Tuesday, August 30, 2011

morning walk

Even if it's only with myself, a "staff meeting" is a must. I've learned this recently. Depending on whether Saturday is a wedding work day or not, I usually have a Monday Morning Meeting or a Tuesday Tin Can Talk (because alliteration makes it more fun). And sometimes I'm fortunate to be accompanied by my husband...because he loves me...and probably because he's in this business either way. (But to be honest, he's the technical genius behind my artistic eye.)

There are no real rules to the meetings yet. I prefer they are out of the "office" so I can gain a little vitamin D and a change of scenery. And they should probably include coffee. Tasty brunch food is also more than welcome. And sometimes they include a little walkabout time or drive around town to gain a little inspiration. Overall, we usually generate a good list of goals for the week. (Whether these things are always obtainable or whether we always reach them or not is another matter!)

Growing up, I remember my parents starting their own business. I can't imagine going out on this shaky limb with three kids under your wing. Even as an adult,  I find I continue to experience new ways to be thankful for the two people who cared for me and fostered my growth.

So this is just a little post to let you know we're still chugging along and to ask you all to keep our business in your thoughts and prayers. As Bryan and I walked to breakfast this morning the air felt cool and refreshing. And after our juice fast last week, we feel a little renewed ourselves. As we watch kids beginning to fill the campuses around us (go gamecocks!), I picked up a new Agenda for the season and we're ready to get down to business for another year!

Thursday, August 25, 2011

a little love

After meeting with a possible new photography client one evening this week, Bryan and I found this little bit of love while walking down the street in the neat little city we call home. If there's one fun thing we've enjoyed about living in Atlanta as we begin our marriage, it's all the little surprises (especially the good ones). This random act of sidewalk art made us pause for one moment to appreciate everything we have.

On the juicing front:

We're going strong! Well, the new and fun part of it is kind of wearing off, but as we conclude day 4 of juicing, we both feel mucho better and feel like our bodies will thank us for the break. I do miss chewing a bit...and the smell of someone's coffee today was taunting, but other than that it's not so bad. You kind of get into a mode. Plus, I have a wonderful husband who gets up before I leave for my three day bakery stint to make me breakfast juice--I've become fond of a morning glass of cabbage and apples, or cabapple juice (like cranapple?).

The funniest thing is that we actually found some strange pleasure in watching some food shows online tonight--go figure!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

renew and reboot

This week, the Sintoses are going to ingest 25 pounds of carrots, 15 lemons, 2 heads of cabbage, 5 bunches of celery, 8 beets, 10 cucumbers and a bushel each of kale and green apples! Intrigued???

With another blog absence, the evidence of our go-go-go-ness is apparent. We've had a busy summer of planting, planning, projects and photography. It's been great! But it's time to slow down just a bit...at least enough to "reboot our systems."  After getting a little inspiration from a neat documentary, Monday morning we planned out a week of good-for-you juices and took off to YDFM for the produce (hence the big box o' greens at the top!). One of the best parts about visiting the farmer's market is that we spent just as much on a week's worth of produce to juice as we do for an average week's worth of groceries!


Two necessary ingredients to keep on hand. We've already learned that if you add an apple and lemon to any juice, it will really "help it out" a bit:)

The classic "mean green" dinner juice! 

Cheers to a cleaner us! (Yes, that means no cupcake eating this week!)

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

timeless beauty

Where does time fly to? If you know, could you tell me so I can buy a ticket?

As much as I may hate looking back on this month's "blog history" later and not seeing pictures and posts, I don't regret not pulling together entries. Finding a topic has not been the problem---a lot has been going on for us! So many things, in fact, that I chose to, for once, take in these moments and occasions as naturally as possible--as possible for me anyway! 

But before this month slips away, I have to at least let a few pictures hold just a couple memories for me. My beautiful sister got married and tomorrow is her birthday. I hope you've enjoyed every year before this one as much as I have, and I wish you the greatest joys on all of your new years as Mrs. Carly Bush. Love you.

Yes, that's Vanessa showing off why shorts or pants are a great wardrobe accessory for a photographer on a wedding day! She captured beautiful shots of Carly and Andrew getting married on June 3rd! It was a little difficult not to want a camera in my hand, but I knew she would do such a great job that I would be able to be a sister and a matron of honor-what wonderful positions! And since my dress had pockets in it, I guess I couldn't help but grab a couple of iPhone photos.

What a wonderful day and what a beautiful new life they share. Congratulations again to Carly, Andrew AND Lizzy!

(Be sure to check out the wedding photos on Chupp Photography!)

Monday, May 9, 2011

mother's day with mother nature

Sunday I celebrated Mother's Day with my beautiful mom and mother nature.
Digging my bare feet into freshly tilled dirt, digging holes for small tomato plants and thinking how I'm blessed beyond measure.

