Washington: Olympia, Snoqualmie, & Seattle

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So… the Pacific Northwest is incredible.

This weekend I saw three beautiful places, two incredible waterfalls, and fell deeply, deeply in love with Seattle in a matter of a couple of hours. I don’t watch Twin Peaks, but if I did, I would be jazzed about staying in the town where it’s filmed (we ate cherry pie at the diner and I think that’s an important element or something). We built fires and hiked and explored for days.

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Olympia, WA: We took a quick detour here to eat lunch and stretch our legs. This place is ADORABLE. One day I’ll be back with enough time to really explore and get to know the city. The capital building is gorgeous and there are so many shops and restaurants and parks to check out.

Snoqualmie, WA: This is quintessential Pacific Northwest magic. Fog in the morning that burns off around noon. Huge pine forests and snow on the mountains that lasts until June. Diners that serve cherry pie and hot coffee from 10am to 10pm.

We spent Saturday afternoon hiking around Franklin Falls. We took every possible detour, made paths where there weren’t any, and ate lunch on the most enormous stump in the middle of the river.

Seattle, WA: For some reason, I am SO drawn to this city. Technically I was born in Washington (I lived in Whidbey Island for the first few years of my life), but I haven’t been back since. I didn’t realize that going back would feel like such a homecoming. As we drove in, I remembered close to nothing but felt this deeply sound comfort despite being thousands of miles away from anything I would normally call “home.”

Brunch at Westward & Little Gull, aka. the cutest (and most delicious) place in the world. I ate my first dutch baby, which is like a buttery pancake. We wandered around Gas Works Park to see the skyline and made it into the city to see Pike Place Market.

More to come. So much more to come.

Can I just say that you all are incredible? I’ve heard from people with suggestions on where to go in their hometown/offers to show me around. As in, actual people. That is amazing and I’m floored that people other than my mom read what’s going on over here.

We’re heading east on Friday from Eugene to Crater Lake. If you’re on Instagram, follow along here or with the hashtag #realdealroadtrip.

Talk soon.

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Thursday Tidbits 4/30/2015

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{image via Moxie Pix}

For a more creative brain, travel. Okay, cool. I’m there.

The extraordinary science of junk food. This is gross and fascinating.

I spent an hour this week down the rabbit hole of Minimalism School posts from Heroine Training. Xandra is a delight and I’m always so inspired by her posts and videos. If you’re interested in lightening your load and keeping your life magical and clear of clutter, she’s your lady.

This magical video of a baby and a dandelion.

If you’re looking for an article about burglary and expert decision-making, here’s the one.

Happy Thursday, everyone.

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How to Integrate Simplicity & Design Into Your Daily Life

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I have always tied my creativity to my surroundings.

To keep my mind focused, productive, and creative, the things that surround me should be focused, productive, and creative, too.

I’ve always loved the phrase, “Have nothing in your home that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful.”

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Thursday Tidbits 4/23/2015

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OH NO. The Amazon button is real.

THIS WOMAN. “Just go ahead and do your thing no matter what.”

The real situation with your upstairs neighbor.

This is hilarious and so terrifying. Maybe the most terrifying part is the very last second… I’m glad I got through it.

Here come the philanthropreneurs.

Happy Thursday, everyone.

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Costa Rica 201: Food & Drink

Travel is about wringing yourself out and filling yourself with wonderful things. Delicious food, good people, and incredible adventures. Here’s a taste of what we had to work with in Costa Rica and what I recommend to anyone who asks:

What To Eat

Fresh fruit. Eat all the fresh fruit you can get your hands on. Guava, papaya, mango, passionfruit, guanabana (whatever that is). These fruits are in season all year long and everything is ripe right from the store – I bought the most delicious avocado and ate it as I left the store, at peak ripeness. Fresh fruits and veggies make a cheap (and delicious!) meal if you’re ballin’ on a budget.

Ceviche. We tried to find ceviche just about every day. This stuff is everywhere I think we managed to eat it 3 or 4 times during our week. It seems that just about everyone has a ceviche stand.

Gallo pinto. 100% Costa Rican breakfast. Beans and rice with natilla (sour cream), scrambled eggs, and fried plantains. It’s cheap and filling and delicious.

What To Drink

Imperial. This is how you take it in like a local. Imperial is like the Bud of Costa Rica. It’s not amazing, but it’s cold and cheap and very Costa Rican. Pilsner is another option – also Costa Rican – but Imperial is the most popular by far.

Juice. This goes under the fresh fruit umbrella. Fruit juice is just fresh fruit and ice in a blender, and it is magically refreshing. Juice and gallo pinto is a perfect breakfast situation.

Coffee. Pour-over coffee is not trendy in Costa Rica. It’s the standard. I couldn’t get enough coffee, and brought home bags and bags of coffee (and at least a pound of dark chocolate-covered espresso beans). Even if you’re not traditionally a coffee drinker, don’t pass it up.

Have you been to Costa Rica? What did you eat?

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Hausfrau: A Book Review

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If we were getting coffee right now, I would talk to you about how I’m crushing through TV and books right now. I just finished a new book, Hausfrau, and I would want to tell you ALL about it.

Let’s just start: Hausfrau is tragic. But it’s fascinating and I couldn’t stop reading it. The novel is a study on depression and womanhood and the self, on how to define yourself against others. Anna has completely lost herself and her identity in the “versions of love” her life allows. (more…)

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