About Me

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Seattle, Washington
topics of concern: Seattle, celebration, husband(Mr. Fleece), clothes, crafts, Jesus.

Wednesday, January 2, 2019

Year of the Pig Plans

In addition to the books I want to read, the things I want to cook, and the goals I want to reach, here are some of the plans I'm tinkering with for the year:

- Cousin's wedding in San Diego (May)
- College Reunion with friends in ATX (June)
- The Queen Anne Fun Run (July)
- Balloon Fiesta trip to Albuquerque (October)
- Another trip to Hawaii since Mr. Fleece has a work conference there (November)
- Getting into a routine with NLW and going on mid-week adventures together
- Continuing our Peps Group
- Family visiting
- Game nights
- Upping my garden game
- NLW turning 1 and all the developmental milestones that come before then
- Celebrating my 30th birthday...which also happens to be my golden birthday : )

Cheers to the Year of the Pig!
- SJW

Tuesday, January 1, 2019

New Year's Chef-olutions

In 2019 I'd like to spend more time cooking with and for friends. Dinner parties, potlucks, plain-Jane weeknight cooking, weekend batch meals. All of it! I'm excited to dig into the world of Ina Garten and her stockpile of recipes and plan to visit Book Larder, a community cookbook store in Seattle. Here are some of the specific things on my list for this year that I've never tackled before:

- poach an egg
- make Brussels sprout slaw
- bake a cake from scratch (I probably did this when I was younger, but it's been years!)
- bake homemade bread
- cook with eggplant
- cook with figs
- make stuffed bell peppers
- make tabbouleh
- make granola

I'd also like to establish four go-to salads, eat more fish, and amp up my use of beets, cabbage, radishes, leeks, squash, artichokes, and mushrooms.
Let me know if you want to join the fun :)

- SJW

Monday, December 31, 2018

December Delights and the New Year Ahead

We've been soaking up our final precious days of parental leave/vacation. Mr. Fleece returns to work this week and I'll go back next week. Spending fifteen days in Connecticut with family for Christmas was splendid, here are some of our New England highlights:

- Family time!
- Going to the Aqaurium and eating delicious noodles with my sister
- Finally meeting my college roommate's boyfriend
- Finishing a season of The Great British Baking Show
- Coffee date at Roost
- Going to the local library twice, including a free showing of A Simple Favor
- Hot tubbing multiple times
- Walks at Cove Park
- Playing Pirate's Dice
- Cooking meals
- Completing three puzzles
- Photoshoots with NLW

Now it's time to re-engage with the real world and set some new rhythms. Here are some of my stop-start-continue goals for the New Year:

STOP
1. Scrolling so much on social media...this has been an easy go-to with so much time at home/nursing. I'm looking into getting an App that will shut off Instagram after a certain time limit each day (5 minutes) or going back to my boundary of just posting/looking on the weekends. As NLW gets older, I want to be on my phone less and less!

2. Buying chips and other empty-nutrition snacks...I honestly don't do too much of this, but would really like to replace snacking with healthier options like veggies, fruits, and nuts. More dark leafy greens too!

3. On a similar note, I'd like to restrict my sweet tooth to only eating home-baked or special occasion treats and not falling into the trap of unplanned dessert eating (i.e. cookies if they're available in the break room).

START
1. Cooking more with friends...I think this is a great way to spend time together and try new things!

2. Daily habits again like working out and reading scripture. These have both been pretty non-existent since NLW was born. I'm going to use The Well Balanced Life Pilates routines and the Seamless Bible Study.

3. Writing more. Journaling thoughts, ideas, plans, memories, and fears. Also more snail mail to family & friends!

CONTINUE
1. Optimizing storage, layout, and decor in our little home...I've been re-inspired by The Tiny Canal Cottage and will implement tips from her book, Small Space Style.

2. Listening to NPR. Reading library books. Seeking out free or artsy/performance/show things to do in Seattle. Cooking Blue Apron meals. Going on walks. Playing games. Planning weekend trips. Playing with NLW. This sums up my life :)

3. Building friendships...This year I felt lonely at various times and mourned not having a set close group of friends to consistently hang out with. Post-college community has been different and challenging at times - often feeling piece-meal through a variety of individual friends rather than one close-knit single group. Rather than being so tied up in an ideal hope or unrealistic expectations, I want to keep pursuing genuine friendships with people I enjoy. Sounds simple enough :)

Overall, I want to cultivate gratitude for all that I have - the people I love, the city I live in, and the beautiful things I get to experience, learn, read, do, and see! Clean water, safe lodging, kind husband, sweet son, fun job...These are all wonderful things to cherish and I don't want an untidy house, tiring day, or restless heart to overshadow all that God has entrusted to me. 

 Here's to a year of knowing and delighting in Him more than I do today,
Happy New Year!

