spring homemaking

March 29, 2011 Candace Morris 4 Comments

For the most part, I've adjusted rather well to full-time work with relatively little homesickness for my homemaking days.  But alas, that was winter.

And now it's spring.
Le Spring

And I am still happy with full-time work.  However, just in this last week, I've been hit hard with a full-blown nostalgia for my house...spending all day in it, cleaning it, arranging it, cooking in it, photographing it, writing in it, reading in it.  Since spring usually brings with its blooms a wake of "WAKE UP" and "LET'S MAKE SOMETHING!" it's been hard to channel that energy while not at home.  

I'm sure I'll find a way, but in the meantime, I must say:

Spring 2011
Damn. It's gorgeous out.


And there is so much goodness at my fingertips.

I am learning to close doors
so I can fly with grace and beauty through the new windows
thrown agape
that lead to the wide open spaces.


Baby Shower for Devon

March 23, 2011 Candace Morris 4 Comments

Good Afternoon!  I am working from home today and basking in sunlight in my new studio (which is really not at all finished save this desk and the paint on the walls).  It's so gorgeous out!


As promised, I wanted to share a few shots of Devon's shower I hosted this weekend.  I'm noticing that it's really hard to host AND take pictures, so I'm thankful to have any...though I do wish there were more.  There certainly were moments to capture.  Oh well!

Some of the food...click on the link for captions.

There has been a goodly amount of sun here this last week and change, but I don't want to jinx Seattle by calling it "Spring."  But I was able to leave the house today without a pashimina for the first time in ages.

I'm feeling just as light as air.
And it feels divine.


walking dates

March 22, 2011 Candace Morris 5 Comments

Last night, after my lover came home from work and I bombarded him with a beer and a hug, and after we ate tomato soup and cheddar/rosemary biscuits, and after bundling up in heavy coat and donning our hats - we went for a walk to celebrate the most beautiful misty rain tickling the cherry blossoms.

On the subject of these lovely blooms, I swear they came out of nowhere!  One day last week, I was riding the bus to work and saw the faintest pink on a far-away tree and I though to myself, "Surely, no! It's too cold!"  But as I looked around more and more, I realized they are indeed deciding it is time to begin their reproductive cycle.  Audacious buggers.

So we took a lovely walk.  We sauntered around in the dusk with two rouge kitties in tow.  We pilfered blossoms of cherries, jasmine, and Daphne to inhale deeply (oh Daphne, you make me swoon.  Have you ever smelled Daphne?!!).  We swigged from the wine bottle Joel hid in his English Great Coat.  We walked toward the lake, ducking under corkscrew willows and stepping gingerly over spasmodic daffodils.  We admired old architecture and ancient stairs made of stone.

light doesn't always come from sunshine
art deco garage door
my lover contemplating homes
grape vines crawling up a telephone pole
cherry blossoms and branches
spring evening 2011
daphne and cherry blossoms

Evening TV is never this good for the soul,


how do you take your tea?

March 21, 2011 Candace Morris 4 Comments

In the spirit of all things Anglo, I invite you to a little tea-time chat.  I am just sitting down to my afternoon cup of tea and have a few simple things to report.  I've been favoriting all kinds of spiced teas lately, Green Ginger or heavily-spiced Chai have been vying for the top.  Today, it's Chai with milk and sugar (they don't have honey at my workplace!).  How do you take your tea?  One lump or two?  Now, if I were a proper Brit, I'd have some sort of biscuit to offer you...but a cyber-biscuit sounds all kinds of wrong.


Heat up your water.
Go ahead.

I'll wait.

afternoon chai

tea time

Now that you're all settled in...
Oh what a weekend!  There was a grand mix of amazing cuisine, easy friendships, a flurry of spring cleaning, assembling food for the baby shower I hosted, drinking (ugh. too much), stimulating conversations, early-to-bed, book-finishing, naps, movie-watching, make-out sessions in the doorway, grocery shopping, meal-planning, baby-kissing.  

Frankly, I do indeed prefer life in general to be less full.  Weekends are such a tricky time of trying to connect with your family, getting enough lazy-time, working around the house, and catching up on sleep.  It's a perfect conundrum and I admit that it stumps me most of the time.  

How about you?  What was your weekend like?

Baby Chioggia and Golden Beet Gratin, Niçoise Olives,  Roquefort Mousse

One of the highlights in the cuisine department was going to Portage on Queen Anne Hill with our good friends, Jeremy and Jenae.  This gem above was one of our salads, the Baby Chioggia and Golden Beet Gratin, Niçoise Olives,  Roquefort Mousse.  I could have eaten quite a few of these.

friday night snacks

Afterward, staring at the moon while eating pistachios and froyo wasn't bad either.

the lovely mess of spring
remnants of tiramisu

The lovely mess of friends, sigh. I truly do find it beautiful.
(more pictures of the baby shower to come)

sunday's on the homestead

Playing and resting at Mom's house on Sunday.  A truly delightful day despite a rather dampening bout of depression that I woke to.


It is a life-long struggle for me, but not so much the depression itself.  It is more the ability to be kind to myself in light of its rather shadowy bits.  I preach loud about self-care, but dears - I fight every damn day to keep the good words and thoughts at the ready and to push back on the deluge of lies threatening my mind.  I bruise like hell most of the time, and sometimes I flat-out lose. But the battle only lasts so long, and that was yesterday. 

