In response. A memoir.

Sean. Sorry for the long delay but since I’ve had a busy day of hustling (what you have to do when you won’t “just pick a guy to settle down and marry to take care of you”). But I wanted to really see what you were saying and respond, not react, in a respectful and gracious manner after your responses to my sharing of the Gillette Ad on Toxic Masculinity, and interpret my use of emoji of course and if Tennessee if fueling my seemingly man hating feminism.

The fact that you see feminism as male hating is sad and part of the problem. The feminists I know aren’t male hating and a lot of them are men as well. The ones who are married or dating are in some of the most healthy relationships I’ve witnessed and their friendship in kind emulates a healthy and mutual respect for both parties. I love, respect and find great friendships with male friends. I’d love to marry a man some day. They are intuitive, intelligent, caring, empowering and loving. But feminism isn’t about hating on the male gender, it’s about fighting for equal rights and opportunities for women. It’s fighting for the woman whose husband won’t let her get a job even though she wants to work and needs that outlet, it’s for the woman who makes 19% less than her male counterparts and who “works harder because she has to prove herself more” – an actual quote from the CEO of a company I was talking to. Being able to choose between working, staying home with their children or doing both. Having an equal household. Being able to wear what you want without being judged. Empowering instead of tearing down. I was raised around great male figures (so lucky) but also have experienced first hand and witnessed the repercussions when a male has had less than stellar examples for how to treat a woman, or even when they seem to be “raised the right way” and use that as an excuse or an advantage. How many “Christian” guys I’ve gone out with who claimed their faith as “so important” when then expecting something else “so important” and throwing a temper tantrum when I said no. The thinking that because a girl is wearing a tank top or shorts means she’s asking to get hit on or raped. Listen, my favorite fashion genre is Elevated Amish and you should have heard some of the things I’ve been told and I absolutely refuse to take the crushing responsibility for an entire gender’s thoughts and actions on the thought that my appearance makes them think and do things that are sins but instead of it being on them, it’s my fault for being who I am and those ill fitting grey pants I got at Goodwill really turn a random guy on but it’s not his fault because I’m the one who chose to wear them. Hard pass.

When, after going on a few DATES and corresponding back and forth,  “Dan” told me that after we got married I was going to stay at home with the kids where I belonged and not work and take my place there. While trying to tell him we weren’t going to be seeing each other any more he flew into a rage and told me that “God told me that we are going to be together so I’m going to have you one way or another.” Constant innuendos, ass grabs, wandering hands, expectations after they’ve paid for a few drinks, snide remarks about waiters once they leave, them telling you that the career and passion path you’ve chosen is basically just a placeholder until “we” get married. You make sure you are rapt with attention while he talks so that he knows you are listening and validating his story but the minute you start to talk his eyes wander and check out the waitress you can hear moving behind you. I’ve let my guard down and had the worst happen thinking I could trust someone. The fact that at every moment of my life outside of my house, (well, inside too), I am constantly formulating an escape plan if things get to a Threat Level: Midnight. Walking in a parking lot, down a sidewalk, through a building, in a bar, constantly uploading and adapting. I laugh because as I say all of these things it’s no wonder why myself and women in general are utterly exhausted.

So take our inside joke that you make every year about why I don’t just pick someone to settle down with because I’m one year older and my uterus is getting dusty and growing cobwebs. We both have laugh, I do too, because now it’s tradition and still sort of funny but the thing is I start to wonder the same thing.  Because so far I haven’t dated anyone who has wooed enough to make me Marie-Kondo-clean-out my uterus, but I do see literally every man around me falling on his knee throwing a diamond ring at his girlfriend. I work so hard for so little and think sometimes how nice it would be if I didn’t have to worry about paying for my bills solo and could just worry about having dinner on the table at 6:00 and a martini in hand when he walks in the door at 5:30. But going on dates reminds me of who I don’t want and those that spark, well, there just wasn’t enough spark to catch on the lint trailing out of my uterus to start the final bonfire. It’s also that question that makes me keep searching for my feminist husband who is out there, picket sign in one hand and waiting with a broom in the other. 

