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SPR IN G 2012


Contents open

Director’s Letter 5


Do Something! 12

Let Her Go 14 create

Make Something! 18

Blossom: Lilacs and Lavender 20


Be Well 24

Discovering Self Compassion 26 explore Take Me to Greece 30 nourish Spring Meal 38 Community Supported Agriculture 47 Sandwich Cookies 50 play A Sense of Community 56 embellish Subtly Spring 65 Rainy Day Up-Dos 78 Beautifully Bright 80 love Five Spring Dates 84 The Pursuit of Togetherness 86 muse The Road Less Traveled 90 Do Something that Scares You 96 close Back Story 100 SPR IN G 2012


{Open} verb * remove the covers or wrapping from

Director’s Letter

With this year’s spring issue, we’re celebrating our 1-year anniversary! Um,

we can come to share our hopes, dreams, and even fears. And after reading

wait… how did that year fly by so quickly? Since I wrote the first of these

through this issue (several times), I am 100% convinced, not to mention

letters 12 months ago, a lot has changed for me, personally. I moved, got a

inspired, that we are well on our way to achieving just that.

full-time job, and scored a handsome husband. And when I take a moment

Happy Spring!

to look back at the past year, I’m so grateful for all of the ups and downs (there were many) and for the fact that we were able to successfully publish four issues that we can be very proud of. I like to think that we’ve grown up a bit at The Violet. Last year, we were all about being bright and bold, and, don’t get me wrong, we still very much appreciate that message, but now we’re beginning to embrace a more subtle and understated spirit. It’s always a good idea to allow oneself to reinvent

Camilla Salem

every now and then, and what better season to do this than spring? We’ve taken on quite a few more contributors than usual with this issue, and they have brought beautiful, important stories to share with us all. We’ve created two new sections (one of the benefits of an online publication) - Explore, where we’ll share stories and advice on traveling near and far, and Love, where we dive into relationships of all kinds. We’re excited to see these sections grow and flourish. Even though I find myself looking back quite a bit, I am also very focused on the future. It’s been a learning process here, and we’re still smoothing out some of the bumps as we strive to turn this small online magazine into a solid brand. We want to be a space for ideas and creativity, a place where

SPR IN G 2012



meet the rockstar team behind this issue of the violet!











A curly-haired,

Molly Yeh is a

Camilla is a 6’0 tall



Jackie lives in New


writer and percus-

California native

Ashlee Gadd is an

Jasmine is a

York’s Hudson

girl split between

sionist living in

who enjoys food (a

aspiring writer &

southern California

Valley with her two

Ottawa (journal-

New York City. She

lot), yoga, creativity

amateur photog-

native living in

dogs, Rocco and

ism school) and

is a recent gradu-

and daydreaming.

rapher residing in

Long Beach, CA,

Suzette. Known as

London (home). An

ate of The Juilliard

She is a graduate

Sacramento, Cali-

with her super-

“the resident pa-

apple lover, dinner

School and assistant

of U.C. Berkeley’s

fornia. When she’s

hot, hair stylist

parazzi”, it was no

party enthusiast &

editor of The Juil-

department of

not making lists

husband, Levi, and

surprise that she’s

bedroom balle-

liard Journal. In

Peace and Conflict

and guzzling Go

their kitties, Gretel

ended up making

rina, Emily enjoys

her free time, this

Studies and admits

Girl energy drinks,

and Lily. True to

her living as a pho-

picnics, baking,


to having amassed

you can find her

her Gemini nature,

tographer. Jackie

80’s post-punk and

enjoys tap dancing,

an embarrassingly

at your local thrift

she values

likes hiking, sushi

reading Heming-

eating, yoga, rock

large collection

store, yoga studio,


and she is among

way. She loves boys

climbing, and bik-

of magazines...

or most likely,

and likes to dabble

the small percent-

with glasses, John

ing. Her refrigera-

so, naturally she

frozen yogurt shop.

in anything that

age of people in the

Hughes movies,

tor is home to

decided to start her

She’s a self

strikes her fancy.

world who actually

and listening to

approximately 50


proclaimed joy-

She appreciates

enjoys hanging out

other people’s sto-


Blog : Champagne

chooser, smile-

good food, good

in airports.

ries. Idols include

Blog : My Name


creator, and truth-

coffee, and good

Blog : JacPfef

Anne Shirley and

is Yeh



Tina Fey.

Blog: Where My

Blog: An

Blog : Say Anything

Heart Resides

Experiment in Poverty







Celeste is a Bay

Ashley Miracle is a

Kenza is 17 year

Britty lives in

Sarah is a mother,

Caitlin is a girl who

Area native whose

natural redhead and

old with a passion

northern California

wife, and owner

followed a dream

life dream is to

makeup enthusiast,

for Shakespeare

with her husband,

of a garbage-eating

to Paris. Finishing

travel the world.

and recently she

and all things old

dog kid, and fat

coonhound. She

graduate school in

A recent Stanford

started sharing her

fashioned. She finds

cat. She works by

lives in Northern

May, she currently

graduate in English

passion for beauty

herself looking at

day in community

Virginia in a 1958

spends as much

and Classics, she

on Youtube. Ashley

life through some

benefit and by night

rambler in constant

time as possible

loves her ukulele,

lives in the great

seriously dramatic

is a slave to the pen.

need of updating.

wandering Paris’s

film photography,

state of Virginia

lenses and like so

Britty enjoys sweaty

When she’s not

streets, getting lost,

stargazing, and Mr.

with her handsome

many teenagers

yoga, dark coffee,

chasing her tod-

and eating as many

Darcy. She splits

husband, Jeremy.

considers herself

homemade bread,

dler or blogging,

baguettes and tartes

her daydreaming

Her secret loves

well beyond her

morning light,

she can be found

as possible. Caitlin

equally between

include the salad

years. She’d much

music with soul,

at Body Step or

also dreams of

food, Europe, and

bar at Ruby Tuesday

rather be having

and sharing a table

cycling class.

making words her

what to be when

and the television

steak frites with Ba-

with friends.

Blog : Sunny Side

full-time work as

she grows up.

show Storage Wars.

doit in France than

Blog : The


a writer someday

Blog : Wanderlust

Blog: That is All

going a high school




Blog : Porch Swings

Blog: My Treasure

& Sunsets


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More Contributors







Rhiannon lives in

Kimberly grew up

Chelsea is a

Chicago where she’s

in Kansas, but has

letterpress printer

working towards

been living in Port-

who loves

her M.A. in Writing

land since 2001.

drawing patterns,

and Publishing. Her

Her Mid-Western

the sound of print-

first love was the

roots give her a

ing presses and

White Sox. She’s a

unique outlook on

getting inky. Daniel

better person after a

living the storied

is a bartender who

nap/run/coffee. She

“Left Coast Life”.

enjoys experiment-

believes kindness

She is a prop and

ing with inventing

and sassiness are

lifestyle photo

new cocktail

equally important,

stylist and also

recipes and master-

and that lemon

works as a Design

ing the classics.

makes everything

Manager. When not

They live together

better. Her motto:

working, Kimberly

in Portland, Oregon

more fun, less fear.

spends time with

with their two cats,

Blog : Chicago Girl

her scientist hubby,

love working in the

Moves On

greyhound, Lazlo

garden together,

and tuxedo kitty,

making things with


their hands, and

Blog: BilleDe

hosting friends for


evenings of drink and food. Blog: Standard


Do you have an idea for a piece? Send a 300 word pitch to us at contributors@

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{Live} verb * remain alive

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Do Something! By Emily Rack

GO GREEN WITH YOUR SPRING CLEANING Try scrubbing your bathtub with a grapefruit instead of a harsh chemical cleanser. It sounds crazy, but the acid found in grapefruit can actually eat away at the grime that collects in your tub. All you have to do is cut a grapefruit in half, and scrub it all over the bathtub, squeezing as you go. Leave the pulp and juice to sit for about 20 minutes, and when you rinse it all off, everything should be spick and span. Not to mention it will smell completely AMAZING.

GET FIT... FOR FREE! Summer is coming up, which means bikini season. Take your fitness into your own hands (or just up your current ante), and show that bathing suit who’s boss. The wonderful online fitness community has made it easy to find a fabulous


or Sephora’s Love Test 11) to wear fresh-faced for

and extensive range of workouts to do at home.

A classic pillar-box red is our tried and true

springtime glam.

