good things : discoveries

Recently I’ve discovered a few wonderful things. And they are:

1. NFL Network on Hulu

Um…HOW DID I NOT KNOW ABOUT THIS??? There are no words. Well there are words, and they appear in the picture above. They say, “Need a break? You have been watching for more than 3 hours.”

Oh.

Well, then.

In my defense, I have no defense. I just love football way too much.

If you’re looking for me between now and September, you know where I’ll be.

2. New Old Soap

I ran out of bathroom soap. Which is only half true, because I have plenty of other soaps that would have no problem making themselves useful in the bathroom. What I really ran out of was eucalyptus mint foaming soap…and I really prefer foaming soap in the bathroom and scrubbing soap for the kitchen because I’m just one big freak. I was just going to use my back-up kitchen soap in the bathroom…but had a stroke of genius instead! I pumped some of the lemon scrubbing soap into what little remained of the eucalyptus soap, added some water, and gave it a good shake. And lo and behold, I now have lemon eucalyptus mint foaming soap that I like even better than the original! (In no small part because I feel like this is a great discovery for all of womankind. Really…just think of the possibilities!!!)

3. Fresh Greens

For the record, don’t believe me when I say that something changed my life. Because it happens often. And while true, it usually doesn’t carry the weight of what most people define as life-changing.

But really…fresh greens changed my life this weekend. And you can take that one to the bank. Or to the farmer’s market, where I purchased said greens.

PEOPLE. OH MY WORD!!! I didn’t think that I could love salad more than I already do. But buying fresh spinach and arugula changed everything. It was like going from Sunny D to fresh squeezed orange juice. So crisp! So fresh! So flavorful!!!

I then proceeded to make six salads. For myself. For the whole week. I’m not even kidding.

Sometimes, when I’m in the kitchen, I’ll pluck a few leaves of spinach from the bunch just to snack on because they’re that good.

Oh my word. Totally life changing.

4. Homemade Sound System

That insert on the chute of the food processor? Perfect for holding an iPhone playing Pandora and amplifying the sound x 100. I had many a kitchen jam session this weekend.

Clearly, because there was so much to celebrate!

Two thumbs way up for unexpected goodness all around.

beka stays in rochester : bin and barrel

I spent some time with Lauren (hi, Lauren!) in between shooting family sessions in Chili last Saturday. She thought it would be fun to go to Bin and Barrel, an antique store in Churchville. I had never been and I love nothing more than a low priced glass jar in my life so that sounded like a fun field trip to me.

Upon entering the store I found approximately 18 glass items that I was ready to claim…but then…THEN…I saw this, lowly and unassuming, laying on the floor:

I think I almost burst a blood vessel.

That, my friends, is a tried-and-true cast iron skillet. And all for the low, low price of $12.

TWELVE DOLLARS!!!

I still can’t believe it.

You’d better buckle up for a litany of posts related to cast iron cookery. I foresee many pancakes, grilled sandwiches, and seared chicken and fish in my future.

Oh. my. word. Bin and Barrel, I think this is the beginning of a beautiful relationship.

(Me and Castie up there? We’re already BFF’s.)

beka stays faithful : using the leaves

I have a small kitchen. You’d know that if I’d finally get around to taking pictures and posting them, but for now just visualize very tall white cabinets and very high ceilings and very little counter space. There’s a table in the kitchen that is slender in the middle, but has two leaves that fold out to the side, tripling the amount of space available for use. On most days I keep the leaves down because I don’t need the extra table space so I prefer the extra kitchen space.

What happens, more often that not, is that because I use the leaves so rarely I forget that they’re there. And then when I find myself mixing batter on the floor or using the top of the microwave to roll out cookies, I get frustrated and start to complain. I bemoan having so little work space. I wonder where in the world I’m going to beat the eggs?! When…let’s recall…I actually have ample space on which to mix the batter, roll the dough, beat the eggs. I just forget that it’s there.

Last weekend, with a pile of dishes scattered on any available flat space and irritation increasing by the minute, I remembered the leaves. And, because I’m a freak I can’t help but function in analogies, I wondered how often I make an unnecessary mess – not of strewn baking sheets and flour, but of everyday life problems – by forgetting to rely on the “leaves” the Lord has built into my life: reading his Word, spending time in prayer, turning to the multitude of friends and family he’s blessed me with. How often do I complain that I don’t have what I need when in reality I have exactly what I need, I just forget that it’s there?

As per the use of my table, it happens more often than not.

From James 5:

Is anyone among you in trouble? Let them pray. Is anyone happy? Let them sing songs of praise. 14 Is anyone among you sick? Let them call the elders of the church to pray over them and anoint them with oil in the name of the Lord. 15 And the prayer offered in faith will make the sick person well; the Lord will raise them up. If they have sinned, they will be forgiven. 16 Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.

Here’s to using the leaves: to reading, to praying, to being invested in relationships.

And here’s to making cookies. Delicious and thought-provoking. Win win.