I'm happy to report that today is looking squeaky clean with its bright citrus perspective.

The truth is, depression comes to the forefront of my soul for a reason - at least for me.  I am  missing my sister and niece something fierce and immersed in all kinds of confusing thoughts, changes, and disappointments. I'm not eating well, not exercising, not writing, not snapping enough photos. All of those reasons aside, let's not forget the chemical imbalance always teetering in my brain chemistry.  So what if I just had to sit on my bed in a total conoundrum about what to wear (not for any special occasion, mind you) for almost an hour.   So what if the only self-care I can really muster is several hot baths in one day or lying still and brooding over the dying pear tree in the back-yard?

the rest of the weekend was spent...

Exactly how I felt at the end of all of it.
Satisfied and so sleeeeepy.

The lovely husband has to work late all week, so this means I get the house to myself.  To this introvert, an quiet space sounds better than a spa or a lifetime supply of gin and tonics.
(Whoa, come now, let's not over-exaggerate dears.)

That tea was reviving
(AND I didn't even burn my tongue!)

All in all, a proper respite.
Until next time.


friday's brain dump

March 18, 2011 Candace Morris 2 Comments

Welcome to my brain.
Today, I'm thinking of:

grapfruit, avocado, kalamata olives, and olive oil
grapefruit, avocado, kalamata olives, and olive oil

pancetta-wrapped dates and a sazerac
Pancetta-wrapped dates

Dinner last night with my love.  Sigh.
That was delicious.

This weekend I'm throwing a baby shower for my lovely Devon and her baby boy arriving in June.  Can't wait to make wee sandwiches and individual tiramisu, oogle miniature man clothes - plus drinking champagne at 1pm is, quite frankly, something I live for.

I'm hoping my Joel takes me to see the new "Jane Eyre" which just released in Seattle today.  Did you know there are 27 adaptations of the novel?  I liked Charlotte Gainsbourg as Jane, but the movie itself was very meh.

I have been looking ahead to this summer, dreaming about swimming, booking camping trips, coordinating a few road trips, and other such delightful holidays.  

I'm daydreaming about my room...it's freshly painted and only needs 1 more coat and my desk in it for me to spread my wings, untuck my thoughts, and lie on the floor of my soul like a snow-angel.  I've got my March poem popping about in my head and it needs to get out - but it needs its very own room.  I'm also working on some photography projects that I'd love to narrow my focus upon.  I'm backed up in letters and other such correspondence since my desk hasn't been unpacked since the move in October.  Cannot wait for this to happen.  My desk is my grand-mother's sewing table, and I'm just in love with it.

I'm pages away from finishing "The Sun Also Rises."  I have enjoyed it immensely and am quite sad to be finished with it already.  Hemingway's stark, terse, economical sentences remind me VERY much of Camus - also one of my favorite authors.  Must look into their correlation.

I'm kicking myself in the wallet for a tax issue I forgot to employ earlier this year.  We owe a rather annoyingly large sum of money to Uncle Sam, and it just hurts.

Sunday is supposed to be gorgeous in Seattle.
I plan to spend it sleeping and eating my mother-in-law's food.



purple - it's what's for dinner

March 17, 2011 Candace Morris 3 Comments


Last night, as I chopped up all the necessaries for tacos, I was struck anew by the gorgeous depth of purple in the cabbage.

I feel extremely thankful that we get to eat food saturated in color.

I can feel it radiating through my eyes today.

Cheers Chickens,


domestic confessions: the bedroom edition

March 14, 2011 Candace Morris 2 Comments

domestic confessions: bedroom edition

May my domestic neglect lighten your load this Monday and help you forgive yourself for your imperfect house.

i realize that title sounds all kinds of wrong for a monday morning.



March 10, 2011 Candace Morris 3 Comments

This last weekend, I was able to get away for a few days and take in the much-needed company of my college best friend and her wee babes.  Joel and I are nursing an empty nest as my sister has moved out, and we are both really missing she and Clara.  There is an overwhelming amount of processing and release that has been left in the wake of this very quiet house, and we are honoring it with all its pain and pleasure.  However, travel is a wonderful distraction and mind-clearer.  It is these things I was pursuing....and while rest and relationship were nurtured, Emerson's thoughts on travel still ring true:

"At home I dream that at Naples, at Rome, I can be intoxicated with beauty, and lose my sadness.  I pack my trunk, embrace my friends, embark on the sea, and at last wake up in Naples,a nd there beside me is the stern fact, the sad self, unrelenting, identical, that I fled from...My giant goes with me wherever I go."

In the end, the trip was wonderful, but to the hope of losing oneself , I doubt I shall ever aspire.

Now if we're talking about sun - oh yes.  My feet basked in warm cement and spring-like breezes.

And if we are talking about beautiful children and trips to In-N-Out, then YES!

And if we are talking about a lot of play, laughter, and fun -

And we are definitely mentioning the good drinks and food.
Fuel for the body and soul.

Or if we are talking about sibling love, plenty of that.

To the beauty of true friends
(and their inspiring offspring),
I say