Monday, September 10, 2012


This past weekend I went on a (rather) breezy long run to train for a marathon. For awhile it was lonely and dark, but as soon as the sun started coming up, it was beautiful.

This is why I love running in New Mexico more than anywhere else.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

tri harder.

In high school, I finished a triathlon so I could cross it off my bucket list. For the next six years, through high school and college I focused on competitive running and my triathlon past fell by the wayside. However, after an injury last December, I returned to my roots, so to speak, and began biking and swimming a little more, all in combination with running. I forgot how much fun I used to have biking (swimming, less so...), and how good it felt to ride over the rolling hills on a sunny day. More than anything, I love how balanced I feel when doing these three sports together. Thus, I decided to sign up for a triathlon just to see how it went. Thankfully, I did not die and I had an absolute blast and I even walked away with the award for first place in my age group.

While there were some slipups (a mismarked bike course, and me forgetting you can't dive into the pool - I did an awkward side flop instead), but it was wonderful, and I plan on doing one in the spring.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

pre-workout snack conundrums.

One of the awful things about Celiac's and other digestive issues is that you never know when you might eat something to set your stomach off. This is one of the reasons I always have to be careful of what I eat before running or cycling, especially if I do it later in the day when I'm usually drained and I need some comida for energy. I've learned many things: some bad (ranch and I will never be friends) and some good (peanut butter was better). However, the best thing I have found is definitely almonds. Perfect amount of carbs for energy and easy to digest. And the other really great thing is that they travel really well, so you can even bring some along for a mid-run snack. I know this post isn't super substantial, but it's something that has served me well, and I hope this advice does the same for you.

Friday, August 31, 2012

bad blogger.

So I have been MIA for the last few weeks. I wish I had a good excuse, but I just got too caught up in school and two jobs starting. Admittedly, even that is a pretty bad excuse. Bad blogging Molly. Hopefully, September will be a little less crazy, so that I have time to do the things that I set out to do, like sleep and blog. Anyway, I actually have lots of great stuff to write about, like: more on Oaxaca, a triathlon I did, school stuff, and marathon training. So this is me, saying I am back from my semi-accidental blogging break with (hopefully) lots of fun stuff. In the meantime, here is a picture of Coco and I being cute.

Friday, August 10, 2012

salt and pepper.

I am never one to shy away from putting spices on anything, be it a drink or dinner entree, but lately I have come to realize the beauty of the most basic spices when it comes to cooking certain things: salt and pepper. While cayenne, cumin, and cinnamon will not be leaving my spice cabinet (or my diet) anytime soon, this week I had a simple, brilliant dish seasoned with nothing more than a little salt and pepper.

My mom made the most amazing Norweigan freshwater salmon, grilled, seasoned with nothing more than salt and pepper. Not only was it some of the best salmon I have ever had, it was some of the best fish I have ever had, which is quite a bit coming from a girl who lived in Maine for four years and this was cooked in New Mexico. So whether it was my mom's fantastic grilling abilities, or the beautifully perfect seasoning of salt and pepper, I just had to share my profound realization of how great these two kitchen staples can really be.

Saturday, August 4, 2012

oaxaca, part 1.

As I wrote before, I recently visited Oaxaca for a pair of weeks and had some truly amazing experiences. The art and the food are both incredible, but the people are what made Oaxaca so special. While I cannot transport the true Oaxaca spirit to you, these pictures may give you a good idea of why I loved it so much, although they cannot do it justice.

Mapuche weaving at the Museo Textil de Oaxaca. 

View from Calle Reforma. 

Maguey cactus.

Monte Albán. 

Thursday, August 2, 2012

on frida.

First off, let me apologize for the absence. Back-to-back trips to Oaxaca and Atlanta left little time to catch up on writing. However, I now have plenty of new adventures of all kinds to transcribe!

One of the first days I was in Mexico happened to be the 105th birthday of Mexican artist Frida Kahlo. As someone who was in Mexico to study art, and who loves the work of Frida, this was too perfect. July 6, the night of Frida's birthday, I happened to eat dinner at a restaurant that had several examples of Frida-inspired art as well as a Frida impersonator. While I didn't get a chance to take any pictures, I can assure you, it was really great.

