Seeking a Smaller World: Handmade and Homegrown

When life gets too “big,” what do you do to make it feel more manageable?

Here are several of my methods for coping, some more productive than others:

  • write
  • eat chocolate
  • play music
  • make things with my own hands
  • look at inspiring things on Instagram
  • try to talk it out/cry
  • exercise
  • garden
  • dream about living on a self-sustaining homestead

I’ve been feeling this “bigness” lately, and I’m trying to make my world smaller.

I don’t think I’m the only one who is grasping for some control this year. Several great conversations with my friends and family about this have proven as much—and of course Instagram has shown me examples of this too. (Visit Loam Magazine  and Farm and Folk’s page to get a grip! I mean, to get inspired.) With many people in the world acting “at large,” and with elements in my life seeming larger than life, I have had to consciously bring myself back to a calmer world—one I can actually touch. The need to get back to the root of things has led me to, literally put my hands in the dirt; put my fingers on strings and keys to find the music; pick up paintbrushes, pens, and by extension, possibilities. What is it about bringing it back home?

I beam when I can eat chard from my own yard or scramble some eggs from the chickens in my uncle’s coop. Living locally is nothing new, yet in this packaged world, it’s a novelty. I am beginning to realize that it’s the dirty work, the hard effort, the time it takes to stand by something from start to finish—and to be able to actually hold a finished project in my hands, possibly even sharing it with others—that makes me feel good.

The types of things that we nurture often nurture us.

Taking action, in whatever small, real, way I can, has helped me make productive progress, and not just find ways to placate my angst (sorry chocolate…you’ve always been there for me and I will love you forever). I realize that I’ve been craving a more handmade, homegrown world, and that’s something I can make happen.



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