This episode of the Small Scale Life Podcast is all about How to Raise You Vibes with Maria the Energy Healer.  As with many interviews, we had a plan and scripted questions for Maria, but we swerved into some really important topics that will serve as way stones for what Small Scale Life is becoming.

For all of our knowledge and understanding, there are things in this world that humans don’t know or have forgotten during our evolution.  The fact of the matter is that there are energies and vibrations at work all around us.

In our crazy Western Civilization, modern men and woman are on the go and don’t often stop to contemplate WHY things happen or WHAT they can do to change how they feel, think and act. Instead, they chalk it up to bad luck or blame someone else for their misfortune.

Feelings, thoughts and actions are all tied together. When we have stinking thinking, it is usually the result of problems with our internal energies, our chakras, conditioning and mindset.  We have been programmed from a young age to be on the go and move through the normal, chaotic progression of birth, school, college, job, relationships, perhaps kids, rearing children, career, retirement and death. The only constants are death, taxes and never-ending consumption.

Stop Right Here!

Stop, breathe and think for a minute.  Turn the lense on yourself and your path.  Ask yourself:

  • What if you could understand the deeper meaning of our pain, stinking thinking and relationship problems?
  • What if we could tap into that energy power deep inside us and begin to work with it rather than against it?
  • Do you work with Source, Nature and deep energy to heal your mind, body and soul?
  • Do you know how to do that?
  • Do you even know what I am talking about?

Did you know an energy healer can help with these things?

I didn’t!  If you are like me six months ago, I wouldn’t have known what this is all about.  I would have thought this was woo woo voodoo and looked at you funny as I hit “block” on my phone.  Oh have times, and I, changed!

Topics Discussed with Maria the Energy Healer

How to Raise Your Vibes with Maria the Energy Healer

Our guest this week is a Reike Master and Intuitive Energy Healer Maria Voorhees-Reincke.  Julie and I discuss the following topics:

  • What is Energy Healing?
  • What is the Difference between Healing Touch and Reike?
  • Is this just woo-woo or voodoo?
  • What is grounding?
  • What are sessions like?

We talk about these and a host of other topics on this 186th Episode of the Small Scale Life Podcast!

I feel that this is an important podcast episode because we are setting a massive cairn in the content forest, and this will serve as a springboard for Rewilding ourselves in the future.  Gardening, practicing gratitude, being on our land, feeling energy, grounding, connecting with Nature are all part of this ongoing effort.  Everything happens for a reason, and that includes connecting with Maria the Energy Healer and others in our life (E-Peeps).


Connect with Maria the Intuitive Energy Healer!

How to Raise Your Vibes with Maria the Energy Healer

If you want to connect with Maria the Intuitive Energy Healer for a private session, drum wash, sound healing session, long distance call, healing or products (sprays, crystals, sage or Palo Santo), you can find her at the following locations:

Facebook – Maria the Intuitive Energy Healer

Instagram -Maria the Intuitive Energy Healer

Maria is approachable and straightforward. Connect with her on those platforms!

Hall of Heroes - Gratitude

hall of heroes, gratitude, practicing gratitude quote

“It’s hard to have a bad day when you START your day with gratitude.”

As part of intentionally Practicing Gratitude, I am starting this podcast episode by recognizing some folks who have been active on Small Scale Life.

Thank all of you for listening to this podcast episode, and if you want a shout out in our next Hall of Heroes, get active and participate on Small Scale Life.

What are you grateful for?  Maybe you should tell that person or that organization (or favorite podcaster).  Give it a try!

Do You have a Side Hustle or Business?

Cash, escape velocity, financial freedom

Some of you have great projects, side hustles or businesses. Perhaps you I could learn from you, and it would be FREE advertising for your project, side hustle or idea.

Share your story by being on the Small Scale Life Podcast!

Send a message to me using the Contact Us page on This is your chance to teach us as we continue to learn, do, grow and be a little better everyday!

2020 – The Year of the Gardener

gardening, herbs, container garden, new gardeners

If you are new to gardening or started gardening in 2020, welcome to the Garden Party!  I know there are a lot of you out there: “more than 20 million novice gardeners picked up a trowel for the first time swelling the ranks of American gardeners to more than 63 million according to Bonnie Plants CEO Mike Sutterer.”

