she cites her influences as

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Eating on the Wild Side: The Missing Link to Optimal Health by Jo Robinson

Maybe we know about vegetables and how we should be eating more of them. We know it matters where our food comes from and the impact genetically modified agriculture has had on global welfare. However, unless we personally know all the best farmers and constantly read seed catalogs, we may not know the difference between varieties of a particular plant, what to look for, or how modern agriculture has altered edibles into the familiar foods we know now. Robinson takes us into the farmers’ market, and even into the grocery store aisles, to pick the produce with the highest nutritional profile; and even offers tips on how to best cook it to preserve all those nutrients we’ve heard so much about. This book was so powerful for me that I even put together a grocery store guide based on Robinson’s recommendations. I think I still have it saved somewhere… I learned orange carrots are not original, cauliflower also comes in a rainbow of colors, and that red apples are sweeter than green (which I never thought about before!).  At the very least, some of the things constantly at the tip of my brain when shopping for produce are because of the ideas in this book.

More details: Robinson focuses on individual plants like apples, oranges, potatoes, greens, etc and explains their nutritional profile, how they were eaten by our ancestors, how they appear in the wild, how we mostly see them now, and how to source the most nutritious of the bunch to which we currently have access.

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The Big Fat Surprise: Why Butter, Meat & Cheese Belong in a Healthy Diet by Nina Teicholz

When we were handed this book in our Culinary Nutrition course, they apologized to the vegetarians for the meat-centric photo on the front cover. I had no idea the impact this book would have on my thoughts about food, and how much it would break down almost everything I had been taught before. You will feel duped by popular science and the American government, wish for parts of your childhood back that you spent eating fat-free yogurt and drinking skim milk, and ache for your friends who haven’t quite crossed over yet. Not to mention that most of the country still operates under incredibly misleading half-truths and flat-out lies about fats and carbohydrates; you will likely struggle to see the world the same way again. But you will relax a bit about your primal cravings and know that you can add something to your list of things to rebel against. Fat is in; carbs are out.

More details: Teicholz debunks the “science” that flung the low-fat, high-carb lifestyle onto medical and government nutritional recommendations by dissecting the original and subsequent studies that got them there.  She makes the case for animal-based eating and animal fats by studying cultures not yet tarnished by Western imperialism.  She makes a caveat at the end of the book to acknowledge that ethics and meat-eating would require an entire additional manuscript, and thus the book does not enter that realm.

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Eating Animals by Jonathan Safran Foer

I have spent my entire adult life not eating animals. I completely overhauled my diet within two months of starting college and haven’t looked back. Still, my diet has continued to shift constantly from extreme (and extremely processed) veganism to allowing my refried beans to be cooked in lard to eating turkey on Christmas. But I’ve never fully embraced the return of meat to my diet, largely for the things I still feel strongly about after reading Foer’s expose. I don’t think eating meat is the devil, though I think there are incredibly unsustainable and unethical ways to do it. I don’t think not eating meat is freakish or crunchy or just trying to get attention. There are unhealthy ways to be a vegan, too. What I loved about Foer’s prose is that he connects a more scientific approach to assessing the effects of the meat industry to the personal and moral qualms that many of us can hardly stomach. He doesn’t make a solely data-based argument, nor is it highly emotional or philosophical. It begs us all to lay down good reason why we make the choices we make, once we finally realize our impact on the whole thing, and to move forward from there. Foer didn’t start out as a vegan with a mission to evangelize; he was a card-carrying meat-eater who did the research and came out the other end, as we all do, a different man.

More details: Foer tackles factory farming, cultural considerations, why we eat some animals and not others, red meat, white meat, fish meat, environmental impact, political corruption, and a philosophical digestion of morality.

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creative liberties

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There are few places I’d rather be than in the kitchen.  I realize that sets me apart from a lot of my contemporaries, and the generations before us.  I didn’t grow up in the kitchen.  And, though I have to remind my mother that she does more than she thinks she does when it comes to home-cooking, I didn’t grow up with my mother in the kitchen, either.  I became interested in cooking during college, after removing meat from my diet and finding myself at a loss for what to eat after that.  As the years went on, I found myself pouring over food blogs and cookbooks and, more importantly, pouring over pots and blenders in the kitchen, mostly making it up as I went along.  By senior year, I was the margarita cupcake queen, hosted club board meetings potluck-style in my apartment, and raced home between classes and duties to roast vegetables and make gigantic green smoothies.  When I think of my relationship to food, I can fondly look back at my life in stages: when I couldn’t stand the thought of animal cruelty staring back at me on my plate, when I eschewed wine in favor of bread and cheese in Europe, when I discovered flaxseed and made a connection between food and healing, when I played private chef at Casa de Mom and Dad, when every meal went down Chopped-style in our Denver volunteer house, on and on.

