Monday, June 29, 2015

GATHER / pure joy

When was the last time you felt PURE JOY?

I was listening to one of my favorite podcasts, Being Boss [direct episode link here]. Kathleen and Emily were interviewing the incredibly inspiring Charlene Johnson. Charlene talked about creating goals to live a life we are proud and excited to live. Goals are my jam. I mean I JAMMMMMMM on goals, they make me tingle and giggly and so excited for the future ahead of me.

Charlene created this sheet that ranks ten areas of your life by....

One of my lowest scores categories was PURE JOY. I had to pause, digest, and get real....why and how am I putting joy on the back burner of my life?

So this week, in an effort to do something that would just light me up and put some of that joy in my heart, I purchased this gorgeous Anna Joyce clutch. It actually puts a smile on my face every time it makes it out of my bag. It felt so good to just buy something because it was beautiful and I knew it would continuously bring a smile to my face whenever I went somewhere.

Have you been keeping JOY off your to do list? Give in, just a little, treat yourself to that thing that would bring a huge smile to your face and a big sigh of surrender to all the hard work you've been doing. YOU DESERVE IT, you really really do.

Saturday, June 27, 2015

POUR / birthday biscuits and gravy

This receipt comes from SpoonForkBacon. Everything on their blog is drool worthy. Every. Time. This was such a delicious recipe and it took about 15 minutes from start to finish (not including the time for biscuits).

*we cheated a little since, I've been under the weather and making biscuits was at the bottom of my to do right now list, sometimes a girl just needs a little help. Biscuits from FarmShop at the Brentwood Country Mart.

Biscuits and Gravy with a fried egg *because it's Thom's birthday and that's they way we roll

serves 2 to 4


2 cups all purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) cold unsalted butter, cut into small cubes
1/4 cup shortening
1/2 cup heavy cream plus more for brushing

sausage gravy

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 garlic clove, minced
6 ounces breakfast sausage (We got some organic breakfast sausage from Whole Foods)
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 1/2 tablespoons all purpose flour
1 1/3 cup whole milk
salt and pepper to taste
1 tablespoon sliced chives, optional
1 teaspoon mince thyme, optional

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
2. Place flour, baking powder and salt in a mixing bowl and whisk together. Add butter and shortening and cut into the dry mixture, until a coarse mealy texture forms. Stir in cream until just incorporated and turn mixture out onto a clean and lightly floured surface. Knead until the dough just comes together, make sure not to overwork.
3. Roll dough until about 1"x 5" x 9" rectangle and fold into thirds, gently roll dough until 1" thick and fold again into thirds again, the other direction
4. Roll dough until 1 1/2" thick and cut into four equal pieces. Place biscuits onto a baking sheets, lined with parchment paper and place in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.
5. Remove from the refrigerator and brush the surface of each biscuit with cream. Place them in the oven and bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until the biscuits have risen and are golden brown.
6. Set aside and allow biscuits to cool slightly, about 5-7 minutes.
7. [This is where I started today] For gravy: Pour oil into a saucepan and place over medium-high heat. Add garlic and saute for 1 minute. Add sausage and continue to saute, while crumbling the sausage.
8. Once the sausage has browned, about 3 to 4 minutes, remove from heat and set aside. Drain the grease from saucepan.
9. Add butter and melt. Whisk in the flour and continue for 2 to 3 minutes to cook out the raw flour taste.
10. Whisk in the milk until no lumps remain. Season with salt and pepper. Lower heat to medium and continue to stir until gravy thickens, about 3 to 4 minutes. Stir sausage back into the gravy and add herbs, if using.
11. Simmer gravy for 2 to 3 minutes and adjust seasoning.
12. To serve, place biscuits onto a platter or individual, shallow dishes and cover with sausage gravy. Serve immediately.

We had these with some fried eggs, some hot sauce, grilled asparagus, and strawberries for some color!

Thursday, June 25, 2015

GATHER / show some love

Here begins my blog series called Show Some Love. These are going to be little bonus posts that highlight a favorite stationery designer or card in just a few words. Happy Thursday! 