- SJW  

Friday, December 28, 2018

Books on Books on Books

2018 was another year full of reading. I joined a book club with friends, tore through several classics, used the Public Library's "Peak Picks" program, and revisited some childhood staples. Here are my top picks that I'd recommend to everyone:

Classics
Rebecca by Daphe du Maurier

Fiction
Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng

Non-Fiction
The Library Book by Susan Orlean

Coffee Table
Am I There Yet? The Loop-de-loop Zigzagged Journey to Adulthood by Mari Andrew

Memoir
Educated by Tara Westover

Cookbook
Healthyish by Lindsay Hunt

Children's
Alphabet of Alphabets by Mike Jolly

The titles I want to explore this year are a mixture of ones that have been on my reading list for quite some time and others that have recently caught my eye. Here are the non-fiction reads I'm most looking forward to trying out. Let me know if you want to read along with me!
Reading guru,

SJW

Wednesday, December 12, 2018

Namesake

My grandfather was born on December 12, 1919. "Twelve twelve nineteen nineteen." Which means today he would have been 99 years old! And though I always called him "Papa" his first name was Norman :)
When choosing a name for our son, I really liked the idea of incorporating a family name and Norman just happened to meet my other criteria as well (a name people recognize but isn't super common, easy to pronounce and easy to spell). But more than that, I really love that he's named after a man who was humble, hard-working, faithful, family-oriented, and kind. I hope Norman reflects these same characteristics as he grows up!
In honor of Norman,

-SJW

Sunday, December 2, 2018

Nifty Gifty Under $50

Yesterday I ventured over to Seattle's annual Urban Craft Uprising winter show, taking in the many delightful handmade goods. Knitwear, sweet treats, unique jewelry, ceramics, paper goods - they've got it all! I didn't have my wallet on me which freed me up to simply admire the colors, creativity, chomps, and cheer of the event. Here's the unique brands that make up my holiday gift guide this year.
SAKUtea | wellness latte blends
Organic, vegan, and gluten-free, these powders are delicious. We already own a milk frother, so these flavorful lattes would be easy to make.
p.o.p. candy co | fresh butter crunch
This stuff is absolutely no-doubt-about-it addictive. Rum y vanilla is where it's at.
Bow Hill Blueberries | organic heirloom blueberry juice
Blueberries aren't even my go-to fruit, but I really liked this juice. Perfect as a shot, in a smoothie, or acai bowl.
Persist | card game
This feminist-inspired, unique, relevant, and interactive game would make the next evening with friends more interesting!
Here are my honorable mentions in four different categories:

Cactus Club | paper goods
I'm a sucker for stationary, art prints, greeting cards, and funky whimsical designs. This was my favorite vendor in the paper goods category!
Going Stag | woodwork
This artwork is eye-catching, happy, and gives off strong PNW vibes! The ornaments are so cute :) 
M Creative J | hand embroidery
Embroidery kits and wall hangings are really in right now. This artist had my favorite styles and even some DIY kits. 
Steady Ceramics | ceramics 
A nice blend of design options - from colorful to black & white and intricate to simple, I like them all. 

Supporting small businesses,  

-SJW

Wednesday, November 28, 2018

Life Wright Now | November 2018

November has been a great month of laid back afternoons, midnight mayhem with NLW, and quite a few outings! We celebrated two separate Thanksgiving meals with friends, went to the Woodland Park Zoo to see Zeya and Ila, and enjoyed our first PEPS meeting; plus I experienced a dueling piano bar for a friend's birthday, soaked up Seattle Rep's hit show In The Heights, and made it to my book club! We're still figuring out infant days and every time I leave the house I think "this could be a complete disaster or this could be fine." A new normal for sure!
Here's some other things I've enjoyed lately:

Watching | Two Netflix documentaries: "Trump: An American Dream" and "Bobby Kennedy for President." Viewing these back to back was actually quite interesting and only highlighted the opposing values and motivations behind their political careers and what they considered "success". I didn't actually know much about RFK going into it and had so much respect and admiration for him after finishing the series. I cannot say the same for Donald Trump.

On a different note, we also started the "Dogs" documentary on Netflix - we were in tears almost the entire first episode.
Eating | Friends have been so kind to bring meals to us as we adjust to life as a family of three. We're also getting by on frozen soups our moms made while they were in town, making batch meals, Blue Apron, and getting take out, including Dick's Burgers and Teriyaki Bowl :)
Reading | I'm still working on my classics list, currently exploring Prince Edward Island through the eyes of a young red-headed girl. Right now I also have "Parenting" by Paul David Tripp open and "Little Fires Everywhere" by Celeste Ng checked out per a friend's recommendation.
Listening | Need to smile? Check out "Emotional Robot" by Casper Babypants. So clever and witty!
Drawing by MaresEatOatsArt
December is always a fun-filled time of year with family, Christmas celebrations, and sweet treats. I'm looking forward to the Urban Craft Uprising this weekend and our two week stint in Connecticut with family!

Merry and bright,

-SJW