Sometimes I picked up trends (hello, bananas; goodbye, bananas) but most times I was just following my heart – er, tongue.  Now that I’m “in the health food scene” as I say – which means nothing more than that I have my finger on the pulse of what is happening on the nutrition front and the social media explosion of food-sharing – I’m even more privy to trends in food and wellness.  Some I embrace whole-heartedly (chocolate + tahini is EVERYTHING), and some I can’t justify launching into (delicately constructing a patterned parfait only to demolish it in a fraction of the time??).  In culinary nutrition, we encourage batch cooking and meal prepping.  However, that’s never quite worked for me.  Sometimes, yes, it pays to wash and prep all your greens, make a slow-cooker soup, or blend up a quick dressing to use all week.  But I don’t make it a regular thing, and here’s why:

  1. I’d rather not spend half a day cooking all my meals for the week.  I prefer to spend my free days bopping around doing whatever thrills me in the moment.  Sometimes, that’s cooking an elaborate meal which takes half a day, but at my own will and freedom.
  2. I’d rather spread out my cooking over the week so that I still have it as my daily meditative and creative time.
  3. I don’t want cooking to be just another chore I have to do on the weekend, like vacuuming, or bathing.
  4. I try not to eat the same thing all week, which is often the result of meal prepping because it is easier to batch cook one dish rather than individual cook seven.
  5. I have no idea what I’ll be craving any day, so I’d rather deal with that when it comes.
  6. I have the time and freedom to cook at my leisure.
  7. I enjoy the creativity that comes from trying to make meals out of what I have on hand.  This is why I don’t meal plan and shop for a list of ingredients, either.  I’m more comfortable problem solving and making it up as I go rather than following a recipe.
  8. If I were to prep a snack or a dessert to have on hand all week when the craving hits, I’ll eat most of it before the end of that day.  Never fails.  Face palm.

The following recipes were whipped up based solely on what I had on hand.  It lets the creativity flow freely.

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POTATO + EGG SALAD

5 red potatoes, boiled and chopped
6 hard-boiled eggs, peeled and chopped
Bunch chives, finely chopped
1 Tbsp ghee
1/4 cup dijon mustard
1-2 Tbsp apple cider vinegar or lemon juice
A few healthy pinches of pink salt
Dash red pepper flakes

Add ingredients to a bowl and smash with a fork until well-mixed and desired consistency.  Spoon over fresh and crispy lettuce leaves, or use as a filling in a collard wrap.

Yield: 6 servings

Note: There is no mayonnaise in this recipe (GASP!).  The only reason for that is I did not have any on hand.  I think smashing the potatoes and eggs together creates a nice consistency, and the ghee was added for healthy fats and moisture in its stead.  I salted the salad quite a bit, because I think potatoes beg for salt and it’s okay if your salt has plenty of minerals!

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RAW MANGO COCONUT PUDDING

2 very ripe mangos, pulped
1/3 cup full-fat coconut milk
1 Tbsp coconut palm sugar
1 Tbsp arrowroot powder
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp ground turmeric
1/4 tsp vanilla extract
Pinch salt

Blend all ingredients until smooth.  Refrigerate to set until thickened to desired consistency.

Yield: 1.5 cups

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RAW CHOCOLATE TAHINI FUDGE

1/4 cup tahini
1 heaping Tbsp cacao powder
1 Tbsp coconut sugar
1 Tbsp coconut oil
1/4 tsp vanilla extract
Small pinch pink salt

Blend ingredients until smooth.  Pour into a fudge mold (I used a parchment-lined pyrex dish).  Freeze until set, about one hour.  Slice to serve.  Store in airtight container in freezer.

