The Magic Of Childhood: A Tribute To Landrum And Aydan

The Magic Of Childhood: A Tribute To Landrum And Aydan

Two boys with kind souls and big dreams.
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This earth is filled with magic. This world holds beautiful people, each with their own unique light. Sometimes we forget or we lose sight of the magic and our light dims. We move through the motions of everyday life and we begin to feel unfulfilled. It takes another light to remind us of that magic we’ve forgotten. For me, that light was a farm, shining were two incredible and strong women raising two young boys with kind souls and big dreams. Their light, their love of life and passion to take care of our world reminded me of that magic. I’m forever changed and for that I am forever grateful.

Lisa, Elizabeth, Landrum, and Aydan live on an off-the-grid sustainable farm in the Appalachian Mountains. The family focuses on teaching and learning about breathing with nature, the animal and plant kingdoms, and the spirit realm. They serve as nature’s caregivers harvesting land using permaculture techniques and tending to many animals ranging from goats to guinea pigs; each chicken, duck, cat, and dog with a wildly different personality.

These boys, uninterested in conformity, love the life they live. They learn and grow every day while they explore and discover all this world has to offer. Their adventures have led them to become impressive outdoorsmen, theatrical unicyclists and beautiful musicians of many instruments. They develop these skills in an unconventional outdoor classroom. The earth is their school. Although they do make time for standard education at home, they develop far greater skills and more impressive qualities through their incredible endeavors.

Because the farm is focused on teaching and learning, many different individuals and groups have come and gone through the years. The family generously shares their wisdom and their humble home with anyone willing to believe in the magic of the earth. I remember sitting in the cabin having conversations with the boys, more intellectual than many students I interact with on my own campus. I have watched first-hand as Landrum thoroughly explains each integral process and piece of a working grey-water system. I have seen the love and respect Aydan treats each animal with as he wakes up at sunrise to care for them. The boys are wise beyond their years, and yet they still play a competitive game of capture the flag and can hula-hoop until they’re dizzy with laughter.

As they grow and climb, run and explore, these boys are surrounded by, and are very aware of the endless beauty this earth holds. Their mothers, family, friends and neighbors provide them with an inspiring support system that allows them to flourish and chase their dreams. During my time on the farm, it took only a week for me to see what a magical childhood these two have. They support each other and laugh and play together while they take this crazy life head on. They’re hungry for knowledge and you can see the light in their eyes and in their hearts.

Landrum and Aydan have set their sights on a new adventure at a summer camp in California. Camp Woolman, founded on Quaker principles, is the perfect fit for these young men to continue to learn and grow. I could not think of two more deserving young people to embark on this exciting new experience. My hope for these boys, and all of today’s children, is that they are able to continue through this life together, discovering what their world has to offer and creating their unique light.

If you feel inclined to learn more about Woodland Harvest Mountain Farm, Aydan and Landrum and their journey, and/or Camp Woolman please see the below links.

Woodland Harvest Mountain Farm

Amazing Boys: Learn, Love, & Grow

Brothers Amazing Healing Journey

Camp Woolman

Cover Image Credit: Woodland Harvest Mountain Farm

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An Open Letter To My Dog In Heaven

You're so incredibly loved and missed.
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You have been there every day for so long. I woke up and went to bed every day knowing you were there and would still be there when I awoke the next morning. You never failed to greet me with an ecstatic wagging tail and an adorable toothy smile whenever I walked into the room. I missed you every single second that we weren't together. We have been the best of friends since the day we met, and our bond has only strengthen throughout the years.

However, as I grew older, so did you. As I was able to do more, you were able to do less. I was able to drive, go to the movies on my own, and apply to college. But you, you couldn't jump as high anymore, you couldn't run as fast as you used to, you couldn't swim as much as you would have liked. Even when your abilities declined, you still remained the happiest pup I had ever met and would continue to always try your hardest to make me happy.

Then the day came. That dreadful, dreadful day. The day where I had to watch you take your last breath as I laid by your side, the day where I had to watch the vet take away the best friend that I had ever known. As horrible as that moment was, and as sad as I still am, I am at peace.

I am at peace because I know that you are in a much, much better place. I know that as soon as you took your last breath here on Earth, God swept your beautiful, innocent soul from the ground and flew you to Heaven. I know that you have gained your furry little wings that you so rightfully deserve, and I am proud that I was able to know and love such an amazing little angel as you.

As I am still here on Earth, I can't say that I know what Heaven above is like for you, but I hope that you are truly having the time of your life. I hope that you are surrounded by perfectly green meadows filled with colorful flowers and blanketed by the bluest skies and the brightest rays of sunshine. I hope that you have hundreds of different lakes, ponds, streams, and even oceans to swim in as much as your sweet little heart pleases. I hope that you have already met with all of our relatives up there and that they give you endless treats and belly rubs, since I no longer can. I hope that all of your pain and suffering has vanished, allowing you to be the young, energetic pup that you once were and have been longing to be for so long now.

Even though we are no longer physically together anymore, you will forever remain in my heart and soul. You were a blessing sent from above, and now, God needs you back. Thank you for completing me and teaching me important life lessons; I will carry you with me everywhere I go until we meet again. I love you, my guardian angel.

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Every Household Needs A Dog

Dog lovers have got it right.

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Whether it's 101 Dalmatians or a St. Bernard named Beethoven, every household needs a dog. Forget cats, fish, and hamsters! They have their perks but nothing beats a dog. I mean look at that face!


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Here are eight reasons dogs are a must:

1. They are great with kids

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When trained properly, dogs make great playmates for kids. They give children the opportunity to develop and interact with the natural world around them.

2. They are protective

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From the smallest pup to the largest dog, all dogs will protect your home from any danger. Whether it is from a lizard that crept in or a burglar, your dog will alarm you of any unwanted guests.

3. They make great companions

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Dogs have a great intuition to tell if you are feeling down. They are readily there to offer comfort. Dogs also are always ready to celebrate with you. They jump even at the simple act of you coming home.

4. They love to cuddle

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Cold nights watching Netflix just got 100 times better with your furry friend. They will even cover your eyes during the scary parts of the movie.

5. They make you laugh

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Dogs have their own sense of humor that is incomparable to any other. With simply chasing their tails, you can be entertained for hours.

6. They bring you gifts

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Dogs are generous by nature. They see your shoes on the ground, they will bring them to you. They see a cool stick, they'll want you to see it too.

7. They are loyal

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I've never seen a service cat. But I sure have seen a service dog. Dogs are loyal and obedient. Once you fall for each other, they never leave your side.

8. They are adorable

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Finally, dogs are just so darn cute! How can you say no to loving them!!

Dogs are the best! You can have other pets, but a dog is a must.


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