Sunday, May 30, 2010

Patience Might Be The Key...

But it's so hard to turn at times!

This is sort of a post script for my "I'm In This for the Long Haul" blog.  I was thinking about it after I posted.

Everything in my life right now lends itself to cultivating patience.  Everything.

Patience for New York.

Waiting for my hair to grow out (this is hard for a Leo).

Slowly paying down my big credit card and student loan.

Watching my savings account grow...slowly but surely.

Waiting to buy certain things (only when I have the funds).

Every time I get a paycheck I square away the bills...budget out this and that...put money on the card and in savings...and then I have to wait until the next payday.  Fingers drumming on my desk.

Waiting for the new season of True Blood to start :)

Researching and waiting to find what my next course of action will be for Scotland.  This is something I cannot rush because I want to make sure to align myself with where I'm supposed to be, not just jump into something for the sake of jumping.

Patience is a very hard won ability for me.  I have been known as an "I want what I want when I want it" kind of gal.  And that has rarely served me well.

With all this patience building comes a lot of thinking, assessing and changing of ideas, which is sort of exciting to tell the truth.  I've been brain-storming my life. Since I'm in a bit of a waiting period right now, why not scout out the possibilities?

I'm trying to learn how to listen...then follow...then listen...then follow.  It's quite a lesson in patience. Especially during the days I don't seem to hear anything.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Weekend Warrior

Fishies and Chips

This week's "assignment" was to take a risk. I spent all week trying to figure out what risk and couldn't think of anything!  I realize, now, that I think of a risk as something big and dropping everything and moving away.  Just a random example ;)

I have been taking little risks for a while now.  Such as asking questions, speaking my mind, and establishing healthy boundaries.  I'm still working at voicing my needs and asking for help.  I'm a little gun-shy still with that.

Some more risk has been involved with purging my apartment because I've been a bit of a hoarder for years...sentimental and craft-related. I'm sure a lot of you can relate.

I read an article about de-cluttering and it mentioned clearing off all surfaces; putting everything in a box to go through when you have time. This is exactly what I did! The result was a clear computer and coffee table.

I was really productive!  I worked on and off all day Saturday and treated myself to my version of a dinner Mom used to make when I was a kid: "fishies" with homemade tartar sauce, rosemary fries and a natural blackberry soda. Then I kicked back with some Dr. Who and Season 1 of True Blood.

Sunday was filled with more of the same.  It was really great because instead of getting overwhelmed with trying to get everything accomplished in one weekend, I took my time, still had a rest, and saw some progress.  I'm seeing how similar organizing my life and my apartment are...I can't expect either to come together all at once. I'm learning more every day.


Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Art and Gimlet Cookies

I have recently submitted a photo to Exhibition One: Zero Gravity at Lolita Bar.  I donated some cookies for the opening reception and decided to take the opportunity to create a new boozy flavor combination! 

Drum roll please...

3 T Gin
2 T Lime Juice
1 t Lime Zest (optional)
3 T Chopped dried cranberries
1/2 c Raw Sugar
1 c All purpose flour
1/2 t Baking Powder
1/4 t Sea Salt
2 t Cornstarch
3 T Canola Oil
3 T Milk

Soak cranberries in gin for about a half hour.

Mix the sugar and lime juice together and let it sit along with the cranberries.  I found it almost acted like sweetened lime juice (but without the corn syrup).

Preheat oven to 350F.

Combine dry ingredients and mix well.  Add cranberry/gin mix, sugared lime juice, zest, oil, and milk. Mix well. Drop onto a cookie sheet (I use a cookie scoop) covered with unbleached parchment paper. Bake for 18 minutes.

Makes about 18 cookies

They were very popular ;)

Most of the time I try to create these cookies from alcohol I already have in the house.  Then I search drink recipes to get inspiration.  It's a lot of (delicious) fun!

Here are some photos from the opening reception at Lolita Bar (on the Lower East Side of Manhattan):

 The photo on top is mine...

That's me in the mirror :)


Sunday, May 16, 2010

I'm In This for the Long Haul...

Persevering seems to be the lesson I need to learn right now.  Not only was it this past week's creative dreaming topic...but I found the above fortune on the floor on my way into the TV Guide kitchen.

Magic, mystery and synchronicity are also a hot topics. Yesterday I spent a WONDERFUL apprenticeship day talking about these very subjects. Some of life's best moments are spent scattered around a kitchen with amazing food and life changing conversation.

Another thing that struck a chord with me was, weirdly, watching an interview with Jonathan Rys Myers. He was talking about auditions and rejections.  He said you shouldn't take a rejection personally because it doesn't mean you're not talented, just that you're not right for that particular role.

It's sort of like when the one you fancy doesn't share your feelings. It simply means you're not the right person for them (and vice versa). Of course, it's easier to be rational when the heart isn't involved.

