Sunday, January 01, 2012

happy new year

With a new year come new changes and challenges - and I hope to really take more time this year and improve my photography.  While I don't have the time, engery or equipment to dedicate to it fully, I do want to learn much more.  I have stared a new blog over at  Over there I hope to just post a photo or two every few days or so.  I'll still post here once in awhile, as this blog is more personal, and not too many people know about it.  I want the other blog to be one that I can tell people about, and they can just have a look when they feel like it.  There are no links over there that will bring you back here. 

Lets hope I can keep this going!

Monday, November 07, 2011

Day 5, Day 6, and Day 7

Slammin these all into one post - yesterday was a perfect day for pulling out the camera and I thought (for about a millisecond) that it was the perfect opportunity to get some family shots, however I was in no mood to make myself look presentable.  Of course with today's rain and leaves falling off the trees I am kicking myself.

Day 5 - Windows/Doors
This photo is a bit of a cop out, I must admit.  I didn't really see anything that caught my eye and so I took this shot.  It's not bad, but I could have done so much better.

Day 6 - Three's
There are two sets of threes here - one are my rings, and the other is a very old china set that has been handed down through the family.  I keep the china on my window ledge because it is pretty, and it is a convenient spot to put my rings when I am baking and I have to get my hands dirty.  There are three rings, my engagement ring, my wedding band, and a ring that I picked up for $50 from Wal Mart.  When i was pregnant with Nick, my wedding band slipped off my finger and fell into the couch.  I couldn't find it for TWO YEARS.  Since my engagement ring didn't fit, I wanted to have some sort of band, so I bought one for myself.  My wedding band finally turned up one day when I lifted up one end of the couch to clean under it and I dropped it - the ring bounced out.  At that point I had been wearing the Wal Mart special for almost two years, so I just put it with the other two rings.  Since my fingers are quite long, the set actually looks pretty good together.

Day 7 - Mess
This isn't really a "mess" per se, but it is as close to one as Renee will ever get.  My little helper wanted to bake today, so we made banana bread.  The house smells like heaven!

Friday, November 04, 2011

Day 4 - Architecture

ar·chi·tec·ture noun \ˈär-kə-ˌtek-chər\

Definition of ARCHITECTURE

1: the art or science of building; specifically : the art or practice of designing and building structures and especially habitable ones

When I first went out today (minus my camera) I noticed many many beautiful things and places that I wanted to capture.  So I went home, got my camera and returned.  Unfortunately the light was different, but still there were some good shots. 

Today's challenge is architecture.  I initially thought that I wanted to get a shot of a building, but none really caught my eye.  And then I noticed all the colours of the trees around the lake.  Beautiful.  And then I had a thought.  The lake, which is one of many in our community, is man-made.  So I guess that could count as architecture, no?

Thursday, November 03, 2011

Day 3 - Shadows

Funny thing is, when you are photographing shadows, you typically need some sun.  I am horrible at photographing with artificial light, I really like natural light - and as luck would have it, it was gross and overcast today.  I usually love taking pictures on overcast days (clouds are like a giant soft-box), but having a touch of sun would have made this assignment much easier.

So I took my camera with me to Nick's soccer practice tonight.  It was freezing cold, but thankfully it was dry.  And then I had a thought.  What if I take a photo of something in the light of the moon?  Not quite a shadow, but it turned out pretty cool.  Glad I had my tripod with me!

Wednesday, November 02, 2011

Day 2 - letters/numbers

I had a good idea of what I wanted to shoot today, so I remembered to take my camera when I took the puppy out for a walk.  I didn't remember to put in a memory card though....

Take two - Renee and I went to pick up the kids from school early and we looked for photo ideas.  Here are three that we wound up with.

#1 - her shoes.  I love her shoes, and they are just starting to get to a point where she can't wear them anymore (sigh).  These shoes truly are all star.

