December 31, 2009 Candace Morris 3 Comments

So what's everyone up to tonight?  Sitting at home with a book and a bottle?  Fancing yourself in some sexy shoes and sparkles?  Well, I'm spending the majority of the day cooking up some yummy desserts for a small dinner party tonight...I hope this eve treats you well.

New Year's Chocolate

This is a bit of the chocolate cayenne cake I'm preparing....




December 28, 2009 Candace Morris 5 Comments

I've been kind of waiting for it to go away but since it's lingering, I suppose I shall extract it thus.  This aforementioned it is this gnawing, annoyingly cold-sore-like discontent that keeps distracting me from enjoying my life.  The little bits, the big bits, they both seem to be growing and swirling in the balloon-sized wine glass of my psyche...and the sulfites are giving me a headache.  Ensue rant:

  1. I miss being busy.  Though everyone seems to be quite jealous of this in me, I must admit that I enjoy  being busy and thriving upon tasks.  However, if these tasks are meaningless and invented solely to keep me busy, I rebel and cannot complete them.  I've said it before, but I've quite married myself to the idea that I might be addicted to meaning and have an overdose in my life.

  2. I am quite discontent at the adjustment in lifestyle.  How I miss the bustling energy of Capitol Hill - the subconscious knowledge that SOMETHING was going on somewhere, SOMEONE was having the time of their life, and if not...were at least in existential crisis over it and hardly complacently adapted to their less than ideal jobs, etc, etc.  When you live with the young, you live with mercenaries.  When you  live with no one, you've only yourself to glean inspiration from.  I feel uninspiring to me this ordinary night in late December.

  3. I feel bored with the things I usually love...writing, photography, art, fashion, cooking, etc.

  4. I've absolutely NOTHING to wear, ever.

  5. Due to No. 2, I do not walk anymore.  I've therefore espoused a new weighty 5 lbs that I cannot seem to divorce from my nether regions.  On top of this, I need a hair cut, eye-brow attention, and mani/pedi.  These things may seem trivial to some, but they are truly integral to me feeling like me...put together, taken care of, lovely.

  6. I've gotten to thinking about my goals for 2010...the goals aside from the financial and fitness.  I've wondered if I should go back to work to find some sort of structure to my day; I've seriously pondered going back to school online; perhaps this is the year I start marketing myself and producing myself as a professional blogger/writer.  I stand at this many-pronged fork (YOU KNOW, LIKE THE ONES THEY SERVE WITH A 20-COURSE MEAL THAT YOU HAVE NO IDEA WHEN TO USE), and I feel nothing.  I feel no passion or inclination towards anything.  
In my soul, I feel big and blue.

I think the only remedy is lots and lots of dancing.
Know any hot clubs in Hobart, Wa?

It must be the Monday after Christmas.

Herein lies the question for you, tell me.  What do you do for inspiration?

~Back to the tequila,


ON TO THE NEW...An Invitation to January's Photo Assignment

December 27, 2009 Candace Morris 11 Comments

Happiest of evenings to you, fellow survivors of the yule-log cheer:

I write to you fireside this quiet eventide.  The saint and I both recline with hot tea and our feet sharing a stool, laptopping to our heart's gluttonous content.  I feel a snack inclination and I imagine we'll head into the media room to continue 30-Rocking here soon, but I wanted to share my greetings.  I truly must have the most blessed life, for my advent seasons are not very stressful (I'm gathering it's because we are very much still the children in our family and don't do a whole lot of work to pull of Christmas).  Joel and I always do our own thing on some random day, and it's full of tradition all our own.   I feel proud to have our family firmly established in these joys before we actually procreate.  

By the way, there is no procreating on the agenda for 2010, I must regret to inform all of those nosy enough to ask and all those polite enough not to.  

Ah, I digress.
Let's move on, shall we?

So, January is just around the corner, and after my post-champagne coma to come, I would like to propose  January's 12-month challenge, which is to say, I will be hosting another photo community gathering on Flickr!  So get ready.

For the entire month of January, I would like to invite you to participate with me as I take photographs and share them.  The theme will be "Daily Bread"...that which brings us it bread, beer, or bologna...I want you to take a picture of any meal or food or drink or snack with the intention of honoring that which nourishes your physical body throughout the day.  This group shall be silly and serious, meaningful and light-hearted, professional and casual.  

