New Year, New Address

I wanted to give y’all a head’s up that I’ll be moving things around a bit. This will be my last post at this URL. Never fear; the whole blog is moving! Going forward, I’ll be posting at lisayoder.is. In fact, I’m already over there! Go on, take a look. I’ll wait.

I’ll leave this right here for the coming days, and then I’ll be redirecting all new traffic over to the new site. It’ll be just the same for now, but I’m excited to consolidate all my work into one space. The design will stay the same just for now, but I’m also working on a redesign, so stay tuned!

I’ll see ya there!

 

Looking Back & Facing Forward

looking back facing forward

Last year, the new year felt monumental. I had accomplished and grown so much, and by the end of 2013, I was in a totally different place than I was at the beginning. I don’t feel like I’ve accomplished nearly as much as I did in 2013, but there are a few goals I’m proud to have accomplished.

2014 To-Do List:

  • speak at an event I spoke at both the Philly Women in Tech Summit & WordCamp Philly! I also made short remarks at the Girl Develop It 3rd Anniversary Party.
  • record an EP with Chad  NOPE. But we’re both taking voice lessons and actively working towards it this year.
  • get published (in a periodical, online, in print, self-published, and/or ebook all count) I was so excited to be included in Melanie & Sandra’s We Are the Contributors project. The archives should be back online in the near future, and I’ll be sure to reshare when they’re posted.
  • learn JavaScript & feel comfortable and confident using both it and jQuery I’ll (rightfully so) probably never feel done with this one. But! I did start getting familiar with Angular this year and will be setting aside more time this month to dive into it even deeper.
  • build another Rails app Also did not do this, but I want to be doing this during 2015. Multiple times.
  • find a house or apartment that feels like a more permanent living situation DONE! I’m so psyched to be living in a place where the floors aren’t rotting. Also, dishwasher! Laundry in our apartment! Dedicated office/music/creative space! It’s glorious. Perhaps it even warrants a house tour series this year.
  • read at least a book a month This was an epic failure, and I am thoroughly embarrassed about it. I was one of those annoying kids who got in trouble for reading too much in class. My parents took books away from me as punishment. I would bring multiple books to the supper table so that when the first one got taken, I’d have a back up. I’m ashamed of the way that screens have taken the place of books in my life.

In addition to making up for what I didn’t accomplish in 2014, I’m hoping to add a few other things to my 2015 to-do list. If I share them here, I have to make moves, right?

So here we go.

  • read a book a month
  • work on at least two Rails apps
  • learn Angular better by building something on my own
  • learn to/make a quilt
  • set up an online shop
  • speak at another event
  • work towards recording an album with Chad

Bonus: I’ve been compiling another playlist, appropriate for year planning (& my birthday! Happy birthday to me!) Reflective, but full of possibilities. Check it out here, & follow along on Spotify if that’s your thang.

 

Favorite Posts of 2014

I know I’m a pretty late to the party on this, but I really can’t believe 2014 is over already. It doesn’t feel like as monumental of a year as 2013 did. Like, not enough exciting stuff happened for the entire year to be gone already. But, despite my not being a 5-days-a-week blogger (or, maybe because of it) I am still pretty psyched about some of the ideas, concepts, and experiences I’ve shared in this space. I’m still turning them over in my head, trying to live them out practically, or just looking back and remembering them fondly.

So here are my favorite posts from 2014. Consider it my highlight reel, if you will:

We definitely do not have as many hours in the day as Beyonce. This flippant phrase that’s now emblazoned on everything from coffee mugs to phone cases is actually pretty damaging. Here’s why.

This year it really hit me that I just cannot do all the things. Well, I can do all the things, but not at the same time. I started thinking about how taking one opportunity would affect my ability to explore others — saying yes to one thing is like saying no to ten other things.

Back in January, I was pleasantly surprised by Alt Summit. I knew it’d be a ton of fun and beautifully executed, but there’s no way I could have anticipated some of the beautiful souls I met there: A Confession & the Real Magic of Alt Summit.