No intimidating gym, no hefty price tag, but you

favorite, but spring is the perfect season to try a

still get all the benefits of taking a group fitness

pretty shade of pink. It looks just as put together

class. We love videos from Pop Pilates, Tone It

as red, but a little sweeter and easier to pull off…

Up, and even oldies like 8 Minute Abs. Another

if you get the right shade! To avoid looking too

easy solution is to do a web search for “zumba”

much like Barbie, we’re loving either a soft rosy

plus “warm up,” “salsa,” “flamenco,” “belly

pink (like Maybelline’s Pink Me Up or Mac’s Lus-

dance,” and “cool down.” Use the videos you

tering) that you can dress up with a little blush

find to put together a full booty-shaking class.

and some major lashes or a super high pigment, wow-factor fuschia (like Carthage from NARS

PLAN YOUR SUMMER VACATION ON A BUDGET Starting to plan in the spring is the easiest and most relaxed way to put together a dreamy vacation without bankrupting yourself. Before you begin, decide what’s most important to you and what you can compromise on. If it’s important to you to eat out every night, see all the sights, and

collect souvenirs from your travels, maybe you

herbs, watching some little green shoots poke

lots of progress in about a month. This sweet

don’t need to stay at a hotel. Instead try a service

out from the earth will make you so proud!

little garden will provide you with lots of salads

like Airbnb, where you can rent beautiful rooms

Take the time to cultivate your green thumb this

throughout the summer, all just a few steps away

or apartments from people all over the world for

spring whether you have a big garden or just a

from your kitchen.

much less than even the cheapest hotels. The site

little window box.

is safe and fun, and you can meet new people and discover a city in a completely new way every time you travel.

PLANT A GARDEN. Whether it’s flowers, veggies, fruits, or even just

What’s easy to take care of this season? Arugula, sugar snap peas, broccoli, and carrots are all simple veggies to plant and relatively low maintenance to care for. You can sow all the seeds at the beginning of spring and should see

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Let Her Go By Rhiannon Falzone

My highest weight was 293 pounds. I weighed this by the time I was 17. I

are capable of more than we think; our minds get in the way. Learn to train

wore a size 24 dress to my senior prom.

your fear.”

I didn’t just like food. I loved food. I loved, hated, and feared it, all in the

I am not just a girl who struggles with weight and body image. My life is

same breath. A person does not reach 293 pounds because they “like”

not that “easy.” Nobody’s is. Nobody’s struggle is simplified and pulled

food. I binged. I binged until I sobbed and my entire body ached. I ate

word for word from a health textbook. I am a girl who works daily at lov-

everything in front of me. I ate to the point of physical pain, where lying

ing, accepting, and forgiving herself.

on my bed, crying, and rubbing my belly was my only source of comfort.

I know how hard it is: getting to the gym when it’s too cold/hot/early/

Then, I wouldn’t eat for an entire day. I tried to make myself throw up; I

far from home, taking care of yourself, gaining and losing close to one

could never do it. When I was 17, the highlight of my week was finding

hundred pounds, not wanting to allow a man to touch or look at you. But

Arby’s coupons in the Sunday newspaper.

I also know what it’s like to want to run, to reach for my gym shoes and

Today, I see a social worker who helps me with my food issues and my nonfood issues. His name is Jim. I love the simplistic irony of the fact that two of the biggest influences in my life right now are Jim and the gym.

not food, to go to a boxing class because it’s been “one of those days,” and if this is the best thing I can do for myself, I need to do it. I know what it’s like to feel healthy and to crave that feeling all the time. I know what happiness feels like; happiness is the exhaustion and calm you feel after a run, the

I wake up at 4:30 a.m. so I can go to the gym before work. I trudge through

joy after you and your body do more than you thought either could. I know

my apartment. I turn on the coffeemaker, the living room lamp, the com-

how it feels to leave a therapy session feeling lighter. I know what it’s like to

puter, the morning news. This time is for me, no one else. I make a whole

feel that none of these good things are possible. They are.

wheat English muffin with peanut butter or high-fiber maple and brown sugar oatmeal with blueberries. I drink water and coffee and grab a banana for the bus ride. The gym feels holy. A spinning class where you spend the majority of the class in the dark is holy. It’s a gift to have an instructor tell you, “Our bodies

At the end of our sessions, Jim almost always asks what I’m thinking. Sometimes it’s, “Jim, I’m tired, and I’ve just spent a good part of the last 60 minutes sobbing in this green leather chair. I’d like to go to the bathroom and throw water on my face.”

I’ve spent my entire life until now numbing myself with food. I fix things,

I climb into my bed as Ruby curls up next to my left leg, as close as she

and I take care of people. Taking care of people makes me feel good, but I’m

can get. I turn on Mary Chapin Carpenter, Patty Griffin, Etta James. Strong

in that green leather chair to work through all of that, and I can’t do that if

women. Their energy changes me. I feel their words change me.

I numb myself again. If I’m sad, I will feel sad. If I’m anxious, I will feel that too. I will breathe, write, and call my friends. I will walk through it to the other side. I’m learning what it’s like to feel all of these things instead of reaching for

Tonight Jim asked, “What was the last thing you did to make yourself happy?” This forces me to pause. I need more moments throughout my day that force me to pause.

food at the first sign of discomfort. Sitting in Jim’s office, answering his questions, I have come to realize how many different versions of that word exist, discomfort.

“I bought myself running shorts on Monday. On Saturday, I flirted with a man, a man who was kind and made me laugh. A man who asked about my writing and my life.”

“You’re doing too much at once,” he tells me tonight. “Good, you don’t do enough of those things for yourself,” he says. “It’s what I do,” I joke. Today, I’m a size 10. I’ve lost nearly 100 pounds, and I’m not done yet. Nobody laughs. Tomorrow, I will wake early. I will drink coffee from my favorite mug. I “You are not going to wake up one day having gained back all of that weight. It’s not who you are anymore,” Jim says. “I’d like one day here where I don’t cry,” I say.

will eat an English muffin while I watch the news. I will read on the bus. I will run. I will be thankful for the day.

I will show myself compassion.

It’s not who you are anymore. “It’s hard to let go of who we were for so long,” he says. I walk down the hall to the bathroom. I look in the mirror and see a pink face and tired eyes, but I like how I look after crying - alive, like I can see everything better. I feel everything better. I feel. After meeting with him, I don’t like to talk to anyone. I need the quiet to collect the things he’s said - words that are heavy, but somehow never weigh me down. I take the train home. I turn my key in the door. I collect my mail from the third step at the bottom of the staircase - another magazine I don’t have time to read. I walk to the top floor. I hear Ruby purring on the other side of the door, my door. I shed a coat that’s entirely too big, but I love the belt and the color; I like myself in green. I feed Ruby; I feed myself. I try to only eat healthy things, but I listen to my body. Tonight, my body wanted a sandwich and a root beer float. I light the lilac candle next to my bed and pour myself a big glass of cold water in one of my favorite mugs, a beautiful white and blue cup with red, yellow, and green flowers, like something I’d see in a Spanish garden. I can’t wait to see Spanish gardens.

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{Create} verb * bring (something) into existence

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Make Something!


We’ve got terrarium fever here at The Violet, but we know that buying fancy glass homes can cost upwards of $30. Here’s a D.I.Y. method that is guaranteed to please both your wallet and your creativity! We recommend visiting your local nursery to pick out succulents, and heading to to the thrift store to hunt for affordable glass containers. For this project, you’ll need:

❉ Wine, beer, or any thrifted glass container ❉ Indoor succulents ❉ Cactus soil ❉ Moss, pebbles, and twigs for decoration ❉ A spoon ❉ Chopsticks Spoon in a thin layer of soil at the bottom of the wine glass. Place your succulent on top. Use the spoon to add soil to any empty space between the sides of the plant soil and the glass. Add moss, pebbles, twigs, and any other decorations you’d like around the succulent. If you’re having a hard time moving the pieces within the narrow glass, try using chopsticks. If there are any pieces of dirt on the remaining portions of the glass, wipe away with a dry towel. Maintenance: The beauty of succulents is that they don’t require a lot of maintenance. In general, these plants thrive well in indirect sunlight and with sparse waterings. Using a spray bottle, water the plant every 1-2 weeks.

There’s something elegant about a message in a bottle - the mysterious meaning, the journey it took, the unknown sender. Imagine putting together your own messages on display for friends and visitors to think about. For this project, you’ll need:

❉ A glass container (preferably a bottle) ❉ Paper ❉ Writing utensil ❉ Twigs, moss, dried flowers for decoration Cut or rip your paper so you’ll be able to fit and read it inside the bottle. Write yourself a message - a word, a quote, a drawing, whatever you want. Place the paper in the bottle, making sure your message is legible from the outside. Add flower petals and any other decorations you’d like inside. You’re welcome (and encouraged) to sprinkle in fresh flowers and leaves - they’ll just dry inside the container. If you’d like to use already dried flowers, you can expedite the drying process by hanging flowers on a wall upside down.

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It’s no surprise that at The Violet, we are drawn to purple-hued flowers. Two of our favorites, lilacs and lavender, make an appearance every spring, and we want to take a moment to appreciate these magnificent blossoms. LILACS Perhaps one of the most convincing signs that the spring season has arrived, woody branches of lilacs begin to appear around April or May each year. The tiny purple blossoms breathe a strong, sweet, and memorable scent that alerts many to the change in seasons and the onset of warm weather. Throughout history, lilacs have been thought to symbolize love, and they even play a significant role in Greek mythology - as a nymph, called Syringa (the lilac’s botanical name), running through the forest trying to escape Pan’s affections. This spring, do your best to get your hands on some if only to bring this sweet season into your home. LAVENDER Though it may be most commonly associated with spas and relaxation, lavender has been an important flower, scent, and color throughout history. It has been long thought of as a healing herb and has been a popular perfume scent since the time of the Greeks. It’s known to represent purity, silence, and luck (and couldn’t we all use a little luck?). While fresh lavender brings a beautiful scent into any household, dried lavender is quite potent as well. Let your bunch dry naturally, and collect the buds into a small muslin bag, which you can tuck into your pillowcase or lingerie drawer.

