Saturday, May 2, 2015

Capture Real Life in 52 weeks. Week two :: Guilty Pleasures

Week two challenge :: Guilty Pleasures

Books / libraries / bookstores

Reading is my current guilty pleasure. I can’t get enough of it! I’m gravitating towards memoirs currently, but I love it all. Fiction, self help, business, etc. I shot this at the local library. 

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Capture Real Life in 52 weeks. Week one :: Day/night

I'm pretty exited about the recent online class I purchased from the team over at A Beautiful Mess. From the class description "In Capture Real Life in 52 Weeks you will be given specific photography challenges and tips you can use throughout the year to document life as it happens around you." 
I'm really excited to build my photography and editing skills. Also it'll be so great to have a full year documented, something I've never had! 

Week one challenge :: day/night
Alvaro & I have breakfast together each morning. It’s usually something pretty quick that includes eggs. Our coffees are usually poured straight into to-go thermoses as we run out the door. However, on the weekends we love drinking out of one of our MANY Starbucks coffee cups :) 

NPR helps us get up to speed with the latest news every morning. 

Night photos coming soon! 


Today is my 29th Birthday. Alvaro & I will spend it together. A long breakfast. A trip to the coffeeshop & likely tacos at my favorite place followed by a movie. A few of my favorite things, with my favorite person. The best kind of day!

I’m excited to make my 29th year, a great one. I have a lot of big things planned. I better go get started! 

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Recent Read // Salmon, People, and Place

When I finished up my last book I asked Al what i should read next. He suggested I read book he just picked up but hasn’t had a chance to read yet, Salmon, People, and Place: A Biologist's Search for Salmon Recovery by Jim Lichatowich. 

Alvaro is studying marine biology at OSU and has a passion for the protection, restoration, and recovery of salmon. So I was excited to read the book and gain a better understanding of the history of salmon in the PNW. I love supporting him in his passion and having a better understanding of salmon will help in our many discussions. 

Background // Jim is a biologist that worked for over 40 years with the ODFW and with various advisory panels throughout Oregon, California, and British Columbia. He has a wealth of knowledge and lots of personal experiences on the difficulties facing the recovery of the salmon. 

Review // I really enjoyed this read. It really opened my eyes to how salmon is viewed by citizens in the PNW and how political it all is. At times I felt discouraged and saddened by the way it seemed the salmon are viewed. As a money making commodity. However in the final chapter he highlights and discusses how he thinks the salmon can be restored to their original runs. The changes that need to take place to ensure they are here for many generations to come. Many of his suggested changes don’t seem too far fetched or impossible. I’m excited to see what changes Al & others in his field are able to make. 

Quotes // Below are some quotes that especially stood out to me: 

“The Pacific Northwest is simply this: wherever the salmon can get to.” - Timothy Egan

“... history matters. It’s not just the long, evolutionary history that matters, but also the shorter-term history of our relationship to the place where we live and hate animals we share that place with” 

“Whatever your belief about creation and the origins of life on Earth, that belief, unless it is completely overridden by the single-minded pursuit of profit, should include respect for nature’s gifts and a sense of wonder at the diversity of life that blankets our planet. Whatever drives your relationship with the natural world - whether you cut trees or build houses out of the wood, irrigate a farm or cook the food it produces, whether you push barges up a river or catch salmon, whether you convert sawdust to paper or use paper to write books - you are surrounded and sustained by nature’s gifts. The annual return of the salmon to the rivers of the Pacific Northwest is one of those gifts.” 

“Our stories determine whether we will coevolve a sustainable relationship with natural resources such as salmon or whether we will destroy relationships and extirpate those resources. In that regard, it is important to remember that we don’t just tell stories -- stories about rivers and harnessing their power and stories about salmon factories. We tell these stories; but these stores also tell us. Stories dig deep and reveal the beliefs, assumptions, and myths that determine how we comprehend and interact with the world around us. If we pay attention to and approach our stories with an open mind, they will tell us important things about ourselves, things that are buried so deep inside us that they remain hidden...” 