I've always got a chuckle for a Sapling Press card. These lovelies are made by Lisa Cairns Krowinski in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Lisa is a letterpress lover who "makes cards you give that one friend who truly gets it. You know the one." I love love love these cards; they make my sides hurt with laughter.

Monday, June 22, 2015

GATHER / twyla tharp and the creative habit : part two

16. What are your attitudes towards: money, power, praise, rivals, work, play?

Money: terrified, chained, and a slave to
Power: don't need it. not necessary to be big and expansive
Praise: needed, earned, deeply appreciated
Rivals: wasted energy, commits me to jealously, robber of creativity
Work: necessary to live and thrive
Play: always, lightness, expansiveness, creativity lives here

17. Which artists do you admire most? 

Filmmakers: Pedro Almoldovar, Richard Linklater
Yoga Teachers: Elena Brower, Stephanie Snyder, May Beth LaRue, Laura Conley, Brianna Turpin
Goal Coach: Jacki Carr
My mom, sister, grandmother, and boyfriend who are all gifted artists who are changing the world one person at a time 

18. Why are they your role models?  

They're all community connectors, teachers, challengers, healers, supremely artistic, entrepreneurs, who are leading the charge in their respective industries. These are the game changers.

19. What do you and your role models have in common? 

We all have unique gifts that we are offering the world. We are honing and constantly refining how we show up in the world. We are creating. We are challenging. We are constantly learning. We are not perfect. We are artistic. We are writers, entrepreneurs, and game changers. 

20. Does anyone in your life regularly inspire you? 

EVERYONE, I mean that with the utmost sincerity. I am constantly finding inspiration among the incredible community and family I have built into my life. They are my guiding lights and my biggest fans.

21. Who is your muse? 

My little sister. She is magic and wondrous and fueled by what feels good. 

22. Define muse. 

Someone who is living in alignment with their truth. 

23. When confronted with superior intelligence or talent, how do you respond? 

In awe. I feel small and usually will underestimate my contribution in lieu of someone else's gifts to the world. 

24. When faced with stupidity, hostility, intransigence, laziness, how do you respond? 

Stupidity: Impatience and frustration
Hostility: I shut down, I loathe confrontation
Intransigence: Confusion, there are always two sides and multiple avenues for achieving the same result
Laziness: Zero Tolerance. There is no room to be lazy in life; you should always be seeking a way to be bigger, better, and more in service to those around you. 

25. When faced with impending success or the threat of failure, how do you respond? 

Paralysis. I am always scared of failing AND succeeding. It's a double edged sword. 

26. When you work, do you love to process or the result? 

The process, always the process, the result is never as satisfying as the route in which I got there. 

27. At what moments do you feel reach exceeds your grasp? 

When I don't know what the next step is. When I don't have a plan. When I try and things fail. 

28. What is your ideal creative activity? 

Collage. It's been in my life since I was very young. I have always been great at using other's artistic work and creating new art from it. I have always wanted to be in service of other's creativity and artistry. 

29. What is your greatest fear? 

That I will never be truly happy and proud of what I have created in this world. 

30. What is the likelihood of either of the answers to the previous two questions happening? 

Mostly zilch. Fear is just something in the way of what I am already doing. It's a mechanism to rob me of creativity and confidence. Writing this made me realize that I love the freedom of expression that comes through collage, I should be doing that more. 

31. Which of your answers would you most like to change? 

I would love to change my answer to my greatest fear. Fear is a mirage. 

32. What is your idea of mastery? 


33. What is your greatest dream? 

To be remembered by those I love and have yet to love as someone who listened, fought for, hugged, deeply loved, challenged, held, surrendered to, and grew from.

Friday, June 12, 2015

POUR / seven spoons baking

There was a cool breeze coming through my kitchen window and the air softly kissed my cheek. These moments, oh these moments. I love the warmth that an oven creates in a small kitchen. I love that I can smell coconut about to start baking. I love that in a hour I will get to fully indulge in something delicious. Today, take a moment, think of something that you crave and indulge in it.

