goodness and life

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My mom loves to travel.  She is fortunate enough to be able to see the world and she is also very generous and always thinks of her girls.  You see out of the three of us, I for certain am the least traveled.  My sister lived in France for 5 years with her family, of course picked up French and could speak it fluently.  In my mind that was like a dream.  She was living a dream.  She missed her family here in the states though and is now back and soon her husband will also be by her side.  The paperwork and all the shenanigans to have a family together when each is a citizen of a different county is a big hassle it seems.  But after nearly 2 years of paperwork and now finally he has an interview…he will be back with his family where he belongs…and look at that.  I got all off track again!  My point being this.  My mom brings back gifts.  Last spring when she visited Italy she brought me back seeds to plant in my garden.  Two weekends ago I planted them.  They are showing signs of growth and silly me…I didn’t label them so I have no idea really what that one above will be.  I know the melon…or it could be zucchini but we will see.  I plan to put them in the real ground this weekend and it will be so fun to watch them grow and be able to eat the fruit/veggies they will produce.  My mom said Italy had the best tasting produce ever.  I shared these seeds too with my friend Ronda, my Aunt and Mama Bear next door.  There were plenty to go around, plenty more still in fact.  I’m sure I will be sharing throughout this spring and summer the progress of our garden.  I did figure out something good recently too.  My butterfly plant had been infested with these tiny bugs…covered!! The same bugs that destroyed my watermelon plant a few seasons back and the same bugs that seem to love my roses. My solution is very natural and non toxic too. I took peppermint soap, diluted with water and sprayed the plant.  The plant survived…the bugs did not!!!  So this is my plan to protect my melon this season. I’ll keep you posted. xo

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get your green on

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Happy St. Patricks Day but more importantly….Happy birthday to my younger and handsome brother Brandon and my Amazing father-n-law who also both were born on this celebratory day!  Turns out I have had this shirt since 2011 and wear it every St. Patrick’s Day, also turns out I wore the same exact earrings today, not planned but shows what a creature of habit I am though;)

I was so greatly touched yesterday by the encouraging comments left on my blog post.  It seems I reach some of you readers out there but I wonder if you know how deeply you touch me.  I can’t tell you how much I appreciate a comment left.  I don’t want to say it’s because I’m insecure and I require cheering but I have found that the way I work best is with positive reinforcement and simply a pat on the back and “job well done” is all I need to keep trucking.  I have always been this way. A few encouraging words go a very long way with me so I have also become somewhat of an encourager myself.  Maybe too much at times….or so my kids think.

Favorite thing I heard today was from Dylan aka Moon Rebel “I want to learn to do a back flip, and I know I can do it because I’m athletic and capable, I just need to commit”  I like it.  He also found a butterfly with a broken wing.  Picked it up then placed it in our garden.

and the very last thing shared today here in this space is the inspiration and free bookcase that was delivered to my driveway by Uncle Don and scouted by Aunt Lynn and if it hadn’t been for my father-n-law knowing I was on the search for a bookcase then it would not have fallen into place so perfectly.  Let’s just say it will include yellow paint…such a very happy color and peacock-blue.  More to come on that later. I hope you will come back to see.

Color makes me happy!

This AND That

I can’t believe it. I just can’t believe I have not blogged since last week. I think it may have something to do with my video making craze. I’m so into making video clips these days it’s all I can think about. I dream of it. Not even joking I literally have dreams of making films. Since I’m talking about it, I will share at the end of this blog my Sunday video. That’s what I have been doing, making a video every single Sunday for 5 weeks straight now. The practice is great but making them slightly different from one another is a little challenge. Of course each Sunday is its own but it will always include my family, eating and just hanging out at our house. I keep them private and you will need a password to watch it. My password for all my Sunday videos is always.     love

Since I have been utterly consumed in video dreamland it has left little time for anything else. However, I must share with you a recent impulse purchase. I got an email from The Paper Source and February is one of my favorite months considering it has so many hearts available for my eyes to see, whelp, the email was about valentine stuff. I saw these most amazing, pretty glasses and I couldn’t resist. Right then and there I clicked PURCHASE. Before I knew it I was typing in my payment information. They arrived today and I have already showed every human being who will look at them. This just means I have to toss our 4 jars to make room in my cupboard. I mean look at them! Great stuff right? Sadly, last time I check they were out of stock, so everyone else and their mom must have thought they were the bees knees too!

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I suppose the last thing I have to talk about is the lovely blog I have admired for quite some time now. It’s called Natalie Creates and she shares 20 random acts of kindness that cost 5 dollars and under. It’s worth checking out.