Monday, January 19, 2015

Cleaning Checklist

One of my goals for 2015 is to work on staying on top of deep cleaning our apartment. It isn’t difficult to keep it picked up since it’s just the two of us, but sometimes the deep cleaning isn’t done as often as it should be. I decided I’d start a little notebook with a cleaning checklist since some times it’s hard to remember everything that needs to be done.

I picked up Martha Stewart’s Homekeeping Handbook from the library. I also am starting this 30-Day Cleaning Challenge from PopSugar. My plan is to use the handbook along with the 30-Day challenge to learn the best way to clean everything. I’m also researching natural and safe cleaning recipes. I’ve found a couple great ones on Pinterset, that I’m sure I’ll be using these next few weeks.

Using the schedule from Martha I created a little checklist in Excel and saved it as a PDF. Each week I’ll print it out & Alvaro and I will tackle it together. Wish us luck!

Do you have a cleaning schedule to stick to or a cleaning recipe that works every time? I’d love to hear!

Sunday, January 11, 2015

Sunday Crafts - Christmas Card Booklet

Inspired by Bridget & Casey at The DIY Playbook, I finally sat down and make a collection of our Christmas cards we received this year. One of my resolutions/goals for this year is to do more crafts and DIY projects. While working on theseI thought it’d be fun to dedicate some time each Sunday to doing something creative. My plan is to do at least one craft or work on a larger project each Sunday and document it here. I’m hoping that will encourage me to spend at least a little time doing something creative & keep me accountable. 

Back to the card organizer > I love the idea of laying them out each Christmas season and flipping through them to see how the kids have grown & think of all the special people in our lives. I had several cards for 2013 laying around too so I went ahead and made ones for 2013 & 2014. Can’t wait for a couple years when we’ll have lots to put out :) I even snuck in the one Alvaro & I sent out this year. I think it’ll be fun to document our cards over the years too. Have you made a craft like this to help keep your cards organized?

Sunday, November 30, 2014

Relaxing Sunday & the "Four Survey"

Alvaro & I are having a super relaxing Sunday at home. Well he’s working on a paper for his Chemistry class so I’m not sure if he’d call that relaxing :) 

I saw this Four Answers Survey on Caitlin’s blog, Healthy Tipping Point, and thought it’d be fun to do! 

Four names that people call me other than my real name:
  1. Cortes
  2. Honey
  3. Bug (nickname by my dad) 
  4. Uncle Cathy - my nephew Tyler hasn’t nailed the Aunt part yet
Four jobs I’ve had:
  1. Admin Assistant at Orthopedic Clinic
  2. Shipping & warehouse worker at book company 
  3. Hollywood Video store employee
  4. Bank Teller
Four movies I’ve watched more than once:
  1. Bridesmaids
  2. Knocked up 
  3. The Break Up
  4. Twilight Series 
Four books I’d recommend:
  1. This is the story of a happy marriage
  2. Me Before You
  3. Start 
  4. Is everyone hanging out without me
Four places I’ve lived
  1. Dorms at college 
  2. Downtown Salem 
  3. South Salem
Four places I’ve visited:
  1. India
  2. Mexico
  3. New York 
  4. California 
Four places I’d rather be right now:
  1. Seattle doing touristy holiday things 
  2. Hawaii with Alvaro 
  3. Disneyland! 
  4. A coffee shop 
Four things I prefer not to eat:
  1. Refried beans
  2. Kale
  3. Whole lemons 
  4. Octopus 
Four of my favorite foods:
  1. Coffee
  2. Apples
  3. Tacos
  4. Ice Cream 
Four TV shows I watch:
  1. The Office
  2. Game of Thrones
  3. SNL
  4. Homeland
Four things I’m looking forward to this year:
  1. Runs with Alvaro 
  2. Making a big dent in our debt 
  3. New opportunities at my job
  4. Planning a nice vacation with Alvaro 
Four things I’m always saying:
  1. Want some coffee? 
  2. What should we make for dinner?
  3. I need to charge my phone. 
  4. I’m tired. 

Hope you’re having a great & relaxing Sunday too!