The End

It is the end of an era. Say goodbye to Orange Is A Good Color. I'm a little sad inside :-) However - I'm excited about the next adventure! Salt For Flavor at saltforflavor.org. I'm looking forward to seeing you there!



Lot's of moving happening this month. The biggest move of all involves my family - they are moving out of the area to be closer to my dad's job. They will be gone by the middle of May :-( I'm pretty sad about them moving - but I know it will be better for everyone to live in the same area. My dad won't have to work away from the family anymore! Besides - my sister Rosie is staying here and my sister Hannah is staying for the summer!

The other move that's taking place is... My blog is moving to Wordpress! New style. New name.
Keep an eye out for the reveal!


Foodie Penpals

I am so excited! I am participating for the first time in a fun new program called Foodie Penpals! Lindsay over at The Lean Green Bean started the program back in September with around 30 participants as a way for foodies all over the country to connect and try new things. This month the program has grown to 600 participants in the US and Canada - not counting the new branch in the UK. How cool is that?!

Here's the short version of how it works (sort of):
 - On the 5th of the month you find out who you're matched with. - You have 72 hours to get in touch with them and figure out any food preferences. - You go shopping with 15 bucks and try to find all the cool stuff you can! - Before the 15th you mail your package. - You wait in anxious anticipation by the mail box until your package arrives. - You open your box and jump up and down with joy and excitement! - You resist temptation and take pictures of everything you got before devouring the wonderfulness. - On the 30th of the month you do a post on your blog about all the awesome stuff you got! - Then you start watching your Inbox for the next e-mail from Lindsay telling you who your new foodie penpal is!

Sound like fun? Visit The Lean Green Bean - Foodie Penpals for detailed information and to sign up!

Stay tuned for more adventures with Foodie Penpals!


Book Giveaway!

I'm giving away this excellent job hunters guide! Check out my review in the previous post. Don't be intimidated by the fact that this book is last years model - it is still a great reference book for anyone interested in finding that new source of income!
Just comment, share or re-tweet in order to be entered. Good luck and good hunting!

Overdue Book (Review)

I was going to review this book last year and didn't. It is now technically "out of date" but I'm going to review it anyways!

Knock 'Em Dead - The Ultimate Job Search Guide (2011) by Martin Yate   

Although my procrastination means that there is already a newer version of this book out - I feel that it is still very relevant to today's job hunters.
With five sections covering everything from productive resume writing to networking, the interview to closing the deal - this book covers it all! Written in an interesting and easy to read style, Mr. Yate takes a look at the most effective methods to use when looking for a job as well as what the interviewer sees and is looking for during the brief time you have to make an impression.
This book is great for today's job market! Because more people are hanging onto their jobs longer and employers are more willing to cut costs by working with less - good jobs seem to be harder to find. It is more important then ever to be able to "sell" yourself and your skills and this book gives you the tools to do that!
This 25th Anniversary Edition of Knock 'Em Dead even contains a brief summery of each of the thirty fastest-growing occupations in the current job market.
Whether you are fresh out of high school looking for your first job or have many years of experience under your belt and are trying to land a better one - this is a great book for you!

*I received this book for free from booksneeze.com. I was not obligated to write a good review - just my honest opinion.* 


And The Winner Is...

As promised - I am giving away the book "Love Food & Live Well" by Chantel Hobbs!
It was a tough decision considering that only ONE person other then my mother re-posted or commented in order to be entered into this giveaway.

So thank you and CONGRATULATIONS to Annika! You win!!!

(Stay tuned for another giveaway in the near future!)


Once again I have fallen down on the blog writing job. Maybe this will cheer you up... A post - with pictures!

March 17th (Saint Patrick's Day) was also my brother Kealen's 16th birthday! In honor of this momentous occasion, we (the siblings) decided to continue our newly begun tradition and take the birthday boy out for a fancy dinner at a snazzy local restaurant. This tradition first started when Kealen, Noah, Rosie and I surprised Hannah for her 18th birthday by getting all dressed up and going out for an amazing meal... I think that may have been the first time we'd ever done something together, without the rest of the family or countless friends tagging along. In any case - we all agree that this is a tradition worthy of continuing! We also agree that it is just way to expensive to do for every birthday, so we're limiting it to 16th, 18th and 30th birthdays (I had to talk them into that last one.)
These evenings have been full of silly conversations, delicious food (very important on a Farris outing) and for some odd reason - bathroom rating?

Kealen's celebration took place at the little Prospect Street Cafe in downtown Bellingham.

Here are a few pictures to show you the fun we had, good food we ate and the following horrible games we bowled!

Happy birthday Kealen-boy!


Book Giveaway!