Please go HERE if you would like to join...

Rules for "DAILY BREAD"

  1. YOU MAKE YOUR OWN RULES (but if you need external rules (like MEeeeeE), here are a few suggestions:)
  2. Take 1 photograph per day - No need to set up photo shoots, the goal here is to get a glimpse into our everyday lives, our everyday souls, even if it's plain grilled cheese every single day.
  3. Upload it to your Flickr account.
  4. Add the photo to the group pool here.
  5. Comment on the other pictures as you see fit.
And that's pretty much it!

Also, in case you are curious, the blog community I follow
has been doing these photo gatherings for quite some time...
you can see them HERE, HERE, and HERE.




December 24, 2009 Candace Morris 2 Comments

 Hey you bumpy ol' yule logs,
Have a fine fine holiday.

I shall be sipping and tipping and putting together puzzles between naps and sacks of toys, all the while gazing at wonderfully tacky christmas decor.

I guess nothing much really changes.




December 21, 2009 Candace Morris 2 Comments

we've managed to scrape some pennies together and afford a few more branches.

Happy Christmas, buggers.



December 20, 2009 Candace Morris 5 Comments

From Clara Blake Goodrich

Four weeks ago today, my niece made me love her.

From Clara Blake Goodrich

Those damn robot-made babies are addicting.


p.s. in 8 weeks, joel's sister will have a baby.  it's like niece-explosion around these parts.
i'm just glad it's not my parts.



December 18, 2009 Candace Morris 1 Comments

  • Clove-stuck oranges
  • LifeSaver Books (esp. the buttered rum)
  • Bumbles
  • Dishes of antique glass holding M&Ms
  • Steak and Stolen at midnight
  • Mickey's "A Christmas Carol"
  • New pajamas



December 17, 2009 Candace Morris 4 Comments

  • peppermint ice cream
  • eggnog
  • crappy plastic wreaths with candles set in the middle
  • handmade red towels that adorn surfaces
  • pandora's jazzy christmas station
  • a crock pot full of cider or mulled wine, accompanied by corny mugs all around
  • ornaments found at the dollar store
  • this horrible fake garland i always put up
  • the smell of the tree all throughout the house
  • watching:
    • white christmas
    • rudolph the red-nosed reindeer (claymation)
    • christmas vacation
    • the nightmare before christmas
    • miracle on 34th street (always watched with joel's dad)
    • it's a wonderful life

to be continued...



December 16, 2009 Candace Morris 2 Comments


This year, our sense of humor is driving the sleigh.  I feel kitchy, a bit irrevrant, and festive as hell.  So festive that I might just blow off my annual Christmas Card entirely...because breaking my own rules feels so right.

Merry Friggen Christ-Birth.



December 15, 2009 Candace Morris 3 Comments

Clara, my new niece

Delaney, my favorite 9month old

My sister and my sister's dog

Mekenzie and Gavin, my bff's kids

In case you needed a cute fix today.




December 14, 2009 Candace Morris 6 Comments

I spent yesterday catching up on my life and one way I did that was reading all the final posts that came in from November's Month of Mail!  It was soo vastly satisfying to hold the entire month's mail in my hands and fondle it greedily.  It was wonderful to see people responding with such appreciation for not only the mail, but also for the idea itself. I cannot say enough about what a wonderful month it was. 

If mail isn't enough magic to bask in (can one bask in magic?), the heavens opened up and poured down its glorious white love upon my country home.

And snow reminds me...
(Warning: long-winded diatribe to follow)

I don't think we have enough magic in our lives as adults.  I've encounterd countless people who feel that getting into Christmas (ie, buying a tree!!!) is unecessary if there are no children around to enjoy it.  I know everyone loves watching children's faces as they marvel at the magic of lights and mangers of Jesus, but I can't help but feel a small loss when adults cannot register a similar magic.  Joelio and I become children around this time of year, putting on music all the time, opening squares in advent calendars, ooohing and aaahing over our tacky Christmas decorations.  We have no small children in this household, but we have plenty of magic.

Fall of 2008 brought with it a deep depression, and one of the major symptoms of this depression was the loss of magic in life.  Nothing interested me...trees were just trees, not living souls.  Stars were just burning things in the sky, not a map of ancient perspectives.  Christmas was obligation and debt, not candlelight and conversation.  For whatever reason, the magic has returned and I couldn't feel more grateful for it.

