covid19 Reflection

Wellness Check

Sometimes it feels looking back on my growing up years that if you were to weigh the cacophonous memories of childhood against the moments you could tell for sure you were loved and cared for the former side would be maxed out and sunk into the table. 

But I do have memories of my Dad looking at me with pride or small moments where he was able to express that love. They feel small but they exist and I hold them close. I will say even with the hard stuff rising to the surface like oil on water – I’m still able to talk to my Dad. I think because he always showed up.

Yesterday I called him up and said, “Wellness check!” It’s something we trade off saying during these Covid-times when it’s been a few weeks between calls. 

Over the years it’s often been 6+ months between conversations, so to have a period in March, April, and May of this year where we’ve talked weekly if not more, it’s been nice. Those conversations have been good and easy.

Wellness check! I say, but behind my words I’m wondering if he’s okay. 

We’ve been thinking about you today, I say.

We talk and he tells me how Joey (Cowboy Joey), one of my hometown’s “walkers”, died. Joey was in a local rest home and died from complications to Covid. 

Is it weird to feel sadness for a loss when you probably only interacted a handful of times but were also always reassured when you saw him or one of the other town “walkers” go by while running an errand on Wilson St? Reassuring because the fabric of your town was in its rightful position. 

It was also sad hearing of another rest home-Covid casualty from a building inspector I used to work with. He was a gruff barrel on stilts of legs and when he retired his parting gift to the City was a City vehicle “filled” with empty alcohol bottles he had unceremoniously left in the car. 🙃

But neither of us mentioned her specifically.

I have her on my calendar as “Terri died” but I’m changing that to Terri’s Anniversary, because the reminder feels too garish as written when June 18th rolls around and it’s been 7 years. 

And I think back, did I show up treating her with enough kindness? Did I not take her serious enough because of my Dad’s penchant for red flag relationships? Could I have been better? I could have.

I understand what you had to do but I also know my Dad misses you in all the ways that were and might have been.

Wellness check.

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline • 1-800-273-8255

Donate in memory of Cowboy Joey to Valley Sheltered Workshop, a non-profit organization that provides job opportunities to individuals with disabilities.


I’m That B*tch That Got 16 Slices Out of Her Banana Bread

Who do you think you are? I am!

It’s been established among family that my “food memory” ability has pretty strong game. No better example than my recollection of making a banana bread recipe as a kid from a light tan spiral-bound Geneva Mother’s Club (now Geneva Women’s Club) cookbook from the late 70s or 80s?? It had all the standards: eggs, buttermilk/yogurt, butter, and sugar. I would love to get my hands on a copy of that cookbook but instead I resorted to trying to find something similar.

I ended up landing on BBC Food’s simply titled, Banana Bread, recipe and went with it. I made 3 alterations as I tend to do.

  1. Swapped in homemade yogurt for buttermilk
  2. Used 1/2 dark brown sugar and 1/2 granulated white – thought any caramelization from the dark would be *chef’s kisses
  3. Added a few smatterings of cinnamon and nutmeg—I would guess less than 1/4 teaspoon each
slice of banana bread with butter

It’s quite perfect for what I was looking to satisfy memory-wise and I wanted to make a few notes for the next time I get around to making it.

  • The recipe is notated in metric measurements – love that precision!!
  • Disappointed that grams weren’t listed for the bananas as I had 3 smaller bananas and 1 larger, but I went with it—401 grams for me
  • So glad I understand what ‘folding’ in flour mixture means – no dense glutenous-formed bread here
  • At an hours time my bread—even though it had a golden top—looked slightly underdone, a toothpick came out clean but I didn’t buy it. Did some research and found these very helpful tips from King Arthur Flour. Aim for an internal temperature of 200° F. I first put it back in for an additional 10 minutes and then added 5 minutes in between each temperature check – I ended up baking an extra 25-30 minutes and yes my oven measured at 350° F. The internal temp before starting was ~ 165° F.
more pictures of sliced banana bread

Recipe stated it would be 10 slices at 334 calories but I wanted to try and shave that down a little bit and was able to cut 16 slices for about 207 calories a slice. Much better for a snack.

I owe my luck with 16 slices to our really great new bread knife, letting the loaf cool for a few hours, and my cutting technique for even slices. First cut is directly down the middle then there are 2 halves, then proceed making center cuts with each “new” section until you have the number of slices you want.


covid19 food

What I Did with 3lb of Garlic

because Costco of course!

We’ve had this garlic in the fridge for about a month and besides roasting about a cup and taking out a few cloves to cook with I haven’t done much with it and was getting a little antsy about spoilage and food-waste!

My thought when purchasing 3lb of garlic was that I wanted to make honey-fermented garlic and toum–a Lebanese garlic sauce. I’m most familiar with Karam’s garlic sauce that we get at the co-op and wanted to try making it myself.

Here we are a few weeks into our own self-quarantine (WA ‘stay at home and stay healthy’ order signed yesterday) and we have no lemons! 😂 So no toum-making for me. That’s okay, there’s plenty of other options when it comes to 3lb of garlic.

First on my list and the easiest to make is lacto-fermented garlic. I’ve been fermenting for 8 years and never made this. I can’t believe it either!

mason jars of garlic

I filled the jars with garlic and probably filled them too full as I tend to do. I then mixed up a salt water brine of 3 cups of filtered water to 3 tablespoons non-iodized salt and poured it over the tops. I was left with about 1/4 cup so not too bad on my estimation.

