Friday, April 24, 2015

part six: sunny.

we talked about all the things we see, we crave, we want for our family.

at some point in the journey, i began to call in the ancestors. there was a lot of driving with tears so i would move to the side of the road and just allow the tears to fall. i wanted to let it out, i was happy to let it go, to move out of the way and allow the heaviness to move on. i would call on j's mother, pat, who i didn't get to meet in human form this time around. i called on my grandmother lena, grandmother pat, grandfather shep, grandmother ina who was lovingly called bressy and all of our bloodlines together. i called to ask for help. i called ask for them to guide us to a home that will hold us, contain us, love us. i asked for a home that will nourish us, nurture our needs, insulate this story. 

then, we found her.

we had let go of hope so we were living off of a brand new kind of sheer raw unknown fuel. we didn't write it down on an altar, we didn't fixate on it, we let it go. we gave it to trust. and then after a few days we might have had a little hope left but it was hope in a different font, it wasn't a dark and heavy holding on kind of a hope, it was a new light filled kind of hope. 

she is a big yellow craftsman, built in the early 1900's during a time when all of my ancestors were alive and kicking. when i walked in, i knew, they made this happen. it was the fastest walk-thru in history; we didn't look around too much as we were determined to get to the backyard. wow. there it was: the backyard we were craving for o & b. the home of a bacon avocado tree, a valencia orange tree, a play structure with swings and a slide, a pink house for beauty, a barn for a painting studio, a drive way, a front yard with a communal tree swing and so much more. we named her sunny.

we didn't tell o & b till we signed the lease. we picked them up early from school with a wood board love and drove to sunny. b walked thru the house like we had that first time; fast and determined to see the back. she walked out to the yard and started singing 'for the first time in forever.' she continued to twirl and sing and run all over the yard, jumped on the swing, checked out her wood house, opened the little pink wood windows while still singing her own version of the frozen song. o was quiet with a soft spoken 'wow' here and there. i found him wrapped up in the orange tree picking an orange, peeling it and taking big huge bites with juice going everywhere. 

we watched them take in this new terrain, to land somewhere, to discover this place we were going to call home. i am not sure there are many words for this kind of thing but it felt pure and so, so goodxxxx

xxxx this is part six in a series called home on the blog xxxx

Thursday, April 16, 2015

a hole in one.

beauties! here is another mini break in the home series for a quick 1-2 which is what i like to call food that takes 1-2 seconds or minutes to make and is simple inside the storm! inside the move, the place that was the hardest to pack up was the kitchen. we were swimming in so much of the unknown. what would we need while we were moving around? what are the essentials to go with us wherever we will be? when will we land and where? i decided to bring all the things i use everyday which in turn made me feel deeply nourished just by looking at them. they were also the things i couldn't bare to put in a box and seal it with tape. they are living and breathing parts of me, of us and how i nourish my family. 

:::i realized that they are not just things, they are a part of our story:::

a few wood spoons (roasting spatula & wooden rice paddle), my mom's 2 copper pots, 2 wood boards (big and small), a bread knife, a few kitchen towels, our iron clad pan, miracle tea, a weck jar of pink salt, a ball jar of brown sugar, olive oil, a small spatula, my mini mits, a roasting dish and chamomile lavender tea. the iron clad pan delivered every time. i love that thing. 

breakfast needed to be quicker than normal because we were staying about 20 minutes  away from a school we used to walk to in five. every morning when i wake up, i turn the stove top dial on low to get the pan warm. i have no idea what will happen. what i do know is i will need to warm or cook something soon: one day old oatmeal to eggs to french toast, you name it. 

:::i wake up, i turn on the fire:::

instead of doing eggs with toast, i thought why not put the two step into one and call it a day? i cut a hole out of a piece of bread and threw it on the warm, lightly buttered iron clad pan. i waited as it warmed the bread. i put the heat up to medium high. then i cracked the egg inside the hole. i also added a little cheese as you can see in the photos. in a minute or two, i turned it over and let it cook a bit on the other side. done and done. say good-bye to waiting at the toaster. of course you can cut all kinds of shapes... a hole seems to do the trick depending on how big your bread is! there are so many different ways you can make this yours. may this bring some brekkie inspiration into your morning routinexxxx

Thursday, April 9, 2015

part five: home.

i am listening. 

and to listen to my body, to my crazy, to my needs: i have to slow way down. why is it so terrifying to slow down? in my childhood, most things were compared to brain surgery as that was my fathers profession. what would happen if a brain surgeon slowed down? the patient would die. so i guess, slowing down meant death or you had to perform life saving surgery (or something of the like) to give yourself the gift of a slow down. you had to sacrifice yourself in some grand way to give yourself the gift of rest. i feel we all have some form of this. what is this? who said this?! another wonderful mantra of the time was 'you can rest when your dead' how can you beat that one?! i suppose not resting might take you there a lot sooner, you can finally let go & rest! OY. these words were said in a jewishy kind of a jest yet the heaviness of never stopping, always doing, sprinting toward success whether i knew what it was or not, being famous, wealthy, shining my light till it died out are all laden in a heavy soup of expectations topped off with a blinding compote that has been simmering in the fires of my body for too long. boring story. 

