“Don’t ask what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive, and go do it. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive.” [Howard Thurman].
Last summer my yoga teacher read us this quote at the end of practice one day. It resonated so strongly with me. That very weekend I started this blog….
So long 2014 and hellloooo to a brand new year! Welcome 2015 and all the good things you have in store for us. As so many of us do, we reflect on the past year’s accomplishments (and yes, missed opportunities as well) through journals, photos, and such. I’ve really been enjoying the year-end recaps that all my favorite bloggers have compiled, so I wanted to give some serious thought to my aspirations and goals for this coming year and share them with you. For many, making a “resolution” for an entire year in advance seems overwhelming and somewhat of a herculean task. And for me personally, I do much better with setting one or two focused intentions with a target date of mid-year to check in on my progress and reassess. My birthday is June 14, so I usually find that’s a good date to mark on the calendar. Here’s my short list. I’ll keep you posted on my progress throughout the year with blog posts and photos. Cheers to a fresh start and the enthusiasm of possibilities to come!
A passion was lit with the endeavor of starting my blog and sharing my creations with you all. I intend to stoke the flames of creativity with more hands-on learning through classes, reading, workshops, conferences, local exploration, meet-up groups and more. Over the past six months, I’ve only scratched the surface of how fun and rewarding this outlet can be. And I so appreciate all the comments I receive from you on the posts; it makes my day!
It truly is the key to beginning and maintaining a new habit, tradition or ritual. I’m often in awe as to how cleverly narrated and expertly photographed so many blogs are. Written from the heart with honesty, openness, wit and with such respect and enthusiasm for the on-line culinary community. There are too many sites to count which I browse regularly and get happily lost in. But here’s just a few new blogs I discovered towards the end of 2014; I can only wish mine grows up one day to be just like these !
Hint Of Vanilla– Megan Voigt is clearly a hugely talented baker. Her gorgeous pastries, breads, cakes, macarons, and alike jump off the page through her amazing photography. …makes you want to get out the flour and eggs that very instant. She tackles the fussy and intricate world of haute baking making it look so easy along the way. Her Honey Lavender Macarons are simply stunning!
The Candid Appetite– Jonathan Melendez is another inspiring young talent who’s love of food fills the screen with color, texture, and creativity with ingredients. He studied photography and works in the food business— and it shows. His keen eye and clean & polished site is filled with mouth-watering pictures and recipes which are easy to follow. He often gives you step-by-step photos to accompany them…. which I love. Jonathan’s sense of humor and variety of dishes keeps me reading.
Katie At The Kitchen Door- I have no idea how I stumbled across her site, but glad I did. Katie has a large readership which enjoys her beautifully photographed dishes and a large recipe list. Go there for inspiration on what to cook tonight. She shares tidbits about her personal life and also incorporates cookbook reviews into the site as well. There are lots of drink recipes too— like this Lemon Rosemary Gin Fizz.…um, yes please!
How Sweet It Is– Jessica Merchant has a huge following on her blog and now a brand new cookbook, called Seriously Delish. It’s filled with a ton of…..well, you guessed it, delicious recipes and her own food shots. Jessica has a truly special way of connecting with her fans and readers through her writing. Her enthusiasm for all things food is seriously off the charts! She also publishes posts daily, which seems like an impossible feat to achieve. That’s dedication. Jessica has given me inspiration to be more consistent with mine this year.
Food 52 & Provisions
I love this site for the new innovative recipes, articles and their Provisions retail shop features small, artisan producers of anything and everything imaginable for cooking or drinking. This is definitely a place for whimsy and wonder.
Shutterstock Blog / Posts by Taylor Mathis
I like to visit the Shutterstock site every few weeks to check out the latest in the world of commercial photography. Their blog site features handy tips & tricks, special features, trends and more. I especially like Taylor’s articles on how to work with food and the camera. He has dozens of techniques from working with color-inspired ingredients to best angles for shooting food to simple lighting tips. I’ve learned so much from his posts.[I took this from Taronga Zoo looking back to Sydney Harbour]
I’m very excited to be traveling back down to Australia in a couple of weeks— it’s been far too long since my last visit. I have some serious catching up to do with my friends there on good eats & drinks! I’ll be sharing my food and travel adventures with you in future posts in February & March. A few must-see’s for this trip are:
The Cookery Book– located just 10 minutes north of Sydney center, The Cookery Book is an exclusive wholesaler and retailer of culinary, health and beverage books for both home cooks and professionals in the culinary field. I can’t wait to see their selection and browse the shelves for some of my favorite Aussie authors.
Sydney Fish Market– In all the times I’ve stayed in Sydney, I’ve never been here. It was this post & this great picture from The Hungry Mum’s blog that finally convinced me. So I’m super excited to stroll the shops. It’s also home to the Sydney Seafood School, a top-notch culinary center and the country’s leading cooking school. There are a couple of classes that have caught my eye, and schedule permitting, this may be a great way to put into practice item #1 from above.
Adelaide Hills, South Australia- This is one of my favorite wine regions in SA. Probably best known for Sauvignon Blanc, the region also boasts award-winning cool climate varietals such as Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Sparkling. I always cherish a visit to this area and am really looking forward to coming across a few new wines and wineries. No worries, you’ll receive a full tasting report along with all the best places to dine in the Hills in special travel posts in February/March.
And of course, no trip to this area would be complete without my requisite visit to Adelaide Central Market, one of my favorite places. It’s mecca for this here foodie. Smelly Cheese Shop here I come!
above photo from Fotolia.com ©schankz