30 June 2009

important things to get done

in two weeks i am going to montreal and there is a lot to get done. of course, there are all the odds and ends that i need to gather which i wont bother you with here in this space, because who really needs to know about what toiletries i still need to buy and what shoes i'm struggling over taking or not? but besides all those necessary details, there are also really important things to get done.

for one, there are 10 more posts to go until 100! remember i promised you a 100th post giveaway? i'm not quite sure when that will land in relation to my trip, but i hope everything will line up. my goal is to start the contest before i leave in hopes that winners will understand that their surprise will come when i get back. we'll see...
if you are looking for a great giveaway right this second go here.

another important thing to get done is the summer photo trade. i am so excited about this project, created by jen of nectar & light. since i've joined this online community of blogging i've been waiting and hoping for a fun photo sharing/trading opportunity. i hope that this is the first in many projects that i can participate in. but i also have to shoot some great summer photos and print them and send them before i leave in two weeks.

lastly on my exciting photo-related to-do list, tifanie and i have a fun little film trade we are doing that i can't wait to share with everyone. we are each shooting a roll of 35mm film, rewinding it with a little tail hanging out, sending it to the other to shoot over, and then developing. neat, huh?

well, thanks for letting me sort out my to-do list with you. do you have any exciting creative prospects going on?

27 June 2009

in the face of a fleeing reality

"to take photographs is to hold one's breath when all
faculties converge in the face of fleeing reality."
-henri cartier-bresson

i was keeping up with my french, reading le monde online newspaper when i noticed an article about henri cartier-bresson. to celebrate 100 years after his birth, two of paris' museums are featuring bresson's work-the house of european photography and the modern museum of art in paris. i wish i could go and see them. after i read that article, my dad dug up his bresson books for me. this quote above was one of the many beautiful things he said in a small introduction to a collection of his photographs. i love it.

25 June 2009

blown glass

the woman who lived in our little house before us was a glass maker. we found this contraption and put it back into use. isn't it pretty?
(for a better quality video, go here)

turns out my holga shots of the solstice parade weren't as fabulous as i had hoped. oh well. i'm glad the 35mm turned out nice and there are some digital ones that my friend jaala took, too.

i'm so glad it's friday! any plans for the weekend?

23 June 2009

pictures from the solstice

i got my first set of pictures back from saturday. here's what the day looked like for me:

*started off with a special breakfast potluck*

*first sights of the parade*

*the crowd*

*barrel folk*




it was a great day!

22 June 2009

the peace of wild things

the farmer's market provides great inspiration for photos.

saturday, i had good friends over for breakfast and we all walked down to the fremont solstice parade. it was so joyful and colorful and lovely that i took two rolls of 120 film on my holga! i can't wait to get those developed and show you the parade. one friend brought homemade ginger vanilla sugar that she broiled on top of sliced grapefruit. wow!

i also, for later in the day, made two batches of ice cream and a pasta salad with basil from my garden. yum.

just an fyi, the photo on my last post was a double exposure with my holga. one shot right side up, the other upside down. of course, inspired by tifanie. it was actually a really bright day but something in the two shots on top of each other made the photo look foggy and almost black and white. thanks for enjoying it!


i have been looking at this lady's blog recently for her stunning shots of life in korea. she just shared a wendell berry poem that stuck with me. i had to pass it along:

The Peace of Wild Things
by Wendell Berry

When despair for the world grows in me
and I wake in the night at the least sound
in fear of what my life and my children’s lives may be,
I go and lie down where the wood drake
rests in beauty on the water, and the great heron feeds.
I come into the peace of wild things
who do not tax their lives with forethought
of grief. I come into the presence of still water.
And I feel above me the day-blind stars
waiting with their light. For a time,
I rest in the grace of the world, and am free.

i'm having a hard start to my monday (maybe because i feel like i should be on summer vacation but i'm now a working stiff and don't get summer breaks), but this poem gives me a little light to give the day a push.

i hope it helps your monday, as well...

19 June 2009

have a great weekend

17 June 2009

farmed food

we got out first CSA yesterday!! we get ours from the boistfort valley farm in chehalis, wa. today i ate the purple kohlrabi and it was crunchy and spicy. i also made a semi-pesto with basil from our garden for dinner. i chopped up a bunch of basil and swirled it around in olive oil, garlic flowers and parmesan. then i mixed in some penne pasta and put that whole thing on a huge bed of lettuce. the lettuce and garlic flowers were from the csa. i also sauteed beet tops with chopped garlic flowers. it was a very green meal, if you can imagine.

