Falling for Yousemite

24 September 2016

It’s the best, always.

Good people, good places.

From a trip in May (the best time to see Yosemite!)

 

Anna

25 August 2016

Ode to Joy

28 January 2016

This is my grandmother, Joy. I made this photograph a few months ago, on large format film. Joy has a few favorite places. One is right here in this backyard, where she has spent most of her life, planting beloved Morning Glories, swimming, and sending her grandkids to climb the redwood trees. “Kids are meant to climb trees,” she would always say.

How I love this magnificent woman. Our lives and character are built, in some way, of these little pieces of those people who raised us, or friendshipped us, who hurt us, and believed in us, and demanded more of us. These spirit fragments slip themselves and dance within us, and we learn to tie them in knots, or shoot them from our fingertips, or consciously release them. I see so much of myself in her. I pull her fragments closer, and closer to me.

Our interactions are quieter now. I remember times when she told me, “you sure know what you want, and how to get it.” I used to hate hearing that, because it made me feel selfish, or demanding. And, truth be told, I am sometimes, and she is too. But I realize now that she was saying it with a bit of kindred admiration. We demand the most of ourselves. I never realized growing up what a privilege it was to be the granddaughter of a valedictorian (let alone a college graduate). This woman lives up to her rich heritage, and she’s spent her life ever-growing, ever-learning, and ever-creating. Publishing books, creating stained glass, arranging flowers, and raising a family, through tragedy and ecstasy and tedium. She and Grandpa used to fight, a lot. Their relationship seemed complicated, but they loved and needed each other, and they fought through it. She was strong, and educated, and capable, and she demanded respect.

Life is intricate and inexplicable. It is poignantly sophisticated and intriguingly incomplete. Sometimes I simply sit and meditate over a life lived. Not a life lived well, or a life wasted; simply… a life lived.

My grandmother, Joy

 

Brumby in Vegas

23 December 2015

A shoot with the band Brumby from their desert homeland:

Brumby band shoot Brumby Brumby Brumby band shoot Brumby Brumby band shoot Brumby band shoot Brumby band shoot Brumby band shoot Brumby band shoot Brumby band shoot Brumby band shoot Brumby band shoot Brumby band shoot Brumby band shoot Brumby band shoot Brumby band shoot Brumby band shoot Brumby band shoot

 

Brumby is currently on tour. Check out their website for tour dates:

 

Brumby band shoot

Just… food?

23 December 2015

Sometimes I feel lame taking pictures of my food. But I wouldn’t feel lame if I could make it look AMAZING like this site. Just imagine our Coq au Vin looking as good…. So here are a bunch of pictures of food? I cook more, I need to take more photos, but here we are, catching up.

As a side note, life is very, very good to me, and I think I’m the happiest person I know.

 

There is nothing quite like tomato pasta sauce made with fresh basil and thyme from the garden. I want this in my mouth right.now.

The Crown Arts | Garden Tomato Thyme-Basil Sauce The Crown Arts | Garden Tomato Thyme-Basil Sauce


Here is my habit… I try something I love, and then I’m not satisfied until I make it myself. Then I inevitably recognize that food we make ourselves is so much better and more satisfying than food we buy! Then I buy the food anyway because I feel like I’ve already conquered this beast and it’s on to the next. Three cheers for culinary experimentation and mastery (one day). Hot, fresh, olive-rosemary bread. Ummm, I want this in my mouth too. It was really good. Especially with homemade herb butter. Especially that.

The Crown Arts | Olive-Rosemary Bread


I made these Peppermint Crackle Cookies for Christmas again this year. I have decided somewhat zealously that they are my favorite cookie. They have a bit of a brownie texture, they are dark and dense, just mild enough but just sweet enough. And a lot of fun to make and look at. Perfect for the holidays.

The Crown Arts | Peppermint Crackle Cookies

 

YUM. Ever since tasting gyros in Greece, I crave them all the time. And they’re never as good as they were there. I attempted (bit healthier using chicken… then again, I added fries). These are a pretty simple and delicious meal.

The Crown Arts | Greek Chicken Souvlaki

 

I was a missionary in Poland. It was the best. I now speak a language that sounds like I’m swearing all the time, and I actually like sauerkraut. What? Before I left on my mission, I had all my friends over for a giant Polish feast. I cooked all day. I was making foods I’d never heard of. And I loved them all. One of the recipes was a Polish beet cake. I was just intrigued enough to make it… and it blew my mind. I have since recreated it (see below). I’m not a cake person. But this cake is unreal! It is ultra-moist, dense, earthy, and decadent (not to mention, way healthier than real chocolate cake). I created a white chocolate butter frosting for this one, but next time I will probably try a drippy chocolate glaze sauce instead.

The Crown Arts | Decadent Polish Beet Cake with White Chocolate Butter Frosting The Crown Arts | Decadent Polish Beet Cake with White Chocolate Butter Frosting The Crown Arts | Decadent Polish Beet Cake with White Chocolate Butter Frosting

 

Coq au vin and brown butter sage mashed potatoes. I don’t make mashed potatoes very often, but I will only make them this way now. P.S. Bonus – bowl is from Poland 🙂 Love their beautiful pottery.

The Crown Arts | Coq Au Vin and Brown Butter Sage Whipped Potatoes

 

I love my sis, love naan, but love making it together even more.

The Crown Arts | Authentic Indian Naan The Crown Arts | Authentic Indian Naan The Crown Arts | Indian Naan with Almonds and Herbs

 

Never not craving. So I made them myself because “I could do that” and it’s much cheaper. After eating about 8, I stopped craving. For the next 6 months. Featured also is a honey-mustard dip. Mixed feelings.

The Crown Arts | Extra-Soft Pretzels with Honey Mustard Sauce

 

We jammin’. And I hope you like jammin’ too! (Peach-raspberry)

The Crown Arts | Peach-Raspberry Summer Jam

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