Hello Friends
What a year it's been. We had an abundance of wild life to care for this year.

We seem to be living in turbulent times. Change appears to be coming to us all in many different ways. Here at our home we have also had some major changes.
My older brother, whom I have looked after for many years, was no longer able to stay at home alone without more support than we could find or offer, and so he moved to a really wonderful assisted living situation in Watertown. We are all adjusting to this major change. I am grateful that he now has someone dispensing his meds and looking out for him 24/7. I've been able to get in one visit per week, and hope winter gives me a little time to introduce him to some of the programs available to him.  The chickens he helped care for still live next door, and will soon be joined by four young hens we bought. Jan's wonderful cat Spanky has a whole new fan club at his new home in Maryland with our friends at Art of Fire.

  Bay House Artisans, the regional arts co-op I help found seven years ago took a major plunge this year. We knew we couldn't continue as a business at the original location, and there were no other rental properties in Alexandria Bay that suited our needs. So a new LLC was formed and a building was purchased. Bay House Artisans now resides at the former Brass Tacks bar & restaurant at 27 Market St. in the Bay. We moved all of our assorted props and display pieces down the street on a clear winter day. Due to many mysterious factors our closing didn't occur until mid-May, already a few weeks into the season. The night of the closing several folks showed up to remove tables and booths. The next day the cleaning and painting began. Restaurant supplies were sold off to local businesses to help clear space. We also had three second floor apartments to get ready for rental. Eight days later we opened the front room for business. The kitchen was a bit more challenging, but eventually got cleaned, painted and set up.  We're still ‘dancing with furniture’ as we figure out what works best in this new space. Under consideration are plans for a possible weekend coffee house during the winter months, and/or offering a few classes. Like most creative ventures, this will be a work in progress for a while. Hopefully a long while.

  Wildlife rehabilitation came on like a late spring storm, keeping us busy from dawn to dusk. As of this writing all late season squirrels and birds have been released, though we still have three pigeons to see through the winter. Plans are being reviewed to winterize & predator-proof  a shelter for them. I wouldn't call them tame, but they aren't exactly wild either. For now we are peacefully coexisting.

  All these changes left me a little less ready for autumn shows energetically. I am planning to be more ready for the next season. You can usually find my complete schedule and last minute changes on our website. I dropped a show or two this year for a variety of reasons – it is no reflection on those events, more a factor of my own choices and needs. The list on the order form contains shows and events I am planning to attend.  Visit hillwoman.com to see some photos of new items I am working on, sale items, and occasional last minute changes.

  It was a strange gardening season with some crops doing quite well and others not so much. Lots of canning has occurred. My favorite new relish was some Apple, Onion & Sage chutney. Another batch will be made soon for gift-giving. I also made some ‘herb bombs’ in ice cube trays to bring the fresh flavors of summer to winter soups and stews.

  As this goes to print we seem to be living in a very unstable world on a planet that is more under siege than ever. This is a time when we need to respond with as much love, compassion, creativity, and mindfulness as we can muster...for pretty much every situation. This is a time to resist fear. This is a time become the goodness and change we need to see in our world. To be rested and ready. And to remember there is much common ground between all of us - find some and make a stand.



Delilahkingfisher releaseSue-Ryn and Delilah
and then
Sue-Ryn releasing one of the kingfishers we raised this summer