The global pandemic forced people to stay home, and when the shelves at the local grocery stores emptied out of bottled water, toilet paper, canned goods, meat and eventually produce, people suddenly realized how fragile our systems and supply chains really are.

People grabbed shovels or borrowed rototillers and tilled up parts of their yards, purchased pre-made garden beds or constructed raised beds as shelves went empty and people needed something to do during the global pandemic.

With so many people jumping into gardening, the demand for seedlings (young plants) and seeds crested.  Shelves at stores and greenhouses were bare, and seed companies put restrictions on who could buy seeds and how much companies could buy.  Individual gardeners couldn’t buy certain seeds from companies at all (i.e., Johnny’s Seeds)!

It was alarming that what was plentiful months before suddenly was scarce. I did an interview with Michael Bell and Drew Demler in 2020, and we joked that we were very rich men as seeds where like gold!  Sadly, we weren’t wrong!

Global Tipping Point: COVID Pandemic, Lockdowns and Social Unrest

For many, the Global Pandemic, Lockdowns and Social Unrest in 2020 were massive Tipping Points. In case you don’t know what a Tipping Point is, they are major events in someone’s life that is so significant that it demands your immediate attention and forces a person to act. Tipping Points are powerful triggers in a person’s life that changes a person’s mindset, actions, personality, and trajectory of life.

For many people, the Global Pandemic, Lockdowns and Social Unrest of 2020 were massive Tipping Point in their lives. Predictably, people do what humans have done throughout the ages when times got hard: people returned to their roots and returned to the land.

As 2021 dawns, these same folks are going to look at their lives and those new gardens and start to wonder what comes next. New technology developed to help people work remotely coupled with Social Unrest have pushed people into the rural areas. Starting a new garden on a new piece of property can be overwhelming, especially if you are sharing the space with hungry four-legged friends!

Even if you didn’t move to a rural place, you might have had weed issues, bushy plants that didn’t produce vegetables, pests, blight or just plain bad luck in 2020. As you stand and look at that garden, does it bring you joy or dread? Are you excited about growing plants or do you cringe with the work that is required?

Don’t take the sledgehammer to your garden yet! I can help you have healthy and productive plants and gardens!


Returning to My Roots

Square Foot Gardening; Garden; Minimalism; Moving; Podcast; Weeds

My great-grandparents, my grandparents and my parents were gardeners. In fact, some of my ancestors were farmers in Poland and shepherds in Czechoslovakia before coming to America. My dad even dabbled in farming after his career in the National Football League came to a close.

As a young man, I hated gardening. I hated weeding. I hated planting. I hated canning. It was hot and tedious, and I always would pick the wrong weed while getting eaten alive by mosquitoes. I’d rather be riding my bike in the woods, playing in the creek or fishing on the lake.

The Crash of 2008 was my massive Tipping Point, and I was really stressed out back then. At the time, I was stressed out about my job was hang by a thread. I had a mortgage that was killing us and I was worried that I didn’t have any skills to survive beyond my office walls.

We got interested in and started gardening when a neighbor brought over some extra vegetables from her Square Foot Gardens. Here was my gracious neighbor sharing some vegetables from her garden and telling us that it was EASY to grow them.

Back then, Julie and I were like many of folks today: we didn’t know How to Start Gardening. We were pretty clueless, and clearly there wasn’t the plethora of gardening resources on the web as there are today.

Julie and I started by “touring” our neighbor’s garden, and we borrowed a book from her: Square Foot Gardening by Mel Bartholomew. Julie and I read the book and started with two basic 4’x4’ Square Foot Gardens. We followed the directions and built the raised beds with cedar planks from a defunct mushroom farm, put down landscape fabric and filled our beds with compost, vermiculite and peat moss. Julie and I bought plants from the local big box store and started.

That is how we started gardening.

Experimentation: Learn, Do, Grow

Through trial and error over the years, I learned a lot about gardening. It didn’t take long for me to expand the garden with two new raised beds. Julie and I moved from Illinois in 2012, and we started renting in St. Louis Park, Minnesota (a suburb just west of downtown Minneapolis).

