Monday, February 21, 2011

Happy 6th Birthday Rosie!

She's six years old already! She started kindergarden this fall and after Christmas switched to a full day kindergarden program where she is doing great! My Rosie is growing up!

We spent the weekend celebrating starting with a trip to a hotel that had a small water park, thanks to Grandma! We all had a blast! Rosie LOVES to swim and asks for the same thing every year for her birthday! She's a great swimmer and takes it very seriously. I'm going to have to sign her up for some lessons very soon.

She's such a sweet big sister. Here she is comforting Daisy thru a scary trip thru the carwash!

Saturday evening Grammy, and Aunt Heidi, Uncle Mark and the cousins came over to celebrate.
Here her cousin Kyle is trying very hard not to blow out her candles! He just turned 6 last month and they are best buddies.

She got a pillow pet she's been hoping for.

We ended the festivities with a tea party with the girls at a local restaurant. What a bunch of cuties!

Thursday, December 9, 2010

My Nephew!

Announcing my nephew!

Giovanni Zaccai Torres was born at
7:18pm on Friday November 5th, 2010. He weighed 6 lbs. 10 oz and
was 18 1/2 " long

This is a big deal for my side of the family! He's the first boy!

I was blessed to have been at his birth. I was able to serve my sister as doula throughout her labor at the hospital. It was a beautiful natural labor. She is an amazing mamma!

These are my girls' hands feeling his sweet softness as they met him for the first time. Rosie is holding him in this photo. She is especially enamored of him. She has been wishing for a baby boy in the family. She is so wonderful with babies and really prides herself on her baby holding skills!

Monday, September 27, 2010

Plan B

Rich and I have been collaborating with the Beerhorst family on an Artprize entry this year! It has been an exciting opportunity to put on public display some of the practices we have been learning and exploring in our lives over the past few years. Here is the link to the artist Bio on the Artprize website.

Our Artprize 2010 will be an out door installation that will simulate a post peak oil world where electricity is only intermittent and almost everything used to keep daily life humming along has been... made out of preexisting products and materials. A combination of very old technologies with what can be patched together out of the rubble of what has been made before, fallen apart and left behind.It's exploring the idea that Plan A which we are currently living is very much taken for granted, but it's not as stable and secure as we all want to believe. We need to think about having a Plan B should this current infrastructure fail us.

My involvement in this project is around food security and learning to feed ourselves with out relying on massive amounts of resources to grow and ship food all over the world. We have built a beautiful outdoor kitchen (once again I find myself cooking outdoors!) that is fully functional, with Rocket stoves, a solar oven, an Ice box, displays of preserved foods and containers of growing lettuce and tomatoes!

Rich's composting toilet outhouse that we used on the farm last summer has been beautified and is also on display!

On opening day of Artprize, we had a procession with the Wonderwagon from the SE side of town all the way over to the Plan B venue on the shore of the Grand River. The kids rode in the wagon all the way and we were accompanied by drumming and chanting and banjo playing!

Artprize is a new event for Grand Rapids, and I can't believe the excitement and traffic thru downtown it has generated. If you are nearby, or can make a trip to GR it would be well worth it. There is so much to see and do! We'd be happy to provide some hospitality while your here!

There is daily family entertainment at the Plan B stage and live music every evening. Visit the Plan B facebook page or the blog to
learn more about the schedule of events. If you are registered to vote, please consider voting for us! We are currently in the top 100, out of nearly 1700 entries!

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Art Show

I have been invited to show some of my recent photographs in an art show at Destination 1111 next weekend. I will be hanging some of my hipstamatic prints. If your in town, come out and see!
Here is a link to the woman's blog who is putting the show together. She has a nice write up on each of the artists.

Artist Statement:
I am a wife and momma to three beautiful little girls. I have worked as a photographer for over 10 years and I am also a professional Doula and Midwifery apprentice, which is a whole lot to juggle and I am always working at maintaining some kind of balance. Our family is living back in the city after an adventure living on a farm together last summer, learning to live more sustainably and interconnected to our local food supply. This year we are growing food in our neighborhood community garden and have been visiting local farms to pick fruit and most of my recent artistic work is based around these activities. I am learning and practicing old techniques of food preservation. Because as a mom, my hands are always full, I have taken to often photographing my life with my iphone as it is always in my pocket. I made these photographs with a vintage camera application that mimics photographs from toy cameras from an earlier era. I apprietiate the irony of using such a modern technological tool to create images that explore old ideas and practices that my generation has become so disconnected from.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Daisy's First Day of School!!

Daisy started school! The Montessori school in our neighborhood where Rosie has been attending for the last 3 years, starts preschool at 3 years old. The classes are multi- age rooms so 3 year olds, four year olds, and kindergardeners all learn together. Daisy started school 2 weeks ago and she Rosie is going into kindergarten. Daisy is in Rosie's class and feels so special going to school with her big sister. Rosie feels very proud to take her under her wing and show her the ropes. It's nice because Daisy only goes 2 days a week, so Daisy can get used to things and Rosie still has plenty of space. Next year Rosie will move up to a 1st, 2nd, 3rd grade room and Daisy will have the class all to herself.

Daisy was so excited the morning that school started! She ran to get in line and followed Rosie with a huge grin on her face and clapping! She never would have looked back if Rich hadn't yelled goodbye to her. She turned and waved goodbye excitedly! When I picked her up at noon, she didn't even want to come home. I asked Rosie how she did at school and she said with a little smirk on her face, "She just sat at the snack table and ate snack the whole time!"

She's got some work to do learning about line theory and keeping her shoes on, but so far she loves school!

Friday, July 30, 2010

Gluten Free baked goods for Sale!!

It's legal to sell baked goods made in a home kitchen! So I am going to give it a whirl.

Here's an article about the new law.

Here's what I will be making this week:

Peanut butter or chocolate chip cookies $.75each
Peach pie (pick up Sunday only) $15
Peach Cobbler $10
Zucchini bread $4
Banana bread $5
Zucchini brownies $5 a pan
whole chocolate cake $15
chocolate cupcakes $.75 each


Let me know today if your interested in ordering anything to be picked up either Saturday or Sunday this week. Spread the word to anyone you know who eats gluten free. If it goes well at home, I might work on getting a permanent spot at the market for next season.

Feel free to leave a message here or call me: (616) 318-1825

Monday, July 26, 2010

Learning about Food Preservation

We are on a journey of finding a new way of eating, a way that is healthier not only for us, but for the local economy, our neighbors, and the planet. I just finished this book, it has provided me with a whole new sense of importance about this journey and a whole new set of tools for how to live in a more sustainable, healthy way. It was a really great read and I will be checking out her other books next.

and here's a poem I came across tonight that I thought was a sweet summary of what's so wonderful about preserving food:

When I go to see my grandma I gain a lot of weight

With her dear hands she gives me plate after plate.

She cans the pickles, sweet & dill

She cans the songs of the whippoorwill

And the morning dew and the evening moon

‘N’ I really got to go see her pretty soon

‘Cause these canned goods I buy at the store

Ain’t got the summer in them anymore.

-Greg Brown, Canned Goods