Month: February 2017

Finally Back on Track 

Hey Everyone!

I am really working on getting better at posting more often. Though most days seem boring and mundane. 

This week I am fighting a cold and while I am not as miserable as I have been with other colds, it still is no fun, and I really have no energy. 

I was finally able to get a new external DVD player for my computer after having my previous one wear out several months ago. There are only so many YouTube videos you can watch during a day. It is nice to be able to be back to watching shows like J*A*G, Downton Abbey, I love Lucy and Gilmore Girls. I am currently working on watching the second season of Mercy Street. I also have Indian Summers, most of Lark Rise to Candleford and most of Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman to watch once I finish Mercy Street and J*A*G. 

Once I am feeling better I have a whole stack of books to read as well. I have most of the Outlander series left to read, as well as all of the game of thrones books, as well as most of the novels that Gail Tsukiyama wrote. 


Understanding Who I Am

Hey Everyone! 

I finally feel like I have a direction in which my life is supposed to go. 

I believe everything happens for a reason, and for some people discovering their career path and the direction they are supposed to go in life a bit later than others. 

I had a completely different idea of what I wanted to do with my life when I graduated from university almost 7 years ago. The nearly 7 years since I graduated from college have changed me, and helped shape who I am today. My college experience was not entirely useless, it really was the first big step in getting me where I am today. I learned to not let others define me, and that I am capable of doing anything I want to do, whether that is conventional or a bit more unconventional. Life has thrown me the unconventional curve ball. 

If you had asked the 22 year old version of myself, if 7 years later, I am doing what I am doing now, I would have told you no. At that point in time, I could not have ever imagined having gone to New York on my own, or that I couldn’t eat dairy, or that I would be living a more natural lifestyle. If you had told me, I would care more about fashion and taking care of my skin, I would have thought you were crazy. 

We grow and change, and I finally feel like I know the direction I am supposed to be working toward, and the life I am supposed to be living. 

Do I stay or do I go?

Hey Everyone! 

Tuesday I had to run over to the office to pick up some prints. The route I normally take to and from the office takes me through two smaller neighborhoods that each have main streets that have that small town or really connected community feel to them. I love going through them. It reminds me of the small towns I had lived in while I was in college. There are restaurants, shops, antiques shops, a coffee shop on the corner of the main intersection. 

If I could live near the heart of these neighborhoods, and had a job that I could support myself on, I would totally live in the city. 

Today I had to go pick up another set of prints. Tuesday was dry, albeit a bit grey, but the rain set in later on in the day Tuesday, and has been raining pretty much nonstop since. As I was driving over the bridge to cross the river, the hills were shrouded with low lying clouds. That is one of the few things I love about this time of year – the low clouds that make everything look darker and more mysterious, and almost magical. 

Right now, I am trying to figure out where I am supposed to be. The job market here is not favorable for someone like me, which for the past 6.5 years has not been in my favor, but if I could find the right job, and land my ideal job, it would be the perfect place since there are not many people doing what I would love to do here. At the same time, the cost of living is more than I really can or want to afford, and live the kind of lifestyle I want to live. I could totally live the kind of life I want to live somewhere that has a lower cost of living. So I am really just trying to figure out what is best for me, and better now, while I am single with no kids. 

The PNW is in my Blood

Hey Everyone!

Yesterday I finally got back outside again, and had gone back down to Silver Falls State Park again yesterday. It was raining off and on the whole trip down, even hailing as I was almost there. It let up pretty quickly so I could enjoy being there. 

I went for a short hike while I was there, I’m guessing about a mile / mile and a half. Hiking back up the canyon was tough since I haven’t been hiking for a while. It felt good though to be outside and be hiking. It is one of those things I love to do. 

I love living in this part of the country, but the cost of living and the economy here, has been such that I feel like I need to be looking else where and other states to find a job I can support myself on. I would be lucky to find a job out here that I can support myself on, that also is not stuck at a desk, in an office 40+ hours a week. There is so much more to life for me than being stuck at a computer for 40 hours a day. If I could find a way to support myself here, doing what I love doing, I would stay in the area. 

There are so many amazing small towns that are outside of the Metro area, that are still close enough to come to the city to go to the mall if I wanted to, which is not super often from my experience in college (at best about once a term or once every 3 months). Portland is also a fun city to explore. There are so many amazing / funky / hipster / portlandia / very Portland coffee shops, tea shops and bakeries – including my favorite which is Gluten Free and Vegan. There are also plenty of small, locally owned, Yarn stores that carry many amazing brands (and quite a few local brands) of yarn. Portland is also a very outdoorsy city. In and around the metro area there are many parks, regional parks and places to go Hiking. Mt Hood is within about an hour and a half’s drive, Multnomah Falls is less than an hour away, you can be at the beach within a couple of hours. 