Frida as a Tehuantepec Woman

While in Oaxaca, I saw a beautiful necklace that Frida's husband, Diego Rivera, gave to her, as well as many references to her work throughout the city. One of the neatest things I saw was a girl dressed in the istmo style, with the headdress, like the painting above. Seeing the "living art" had to be one of my favorite things in Oaxaca. Of course, when I got back, I found a reference to Frida on Man Repeller regarding her red lipstick and wild hair. So, I took this as some kind of artistic-divine inspiration and rocked the red lipstick and messy hair for a day. I will probably do this again soon, all while trying to avoid that oh-so-trademark unibrow, which is hopefully not a trademark of my own. Which is also why I will be getting my eyebrows threaded very soon.

Here's to you, Frida. Lipstick, eyebrow(s), and all.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

recipes: dijon-cayenne salmon.

As I have written about before, I love sushi, and fish in general. Whenever I go back to the east coast, I always make sure to eat plenty of fresh fish to tide me over during months in the dry desert where nary a body of water and therefore, delicious fish, is to be found. However, one of the staple fish you can easily find in New Mexico just never appealed to me: salmon. You can find it in almost any restaurant, and it's often local, fresh caught, and good to quite a few people. I don't know whether it was the taste, smell or a combination of the two, but I just never really liked salmon. That is, until I realized when prepared correctly, how good it can be. I recently tried salmon at Jennifer James 101, a local favorite of mine, and I was blown away and decided that maybe salmon wasn't all that bad. However, getting it to taste as good at home as it did eating out could proved to be a challenge - until I created this recipe. The flavors are just spicy enough to add something extra to the salmon, but not overpowering, and cooking in the oven makes sure the salmon doesn't get too soggy or overcooked. Needless to say, this salmon is a new favorite in my kitchen repertoire.

Dijon-Cayenne Salmon
makes 1 serving

1 salmon filet (about 2" x 5")
2 tablespoons of good dijon mustard
1 teaspoon of cayenne
pinch of kosher salt
cracked black pepper


1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. While oven warms, prepare salmon on small baking sheet with kosher salt and cracked black pepper.
2. Right before putting the salmon in the oven, cover the top and sides with the dijon mustard and sprinkle cayenne over the top.
3. Cook for 15 minutes at 400 degrees, or until fish flakes with a fork.

Monday, July 16, 2012

why to keep a journal when you travel.

Today is my last full day in Oaxaca, and I thought it only appropriate to clarify why my updates have been rather absent. When I was twelve and thirteen, I would keep a diary religiously. Like write down everything - because to preteen me, everything really was that important. However, as the writing and reading for school increased, then really increased in college, I fell out of the habit. It's still not something I do regularly, unless profound inspiration strikes. However, when I travel I much prefer the portability and accessibility of a bound bunch of paper to anything digital. Around Oaxaca I can whip out my journal whenever the fancy strikes, whether I want to write down something funny or remember the name of an artist. Much more convenient than any iDevice. While I will not be keeping up the aforementioned travel journal when I go back home, it is a perfect way to remember everything I loved and saw in this beautiful city.

Friday, July 6, 2012

the nopal is delicious and the people are lovely.

This will be a rather short entry, seeing how difficult it can be to blog on an iPhone, but Oaxaca is really, truly wonderful. It is so much more than I was expecting, and the people living here are some of the nicest I have ever met. While the people make Oaxaca, the food and the fashion are not too shabby either. Local tradition inspires everything, and brings an unbridled joy to the crafts and foodways here. While I can't add images here from my phone, look on my instagram and twitter for pictures of some great food and beautiful Oaxacan dancers.

Monday, July 2, 2012

when you can't eat abroad.

After a long week of stomach bugs and naps, I'm headed off to Oaxaca in the morning. I'm so excited to go speak Spanish, see lots of art, and explore a new place. Unfortunately, my tastebuds will not be able to do that much exploring. I'm already on thin ice with what I can eat, and sadly, lingering stomach bugs and unknown cuisine do not mix well. As I've said before, I love trying out new fare. However, this can be difficult abroad when there is not a ton that you think you will be able to tolerate.  I'm all for trying out new foods abroad - it is one of my favorite things - but you do need to keep an eye out on your health, especially when you're not in familiar surroundings. Because this is not the first time this has happened to me, I have a few tips for when you may find yourself in this plight:

1. Bring granola bars and dried fruit from home. They're easy to carry and make a good breakfast or lunch when there is not necessarily anything around you can eat.

