Sunday, February 24, 2013

My Recipe: Cran-Coco Energy Bars

It has become clear that I need to plan & prepare better snacks for the week. Otherwise, I'm scrounging change & choosing between E2 & F3, scarfing candy with 100 un-pronouncable ingredients, feeling shitty. Here's my healthy fix for this week (adapted from this Coconut Crack Bars recipe):

Cran-Coco Energy Bars
1 cup raw almonds
1 cup raw coconut
1 cup cranberries
1/4 cup melted coconut oil
1/4 cup agave
Touch vanilla & salt

Grease your container with melted coconut oil. Blend in almonds in food processor, then add each ingredient gradually.  Press into pan with wax paper, put in fridge. Enjoy & avoid sugar breakdowns. Have a great week!

Friday, February 22, 2013

five-minute friday: what mom did

What Mom did. (for five-minute Friday)

Laughed, prioritized, cooked, played, supported, taught, listened, answered, worried, encouraged, dreamed, adapted, chatted, got up early, worked, danced, created, studied, decorated, showed up, brainstormed, sewed, corrected, baked, hugged, understood, encouraged, advocated, asked, pained, smiled, loved. 

She still does these things. Lovely and different now that she's Grandma.

Beyond thankful for Laura Lynn.

Spaghetti & Meatballs
she also makes the best spaghetti!
(photo copied from pinterest)

Monday, February 18, 2013

Because I Said So.

It’s well-past my bedtime, and my cool cucumber of a husband lounges on the futon, sweetly ignoring my piles of lessons strewn about the floor.  He reads Rolling Stone, flashing me a pic every once in awhile, waiting.  I write for Mamalode now because today’s motto is, “do it while you’re thinking about it”.  Otherwise, it’ll be too late.

The accelerando of parenthood is real, our babe is almost a year old.  Full of giggles and kisses- revamping our identities, celebrating hers.  

Who knows where the wind will blow?  In just four short months, our family will return from this one-bedroom bungalow to our favorite mountains.

In this in-between, I pin dreams of a future home, constantly tidying ours.  Not to pine away our time here- this time is fresh and special, fleeting.  

I become the little spoon and let sleep wash over me.  
Our space is ours.  Wherever we are, love grows.

Friday, February 15, 2013

5-min Friday: Beloved

I've been perusing lots of blogs lately, and I found Lisa-Jo Baker through 3 things for Mom.  She does something called "Five Minute Friday" and I'm going to try & participate for a writing exercise and networking.  This week: Beloved.

The love of place is something that we can't shake.  When I think of beloved, of course family comes to mind, but at the forefront is place.  I love to travel, and these are a couple places I hold in my heart.

Beloved Vienna: at 24, two months before I married the love of my life, I traveled to Austria with a group of fantastic musicians.  I soaked up the opera and ran the streets daily.  I found favorite coffee shops, I smoked cigarettes & ate gelato like it was my job, I didn't shave my legs or armpits and proudly held on to the rail on the U-Bahn.  I wept in concerthauses, my heart raced in museums and I realized the power of art daily.  I will never forget my time in Austria, feeling free, and sure of myself.  Vienna solidified my values in music, life, and love.

View of Vienna from a glass elevator.  St. Stephen's Cathedral dominates the skyline.

Beloved San Juan del Sur: at 25, freshly married, adventure and love and no worries.  A Honeymoon in Nicaragua!  James and I learned a little Spanish, drank Tonas, smoked cigarettes, made new friends. I ran the jungle roads, he free-styled in the waves, we surfed.  Huge, loud, thunderstorms took the power out, we stayed in.  Everything was salty and sweaty.  I smiled at wide-eyed babies and mothers with big bellies, dreaming of the babies we would make soon.

At 26, we'll take Josephine on an adventure to Colorado to visit my best friend.  I suspect baby will be walking then.  It'll be so fun to stop and look around on the way!  Then in May, travel to Seattle, another beloved place.  I'll bring a bus-load of 30 singing High-School singers, and see if I can show them why I love to travel.  To fall in love with a new place, and a new part of me.

Disclaimer: this post took a little longer than five minutes...

Thursday, February 14, 2013

thursday thoughts: ritual & routine

Valentine's Day, another wonderful day!  JJ was so excited to see me when I picked her up today, and school was awesome with Singing Valentines and new feng-shui.  James made me a beautiful Valentine and yummy dinner, I visited the awesome Very Special Arts choir, who I will be guest conducting for a friend who's headed to Morocco next week.  Returned home for Nashville, snuggles, and too many Dove chocolates.

Nashville has become a ritual- Thursday evenings on Hulu, I look forward to living vicariously through beautiful country artists on my favorite show of the year.  It's produced by T. Bone Burnett, who has 40 years of experience making music for the likes of O Brother, Wherefore Art Though and Walk the Line.  Sort of a guilty pleasure, but the music and style are so great!

Rituals and routines are going to turn my life around.  Apparently I've been saying this for years, but it's hard work for what my dad call "creative types" like me.  After the Sandy Hook shootings, I perused the twitter feed of their school principal Dawn Hochsprung.  December's affects my outlook on teaching and life, but I've found Dawn's bravery and pride in her school inspiring.  The last article Dawn retweeted, "Nine Ways Successful People Defeat Stress" brought up a point that's been simmering in my mind- rely on routines.  Avoid wasting energy on small details, like setting out clothes or packing a lunch, (skip trying on three outfits or the zoning out while cutting celery).

