In The Kitchen: CrockPot Love

Happy February, all! Is it just me or was January just a giant blur? Yeah.

Anyway, I wanted to share a fun slow cooker recipe I made last week after buying my very first crock pot! I’ve been eating really poorly lately (read: schlepping home after work exhausted and making a sandwich or popping in a microwave meal), and I want to change that. I feel much better about myself (and feel much happier!) when I’m eating a balanced diet filled with greens and protein, so I’m trying to get better about it. I decided to buy a crockpot so I could make a week’s worth of meals in advance and pop them in the microwave when I get home from work. It worked so well last week, I’m excited to try lots of slow-cooker recipes in the weeks to come!

Okay, sorry for rambling a little there. Let’s get to the food! I adapted this recipe for Slow Cooker Chicken Fajitas. The recipe suggests straining off some of the liquid at the end to make your fajitas, but I skipped that step and just ate mine like a hearty stew. So good!

How amazing does this look? In The Kitchen // Imperfect Chevron

It tasted really good, and I was overall really glad to have easy microwavable and healthy meals during the week. In the future, I’d probably cube up some avocado and throw some cilantro on top! And maybe add a little more spices?

Do you have any go-to crock pot or slow-cooker recipes? Feel free to share with me!

xo

My Life in California

Happy weekend, guys! I’m finally feeling like myself again after a doozy of a cold last week, I hope none of you get it. Tis the season, right? I’m sitting here, sipping on my first cup of coffee in a week (I KNOW HOW THE HECK AM I STILL ALIVE?) and I realized I haven’t given any blog updates on how things have been going since the big move. So while this happy caffeine buzz lasts, I want to share a little about what I’ve been up to since moving to California about a month ago!

The San Francisco Bay Area sure is beautiful. I’m in love with the green hills all around, the palm trees that line some of the streets, and the views of the bay. I live in the East Bay, and so far I love it. To be fair, I do miss home (Colorado will always be my “home”)…but it’s helped that the winter here is so mild. People have been complaining about the 40s and 50s here, and I’m just happy I don’t need a winter jacket.

My Life in California // Imperfect Chevron

I bought this pretty little plant baby, and I love her so!

I’ve been settling in to my new job, and it’s very fulfilling and challenging. My coworkers rock, I’m slowly building up to a full caseload, and I’m learning so SO so much. It’s hard, pretty much all the time I feel like I’m flailing, but I know I’m where I’m supposed to be right now. It’s so good, to finally be working and actually loving what I’m doing, and I’m really grateful for it.

My Life in California // Imperfect Chevron

One of my coworkers brought back these amazing Harry Potter enamel pins from Universal Studios. See? I fit in so well with these people!

I’m back to ballet again, I found a great studio in the Bay Area that offers tons of adult classes. It’s pretty intense–a lot of local professional dancers take the class, and everyone is amazing, but it’s been so cool to be in class with such talented artistic people. I love watching them in class and trying to imitate their artistry (and failing miserably, of course). Ballet just fills my soul with joy!

My Life in California // Imperfect Chevron

My daily mantra…and my coffee vessel of choice

Weekends have mostly been spent relaxing, studying, and exploring the area slowly. I don’t really have friends here yet (other than my coworkers), so it’s been a little weird and lonely at times…but I know I’ll meet great people eventually! I think it just takes time to really integrate yourself into a new community and get out there and actually meet people. It’s something that can be sort of challenging for me, because I’m definitely an introverted person. It takes me a little while to warm up to new people and really be myself. So I’m trying to really push myself in that area. Work in progress, right?

I’m still trying to find a good balance of how I spend my time…right now I’m learning so much and having to study in a lot of my free time, so I haven’t had as much time to participate in my hobbies as I’d like. I’m trying to learn French so I can go to Paris with my family later this year, and I’m hoping to carve out some dedicated weekly time to work on that. I’m also not getting as many creative outlets as I’d like right now–there are times that I really get the itch to create, and right now I just don’t have a ton of time to fulfill the need. Again, work in progress.