Yield: 6-8 servings

monthly challenge iii: yoga is my boring place

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Twice in my life, yoga has made an outstanding impact.  I’m not a fitness geek; I’m not competitive and sometimes I’m not even sure if I’m goal-oriented.  I just mosey along and do what I like and move on when it satisfies me.  Or, more likely, when it doesn’t.  I first found yoga in college: in the free fitness center that was always under construction.  You had to walk down to the basement and through all the dudes bulking up in front of the mirror walls to get to the back corner, windowless room where you could finally – finally – get away from it all.  The instructors were fellow students, none of whom I was familiar with, so it was accessible and private.  I went to yoga every day.  I would get up in the early mornings before class to make a session that had fewer than five people.  The sequences were almost always the same, so I could simultaneously anticipate and let go.  Sometimes my best friend and roommate would be on the mat next to me.  Sometimes I’d convince a fella or two to try it out.  Mostly I just went there to be anonymous and stretch my body.

It was challenging.  I was constantly trying to contort my limbs into shapes I’d never seen before, use muscles I never felt before, sink my heart like I’d never before been asked to do.  I thought I knew what yoga was.

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My second year in Denver, a sweet coworker invited me to try out her yoga studio.  She warned me it was a little different, but I couldn’t imagine what she was talking about.  That first day in a sunny studio in Golden, CO, I found myself.  I mean, I found my body.  I’d been practicing yoga for maybe five years by then, and the minute I followed the carefully articulated instructions for alignment, it was like the moment you slip on the perfect pair of pants; the moment you taste that sweet potato white bean soup and think you’ve never had something so precisely delicious before.  I parallel parked my hips and pressed my head back into my hand and something clicked within me that had never been sparked before.  It was the Bowspring.

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If you’ve heard me talk about yoga in the last few years, you undoubtedly know about the Bowspring.  I’m obsessed.  It contradicts some of the most widely taught concepts in modern yoga and, for those who have tried the technique around die hard yogis, you know it’s sort of scandalous.  Anyway, it changed my body and my life.  During one of the most grueling times of my adult life (see previous post), it provided a grounding experience and allowed me to focus on something other than the desperate girl inside of me trying to understand her life.  Everything around me was mental and driving me crazy, but Bowspring was something tangible; I could control it, I could invite it in, and it felt damn good.  Leaving my studio, which is the flagship studio for the Bowspring technique (and I do not take it lightly that I was able to study under the founders of the alignment), was one of the hardest things about leaving Denver.  I knew my relationship to Bowspring as I had come to know it was over.

The Bowspring alignment has colored nearly every other physical aspect of my life — from sitting in a chair to riding a bike to playing with the dog.  That’s what it’s meant for; to put us back into our ancient animal shape to promote lightness of being and boundless energy.  But my home practice was lacking, because it is challenging work and my self-discipline is challenged by everything I let myself get distracted by at home.  I never have enough time, I tell myself.  And then, when the postures themselves get tough, I miss having someone encourage me on.  There’s nothing like the Bowspring out West.  In fact, because people out here are so serious about their yoga, alignment is really rather strict and particular.  I found one lovely teacher in San Diego who was familiar with the Bowspring.  I was able to chat with her after taking a class and at her encouragement I decided to try a local studio in town just to get back on the mat.  Thus, the monthly challenge of yoga every damn day (or most days, at least).

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It was going okay at first.  I definitely needed a place to go in the evenings when some things were stirring up personally.  Everyone at the studio was nice and I was able to tell them I do my own thing.  They were interested in hearing more, but the minute I started explaining it their faces would fall; they were an “alignment-based” studio and I quickly felt that there was no place for “doing my own thing.”  Then I thought, Maybe I’ll try their alignment and get back to the yoga I knew before Bowspring.  I was so tight in my hamstrings, because Bowspring doesn’t to forward folds and straight knees in order to keep the desired curve in the lower back.  I didn’t particularly enjoy doing the moves or even my modifications and I didn’t find it very challenging, other than fighting the pain – yes, pain – trying to stretch out my hamstrings.  The physical practice wasn’t shaping up to be something I wanted to spend my time doing.

Then I zeroed in on something else yoga teachers are prone to do: speak very spiritually and very heady.  To push my discomfort into the background, I tried to focus on what they were offering.  During one particularly taxing yin class, I found everything that came out of the instructor’s mouth to be completely … trite.  I think there’s an important truth to be heard when we’re in that bitter space in our own minds.  When Judgmental Bre turns up the volume, I’ve been trying not to stuff her down.  I don’t enjoy being a negative person and if I share these thoughts it’s almost exclusively with my mother, who is like talking to an older, wiser version of myself in the mirror.  But I learn a lot about myself by tuning into those sour thoughts.  Particularly, I have learned some of my triggers (so they can be dealt with) and exposed things that really don’t feed my soul (so that I can move on).  This is incredibly important for me because by now we know I stayed in a job that made me incredibly unhappy for six months too long and for very few reasons that could hardly be interpreted as well-thought-out.

