what is freedom?


what is freedom?

Sometimes I think in life we hold "things" much too dearly. We acquire stuff to make us happy. We think we "need" the next new thing. Our homes are filled with items that we forget about. Not long after getting something, it's tucked away in some corner to be soon forgotten. We make "wish lists", or we buy things on a whim when we are unhappy or we feel we deserve it. I know I've done it much too often. I have gotten better at not purchasing things I don't need, but there are times I am caught up by the moment and I think I need those new boots or even just going out to eat with friends, when we could have a lovely time making a meal ourselves for half the price.

I look around my room and I see stuff I never use. I think to myself, "I'll clean it up one of these days, but I'm so busy right now. I don't have time." I must make time. There is always time to do something if you really want to do it. I've been thinking a lot lately about removing as much stuff from my life that I can. I've thought about this a lot. It ties in quite a bit with my desire to be more self-sufficient. Making my own things, being more natural instead of caving into the things in this world which surrounds us daily. Those billboards and those commercials on the television that scream "BUY ME! YOU NEED ME!" When only those things are what make us kill ourselves to work harder, to make more money, to buy more things. And all for what? So that we can be happy for a short time? Because the happiness does not last. And then what you are left with is just a cluttered room and less space.

I think of what Charlotte Brontë said, "I am no bird; and no net ensnares me; I am a free human being with an independent will." I feel the only thing that comes from acquiring more stuff in our life is a net; a cage. It does nothing to free us, even though the world likes to tell us that through having more money and buying more things, that somehow, it makes you more of an independent person. But the way I look at it, that is so far from true. We are slaves to ourselves by having this idea of needing things in our life. America is supposed to be the richest country in the world, but why is that? Because we are "free?" Because we have more stuff? What is freedom? Is it having more money? Perhaps I am getting on a bunny-trail here, really leading to no conclusion. But when you honestly think about it, are we truly free? So many times we don't listen to ourselves and we do what our neighbor is doing, because we are scared to break outside the social norm. It seems in today's society, the idea of independence and freedom is so much different than the true definition. It's something to think about. I'm not preaching to anyone. I'm as much to blame as anyone.

And now that I've rambled on long enough, I must get back to my work.

Be well.

a walk

Sunday the only day we don't work:
Mules farting around the meadow,
Murphy fishing,
The tent flaps in the warm
Early sun: I've eaten breakfast and I'll
Take a walk
To Benson Lake. Packed a lunch,
Goodbye. Hopping on creekbed boulders
Up the rock throat three miles
Puite Creek –
In steep gorge glacier-slick rattlesnake country
Jump, land by a pool, trout skitter,
The clear sky. Deer tracks.
Bad place by a falls, boulders big as houses,
Lunch tied to belt,
I stemmed up a crack and almost fell
But rolled out safe on a ledge
and ambled on.
Quail chicks freeze underfoot, color of stone
Then run cheep! away, hen quail fussing.
Craggy west end of Benson Lake – after edging
Past dark creek pools on a long white slope –
Lookt down in the ice-black lake
lined with cliff
From far above: deep shimmering trout.
A lone duck in a gunsightpass
steep side hill
Through slide-aspen and talus, to the east end,
Down to grass, wading a wide smooth stream
Into camp. At last.
By the rusty three-year-
Ago left-behind cookstove
Of the old trail crew,
Stoppt and swam and ate my lunch.

-Gary Snyder



quiet evening.

mmm pizza

I do hope you all are having a nice weekend. Even though it looks like I'm lounging about, I'm actually working. But I did finish one big project and that makes me feel great. Now to finish the next big project!

good morning.


good morning.

big project


I got up at 6:30a.m. today. I know that may be a normal time to wake up for many of you, but for me that is early. So I'm kind of proud of myself for actually getting up. And I got to bed just past midnight. I'm a night owl. I've been like that most of my life. I like my sleep and I like going to bed late. But there's also a joy in waking up early. It's silent. All I hear are the birds singing. It's still a little dark out, but gradually it gets brighter and brighter. So I go both ways sometimes and since I've got a lot of projects to complete, I thought I would get a head start.

I also got up early because this evening I'm going to learn about all the different kinds of scotch and bourbon. I can't imagine coming home and working after that! So I guess after tonight I will be an expert. har har.

After looking at this gorgeous printing, I want to print SO BAD. I must resist. I haven't the time! Oh why do I always want to get into a new project when I have way too many other projects to complete first?

It's a beautiful day!



last day to shampoo

Tomorrow begins the no-shampoo routine for me. A number of you have decided to join in and I'm finding I'm losing track of who said they were joining and who said they were thinking of joining. So...feel free to post here if you want to jump in on it, if you haven't already. {Or post anyway, I love reading comments.} I know a few of you who are doing it for sure and have already started blogging about it. I can't wait to see some results!

