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{an autumn stroll through historic yates mill county park}

22 Oct

in the mid-morning hours of a brisk and blissful sunday, in the glory of a charming and colourful mid-october, in a pleasant little nook of north carolina, i took myself {and my camera} on a spontaneous date with nature…

… and we both needed it.


{summer’s final moon}

28 Aug

i just never tire of experiencing the ocean… the sight, the smell, the sound… the feeling, the energy all around!

i also never tire of experiencing the moon… equally as much wonderful energy to behold!

i went down to the shore over the weekend for some {much needed} vitamin sea and to admire and enjoy the ocean and the full moon. by the time i got to the beach, the moon was just coming up over the horizon… and some hazy clouds initially obstructed the view.

still… breathtaking, right?!

it wasn’t long before the moon peeked out of the ombre sky and shared her beauty with us one again, in her final appearance of summer.

i walked around for a good hour or so, gazing in wanderlust as the moon took place high in the sky, illuminating all it touched…

… listening to the crashing waves, my senses engaged with the salty air, my toes wiggling in the soft sand…

feeling humbled and grateful for all that has been before me and all that is around me now. for all that will be, for all that i am, for all that i have, and for all that i have yet to experience.


{total solar eclipse}

22 Aug

i drove down to columbia, south carolina to watch the total solar eclipse yesterday… and i’m so glad i made the trek! admittedly, i did not do as much preparing as i would’ve normally done… particularly because it kind of came together last minute. originally i had wanted to go to greenville, sc – which is where i was born {and supposedly where the highest totality and visibility would be}, but it all worked out rather nicely and i’m thankful to have been where i was… especially because it was also my mama’s birthday yesterday.

i didn’t have time to make a pinhole camera, which i really wanted to do, but of course i had a camera. if you follow me on instagram, i hope you saw the story… it was fun to create.

it was important to me not to get too caught up in taking fotos, because i truly wanted to enjoy the moment {two minutes, 36 seconds to be exact} 🙂

i shot these images with a 50mm lense… which, of course, isn’t ideal for something so far away… but i kind of liked showing the sky and having the tiny sun and moon fill up a tiny amount of space. i didn’t have a special filter, so i simply put my eclipse glasses over my lense. i thought about using my zoom lense, but like i said, i was more concerned with being there to truly witness the moment… it’s a hard balance sometimes, as someone who loves to take pictures… but i have been challenging myself to “capture the moment with my mind,” from time to time. this was one of those moments.

i took a few pictures of the crowd as well, but i wasn’t super thrilled with most of them. i think i was just too caught up in the experience to really take very many fotos… and i’m okay with that.

it was a truly incredible event and the sky was perfectly clear for the duration of {almost} totality. the crowd was wonderful, the vibe was awesome, the beer was delicious {i drank a special ‘black ipa’ aptly named, “blackout”.} i feel very fortunate to have been where i was during the eclipse. we reached totality around 2:30 p.m. in columbia, south carolina. the temperature dropped, the moon inched in front of the sun, making it as dark as night… the crowd went wild, people screamed and hugged and kissed… it’s kind of hard to truly describe how marvelous it was to see it all happen. the energy felt very intense to me… and as someone who has always admired and been in awe of the stars, it was a lot to take in… something for the history books, indeed.

i’m still buzzing from it all ❤

       

{mercury retrogrades tonight!}

12 Aug

time to slow it down…

{nyc – through the eye of my camera phone}

17 Jul

i am working on a new volume of “memories in manhattan” and will post one next week… in the meantime, here’s a post about new york to keep the theme going 🙂


i took a trip new york in june… i had been wanting to go back for a visit for quite some time, as it had been about 5 years since i had been there. often times, i think part of me wants to live there again, so i was eager to experience the city once more to see how i felt about being there.

i had a wonderful trip, as i figured i would. the weather was a little ridiculous – as in sweltering hot. but outside of that, it was nice to feel the energy of that amazing city, again. new york has a way of making you feel on top of the world; as if the whole place belongs to you. as an introvert, it’s strange to me that i can be surrounded by people but still feel like i’m in my own little bubble. the “hum” that is always in the background doesn’t feel distracting to me… it’s a strange dichotomy that i have always appreciated.

all that said, i think i realized that i do not wish to live in a place like new york again. i long for a country life – on a farm somewhere, growing food and having lots of animals. of course, that may change – after all, we are human and our desires come and go as we move through life.

it was wonderful to be in new york once more and to walk around and take the subway and just feel the energy… i immediately settled back in to the “way of life” there and even had people asking me for directions – and i knew them! that’s also a good ego boost.

i didn’t pick up my camera too much… i guess because since i lived there for so long, i took so many pictures already and this time i just wanted to kind of experience it in a different way. of course, i did have my camera phone with me – so i captured a lot of snapshots with it.

here is a gallery of fotos from my trip – i hope you enjoy! :

 

until next time…

 

