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5/30/12

1970s books and art


i've been amassing a pretty sweet collection of 1970s books lately, thanks mostly to my mom and then also to the thrift store. such a consistent aesthetic (of awesomeness) to this particular era. i will let the pictures do the talking.







5/29/12

heartmelters and other delicious things (or, pregnancy part 2)


"Mother and infant are designed to be a dynamic that activates in each nature's agenda for nurturing and well-being. The infant unlocks in the mother a wisdom and knowledge gained over eons as the mother unlocks in the infant the intelligence to be fully human"

-Joseph Chilton Pearce, The Biology of Transcendence 

Once again, thank you for all your comments over here. I cannot even pretend that I am not tremendously affected by such an outpouring of kind words. Friends both old (very old) and new wrote with their thoughts and memories and it was such a joy to read through everything. It's like when you find an old letter, or and old journal entry that had been forgotten: a quick lightning bolt of memory electrifies the atmosphere and everything seems to shift, just slightly.  It is exciting to read the comments from the other mamas who had their babies very young and also "gave up" their 20s to the large project of motherhood.

 It is a special thing we share, us mothers, and to share the experience of mothering so young feels good to me. It is a sigh of relief; the recognition of a secret code. 

Jeff Battocletti, Our Lady of Hollywood

 As promised, my next post on this topic will be about my birthing experience, which was very positive. Some other topics that rise up while writing all of this are a bit more complex and harder to pull apart - like the subject of my relationship during this chapter, or the enormous heft of disappointment that I could feel from people who loved me. Though with love comes support, many people could not mask their fear and doubt (understandably so) about my decision to move forward in this particular direction. Perhaps, in the future, i will revisit these rich and sticky subjects with clarity and eloquence; we shall see. 

I listed some more vintage in the shop this weekend, stop by if you'd like. more soon! 


high-waisted levi summer shorts
1970s high-waisted jeans
oversize mexican blanket poncho






5/25/12

summer breezy


thank you to everyone who has commented so far on my pregnancy post. truly, your words mean so much and are so inspiring. i'm taking the weekend off from blog land, and will be back next week to answer some questions that people left in the comments, as well as to fill in the story a bit more. 


find me on instagram! @lostboysandlovers - i will post some photos this weekend of new stuff going in the shop.

image found here

5/23/12

red lentil dal with sweet brown rice and yams

in college, one of my primary food staples was lentils and rice. i ate it endlessly, mixed with salad greens in a delicious and healthy pile of food. even when i traveled, i would bring a bag of rice and a bag of lentils in my suitcase so that i could, if needed, feed myself freely and cheaply wherever i was. 

last night, i realized it was getting late and i hadn't really planned dinner. sigh. dinner always goes much more smoothly when i plan it, as i have two male human beings to feed, and dinner is very important to them both. in fact, they are both always hungry, but hungriest at lunch and dinner. i came up with an on-the-spot meal that i'd never made before, and it was so delicious - i was (admittedly) very proud. although we devoured it too quickly for me to take pictures, i've supplemented this post with photos i gleaned from pinterest. you can go to the food section in my pinterest profile to see these photos and the other recipes they originally came from.

dinner was red lentil dal with garlic and ghee (served with warm baguette and butter); sweet brown rice with raisins and cinnamon; and baked sweet potatoes (technically, yams, i think, but either will work). quite simple, with lots of nutrition (and no meat). 

baked yams

this is the easiest part of the meal! before starting anything else, do these so that they can cook while you make the rest of the meal. preheat your oven to 400 degrees and wash your sweet potatoes or yams. i used jewel yams. 

after they've been washed, prick each potato several times with a fork, and then rub the skin with olive oil. set the potatoes on a piece of tin foil, and place them in the oven to bake. they usually take around 45 minutes, depending on the size - you can test their done-ness with a fork...they should be very soft all the way through. they will also start to ooze a sticky nectar when they are done. 



easy sweet brown rice pudding

technically, this is not a pudding. but you see, i was trying to make dinner a bit faster since it was late, and so i didn't want to spend another half-hour baking a pudding with eggs (though next time i am going to do it that way, as baked puddings are delicious). this was an improvised and easier way, and it turned out very well.

put two cups of sweet brown rice and four cups of water in a pot and bring to a boil; reduce to simmer, and simmer until rice is cooked (about 45 minutes). when rice is cooked, pour milk into it as you stir it in until the rice reaches a desired consistency (this is up to you - i left mine fairly thick). next, add a couple teaspoons of brown sugar (or honey or maple), a few dashes of cinnamon, and a splash of vanilla. scoop into bowls and serve garnished with raisins. 



