yellow flowers

This month over at ‘The Creative Mama’ they are paying tribute to the color yellow.  I found myself smiling when I read this, yellow being my favorite color.

“What’s your favorite color?”

It’s a question often associated with childhood or used on a quiz that defines your personality type. There’s a lot that can determine your favorite shade on the color wheel.  It is no secret around our house that I love yellow.  Sure, there are other colors I like…orange, apple green, gray, robin’s egg blue.  But yellow, well, it holds a special place…

It was the color of one of the first flower girl dresses I ever wore.  Feeling like a princess at the sweet age of 5.

The color of my first bike, training wheels and all.  My first taste of independence, cruising around the neighborhood.

It was the color of the flowers my husband gave me when we first started dating.

sunflowers

It is the color of the sunflowers that grow in our garden every year.

It is the color of the shirt Samuel wore 2 years ago on my birthday, telling me that wearing my favorite color was his present to me.

It is the color of the bouquets of dandelions Henry brings me every spring.

It is the color of the flowers that bloom in my favorite mountain meadow.

It is the color on our walls, the place we gather, make memories and call home.

I would encourage you to head over to ‘The Creative Mama’ and check out the links of others sharing their love for yellow, maybe even share one of your own.

Hoping for a little bit of sunshine and yellow in your Thursday!

Alison

 

 

I take a lot of pictures, I know, this is obvious. I spend so much time with my camera I’ve begun to think that it is just how I see the world..as though I’m looking through a lens. I find myself framing up scenes as I sit at a stoplight or watch the boys at baseball practice. Where is the light coming from? If I stood there how would it fall? Where are the shadows? What would be the best composition?

I love every single thing about taking pictures with my big camera, but sometimes I just want the freedom to point and shoot. To not worry about settings, making it all about the composition and the moment and the shot. I can’t seem to find that with my point and shoot camera. I’m not sure what it is, but all I find is frustration and missed moments.

This is where my iPhone comes in.

I have hundreds (yes, hundreds!) of iPhone images. It feels like freedom. I find myself taking pictures of the most random things and loving them as much as if I’d used my big camera. The best part is that I have it with me all the time. I’m not restricted to worrying about lugging around my SLR, making sure it will be safe. This seems to be a trend among photographers as I’ve been seeing more and more talk about iPhoneography online. There’s even a book about it called, so appropriately, ‘The Art of iPhoneography’.

Today, I thought I would share a few of my favorite apps for taking pictures in my own iPhoneography journey.

First up is the Shake It app. I probably use this one more than any other and when the boys take pics it’s the one they use too. You can see more pictures using this app here and here. It creates a polaroid type image, right down to the border and sound of film being spit out. If you shake the phone the picture develops a little faster and you can watch it slowly come into view. Just like the polaroid film of old.

Next up is Pocketbooth

I remember growing up there was a shopping mall in a neighboring town that had one of these booths. When we would go for an out of town shopping trip (for school clothes etc.) hitting the photo booth was always on the list of things we had to do. It was just as much of a treat to get a souvenir strip of images as it was to come home with a pair of new shoes. I saved almost all of them. They are yellowing and a bit curled, but every time I see them I am reminded of the fun those photo booths could be.

And I know I am probably a little behind on this next one, but I’m going to mention it anyway…Instagram.

I had been seeing folks on Twitter and Facebook posting these images for awhile and wondered what all the fuss was about. Last week I downloaded the app and now I know. It is a quick and easy way to share your pics on social media. With all the fun filters to choose from you can give a different look to every image.

Finally, once you have taken all these great iPhone picks what are you going to do with them? You don’t want to keep them on your phone and risk loosing them (yes, I’m speaking from experience here). You need to transfer them to your computer to save and share. That’s where the Photo Transfer app comes in. You simply choose your images and decide if you are transfering to your PC or phone and it gives you an address to type into your browser and downloads your pics as a zip file. Super quick, super easy. Exactly what I need.

Do you have any favorite photo apps for your phone? I’d love to hear about them.

Alison

artichoke

Friday night is our regular pizza and movie night. The boys spread out old blankets in front of the TV, grab their plates full of pizza and tune in to the chosen flick. Bret and I usually join them, but last Friday night we did something different.

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Well, today is the big day. Prince William marries Kate Middleton. Did you get up early to watch the festivities or set your DVR? I’m afraid I fall into the DVR crowd. Sleep feels very precious this week.

Years ago, I remember watching the wedding of Prince Charles and Diana. My mom and I got up very early. Snuggled in our pj’s and blankets we watched with the rest of the world as a young woman became a princess. As an 8 year old girl, it seemed magical.

Early in my parents marriage they lived in England, moving back to the states before I was born. My mom would often share her memories of the time they spent there. Not long ago we found the village, street and flat where they lived, using Google Earth. She took me on a virtual tour of her time living there. How she took her shopping cart and walked to the open air market to get food for meals. She described how the brilliant color of the daffodils and tulips would contrast with the gray English sky.

The day that we watched the wedding of Prince Charles and Diana it was like having my own personal tour guide, right there in my living room. As the cameras showed crowds of people at the gates of Buckingham palace, she told me about the Beefeaters and the crown jewels. When they interviewed bystanders she told me about the humor and character of the people she met living there. I was fascinated.

Many of the food blogs I follow have been sharing fancy English desserts and wedding-like delicacies this week. And they are beautiful, but I decided to go a different route and share something a bit more common. Beans and Toast. It is a traditional English meal, often eaten for breakfast, but can make a hearty lunch too. Normally, it is made with a can of Heinz baked beans, white bread and a hefty swipe of butter. As a child I remember my dad eating it for breakfast and mom telling us about how they ate it often when they lived overseas. I decided to share a different spin on it, adding a bit more color and flavor.

I’ll occasionally eat this for breakfast or lunch, protein packed, it always gets me through to the next meal. This is more of a method than a recipe, use what you have on hand and make a delicious version all your own.

Beans and Toast

2 slices of bread, toasted–use what you have, lately we’ve been loving the Nine Grain Bread from Great Harvest.

1 can baked beans (Heinz vegetarian or your own version of baked beans)

1 tomato

Earth Balance Butter

A handful of spinach or kale ( I used some purple kale because that is what I had on hand) Make sure to take the leaves off the kale stems before steaming.

Over medium heat add a small amount of water to a skillet, when the water is bubbling add the spinach or kale to the skillet and cover. Steam for a few minutes until greens are bright and have wilted. Drain and set aside.

Heat your beans in a saucepan or microwave.

Toast bread in a toaster or under the broiler. After bread is toasted, spread on butter, if using.

Place the toast on a serving plate and top each piece with kale/spinach, a scoop of beans and a few slices of tomato. Salt and pepper to taste.

Maybe make a plate of beans and toast today as you sit down to watch the wedding coverage. I think that’s what I’ll be doing.

Have a great weekend!

Alison

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