Snowpocolypse 2013

So after a weekend of this – 50-70 mile an hour winds and two feet of snow:

 

Boston Blizzard 2013 - Alicia Carlson Photography

Photo taken with my iPhone in Downtown Boston

Snow on Beacon Hill

Snow on Beacon Hill, Boston – taken with my iPhone

 

And working this:

TV snow coverage

Behind-the-scenes of local news blizzard coverage. Photo taken with my iPhone.

I needed a little bit of this:

Winter at Codman Farm

After being cooped up inside at the TV station for two days, getting back outside was pretty exciting. Fresh air! Snow! Blue sky! Cute farm animals! (Except for the pig. The pig is not cute, and smells really bad.) Then there was this little face:

Baby Goat

 

And this little guy, who was running all around the place:

Lamb

Farm animals

Goats at Codman Farm

Goats at Codman Farm

Yes, it’s only February 11th. But as the rain falls outside, and the beautiful snow fall turns into disgusting slush and ice, baby farm animals are a sure sign that spring is right around the corner…right?!?!?!

Harpoon Beer Hall Preview

Believe the hype – the Harpoon Beer Hall is as awesome as you’re anticipating it to be. Jeff and I attended a Friends of Harpoon preview of the hall on Wednesday night and cannot wait to go back!

The hall is part of a larger renovation at the brewery. Set in a prime spot along the waterfront, the hall offers a beautiful view of the city. Long tables line the room, and there are no televisions to distract people from the company surrounding them. The tables, benches, and bar are gorgeous – they’re made from Vermont butternut, and recycled wood. And interesting phenomenon occurred – strangers talked to each other! Friends were made! Shock! Awe! (For those of you not from Boston, this is not common occurrence.) Jeff and I chatted with a really nice couple sitting next to us, some guys sitting on our other side gave us one of their pretzels, and a random other person gave Jeff an extra beer token.

Harpoon Beer Hall

Being a television director, I had to try the 100 Barrel Series Directors’ Cut.

 

I love Harpoon beers, so it’s fun to try new batches and see what they’re experimenting with.

Harpoon Beer Hall

Plenty to choose from or sample…

 

Harpoon Beer Hall

Harpoon Beer Hall

According to Harpoon’s Twitter account, they’re waiting for final permit approvals and should be open very soon. (Update: According to Eater.com, it’s opening tonight at 5pm!) Cheers!

Harpoon Brewery and Beer Hall is located at 306 Northern Ave., Boston. Take the T – there’s a silver line stop right across the street!

Say it ain’t true, Sel de la Terre!

 

 

Sel de la Terre

Photo taken with my iPhone

Nooooooo… 🙁 Excuse me while I pout for a minute… One of my favorite restaurants closed their last Boston location. Sel de la Terre had the best burger and chocolate molten cake… (Healthy. 😉 ) I enjoyed a wonderful brunch there with college friends who came back to town one weekend, and took Jeff there for a 4-course food and beer pairing on his birthday…

Sadness.

Breakfast Reinvented

So what are you up to this weekend? I’m totally procrastinating right now – I *should* be cleaning out my closets like I’ve been promising myself. (The clutter is driving me nuts!) I should be cutting up and freezing the organic strawberries I got at Haymarket yesterday for $1. ($1! Seriously!) But instead, I got sucked into Pinterest, and ended up coming across a delicious recipe for blueberry baked oatmeal. I’m bored with having cereal or eggs every morning, so this is a welcome change in routine! You can find the recipe over on the blog, So, How’s It Taste. It’s really simple, and nice to have leftovers for the week!

Hope you have a fantastic weekend!

Blueberry oatmeal

Macaron Sweeterie

All anyone is talking about this week is the extreme cold weather we’re experiencing. It’s been incredibly cold in Boston lately, and I just want to curl up somewhere warm with a cup of tea, and not move until summer!

Speaking of tea, I recently photographed a perfect companion to a cup of tea – French macaron cookies from Macaron Sweeterie in Lexington, MA. Here are a few photos from the shoot. Enjoy!

