Year Recap for Half Hectare Homestead 2021

What a year. We started it still living in Totnes, Devon, UK with my parents. Worried and mourned for the state of our homeland during the January 6th Insurrection. Anxiously saw our friends and family in Texas struggle to survive through the Texas Winter Freeze. Narrowly made our way back to the USA during a lockdown only due to the fact that we are US citizens. Healed the freeze and neglect damage to our Houston gardens. Prepared for an increasingly chaotic hurricane season, and prayed for our friends in Louisiana who are still enduring the aftermath of Hurricane Ida. Learned from our experience of hosting and tiny-home living at Cibolo Gardens Nature Preserve and Event Center for a few months. I survived my shingles outbreak thanks to Cristophe’s amazing Herbalist skills. And then, we returned to Houston to continue caring for our garden here through the warmest winter we’ve yet experienced.

Year of Healing

That quick synopsis works to touch on the physical moves we’ve made this year, but it barely scratches the surface of our own personal healing journeys. Our move to the UK in October of 2020 was our first step in committing to a lifestyle that puts our health first. This health is holistic, including every part of our beings. Cristophe and I both strive to maintain our health mentally, emotionally, spiritually, and physically. This commitment has been scary at times, and has certainly been an evolving process, but there is no doubt we each needed it. We cannot help others learn and heal if we ourselves are too unhealthy to even begin the work.

Picture of a henna design with three Rune symbols around a circle of the moon phases surrounding a sprouting seed on Cristophe's upper back with Rimakej's left hand resting under the design. Her hand is also covered with a henna design of overlaying hands growing from small to large.
Growth Henna by Rimakej Valentini April 2021

The Continuing Pandemic

Watching the world fall apart around us has honestly been no surprise. Our whole generation is certainly used to this kind of dismay. Cristophe and I are adapters, and were under no illusion that things would be going “back to normal” in 2021. Same applies to 2022. All the varying Covid strains were bound to happen. We’ve been wearing our masks and consciously distancing ourselves from others this whole time. Climate change is happening, and it is not something the world can stop. It is only something we can properly adapt to. We have continued to cautiously assess and adjust to new information as it comes. Nature is change. Change is not evil. Adaptability is key.

Year of Shadow Work

This year has given us the much-needed time to really delve into ourselves to understand ourselves. This includes those darker less pleasant parts of our experiences, feelings, and reactions. This side is known by many, especially in our Pagan community, as our shadow selves. Many people try to ignore/hide this side of themselves, which only leads to further illness. True healthy balance requires the existence and understanding of all sides.

Picture of the full moon covered in an eclipse shadow leaving only a crescent of light showing through the nighttime silhouette of the top of a large pine tree.
Lunar Eclipse through the Pine Trees by Rimakej Valentini November 2021

Part of our shadow work this year has led each of us to better understand and accept our Neurodivergent minds. This alone has significantly improved our abilities to voice our needs and concerns, prevent overstimulation and burn-out, and properly channel our individual gifts towards meaningful goals. This year’s shadow work has also given us the ability to work on mending our own generational traumas through ancestral research and connection. Reminding us that we have the power to end abusive cycles, and that we have the power to revive the knowledge and life-saving practices that were once stolen from us.

What’s Ahead for HHH

2021 has also been a year of networking for us. We’ve been growing our community through this website, our social media pages, and general outreach. Plans are in place for a major move this coming spring. So, stay tuned! Thank you for growing with us, and we look forward to sharing our 2022 adventures with you all. Happy New Year!

Picture of Rimakej and Cristophe Valentini wearing many crystals and shiny metal jewelry for their Samhain celebration. Rima is also wearing red makeup in a Indigenous design of lines and dots across her face and chin.
Samhain 2021

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