The video I posted, I captioned with a heart and hand clap emoji. The video made me cry. It made me feel. It gave a call to action. It was beautiful. It touched on bullies, the paper cut comments meant to bring someone down, physical abuse, treatment of women and the “boys will be boys” mentality that only gets worse when boys become older and then are dads and bosses and people in power who have say over other peoples’ lives. It then showed the empathy some men already have and others need, the acts of kindness and it ended with a call to action. It’s asking men to be better, not just to women but other men as well. Yes. I hearted it and hand clapped it. Creative directing that idea was brave as well as genius and I wanted to give props to those people. It also makes me so proud of my siblings and friends and the way they are raising their children, both boys and girls. It gives me hope for the next generation and even more hope for the one following.

So, no. I wouldn’t say it’s Tennessee.

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January Inspiration

I’m not sure what the weather is like where you are but even though I’m happy that Nashville isn’t high on the snow count, there are still enough gray days where I find myself staring out the window, idea-less and convinced that I’ve used up all of my creativity and I will never be able to produce anything ever again.

Dramatic, I know, but that’s the most exciting thing I’ve done today except send a ton of emails. But what does get me out of this funk, other than jetsetting to Tulum or the Amalfi coast? Finding inspiration. Whether it’s on Pinterest, looking through art and photography books, old travel books, etc.

So, I’m rounding up some of the pics that have gotten me through the gray days here in Nashville and hopefully they help you too. I’ve included a compilation board for you to save and print off or pin for later inspiration.

*All pictures taken from Pinterest, follow me for links to their original pages! @wildartifact

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Holiday Spirit

Holidays are obviously full of gift giving, food devouring, drink swilling and lots of family time, with some those ensuing more-so around family than usual.

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If you’re friends with me then it’s fair to say at some point I’ll either make you a gift or food object at some point. I’ll be honest, sometimes it is me trying to save money but other times it’s because I tried something awesome and I want to share it with everyone. Literally.  

So, infusing gin. I love gin as a base for cocktails because you can do a lot with it and it’s easy to play around with. I got the idea to do an infusion when I wanted to add some flavor to fin but couldn’t find the right type of liqueur or bitters to do it and thought there had to be a way to infuse it into the gin. Turns out there is.

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For my gin infusions I tried to think of my friends and what their personalities evoked when I thought of them/what flavors they like and what ones would work well with gin. My synopsis? Lemon, grapefruit, chamomile and ginger.

And it’s SUPER easy. Almost way too easy.

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Pick your poison. Then pick your infusion.

 

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Chamomile:

1 mason jar of gin

2 tea bags

=

Let steep for 1 day and take out tea bags. Keep in jar or transfer to resalable , airtight container. Store in a cool, dry place.

 

 

Lemon/Grapefruit/Ginger

1 mason jar of gin

Peel rind of one lemon

Juice lemon and pour into jar

=

Let sit for 1-2 days, then take out rind, strain gin with a fine mesh strainer (I used a fine cotton cloth) and transfer gin back to jar or reseal-able airtight container. Store in a cool, dry place.

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 CHEERS.

Enjoy Responsibly.

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Healing Winter Broth Recipe

Last January, during a bout of sickness where, for a few days, I did believe that I was not going to survive the winter, I made up this recipe. I was housesitting and didn’t have access to my arsenal of voodoo stuff at home so I was making do with what they had in their pantry for whatever I could think of that could help me. So, this was born.

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As always, you can adjust this for your own taste. I prefer bold flavors with a good deal of heat and spice but I also know if I gave that to my roommate she might throw up. So feel free to make this a version of your own! If you are feeling a cold coming on I would add two cloves of garlic and healthy amounts of freshly grated ginger (or dry spices if you have to) to really nip things in the bud.

Enjoy.

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Healing Winter Broth 

1 cup (8 oz) of broth (vegetable, bone or chicken, preferable low sodium)

½ tsp Himalayan rock salt

1 tsp turmeric

1 tsp smoked paprika

1 tsp red pepper flakes

1 clove fresh garlic

Pinch of green onion tops

1 tsp of freshly grated ginger

 

*Pour broth into small saucepan and turn heat to medium/low. You just want to heat the broth, it doesn’t need to boil.

