Thursday, February 23, 2012

Slowing down this week.

I'm on a pursuit of awesomeness. Excellence is the bare minimum. ~O Magazine, March issue
Everyday this week I have had an extra child home from school due to a stomach bug going through our house. Aside from the unpleasant job of being the cleanup crew, I have found myself slowing down to tend to them and cuddle on the couch and have an extra cup of tea.

I even read the recent issue of O Magazine titled "De-Clutter Your Life!" My favorite article was Martha Beck's on worrying too much. She urges to stop fretting, agonizing, panicking, and otherwise losing sleep over things you can't control.

Two things especially stayed with me. First, she writes, People blossom when we love them, not when we worry about them. Worry just teaches worry. Let it go. I will try and remember this when I worry about my  kids.

She also writes, Stop fixating on stuff you can touch and start caring about stuff that touches you. She's referring to focusing on experiences rather than objects. This helps as I continue the quest to de-clutter my own home. Stuff tends to pile up here quick.

I'm also going to try the soba noodle recipe with kale and walnuts. I'll let you know how it tastes. Time for another cup of tea.

Friday, February 17, 2012

Bliss List Friday

Trailblazing today.
This will be my final Bliss List for my e-course however, they have been so much fun they may continue. A great reminder to capture the precious moments of life.
My son helping my friend paint. Little guy watching.
1. My son wanted a blue bedroom so we let him choose his shade. He chose Dynamic Blue which fits him to a tee. Here he is helping roll the paint. I will post the finished walls soon.

 2. The broccoli cheese soup recipe I made on Valentines Day. It disappeared fast and I will make it again soon for sure!

3. The butterfly charm I gave my daughter for Valentines Day. She loves it so much. My mom gave her a silver charm bracelet and we will help her collect charms over the years as my mom did for me.

An evening out with my some members of my book club who are dear friends for life.
My son blazing a trail.
5. Today's sunny hike with my son who blazed the trail in his ATV. I know he loves when I watch him navigate the trails. It was a serious workout for me and so exhilarating!

Thank you so much for sharing my bliss,

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Celebrating Friendship Tribes

Each friend represents a world in us, a world possibly not born until they arrive, and it is only by this meeting that a new world is born. ~Anais Nin
My friends are my estate. ~Emily Dickinson
I truly treasure my friends. I am so fortunate to have a few friendship tribes that nourish my heart and soul. The fierce and amazing mom tribe that has blossomed around kids (and wine), my dear book club that has been meeting once a month for twelve years, far away friends that I don't see or talk to often but love when we reconnect, and then my new blooming online tribe of  like minded creatives who I have connected through blogging and e-courses.

Last night my book club gathered within our fifty mile radius at a bustling little place called The Friendly Tavern. We all indulged in house special breaded tenderloins, burgers, and patty melts and cut them in half and shared them. We washed them down with glasses of Blue Moon on draft with orange garnish.
It was another lively evening of laughter and sharing. Anita is learning to crochet and showed us a gorgeous magenta sweater she is creating. Tiffany recently moved her photography studio out of her home and into a studio nearby. She walked us over to her gorgeous Nathaniel Edmunds Photography studio and we celebrated with red velvet cupcakes. We are so proud of her success and know great things will happen as she takes her business to the next level.
The power of friendship never ceases to amaze me.  I am so grateful for the friends I have in my life. We share, listen, encourage, cry, and celebrate success. Friendship is so worth nurturing. Finding a tribe to share our passions can really light up our lives. Thank you friends.
Hugs and happiness, kathy

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Love is...Broccoli Cheese Soup in a Bread Bowl

Good soup is one of the prime ingredients of good living. For soup can do more to lift the spirits and stimulate the appetite than any other one dish.  Louis P. De Gouy, ‘The Soup Book’ (1949)
Happy Valentines Day friends. We woke up today with cold temps and a fresh blanket of snow covering the ground. As lunchtime approached,  I was in the mood for soup. Broccoli cheese soup in a bread bowl to be exact. This is what I made to share with my husband and little guy for a delicious Valentine's lunch. I used frozen veggies to make it super quick and easy. Here's how:
Broccoli Cheese Soup in a Bread Bowl
1 stick butter
1 c. frozen diced onions
1/3 c. flour
1 c. half and half
2 c. whole milk
1 c. chicken stock
1 16 oz. bag frozen broccoli
1 c. frozen spinach
1 t. salt
black pepper
Dash of nutmeg and cayenne pepper
3 c. shredded cheddar cheese
1 pkg of 6 Kaiser bakery rolls
Melt butter in a pot on medium heat. Add onions. Saute for 5 minutes then sprinkle flour on top and stir a minute. Pour in milk and half and half. Add spices, then broccoli and spinach. Simmer for 20 minutes then add cheese to melt.
After this, I used my new favorite tool - an immersion blender to puree. You can use a blender or just mash the broccoli for a more chunky version. I really like the smooth texture the blender creates and my kids will not know about the spinach. Add more chicken stock if needed.
Carve out the tops and center of the rolls creating a bowl.
Pour the soup in the bowls and top with more shredded cheese.
Cheesy green goodness in an edible bowl. Enjoy!
xoxo, kathy

