Red Twilight

Life is beautiful.

Red Twilight

Posted by Avra-Sha Faohla on February 7, 2015

Sometimes, in late summer or autumn, just after sunset, everything is bathed in red. It’s an extremely subtle red, one that not everyone can discern when I point it out.

I think it’s beautiful, that red twilight.

But then, I think most everything in nature is beautiful.

Let me introduce myself. Hello! My name is Avra. I like smiling and being positive. I like reading and writing. I like baking. I like discovering and learning almost everything, although I have a particular fondness for trivia. I pretend to dabble in birdwatching. I love looking at the night sky, and am trying to learn the names of many of the visible constellations and stars. It gives me an extra appreciation for the beautiful vastness and complexity of creation. Some people think me a bit odd, but I think I still manage myself fairly well in normal company, despite a touch of awkwardness.

I’ve had a wonderful time keeping this blog the past several years, and I’ve met some lovely people along the way. But it’s time for me to move on.

Thank you to all those who have read and commented: Beth, Elana, Sherrie, Snigdha, Mara/Kristina, Em, Picco, Mselene, and my writing challenge companions. You guys are wonderful and are probably the reason I’ve kept this up so long.

And if there’s anyone else who reads this blog but hasn’t commented, thank you for reading and caring, even though I didn’t know about it. Perhaps you’ll come out of hiding to wish me goodbye?

Posted in All About Avra | Tagged: , | 4 Comments »

Dorothy Who?

Posted by Avra-Sha Faohla on January 28, 2015

My friends, something has just occurred to me.

The protagonist in The Wonderful Wizard of Oz is named Dorothy Gale.

Dorothy Gale. Like, a strong wind.

I don’t understand how I never noticed the significance until today.

Had you?

Posted in Thoughts and Musings | Tagged: , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Dreams. You’ve Got to Love Them.

Posted by Avra-Sha Faohla on November 26, 2014

I was approaching the end of my pregnancy. I kept thinking I was going into labor, even though I was not feeling any pain. So I rushed to the doctor, convinced that the time had finally come. I was very worried.

As I stood before the front desk waiting for the doctor, my mind jumped ahead and imagined when this was over, when I would joyfully hold my newborn in my arms. Then my baby’s father would  . . . Wait. What father? I have no husband! I’m not married!

I looked at my belly, which moments ago had been clearly, undeniably containing a baby, and poof! It had magically become normal-sized!

I was not pregnant after all.

Just a dream I had last night that amused me. I hope you were able to find it entertaining, too!

P.S. It’s amazing how our dreaming brains are very determined to keep us unaware that we’re dreaming. I figured out that it logically couldn’t be true, but rather than allow me to realize that it was a dream, my brain somehow managed to have me believe that I’d just been mistaken about my pregnancy! Weird.

Posted in Interesting Happenings | Tagged: , , , , | 2 Comments »

How to Use Up Boiled Onions

Posted by Avra-Sha Faohla on November 7, 2014

When my mother makes soup with onions, she puts them in whole and takes them out that way too (to dispose of them in the garbage) because there are several people in my family who don’t like boiled onions. When I discovered this, I asked my mother to serve me a lot of onion with my soup so that it doesn’t go to waste.

I don’t know if I ever mentioned this, but I hate when food is wasted.

One day I found a boiled onion wrapped in a piece of tinfoil in the fridge. It was whole; she must have forgotten to give me some of it with the soup from which it had originally come.

“What are you going to do with this?” I asked her.

“Oh, I’ll probably throw it out. No one wants boiled onions.”

“Don’t throw it out!” I said. “I’ll eat it!”

Now, I do like boiled onion in my soup, but plain? I’m not the biggest fan.

So I put it in the blender.


It came out the consistency of applesauce. Onion-sauce?


I spooned out a portion and ate it. Once I got over the strangeness of onion applesauce, it was actually pretty good.


I decided to add some milk to the remainder and blend it up some more. And, whoa, I was really pleased with that addition! It took the onion-sauce to a whole new level!


I call it “creamed onion.”


So next time you are thinking of throwing out a boiled onion from a soup, maybe consider trying this instead.



P.S. I feel I must point out that I am aware that the lighting in these photos is dreadful. I never claimed to be a photographer. ;)

Posted in Food, How-Tos, Recipes | Tagged: , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »


Posted by Avra-Sha Faohla on October 30, 2014

I was walking home when I passed a farmer’s market that I don’t usually see.

Their produce cost more than I was willing to pay, and I was about to move on when I spotted this:

IMG_4919 (2)

It’s Romanesco, the vegetable that I’ve only ever seen online in articles about fractals (repeating patterns over multiple scales–i,e., their smaller parts resemble their whole, and those parts have similarly smaller parts resembling their whole, etc.) . And it’s gorgeous!


I pulled out my camera and started taking pictures of this mathematical marvel.


Eventually I realized that one of the guys working there was looking at me oddly.


Maybe it wasn’t so nice to be just taking pictures and not buying anything. (But I did try! Their zucchinis were just too expensive for me!) So I apologized to the guy and soon left.


But I must admit, I don’t know how sorry I really was. Not when I got all these pictures of the beauties to look back on.



Posted in Nature, Pictures | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Annoying Things Food Bloggers Do

Posted by Avra-Sha Faohla on October 23, 2014

I like reading food blogs. I’ve noticed that there are a few things that a lot of food bloggers like to do which I find frustrating. These are probably not done just by food bloggers, but that’s where I’ve noticed them.