Macaron Sweeterie

Macaron Sweeterie

Wedding Favors from Macaron Sweeterie

Macarons

 

Happy New Year!

Happy 2013!!! I hope you had a wonderful time on Monday night! I rang in the new year with some of my favorite people.

NYE at The Burren in Somerville, MA

Photo from Annette’s Instagram account. Thanks, Annette!

NYE at The Burren in Somerville, MA

Back in November, I reflected on the past year and how grateful I am for supportive friends and family, and how my photography business grew in such a short amount of time. This site isn’t even a year old yet, and I’m still a bit speechless over the wonderful clients and opportunities that came along. So where will it go from here?

I hope to double the amount of clients I work with. I love working with restaurants and small businesses – it never feels like work and I love seeing them happy with the results! It’s fun helping clients promote their products and business. I also photographed some awesome events, and look forward to working with those organizations again in 2013. I already booked a new client and can’t wait to photograph their Valentine’s Day chocolate collection.

I hope to complete my camera kit. I upgraded my gear a few months ago, but still need to purchase a flash and another lens. Okay, maybe two lenses. And another camera body. I don’t want to drop a lot of money on rentals, and there’s only so many times Jeff is going to let me borrow his. 😉

I will learn how to shoot video on my DSLR. Work got so busy, I never got a chance to play around with shooting video with my new camera! I’ve worked in TV for almost 11 years, so I’m excited to start offering another service to clients.

I hope to be in a position to rent a studio space by the end of 2013. Right now I work on location, and work on personal projects in my living room. Food photography props are neatly tucked away all over my apartment. It would be nice to have them organized in one place that doesn’t take up my actual living space. I’d love to work in a studio space filled with sunlight. (I sit in a dark room all day at my 9-5 job. I need more vitamin D in my life!)

 

Let’s see, what else… Last year my personal goals were to double the amount of money I put into my savings account each month. Done. I wanted to cook more instead of eating frozen meals. Done. Every year I say I want to run a 5k and never do. I did it a few weeks ago, and managed not to re-injure my knee. Yay!

Somerville Jingle Bell Run 2012

Somerville Jingle Bell Run 2012

The resolution I failed miserably at? Calling friends who live far away more often. I don’t know what happened. (I’m sorry!!! 🙁  ) We exchanged emails and Facebook messages, and I visited a few in Los Angeles earlier this year… But I need to pick up the phone more often. Or get out of the dark ages and use Skype more. Or Google+ chat…or something.

So this year I will pick up the phone more often. I will cook at home even more instead of eating out. Even though my rent is about to go up a lot, I will keep saving money.

So what are your goals and resolutions this year? Any big, exciting projects or trips coming up?

Winter Wonderland

It finally snowed! Last year, we had a trace amount of it. My snow shovel was never used. I think I wore my winter boots once, and never wore my down coat because it was never cold enough. Living in New England, that was downright SCARY. We’re used to wearing 18 layers at this time of year.

Winter at the Middlesex Fells Reservation

The city was silent when I got out of work last night. Very few people were out, and no one was on the road – I love how peaceful the city is during snow storms. Likewise, I love the country the morning after a storm.

Middlesex Fells Reservation snow

I don’t live in the country, but the Middlesex Fells Reservation is a little taste of New Hampshire right outside of Boston. It’s a place of peace and serenity – even with the sound of highway traffic in the background, I love hiking and biking though there.

Middlesex Fells Reservation snow

There’s only about five inches of snow on the ground, but it’s just enough. And it’s the kind that clings to everything, transforming the woods into a winter wonderland.

Middlesex Fells Reservation snow

Middlesex Fells Reservation snow

Not too many people were out. I pulled over in one section and discovered these animal tracks – there weren’t any human footprints around, so they’re from a deer, coyote, or something. Any animal track experts out there? I’m curious! 🙂

Middlesex Fells Reservation snowy landscape

It’s beautiful. Serene. Calm. Peaceful. Quiet. The only sounds were birds chirping, and the occasional branch snapping under the weight of the snow. This was much needed after weeks of holiday craziness. A fresh blanket of snow to start 2013. Renewal. Happy New Year!

