Wednesday, September 5, 2012


The time has come for me to say goodbye to this blog. Over these past five+ years that I've maintained this space, I've learned so much, made life long friends, and shared some of my favorite music. It's been a wonderful experience, and this is certainly a bittersweet farewell.

I've often thought about when I would end my blogging days and asked myself how I would know when it was time. These past couple months I've stepped back to see if I still felt an urge to share here, and was quite surprised that I didn't. I let that feeling settle and I feel good about this decision.

Of course, there are things that I will miss. Mostly, the connection to friends and readers, but this change feels peaceful and I am grateful for the support and encouragement I have received here.

I will leave this space open, at least for the time being, so that my archives, and music playlists will still be available. As always, I can be reached by email [passionistapresents at gmail dot com] if you ever feel the need to contact me. I also will still be sharing photos and snippets of my life on Instagram (@MarilynLott).

Thank you for reading, for commenting, and for encouraging me all these years.

Farewell, friends!

Friday, July 6, 2012

July mix winner + tonsillectomy.

I hope your Independence Day was safe and wonderful! We've had a pretty good week. Though yesterday Lily had her tonsils and adenoids out so the start of the week was definitely better than the end :)

She is a perfect little patient though and doesn't cry, or whine, or complain. The surgery center just called to check on her and asked her what her pain level was on a scale of 1-10 and she said 8. It breaks my heart to watch her suffer. But this too shall pass. In a few days she will be back to her bubbly, wiggly little self.

On to the mix giveaway: this month's winner is...

comment #12: Kaybs!!!

Congratulations. Please email me [passionistapresents at gmail dot com] your address and I'll get your mix in the mail!

Here's Lily before and after surgery:

7:15 am- She was nervous, but still bubbly and happy!

9:30 pm- This was taken last night after hours of vomiting. I asked her to smile, she said she couldn't because it hurt too bad.

I'm happy to report that she is doing much better this morning. The nausea and vomiting have passed. Hallelujah!

Monday, July 2, 2012

July Mix.

Happy July friends! We are enjoying our summer very much and hope you are too. This month's mix starts off with a really fun song that I can't wait to blast outside tonight while we BBQ, play volleyball, and watch fireworks. There's some mellow songs in there too that will be perfect for lazy summer evenings around the fire pit.

Here's the track list:

1. St. Croix - Family of the Year
2. Tiger Child - The Young Romans
3. Falling - Ivan & Alyosha [not available yet!]
4. Holiday - Jessie Baylin
5. That Wasn't Me - Brandi Carlile
6. Crazy Fool - Jack Savoretti
7. On the Sea - Beach House
8. Life's for the Living - Passenger
9. There's No Leaving Now - The Tallest Man on Earth
10. Sleeping With a Stranger - Matthew Perryman Jones
11. Sorry Seems to Be the Hardest Word - Hannah Miller
12. Caught Me Thinkin - Bahamas
13. The Longer the Waiting - Anna Ternheim
14. Waves - Small Town Jones
15. Let It Go - Fossil Collective
16. Let The Sail Be Your Guide - Jay William Henderson
17. Broken Brights - Angus Stone
18. Better Man - Marc Scibilia
19. Make Me Down - Josh Ritter
20. Hemlock Tree - Jaymay

Want to win this mix?
Comment once on this post before 9am Friday, July 6th.
A winner will be announced on Friday!

Good luck + Enjoy!

P.S. This month's cover picture is one I took last July while we visited a local park along the Columbia River. We get to watch these pretty dinner cruise ships float up and down the rivers here.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

The Palouse Scenic Byway.

Last week, I hopped in my car early one morning excited to drive north a couple of hours where I would pick up Jocelyn from a basketball camp she was attending. Three things about this trip forced a silly grin on my face.

1. I was looking forward to seeing Jocelyn after missing her for a few days.
2. A couple of solitary hours in the car is a favorite of mine, especially with great tunes to play.
3. I knew this drive, in the month of June, is one of the most beautiful things ever!

Every time I drive The Palouse Scenic Byway, it takes my breath away. This stretch of highway is so beautiful with it's rolling green and chartreuse fields, old barns and farm equipment, charming farm cottages and lots of livestock. Even before the official scenic route begins, the golden wheat fields north of the Tri-Cities and the rugged cliffs near Kahlotus and Washtucna make for some gorgeous photo opportunities. Click here to read all about The Palouse Scenic Byway and for day trip ideas in this area. Here is a link to the course that I drove.

