Tag: Food

Longing for Autumn 

Hey Everyone!

Yesterday had been unseasonably cool, and a bit wet at times. 

It has been the perfect day to bake cookies, drink tea, warm some Apple S’mores Scentsy cubes in my Scentsy warmer, work on some knitting, and day dream about autumn and having a home of my own. 

I am still trying to find a job, so that I can do normal, boring adult things, as well as try new recipes and bake new stuff. I am also longing to have a home of my own and my own kitchen again. I do miss having my own kitchen. 

There are so many things I want to try cooking, baking and canning – just not all three to the same food item. I really want to make my own jams, jellies, preserves and syrups. I also want to can fruit and pickles. I want to be able to make more breads and try new main courses and be able to do some entertaining.

I would love to have a freezer full of fresh caught fish (various kinds of salmon, trout, cod, etc), some elk, venison, moose pork (raised on site), locally raised lamb, and chicken (that was raised on site). I know there are animal rights activists out there that are anti-hunting and anti-fishing. To all of them, I would rather have locally hunted/ locally caught meat, that I know where it came from and that it was free range, and wild in its natural habitat . Meat that comes from commercial farms that use hormones, antibiotics and have cruel and inhumane confinement where the animals are living in dirt and manure is poor quality even at best. 

Having had better quality food, as well as the whole fresh air, gorgeous scenery, and the whole less screen time (even if it means crappy internet), would totally be worth giving up the city life for. 

I long for a life of honest hard work, to have an overall better way of life. I want to grow and raise as much of my own food as possible, and what I cannot grow or raise (or feasibly do so on a non commercial level), purchase locally from those who do. 

I actually do enjoy Homemaking, and yes, I would rather be in the kitchen cooking, baking, and canning or out in the garden, weeding and picking fresh produce over sitting at a desk, in an office, any day of the week. 

Now watch, I may have to eat those words, but really, in all honesty, I would rather be a modern (ie have electricity, indoor plumbing, central heat and AC, and a modern kitchen) homesteader, than have a career in corporate America. I like being tired from a long day of physical work. 

Yesterday I had also worked a bit on my current sock that I am knitting up. I finally got the cuff done, which is making progress. That anymore seems to be what takes the longest since I do 1 x 1 ribbing. 

The weather yesterday totally had me wanting to to be autumn already, so it would be cool, overcast and wet almost everyday, or at least sunny with the high around 65, with cool crisp mornings, and a crispness to the air as the leaves are turning to the beautiful autumn colors. I so want to be able to decorate for autumn and be warming scents like Apple S’mores and Pumpkin Roll daily. 


What would you do if you weren’t afraid?

Hey Everyone!

Upon watching Ellie and Jared’s one year of daily vlogging video, Jared had used that quote at the beginning, “What would you do if you weren’t afraid?”

If I weren’t afraid of not being able to support myself, I would move to SE Alaska in a heartbeat, where I would continue blogging, and would be writing about how living in Alaska was new and different, and what I was learning about the culture, and working to fit in where I was living.

Scotland was the original dream, though through research, the easiest and most logical way to legally move there would be to marry a man who has British Nationality. It could happen, but it is not likely.

I am fully aware that moving anywhere is a difficult transition, but with the right attitude it can totally be done.

I would love to work at a retreat center that is built in a manner that is traditional to where it is located, and is cohesive with the land around it. Living in Alaska is a beautifully rugged state that isn’t for the faint of heart. The landscape is awe inspiring, and making that a large part of the retreat center and keeping with the history of the area is hugely important to me. Living in a cool, coastal climate where it rarely (if ever) gets above 75 degrees is also something that is appealing to me. I don’t like the heat, I love knitting warm accessories for myself, and would love more opportunities to use them. They are no good to me sitting in plastic tubs, I would much prefer to make use of them on a regular basis.

I am also one of these people who would make it work. If and when I move up there, moving back down south isn’t an option. Alaska, like many other things in my life, I would prove people and statistics wrong about. I have seen reports that most people that move to Alaska don’t last more than 5 years, while there are some who actually do. I intend to be one of those who actually lives there for the rest of my life, given the opportunity to move there in the first place.

Due to the fact that moving to Alaska in in my 5 year plan, I am trying to as much stuff down here in the lower forty eight that I have on my bucket list that I can, so that I will be taking advantage of as many opportunities as I can.

Over the last few years, while big city life has had a few advantages, the frustrations and disadvantages have been ever present and on the rise since I graduated from college 5 years ago. While there are still areas of small town life that amaze me, they remind me that living in the big city, for me is more than overrated.

