Mama Gone Green is a blog dedicated to raising happy children and reducing our impact on the Earth. My name is Taryn and I am the mother of 2 young kids and an environmental studies instructor at a community college in Portland, Oregon. Please join me as I journey through life as a mama, teacher, knitter, photographer, gardener, and environmentalist!

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Yarn Along

Hello! Happy Wednesday! Thought I would pop in for a quick post here on the blog.... it has been quite a while....... Today I am joining with Ginny at Small Things for this week's Yarn Along.

I am knitting myself a second pillow cover from this pattern. I have not been knitting much lately, just not really in the mood. I do have a couple of projects that I am pretty anxious to start, but I am not allowing myself to start anything until I finish this pillow cover. Maybe that will help motivate me.

Right now I am reading You Are A Badass: How to Stop Doubting Your Greatness and Start Living an Awesome Life by Jen Sincero. It was recommended to me by a friend a few months ago, to help ease me through this transitional period in my life. And the book is good! Nothing groundbreaking, but it has been encouraging and inspiring. It's always nice to be reminded that no matter what, I am still a little bit of a badass......

What are you reading? What are you knitting?
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Monday, May 30, 2016

My Weekend

This weekend the kids were with their dad, and it has been my first solo weekend in awhile where I wasn't on an adventure or had lots of big plans. And it was perfect. I needed nothing more than a weekend for me... to catch up on work, my to-do list, and taking care of myself.
I made it to a yoga class both mornings, picked and started infusing herbs for this year's batch of lip balm, went on a 7 mile run on Saturday, did a ton of yard work, got caught up on my reading for the herbalism class I am taking, and got mostly caught up with my work  for the two classes I am teaching. It was super productive. Although I feel like I could surely use two more days just like the past two..... maybe then I could feel fully caught up with life. Maybe.
And now this weekend feels extra special because today is a holiday and I get to spend the day with both my kids! It's a gorgeous day out, so we have a little hike in the works, and I am hoping to spend some time in the garden.
Hope you all had a lovely weekend! 

Joining the lovely Karen from Pumpkin Sunrise......
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Monday, May 23, 2016

Shifting Spaces

I haven't been on here for almost 3 weeks! I have noticed a slow shift happening over the past year or so... I am finding (making?) less and less time to write on the blog and have been spending more energy posting photos on Instagram.
I think that a lot of it is because I don't have tons to write about as of late. I have been doing lots of processing within my own mind, but much of it is still in the thinking stages, and isn't ready to be released yet.
I am also busier. Much busier. Working twice as much with very little free time, and trying to keep my house in order, be a good mama, and still find time for myself every now and again.
At first it was stressing me out that I wasn't posting on here more..... my blog has been a staple in my life since Finn was little. But then I decided that it is ok that I am not spending much time in this space right now. I am in the process of evolving and I suppose this space is evolving with me.
So, I will be patient with myself. I know I will be back as time allows. And in the meantime you can find me on Instagram: @tarynoakley

And now I will share with you a few pictures from my absolutely amazing weekend the kids and I just had. The three of us spent 2 nights in a yurt on the Oregon Coast, near Florence. The weather was perfect. My kids were happy. They built forts and dug in the sand. I found agates, read and did some knitting. We went on a couple short hike, one to the Hobbit Beach, a trail I have been yearning to hike for ages. And I also finally saw Thor's well-- it's essentially a depression in the bedrock and at high tide the ocean water drains into it. It's pretty neat.

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Monday, May 2, 2016

Silver Linings

As I am sure you all know by now, I recently got divorced.

When my ex told me that he was moving out, I was devastated. It felt like my life had ended. Like there was nowhere left to go. I cried for weeks on end. I was immobilized with fear and guilt. I hated who I had become.

And then slowly, bit by bit, things started to get better.

Not good by any scope of the imagination, but better. And yes, there were (and still are!) lots of ups and downs, but I was finding myself smiling again. I was catching myself feeling happy. And man, did it feel good.

And even though he moved out a year ago, there are still lots of ups and downs. I still have bad days, but now I find that most days are good ones.  I still get sad and mourn for the loss of my marriage and my family. I still get stressed about finances and work and my living situation. I still feel overwhelmed by the reality of being a single mama-- the days that can seem to be never-ending, with no breaks in sight. The magnitude of everything in my life that has changed over the past year is sometimes overwhelming.

But do you know what?

It has all been incredibly liberating.

I have changed so much during this transition (how could one not?) and have found so many silver linings with my new life. No, these upsides don't just fix everything and make it OK, but they have made me realize that everything will be OK. It will.

And I know that I am not the only one out there going through a divorce. I have a handful of friends in the same boat as me right now, and we regularly share our silver linings with one another. So here friends, are some of my silver linings.....