I dressed up in my mom’s wedding dress & flounced all around Penn Treaty Park & Kensington in Inna’s Vintage Beauty Project.

And finally, I wrote about what it’s like to be 27… and be married for five years.

 

 

Good for What Ails You: Recipe for a Relaxing Night

Good for what ails youI hope your holidays were/are delightful! I spent mine laying around my parents’ farmhouse, ‘grammin’ photos of a mild rural Central PA winter, working, and eating an obscene amount of cheese.

After a seriously pleasant few days back on the farm, we rolled into Philly late Saturday afternoon. Upon opening the car door to unload many bags and many (ok, just two) cats, city smells and and sounds and air assaulted my senses. Within five minutes, I had a rip-roaring headache and was starting to get whiny. I was missing the clean air and clear head that I’d left behind three short hours earlier.

So, just in case you’re having a rough time transitioning back to the real world after holiday travel, this is what worked for me. Behold, a recipe to feel like a new person.

Ingredients:

  • 2 hours
  • 1 steamy bath
  • a makeshift teabag out of cheesecloth, filled with lavender & cedar shavings
  • Trader Joe’s Lavender Sea Salt Scrub
  • 1 Anthropologie Volcano candle
  • 2 hot toddies
  • 3 glasses of ice water (the steam and hot toddies will dehydrate you; be sure to drink plenty of water!)
  • magazine and/or book of choice — mine were Frankie & When I Was a Child I Read Books
  • Emily Wells’ Mama Acoustic Recordings on repeat
  • a clean & tidy bedroom to retreat to upon leaving the bath

Prior to this, I think the last time I took a bath was probably the day I got married. Five and a half years ago. So it was high time I get reacquainted with reading in a steamy tub, all alone. It was glorious. I felt like a whole new person after emerging from my steamy solitude, and it’s set the tone for this whole week. Calm. Easy. Low pressure.

This episode aside, I’m mostly spending this quiet week working. The week between Christmas and the new year is a beautiful pause. It feels a little like time has stopped and there’s room for recalibration before really diving back into the everyday tasks. How are you filling this time?

Last Minute Christmas Recipes on The Dish

sandtarts1If you don’t already know, I’ve been contributing the The Town Dish to varying degrees for the past two and a half years. If you haven’t checked out the Town Dish yet, especially if you live in Southeast PA, don’t waste any more time! They do excellent coverage of the Southeastern PA hyperlocal food scene, but also plenty of travel, recipes, health, and style writing that’s appealing no matter where you live.

This month, I’ve got two posts up there; both are perfect for some last minute holiday food ideas. Between the two of them, they sum up my family’s biggest holiday food traditions: sand tarts, nut cups, and mush (an Amish-Mennonite cornmeal dish) on Christmas morning.

I’m already working remotely from my parents’ farm, so I’m in full-on holiday mode. I’ll be eating some or all of these in the next week or so.

2 Pennsylvania Dutch Cookie Recipes to Try This Christmas

I have a lot of favorite memories about childhood Christmases on the farm: coming in from the barn with red cheeks and noses, Saturdays spent munching on nut cups while sprinkling cinnamon, sugar and chopped nuts on sand tarts. There’s no tradition of colorful M&M cookies or sprinkles on Christmas cookies in my family—we keep it simple.

Keep Reading on The Town Dish

sandtarts & nut cups

An Old-Fashioned Christmas Feast on the Farm: Cornmeal Mush

I have happily eaten the exact same thing with a less-than-appetizing name every Christmas morning for approximately the past 20 years: mush. My grandmother made it every morning for my dad and his five siblings after they finished the barn work and before they went to school. My grandma made it for me a few times for breakfast when I was really little, and I was hooked. At some point, I decided that I’d make mush for breakfast as a Christmas gift for my dad, who now only eats it when I make it, and I’ve done it every year since. Right after Thanksgiving, he asks me if I’m going to make mush again this year. The answer is always yes.

Keep Reading on The Town Dish