Jun 6, 2015

food photography

ryan is helping me learn how to take photos of one of my favorite subjects–food :)  anyone who doesn’t like food is out of their mind, and we can’t be friends. 

here are some of my favorites from this morning.

my rhubarb-raspberry compote I made yesterday:

along with a humorous touch from ryan :)  

radishes with a filter–i love their color:

and a photobomb: 

and some beautiful berries and cherries:

food is one of those things that can really bring back memories, and–let’s face it–and important part of everyday life. we’ll see what my photos look like on my own, next time!

happy eating :)

Tags foodisbeautiful springbounty reblog

Apr 4, 2015

easter 2015....early.

ryan and i are going to anime boston tomorrow, so we decided to celebrate easter today. 

it’s actually been a very nice, relaxing day that we got to spend together. guess this is how normal people with normal jobs feel.


life without hello kitty is no life at all!  :P


our easter meal may look slightly familiar–probably because i made it for christmas and haven’t since! i found a great recipe for ham online somewhere; ryan loves ham, it makes good leftovers, and it’s so easy to do (glaze it, and throw it in oven). 

the potatoes are a martha stewart recipe that look impressive and a very simple if you have a great knife (just be careful).

dessert is blackberry cobbler:


of course our chicks and bunny have to be included (and will be until they….move on to a better life…..):


spring cherry blossom buds from trader joes (beautiful):


this could possibly be the cutest find this year (from the easter bunny of course)–”peas and carrots” :


and, finally, our loot from the bunny! like our eggs???? we made PIRATE EASTER EGGS. awesome.


hope you all have a nice weekend!

Tags easter2015 easterbunny reblog

Apr 4, 2015

pax east

well folks, i survived another PAX. i was pretty sick the whole time, but “champed it up” (ryan’s words) because it is the one thing he looks forward to all year. i tried to be a trooper. i think i only complained about the fact that i couldn’t breathe a few times. and carried a kleenex box.

here i am in the waiting line, trying to get in VSO bowings:


the people next to me were curious, but tried not to stare. perhaps it was also the fact that i had a hello kitty backpack, kleenex, breakfast for ryan and me, and a seal dressed as a dinosaur nearby. who knows?


that’s a pretty tame photo of what the lines looked like. it is a madhouse. 


that’s ryan after he cut an enormous line at the Halo 5 demonstration. as we walked by, they were asking for single riders–three times–no one volunteered, so ryan said “here!” and they let him in.

there was a lot of grumbling, but if you can’t grab your b*&^%, is that really our fault?

and now for Balloonicorn (my favorite): 


we know how i am with pink, cute things.

Halo tournament, anyone?


you can’t believe how many hordes of captivated dudes there are at PAX. it is astounding. 

and my favorite line form-er:


of course, ryan has already started getting excited for next year.

until then, happy gaming!

Tags isurvivedpaxeast reblog

Feb 14, 2015

and a happy v-day to you!

well, it’s that time of year that we either love or dread. i don’t care about valentine’s day so much, but i do love holiday decorating. it’s a “thing” of mine. also, i love pink and sparkles. soooo v-day fits me pretty well :)

even though i had a gig today (and it’s currently blizzard-ing), it was a nice day. ryan made me breakfast, and one of my students composed me “two valentine’s songs” as a present. life could be a heck of a lot worse!

first, i have to share some decorations with everyone. i can’t help it–i love decorating.

my cute Papersource window clings (yes, that is some of our 28 inches of snow we’ve gotten falling in the background):


my little heart bowl with candy gummies (a treat for us–we don’t eat much candy these days):


i LOVE themed dish towels. i am a nerd.


now, it’s time for me to share my pink velvet cake process. here is the recipe: http://blahnikbaker.com/pink-velvet-cupcakes/ 

the cake is really good, and it was so easy to make. i decided to use these tiny pans from Sur La Table to make a layer cake, instead of cupcakes: http://www.surlatable.com/product/PRO-1463454/Wilton 5 Layer Cake Pan Set 

so easy, non-stick so cleaning them is a cinch (they’re also dishwasher safe), and it makes for a fun cake. one box of mix will fill all five pans, by the way.

