Category Archives: Soul

1/365 2015

Haze, laze and waiting
For nothing, for nothing appears
Just do, spring arrives

My Flourless (gluten-free) & Dairy-free Chocolate Cake


The kitchen table—the place where broken hearts are mended, the place where everyone congregates at a party, and most importantly, the place where you share a meal with family and friends. Come sit for a spell, swap recipes and reveal secret ingredients.

In my family, we celebrate Easter with a huge egg hunt and dinner. Serving a dessert that everyone can enjoy has become a challenge as my family has expanded and food allergies have developed. For me, this means creating a dessert that is both gluten and dairy-free. By searching the internet and making a few tweaks of my own, I contrived a recipe for delicious gluten and dairyfree flourless chocolate cake. What’s best is that you can change the flavor profile just by changing whether you top it with fresh berries, candied jalapenos, simple powdered sugar, or ground espresso beans. Or, add a bit of vanilla or orange extract as another option. This is a rich cake with a dense, fudgy center and crispy edges, perfect for a single layer presentation.

My Flourless & Dairy-free Chocolate Cake
Makes one 8-inch cake

• 4 ounces fine-quality bittersweet chocolate (check ingredient list to make sure there is no added milk or milk fat)
• 1/2 cup of coconut oil
• 3/4cup sugar
• 3 large eggs
• 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
optional toppings: powdered sugar, berries, a white chocolate drizzle, cocoa powder

Preheat oven to 375°F

Line bottom of 8-inch round baking pan with wax paper cut to fit.
Grease pan and wax paper with oil.
Break up chocolate bar into pieces.
Place chocolate and 1/2 cup of coconut oil into a microwave safe bowl.
Microwave on medium power for 30 second increments,
stirring between each increment until melted.
(The coconut oil may be chunky when first removing it from jar)
Once melted, whisk sugar into chocolate mixture. Add eggs, and whisk again.
Add cocoa powder to mixture slowly while whisking until combined. Do not overmix.
Pour batter into pan and place on middle rack in oven.
Bake for 30 minutes. Remove from oven and cool cake in pan for 5 minutes.
Turn over onto serving plate and carefully remove wax paper.
Dust with powdered sugar and top with your choice of ingredients.


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Soulful Saturday: Week 9

Soulful SaturdayI apologize for posting today’s theme late. It’s been a hectic day full of photo shoots, play practices and that awful deed called bill paying. I’m having a hard time staying positive. So in an attempt to be positive, this week’s theme is renewal based on the promise of spring which in some ways gives hope.

As always, feel free to share your art, poem, short story, photo and post a link under this post.

Last week, my hubby did a piece of artwork for last week’s theme of “describe the ghosts that live in your house.” His contribution can be seen here:

My contribution can be seen here:

+46 Soulful Saturday: Week 8

+46 Soulful Saturday

This week’s theme thanks to the theme generator on WordPress.

Italo Calvino said, “The more enlightened our houses are, the more their walls ooze ghosts.” Describe the ghosts that live in your house.

Create art or writing based on the above prompt and post a link, if you so desire.
Here’s my contribution for the week:

The ghosts in my house aren’t only thoughts and memories. Some of them are present in physical matter left behind from years past. Holes in the wall from teenage angst, a last minute carpet bought for the floor that I eventually gave birth to my youngest daughter on, an entryway marking the growth of children over the years.

When I was young, we moved around almost every single year until I was 12. There was no time for physical items to becomes markers of past events. There was no time for bonds to be formed among friends or even family outside my primary unit. No ghosts in those houses and apartments at all. The place that held ghosts for me at that stage of life was my mother’s car. Many road trips and moves were spent in her car where each of the three of us had our designated living area… mine was the back window. I laid against the cold of the back window watching other cars drive by and that was my place. Even though we stopped moving after I turned 12 and my Mom remarried, it took me years to feel at home anywhere other than a car. When I turned 15, my Mom wanted to move again, I told her no. I told her she could move without me, but that I was not moving again. And, truly, I haven’t. I may have lived in a couple different apartments before buying the house we have lived in for 12 years, but they have all been within about an hour of each other. Now, I have a home, ghosts and all.

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+38 Baby bird return to the nest


Any mama knows that as much as we want to encourage each one of our babes to fly the nest and pursue their passions as they become adults, we also mourn the loss of the day to day interaction experienced when living together. Today I was granted a rare chance to savor the last few moments of my eldest baby’s transition between child and adult. He decided to come back home to live temporarily until he firms up his plans to possibly move to California. God please grant me the wisdom to use these next few hours, days, months wisely and not to waste them.

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+33 Measure of a woman


What you see is what you get. I think this image speaks for itself. Life is not fair. You can work out 4-5 times per week for months on end, you can run for miles, you can watch what you eat (and f it up, too) but you can’t change everything.  What do people who do not know me see when they look at me? A fat girl. What do I see when I look in the mirror? 8 times out of 10, a fat girl. 2 times out of 10 I might see all of the hard work I’ve put into reshaping this worn out body, this worn out womb. I might see this holder of five children as something to accept. I doubt I will ever see it as something beautiful. It’s not. But, maybe one day when it’s 6 sizes smaller, I’ll be more at peace with myself and the pendulum will shift.

This is my “Soulful Saturday” theme contribution for the week.

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+32 Soulful Saturday: Week 5

+32 Soulful Saturday

This week’s theme is “real life”. Write about it. Draw, paint, photograph… do something and post a link here, if you like.

I haven’t finished my piece for last week’s theme of fire, but will do so at some point.

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+29 Gratitude

Wednesday… day of gratitude for the sharing of knowledge from strangers. Yet again, the men on the coal website answered my questions about my coal stoker.

Creatively speaking, I have ideas brewing but nothing coming to fruition. I need to go out and buy oil pastels.


+28 Winter Birth

bday1-2Today is my birthday. Much of my journey of the past year has been focused on my physical body and trying fervently to rid myself of the extra baggage it has acquired over the past twenty three years. This year I am continuing to focus on the physical but added this blog in as a way to return to focusing on my soul and creativity… perhaps to shed the baggage of accumulated negative waste in my head. I shot this photo during my birthday run on my favorite trail. As a January baby, I tend toward the thread of melancholy that weaves it way in and out of the winter months. I love  how silent snow reflects the moonlight, cold yet inviting.

Memories to savor from my birthday:
– running through the brisk air at a faster than usual pace.
– realizing that despite our immaturity as young parents and our weaknesses in general, we have raised a well-balanced, loving adult son. I treasure his visit for my celebration, the dancing to Just Dance 4, and the conversation about emotions we had.
– time around the diningroom table with 4 out of my 5 kids, my hubby, my Mom, and one of my sisters… of special note was the very odd sounding rendition of “Happy Birthday” sung in varying accents.
– a delicious flourless chocolate cake with fresh raspberries, blueberries, bananas and peanut granola lovingly prepared by my husband.

And, another pic from my run…


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+24 Solitary


Solitary yet surrounded

Not always alone

Not always known


(My Soulful Saturday contribution for week 3)


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