Most days I hem and haww over what to make for dinner. This is my mental process:
“I should make soup.”
“No, it’s too hot for soup.”
“Ooh! Tomatoes! I should make a caprese grilled cheese with basil and mozzarella”.
“Should I add cheddar cheese instead of mozzarella?”
“No, might taste weird.”
“I know! Grilled cheese. Grilled cheese with a cheddar mozzarella blend but without tomato or basil.”
“But I still want to use these tomatoes…”
“What goes well with grilled cheese?”
Boom. Back at my original idea.
It may be too hot for just soup, but a grilled cheese salad with a bowl of tomato soup? Somehow that still just says summer to me. I figure, you don’t have to eat the tomato soup piping hot. You know what I’m sayin’?
Besides, we’re totally rolling into Fall now. So… we’ll just call it thinking ahead. Right? Right.
Tomato soup inspired by Tyler Florence
Some time ago I mentioned that my brother Ken started gardening. First it was a few raised beds with potatoes, beans, and herbs, and then it grew (pun intended) into so much more! The kids’ got a green thumb if you ever saw one.
We just picked the first green beans of the season. It might not look like much, but I was so stoked!
These are hydrangeas that no one really paid any attention to and got a little out of control. They’re pretty though, aren’t they?
Potatoes! There are little spuds growing right under those leaves in the ground. There are a few varieties including red potatoes and buttery gold ones.
You can see a couple of the raised beds here, and my brother also planted hops (as in hops for beer) last year and they’re now climbing up the front of the house. There are three types of hops there. At first they weren’t doing just okay, but then Ken stuck some fish heads (no lie) into the ground and they shot up like crazy. Must love those fish-head nutrients.
The little tomatoes also have me really excited. I just love seeing little fruit forming.
The raspberries are thriving and are delicious! Did you know that when you pick raspberries you’re supposed to pick from the bottom first? They’re sweeter there!
I got myself a little handful and popped them all into my mouth.
There’s a lot more going on in the garden, but those are the main producers right now. It’s really crazy how much food that you grow at home really tastes so much better than what you’ll find at the store. Even a little container of tomatoes makes a big difference!
Do you have a garden? What’s growing right now?
Hi! I know I’ve been gone for a few weeks. I decided to take an impromptu summer vacation and I’m back all rejuvenated with a new look and a bunch of new things to share!
- First, you may have noticed the new design. It’s just a slight tweak, but I’m so much happier with how much cleaner and organized everything looks. The about me page is also revamped, and I’ve linked to some favorite posts from the previous incarnation of the blog. The archives are all still there too, for anyone who wants to go down memory lane.
- Second, I’ve changed the blogging schedule from five days a week to two or three. As much as I liked posting every weekday, by scaling it back I feel like I’ll be able to give you more focused, quality content on a consistent basis. The format will most likely be Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, so if you’d like to stay updated I’ll be announcing new posts on Facebook. I’ve also been digging Feedly for subscribing to my favorite blogs since Reader died, if you haven’t checked it out yet I recommend it!
- Third, I’ll be rolling out a new weekly column where on Mondays I’ll be posting some of my favorite things from life and around the internet. It’s similar to what I usually post but in a more condensed format. Personally I love coming into the week with lots of new things to look at, so I hope you enjoy them too!
Without further ado, here are this week’s Monday favorites:
- Food. All of it. I’ve been going a little bit crazy with the cooking, baking, and farmer’s market-ing. From de-stemming ancho chiles to picking green beans from the garden, I just can’t seem to get enough lately. I try to stick to really simple meals, but somehow end up in the kitchen making enchiladas for five hours. Yeah… working on that whole time management thing. Photos from my instagram.
- Save The Dates - Holy moly. I’ve always been a huge fan of Britney Lee but these Jaws-themed Save The Dates that she made for her and her husband’s wedding take it to another level!
- Blurred Lines - This song is my jaaaaaaam right now.
When you’re feeling down, it’s so tempting to focus on your sadness: you wonder why you’re sad, you hate that you’re sad, you wish you weren’t sad. It’s completely natural to do this. But it’s the wrong way to be. No matter how smart you are– you will never change a bad mood by thinking about it. You will only magnify it.
Instead focus on your behavior. Focus on what you can change. Go outside. Exercise. Quit isolating yourself. Interact with friends and family. Accomplish things. Your mind will reward you with happiness.
It is so tough to change your behavior if you are feeling depressed. But it’s the only way. Don’t say: “I’ll act differently when I feel better.”
Act differently, and you will feel better.
Have a great Monday!
A patch of pretty blue sky.
Sundaes made from Trader Joe’s ingredients for Father’s Day– vanilla ice cream, hot fudge, candied pecans, and two little chewy chocolate chip cookies.