That’s all for now. As if anyone is really reading this besides my mom. Thank you mom, you have always always been my biggest support.  I can’t forget Kate too, she always leaves a little love on my page after she reads my swirling mind nonsense.

sunday dinner

IMG_1594My word.  Balance.  Already I’m taking on so many projects I can’t seem to say NO to.  They are all creative and wonderful projects and I know creatively they will help me to grow, to get better, to learn more.  This is another project.  A personal one along with a group project.  In NOW YOU alumni group some gals have gathered to cook.  We each pick a cookbook, try new recipes and share our results.  Some of us have blogs to share them on some will share on IG and others on Flickr.  I have decided I will try my recipes on Sundays, a good way to end the week….or begin it.  However you look at it.  This is our first Sunday meal of 2015 and I combined it with yet another project.  The year-long time capsule film making class I’m taking with Xanthe.  We used our cookbook that my mom actually bought for my oldest because he too loves to cook.  The cook book is “Barefoot Contessa – Back to the Basics” We kept it very simple and not very complicated at all, similar to how we cook anyways.  Tuscan Lemon Chicken and Pan-Roasted Root Vegetables.  We ended our meal with a family game, chocolate fondu with strawberries.  YUMMY!

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Sunday dinner from Tracie West on Vimeo.

List of creative projects for 2015

Cooking with 52 Weeks of Now You/Sunday Dinners

A Year long Film Making/Time Capsule class

Shooting with Soul with a group of gals and a shared blog

Coloring with Miss Moonspinner

All these projects include film and photography

plus my blog:)

Mary Lou Heard Garden Tour 2014

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I’m a little late in this post but I had so many pictures to go through I tried to narrow it down a little.  I really, really enjoy gardening.  It’s therapeutic for me to get my hands in the soil and plant seeds that I get super excited to watch grow.  I truly, truly let things bloom where they are planted it’s just so exciting to me to watch a little green plants pop out of the soil and turn into a beautiful flowers or something to eat.  I have three sunflowers that replanted themselves in the strangest of spots in the garden, one is right in front of my back window so I will be able to see its big yellow head when it blooms.  I got a random holly hock in my front garden from seeds I had collected from a nursery that was going out of business,  it surprised me when it popped up this spring and is now in bloom.  I even love weeding.  I just love being close to the earth that’s all and so I really respect and admire the people who open their homes and gardens up for the Mary Lou Heard Memorial Garden Tour   You can read a little about Mary’s story HERE .  She was an amazing, strong and brave woman who leaves behind a rich legacy.  A single mom who struggled with depression and found her passion and healing in gardening.  All the money donated goes to the Sheepfold  and non-profit organization who helps single mommies.  It’s all so good, all of it.

And now for a few of my favorite pictures from the garden tour which I had a wonderful time at with some really amazing ladies I know.  I hope you enjoy the pictures and can imagine the time spent developing these gorgeous gardens.

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IMG_4667And below are my very own hollyhocks that I have been so excited to watch grow and bloom.

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rain! rain!

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We got a tiny smidgen of rain last night.  We love the smell of rain on the asphalt and because of our friend Heather we have a rain song and we would like to share it with you here in the video attached.  California desperately needs rain.  Please send rain wishes our way.

 

It’s a small world

I have this book called 99 things to do when you have time.  Number  5 was to look up lyrics to a song you half remembered.  I know it’s sort of crazy out of all the really, really great music out there that I would pick “It’s a small world”  I just remember a few years back when the kids were small and we could afford season passes to Disneyland back then the prices were kind of reasonable.  Any way, I have such great memories of Disneyland with the kids.  Abbie claims to barely remember the times we spent at Disneyland, she is the youngest  so technically she didn’t get as much time in as the boys. The point of my story is, I never got tired of the ride “It’s a small world”  I love how happy it is, the feeling of the boat crashing up against the sides and the splashy water sound and the COLOR, all the awesome color, and the big melting pot of all different ethnic groups from around the globe, smiling, holding hands and being united.  I looked up the simple lyrics today and as simple as they are.  I believe them with my whole heart.  It’s just wholesome stuff.

small worldThis was my last trip in “It’s a Small World” Feb. 2010

This simple song brought back a flood of memories from the time Tim our cousin treated all of us to a day at Disneyland, but not just Disneyland but the exclusive Club 33.  I had never been to Club 33 before or since in all my days living in California.  I decided to share a few images from that day.  I think this is one of our last trips to Disneyland that I can remember.  Our kids nearly grew up there, or at least the boys.  When we had passes we would go on Friday’s after work or even some days during the week.  Abbie again being the littlest and only girl didn’t get as many years there before the prices went way up.  I remember on this day it was raining, which didn’t bother me for one second, I had a rain jacket, rain boots and rain hat and I LOVE the RAIN. This also meant the crowds were less the lines were shorter and that made for a very awesome day.  I still have such gratitude for Tim and Patrick treating our families to such a wonderful and memorable experience.  It seems like just yesterday.

tim and kidsTim is so good with the kids.   Here he is with the two littles.

tim and abbieAbbie got rides from not only Tim but….

matt abbieother cousin Matt too

rainy daySee what I mean about rain.  I promise this is few people compared to summer time rush

all of usOur family with the generous givers

club 33A peek at club 33, Abbie even had me take pictures in the bathroom, I’ll spare you that

fairylandthe girls in fairyland oh, and one boy too!