2. Utilize the local market. Bread, jams, and fruits (with peels!) can make an easy and cheap dinner.

3. Follow the line. If people are lining up somewhere, it's probably for a good reason. It if looks good and suits your fancy, join them! Just be sure to get meat and vegetables very well done.

That being said, don't be scared from trying out the local delicacies - you may find a new favorite. Just remember to keep a watch on your body, drink lots of water, and be prepared for any unwelcome bugs or sicknesses. But most of all, when abroad or just traveling across state lines: explore and learn something in the culinary realm! You may find your new signature dish...

what happens in mexico.

In new news, I'm leaving for Mexico for a work trip in the morning. My posts may be slightly intermittent over the next few weeks, but I will try to send along some news, pictures, and sartorial-influenced posts from south of the border. Un beso!

Tuesday, June 26, 2012


Disclaimer: this post is not about the usual food, fun, fashion, travel which I usually write. Rather, it is a note that the universe gave me and I am passing it onto you, because it is often a message I find myself overlooking.

Putting it simply, this past week was not my best. After several days of battling my stomach I finally ending up fainting during my dog's vet appointment, which was quickly followed with a trip to the ER, where I was admitted for dehydration and exhaustion. I'd like to think that this gives me celebrity status, since that's what the young actresses are often admitted for quite often. However, this was not due to binge-drinking but a solid four days of being unable to keep down much food. While I am not sure what caused this stomach flare episode, one thing it did teach me was that even during summer, I do not just relax and let it go. I was so stressed about all the things I was unable to get done while I was bedridden, but in the end that was really just negative feedback for my digestive issues. What it took to get me this reminder to chill out was a surprise visitor of the best kind from across the country.

On Friday afternoon I was lying in my bed, contemplating all the levels of misery in my life at that exact moment, when the one person who I desperately needed to see walked through my door holding my chihuahua. My boyfriend coming to see me from his job in Atlanta had to be one of the absolute sweetest things anyone has ever done for me. At soon as he gave me a hug and said hi, I knew I was getting better because I felt like I could finally stop worrying about all the external things, because someone was there to help take care of them for me.

Suddenly, all the things I should have been doing: meeting with professors and reading books for my degree became less important or certainly less urgent. Everything could wait, at least until I was better and not as sick. My boyfriend visiting put the important things into perspective, and I suddenly felt myself getting better. I sometimes let the urgent crowd out the important, but this past week put it all into perspective. It took the sweetest boyfriend and some really good food to remind me that things will wait, and that when sometimes you just need to relax until you feel better - the world will wait.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

ten things i love about summer.

I originally intended to write some sort of summer bucket list for the official start of the season, but I realized that summer is not about trying to accomplish everything on a to-do list because that takes the fun out of summer and makes it into more work than it should be. Rather, I think that summer should be about doing the things you love with people you love. So, here is a list of ten things I love about summer, in no particular order.

1. Häagen-Dazs Raspberry Sorbet

2. Ridiculously bright colors, in everything from shirts to drinks to nail polish.

3. Early morning long runs. You get to enjoy a little sun minus the searing heat and you feel so good when you're done.

4. Trying out new white wines in the early evening. This moscatel seco from Spain is my new favorite.

5. Fun trips to places like this and this.

6. An excuse to wear holey, ripped-up denim cutoffs that are the most comfortable thing in your closet.

7. Reading. A ton. Right now I'm on Lives Like Loaded Guns, about the family turmoil surrounding Emily Dickinson.

8. Really bad music to drive to with the windows down as you sing loudly.

9. Air conditioning. I would die in the NM heat without it.

10. Watching New Mexico sunsets with my wonderful boyfriend. You can argue all you want, I think they're the most beautiful in the world.

See what I mean?
Now, what are some of your favorite things to do in the summer? I'm always looking to try out something new!

Sunday, June 17, 2012

flying light.

When I'm traveling, I'm usually tight on time, space, and money (hence no checked bags if there is a fee). Trying to stuff everything into a carryon leaves very little space, and once I am there, I don't feel like messing around with outfits and accessories to find something that looks both professional and fashionable. As I've settled into partially grown-up life, the need to look more professional, especially on work trips, is essential, and I've found that jewelry and other accessories are a great way to make everything look more professional and pulled together. That being said, I find it much easier to have a few selected pieces on hand that coordinate with each other and most of my outfits. This past week in Indianapolis, I took along just a few bracelets that could be mix-and-matched with each other and my outfits.

top to bottom: sculpted white bracelet from my mother, large faux pearls from Urban Outfitters (old),
thin gold bangle from Claire's (old), bracelet my uncle made for me, Henri Bendel cuff (current).
Just these few bracelets made it much easier waking up at six am when I was practically a zombie and getting ready to go. Coordinating this with simple earrings and a necklace or two was very simple and made looking professional and put together an afterthought so I could focus on what I was there for -work (and a little shopping).