When broth is beginning to simmer, add the rest of ingredients.

Enjoy.

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Fire Starter

A taste of spring came yesterday, unexpectedly, in the middle of December when usually the days are short and nights are cold. A Sunday morning spent baking Christmas cookies seemed like we forcing a lie upon ourselves and conjuring feelings and cheer. Over 60 degrees, sun shining, friends walking through neighborhoods and paying house calls, it was a pretty perfect day.

After doing some work in the afternoon and not getting to really play outside all I wanted to do was sit in the fresh air. Told my roommate to not plan dinner, grabbed firewood and pizza from the store and headed home. The night was settling into the perfect evening, a caress of a breeze, a coolness preceding that with a clear sky.  

For all of my best intentions and fire starting capabilities, that wood was just a mite damp and my efforts for an organic start were futile and I had to trudge back to the house for the back up fire starter. Much to my chagrin that also took about three tries to actually get that wood to burn and then it was good to go. My roommate commented as we were bringing dinner outside “Wow, that fire is really going!” To which I replied, “I used the fire starter, it had no choice!’  

It was  a perfect night filled with deep conversation, connecting, laughing and overall enjoying the company of a friend who knows you so well. The stars were so beautiful and clear that we got out our star gazing apps and were looking up constellations and letting the awe wash over us as the realization of how small we really are set in during those moments you can only ever fully stop to realize.  

As the fire was dying down Becky had made another comment about how well the fire did after the starter was used. Thinking about it for a second though I replied back, “the fire had started before, it alive and going, it was hot, but it needed some encouragement, it needed the fire starter even though it was technically hot enough if the wood wasn’t damp.” Then I grabbed the bridge of my nose and closed my eyes and muttered out “hold on, there’s an analogy in there, hold please”.

How many times can we feel like the fire before the starter? We’re alive, doing our thing, going along, but we’ve lost the spark that kept us ignited. The flames are slowly fading and maybe every once in awhile you get a whiff of oxygen to keep going but it isn’t enough to sustain. Maybe a slew of bad things keep happening and we feel like it’s going to completely go out, our embers are dying one at a time. But then a fire starter comes in, a friend who so completely believes in you, what you are doing, speaks to you heart and soul and reignites that flame.

I feel like I am, but I always want to be a fire starter. I am surrounded by amazing humans who are and I’m not sure if that’s luck or if we’re all drawn to the flames but I am so grateful. But then it’s taking what you’ve been given, the encouragement and empowering and belief and pouring that into someone else who needs it. Because if we are all pouring into someone else just think of the light that shines from that, how tall is that fire. Think of how mesmerizing a bonfire is, people can’t help but stare into the flames and get lost in the wonder, the power, the sheer breathtaking nature of the light. Then think of those people who are the same, their light and energy invokes awe and think of them taking their energy and giving a portion of that to someone who needs it. Because when that happens, they literally don’t have a choice, their fire can’t help but become ignited even in the smallest amount. Then someone else will do the same until your fire is fully stoked and you can, in turn, empower someone else. So, whose fire are you going to help re-ignite this week?

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Breaking (Bread)

When people think of baking bread they think of hot kitchens, hours of watching, waiting, kneading and all for the potential chance to screw things up.

Luckily for everyone, my amazing mom is coming to the rescue once again.

Beer Bread (otherwise known as Bachelor Bread), is a simple, easy, fool proof recipe that I make so often I can usually just take some out of the fridge and heat up if a friend decides to pop over unexpectedly.  

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I love telling people that I’m just taking bread out of the oven because they expect you to have been slaving away for hours when in reality it took me 10 minutes. While this bread does include beer (helps with that one can that always happens to be in the fridge) you really can’t taste the beer because it gets baked out of it. That being said, I do prefer using a stout or porter, something about the thickness and richness of the brew affects the bread in the best way.

