Stationary Drifting


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Best of Blogs: March

best of blogs_march

I didn’t really keep up with my posting schedule for this month but I do want to keep up with my ‘best of’ posts. The monthly posts are a great way for me to record my goings on for posterity or whatever, and I really love the best of blogs posts because I really love blogs! I don’t have a lot of readership, and some of the blogs I follow don’t either (though I’m sure they all have more than me!), but whether we just read each others’ or if we have thousands of hits a day I really love these blogs and I want to give them the recognition they deserve.

This month I would really like to highlight 2 blogs that have inspired me to get back into blogging as a way to share my day to day and what makes me happy. I think that these were the first 2 blogs I really got into, and started reading daily (or whenever they posted). They both are incredibly honest in their approach to writing, which is refreshing and so so brave. I don’t know if I’ll ever be able to put myself out there like they do (either on the web or in real life) but I very much admire their writing. They remind me to not fall into the trap of blogging only about beautiful things but to find beauty in the sharing the hard things too.

Click here to see February’s best of blogs – there are some great blogs on that one that I am still reading daily.

REMINDER: all the photos belong to the blogger they are associated with, click each photo to be taken to their corresponding post.

blackandwhiteandlovedallover{click blog logo, or here, to be taken to the site}

/// above photos belong to Ellen, click on each photo to be taken to their source ///

Ellen from Black and White and Loved All Over is one of the first bloggers I started to follow regularly. I really can’t remember right now how I came across her blog but I remember being really really excited about her writing style from the beginning. There are a few blogs I have come across that I loved so much that I read pretty much all their archives like the site was a novel, hers was the first one I did that with. I had no idea that I could get that into the ramblings of a fellow internet user but Ellen proved me that writing and just putting it out there can be so powerful.

These days Ellen is a mother of 2 really really gorgeous girls (pictured above!) and blogs a lot about her experience of motherhood. She is so real and honest about the joys and challenges of motherhood, its refreshing. I haven’t quite found anyone who expresses so well (what I imagine is) the complexities of loving little people so much while simultaneously acknowledging that its a damn hard job. She also blogs about home decor, DIY culture, being a freelance writer, living in Nashville, her husband, and other regular life stuff. I can’t help but having a driving need to visit Nashville and see the beauty of the place she describes with so much love.

I really suggest clicking the links and checking out blackandwhiteandlovedallover. Its a really wonderful space on the internet and I hope she keeps up the writing for a long time (no pressure Ellen, but seriously I would really miss you if you stopped).

Also, she just seems like a cool person, the kind I would enjoy sharing a beer with and rolling our eyes about life’s twists and turns.

{click blog logo, or here, to be taken to the site}

/// above photos belong to Drea, click on each photo to be taken to their source ///

I don’t know why I follow so many mom bloggers…maybe there’s something about being a mom being at home for that first little bit that gets people into it, maybe its a desire to document your child’s life that comes out of parenthood (I’ve seen a fair few dad bloggers too), I don’t know I’m not a mom. Drea from ohdeardrea is another blogger I follow that is also a mother of a really lovely and sweet sounding daughter. I think I found Drea’s blog through Ellen from blackandwhiteandlovedallover (above). She is the second blogger I remember getting into and the second blog that I got so excited about I read nearly all her archives. What made Drea stand out to me at first was that she was (at the time) a single mom blogger. Which is pretty rare, I find, in the blog world and kind of refreshing to see that people are thriving as single, happy parents out there. The other thing I really liked about her blog was how raw it was. She did not hold back at all in talking about her struggles and what was going on for her. Which is also really rare in the blog world where everything is tied up in a neat little bow that was hand crafted and photoshopped. These days she is a little more, I don’t know, restrained in her writing. Which makes complete sense to me because people on the internet can be pretty judgemental. But she still retains an honest voice, and journal quality that makes her really great to read on this side of the screen. The kind of read that makes me feel like struggle and happiness can be tied together and beautiful either way.

Besides being a mother, Drea also writes about being vegan, crafting, cooking/eating/being a foodie (ohmygod the eating that happens in her house!), travel, living in Florida, friends and loved ones, and general life stuff.

Check out ohdeardrea for a some really heartfelt and entertaining blogging, oogle her incredible floral couch, and dream about living in Florida.

Like Ellen, Drea just seems like a really great person that would be fun to go out dancing with.

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And that’s it for March Best of Blogs. Thanks to Ellen and Drea for their permission to use photos from their blogs. I have to admit that its a bit of a thrill to send and get emails from people who’s blogs I really admire.

Thanks for reading, and let me know what your favourite blogs are in the comments! I’m always happy to find new great and inspiring sites to read!


Things recently cooked/baked/blended and enjoyed

My cooking bug is coming back. I think M and I take turns, one of us cooks and cleans until we are tired of it or think that the other one does nothing and then we switch. Either way I’ve been happy in the kitchen again lately and have been making lots of yummy (and a few meh, but I’m not going to showcase those) things.

this hung in my mom's kitchen forever, now it hangs in mine (I think my aunt might have made it, I should ask...)