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It’s a world of laughter and a world of tears

It’s a world of hopes and a world of fears

There’s so much that we share

It’s a small world after all

There is just one moon

And one golden sun

And a smile means friendship to everyone

Though the mountains divide

And the oceans are wide

It’s a small world after all

A small, small world

clean floors are worth celebrating

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It all began Thursday morning.  The alarm goes off at 5:45, I drag out of bed because I have never been a morning person.  My ritual is feeding the animals first, and the kitties they run around my legs meowing and meowing and I think it’s so cute.  I start my coffee and then I sit and read my devotion.  This particular morning had one of my favorite references which is about not worrying. This one found in Luke 12:22-24 “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat, or about your body, what you will wear.  Life is more than food, and the body more than clothes.  Consider the Ravens:  They do not sow or reap, they have no storeroom or barn, yet God feeds them.  And how much more valuable are you than the birds!”  Those words just never get old to me.  I did all the other mom stuff and had to photograph this rose.  This rose motorcycle man ripped off the rose bush for me.  Yes, I say ripped because he didn’t use clippers or anything like that.  It just made me smile so big when he brought it in this morning. It was a good pause plus I got a kiss with it.  So this is why I begin with the picture of the rose.

Now let’s get to the floors!  Also this morning I just started to freak out a little as the beautiful morning light hit my kitchen floors.  I mean I said out loud “oh my gosh the floors are gross!” “I think I will need to do something about them today when I get home from work, I just have to. ”  And so….I did.  Below is the process and you know it was a beautiful process.  I completely enjoyed the job.  I’m not kidding you.  I crank on the music, grab my camera.  Clean a little pause for pictures and just take the entire process in.  I just know when I finish,  walking on that floor will feel so much better. I still love my cork floors, I just do.  Don’t even regret putting the cork in the kitchen.  It feels nice beneath the feet.  Speaking of feet, try not to look very close at mine.  Bluck.  They could use some major attention, but it’s real.  Just keeping it real.  So now my floors, they are clean and they feel nice and they look pretty, and they shine.  We all know though this will only last maybe 24 hours if I’m lucky, then the crumbs start hitting the floor and pushing against the edges.  And then I sort of ignore it for a time until one morning I will notice the pretty morning light shining on all the bits of chunky dust on my kitchen floor.  But today, I celebrate!  I celebrate my clean floors.  And btw, doesn’t every good mom clean her floors in her work clothes? I bet so.

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The before floorIMG_6156

My mom brought me back this kitchen towel from Arkansas.  She said “this is so you”  and we laughed and laughedIMG_6158

Dylan even had fun with the cleaning of the floors, he had his own soundtrack going thoughIMG_6165

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I love to keep containers and re-use them for stuff like this.  My rag was an old t-shirt.IMG_6169

Okay so when I use the timer, I’m not super picky about how clear the shot is, it’s just the idea of what’s going on hereIMG_6176

See there, cleaning in my pretty work shirtIMG_6172

Eeeeek, those feet but look at those shiny floorsIMG_6182

And motorcycle man, he mowed the lawnIMG_6189

Our littlest and only girl, had a good idea when she took her school work outsideIMG_6197

and the pumpkins, they still grow
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My very first blog award!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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I just very recently met a really cool blogger whose name is Dean  and yes Dean is a gal who lives in England with her darling little T and her hubby!  Her blog is really full of good stuff; I encourage you to visit if you have not already.  So Miss Dean from England gave me a “blog your heart out” award today!!  My very first blog award EVER!!  Well according to Dean, it’s not a “real” award however, I’m gunna say it’s very real to me, like I have arrived or something!! Little old me with not even 100 readers.  Yes, I’m going to say significant award even because I feel honored to have been recognized by my fellow peer in this blog world and to be alongside some really awesome bloggers. Some of these gals have like in the thousands of readers!  It’s completely mind blowing to me.   And here I am!  Completely honored and may even try to do a real live cart-wheel cause of it, in my mind I’m already cartwheeling in a big open field of poppies.  Okay, get ahold of yourself Tracie, deep breaths.  With this award I’m to answer a few questions and then nominate five bloggers who I think are most deserving of this award.  I’m so excited!!!  Dean, you have no idea how special you have me feeling today…on top of the world!

