I woke up before dawn on Saturday, the , to hike up the mountain behind my house to watch the sun rise over our valley with several members of the community on the other side of the hill.  I enjoy this ritual to honor the solstices and equinoxes in my area as it keeps me in tune with the seasonal cycles and gives me an opportunity to give thanks and focus on my wishes for the coming season. Lou Gold (click his name for a link to his blog) started the “solstice ridge hikes” over a decade ago and we continue the tradition.  He is in the Amazon Basin, raising awareness about the indigenous Amazonian people’s struggle to preserve the tropical rainforest and their .  I honor them and wish them success in saving themselves as well as the multitude of medicinal plants there and the forests themselves, the lungs of the earth.

Summertime is vacation season here in the northern hemisphere.  It is difficult as a doctor to take time off, but even doctors need a break to recharge every once in awhile.  So, I will be taking a vacation from this blog for a few weeks.  I will be enjoying the company of several waves of house guests, a camping trip and lots of time in my garden.  I have artichokes and peas coming out my ears right now and am thankful to be in the process of freezing a year’s supply of snow peas.  The strawberries and blueberries are also abundant.  I harvested some delicious broccoli and carrots for dinner last night and have so much lettuce that we can’t eat enough salads right now.  The corn is knee high and we are trellising beans and tomatoes like crazy to keep up with their growth.  There is days worth of weeding to be done or the will be swallowed up and disappear.  So, I will have my hands full with growing my family’s organic produce for the year and sharing the abundance with visiting family and friends in the next few weeks.

So, while I take a little summer blog vacation, go play outside and enjoy the gorgeous summer weather! Please come back and catch up on the naturopathic perspective sometime in July. Until then, be well.

Margaret Philhower, ND