Saturday, June 16, 2012


This past week I have been crazy, not sleeping busy because of work - that is nationals for debate, held in Indianapolis this year. While a little stressful at times, it is such a reward to not only work with, but see the success of such talented students. That being said, we had some time for fun and exploring the "Racing Capital of the World" (according to the sign coming into the city). While we did not see any real racecars, we did find some miniature ones, along with a huge van, and some really breathtaking art. 

Diamond Hotwheels car at the Indianapolis Children's Museum.

Glass ceiling by Chihuly at the Children's Museum. 

Tower of Fireworks, also by Chihuly, at the Museum. 
My new van which I've been driving around Indy. 

Saturday, June 9, 2012

gluten-free is me, too.

One of the most annoying things about having Celiac's disease is finding a recipe that looks delicious only to realize it is chock-full of wheat or something else my body hates. You can adapt, but things that aren't designed to be made with gluten-free ingredients are often missing something in the taste department. So you can guess my happiness when I ran across Feed Me Phoebe, a new blog from one of the founders of another one of my favorite cooking blogs, Big Girls Small Kitchen. One of her regular columns on the site is called "Gluten-Free is Me." On it she features recipes that are made to be cooked with gluten-free ingredients. Since this is just a new discovery, I have yet to try anything out, but I'm looking forward to making some, especially the black bean arepas, which are one of my favorite Latin American foods. Please share any new recipes in the comments, especially the gluten-free variety!

Thursday, June 7, 2012

diy: glittery graduation.

With graduations left and right this time of year, cards are a necessity for all of the graduates, from high school, college, or any other kind of school really. As I've said before, I'm also not a big fan of store-bought cards with boilerplate messages that have no kind of personality. However, making cards en masse can be time-consuming and a bit of a pain. My easy solution here to streamline the process is to make the same style of card with slight variations. For example, a few weeks ago when several of my high-schoolers graduated I bought several different shades of cardstock and broke out my gold glitter to make a bevy of sparkly cards.

Glittery graduation cards galore.

I simply wrote a message on the front of each of the cards (ie. hooray, felicidades, congrats, etc.) and wrote the name of every recipient in a glue pen and covered it in glitter. With a personalized message inside, I think it was a great sendoff for my graduates.


This past Memorial Day I flew out to Atlanta to see my boyfriend where he is working for the summer.While it was wonderful to be back on the East Coast I did not miss the humidity. Nevertheless, Atlanta has a million fun things to do, about five of which we have done so far, and I will have to finish the rest when I visit again in July.

AMAZING burger (well the meat part at least) at Holeman and Finch in Buckhead 
A Braves game at Turner Field

It's hot on the subway
Food, fun, baseball, and shopping - all great in Hotlanta. Such a fun city and I can't wait to head back. Visiting Atlanta was part of something about myself I have discovered this year. One of my favorite new pastimes is visiting America, or all the little places you don't normally think of vacationing. I've been lucky enough to do that this year by working with my debaters and taking them to out-of-state tournaments. I may not be one to dole out great advice, but if you are low on funds and want to take a vacation, visit somewhere in the US you have never been before. It may just end up being your new favorite city...

Friday, May 25, 2012

recipes: fried eggs galore.

I happen to be kind of a lazy chef when I'm cooking for just myself. I also happen to love fried eggs, particularly when cooked in olive oil. Luckily for me, these two phenomena go hand-in-hand. This past weekend, alone at my parents' house while they were bringing my brother home from college, I had fried eggs for almost every meal. This gave me an opportunity to experiment with all of the different ways to eat aforementioned olive oil fried eggs:

1. Fried egg on bagel with salsa, spinach, and arugula.
2. Fried egg and adzuki bean burger on bagel with dijon mustard, spinach, and arugula.
3. Fried egg over brown rice with marinara, spinach, and cracked black pepper.
4. Fried egg on English muffin with avocado, tomato, and cilantro.