here is the start:


and my decorated finished product–i had to have dino sprinkles, and i figured a bit more sparkle pink wouldn’t hurt?


looks pretty tasty, right?????


my little present pile for ryan was overshadowed by…..


the awesome and sweet photo card he made me, and PINK TOMS!!!! :D


go get yourself some cake! :)

Tags pinkvalentines reblog

Jan 27, 2015

christmas 2014!

we had a really nice xmas this year. ryan and i try to spend thanksgiving with our families and christmas together. so far, it has worked. after we get married, this may not be the case anymore. for now, we have really enjoyed having christmas together.

of course, this pile from Amazon doesn’t hurt:

every year we do a gingerbread village, and i think this year was our best (so i have to share–when it looks like crap, i won’t, haha):

i even made a special one with our names! aren’t i creative?

our friends jeff and john got me this present. i think they know me pretty well (isn’t she cute?): 


christmas morning breakfast this year was panetonne french toast with warm cinnamon maple syrup (made from scratch) and bacon. it was delicious and we’re still working off the calories:

here are the fixings for our christmas dinner–brown sugar glazed ham (a mini ham, which was the perfect size for two people), thinly sliced potatoes with thyme that i baked in a heart tin (daw), and a mini apple pie:

it was delicious and very easy. i may have to do that again next year!

meanwhile, here is our pickle present:

who can resist such a cute ornament? adorbs.

and, finally, christmas carnage:

it was a very nice, very generous christmas. ryan and i are both happy, healthy and well and wish you a terrific 2015 :)

Tags belatedchristmas reblog

Jan 27, 2015

thanksgiving with the fam

thanksgiving has got to be my second favorite holiday after halloween. who can go wrong with food? my family loves it. we always have as many pies as people (or more), carbs galore, and stuffing ourselves :)

the pre-dinner table–isn’t that a beautiful squash my mom brought?

my contribution–chocolate turkeys from whole foods:

table with food (notice we had to take that squash off, to make room?):

and, of course we need some food pics:

my favorites have remained the same for years: pie, stuffing, and “Leah’s fluffy rolls”. apparently i like sweets and carbs. i know what’s good for me :) hope you all enjoyed your holiday with people you love and lots of delicious things to eat. i always feel so lucky this time of year, and 2014 was no exception!

Tags thanksgiving reblog

Jan 27, 2015

halloween and more fall


oh boy, it’s been a while. we have a snow day in MA, so i am finally having time to update my blog.

fall was a very busy time for us. lots of gigs, lots of teaching, lots of travel. 

however, there is always time for baked pumpkin donuts with maple frosting, and some hot apple cider in apple mugs! yum yum :)

we were able to have a halloween party this year–our annual tradition–and i cooked up a storm. our friends Jeff and John hosted with us, in a “scary asylum” theme. Jeff LOVES Halloween, so we thought it would be fun to host together. 

i want to share some of the fun things i made!

homemade candy corn meringues:

much easier than i thought they would be.

a chocolate-pumpkin bundt cake with chocolate drizzle:

it was delicious and had a cool swirl inside. i may try to do it but with a purple swirl next year.

next, we have pumpkin puffs (thanks Martha):

and “witch’s fingers” which were like funny breadsticks, but gross-looking:

and we have to have savory stuff too–

cheesy beef biscuit “tacos” (more like empanadas), nice and spicy:

a sourdough bread boule with cheese and Italian spices inside that pulls apart (I thought it looked a little like a brain):

mummy dogs!!! so fun and tasty (i had to use organic hot dogs with no nitrites, of course):

antipasti salami bites with tomato, mozzarella and basil:

and, last but definitely not least, a pumpkin barfing guac:


and, i wanted to share some of our decorations (scary ones not included):

thanks to my friend Katherine for my mummy bowl :)

all in all, it was a great party, and i think i did us proud with the food. 

i wish fall could last all year!

