Friday, July 27, 2007

Summer Camp...Respite and Retreat

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket I'm typing this on the's 85 degrees at 9:30am but breezy. It's the last day of summer camp for the kiddies. Today they'll make candles and homemade bread. They're having a great am I! I thought I'd be bored...lonely...miss them...NOT! lol.

I feel like that lady in the Staples commercial who is frolicking through the back-to-school aisles while her kids, sullen, drag slowly behind. I used to hate that commercial when my kids were little and quiet...and entertained. Now they're older, whinier, argumentative, combative with each other (oh! A hummingbird just buzzed by!) and bored. This week they came home so tired, they didn't have the energy for fighting or whining. This is the first time I've had the house to myself in....I don't remember when. With hubbie working from home a few days a week, I'm hardly ever alone.

I did stuff I never do this week. Read magazines. Floated in the pool. Did laps. Drank a beer and had a sub. (I eat fancy food at work for lunch...a sub is a treat for me!) I put a bikini on (with many towels on the deck railings shielding me from neighbors) and tanned. I got sunburned. I bought a new book. I read a page then remembered that I still had housework to do even though it seemed like I was on a tropical vacation somewhere.

I have to go back to work next week. This three weeks off makes me seriously consider becoming a teacher. Yes, yes, I love kids and like developing young minds, but c'mon...summers OFF! Snow days OFF! Holidays OFF! It's gotta be worth all the headaches and noise, noise, noise from kids and flack from their parents. Right??

Anyway...a few more hours of quiet. I'll have lunch with a friend today at a new place on the river. Maybe we'll have a cocktail. I don't think they give out crayons at the door. I'm happy about that.

I'll look forward to the kiddies coming home. They'll save me a bite of bread and in two weeks, their herbed vinegar will be ready. (My daughter asked me if bread lasted two weeks so she could dip her homemade bread in the homemade vinegar...I told her we'd make more bread. If a mom who works at the Culinary can't make bread...what good is that?!) We've done more stuff together this week at night than we usually do when they're home all the time. We played games in the pool. Watched TV. Hung out and talked. It's been good. For them and me.

Friday, July 20, 2007

Renaissance Artistry Rediscovered

My latest "Young Entrepreneur" story in the Poughkeepsie Journal is up today. I enjoyed interviewing venetian plaster artist Martin Ahlf and his wife about his work, which I'd never heard of before. Now I think I could work in the plaster supplier showroom as a salesperson!

Anyway, here it is. His wife took the story photo of his very cool Venetian plaster work in the New Orleans Ritz Carlton.

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Unrelated, but I love this feature on the BBC site...A Day in Pictures. I found it last year when I was searching their site for something. I read a story there and emailed a comment and they emailed me asking to be on their radio show which is broadcast online. I think it was about politics, I can't remember. Anyway, I talked to the BBC program manager and he told me when they'd be calling. I waited around for them to call me for the entire show, then near the end, they called to say that the other guy, a very interesting non-profit director, took up all the time. Oh well. There went my 15 minutes.

Still a very cool site...with or without me yammerin on it.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Cool Cover Photo

Got the cover photo on Cuisine of the Hudson Valley magazine for the Poughkeepsie Journal this month. (Thanks, Barbara!)

This photo Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucketaccompanies my story on cool summer foods. I collected a few recipes from chefs, a local restauranteur, Luis Pinto, and submitted a few of my own.

The photo was a challenge. I took a few at the restaurant but the light wasn't optimal (and my good camera's battery died, so I was left with the backup..long story short, I need a backup battery) and the dish needed to be arranged better for the closeup.

He gave me the dish to take home and I cleaned everything off and re-plated it, made a new sauce for the shrimp and shot photos like a mad-woman before the sun set outside. The photo at right is one of many, many, many shots.

I like being able to shoot my own photos for stories. It's not always an option, or convenient, but I enjoy it.

Food writing is great fun for me. I get to incorporate two of my favorite and writing. I've also been doing the monthly food features at work for the Culinary. This month's is on brownies...not quite food porn like the tempura piece, but it's a good recipe.

Also had my story about adult kickball in the sports section. I think I've written for every section now except for local news. Any breaking news to share? Let me know...I'll ask someone else to write it...I'm too busy!!!
= )