So I needed some good news in my life when some actually came this time. My friend calls with talk of expanding her business to include a wellness center offering yoga. We tossed around ideas for a few minutes because … Continue reading


Happiness, really??

It’s said trying a few simple things to change or strengthen a few behaviors for true happiness. 1. Being calmed by water watching isn’t just for dreamy Pisces. Being near, looking over a body of water can be soothing to … Continue reading


Have you ever entertained the idea of living in a van?

So not just a van.. mind you. A camper van, a vanagon. I have always heard the call of the open road, but never thought it for me for several reasons. I’m thirty with a ten year old daughter who is ready for a change. We have always leaned toward the minimal side and this seems.. perfect. Rent the house out while we are gone. I have been doing some minor restorations to the house. Pretty much refreshing things up. A new microwave, paint, baseboards in the bathroom. The ideal way would be to rent the lake house for enough to cover mortgage and taxes. Maybe even a little extra to nest egg.


'We van in like a wrecking ball!!'

‘We van in like a wrecking ball!!’


Here and Now..

Recently faced with short term goals lately as enough time has passed with no real plan to place that its time to regroup. As soon as my student loans paperwork can filled > 50 days and processed, I can return to school under Pell grant without loans. How dumb that was.. I feel the financial institutions should make you show a business plan almost to get the loans they give out per semester. We’re in college for Pete’s sake! We are supposed to be poor then go out and get our degree job. But Hell no, they asked if I needed the full amount??!  Real thought needs to be put in on what job/career will be most fitting with finances and security. Degree needs to be picked with a job in mind. I felt double crossed as I left micro and chemistry lab like a super cool mad scientist to get into what I thought was the program of my dreams of Nursing. No. It didn’t happen that way. At all. Thoroughly disgusted with the time and effort I spent to get into this super selective program.. and I hated it. No preparation for what I was to face in the two years of core classes geared toward the Nursing program. :((( Not a happy camper and I knew I didn’t want to be stuck in this field. I took a hardship leave and left. Where do I go from now?

I mean I have my minor in journalism.. That’s what I love. Words. They can do so much, take you somewhere that you have never been. you think artists starve?? Journalists eat dirt. Not even good dirt, like scraggy dirt, yuck. So here my ramblings will go for now as I process through this life of a mother, hippie, peace promoter, you get the picture 😉 There are so many things I want to do, record here, take you all into my silly, wild, crazy life as I figure out where I go from here. About this close to renting the house out, buying a van and hitting the road. Seriously.

For now on a personal level, smile more it catches on. Feel happier. Keep up my Yoga, push Syd to find the peace that comes with grounded breathing and focus. She already knows some simple routines to try on her own, but I want her to want to do them, need to like I do.



So.. it’s been awhile..

I feel like I’m in confession a little, even though I’m not Catholic . So much has happen since my last post. Sydni and I are continuing with our self sustainability as much as we can here! I work full time now at an awesome bar and grill. I still commute!! The Rat Ride has done me well! I have also added a tricycle to our wheels. With a basket in the back, it’s perfect for the .2 miles to the grocery. Work is about .3 miles in the other direction. So everything works out great!

It’s harder the find that balance working in such a fast paced environment, even harder to not take it home. Sydni and I have started back to our yoga practice to help with that. She has really been a wall for me this past year. She understands more than I could even ask of her. 

We are doing some container gardening and we have 5 fruit trees . I’m re doing the front flower beds and plan on incorporating more edible landscaping into to ornamental already there. Slowly but surely!! It’s so good to be back down south, where you can buy a bushel of acre peas from your cousin, get a bag of tomatoes from your mom, the list goes on. I’ve got my compost almost at full rock 🙂 Going through as much food at work prepping stuff really helps add to the heap. The worm farm is put together but not yet operational. Trying to build up some of the dirt in the back that has been barren for so long due to shade and the wrong plantings. Got some beautiful black and red elephant ears, planted because you know I love bulbs!! ivy and a little jasmine I’m trying to save. It’s all coming along 🙂

We are still doing all of our art stuff on the side and may have found a partner in the department which could mean big things!! She is going to teach me to sew first hand and I cannot wait!!