So I've been thinking about all the progress and "setbacks" that I've faced or am facing:

  • This week I discovered that I can't establish dual citizenship with Canada via Great Parents...just parents.  But that doesn't mean I'll give up looking into it.  I was actually surprised by how okay I was upon finding all this out. Maybe I'm simply not supposed to reclaim that. It certainly doesn't mean I'll stop researching my family's history!

  • I admit that I gave up on giving Reiki treatments.  I bought a folding massage table over a year ago and started to tentatively put the word out.  I had one I gave up.  I'm not sure how to pick this up again but that table keeps staring at me...reminding me of the new story I'm trying to write for myself.

  • I remember sitting in a laundromat with a book called, "Creative Cash" years ago. This was before "LionArt Creations" and "The Lion's Share."  I still haven't figured out how to morph the two into a source of income but it's taken on forms I never would have imagined back when my clothes were tumbling around in that Manhattan laundromat. Currently this blog is a source of joy, so I know I'm on the right track.

  •  I'm also on a seemingly never-ending quest to find my way back to Scotland.  Currently I'm really into the idea of applying for School, although I'm not sure what or where I want to study yet. Edinburgh seems like the logical choice.  And I do love Edinburgh...

This could all change tomorrow...and if it does, that's the direction I should be facing.


Thursday, May 13, 2010

Strawberry & Spinach Salad

This is one of my favorite Spring salads and is so easy to make!  There really aren't any set amounts for the ingredients.  It's pretty much up to you. If you love strawberries, go heavy on those and vice versa if Spinach is your favorite.

Baby Spinach
Olive oil
Raspberry Balsamic Vinegar
Sea Salt
Goat Cheese

I add in some pecans pan-cooked cooked in a splash of raspberry balsamic vinegar and a touch of Celtic sea salt (regular balsamic also works nicely).

Dress with (raspberry) balsamic vinegar, olive oil, and salt to taste. As always...a touch of goat cheese sends it right over the top.

I accidentally bought regular spinach this time...and it was good...but baby spinach is fabulous.

As a side, I cooked some antibiotic free chicken tenders in regular balsamic vinegar and sea salt.  They were also delicious cold!


Monday, May 10, 2010

Spring Cleaning

My Apartment's Garden

I'm trying to do some spring cleaning and checking in.  It's slow going but I'm making some progress.  I spent some time, a week ago, cleaning my whole kitchen and watching videos I'd accumulated over the years at the office.  And when I say "videos" that's exactly what I mean...VHS!

I had decided to purge my video rack...but there were a few I really did want to see.  So, I watched a three part documentary about America in the 1940s and part of a movie that I really didn't feel like finishing.  And into the bin they all went.  I plan to work my way through the pile.

I also went through my shoes!  Even I'm amazed at that!

However, I still need to physically get rid of all of it.  It doesn't help much when you hold onto stuff that you've "decided" isn't needed anymore.  It still takes up space just the same.

All us Creative Dreamers were given a Spring Check-In Questionaire and I found that I was a bit muddled with the answering of it!  I have begun to get overwhelmed with my dreams and haven't been keeping track of them well enough to see all the progress I've been making...nor have I been rewarding myself for all the good work.

Spring Check-In

section one: where am i thriving? what seeds are sprouting beautifully?
  • Creative ideas for The Lion's Share
  • Paying down debt and putting more in savings
list: dreams for me to continue nurturing
  • Paying down debt and increasing savings
  • Bringing The Lion's Share to Scotland
  • Getting out of the city
plan: what do these dreams need to continue to thrive and how will i give it to them?
  • Keep budgeting and living within my means (gratitude for the money-energy...allow the flow)
  • Researching holistic cooking classes
  • Researching grants
  • Keep up with posting here
  • Get involved with creative pursuits

section two: where am i struggling?  which seeds aren’t coming up (yet)?
  • My tolerance of New York is getting thinner all the time
  • My patience gets challenged with the debt...I fail to acknowledge the progress and only see the numbers.  I need to celebrate the little victories.
  • I still don't have an exercise regime and feel very out of shape and tired
  • I've fallen out of practice with reiki
  • I would like a clearer plan for my travel dreams
list: dreams to plant again
  • Setting up a new photography website/gallery/storefront
  • Giving reiki treatments 
  • Yoga/exercise practice
plan: how am i going to plant them? what can i do to get these dreams moving and how will i do it?
  • Sit down with the photos again
  • Start practicing reiki on myself again
  • Start doing the simple AM/PM yoga DVD again

section three: is there anything unwanted starting to sprout?
  • Anger sprouts up a lot at the city and all it encompasses. I feel tense just walking out my front door...and at times the energy in the air makes me want to cry. That's certainly unwanted.
  • Feeling overwhelmed at times.
list: areas where weeding is necessary
  • I really need to get rid of a lot of stuff cluttering up my apartment so I can clean easier and have more space to think, breathe, exercise and have more time to relax.  More time to cook and blog.
plan: what will it take to remove these weeds?  how will i do it?
  •  I'm going to start by getting rid of the clothes and box of videos I collected.  It's a start at least.