My family lived off the land and summer evening meals featured baked stuffed tomatoes, potato salad, corn on the cob, fresh shelled peas and homemade ice cream with strawberries from our garden. With no air conditioning in those days, the cool porch was the center of our universe after the scorching days.
As a spiritual person, nature for me has always been a healing place. Going back all the way to my childhood on the farm, the fields and forests were places of adventure and self-discovery. Animals were companions and friends, and the world moved at a slower, more rational pace than the bustling cities where I'd resided my adult life.
I'd come to the country to do my Thoreau bit, so I needed an office that looked out onto the woods for inspiration. I converted one of the bedrooms into my workspace and through its windows watched the wildlife appear each morning with the sunrise. Many were the days I would sit in wonder, coffee in hand, for hours.