Fried egg on an English muffin with cilantro, avocado, and tomato

Version 3 was by far my favorite, although they all turned out quite good, considering I was pretty much winging it in the kitchen and throwing together truly random ingredients. It really was such a fun way to spend the weekend trying to figure out all of the ways to eat a fried egg, although I went for a couple of days sans eggs after the weekend was over...

Happy Memorial Day weekend! May it be filled with barbecues, friends, and maybe some fried eggs!

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

diy: popping over with love card.

So I made this card for my boyfriend awhile ago (ahem...Valentine's day), but thought it was too adorable not to share. It was simple enough to make - just running to the craft shop for the right colors of paper and  cutting them so that I could glue them together to get the popcorn shape. I do have some tips that I have learned after making many cards that make your life a lot easier, for any of you that want to make cards.

1. Make a practice card on printer paper if you're making a card for the first time - it will let you practice and give you something to trace with. 

2. Pencil is your friend! It helps you avoid spelling errors and let's you decide what "font" to use, so to speak. 

3. Buy multiples of the same shade/pattern of paper. That way if you screw up, you have backup, and if not, you just have an excuse to make more cards.

Happy card-making!

Saturday, May 19, 2012

warrior dash.

A few weeks ago, I ran a great race with my mom called the Warrior Dash, which benefits St. Jude. Needless to say, I haven't done any race like this before. It was just a 5k, but a bit slower than most I run because there are thirteen obstacles over the race course, including a mud pit and climbing over cargo nets. While it was definitely the hardest 5k I've ever done, it was also the most fun, especially with my mom.

My mom and I, pre-race. 

I'm pretty sure this is the coolest I will ever look. 

Friday, May 18, 2012

recipes: marbled buttercream brownies.

Although gluten-free baking is now the norm for me, I still haven't mastered some of the notoriously finicky gluten-free recipes - brownies being one of them. I have yet to find the right mixture and baking time to get the same fudgy, dense texture that are in my regular brownies. Going to a potluck the other night, I wanted to bring brownies since they're always a crowd favorite, and I didn't want to subject others to my experiments in gluten-free baking, so I decided to just go the regular route with a twist. I found this recipe at BGSK and decided to make these for the potluck. My version turned out a little marbled on top because I didn't have time to let the buttercream completely cool before putting on the chocolate glaze, but it turned out to have a rather pretty marbled effect on the top. Whatever they looked like, they were a big hit, and I'm sure I will be making them again, gluten-free or not.



Sunday, May 13, 2012

recipes: rosemary roasted red potato salad.

My mom and I share a love for many things, one of those being roasted red potatoes with olive oil and rosemary. I love the crispiness of the potatoes combined with the freshness of the rosemary. For mother's day this year I made my mom one of her old school favorites - BLTs with a couple of upgrades, but I thought this springtime picnic classic deserved another to go on the side, hence a version of our favorite potatoes in a salad version. Although it was very windy, cold, and unspringy here on mother's day this year, this potato salad will be one of my spring favorites for a very long time.

Rosemary Roasted Red Potato Salad
makes 4 servings


6 small red potatoes
4-5 sprigs of rosemary
4 tablespoons of olive oil
1/4 cup of mayonnaise
1/4 cup of dijon mustard
1 1/2 teaspoons of sriracha
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon cracked black pepper


1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Slice potatoes into 1/2'' x 1'' pieces and place into bowl. Cover with olive oil and add in rosemary. Stir together until well coated. Place in oven and cook for 30 minutes or until golden brown and fork tender.
2. In a small bowl, mix together mayonnaise and mustard. Stir in sriracha. When well mixed add in salt and pepper.
3. Let potatoes cool and place in large bowl. Pour in mayonnaise/mustard mixture and stir until potatoes are well coated.

Sunday, May 6, 2012

pardon the finals.

