Wednesday, March 31, 2010

One Small Change Update and Farewell March

On this last day of March I think back through so many memories and there are a lot that come from our One Small Change.
I really focused on slowing down, planning and thinking ahead so my family may eat more whole foods in our ONE SMALL CHANGE rather than those quick fixes in flash that are so easy for this on the go Momma to grab.

Our Small change list
  • We make all our own bread now. I found this Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day and am is really that easy and I just found out that they have a new cookbook Healthy Bread in Five...on my wish list. We started with the basic recipe to get the rhythm, now we are using the Whole Wheat recipe soo good!
  • The Farmer's Market opened, so we have an abundance of local produce and have plans to get there every Saturday morning. There is also a neighborhood market on Wednesdays we caught today.
  • We have created a weekly meal rhythm that has helped me plan and prepare. It has also helped with stocking of the pantry and fridge...
  • All veggie trimmings are saved for stock
  • New rule...all left overs are to be eaten...I try and come up with creative ways to use them with how much care we put into our food, we want zero to go to waste.
  • Pizza night (Sat.) all from scratch. this moment
I think getting organized was the most difficult, but have made some small changes and am having fun making connections with the farmers' weekly at the market. A big change is we are eating less meat at our table. We are meat eaters and have only been consumers of grass fed beef and organic poultry for some time last stage of the change will be to buy our meat from Afton Field Farm. We did buy an organic pasture chicken from a different local farm at the market week before last and I have made 4 meals from that one bird, and have two gallons of chicken stock in the freezer for more to come.

Maxx and I have been feeling under the weather and the other night after our bike ride we made chicken noodle soup and had tea. It was such a joy to both work on this project and sit down and enjoy the comfort. Maxx said very excited that he, "...L-O-V-E s peas and noodles" -the bonus of making our own...we get to add in extra :)

I am really loving living more simply and am looking forward to April's small change.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

In Training

It is official Maxx is in training.

Our first ride was to the grocery store to pick up some missing ingredients for soup. Success. He is a natural.

Friday, March 26, 2010

This Moment

{this moment} - A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember...

This is a sweet weekly tradition in my blogging rhythm inspired byAmanda of SouleMama

Gratitude Friday

It is Friday, again? ...Already!?!

What a fantastic week! It started with a *:BANG:* and it is going to end with some needed rest.
What I am thankful for this week:
  • Spending a beautiful day with and getting to know my new friend Lisa
  • Being inspired by so many things
  • Maxx's sense of humor
  • My friend's near and far who have beautiful animals... they have created so many memories for us
  • Friends who want to play and share their time with Maxx
  • Cooking and enjoying all the fresh food from the Farmer's Market ALLL week
  • My new school much I have gained in just four weeks
  • This beautiful new Spring season!!!
What are you grateful for?

Saturday, March 20, 2010

The New Season!

It was a BIG day!!!

The first farmer's market of the SEASON!!!
We packed a lot in and are going to sleep good Tooo-night!

Beautiful tarts, sweets and brownies!!!

Rhubarb and Strawberry Jam

He made Maxx a lion

Pasture Free Range Organic Eggs... colorful... beauties!

Bountiful ...OH nooo!!! We dropped our sample.

Energy booster. Montreal style bagels with dill cream cheese.


And we left... Happy Campers!!!

Friday, March 19, 2010

This Moment

{this moment} - A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember...Amanda

Gratitude Friday

It has been one great bundle of days!!!
Here are some things I am thankful for this week:
  • Fun spring traditions that involve green and little leprechauns
  • The beeeau-ti-FUL weather
  • Making fresh bread three times this week at home
  • Cooking with fresh whole foods is so rewarding Pizza with crust Maxx and I made, and the sauce we made two days before, grating cheese is a blast..."snowing cheese!!!"
  • Red wine and tahini dressing
  • Laughing with my peers after work over frito pie and spirits
  • A clean car and house even if it is for just today
  • Having breakfast with Maxx
  • For constructive criticism and the growth
  • I have the day off to enjoy the first farmer's market of the season!
I gotta run so I can get outside!!!
What are you grateful for?

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Wishing you a rainbow For sunlight after showers

Miles and miles of Irish smiles For golden happy hours

Shamrocks at your doorway For luck and laughter too,

And a host of friends that never ends Each day your whole life through!

(Olde Irish Wish)

Happy St. Paricks' Day!!!