Over the past month or two, I've been trying to rewire my life to be more productive, to be the best me possible.  It's happening, gradually and surely!  Just yesterday, I rearranged the piano in my classroom so that my students look out the windows to the mountains while I rehearse them instead of at the Promethean board.  Part of their routine now will be stopping at the Promethean board for sight-reading or music examples, but moving on to the much more inspiring windows where we can make music.  All the students have noticed the difference.  Looking forward to beginning new music and new rituals in the choir room.

What are your favorite routines/rituals?  I have a cup of tea before bed and spray my face with lovely lavendar spritzer (a gift from an even lovelier friend).  Tonight, I played music, which I'm hoping to make part of the routine.  "Turn Me On", for my husband who is busy answering emails for his two jobs.  Think I'll actually hit the hay in time for my self-imposed 10-6 bedtime.  xoxoxxoo

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

the Book of Right On

Aristotle rings in my ears, "You are what you repeatedly do," and I like it.  The voice of Joanna Newsom, my sweet old friend cowls through my new "beatsaudio" speakers.  I miss wearing headphones all the time, carrying around one cd, listening to the album all the way through.  Gonna start listening to my ipod on my run to get JJ from daycare.

JCannon cleans up dishes from a lovely evening with good pals.  Chicken noodle soup for the soul.  Josey sleeps.  I wonder what she's dreaming after a day at school, away from home, with new friends!  She loves her Chariot rides, which is making it easier to go running.  Can't wait to meet the newest Cannon!

Thinking ahead, toward entertaining in restaurants coming up- I want to learn more music by heart.  My sheet music collection is impressive, and I read it like a champ.  Yet, I'd like to be able to call many songs I've learned to mind, and just play and sing.  So, I'm going to work on that more!  (I'm trying this google template to plan for this Spring's repertoire...more about that later.)

How to learn a song:
1.  Listen to the original a few times.  Try for all the way through!  Sing along.
2.  Listen to other versions if you like.  Sing along- get a grasp on lyrics start expressing it.
3.  Look at the chords or sheet music.  Try in a few different keys, find your favorite, make it your own.

The last step, find a way to stamp it into memory.  I guess that would mean just sitting down and playing more.  Which seems to be the answer to all my problems.  Why is it so hard, then?

My favorite notebook of songs is almost full.  I need to fill in some lyrics and chords, but it is a beautiful collection of songs that have been important to me.  The notebook that I started the summer James and I fell in love.  There are many pages that aren't completely filled out- missing chords or lyrics or both, but the titles are there.  What will be the last song?  I have a feeling I'll write it here:

Many Glacier Hotel

Sunday, February 3, 2013

With Our Own Two Hands

Happy Superbowl Sunday.  It does feel kind of like a holiday, doesn't it?  I'm excited to hear about my brother's celebration in Whistler/Seattle.  Living vicariously through him this weekend.

It's been nice to be in Missoula on the weekends while James works, because I have this day to check in with life.  Give Josey a bath, paint my nails, put laundry away, prep food.  Life is clipping along fast then ever with Josephine in the mix!  From what I hear, the more kids you have, the quicker life goes.  Makes sense to me, but I don't wanna miss a thing!  One thing I will miss: Superbowl Sunday.

 Our usual Superbowl Sunday amigos are away in Idaho, and James is working.  Plus, I just found out who's in the game yesterday.  I do love San Francisco, so go 49ers!  I will not be watching any football, but you can bet your Autumn-bottom I'll find a link to watch the halftime show).  I loved the recent SNL skit where Martin Luther King Jr. visits Obama and can't stop talking about how beautiful she is.  I'm a fan.  

She is so cute with the bjorn! I'm about to retire ours for now, trying to score an Ergo because JJ kills my back in the Bjorn!  A couple new babies coming into our world- baby boy Rhett was born Friday in Ohio to a group of loving, creative women surrounding him. The newest babe in our Glacier Family is making us wait...

Today, I'm going to write some cards, do laundry (constant, but easy), get outside with my baby to visit Daddyhubby at work & spend time on this.  A lot of my students seem very interested in ukulele- gonna get it back in my life!   

The 12th Annual Cafe Chocolat is next Saturday!  The theme this year is "Reflections".  I can't believe this is my third year around in Florence.  Time flies when you're having fun.  It's amazing to see the continued growth in students.  I am so lucky to have my kids for (potentially) 7 years.  It's nice to see them cross the rough, awkward waters of late MS/Early HS and come into themselves more.  Which, I suppose is a process that is still happening in ways for me.  This year's performance will be especially strong with the choral groups- "Man in the Mirror," "Over the Rainbow/What a Wonderful World," and "Hall of Fame" among the musical highlights. Plus,- I'm excited for the theme and decorations.  We prepped with our new sound system on Friday, and a couple of the acts were deemed "Gems," by James.  

Have a wonderful, productive Sunday and thanks for reading!  


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