My first choice of places to live, in Alaska is Ketchikan, and that is the goal that I am working toward, My plan B, is Juneau. I prefer the smaller town, in the middle of nowhere, way of life, but at the same time I do understand that i have food intolerances (and while making trips to Juneau to do stock up trips on certain items is totally doable), living in Juneau might be a bit less of a struggle, in terms of food availability. I know if all else fails that ordering online is also an option (which I would be doing anyway for my gluten free stuff from Bob’s Red Mill).

I would love to pack up, and taking my blog, my knitting, and my love for the great outdoors to Alaska, I am looking for, waiting on, and praying about the financial means to take me there and support myself on.

Keeping Busy and Active is Amazing

Hi Everyone!

Beings that I am working, it is so much easier to just take off and go somewhere on my own if I just need to get out and go somewhere. Beings that I am paying for the gas, that is not an issue. For me, going to the beach, even for just a few hours is exactly what I need. Just driving, and getting out of the city, and going to small beautiful coastal towns recharges me.

I got up this morning, and got a move on, so I could get out of the house and get my day going. I stopped at the mall this morning. I went and got a clean eating cookbook and a vegan cookbook. I am not going full on vegan or vegetarian anytime soon, I am really just wanting to eat better, so that I feel better over all. Beings that I am dairy free 99.999999% of the time and gluten free 95%+ of the time I am really wanting fresh recipes to try, because I am tired of eating the same old things all the time. Beings that a friend of mine is a Beachbody coach, and has been running clean eating challenges over the last month, I decided to give it a try. While I have to plans to commit to the beachbody program, and be an avid shakeology user, I am giving PiYo and the 21 day fix a try, as well as trying Shakeology (I got the Vegan Chocolate flavor) for the 21 day challenge. I am really trying to mix things up, and try new workouts, primarily those that are low impact. I am wanting to get in shape, so between eating the right foods, and exercising I am working toward my goal of living a healthy, active lifestyle. It isn’t an easy goal, but I want it, and I am actively pursing it. My package of Shakeology came in the mail today. Part of my desire to get in shape is to help take some of the pressure off my knees, my heart, my lungs, and my left ankle, which I badly sprained when I was 15 and it never healed properly (leading to at least 2 subsequent sprains). I am wanting to help strengthen the muscles I have weakened by injuring myself.

While at the mall, I stopped at The Bath and Body Works and picked up a few (literally like four) hand soaps. I also stopped at the body shop to use my 8th point reward. I picked up another vial of tea tree oil, as well as the vitamin C moisturizer with SPF in it. Beings that spring is here, and summer is right around the corner I wanted a second face moisturizer with SPF in it beings that I love being outdoors. While I am fully aware that I need Vitamin D, and the best way to get it is spending 20 – 30 minutes outside, I still want to protect the skin of my face and neck from the UVA and UVB Rays. I normally don’t use sun block on the rest of my body, if I am just running errands or am not out for long periods of time. I do use it though when I know I am going to be out more than running errands and such. I totally put it on before going to the beach or hiking.

I then went to the coast for a few hours. I so needed the break from the big city. I am tolerating the city because this is where I am right now, and at this point in my life, but I get out of it as much as possible, because I am not a city girl at heart. I love the coast and I love small town life, so I spend as much time as I can in some of the small towns on the coast. I would have loved to have stayed at the coast. Every time I go to the coast I can’t get over how beautiful it is, and mind you I have been going to the coast several times a year since I was about 6 months old. I never get tired of it.

After I got back into the city, I went for a walk, got dinner and did a load of laundry before spending the rest of the evening on my computer thinking about blogging.

I know that everything happens for a reason, and that I have my job for a reason, even if it is just to be able to keep me in food and gas money so I can continue discovering what I love. If you had asked me even two months ago if I would be even more into healthy eating, and actively exercising on a regular basis (I strive for 6 days a week), I would have thought you were crazy. Then again that was also before I was forced to start working from home for my job, which then allowed me to switch from working 5 eight hour days to working 4 ten hour days, and getting off early enough in the evening to fit in a work out before dinner and still have a couple hours to relax and chill out before going to bed. I am also loving having 3 day weekends. It is allowing me to fit in doing more of what I want to do while still working full time.

Moving on a Rainy Saturday

Hey Everyone!

