Five Simple Things (November 27)

 Hello.

It's the day after Thanksgiving and I am extremely thankful to make it this far in this year. This year was rough. Not just rough, but extremely difficult. Putting words on a screen on a blog post doesn't even depict the right way to show how emotionally draining, and physically hard this past year has been. From a major surgery, to storms, to wildfires, to the pandemic, to mental health issues crashing in on me, I am honestly looking forward to a new year and a do over. 2020 will be the year going forward to never repeat. A lot of people are saying this year hasn't been hard on them, and that is great to hear. We struggled, in more ways than one, so it's nice to know that not everyone has had those struggles. We enjoyed a quiet Thanksgiving this year and this past week I've had some issues with my anxiety, so this weekend will definitely be very low key. Here are five things this week.

1. This Picture.

They are best friends.

2. This Dinner.

I've been a little under the weather this week a bit and Jeff has been amazing making dinners for us. I was actually excited about this meal because we grew the zucchini this year through all the wildfire smoke and ash.

3. This Kitty.

She's such a goofball. 

4. This Look.

I've been watching The Office lately when falling asleep. It's either The Office or the Hunger Games, just because I am familiar with them and can relax without any stimulation from not knowing what's going to happen. I've read that people that have high anxiety do this as a form of comfort. Guess that makes sense. Well, this image made me laugh when I woke up the next morning. Some time in the night I paused it and woke up to Michael Scott's judgement eyes on me. It was as if they were saying, "how dare you pause The Office and sleep." ☺

5. This Art.


Incredible! You can check out his work here and here.

Positive affirmations this week: "On a scale of 1-10, how happy are you with your life right now?"
About a 6. I feel like everyone is a work in progress, so the six is coming from a state of that thought. Once I'm able to be in a location where I feel less surrounded by stressors I feel that number will jump to a seven, or an eight. I think a lot of people assume that those with mental health issues are always floating at a two or three because they "assume" depression and anxiety make the person sad, or come across miserable all the time. That's just not the case. You can be successful, happy, and always bubbly around the right people and still suffer from a mental health issue. That stigma needs to end. Everyone on this planet, no matter who they are, struggle with some form of a mental issue at least once in their life. The judgement that just because you aren't suffering, so someone else shouldn't be struggling is also very obtuse. Hopefully, in my lifetime that stigma and judgement will end.

Have a nice weekend.

Five Simple Things (November 20)

Hello.

We are finally and completely out of the wildfire threats in Oregon. The ones that were close to us are now contained and a lot of the smaller ones have been completely contained. It's sad to hear that more people perished in the fires and the way Talent, Oregon, looks is devastating. I feel so much empathy for the people in Talent that not only lost their house, but also their place of work. During this pandemic it's just heartbreaking to hear the stories of some of these families. Here on our side we are slowly cleaning ash up in random places. Of course, our pool was a casualty of the ash, but we've had to clean out some of our gutters, along parts of the roof, and also along our fence line. It's weird seeing so much ash here. A lot of our plants look dead right now and I hope we didn't lose any of them during this time. We replanted our crabapple before the wildfires happened and we are worried it might not make it because of the smoke blocking the sun. Fingers crossed it pulls through. Here are five things this week.

1. This Memorial.

We still love the fact that we honored Baz in such a public way. He really was a great dog and it's nice to be able to know he is part of us still and we get to see him every time we leave the house and look at the Free Little Library. We have plans to put a lower hook and honor Meia with a "cat hook." And, an even lower one maybe eventually for the ducks. 

2. This Spatula. 

This wooden spatula is actually a rice spatula, but we have been using it for everything lately. It's USDA organic and made from sustainable bamboo. I picked this one up at Might Nest here.

3. This Rainbow.

It's nice to see glimpses of a rainbow right now, especially after this past summer. There isn't hardly any smoke in the air here in the valley, but the sky has looked different lately until this rainbow came out. 

4. This Sticker.

Love it.