this season's deliveries will be our first summer csa. deciding to sign up was not a hard descision. i had been wanting to do a csa for awhile, but didn't feel like i had a stable place where i could consistently eat the produce. i also knew i wanted to go with boistfort valley farm both because i had worked a few farmer's markets with them so i knew they had a fantastic range of vegetables, and because they had recently been devastated by the 2007 flood, so i wanted to give them support. it was last november when i felt like i was ready. we got a large winter package of onions, potatoes and lots of roots. it was so fun and delicious, but now that the warm weather is here and the first deliveries have arrived on the doorstop of our 'drop spot,' i can't wait for flowers, berries, peas and summer squash! i hope to tell you more about it as i go

these pictures above are, obviously, not my csa. they are from the seattle tilth edible plant sale that i volunteered at a while back. imagine a huge field of plant starts: all edible, all organic and mostly diverse varieties of the usual garden vegetables. the tomatoe section was huge because of all the varieties! after awing at this beautiful sale, i ended up getting: two types of hot peppers, basil, chocolate mint, sage, edible flowers and lots of onions. yum!

15 June 2009

it is seattle...

some pictures of places i don't habitually go in seattle:
1. downtown
2. by the boats, on the montlake cut.

i made my first batch of ice cream this weekend! well, it was actually frozen yogurt, but does it really matter? it was coffee frozen yogurt. when i tasted it, i was a bit worried about the sour yogurt mixed with the coffee, but people seemed to really love it. today i'm daydreaming about david lebovitz' cheesecake ice cream with a blueberry syrup swirl in it. or maybe these.

well, instead of sitting here listening to the birds and thinking about ice cream, i guess i better go daydream about ice cream at work....
have a great monday!

13 June 2009

peonies nod in the breeze

here is a beautiful bouquet i got last weekend at the fremont market. the peonies remind me of my college graduation (which was a year ago yesterday) because i put a bouquet of pink peonies on my cap. that was such a fun day and i'm a little sad for it to be a year away now.

the top shot is with the holga and the bottom is with that expired film i told you about. i really love the texture in the expired film one. i also got my most recent roll of film from the holga back and it is the best yet! i am so excited to share.

and now i have an...

my last post was number 80 here and i've decided that when i get to 100 i'm going to have a fun giveaway! it will include photos, free things and your feedback. so, keep checking in and in 20 more posts, there will be a special surprise!

thanks to everyone who has been stopping by and saying hi. i love meeting you all!

11 June 2009

summer dessert

a tasty recipe...

for a delicious summer dessert i mixed berries, cut up nectarine, juice of half a lemon, 1 tsp lemon zest, crystallized ginger, raw sugar and fresh mint. i let them sit together in the fridge for a few hours to mascerate and to get to know each other. the flavors really brightened and made the whole mixture very complex.

then, i spooned this onto cream scones. now i had dreamed of making my own lemon-ginger scones that would highlight the flavors in the fruit mixture, but for lack of time i bought cream scones at our food co-op. i cut them in half, too.

here is the best part: on top of the scones and fruit i scooped plain yogurt and drizzled honey. the whole thing was sour, sweet, fresh, bright, subtle and complex.

...and very, very summery.

do you have a favorite summer dessert??

09 June 2009

amidst all the new

guess what i just realized?
the color in my 35mm film shots are so cool not because of my funky vintage camera, but because i'm using expired film. i don't know why i didn't even think that the film i've had for over 3 years might somehow make my images look different? but, i love it and i am suddenly very sad that there is only two rolls left. to celebrate my new discovery and to enjoy my last rolls, i joined the expired film flickr group!

above are two really neat theaters in seattle and the bottom photo is behind my work. i like being reminded that seattle has age and character, amidst all the new modern looking condos and shopping complexes. sometimes i like to imagine that i am my grandma when she was young, going downtown and seeing the big city. or that i see what my great-grandpa saw every day when he went to work. the old, the brick, the rust, the class--they're important. i'm glad my film can retell that antiquity.

have you seen adie loves polly yet? do.

08 June 2009

the summer night's air

it's official. summer is here.
well, maybe not official official, because the summer solstice is two weeks off. but, it's official in the hot nights, full bloom and barbecues sense of official. the top shot is from my holga. and the bottom two are digital, on capitol hill. from yet another hot night of walking around.

i'm not very motivated this monday morning. i hope i can get back into the swing of work days. but, just to hang onto the weekend a little longer, i'll share some highlights.

-jon and i made salted caramel popsicles in our ice tray! yum.
-i got (two years later) david lebovitz' ice cream book the perfect scoop. dreaming of vietnamese espresso and pear pecorino ice cream...
-heard neko case's smashing voice at her seattle concert! (by the way, i love how her site says "available everywhere, especially at your local record store").
-harvested the rest of my arugula and made a salad with pickings from the garden: chives and chive blossoms, basil, arugula, sweet pea leaves, violas and oregano.
-flowers from the fremont market
-had a picnic in the park
-saw friends from out of town

...oh there was much more! but i'll stop there...

have a great monday!