and the listening required stopping. oh god. stopping. scariest place ever. stopping is not trending anywhere these days and i am a leo with a scorpio rising and an aries moon. help! lets step back a minute. i didn't just decide one day i needed to stop, breathe and really go there whatever that means. also, lets just pop the fantasy cherry that i am all good now and stopping comes with ease. NOT THE CASE. i am steeping, drip by drip in this precious forever conversation, in this fearlessly tender practice, this vital listening, that is this being human thing. 

i thought letting the house go would be the hardest part of our journey as we tried to do everything we could to keep it. we were so scared to let go. in the process of getting the house ready to sell, we moved out in the new year. a dear friend offered her home to us for one month. we figured this would be plenty of time to find our new home. i can admit to even a zest of excitement in the unknown, finding a home that will serve our family better with a yard, a conversation with nature, aligning with what we wanted for our family, maybe even a swing set and some bikes. 

one of the last nights at 601 j and i made a fire. we wrote on a piece of paper everything we wanted in a home. we talked about all the things we see, we crave, we want for our family. we put it on the altar. as the days, the craigs list posts, the westside rentals, the willows, the trulias, the MLS' all rolled by we were faced with our story over and over again. on paper, we were not the best of candidates for a clean credit report. every phone call, every agent, every open house we would share the story. we were honest, authentic, up front and deeply exhausted. we were rejected by the first three homes we liked. each place taught us something new. don't involve the kids, speak directly to the listing agent, meet the owners. the month of january was full with tears, carrying a heaviness that only the unknown can bring mixed with a fierce mama lion desire to keep us moving forward in a thick & sticky landscape of letting go, letting go, letting go. i had no idea what i was doing. i made breakfast, lunch and dinner. i packed boxes. i called clients. i watched the end of parenthood. talk about loss.

one of my tools to slowing down is creating altars. creating beauty everywhere i look. i crave beauty inside the suffering: a point in which to pray. a place to stop, to see what i am working toward, to express my gratitude. an installation of intentions that is working while i am surviving. my true self represented inside of a painted rock, a feather, a poem, a louise hay quote, a lit votive candle from ikea as the whirling dervishes inside me dance their dance. all of this inside black beans & rice, potty training, undying laundry, karate, trying not to yell and failing at every attempt, looking for empathy everywhere and finding it in the altar.

::: this is part five in an unraveling series on home :::

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

a pause for passover ::: brisket.

hi beauties! let's take a breather in this unraveling series on home to give you a brisket recipe for passover or any day really... it's a quick prep and a deeply nourishing outcome with it's warm aroma filling the house for hours and it's delicious taste.  this is a very significant piece to defining the sacredness of home, the connection to my bloodline, the poetry inside my culture ::: the delicious food of the high holidays. i am rarely 'on it' with the blogging & weeks before posting recipes (sorry).... i think a staff might turn that around. i guess i could start with a calendar. today, i am turning over a new leaf and sharing a very simple and BEAUTY filled recipe for passover. this can happen in a dutch oven or in a slow cooker. i love both depending on what your day has in store. if you will be home, throw it in the oven. if not, slow cook it. whatever you do, with these few ingredients it will be delish.

parsley, celery, carrots, meyer lemon zest, 
spring onions, garlic, garlic salt, bay leaves, 
rosemary, thyme, salt and LOVE. 

1. turn the oven to 350
2. heat the dutch oven on the stove top with medium to high heat. 
3. inside the dutch oven: olive oil, spring onion or any onion, garlic
4. massage the meat with gratitude, love, garlic salt, salt, rosemary,
thyme & parsley
5. you are looking to hear the 'audible sear'
6. make sure the pot is hot
7. seer the meat for a few minutes on both sides
8. then add a few stalks of celery, carrots and any other vegetables
9. yams, potatoes or celery root are a nice addition if you are looking
for more roots
10. then add 1 - 2 bay leaves, a little more olive oil on top, salt & zest
of one meyer lemon
11. put it in the oven on 350 for 2 1/2 hours with the top on
12. you will want to check in every 30 minutes to an hour
13. you are also welcome to turn it over if you want in those intervals
14. whatever you do, it will turn out beautifully
15. you got thisxxxx

the food of the holiday is where i have an opportunity to connect with my judaism, the kitchen as my temple. the smells, the gathering of the food, the connecting with all the jewish grandmothers before me, it's inside the stories we came from and the stories we are writing today. we are giving our families this story by turning on the fire during this time of the holidays. whatever you believe, you can connect to nourishing your family with intention and lovexxxx.