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There isn’t a lot of sugar but the little bit of brown sugar that you put and it combines with the heavier beer is just the touch of heaven that you are looking for. Then dipping this in the olive oil dipping oil I’ve included as well is the perfect appetizer or light dinner.  My friends request beer bread all the time!

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The best part? This literally takes about 10 minutes to mix up and then only 45 minutes to bake, enough time to finish getting ready for guests and have it come piping hot out of the oven! And no one is going to believe you when you say how easy it was.

This also makes a GREAT present! My mom will wrap this up and give to all of the older bachelors in their church and community and it’s something that is useful, not a thing that’s going to take up more space and it makes you bake!

It’s also great the following days after when you get home late from work and don’t feel like cooking, just break some off and toast it up, grab that dipping oil and pray there’s a bit of cheese left and you’ll be living like a queen.

#carbsforlife

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"Are You a Teacher?"

“Are you a teacher?” Question asked on a flight back from a weekend Girl’s Trip to Vegas to celebrate a friend’s birthday. On my right hand side sat my friend Andrea and then to my left sat a younger guy who had his head resting on his arms while I got myself situated. Andrea and I talked for a few minutes while taxiing off and then she settled into a movie while I pulled out the book I’ve been trying to work through.

 When I read, I READ. Words are so very powerful and it feels like I am constantly writing quotes or ideas from books down to remember for later. I have a small black notebook that I write these down because there’s a tugging that pulls me to write, if I don’t I feel as if I’ve forgotten something and it will drive me bananas. My parents are avid readers and writers, my Mom is a published poet (I’ll say it even though she dismisses that fact), and my Dad is eloquent in his letters, sermons for volunteering and his short verses he sends in packages (which I always look forward to). But the power, value and knowledge that written word could give us was sought after in my family. When I was younger and going through hard times with bullies, friendships and feelings of isolation while being sick and seeing doctor after doctor I sought solace in books. My vivid imagination came into play because I could literally leave my circumstances and be transported to other worlds with new people, ideas, and adventures. Books were my friends, escape and savior. Which is why I always used weird words or phrases that my friends would always laugh at and roll their eyes.

 So I whip out my book, which is thick, heavy and pretty intimidating, and start the process. The thing is, this book takes forever to read because every other line introduces subjects, facts, topics that are new or heady or something I need to ponder and I was whipping back and forth from my notebook to my book constantly.

 My seatmate next to me awoke from his nap and started off the conversation with asking about my shoes and I tried not to roll my eyes all the way back into my head because it was obvious after a couple of questions he was trying to flirt and I was just not at all in the mood (sorry). Then he goes into this.
“Why are you underlining and writing stuff down? Are you studying for something?” No, and then “Are you a teacher?” No. I explained that I love reading, whether it is fiction or non-fiction and that whenever something strikes a chord I usually write it down or underline it so that I can think about it later. Have you ever read a sentence that you can’t get out of your mind or that resonated so much with you that you felt a light go off inside you? 

He looked at me like I was crazy. Tried a different tactic.

“So this book is about the author’s deduction that being exceptional is at the core of the human condition and that difference unites us. After interviewing hundreds of families who are all conceived to be different (autism, deafness, prodigies, criminals, etc), he delves into the question – to what extent should parents accept their children for who they are, and to what extent should they help them become their best selves. Also, with/without the struggles that those individuals endured would they have given them up since it made them who they are and to what extent did they become who are they are now because of those said struggles, alienations, discriminations, etc? 

So, lots to think about. Paragraphs I have to read over and over. Concepts I might not think about on a regular basis and stories that keep breaking my heart over and over and triumphs that are exhilarating to read for the people involved.

I’m fascinated by people; the inner workings of their mind and the human condition, which is also why I’ve loved learning about the enneagram. I strive to know more about myself and about other people because there is a vast abyss of information, we can really never know enough.  A dinner party should never be silent because of the lack of questions. On any given day you will meet a new person who has a lifetime of experiences and knowledge that you can ask about.

