Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Cooking is Magic

i love fall because it puts me in a cooking mood.  admittedly, i've been cooking a lot more now that i've (tried) to commit myself to eating as little processed food as i can.  seriously, it's hard yo.  try to ingest less toxins, and you end up having to make everything from scratch because you can't be sure that what you're eating is really food.  and with the cooler weather, soups are big for me.  i love soups.  i'm going to share a recipe for one of my favorite soups.  and most of the ingredients have magical benefits as well.  so not only are you getting the amazing real food benefits but you get magical benefits too.  

Onion Protection Soup

you need:

6 tbl butter
4-6 large white onion (protection)
3 tbl brown sugar
2 tbl flour (prosperity)
4 c beef stock
salt (protection)
fresh ground pepper (grounding)
1/4 c rum
1c grated mozzarella or provolone cheese

melt the butter in a large sauce pan, add the chopped onion and sugar, cook over medium heat until the onions are caramelized.  remove from heat and the flour and slowly add the beef stock, stirring the entire time.  bring to a boil, add salt, pepper, and rum.  simmer for 20min, then ladle into bowls, top with cheese.

serve with home made croutons drizzled with butter when ever you feel you need a little more protection.  

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

maybe this IS a midlife crisis.

seriously, i turn 39 and suddenly i'm falling apart.  questioning my place in the universe, re thinking patterns that have been two decades in the making, you know, like ya do.  it's not that i'm unhappy with my life, i love my life.  it's just that i know that there could be something else i'm doing.  it's not a feeling of being stuck, but of being....  un stretched.

you know that feeling in yoga after your first mountain pose, that awesome powerful stretch?  i feel like THAT feeling is missing, you know?  that feeling your body has after a challenge.  that.  and it's not like i have a lot of extra time to stretch those muscles (except for literal), so really it leaves one feeling impotent to change anything.  but it doesn't stop the feeling of WANTING the change.  for example, here is a small sampling of the things that have crossed my mind to learn/do/attempt at change just this week alone:

start yoga teacher training
begin an herbalist course
Italian cooking course
start a website selling aprons in geeky fabrics
winning the lottery
learn nailbinding
creating an art instillation project that is all copies of well known paintings but knitted.
yoga flash mob

but now, looking at the list, maybe it's not just the change that i crave, it's the learning.  except for lottery winner and yoga flash mob, that's pretty much all the list is...  learning something.  maybe it's not my life i need to stretch, but my brain.

something to think about at least.

Sunday, November 10, 2013


it's en vogue right now on facebook to list something each day that you are grateful for.  while i'm not going to go that far, i will list just some of the things that i'm really truely grateful for here.

i'm grateful for my children.  they are smart, and beautiful, and amazing and bring me happiness every single day of my life, even if i don't see them every day.

i'm grateful for my husband.  it's no exaggeration to say that he saved me.  i honestly would not be where i am, in any way shape or form without him in my life.

i'm grateful for my parents.  they are the most wonderful and giving people i've ever known in my life, and every charitable bone i have in my body comes from them.

i'm grateful for my family, both blood and extended.  they are my tribe and that is no small thing.

i'm grateful for my faith.  it gives me a sense of peace in a very turbulent world.

i'm grateful for my health.  when it boils right down to it, i own absolutely nothing else in this world but this body, and i'm happy that it is in (mostly) working order.

while we're at it, i'm grateful for my herbalist.  as much governmental weirdness as is surrounding the healthcare industry, i'm thankful that i have a way to take care of myself.

i'm grateful for yoga.  it allows me some time for myself.

i'm grateful for wool socks.  yes, this sounds flippant, but it really isnt.  and if you don't understand that, you've never had a pair of hand knit wool socks, and i'm so very sorry.

i'm grateful for my abilities.  they are many and enjoyable.

i'm grateful that i live in a place where i can find fresh real food when i need to.  a lot of people cant.

so obviously, i'm grateful for a great many things.  what are you grateful, really grateful, for?

Thursday, November 7, 2013

i miss my bestie

my best friend only comes into town, if im lucky, once a year or so.  we text message each other, and keep up in each others lives, but given my hate for talking on the phone, that's about all we can do.  but she's coming into town this time for the Solstice for almost a week.  i'm so excited i almost squeed myself.

she is amazing and beautiful.  inside and out.  i've known her for well over half my life at this point, and she knows everything about me, at least everything worth knowing.  we lead very different lives.  where i settled down, she is truly a Rom spirit, driven by wanderlust.  i don't envy her though, her path is different than mine.  both beautiful, just different paths.  i will love every minute she is here, and miss her terribly when she is gone.  but i wouldn't change either of our lives even a moment.  we are the way we are for a reason.  its our wyrd.

so i guess, Andromeda, this is my round about way of saying......  i made you yoga socks for christmas, and now i can give them to you in person.  