My plan:

I decided to ditch the only-water method, because I have a feeling I'm not going to like that so much. Perhaps later on I will decide to try nothing at all, but for now I'm going to go back to using baking soda. I think this round I'm going to use less baking soda to water than I did before. When I first tried this, I found after some time, it started to dry out my hair. Everyone is different, so you have to experiment and see what works best for you.

Baking soda wash:
  • 1 Tablespoon baking soda {I'm going to use half of this amount to start}
  • 1 Cup warm water
I like to mix this up in a dish, mixing until the baking soda has dissolved and the water is clear. Then I pour it in a container {I use an old shampoo or conditioner bottle, but make sure you wash them out first}. Another way of doing this is to make a baking soda paste, which I assume you would need to make before each wash rather than making it ahead of time. I also read that you can apply the baking soda to your hair before getting into the shower and then just rinse it off with warm water.

After washing your hair with the baking powder solution, you can make a vinegar rinse. You do not need to apply this to your hair each time you wash. In fact it's probably a good idea to only do this one to two times a week.

Vinegar rinse:
  • 1-2 Tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1 Cup water
Pour this over your hair and rinse with cool water. Don't worry about the smell. Once your hair is dry it goes away. However, some people will add essential oils like lavender or rosemary.

Another rinse I would like to experiment with is an infusion of essential oils and water. Basically I'm thinking of boiling some water and adding the rosemary & thyme essential oil I picked up last week. I'll let you know how that goes.

**For pretty much everything you would want to know, go here.

:::On a related note, I have been starting to wash my face with baking soda as well. All I do is pour out a bit of baking soda into the palm of my hand and add warm water to make a paste, then rub it all over my face. Gently scrub your face and rinse off with warm water. It leaves my skin nice and smooth! And when it's dry out, I will use a bit of almond oil {or olive oil} on my face as well. If it seems like I've added too much oil, I'll simply rinse my face with some water and that usually evens it out.:::

Good luck!

the week at its end.

knit knit

i like waffles better than pancakes.


**Been sewing a lot and listening to Billie Holiday.

**Yesterday I woke up to a blanket of snow on the ground. Despite wishing it were summer, this made me happy.

**Last night I watched The Women while hand sewing trim on a dress. I saw it once a long time ago and I don't remember it being so good! Really, you must check it out (especially if you are a woman.) ;) I heard there is a remake? It couldn't possibly be as good as the original.

**Today is another day of sewing for me, but I'm nearing the end of one project and it's turning out really very nice. I always get a little nervous until I see it all coming together the way I pictured it.

**Hey, look...Erica gave me a little blog award. Aww, thanks! :) And here are 10 blogs I love:

I hope everyone has had a lovely weekend. I had better get started on that pile of sewing!

P.S. I forgot someone had asked awhile back if I could get them the link to my old music playlist. I took it off because it was screwing up my page, but I want to make a new one sometime. Until then, you can find the old one here. :)



Sorry guys. I have not been on here to update much at all lately. I have been side-tracked with work and projects that must be completed. I'm planning to work really hard all weekend and all through Sunday, then repeat Monday through to the next weekend. I imagine it's going to be kind of funny doing the no-shampoo thing during a busy week. My face has been breaking out too. That only means one thing. I will say no more... So yes. I'll try to post when I can. I'm hoping to take a break sometime during the weekend and write up a post about my plan for the no-shampooing. I'm surprised that so many of you are willing to venture in on this! Some of you have already started. Way cool. Let's see if through all this heavy working and no-shampooing and, well, you know...everything...let's hope I do not go completely insane.

Oh yeah, I also have pictures on my camera I have yet to upload. And I'm thinking of switching things up with the whole breakfast-picture-thing. Like, take a picture anytime I feel like taking a picture of my breakfast. 'Cause there are weeks when I have hardly any time to worry so much that my breakfast is pretty enough for a picture. Heck, maybe I will switch it up sometime and take a picture of something else! I'm not sure what else yet, but I do want to continue trying to photograph more. {Of course this happens to be a no-picture post. Go figure...}

Happy weekend!

no shampoo?