I am going to give away this book that I just reviewed (see my last post) in the next two weeks! The winner of said book will be chosen via the very scientific method of drawing a name out of a hat. In order to get your name in the hat you need to either leave a comment on a post anywhere on this blog or share one of my posts via Twitter or Facebook! (You'll need to mention the share to me so I know it happened.) Considering that there are very few comments on this blog - I'm thinking this will be an easy win for anyone who does decide to comment or share! Thank you in advance... And good luck!

(I am able to give this book away because it was given to me by Blogging for Books)

A Review: Love Food & Live Well by Chantel Hobbs

In her book Love Food & Live Well Chantel Hobbs gives us a down-to-earth and realistic way to "Lose weight, get fit and taste life at it's very best!" In this book Chantel gives a recount of her own struggle with weight and her journey from nearly 350 pounds to the lean, fit woman she is today. Her open recollection of the emotions and experiences she had while being over weight make this book an encouraging read!
Although some of the writing style and phrases used became a little repetitive as I was reading, I did feel as though I was being addressed by a real woman with real struggles and real successes. This book seems to be a combination "how-to" book and a personal conversation between the author and the world. Even though at times I had a hard time staying interested (I wanted her to just get to the point), this book is jam packed with helpful information and encouraging words.
Chantel addresses some of the bad "deals" we are sold as Americans (the Barbie Myth) and tells us about the best "deal" of all - the one that God offers us!
In the later chapters of this book, she lays out some practical, hands-on tools to assist with weight loss. Chantel passionately discusses carbs, protein and fat and the roles they play in our health and diets. She gives important tips on "how to make meals meaningful" including quick, delicious sounding recipes and delves into the "moving" and exercise portion of our lives, giving detailed directions (including pictures) on different ways to switch up the normal routine. 

I recommend this book to anyone looking for a light and encouraging book that gives helpful advice about health and fitness!

(Waterbrook Multnomah Publishers has provided me with a complimentary copy of this book for review purposes.)


Family Ties

Sometimes it is so hard to put into words the thoughts that are chasing each other around inside my head. This is one of those times...
The death of my cousin has reminded me once again how important family is and how necessary it is to cultivate and maintain those long distance family relationships.

So - if I am related to you, I want you to know how very much I love you!


Life vs Death

This week has been hard.      Emotionally.      Mentally.       I'm tired and I'm not really sure what I'm supposed to think or feel anymore.

Wednesday was a mixed up jumble of almost every emotion there is.
Frustrations from a disconnected phone and a disorganized job.
Excitement because one of the girls from my house FINALLY went into labor!
Worry and concern that she would think I didn't care because I couldn't text from my disconnected phone.
And then...
Stunning, tears-running-down-the-face sadness when we got the news that my cousin Ian had been killed by a train.
Helplessness as I watched my mother mourn this cousin that I barely knew.
Blank. Nothing. Sometimes feeling like I had to remind myself how to breathe.
JOY! Excitement. I got the text that told me a new little baby girl had arrived!

One life had ended, another began.

Even now... as thoughts tumble around my brain... I don't know what to think.
Maybe I'll be able to grab one and hold onto it... later.

(I've noticed that this post is incredibly depressing. I will write a more cheerful post, detailing the positive ways this week has affected me, in the near future. Thanks for reading!)


Winter Blues Solutions

During these cold, gray days of winter it can be extremely easy to fall into a less than cheerful mood. Ok - maybe I'm understating the problem. We can get depressed, grumpy, mad at the world. We can start to go just plain old stir-crazy! Clouds and below freezing temperatures seem to amplify the rest of life's little problems.

It is important for our sanity (and the sanity of those around us) to go to battle against these bad-mood monsters!
*Check out this post my mom mentioned that takes a creative look at a similar every day challenge many of us have: here.
I decided to write this post because the gray skies of winter have a pretty big affect on my mood. It is much harder to be grumpy when the sun is shining brightly and it's warm enough for shorts and a tank top! I have to continually fight against my bad mood. Everything I do can affect my mood in some way or another when the sky looks gloomy.

So how do I fight? There are the obvious ways: reading the Bible regularly, spending time in prayer, getting enough sleep (all areas I could improve).
There are other things we can do that may not be quite as obvious... I take liquid Vitamin D and an herbal extract Good Mood Tonic every day. Reducing sugar intake and increasing "good fat" (coconut oil, cod liver oil, etc.) intake is important for energy levels and over all well being. Having a clean (and organized!) living space is key to a positive outlook on life. Consciously enjoying the little things in life is very important! Take the time to enjoy and appreciate those things that we wouldn't get a chance to do if it was warm and sunny outside. Things such as - savoring a cup of hot tea... Working on a puzzle while the wind howls outside... Filing your taxes in less then fifteen minutes because you live in Washington and don't have to file state taxes! Walking through a field of untouched snow in the moonlight... Watching the snow falling outside while you fall asleep. Little things can provide some of life greatest joys!

Don't let those winter doldrums get you down... Fight back with every "little thing" you've got!

What are some of the ways that you combat the winter blues?