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So, I’m standing on my yoga mat after a sequence of sun salutations instructed entirely by the corresponding sanskrit names for each of the poses and the teacher attempts to connect with each one of us as she says something she hopes we’ll find moving.  My affect is flat, heart sunk, mind blank of all thoughts except one: This is so boring.

In that moment, I knew I didn’t have to do this.  I didn’t have to come to California for sun and fun and waste my time in a mental state like this.  They didn’t deserve that poor energy, either.  I started to wonder when yoga stopped being “my thing,” and I realized it didn’t matter.  We are constantly changing and evolving and we know this, and yet we still try to stuff ourselves into pristine little shapes.  I definitely always thought yoga was in line with my lifestyle, and who is a mindful, fit woman these days if she is not a yogi?

In a spare moment, I googled “yoga is boring” just to see what would come up.  I found tons of click bait articles about how to make yoga not boring, or how to push past the boredom into enlightenment.  Really?  If you don’t like a thing, don’t do it!  Why do we need to convince ourselves it’s worth doing?  The thing that annoys me about the wellness industry these days is that they forget that everyone is an individual collection of energy and cellular activity.  Meditation is not for everyone, although it brings satisfying results to many.  Giant green smoothies, magic elixir dusts, warm lemon water in the morning, raw food, whatever this week’s trend is DOESN’T HAVE TO BE FOR YOU.  I like to try a thing, evaluate it, decide whether or not it’s worth my time, and either explore it some more or ditch it outright.  I don’t love meditation, and I don’t love yoga.  There; I’ve come clean.

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I still love the Bowspring, though, and if I truly desire to have it and all it’s personal benefits in my life, I’ll find a way to make it work.  I also love walking, and riding my bike, and crawling around on the floor with the pup.  I like going upside down and doing back bends and, most of all, eating food that makes me feel good.  Somewhere out there, yoga is someone’s self-care.  It’s okay that I’d rather talk to the dog, or my mom, or myself.

change is my signature scent

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I always seem to forget anniversaries.

A year and a few days ago I quit my soul-sucking job on a whim.  Amazing that it had to be on a whim.  I knew it had hollowed me out and would continue to do so.  But I had a plan: I would stick it out for the two-year mark, which coincided with my lease ending, which coincided with my brother’s lease ending, which, we decided, was the perfect time for a cross-country move.  I’ve never thought about it as my rock-bottom moment, even though I often recount how I’d become the most basic representation of a human: merely breathing and moving my body to remind myself that I was alive, because every day seemed like a failure and nothing – not live-in friends or soulmate coworkers or the juiciest genre-bending yoga – could fill in the gaping hole of my heart.  I have to say I’ve had worse times where hopelessness arrived without coping skills, and Denver was nothing if not a playground for my coping skills.  But coping skills exist for our survival, and just like our cortisol and adrenaline, they’re not meant to sustain us for long periods of time.  So I supposed I did hit rock bottom.  I crashed, and on the other end of the phone were my beautiful parents who scrubbed the person right back into me when they reminded me that my path is my path, and I can change it whenever I want to.  I could change!  Of course; I’d almost forgotten my signature scent.

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Though I’m completely bored of modern yoga (that’s for another post), one of the most poignant concepts that actually means something when I draw upon it in everyday life is the idea that there is nothing I have to be, nowhere I have to go.  It’s different, that kind of perspective.  We don’t like to be nothing.  We millenials and adrenaline junkies and people-out-seeking-joy need to be BIG and INSPIRED and POWERFUL and EVERYWHERE.  But I can’t be those things if I’m not first grounded.  And I’ll probably spend half my life trying to get grounded, because there’s such a weird energy on this planet right now, and I’m just trying not to get knocked sideways every day.  One of the best things I ever did for myself was to quit.  I was trying to avoid failure by not quitting, but then my mom reminded me: “Why do you need to win at this?  You don’t like this.  You don’t want to do this.  Why do you have to make it another year if you never plan to do this again in your life?”  WOW.  Wake up call.  There is nothing I have to be, nowhere I have to go.