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{Nurture} verb * care for and encourage the growth or development of

We Recommend By Jackie Pfeffer

BOOK – Committed by Elizabeth Gilbert

ALBUM – Some Nights by fun.

MOVIE – For Lovers Only

From the same woman who wrote Eat, Pray,

fun. is made up of members from the Format,

For Lovers Only is a Polish Brothers film, set

Love comes Committed, which focuses on mar-

Steel Train, and Anathallo so it’s no surprise that

in Paris, about two former lovers who run

riage and all that it means. Through interviews,

their second album, Some Nights, has been on

into each other and rekindle an old flame. It’s

historical research, and personal reflection into

repeat around here. Each song on the album is

modern meets classic filmed beautifully in black

her own relationships, Gilbert delivers a study

powerful and catchy (it will have you singing

& white. If the steamy romance between the

on an age-old institution that will have you

along in no time). With lyrics like “Tonight we

main characters isn’t enough to add this to your

laughing out loud and looking at marriage in a

are young so let’s set the world on fire. We can

Netflix queue, the flawless styling and brilliant

way you never have before.

burn brighter than the sun,” fun.’s “We Are

cinematography should help.

Young” is a shoe-in for this season’s anthem.

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Be Well By Emily Rack

My sweet tooth, I’m sure, comes directly from

worth dessert every night.

my grandma… a woman known to drink con-

A recent report in the science journal Nature

densed milk and golden syrup straight from the

even suggested that added sugar is so toxic it

can. I’m not joking.

should be regulated the same way as alcohol

This Achilles heel of mine lies more in the way

and tobacco. Age limits, specific retail hours,

of homemade baked goods. Give me a dense dark

and higher prices for sweetened products are

chocolate brownie, a cinnamon bun gooey with

all looming as people discover more about the

frosting, or anything, anything, with salted cara-

dangers of sweet treats.

mel, and I’m yours. But let’s face it - I won’t say

As a generation of Westerners who rely heavily

no to a handful of crystalline sour candies either.

on processed foods, one of our biggest issues is

Shame, shame on me. Why can’t wheatgrass be

that we’re often unwittingly consuming sugar

so addictive?

in almost everything we eat. Sugar is the most

It seems, however, that I am not the only one with an intense sweet tooth. According to the United States Dieticians Association, the average American’s added sugar intake is around 32 teaspoons every day.

himself well inside and out, but we also believe in moderation. So while I’ll be cutting out most of the processed sugar in my life to try to clean up my body, you’ll still find me in the kitchen occasionally dipping my finger into some homemade cookie dough.

commonly used additive in the world. It sneaks up on us in bread, cereal, ketchup, store-bought salsa, boxed rice, canned veggies, yogurt, peanut butter, deli meats… the list goes on. Checking the labels on most of what we buy at the grocery store is becoming increasingly necessary. If you

Hang on. Let me get my megaphone. Tap, tap,

see sugar listed close to the beginning of the

tap. Is this thing on?

ingredients list (fructose, in particular), it might

I’ll say it again. 32 teaspoons. Yikes.

be worth finding a healthier, homemade option.

The World Health Organization suggests that

A big part of The Violet’s philosophy is getting

this number should actually be a maximum of

back to eating foods in their natural state, cook-

five teaspoons every day because all those extra,

ing from scratch, and understanding what we

empty calories lead to problems like obesity,

eat. In all of our issues, you’ll find beautiful,

heart disease, cancer, and Type 2 Diabetes. This

simple recipes with no scary additives.

is pretty scary if you ask me and definitely not

We believe everyone can nourish herself or

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Discovering Self-Compassion By Sarah Bagley

Somewhere in my 20s, I got this idea that I wasn’t worthy. It was a painful

When something becomes part of your being, how do you get rid of it?

period of disenchantment and tough realizations. I felt lost, lonely, and vul-

So I decided I wouldn’t get rid of it; I’d change it. Instead of negative self-

nerable. It was at this time, when I was raw and open, that I found myself

talk, I’d replace it with positive self-talk. When I heard myself say, “I’m

susceptible to negativity. Negative words from others and negative self-talk

a failure,” I stopped right there, took a clearing breath, and changed my

penetrated me, cutting deep and becoming part of my bloodstream.


Once I let negativity in, it was there to stay. I put myself down. I wasn’t

I’m not a failure. I’m struggling today. I’m stressed. I need a break. That

smart enough, pretty enough, ambitious enough. Everyone else was better

does not make me a failure; that makes me human.

than me. It created a spiral. When I received criticism or made a mistake, I

At first, it seemed trivial - working to turn my inner dialogue from nega-

decided I was always making mistakes. I never did anything right. I would

tive to positive. Would it make any difference? Yes. Absolutely. It seemed

end up as a failure. I’d never amount to anything.

insignificant, working to reframe my self-talk. But, once I did it a handful

It was my own negative train to nowhere. And once I got on, well, I was on.

of times and then another handful of times and then more and more, I

All those rides on the negative train made me doubt my abilities and ques-

changed how I think. I don’t get on that negative train anymore. In fact,

tion who I was. My confidence was obliterated.

there isn’t even a stop for that train. I ride an entirely new train, a train

I spent a good deal of time on that train, chugging along to my negative inner dialogue. Then I started losing things - connections with friends, faith, and, most devastatingly, my ability to write, to craft sentences that poured out of my heart. Things have always made sense when I write. It’s as if all the synapses in my brain click together and force me to realize things that weren’t clear before. I couldn’t let that part of me die.

filled with positive self-talk that frees me. And now I’m replacing the things I lost. I’ve gained connections, formed new friendships, reached out, said yes, and re-found my words and my voice. Be kind to yourself. Don’t let those negative words pierce below the surface. Keep them at bay, repeat words of positive self-talk, work every day to encourage yourself. It’s easy to let those negative thoughts slip in, but it’s so much more valuable to set yourself free.

But I got so used to the negative voices, I didn’t know how to turn them off.

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{Explore} verb * travel in or through (an unfamiliar country or area) in order to learn about or familiarize oneself with it

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Take Me to Greece By Ashlee Gadd

I can’t remember exactly when my love affair with Greece began… proba-

my own neighborhood, let alone my own city, would look if I (along with

bly sometime after seeing Mama Mia if I’m being totally honest. At the risk

everyone else) cared enough to do the same.

of sounding dramatic, there was something about watching Meryl Streep

As we indulged in souvlaki and gelato on our last night in Santorini, we

dance across the blue and white calderas that spoke directly to my soul.

stared at the sun disappearing behind the Aegean Sea in awe. I wasn’t ready

On our second wedding anniversary, my husband and I sat down to dinner

to go back to reality.

in Capitola and crafted a pre-baby bucket list on a cocktail napkin. We were

“Was this everything you hoped it would be?” my husband asked quietly.

half joking and half serious at the time - throwing out a combination of wildly unrealistic and silly ideas to accompany the legit tasks we wanted to

“It was better,” I answered honestly.

accomplish before becoming parents. However, our number one item on

We did it. We crossed Greece off the pre-baby bucket list, and it was worth

the list was always non-negotiable in my eyes.

every penny. The next morning, I felt light tears stinging my eyes as we

“There is no way I am getting pregnant until you take me to Greece,” I told my husband confidently. He rolled his eyes and smiled. He could see the determination on my face and knew better than to try to talk me out of it. A few days later, we set up a special “Greece” savings account and started setting aside $25 a week. When bonuses and tax refunds came around, we always stuck a portion in

boarded the plane to return home. All good things must come to an end, and Greece was certainly no exception. Yet, there was something forlorn and disheartening about the finality of knowing our adventure was over. Little did I know, three short months later, a whole new adventure was about to begin. It all started in the bathroom, with a positive pregnancy test.

our Greece fund. We’ve never really been the type of people who adhere to a strict budget, but saving for that trip quickly became a top priority. Almost two years later, we stepped off a plane in Santorini, hand in hand, eyes wide open. I couldn’t believe it. Thirty minutes later, a taxi driver dropped us off in Oia where we would spend our first three nights. Irena, the innkeeper, welcomed us with a warm smile and a voice that sang when she spoke. She treated us like we were her own children, and I’ll never forget the first day she brought us breakfast. “Gooooood mooooooooorning!!!” she sang, swiftly entering our room with a tray full of fresh croissants and fruit. My husband and I stared at each other, stifling giggles. We had never met anyone so... happy. For the remainder of the trip, we sang “good morning” to each other every day, as a small tribute to our sweet Irena. The 12 days that followed were a blur of beautiful sunsets, delicious food, and scenery so perfect that it looked fake at times. Not one piece of trash could be spotted on the ground. Every potted plant was watered and blooming. The color contrast between the crisp white walls and bright blue doors was clearly the mark of a professional painter. One could tell just from roaming the streets that the people who lived there took pride in their city - enough pride to spend a few minutes every morning sweeping the sidewalks and watering the plants. I remember thinking how different

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{Nourish} verb * provide with food or other substances necessary for growth, health and good condition

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Spring Meal embark on a culinary adventure abroad with this mediterranean - inspired lunch menu

By Camilla Salem

Take your tastebuds on a trip (spring break, anyone?) to the Mediterranean. Flavors like garlic, wine, tomato, olive oil, and caraway contribute to this colorful meal. It’s one of those meals designed to be enjoyed casually, accompanied by really good conversation and great music. This isn’t meant to be a formal meal. Set your table in casual buffet style. Stack your plates, and group your flatware in mason jars. Display a pretty stem of lilacs in an old clean wine bottle for a simple touch of spring.


