmm, just thinking about it makes me long for the woman cave). And, printed on a page in one of them is a glorious autumnal poem by the dear Mary Oliver, one of my favorite artists. In celebration of the season and all of the gifts it bestows upon us, I share with you her Song for Autumn

Song for Autumn by Mary Oliver
In the deep fall
don’t you imagine the leaves think how
comfortable it will be to touch
the earth instead of the
nothingness of air and the endless
freshets of wind? And don’t you think
the trees themselves, especially those with mossy,
warm caves, begin to think
of the birds that will come — six, a dozen — to sleep
inside their bodies? And don’t you hear
the goldenrod whispering goodbye,
the everlasting being crowned with the first
tuffets of snow? The pond
vanishes, and the white field over which
the fox runs so quickly brings out
its blue shadows. And the wind pumps its
bellows. And at evening especially,
the piled firewood shifts a little,
longing to be on its way.