Author Archives: des

28/52


bean28-52

28-52a portrait | once a week | every week | in 2014. |

Sorry for the quiet over here. I recently explained it to a friend that I am just feeling like my spirit is needing a bit of stillness in preparation for something. I’ve been doing lots of reading, getting on the floor playing and relaxing in the sunshine. This weekend the reason came. The girls and I are getting ready to hop on a red eye tonight to head home to be with my mom as she goes into open heart surgery. We will be there to help her mend, take care of her garden and play in the childhood home I grew up in…its a big delight to see my children run and laugh down the halls just as I did. That home holds many stories.

We do not know when we will be returning and I will be solo parenting out of our normal rhythm for weeks on end until the time feels right to return home. This also means flying with 2 children, one being totally unpredictable!  Please send your thoughts and funny stories to keep me entertained in the small moments I will have to myself. I will be trying my best to continue with The 52 Project and blogging but will admit that most of the photos will most likely be coming from my phone, like the ones above.

LUCY / had the role of the narrator in her recent 2 week drama camp which ended in a wonderful performance of the ‘The Slightly Twisted Gingerbread Kid’. She blew us away! You can see the pride in her face.

ANAïS / summer is in full swing here and she has been enjoying playing the back with the big kids, she opts for a cooler full of water instead of super soakers.

linking up with Practising Simplicity

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27/52

27/52 | WORKHOUSEBLOG27/52 | WORKHOUSEBLOG

| a portrait | once a week | every week | in 2014. |

LUCY / Fourth of July, need I say anymore? Our neighborhood is one of the select few in the area where fireworks are allowed and people here seem to go all out, so we joined in on the fun. Along with an All-American BBQ and ice cream with sprinkles.

ANAïS / happily eating a rock she found on the beach, she has a savory tooth so I am assuming its salt water taste appealed to her palette.

linking up with Practising Simplicity 

. . .

Sorry things have been so quiet around here, summer seems to take hold and get the better of me. As well as reading a lot of very introspective books that have me questioning deeply and personally, something I am looking forward to sharing with you in the very near future.

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26/52

26/52 | workhouseblog 26/52 | workhouseblog

| a portrait | once a week | every week | in 2014. |

Summer is here and we are spending most of our days outdoors even if its simply just being out in the yard. My morning ritual is walking alone out back with a cup of tea to check on the vegetable garden and marvel at its growth overnight. Then I go back inside to make breakfast and then we all head out to the backyard to eat, talk about our dreams and discuss what we are going to do with our day. My daily request is always a nap.

LUCY / waiting for the sprinkler to makes its way over her, followed by a joyous scream and beaming smile. There are usually all sorts of containers, funnels and spoons spread about the yard but this day I got out before the toy scatter.

ANAïS / joining me in the evenings to water the garden rushing to get her shovel before I am too far off. She digs near the planters waiting for the little streams of water to make their way to her so she can mix the earth and water together.

linking up with Practising Simplicity

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birthday // big brother

date nut bread | workhouseblog date nut bread | workhouseblogMy eldest brother is one of my most favorite people in my life. He has a boisterous laugh and a personality that fills any room. When I was little he used to pretend to send my letters to Santa and in return I would make him Rush and AC/DC stickers out of sticky labels my 2nd grade teacher would give me. He has given me advice, remained young at heart and has been by my side forever. We have weathered our shares of storms, losses and failures but we also have had numerous celebrations together; winning a ton of tickets at whack-a-mole, having children, watching each other graduated from college, learning to drive a manual (not so good on my end), road trips and birthdays. This Sunday is his.

His wish is to go float, so we are, I am more than thrilled to be able to give him that experience along with a homemade cake. Its the least I can do afterall he’s been there for almost all my break-ups, my teenage angst and my many other annoying little sister habits/situations. Happiest Birthdays to you, Brian! May this year find you new adventures, incredible happiness and more loaves of date nut bread! We love you.

In honor of his birthday I thought I would share one of his favorite quick bread recipes, something that he remembers fondly from his childhood. I was introduced to this Date Nut Bread recipe by (his) mom on a recent trip here to the PNW, she made it several times in her short stay and since being handed down the recipe we too have made it several more times in the span of a few weeks. Lucy is a gigantic fan of muffins so we gave it a go in tins, if doing the same I would highly recommend using liners as this a very sticky, gooey bread, I  however, prefer it as a loaf as the recipes states.

