Taking on Life at Full Speed

Learning from the past to make a brighter future

Fall is Coming!  — August 19, 2017

Fall is Coming! 

Hey Everyone! 

The past few days especially, I have been noticing that we, here in Portland have entered into the transition from summer to fall. It has begun to cool off, especially at night. It has been cooling off fast once the sun starts going down. 

The light has started to change as well, the tilt of the earth has changed the past couple weeks. The shadows are different during the day.

I have also noticed that the air is starting to smell more like fall. Fall has its own distinct scent. It’s not completely there yet to the full fledged fall scent yet, but the hints are there. It also doesn’t smell like the height of summer either. 

Each season has its own look, feel, and smell. Soon, I will have to break out the Apple S’mores and Pumpkin Roll Scentsy Bars full time for a few weeks. 

I am so ready to have my own place and be able to decorate it the way I want, as I have a good collection of fall decorations started. 

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Dairy Free Cherry Garcia — July 1, 2017

Dairy Free Cherry Garcia

Hey Everyone! 

Happy Canada Day! 

I have been Dairy Free (or in the process of going dairy free) for 5.5 years. If you haven’t had to go without a food staple (ie dairy, gluten or eggs), you really can’t relate to missing certain foods because you know that if you eat them, you will be sick. The fact that I have had to completely give up dairy and eggs and not eat much gluten, It has been quite an adjustment. I have yet to find a dairy free cheese or yogurt that has a similar taste and texture to dairy versions. So I have given up trying to find a dairy free yogurt I like, dairy free cheese is just gross, coconut and coconut almond milk are my favorite milk alternatives, the onion and chive dairy free cream cheese spread stuff is tolerable on bagels and in mashed potatoes, and they don’t make a dairy free cottage cheese option. So far the dairy free option that tastes the best is coconut milk ice cream, though I was so excited when I heard that Ben and Jerry’s came out wth a dairy free ice cream option I got excited. It has been years since I have been able to have Ben and Jerry’s. I finally got to enjoy some dairy free Cherry Garcia and not have to worry about being sick afterwards. 

Today we had gone out to a farm stand we are aware of to see about some berries to make jam. They didn’t have any strawberries, but did have some raspberries, blackberries and blueberries. So we picked up some some berries. The farm stand we went to is outside of the city. I always love leaving the city and going out into the country. 

This evening I had gone out to see some people I know who are in town for a convention, it was really nice to see them. After I had seen them, I went for a little drive, a little ways out of town. When I was off the freeway, I had my windows rolled down, breathing the fresh air. I don’t know if it is the type of grass that grows outside of town, or the fact that it is allowed to grow (as that grass I am referring to is the grass that grows along the side of the road and the grass that is used to make hay), and naturally dry out during the summer, but I love the smell of the long grass in the summer. I have noticed that the Beach grass smells different from the valley grass (and I am not talking about weed aka pot aka marijuana, I am talking about literal grass that grows in your lawn, and in fields to make hay for animals). The grass around here in the valley reminds me of driving from the towns I lived in while in college to the town where I attended church at the time. Quite often I would drive those 2 lane country roads in the summer, with the windows rolled down. There were a ton of hay fields in the county. I can’t imagine not being able to smell or taste. 

Having developed food intolerances as an adult, I have come to appreciate my sense even more. While food intolerances are insignificant compared to other disabilities and diseases that deprive people of their senses. 

I know when I was younger (teen years especially) I tried hard to be someone I am not. I felt like I was expected to be this prim, proper young woman who was the stereotypical girl, who did no wrong, who also liked doing my hair, makeup and going shopping. Pretty much a city girl through and through.  At the time I knew it wasn’t me, but I wanted to be accepted and fit in. College was a big game changer for me. It helped me realize that that life wasn’t for me and that it was ok to be a jeans and tee shirt kind of girl, who prefers the country to the city. I still like to dress nicely when I go out and about. The world as I see it has been ever changing and evolving as I have grown and changed over the years. Who I am, no longer hinges on what others think, or some real or perceived expectations of who I am supposed to be. Who I am has been shaped on my own life experience, the good, the bad, and the down right ugly. I have learned that life is more than allowing others to live my life for me. 