Sadly, I am not the one who actually moved today. I spent a few hours helping one of my Coworkers from the Studio I had worked at a year ago, and her husband move out of their apartment, into a cute little one bed one bath house in North Portland. Their house has a front yard and a backyard, which is perfect for their two dogs, and being able to enjoy being outside on summer evenings and such. After we had emptied their moving truck at their new house, they took those of us who helped out for food.

After I got back to the house, I began dealing with placing a claim on a lost package in the UPS system. I had ordered some stuff, which shipped Friday, March 6th. I had used express 1 – 3 day shipping, and as of Tuesday, March 10th, it got stuck in Oakland, CA, and has been there since. So that has been interesting. I also did a load of laundry, while working on the claim. I would have liked to have watched Brave and Maleficent tonight, and had been looking forward to it since the Friday my package shipped, but sadly I am having to postpone that, as my package isn’t here.

Today, I ordered PiYo, which is a Pilates/Yoga workout, as I am wanting to get in shape, as there are so many adventures I want to go on, but I am so out of shape, it isn’t funny. I want to take on many more hikes, and adventures than I could have dreamed of. I also want to give Bouldering and Rock Climbing another effort, and be in better shape, and more toned, so that I have less of me to try to maneuver, and more muscle tone to maneuver the smaller me. I am doing this for myself. It has nothing to do with the societal pressures to conform. It has everything to do with me, and what I want to do with my life, on a whole, and as a career. I don’t like being stuck inside, when I could be outside exploring, learning, teaching, sharing experience, and being example that while traditions help build a firm foundation of who we are, the old ways are not the only ways. As a young woman in my late 20’s, I am at an amazing age where I am still learning a lot from my elders, yet I am an example and teacher to my peers and those younger than myself. Girls are not just weaklings, who stay inside all day and have no thoughts, feelings, dreams, goals, and aspirations of their own. They have all of that and so much more.

Even with getting soaking wet, with helping my friend move, I prefer to be soaking wet for that time to being too hot for any length of time. It was a perfect early spring day here in Oregon.

Over the past month, I have been challenging myself a bit, to get out, and work on getting used to driving different places, and using different freeways and such that I am not as used to or comfortable with. As much as I don’t like living in the big city, I still am living here for the time being. I figure the more I get used to going different places, and getting out of my comfort zone and rabbit trails, it will help me out when I have the opportunity to move somewhere new. I know when I had moved off to college, figuring out where things were, and how to get from point a to point b was rather overwhelming. This challenge had actually kind of started in college, and just continued to take off after that. In the last couple of months, having the Google Maps app on my iPhone has really helped with that confidence to figure out where I am going when I am going into unfamiliar territory.

I don’t know about some People.

Hey Everyone!

Today seems to not have been my day for going out and about. I woke up with an allergy  headache that has not gone away even with taking allergy meds and tylenol.

I had gone to REI to see about getting some Hiking Boots, because I love hiking and need something that will be comfortable, and support my ankles since one of my ankles was left weak after a really bad sprain that never healed properly.

While leaving the mall, I had some idiot backing out right behind me, nearly missing backing right out into me, even with me honking they were oblivious to my honking, and kept backing, and the person behind me in the lane started honking as well, because they saw what was going on, and the idiot who was backing out was not getting the message from me, the one who they were backing out into. So yeah, I was pretty ticked off about that.

I was going to stop at Fred Meyer on the way home, but traffic in the parking lot was too insane for me to fuss with after what I had been through at the mall. So I ended up going to Safeway to do the entirety of my grocery shopping, which was just as well. I was going to get some fresh Alaska Salmon at Fred Meyer, on sale for $12.99 a pound, but I found Columbia River Steelhead Trout which is way more local and fresh for $7.99 a pound. I also go some chicken to cook up for this week, and more food for myself. Beings that I am working I am responsible for the food that is specifically for myself or that looks good.

Tonight I am looking forward to working more on getting stuff set up on my computer and getting it organized, as well as getting caught up on Vlogs and shows on Hulu. I have gotten behind on my Hulu videos while my old computer was on the fritz.

Happy New Year

It is January 1st, the start of a new year, and another birthday over for me. For many they make New Years resolutions and then by March few are still working on keeping them.

The only resolutionish thing that I am making is that I want to cook more healthy food for myself and make taste amazing. With that I want to blog about it and share a picture of the meal. I am trying to eat more organic, natural, non GMO, cage free, grass fed, antibiotic free etc food because I believe that it is better for my body, and that it would be getting food more like what was available prior to the 1960’s. Back then there were not all the cases of food intolerances and allergies like there are nowadays. Beings that I am one who deals with food intolerances I know what it is like to have food make make sick. I know full well that this good costs more, and beings as I am working, I am totally ok buying my own specialty more expensive food. That is my choice for me.