Date Nut Bread

3/4 C chopped nuts (we used walnuts)
1 C chopped dates (medjools)
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 C butter
3/4 C boiling water
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
1 C sugar
1 1/2 C sifted all purpose flour

For a gluten free bread
substitute all purpose flour for
1 C oat flour
1/2 C quinoa flakes or flour

Combine nuts, dates, soda and salt in a mixing bowl. Add butter and boiling water; let mixture stand for 15 minutes. Stir to blend. In a separate bowl beat the eggs slightly, add the vanilla. Stir in the sugar and add the sifted flour. Add this to the date mixture. Do not over mix. Place in a loaf pan at 350 degrees for 1 hour or until a toothpick comes out clean when inserted. Cool before removing.

 

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making it with stephany

stephany |workhouseblogMan. This girl rocks my socks off! I met Stephany years ago at a wedding photography workshop, I was there from Seattle, she was there from Minnesota (she’s referred to as ‘Minnesota, Yo!’ in my house). It was my first extended time away since becoming a mom and not only was I looking forward to some industry insight but I was also hoping to de-mom a bit while I staying at super posh luxury hotel..luckily for me, Stephany came to do the same! We instantly hit it off and have remained friends after all these years.

After getting to know her, outside of photography, I have learned that she can make just about anything- from awesome fondant robot cakes to cocktails, to amazing glass glitter deer heads. And she is amazing ON camera! She recently created ‘Making It with Stephany‘, a youtube channel filled with diy tutorials that are delightfully entertaining and show off her big heart and quirky personality.  Seriously, so good! I am kindly asking my readers to please help make some big dreams come true for Stephany, she needs support in ways that only come from numbers; followers, visits, likes, comments, views. You can support her in any of your favorite social media platforms and please tell a friend or 50 do to the same. There are some exciting prospects that can come from your support and I know that she would graciously thank each and every one of you by buying you a shot. And by goodness, the girl deserves it! Many thanks in advance! x

Finding Stephany:
- Her Site
-She’s on Instagram
-She’s on The FB
-Of course she’s on YouTube
-And don’t forget her on Pinterest

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25/52

bean25/52 | workhouseblog bird25/52 | workhouseblog| a portrait | once a week | every week | in 2014. |

LUCY / if this isn’t a sign that she could quite possibly be the most magical child ever, then I don’t know what else to say. She found this ROCK at the beach this week. Perfectly round, like a pearl, I have never seen such a thing in my whole life, “and you’re so much older than me”, she said, “you’ve been around for a long time”.

ANAïS / she swings on this tire almost every day, she is on the look out for birds. Lucy is able to make her belly laugh in the silliest of ways, I am almost positive that’s why the birds come to visit.

linking up with Practising Simplicity

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treats // mango peach fruit leather

mango peach leather | workhouseblogmango peach leather | workhouseblogmango peach leather | workhouseblogmango peach leather | workhouseblog

Several times throughout the summer my mom sends the girls giant boxes of fruit from her backyard garden, this past week we received a package of donut peaches. Most of the fruit survives but the casualties (the bruised, smashed guys) get turned into fruit leather. This go around we opted for mango peach. Fruit leather is so very simple that I let Lucy make it all on her own with a bit of supervision- that mostly looks like me sitting at the dining table drinking tea and reminding her to put the lid on the vitamix. These were a hit and were gone within a day or two. 

MANGO PEACH FRUIT LEATHER
2 ripe mangos cubed
2 cups ripe peaches, skins removes and sliced

Blend in a high speed blender or food processor until pureed. Line dehydrator trays with non stick mats or parchment paper (if baking, silpat or parchment will work on a cookie sheet). Spread fruit puree evenly, give the tray a gentle tap to smooth out the mixture. Place in dehydrator, set on 115 degrees for 4-6 hours. If using an oven, set at 175 for 4-6 hours. Your fruit leather is done it when it is dry and peels easily from the pan.

Transfer dried fruit sheets to waxed paper (if you used a baking mat) and cut into strips with a pizza cutter or kitchen shears. You can also cut them into shapes with cookie cutters. Store fruit leather in an air tight container or just devour.