A card from the wonderfully talented Joyce Chai. Joyce does beautiful lettering (that’s my name in her handwriting!), which she often posts on her instagram here (in addition to gorgeous photos).
Look whose book I found at the local bookstore! That would be Miss Jesse Klausmeier’s Open This Little Book! (Remember her interview?) So very cool.
Was going down the front porch stairs, and saw this little flower poking through. Made me happy.
Back to my Friday five! This week we were lucky enough to get a few days of sunshine, so I l felt very lucky to spend some sunny afternoons in a hammock (which was actually a gift my dad got for Father’s Day and he was nice enough to share). If you’ve never been in a hammock (I hadn’t), they are amazing! Even more amazing is bringing out a pillow to rest your head on and dragging a side-table over to place your snacks and drink on. Because snacks are the best part!
I hope you had a great week and a fun weekend planned. Monster’s University is being released today, so I think I know where I’ll be! Pixar fo life!
See you here on Monday!
I was at the grocery store in the checkout line today, when the cashier turned to me and exclaimed, “You look like…!”
He stopped while he tried to remember the name.
“…that girl from Smallville!”
I laughed because before he even said it I knew what he was going to say.
Ever since high school, if anyone’s ever said I look like someone, it’s always been Kristin Kreuk. It honestly makes me happy though because it’s someone I really like! I can kind of see it– maybe it’s the forehead? And that we’re both half Asian? I don’t know.
Other than Kreuk, in the past I’ve also gotten Lindsay Price (from Lipstick Jungle) on a couple of occasions. I wish!
It made me curious about doppelgangers, so I asked the cashier if people told him he looked like anyone. ”Tobey Maguire. At least once a day”.
As soon as he said it I could totally see it! What’s really funny though, is that he told me that his wife is ironically not attracted to Toby Maguire at all! Hahaha. I guess some people just see it and others don’t.
Do you have a doppelganger? Who do people tell you that you look like?
Back in February, I did a roundup of shows and movies that I think are worth watching on Netflix. Since the content is regularly updated, I figured it’s time for an update!
Here’s what I’ve been watching:
The Vampire Diaries, Season 1 through 3- Okay, so until now I hadn’t jumped on the whole vampire/werewolves/supernatural bandwagon (aside from Buffy, which was basically a million years ago). I’ve never seen Twilight or any other recent vampire show/movie. BUT. BIG BUT. The Vampire Diaries (forgive the forthcoming pun) totally SUCKED ME IN. Every episode, every season. I realize that I’m not a teenager, but I don’t care!
I had been interested in watching True Blood, but heard it’s pretty violent, and I’m a bit squeamish when it comes to violence. So I figured that Vampire Diaries, being on The CW would be really tame. Wrong! I was actually pretty surprised at the level of violence on the show. I mean, for a show on CW, it takes it much further than Buffy ever did. Somehow, though, it manages not to cross the WTF line (okay, maybe once or twice, but more shock than violence).
The basic premise is that Continue reading
My happy corner from this weekend: a blanket, a book, some green juice (still obsessed, and with a bendy straw!), and plenty of sunshine.
It’s the little things.
My brother hooked it up with some zaru soba (Japanese buckwheat noodles served with cold broth).
I know, three weeks with just one photo on my weekly roundups! For shame. Promise that will change soon.
Did you know that summer officially starts next Friday? Mentally I’ve been in summer mode for a while now because the weather has been so good here. We’ve already been out BBQ-ing, kids have been getting out of school and graduating, and the town has just been generally livelier with the increase in sunny days. Summer really is when the Northwest shines the most– figuratively and literally. The scenery is spectacular and there is little more beautiful than the bay gleaming in the early morning and late afternoon.
I hope you have fun plans this weekend, and I’ll see you here on Monday!
“Picture a beautiful mountain, perhaps a peak covered in snow. As you look at it, you can see that it has an inner core of constant peace and constant temperature so that no matter what happens on the outside, the inside remains unchanged.
Now imagine that the seasons come and go. Summer comes with lightning, with storms, with flooding and fires, yet inside the mountain remains completely still, tranquil and calm. The summer becomes fall, with howling winds and leaves falling off trees; then winter arrives with snows and freezing temperatures. Yet the inner core, the beautiful space deep within the mountain is unaffected by any of these changing seasons.
We are like the mountain. We do not have to let outside events rob us of our joy and harmony, no matter how strongly the storms rage, no matter how loudly the winds howl. We all have that inner core of calm and quiet. It is there whenever we need it.
No matter what people say about us, no matter what criticisms or judgements they may offer up, we are already divine. We are solid and grounded in the earth like a mountain. We are spiritual beings. The words of others cannot rob us of our inner peace and joy unless we give them the power to do so. The mountain, inside, is perfect, and so are we.”
-The Meditation of the Mountain by Dr. Brian Weiss via Spirit Miner