Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Balance Resolutions

Running a business, managing a farm, and caring for a family can take up more than the amount of time available in a day. I'm finding more and more its hard to carve time out for myself as my business grows so learning how to balance things is important. I also find that long work days and multiple interruptions can affect my ability to concentrate. I'm searching for ways to have more balance in my life. These are some resolutions I've made to find more balance in my life this year.

When the weather is nice, a walk mid-afternoon (during the warmest time of day) helps to relax and refocus. Sometimes that is not enough so I'm finding that just walking away from things every couple of hours to move my body is also important. I usually work by myself so blasting the radio and dancing for a few minutes is an option I can take advantage of more often.

In spring, summer and fall I work most Saturdays at the farmers market. This makes it important to focus on another day of the week to take off or at least fewer hours one day. I am trying to start a habit of working less on Fridays but not just that, I want to exercise more on Fridays since I never do enough of that. This will help relieve stress, help refocus and maintain weight. A friend of mine does Zumba on Friday mornings so that is a good opportunity to exercise and spend more time with a friend. Working solo limits the time I spend with other people. Although I network alot locally that is different than spending quality time with friends so another focus is to find new creative ways to spend time with friends.
My kids are nearly grown with one moved out and the other a senior in high school which allows me to spend more time now growing my business, but carving time out for myself is still important.
How do you balance your life?

Monday, January 21, 2013

2012 Conferences in Review

Christine Teeple, Sarah Richards, Cindy Jones

Ann Harmon, Cindy Jones

George Wahl at the Colorado Aromatics Booth at the Lavender Festival
Dr. Cindy Jones talking on Biochemistry 101 at the SCC meeting
Before we get too far into 2013 I want to review some conferences I've been to this year. Since my kids are getting older its getting easier to take trips and get to educational events.

In April I went to the International Lavender Conference in Sequim Washington. This was fun for a number of reasons. I got to meet in person some colleagues I'd been working with in developing the United States Lavender Association (USLGA); Mary and Tim Bergstrom, Curtis Swift, Kathy Kimbrough, Sarah Richards and Christine Teeple, as well as making many more friends in the lavender industry. I also met Annie Harmon of Morning Myst Botanics who I'd been collaborating with and talking to for many years about distilling.

Summers were busy with farmers markets but we went to the Western Colorado Lavender Association's second annual Lavender Festival. This was our second time so we've been to all of them. My son and our foreign exchange student went with us and helped alot. Its a great festival with a great crowd.

We managed a trip to visit family in August. Then I went back to Grand Junction to attend the SW Lavender conference in September. At that meeting I talked on Using Distillates in Cosmetics. I toured some of the lavender farms their and visited with friends/colleagues again.

In November I went to the Intermountain West's Society of Cosmetic Chemists meeting in Salt Lake City. There I gave a talk on Biochemistry 101; a basic biochemistry talk that addressed the chemical groups of cosmetic ingredients. This was a great opportunity to meet with other cosmetic chemists and learn about more ingredients. I also had the opportunity to tour some manufacturing facilities.

I hope to take a few fun trips in 2013 as well, although nothing is definate yet.

Monday, January 7, 2013

Marinated Black Eyed Peas

Black eyed peas are a symbol of good luck and prosperity in the new year; at least in the Southern USA. My husband made this delicious black eyed peas salad for New Year's Dinner.  According to Wikipedia it is also eaten on the Jewish New Year, Rosh Hashana, for good luck. The reason I liked this recipe is that it is vegetarian and light. This recipe is adapted from "Vegetarian Celebrations" by Nava Atlas. If you didn't get enough black eyed peas for your Good Luck, I'm sure its not too late to try this recipe.

2 cups black eyed peas (canned or cooked yourself)
1 red bell pepper cut into strips
1/4 cup finely chopped onion
3 tablespoons fresh parsley
3 tablespoons olive oil
juice of 1/2 lemon or more to taste
1 garlic clove crushed/chopped
salt and pepper to taste

Mix all ingredients together and let sit an hour or more for flavors to blend. We had this with cornbread.
Do you have another vegetarian black eyed peas recipes?


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