red lentil dal with garlic and ghee

put one cup of red lentils and two cups of water in a pot and bring to a boil (add a bay leaf if you have one); reduce to a simmer and simmer with lid on for several minutes (about 15-20). do not season with any salt until the lentils are just about done. this was my first time making these kinds of lentils, so i checked and stirred them often until they seemed to be the right consistency (soft).

once they are soft, add curry paste to taste, and season with equal parts of tamari and maple syrup/honey. taste as you go to ensure the flavor is how you like it. you can stop here if you like - the next step i did is optional. 

in a cast-iron skillet, i simmered chopped garlic cloves in a couple tablespoons of homemade ghee (a gift from my mom). once it was nicely cooked, i poured the ghee and garlic into the dal and mixed it in (yum). if you haven't heard of ghee, or the wonders of ghee, please read about it here
 
i served the dal in scoops on our plates with slices of oven-warmed baguette to dip into it. i buttered my bread (cuz that's how i do) and then ate the dal on top of that. 



the boys devoured it and were happy and full - and as many of us know, this is the true sign of a successful meal. (also: though i didn't include greens in this meal, it would look beautiful with any green side dish - from kale salad to steamed chard or broccoli, and so on). 

i'm making the dahl again for lunch today!

photos: one, two, three


5/21/12

Once upon a time when I was young (and pregnant)


Inspired by other blogs that i love, and also as part of an effort to write down memories that i haven't officially recorded, i'm experimenting with telling more and bigger stories here...and for ages i've been meaning to tell my birth story (which, nearly 8 years later, i have never written down, and i can't believe it). thinking about my birth story, however, gets me thinking, of course, about my pregnancy and so i thought i'd start there for the sake of chronology.



Long ago, but also not that long ago, I was pregnant with my son, Asher. I was 21 when I got pregnant - finishing the last term of college - making me a very unusual specimen among my peers. Many people seemed shocked that I was pregnant and happy (are you happy?? the would ask, wide-eyed). i was dreadlocked (i cut them three months into my pregnancy) and young, working on a bachelor's degree and also working as a cocktail waitress; life was, for the most part, not terribly serious and very, very easy. my best friends were supportive and loving, but since we were all so freaking young, no one had any advice or insight as to the adventure i was about to embark upon. for instance, i never even considered the fact that one might face breastfeeding problems after birth, until it happened to me (that's another story). things like that - so much that i just didn't know.

me in the dreadlocked days!

I did know a lot, though. i have a mother who is wise and loving and shared that with me, and at the time, my son's father worked at the local natural foods store in Eugene (where we lived) and it was a micro-community of love, nutrition and support. because of Sundance Natural Foods, i was able to feed and nourish myself and educate myself immensely on pregnancy and childbirth. Everyone there, from the cashiers to the wellness manager knew me and would share their stories, offer me advice and insight, magazines and books. It was a nest full of mama birds, and i went there often.

Truly, this story is long and complex, longer than a blog post, perhaps. I was in a relationship that was incredibly rocky and defined by so many missteps of youth. but there i was - the pregnancy seemed, for those months, to override all the instability and unrest. bliss prevailed: it was summer, i was young, everything was beautiful. another advantage of youth - we managed to work minimally and have just enough money to get by while spending most of our time riverside and soaked in sun. a couple months we lived in a large tent in my friend's yard, running an extension cord from her window so that we could watch DVDs and have a lamp and a fan. our giant pit bull lived there with us. (thank you, jenny). see? you just can't do shit like that anymore. now we are all so much more grown up, and while none of my close friends have followed me yet on the baby train, many of them are getting hitched and getting professional and myriad other "things" that root us more deeply to the responsibilities of adult life. 

Because i was so young, my body reveled in pregnancy. I was healthier than i'd ever been, and living in Eugene meant i was surrounded by a very health-conscious community, so my health was supported from all sides. i hardly gained any weight, and i joined a prenatal yoga class where i sat with other blissed out mamas and breathed a lot. after the classes, our teacher would brew tea for us and feed us food from her garden (yes, seriously) as we sat together and spoke dreamily of baby names and intuition, of plans and of pelvic floors.



My sensitivity during this time skyrocketed, and my intuitive sense crystallized and anchored in my core. it became very clear to me where my intuitive center was and how to access it, and how to follow its directions. before my pregnancy, i hadn't known this. it was cloudy and confusing; had i been able to listen to myself more, in fact, i would not have been in the relationship i was in at the time. one of my life's greatest ironies so far is that it was a series of complete unconscious actions and choices that led me through the portal to real consciousness and awareness (not that i am completely conscious and aware, but i did enter the doorway at that time and continue to work on it...you know how it goes).