Even as a renter, I had raised bed gardens in a “Wild Area” in the back of the yard which was littered with broken bottles, branches, litter and out of control landscaping. I started gardening in special Hybrid Rain Gutter Grow System (self watering) raised beds on our driveway and created gardens clinging to fences. Having small spaces, not wanting to tear up all the landscaping and dealing with snow on the driveway forced me to be creative and adaptable.

When I have owned the property, I have experimented with Square Foot Garden Beds, Hybrid Rain Gutter Grow Systems, Mittleider Grow Boxes, Vertical Gardens, Patio Gardens, Container Gardens, Wicking Containers and Wicking Beds made of out metal watering troughs.

By experimenting with these different and various types of methods, I have learned a thing or two about gardening, pests and plants. It has been fun to experiment and talk about it on Small Scale Life, but up until now the story and guidance has been pieces and parts. It is time to pull it all together, especially as I am gearing up to start something new!


A New Adventure Begins in 2021

Tom and Julie, Eagle's Ridge, Home, Small Scale Life, Resilience through Rewilding

Flash forward to 2020. My wife Julie and I purchased property in Star Prairie, Wisconsin, and we call it Eagles Ridge. We even made a Small Scale Life Podcast Episode announcing this project.

We are building a new home and community there. This is a old piece of farmland, and it has not been farmed in years. The pocket gophers, deer, weeds and invasive species have reclaimed this parcel. We are making some changes there!

Early on after purchasing the property, I woke up at 3:30 in the morning. My brain was already working on how to start gardening on Eagles Ridge:

  • Placement of the garden on the lot
  • Orientation of the raised beds
  • What I would grow
  • How I would grow the plants and herbs
  • How would I water the garden

I can see it already in my mind. I have a vision of how it will work, where beds will be placed, where I will plant fruit trees, berries, grapes asparagus and rhubarb. I will have a heated greenhouse, and I will collect rain water.

It is coming….someday soon.

So, the question is: if you have a clean slate, how do you start gardening? How do you design and plan this garden so it is productive, efficient, secure and doesn’t break the bank?

A New Series Begins: How to Start Gardening

garden, new garden, eagles ridge garden, clean slate

Here is what I know: I am starting from scratch.

All of my gardening gear is stored securely in a storage locker in New Richmond, Wisconsin. I have no idea where that gear is; it is buried under a wall of boxes. That means I don’t have my grow lights, heating pads, seed trays, tools, plant labels, potting soil or seeds. I don’t even have a garden yet; the land has grass and the Wicking Beds are stored behind the red pine tree in the field.

Trust me: I truly am starting from scratch!  The picture above shows the future gardening at Eagles Ridge, and I will be posting a video soon showing the area and discussing it in more detail.

In this new series, I am going show how to start gardening when you have nothing. I am going to walk you through the process:

• Plan your 2021 garden (things to think about)
• Grow plants from seed in my apartment
• Transplant the seedlings into bigger containers
• How Raised Beds can improve your garden
• Build a mobile self-watering garden
• Plan the garden at Eagles Ridge
• Protect the garden from four-legged fury pests (rabbits, pocket gophers and deer)
• Prepare the garden area
• Plant the first perennial plants (comfry, rhubarb, and berries) and fruit trees
• Collecting Rain Water
• Design a wild flower garden

My plan is to use the Small Scale Life Instagram, YouTube Channel and Odysee Channel to show you How to Start Gardening.

I am also going to update the 2020 Seed Starting Guide by documenting my seed starting efforts this year (in an apartment with no grow lights). I am planning to use my email lists more in 2021, so please consider signing up.  Of course, you will be added to the email list if you download the Seed Starting Guide and Ideas Appendix.

Are you ready?

I am! I have some seeds, a seed tray and some potting soil. It is time to get started!

Listen to this Episode!

Seeds in Trays, Seed Starting Guide

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For Small Scale Life Podcasts, I would like to thank Austin Quinn at Vlog Vibes for the intro and outro music. For more information abut Austin and Vlog Vibes, please see the following:

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Ratings and reviews help us grow the podcast and the blog, and I appreciate your reviews.  I will be reading reviews out on future episodes of the Small Scale Life Podcast!