  • Re-finding myself. During my marriage, so many parts of me got pushed aside. And honestly, I didn't even realize it at the time. But since the separation, I have been rediscovering parts of me that I forgot about. Remembering things that I used to love. And allowing myself to indulge once again.
  • Friends. Oh lovely lovely friends. It's not like I didn't see my friends while I was married, but I honestly rarely ever had a chance to go out. I felt guilty making my own plans, taking time just for me. Now I get so much more friend time. And these amazing friends have listened to me cry and complain, and have made me laugh and forget about my troubles for a while. Never in my life have I been so appreciative of my friends.
  • Finding my courage. In my new life, things are hectic. My schedule is crazy, I am running a household on my own, and I doubled my hours at work.  I have had to learn to ask for the help that I need (which for me was much harder than I could ever have imagined).  And it has been empowering.
  • Time for Me. To go to yoga. To go on a hike. To plan a weekend away. I never had these opportunities before. If I did make plans, they came with a side of self-induced guilt, like I "should" be home with the kids. Now I have times every week where I don't have the kids and can fill my time however I like. It has been incredibly freeing. I forgot how much I enjoyed having time with myself.
  • The excitement of new relationships. No, I don't have a new partner. But I have been on some dates. And while honestly it is all pretty scary, it's also really exciting. The possibilities are endless, right?
  • Feeling completely in charge of myself. I am in charge of my time, my finances, my house and my car. And while this all takes a lot of work and time, it is super empowering. There is no more hoping someone else does the dishes or fills the car with gas, no wondering if the bills have been paid. I am in charge of it all, and it feels good.
  • Feeling happy. I don't think I realized how much negative energy was in my house before the separation. These days I give and get much less criticism. And that means many more moments of joy!
So, here is to accepting the past, forgiving the hurt, and moving forward! I am sure there are more silver linings to come....

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Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Yarn Along

Hello! Happy Wednesday! Joining with Ginny at Small Things for this week's Yarn Along.

OK, well my post isn't super exciting this week as I am still reading and knitting the same things from last week.....

I am knitting myself a couple of pillow covers from this pattern. I have made a little progress this week, but I have had some very sore wrists (too much yoga, I think?) and knitting has been making it feel worse. So---- I haven't been knitting much. But don't worry, I am making grand plans in my head of all of the things I want to knit! That doesn't bother my wrists at all!

And yes, I am still reading War and Peace. But I actually had a chance to dig in this past weekend and make some progress. I have a lot of trouble making my way through the war parts..... but the "peace" parts are really the best love story ever told. Now, if I could just stop reading other books in between finishing this book, maybe I could actually finish it! And look below- I think my buddy who came to check out my book is symbolic of the speed at which I am reading....

What are you reading? What are you knitting?

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Sunday, April 24, 2016


Hello Sunday. Welcome.
Life seems to be on fast forward lately. I can't seem to make it slow down. I know that I really need to make myself slow down, but it's so hard for me to do. Expectations (my own and others), obligations, desires and curiosity all keep pulling me to do, do, do... and rarely ever to stop, stop, stop. I guess it's just part of my nature. But I can't stop thinking about how much I would benefit from a silent week in meditation at a monastery.....
Despite the craziness of life, I do always make time to stop and reflect upon it. And my gratitude journal has been key to making that happen. I have been super successful with my gratitude journal ever since I started it in August. And the key was making it super simple. In the past, I kept a separate notebook in my nightstand and was supposed to write down a few things each night. But, it never happened. I was too tired. It was too regimented.
Now, I use my daily planner and write my gratitudes in the "notes" section for each week. I can write as many time as I want during the week and I since I almost always have my planner with me, I can write at any time, and not just before bed. And, viola! Success!
Anyways, here are a few of my gratitudes from this week:
  • Having a mostly-at-home weekend with very few plans..... some much needed time to catch up on work, cleaning, my herb class, and life... 
  • Sitting outside in the sun and reading, uninterrupted. I was only uninterrupted for about 7 minutes, but hey- I will take what I can get!
  • The amazing forests we have here in the Pacific northwest. Even after living here for almost 9 years, I still feel a sense of magic each time I enter one.
  • Feeling my body becoming stronger, more balanced and more centered. I have felt a recent change with my strength during yoga and it is exciting!
  • The camera on my new phone. It is so much better than my last one! 
  • Music! With my new phone I also have enough space for Spotify, and I have been having so much fun with the wealth of music at my fingertips.
  • Adventures to look forward to!! I have a ladies adventure planned for next week and a trip to Colorado in my near future. I love adventures (see, this is why I have such a problem slowing down like I need to!). I guess I should just embrace my love of adventure, but learn to take some time in-between to rest. It's all about balance, right?

What have you felt grateful for this week?

Joining in with the other Taryn from Wooly Moss Roots
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Friday, April 22, 2016

Happy Earth Day!

"The clearest way into the universe is through a forest wilderness"
                                                             - John Muir

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