Nov 30, 2010

Leaves of three, leave them be.

Mackenzie and I went for a walk one afternoon early this month.

I'm always struck by the variety of leaves on a single stretch of road.

I hadn't engrossed myself in photography for a while, so it was soothing to hear the shutter *click* again.

Flaming red, somber plum, and dusty butter colored poison oak.

Rim lit Oleander.

Starch creased, ever green, blackberry bramble.


Now fall is almost gone. Never has it flown away so fast.

Nov 20, 2010

The Cellist

He silently draws his arm across the bow and the swish of rosin is muffled by the horsehair strings. He takes his seat, fine tunes the strings of his cello until it sings in unison with the concertmaster, and fixes his eyes on the conductor's poised stick. At the slightest movement, a vibrating chorus rises, diffusing the silence that had since hung over the the eager listeners.

Watch his face. His eyes follow the ebb and flow of the soaring melody, closing and opening again to watch the conductor's signals; emotion quivers on his lips, as if longing to escape; he sways as if moved by the undulating sound; and through his fingers, his energy escapes in complex choreography, dancing up and down the fingerboard.
The final notes ring out, and with quiet satisfaction he exits stage left with the rich harmonies still lingering in his mind like a pleasant fragrance.

Photo and Text, 11.15.10

Nov 19, 2010

To Make

I have a million projects on queue, but this is too adorable to pass up. Combined with my love of wraps and fair isle, the adorableness of this dear deer has me captivated.

Nov 18, 2010

Note to Self:


[tem-per-uhns, tem-pruhns]
1. moderation or self-restraint in action, statement, etc.; self-control.

temperance tem·per·ance (těm'pər-əns, těm'prəns)

Moderation and self-restraint, as in behavior or expression.

Nov 16, 2010

I Heart Faces - Silhouette

The Photo Challenge this week at I Heart Faces is Silhouette themed. This picture was taken on New Years Eve as we took a sunset walk through the foothills above our friend's house.

So many more silhouetted entries on the I Heart Faces website!

Nov 14, 2010


7-year-olds are always allowed to be toothless.

Especially when they have dimples.

Enough said.

Nov 12, 2010

Happy Birthday

It's been twenty years since my big brother was born. Say what? Happy Birthday Jared!

In honor of his special request for something pumpkiny, his coworker made him a pumpkin waffle this morning at work, my mom bought him a pumpkin cookie, and I made a batch of miniature pumpkin muffins.

Nov 2, 2010

What I Wore

I had free time and a journal this morning as I sat in the car during my brothers class. A while ago I saw a Flickr group where people would post drawings of their outfits, and I thought at the time that it was a creative realm far above my own. How silly. It is the most enjoyable way to pass the time on a school morning before class that I have yet come across. Try it sometime :) The key is to keep a pencil case with rainbow colors and paper to draw on with you at all times.

Oct 31, 2010

Collage Day

Yesterday Morning my sisters and I had a paper-scraps-on-the-floor, ripping-out-magazine-pages, sticky-glue-on-your-fingers, kind of collage day! Here is my creation.

Oct 29, 2010

Picnic Lunch

In September we took a picnic lunch to eat at a park after church. It was my dad's birthday, so we planned ahead for a more memorable afternoon than our normal Sunday. There are trails to traverse and one hill that overlooks much of Almaden.

Picnickers. Is that how you would spell it?

Homemade bread.

On top of the world.

The great adventurer.

Resting on the solid rock.

It is a beautiful park, a visit will never disappoint.

Oct 27, 2010

Three P Soup

I think it is high time to brag on my mother. Three words: She can cook! This afternoon she made the most cozy, tantalizing, autumn soup. Three P's: Pumpkin, Sweet Potatoes, and Peanut Butter. An unlikely combination, but trust me, my tongue was in ecstasies. She cut up green onions for a garnish; it was a perfect contrast.

Oct 25, 2010


(From the Rudyard Kipling poem, "If")

Oct 23, 2010

occasional oblivion

sometimes i notice the little things that matter, but most times i am so wrapped up in myself that i forget to look around. it dawns on you, like when you start talking to that person at the other end of the room, & feel like it what you're saying is so interesting, & five minutes later you realize that they were never there at all & all those words were wasted... it helps to pause every once and a while, & simply observe.

My Lunch


my mom's homemade saurkraut


Oct 19, 2010

I Heart Faces - In the Orchard Photo Challenge

Of all the challenges that I should enter, this is the foremost. I am blessed to live right on the brink of an apple/pear orchard, so I have many photos "in the orchard."

This is my entry:

Oct 17, 2010


I have written myself a definition of gossip for my own personal reference:

Attempting to tickle the ears of ones listener by expounding upon facts (thereby creating fiction) which draws attention to oneself at the expense of another.

What do you think of its accuracy?

Oct 15, 2010


There has been a decided surge of photos in the blogosphere that feature pennant banners which I think are very adorable and worthy of my time. Late this summer I sat down to create just such a banner. Following is the result of my troubles.

The fabric came from a Laura Ashley sample book which we were given for free when a friend of my moms, who owned a textile shop, went out of business.