{throwback thursday : manhattan henge}

13 Jul

apparently it’s manhattan henge time… i heard on TV that the big night was last night and tonight it will also be visible.

when i lived in new york, i didn’t think about the fact that you don’t really see sunsets. i guess it didn’t occur to me at the time… but after living in denver and seeing some of the most amazing sunsets ever, i started to realize that i don’t have very many memories of sunsets while i lived in the big city.

anyway, in honour of this twice a year event that happens in new york, i thought i would share these fotos for throwback thursday. i’m super grateful i actually got to experience this… for those of you that may be unfamiliar – only twice a year does the sun line up just perfectly in between the concrete jungle so that it sets right in between the buildings. one can only see this on 34th street, 42nd street, or 57th street… i think i fotographed these images from 34th…

enjoy!


{beachy}

24 May

i took a little drive down to the shore few weeks ago… and unbeknownst to me, it was spring break – so the beach was super crowded.

i pretended like no one was there, anyway. 🙂


 

i took myself out to dinner, which has become a tradition now, every time i visit the area. i’m in love with hieronymus seafood and i always get their steamer platter.

nom nom!!

i was a very happy mermaid… 😉

 

{memories in manhattan – volume 5}

15 May

even though i don’t miss the winters in the northeast, or winter in general for that matter, i did enjoy the variety of weather that seems to roll in and out of new york. particularly, the evening rain. there’s something about a late night drizzle… it seems calming to me.

as i was looking through old fotos of my days living in new york, i came across a fun memory of a time when some visitors came to town and i helped them squeeze in as many “tourist attractions” as possible, since they were only there for two days. it made me feel pretty cool when they asked for suggestions. maybe because it made me realize that i had been in the city long enough to not only know my way around, but to be somewhat of a tour-guide.

one of my favourite places to visit and view the city was the empire state building. being able to experience the city from that perspective is something to behold. i only visited the empire state building twice during my time living in nyc, and both times were memorable and exciting. this particular night was memorable because it was very cold, and very wet. it was one of those kinds of rain that was almost like a mist, making the visibility low and the mood high.

the way way top

when my friends and i decided to go to the top of the empire state building, we didn’t realize that the very very top would be closed off due to wind and the aforementioned low-visibility. my friends didn’t care, and neither did i. by the time we decided to make our way to the destination, we had already been wandering the city for a good hour, sans umbrella… and it didn’t seem to bother any of us. besides, a huge part of the experience was being together – and for me, seeing the excitement on their faces, and living vicariously through their enjoyment. furthermore, the line was much shorter and there were fewer people on the tour… so it felt like we had the whole place to ourselves.

because of the rain, i found myself taking less fotos and spending more time reveling in and soaking up the moment… and doing my best to keep warm!

if i close my eyes, i can whisk myself away to some of those moments, and revisit and remember the experience so richly.

i love his hoodie

i love my hat

did i mention that these friends of mine are like the empire state building… in that, they are very very tall?!{especially standing next to me – haha!}  😉

 

{memories in manhattan – volume 4}

3 Apr

a good friend of mine just reminded me of an annual event that takes place in union square park, lower manhattan. it apparently just happened last weekend in new york, and i was reminded of the time that i was fortunate to be in the mix, camera in hand.

i’m talking about the ‘annual pillow fight’ 🙂

i’ll never forget the hilarity of this day. it was a sunny afternoon, but there was a spring chill in the air. 14th street was lined with people dressed in pajamas and costumes and carrying their favourite pillows under their arms. police staff stood closely by, and the occasional ambulance could be found parked around the corner, should anyone get hit a little too hard or fall off someone’s shoulders.

i meandered my way into the crowd, holding my camera close to my chest. i spotted several fotographers hiding out in the ‘pit’ and remember being nervous for them – like, what if someone or someone’s pillow knocked their camera to the ground? even though i came unprepared anyway {no pillow and all}, i was certain i would never be caught in the moshpit, let alone with my camera. i’m a self-admitted wuss like that. i prefer to have a nice long lense and stand nice and far back.

anyway, i people-watched for a good 20 minutes or so, snapping fotos like this :

i laughed at several costumes and appreciated how much thought some of the attendees took into preparing for this event. i wondered to myself if i knew anyone in the crowd.

hundreds of people people gathered in the shop windows nearby to get an aerial view… Continue reading

{how seashells are like humans… or is it the other way around?!}

20 Jan

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i love the ocean. i love everything about it – the movement, the sounds, the life that’s in it, the deep mystery of it… my soul resonates so intimately with all things ocean-related.

one of the things i love most about living in north carolina is the fact that i can go to the ocean in december! last month, just after the holidays, we took a drive to the shore and spent some time with big blue. i love to beach-comb and i have been gathering quite a collection of shells lately.

as i was laying all my seashells out the other day, i was admiring the variety of what was in front of me, and i got to thinking about how similar seashells and humans are. we are all so uniquely different, and yet we all come from the same place, essentially. maybe not the same exact place, as we are all born into different families and have different backgrounds and stories, but we are all born the same way and created the same way, just like seashells.

