Thursday, May 23, 2013
In Portland we recently had a stretch of good weather. Like, really really good weather. It was in the mid-70s for over a week. But the spring rain started again and it’s been pretty wet. Yesterday all I could think about was curling up with a big bowl of chicken noodle soup. We had all the ingredients and I had some time before Spanish class, so I knew it was the right thing to do. Also, Jonathan had a dentist appointment over on the waterfront and I knew he’d be soaked from riding in the rain to and from there and would probably like some soup to warm up with!
It’s been several months since I’ve made soup and, I gotta say, last night’s soup was AMAZING. Probably some of the best soup I’ve made. It’s jam-packed full of healthy stuff AND you can clean out your fridge! And I get to eat some leftovers for lunch today, which I’m pretty excited about. So get to making this soup!
All ingredients are approximations, as per my usual soup-making. :o)
6 medium carrots
3 chicken tenders (about 1.5 breasts’ worth)
1.5 diced onions
Last bit of almost-bad kale (small handful’s worth)
Two large fistfuls of spinach
¼ cup of diced mushrooms
½ cup of frozen corn
¾ cup of frozen peas
1.5 cups of uncooked whole wheat penne pasta
1 tbsp of chicken stock concentrate
Salt and pepper to taste
1 tbsp of thyme
2 tsp of chili powder
2 tsp of cumin
2 tsp of turmeric (turmeric in EVERYTHING – it is good for you!)
Pre-heat your pot on medium heat and throw in a couple good-sized blobs of coconut oil. You could also use olive oil. When it gets warm, toss in your diced onions. While those cook a bit chop your carrots into small pieces. After the onions have cooked for five minutes or so, toss those carrots in there and stir them around. The chicken I used was frozen still, so don’t worry about thawing your chicken. Put the chicken on top of the onion and carrots and fill the pot with water, leaving about two inches of room at the top. Turn the heat to high and let everything boil for five minutes or so. Toss your spices, salt and pepper, and the chicken stock concentrate in now. After everything has boiled a few minutes, turn the heat down and let it simmer for a while. It’s going to start smelling really good!
After it’s simmered for a while, take the chicken pieces out and shred them. (Do I have to tell you to make sure they’re fully cooked? Don’t be dumb and get chickenella.) Throw them back into the pot and turn the heat back up to medium-high. Toss the noodles in there and let them cook. How long do whole wheat noodles take to cook? I cooked mine for maybe 11 or 12 minutes? When the noodles are done, toss in the mushrooms, kale, spinach, peas, and corn, and let it cook for a few minutes.
BAM! This was a super easy and relatively fast recipe. Plus, it made a ton of leftovers, which is always awesome. So go now and make this soup!
Tuesday, May 21, 2013
Her husband James!
The lovely Little Things PDX even took part!
So, you know, if you feel like being silly, I'd love to see your #slothing photos!
Monday, May 20, 2013
My favorite part was the relay race, where a cucumber was passed instead of a baton. One of the teams was just a father and a son, but the kid did a great job! Everyone was rooting for him and he did awesome!
I am working so many weekends this year that have races happening on them, so I wasn’t anticipating being able to make any of the races I wanted to see, so the surprise day off was appreciated. I can’t wait to make the next race!
Local framebuilder Ira Ryan on the left!
"You didn't pass the cucumber? Drop and give me ten!"
Sunday, May 19, 2013
Life update time. So much going on lately.
No, really, I haven't had much free time lately and it kinda sucks. It's great, but then it's not.
Let me explain.
In good news, I started Spanish class! It's pretty awesome. I am one of two ladies in the class. (I am a LADY.) It's kind of like I get a private lesson. My teacher's name is Ceci and she is so cute and wonderful. She's probably mid-20s and Mexican. She has glorious hair. She is the toughest Spanish teacher I've had, but I need that at this point. I am in intensive Spanish, which means we meet twice a week for an hour and a half each class. It's been great, but I haven't had much time to really focus on the language aspect. I have been making dumb mistakes on really easy stuff. I am a champ at conjugating verbs. I can usually speak well enough to get my point across for a lot of things. But I haven't been having time to complete the homework. My life has been too full of....stuff? to focus and I am feeling overwhelmed. I know it's temporary but I am just really tired.
Like today I get a surprise day off. I was originally going to be working the Saturday market but there is a race downtown today and it just makes it super sucky to sell to people. This race in particular, apparently. Karina is up in Seattle and doing GREAT so she had her husband come pick up all of my items last night and bring them up to Seattle so she could sell them there. She sold almost all of an entire size of skirts! Yeah, Karina!!
I should be bummed that I'm not making money today. Which I am. But I'm also kind of relieved. I have SO MUCH money to make by the end of the year to pay for my trip to Antarctica and South America. Did I mention I'll be out of town from about January 8-February 18? More about that in a sec...
So today Jonathan and I are going to go to Kruger's farm on Sauvie Island for a farm crit. It's this one here. I was originally bummed that I wasn't going to be able to go to any bike races this year because I'm working so many weekends, so I'm glad Jonathan and I will be able to make this one!