Two weeks later I moved into my parent’s home.  Within a week of breathing in the Iowa summer air, I was human again.  In fact, I was bursting.  Feelings were coming to the surface that I hadn’t felt in months.  Days went by without being at the constant helm of irritation.  Finally, I was the light burning on the wick again, rather than the stamper, the smoke.

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By the end of the summer, Jared and I had made the days-long journey to a random, secluded, small town on the West Coast.  It wasn’t our dream town but it was nearby, and it’s served us both in ways we likely didn’t anticipate.  My life looks nothing like I thought it would at age 25.  I mean, I was (and still am) probably over-exposed to FRIENDS, but I always thought my daily life would circle around my closest friends in an urban environment.  I didn’t think most of my acquaintances and confidants would be twice my age.  I often can’t believe that I work in a conservative, old-school office and push paper for people who’ve never heard of environmental conservation.  I never dreamed I’d be living with my brother, or rather successfully sweet talking the rest of the BKK clan into reconvening out West.

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I don’t get to the beach near as much as I would like.  We’re kind of freaking out because this state is not very dog-friendly and the impending apartment hunt will NOT be fun.  Scaling back on high stress work makes it all the more challenging to plan for a move to our dream city.  There are so many what-ifs and unknowns in our future that the planner in me still purses her lips sometimes.  BUT: somehow I’ve convinced myself to let certain things unfold as they may, to not push them too hard lest old wounds be exposed, to open the windows and let the breeze be enough, to cultivate our home so our introversion is not as pitiful, and to enjoy the friendship of those who cherish spending time with me despite our age differences.

A year ago, I was just desperate to leave my old life behind.  I had few expectations for what this California life would be like, and that’s probably allowed the panic to stay at bay for most of these last eight months.  This summer will be most telling of how the future will unfold, and I, in all the uncertainty, seem to have nothing but underlying optimism.  Take that, anxiety.  Take that.

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plant life

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I am trying to energize our space.  There’s an incredible limbo in a life without strings.  I’m attached to so little.  That kind of freedom is like feet dangling over a ledge; if you scoot any farther forward you’ll fall off.  Who knows what’s at the bottom?  And let me be clear: it’s not necessarily a negative thing.  It’s just that there are so many unknowns.  And I’m nothing if not transparent.  I do not do well with unknowables.

Are we still authentic if we have to constantly remind ourselves of our life motto?  I like simple, slow living.  I like adventure and exploration.  I like home-cooking and good books.  I like nutrition and long walks in the sunshine.  Sometimes my breath shifts slightly and it feels like I’m losing ground and can’t remember if I’ve been living every day of my life to satisfaction.  Often times, it’s after a moment of drama – or what my dear mother would call “life, happening” – but in my head I think I’ve been pushed off the ledge and I try to find anything to grip onto to crawl back up.  And I mow the grass and trim the hedges and set out plants to stretch toward the sun.  I talk to people like I’ve known them forever, and life, inevitably, goes on.

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  1. Part of the drama lately was finally getting this print on the wall.  Ever since I saw it on The Gourmet Print Shop, I knew it was right for me: the visual expression of my internal religion.  The tough part was finding people to support my vision; people who would listen to what I wanted and work with me to bring it to life.  After the first failed print job and multiple attempts to find an in-tact white wooden frame, I was feeling disheartened.  Then the universe brought in some serious kindness and now this print brings serious magic to our home.
  2. After more person-to-person drama, I decided I needed to seek out some plant friends.  They breathe life into our space when we forget it’s possible.  
  3. And so the kitchen, with it’s blazing afternoon rays, is the new home of these sprightly and inspiring plants.
  4. And then I was inspired to bring food life into the home after a trip to (quite sparse) local farmers market.  It’s more like a highly-curated row of sellers, and on this particular day there was only one veg lady, so I bought her lot.  I’m not particularly fond of food prep because I like flowing with my daily inspiration and never want food to be a chore.  But sometimes you just need to wash and prep your greens!  And while they dry, you might as well roast a spaghetti squash and steam some beet roots and cook down some organic butter into ghee.  
  5. More living things: my new sourdough starter is getting its time in the sun with this super stack of spelt pancakes. 
  6. Not only is plant life coming in to bring energy into our space, I’m also trying to liven up our walls.  We are both homebodies so anything that can inspire us in this place is important.  Everything speaks to us; everything moves us one way or another; and the things that make up our home should make the best of us.

silence

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I’ve been off lately.  Questioning my gut instincts.  Ignoring my gut health.  Letting the cobwebs build up and my excuse: waiting for the duster to arrive / waiting for the dust to clear out on its own / hiding from the dust.  I’ve been having some prolific thoughts, about peace and battle, control and release.  We know I’m a little Tinker Bell – as I’d argue much of the Bad Kid clan is – and can only hold one bright and burning emotion at a time in this malleable body of mine.  I’m as translucent as a cornea, as confused as a sleepy child, and I will never stop searching / dreaming / hoping.