I am incredibly sorry how absent I have been the last few days. Finals week has left me feeling like this:
This is one of the joys of grad school: working full time while still trying to do finals. I would not recommend it. In a few days I (and thus this blog) will be back to normal.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

recipes: moral-laden pizza

Trying to cook for yourself comes with many lessons. Sometimes it's the cooking part, and sometimes it's what comes long before the cooking part, and even before the grocery shopping part. Since my boyfriend is visiting for the next couple of weeks, he decided to make dinner for me and my parents one night, with help from the sous chef: yours truly. We decided to just go to the store sans list because the ingredients for making pizza should be pretty simple, right? Not. The base for the sauce we bought was terrible, all of the eggs in the refrigerator were cracked, and oregano was nowhere to be found in the pantry. This supposedly "simple" dinner required six trips to three different grocery stores and much sighing and odd looks from cashiers that had seen me maybe four times in the span of two hours. While my parents and my boyfriend had regular versions of the pizza, I had great gluten-free pizza that was some of the best I have ever had post-Celiac diagnosis. While everyone loved the pizza my boyfriend made, I couldn't help but think that there was a lesson or two to be gained from aforementioned grocery store fiasco: 1) Make a list. 2) Make sure you actually have the ingredients you need, and that they have not gone bad. These may seem like obvious things, but I thought I would pass the message along. However, it was all worth it, because it resulted in a really, really good pizza for me.

Moral-Laden Pizza 
makes 2 servings

One package of Bob's Red Mill Gluten-Free Pizza Crust Mix (just follow the directions on the bag to make the dough)
4 slices fresh mozzarella
Small spoonful of pizza sauce (use whatever kind you like - I'm normally lazy and just go for some marinara)
Small handful basil
1/4 cup of pitted Greek olives
1/4 cup shredded Italian cheese mix

1. Prepare dough according to instructions on bag, and preheat oven to 400 degrees.
2. After making the dough, spread out over a floured surface. I made a 10-inch crust, about 1/2 inch thick from this dough, but you can definitely make more if you spread the dough out more to make it thicker.
3. Bake just the dough for 12 to 15 minutes or until golden.
4. Take out the crust, and layer with sauce, shredded cheese, mozzarella slices, tomatoes, basil, and then olives. Bake for an additional 8 to 10 minutes, or until cheese is melted.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

a confession.

I have realized this past week, more than ever that I have become a bag lady.The computer, folders, makeup, books and other miscellaneous but necessary items have combined to make one bag too large to hold all of them. This results in my having quite a large collection of totes to carry around everyday, so many that I actually need one entire seat on the bus just to hold them. I might be a bit nerdy, but that doesn't mean my bags have to be.


Here is where my obsession with Seabags comes in. They're a local company out of Portland, Maine that recycles sails and makes them into the cutest and durable totes. I now own a couple, including my favorite with a grey whale tail, and rely on them everyday to make me look a little less geeky on my way into the gallery space.

Sunday, April 29, 2012

gone with the wind.

Running usually brings with it its own set of challenges: hills, thirst, and many-a-cramp. However, last Thursday when I went running I had to deal with a whole new challenge: wind. And not just wind, but rather 50-plus mile an hour gusts from two directions. I had already set my mind on doing a pretty hard run (5 x 5 minutes hard, 4 minutes easy for 5 miles), and I had no intention of letting the wind stop me, although that might have been against my better judgment. Nobody else was out on the path I was running on, and with good reason. I was literally getting pushed to the side of the road, dirt was blowing in my face, I had tears running down my cheeks and my nose would not stop running. On top of that it was really hot. I'm pretty sure it was what running through the Saudi Arabian desert would feel like. However, did I regret this? No. Why? Am I crazy, or maybe just a glutton for punishment? Well perhaps, but I realized after I finished how good I felt. Strong, successful, and pretty badass. These are the kinds of runs that I know will help me get better and faster in the long run (pun intended). After being sick with food allergies for so long, I really appreciate how much my body can do now that I am healthy and eating (and not eating) the right foods. Now, while I won't exactly be praying for another day with wind like this, I would welcome it if it showed up on my afternoon run.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

international bling.

Some of my favorite pieces of jewelry are those that I collect on trips through Latin America and the Caribbean. In particular, I have a fascination with these bracelets that I found in Buenos Aires that are painted like Russian nesting dolls.

Now the smaller bracelet I bought from JewelMint, but I love the juxtaposition in the bigger bracelet of something both Russian and Latin. In a lot of ways, it captures what I love about Latin America and the art - the influence of more than one culture and the mestizaje which shows up in the art that I study. That, and this bracelet is just really pretty.

Monday, April 23, 2012

new art.

