xochitl adriana

Month: July, 2013

A Juliet Zulu weekend

A few weeks ago, my friend Lindsay asked me if I wanted to tag along with her to help her cook for the Juliet Zulu company retreat. I immediately said yes for a few reasons: Lindsay and I have been friends and planning to cook together for about two years now and it had never happened, so here was our big chance; I had known some of the people that work for the company for a while but hadn’t had a chance to hang out in a long time, so I was excited to catch up; and lastly, Lindsay told me it’d be at a cabin by the river, which are two of my most favorite things, so I jumped on board right away. 

Lindsay and I got together to plan the meals and get ready for the big weekend. Thankfully, the girl is as organized and as much of a planner as I am (a four page spreadsheet shopping list with all we needed alphabetized? YES.), so after a big Costco shopping trip and a last shopping stop in Salem, we somehow managed to fit everything into her car, chose some favorite episodes of This American Life and set off for the cabin.

The next four days were incredible. It was a lot of hard work followed by a lot of playing hard. Having never cooked with Lindsay before and me being a bit of a control freak in the kitchen, I was a little nervous about how things would go, but it could not have worked out better. Lindsay is a phenomenal cook and I was really excited and honored to be working alongside her in the kitchen, picking up some tips here and there. We had some moments of tension and stress, as would be expected when two people are in a little kitchen cooking for a big group of people (average per meal was 25 the first couple of days), but it didn’t keep us from getting everything done and making it work. There were last minute changes to the meals due to fruits going bad, things getting frozen instead of refrigerated, running out of ingredients or just realizing we were a bit overambitious when planning the meals. Still, it all worked out just fine, the food was enjoyed and everyone was so appreciative and encouraging about the cooking. It was a really good experience and a chance for me to learn to be more flexible, something I am working on in my life.

When we weren’t cooking or cleaning, we got a chance to do a lot of hanging out. I loved reconnecting with old friends and making new ones, getting to know people better and enjoying the ridiculous amount of laughter that went on over the course of those few days. I got to spend a lot of time on the dock, on a boat, or in the water, which is exactly what I was hoping for. I am person that loves rivers and swimming and I made it my goal to swim across the river and back every day, which I accomplished three of the four days. There were bonfires every night, I learned a new game I now love, LCR, which we played with an awesome 90s music soundtrack playing in the background. I got up at 5am one morning and went for a beautiful morning walk where the mountains were shrouded in fog. 

The weekend was one of the best so far this summer. I worked hard and had tired bones. I played a lot and felt refreshed. I saw a family of elk drinking at the riverbank as we went by on the boat. I had river hair that smelled of bonfire. I was blessed by laughter and wonderful conversations around a fire. 

I took a ton of pictures while we were out there, so I’ll share some here. These were all done with my iPhone, but I’ll post some camera ones once I get the film developed. Until then, hope you guys enjoy these!ImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImage


Sauvie Island

There is a place just outside of Portland that makes me very happy; this place is called Sauvie Island. Sauvie became my favorite place from the very first time I went there – it is green, beautiful and peaceful. There are farms, animals, a few beaches and the most beautiful scenery. The drive through the island calls for windows down, pretty music playing loudly and no words being spoken, just taking in the sights and the moment you are in.

I spend quite a bit of time at Sauvie Island throughout the year, but mostly in the spring and summer. There are farms that offer berry, apple, peach, and flower picking (Sauvie Island Farms is my favorite), beaches to picnic on with the Columbia River just waiting for you to swim in and in the fall, there is The Pumpkin Patch, where we go to eat kettle corn, pet animals, go through the corn maize and ride tractors that take us to huge fields of pumpkins until you find the perfect one.

Well, a couple of weeks ago, I happened to have plans three consecutive days on the island and I had my first roll of Kodak Portra 160 film to shoot. I was excited to shoot with it since I never had before but had seen how wonderful it looked and because I would be around people I love in my favorite place.

I got my film back yesterday and was not disappointed. There is still a lot I have to learn with my camera and there were a few I was a bit bummed about not turning out right (too bright, too dark, out of focus, etc), but overall I was pretty happy with the results. Here are a few of my favorites, from a day of berry picking and adventuring around the island and the evening of our Kinfolk community potluck. Hope you guys enjoy them!









Hello! I just started this blog and already

Hello! I just started this blog and already I have been slacking on posting as much as I wanted to! The last couple of weeks have been sun and busy and I have been running around with barely any time to spare. 

Last week was my birthday and I got to celebrate it with some of my most favorite people. I did not know what was planned, just went along with what my friends had in store for me. I was spoiled with breakfast at my favorite place, hours of swimming at a secret spot in the middle of the Columbia River with the gorge all around us and a BBQ with my nearest and dearest to end the day. The rest of the week was filled with a friend’s birthday, 4th of July, backyard camp outs, river times, BBQs and so much fun. 

It’s been a really good time lately, but I am finding myself getting worn out and needing to be better at slowing down and saying “no” to things sometimes. I need to get back to my normal routine and be better disciplined about how I spend my time.

Now, I know this is the quickest little post, but I promise to bring back my full attention to it in a couple of days. I am going to have some wonderful photos and  things to share with you guys here in the next week!