My Life in California // Imperfect Chevron

Just a selfie to demonstrate that I’m happy here. #Shameless

Anyway, I don’t want to go on and on and bore you to bits. I just wanted to share a little of what my life has been like since I uprooted myself. As hard as it’s been to be alone in a new city, starting a new job…I really feel like I’m meant to be here right now. It feels right. I’m happy here right now! Thanks for letting me gush on for a while there. I’m trying not to be too doofy, but California is treating me pretty well so far.

xo

2017 Goals

I’m not one for making New Year’s resolutions. The word “resolution” just has this negative connotation to it, don’t you think? Maybe it’s just me… So, I don’t make resolutions. BUT as you all probably know, I do love to make goals, and there’s something refreshing and inspiring about a brand new year. Starting another year always pushes me to reflect on how my life is going on a day-to-day basis, and I like to make little goals for myself. I’m always pushing myself towards positivity and finding happiness in every day, and I’m ready for the new opportunities and challenges 2017 has to offer.

2017 Goals // Imperfect Chevron

Here are my goals for this fresh new year:

  1. Send more birthday cards: I always love receiving mail, and I know how special it makes me feel when I get a birthday card from a friend or family member. I really want to send my friends lovely little handmade birthday notes this year! It’s a simple but very meaningful way to tell the people I love how special they are!
  2. Spend more free time “hobbying:” with grad school taking up most of my time for the last couple of years, I really want to make my hobbies more of a priority again. I’ve missed sewing and painting, I love letting my creative energy just flow.
  3. Travel to Europe: more specifically, Paris, France. I’ve never been to Europe before, but my wanderlust is so real. One of the most important things in my life is traveling, and I’m so excited to visit Paris with my family next fall. I’m trying my best to learn French!
  4. Meet friends in my new city: having just moved to the SF bay area, I don’t have any friends yet here (other than the amazing people I work with!). I really want to meet some new friends here this year, to really establish my life here.
  5. Eat at a new restaurant at least once a month: I’ve just moved to the area, and it’s got some really great restaurants. It’s such a diverse community with an amazing variety of eateries, and I’m slowly building a list of my favorites! But it’s easy for me to fall into a comfy pattern of eating at just a couple places over and over. So I want to keep myself trying new restaurants as much as possible!

So there you go, a few goals I’ve made for myself for 2017! Do you have any goals?

*Side note: I just checked my inbox and have finally sorted through all of the messages! Sorry for the long wait on those responses. I am going to get better at checking them on a regular basis, I promise!*

xo

Best of 2016

In honor of the end of 2016, I wanted to round up and share some of my favorite blog posts from the year. No matter where you’re spending your New Year’s eve (or how, there’s no shame in relaxing at home, am I right?!), I hope it’s warm and lovely! And be safe out there (:

The Best of 2016

Best of 2016 // Imperfect Chevron

Travel Posts

2016 was full of traveling for me. From my clinical internships where I spent 3 months in North Carolina and 3 months in Florida, to a long weekend in Vail for the International Dance Festival, to interviewing for jobs in California…it’s been a busy year! Here are some of my favorites:

  1. Three Sisters Spring
  2. A Day at the Beach
  3. North Carolina Mountain Trip
  4. Vail Weekend
  5. San Luis Obispo Trip
  6. San Francisco Trip

DIY Posts

I had a few fun DIY and home decor posts to share this year. Makers gonna make, you know?

  1. Felt Wall Hanging
  2. Gallery Wall DIY
  3. DIY End Table Makeover
  4. My Sewing Machine Story

Cooking Posts

I love to cook, and mostly I love to eat. Here are a couple of recipes and food-related posts from 2016!

  1. The Perfect Green Smoothie
  2. In the Kitchen Recipe Roundup
  3. The Best Chicken Stew
  4. Delicious Coconut Bundt Birthday Cake

Miscellaneous Posts

I had a few random posts that I was really grateful and happy to share here on the blog, that don’t really fit into any other categories.

  1. My dog’s 14th birthday
  2. Wild by Cheryl Strayed
  3. G5 Hop Farm

Happy New Year!

xo

DIY: Hanging Wall Decor

I’ve been settling into my new home in California, and getting my room set up how I like it. My walls were starting to look pretty white and boring, so this weekend I decided to whip together a quick wall hanging. It’s easy and quick, and it really livens up a boring or plain space! It’s a good afternoon project to tuck away for a rainy or cold day.