1 note reblog

Oct 18, 2014

fall fun

after the Made in VT VSO tour, i stayed another week to play La Traviata in Middleburg. ryan decided to come up and spend a weekend in VT with me. 

here are some photos of our fun: 

we found a pumpkin patch outside Rutland. i got to pull around our AWD wagon. that thing gets heavy, quickly!

ryan got to have his turn too. this was a real patch, folks. stems somewhat attached, muddy, and everything. 

we also visited two different orchards–one in Mendon, and one in Middleburg. this is a pic from the orchard in Mendon. they had apple-pickers that we did not discover until the end. great fun for me, but hard to use if you’re….well….short.

and, of course i have to have a fall drive photo. Vermont really is gorgeous.

happy fall everyone :)

Tags happyfall reblog

Aug 30, 2014

it’s coming! :)


Aug 28, 2014

Funspot adventures

have you ever been to Funspot in Nh? 

well, it’s a pretty good time. ryan and i went this weekend and discovered a boardwalk with even more games and adventures.

not only is Funspot billed as the largest arcade in world (over 70,000 square feet), but it also has three levels, a bowling alley, and a ton of games where you earn tickets, which is what i like to do.

ryan became OBSESSED with Tapper:

and we laughed at this fun game by Sega that moves around while you play–not as good as Tokyocop (or how Tokyocop seems to work), but still amusing:

i like this photo. we’re on a mission to play as many games as possible:

on the other hand, some of us like to have fun with the creative filters on the new SLR that ryan just bought me. this is Tron in “watercolor”:

we spent the night in a small cottage nearby, played some pirate mini golf, ate at Griddle in the Middle and Donna’s (my favorite), and did some exploring together. it was nice :)

soon we are going to Vegas, and i can’t wait to share those photos!

welcome back to another school year :)


Jul 17, 2014


because i have been literally driving all over New England for the last three weeks (surviving on Starbucks, assorted energy bars, bananas, and sheer will power), i have no new photos to share with you. 

but, i DO have old ones.

random photo #1: 

an awesome Tetris lamp we bought at Pax East. yes, you can rearrange the pieces. yes, the piece goes dark when you remove it from its friends. yes, it is AWESOME. all nerds should have one.


random photo #2: 

the cutest baby apple pie from “pies a la mode” in falmouth. i did a gig there in late april and was pleased to find the pie shop i’d visited before is still there. it’s hard not to buy everything, but i restrained myself.

it was delicious.


and, because i am OCD and have to do things in odd numbers, here is random photo #3:

liz, do you remember these?????


i will hit a new record of 5000 miles put on the car in four weeks. i hope it’s now clear why i haven’t updated recently.

the end.


Jun 3, 2014

schedule update

we are in and out of town this summer, but if you want to join us on June 21 (sat) for a game night, email me!

here are the next several weekends for us:

Cambridge gig


in town



Maine (for me) / PA (for ryan)

a couple weekends in town, or perhaps not (likely to ME or VT again)

CT for a training

Maine to play a concert and my dad’s birthday

in town (yay)

NH weekend

Labor Day weekend (already! i know!)

then it’s back to the ol’ grind.

ryan is discovering how awesome Vermont is, but we are spending a boatload on hotels this summer, so we shall see.

no huge travels for us, but we are going to Vegas in September (no, not eloping), so we’re trying to hang around here.

i’m looking forward to a few days in Portland with my sister, going to the beach, and eating my first “cronut” which has apparently been reserved for me as of this morning :) 

hope your summer plans are moving along!


Jun 3, 2014

cute things

how to frost a cake - coco cake land

my sister kindly introduced me to coco cakeland years ago. she has beautiful, adorable creations that are worth sharing with all your friends and family and people you don’t even know.


happy tuesday!

Tags cococakeland reblog

May 29, 2014

update time!

good morning all :)

it has been an extremely busy month. i’ve been gigging like crazy, teaching,  and generally trying not to go too insane. a friend reminded me that we want to be busy in May, because it means summer may not be as difficult. she is totally right.

last weekend ryan and i went to NYC. i had to take a class for a grant i received, and we decided to spend the weekend in the city.

unfortunately, i was very sick the two days prior, was miserable on the bus, and didn’t  get to see a dear friend at the chocolate and bar we planned to visit.

we did get to visit an old haunt–Russian Vodka Room–with a friend and his girlfriend, as well as spending the day Saturday at the BEST BOOKSTORE EVER: http://www.kinokuniya.com/us/.

they had everything a person could ever want, including a cute cafe with Japanese bentos and onigiri!

