Monday, May 4, 2015

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Inspiration of the Day: Lizzie Velasquez

In case your Tuesday is feeling uninspired, meet Lizzie, motivational speaker and author.
I remember watching this TED talk awhile back and feeling inspired by the human spirit. Also, I hate that people can hide behind computer screens to bully one another. It's a whole new ballgame and I think it's pathetic that people take time out of their precious lives to write mean comments. I will take good ol' fashion playground brawls any day.

Now Lizzie has a documentary, "A BRAVE HEART: The Lizzie Velasquez Story", and it just premiered at this year's South by Southwest Film Festival. Gosh, it looks like it will make me feel all kinds of inspired. 
This girl has changed the narrative of the story from being "killed with fire" to killing it with fire, from "being a victim to a hero". 

Monday, March 2, 2015

How To: Propagate a Succulent // If You Give A Plant A Haircut

Get ready for a thrilling tale of nature versus nurture starring the life of a succulent.

I have always killed succulents. Always. Until one day I had two breakthroughs, I was drowning them with love, water, diet coke and the little guys had no sunlight. I could get really deep right now and translate that into some metaphor about loving people well but I won't. 

Since then the greenery has been thriving. I don't water them as much, aka, pour the warm bottom bit of diet coke on them and I put them next to the window. I managed to keep two of the three alive. I feel like the odds are good for when I have children. One of these greens, let's call him Ness, did so well it outgrew it's pot. Ness needed a makeover so I googled how to propagate succulents. And would you believe on this giant world wide web I couldn't find what I was looking for. This only mean't one thing, I had to do what I do best, pretend to know what I'm doing. 

Your welcome for this step by step,(day by day), guide of professional photos. 

How to Propagate Succulents AKA The Loch Ness Monster's First Haircut:::
1. The before picture of Ness, who clearly needs a haircut. Rat tail that puts Shia LaBeouf to shame.
 2. Chop it like its hot. Grab some scissors and clip the top of your Ness* off. You want a piece big enough that it still has a few leaves on it.
 3. Put Ness*, post makeover, in a shady spot for a few days.
 4. Empty Ness's home of all previous roots to make room for new life to form. (This could also become a deep metaphor.)
 5. After a few days the end of Ness should have become callused, like feet. The end will be rougher and look a little darker, like my heart.
 Above photo is an example of a callused succulent.
6. Once the end is all rough and callused you move Ness into his new home, which is his old home just remodeled. Out with the old in with the new is the name of this game. Just plant him in there, rough end down. 

7. Don't add any water right away. Wait until roots have formed, Ness needs to approve of the remodel. It takes a few days for this to happen. Just pull Ness out to check for roots then put him back into the soil. Once the roots appear, water away! But only about once a week. Or they get soggy and die.

*the succulent

BONUS:: You can always just buy a new succulent because they're only like $2. But I like hard work and I'd rather get two items off a dollar menu.

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Acai Bowl aka MANA FROM HEAVEN

-"Hey Katy?"
-"Oh hey guy!"
-"I just can't fight this question anymore, gurl I gotta know, how do you eat your quinoa granola?"
-"First off, thank you for your question Sir Charles. Now let me tell you about the holy grail of fresh, the acai bowl."
I have many, many favorite breakfast foods. This is one of them. You probably recognize it from pretty pictures that are posted all over tumblr and Instagram. I know I did. A desire deep down in my gut began to form, I wanted to eat all the textures and colors. Then, I went to Hawaii late last year and naturally was on a mission to give into my desire to try this magic frozen nectar of the surfers. Which I did, multiple times, even at the expense of a flat tire. 
LET ME TELL YOU, acai bowls are worth all the hype, it's breakfast ice cream! Fun fact, pretty sure I've heard acai hails from Brazil. This means two things to me, that a delicious food dish is enough to make me come to your country and eating these in Brazil has to be a spiritual experience.
Moving on, once I returned from Hawaii I had to figure out a way to make them for myself. Enter Costco. Costco carries frozen packs of acai berry from Sambazon because Costco, like love, never fails. Except for that one time they decided to stop making ice cream bars. 