DIY Wall Hanging // Imperfect Chevron

DIY Felt Wall Hanging

  1. Gather your supplies, and cut out the shape you want a bunch of times. I chose hearts, but I think this would work well with geometric shapes like triangles or diamonds! I used glittery red felt, light blue felt, navy felt, and black felt. You’ll also need scissors and yarn. img_3944
  2. Cut 2 small holes in the center of each felt shape (just wide enough to pass yarn through the holes). DIY Wall Hanging // Imperfect Chevron
  3. String yarn through the shapes, leaving a few inches between each heart. Make the strands as long or short as you want. I didn’t want mine to look too even, so I cute various lengths of thread. DIY Wall Hanging // Imperfect Chevron
  4. Hang on the wall using a thumb tack or nail. And you’re done! Step back to admire your handiwork.

See how easy!? I hope you try this quick little DIY, let me know how it turns out for you!

xo

 

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas // Imperfect Chevron

It hasn’t really felt much like Christmas to me yet this year. I’m not sure if it’s because I moved to California and there’s no snow, or if it’s because I’ve been very busy at work, or if it’s because I won’t be home for Christmas this year…but I haven’t been feeling very festive this month.

Anyway, it’s my first Christmas alone, and it definitely feels weird. But things are going good here so far, and I’m grateful for it. I know I’ve made the right decision in moving across the country by myself to start a brand new job in a brand new city. It feels really right (and also kind of like I’m getting dragged behind the boat most of the time, but I digress). Like I’m where I’m meant to be. Good vibes only!

I hope that your Christmas is merry and bright, no matter where you are and no matter who you’re with (or not with). Fill your day with love and joy, find happiness in the little things, and be present in the moment. Wishing all of you (and your families!) a very Merry Christmas.

xo

2016 Holiday Playlist

Once December hits, I’m ready to get festive for the season. I pull out all the fuzzy blankets (which I secretly keep out all year long, #AlwaysCold am I right?), brew up a mug of hot tea, and make a cozy and festive holiday playlist. This year, I’ll be spending my first Christmas totally alone, away from home. And while I’m pretty ok with it so far, I know I’ll really want a solid playlist to keep me feeling the holiday spirit, even when I start to get all the homesick feels.

Don’t get me wrong, I love Christmas music, but the classic stuff gets kind of old after a little while. So I made a little Indie Christmas playlist with some fun and different tunes, and I’m sharing it with you all today in case you want something festive to listen to this season!

Christmas 2016 Festive Playlist

2016 Festive Playlist // Imperfect Chevron

Don’t Shoot Me Santa – The Killers
Christmas in the Room – Sufjan Stevens
Wonderful Christmastime – Paul McCartney
The Christmas Waltz – She & Him
Last Christmas – Wham!
Christmas is Cancelled – The Long Blondes
Christmas (Baby Please Come Home) – Death Cab for Cutie
Christmas Wrapping – The Waitresses
Goodbye England,Covered in Snow – Laura Marling
Little Drum Machine Boy – Beck
The Cowboys Christmas Ball – The Killers
Santa Stole My Lady – Fitz & The Tantrums
Won’t Be Home for Christmas – Blink 182
Silent Night – Low
The Christmas Song (Roasting Chesnuts) – Arcade Fire
Merry Christmas (I Don’t Want to Fight) – The Ramones
Holiday Road – The Walkmen
Have  Yourself a Merry Little Christmas – Starflyer 59
Xmas Time is Here Again – My Morning Jacket
This Was the Worst Christmas Ever – Sufjan Stevens
I want an Alien for Christmas – Fountains of Wayne
I’m on Thin Ice – Clap Your Hands Say Yeah
I Feel it in my Bones – The Killers
Father Christmas – The Kinks
Christmas Wrapping – Dog is Dead
Just Like Christmas – Low
Lonely This Christmas – Lucky Soul
I Wish it was Christmas Today – Julian Casablancas

Enjoy! Happy holidays to everyone (: Sending lots of warm hugs and good vibes to you all.

xo.