Everyone is curious about something, even to a small extent. I’m the type of person who loves to glance at houses while walking by and see people living their life and wonder what it’s like for them. How their day went, what they are doing that night, what they do for work, what their family is like, how do they spend their time, etc. So maybe it’s not that far off that I’m drawn to a book where he tells you exactly how some people’s experiences are in a set of circumstances that are completely different from my own.

He looked at me like I was crazy again. 

“You do this for, fun?” Oy. Without sounding defensive, but also a little defensive, I threw back that this isn’t the only thing that I did for fun and as I was answering I did a virtual face palm to my own forehead because while I was being super annoyed and not wanting to answer his slow, fishing questions, literally there was an opportunity in front of me like I talked about above. I also firmly believe that if you don’t want to talk to anyone or they are making you uncomfortable you do not have to give them the time of day, as a woman if a man is trying to guilt you into engaging with him, saying rude comments or making you uncomfortable, you know exactly what to do and trust your intuition.  

Anyhoo, he asked me about my work, my passion projects and he then began a long, sometimes painful, sometimes funny but all the way interesting conversation about his life in CA, how he can’t get his drinking under control, he used to work in finance but now he’s working as a machinist at a manufacturing plant because the hours are better, doesn’t know what to do with his life, is so bored at work, is trying to learn Japanese in all of his down time, doesn’t know how to make friends, etc. It was a lot that I wasn’t fully prepared for but could only give him advice in some places, encouragement in others, and an open ear for the rest.

At the end of the flight we exited the plane and went our separate ways and he reminded me again that we are all looking for connection. Through this book I’m looking for ways to connect to people who have gone through things I never have and he saw sitting next to a stranger on a flight as an opportunity to practice something he didn’t feel comfortable in and engage in a random conversation. I eventually did get to read more of my book and shared with him some of the things I was underlining and why and we both left.

Once again, books for the win.

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Mamsie and Me

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I feel the weight of having a Mother I love. I feel the weight because her age is now something that doesn’t seem to match her. I feel the weight because I do not live near  her so the making of memories is far and few between and I have begun to have anxiety that I won’t have enough stored by the time it is too late. I begin to feel a murmuring panic that I don’t have children who get to experience all that she has to offer at this age when she is still her own and in all transparency I feel a small vein of jealousy for my unborn children because of their cousins’ who get Mamsie in her glory days. I feel everything to the bone and I feel her, in ways difficult to express but churning just below the surface.

I feel the years of toil in her hands. Her strength in posture perfect back, watching her navigate life with an innate gracefulness I wish could be taught. The joy in her eyes when engaging with another human who was formerly a  stranger. The beauty she sees staring at a face wrought with more wrinkles than hers. The tiredness as she sinks into her bed and whispers a poem she wrote about such an action when I was 7.

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I can hear her voice reading aloud or telling stories, instructing life lessons in what I thought was just an evening spent baking a pie. I feel the afternoons of trudging off the bus with tears streaming down my face because of a nonchalant insult that sliced more deeply than the deliverer even knew and her waiting with open arms and never ending advice of “stand up straight and ignore them…inner beauty shines through more than outer beauty…even if they are unkind to you, you need to be kind to them.”

I recall her silhouette, in that early pre-dawn getting ready for the day. Darkness flitted through my dreams so I was never one for sleep, her grace letting me wander through the jewelry boxes on her dresser, asking questions and being intrusive or sleeping in her bed in hopes my imagination would quiet and a few hours of rest could be had.

I can feel her gentleness with the spirits of everyone she has encountered, no human has withstood their own barriers in her presence and I shudder with shame the number of times my eyes rolled as she thanked an aging veteran or told another elderly woman she looks just like her mother. Her ease of laughter, that gasping, breathless laugh which eventually turns into a cry and I think makes her the most beautiful woman in the world.

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Her faith is palpable because I can feel it; see it. Every morning on her knees, reading her Bible, tending to others, praying in those hushed moments when stillness emanates throughout the house. Her patience like a blanket, enfolding around me even as mine wears thin. 