06 June 2009

sun tea

i've been making sun teas each weekend, putting them in the fridge and drinking them as iced tea during the week. it is the easiest thing to do and has been fitting perfectly with my weekend activity of gardening. i just put a pitcher of water and some tea bags on our fence ledge--next to the potted oregano, sage and mint--and then i work in the garden, watching the tea slowly brew and turn the water into a burnt orange color.
since this is an overcast saturday in seattle, i will post about sun teas instead of making one. for me, the fun in making them is creating different types of flavor combinations. i just look at whatever teas i have in my house and think of yummy concoctions!

here's what i've done that you might like:

combo #1
2 bags lemon black tea
2 bags ginger tea
5 sprigs of mint (from the plant on the fence ledge)

combo #2
2 bags good earth spiced black tea
1 bag cranberry flavored black or herbal tea

combo #3
3 bags moroccon mint tea
1 lemon round
5 sprigs mint
optional: ceylon tea or lemon black tea

-fill a clear glass pitcher of water
-add tea and herbs
-let sit out in sun for about 6 hours, depending on sun intensity.
-refrigerate pitcher and drink tea cold

**green tea:
i'm not a big green iced tea fan, but making a sun tea with green tea and drinking it warm sounds amazing.

**sweetened tea:
i haven't been adding sugar because the teas have been tasting flavorful enough without, but if i were to sweeten them, i'd use agave because the flavor blends well and it disolves easily.
or, the icing on the cake would be to get a stevia plant. my mom has one and it is sweet just chewing on it! i would love to add a few stevia leaves to a batch for natural sweetness. maybe i'll sneak into my mom's backyard....

any tea concotions that you really like?

04 June 2009

to tell stories

in my list, i said that i was excited to meet eduardo galeano.
i was.
now i'm excited to have met him. he was such a calm and sincere man.
galeano only came by for a few minutes to sign his books, we weren't even hosting his event.
but for five to ten minutes, i had the pleasure of standing next to him, feeding him books that he slowly and intently signed while he spoke little pieces of beauty.

...if the name eduardo galeano sounds familiar, but you can't pinpoint it, here is a hint. he has recently been largely recognized in the u.s. because hugo chavez gave obama galeano's book open veins. but chavez wasn't uncovering a mystery; galeano is a writer from uruguay who has been well known for his mark on latin american literature in parts of the united states and most certainly in latin america for years...

he told me that he didn't have any schooling.
"the cafes are my school,
the home of the anonymous story teller.
from them i learned how to tell stories."

you can see the democracy now! interview with galeano at pulse media and enjoy his insight and pace in the way that i did.

here is a beautiful quote from this interview:
"i don't want to teach anyone about anything, i just want to tell stories. that's all"

his newest book is mirrors: stories of almost everyone.

hot hot days

it has been so hot here. it's 80 degrees! in june! in seattle! but, i like that it's new. it forces me to be creative about what i wear, it forces my plants out of their shell and into full bloom. it forces me to hang out with a lot of people and walk around in the evenings and sit outside for dinner. those are pretty good things.

for lack of much else to talk about, i've made a list.

right now, here is what is inspiring me:

sweet pea vines growing tall
reading a novela by my coworker
eating outside
iced coffee
sharing food
early morning birdsongs
sun tea (i make a batch every weekend with a new combination of tea bags)
recipes for popsicles and ice cream
waking up early and starting the day early
meeting this acclaimed man
daily choosing which camera to put into my bag
picture frames


i hope this list keeps expanding

01 June 2009

all the little birds

all the little birds chirpping this morning woke me up way earlier than i ever intended to get up. (of course, jon was already awake and out of the house by this time, but still, i was going to sleep in!) if there is anything, though, that i don't mind waking me up, it should be little birds chirpping. it's so beautiful and exciting! it's like that point when spring and summer merge together. when it is cosistently warm out, but not yet unbearable. or, when most of the flowers are in bloom or have bloomed and withered, but there is still the thought of late-comers budding for summer: dahlias, lilies, roses, daisies. that point when spring and summer merge is the best for me. i'm still so excited about spring weather, spring smells, spring sounds but i'm not yet into the full on summer lounging, tanning, travelling.

in seattle when the weather gets warm, everyone comes out. where do all these people hide for half the year? everyone smiles and talks, they are reborn from the long grey winter. everyone becomes more social. this weekend i met with a lot of different friends and we all walked around. walked to a movie, walked to breakfast, walked to drinks by the water. i harvested my arugula, which tastes so crisp and peppery, i love it. i ate most of my meals outside. the excitement of drinks and warm weather and lots of new and old friends is why was okay that the birds woke me up.

hope you had a great weekend and that you enjoy your new week!

also, as i mentioned last week, matthew amster-burton is speaking at u.bookstore tonight at 7pm!! come if you can. he's so funny.