Spicy Shrimp With White Wine and Tomatoes Moroccan Spiced Carrot Salad Steamed Fennel With Garlic Vinaigrette Crusty Bread Strawberries With Greek Yogurt and Brown Sugar North African Mint Tea

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Spicy Shrimp With White Wine and Tomatoes

Moroccan Spiced Carrot Salad

This recipe is a favorite in my household. The

to this potent and satisfying side dish. Thinly

flavors go together naturally and without much

sliced carrots are blanched and then tossed in a

effort. It’s bold, bright, and saucy — perfect

simple combination of oil and vinegar. Parsley

for bread dipping. It takes just minutes to come

adds another fresh flavor component that takes

together, yet, as you enjoy this dish, you’ll feel

this entire dish to the next level.

like you’re celebrating.

A dollop of harissa in the vinaigrette is the secret

Steamed Fennel With Garlic Vinaigrette Up until very recently, I’d only ever experienced fennel in its raw state. I’ll admit that while I am fond of the licorice flavor, it’s rather strong and not exactly the subtlest of ingredients. However, when quartered, steamed, and doused in a healthy amount of garlic vinaigrette, it takes on a new identity entirely. That licorice flavor steps into the background and is complemented by the acidic vinaigrette wonderfully.

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Strawberries With Greek Yogurt and Brown Sugar Dip strawberries in Greek yogurt then in brown sugar and you will find yourself with the most decadent dessert of all time. Trust me.

North African Mint Tea Hot, sweet, mint tea is a perfect post-meal treat. The mint helps to calmly digest all of the food you just ate, and the sweetness makes it feel like an extra dessert. It’s possible that this tea will become your new after-dinner indulgence.

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The Recipes


1 pound of shrimp, peeled and deveined 3 tablespoons olive oil 5 large cloves of garlic, minced Pinch of hot pepper flakes

1/4 teaspoon caraway seeds (optional) 1/4 cup parsley, chopped


Fill a large pot with water and bring to a boil.

2 pints strawberries 1 cup Greek yogurt 1 cup brown sugar

While you’re waiting, very thinly slice carrots on the diagonal (a mandolin works really well for this). When water comes to a boil, drop carrot

1/4 cup of parsley, chopped 4 canned san marzano tomatoes, chopped, and 1/4 cup of the sauce reserved 1 1/2 cups of dry white wine 1 teaspoon salt 1/2 teaspoon black pepper

slices in and blanch for 2 to 3 minutes. Drain

Heat olive oil and garlic in a large sauce pan


over medium-high heat. Once the garlic begins to sizzle, add shrimp and hot pepper flakes and cook for about a minute Add chopped tomatoes and sauce. Cook down for about 3 minutes. Add wine, parsley, salt, and pepper and cook for 10 more minutes, until wine has cooked down a bit. Serve hot with your favorite crusty bread.

and put into a bowl. In a small bowl, whisk oil, vinegar, harissa, and caraway seeds together

Serves 4 to 6

Serve strawberries along side a bowl of Greek yogurt and brown sugar. Dip strawberries into yogurt and then into brown sugar.

with a fork. Pour vinaigrette over carrots and


top with parsley. Mix everything together until

Serves 6 to 8

evenly incorporated.

1 heaping tablespoon gunpowder green tea, or 4 packets of green tea 1 large bunch of fresh mint leaves 3 teaspoons sugar

Serves 6 to 8

4 bulbs of fennel, tops cut off and quartered 3 cloves of garlic, grated 1/2 teaspoon salt 1/4 teaspoon pepper 4 tablespoons olive oil 4 tablespoons red wine vinegar

Bring a large pot of water to a boil. In a large teapot (ceramic or metal), place tea and mint. If you’re using loose gunpowder tea, it’s a good idea to do a rinse the tea in a strainer with hot water to get rid of any bitterness. Place the bunch of mint leaves in the teapot. Spoon sugar in and


In a large steamer, steam quartered fennel for

fill with hot water. Stir with a spoon, then let

Serves 4 to 6

about 20 minutes, or until tender when pierced

steep for 5 to 10 minutes. Serve in small glasses

with a fork. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, whisk

for a more authentic experience.

4 large carrots, peeled 4 tablespoons olive oil 3 tablespoons red wine vinegar 1/2 teaspoon salt 1 heaping teaspoon harissa

together garlic, salt, pepper, olive oil, and vinegar. Pour over steamed fennel. Garnish with chopped fennel leaves.

Community Supported Agriculture . . . AND WHY WE’RE HUGE FANS Words by Ashlee Gadd Photo by Camilla Salem

Documentaries such as Food, Inc. and Forks Over

T Consumers know exactly where their food

Knives, are bringing attention to our diets like never before. Both films address the seemingly obvious yet crucial question: do you know where your food comes from?

comes from, are exposed to new produce, and develop a personal relationship with their farmer.

Last summer, my husband and I planted our very first backyard garden, reaping the fruits of our labor (pun intended) for a solid five months before the weather changed. As much as I wanted to, I just couldn’t bring myself to maintain a winter garden. Harvesting lettuce in the pouring rain does not appeal to me, now or ever. Not wanting to give up our regular allotment of fresh fruits and vegetables, I sought after the next best thing — a CSA box. In case you’re not familiar with Community Supported Agriculture, here are the basics:

time marketing, receive payment early in the season, which helps with cash flow, and form relationships with the people who eat the food they grow.

T Farmers spend more time harvesting and less

Talk about a win-win! Now, every other Tuesday I receive a big box on my doorstep full of fresh fruits and vegetables, straight from the farm (see: slightly covered in dirt). Doesn’t get much fresher than that! For more information about CSA programs, visit

Interested in signing up for a CSA box? If you’re in Northern California, we recommend Farm Fresh to You. Use promo code 6164 to receive $10 off your first box when you sign up online, and tell them Ashlee Gadd or Camilla Salem referred you!

T Consumers can purchase a “share” of the crop directly from the farmer, which typically comes in the form of a weekly or biweekly box of seasonal fruits and vegetables.

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From Scratch GO A LITTLE NUTTY By Camilla Salem

almond milk 2 cups raw almonds Water for soaking

2 1/2 cups filtered water Cover almonds with water in a bowl. Cover with a towel and let soak overnight. The next day drain almonds and place in a blender. Blend for 1 minute, until almonds are chopped up and begin to become somewhat creamy. Pour filtered water into the blender and let everything blend together for 2-3 minutes. Place a few layers of cheesecloth over a mesh strainer and fit over a bowl. Strain almond mixture. You can dry the leftover meal and use for baking. Pour the milk in a jar, cover with plastic wrap and store in the refrigerator for 2 to 3 days.

peanut butter 2 cups unsalted roasted peanuts 1 1/2 tablespoons salt In a large food processor, chop peanuts for about 5 minutes until they begin to clump together. Add salt to chopped peanuts and mix for 5 more minutes for crunchy peanut butter and 10 more for creamy. Store in your refrigerator.

coconut macaroons 2 cups unsweetened coconut flakes 1 tablespoons powdered sugar 3 tablespoons flour 2 egg whites 1 teaspoon almond extract Preheat oven to 325째F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Mix together coconut, sugar, flour, egg whites, and almond extract in a bowl. Spoon drops of coconut mixture on to baking sheet. Bake for 20 minutes or until the edges begin to turn golden brown. Enjoy warm or cold and for added sweetness, dust with extra powdered sugar.

smokehouse almonds 2 cups raw almonds 2 teaspoons chipotle chili powder 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper 1 teaspoon smoked paprika 2 teaspoons salt 2 tablespoons olive oil Preheat oven to 350째F. Mix togethr almonds, spices, and olive oil in a bowl until almonds are evenly covered. Lay almonds in an even layer on the baking sheet. Roast for 25 minutes. Enjoy for up to one week.