My dad and Bryan trying to figure out how we're going to find room for all the seeds!

Last year's garden novice hard at work improving his skill. 

To our wonderful mothers: Your constant love, support and encouragement is unfailing and uplifting--
roses by any other names would not smell as sweet!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

first anniversary

Three hundred and sixty-five days have passed since I married the man God created for me. And I think we've found 365 new ways to fall in love since then.

We posted a little something about our paper anniversary on the Tin Can blog, but from the photos above and below you can get a glimpse of how our weekend began and ended. (and why we'll need another one of these weekends before April of next year!)

Saturday, April 23, 2011

tune my heart

As I look forward to the morning sun, when we shall worship the Savior who rose from the grave, I seem transfixed on these words penned in the 18th century by 22-year-old Robert Robinson. Set to music, it's a beautiful hymn we had played at our wedding, which many of you probably know by memory. But instead of singing by heart first, try taking a look at just the words and see how they work in your heart. I hope you find a beautiful prayer and blessing as I did this evening.

 Come Thou Fount of every blessing
Tune my heart to sing Thy grace;
Streams of mercy, never ceasing,
Call for songs of loudest praise
Teach me some melodious sonnet,
Sung by flaming tongues above.
Praise the mount! I'm fixed upon it,
Mount of God's unchanging love.

Here I raise my Ebenezer;
Hither by Thy help I'm come;
And I hope, by Thy good pleasure,
Safely to arrive at home.
Jesus sought me when a stranger,
Wandering from the fold of God;
He, to rescue me from danger,
Interposed His precious blood.

O to grace how great a debtor
Daily I'm constrained to be!
Let that grace now like a fetter,
Bind my wandering heart to Thee.
Prone to wander, Lord, I feel it,
Prone to leave the God I love;
Here's my heart, O take and seal it,
Seal it for Thy courts above.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

fine day for a float

Ah, the weather is getting warmer and I anticipate that wonderful feeling of the season's first swim. A cool, weightless world of my own to traverse. And yet, what it must feel like to swim for the first time!

Last week we were most thrilled by a surprise that led to a visit from our favOUrite canadiens! Leaving some snow behind, they were excited to pack for the warm Georgia spring; especially Amelia! She got to bring a suitcase of her very own full of spring clothes (showing off those adorable little legs) and her bathing suit! My mom was so excited for the temperatures to hit in the 80s (or 30s, eh), she went out and bought miss ellie a pool! a little fancy something from the local dollar general:)

charting new waters...her first outdoor swim!

a little light kicking with dad

if there's one awesome thing...no, two...about watching kyle and ellie, it's that 1) he's an amazing father and 2) he's still kyle:)

and vanessa is such an outgoing and loving first-time mom. maybe it's the nurse in her. and maybe she's just wonderful like that.

of course, how could anyone resist a bathing beauty like this?

I'm so very thankful for the gifts of time we get to spend with these three! Amelia is becoming quite the seasoned international traveler:)

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

a surprise and a celebration

Over the weekend we layered doughnut on top of doughnut to make Memaw's 80th birthday cake. What a feat! more hers than ours:)

The best of the celebration was the family getting to gather together. Pawpaw told stories about how they used to gather over meals when he first started dating Memaw. Perhaps that is the destination of this blog. Something more along the lines of "soul food."

In any case, here is the surprise to go with the celebration! The Canadiens came to visit!

This face will steal the show and your heart...and you love both. For the first time, I saw her cute little legs hanging out of some baby bloomers--she got to wear her first summer clothes! 

And speaking of firsts, she also made her first run to the acclaimed summer ice cream truck thanks to her awesome dad! 

Everyone enjoyed eating the chili dogs and pork that was roasted all night long.

The cute factor is a high one when the Harbin clan gets together!

My glowing Saree! (about to have another cute one herself)

The kids loved the big jump...and there was even an adult skate after they were worn out:)

And, of course, no big family gathering is complete without a little singing!

Here's to celebrations! Another happy birthday goes out to my step grandmother, Jo! 
(Hope you get to feeling better soon!)

Monday, March 21, 2011

the dish on some top food spots in atlanta

This year, St. Paddy's day was celebrated with green cupcakes (and Guinness cake, of course!)

Working a long day at the bakery wasn't so bad. Everyone was in great spirits and every time I answered the phone by giving my name, people responded with great exclamation:) By the end of the night, I was washing dishes with the back door open to the live music playing across the street.