So.. Just trying to figure it all out :)

ImageSo, wow is right.. We are going to have to start over in so many aspects when we move. It’s so scary to let go of what you already have to even embrace the possibility of a better future. The future we want is less dependance on anything store bought. And that ranges from food to clothing to gas. We started that here and now we’ll start again.

I’m losing the chickens today. Yes I’ve cried more than you can imagine over three birds. I put their whole package on Craigslist for $100 and it sold in 30 minutes. He’ll be here today. A small family with two growing children. I’m glad people are starting to realize the importance of growing it yourself. You know what goes in that chicken, the eggs are walked in your back door, fresh as they can be. Who wouldn’t want that?! And to have it all packaged up to boot! We’ll have to check ordinances once we get settled in, build a better coop and start again. Keep moving forward!! (saw it on a movie)

ImageWe found Budget to be the cheapest rental. They have a 20% off until the 28th and we’ll save around 75-100 bucks going during the week instead of weekend. So the last week of February will be our last week in Indian Trail. My stomach is doing somersaults right now!

I have already emailed Michael’s resume to my mom to hopefully work her magic!! She knows someone at the Honda dealership there in Valdosta and took Michael’s resume up there. Everyone seemed really excited about his certifications in general not just the ones with Honda. They asked all about the move, when we would be there and if he would be able to start work the following Monday. THIS COULD BE A GREAT THING!! So please everyone keep your fingers crossed. He is so worried about finding a good job in a smaller city and it working for all of us. I’ve also decided to seek employment. The house sits pretty central in Lake Park so commuting on the SS is going to be sweet. I really hope I can find something close enough and be able to work things out to be home for Syddo! Because that is really what this is all about for me in the long run. Raising her to have a different awareness on the world and I have to be there to do that 😉

ImageSo I’m really scared, nervous, excited, etc., etc. Everything is moving so fast. I think we are going to try for the yard sale this weekend. Go ahead and get that stuff gone and purge again. We plan on taking the basics, we just all have different definitions on what exactly the basics are!


Headed back down South.. :)

ImageSo, BIG BIG news folks!! We are moving to Georgia in four weeks!! My family owns a house on a small lake in Lake Park, GA. It’s about five miles from the FLA line in Lowndes county. We are so excited about this opportunity! You know around Thanksgiving, we were wanting to get back closer to some family and I seem to have the biggest lot in one place 🙂

The lake house was built by my great-uncle around ’74, I believe. He had moved there to become Principal of Lake Park Elementary. He and my great-aunt have been gone many years now. Their three children inherited the home until my mother bought it.. eh.. 15 years ago?? (don’t hold me to that date ;)) What! I remember working on it on my 13th birthday, so.. that means15 years, hey I was right! Mom gutted some of the house, knocked down partial walls and voila!

She just celebrated her second wedding anniversary with her husband who she now lives with on a beautiful spread of ten acres. She has rented out the house(it is still being paid for because of refinancing) and the tenants moved out last month. So!!! We are going. It’s a 3 bedroom, 2 bath, 1 office/laundry room (which was my room as a teen! but when I left, mom knocked down another wall and extended her closet halfway into that bedroom and put the washer and dryer and computer desk in there :/) All brick exterior, fireplace inside, four 75 year old (at least) oak trees that had been there before the house was built. My uncle planted four dogwood trees when the house was built but only one remains living. They died from the inside out just like the Sunday school story.

So how does this help our self sufficient journey you ask?? One major factor here is community (my family and friends of 28 years) We don’t really have and never will have the network we will down there. My two parents alone know 75% of Valdosta, GA. Michael has taken a big decrease in pay and it is really affecting us here. Commuting with my bike will be awesome around the Lakes and community there. The exercise on bike alone will be phenomenal! I’m actually REALLY excited about that! But.. I will not have the garden plot I had here. And everything we have planted in ground, we lose. We are still trying to find out about the chickens. They will be in a dog kennel in the back of the Fit if I can help it 🙂 We’ve planted 5 beautiful trees, 3 tea olives, 3 rosemary bushes, 2 blueberry bushes, 2 jasmine, 1 huge Triplecrown blackberry bush, 1 each mint, spearmint, and apple mint. I can only hope the family who moves in here next sees these as a blessing. Will appreciate the life we tried so hard at putting back into the soil.

