Tag Archives: being in the moment

My Favorite Things – Snapshots from Goose Pond, New Hampshire

It’s hard to believe that our vacation is coming to a close.  We’ve had spectacular weather, oh-so-many delicious meals, and lots of opportunities to just rest and play.  In fact, I’ve been spending so much time doing all of the above that I  pretty much forgot to pull out my camera.  Sometimes really being in the moment is the best medicine!

And when I’m back in the grind of work in the city, I plan to pull out these photos and give myself permission to dream again…

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Friday’s Thought – Moments

church-steeple-at-night

“Photography is an immediate reaction, drawing is a meditation.”

(Henri Cartier-Bresson)

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Friday’s Thought – On Travel

Information kiosk at Grand Central Station

“Wherever you go, go with all your heart. “

(Confucius)

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Friday’s Thought – On The Joys of Solitude

solitary park bench in Paris

What a lovely surprise to finally discover how unlonely being alone can be.

(Ellen Burstyn)

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My Favorite Things – The Parisian Aesthetic Rubs Off On Me

Although I had to say goodbye to Paris early yesterday morning, I feel like a good dose of the Parisian aesthetic came home with me.  To clarify, I didn’t buy any souvenirs (aside from the food I ate, my only other purchases were two postcards!); however, the constant people watching and sight-seeing was like a crash course in good taste.

To begin with, Parisians seem to have a love affair with good food made from good quality ingredients.

Wouldn’t you be inspired to eat well if your supermarket veggie display looked like this?

Beautiful veggie display in the St. Germaine area

beautiful assortment of veggies

So when I arrived home yesterday afternoon, one of the first things I did was to head over to Whole Foods to purchase some zucchini, tomatoes and pesto for a healthy dinner of Pesto “Zoodles” with cherry tomatoes.   Eaten al fresco on our patio, I could almost pretend that I was back in Paris!

Today, I spent much of the day finding things in the apartment to give away.  Paring down seems somehow very Parisian.  My goal is not only to de-clutter (an ongoing task when you live in a New York apartment) but I’m also eager to make sure I’m surrounded by only pretty things.  And to that end, I went out and bought myself a bouquet of flowers for the bedroom.

Could this have been my inspiration?

Assorted roses in a flower shop display in Paris

Flower shop display in Paris

Bien sûr!

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Friday’s Thought – Daily Treasures

Water droplets

“We can only be said to be alive in those moments when our hearts are conscious of our treasures.”

(Thornton Wilder)

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My Favorite Things – A Quiet Afternoon at Home

My low-energy funk last week didn’t last too long.  Between rehearsing and performing shows with the New Jersey Symphony and the New York City Ballet, there hasn’t been much time to loll around this week.  And in addition to my musical work, I’ve also been busy at the drafting table.  Occupying my time is a fun multi-piece, custom jewelry design project for a new client.  Ironically, it’s the work that’s energized me and also given me a sense of calm and focus.

Today after walking home from Lincoln Center, I took time to brew a pot of Rooibos tea and enjoy one of my homemade Almond Flour Chocolate Oat Chip cookies with Orange (recipe follows below).  

afternoon tea

The light streaming into our apartment was so beautiful that I couldn’t resist taking some photos of my magnificent orchid.

My orchid in bloom

My orchid in bloom Jan 2016

And since I was enjoying being in the moment, I finished my afternoon tea hour by lighting one of my Lisn Japanese incense sticks

teapot with incense ribbon

Joana’s Flourless Chocolate Oat Chip Cookies with Orange

Ingredients:

1 cup packed almond flour

scant 1 tsp baking soda

1/4 tsp baking powder

pinch salt

1/2 cup unsalted butter (I use Kerrygold Irish butter)

1/2 cup non-fat dry milk

1/2 cup coconut sugar

1 egg

1/2 tsp vanilla extract

3/4 cup rolled oats

1/4 cup candied orange peel

1 cup semi-sweet (or 70% or higher) chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Grease two baking sheets.  Combine the almond flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt in a small bowl and set aside.  With an electric mixer, cream together the butter, dried milk and sugar. Add the egg and vanilla extract and beat until fluffy.  Add the flour mixture and beat on low speed until thoroughly blended.  Stir in the rolled oats, candied orange peel and chocolate chips.  Drop heaped teapsoonfuls on to the prepared baking sheets, spacing about an inch apart.  Bake for 10-12 minutes, until just browned on top.  Let cool for at least 15 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool.

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