31 May 2012

T H E   C O T T A G E


Fresh sage from the garden.

Heather's little collection of teapots. 

Scotia - what a sweet girl! Her looks and demeanor remind me so much of Macy. Makes me happy-sad.

Ahhh.. Sage tea.

You guys, I am LOVING where I'm at so much right now! We completely hit the jackpot when we found Heather and Paul (via helpx). Every day we are busy working in the garden, cooking, baking and learning all sorts of new things - and every moment is full of stories, laughter and fun. Everything about them and their home feels so familiar and comfortable. I feel so lucky to be here.

Whenever I find a moment to write, I know that I just keep promising more stories and photos, yet I haven't actually followed through with too many of those lately. So, here's one more promise to add to the others. I will be updating soon with much more - really! Until then, I have to catch up on my sleep. We have a busy day at the farmer's market tomorrow!

27 May 2012


Totokaelo just reopened at a new location in Seattle on Capitol Hill. When I saw the photos on Facebook I had to drop everything just to share them with you; it looks so beautiful and I am so excited to see it when I return home. It's so inspiring!

On the traveling front I have much to share. We just relocated to a new place in Ireland. The home we were at all of last week wasn't really jiving with us, unfortunately. Now I'll have the time and freedom to explain everything. So, you can expect some interesting stories to come.

Photos by Charlie Schuck

24 May 2012

A    D A Y    I N    A M S T E R D A M

Hello everyone! Just a quick note to let you know where I am (for those of you who want to know). Ashley and I are currently in Ireland, we arrived here last Saturday. Unfortunately I can't say much about it now, so here is what I wrote a couple of weeks ago while in Liverpool on our day in Amsterdam. I hope to be updating more regularly again soon and sharing stories of the past few weeks.

Until then...!


Amsterdam! What a cool city. I loved the buildings, the adorable men, women and children alike on their bicycles. I love the tram! I prefer it so much more to an underground train where you can't see a thing and all you want to do is take a snooze. We took a morning stroll around Vondelpark. I enjoyed a pancake with strawberries and whipped cream - something I haven't had in ages, it seems. We visited the Anne Frank House which was very sad and sobering, but interesting and important to see. We took a peek inside of a nice shop that we stumbled upon, Fair + Fair. I had to keep my hands far away from my wallet or else I could have purchased enough to redecorate my entire future dream home.

We roamed the streets and admired the canals. I think my favorite thing was meandering around the Jordaan neighborhood, peering into everyone's windows. The homes are beautiful and decorated so perfectly. Many times I was tempted to point my camera inside but more often than not, the lucky owner was sitting on their couch reading the paper, or at the table sipping tea. I'm sure they wouldn't have appreciated my intruding on their privacy, but in retrospect I wish I had been a little bolder and just gone for it anyway! That is how you get the best photos, after all.

I am not thrilled with my photos from Amsterdam, really. This is actually why it's taken me a while to get around to posting this. Every time I looked through the pictures I got bored and/or irritated. Considering we only had one day there, I suppose I didn't get much of a chance to really capture the city in a way I would have liked to. Even still, I wish I had taken more and been more thoughtful about the ones I did take. To be honest I feel that when I started this journey, I did such a better job of documenting all that I was seeing. I always had my camera out and was snapping away at it constantly. Now I'm getting lazy and I am not happy with myself or the results. There's still time to rectify this, though - so I suppose it's good I'm noticing it now!

18 May 2012

15 May 2012

S W E E T   S A R C O

Much of our time in Albacete was spent adoring Sarco. Elena named him Sarcozy because of his resemblance to the former French president. What a pup! 


To be honest I don't feel much like doing this right now - sometimes writing takes more energy than I can muster. However, if I don't do it now who knows when I will? I've been in Liverpool for a week now - most of my time has consisted of helping my friend renovate his family's huge house from the late 1860s. My contributions have been small (speckling, sanding, painting) compared to the tasks that he and his brother are carrying out on a daily basis - but still, I'm tired!

There's not a whole lot to tell about our stay in Albacete; I was pretty sick and stayed in bed nearly the whole time we were there. It was hard to be ill when there was so much more I would have liked to be doing, but there couldn't have been a better place to be. Elena and María's mom, Juani, took care of me as though I were her own daughter. I felt so comforted by that, considering how far away my own mother is (no matter how old I get, I'll always long for her when I'm not well).

I did get to enjoy a couple of days with the girls before I was at my worst. The night we arrived, a big group of us went to their friend's restaurant which was delicious and without a doubt the best food we had in Spain. The restaurant itself was so charming and so Spanish. I couldn't put my camera - or my fork down!

I cannot recall what this all was, but what I do remember were teeny tiny pancakes with some sort of fried cheese on top, and in the center of the plate is lavender jam. 

These were so good! Crunchy and cheesy on the outside, doughy and moist on the inside.

 What a doll! Missing you, sweet friend.

 I am so fortunate and so grateful to have these girls in my life. Thank goodness for the internet. ;)