I hung it up in my room, and even though I hadn't measured anything beforehand, it fit perfectly wall to wall!

The simplest things do so much do perk up a room!

Oct 9, 2010

A Good Morning

A good morning starts with warm.
Warm from a shower,
Or warm from a fuzzy blanket in an armchair,
Or warm from steamy coffee or tea.

On a different note, I had an "iced coffee" from burger king this afternoon with a friend of mine, and I asked for a non flavored coffee; just plain coffee. Well, apparently their version of "non-flavored" is "sugar flavored." I've gotten into the habit of just coffee and milk, (when I do drink it), but even when I do sweeten it I never load it with as much sugar as that! So much for plain iced coffee... I couldn't finish it.

Oct 8, 2010

New Kid on the Block

A special announcement! My little sister has joined the blog world, and would love it if you stopped by to comment on her first post! Here is the link:


Food for the Fall

I am regularly shocked by the narrowness of my peers diets. I brought cauliflower and butternut squash soup for my lunch at class one day, and its warm, spiced aromas filled the air with comfort. But my fellow students, after asking what it was, could only say, "Oh. I never eat that kind of stuff." Think of the worlds of flavor they miss out on by disdaining "that kind of stuff!" Lucky for me there is a pot of squash on the stove as I type for dinner tonight. Butternut squash, however, is only one example of the many foods for fall.
Another fairly recent personal discovery is the spaghetti squash: this remarkable vegetable, when roasted in the oven, flaunts a stringy interior that can be substituted for noodles! It has a mild, sweet flavor, and thus pairs perfectly with your classic meat marinara.
Finally, I have learned how to cook up a pot of lentils with a slight tang and a touch of thyme.

After soaking 2 cups of lentils overnight, covered with warm water and 2 Tb of whey, rinse them and cover them with new water. Add a few quartered onions, a few cloves of garlic, a few sprigs of thyme (tied into a bundle), and a few grinds of pepper. This mixture cooks for about an hour or until the lentils are cooked through. Before serving add up to 1/2 cup of lemon juice, and salt to taste.

Fall also brings a finale to the garden production. Are you not blown away by this plethora of tomatos? After an incredibly abundant crop of luscious, crimson, beauties, we decided to clear off the rest of the bush. Joshua gathered them this morning. He remembers my dad making a green tomato sauce last year, so perhaps that will be the end of these as well.

Sep 18, 2010


Tortillas are very much a staple in our house. Quesadillas are the catch all lunch when no one has any ideas. Now, as delicious as Trader Joe's Whole Wheat Tortillas are, it is easy to make your own delicious tortillas at home.

Tortilla Recipe
1/4 c. oil
1 tsp salt
1/2 c. warm water
2 c. flour

This recipe makes aprox. 4 tortillas, (depending on how big your like them). Double, triple, quadruple, quintuple, etc. to make more!

Mix the ingredients together to form a stiff dough; using a mixer/kneader machine always makes this easier.
Cut dough into pieces. As I mentioned above, the basic recipe makes about 4. I usually quad the recipe and make 16.
Roll each piece out to about an eighth of an inch think, (adjust this depending on your preference).
Heat on a griddle or skillet until cooked through. Watch your heat carefully! If it is too hot, your tortillas will burn before they cook. Ideally you want them just beginning to brown when you flip them.

These tortillas are best for very simple meals. I don't recommend them for burritos, as they are prone to tear. But they are so delicious, that all you really need is a pot of beans, a bowl of hummus, chopped tomatoes & basil, or any other simple topping
Voila! You have a fabulous lunch.

Apple of a Different Color

"Sometimes the only thing to do is to start looking at everything again until you forget what you're supposed to see

& actually see what's there."


Some days, you can't help but look at everyone else (very objectively, of course) and decide that you are very glad that you are you and not anybody else. You then turn and look (very objectively) at yourself, and realize that there are certain things about yourself that you very much appreciate. Things that are distinctly you.
At this point you must lay aside all manner of characteristics that others have projected onto you; and look quite simply at yourself as a whole individual person, independent from all others.
You are not what-you-do. These things, rather, proceed from who you are, that mystery of soul and spirit housed by and piloting your body. Because of the way YOU are, you choose to play music, or to dance, or to write. Because YOU have likes and fears and desires and strengths, you will choose how and where and with whom to spend your future. Because the people-who-have-been-there-all-along have helped shaped that which is YOU (your spirit and your soul), YOU are now an

It is a "which comes first" scenario.
Entering in the midst of your life, one may see the space which you occupy and think they see you. They see the place you fill on the stage, at the podium, or on various teams, and say "Ah, this then is who they are!"
But with time, this same person may come to see
the shape of your spirit and your soul, and the effect of those-who-have-been-there-all-along ; at this they will say "Ah, this then is who they are!" and "This is why they occupy that place in the world."

Now in the course of this train of thought, you may pause: you may look at everyone around you and think (very objectively) about how glad you are that they are them. For the people-who-have-been-there-all-along, because of their them-ness, have helped to shape your you-ness and make you an apple of a different color, shiny and unique to everybody else. You look at them (very objectively) and realize that there are certain things about them that you
very much
And you realize, perhaps you're not so independent from others after all.