This season, I truly hope the advent brings you magic, and if not, at least HOPE for magic to come.   I hope this magic is for YOU and not just the little souls in your life...




December 13, 2009 Candace Morris 3 Comments

Well, I've returned to snowy  Maple Valley after a 3 week hiatus wherein I gallivanted all along the West Coast.  After spending two glorious weeks with my niece Clara (and her parents, they're pretty great too, I guess), the saint flew down to join me in driving our new car back to Seattle from San Diego.   We expected horrible snow showers and icy conditions, but the weather couldn't have been better.  A peaceful trip indeed.

Thankfully we have friends and family all along the way so we didn't have to make the 23-hour drive in one straight shot.  We had such enjoyable times visiting people; I'm counting right now and we visited 7 homes and 30 people (12 of them kids) 6 dogs, and 4 cats.

So you can imagine that this introverted lady is soaking up the quiet familiarity of her home like the solitude-sponge she is.

After the 10-hour stint from Redding to Seattle yesterday, I arrived home sleepy and thankful.  I rested in the hottest of scalding baths, lighted a candle, and ate a tortilla with butter (I often eat while in the tub, it's so luxurious!).  I noticed that I was indeed spent in word count and thought-process, full well knowing that when required to extrovert myself, the fatigue manifests itself both in cerebral function and physical fatigue.  It feels like I've just ran a 10-mile race.

Now I've returned and am eager to catch up with those here in my home; also knowing that I will need some time to recapture my social stamina and here's the great part about all of this that hit me while I was in the bath...

I was hit with my limits and let down into rest, knowing that I could not call or see a single soul for a few days and two good feelings took over where before those feelings would have been self-deprecating and full of toxic bile.  I used to berate myself for my own limits, but in the last few years of care and growth, I noticed that I liked myself not only in spite of these frustrating limitations, but even because of them.  No one can be Candace like I can.  The other wonderful feeling is receiving words from friends that remind me to take my time settling in, to call only when I am ready, to reemerge on my own time.  So, I shall. 

And the magic keeps coming in the form of flurrying snow falling upon my country home.  What perfect timing.

Perhaps tonight I shall decorate the house with my Christmas baubles...



December 04, 2009 Candace Morris 2 Comments

To celebrate the simple, ordinary, every-day beauty of the sunset, my sister and I took the baby to walk around the lake.

It was simple.




December 02, 2009 Candace Morris 5 Comments

Well, in the 12-month challenge, November was BY FAR my favorite month - perhaps because people joined me in it.  And yet again, I am humbly reminded that I am not an island; community is an integral part to inspiration and self-care.   It was cool not only to form new friendships, but to both give and receive written mail.  All of the challenges represented in the 12-month challenge are selected because I want to increase these things in my daily I do hope that I'll be able to continue writing mail two or three times per week.

It's fun to be in a house where my mail has been's like MAGIC!

So far, the months have gone a little something like this:

  • August: Stick to a budget
  • September: Claim the space for my new country home
  • October: 25 photographs per day
  • November: The month of mail - write a piece of mail each day.

So now the question remains, what to do with December?  We are already TWO WHOLE days into it, and I think perhaps this month will continue the writing theme.  Last December, I hosted a photography collaboration on Flickr called A Shot in the Dark: December was so fun.  I miss those collaborations, and in the name of that, might do one in January.

So December, you busy little month, about this.  Every day for December I shall commit to journaling.  Journaling is something I do regularly, though not regularly enough for my taste, and since most of what I read are other artists' journals, I am inspired to do the same.  Shall you join me?

I did not bring my journal on my trip, and I won't return to it until December 11, so I think I might just have to type it...bah humbug.  I like pens and scratchy sounds on paper.

Maybe my saint will bring it with him when he joins me this weekend for our trek home.

Or maybe this month should be a commitment to finish my now WAY TOO LONG read of The Brothers Karamazov.  I am losing quite a bit of continuity prolonging the read over so many months.  Russians do not like to be put on hold like this, and I can feel myself loosing grip on Fyodor's message.  Perhaps I shall drink vodka, eat caviar, and read every night?  Hmmm.

As you can see, I am still a bit undecided.  Perhaps then December should be the month of indecision.  That should be fun.

Wishing you lots of hot coffee and chocolate cupcakes, trust me, it makes a grand breakfast,