5. These Edibles.

I'm starting to like the Drops watermelon jellies. They take the edge off of my anxiety issues and actually help me sleep. These contain 50mg THC and when cut into the appropriate serving size offers a 5mg THC hit. It's a nice replacement to my anxiety medication so far.

I also received the November Kiwi Eco Box this week, too. Since Yogi Surprise came to an end, I found Kiwi Eco Box and so far, I love it! Everything is environmentally friendly, minimal, and simple. You can sign up here!

Positive affirmations this week:


Have a nice weekend.

Vista House-Crown Point (Columbia River Gorge)

Skylar and I took a small day trip to Crown Point Scenic Corridor and through the Columbia River Gorge. We wanted to get out of the house for a bit, unfortunately Jeff was at work and it seems that most of our day trips don't include him because of his work schedule. In the middle of the pandemic there wasn't a lot of people around and we ended up at Vista House. Vista House is a overlook of the Columbia River and the view was amazing. -Even through the gray skies. (The Vista House is currently closed because of the pandemic, but the outer ring of the house is accessible to the public with respect to the area)

“It could serve as a comfort station for the tourist and the travelers of America’s greatest highway and inspire the traveler along the highway making the wonders of the gorge accessible. And, I suggest it be known as the Vista House." -Samuel Lancaster, Assistant Highway Engineer for Multnomah County in 1913. Supervisor of the Columbia River Highway project.










Five Simple Things (November 13)

Hello.

Happy Friday the Thirteenth. I'm not too superstitious, and as Michael Scott would say on "The Office," "I'm a little stitious." It's fun to think of superstitions, but some of them were based out of fear and to cause fear in people and that aspect is not fun, at all. But, it's been a nice week to relax. Skylar and I went through a lot of things in the garage this week and donated a lot of unnecessary items that we haven't used in awhile. As I've stated before, every once in awhile I like to do a purge of things to keep the clutter at bay. Which, the last few years hasn't been that bad because we make sure to purchase things with intention. Bring things into the house that aren't needed is what we've been working on the last few years and we've gotten better at it. It's a practice that has to be constant, or you will fall back on old habits. The influence of others is tough, too. It's almost like people think they NEED to buy things all the time and you really don't need to do any of that. I'm a habitual list maker and grocery shopping, there's a list. Traveling, there's a list. Clothes shopping, there's a list. I literally make a list for everything to stay on task and not bring in unnecessariness into our home. There's a lot of minimalist ideas and views at the link at the top of the blog. Slowly over the next year I will be adding to it as I make minimalist posts on the blog. If you're looking for ways to cut the clutter in your home and life, check it out. For now, here are five things this week,

1. This Sky.

The old saying goes, "Pink sky at night, sailor's delight," But, this kind of sky is what we call Meirez Sky and we love it and who it's named after. It lets us know that the next day and into the week will be calm and stress free.

2. This Moment.

The duplex across the street has a new tenant and their kitty comes to visit Eleven. We've named him "Jack."

3. This Cleaner.

Little ants are an issue here during the end of spring and first of the summer months. We would think we got them under control and the following day they would return. That was until I found a solution. These multi-surface cleaners are the best thing that I've found that safe, nontoxic, and actually keeps the ants at bay. I spray it on the counters, around the windowsills, and along the doorways and baseboards. It really does more than what it states on the bottle. You can pick up a bundle here.

4. These Pens.

Other than my Micron Pens I've taken a real liking to these Emott fine points. They are perfect for my nightly affirmations journaling. My Micron pens come in black multipoint, but these uni-balls come in multicolored fine points.

5. These Edibles.

Giving these edibles a go this month. Most of these edibles I post on my blog here are made in Oregon and are local. It's amazing how much hemp, CBD, or THC products are made in this state. I'm curious about how these are going to work for me. Hopefully, they give me the same benefit as the last ones.

Our next episode on the podcast came out yesterday, too. It's about Samuel Mason the river pirate. Check it out here.
Positive affirmations this week:


Have a nice weekend.

Five Simple Things (November 6)

 Hello.