This year I want to write more for my blogs. I would think that daily blog posts would get boring after a while as most of them would be like “I got up, showered, ate breakfast, went to work, came home from work, had dinner, watched the chicks life as well as Ellie and Jared then went to bed”. That is how my life is at the moment.

Today I had gone to New Seasons and I found gluten free and dairy free pumpkin spice waffles. How awesome is that? I had gone to the New Seasons that I am not as familiar with so I got turned around and was like “where is everything?” I have gotten used to the little one that is on my way to and from work. I had also picked up some cage free better for you chicken for dinner this next week.

I stopped at Fred Meyer as well to pick up some lunch meat and Allergy Meds. I have allergies year round so I feel like I am taking allergy meds daily. It kinda sucks but it in part has to do with where I live.

This year I am also trying to save money and live on a budget so that I have some money to fall back on, or use to move out when I get another job when this one ends, or what have you. It would be nice to have some money set aside so if I have other weeks like this where there isn’t enough work for me to be at work, and I lose a week of pay, it isn’t as much as a financial hardship. Having spent pretty much all my adult life living paycheck to paycheck scraping by while living with my parents has been tough and I have hated it, so I am working toward becoming financially independent and moving out one of these days, like I have been taught my entire life. I have also learned that getting married and raising a family isn’t my only option in life. While both of those are admirable things, if it just doesn’t happen for me or I choose to not get married, that is an acceptable choice. Getting married is not the solution to my current living situation, or to all my “problems”.

Redefining Self Image

Hey Everyone! 

I can only speak for myself, but I know that a lot of teenage girls and young women at least where I am from at one point or another, if not for a long period of time struggle with body image, self image and self confidence. We base a lot of our self worth and self confidence off what we are told, taught, and what we see through the media. Our culture has gotten so caught up in attaining an unattainable image that we are being force fed. At the same time we also wonder why so many teenagers and young adults develop eating disorders. 

Beauty is more than skin deep. There is more to who we are than what size we wear, the number on the scale, and the image the media forces upon us. 

I am not immune to any of this. From a young age I was ugly fat girl. I have always struggled with food being the enemy, and until I was in college I was never really taught that Food is not the enemy, but how to make good food choices, and that I don’t have to give up the things that taste good, just balance out what I eat. I was also one who at times ate my feelings, or went hungry, to achieve a more acceptable body according to the media and my mother. My freshmen year I was definitely malnourished, and lost at least 20 pounds because I was eating too few calories. Many of you may be thinking “why didn’t your parents intervene?” They didn’t take the time to notice that I wasn’t eating, and that I was skipping dinner daily. I went to bed hungry because I was ashamed of my body, and what I looked like. 

Rebuilding your self image will take hard work, and what worked for me may or may not work for someone else. For me, tuning out the haters, and those that put me down, talked crap about be to my face or behind my back, and telling myself that those who took issue with my weight, and treated me like I was less of a person or somehow worth less than them because of my weight, or that I was not as “pretty” as them, are the ones with the issues. There are people in my life who have helped me to rebuild my self image by loving me and accepting me for who I am. 

I am still a ways of from where I would like to be, but I have come a long way from where I was in middle school and high school. It will help when I am able to move away from the two people who have tortured me enough so far in my life to last for several life times, and they are the ones who should really be there to help build up a positive self image, but they have been more destructive than anything. 

For me, taking the negative and destructive things with a grain of salt is hard, when it is coming at you a mile a minute, but it can be done. Yes, it still gets to me at times, and fighting back sometimes only makes things worse when you are around people who believe they are never wrong 100% of the time and you should kiss the ground they walk on (yet they whine and  complain worse than a little kid when something doesn’t go their way or doesn’t go the way they wanted). With certain people that have given me the “suck it up and deal with it” stance, I have fed it right back to them, because life isn’t fair, and they can’t get their way 100% of the time, and we all have to do things in life we don’t like. 

Letting people do nice things for me, still feels really foreign. I have spent so many years bending over backwards (I had to), and not having people do nice things for me because they want to, that it is taking me some time to get used to the fact that there are still people out there who like to do nice things for the people they care about. 

There came a point where I had to choose whether I was going to continue to let others life my life for me, and continue walking all over me, or if I was going to reclaim my life, and stand up for myself. I chose to reclaim my life, and work on improving my self image, and stand up for myself.