Thursday, April 30, 2020

Stay Safe, Baby by Juliana Aragón Fatula

Dear Reader,

model of face mask sewn by Juliana 

I'm working in the compost pile, out back, wearing my bluetooth headphones and dancing to Reggae. It's my music therapy for depression. Yesterday, I watched too much Corono Virus Coverage on CNN and ended up in bed with a case of the blues. So today, no CNN. Just groovy tunes and sunshine.

I make a compost pile each winter and by spring the dirt is dark and rich with eggshells and rotting vegetable scraps, leaves, sawdust, and coffee and tea grounds. I make my own dirt for my Chicana Garden. I grow roses, and wildflowers, iris, lilacs, peonies, morning glories, and lots of herbs and vegetables. My fruit trees provide a bounty every fall of apples, peaches, grapes, strawberries, raspberries.

mi Chicana Garden Southern Colorado

This year, I'm adding milkweed for the Monarch Butterflies. A good friend from Canada gave me seeds and they are in the windowsill growing and thriving. I've started my seeds in the warmth of my living room near the woodstove and they are growing in the Colorado sunshine. I mist them with a spray bottle every day several times to keep them from drying out. I keep them between moist and wet.

I enjoy gardening and when the weather warms up I have to dig in the dirt. I find it very relaxing to grow things from seed and to watch them break their heads out of the soil and stretch towards the sun. I have geraniums, coleus, adding color to my windowsills. I learned gardening from my father and how to pinch and root houseplants from cuttings from my mother.

My father used to give my mom a hard time saying, "You can't eat flowers." But I've found lots of flowers and herbs that I grow are edible and have health benefits. My parents would be so proud of the horticulturist and curendera I've become. I make shampoo, conditioner, pain salve, medicinal teas, and cannabis cookies and candy that are delicious and ease my arthritis and depression.

I' never would have believed back in the sixties that I'd be growing my own vegetables, fruit, herbs, and medicine. But here I am killing it in the field of research and growing, curing, and preserving my Chicana Garden. I make only enough for my family and a few dear friends but now with this Corona Virus I wonder how I can help my country more with my gifts. So I've been making face masks for protection when going out in public and practicing safe distancing. My neighbors think my husband and I are nutty than the walnut tree but we wear our masks with pride because we are not Covid Idiots. We are survivors. I pray that this disease doesn't wipe us out, but the numbers are frightening. So instead of worrying myself sick, I listen to reggae, dance, cook, garden, sanitize, and pray for the day when this is just a memory and not a nightmare.

I pray for all the people all over the world because, baby, we all in this together. One World. One Love. Come on people. Be smart. Be safe. Save lives. Stay  home. Wash your hands, wear a mask in public and sanitize everything you touch. It's up to us to stop this menace. It's all in our hands.

Monday, April 27, 2020

Malice Domestic in pictures by Dru Ann Love

This week I would be winging my way to Bethesda, Maryland for the annual Malice Domestic Convention. As we are still in the midst of a pandemic, this and other major reader/fan conventions have been canceled. Today's post is a pictorial journey of the fun times had at previous Malice Domestic conventions. . .starting with 2010.

2010 in Crystal City, Virginia - This was my first time there and I was nervous as heck. I always thank Heather Webber from nudging me to attend.

2011 in Bethesda, Maryland

2012 in Bethesda, Maryland

2013 in Bethesda, Maryland

2014 in Bethesda, Maryland

2015 in Bethesda, Maryland

2016 in Bethesda, Maryland

2017 in Bethesda, Maryland - The year I won the MWA Raven Award

2018 in Bethesda, Maryland

2019 in Bethesda, Maryland - BOLO Books and dru's book musings first ad in the Malice Domestic program book

2020 in Bethesda, Maryland

Who's ready for the conventions in 2021? Albuquerque, Bethesda, and New Orleans, anyone?

I know I am.