Saturday continued with a jaunt around Midtown, enjoying the beautiful weather, and meeting a friend at Joe’s Shanghai in Chinatown for some soup dumplings and extremely yummy Chinese food. 

ryan got really sick Saturday night with a stomach bug that has continued until today. it was unfortunate, as we didn’t get to do much on our last day in NYC, but we fully intend to go back soon.

this weekend we will be visiting some wedding sites in Vermont on a quick trip Fri-Sun, then it’s back to the grind next week with a gig in Cambridge and my first studio recital in Boston.

the following weekend will be a visit to Portland to see my family, and a friend’s wedding in Chamberlain, ME. 

lots to do, people to see, meals to eat and enjoy. 

hope we have some great weather coming up! miss you all :)


May 8, 2014

weird of the week

you know, we all TALK about doing this, but i didn’t realize some yahoo would actually go ahead and do it:


way to go, Boston.


May 8, 2014

quinoa bites

so, i made these as an appetizer for a dinner we hosted for friends, and they were delicious. it’s a great way to get someone to eat quinoa. the first time i made quinoa, ryan said “le, what IS this?” i have to admit, it does look weird to me too, with those strange little tails hanging out the back. it’s an acquired taste for a few of us.

this is a much better way to eat it–make the quinoa first, then mix it with spinach and other things, and bake in mini muffin tins.

and here is a link to the website (i especially like that this girl is “curvy carrot”): http://www.thecurvycarrot.com/2012/01/24/cheese-and-vegetable-quinoa-bites/

i used onion instead of shallot which was no big deal. they were tasty both hot and cold, and would be very portable. ryan gobbled several before i stopped him to ask if he knew what he was eating. 

i love tricking people :)

Tags quinoa reblog

Apr 30, 2014

crazy times

hi all,

just want to share that my updates have slowed as i’ve gotten busy. brief overview of my next several weekends:

Cambridge (thank goodness–a gig at home finally)

so, needless to say, i’m starting to feel a little anxious for driving (ever since my car broke down last summer), and to fit everything in. on top of that, i’m trying to plan wedding stuff too.

i’ll try to update at some point soon!

in the meantime, YAY WARM WEATHER….oh wait……


Apr 22, 2014

post-valentine's cake

i adapted this adorable, heart-shaped little cake from Sprinkle Bakes for our valentine’s dessert: http://www.sprinklebakes.com/2011/02/heritage-red-velvet-cake.html.

if you all don’t know about Heather at Sprinkle Bakes, you are missing out. big time. her food is beautiful, cheery, and so cute. 

back to the cake. i hadn’t made red velvet before, so it was interesting. i managed, of course, to get red food dye all over the place.  

here’s the finished product:

also want to share the dino-shaped sprinkles i got from King Arthur last summer when my car broke down…for the first time…and the fam spent the afternoon wandering the store while we waited for updates.

at least something good came out of it!

if you haven’t made red velvet before, make sure you are prepared for red dye splatter. even one sputter goes a loooong way. 


Tags sprinklebakes reblog

Apr 22, 2014

belated st. patty's post

st. patty’s day was pretty uneventful in our house. ryan and i had work, it was a monday, and we had just spent the weekend in CT with his family, celebrating our engagement. 

however, i think it is my duty to share these muffins from King Arthur:


irish soda bread muffins: http://www.kingarthurflour.com/recipes/irish-soda-bread-muffins-recipe.

so easy!

the tops are slightly crunchy, the muffin is sweet, and they taste delicious with just a hint of butter. i made mine with raisins, as we had no currents. i ate at least two in a row. maybe three (shh).

the rest of the meal was uneventful. 

just some salmon and chard, that i have made many times (one of our favorites). but, the MUFFINS.  

go for it, you guys.