Sep 15, 2010

Alone Way

Cheerful morning walk
down the orchard alleyway.
Breathing chilled new air.
Trees and fog and golden dog;
Startled flock of quail.
Footsteps in the earth:
Someone has been here before.
(Maybe it was me.)

But I'm alone.

Squinting in the sun,
Making my alone way home,
welcomed by the cat.

Sep 1, 2010

The Certainties of Caring for Children

If a child asks you, "Guess how old I am, four or five?"Always guess five.

If a child is taller than your waist, don't offer to spin her around. By the time she asks for a fifth turn, you will probably scrape her knees against the ground from exhaustion.

As dirty as a child gets, they can always be cleaned again, so make your decision: would you rather have happy children playing harmlessly out side making blackberry jam with their fingers and a cereal bowl and not bothering you? Or would you rather impatiently tell them not to make a mess of themselves and then have to answer their subsequent complaints of "I'm bored"?

If you pick up an adorable small child and he tells you with an innocent sigh, "My mom can't hold me anymore, only my dad." Know that he loves being held as much as you love holding him. Just be prepared to carry him for the rest of the evening.

If one child asks you to blow up one of the long skinny balloons meant for pumps and sees you succeed, take a deep breath: you will probably be asked to blow up at least five more.

(If I have missed any, let me know.)

Aug 31, 2010

100th Post.

I thought the day would never come: 100 posts. I guess that means I've Collected 100 Thoughts? (Though I may change the name; be prepared.)

If I were to have a 100th Birthday Present~

~this would be it!
I absolutely love this blouse, and find it very inspiring. I am going to try to semi-recreate it with what I have on hand. It may look very different, but know that this was the inspiration.

I originally found this item in the Anthropologie store with Sarah Mitchell. We spent nearly 4 hours in the Santana Row location, and although we didn't buy anything we came away with a million ideas and a throbbing in our hearts for the love of Anthropologie.

Aug 28, 2010

Enchanted Life, (with the most innocent use of the word).

I am convinced; my little brother is my enchanted prince, and little sisters are princesses.

My home is my enchanted palace, with spacious room on the front porch balcony to bask in the summer evenings.

We live in the midst of an enchanted forest (which is proved by the fact that it worked it's way onto a board game in our closet which you see the royal children playing), and we are free to stroll the grounds at any time.

If this is no enchanted life in my restless eyes, I would be restless in any quarter of this fragile globe on which we live.

Aug 24, 2010


I finished a dress today. I made the bodice using a pattern I already had, and the skirt is just a big rectangle.
In hindsight, I should have made the skirt a bigger rectangle than I did, because I ended up having less room to gather than I thought I would.

Much of the dress is machine sewn, but when it came time to attach the skirt, I switched to hand sewing. I wasn't liking the way it looked with a machine gather, so I ended up sewing the skirt with a needle & thread making little pleats as I went. It's not perfect, but I was happier with the end result.

I also hemmed the skirt by hand. I originally cut the skirt piece with room to spare, but realized it isn't so easy to make a straight cut after the fact; so instead I made a deep hem and stitched it by hand.

Thank you little sister for taking the photos. It was a painless 2 minute snap of a "shoot". Pretty good, yea?
Hello all,

I have been playing around with my blog template, and some diy techniques. Now I am learning how to post bigger pictures.
Here is the full image used behind my header.

Aug 5, 2010


If you go to India, "food" means rice. I also find it interesting that when ancient Israel experienced famines, they were still able to offer nuts & fruits as gifts to Egypt . Evidently, in Israel, "food" meant grain; for grain makes bread, and bread... well bread is food.

Food staples are inevitable. Though America lacks no eatables, I think it safe to say that to many Americans "food" is bread. Cinnamon toast in the morning, a turkey sandwich or pb&j come lunch, and hamburgers for dinner.The unfortunate fact is that most available bread is sadly lacking in nutrients. Most commercial flour may as well be dust; if I remember correctly, 80% of the nutritional value is lost with the 40% of each grain kernel that is discarded, (but don't quote me on that).

The main thing I am trying to say, is that I love bread. Really love bread. But not the bread I mentioned above. Not even the expensive kind, though that is good as well. I will, rather, thank my mother for my whole life for teaching me how to make yummy, whole, affordable bread worth eating, (and worth every effort to have a steamy slice fresh out of the oven). This bread is simple, it is versatile, & I love it.

Exibit A:
I'll throw this tantalizing beauty together anytime we have the ingredients on hand.

Toasted Bread with Olive Oil
Fresh Basil
Sliced (cherry or full size) Tomatos
Plain Yogurt

Exibit B:

The credit for this goes entirely to the genius of Heidi Swanson and the determination of my brother, Jared. He found her blog and has found a way to recreate more than one of her amazing recipes. This one was memorable:

Marinated Tempeh
Oven Baked Tomatos
Fresh Lettuce

Find the complete recipe on Heidi's blog! (linked above)

So yummy. A worthy way to use a good loaf of bread.

Should I post the recipe?