I went on a silent retreat at the meditation center of which I am a member.  It was explorific.  So refreshing to find large stretches of time to do nothing but stare at the wall, or the wood-burning fireplace.  I took a nap (!) and slept sooooo much.  And finally tackled mindful eating, where I’d make small bowls of porridge or salad last for thirty minutes.  Most of all, it left me craving more.  It begged me to look at my incredibly privileged life full of wonderfully peaceful moments and always having enough, and find spaces I can enjoy that more.

I’m starting with my home.  We’re going to grow things.  We’re going to tend them and put them on display and look upon them with gratitude and look to them for energy and grounding.  We’re going to bring color and design to the walls with more artwork.  We’re going to feng shui and clear out and build up.

I’m refocusing my body.  I’m doing yoga every damn day.  I’ve invested in a local farm (a la community-shared agriculture) and asked them to feed me week-to-week.  I’ve been reinspired by beautiful food-crafters to create more awesome meals at home.  I’m still not big on meal prepping, but I think I can squeeze in some meal plans to make things a bit more evolved than sauteed vegetables.  I’m letting the sunshine into my skin (okay, it finally arrived back to the coast after a record wet winter) and the salt water under my feet.  And let’s all drink more water, okay?

Below is a poem I wrote on the silent retreat crouched next to a hopi medicine wheel on top of a hill surrounded by valleys and hills of the countryside.

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Silence — B. Barak, 2017

I wish I could know
about our ancestors
and what makes the world
a shiny, bright thing of terrible beauty
and a dark, eternal night
of hope and despair.

I don’t want a story
or a bible
or an ancient burial ground.
I want to know
in this soul of mine they say I have.

I want to know the way I know unconditional love.
I want to know the way I know utter exhaustion.
I want to know the way I know music riding on the wind and brushing
the hair across my face like a kiss
of simple and incredible love.

I want to be born into the arms of my heritage
and know where my body resides.

noodle dance

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Did you hear?! Because I almost didn’t; we’ve been California residents for over six months.

We missed our six-month anniversary,
which means time has been FLYing,
which means we’ve been enjoying living together,
which means we’ve been finding things to entertain ourselves,
which means we’ve been settling in.

Which means we are beyond that daunting stage of merely surviving and passing over the delicate landscape that leads to the paradisiacal land of thriving. Which, for us, is a sunny, palm-tree studded skyline and a sandy beach.

Despite leaving behind most of the books we’ve owned, our movie collection, our friends and family, we’re not so disparate. We still listen to our favorite music. We still cook our favorite foods. We still speak for the dog.

So, in honor of our new life, here’s a recipe to roughy follow if you want to be like us and make shit up as you go. Cheers.

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BKK elevated butter noodles for two

1 head broccoli, chopped or sliced into small, bite-sized pieces
1 yellow bell pepper, sliced into small strips
1 bundle fresh-made linguini
1 cup red wine
1/4 cup butter from cows that are allowed to graze on sunny, green pastures

  1. Bring a stock pot of heavily salted water to boil. Add pasta and cook 4-5 minutes or as instructed.
  2. Heat butter in a cast-iron skillet. Add broccoli and bell pepper and saute until they begin to blacken on some sides.
  3. Add wine and butter in a small saucepan and boil to reduce to about half it’s volume.
  4. Add cooked pasta to the cast-iron skillet along with the veggies, and pour over the wine sauce. Cook a minute or two to combine. Salt and pepper liberally. Add more butter if desired. Wilt in greens or sprinkle micro-greens over top after plated.

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I made the trip down to San Diego (in the biggest rain storm southern California has seen in maybe a decade …) to meet up with a dear friend from Denver.  We trotted all over the rather expansive city and tried to experience as many neighborhoods as we could!  This is the infamous La Jolla beach (above and below) with all the bored sea lions.  Sometimes – SOMETIMES – we do touristy things and aren’t mad about it.

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