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A yummy vegan apple crisp.

The recipe came mostly from Doris Encyclopedia.

it didn't last very long...

A is for Apple Crisp:

6-7 granny smith apples (I used apples that came in my food box, they were red, possibly royal gala and worked great/are delicious)
1/2 cup of butter (I used earth balance)
1cup of sugar (I used cane sugar)
3/4cup of flour (I used brown pastry)
1teaspoon of cinnamon

I also added about a cup of chopped almonds for some crunch. I chopped them really fine so that they mixed in well and cooked a bit.

Cut up apples really thin. Put 1/2 the apples in a square pan and sprinkle with a little cinnamon and sugar. Put in the rest of the apples (i placed in thirds and sprinkled after every one, including the last). It will really fill up the pan and if you don’t cut them thin they won’t fit.

Preheat the oven to 350. Mix all the ingredients, aside from the apples, then sprinkle them on top of the apples. Bake for 1 hour.

It doesn’t taste the same as buttery apple crisp but it’s still really delicious. M and I have been eating it for breakfast lunch and dinner.

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Bread!

Corrie send me this recipe for no knead bread a little while ago and I’ve been making it often ever since. It’s so easy and so good, I’ve sworn to never buy shitty grocery store bread again, and to rarely pay out the high prices for bakery bread. I do need a better pot than my cast iron pan though. Note: I use half white all purpose flour and half brown. It makes for more dense, less airy bread but it’s better for the body.

also didn't last long. I make this several times a week

Artisan bread

3 cups of white flour
1/4 teaspoon of yeast
1 1/4 teasons of salt
1 1/3 cups of water

Mix the flour, salt, and yeast in bowl. Add the water and mix with a spoon for less than a minute until you get a sticky and lumpy ball of dough. Add a touch of water if it’s too dry. Cover the bowl and let it sit in a warm place for at least 12 hours of rising (I tried 24 hours and…well, you’ll have to try yourself, but you won’t be disappointed). That’s right. Just leave it. Don’t knead it. The little fermenting bubbles will do all the work for you.

After the initial rise, scoop the dough onto a heavily floured piece of parchment paper (having the paper on a tray makes it easier to move). Pull the edges of the ball so they fold over the top and meet in the middle. You’ll do this 4 or 5 times so that all the seams of dough are on the top. Now flip the floury ball over so the seams are hidden (flour on the hands also helps).

Preheat your oven from 425-475 degrees F with one of those inside. The lower temp gives a softer tan coloured crust while 475 gives a crisp and chocolaty crust.

After the loaf has risen for about an hour, grab the four corners of the parchment and gently transfer the loaf and parchment to the preheated casrole dish with a lid ( the round white ceramic dishes with the blue flowers work great, I think it’s called corning wear) and slide it into the oven for 30 min with a lid and then 15 minutes without. Eat fresh or cooling on a rack for an hour does help you to get the biggest bubbles.

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His and hers humus.

I can’t believe how easy humus is to make, I will never ever buy humus again. M doesn’t like stuff in his humus so I usually make a big batch of plain, pour half into a container for him and then add the stuff I like. I forgot the olive oil in this batch but this is generally how I make it.

mine is on the left. M is mad now because mine is more delicious and his is gone

M’s humus:

2 cans of chickpeas, rinsed
1/2 can of the chickpea water
Several cloves of garlic
A few tablespoons of tahini
A glug of olive oil
Salt and pepper.

Throw all into the blender and blend until smooth.
I’ve been experimenting. My blender needs enough liquid that it will turn over but the humus needs to not be too liquidy. Hence the imperfect measurements.

K’s humus:

All of the above plus:

A big handful of cilantro
Cayenne and paprika to taste.

Blend until smooth or, in my case, until the spices are well mixed in and the cilantro is chopped up really tiny in the previous humus mix.

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Cantaloupe Coconut and Ginger Smoothie

I like to get something good in my belly first thing in the morning but when I first wake up I hate eating. Too sleepy. Drinking is okay though so I’ve been making myself smoothies almost every morning since I brought my blender home from my mom’s last fall. It’s so great and fresh and makes me want to face the day even more than coffee does. It’s also a great way to sneak in tons of ginger which keeps the winter sick germs away (I have a really terrible immune system).

i drink all my smoothies in jars. I just like it better

This is what I threw in the blender today:

Half a cantaloupe from our food box
1 organic banana from the market
About 4 strawberries from the market (the last from my grocery adventure last week)
A big chunk of ginger from the market, peeled and chopped (to avoid too many ginger strings)
A quarter cup ish of coconut milk
Filled to the top of the fruit with fresh pressed apple juice from the market.
A generous amount of locally made organic plain yogurt from the market.

Blend until its smooth and enjoy immediately. I put the other half in a jar and stuck it in the fridge for later, or for tomorrow.

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I like doing nice things for my body. As M said last night as he was snacking on bread and humus, it’s so cool to be eating all homemade things. Which is a big shift for the two of us since we both used to be chronic eaters out.