It was with our bodies we worshipped in the great vastness of God's ocean—sure proof of Himself—tossed and lost in the waves of the Atlantic.
Escape | by Suzanna West Makowski
I am so thrilled to share my photo that was just featured by the EyeEm Blog as a part of The Week On EyeEm—weekly highlights of images by photographers all over the world.
Inaction breeds doubt and fear. Action breeds confidence and courage. If you want to conquer fear, do not sit home and think about it. Go out and get busy. // Dale Carnegie
Sometimes I think I take too many photographs and don't do enough with them. It's so easy to doubt myself and the creative process, yet I know creativity and skill is practiced. I push myself to make shots visually interesting or tell a story, even if just from my everyday life. Having a recognized and talented group of people to share them with is the great advantage of the incredible world of social media we live in. Getting my own images out for discussion and interacting with others' about their work—without comparison—are actions I must continually strive for to keep fear at bay and grow creatively.
I have wanted to compost for a long time and even had some meager attempts at doing it years ago when I lived with my parents. But, without having my own place for so long I never really owned it like I should have to make it successful. Plus, I got caught up in the seeming complication of it. Like I often do, I felt like I couldn't do it perfectly so I was paralyzed to do anything at all.
Now I'm in a house and working toward some homesteading practices I have been dreaming about to keep our family healthy, sustainable and frugal. I found the Living Homegrown Podcast to start learning a little before jumping in. The episode on Composting 101 pushed me—succeed or fail—to just start. So while I'm no expert, here's what I've been doing.
TURN IT // Give It Some Air
I have a good size backyard, so I decided to stop worrying about what container to put my compost in and just start a pile by my back fence. Every week or so I go turn my pile over to loosen it up to make sure it has air. I wasn't sure if my pile was starting to smell a little funny when I approached (which means things are out of wack), but was encouraged by the deep earthly smell I caught wind of when I flipped the bottom of my pile over.
BROWN LAYER IT // Give It Some Carbon
While I used to worry that I needed to source some herbiside-free hay, I realized I had tons of brown (carbon) stuff all around the house. I was able to collect plenty of dead leaves, twigs, shedding Crape Myrtle bark, (even corrugated cardboard!) etc. from around my property.
GREEN LAYER IT // Give It Some Nitrogen
Throughout the week I keep my food scraps in a container in the fridge. Soon enough I will invest in a countertop odor-free bin, but for now this system seems to work. I dump them, along with grass clippings and other green stuffs on top of the brown layer. Apparently the ratio of brown to green should be about 7:1. Odor is a giveaway that this ratio may not be quite right, so I'm keeping that in mind. But honestly, I'm not worrying too much about that right now.
DIRT LAYER IT
I finish by piling dirt on top, usually just covering up the food scraps.
Depending on how dry the pile looks or what the rain-prediction is for the week I will soak the compost with water.
What about all you real food growers out there? Any compost tips I need as I figure this thing out?
A couple weeks ago I stumbled across a little piece of heaven. In search of grass-fed, local beef I found Green Leaf Farms on EatWild.com and chose it mostly just for it's proximity. But it was more like fate or serendipity. The charm of this place and all the ways I feel I can identify with it and the people just won me over. If you live anywhere near Concord, NC please visit this beautiful place.
This summer I watched two small boys a couple days a week. Combined with my own kids, that was 2 three-year-olds, a one-year-old, and a four-month-old. This made for some challenging, tiring days juggling everyone's needs. But, I kept my camera out throughout our time together—a welcome haven of new perspective for me to glance through from time to time. Chris Orwig in his book, The Creative Fight, puts it,
Rather than feeling burdened by time, the camera helped me appreciate it one small slice at a time. I discovered within these slices new worlds and hidden truths that previously went unseen.
At the end of our time together I compiled all my favorite images into a gallery to surprise the boys' parents. Their mom told me she had tears in her eyes as she went through the photos. I'm sure it is not easy to leave your kids with, essentially, a stranger. So having their trust meant a lot to me and being able to reassure them of their decision with a delightful photography surprise was my favorite part of the experience.
After many years of renting without a permanent garden spot I am finally getting my hands dirty to grow some veg! Compost and more compost is my first feat in preparation for Spring. Plus, we are potting a little tomato plant gifted to us so we can start growing now!
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Hi. I'm Suzanna.
I like running outside, eating real food and crafting beautiful images. I am captivated by authenticity, adventurers and life-lovers. I call myself a biohacker-wannabe pursuing the unconventional.
Society6 by Suzanna West
Fine Art America by Suzanna West