The seasons are changing here and it's not exactly the same, but at least we are out of the dangers of wildfires. All of them have been contained here and it's a nice relief. And, the Coronavirus numbers are going up drastically nationwide. Here in Oregon we are still under a mask mandate, which I'm not sure when that's going to be lifted. Here in our own county there's still people that are calling it all a hoax and it's going against our civil rights and is treason. I don't understand that. It's as if we've all stepped through the looking glass into an alternate universe, or something, and some of these people fell completely down a rabbit hole and can't climb out. We've been enjoying Sarah Cooper's TikToks on the president's speeches, too. They are quite comical. On another side we've been looking into land purchases and came across a website that only shows houses for sale in an area in British Columbia named Ucluelet. A lot of these houses are amazing and actually affordable. We love the view from some of the houses decks and porches. We've been drinking a lot of water lately. I think the heat and smoke from the summer has dehydrated us inside and out. We used to have an automatic cold/hot water dispenser, but the rental price on those is ridiculous. We have gone to five gallon containers and filling them at the local food co-op, but it would be nice to have the water cold. We are looking into getting another cold/hot dispenser, but we aren't sure what we want yet. As for now, we have gone as far as getting Fiji Water and Evian delivered straight to our door. This will work for now, but we need a cheaper and longer term solution. We'll weigh the odds and see what's better for our family. For now, here are five things this week.

1. This Rosemary.

We trimmed the rosemary bush on the side of our house this week and I took the opportunity to hang dry the stems. One of my favorite herbs is rosemary and the house twice this week smelled amazing. It's interesting to know that inhaling rosemary essential oil and just smelling rosemary increases mental clarity and stimulates brain function to be able to concentrate better. 

2. This Ambience.

I was hunting one day to find some ambient restaurant sounds recently and found two great sites. They are free and offer such a great mix of sounds that you can personalize to your own liking on what you want to hear. The first one is AmbientMixer.com and the second one is MyNoise.net. Both are great for creating ambient sounds of a café, restaurant, kitchen cooking, etc.

3. This Kid.

He is just growing up way too fast. He is taller than I am now and almost taller than Jeff. It's incredible how quickly the time goes by when you don't want it to. He turned 17 in September and is going into the eleventh grade. At times we miss our little Bean, but we are so proud of who he is becoming and how awesome he is to be around. 

4. This Podcast.

As mentioned in the previous Friday's post, Skylar and I started a podcast, finally. We have been toying with the idea for several years now and finally just did it. The first episode came out Thursday before Halloween. It's a topic a lot of people are discouraged about, but we are enjoying learning as we go. It's mostly about the horror side of history and season one is about serial killers of the 1800s. You can listen to episodes at the link that the top of the blog, listen to them on pretty much all platforms, our Anchor page here, or our website here. If you enjoy it, let us know! Our first episode is on H.H. Holmes, and our second is on The Harpe Brothers.

5. This Kitty.

Sometimes she's just too pretty not to share.

Positive affirmations this week:


Have a nice weekend.

End of October 2020 (1 Second Every Day)

 

Halloween 2020

We decided against our yearly cotton candy spinning this year because of the pandemic, but we still had a good Halloween at home. Skylar wanted to dress up, like he does every year, but he decided against going trick or treating on his own. We answered the door with masks on and washed our hands after each person left. We even sanitized our door often just to help cut down on the spread of germs. It was a foggy morning and because of that, I decided to take a few shots in the local cemetery. I've started an Instagram account on the fog that rolls through the Willamette Valley and you can view it here. But, the fog on Halloween morning was perfect for a photo opportunity. Later in the night the Blue Moon was amazing! It's the first full Halloween moon to shine in all U.S. time zones in 76 years.











Skylar decided to go as the Joker for Halloween this year and when we turned the lights out, he really did look pretty scary. We only got a few trick or treaters and Skylar didn't go trick or treating himself, but it was a fun night. His makeup was pretty accurate and I can hear the Joker's voice, "Why so serious?"

"Let's put a smile on that face."