Category Archives: Events

What’s happening at the Sunshine House

Sustainable Sharing – Sunshine House CSA

Jennifer and I are delighted to announce we are offering shares in our first Sunshine House CSA!  Our son James has been spearheading the transformation  with the help of many of our friends, and a few WWOOFERS (stay tuned for more on WWOOF), to expand our modest permaculture homestead to a small market farm (small being the operative word).

Over the next couple of  months we expect to harvest cucumbers, broccoli, cauliflower, eggplant, green beans, peas, carrots, beets, radishes, lettuce, chard, cocozella squash, peppers, okra, rhubarb and several varieties of tomatoes.  Additionally our herb garden is full of parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme  ( I could not resist) and second lesser known verse; marjoram, tarragon, mint, and chives.  We will also share at least once: honey, seasonal fruit, and farm fresh eggs.

We anticipate our harvest to begin Monday July 9th and continue weekly through September 24th.  We are offering our twelve week share for a modest investment of $300.00.  Pickup will be available Monday afternoon and Tuesday morning at the Sunshine House in Cromwell.  James is willing to offer delivery. Please call to discuss.

Sustainable Sharing

Over the past five years we have enjoyed sharing our abundance with family, friends, and neighbors. Recently we have realized how important it is for us to do what we love as a lifestyle! We invite you to join us in making an investment in this healthy lifestyle and grow the Sunshine House Farm infrastructure, capabilities and offerings. We will use the rest of the the proceeds of this share and continue to give fresh fruit, produce and eggs to our local Food Pantries.

Getting Matching Pictures…what it took.

“That’s not what I meant!”

For years I found myself muttering this under my breath. I know what I meant!  I know it is so obvious! How could someone possibly think I meant that?!?!

While we have had a wonderful marriage we did have our fair share of “being misunderstood” or feeling “unappreciated” which ultimately led to what we lovingly call the death spiral of verbal entanglement…every.single.time.

Sound familiar? To register for the August 6th workshop click here.

It took 20 years of marriage counseling, individual therapy, book upon book, method upon method, degrees, sailing trips, houses, and almost calling it quits – so many different strategies in order for Michael and I to figure out that what we needed was to learn to listen with empathy and express ourselves honestly and without judgement in order to enjoy and flourish in the full measure of love we had for each other.  Well, in the summer of 2011 NVC (Non-Violent Communication) found us (long story haha!). It saved our marriage, our hearts, our lives, our sanity.  We now fully enjoy the 25 years of life we have shared.

We have combined our personal NVC work and skills along with some tools we’ve learned in a couple of other methods to bring you “Matching Pictures”.

This one day workshop August 6th from 8:00am-5:00pm is an Introduction to Compassionate Communication.

How do we find the peace within our hearts and with those we love? How do we practice meaningful communication in order to get our needs met appropriately?

20130913_214132Explore with us new approaches to communicating that help us connect with others and our divine energy. During the workshop we will participate in several fun exercises that will help us practice and explore listening with empathy and expressing ourselves with an open and loving heart.

This workshop is appropriate for couples, siblings, families or individuals looking to connect with their loved ones with more intention.  The skills can be applied to all relationships, especially ourselves!
This workshop is based on the work of Marshall Rosenberg’s Nonviolent Communication, a language of compassion, referred to as NVC. For those of you unfamiliar with NVC you can visit the Center for Nonviolent Communication’s website and read the first chapter of Rosenberg’s book.

To register for the workshop click here.

Registration and light breakfast fare are from 8:00am -9:00am
Registration Fee of $75.00 includes all the materials needed for the workshop which you will keep, a light morning breakfast fare, a catered healthy summertime lunch and afternoon refreshments. Please wear whatever you are most comfortable in. Our workshop room is a beautiful sunlit room on the waterfall overlooking a beautiful pond.
The workshop will begin promptly at 9:00am

“That’s not what I meant!”

How many times have we found ourselves muttering this under our breath, frustrated that we found ourselves feeling “misunderstood”? What are we missing? How do we find the peace within our hearts and with those we love? How do we practice meaningful communication in order to get our needs met appropriately? We understand and we have been there!

Have you attended one of our previous workshops?  Then please, come join us for a refresher!  Join us for a Matching Pictures One-Day Refresher Course for $40.00.  Attend alongside new participants and experience all of those “aha!” moments anew.  Enjoy the camaraderie and food while getting your needs for connection and shared reality met! Register here.

Dignity Duffels

“Give, give, give. This is the secret of abundance. Develop a magnanimous heart… You must have a heart that melts at the sufferings of others. Your heart must be so soft as butter. Then alone will you get Advaitic realisation of Oneness or Unity of Self. Then alone can you become one with all. You must share what you have with others — material, intellectual and spiritual wealth. Such a heart you should have.”
~Swami Sivananda

Michael and I have had the wonderful privilege this year of starting a new “dream board” for our lives, and much to our pleasant surprise our new dream board involves a lot of what we want to do to serve God in others.

After some personal reflection and seeing life and people with new eyes I have been more and more aware of the needs of others; not cars, or houses or even food, just basic necessities; those daily items I have sometimes taken for granted. For instance, being able to floss and brush my teeth with a toothbrush and my favorite toothpaste, washing my face with a clean washcloth and putting on my Oil of Olay every morning, having deodorant in my cabinet, being able to use my tweezers every day and having a large hand lotion I can use at any time.  I have become so grateful for these little things each day.  This gratitude is inspiring me to have a new kind of drive – A Dignity Duffel Drive!

What is a Dignity Duffel you ask???

Dignity Duffel is a duffel bag filled with all of the toiletries and self-care items you use to help you feel like you have dignity and self-worth.

I have partnered again with the St. Vincent DePaul Shelter in Middletown.  Thank you Ron Krom for always supporting and encouraging my crazy, hair-brained ideas and my need for contribution to others! The St. Vincent DePaul Center, whose motto is Meeting Needs and Offering Hope, has identified a community with the need forDignity Duffels which matches my need to contribute to others’ dignity!! PERFECT!


I now invite you and your family, friends, youth groups, neighbors and co-workers to add a person with Dignity to this years holiday gift giving list. Let’s call them Dignity Darla and Dignity Dave.

Please purchase a new, sturdy duffel bag and fill it with the items suggested below.  If you think of something which we have not listed , but it brings you joy to put it in, by all means add it!

And most importantly, fill it with a vision of dignity.

Dignity Duffle
Our Dignity Duffel. We purchased the bag and all the contents at KMart in Cromwell.  It cost $65.41 and we purchased name brands (my favorites).  Feel free to accomodate your budget.

  I will be collecting your stuffed and zipped Dignity Duffels on Saturday December 14th from 1:00 – 2:30 pm at the St. Vincent dePaul Soup Kitchen 617 Main Street, Middletown (next door to The Buttonwood Tree). Volunteers will be on the sidewalk able to collect your offering if you don’t have time to park. Additionally you can bring it to me any Wednesday at the Connecticut Yoga Center and stay for a free yoga class with me (thanks Erika!) I teach from 6:30-8:00pm every week.  Or email me and we can make other arrangements.

If you are one of our friends from afar I encourage you to start aDignity Duffel Drive right in your own community! Or at least create aDignity Duffel and drop it off at your nearest community shelter. Trust me, it will go to someone in need.

Truly friends, the God in me honors and loves the God in you, and in all of our brothers and sisters in need.


Toothbrush and plastic toothbrush holder


Dental floss

Bar soap in plastic soap holder

Container of “Fresh Wipes”

Winter strength hand lotion


Oil of Olay

Finger nail clippers


Hair ties





Baby powder


Hand sanitizer