Jen Inchiostro

the daily life of a nerdy mom

The Test of Time

It was 2005 and my husband was on deployment. I had just had my first child and I was all alone in a new city. Then I found blogs, and communities of bloggers that were active every day. 

I was a devout blog reader, every morning I would wake up before the baby, make coffee and sit down to read the daily posts. It became a real life line. Through this online community- I found Waldorf and then the Natural Living. I joined old-school message boards and my circle grew. I found other Moms like me- searching spiritually for a home while tending babies in a purely physical existence…and looking for others that understood that liminal space. 

Then in 2008, I had my second child and started to feel like life was one long day- I was struggling to be present. I was slowly getting depressed and could feel myself slipping into something I didn’t like. I was reading these blogs still and wondered how these moms stayed so grounded and did SO MUCH. I felt like I was failing at everything! Just caretaking and house cleaning. I reached out to one in the middle of the night and she said- “start a blog, document everything once a day and you will realize YOU are doing a LOT as well”.

So I started a blog and after a month, realized that my days seemed VERY IMPRESSIVE when I looked back at them! Because they WERE! I WAS DOING SO MUCH! But the exhaustion and stress had the mom guilt way higher than it should be. 

I didn’t want my kids to feel like they always had a camera in their face, so my pictures weren’t photographer specials or anything. I was using a red digital point and shoot from target. But somehow that worked perfectly with my message. I just wanted to be IN the children childhoods- making memories with them and not stressing out.

The long and story of this story is that I had another child in 2009, and life sped up. The blogging kept me in my moments and helped me transition rom a mom of 2 to a mom of 3. I still look back at that blog to reminisce! 

About a year ago, I had a little voice whispering in my ear to start a new blog. I felt really certain that the blog world was probably not my scene anymore and that “no one will read it”. I have been tossing this idea around for the WHOLE YEAR. 

Maybe no one will read this- maybe only my kids will. Maybe ONLY I WILL. But that’s okay. The blog community I found in 2005 is no longer my main circle of friends and the communities I found in different states as we moved around are no longer my main circle of friends, but THAT BLOG IS STILL THERE reminding me of a life I once had. I am eternally grateful for that. 

This is a screen grab of the old blog- making lanterns in preparation to attend a Chinese New Year Parade in San Francisco. The quality isn’t great, but it is just enough to spark all the memories.

So I am gifting future Jen a blog she can look back at. I now have an 18 year old artist and writer that is getting ready for college. An almost 16 year old that is in love with reading and wants to study English Lit and fills my days with new ideas. A 14 year old that reads ancient texts and games and wants to be a Priest. A 5 year old that is just the picture of joy and whimsy that fills up our days with hilarious questions and endless energy. We play FORTNITE as a family and feed the unhoused on the weekends. We just moved from a FARM back into the city last year and love our new, walkable neighborhood. My whole family is working through the process of understanding our varying neuro-divergent lives after a diagnosis…talk about wishing THAT had been a thing in the 1980s!!!!

I am a witch (as in a wise woman who works with plants and crystals and tarot and astrology) and Im also an Episcopalian that goes to church every week. I have people that disagree with literally everything about both of those things and make it well known- and Ive stopped caring. I was raised with an understanding that everything is everything- and the universe is infinite- and we are the universe embodied, so I seek to never limit myself. I am an orphan raised by my grandma and aunts- my childhood was full of psychic women. But I left the church I was raised in at 16 and became pagan because I couldn’t stand the modern christian church. 

As you can see in the picture below, I have been weaving together my christianity, pagan, Waldorf and Catholic beliefs for a long time… this is from a separate blog in 2009. I had separated it from Raising Lovies because I was super afraid of what some friends and family would think.

I fell in love at 18 and married Catholic at 21- but divorced shortly after… I was just so young. I swore off all relationships and then accidentally met the love of my life 6 months later. We married quickly and celebrate our 20 year anniversary this July. He is a genius and the best supporter of my dreams and also disabled from his service, so it gets complicated. I’ll probably talk a ton about that. 

I overshare because I had  a lot of childhood trauma- and a lot of it revolves around being misunderstood. I used to people please to a default and now I just ghost if the vibes are off because I have found that over-explaining yourself to people doesn’t actually help them understand you. People think what they want and see what they want and DO what they want- and that none of it is my business. I have been hurt a lot, but I also hurt other people along the way as well. My only regrets stem from those times I hurt other people and couldn’t manage to “make it right”. 

