Monday, February 11, 2013

Crickets have taken over this place, but no more

Please pick your jaw up off the floor... I'm back! I've been busy being pregnant, having my fourth daughter, surviving this year, and seeing my sweet baby turn one. One! I am still in shock that all these bits of life have zipped by without documenting them here. If you are reading this, you are definitely (a) family or (b) really patient! Or both in many cases, heh heh.

It's been over a year since I've shared anything with you, you poor thing. :) It's actually pretty pitiful that the blog only shows two of my girls! Baby steps. I'll get this blog caught up some day. I think our New Year's card could at least sum up 2012 for you better than my sleep deprived rambling will:

I recently shot a multi-event wedding that had me behind the camera for almost 18 hours in one day! Take a sneak peek here (click on the photo):
More to share - later!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011


After a long, hard day, I was awarded this moment:


They were huddled together on Abigail's bunk as I took this stealth photo courtesy of a telephoto lens.

I may or may not have fought back a few tears. :)

They were reading a Caillou book together, to assuage Alyssa's newfound obsession with the whiny, yet endearing character.

Friday, December 9, 2011

My helpers

My daily sacred work involves a lot of repetition. Diaper changes, packing lunches, teaching the ABCs... laundry in, laundry out. Dishes in, dishes out. It's so easy to morph into a grump and forget just why I do what I do.

Well, thank goodness that the very little ones whose hands could single-handedly dismantle the homeschool room in mere seconds are starting to enjoy assisting me with the aforementioned duties. It's really fun to do things together.

Case in point: dishes!

After I remove knives and chopsticks, Alyssa slowly empties the utensil caddy in the dishwasher and hands the utensils to Abigail.




Little Alyssa gets a bit pushy at times, as if she's the one in charge.


"Ah dunnnnn (all done)," she declares.


While they're busy with the utensils, I quickly put everything else away. It keeps them occupied and focused, which equates to a good routine. They feel so empowered by this small thing too.

I'm glad they're so helpful - there will be a bit more to do once the baby comes!

The aroma of baking fills the air


Ron's apple caramel pie

and savory!



My husband makes his apple pie without a recipe, so there isn't a recipe to refer you to, but the "Quick and Easy" breadsticks are definitely worthy of sharing - here is the recipe for it if you'd like. The breadsticks freeze well too, so make two batches! I used cheddar because that's all I had in the house. Be sure to be generous when sprinkling on the cheese and garlic spread.

Friday, December 2, 2011

Photo sessions aplenty

It is true that one of the busiest times of the year for photographers is the fall season.

Take a peek at my latest on my photography blog:


Sunday, November 27, 2011

My girls and me, 5K style

Too much tomato pasta and I dropped off blogland. Actually, tryptophan-induced gluttony has gotten the best of me as of late, but that's another post.  :)

One event my girls and I have not missed the last five years is the the nation's largest 5K for women. The first year was in 2007, with 4-year-old Amanda and a 7-month-old Abigail, and Amanda walked with me while I toted Abigail in a Bjorn. Read about our first foray here:

2007 5K

In 2008 - read about our second year here:

2008 5K

In 2009, I made the mistake of emptying out my memory card without fetching the 5K photos.  What's worse is that I never wrote down the memories.  Oh well....

2009 5K

In 2010, I was but 2-1/2 months postpartum when the girls and I walked again:

2010 5K

Again, I didn't write down the memories!

So here I am, a few months behind, making sure that blogland knows I've taken photos AND written the account down for year number five!

::2011 5K::

With three little ones and their items to keep track of, I made sure to lay out all of our uniforms the night prior.


The morning of, we were up at an ungodly hour to get going - see how dark it is still?

It's still dark.

Here we are ready to go, all five of us (there's one nestled in my belly!):

ready to go

We met up with our good friends, Julie and Brooke, and we happily bugged other 5Kers for a group photo:

Group photo

Amanda sure had fun having a friend with her! Plus, I got smart (after several years of doing this) and signed up for the stroller wave, so my girls didn't have to endure looking at other ladies' backsides and legs for the opening ceremony.



Abby and Alyssa had the luxury of a stroller ride the entire time. Amanda was walking the entire thing at Abby's age!

Miss Abacus


It was a gorgeous day with no rain in sight. Julie and I had a lovely time chatting the whole way. It didn't feel like 5 kilometers at all! Even though this was Julie and Brooke's first 5K, you never would have known.

The finish line photo:


We all sat down and wolfed down our finish line breakfast!

Alyssa eats and eats

Looking onward to next year's event!  With four kids in tow....

2011 5K 

Monday, September 5, 2011

Roasted tomato pasta

If your garden's bounty has you knee deep in tomatoes, you can understand the challenge I face everyday.

roasted tomatos pasta2

roasted tomatos pasta3

roasted tomatos pasta4

It's a good problem, of course, with some good solutions too, I'm finding out. I was particularly inspired by Prudent Baby.

One such solution is this roasted tomato pasta. Yum factor is extremely high, and the smell-o-meter is off the charts grand. It was thrown together for an impromptu meal with a good friend.

roasted tomato pasta1

Alas, my dark kitchen doesn't produce photos that do this dish justice, but you get the picture (I'm so punny).

The trick is to slow roast your tomatoes. I used beefsteak, roma, and pear tomatoes, because that's what I have. Each imparts a subtly different aura that harmonizes well.

Cut up the tomatoes so they're half inch cubes. I used enough tomatoes to fill a baking sheet, because I wanted to make enough for eight servings.

roasted tomato pasta5

Add salt and pepper to taste, then add your desired amount of garlic. I used the garlic juice from this Costco monstrosity:

roasted tomato pasta6

Drizzle a good amount of extra virgin olive oil on the tomatoes, and toss them to coat evenly.

roasted tomato pasta 7

In goes the baking sheet into an oven preheated at 225. Roasting time will be between 3-1/2 to 4-1/2 hours. Trust me, it is worth the time.

During the last 20 minutes of the roasting time, boil your linguine noodles, and lightly salt and drizzle some olive oil. They should finish right around the time the tomatoes are ready and they look like this:

roasted tomato pasta 8

Take a silcone spoon scraper and release all the good bits:

roasted tomato pasta 9

Set aside in a bowl.

Take your noodles and run them against the baking sheet so as to pick up every bit of the pan juices. Add more olive oil as needed. Then add the roasted tomatoes back into the noodles.

roasted tomato pasta10

Top with basil and serve.

roasted tomato pasta1

Heather's Roasted Tomato Pasta
Serves 8

-fresh tomatoes (I used three kinds: beefsteak, roma, and pear tomatoes)
-extra virgin olive oil
-minced garlic (I used garlic juice)
-sea salt and pepper to taste
-prepared linguine noodles

1. Preheat oven to 225 degrees F.
2. Wash and cut up tomatoes into half inch cubes. Transfer them onto a baking sheet.
3. Sprinkle with salt, pepper, and garlic to taste. Drizzle liberally with extra virgin olive oil, giving a good toss to coat evenly.
4. Into the oven it goes for 3-1/2 to 4-1/2 hours.
5. During the last 20 minutes of the roasting time, prepare the linguine noodles, timing it to finish with the tomatoes. Lightly salt and drizzle a bit of olive oil.
6. Pull out the roasted tomatoes and release the softened bits with a silicone spoon scraper. Set aside in a bowl.
7. Run the noodles against the baking sheet so as to pick up every bit of the pan juices. Add more olive oil as needed. Then add the roasted tomatoes back into the noodles.
8. Serve as is, or add basil and/or fresh mozzarella to kick it up a notch or two.


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