Thursday, August 28, 2014

Artisan Bread


I posted a photo of this bread some time ago on my instagram page and had a few requests for the recipe. If you enjoy fresh, homemade bread (ummm if you have a pulse I think you fit in this category) that is hard to mess up then read on.

 


Artisan Bread
 
3 c flour
1 t salt
1/4 t yeast
Mix together.
 
Add 1 1/2 c hot water and stir until combined. Use your hands to knead everything together into a ball. Place in a bowl, cover with a towel and let sit on the counter for 12-16 hours.
 
Dump out on a floured board and add additional flour until the dough is no longer goopy.
 
Add a bit of flour into the bowl it had been sitting in, put dough back in bowl and cover again with a towel. (this can be done a few minutes before backing or an hour or two)
 
Preheat Le Crueset (or whatever dutch oven you have) in oven to 425 degrees.
 
Once preheated, place the dough in the Le Crueset and bake, covered, for 30 minutes.
 
Bake, uncovered, for 10 minutes.
 
Enjoy!! 
 
**This recipe loves to have spices, cheese, or herbs added to the dough. Simply sprinkle in your favorites when you blend all the ingredients and let me know if you find a real winning combo.**
 


Monday, August 25, 2014

Baby Girl Daydreams

This baby girl is coming in about 30 days....which makes me smile just to type. I cannot wait to have her here. These days my mind is on constant replay of what the day/night of her birth might be like. I envision holding her little body and seeing her perfect little face for the first time as I say in my heart to her "You are mine and I love you more than you ever will know".  For me those first few days have a magic to them that nothing else in life can touch.
   This Summer caught me off guard with the level of involvement it required. I didn't fill my calendar up with countless activities but the truth of growing up and having three children in this world just means life is full. It was full. It was lovely. Now school has started for two of my littles this past week so schedules have no potential of slowing down. Slow living and empty schedules satisfy me for a sliver of time, but if you know me well at all you know I thrive in the full.

 But I do have this baby coming.

I want to have slow time to just daydream about her, plan for her and ready myself for a new gift to be mama to.


   A laundry basket filled with the clothes my other girls have worn sits in the nursery closet waiting for me to find more baby hangers to hang them on. (anyone have a load of baby hangers they no longer want??) Often times with new babies coming the easiest way for me to feel "ready" for them or perhaps in touch with the reality that they will be in my arms soon, is to purchase items for them. I remember visiting Baby Gap right before Vera was born and buying a few little items that would be just for her. As I was washing the baby clothes I came across those items and smiled in remembrance. I like preparing for my babies. Getting our home ready to be their home. But this time around I feel flustered or disorganized or without the funds to fully prepare in the fashion I usually have. Part of me feels like, why do I need to spend money to get ready for a new baby....that sounds shallow and greedy. And part of me feels like, I want this baby girl to feel as planned for and thought about as my other three.....can't she have a few fresh items of her own?
    This morning I have already dropped my oldest babe off at school for the whole day. It still makes me teary if I think about it too long. I am sitting across from my current baby girl as she literally eats cream cheese from the tub with a butter knife as the robotic sounds of Mario Bros. is serenading us from the other room as my boy gets his game time on. This season is a good one. Soon I will face another new season and again adjust my sails to the new life and role I am called to. I fear change and welcome it in the same breath. Fear the unknown, grieve the past rhythms' beauty and welcome the new pattern and beat change brings me.
   Baby girl, if you ever read this please know that if you come home from the hospital in the same outfit that Vera did, or are wrapped in hand-me-down blankets for your whole infancy, my love for you is as fresh and soaked in delight as it has ever been for my babies! I have loved spending this slice of sweet morning daydreaming about you.

Saturday, August 23, 2014

School

                Two of my babes started school this week. Pregnancy hormones are helping no one.



 

 






 

 

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

The longings we face

  Part of my nighttime ritual involves filling my mind with Instagram images. It relaxes me, it inspires me and connects me to new worlds. Through the rabbit trails of Instagram I chanced upon a young woman's blog. The way in which she wrote made it impossible for me to stop clicking on the small glowing titles on my phone's screen. The content was common-parenting posts, recipe ideas-but how she wrote captured me.

  The more I devoured her every word the more I found myself aching to be gifted in crafting words. I tried to study her style. The way she wrote I didn't know was allowed with words, grammar and sentences.

 Words, written words, always make me feel limited. I fear being grammatically incorrect (and believe me I know that time and time again I am).  My high school English teacher had many words with me about my confusion with grammer. I blame it on being bumped up to advance placement at odd times that somehow made me leap frog past the basics, but in truth it probably is my lack of interest in the rules and structure of something so personal as writing. How can a creative outlet have rules? It defeats the very purpose of it right? (English majors everywhere are shouting NO NO NO-and I believe you) I think this insecurity with form caused me to fall in love with poetry's unstructured nature. I felt the freedom to say what I wanted in any manner I selected. Thoughts flowing-not in a capitalize the first letter and end with a period rigidness-but in an express what you want how you want format.  At times I wanted to use all lowercase because my mind reads capitalization with a stronger voice and having the gentle word of beating writing Beating made it sound off in my head from how I wanted it to. I loved poetry. I excelled in poetry. I felt secure within the boundaries and could then just write.

 I could sense this same feel of freedom as I read her brilliant writing. She was free. She was more herself, the limits enabled her form.

It made me feel small. Without a talent worth using.

 A silly thought indeed. Truthfully one I rarely battle. I like how I am wired and gifted. But that night I laid in bed with my small feeling self propped up on my left arm until it went all tingling and worn. My mind felt similar. Tingly with the thrill of interacting with such talent. Tingly with the endless avenues that were still left for me to discover in this field of written art. And worn.  Worn because I had so much I wanted for myself in that moment-and much of it would never be realized. I don't have a medium-a microphone as powerful.

  I wanted to roll out of bed, turn on the hall light and fill page upon page with lists of my desires in that very moment. Lists help steady me when excitement, inspiration, daunting tasks or flooding thoughts leave no room in my mind for anything else. But I battled the thought. Logically I needed sleep. At 34 weeks pregnant every moment of rest I could get needed to be used entirely. Nate would worry to wake and not find me next to him. As I laid there with my logic I heard a muffled cry.

 I sprang up to respond. Relieved to have a valid reason to rise. Sweet Vera had fallen out of her bed and sat huddled on the ground-not sure how to fix the problem herself. Just like me. Sitting stuck between sleep, dreaming, action and immobility. Just crying enough to be dealt with but not enough to stir anyone else. I scooped her up-thankful to have her little frame curved into mine. I held her-like He was holding me. Clarity deep and thick hit-This is enough for you because I chose it for you. "Equipped for every good work...." Let go of equipped for each fancy, every desire, this world so full of options....stick to the good work I called You to. I cried over the little blonde curls of a heavy hot body. Thankful that I always find my landing spot. Not because I am an expert flyer but because it all has been charted out for me....before I even had form.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Color Tattoo Eyeshadow by Maybelline

 
 

A quick, easy and inexpensive way to get ready in the morning. These Color Tattoos come in a variety of color options and stay on for a very long time. I use either my finger or a small fluffy brush to apply to my whole eyelid. I really like this color Bad to the Bronze and I use it as a base for eye shadows. I find it adds some welcome dimension and staying power throughout the day.


Any great priced makeup items you use?