Excited To Read “Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls”!!

I saw this campaign a few months ago and was IN immediately. I just updated the details they need to send me all the perks (including book/coloring book etc.) and I am so excited to read this to my kids!!! See video below for more info…it is pretty sweet!!

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Finalist in #NewSchoolAlumni Summer Photo Contest “Bubble”

I am so excited to be included in this contest! I graduated from Parsons in 2003 with BFA in Communication Design. After leaving New York in 2006 it is great to be recognized as a finalist for this fun picture I took earlier this summer!

You can vote now by “Liking” your favorite photo here on Facebook and Instagram.

The “New School Favorite,” along with the three winning photos, will be announced after voting ends on August 9, 2016.

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Dinner Experiments.. #1 (Picky Kids)

My goal is to feed the kids a healthy dinner, and to minimize my own time in the kitchen, because I have other stuff too do and I’m not in a domestic skills kind of mood.

Problem: I was completely in hyperfocus mode learning about options to update one of my main sites that has been in desperate need of an update for too long to mention…I did NOT feel like asking my sweet little picky kids what they wanted for dinner, because surely they would want what I didn’t have!

Technique: I went to the kitchen, took a quick inventory and quickly decided what I would make…and when the kids asked, I did NOT answer, I told them they’d see when it was done. I used three pans, faux pas but still, I think it’s good.

Pan 1:
Quinoa and Rice, this is a premade mix of the two grains that we get from Costco, the kids love it. My first step was taking one packet of this, and putting it in the first pan with a few tablespoons of water. This is the “base” of what I was making…

Pan 2:
Broccoli, I started a pot of a few cups of water to get it boiling, broccoli is the one vegetable that they will eat almost always. I figured that if this was a part of it, along with the rice, it would be good.

Pan 3:
Mushroom soup, this is the yummy/new/special part that I’m gambling on…I’ve heard of all sorts of recipes that have some kind of soup. Stuff like casseroles that are “so” easy to make. I figured that this means kids generally like it…so my plan is to use it as a secret sauce on top of EVERYTHING!

Presentation:
Alright, this is how it all came together. I got three plates, and first put the rice mix and broccoli on it. I tried to put the broccoli kind of leaning on the rice to make it all fit nicely. Then I took the Mushroom soup and drizzled it all over everything…then I found some spooks and forks (very random ones that were the last ones to remain clean in the silverware drawer, but hey they matched!) and put them on the kids table. I saw there was maybe more soup than they wanted and so then I grabbed a few slices of bread to leave in the sauce to give them another option to fill up on. I also put the rest of the rice mix and soup into two cute little containers to give them to opportunity to serve themselves more (if they liked it) and of course hoping this would encourage them to eat what they had…so they could get more.

I then got them each a glass of water.

Then I walked up towards my office, called out something like, “Your food might get cold if you don’t eat it fast!” and disappeared in my office…

…and so far so good…I started typing this immediately upon getting to my computer and I have heard no loud protesting voices and only ONE kid come into my office. The one kid came in, and he gave me a hug (score!). I asked him if he was done ready to brush teeth, and he said he didn’t eat his dinner, so I explained that meant that he had to leave. I declared he is only allowed in my office after he brushes his teeth, and he can’t do that until he eats his dinner. It’s about 12 after 8pm now..I’ll add updates as they come! We will see if this works…

8:14pm: Husband came upstairs and reported that they are eating..pretty sure they all are but they also started a movie. I’m still taking it as a win if they are eating!

8:44pm: It looks like it partially worked…son refused it and found a marshmallow, so he is going crazy. Only good in that is his sisters are working together to stop his destruction (aka throwing their toys away). Entertaining, but I wish that he ate!

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Reading “The Red Tent”, Interesting Stories New To Me

The Red TentI went on a women’s retreat recently, it was about 3 weeks ago. I went to an island just a little ways from Seattle where I live to spend a few days with a lot of other women, about 30. It was based on the “Warrior Goddess Training” book which I’m going to start reading soon, but I had to first write about The Red Tent because I find it so interesting.

I’m going to start this with letting you know, that I don’t read all that much. Recently most of my reading had been word by word for my son, who is in speech therapy, so that he can learn how to both read (he declared he wants to by the time he is 5) and pronounce words being spoken using the BOB books. When someone recommended I read this The Red Tent book though I was ready. I got it the day after getting back from the retreat, or was it the same day?

For me this book is fabulous…I have never read the bible. On the back it will tell you how it is: “a valuable achievment in modern fiction: a new view of biblical women’s society.”. I am at the time of writing this about 2/3 of the way finished. It is a “fiction” book and this is not my normal reading preference. I love to read books about “real” things with tips about how to become better, but this book is interesting me because to me it is a digest-able interpretation of stories from the bible which appear to be really important to other people. I was not raised a Christian or any other kind of religion that required that I know biblical stories at all, and only recently through my experiences with CSL/Religious Science/Science of Mind have I even been curious. I might even be soon taking a class that is about the bible, though still not a typical Christian bible study.