#2 - my lens cap - I took this photo with coffee in one hand, camera in the other.  I would love this photo so much more if it were not a bit fuzzy.

#3 - A busy Grade 2 Classroom - Nick's english teacher is so organized, and her class set up is spectacular.  Such a nice, inviting place (especially on a cold day like today!)

Tuesday, November 01, 2011

here we go again...

I've been invited to do another photo challenge, and since my camera has accumulated a fine layer of dust, I figured I had better get off my ass and take some photos.  First up my favourite....self portrait (UGH).  Out came the trusty tripod, and I invited a friend to join in on the fun so that the focus could be off of me.  Best part was my face was totally covered (and that was a fluke).  Stay tuned for tomorrow!

Monday, September 26, 2011

My go to in a pinch - quiche.

This is by far Ethan's favourite - the other two, not so much.  We are working on it.  The great thing about quiche is that your few key ingredients (pastry, milk, flour, eggs, cheese) you will usually have on hand, and then you can add whatever to suit your needs or taste.  This particular batch has onions and tomatoes (fresh from the farmer's market), and a bit of bacon.  Sometimes I put spinach in as well.  If you want to make it vegetarian, just take the meat out. 

Another thing I add is mixed herbs.  This too can vary depending on what you have in your pantry (or garden).  I usually use Greggs, and unless you are in New Zealand, you'll have a tough time finding it.  It is basically a mix of dried thyme and sage, with a small amount of marjoram.  It is one of the things that any relative from NZ must bring me when they come here (and a bag of Pineapple Lumps thank you very much).

So here is what you will need for this recipe:

Mix the milk, flour and eggs and spices and whisk until combined.  Set aside.  The reason that these eggs look so yellow is that they are Omega 3 eggs - I forget how pale regular egg yolks can look!

Since I made this quiche for a potluck, I chose to use mini-tartlets.  These are handy for lunches for the kids as well.  Sometimes I'll make my own pastry, but often I just use pre-made. 

Then I just fill them up with the ingredients.  I usually put in onion, bacon, tomato, cheese and then pour in the liquid mixture.  Some like to mix everything together and then pour it in - I haven't tried it but my guess is that it would work just as well.

I try to find "pockets" in the tartlet and fill very carefully.  If I rush it the liquid goes on top of the cheese and spills over.  I find that if I fill them from the side it works well.  As the quiche cooks it will rise up, but after you take it out of the oven and let it sit I find that it does sink a bit. 

Pop the tray in the oven and cook for about 30-40 minutes.  Time will vary depending on what you use - a full pie shell (it will take longer, sometimes up to 50 minutes).  Keep an eye on them and take them out when they have browned nicely.  Admittedly, these ones were probably cooked a bit long, but they still tasted great.  Of course, time does tend to go by slowly when you are waiting for them to come out....

Let the quiche sit for a bit to let them cool before eating.  They can be enjoyed warm and heated up the next day for breakfast.  Enjoy!

1 cup of milk
3 eggs
2-3 Tbsp of whole wheat flour
1 onion, chopped.
6 slices of bacon
1 tomato
1.5-2 cups of grated cheese
1 frozen, prepared pie crust (9 inch, can be deep dish or not) or approximately 20 tartlet shells.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

Saute chopped onion for a couple of minutes and remove from skillet. Chop bacon and cook in a skillet.  Remove bacon from skillet and let rest on a paper towel. 
Beat eggs, flour and milk in medium bowl with whisk until well blended. Stir in spice.  
Place frozen tartlet shells on a baking sheet and fill with prepared ingredients (onion, tomato, bacon and cheese).  Slowly pour liquid mixture in each shell, being careful not to over-fill.

Put baking sheet in the oven and lower temperature to 350 degrees after 10 minutes.  Continue to cook quiche for approximately 20-30 more minutes (may be longer if you use a full pie shell).  Quiche is done when the centre is set and top is golden brown. Let stand 10 min. before cutting to serve.