One of my favorite things to do an Albuquerque has always been to go see art openings. I would go for my teachers in high school, and even a few where I had a piece displayed, but now I get to help put them on myself and see the wonderful work other young people are doing in Albuquerque. This past weekend, I went to one entitled "How Appropriate" by an MFA student named Ana Medina (see some of her work here). Her works captured a sense of identity in youth today, all done in such a way that the viewer can feel the emotion in a particular moment. It was so great to see such refreshing art in Albuquerque, and to see an artist so young with such original work. I'm super excited about all of the MFA shows coming up soon, and all of the great exhibits this summer, and will be sure to keep everyone updated so you might have a chance to go see some. And if you're in Albuquerque, you have no excuse not to.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

getting stitchy with it.

I really envy super crafty people. While I do make a mean greeting card (I will upload one of my favorites soon!), I have many more crafts that I would like to master, the next one being embroidery. One of my colleagues, Kristen, a wonderfully talented embroiderer inspired me to get into this beautiful art over the summer when I will be doing some academic reading and art history research. She has her own wonderful blog, The Bobbypin Bandit, where she offers her musings on academia and great craft ideas, but she also contributes to a collaborative embroidery blog called Feeling Stitchy which offers many great tutorials for adorable embroidery. I plan on taking up some of these projects as soon as I am finished with my constant paper writing for the end of the school year. I think it's easy to say what I would rather be doing...

Readers, any exciting craft ideas or projects you're working on?

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

the sushi train.

Through the gluten, lactose, and shellfish-free life I live, sushi has been one of those foods I can turn to again and again. Now, I may be getting overly sentimental over raw fish, but it was one of the few foods I could eat when I was sick (sans wasabi, cause that stuff does a number on your stomach) without getting even sicker. These days it holds a special place in my heart because I know I can eat it safely without throwing it back up (sorry for the TMI). Now, I normally bring my lunch to work, but I was pretty excited when I discovered sushi in the student union building, and as I had no ingredients at home for a lunch today, this was a perfect excuse to get my nori fix. This is really just a post about the lunch I had today, and further encouragement to jump on the sushi train if you haven't yet. Now if I could only get a certain boyfriend of mine to try it...


Chopsticks instructions always crack me up.

Monday, April 16, 2012

the stuff of which great weekends are made.

I have to say that I had one of those wonderful spring weekends. Although the ridiculously high amounts of wind and dust dashed my plans to run outside Saturday (hello, again, treadmill!), I still enjoyed myself.

Crabapple blossoms. 

Ghost tour in Old Town. 

Pensive chihuahua. 

Accessorizing while reading.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

my new favorite bracelet.

One of my favorite things about teaching debate is how much my students do appreciate me, even if I'm not always aware of it. Last week, at the final team banquet I started crying when the students were thanking me, and I cried more later when I read the sweetest messages on the card they gave me. While nothing can mean more than these words, they gave me some absolutely beautiful gifts as well. One of which is this twisted silver bracelet, my new favorite go-to piece.

I can't believe how lucky I am to work with such wonderful students day in and day out. I'm so sad to see the seniors graduate, but can't wait to take some of them to nationals in Indianapolis and see the young'uns grow even more next year!

Sunday, April 8, 2012

accessorizing for easter.

One of the wonderful things about all the church services, mother's day luncheons, and bridal showers over the next few months is the limitless number of opportunities to get dressed up and accessorize to the nines, two of my favorite pastimes. I love unexpected pops of color against more subdued tones, like a bright necklace over a springy, but demure, dress. This is what I wore to last night's Easter vigil, and although you can't see it, the chains of yellow beads were perfect for my blue-striped maxi dress, the same  shade as my turquoise cross from Santa Fe.

Gotta love the sale jewelry at Target... 
May all of you reading have a happy Easter and a wonderful Passover, if you're celebrating! But no matter what you do, accessories always make the day.

Saturday, April 7, 2012

spring, thus far.

 I always welcome the warm days of spring with a smile and a desire to skip through flowers in the warm sun. Unfortunately, soon after that daydream, mid-semester hits like a snowstorm, flurrying up my sunny daydreams with the harsh realities of academia. However, I still find lots of joy in spring with the time I (can) spend running in the sun, taking walks with my wonderful boyfriend, and relishing in sometimes-too-short spring dresses. As promised, here are some pictures of my spring so far, and some of the wonderful happenings on coasts both East and West.

A tipsy mouse at my boyfriend's parents' house for St. Paddy's. 

Make-your-own-smores at Planet Marshmallow in Manchester, NH. 