Knowing when it is time to Move On — April 25, 2017

Knowing when it is time to Move On

Hey Everyone!

For years really, I have known that where I am, is not where I am supposed to be long term. Now that the job I had had for almost 2.5 years ended, it is really time for me to figure out where to go from here, and where I am supposed to be, and what I am supposed to be doing.

I know for a while I needed to be here, as this was one of the best places in the country to have to learn how to have to be dairy free and gluten free, but now that I am on top of it, and know how to live that way, it is time for me to move on.

I have known that there were no living wage jobs for someone like me here, for  years, the economy here is really IT and manufacturing driven. When you studied History in College, and know that you want to do more to live off the land, and share the knowledge that I have gained about clean eating, healthy living, growing and preserving my own food, that it isn’t going to happen here.

There is so much I want to do with my life, and I can’t be all that I know I can be, and all I am supposed to be when I can’t get a job that I can support myself on. I am one of those people, who don’t understand algebra, let alone calculus, who’s brain struggles to grasp engineering concepts, let alone all the math and science to become an engineer of any sort or go into the health care fields.

The easy simple answer would be to stay, and not put in the effort to leaving, but anything that is worth doing, isn’t easy, and by staying I would not be allowing myself to achieve my full potential, or help others to achieve their’s while I am achieving mine. There is more to life than not being true to who you are, and not pursuing what you love and are really good at. What I am good at, and am really passionate about is not even close to being tapped here. It was through being here, and going through several of the wrong things that I have found what I love, and what I am good at, and with that I must leave and find where I am to thrive, and excel.

Spring is Coming! — March 16, 2017

Spring is Coming!

Hey Everyone!

Spring is finally coming!

After a very wet and grey winter, and the wettest February on record, it is finally starting to feel like spring. The temperatures have finally normal for this time of year. After it being below average for a while, and having several snow and ice events back in January and early February. I am so ready for spring. 

Yesterday I had spent the day cooking and baking, today I have spent the day working on some knitting. I am also working on looking for a new job. 

I am finally getting in the last of the yarn and stuff that I had ordered before my job ended. I have been working on filming videos to put up on my YouTube channels, as well as writing several blog posts over the last few days. 

I have missed having stuff to create blog content about. I didn’t have a lot of free time to create the kind of content I love writing about, such as what knitting projects I am working on, or what kinds of tasty gluten free & dairy free food I create, as I didn’t have a lot of time to spend doing what I love and am most passionate about. Knitting, Homemaking stuff and being outdoors (hiking, adventures, exploring, etc) are what I am passionate about. We all have to eat, and having a place to call home is a must. A lot of what I knit for myself, is to make being outside in the cold weather that much more fun, and to be able to stay out longer while being comfortable. 

Life Update — March 10, 2017

Life Update

Hey Everyone!

I haven’t really talked about what I was doing for work on this blog, mostly because I didn’t really want to talk about it, and really didn’t feel that it was appropriate at the time to talk about what I was doing. From mid – November 2014 until recently I had been working for one of the local phone/internet companies as a contractor, where my title was Engineering Assistant. I was hired to help with a big project that they had going and needed help with. Now that it is wrapping up, they didn’t need as much help with it, so I am now looking for a new job.

This job had given me about 2.33 years of work experience at the same job, which is a huge deal for anyone my position, who graduated from college during the recession who had also struggled to get work experience. Each of the jobs I have held have been learning experiences, in who I am, and what I am supposed to be doing career wise with my life. While I don’t see myself having a career as an engineer or with the phone company, I don’t regret having taken this job, nor do I see it as a mistake or a bad career move. Like I previously stated, it gave me more than two years of work experience at the same job, It also gave me an income during that time, during which I was able to make some progress in paying off my student debt. It also allowed me to work on growing my personal library. I have purchased plenty of books during the past two years. It also allowed me to buy yarn, in which I have and will be able to knit up into some amazing items. It also allowed me to pay for some weekend adventures, which have been a blast.