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24/52

bean24/52 | workhouseblog bird24/52 | workhouseblog| a portrait | once a week | every week | in 2014. |

Father’s Day edition. We spent the first half of the day exploring low tide. Lucy found two jellyfish, crabs and was able to hold some sea stars that some local divers had found in the Sound. The little one was captivated by the crowds of people and big kids throwing large pieces of kelp about.

LUCY | sporting her new haircut and growning up before our eyes. Every morning she seems more mature and bigger than the evening before. Her teeth are constantly moving, changing her smile; her nose is now taking on a little bit more definition. Luckily, she still puts up with our constant complaints about it all happening so quickly.

ANAïS |  she says “DAD!” no less than 500x a day. First thing in the morning, “Dad!”, if the phone rings. “Dad!”, if she hears a car door close, if I make a call, if we step outside or just for fun, “Dad, Dad, Dad!”. I suppose for him there is really no better sound. They have been best buddies from the get go.

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intentional living // a practice

workhouseblogThroughout my life there have been many moments when holding an intention has pulled me through. I may not have had the easiest of childhoods but envisioning what kind of life I wanted when I grew up is what kept my spirits up and my heart softened. Often people ask how I’ve created so much peace and calmness around me and my family, holding an intention is the first answer I always give. My one true intention that I have held fast for my entire life is to be happy, to live a happy life. When things were challenging and dark I would switch my focus to what it was that I wanted to desperately feel and held it tight in my heart. I am by no means saying that my life is perfect or without struggles but I will gladly state that I am indeed happy and because of it there is a sweetness that surrounds me and my family.

When searching for what to hold onto be aware of your true self, don’t hold onto any unrealistic expectations that you or others have for you. Dig down deep and listen to your spirit. What do you hear? What do you see? I often ask people to make a list of what they want to change or experience, what does that: feel like, look like, smell like and taste like? What would you value most about your hopes?  What does it mean for you? Hold onto that. Say it aloud. Meditate. Pray. Share it with those who would support you and your intention.

I some times make a list of my values of a particular situation or goal, this can help shed light and give me insight of what it is that I truly desire. Be it hopes for my personal life, work, friendships, creativity, the list could go on and on. Staying mindful to what sort of emotional state or place I am in in my  life at the time can help me center with what is really attainable for me. I try my best to find the simplest thing to hold onto, for example my intention to be happy, it encompasses as a whole and yet is something familiar and easy to connect to. It is not a selfish desire for one’s self but a hope that I have the power to create what is meaningful and important for myself and my family.

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gratitude // no. 19

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There has been a pesky creature digging in our garden, I tied up our garden with with twine earlier last week but whatever it is it some how managed to force its way through this weekend trampling and digging up our freshly sprouted starts. Total bum deal. Sunday the mister walked up to the hardware store to buy some supplies to eradicate the issue, I on the other hand was ready to give up and eat my feelings with donuts, the former was the proper way to deal. Here’s to hoping that the problem has been solved, our growing season is short here in the PNW and if we don’t get things up and growing soon we will be out of luck.

We had a lovely low key weekend: yard work, basking in the sun while the girls played with the hose and random plastic containers filled with water and bubbles, grass and whatever else springtime potions are made of. I was also able to pass along a long standing tradition of gifting my niece with [black] pearl earrings for graduation, something my father started with my older sisters, my sister did for me and now  I was able to do for her. Traditions like that are my favorite. We then ate our weight in Korean BBQ and came home to make bubble tea.

Overall a pretty perfect weekend including the fact that me and the mister made this to go along with an evening of binge watching the new season of ‘Orange is the New Black’. Aye aye aye.

the gratitude list:
-this is the last week of school
-a summer of endless possibilities is awaiting
-the yard looks amazing
-blessed for a shared intention for partnership
-a daughter who is incredibly creative and quick witted
-a daughter who has a giant smile, wants to cuddle endlessly and is
learning her animal sounds, cats say ‘hi’ fyi
-sunday morning huddled in bed, two sleeping, one reading and one pinning the
morning away
-cups of earl grey with milk
-homemade Vietnamese iced coffee
-cool ocean breezes
-filling our home with houseplants. another fiddle leaf fig acquired and then some
-receiving a large order of books

What are you starting your week grateful for? Big or small. Things that fill your soul
and make life as an adult that much more doable.

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