One of the many beautiful churches decorating the skyline in Portland, ME. 

Seagulls perched on posts on the New Hampshire coast. 

My seven debaters headed for the national (!) tournament in Indianapolis. Couldn't be prouder. 

Back to reading, reading, reading. I must say, a very good book though. 

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

alas, no more java.

Several weeks ago, I came to the unfortunate realization that one of my most favorite things ever happened to be making me rather sick. Every morning I would get these stomach-turning pangs of nausea, and while they would go away by 10 am, they were still terrible. I tried changing around a lot of things: what I was eating, how much I was eating, and when. But no matter what I did with breakfast food, I still got sick. Then I realized I would probably have to eliminate the lowest common denominator: coffee.

Now tell any regular, caffeine-laced grad student that they will have to part with their coffee (or other form of caffeine), and they will probably throw a heavy textbook full of theory at you. The last morning I had coffee, and knew that it would be my last cup of any kind of caffeine for awhile, I felt like Hamlet saying goodbye to Yorick. I questioned how I would make it through life without caffeinated tea, diet coke, and most importantly, soy lattes, but the results have been surprisingly pleasant.

Me, with a new found appreciation for all things pepperminty and tea-y.
Now, I worked in a tea shop in high school, and went back to my roots for my new morning drink go-to: tisane. It has strong flavors like tea, but no actual tea leaves, just herbs, roots, flowers, and whatnot. After trying a few, I've gotten hooked on any green or white tea, or tisane, that has strong peppermint flavors, which I really need to wake up in the morning. Fortunately, I've felt much better since this little switch. I don't know when, or if, I will go back to caffeine, but right now I'm enjoying my life without java.

Monday, April 2, 2012

a fun run in the sun.

Lately (minus today) the weather here has been just too perfect. Spring always means one thing for me: midday desert runs. This may seem odd, but the temperature is wonderful in the middle of the day and the sun is all the way out, so you get the warmth without the beating heat and crazy locust noises that accompany it in the middle of summer. This allows for great, hard runs in super-nice weather. I always come back tired, but feeling much better about myself than I did when I left.

necessary colorful running shoes
Lately I've been training for this and this (hopefully --- cross your fingers!), and the sun has been the perfect training partner, making me go faster because its not too hot, and staying out longer because its just so beautiful.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

happy april.

While I am not writing anything "official" today, here is a delightfully yummy picture I took with my phone while making this salad from BGSK. Giving me lots of wonderful spring produce to look forward to this April...

Parsley, basil, cherry tomatoes, lemon. 

Friday, March 30, 2012

recipes: gluten-free & vegan lace cookies.

My grandma was the resident baker in our family. While she doesn't bake as much anymore, I still remember her many confections. One thing she made rarely, but was such a delight that I still remember it, is lace cookies. These light-as-a-feather cookies are very southern, wonderfully delicate, and almost ethereal in your mouth. After I found out about Celiac's disease and its ban on wheat, I bought this wonderful cookbook full of vegan, gluten-free baked goods. To my delight, a version of lace cookies were included. These cookies turn out wonderfully thin, light, and are a perfect cookie to start off the warm spring months. Missing one of the ingredients, vanilla, I threw in cinnamon and substituted some brown sugar for a wonderfully scented dough.

Gluten-Free and Vegan Lace Cookies
adapted from Babycakes Covers the Classics

1 3/4 cups of Bob's Red Mill All-Purpose Gluten-Free Baking Flour *
1 cup of sugar
1/2 cup of brown sugar
1/4 cup arrowroot *
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon xanthan gum *
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 cup canola oil
1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
1 teaspoon cinnamon
* These ingredients may sound weird, but they are easily found in Whole Foods and similar stores.

1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees and line 2-3 cookie sheets with parchment paper.
2. Mix flour, sugar, brown sugar, arrowroot, baking soda, xanthan gum, and kosher salt in a large mixing bowl until well combined.
3. Stir in canola oil, applesauce, and cinnamon.
4. Scoop teaspoon-size rolls onto cookie sheets, with about 15 dough balls per sheet.
5. Bake for 7 minutes, and rotate and bake for another 7 minutes. Do 6 minutes on each side for a less crunchy cookie.
6. Let cool for 15 minutes before removing from cookie sheet.

Although these are vegan, they are wonderful with ice cream, even soy for that matter.