If you live anywhere near here, or may be passing through, this drive is worth the detour.

 I can't wait to go back again and take pictures of all of the other beautiful sights along the way.

Happy Road Tripping!

Friday, June 22, 2012

Blueberry season.

Blueberry harvest has begun here on the farm and I am so happy to have fresh berries at my disposal. A few years ago, we started hosting a Blueberry U-pick in a small section of the farm and it has garnered a lot of attention from anxious blueberry fans. They come in droves to pick our delicious, organic blueberries. And each year, I get question after question asking "When will the U-pick open?" So we've started a Facebook page where people can get those answers.

If you're a local blueberry fan, be sure to like that page and come on out to the U-pick to stock up on these beauties. Here's the info on the U-pick for this year:

Applegate Orchards Blueberry U-pick
Opens on Monday, June 25th
hours will be: Monday-Saturday 8:00am-5:00pm
The U-pick will be open for about 3-4 weeks.
Prices: $3/lb for U-pick, $4/lb for We-pick.
Located on Ice Harbor Dr/HWY 124 in Burbank, WA
There will be plenty of signs marking the blueberry patch!
There is also a link to a map on the Blueberry U-pick Facebook page.

Happy Berry Picking!

Monday, June 18, 2012

The Lower Lights-Vol. 2

Just pre-ordered this new album from The Lower Lights and am listening to the two songs immediate available for download. The entire album will be available next week and I am really looking forward to more new music from this great group of musicians. And now a letter...

Dear The Lower Lights,

I love your music. I wish I had a steady stream of new music from you every month. If you make it, I will buy it. Keep it coming!


Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Tough Rhino Mud Run.

This past weekend was a big one for us. We held the first annual Tough Rhino Mud Run. It was a huge labor of love and so much hard work, especially on Brandon's part. He built the obstacles and course in the weeks leading up to the race and he spent many many hours, often late into the night working on it. One of the things I love most about him is his work ethic, he is NOT afraid of hard work.

I am really proud of him because in a few short months he made this idea of his into a reality, and it turned out pretty great. We had almost 1200 people race on Saturday, including 200 children in the Jr Rhino events. At one point, there were about 1500-1600 people at the park. There was extensive media coverage, at least 75 volunteers, sponsors, vendors, entertainment. It was amazing.

I thought I would share some photos from the event so you could see how much fun it was.

This collage shows some of the different obstacles from the race, and the picture below is the course map.

The awesome people who came out to the event is what I am so overwhelmed by. The weather on Saturday wasn't ideal. It was cold, windy, rainy... but still they came in droves and with smiles on their faces. They brought their children and they dressed up in silly costumes. They formed teams and gave them funny names like "Skid Marks" with matching t-shirts. Best friends joined together to make teams called "The Real Housewives of the Tri-Cities" or "The MUDonnas". It was just so much fun.

And we can't wait to do it again next year!

Monday, June 11, 2012

June Mix Winner.

Friends, this past week and weekend has been the craziest E-V-E-R. Lots of hard work and time and energy went into putting on the first ever Tough Rhino Mud Run on Saturday and it was so much fun. But oh so much work. [I'll post more about the race tomorrow!]

I wasn't able to post the winner on Friday, so today will have to do.

Dear Kelly McCaleb, chose #12 and that just happens to be you! Please email me your address and I will get your mix in the mail. [passionistapresents at gmail dot com]

**The kids are home from school now which means Summer break is here and I am so very happy about that!

Friday, June 1, 2012

June Mix

We only have one more week of school and then it will be full on Summer break. Blueberry harvest will begin in about three weeks and our Summer schedule is already filling up with kids heading to this camp and that camp and I'm trying to make sure that we fill our Summer with plenty of relaxed days by the pool, BBQ's with family, and backyard campfires, and hopefully a road trip or two.

That's where this mix comes in. This mix is begging to be blared on a hot summer day, cruising down the highway, singing along and dancing in your seat. Please say YES!

