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gorging on the offerings of right now

2022 October 3
by Rachel Turiel

I am measuring the passing of time in birds and backyard fruit. It’s all happening on a micro-scale. Time shuttles from the season of grosbeaks messily eviscerating chokecherries in search of seeds, to the season of tanagers plucking singular grapes from the vine, their beaks deftly working skin and pulp. Up next: siskins and goldfinches crash landing on sunflower heads, gorging on the offerings of right now.

Grapes are long gone, and already nostalgic for the yellow-suited tanagers I jokingly wondered if putting out a plate of store-bought grapes might lure them back. “They like their grapes on the hoof,” Dan pointed out. Of course. Leave it to the humans to want to manipulate, secure, and hold down what we like, rather than releasing each moment back to the mystery of life.

Outside, the wand of waning light is brushing the land and everything is exquisite: the tomatoes plumping and sweetening; the trees burnished with color; the morning chill creeping its tendrils through the house.

And inside, Rose tells me, “I’ve come to realize you and dad aren’t gonna add decorative fall touches to the house, so I’ll just rely on you two for the big stuff.” Whew. This follows the daily emptying of her backpack with thrift store finds, our house becoming populated with small and sundry pumpkins: ceramic, woven, felted sweater-wearing. She also just dyed her hair purplish and explained that it’s a manifestation of her “bad bitch energy.” There is space for it all, pumpkin bitch.

Col, after years of Covid loneliness, is suddenly and platonically beset with girl-friends. What a relief. “It was only a matter of time before girls discovered him,” my mom says. And true. Despite listening to hiphop that rings all my feminist alarm bells, he is kind and gentle and knows how to have a conversation, and also how to hang out in comfortable silence. And he is welcome to use this as a personal profile someday.

My kids love it tolerate it when I send them photos like this. (Seen outside the Coffee Bear in Silverton – photo taken with my flip phone and converted to sharable photo by Rose, i.e. excuse the fuzziness.)

I apologize to return to this space after months away for such a short post. But I want to share a couple things.

  1. I am offering in person, drop in, donation-based Coaching for Parents of Tweens and Teens on Weds afternoons, starting Oct 5th. We will drink tea, support each other, and explore strategies to increase household trust, honesty and connection, based on principles of Nonviolent Communication, brain science and my understanding of how teens are impacted by cultural messages, social media and the nonstop input endemic to our times. No commitment needed, come check it out!More info on Coaching for Parents (and guardians, foster parents, teachers, family members) of Tweens and Teens here

2. A little something I wrote about how to repair when our behavior impacts someone.

3. This Ted Talk “This could be why you’re depressed or anxious” resonated with every fiber of my being.

If you are not local and are interested in a class for parents of tweens/teens, email me. I am collecting names.

With love and faith and pumpkins and bad bitches,


2 Responses leave one →
  1. Anonymous permalink
    October 3, 2022

    Rachel, you are still a garden poet queen and have got the bestest kids ever. I love you.
    ~Sharon Ray

  2. Solyssa permalink
    October 24, 2022

    I’ve missed your posts! Wish I was local to drop in on a Wed. for tea and parenting conversations.

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