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Sandwich Cookies By Molly Yeh

Sandwiching is unquestionably one of the great-

tions are endless (it’s your tummy space you’ll

1/2 cup white sugar

est actions on earth. Being sandwiched by your

have to conquer). Following are a few recipes

1 egg

best friends, having a midnight grilled cheese

to make your own. Some are easy, some are a

A splash of vanilla

sandwich, sandwiching a puppy with your

bit different, but I can’t think of a more perfect

A pinch of salt

arms... it is almost as great as taco-ing. Whoever

way to kick off Spring than with some gorgeous

A pinch of cinnamon

first applied it to sweets deserves a cookie!

sandwich cookies. So get sandwiching!

From the stroopwafel in Belgium to the whoopie


with parchment paper. In a large bowl, combine

pie in Pennsylvania to France’s macaron, cultures

Out of all of the possible food combinations

all ingredients. Divide into 1-inch balls. Place on

all over the world have their signature sandwich

in the history of food, one of the all-time best

baking sheet. Press down with a fork to create

cookie, and they’re all very tasty. It goes without

is apples and peanut butter. These sandwiches

the traditional peanut butter cookie train tracks.

saying that a good sandwich cookie has a pleas-

use peanut butter cookies that are unbelievable

Bake for 15 minutes.

ing ratio of filling to cookie, satisfying flavor

easy to make and a blended version of Charoset,

Charoset Filling:

combinations, and filling firm enough that it

which is a traditional Passover dish with apples

1 Granny Smith apple, cored and chopped

doesn’t all ooze out in the first bite. Bonus points

and walnuts. Plus, they’re gluten-free.

Juice from 1/2 a lemon

if it can withstand an Oreo-style “twist”.

Peanut Butter Cookies:

2 tbsp brown sugar

The possibilities for sandwich cookie combina-

1 cup peanut butter

1/2 cup walnuts

Preheat oven to 350°, and line a baking sheet

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Bake for 15 minutes. Jalapeño Jam Filling: It’s best to make this the night before so the jam has time to firm up in the refrigerator. But if you simply can’t wait that long, go ahead and form the sandwiches with the warm jam. They’ll be messy but still yummy! 2 cups white sugar 1 tsp pectin (available at many grocery and cooking stores) 1 cup chopped and seeded jalapeños 1 cup vinegar 1 1/2 tsp calcium water (comes with pectin) Combine 1/2 cup sugar with pectin, and set aside. In a large saucepan, bring jalapeños and vinegar to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, covered, for five minutes. Stir in calcium water. Continue stirring, and add the sugar/pectin mixture. Stir fast for two minutes. Add remaining sugar, and stir until dissolved. Remove from heat, and chill in the refrigerator until ready to use. 1/4 cup sweet wine

A pinch of salt

1/4 cup raisins

1 lb butter, softened

1 1/2 tsp cinnamon

1/2 cup sugar

Blend all ingredients in a blender. Sandwich a spoonful of Charoset between two cookies once cookies have cooled. CORN JALAPENO JAMMERS If there’s one thing that will complement the sweet, wholesome taste of corn bread, it’s the acidic, spicy, badass-ness of jalapeños. Here’s the

1 egg 2 tsp vanilla

LAVENDER MACARONS WITH DARK CHOCOLATE GANACHE FILLING If you’ve ever made macarons, you know that these take time, patience, luck, and maybe a cocktail to reward yourself if they come out

In a medium bowl, whisk together cornmeal,

correctly (or one to drown your sorrows if they

flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside. In a

don’t). They’re fussy little cookies, indeed, but

large bowl with an electric mixer, beat butter

incredibly tasty, dainty, and worth all of the

and sugar until fluffy. Add egg and vanilla. Add


dry ingredients, and mix until just combined.

Meringue Cookies:

combination in cookie form with a buttery, not-

Divide into two equal parts, wrap in plastic

1 cup + 2 tbsp powdered sugar

too-sweet corn cookie.

wrap, and refrigerate for one hour.

1/2 tsp dried lavender (available in the spice

Corn Cookies:

Preheat oven to 350°, and line a baking sheet

2 cups cornmeal

with parchment paper. Roll out dough between

1 cup all-purpose flour

two sheets of waxed paper to ¼-inch thick. Cut

1/2 tsp baking powder

into desired shapes, and transfer to baking sheet.

section) 1 cup sifted almond flour 3 egg whites (that have been resting, uncovered, for 24 hours)

A pinch of salt ¼ cup white sugar Line a baking sheet with parchment paper, and set aside. In a spice grinder, blend two tablespoons of powdered sugar with the lavender. Sift, then whisk together with the remaining powdered sugar and almond flour. Set aside. In a separate, large bowl, beat the egg whites and salt with an electric mixer until foamy. Continue mixing, and gradually add the sugar. Beat until

propped open (use a wooden spoon) for 10

stiff peaks form.

minutes, rotating pan after five minutes.

Fold the dry ingredients into the egg white

Dark Chocolate Ganache Filling:

mixture, and mix until smooth (peaks should

4 oz dark chocolate

not hold their form).

1/2 cup heavy cream

With a piping bag, pipe 1 ½-inch circles onto the

Melt chocolate with the heavy cream over a dou-

baking sheet.

ble boiler until smooth. Refrigerate for an hour,

Let rest for 1-2 hours, until skins form on top.

stirring occasionally.

You’ll know this has happened if they remain

Sandwich a small spoonful between two cooled

totally unscathed when you poke them lightly.

meringue cookies. Refrigerate cookies until

Preheat oven to 350°. Bake with the oven door

chocolate has hardened.

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{Play} verb * engage in activity for enjoyment

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A Sense of Community Photos by Sara Gray Words by Kimberly Brandt and Ashlee Gadd

What do you get when you combine simple recipes, handcrafted cocktails,

personal identity and relationship to your community.

a big table, and good friends? A sense of community, and one gorgeous

Today, Daniel is exploring everything from craft cocktails to making his

dinner party!

own vermouth, while Chelsea is working on a line of print and textile

Meet Daniel and Chelsea - the printers and makers behind Standard Author-

work. The two hope to develop Standard Authority into a small publishing

ity in Portland, OR. During college, the couple worked together at a little

and print operation that melds their love of quality design to the food and

bistro cafĂŠ called the French Bear, set in the northern area of the Willamette

beverage community where they feel at home.

Valley Wine Industry. The Bear, as regulars referred to it, was co-owned by

+ Sea Salt and Pepper Crackers

Matt and Holly Kinne of McKinlay Vineyards, whose honest and good-

These easy-to-make pepper crackers are a new staple in Chelsea and Daniel’s

hearted perspective taught Chelsea and Daniel the fundamentals they

kitchen. They are perfect for meats and cheeses and are a delicious addition

cherish when working with food today. They learned that creating food

to any soup. Adding herbs, like rosemary, to the seasoning is a fun alterna-

was more than just developing recipes; it was also about embracing your

tive for additional flavor. (Recipe - Epicurious)

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+ Hollandaise sauce: ‘Blender Hollandaise Sauce’

+ Grilled Spring Asparagus

This blender hollandaise is a quick and simple sauce that works for dinner

Par-boiling asparagus is a simple way to ensure that the asparagus’s texture

and breakfast. (Recipe - Epicurious)

is consistent. Bring a pot of water to boil. Set asparagus in vertical bunches

+ Cedar Grilled Salmon

base down in the boiling water, and cook for 4-6 minutes. Remove from

Grilling salmon on cedar planks is a delicious and traditional Northwest method. It adds a smoky flavor and soft texture to the fish. Prepare the cedar planks by soaking them in water for two hours. Remove any fish bones and skin, and cut the fish into individual fillets (typically around 4.5 oz). Marinate the salmon by brushing each fillet with olive oil, Meyer lemon juice, salt, and pepper. Let marinate for one hour. Several minutes before cooking, start preheating the grill at medium-low. You should be able to hold your hands over the grill for four seconds to know that it’s ready. Keep a water bottle on hand in case the sides of the cedar planks catch fire. Cook for 20 minutes or until the fish flakes apart with a fork.

heat, and let stand at room temperature. Minutes before serving, grill the asparagus on medium-high heat for three minutes. Season with salt. Lay out the asparagus, top with salmon, and drizzle hollandaise over both. Garnish, and serve.

+ Coconut Milk Panna Cotta

+ Blood Orange Simple Syrup

This recipe is an easy way to provide a simple dessert for both your vegan

This blood orange syrup’s ratio is three cups juice to one cup sugar. Add

and gluten-free friends. Daniel substituted a whole vanilla bean sliced in

three peppercorns and the zest from half an orange, and bring the juice to

half lengthwise for the vanilla extract. Pairing it with the blood orange

a boil. Simmer until the sugar has dissolved. Refrigerate until cold. A boozy

syrup provides the right amount of bitterness. (Recipe - Natural Noshings)

variation substitutes one cup juice with one cup blood orange liqueur.