This part of the country has a great climate for growing produce. Not only for eating fresh, but also for preserving. We grow a lot of berries out here, as well as pears, peaches (I’ll take Oregon peaches over Georgia Peaches any day), apples and cherries, among other things. Being able to make homemade jam and home canned peaches, pears, cherries, pie cherries, apple sauce, and garlic dill pickles, is one of my favorite things to do in the summer and autumn. 

Even though I prefer small town life to living in the city, there are definitely ways where having lived in Portland definitely shows. While I don’t really ascribe to the hipster mentality and lifestyle, the fact that Portland is a strong hold for that ways of life, means that it is so much easier for someone like me, who can’t eat dairy, limits my gluten consumption, and is trying to live a more natural life, for my own health and well being is pretty great. 

You could definitely say I am a product of where I grew up, as I have loved living here. I am trying to enjoy what time I have left here. In trying to further my career I may have to move somewhere else, because of better job opportunities. 

Living a Simpler Life

Hey Everyone!

Over the course of the past few years I have been working to figure out what I am supposed to be doing with my life. As time has gone by, I have been finding myself spending more and more time outdoors, going on adventures and hiking. Since I graduated from college, I have developed food intolerances and sensitivities, which has made food a big deal for me. Knowing where my food comes from and sticking to whole grains, lean proteins, fresh & local fruits and vegetables is my goal.

What I have come to the conclusion is that the city life is not for me, and I want to live a simpler life. A life that is less about having a lot of material goods and more about actually living life and living more off the land, without excess. 

I don’t want to live completely off grid, but I want to take advantage of a simpler life, where I make as much of my own stuff as possible. I also want to take advantage of alternative energy sources such as Solar, Wind and hydro power that are renewable. 

I have also been trying to use more natural products, as I have found that skin care, laundry care, dish care products are so full of synthetic chemicals that cause adverse reactions and have been linked to diseases that were nowhere near as prevalent 65+ years ago. 

To some extent I am going more natural, there are still areas of current mainstream society that I don’t want to go without. I know I would miss having a cellphone, internet, grocery stores (for food that I am unable to grow or raise myself), and my current wardrobe. 

I have loved being out in the woods, campfires, canning fruit, making jam, going to the farms or farm store / co op and buy what I can’t grow or is not time / cost effective to grow small scale from local farms and orchards where they grow what I want on a larger scale. I love supporting local. 

From the time I was young, I have been fascinated by Laura Ingalls Wilder’s life as a girl and young woman growing up and living on the frontier and being a pioneer. 

The college I had attended was in a small town in the middle of nowhere, in the middle of farm, wine and hops country. While I know there are towns even smaller out there, and even further away from the city. This experience, combined with the fact that I chose to spend as much time there as possible. I didn’t want to be one of those college kids who goes away to a school within 100 miles of my parents house, just to go “home” every weekend. I wanted to integrate myself into life there. I chose to stay there most weekends and most summers. It totally became my home. 

Having grown up in the city, and having had to come back after university, I have seen how expensive it really is to live in an urban area, especially on the west coast. It is difficult for a young professional, like myself to find a job I can support myself on and maintain the city lifestyle. 

My dream job is living in a small town to a small city (like under 70k people max), and blogging about living a simpler life, more off the land, where I can spend more time outside when the weather permits. I also want to blog about the homemaking end of things, as well as what I knit up for myself. 

2017 Goals

Hey Everyone!

It’s only February 5th, and I know this year is going to be a year of changes, and I know they are going to be for the better. I know I am being vague right now, but that is all I can say, until I know what is going on and things work out. 

Things I want to make happen this year:

•More Adventures – I am beginning to plan one out of state which I will write about when it happens. The last big adventure I went on was 5.5 years ago when I went to New York.

•I intend to spend more time outside, as the weather gets nicer. 

•I am working on eating a healthier diet, and adhering to clean eating a lot better, as well as figuring out how to be dairy free, gluten free, egg free and clean eating and getting the most for my money. 

•do more to be the happiest, healthiest version of myself

•More personal knitting projects. I have several in the works, and have many more I want to complete. 

•Reading more books – I have one Nicholas Sparks book I am currently reading, another one to read, as well as several (like 6) novels by Gail Tsukiyama, as well as the Outlander series and Game of Thrones series. 

•work on my blogs

I am excited to see what this year has in store for me.