When I came home twelve hours after I left, we didn't feel bad about not finding a pub or a plate of Irish fare for the night. In fact, we've probably made a bit of a decision not to go out on major holidays here. The city can become littered with poor decisions by people who only "go all out" a couple nights a year. We'll save our outings for when we'll really enjoy them most:)

This sounds like a good time to go ahead and include a little list of our new favorite eateries:


Ria's Bluebird. A living gem across from the historic Oakland Cemetery. Haven't had a poor dish there to date! On our last visit, I tried the Brisket Breakfast: slow-roasted Angus beef and poached eggs in a spicy tomato broth---now this is the way to start your day!

Sun in My Belly. A beautifully renovated hardware store in the Kirkwood District. I have the strong desire to try every item on the menu. Last time we lingered there, I could not pass up the omelette of the day--I believe goat cheese and sun-dried tomatoes were at stake! 


Cafe di Sol. This place has the three things that will always get me to return to a restaurant: great location, atmosphere and food. Located in our own neighborhood, it's set up like a European cafe so almost every sidewalk diner has a great people-watching view. I don't know that I'll ever be able to try anything else on the menu because Andy's Burger is just that good--all my favorite flavors in each bite. Just to get your mouth watering, it has gruyere cheese, garlic herb-roasted shiitake mushrooms and garlic aioli.

Midtown Tavern. Ok, when you walk in, it looks like a dive you may not want to eat in. But that's why we're helping you out (because we had someone show us the way as well!). In the cold of winter, the havarti grilled cheese with thin slices of granny smith apple called to me. We recently sampled the Cerdo Asado sandwich and now we feel we can't be led astray. It is filled with slow-roasted Cuban-style pork, creamy slaw and house-made pickles. Flavor punch! Oh, and whatever you do, don't go without trying the gouda mac n' cheese. You'l thank us!

Although we'd love to try new restaurants every week, these are the four we've found and love on the first year of marriage budget. Let us know if you find yourself needing company at one of these wonderful places!

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

caught red handed

It's no secret that red (or at least "pops" of red) is a favorite for me. 
Red things I've collected and love?
my purse, bathrobe, baker's twine, and mixing bowl to name a few. 

New red thing I no longer so much love and am frankly slightly concerned with?
jar of red cherries. 
We're not talking beautiful, ripe and delicious fresh cherries. We're speaking of what I used to think of as "real" fruit cherries--maraschino cherries.

After dipping my hand in the cherry jar to gain the correct amount of dessert toppings, a customer came inside the bakery. I washed my hands, but there was no getting around it...I was caught red-handed! Unable to really explain why my skin was such a bright red, I thought I'd dig a little deeper. (On this note...how many times do we continue to eat or drink things "just because" without wondering why, per se, something I'm ingesting has semi-permanently stained my hand?)

Upon just a tiny bit of research (read as googling), I found the following:

From WikipediaThe cherries are first preserved in a brine solution usually containing sulfur dioxide and calcium chloride to bleach the fruit, then soaked in a suspension of food coloring (common red food dye, FD&C Red 40), sugar syrup, and other components.

The Food and Drug Administration has finally proposed that manufacturers must indicate the presence of the insect-derived colorings in their food products. 

Present labels may indicate "color added," E120, or "natural color" when cochineal or carmine is present in the product. According to the FDA, carmine is used in foods like ice cream, strawberry milk, fake crab and lobster, maraschino cherries, port wine cheese, lumpfish eggs, and liqueurs like Compari. 

(as a side note: it doesn't help matters to find out "cochineal is described in laymen's terms by the free dictionary as  "

a red dyestuff consisting of dried bodies of female cochineal insects." Yum!)

I don't really have a soapbox to stand on regarding these cherries. Just thought I'd share something I found interesting today. I've come to realize that since we live in an age of eating fast and in mass, as consumers, we really have to do our own investigating. (For instance, I found out in a NY Times article last week that McDonald's new "wholesome" oatmeal has the same calories as a Snickers bar...and contains more than 10 ingredients...only this company could ruin such a simple and wonderful food.)

Lesson learned: be inquisitive before ingesting. Food for thought.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

new lights. new trials.

Bryan and I recently picked up some new to us (but really 15 years old) lights so that we can begin moving into the world of off camera shooting (for events that require such). This is fun yet scary yet exhilarating all at the same time. It feels like we're relearning how to take pictures...and with these new tools, we are! 

These are basically our first two (awkward) pictures taken as trials to see just what we have to work with. First thing learned, we're not epileptic...but we are seeing spots.

After some self trials, our friend Ross dropped by that night and graciously volunteered to hang out while we fiddled with new settings and placements. We went outside our loft to the atrium in near darkness and fired off these next shots. Although they're not perfect by any means, they sure did provide great hope and excitement for future images.

So on this rainy Saturday, we're doing a little studying and researching. 

And as we set forth to discover new photography frontiers, we're lead by this verse in Psalms:
"Send forth your light and your truth, let them guide me; let them bring me to your holy mountain, to the place where you dwell."