Who/What encouraged you to start blogging?

Life in the Wylde West has been going about just barely over one year now.  However like many of us, I was a big time journal-er growing up, I had diaries when I was a tween, I had journals as a young adult, I used to type in my word processor notes and milestones for my first born and placed them in a binder so sort of like a blog in a binder, then there was a site called VOX, I blogged there years back until they went under.  I came back to blog on WordPress mostly because I have a skin condition that drives me crazy and I was blogging about healthy eating and dealing with my skin troubles and OCD’ness.  But then it became much more fun to write about every-day-ness, and a poem here or there, or an interview with someone I admire.  So it went from Healing the Natural Way to….Life in the Wylde West.  I live in California on the West Coast, our last name is West and had our third child been another boy, his name would have been Wylde but that third child came out a girl and we couldn’t name a sweet girl Wylde.  So I named my blog Wylde!

How did you choose what topics to blog about?

I’m going to say, the topics choose me.  I just get up each morning and as the day progresses I decide what I may talk about. Whether it be a recipe, an interview, a poem, or just what I did that day, of course my kids (that’s a given) or like today, I got this awesome award so, it chose me!

Tell us something that people don’t know about you?

Gee, I’ve literally almost put it all out there already but…..maybe the time I was engaged to my now husband and my parents were out-of-town so we took Mom’s convertible Mercedes, worked to get that top off, and drove to Beverly Hills to act as if we were among the Rich and famous. She left the keys, what do you expect?

What three words best describe your style?

Colorful, mismatched and repetitive (meaning the same few outfits get rotated around)

What do you like to do when you are not blogging?

There’s that new obsession for Mad Men, tinkering in my garden, taking tons of nonsense pictures, hanging out with Motorcycle man and the kids.

Now for my five pix all fellow WordPress gals because I wasn’t sure if I could go out of this WordPress world, I’m really very new to awards and all.  I have a few really awesome friends who blog on blogspot or blogger, or something like that name but today these awards are presented to my fellow WordPress bloggers.

Susan because since the very beginning she has visited my site faithfully and sometimes is my one and only “like” or comment on any given day.  Plus she takes really; really beautiful pictures and I love how she sees the world through her lens.

Heidi someone relatively new to me but I love that she is a witty farm girl from Canada who tells really cute stories about her girls and shares recipes too!

Joyce because she is a working mama who loves her two babes like no other and shares openly and honestly and most often I’m nodding my head in agreement, like I feel just like you Joyce, like exactly!

Vivian   I just love her and I don’t even know her!  I found her one time while I was just looking around one day and I love her heart for God and she is so encouraging to me, she always stops by with kind words and advice even.  Although she hasn’t blogged for a good long while, it’s my hope she can find some time because I just plain like her.

Caitlin a very talented young, HARD working gal who is one of those bloggers who has over a 1,000 readers!  She is just incredible and although I’m twice her age, I completely enjoy what she has to share on her blog.  She’s darling, entertaining and she also shares recipes! And even though she is very popular she still will come visit little old me!

Apples and Rain….yes more apples and rain;)

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Someone read my blog about CHANGE and she did something about it.  I received the most beautiful handmade necklace today in the mail.  It read “change” and it truly touched my heart.  I have a dear friend who has a name but I like to call her Ocean’s Child, first because she adores anything to do with the ocean and the ocean it reminds me of her.  Second, I like John Lennon, he is my favorite Beatle and well wouldn’t you know, it’s his birthday today!  How crazy is that!  I really love that song Julia so very much and in the this song it has a line “Ocean Child”. My friend has a  beautiful Etsy store called Two Mermaids  and she makes beautiful hand blown beads and she sells fun ocean themed gifts and mermaids of course….everything mermaid!  You should go visit her store, you will not be disappointed.

So remember earlier today I talked about rain and apples?  Well since it rained we wanted to bake of course but not our apple pie, nope.  We decided to make apple pizza instead.  Below are some of the images from our rainy day baking.  I don’t like writing recipes out very much, I’m not a big measurer and things like that so sometimes it’s hard to stop and really think about how to tell someone how we make things but I have tried of course, after all I do have a recipe tab.  This recipe does have measurements though because it’s not really ours, it’s Mrs. Ostgaard’s apple pie recipe from when all three of my kids went through the 5th grade.  They all made this pie, we just happened to use her ingredients and turn it into a pizza instead.  Meaning we just rolled the dough flat instead of placing it in a pie dish.

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While the apple pizza baked, we ran out to play in the rain.  Below are my two favorite shots of the rain girl.

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TA DA!  Apple Pizza

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