Friday, February 10, 2012

Sweet Little Blooming Bliss List

I am truly enjoying the Friday Bliss List posting. It makes me reflect and be grateful for good things happening.
This week I started an e-course called Blooming True with artist Flora Bowley. She had us stretch our bodies, tap into our intuition, and splatter paint on a canvas. It's scary and exhilarating!
We were asked to use warm colors for this first of many layers. I'll will post my progress next week.
Red velvet, coconut almond, dark chocolate raspberry, caramel, and chocolate truffle.
Bliss was also found by discovering a new little local chocolate shop called Confection Delights. After meeting owner Pamela, I indulged in a red velvet chocolate truffle. Divine. I bought a little box for my friend Liz's birthday and ordered few more for Valentine's Day. Can't wait to give them away!
Lastly, the snow is falling and I'm happy to spend the evening getting cozy with my family on the couch.
That is my short and sweet Bliss List. I would love to know yours.
Hugs and Happiness,

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Ready to Bloom True

All aglow in the work. ~Virgil

I've always loved to paint. Standing before a blank page or canvas, imagining the possibilities. I don't consider myself an artist really, more like a painting enthusiast. It's fun. It makes my heart sing.
My new Heart Studio!
This week I am starting Flora Bowley's first ever Bloom True e-course. She is an amazing artist who gives retreats all over the world. She is intuitive and heart centered in her teachings and art. She incorporates mind and body, yoga and breath. That's my kind of girl!

Since my family needs breakfast every morning, traveling to a retreat is not possible. I can now take Flora's class in my kitchen between dishes, laundry, and basketball practice. Last night when everyone was sleeping quietly, I transformed my office into an art studio. I am calling it my Heart Studio.
My heart leapt and twirled as I bought Medieval Gold metallic glaze and foam brushes at Michael's. I am looking forward to this five week painting adventure with women enrolled from all over the world. I will be posting on my progress and journey while Blooming True.
Vision boards and a painting I did in high school called Purple Plenty
Ready to Bloom!

Friday, February 3, 2012

Bliss List Friday

Favorite Blissful things of the week:
Taking my daughter to her first lesson with horses where she groomed and walked the horse. She has been on cloud 9 all week!

Communicating with my friend who moved to Rio De Janeiro, Brazil with her husband and three children. What an adventure!

Hiking with my little guy in 50 degree sunshine. Not typical for February in the Midwest.

Exercising every day this week. I'm feeling stronger and have more energy.

Hot date with my husband this weekend. A rare thing with four young kids.
Wishing you a week full of bliss. Remember, it's the little things that mean so much.
xo, kathy

Thursday, February 2, 2012

If it's not Yes! It's no.

If it's not Yes! It's no.
This quote recently caught my attention. It's my nature to try and please and help others and say yes. Like many women and moms, we say yes to things even when we may not really have our hearts into them. When that happens we get emotionally and physically drained. We and our loved ones can suffer, and no room is left for the true things we want and need.
I was just asked to teach yoga at a really great place. I have wanted this in the past. When I finally got the call, my heart did not leap with joy. I started fretting. Not that I wasn't thrilled about the offer, I love sharing my passion for yoga with others. It would be making my plate too full at this time.
That's me enjoying reverse warrior pose.
I have learned my lesson on this the hard way.  If the timing is not right, then I should not be making a commitment. It's not fair to myself or others. I have also learned that saying no is not easy but can feel freeing.
As February begins, I feel the need to let go of clutter and things that do not nurture my soul. Hopefully this will open space to listen to my inner compass, for ways to give and grow that make my heart sing.
Wishing you a month of love and joy,