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+ La Floridita (variation)

+ Deep Sea Diver

This classic cocktail is delicious, and the addition of agave syrup is perfect

This is a highball styled drink with the body of a cocktail. The club soda

for pairing with the maraschino liqueur.

along with the citrus cuts into the sweetness enough to make this delicious,

In a mixing glass pour 2 oz. light rum, 1/4 Luxardo Maraschino Liqueur, 1 1/2 oz fresh lime juice, and 1 teaspoon agave syrup. Add ice, and shake for

long-sipping drink perfect for meals. In a mixing glass, pour 2 oz. citrus vodka (Daniel used Ketel One Citron but

10 seconds. Strain into an old fashioned glass with crushed ice, or add all in- any citrus vodka will do), 1/2 oz. lime, 1/2 oz. blood orange syrup, and 1/2 gredients to a blender, measure ice with an old fashioned glass and blend*.

oz. Roi Rene Rouge Cherry Liqueur. Fill with ice, and shake for 10 seconds.

Garnish with a full lime wheel.

Strain into a Collins glass filled with ice. Top with club soda, and garnish

*Blending this drink means whole pitchers can be made by increasing the amounts while keeping the ratio the same for larger parties.

with a full lime wheel on a pick.

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Credits Photography: Sara Gray Photography Styling: Kimberly Brandt Menu Design + Hosts: Daniel and Chelsea Parker Guidry Napkin and Menu Printing: Chelsea Parker Guidry Flowers: Petalos Hair + Make up: Kendra Stanton

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{Embellish} verb * make (something) more attractive by the addition of decorative details or features

Subtly Spring THIS SEASON, WE’RE ALL ABOUT SOFT AND SUBTLE COLORS Photos by Ashlee Gadd Words by Camilla Salem SPR IN G 2012

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EARTHY TONES Incorporate organic, earthy tones into your outfits. Colors like beige and mossy green go well together naturally and exude an effortless air. Our look: a long beige cardigan over a simple black tube dress, accessorized with a soft green scarf.

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HINTS OF SPRING Even if we are keeping things subtle this season, we still like to be playful. A butterfly or floral printed scarf over a mustard dress is relaxed and fun. For those rainy days, cover up with a button-up shirt and a classic clear umbrella.

WEAR FLOWERS IN YOUR HAIR While this white blazer and graphic tee combination is sharp and somewhat edgy, the floral pin perfectly positioned on a pretty bun helps to soften things up. This detail brings a bit of spring into the lives of everyone around you.

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SWEET TOMBOY Channel Rosie the Riveter with rolled up boyfriend jeans and a t-shirt. But to hold true to your femininity (which we fully believe in), add a bright belt and a chunky scarf. Finish the outfit with a scarf tied in your hair.

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MIXED TEXTURES Mixing textures suggests an easygoing demeanor. When leading a full life, who wants to spend time matching everything perfectly? We paired a shiny silk dress with a soft coat, and the result had great contrast.

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STAY RELA XED For those days where you just don’t feel quite like yourself (we all have them), don’t turn to sweatpants. Loose linen pants and a floral sweater will help set you straight. We love how relaxed and comfortable this look is, ponytail and all.

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Spring showers bring to mind images of ador-

braid is more sophisticated than the basic

able rain boots, gardens blooming, and rows of

3-strand variety and so versatile that it works

little ducklings waddling through puddles… but

with a prim and polished look but would also

they also make me think of the unruly hair that

perfectly suit a flower fairy. Here’s an easy

comes with dashing through the drizzle all day.

tutorial to get you started on the basics for this

Let’s face it, that may be super cute when you’re


all singing in the rain but less so when your hair

1. Part hair down the center, and divide into

slowly drip-dries into frizzy, tangled strands

two sections.

during a meeting or on a date.

Send us pictures of you in these hairstyles. We’d love to see!

2. Fishtail braid both sides, all the way to the

Rainy days spent inside are the perfect time to

very ends (secure with small elastics). Click here

practice some pretty, sprinkle-resistant up-dos

for a helpful video.

that are perfect for spring and all that comes with it. FISHTAIL CROSSOVER CROWN If you haven’t gotten the hang of the fishtail braid, it’s about time you learned. The fishtail

3. Prepare a handful of bobby pins, and start by wrapping one braid along the nape of your neck and up to the crown of your head.

4. Pin the braid flat against your head the whole

way up, tucking the bobby pins under so they

give you that giant I’m-smuggling-a-sock-in-here

4. Pause throughout the process to make sure all

don’t show.

bump, and it’ll be easier to roll up. Follow these

strands are tucked in and rolling under evenly.

5. Repeat with the opposite braid, crossing over

easy steps for this classic look.

You’ll know it’s time to stop when your bun is

slightly above the first one.

1. Roll up your section of sock or nylon into a

sitting quite tightly atop your head.

6. Finish the look by teasing some of the

donut shape, securing the ends. Not too thick, or

5. Loosen up any areas that are too tight by

you’ll never be able to roll it.

gently pulling with your hands.

2. Brush hair until smooth, and fasten in a high

6. Finish by wrapping a silk scarf or some rib-

ponytail on top of your head. Make sure you

bon around the base of the bun, tying in a knot,

leave out any wisps you’d like to frame your face

or fixing with bobby pins.

un-braided hair, and spray with your favorite hairspray. DECOR ATED SOCK BUN Oh, the sock bun - a recent favorite of blogger girls everywhere. Admittedly, it is a lot more

in advance.

pulled together than the old, chaotic topknot

3. Pull the ponytail through the sock donut, and

we’ve all thrown on top of our heads (‘fess up -

slide it up about an inch away from the ends.

you did it too). The sock bun is simple, secure,

Begin to evenly tuck your hair around the donut,

and looks flawless if you master the technique.

making sure the fabric is all covered by hair,

Our secret for this darling ‘do? Use a section of

and start to roll it down towards the base of the

nylon or tight material instead of a sock. It won’t


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Beautifully Bright By Ashley Miracle

This spring is all about nudes and neons. What

lipstick on teeth and stained collars, have no

better way to experiment with this combination

fear. Revlon’s new Lip Butters pack the punch of

than in your makeup routine?

normal lipstick without all the upkeep, and the

A classic spring makeup look is neutral, barelythere eyes paired with a bright lip. Every girl needs a good neutral palette in her collection.

healthy shine they leave on your lips is perfect for spring. Check out Candy Apple (orange red) and Raspberry Pie (magenta).

Two perfect options are the Naked2 palette from

Can a ChapStick-and-out-the-door girl partici-

Urban Decay and the Nude ‘Tude palette from

pate in this trend? Of course! A perfect comple-

theBalm. These neutral shadows are very flatter-

ment to a bare face is bright fingernails. Some

ing and allow you to create dozens of looks.

great nail polish options for spring are Deborah

With the rest of your face acting as a blank canvas, it’s time to have some fun with lip color. Two cult-favorite lipsticks are Girl About Town (blue-based fuchsia) from MAC and Heat Wave (orange red) from NARS. Now, if the mention of bold lipstick fills your mind with images of

Lippmann’s Daytripper (pink melon) and Butter London’s Primrose Hill Picnic (pink fuchsia). If you really want to commit, try Butter London’s Cheeky Chops (buttery yellow). Here’s to a beautiful and bright spring!

Visit That is All for even more incredible makeup advice.

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{Love} verb * have a profoundly tender, passionate affection for (another person).

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Five Dates for Spring By Jackie Pfeffer

Spring is upon us, and if you ever watched



Bambi as a child, you know that it’s the season of

One of the best parts about spring is the weather,

Channel your inner 5-year-old, and spend the

love. What better way to spend the season than

so spend some time enjoying it with your guy.

afternoon at a local fair or carnival. You can play

with your significant other or, if you’re single,

Grab a blanket, pack some wine and snacks

bumper cars, challenge each other to carnival

perhaps a new prospect? When it comes to dates,

(check out some of the recipes in our Nourish

games, and chow down on fair food – plus, what

it’s really easy to get repetitive, which is why

section), head to your favorite outdoor spot,

better place to kiss than on top of a Ferris wheel?

I’ve compiled this list of five great spring dates.

whether it’s a park, field, or your favorite hiking

Whether you’re a hopeless romantic or a sports

trail, and stretch out for the afternoon.

fanatic, there’s something for you.




Coffee is my first date go-to. It’s nice to be able

I recently discovered that there are several in-

Baseball season is upon us, and even if you’re

to sit and chat to get to know someone without

door rock walls in my area and thought going to

not a die-hard fan like most of the people in

the distraction of a movie or worrying about

one on a date would be really fun. Of course, if

my area of the U.S. (go Yankees!), you can still

whether or not you have pasta all over your face.

you’re as uncoordinated as I am, you may spend

have a blast at a baseball game. Something about

If you’re meeting someone for the first time,

more time laughing than actually climbing, but

being around so many sports fans cheering for

make sure you find a good coffee shop that’s not

that’s perfectly acceptable. But if you’d rather

the same team is kind of infectious, and I guar-

standing-room-only or worse – closed. Getting

keep things simple, just get out and explore your

antee you’ll be shouting and dancing at every

to know each other while awkwardly standing

natural environment.

homerun in no time.

on a sidewalk isn’t nearly as much fun as sitting in a cozy café.