seashells all come from the ocean, a vast sea of wonder. we, as humans, all come from the same wondrous creative process. we all look different and have different shapes and colours and sizes – just as seashells do. some of us are not fully developed or some of us are broken – just like seashells. some of us have lots of stripes and stories to tell, and some of us do not – just like seashells. some of us are a little more ‘clean cut’ and some of us are a little ‘rough around the edges’ – just like seashells. some of us get tossed around by life, just as seashells get tossed around by the ocean waves. some of us leave the ‘ocean’ a lot sooner than others. we are very similar – humans and seashells.

at the end of the day, we all come from the same ‘ocean.’ we all are born human, and that is what connects us. our differences are what make us unique and give us unique perceptions and views of the world. those differences are what allow us to be able to learn from each other. in an ideal world, we would all appreciate our differences and recognize that those differences are what makes us all able to truly work together, and to formulate this big ol’ puzzle called life into a clearer picture.

my wish for the world is that we truly start to see each other.

 

 

{details matter}

18 Nov

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images from historic yates mill park – north carolina.

 

{zen space}

7 Nov

oh, how i have missed blogging!  and i have missed interacting with my readers! i hope you all have been well and that life has been treating you with love and grace.

so much has happened this year {and last year} for me and although i would love to go into great detail about it all, after much consideration, i have decided to refrain.  i have been taking some time to journal some thoughts down and i think that will be a good way to release it all first. then, if i decide to share, i will.

it suffices to say that i have grown tremendously over the last 24 months and i sit here writing this post with an overwhelming sense of gratitude and relief! the past is in the past and i am here, now. although, the time is always now, you know?! if we are fully submersed in the moment, we are always in the now.  the past is behind us and we can’t change it and the future doesn’t even exist yet… so all we really have is now. and it is always NOW. i am {re}learning and remembering how crucial this simple truth is to keep in the forefront of our minds. it is far too easy to get caught up in other things and especially other thoughts.

and here at food and foto, we like to keep it as light-hearted as possible. or at least, as “positive” as possible. i have been thinking a lot about what we choose to focus on; what we allow our minds to be occupied with. and for me, it is extremely important to find a way to disconnect from our seemingly ceaseless thoughts… to find a zen space. and that doesn’t exactly have to be a physical place. although – it can be found in nature, in a park, in your bedroom, at a church… but basically, being “zen” is truly a state of mind. it has little to do with location.

however, it is true and i do find that some places bring me to a more “zen” feeling than others. for example, i did like living in the mountains and especially in the tiny home, as it was a life-changing experience… one that many people dream of. however, i never quite felt “zen” while i was there. at least, not like i do when i am near the ocean. i love listening to the sound of the waves as the water ebbs and flows… it reminds me to breathe in and breathe out. i love the smell of the salty air breezing through my hair… it reminds me to stay in touch with my intuition and appreciate the moment. i love sense of wonder and awe i feel for the unknown that lies beyond and beneath… it keeps me grounded and humble. truly, nothing makes me feel more zen than being near the ocean.

i am a water baby at my core and i basically believe i am {or was} a mermaid. therefore, i feel truly at home when i am near the vastness of the big blue. something about being around the water gives me a sense of peace like nothing else does. it is truly my zen space.

with all that said, i would like to share these fotos i took while visiting the atlantic ocean recently. i had a little fun playing around with some different filters. also, it’s pretty satisfying to be able to dip your toes in the warm sand in november!

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where do you find your zen space?!

{fire in the sky}

11 Mar

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{another beautiful sunset}

6 Mar

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{things that remind me of new york…}

4 Mar

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pizza… and me in this hat!

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geese everywhere for days… and creepy, unexplainable masks…

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culturally cool bikes… !

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large groups of ninjas practicing with swords… and this…

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stickers on electrical posts… and graffiti in hidden spots…

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broken glass that looks like art… and bright colours…

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stickers everywhere for days… especially funny ones…

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this cool lamppost… !

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tweety bird driving {what appears to be} a pimped-out dunebuggy… and awesome murals…

{lately…}

11 May

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{signs of spring – cheerful cherry blossoms}

23 Mar

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mmmm, can’t you just smell them?!?!

 

{petroglyphs – “rock art” in moab}

4 Nov

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i don’t know if i can find words to express what i felt when i saw these petroglyphs on this huge rock in moab last month… it is beyond fascinating to me.

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notice the 6 toes on the right??!!

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i’m sure i learned about this stuff in science class, but i was just blown away to see it in person!

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so fascinating……….

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what were they trying to say?!?!………….

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what do you all think about this kind of thing?!  does it blow your mind like it does for me?!

😀

{silent sunday : the eyes of the aspens}

19 Oct

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{silent saturday : in awe of the aspens}

18 Oct

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