Back to Antarctica. I am burnt out on saving money. I know:
1. I did this to myself
2. I really do want to make Antarctica happen
3. I am just whining on my personal blog, of which I am the queen and maker-of-happenings
I'm tired of working so hard for this. WHINE WHINE WHINE. Normally I'm not so busy every night so I go to work, come home and relax with Jonathan and Artoo, and then work weekends and it's not a big deal. But right now I am working the weekends (or at least doing something on the weekends) and then having plans pretty much every night after work. I have had no down time lately. Brittany is tired.
I want to be able to spend money on things and not have pangs of "but you need to save $15,000 more to get to Antarctica!!!!!! don't buy that!" I KNOW I have told myself that it's okay to use money in savings if I need to, but that I am working hard throughout the year so that I only need to take less money out. And I know this is only temporary! Next year I won't technically have to be saving for SUCH an expensive trip. Like I mentioned before, I will be out of town for a month and a half, spending part of my winter in the balmy summer of the Southern Hemisphere...in Antarctica and Patagonia. (That was a joke.)
I will be able to relax more next year. But will I relax? To some degree, my side-hustles are pretty easy. House-sitting is me loving your pets for money. Using your water and electricity. (Even though I don't use much at all.) Working for Karina on the weekends is me being outside and schmoozing with people and other vendors (and reading, depending on how slow it is). But my side-hustles do take me away from home. So we'll see what happens next year. I do have a trip to Germany in July planned to be a bridesmaid for my friends getting married in a castle. (BOOYEAH.)
And then there's visiting my mom I want to do...and going to Ketchikan once or twice...and going to Oahu with Amy...and I'd love to visit Kim...and Renai...and Stina...oh, crap, now that's the whole year...
I wish I were independently wealthy sometimes so I could make all the travel I want to do happen Right Now.
I want to be able to buy some of the stuff I want without going OH SHIT I BOUGHT THINGS.
I broke down and went to Sephora this week. I have been trying to be a good minimalist and tell myself that I don't need or want colorful eye makeup but I doooooo. And I try and tell myself that the chemicals in the makeup are bad for me and if I get eyelid cancer down the road that I did it to myself, but I totally did this:
That's three eye liner pencils, one eye shadow pencil, some matte eyelid primer, and some eyelash curlers. I spent over a hundred bucks. My love of Urban Decay makeup has come out in full force. I have been a fan of UD since junior year of high school, where I would stock up on the (now discontinued) Lip Gunk and eye shadows. I love having crazy colorful eye makeup. I haven't done it in a long time for many reasons, but I broke down.
Like I said before, I am burnt out on saving money. Not like I ever go hog-wild (lie) and spend a bunch of money on stuff (lie), but sometimes I just want to buy things, darn it. I want to buy a shirt or a necklace or eye make-up and not be all, "OH, BRITTANY. DO YOU REALLY NEED THAT? NO! IT'S A WANT NOT A NEED." My inner voice is an all-caps kind of judgey beeyotch sometimes. But, yes, I bought eye makeup and I now have teal, fluorescent green, and bright purple (with sparkles!) eye liners.
This all will pass. I'm only feeling extra judgy on myself now because I'm mentally drained and I still need to keep working. I know when I am on a boat for three weeks, looking at minke whales and Shackleton's grave and millions of penguins and then hiking in Patagonia and drinking Argentinian wine and eating Argentinian beef and being all, "Oh, THIS is what the pampas looks like!" I will look back on the last two years and be all, "Thank god I worked my ass off to achieve one of my life dreams!"
But until then I am still human and I have bouts of whininess.
Thanks for reading.
(I'll leave you with some super cute pictures of Julius to redeem myself of all this whining. He's been snuggling with me for the last hour. I love him!)
BRITTANY: LOVING YOUR PETS FOR MONEY SINCE 2006.
Friday, May 17, 2013
Wow, I'm finally able to put this post together. What a week! It's been a little crazy here, so it's nice to come back and look at these pictures and think about how relaxing it was to be at the beach for two days! The Sylvia Beach Hotel was just as wonderful as the last time we stayed!
I took all of these photos with our Canon S100 but I may do a post of the photos I took with my cell phone another time. Those are always the more candid shots. :o)
The hotel on my early Saturday morning walk...
Dr. Seuss room
Lincoln Steffens room
Shelly the hotel cat (and her 'nip)! I LOVED HER.
We went to the Newport Aquarium and saw our favorites!
It was International Migratory Bird Day and the Cascades Raptor Center from Eugene had brought this falcon and the osprey below to show people. Such cool birds!
This rockfish does not approve.
After the aquarium we walked around five miles and watched the sun set! We walked from the hotel up to the start of Agate Beach and then back again. This picture shows my explorer pose.
Watching the sun set was so colorful and amazing!
On Sunday we went to the Yaquina Head lighthouse. It was AWESOME.
I LOVE my windbreaker! It's Patagonia's Houdini jacket. I highly recommend it!
Mama and baby seal!
Frank was there, of course! (See the rest of her travels here!)