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The Pursuit of Togetherness By Britty Wesely

In a technology-driven world powered by Apple products and smart phones,

before. Here we spent our first days as a married couple and many days

it can be difficult to carve out quality time with the ones you love, sans noise.

since. Now we returned to celebrate one year of wedlock. While we’ve

We hope you find this enchanting tale of one couple’s anniversary trip in the

accustomed ourselves to this sleepy seaside town, we wandered with fresh

wilderness to be as inspiring as we did…

eyes, finding beauty in the little moments we may have missed before.

We took great delight in driving slowly with little more in mind than the pursuit of togetherness. Most of the drive was spent in silence – not an awkward, tension-filled silence, but more of a quiet comfort and appreciation. We zipped down Highway 1, tucked away in the winding road, peeking and booing around corners with deer, cattle, and the occasional passing car. After a few hours, we arrived at the cozy little loft we’d call home for the next couple days. Nestled between trees and rolling hills, the loft overlooked a tranquil turquoise sea. Its crashing waves fostered a rhythm with the inflow and outflow, quieting the mind and anchoring the soul. We gathered our belongings and settled indoors just as the sun began to set. The rest of the night was spent reading by candlelight, a fire roaring and a cup of tea brewing as our favorite records serenaded us. The next morning we woke to the calling of the sun, its rays peeking in through salt-stained windows. Warm sheets kept us in bed a little while longer as we laid watching flocks of waterfowl fly in formation and land softly on the blue glass of the bay, taking turns to dive for morning nourishment. We found comfort in the familiarity of this place we’ve been so many times

The following days we spent in tandem, exploring the hills and the connections forged through the experiences we shared. Our clothes and hair were branded by the scent of crisp, salty air as we hiked the coastline, stumbling upon herds of elk and views of blue unbound. Returning later to our lofty digs, we dined al fresco on cheese from local creameries, oysters caught outside our door, and a bottle of old grapes from a nearby vineyard. While rejuvenated by the fresh air and open skies, it was not the destination that provided a respite for our souls, but rather the companionship that bound us. For the boundaries of home transcend the four walls that regularly shelter us out to the experiences we share together. The other person becomes our anchor, amplifying that notion of home. We spent our last evening on the dock, seated close, hands clasped together. Mouths and minds silent, reassured by the company and the love we shared. The tide moved in and out as did the breath from our lungs. The sun set, the sky darkened and slowly became glittered with stars as the wine from our glasses vanished. The next morning, we reflected on the last year over a dark roast and toast

with honey. We lingered. Stared awhile at the water below. Our hesitation to pack was soon diminished as we remembered that this feeling of togetherness we cherished on this trip was not something we’d leave behind. This venture simply contributed to the collaborative history of us, the shared experience that solidifies and grounds who we are collectively. We took that feeling with us as we left and on every journey since.

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{Muse} verb * be absorbed in thought

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The Road Less Traveled LOOKING AT WHAT IT TAKES TO RISK IT ALL AND FOLLOW YOUR DREAMS Words by Camilla Salem Art by Jody Salem

Wake up. Shower. Coffee. Breakfast. Coffee. Commute. Work. Coffee. Commute. Wine. Sleep. This is the American dream, right? For some, it may be since it offers security, stability, and, most of the time, health insurance. Those things are invaluable in this day and age when jobs are increasingly few and far between. But what happens when you find yourself dissatisfied with this steady schedule and all that it has to offer? What do you do when you feel a calling towards a more creative lifestyle or a profession devoted to helping people? Do you ignore it so as not to disturb your current lifestyle, or do you risk losing all of that security in order to feel more fulfilled? While the possibility of such a leap is completely dependent on your own set of circumstances and values, I do believe it’s important to consider the possibility that a change might be in order. Yes, it’s important to proceed with caution, especially with all of today’s uncertainties, but how liberating is it to even imagine being able to do what you truly love day in and day out? I’ve managed to get four women to sit down and share their own experiences with massive career shifts. Each shares her own set of worries, frustrations, and considerations that came with making a life-altering decision. Getting to know women who have undergone such a transition makes the possibility of living our dreams all the more attainable.

LINNEA PAULINA {Linnea Paulina Photography} what transition did you make (which job to which job)? I have spent the past two years preparing for the transition I am about to make. Next week will be my last wearing the Coast Guard uniform - a uniform I have spent the past nine years of my life wearing and one that I have been honored to wear. I am currently an Officer in the U.S. Coast Guard and will soon be a full-time wedding and lifestyle photographer. was there anything that prompted you to make the change when you did? My getting stationed in Houston, TX, in 2010, initially prompted making this transition. Prior to my move, I had been working and living in Portland, OR, and had just met a fantastic guy named Zachary (whom I’m lucky to say is now my husband). I was contractually committed to my job for the next two years, and Zac had just started a new job and purchased a house. Knowing that I had two years ahead of me to prepare, and wanting nothing to hold me back, I went for it. I attended a business workshop at the library, did lots of research, and began.  what, if any, reservations did you have about this shift? Initially, I did have reservations that were financially focused: why would I leave a job that gives an excellent salary, benefits, and a retirement for life after you work there for 20 years? This fear was toppled, however, by the peace of knowing that I was doing the right and best thing for Zachary, me, and our future family. Beyond having a positive outlook, I knew that I would have to pair this with something concrete, namely, setting myself up for success by bolstering my savings and retirement accounts. Zac and I also spent a lot of time together planning, budgeting, and finding ways to lower our monthly expenses.

did your family and peers support you? I am lucky to say that my family and peers did support me 100%. What has meant the most to me is having Zachary and my parents believe in me and share my excitement. I think that other people respected that I was taking myself seriously and investing in my business and myself.   what are the most important things to consider when making this change? I think the most important thing to consider is that you do it in a way that allows you to consistently take care of yourself and others. In order to not drive yourself bonkers, make little changes that bring you toward the goals you want to achieve and the direction you want to travel. Also, it doesn’t hurt to have your finances in order before making a transition like this: pay off any debt beforehand, and build up your savings.  how do you feel now about your job? I am so excited to take on this new job. I don’t have any illusions that it will be easy, but I do know for certain that I am ready to pour my heart into being the best photographer I can and running a business that creates a remarkable experience for my clients.   what advice would you give to people who are in the process of contemplating such a transition? If I could give any advice, it would be to research and learn as much as you can, but don’t forget to actually do and take action. 

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JOANNE R ACK what transition did you make (which job to which job)? I was an Executive Director for a social service agency in the U.K., and I am now a Registered Midwife in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada. was there anything that prompted you to make the change when you did? There were a number of things. My three daughters were getting older, and I felt that going back to school full-time, and the subsequent demands of being a midwife, were going to be manageable. Being a midwife means being on call 24/7. That kind of lifestyle did not fit well with the kind of mothering I wanted to provide while my girls were little. I made the decision to change careers during a family vacation. We were in Malaysia traveling on a long boat on our way into the rainforest. Being so far away from home in somewhere so foreign gave me the space I needed to reflect on what I wanted. I just realized that if I did not make the change now, I never would. I realized that would be a regret I would always carry with me.  what, if any, reservations did you have about this shift? I had wanted to make this career change for a very long time. I was nervous that the reality might not live up to the dream. Luckily, I was wrong.  did your family and peers support you? My family was incredibly supportive. There were times during my training that were really challenging emotionally and physically. I had to live away from home for long periods of time so that I could access various clinical experiences. My family was amazing. My husband and daughters just said, “Go. Do what you need to do. We love you.” It made it so much easier knowing they were behind me. 

what are the most important things to consider when making this change? I always knew that this was what I wanted to do. Being true to myself was very important. how do you feel now about your job? I am amazingly blessed to be a midwife.  what is the best thing you’ve experienced as a result of this transition? I have learned a lot about what’s important to me in terms of ownership over my life and how making transformative change not only impacts the person making the change, but also those around you.  what advice would you give to people who are in the process of contemplating such a transition? Listen to your heart.

ASHLEE GADD {Ashlee Gadd Creative} what transition did you make (which job to which job)? Last November, I quit my job as a full-time Marketing & PR Manager at a boutique hotel to start my own business as a freelance writer, photographer, and creative consultant. I switched from an 8-5, high-heels-wearing cubicle job to a work-from-home-in-my-sweatpants gig. was there anything that prompted you to make the change when you did? I hit a breaking point. I wasn’t content with the work I was producing because I was trying to do too much at once. I felt like I was spread too thin across the board and wasn’t 100% dedicated to anything. That eventually led to frustration, anxiety, and overall unhappiness in my work life.  what, if any, reservations did you have about this shift? I had plenty of reservations about the shift - fear of failure, making less money, what other people would think, not being happy, etc. . did your family and peers support you? Absolutely! I was overwhelmed at the amount of support I received after announcing my plan to start working for myself. It really gave me the confidence I needed. 

how do you feel now about your job? I wake up every morning feeling incredibly blessed to work for myself. With a baby due in five weeks, I can’t imagine a better situation for me and my family. I am so grateful for the opportunity to work from home, set my own hours, and do what I love as I enter motherhood! what is the best thing you’ve experienced as a result of this transition? Freedom. It’s amazing how much you can accomplish in a single week when you have the freedom to do what you want to do and go where you want to go. I’m not chained to a desk or an office building all day, which has really helped my creativity thrive. what advice would you give to people who are in the process of contemplating such a transition? Make sure you’re ready! Prepare yourself mentally and physically to be your own boss - it’s not all fun and roses. The “business” aspect is a lot of work: getting a business license, paying self-employment taxes, learning accounting, creating a website, etc. Managing yourself is not for the faint of heart.

what are the most important things to consider when making this change? I think one of the most important things to consider is your dedication and willingness to pour your heart into your dream. Without solid dedication, a dream is just a dream.

