Thursday, May 31, 2012


At the end of June we are going to Alaska.
After flying into Anchorage we plan on renting our first car (Ben is finally 25), and driving to Homer, where we’ll be tent-camping in Mike’s back yard (Mike is a friend of Bek's who is so well traveled that she knows people in Alaska--yep amazing). 
In Homer we plan to go looking for wildlife in Katchemak Bay, go to the beach, and hang out in town. 
After Homer we’ll go to Seward where we want to see whales and possibly go deep-sea fishing. 
From Seward we’ll head to a fly fishing spot on the Anchor river and its tributaries, hopefully finding a KOA or a cheap hotel to stay in along the way. 
After fishing for a day or two we’ll finish out the trip in Denali National Park on a three day backpacking trip,
 followed by a stay in whatever hotel Denali can boast. 
Nothing ever goes as planned but I'm ready for the next summer adventure in the mountains. 
I am so excited. 

rainbow chard

I am growing so many things.
Rainbow chard is everywhere in my garden.
It's pesto time y'all.
1/2 cup olive oil, divided
10 leaves chard, chopped
4 cloves garlic, chopped
1 cup basil leaves
1 cup pecans
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 (3 ounce) package grated Parmesan cheese
salt and ground black pepper to taste
Heat 2 teaspoons of the olive oil in a skillet over medium heat;
 cook and stir the Swiss chard and garlic in the hot oil until the chard leaves have wilted, 3 to 5 minutes. Remove from heat and allow to cool.
Process the basil, pecans, sea salt, Parmesan cheese, and remaining olive oil in a food processor until all the ingredients are well integrated. 
Add the Swiss chard mixture and the lemon juice to the food processor; 
continue chopping until the mixture is pureed. 
Season with salt and pepper.
You can never have too much garlic or cheese! 
Be generous.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012


Over the long weekend I went to Texas to visit the beautiful Em Loerke!
It was my first time to visit Dallas & everything about it was perfect. 
We ate ridiculously tasty food at Velvet Taco.
Walked along the water while we watched sailboats & runners. 
Grubbed on pizza & beer at Eno's while we laughed about trail magic. 
Stayed up way too late talking & catching up.
Bought goodies at Central Market.
She took me to The Ranch--the most perfect getaway 30 minutes outside of the city. 
We fed the horses, Hank & Skinny Jimmy.  
Climbed up a windmill.
Cooked hotdogs & corn over a fire. 
Too many good things. 
I'm so happy & thankful. 

Friday, May 25, 2012

guiding goddess.

This week I keep reading about the Everest summits.
It is so inspiring & encouraging to see people push their limits in the best possible way.
I decided to do a little research on some of the climbers & to my surprise, I found The Melissa Arnot.
My mind is blown.
Arnot was raised just outside Glacier National Park in Whitefish, Montana. 
After college, she began living out of her car to save money and climb mountains. 
She first climbed Mt. Rainier in 2001 and called it a “watershed moment.”
 Melissa began teaching wilderness medicine in 2002 and began guiding on Mt. Rainier with Rainier Mountaineering, Inc. in 2004.
By 2006 she was a lead guide & now she has summited Rainier more than 70 times. 
In 2008, she joined Jeff Dossett and David Morton on the Everest Team Inspi(RED) to promote HIV/AIDs 
Her passions for climbing, teaching, and taking care of others have taken her all over the world
 helping people test their limits in the safest way possible, while still having fun. 
73 summits of Mt. Rainier (14,410')
1 expedition on Mt. McKinley (20,320')
2 Expeditions on Cotopaxi, Ecuador (19,348')
2 Expeditions on Cayambe, Ecuador (18,997')
2 Expeditions to Aconcagua, Argentina (22,841')
3 Summits of Mt. Everest (29,029'), (South Col route)
info sources:
photo sources:

Thursday, May 24, 2012


urban beekeeping.

I got my bees!!!
First I got the topbar hive from Walter T. Kelly.
We had a package & put them in last Monday, it went flawlessly.
On Saturday, Sam went with me to pick up my two nucs from the farmer Mark. 
We put the bees in their new home & now they seem so happy.
We even tasted a little honey--delicious.
I wanted to take a picture of the inside of the topbar hive because it was so unique. 
I took my gloves off & stuck my hand inside the hive--yep, I got stung (but only once & with good reason).
I'm having so much fun.
I'm loving the bees.  

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

raleigh record.

a couple of weeks ago my trek got stolen. 
Ben was fishing in Georgia & I stayed the weekend with Bek.
I got home on Sunday & found that my bicycle was gone.
to say the least I was devastated. 
I felt violated & sad that someone now had my favorite piece of gear. 
we claimed it on insurance.
went to Old Bikes Belong, on Preston Street.
met the cute bike shop pup, Murphy, & were sold. 
I got a little vintage Raleigh Record. 
I love my new whip.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

please & thank you.

this is my favorite coffee shop.
we go 2-3 times a week for lunch, ginger ale, or spanish lattes.
it's a happy place. 

Monday, May 21, 2012

magic hour in the honey hole

our church on Sunday. 
caught beautiful rainbow trout.
so impressed by Ben. 
he taught me all I know about fly fishing. 

Thursday, May 17, 2012


I have pressed myself;
Shoulderblades and footbones
Levered between a rock
And a hard place.
Like a canary in a coal mine,
I have sensed the closing in,
Felt the pressure,
And flown away with a flash
Of yellow wings.

summa cum laude

Summa cum laude: with highest distinction.
Ben has his Master's.
Once again graduating summa cum laude. 
I am proud of him.
He is now in the PhD program at the University of Kentucky. 
His focus will be on ecocriticism. 


I've always wanted to make cheese. 
A couple of weeks ago we used Bekah's fresh milk from her goat, Lady, & we made chevre. 
It was the most delicious cheese ever & I can't wait to experiment with other recipes. 
2 Gallons of Goat Milk
 1/4 Cup of Cultured Buttermilk 
 1/2 Tablet of Rennet (equivalent to 2 drops of liquid rennet) 
 1-2 Teaspoons of Salt 
 1/4 Cup of Warm Water
Warm the milk to room temperature (68-70 °F)
Dissolve 1/2 of the rennet tablet in 1/4 cup warm water
Stir in the buttermilk and mix thoroughly
Stir in the rest of the rennet and mix thoroughly
Cover and let it sit for a total of 24 hours
After 24 hours, check the mixture for clean breaks
At this time, the curd should be firm enough to cut into 1/2 inch cubes
Next ladle the curds into a sterile cloth located suspending above a colander
Place that in a refrigerator or cool place for 24 hours
After the 24 hours has passed, the whey should all be drained
Next add about 1-2 teaspoons of salt
Cover and place in the refrigerator

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

gorge goodies

Went to The Gorge & it was perfect.
Made skillet pancakes & bacon over the fire.
Sat in caves.
Hiked the trails.
Climbed on top of Court House Rock.
Everything about it made me so happy.