Her curiosity is an experience shared, whether it was stopping by the side of a road to see what kind of flower was growing there or her allowing us to do “experiments” in the kitchen or try things we had never done without so much as a “it probably won’t work, or that will get messy.” Her penchant for cultivating and growing leaves of green also extending to the people around her. Her denial is sweet, but a resounding truth is that she has lived an intentional and brave life.

I yearn for and ache for her nurturing, the innate essence of Mother bestowed to anyone crossing her path. Human or animal, her ability to see beyond the shell that encases a spirit is grounding. The hierarchy in the animal kingdom made no impression on her as a snake deserved to be nursed back to life as much as a baby kitten or rabbit. Her hands brushing my hair and back as I need comforting, her body intuitively forming to mine for a hug that neither of us chooses to break.

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Never one for demanding luxury she certainly has never received it and her grace in that acceptance is in itself humbling. The “make do” and “there are people who are living in worse conditions” mantras were always given a seat at our table, her defending that she will be in heaven one day and it all doesn’t matter. But sometimes it seems closer, in stolen moments and light that only those on the receiving end can see.  

What if I see glimpses of heaven now?

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Photography by: Ashtin Paige - Nashville TN

http://www.ashtinpaige.com/

Babes and Beignets on a Thursday

This whole thing is about rolling with the punches and how life isn't perfect like the Instagram and Pinterest pictures (thank goodness). 

One of my favorite ways to love my people is to invite them over for a meal. A meal, coffee, cocktails, just something that I've made. They are in my house, enjoying the atmosphere, music and conversation, and for a few moments there is honest human connection for us to feel known and safety to be vulnerable. 

While not one to discriminate foods or meals, I would have to say that breakfast and supper are my favorites, with dessert being a close third. Obviously I love lunch, but in general you don't get the same amount of love labor preparing it especially if you are working and only have a short amount of time. So when I can, I find an excuse for friends to come over for breakfast as well as the suppers I love so much. 

I've never been to New Orleans, eaten a beignet or created a dish using real lavender buds. So this morning was one of firsts and I loved it. Disclaimer: not everything went to plan, also disclaimer, everything turned out ok. Also disclaimer: I frequently forget to read recipes all the way through or assume I've made something before so I "basically know the process". No comment. 

Found a recipe for Lavender Beignets on Pinterest (credited below) so that was the main part of the meal that I wanted to showcase. Did anyone else know that you can buy lavender on Amazon? Cause I have so much extra if you need to borrow any. 

The counterparts to the breakfast was a sheet of Roasted Asparagus and Tomatoes with Crumbled Feta and Smoked Paprika and Scrambled Eggs with Orange Pepper, Jalapenos and Green Onions. Right after preparing the asparagus and putting it into the oven I realized a terrible, heart dropping mistake as I was getting out the ingredients for the beignets. I forgot the yeast. Actually, I most definitely left the yeast in the bottom of my cart at the grocery store. But my friends were coming and I had to adapt to the situation. 

While there is no completely accurate substitute for yeast, there is a passible solution that will do in a pinch. It just makes the the dough a bit more dense, it doesn't as much of an airy, light texture. 

While rolling my eyes and kicking myself for not noticing, I decided that the only decision was to try it using a substitution of lemon juice and baking soda and they would either turn out and be good or we would all laugh about it later. Which is pretty much all I ever do in any of the given life situations. 

Throwing the lavender glaze and filling together was magical, the sweet, earthy and tangy scent of lavender filling the air as I whisked the sugar and milk. The dough came together surprisingly well, it rolled out evenly and was I cut squares and popped them in the oil I was pleasantly surprised to see them puffing up and acting, well, like beignets. Tossed them onto a paper towel, filled them with the lavender filling and then a quick glaze, a slight shake of powered sugar, and voila, beignets for days. 

Then I had my friends each grab something and we traipsed to my hilariously small balcony to eat on an upturned crate that I pulled out of my dad's shed and written on one of the ends is shipping instructions to some of my ancestors in the area of back home (souther Minnesota). Sitting poised on the glorious poufs that I recently brought home, the morning was perfect for catching up and licking our fingers from the icing dripping down like nectar from the gods. 