After you have the acai potion you just blend it up with a (frozen)banana and apple or orange juice,or almond milk. I've tried all three, but not at once, because I'm a modern day woman. It blends to a thick smoothie which you top it with all the fruit and granola and chia seeds. Not as good as Hawaii but it'll get the job done. Also this is not a food blog. I just like to eat. 
Tune in next week when I post about another trendy food, avocado toast. Just kidding. I won't. I don't think.

Monday, February 23, 2015

Quinoa Granola

This post should probably be called, 'How many times can I use the word quinoa?' or 'The year 2013 wants its' IT food back yo'.


I LOVE QUINOA.

And eating it makes people, and yourself, think you're healthier than you are. Because, "We for suuure care about what other people think of our eating habits, riiiight?", she said as she licked clean her third stick of a cake pop in the last hour, cause they're frickin' fabulous.
I know quinoa is nothing new but seriously, quinoa saved my life. It is the swiss army knife of grains. Breakfast, lunch and dinner. Sweet or savory. 

I have cooked it up with milk. You can use any kind of milk, fresh from an animals teet or straight from squished almond nuts. Then there you have it...breakfast quinoa! It can be topped with more milk or berries or yogurt or honey - basically it is your home cereal base and where you take it is only determined by your imagination. Need inspiration? Look up quinoa breakfast bowl on Pinterest. Unreal.

"Why, sometimes I believed in as many as six impossible things before breakfast." 
- the Queen or Lewis Carroll

Quinoa can also be cooked in water, water with salt or any kind of broth. I use chicken broth. Bottom line: just cook it in liquid. Also, typing out loud here but I wonder how coffee quinoa would be?! STARBUCKS BREAKFAST MENU LOOK OUT! I'M DREAMING THE IMPOSSIBLE. 

Once the quinoa is cooked I use it as a side for lunch or dinner. Might add some garlic and sweet nothings to it. Or if I'm really feeling it I'll make a quinoa bowl, like a rice bowl but with quinoa ya know. BIG DREAMS. 
Now the smart asses out there reading this(side note: no one reads this) may be thinking, "Why not just use brown rice, it's healthy and lower calorie you idiot." NO, YOU ARE MEAN. NOTHING IS AS HEALTHY AS QUINOA. Except straight shots of green juice and almonds. But yes, it is higher calorie but also higher protein. Personally I choose protein because muscles. I don't have any but I enjoy them on others. Also, it tastes better and I bet Gwyneth eats it.

I don't know all the nutritional facts but just believe me on this one. I just know it keeps me regular. That should be proof enough for you. I think it's the fiber. Don't quote me. I judge whether foods are healthy by how they go through the ol' system and quinoa keeps the tracks on track and flowing. Regularly. Amen.
All of this to say, TRY THIS QUINOA GRANOLA I MADE. IT'S DELICIOUS. I never follow cooking instructions, because if there's anywhere I like surprises it's in the kitchen. You don't have to follow instructions either. Play with it. Make it your own. Just make something edible.

 BASIC QUINOA GRANOLA

Ingredients
3 cups cooked quinoa*
(Using water with or without salt. I like salt. I'm also bloated a lot. You choose).
1-3 cups old-fashioned oats (or whatever, I just had some to use up)
1/2 tbs cinnamon

Combine with:
2 tbs butter, melted
1/2 cup honey
1/2 cup maple syrup
You can also use agave, coconut oil or any combination. 
Just get the grains lathered real good. 

Bake:
Spread flat on sprayed baking sheet.
Bake at 325 degrees for 25-30 minutes. 
Let cool until dry and crunchy.

Add:
Anything you want. What an adventure!
I added chia seeds to my granola but that's all. I'm boring.
Some people like coconut shaving or any kind of nut or dried fruit added.
But I don't like any of that so go forth from my basic and terribly done recipe and make it awesome! 

After add-ins:
Snack on granola.
Scrape remaining into a hip mason jar to eat at later time, like breakfast.


*If you don't know how to cook quinoa look at the back of the package or call your mom. If your mom is dead, I'm really sorry. Look at the back of the package again? Or Google?

Monday, January 12, 2015

Your Favorite Team's Favorite Team

Today is the day. 
Oregon plays Ohio State for the college football National Championship. 
It feels like Christmas. But Santa is Hawaiian. 
I am so stinkin' excited.  
I love my ducks. 
I love the power sports have to bring people together and also divide families. I love the way people love the Ducks. I love the way people hate the Ducks. I love the way having a team can make people feel like they're a part of something bigger than themselves. 
I like sports and I don't care who knows. 