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business - but I never thought I’d start out that way right out of college. I didn’t think it was possible. So, when I did, I was terrified of disappointing that little girl inside me that had hoped to be a certain kind of woman when she grew up. did your family and peers support you? My family has always been incredibly supportive. I’ve always felt that, as far as my dad was concerned, I could do anything I set my mind to. And, my mom has been much the same way. A lot of my friends made it clear they thought I was crazy. That was hard. But I was in a relationship when I launched Nakate and, though we went our separate ways some time ago, my then boyfriend was the drive that kept me going during our first year. what are the most important things to consider when making this change? I think it’s key to know what opportunities are in front of you, and which ones you don’t want to miss - opportunities for your happiness, your congruity as a person, your contribution to the world and to society and to yourself - what do you want to know you accomplished in your life?

SHANLEY KNOX {Nakate Project} what transition did you make (which job to which job)? My transition was actually more of a switch from one plan to another since I was graduating, and didn’t have a job yet. I was planning to move to Washington DC. I had a part time job lined up, with an interview for a full time position scheduled a few weeks out. It was the end of final exams, the week before I graduated, and I decided to give up my plan to begin writing, and start a social enterprise instead. I moved in with my parents, launched an online store, and began selling off inventory I’d brought back six months before from a trip to Uganda. When I began to realize just exactly what I’d taken on, I felt crazy. But, almost a year and a half later, there’s no doubt in my mind that I made the right choice. was there anything that prompted you to make the change when you did? I spent the last summer of college in Uganda reporting for a nonprofit in a village where abuse and prostitution was rampant. I came home tired of the things I’d seen, and never really wanting to go back. Four months later, I was in a class where they were showcasing the work of students from the past semester. One video highlighted prostitution in South America, and I sat in this dark room with all these other exhausted students clutching my americano and bawling. I knew that those women didn’t need me to partner with them or come in and change their lives, but I was suddenly overwhelmingly aware that I wanted to be part of their stories, and I wanted them to be part of mine. what, if any, reservations did you have about this shift? My biggest fear was being a joke, and not having the career I hoped for. When I was a little girl, I always imagined myself working in international

The second set of questions have to do with expectations. Are you ready to fail over and over again? Are you ready to see a thousand opportunities you’re counting on fail to work out? Are you ready to have a vision of your head of where you know you want to be eventually, and make the sacrifices you will have to to get there? For me, that meant moving in with my parents for almost a year, selling a lot of my things, and getting a part time nanny job to pay my bills. Lastly, I think you have to know if you can find the right people to do it with you. Nakate launched without seed capitol, and the only reason we’ve been able to keep afloat is because of the people involved - my core team, Mike, Shannon, Antonio, Gina - they’ve made this project possible. how do you feel now about your job? My job changes my life on a daily basis. It’s constantly educating me, pushing me, challenging me and moving me forward professionally and personally. It’s the hardest thing I’ve ever done, but by far the most rewarding. what is the best thing you’ve experienced as a result of this transition? Meeting with women from a different culture, with foreign struggles, issues and circumstances, and - together - crossing cultural boundaries and making an international business work, is something I don’t even know how to put into words. It’s exhilarating, it’s terrifying - and it’s something I can’t imagine having lived my life without while I worked for someone else. what advice would you give to people who are in the process of contemplating such a transition? I think May Angelou said it best: “Life loves to be taken by the lapel and told: ‘I’m with you kid. Let’s go.’”

Your Turn

WE ASKED YOU: WHAT IS YOUR DREAM JOB? I would own my own bookstore. I worked at one for 4 years and it will forever be my most favorite job. Books hold a special place in my heart; there’s nothing like getting caught up in a good story with a great cup of coffee in hand. No job seems as fulfilling as sharing that feeling with others. — Sophie, Blog: Just Live Into It

Professional person-who-talks-to-other-people-about-books-all-day. Is that a job? Can we make that a job? — Sarah, Blog: To Build Books and Castles

If I could have any career or job in the world, I would be a literary agent or an editor at a publishing house. I would love to be a part of the process of helping a writer achieve his or her goal of getting their work published. — Natasha, Blog: Small and Charming

I would give anything to work in the Smithsonian museums! But just generally I would love to work in a museum as a curator and the amazing thing is since I’m just going into college, that is what I’m going to work towards - being an archaeologist and working in a museum. — Karman, Blog: Talking Chapattis

If I could have any job in the world, I would love to sit and listen to children talk all day long. The way they think and see the world is astounding to me, and I always wish I could get in that mindset again. I would love to sit and watch them play and then play with them-fully immersing myself into their fantasies and relinquish all thoughts of reality. In my future career, I plan on doing my part to preserve a child’s innocence as long as possible, so that they can enjoy the world as they see it and encourage them to see the beauty in everything, even when times get tough. — Lauren

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Do Something That Scares You By Caitlin Rodgers

I graduated from college without a clue of

ment, but voilà, I had my ticket to a life I had

as friends and I picnicked into the evening, a

where I was headed. At the time, perhaps only

only ever dreamed about - I was moving to

stranger sketched me at a café while I unknow-

second to my love of words was my love of

Paris! A fe w months later, as my plane landed at

ingly studied and then left it on my table with

Paris. As a double writing and French major,

Charles de Gaulle Airport, I wasn’t just nervous; I

a wink and a smile, grocery store trips entailed

I had been a Francophile since the first day of

was terrified. For the first time, I was completely

passing a 300-year old cathedral. Life was thick

seventh grade French class, but I simply wasn’t

on my own. I didn’t know a soul in the city

with beautiful details and rich moments that

that girl – not the brave, adventurous one who

where just about every corner looked the same.

stole my breath.

could leave everything familiar to discover

Getting lost was an (unintended) daily exercise

something unknown. At least that’s what I had

and the French that buzzed in my ears was ter-

always thought. Yet as I spent one afternoon after

ribly different from what I had heard in college

another stressing about my future, I’d wonder,

classes. Oh brave new world, what had I done?

“What if I’m wrong?”

I’ll never forget, though, the first time I was

only 3:00 a.m. in Texas. I was forced to dig deep

Several months later, I stared down at an email

asked for directions… in French. I probably

and do things for myself like never before. Each

acceptance letter for graduate school – in Paris. It

beamed for hours. There were moments when

of these moments – be them difficult or sweet –

had taken several tough-love conversations with

I felt like I must be living in a dream: pink and

was teaching me and forcing me to discover the

my parents and their full-throttle encourage-

orange sunsets burned behind the Eiffel Tower

real adult Caitlin.

But it was also a challenge. In the early days, sometimes all I wanted was a hug from my parents or at least the ability to call them. However, counting back seven hours, I’d realize it was

Even now, more than a year after I arrived, my heart still beats wildly as I wander through streets: everywhere I look there are people, buildings, and corners filled to the brim with character that I could savor for hours. It’s in these hours that I have come to understand that you’ve got to follow your heart – not just because you’ll always think “what if?” if you don’t, but because it has the potential to make you the person you were created to be. Paris has taught me that the risk is worth it and that the unknown isn’t something to fear, but to chase.

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{Close} verb * bring or come to an end

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Back Story

Photo by Ashlee Gadd

It might surprise you that this picture

they came straight out of a perfectly styled

from this issue’s Embellish shoot makes

catalogue, but who really wants that? If a

our hearts really happy. Why? Because it

pair of mismatched socks brings a smile to

represents the truth that at the end of the

your face at the end of the day - or while

day, we’re not perfect. Under all of the

you’re reading this - then we’re gonna go

thoughtful styling and carefully applied

ahead and support that. CS

makeup, sometimes you’ll find a pair of mismatched socks. Behind the glossy pages of this 1-year-old online magazine sits a group of women who do the best they can to live full, healthy, happy lives but sometimes struggle. And we’re not the kind of people to hide that fact. In a world where we compare ourselves to one another more and more, it’s kind of nice to be reminded that it’s okay to embrace our imperfections. Our lives aren’t always going to look like

So long as a person is capable of self-renewal they are a living being. — Henri Frédéric Amiel SPR IN G 2012

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The Violet | Spring 2012  

The Violet's Spring 2012 Issue

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