Taking a moment…

It doesn’t feel right to move forward with new posts without acknowledging the events of last Friday in CT… Working in the news biz, we knew how bad it was before media outlets started reporting it… Later in the day, a close friend commented that she doesn’t know how I do it, putting news like that on the air without losing it. Honestly, I’m not sure. After years of being in a control room, you learn how to shut off most emotions and focus on doing the job at hand – there’s time to think, feel and reflect after your shift is done.

Tears came to my eyes several times throughout the weekend. As someone who lost classmates to brutal violence in elementary school, my heart goes out to the children in Newtown, CT… The fear, confusion, and uncertainty those children are experiencing is something no one should ever have to face. I’m sure many adults and children feel completely helpless, but all you can do is embrace and comfort each other, and have faith everything will someday be okay.

 

Ritz in a Box

With a bunch of important events coming up to photograph, I rented a lens from LensProToGo. While testing it out last night, a certain little someone decided to fall asleep in the box the lens was shipped in. So here’s your moment of cuteness for the day, which was taken right before Ritz’s eyes closed!

 

Cat in a box

The Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap – Cranberry Chocolate Biscotti

 The Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap 2012

I’m so excited to participate in The Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap this year! It’s a great cause because we’re raising money for Cookies for Kids’ Cancer. Each participating blogger made a donation to the charity, and our donations are being matched by OXO, dollar for dollar, up to $100,000! My friend Julie of The Little Kitchen and Lindsey of Love and Olive Oil put a lot of work into this, and I wanted to support them as well. I also like cookies. A lot. Can’t resist ’em. I mean, who doesn’t love a good cookie?! C’mon!

Gluten-free biscotti

I haven’t tried baking gluten-free cookies yet, so I figured this was a great opportunity to give it a try. Biscotti seemed like a good choice because it would ship well, and it’s a great holiday cookie to dunk in coffee, hot chocolate, or milk. And although it takes some time to bake, it’s a very simple recipe. This recipe is slightly adapted from one on elanaspantry.com – hers calls for pecans and I decided to leave them out. It’s just a personal preference.

gluten-free biscotti

 Thanks to OXO for the adorable “Be a Good Cookie” spatula! They’re being sold to raise money for pediatric cancer research, as part of their partnership with Cookies for Kids’ Cancer. If you’re interested in purchasing one, you can find it here.

And thanks to Heather from A Sweet Simple Life, Desiree at Unconventional Kitchen, and Lesley Palmer from Healthy Meals to You for the cookies they sent me! Happy holidays!

 

The Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap - Cranberry Chocolate Biscotti
Author: 
Recipe type: Cookie
Cuisine: Gluten-Free
Serves: 24 biscotti
 
Ingredients
  • ½ cup agave nectar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 3 cups blanched almond flour
  • ¼ teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ cup dark chocolate chips
  • ½ cup dried cranberries
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, combine agave, eggs, and vanilla. Blend with a mixer until fluffy. (About 5 minutes.)
  3. In a separate bowl, stir together the almond flour, salt, and baking soda.
  4. Add dry ingredients to wet, stir until combined, then stir in chocolate and cranberries.
  5. On a parchment paper lined cookie sheet, transfer the mixture and form a log about 12 inches long and 3 inches wide.
  6. Bake at 325 degrees for 30 minutes
  7. Remove from oven and cool for 20 minutes
  8. Transfer the log to a cutting board and cut once lengthwise, then ½ inch slices widthwise.
  9. Place the biscotti back on the parchment lined cookie sheet, and bake for 15 minutes.
  10. Turn each slice over, and bake for another 15 minutes, until they are golden brown.
  11. Remove from oven and allow them to cool for about 20 minutes, until they turn crunchy