This recipe was adapted on the Seven Spoons blog. Tara O'Brady's blog is a recent discovery and I cannot get enough. She has such poignant and beautiful things to say about food, family, and everyday thoughts. She has also just written her first cookbook, affectionally called Seven Spoons, I hope to add it to my bookshelf soon.

Bill Granger's Coconut Bread
adapted from the original

2 large eggs
1 1/4 cups milk
Seeds scraped from half a vanilla bean (I substituted 1 teaspoon vanilla extract)
2 1/2 cups flour, more dusting for pan
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup superfine sugar
5 ounces flaked coconut (around 1 1/2 cups)
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled
Soft butter for greasing the pan

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees fahrenheit.

In a small bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk and vanilla seeds. Set aside.

In a large bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, cinnamon and salt. Stir in the sugar and coconut. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients, and slowly add the egg mixture, stirring until just combined. Fold in the melted butter, being careful not to overmix.

Grease and flour a 8x4 inch loaf pan. Pour in the batter and bake un the preheated oven until the loaf is golden and a cake tester inserted into the middle comes out clean, around 1 hour. Remove from the oven and allow to cool in its pan for five minutes, then turn it out onto a wire rack. Position is again side up to cool a bit more.

Slice thickly and toast or serve as is.

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

GATHER / core desired feelings JUNE EDITION

This month it's all about these five things. 

[defining these words has become such a great pleasure, try it at home; words can take on so much meaning when you examine how they make you feel] 

JOY: to experience great pleasure (YES, please!) 

TRUST: assured reliance on the truth of something 

LOVE: the object of devotion 

CONNECTION: joining together in intimacy 

HOME: in harmony with your surroundings; at ease 

We are making big things happen in our Los Angeles family this month. I want to make sure I can hold space for the things that are most important, not beat myself for the ways in which I tell myself I am not doing enough. Baby steps and deep breaths to that big future. It's all coming. 

How do YOU WANT TO FEEL this month?

Monday, June 8, 2015

GATHER / five years

This one was really just for me. A moment of reflection on an accelerated life among this concrete jungle called Los Angeles. It's been five long and simultaneously short, wondrous, arduous, lonely, and lovely years.

cheers to our journey together.

you've given me....

six different homes

a relationship that has taught me so much about of the power of patience, forgiveness, and self worth

a network of the most incredible women I've ever known

a tribe of teachers, mentors, and heroes

a quiet space i continue to fight to call my own

a deeper connection to my mat

an ever-evolving connection to self

a lesson in choice - to know that I can always choose to walk in another other direction

isolation - and how it can sometimes be a gift of creation

the only constant is CHANGE. lots and lots of change.

family is and always will be the guiding force in my life

a path to teaching and sharing this yoga practice with others

ocean breezes and crashing waves

a trip to the ER - a lesson in loving

declaring my worth - nothing should be done for free - unless it feels good to give

a wicked sense of direction - no maps needed are required to find my way

an ever evloving sense of purpose

a job on a deeply wonderful show that I will never forget

a lot of late night Del Taco

dark theaters, great movies, and a partner in crime to enjoy them with

avenues of self exploration - a lot of SOUL SEARCHING

finding pleasure in the most unexpected of places

a deeper connection to my grandparents

the chance to live near my sister again - to tell her how much I truly love her

CONNECTION amidst a lot of disconnection

six jobs - all teaching me strong lessons

merit badges of strength

Hollywood - enough said

bumpy sidewalks

a filthy mouth in traffic

I was looking through our photos from the last five years and there are faces I remember, moments I will never forget, lots of standing in lines (mostly for movies I've already seen), dinners with friends who became like family, Thom....lots and lots of Thom, impromptu trips mostly along the coastline, visiting my family at home, an an ever changing expression on my face. Although one thing remains strong, I smile, a lot. I mean most of the time. Through it all, I've always retained that sense of momentary ease.

How does it feel to be where you are? Can you take yourself back over the last few years? Gazing over those years filled me with a deep sense of gratitude for where I have been and a clear and shining vision of the life I want to create moving forward. Try looking back, even if only to give yourself credit for how you got here. It helps us to keep some perspective and celebrate how far we've come.