Sun Queens: Ukrainian flower crowns

According to Ukranian tradition, these headdresses were worn by young, unmarried women to show their “purity” and marital eligibility. These crowns were woven specifically for the photo shoot by Treti Pivni, to celebrate the tradition and foster social unity. The flower and plant arrangements are mesmerizing and bountiful, and oh so optimistic. This way of expressing the bounty of the universe is what inspires the mandala project. See more crowns over at Slavorum or check … >> read more

Cuexcomate volcano inside

Cuexcomate, the world’s smallest volcano, Puebla, Mexico

In a day of contrasts, we visited the world’s smallest volcano and the world’s largest pyramid all in one day. The tiny Cuexcomate volcano is in Cholula, a small town outside of Puebla city. It is primarily a geyser offshoot in the ridge that holds the much larger Popacateketl Volcano that dominates the Puebla horizon. The whole region is full of volcanoes.

The Great Pyramid, Cholula Mexico

The Great Pyramid of Cholula, just outside the city of Puebla in Mexico, is that largest constructed pyramid in the world, with each side at the base measuring 400 meters and an overall height of 450 meters. Because the pyramid is covered in earth and vegetation, it feels like a mountain to be near it and it’s nearly impossible to imagine it as built by humans. Other archeological digs reveal further the extent of the … >> read more

Central Market in Tepoztlan, Mexico

Tepoztlan is a small town of about 24,000 people nestled in a small green valley 1.5 hours south of Mexico City. The town is one of the federally designated “Pueblos Magicos“, a status it earned for its natural beauty, it is held as the birthplace of Quetzalcoatl. On the weekends the town fills up with day tourists from Mexico and surrounding areas, as well as those who own one of the many weekend retreat homes … >> read more

columns and arches repeating

Churches of Cholula, Puebla province, Mexico

We spent a day being tourists in the tiny town of Cholula, just outside the city of Puebla. The village is known for the largest pyramid in the world as well as the smallest volcano in the world. It has many churches, several appear in this post. Cholula is also full of restaurants, shops, galleries, and street life.

Day of the Dead home altar

Home altars are set up in Mexico for Dia de los Muertos to entice departed spirits to visit and to linger. Sweets, flowers, and food are offered. We set up our altar with existing and new objects, sugar skulls and a chocolate skull, and all on pieces of silk and linen that Magda is currently using in her embroidered mandala project. We gave our ancestors their favorite foods, art, sparkling jewels, flowers, and a merry … >> read more

Carved wood bird and face mask from Mexico

Barking Up the Wrong Tree blog of science and expert backed methods of happiness

It’s September. Are you feeling the rush of fall productivity, or is the vibe more like panic, your summertime relaxation an already shockingly distant memory? Enter Eric Barker’s timely post, This Is How To Be Productive Without Being Miserable: 8 Proven Secrets. If part of your ongoing life work is a direct effort to tweak your “settings”, from simple vows to work smarter not harder and all the way to running neuro-linguistic and other reprogramming … >> read more