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

not my usual warm and fuzzy, i'm ok if you skip this one.

i need to stop punishing myself.  i am not now, nor will i ever be a 90lb model.  and honestly, nor do i want to.  speaking simply from an aesthetic perspective, it's gross.  speaking from a health perspective it's a death sentence.  i'm a full grown woman, with hips and curves.  my body has carried me almost 40 years.  it has been my only constant friend, and only sometimes enemy.  it has felt love and ecstasy, born children, attempted to feed them, and only in that has it ever truly been a disappointment.  but being the size that i am isn't healthy either.  neither extreme is good.  and i'll be the first to admit.  i love food.  food is awesome.  especially bread.  home made bread is the bomb diggidy.  i have two loaves cooling on the oven right now, and i can say with almost 100% certainty that if left to my own devices, i will eat an entire loaf.  especially since i made sage rosemary butter.  but i digress.  and it's not like i don't like myself.  i love me.  i'm amazing.  lack of ego is not an issue here.  i'll be the first to admit, i'm narcissistic.  but common, you've met me, wouldn't you be narcissistic if you were me??  honestly.

but even i get all bogged down with the images of fitness.  the six pack abs, the mountain biceps.  the things that i will NEVER have time to obtain.  there just aren't enough hours in the day to do it.  i am a wife, a mother, a human worker.  i cook and clean and work and am present with my children and husband.  to do any more is....  unobtainable.  because i cannot and will not NOT cook and clean and work and i will ABSOLUTLY NOT EVER NOT be present with my husband and children.  they are more important to me than...  well, me.  as amazing as i am, they are more amazing to me.  but the images don't stop.  every magazine, every television show, every billboard....  images that the food company, the fitness industry, the clothing industry want to remind me that i'm not enough.  i'm not thin enough.  my hair isn't bouncy enough.  my skin isn't clear enough.  i am not enough.  



it only works if i let it.  this constant shrapnel of messages telling me how much i suck, only works when i allow it to.  "no one can make you feel bad without your consent" - Eleanor Roosevelt.  i like that quote.  because it reminds me that i have the power to decide to let someone else hurt me.  or not.  and i'm choosing not.  i can't stop the images from being out there.  but i can stop me reacting to them by feeling bad.  i choose to not feel bad.  and i know it's not going to be a switch i flip and suddenly they don't bother me anymore.  they will.  they probably always will.  but i just have to keep reminding myself that i am enough.  i am mother enough, and wife enough, and ME enough.  i am enough.


so i'll end this post, i'm going to unroll my yoga mat, and just be


Monday, November 4, 2013

holiday retro

i've said it before and i'll say it again.  the day after halloween is my favorite shopping day of the year.  and for good reason.  most of the decorations are half off, so it's easy and cheap to get yourself the hook up for next year.  i'll admit that my home decor takes a not so subtle nod to the macabre.

and then you find gems like this :
this is (sideways and i can't figure out how to flip it) this years cotton table cloth in the halloween section of Target.  100% cotton, and oh so amazballs.  the original price was $14.99, and i picked it up for just $7.50.  and it's a huge piece of fabric.  i forget the actual dimensions, but big.  it IS a table cloth after all.  and if you've ever been fabric shopping you know that any good measure of fabric is going to cost a butt ton more than $7.50, especially quirky fabric like this.  

so i picked it up.  before the car even got out of the Target parking lot, i'd sent a missive to my Heather who is my go-to gal pal in the fabric/clothing design department.  (everyone should have a Heather, they're great, i have a couple of Heather's)  i automatically envisioned a skirt out of the fabric, i just wasn't sure what kind.  Between Heather and myself, we decided on a pencil skirt.

now, i've never made a pencil skirt before, and Heather was there for me again.  she pointed me here, to an amazing tutorial on drafting a pencil skirt pattern.  once the pattern was made, it was super simple to stitch it together.  

pencil skirt pattern

i honestly couldn't be more pleased with the results.  the skirt has a kicky retro flair, i added a ruffled kick pleat in the back, and i can see me wearing it even though i'm not a skirty kind of gal.  i think i'll even pick up another table cloth if there are any left.  

the completed skirt looks amazing,  now i just need somewhere to wear it.  

the kick pleat gives it a little tail.  

here's a better picture of the ruffles.  

Friday, November 1, 2013

fighting the good fight

i have amazing hair.  it's long, it's silky, there are beautiful waves and curls.  it's glorious.  amazing.  breathtaking.

maybe one day a year.

every other day my head is covered in a mop of frizz.  i've tried the expensive cleansing conditioners, i've tried no-poo, i've tried prayer.  nothing works.  i've done hours of research and short of a pony tail, there isn't much else i can do.  right now my hair routine is usually shampooing every other day, and conditioning and apple cider vinegar rinse every day.  i've been reading lately about how the ph of carbonated water is different, and that is a fix for the frizz.

well, i have a soda stream......

and if i need to rinse with ACV anyway, why not add the ACV to the soda stream water.....


so i decided to give it a try.  here is a before picture.  (i sent it to my friend Andi in response to her uber cute selfie on instagram.  yes i'm an adult, shut up)

pretty flat and frizzed

here is after the soda stream water with ACV

yes, it's a little hard to see, but i no longer have a shoulder length halo.

so while the battle is in no way over, i have another weapon in my possession.  someday i'll have movie star hair without having to use a buttload of goop.  i will.  *sob* I WILL!!!