SO MANY EMOTIONS.
IS THIS WHAT BEING TURNT FEELS LIKE?!?
#goducks

Saturday, January 3, 2015

Good Riddance 2014.

Ugh. 2014. You were a hell of a year.

2014 left me feeling wrecked and ruined. Thinking back on this last year elicits a deep gut punch of shame and worthlessness that I didn’t even know was on the spectrum of the scale of emotions. I just felt dull and full of guilt. I was physically, emotionally, spiritually and mentally spent.

I was a dweller in comfort and never have felt less myself. I never wanted to get this comfortable. I never thought I’d be the girl living with her parents post-grad. I thought I’d the girl that was doing and seeing and risking, packing up everything and moving to a new place just for the thrill of it. I had always been ‘that girl’, or at least that was the girl I knew I wanted to be.
I lived this year in a fog and had no idea where my life was going. It was terrible and confusing. It still is. I became so sick of myself I couldn't figure out why everyone else wouldn't be as well. I spoke to myself in a way that I would never dare speak to anyone else. I was stuck in my own head and the more I fought to get out of it the more self-involved I became.

I went silent. I lost my voice and when I found it I was quickly reminded that I was not good enough to speak. It's hard to talk about your life when you're embarrassed by it. There were times when I felt too deeply, too much hurt and all I could do was feel. Then other times I was nothing. I felt the way clouds do as they sit between mountains. Life is a solitary experience. My comfort in being alone would drift in and out into loneliness. I knew I should be around community and people yet the anxiety that came from social gatherings made it almost unbearable and effects of the small talk would take me days to recover from. 

I faced death and I faced life. I faced the terrible pain that comes from living through my 'works' to gain worth from people that was never going to come. Depression would creep in out of nowhere, like the evil crawler of the dawn that it is and stretch me thin within the walls of my own mind. How can something that is a part of you work so hard at your own demise? How can your body that you want to love so badly always, always hurt? I faced anxiety that laid me out on the floor realizing, “OH, this is what people are talking about”. It’s crippling and unexplainable.
I learned a lot this year. I learned I can’t do fake. I learned that family is really hard. I learned about parts of my personality that I had tried to keep hidden because years of growing up and reading people’s reactions to me had taught me they were shameful, to be afraid. I learned I don’t have to be defined by what other people think of me. I learned that I can change my roles. I learned I hate the term ‘kill them with kindness’ because some people are cruel and manipulative.

I already know there will be a time when I miss 2014. Closer than I think I will find the silver lining because through sadness, confusion, vulnerability and navigating the waves of loneliness I am still here. I am alive. I am breathing. The flittering and distant flame is still there and fuel is being added to the fire that is me. 

Life is rough. Life is messy. Life is complicated. 
I am rough. I am messy. I am complicated. 
Being alive and human on this grand, breathtaking Earth is rough and messy and complicated.

Admitting all this makes me feel so selfish. Why does saying I had a sucky year make me feel like I just wasn’t trying hard enough, that I’m just not a good enough Christian? I mean, how could I, an 'American-middle class-white-female' have any right to whine?

So, I say all this knowing that there will be years worse than this and there will be better. I say this knowing that perspective is everything and I am in an extremely fortunate position in the grand scheme of things. No year can be all darkness and I did have so much joy mixed in. Life is good. This year I caught glimpses of eternity. I got months and months of cherished and sacred time with my Grandma that I wouldn’t trade for the world. I got to see places new and old. I got to be consoled by the rugged Oregon coastline, lost amongst the pines that point me to a higher Power. 
2015 is going to be better, filled with magic and madness.

I’m also not na├»ve enough to think that a sudden change of digits on the calendar will take the daily battles away. It’s a process. New struggles will come. They will change me. I will learn. I will grow. I will love. I will trust.

Basically this next year I just want new mercies. Whatever those are. Sounds like the right thing to want at this point. To wake up everyday and rejoice in the fact that it is new. I am new. I can try again. I can fail again. I want to take risks and ride into life bravely, once again. 
FOR NARNIA…FOR FRODO.





Sometimes we just have a bad year.