Placed a glass weight in each jar and covered it with pickling tops. I’ve since written today’s date on the jars with Sharpie so I know when to start checking.

There are many benefits to fermenting food but sometimes it’s also about delaying the decision of how you’re going to eat the food too. I’m saving it from spoiling but also putting off eating it just yet—in a safe way.

a line of garlic-filled mason jars

Next up was honey-fermented garlic. Another simple process, add garlic cloves to a mason jar, cover with honey (I used local Woodland Honey), use a glass fermenting weight to keep the garlic below the honey, and cover it with a pickling lid.

The small jar on the end is for the fridge and normal cooking.

Have you bought similar garlic? and What did you do with it?

exercise journal

Notes I’ve Written to Myself in the Last Year Since Starting Weightlifting


March 14: I trust myself. I trust my body.

March 18: Investing in my current + future self

March 19: Trust in your body, it knows what to do.

March 22: I am doing the best for my body + my body knows what to do.

March 25: I’m grateful for my body and trust in its wisdom. [not sure if I really felt this today]

March 27 – LTG: I want to and will feel good with my 1st few steps out of bed in the morning.

April 1: I see results when I put in the right amount of work/mindset. I just started week 5 of this plan and see changes in my body composition even though the scale hasn’t moved much.

April 3: No one is going to care as much as you do. It takes time.

April 8: I see myself getting stronger + healthier and MAINTAINING that for the rest of my life.

April 12: I am building muscle! • It’s okay to be hungry • I can see my upper abs even at 194lb! Sweating A LOT, it feels good!

April 14: It’s okay to be a little hungry 🙂

April 24: Find external focuses other than food/cooking/recipes/old food blog type stuff.

April 30: Think about more unilateral movements to improve overall “everyday” strength and flexibility-maybe as a superset (ss)

May 1: Stay focused. Don’t procrastinate.

May 21: Your mind gives up before your body.

July 15: I’m in control of my life.

August 28: Isolated movements like below really seem to keep me “present” on all the little muscles worked.

December 4: Tired today but I did it!

December 12: TIRED LEGS – UGH is how I felt.


February 12: Started doing exercise “set” all together with 1 minute rests. First time trying this in almost a year of weightlifting. I felt muscles were more focused and tired/worked – in a good way.

February 17: I want to prioritize sleep!

February 18: Pretty good leg and hip power

February 19-mantra: I am healthy as I can be. My nails are strong and feeling really good.

February 20: When I’m eating to fit a moving calorie target that’s based on my daily activity & deficit—that could be different everyday—it feels like A LOT of work that becomes tiring and obsessive vs. when I set a calorie goal based on a weeks average with macronutrient goals—this all feels so relaxing and my body/digestion feel really good.

February 21: I’ve got this! I’m strong and have done some amazing work to get here!

February 24: Focus on macros. There are no bad foods. [there are no bad foods but there are foods that fuck with my digestion, but that is a whole different thing-this is about categorizing foods as good or bad]


Read in the Moment or Delete Forever

Somehow I’ve managed to accumulate more than 10,095 emails in my personal inbox.


Inspired by Jeremy’s recent post I thought I’d use this post-Christmas cleaning opportunity to catalog what I’m unsubscribing from.

In Order of Deletion

  1. Pinterest; Covering explore.pinterest and inspire.pinterest. I don’t really use Pinterest that much so ????
  2. Goodreads
  3. Indeed; It was a good reminder to unsubscribe from Portland/Vancouver/Newport job listings – we’ll at least be in Pullman at least another year.
  4. Zillow; Wow! Huge offender. ????
  5. Deal of the Day; Ugh online impulse shopping.
  6. Wyndham Rewards
  7. Choice Privileges
  8. The Family
  9.; I really only want phone notifications for new news on directors/actors/movies I’ve decided to follow. I don’t think this exists though because I get everything but.
  11. The Vegg
  12. Brain Pickings Weekly; I’ve actually been unsubscribed for some time. Any time you think you’ll go back and read something, just know that you won’t. Read in the moment or delete forever.
  13. Google Local Guides
  14. If It Fits Your Macros; 12 Hours Left • Our Final Sale • 90% Off Now • It’s Not Too Late • Are you serious? • Massive Sale Starts Now • This is for you –If someone wanted to know how boring marketing is I’d refer to these. It’s a shame because I feel like they were emailing interesting content until September-ish of last year.
    down to 8,997
  15. Kiva
    down to 7,129
  17. Big 5 Sporting Goods
  18. Vegan Cuts
  19. Google Alerts; vegan • cruelty-free • plant-based • carmina burana 
    down to 6,359
  20. Skillshare; an example of staying subscribed to something just I remember I’ve paid for a service and I should use it. Terrible strategy for me.
    down to 6,124
  21. Stacksocial/Skillwise
    down to 5,636 
  22. Wacom
  23. Creative Market
  24. Picture Correct
  25. PETA
  26. FedEx Office
  27. 100% Pure
  28. PictureCorrect (older/different from #24)
    down to 4,930
  29. NW Veg
    down to 3,593
  30. Lana Del Ray; sorry sometimes I forget Twitter exists
  31. The Oatmeal; same as above
  32. Happify