 

But this goes to show, even thrown a curveball in the midst of baking, things will turn out even if it might not be the exact item you thought you were making. Stretch your mind, test out the cat like reflexes and roll with the punches. 

Live wild, babes. 

 

Lavender Beignets (from Gringilicious)

Lavender Vanilla Bean Icing:

  • 1 tblsp dried lavender flowers
  • scrapings from 1 large vanilla bean
  • 1/2 cup whole milk
  • 4 cups powered sugar

Lavender Vanilla Bean Cream:

  • 2 oz cream cheese, softened
  • 1/4 cup butter, softened
  • 2 tblsp heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup prepared lavender icing (from above)

Beignets:

  • 1 cup warm milk (not hot)
  • 1 tblsp active dry yeast
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1 tsp salt 
  • 1/3 cup butter, melted
  • oil for frying

Directions:

  1. First make your icing and filling, Whisk together the ingredients for the icing in a medium bowl until smooth. and set aside. Combine cream cheese and butter in a stand mixer fitted with whisk attachment. Beat together until creamed and fluffy. Add cream and 1/2 cup of icing then mix until combined. Cover and place mixture into the fridge until ready for it.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer (or a large bowl), dissolve yeast in milk and allow to sit for about 5 minutes until bubbly. Beat in eggs and sugar, then butter and salt until combined. Add flour a cup at a time until your dough comes together and pull away from the sides. Cover bowl with a damp towel or plastic wrap and place in warm place to rise until doubled in size. (Alternatively, you can refrigerate the dough overnight.)
  3. When dough is ready divide it in half. Roll one half out into a square, roughly 10x10, and cut into 16 squares. Place the squares on a tray and allow them to rise for 30 to 45 minutes.
  4. Heat about 3 inches of oil in a large high-sided pan to 350 degrees F (180 C) and line a plate with paper towels. Drop dough squares, a few at a time, gently into oil and fry on each side for about 30 seconds or until golden brown. Remove with a slotted spoon and place on prepared plate.
  5. Now fill a pastry bag fitted with a long narrow tip with the lavender cream and pipe into the centers then spread about 1 tablespoon of icing on top of each. Serve ASAP. 

Thank you to Tori from Gringi-licious for this amazing recipe that I mostly followed! Everyone go check out her awesome blog http://www.gringilicious.com

 

Wild Artifact

Wild Artifact is a lifestyle. It’s a state of mind. Finding the beauty and the wild in the everyday, loving and blessing those around you. Gathering those you love, pursuing passions (even more than one) and thinking of everything as an adventure. Whether that means doing something outside of the norm on your lunch break or exploring a new part of your city on a weekend. Actually making those recipes that have been gathering dust on your Pinterest page and doing the activities with friends that everyone keeps talking about.

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Creating the ideas running through your mind at work or while you lie in bed and actually getting up and making them. Doing things spontaneously just because. Planning out the ideas you want. Being intentional with your time and the ones that you love, celebrating the community you create and go through life with while also loving yourself and practicing self-care.  It's not just a blog, shop, place for pretty photos, it's living every day to the fullest and empowering others to do the same. And, if we can be honest with each other, I have no idea where this is going or where I am going, but part of living wild is letting go of fear and all the minute details that contains. So let's see where this adventure leads. 

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Wild Artifact is a lifestyle. It’s not a blog, a shop, a thing, it just is. It’s part of everything we do and everything we are. It’s home, beauty (inner&outer), style, and adventuring. Wild Artifact can be everything from styling a room to evoke specific feelings, it can be items I make, or things that are found. A blog with recipes that I’ve tried and want to share, sharing get togethers with friends and some of the things that we like to do, and finding the wild and adventure in the every day. Selling the jewelry, textiles and goods that keep me alive and I love to make, while also offering goods I've collected on my travels or finds I can't keep to myself. Empowering women to be wild; wildly passionate, loving, seeking beauty in the mundane and living out their faith and connecting with other women. Being wild enough to live each day to the fullest even if you never left the house. Seek the wild. Even at 10 am on a Monday.

Live well. Love more. Live wild.