1. Summer, Hither - Sleepy Turtles
2. Hearts Content - Brandi Carlile [will be available on Tuesday, June 5th!]
3. As It Seems - Lily Kershaw
4. Hello Hello - Missy Higgins
5. Count Me In - Early Winters
6. Muscle & Bone - Hannah & Maggie
7. In My Life - Bess Rogers
8. 1904 - Tallest Man on Earth
9. Hello My Old Heart - The Oh Hello's
10. Watch How You Go - Keane
11. Be Honest - Jason Mraz feat. Inara George
12. I Make My Own Sunshine - Alyssa Bonagura
13. Featherstone - The Paper Kites
14. Lead Me Right - Katie Costello
15. Specks - Matt Pond PA
16. Talk To Me - Meg & Bryan
17. Breakdown More - Eric Hutchinson
18. 40 Mark Strasse - The Shins
19. All Through August - Death and a Cure
20. Landline - Greg Laswell feat. Ingrid Michaelson

Want this mix? Comment once on this post by 9am Friday, June 8th.
A winner will be announced on the 8th!
Good Luck + Enjoy!

P.S. This month's cover is a picture I took last Summer while laying on a blanket in the park, looking up at the sun shining through the trees.

P.P.S If you are looking for any of my past mixes, they can be found on my left sidebar under "Listen to My Monthly Mixes." Here's all of the 2012 mixes.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Life lately...

This time of year is always the craziest, busiest time. The last two weeks of school seems to be the most exhausting. Just wanted to post a little update on our family because this is the only journaling I do :)

I'll start with the youngest.

Lily- She is doing very well in school and almost never needs to be reminded to do her homework. She is very responsible and is my best helper here at home. She is very willing to help with dinner, dishes, vacuuming, pretty much anything I ask her to do. Except clean her room. She really does NOT like to do that. It's her Achilles heel. She is also playing softball which she enjoys, but unfortunately has missed several games and practices because of her tonsils. Have I mentioned her tonsils? They are enormous and disgusting. She is having them removed on the 5th of July and we can't wait because they are ridiculous.

Ethan- This boy has been on cloud nine because his favorite person in the world, Uncle Taylor, has been visiting for the past two weeks and when Taylor is here, we rarely see Ethan. But Taylor is leaving today, so Ethan will have to resume regular life with his family. Also, Ethan started football practice yesterday. Without telling me about it. He didn't show up after school and I searched and searched and searched for him and finally at about 4:15, just before I was about to report him missing to the police, I found him at football practice. In related news, his coach thinks he has serious potential as a wide receiver. I, however, never want to let him leave the house again. Sheesh!

Jocelyn- This is the part where all we talk about is sports. Jocelyn just finished varsity softball, playing first base and loving every minute of it. Softball is her sport. I'm pretty sure she dreams about softball. Her team made it to districts and did well, and we are looking forward to two more years of watching this team grow. Yesterday she started summer basketball and will play in some series and tournaments beginning next week. Tonight she starts summer softball, and her first game will be next week as well. If you are ever looking for her this summer, she'll either be on the softball field or the basketball court.

Madeline- She is just a few days shy of finishing her first year of Cosmetology and she really enjoys it. She will be continuing her Cosmo education through the summer which will really limit the amount of "fun" and "entertainment" she gets to enjoy this summer, but she is grateful for the opportunity and realizes what an advantage this will be in her life. She finished up her Junior year playing tennis and will now start summer softball with Jocelyn, her best friend in the whole world. I think they are pretty excited about it.

Marilyn- If you've made it this far, then you realize how I spend my time. Driving to and from sports, watching sports, signing kids up for sports, hearing about sports, etc. I'm glad that my kids enjoy playing outdoors and staying active, so I'm not complaining. Lately, I've been playing a lot of piano, reading, helping Brandon with the Tough Rhino stuff and failing to stay caught up on the housework. I'll just keep at it though. One thing I'm really happy about is that my peonies are blooming. They're so pretty.

Brandon- More sports. He has been really, crazy busy with Tough Rhino preparations which will be held June 9th. There are almost 700 people signed up for this race so far and we fully expect it to reach 1000. It's a massive undertaking and they've started building the obstacles which is really exciting. Our community is super pumped about the Tri-Cities first ever mud run obstacle course, and I am really proud of him and the work he has put into this race.

Besides all of that, he has been preparing for a race he did this past weekend. It was a 200 mile ultra. I'll post more about that soon, but he finished it in 62 hours and it was by far the most emotionally up and down race he's ever done.

Blueberry harvest will begin in about three weeks and so he's busy on the farm as well. He pretty much just goes and goes and goes, all day, every day.

So that's a wrap up of our lives lately. I'll check back in soon!