In the course of the adventures I have been on, and being able to really get out and see more of the city I live it, and experience it, I have learned a lot about who I am and the direction my life is going in. I love this part of the country. This is my home.

I have had the opportunity to go on more hikes, and spend more time at the beach, and that has been amazing. I love hiking, it is one of those things that I will keep doing for as long as I am able to.

Over the past couple months I have been stocking up on Sock Yarn, so I can knit myself socks that are sturdier, warmer, and of a better quality than store bought socks for Hiking socks. I am all about doing as much DIY stuff as possible, and I love making hand knit goods for myself that are not only pretty, but also functional and useful to my lifestyle. I definitely love being outdoors, exploring the are around me.

My love of History, especially that of Women’s roles, and what women did throughout history, has been a passion of mine that has been thriving. Between knitting, and learning more about homemaking, cooking & baking healthy dairy free, gluten free, egg free food.

This winter was hard, normally I love winter, and I love the rainy, grey days. This winter I have been in a funk, largely due to stress. Now that we have had a few nice, semi warm (like 58 – 60 degrees Fahrenheit) and at least partly sunny, so that has helped me get out of the funk. I am doing fine now, with some sleep and a nice day.

Today, I have been working on a pair of socks I am working on, I also got a load of laundry done, as well as relaxing which is really important right now. Burn Out and negative stress are not healthy, and I am working to get back to a good place when it comes to the stress thing. I also got my resume updated, so come Monday, I can hit the ground running to find a new job as quickly as possible.

IKEA exploration and inspiration  — April 3, 2016

IKEA exploration and inspiration 

Hey Everyone!

On Friday I had stopped at my favorite yarn store to pick up some yarn, one hank is so that I can complete the reknit of a scarf I accidentally felted. And the other is to put with another yarn of the same weight for a shawl I had seen in the shop, and got the pattern for. 

Yesterday I had decided to go to IKEA and get a bigger plastic bucket which I had originally planned to use for my Scentsy warmer collection, but ended up doing some rearranging, and put all my sweater yarn in the big IKEA bucket, and then put the few new warmers in one of my buckets that previously held yarn, and then am using the other yarn bucket for Infant Hats. Rearranging yarn and Scentsy warmers then taking buckets down to the garage was a lot of hard work. 

While I was at IKEA I was getting some ideas just for the fun if it. I do look at living rooms, but only keep what is there in the back of my mind in terms of artwork, and maybe sets if I have a family room in addition to a living room, as I already have most of my living room furniture. Though I may want an actual entertainment center, and I need bookshelves. I have a lot of books. My primary focus has been on Kitchens and Dining Tables. I love kitchens and cannot wait to have one of my own again. I also want a dining room table that I can host dinners and have gatherings at. 

I also became an ItWorks Distributor in Friday, beings that I love the products, and would love to earn some money, even if it was just enough to cover the cost of my own monthly ItWorks order it would be worth it. While I would love to earn enough to support myself and travel on, I would be thrilled. If and until that happens I am not giving up on my day job yet. 