Alright, some of you are gonna think I'm nuts, but I've decided to go back into not shampooing my hair again. I did it for a year once and I loved it. It worked the best in the winter because although my hair is naturally wavy and has a lot of body, in the winter it's dry and lifeless. It may sound strange to do this, but there are several reasons why so many people today are beginning to throw out their shampoo. Here are a few reasons why I personally am planning to do this (or why I did it in the past):
  • My hair is thick and I've used lots of product before to try and bring my hair together so it's not so fluffy. I've used spray gels and they do seem to work okay, but they also make my floor a sticky mess if I don't wipe it up after every time I spray my hair. And the idea of putting gunk in my hair isn't very appealing.
  • I love the fact that going without shampoo means you are going a more natural route and by doing this, you're not only eliminating nasty chemicals into your hair (and who knows what else is in that shampoo) but you're also helping out our environment.
  • Going without shampoo would save me a little money. Maybe not a lot, but over time I think I would spend less money on shampoo and hair products so in a sense I am saving quite a bit of money down the road.
  • Lately my hair has been really greasy and I think it's because I've been shampooing my hair daily. I decided either I need to cut back on my shampooing or just stop all together. Personally, I think cutting out shampoo altogether is just way more fun. Am I weird?
  • Speaking of weird, the true reasoning behind all this is that I really just want to tell people I don't use shampoo. It makes me feel all hippie and natural. What can I say? I like that feeling. Yes, I like people thinking I'm crazy, weird, different or special. 'Cause I am!
Okay, so these probably aren't great reasons to stop using shampoo, but I'm not really trying to convince anyone. I just want to do it myself. Also, I know my hair has a lot of curl to it, but right now it's so dead that it looks board straight. I want my curls back! And I think if I ditch the shampoo I might be able to get them back again without using a ton of hair product. I also want to start now while it's dry outside, because it's so much harder to get into the routine during the hot humid summer months. I want to get past that nasty greasy hair stage, which takes approximately two to three weeks. I think it took me two weeks the last time I did it, though. They say it may even take up to six weeks, so that's at least how long I'm going to stick with this. But I'm really hoping this works and I can stick with this no-shampoo thing for a long time.

SO! Who's with me? Anyone want to go SIX WEEKS without washing your hair with shampoo? The biggest reason I'm posting this here isn't really to convince you all out there to do it with me (although it would be way more fun), but mainly so I can stick with my plan and not break down when it's the hardest. Basically here is how it will work:
  1. DON'T use any shampoo. You can use conditioner, you can use a mixture of baking soda and water or any other number of things. But no shampoo! Personally, I plan to cut out all shampoo and conditioner. I think I might even pass up the baking soda wash too. I want to see how it is with just water. Am I completely crazy? Maybe. But I'm still curious to find out what happens.
  2. Take a picture of the process. Start with day one and then a new picture every two weeks until six weeks have passed by. If you like it by the end of six weeks, you can continue another two weeks etc. I probably won't keep taking pictures if I do decide this is the way I want to go, but I thought it would be fun for at least the first six weeks.
That's it! To get started, I'm listing some helpful links for the various ways of going shampoo-free. I plan to start a week from Monday, which would be February 16th (Presidents' Day). You can start that day or any other day. But I would love to know if you are doing this with me! If I get enough people interested in joining my little plan, I'll post a link to your blog (assuming you have a blog and are willing to blog about your no-shampoo experience) and I will list the date you plan to start. Just be sure to let me know when you plan to start.

Pros and Cons of Water-Only Hair Washing
Conditioner-Only Hair Washing
Shampoo Free {baking soda method}
Curly Girl the book {conditioner method}
Website for Curly Girl hair

On a side note, I am not fond of the name some people are giving this: "No-Poo." Sorry, but that name alone kinda makes me want to vomit. Just sayin'...

Anyway, this should be fun! Hope I've convinced a few of you to do this with me. :)

oatmeal pancakes.

oatmeal pancakes

I woke up this morning to find a plate full of oatmeal pancakes. How did Dad know I was craving oatmeal pancakes? Thanks, Dad! :)

weekend... already?


no-knead bread

maple scones


Wow, time sure flies! I can't believe it's already Friday. I don't have a lot of time at the moment, but wanted to share the pictures I've been taking of my breakfasts. Plus last night I decided to make more bread! I mixed it up last night and let it sit overnight for about 12 hours. I'd say it turned out rather nice. It's delicious, too.

On a different note, I'm thinking of doing the whole no-shampoo thing again. Awhile back I broke down and used shampoo and when you do that, it's so hard to get back into the no-shampoo routine. But right now my hair is just nasty. I shampoo it and it's still gross. I blame it on the weather. Anyhow, I'm going to post more about this later, but wanted to give a little shout-out to anyone who wants to join me. No shampooing for at least six weeks! We could start a little support group, taking a picture every two weeks to see the progress. If you're interested, check out my next post.

Have a wonderful weekend, all!

p.s. Thank you all for the breakfast suggestions! They're great!

brunch with annie.


cinnamon rolls with annie

I made cinnamon rolls today using the left over bread dough (that same no-knead dough I have been raving about) and it turned out pretty good! Except next time I will not leave it in the oven as long as I did. They were a bit crispy. But they were still edible. A little too edible, I might add. Yum. Let's just say it's very hard to stop at one.




messy desk

french toast.

I guess the times slipped away from me and I didn't get a chance to sit down and post anything. So we've got three breakfasts to show you today. Nothing exciting lately. I'll try to be more creative. I've just not had a lot of time to think about breakfast. Any ideas?