Sensory sensitivity was major for me, also. i mostly stopped watching movies, as the injection of synthetic input (which resulted in real emotional reactions) seemed like overload for me and the little babe. what a huge responsibility! i remember sitting in a movie theater to see a movie, and the previews started, and suddenly i was inundated with loud sounds and music, darkness and imagery, and i felt terrible for subjecting my baby to all of that! i had to leave before the movie even started. that's how sensitive i was... everything was part of everything; everything i felt and consumed was a building brick for this being that was forming in my belly.

Honestly, there is much that I don't remember, and this was also in an era where digital life had not yet taken over: i was not on any social networks (though my coworkers gossiped about Friendster), i never really used the internet except for email sometimes, and i didn't own a digital camera (!!!). all that only 8 years ago!! there are hardly any photos of me all cute and pregnant - just a treasured few.

6 months preggers, at the river in Cottage Grove, OR

What I do remember, most of all, is that huge sense of awakening i felt. i remember feeling tremendously beautiful and happy and excited; i remember feeling the tautness of my belly as it grew; i remember feeling like a demographic all of my own. there was so much big stuff happening during that time - both joyful and sad. i was also about to skip an entire decade of "young & free" - my twenties would not be what they are to so many people; and the relationship to which i alluded earlier, though it was actually quite loving and joyful during my pregnancy, would soon unravel (as it was always meant to) and i would astonish myself with immense strength and wisdom, as it was needed to survive and flourish. Oh how much I have learned!!


I want to put this out there for other mamas to read, especially mamas who decide(d) to have their babies while they were young. throughout my adventure, i have felt mostly surrounded by a different demographic - older mothers with marriages or mortgages or both, and i often felt young and inexperienced; or like i was seeking different things. my lifestyle was incredibly different from theirs. i want to put this story out there in case someone reads it one day and feels a sense of familiarity between our experiences and gathers a small sense of satisfaction and rest from that familiarity.

(chapters to follow: childbirth, breastfeeding, single-mothering, and more!)

also, to any of my friends who read this and were there for my pregnancy, please share any stories you might remember from that era. i would love to read them. 


5/19/12

farm life farm wife: some photos


finally, finally life is settling into a more rhythmic pace. this past winter seemed to be all about the un-rhythm, the parts in between the beats where secret stories lie. and then, Spring! here in California it very much feels like Summer already. lots of long sunny days and blazing sunsets - even more blazing on the big agricultural days when the sun lowers itself through an atmosphere of dirt and dust. my, those dirty sunsets are red and beautiful. here are a few photos of bits and pieces of my every-day.


when we first moved in here, i planted a tiny porch-garden on the back deck - lettuce, chard, kale, cilantro and mint. now i've finally gotten my "real" garden built and planted also, but i love the porch greens...and they are so close to my kitchen. i swear, i used to be a non-believer in the kale salad hype, but these past few days - i may be a convert now. 


5/13/12

happy mother's day



big love to all the amazing and beautiful mommas out there! hope you (we) are all feeling the love and taking a well-deserved day off. 

me & my mom, oakland zoo

5/12/12

vintage dresses for gardens and sunshine


four new dresses listed in the shop yesterday, and there are still a few more waiting to be listed this weekend.





5/11/12

home is wherever i'm with you



friends and followers! come follow me at my new blog, i've been posting sweet summer dresses and musing about our grandmothers.





mother's day preparations: floral dresses, summer tresses


i  found this dress a while ago for the shop, and even photographed it months ago on my dress form and listed it, though it was during the wrong season and it never sold. i rephotographed this week, and then, upon folding it up afterward noticed that it has large (though very well camouflaged) stains on the front of the skirt. they are a light brown color, and with the big floral splashes, they blend right in. but they are there, and i don't think i can sell it now. 




so, i suppose i shall keep it. it is nearly perfect for mother's day, don't you think?


5/9/12

crafty: repurposed doily dream catchers

Originally inspired by Lune vintage, I began creating these repurposed doily dream catchers last year. these ones in particular I created for a friend's art show last month; they hung from the ceiling to complement his paintings. I just listed them in my shop.



I love taking something old and making it into something new. I love using things that remind us of grandmothers - crocheted doilies, crystals from an old chandelier. Lately I have been thinking a lot about Grandmothers and how they are the lifeline to our past. They hold the secrets of our ancestry, they know about the women who are in our blood. Often, we don't realize this until it is too late to ask them...to ask particulars about what our great-great-grandmothers cooked in the kitchen, what crafts they loved all those generations ago. So many secrets slumber in the grandmothers' memories.