That is one reason that I held off on this blog idea for so long. I know one day, maybe, people who I have hurt, and that maybe still hold resentments- may find and read this. If that is you- I am sorry. I hope I said it to you, but if I didn’t, Im sorry. I hold zero ill will towards anyone, I know that I was a handful for a bunch of times in my life. Because of therapy and so much work, I sometimes feel like Im not even the same person I was… Ive tried to reach out to people to apologize personally and have had that backfire one too many times. So- I stopped doing that and leave people to their peace. 

I no longer discuss politics or social matters online- EVER. Lord help you though if you get me on the phone or zoom or come to my house- because Im super duper political and active. My local representative in my last district knew me by name and would sometimes have their assistant CALL me when I would email my thoughts on things. But I just don’t believe the current social stratosphere is safe for most people. I also only have 500 followers who all think pretty similarly to me, because I un-friended 2000 people in the great war of 2020. It feels so preachy to preach back into the void.

I will toss out the disclaimers for this space- I am ALWAYS AND FOREVER ANTI-WAR. All war. All killing. I believe that in 2024, we should be a TALKING and DEBATING world and am constantly shocked at how radical and “ignorant” people say I am for that belief. Of course, I stand for a Ceasefire- because of COURSE. I am more pro-LGBTQ+ than I can say. I raised my kids from MINUTE ONE with the expectation that they would be individuals. Literally in 2005, I refused to let anyone gender stereotype- bought all gender neutral items/clothes. I would care if any of them are anything- because I don’t believe it is even my business. I am here to witness their becoming and their journey, not control or manipulate it. I dream of a world where no one “comes out” and certainly made sure my kids knew they never had to fear being anything. I mean, personally, if I was being raised in this world, I would be identifying at non-binary. I came out at bisexual in the 90s and maintain that I just happened to fall in love with a man, but could’ve easily have lived my life with any other gender or expression. Back then, all we really had was “straight, bi or gay” and I always felt like I didn’t fit. I LOVE the freedom that is happening and work to make spaces for those at risk. 

I was an anti-vax Mom after my first had an injury- but am now a slow vaxxer that feels a lot of sadness for how brainwashed I was from a lot o fear mongering. We also used to be a gluten free, dairy free, etc etc family for TEN YEARS… and now we take anti-histamines and eat whatever we want in moderation. I’ve lived a LOT of extremes! We lived in an RV that ran on waste oil, a farm with 50 chickens and turkeys and guinea fowl… we have lived in California, Arizona and are now in Michigan. I absolutely love Detroit, but hate the weather and fully plan to move away again at some point…. Or global warming will change the weather and I’ll stay here. Who knows. 

I am a voracious reader- I became a READER to escape all that aforementioned childhood trauma and I stayed one because life is always kind of hard.

I am a lover and supporter of LIBRARIES and of course, have the witch dream of owning a bookshop/cafe. I raised readers, and we often read each others favorites in order to talk more about books. I have a Goodreads and a PangoBook shop . I LOVE all things fantasy… cozy fantasy, romantasy, urban fantasy, high fantasy… I also LOVE a heartbreaking contemporary and will read ANYTHING smut, the weirder the better. I’M not sorry about that… I am a scorpio. 

Over the years I have dabbled in writing and painting….then found a lot of success in an essential oils network marketing business that hit hard times in 2020, along with the world. I still use those products and help others, but I won’t talk about that in this space at all- as I lost a part of my soul in those years and this space is about reclamation… I may post here and there about essential oils because I use them daily, but anything I sell in this site’s shop will be solely my creation and no other businesses. I am a beeswax candle maker, dabble in poured candles and make incense blends with herbs I collect and grow. I will link my Etsy here and down in the footer, just click the image of candles.

I also run a Patreon where I teach about astrology- currently with a focus on lunar cycles. I offer private energy + tarot readings and group workshops. I am a lifelong, reluctant psychic and medium- meaning I have tried to hide and run from my gifts, but here they are- love it or leave it. 

I you read this far, you are amazing. This is me in a nutshell- and Im thankful you are here. 

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