Friday, March 12, 2010

This Moment

{this moment} - A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember...Amanda

Gratitude Friday

This week has been so full and abundant!!!
My heart feels soooo good, and here are a few things to share.
  • For my beautiful boy who is so open to meet new people and welcome them into his heart.
  • A fun evening with some of the most amazing women I know. We have to make this a monthly thing!!!
  • Laughing and finding humor in the heat of frustration and a difficult situation. ;)jess
  • For the cherry blossom tree right outside our windows and all over town...oh that pink is delicious!
  • Finding new verses and songs to enhance our daily rhythm. We have a sweet new bed time song we now sing before Maxx sleeps with the angels.
  • For my life experiences, here in my early 30s, I feel so blessed by such a short period of time to be where I am.
  • For some amazingly talented people I work with and for...I learn from you every day.
  • For the Mothers blogging out there that I read daily or fall upon in a google search...the inspiration and raw wisdom is so powerful.
  • For the beautiful new community and friendships that we are building as a family. I am totally feeling the incarnate pull...we were meant to all be here now to meet and know each other.
  • For a husband who is willing to do what it takes to unplug a toilet and find humor in the O. M. G.!!!!! Task! lol!!!!
What a week!!!
What are you grateful for?

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Personal Found World and Anticipation

I was looking through some pictures from the past, and came across some that were right at 3 years ago (Spring 2007)...WOW!!! It is amazing how we as people change. I look through my "MySpace" posts and realized how much of a different person I was then, than I am now. My values are the same, but my tone is different.
Maturity? I would say, for sure.
In the picture above the young me as a new parent, Maxx is a 2 year old and we had, had a looong day at a festival.

I look in the mirror today and I have 6 inch roots!
Yes...that blonde is from a different me. That Jane could not even leave the house without makeup...lots of black eyeliner...smoky shadows on my eyes...a new hair color every month or if not a new color, my roots touched up (the photo above I had 3 shades of color black, red, and blond in the back), lots of time in front of a mirror with a blow dryer and styling shop shop...closet full of clothes, bags, and just stuff! I had outfits. Loads of jewelry, and killer creeper shoes to match whatever my costume was for the day. Yes, I had many many colors and shapes of those heavy sole shoes. lol I need to find more pictures...I am always the one behind the camera, so I am in so few.

I have morphed into another person. I seem to have shed my skin and now see a new world. Really it was a choice and I chose to make a change. Take my activism to a new level. I can create change and control what we do as a family...less preachy and more of a personal and daily fight. I turned "it" (mainstream media) off and closed the door. No msn, no cnn, no news paper, no magazines, and T.V. was torched out of our life a while back before this faze.

So if you ask me who the new celebrities are, anything about pop culture pre 2008 or what is "in" or what the latest block buster is...I will have a blank stare, because I choose not to know.

I decided in '08 the only way I would hear or see the world was through other Mothers' blogs or word of mouth. If there is a cool movie and they post about it...I may check it out, or someone tells me about an inspiring book or a product or a news event, then I would know.

Really. I don't know what the news is blah-ing about... the latest scandal or even the weather unless I heard it from someone.

It is so so so so nice. Freeing!

I want to see the world unsolicited...without an sell me something, to distract me, to create fear. There is enough stress and distraction in daily life, that the mainstream stuff just seemed to add to my pile and distract me from finding out more about who I am as a person, as a mother, and where I want to be.

Now we eat at home (except on Fridays), cook with whole foods, always have something soaking, put my hair in a pony tail sometimes wet, and head out the door with or without a touch of makeup, I play with Maxx, we make handmade gifts and cards. My closet now: 4 shirts and 2 pairs of pants with clogs is what I have and wear.

Doing this what have I learned? The world through Mothers' eyes is hopeful, beautiful, sweet, proud, powerful, amazing, funny, creative, inventive, personal and inspiring simplicity. I love the world I see.

Looking through the pictures each year in the "spring" folders their is one familiar event I notice, and the only change this year will be to go more often. Each spring I have photos of us at the Farmer's Market. This is something we look so forward to every year! Seeing the rows of greens, vegetables, flowers, fruits, fresh baked goods, some crafts and art, canned salsas and preserves, local honey, cheese, farm fresh eggs and meats.

AWWW! My sweet little punk by the rocks. Here is a sweet one of Maxx eating some blueberries he picked out at the Chicago Farmer's Market the same year as the photo above.
The Farmer's market on this scale is one thing we really missed while we lived in Houston. Portland's market opens next week!!! We are full of anticipation!!

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Silent Sunday

Maxx at play, this street.

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Silly Saturday!

We had a puppy visitor today. Puppy had been on a long adventure... He was hunnGRY and thIIRsty! ...and he only drank his water with a crazy straw. Good boy!

Friday, March 5, 2010

Gratitude Friday

I have so much to be thankful for.
This week here are some things where the volume is really loud in my heart.
  • Dancing with with Maxx to the beat of tribal drumming outside of the school.
  • Raw vegan chocolate ice cream on a challenging day and fresh lemon in my water glass.
  • An unexpected and needed late night online chat.
  • Beginning a new personal journey into Waldorf teaching.
  • The beauty of consistency. How it can really show you who someone is.
  • New friendships that are blossoming and the spontaneous lunch breaks with them.
  • The walks to and from work on these beautiful days.
  • Feeling proud of who I am.
Off to bed. Excited for a day off from work tomorrow.
What are you grateful for?