Anyway, I do really like this book. It is telling stories of Jacob, Joseph and more from the perspective of Dinah. Her perspective is an interesting one that starts out as a child, with reverence to her “mothers” and a perspective that amazingly makes it all seem “ok”, at least in the beginning. It was fun to mention things about it to my husband who has much more awareness of the bible’s stories, and to learn about how well it does match up with what the book says. It’s a great intro for me into learning it and getting more of a women’s perspective that I can understand and easily consume as a reader. It even got me to re-download the GoodReads app on my phone just so I could update how far I was!

I highly recommend it and plan to pass it to my daughters when they are of an age that it isn’t “too” disturbing…because yes it gets to some of those parts. Have you read it? What did you think? I’d love to discuss in the comments if you want to share!

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Family/Plants/Family/Rocks/Plants = Perfect Day For Me!!

Today was amazing!! I started early, for a Saturday.

Family:
All five of us went to a potluck brunch and had a lovely time with lots of other families that we have gotten to know the last few years. After this we went home.

Plants:
Once home, I spent some time in the garden. I got some help from my younger daughter too, so technically I also got some more family time too! It started out kind of sad when we realized that our corn had been chomped on by something, so that was sad, but I found the rest of the corn seeds and planted more. I did a little research and think it was a crow that did it, I tried to send messages to the one I saw on our chimney and mentally explained that the plants meant a lot to the family, hopefully he/she is as perceptive as I believe and understood me!

I decided to then tackle the lilies. This little bunch of them really looked like they needed space!:

Crowded Lilies

I dug up the bunch of crowded Stargazer Lilies that aren’t doing so well, split them up, and replanted them where they have more room, a very satisfying job! I also put two of them into pots for my youngest as she asked me to. I just hope we remember which pots are the lilies! I’ll need to get some masking tape or something to mark them!

Family:
Once I finished with the lilies it was time to go to grandma’s house. Once we got there I got to spend some time in her garden too, so this one is also combines family and plant time. First I cleared out a bunch of morning glory from where the recently planted raspberries are planted, and then did a bit of trimming away of ivy and other plants that blocked paths etc. In the end I got five tomato plants too, score! I left from here with my older daughter, and went on to our next adventure.

Rocks:
I took her to the NW Rockhunter Shop! It was just last week that I discovered it and now I’ve taken both of my daughters here as well, and they definitely share my love of colorful rocks and learning about them. On top of this there was a very friendly dog (who is always there, he’s awesome!) and also there was a recently adopted kitten today!

Rockhunting

After leaving the store my daughter agreed to go to a restaurant that we hadn’t been to before, it was near where we “thought” we were going and it was great! We both really liked it and I enjoyed being in a “hip” Pho restaurant that reminded me of some of the restaurants I used to go to when I lived in NYC, and to share the experience with my very grateful daughter who is normally quite picky made it even better!!

Plants:
Once we got home I got started with the tomatoes right away…I wanted them to get into the fresh soil/compost and get busy making us tomatoes! I started out looking for some bigger pots..I only found about 3, and so I started doing some investigating. I had a few plants that I thought would be good companions, so I did some research and also while I was looking for decent companions I also found a couple more medium sized pots. I thought it was more than I needed! I was also pleasantly surprised to see this!:

First Lavender Flower of 2016

I laughed out loud when I saw the flower! I had been convinced it was rosemary, I looked up what rosemary flowers look like and sniffed the flower and (of course) it is definitely lavender. I thought it was so funny because I have been trying to get another of my lavender plants to bloom (unsuccessfully) for years!! This one was adopted a few weeks ago when I found it on and old toy outside of my sons preschool. I remember them telling me it was lavender and still being convinced it was rosemary…well that shows me!!

My next surprise was when I got started with the tomatoes, what I thought was five tomato starts, was actually closer to 12! Each of the 5 little containers with the starts had 2-3 strong tomato starts in it! I planted about four with either the lavender or oregano that I had in pots already and used the rest of the potting/compost that I had putting the rest of them in the big and medium sized pots that I found. I used every single one and they all are now happily planted either in a bigger container and less root competition or alongside so plants that will hopefully be good companions.

I feel absolutely exhilarated at such a wonderful day, my cup is completely filled up with both family and plant time, both of which make me so happy! Plus I got some one on one time with each of my daughters today, one at the rock store and the other in the garden. I had to write it so that I can always look back and remember, I want to make sure I have a LOT more days like this!

I hope that you had and amazing day too and that tomorrow is even better for all of us!! Maybe I’ll get some laundry or dishes done even, lol!! Today I didn’t have any symptoms come up related to Multiple Sclerosis but I really believe that it is days well spent like this one that help me to stay as healthy as I am.

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