Sunday, August 6, 2017

5 Months of Happenings or My How Time Flies

There is an old saying that is, oh, so true for me right now; “My, how time flies when you’re having fun.”  And boy have we been having fun.  This post is going to quickly recap the craziness that has been my life for the last 5 months.

Let’s get this calendar of events started with the month of February. February was the month that we moved from the home we have had for 14 years (Do you know how much stuff you accumulate in 14 years?) to our new home we had built in the North Georgia Mountains.  We broke ground in June of 2016 and the house was completed on February of 2017.

Moving on to the month of March.  This month did not slow down.  It was moving at warp speed.  There were boxes to unpack, getting settled, and making our new place look like home.  And the fun did not end there. 

March 25th I was on the road to a very special baby shower in Tennessee. Then leaving Tennessee for a Food Photography Workshop in Charleston with 2 of my favorite people in the world - Helene Dujardin and Tami Hardeman-Boutté.  I believe (and Helene can correct me if I am wrong) I have worked 12 workshops and there has never been a dull moment and always a good time.  The added benefit is the attendees.
(*side note: Helene and Tami are doing a Food Styling and Photo Workshop in Tuscany, Italy, September 27th to October 1st. What a wonderful workshop that will be.  To find out more and how to sign-up click on this link: Tuscany, Italy Workshop )

March Workshop:
Helene doing her magic

Tami creating the most beautiful sandwich ever
attendee practicing technique

and let's not forget the beach

March is out and April is in:

April was the month for birthdays – my middle son is at the beginning of the month. My birthday comes in the middle (was not ready to turn 59).
Matthew with his son Julian
The day after my birthday a new member of the family arrived:  Lillian Grace Stephens 7lbs. 2 oz.
Lillian Grace
Trip to West Palm to meet Lillian
Proud Papa

May was a Mother's Day Lunch and a visit from family.  

We start off June with a visit to the Booth Western Museum in Cartersville, GA. for an extended exhibit of work by Ansel Adams.  If you ever have a chance to visit this museum you will not be disappointed.  It is kind of a hidden treasure.

Next came a week with our oldest grandson.  I loved this week and wish it had lasted longer.  It was like Summer Camp – hiking, biking, swimming, kayaking, paddle boating, games, art, late night movies.  It was quite a week.  I am already planning next year. 

As a family, we sent the end of June out with a bang.  We celebrated a long overdue Family Reunion to break in our new home.  There was food, fun, and just spending time together. The rest of the week was spent at the lake, pool, and a trip to Blue Ridge for a train ride.

Well, this ends my story of the 5 months of adventure.  Stay tuned for more happenings, more fun, and more recipes.
Ya'll Come Back Now, Ya Hear

Saturday, February 11, 2017

Charleston Workshop Continued

Here are more shots from the January workshop.  The weather was perfect. The meals, as always, were great.  Each day was packed with instruction and fun. Helene, John, and Gina did a great job.  I believe it just deserved a second post: from food styling, going to meet the fishing boats, making gnocchi, and the beach.  It was quite a week.

Thanks so Much,

**A side note:  
    There is another work shop coming up in March.  If you 
    are interested go to workshop link for all the information. 

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Charleston Workshop 2017 Success!

Last week (Jan. 22 to Jan. 28) we had the team back together again for another great Food Photography Workshop in Charleston, S.C.  Host and teacher - Helene Dujardin, Chef John Ondo, and me. John gave me the title of Chef de Cuisine (to me that is pretty high praise, but I'll take it.)

This, I believe, is one of the best workshops around.  Where else could you get morning instruction; practice shooting time with one-on-one time with Helene (food photographer & author); a cooking demo from Chef John (restaurant owner & chef);  beautiful accommodations & meals; in one of the most beautiful cities in the U.S.  (Can you tell I am just glad to be there.)  The 3 of us together are definitely friends, but we are so much more.  We are family. We love working together and it shows.

To add to the fun Gina Homolka, author of "Skinnytaste" cookbooks and Skinnytaste blog, was a guest.  She added to the fun with tips and demos from her new book "Skinnytaste: fast and slow" (which Helene was the photographer).  
So added benefits, back in the beautiful Charleston, beach access, working along side family.  Score! on all counts.

But, what is a workshop with out attendees?  Nothing.  People from all over the world and all walks of life.  I will tell you that each workshop I have participated in, the attendees have been great.  This one was no exception.  Such a fun group to serve.  By the end of the week it was like we had known each other for years.  Best part is I get to add them all the my list of life-long-friends.  
Jennifer Carr
Alice Choi
Joanne Grewe 
Maryanne Cabrera

After this week of fun (not work), friends, and great food it takes at least 3 days for me to adjust back to my home life.  There are usually 3 stages: the exhaustion stage hits, then there is the winding down stage, and the least favorite of all is the reality stage.  You begin to miss your family and your new friends.
To bring this post to a close I want to Thank all those involved in making last week so wonderful and so much fun!  Helene, John, Gina, Jennifer, Alice, Maryanne, Sheena, and Joanne.

Thank you and Blessings,
P.S. to all who read this - check out the great blogs that I have posted.