Thing #1

They use the > symbol to mean better than. They might say:

Frosted > unfrosted.

Except the problem is that > means greater in number than. Not better than. The pseudo-math doesn’t even make sense.

Does anyone else get annoyed when they see that?

Thing #2

They say “I inhaled these cookies!” No, you did not. You’d be choking if you did.

Maybe the first time someone used inhale to mean gobble up, the choking imagery could be overlooked because it was clever and original. But it’s since lost any originality.

Dictionaries do include it as an informal definition of inhale, so use it if you wish. But it’ll always sound to me like you’re choking.

Thing #3

Speaking of overused expressions, please stop telling me I need your latest food creations in my life. Think of a different way to say they’re amazing. Even just saying “they’re amazing” is better than using an expression that is supposed to be clever but is used by every other person.

need these in life

Thing #4

This one is really for all recipe writers, not just the bloggers: What’s with the “pinch” of salt (or whatever)? I am using a recipe rather than making it up as I go because I want exact measurements that I know will work! Can’t you measure it and tell me what it is? 1/4 teaspoon? 1/8 teaspoon?

When I see “pinch of salt” in a recipe, I either skip it entirely or use so little, for fear of oversalting, that it doesn’t do anything for the dish anyway.

By the way, I also don’t like “heaping” and “scant” (how heaping? how scant?).


I just wanted to add that I’m dreadful at sounding lighthearted in writing. While everything I said here is true, it probably doesn’t bother me as much as it seems it does. If you do one of these things, I still love you. And I likely won’t remember it anyway. :D

Posted in Thoughts and Musings | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

Voice Week Part Five: The Man at the Monument Shop

Posted by Avra-Sha Faohla on September 24, 2014

Catch up:
Part One
Part Two
Part Three
Part Four

Part Five:  The Man at the Monument Shop

Selling tombstones is funny work. It’s got to be funny or else it’s depressing. The other day a snippy man with a face like a hippopotamus came in and asked whether we sold wooden tombstones. Wooden! Now there’s a modern man stuck in the Victorian era somehow. I could barely hold in my laughter, although maybe it wasn’t because of what he said so much as because of what he looked like.

Then there was the hobbling old woman who wanted a stone for her dear late husband John Williams. As if it wasn’t bad enough that he had the terribly common surname Williams, his parents had gone and named him John. And the silly woman wanted his name prominent and the dates all tiny! Someday someone’ll see his tombstone and think it belongs to someone else.

Now wouldn’t that be funny?


I got the idea for this last one from Stephanie’s suggestion on the Voice Week About page that you can write from different time periods. Not a different time period exactly, but a different time, yes. :D So thank you, Stephanie, for that suggestion!

Anyway, I hope you enjoyed this adventure! I certainly did.

Posted in Creative Writing | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | 16 Comments »

Voice Week Part Four: The Girl

Posted by Avra-Sha Faohla on September 23, 2014

Catch up:
Part One
Part Two
Part Three

Part Four: The Girl

Lots of stupid people think that teenage love isn’t the real thing. As if we’re only subhuman and our emotions can’t compare to those of “real” adults.

But when my boyfriend died last week, I felt like my heart had been demolished.

Today I visited his graveyard. I couldn’t remember exactly where his grave was, but I walked around until I spotted his name on a stone. I just kind of crumpled onto the ground. I wanted to say something, but there was nothing to say.

Some old lady with a little kid came by. I don’t know who she was. Not his grandmother because I’ve met both of them. I didn’t recognize the kid either.

When they came, I left.

I wish I could say visiting him helped. But my heart is as sore as ever.

Posted in Creative Writing | Tagged: , , , , , , | 16 Comments »

Voice Week Part Three: The Child

Posted by Avra-Sha Faohla on September 22, 2014

Catch up:
Part One
Part Two

Part Three: The Child

Grandpa died when I was little and I don’t remember him. I wish I did. Today I asked Grandma if she could take me to his grave, and she let me come with her.

The graveyard was very big. It felt like a very long time before we got there.

Someone I knew was sitting by Grandpa’s grave. It was the lady who helped me find my mother last year when I was lost in the park. I waved, but she didn’t wave back.

Grandma asked her if she knew Grandpa. But she just told Grandma to leave her alone. And then she got up and went away.

I guess she was just sad that Grandpa was dead. I asked Grandma about it, and she didn’t know. But I think I am right because she didn’t even say hi to me.

Posted in Creative Writing | Tagged: , , , , , , | 19 Comments »

Voice Week Part Two: The Old Woman

Posted by Avra-Sha Faohla on September 21, 2014

Catch part one here.

Part Two: The Old Woman

My grandson wanted to visit John’s grave with me. I was touched, you see. He was an infant when his grandfather died and, of course, could not have remembered him. It truly was touching. He is a sweet child.

We walked across the graveyard. Rob held my hand, which you’ll understand was—even after six years—for me as much as for him. When we reached John’s grave, a young lady, perhaps seventeen or eighteen years old, was sitting there.

I asked, “Did you know him?” I’d never seen her before, you see.

She looked up, and I tell you, she looked more miserable than I’d ever seen anyone look. She said, “Leave me alone,” and walked off.

Rob asked me, “Is she sad about Grandpa?”

“I don’t know, Rob,” I told him. “But you’re right. She’s very sad.”

Posted in Creative Writing | Tagged: , , , , , , | 20 Comments »


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