Though I also recently turned down a job. I had applied for it in a recommendation, knowing I was not qualified for it, then interviewed and was offered it. Why I declined it, was in part in that I wouldn’t be making a whole lot more than I am where I am now, It’s not something I really want to do, or would help me in my career, as well as the fact that there are currently only 6 other females who have this position in the city. I kinda felt that I would have to do more than pull my weight to be accepted by my peers and the customers, and do more than the guys to be taken seriously. While I am all for women being able to do whatever they want career wise and get equal pay, there are some battles I am unwilling to fight when I can see why it is a male dominated field. This particular job also had a physical aspect that I could have dealt with, but at what point would my body say enough is enough and become a liability and interfere with doing my job. It also came down to making due for now on a little less income means I still have my 3 day weekends to pursue what I am passionate about, as well as have the time to do the ItWorks thing. I get to work in a climate controlled environment (which I would partially give up if I got a farm or to have a job I enjoyed that made me go outside, that is a different story), and I am not having to fight the uphill battle of pushing a feminist agenda that I don’t 100% agree with down guys throats who are old school, just with my presence, or deal with the discrimination of being a female “where I don’t belong”. It also came down to knowing that it wasn’t where God wanted me. 

In the past few months, I know I have been changing, really wanting a home of my own, having my own kitchen, wanting to Can fruit and make jam in the summer. While I still love the outdoors, and adventures there is nothing unladylike about that. Look at the pioneers. I have just been being led more to becoming more of a lady, and being an example for younger girls and young women. 

I am trying to get into shape, and it is currently kicking my butt. I have been going and doing so much lately that it has finally caught up with me, and I have not felt the best today. I even took a nap today. I guess I have been trying to do too much too fast with going for walks and adding in adventures. At least I haven’t gotten sick yet, and knock on wood I hope I don’t. I will just keep taking my greens and greens chews, and hope I don’t get sick. 

Finding my purpose  — March 13, 2016

Finding my purpose 

Hey Everyone! 

I don’t often talk about my past and things I have been through that are tough issues, like bullying, my weight, eating disorders, cutting, depression, coping with the loss of a grandparent on my own. Those have always been subjects that I have been trained to believe are taboo and you don’t discuss, period. Because of that, myself and many other kids and young adult struggle with, and some tragically succumb to their struggles. 

Before this post takes a much darker turn than I had anticipated, there are things I have been through that only a handful of people know the full extent of, and they have seen me trough that and seen me come out the other side, for the better. 

For anyone out there reading this, and going through hard issues, while I don’t personally understand what you are going through, there is hope and help out there, and others who have gone through similar things. 

Why I am choosing to write this post is because in the past couple of weeks I have decided to start making some life changes, for the better. I started using some of the ItWorks products to help me get my weight under control as I have allowed it to get out of control again. Why now you may ask? Why not? I have never been much of an athlete, but there are physical activities that I enjoy and shedding some weight would help me to be more successful at those activities as well as enjoy them more. I also have been feeling the effects of an old injury that never healed properly and losing weight would help ease the pressure on those points. 

Many of you who have followed me for any length of time know how much I love being outside and away from the big city. Yesterday while I was out on a drive along a two lane highway in the middle of nowhere I realized that I am in the city for a reason, and I have a purpose here. The whole “growing where you are planted” kind of came back to bite me so to speak. That definitely doesn’t mean that the adventures or love of small towns will stop, but rather an understanding and appreciation for the opportunities I have had. I am also not saying that I may never get to move back to a small town, but for this season of my life I am needed here. I don’t fully understand my purpose or my mission but I know enough to see that everything that has happened in my life has happened for a reason and I am who I am for a reason. 

I have been given a great group of friends who love and support me for who I am, I find ways to do what I love often. 

Still trying to figure things out — February 17, 2016

Still trying to figure things out

Hey Everyone!

I can’t seem to get this post written, even though I feel like it should be written.

I have had a lot on my mind today. A lot of has to do with my future and career plans and goals. 

After I had realized that being a teacher wasn’t for me, I became kind of lost in terms of career goals and aspirations. I finished college and got a degree in Social Science with a focus in American History and I minored in literature. It will be 6 years in June that I graduated with my bachelors degree and I still feel as lost as I did then, and I have no idea what career I should have or what I should be working toward. 

Some people know what they want to do as a career from the time they are young, others take some time and figure it out through working several jobs in different industries. 

