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! 

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Thankful

via
I always feel like i have so much to be thankful for, but this year it seems like even more. I’m so thankful for my family & the support that they’ve been for Alvaro & I. I’m grateful for a job I love that allows Al to go to school full time. I’m thankful for our health & both our families health. I’m thankful for an apartment we’re making cozy, into our home. I’m thankful for my husband. How incredibly supportive he is & the amazing relationship we have. No way we could be changing our lives & futures without each other. I love him & appreciate him so much. 

I hope your thankful list is long & full. 

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Alvaro's Birthday

Last monday, November 3rd, was Alvaro’s birthday. Between a Biology midterm on Monday & Al getting rear ended on Tuesday :( the week didn’t feel very celebratory.  However when Al came to pick me up Friday from work, I had a plan in the making. Dinner & shopping in Bridgeport. Honestly, it didn’t take much to convince Al to go along with my idea. After a quick stop on the house we were heading to Bridgeport Village. 

After we got our name on the list for PF Chang's we went over to the Apple Store to do a little shopping. Alvaro had been doing some research on an iPad and really wanted to get one to help with his studies and take to class. We walked out with a brand new iPad Air 2 for him! So excited for him. The iPad we had before that was the first version they came out with! It was over twice the weight of the new one which we could no longer update since Apple is no longer supporting that operating system, ha. 


We ran over to PF Chang’s and had a wonderful dinner together. I think the best part was that neither of us took out our phones or even thought about them (no photos). We just really enjoyed each other. I have a bad habit of being anxious and always trying to stick to a schedule, but I didn’t even think about it. I just wanted to celebrate my husband & his birthday. I love him so much. I think even though it was simple, it’ll be a birthday we’ll always remember. 

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Anxiety

Every few of months I suffer from a couple days of pretty terrible anxiety. The littlest thing will cause me to be anxious and I’ll immediately go to the worst case scenario. It throws me for a loop and makes it difficult to focus on simple daily tasks. When I go through this spells I feel sick, I often don’t sleep well, and cry very easily. I know a lot of it stems from my brother passing away from cancer & the lack of control. Luckily I have a great support system. Alvaro is always there encouraging & supporting me. Staying up with my when I can't sleep & praying for me. I group text my family asking for prayer. I pray a lot & remind myself of the reality, the facts. A few days after it passes, I look back and try to think of how I could have handled that better. What could I have done better/different to help avoid the anxiety in the first place. Stress is normal, but anxiety and worry disrupting my life is not. I found the print below on etsy and thought it was a great reminder. I might need to buy it & put it in our house. 

Via DaughterZionDesigns on Etsy
How do you handle anxiety & stress? Have you read any books that have helped you manage it?