On Stands Now
February 2024

Questa  •  Red River  •  Cerro  •  Costilla  •  Amalia  •  Lama  •  San Cristobal

northern new mexico news boy
Access Back Issues of
Print Editions Here

Positive Thoughts: September 2021

QUESTA DEL RIO NEWS would like to thank Donna Mitchell-Moniak, for her tireless service to our newspaper community. This September edition of POSITIVE THOUGHTS will be Donna’s last article for us. Along with this regular feature and her Volunteer of the Month interviews, Donna was also our Calendar Coordinator and managed our newspaper distribution on the Colorado side of the border. Donna is a model volunteer and we are sorry she has never agreed to be featured as our Volunteer of the Month! Thank you Donna, for all you do, especially what you have done for us! Blessings on your journey.

Palisade Peaches, mmm mmm. Hope ya’ll in northern Taos County could get some from roadside vendors. It’s looking like a bumper crop year for tree fruit of every kind. Apple, apricot, and plum trees are laden. Give them enough water to sweeten the fruit, and voila, fruit pies on the menu! My neighbor uses the tried and true Joy of Cooking recipe for peach pie and then adapts it for other fruit as they are harvested. His is the best peach pie I’ve ever had, but I think it’s mostly due to the western slope Palisade peaches. (Don’t tell him I said that.)

The honey this year should also be amazing. Look for local roadside vendors on or around Labor Day weekend. Farmers Markets like our own Questa Farmers Market have local honey, and other markets will allow you to score fruit and fruit preserves, melons, and squashes. The cool nights—so good for sleeping—slow down the growth of tomatoes so this year they are plodding, and not trotting, to ripeness. But, if an early snow doesn’t come like last year, there’ll be lots of tomatoes. Yeah!

The mints love the cool nights, and other herbs do, too. I’ve harvested, dried, and put up enough mint to get several people through ’til next season. Spearmint, peppermint, and chocolate mint have been harvested throughout the summer. The mojito, used for tea in this house, was left to spread a bit more. Next year it will get a haircut.

How’s your garden as the season draws to completion? What experiments did you try? What worked out, and what didn’t? What new tidbit did you learn from Mother Nature? Daily, just looking out my windows at the elm or Ponderosa pines and at the plethora of birds and insects that make these trees their homes, plus the endless stream of bees and other flower loving insects, I marvel at the abundance that is the truth about planet Earth.

Mother Nature doesn’t divide anything, doesn’t portion out this to that being, and that to this being. Instead, everything is available to everyone and everything. Because of that, Nature thrives, life thrives, and human beings have thrived.

With human beings leaving little to none for Nature, Nature’s equitable and equanimous abundance cannot be maintained. Where and when Nature and human beings share, exchanging goodness without deference, all of life thrives. I am so grateful that where I live people care about how to support the wildness that was here before us and facilitate the thriving of their earth-based livelihoods in concert with Nature itself. Thank you to people everywhere who hold life and beauty around us as precious.


Dates to Remember This September:

  • September 4: National Wildlife Day
  • September 6: Labor Day
  • September 7: Rosh Hashanah begins
  • September 12: National Grandparents Day
  • Sept 15: First day of Hispanic Heritage Month
  • September 16: Yom Kippur
  • September 18: National Clean-Up Day – use it as you will!
  • September 21: World Alzheimer’s Day and World Gratitude Day. Gratitude is such a powerful medicine, joyous energy, mood-transformer, and complement to any moment of the day.
  • September 22: Autumnal Equinox and Car-Free Day.
  • September 27: Family Day
  • September 28: Voter Registration Day. Please make sure you can
    vote in every election—local, state, and national. It matters.


  • Donna Mitchell Moniak

    Donna Mitchell-Moniak, meditator and teacher of meditation, delights in the solitude and views of mountains and sky which Jaroso, CO provides. All beings are the focus of meditation, equanimity, joy, and the awakened liberation for all is her daily prayer and practice. Donna is a mother two, gardener, and uses the disability of her body as her Sacred Path. Check out her blog!