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

One Small Change for March

If nothing ever changed, there'd be no butterflies. ~Author Unknown

For our first One Small Change and in March, we are going to cook with whole foods and work on eating more seasonal and local produce for the month. I am so inspired by the others who have joined in and are making their small changes along with my friends and peers who teach and inspire me daily. Personally I have been making changes over time, but never dedicated a month to making that change, publicly posting it and having a follow up. (Thanks Cindy for the link!)

As a working mother, I find it easy to grab a frozen pizza and a salad kit on a hectic day...make macaroni and cheese from a box, vege bouillon cubes, and my favorite quick food is boxed (bagged) cereal for breakfast. I am not saying this may not happen, but I am aiming for it to be far less. In time with practice, the right tools and being comfortable I am aiming for "once in a blue moon", to quote Maxx.

This month will be about purging out the processed and welcoming in beautiful grains, legumes, local seasonal fruit and vegetables. This is going be about new habits and taking time to plan on my part, then working the plan.

I am reading the cookbook Feeding The Whole Family Cooking with Whole Foods (Thank you Lisa for bringing it in.)
I have a strong sense of cooking and a culinary degree, so it may seem to those who know me well... this book is very basic and simple. *smile* ...My goal. Living more simple and bringing wholeness and connection onto our table for our soul, our health, and yearly rhythm of the seasons. I also feel blessed and lucky to have a child that does not have food allergies and just follows me to the next culinary adventure. I want to lead, teach, and take advantage by nourishing him, so he, and his, may be able to enjoy the beauty in so many different foods also. My maternal instinct says cut out the processed and factory foods. We have been eating natural and organic foods for some time now, so this just seems like the natural progression and the right thing.

Another great thing about this book for me personally... is the handy dandy appendix meal planner...and recipes to help give just the jump start I need. Working through the recipes I will gain the knowledge and wisdom I need through this journey of change.

We have already incorporated and tested some of the recipes, so I have a little head start...little did I know about this blog that is inspiring so many out there to make one small change. *glass up* To March and to your One Small Change.

Monday, March 1, 2010

The Little Postman and a Sweet Birthday Conversation

Today is my Dad's birthday.
...we are late mailing our card...but we got it in the mail, just in time to be posted on the day of celebration.

Maxx loves the post office ritual...putting on the stamp, writing the address and return address, then venturing to the post office, the mail drop box, the mail trucks, the uniforms..."What are THOSE!?!" today the P.O. Boxes caught his attention... A very exciting job the postal workers have. Alot of magic goes on behind those walls.

Postal work is in his blood. My late grandfather retired from the U.S.P.S. after 35 years. (Is that right Mom?) So to is really special when he plays postman.

We have a sweet golden book that Maxx loves to read about the secret that is sealed and is handled by "Seven Little Postman" it is written by Margaret Wise Brown. (I love to read anything by her.)

Many times I think about getting these or making something like it myself for Maxx:(check'em out->) Mail Bag; Post Office; Mail box... they are so cool...right?!!!

Then Maxx starts his open ended play with his playstand and it backs what Waldorf has taught me..., about how powerful the child's imagination is and how they need to be able to have free open ended play. Watching him play tonight those toys would not have added anything, in fact they would have taken his creativity away. I am floored and reminded...
"Jaaane ELIZABETH!!!! Get back on your personal daily hourly journey to live more simply."

Maxx playing postman while I'm making supper this evening.

Right before I set the table for supper, we called Pop-pah to wish him a Happy Birthday. He and Maxx talked for 29 minutes non stop. It was so sweet. My Dad sends Maxx a letter each week with find the "six differences". (like this one.<-do the faces freak you out as much as

Back story: While we lived in Texas Pop-pah and Maxx would read the paper on Sunday and when they got to the comics they would try and find the "six differences" between the two pictures.

Since we moved to Oregon, my Dad has kept up that special weekly tradition. Each week Maxx gets a letter in the mailbox and if it is there...he can not hold or carry ANYthing he may have been. Then he proudly walks down the hall and up the stairs holding it with both hands, 'till we get into our apartment...he starts opening it as fast as he can, just beaming. Inside is a clipped "difference!" from the newspaper and a card. After a few mailings my Dad started adding a photo of different memories too. Maxx and I have put together a little photo album to hold it all in one place. Maxx looks at it every single day, it is so special to him. He has each letter memorized and loves to "read" them out loud to me.

This week Maxx has the opportunity to take something for show and tell at his school, and he wants to take his photo album and tell his schoolmates all about it.

Tonight on the phone he had a little practice by telling Pop-pah all about his album and he "read" each card, by heart, back to Pop-pah.

It was the sweetest conversation I have ever heard.

Happy Birthday Dad!!!