A few days ago it was my birthday. So I did what I do every year on my birthday. I have a traditional carrot cake. This all started when I was young and my grandma would make me carrot cake for my birthday. I didn't much care for carrot cake at the time. Especially one made of scratch that fit into a 9x13 pyrex baking pan. I wanted a vanilla light and airy cake from the store like all the other kids had. Not some thing with vegetables in it disguised as dessert. Carrots in my option were not my favorite vegetable and I didn't much like them for dinner, so they had no business being in a cake. But I did not have the heart to tell Grandma that her baking was in vain. So I ate the cake.

The cake ordeal got me thinking how many things I did not like as a kid. My parents always had the most grainy of grains wheat bread, Laura Scutter's peanut butter and homemade blackberry jam from the blackberry bush, which was my job to go fetch. Needless to say only half the berries made it to the house, the rest found a home in my tummy. I remember my neighbor Karen's mom would make peanut butter and jelly sandwiches for us on perfectly white wonder bread spread with smooth Skippy and Smuckers grape jelly. She would then cut the crust off and place a banana next to it for us to enjoy. While I was eating each bite of my delicious not so wholesome sandwich I thought to myself, "Why can't my mom and dad supply great food like Karens mom had?"

For breakfast in my house dad would make buckwheat pancakes with orange peel in them. I mean I gave him a couple of points for pancakes in general, but buckwheat come on pops! The cereal in our house consist of muesli or steel-cut oats. Where was the peanut butter Captain Crunch? Or the Fruity Pebbles? No Lucky Charms? No golden grams? We almost never had fast food. Like pretty much never. I'm not saying there was not ever junk food in our home, but for the majority of the time it was good wholesome food.

Now as the grown woman I am today I have to laugh at the upturned nose of the child sized version of myself. I now really appreciate the fact that my parents tried to instill good eating habits in our lives. All the things I didn't enjoy as a kid I now really enjoy............Especially carrot cake!

Updated: Mar 22

Growing up in Southern California my grandparents would always take us on adventures. My grandfather was very much into old abandoned mines, searching for gold and Native American symbols carved into rocks. He always had his camera handy to take a picture so as he could later tell you a story and sing a song about it with his beat up guitar. He would load the green 1964 Rambler station wagon with myself, my brother, the neighbor kids, our cousins and whoever would fit and away went to some old spot in the desert. Grandma would pack us all lunch, with Lucky the dog in tow. I don't think I appreciated these adventures as much as a kid as I do now. One that sticks out in my head the most was when we were in the mountains and our trusty Rambler bottomed out on a hill. A truck passing by had to that are home to birds.

This weekend my fella and I drove out to east Oregon to Grass Valley in search of a ghost town. We happened to find this old church that was abandoned and begging to be shot. As Andrew got ready to sing with his guitar, I let my imagination run wild with the possibles of what could be done with this old dilapidating building. How amazing it would be to live in it. Where would the kitchen go. How beautiful it would look if: all the wood were restored to it's previous glory, the walls were a perfect white, and a loft was built high up and some of the wood on the ceiling taken off to reveal the glorious rafters. I thought about where the pews once sat, and the pulpit once resided. How many people once attended the congregation. How many drifters, scavengers and wonders have crossed paths with this church as it sits in its lonely, yet peaceful state now. Then Andrew began to sing, and it was like having a concert to my self. Through the window in the distance you could see some horses corralled in a field.

When I was a young girl we moved from a suburb of Orange County to a rural part of San Diego. As much as I missed my old city the nice part about our new town was we lived on 2 archers. This meant to me that I finally had enough room to own a horse. We soon purchased two horses and I loved riding them. I would ride to my best friends house, pick her up and we would ride back to my house. One of the things I loved most about them was their noises. The soft part around their mouth protected by whiskers. I would love to give them carrots and watch their upper lip fumble around for a firm grasp of the tasty treat. I did not have a carrot for the horse I tried to befriend on this particular day, but I was quite happy to make his acquaintance nonetheless.

On the opposite side of the road from the horse corral was a small white house. It was uncertain if it was occupied, but was most definitely neglected. The yard had a garden of weeds, and the picket fence had little to no paint. The white paint on the house was chipping to reveal the previous color green. Nestled by the fence in a patch of dead flowers was the biggest dandelion I had ever seen. I don't know about you but I never pass up a opportunity to make a wish on one of these delicate whimsical plants.

On our way back home we stopped in Wasco to check out some old cars and admired some of the old brick warehouses in town. We saw some people working in their yards with the mid day sun glaring. It was the last day of August and you would hardly know that summer was coming to an end with the heat.

I am not one for wearing shorts or sandals in the summer. So this seventies wrap-around skirt is one of my go to's on warm summer days. You can wear it with a perfectly worn in band t-shirt, your favorite body suit, or seen here with my white eye lit night gown worn as a top. Like I said I'm not one for sandals. My version of sandals are Converse, Vans, or Toms. That being said I found this pair of Brazilian wooden sandals in a vintage shop and they are not only comfortable, but they have just the right amount of heel.

Had the pleasure of going to Prescott this week. I always enjoy the desert. Arizona's desert is different than California's desert, but just as peaceful and beautiful. I always feel calm there. It feels like floating in a quiet pool and all your thoughts and cares just seem to soak up into the sun rays you're basking in. It's like the stillness you feel when your sitting by a creek or river, and you just hear the water and the trees. Something about the desert is magical to me. I love it. The landscaping of dirt and rock. The unlikelihood of shade from a cactus. The pop of color you get from a blooming flower. The clear blue sky with the mountains as a back drop. Every time I come to the desert it's like dropping by a wise friends house. Someone you admire and could sit and listen to their stories of long ago and a life thats passed by. Someone you could sit on a porch with and sip ice tea and say nothing at all. Just listening to the still breeze as the sun kisses your skin - until the trance that your in is broken by laughter - followed by 'we should have some ice cream.' I honestly wish I had an old wise friend like this. It use to be my grandma, but since she's gone the desert has taken a familiar approach to a warm fond kinship. I will always love it as far as I can see.