We will definitely have to change some garden practices for the new house. Start making a new homestead 🙂 The back yard is mostly shaded by the oaks. The front yard is your conventional turf yard. I can’t wait to get back down there to look at the grounds with a grower’s eye. I know container gardening is going to be huge for us. Can’t wait to keep you guys posted on everything. Wish us good luck, I feel this move is for a right reason and we are embracing it wholeheartedly.

We have started the pre-packing purge for a yard/moving sale and it feels GREAT! Until next post 😉


I entered a Photo Contest!! Vote on Talenthouse!

Hey y’all. I entered in a photo to a Flogging Molly photo contest on Talenthouse.

Image This is FURTHUR. A show I attended last July. I am up against some pros so I could use all the help I could get!! I can’t seem to copy the link here but it is on countingdownfromzero Facebook page

and the contest page by Talent House  Kortni Lawlor Furthur for Flogging Molly. Click the blue button Support Kortni to cast vote 🙂

A week for voting! Starting today, thanks everybody!!


Am I a bad cave man??

ImageSo I went to the doctor last Friday. Weighing in at 147, he actually had to ask if I had any concerns.. Yeah! I’m 20 pounds heavier than when I came up here last July. Yes I admit to being a bit of a shut-in at first.. I didn’t know anybody, traffic scared me to death, I quit smoking.. Pick one. The results are in and regardless the reason, I gained 20 pounds, my clothes don’t fit, yada yada. I knew he would be impressed though when I told him I was trying to exercise by doing one of Jessica Simpson’s workouts! By his amused expression I took it he was not impressed by my choice of workouts. He then asked if I had eaten yet? My appointment was at 8:40 so no, but as I was about to lie, my stomach gave me away at the mention of food.

“You’re being a bad caveman.” he says. What? A bad caveman and he thinks I’m nuts for all my permie ideas.. He then explains. The way our bodies are made, think about a cave man. A good cave man wakes up gets his tribe. They go outside, eat some nuts. Ramble on for a while, dig up some roots, eat them. Ramble on a while, smack a squirrel.. you get the picture. When a good caveman goes throughout his day and goes to bed at night, he body tells him good job. There is enough food, we have adequate hunting and gathering skills so there is no threat of hunger. All body processes a go at normal speed. May even burn a few extra calories in the bush if your body think you have them to spare.

But a bad cave man may not be able to find food for him and his tribe. His body does not eat every couple of hours and throughout the day and when he goes to sleep his body will think.. okay there is not enough food to keep hunger at bay and it will go into calorie conserve mode, actually making it harder to burn calories. Your body doesn’t know when it will get its next meal and will fight over the precious calories it thinks is left. Sporadic feedings are not what we were made for, even though the average American skips breakfast, grabs a bite at lunch and stuffs themselves before bed. Not good for our metabolism.

I tell him I am not a bad caveman, but I will find a more stable in the long term workout 😉


New Pancake Recipe a Hit!!

ImageNot having a clue what to feed the three children demanding food, I turn to (one of my savior websites) for something for breakfast. I had flour, milk and eggs.. I felt pretty confident 🙂 A picture of fluffy, golden pancakes immediately caught my eye. Checked the ingredient list. Okay.. This could work and I get to make my own sour milk. Oh yeah..

ImageFirst I put the vinegar into my milk to sit.. How weird. This has got me wanting to look up making buttermilk. I whisked together my flour and other dry ingredients while my butter melted. In drops an egg to the butter. I’ve noticed how dominate the yolk in our chickens eggs compared to what I’m used to from the grocery store! It’s cool how I get to pick which chicken’s egg I use. Donna got the honors today 😉

Mixed our flour mixture in and then proceeded to make some of the BEST pancakes I’ve ever had. Ladies and Gentlemen, we have a new recipe.

Fluffy Pancakes

  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 2 tablespoons white vinegar
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons white sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted
  • cooking spray


  1. Combine milk with vinegar in a medium bowl and set aside for 5 minutes to “sour”.
  2. Combine flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a large mixing bowl. Whisk egg and butter into “soured” milk. Pour the flour mixture into the wet ingredients and whisk until lumps are gone.
  3. Heat a large skillet over medium heat, and coat with cooking spray. Pour 1/4 cupfuls of batter onto the skillet, and cook until bubbles appear on the surface. Flip with a spatula, and cook until browned on the other side.