Maui was a dream come true. I can’t find the words or photographs to do it justice. I feel overwhelmingly grateful for our time there and grateful for my family that I spent these days with. I’m feeling a bit haunted by this place with Hawaiian tunes still in my head, ukuleles being strummed around here, and banana bread in the oven. My heart aches yet I feel so grateful.
Inspired by the lemon tree and herbs wintering in my family room, I decided to find a healthful and protein rich way to warm our mornings. They’re quick, easy and taste great with a drizzle of honey and a cup of strong coffee.
Almond Breakfast Cakes with Lemon, Rosemary, and Figs
Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
In a bowl, mix:
Drop 8 – 10 spoonfuls onto a greased baking sheet and bake for 8-10 minutes.
Tina is one of my oldest and best friends. She’s loyal, honest, talented, and lovely. We’ve known each other for 20 years and she’s been a kindred spirit, my confidante, and my biggest cheerleader. When her and Scott met and later became engaged, let’s just say, that I was thrilled. For her – because of the many conversations we’ve had through the years about love, loss, and finding the right guy to spend your life with. For Scott – because I knew how incredibly lucky he was to be spending his life with a woman as wonderful as my friend.
A while back Tina told me of a conversation between her and Scott about their past acquaintances and relationships. They asked each other about “the one who got away”. Her reply to him was “Scott, it was you.” This August, as they said their vows, and I listened and watched and took photographs, I thought of this conversation and was so thankful and grateful that they found their way across the miles and through the years to be together. To be in these moments with them on their wedding day seemed a bit surreal.
I am truly honored to have spent this day with them and beyond flattered that they placed so much confidence in me as a photographer to document and capture this especially important event in their lives.
My dear friend was recently diagnosed with stage 4 ovarian cancer. She is courageous and beautiful and is facing every day with strength and grace. Last night she decided to shave her hair as it has started falling out due to chemotherapy. I am grateful and humbled that she asked me to photograph this important step in her journey.
It’s been months and months since I’ve posted anything here. Yet as the summer fades and the winds cool, I feel compelled to look back over the next couple of days and revel in the warmth and love and happy memories.
Midsummer, we headed to Wisconsin for our annual trip. For one week, not only do I get to watch the beautiful sunsets and listen to the loons, but I get to listen to laughter, appreciate my family, and watch these kids grow into really amazing people. My heart spends the week filled with love, wonder, and gratitude. I am blessed and so incredibly lucky.
This has been a rough winter. I love the snow but we have been covered in it since December. We can now see patches of grass here and there and it is getting me in the mood for spring. At the end of every winter we head out to Hausermann’s Orchids for their orchid show and sale. I love the warmth, the humidity, and the sunny glow of their endless greenhouses. The best part is that we always pick out a few things to nurture at home and brighten our days.
Today my grandmother would have celebrated her 100th birthday. She loved music and to dance and play the organ, be in her garden, play cards, and listen to the Polka station on Sunday mornings. Growing up, I think of her mostly in the kitchen. There was always a pot of soup on the stove, a pot of coffee brewing or a wonderful meal being prepared. She taught me how to make pierogi and dumplings, speak a few words in Polish, and to play and sing “Zosia Polka” on her organ. I am grateful and comforted by these wonderful times we spent together.
This morning as I was thinking of her, I went through her recipe box looking for something to cook and honor her with. I skipped over the jellied pig’s knuckles and went straight for the cakes. I narrowed the list down to either the sauerkraut cake or the Pope’s cake and I decided on the later. I carried down my record player, turned on the Polkas and couldn’t help but dance while the cake baked.
As I grew older my grandma became my trusted friend. I think of her often and miss her dearly – mostly when I’m in the kitchen.
Every year we go to Grandpa’s Christmas tree farm to pick out our tree, cut it down, and bring it home to decorate. It’s a wonderful tradition that we have been doing with our boys for quite a few years. They can’t wait for the tractor ride and the hot cocoa with peppermint sticks afterwards. This year did not disappoint. The snow was gently falling, the kids were running and having fun, and I managed to get by without tripping on any tree stumps. We found the most beautiful tree – pine cones and all!
We spent this past weekend driving through Wisconsin and into Minnesota to celebrate the holidays with family. We were hungry by the time we reached Madison so we pulled off the highway and happened across a restaurant called the Weary Traveler. We loved the eclectic decor and the food was so good. Madison seems to be full of these great little finds. I’m sure we will be back here the next time we drive through.
9 hours after we left our home we finally arrived at our destination. The kids were tired of being in the car and we were hungry again so we me met our family at a place that had sauerkraut pizza – it was seriously good! It was nice to see our Minnesotans, sit, have a cocktail and relax. We stayed the weekend with my in-laws who have quite a few animals, three of which are the sweetest Icelandic horses.
The visit was short but we had such a great time visiting and talking and exploring a little bit of Minnesota.