I know I have said it before that I want to read more books as I still have 7 Outlander books to read, as well as the newest Nicolas Sparks book, and the Game of Thrones books. I was a literature minor in College, because I love reading. Since high school I have started collecting books. I have a whole uhaul electronics box full of books and then I have been buying more since then. 

The six things that are constantly  on my mind are Gluten Free/Dairy Free food, knitting, books, blogging, a home of my own/homemaking and adventures not exactly in that order. I would love to find a way to get paid to do all the above as well as help young women who are or have gone through what I have been through. 

Something to work toward — December 14, 2015

Something to work toward

Hey Everyone!

I have been meaning to write this post for a few days now, but have been so busy and tired that I haven’t done so yet. 

This past week I was in training, which took a lot out of me, and I was wiped out at the end. This past weekend was also pretty busy. 

This past weekend I helped to make some of the hot chocolate as well as help serve it and the cookies at the 3 evening Christmas event at my parents church. That had kept me busy this weekend as well. Despite the constant rain there was a decent turn out. Each year it has grown into a bigger and better production. This was its 7th year of Christmas on the Campgrounds. It is hard to believe that it has been that long. 

I know I have likely mentioned in the past that I am wanting to move and live somewhere new, while Alaska is at the top of my list, I have not completely said no to living somewhere else. Though I am waiting a few more months until it is not the dead of winter and I have more of the financial end squared away, but Alaska is looking like a real contender. I am praying about it, and leaving it in God’s hands. It would be an amazing experience if it works out. If this isn’t the first blog post of mine that you have read, you know I like adventures. 

Right now everything is still in the whole wait and see, don’t talk much about it outside a close group of people just in case it doesn’t work out. 

Anyone who knows me well, knows that moving to Alaska has been a dream of mine for years. Once I came back to reality and realized that unless I married a man with British nationality, and lived in Scotland, that moving to Scotland was not likely to happen, whereas Alaska is still part of the US but is pretty much like its own country. Though they at least use the same currency, and the same electrical outlets and voltage we do “down south”. 

Needing a job is the biggest challenge, though I may have solved that problem. That is part of what I am praying about, is that if it is the Lord’s Will I will get a job before I move, and have a bit more work experience on my resume and money in the bank account before I make a move that big. This is a whole lot more serious than going to New York to be a Nanny. This would be a I am moving and I don’t know when I will be back, and may never move back south kind of a move. 

Something to work toward —

Something to work toward

Hey Everyone!

I have been meaning to write this post for a few days now, but have been so busy and tired that I haven’t done so yet. 

This past week I was in training, which took a lot out of me, and I was wiped out at the end. This past weekend was also pretty busy. 

This past weekend I helped to make some of the hot chocolate as well as help serve it and the cookies at the 3 evening Christmas event at my parents church. That had kept me busy this weekend as well. Despite the constant rain there was a decent turn out. Each year it has grown into a bigger and better production. This was its 7th year of Christmas on the Campgrounds. It is hard to believe that it has been that long. 

I know I have likely mentioned in the past that I am wanting to move and live somewhere new, while Alaska is at the top of my list, I have not completely said no to living somewhere else. Though I am waiting a few more months until it is not the dead of winter and I have more of the financial end squared away, but Alaska is looking like a real contender. I am praying about it, and leaving it in God’s hands. It would be an amazing experience if it works out. If this isn’t the first blog post of mine that you have read, you know I like adventures. 

Right now everything is still in the whole wait and see, don’t talk much about it outside a close group of people just in case it doesn’t work out. 

Anyone who knows me well, knows that moving to Alaska has been a dream of mine for years. Once I came back to reality and realized that unless I married a man with British nationality, and lived in Scotland, that moving to Scotland was not likely to happen, whereas Alaska is still part of the US but is pretty much like its own country. Though they at least use the same currency, and the same electrical outlets and voltage we do “down south”. 

Needing a job is the biggest challenge, though I may have solved that problem. That is part of what I am praying about, is that if it is the Lord’s Will I will get a job before I move.