Tag Archives: cooking

Life has sure been busy.

I’m starting to learn that being busy is just a state that we all know as adulthood.  I keep thinking things will slow down, but they don’t! 🙂 I did take a very brief break after the race, but it didn’t last!

While I’ve been out on adventures, here is what you missed:

-An Earth Day presentation. Matt, my TU chapter president, and I, made a PowerPoint to share what TU does in our community. The Jensen Center was packed with friends of water in our area. 🙂   

   -I ran up to Wausau and did a few headshots and event photos from an oral health presentation sponsored by Fehrman Orthodontics.  

   -I cooked a killer batch of fajitas. They were pretty, too…  -I religiously went to yoga at Community Soul.   

 -And last, but not least, Brian and I celebrated my one-week-post-marathon anniversary by running a little five mile race in New London. It’s called the Sturgeon Shuffle, and the course runs along the Wolf River while the sturgeon are typically spawning.  It was a great race, though my legs were feeling pretty tired near the end. Marathon recovery is no joke! I do love running along the water, and this course is an out-and-back, with a two mile option. It starts and ends at the school, runs through a little park, then the rest of the course follows the river. I loved that part of it. Brian was a trooper and stuck with me through the whole thing, even though I felt like I was running excruciatingly slow. Post-marathon muscle fatigue is such a weird and very real thing. It was a relatively small race, with chilly and windy weather, and it was well organized. They had bananas and delicious cookies at the finish, so I was obviously pretty excited for that! We finished and warmed up inside the school until it was time for awards.

Brian placed 2nd in his age group. I got 3rd in mine, and we both came home with these fabulous mugs as awards.   

 I’ve been traveling all over the place, shooting places, people, and projects… and I can’t wait to sit still long enough to share them all with you! 

I’ll be back soon. 🙂

Miles this year: 266

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Spicy soup, a trip to Green Bay, and tying some flies

It was cold. Freeze your face off cold. I love Wisconsin, but we had five days in a row with a high temperature below zero. This girl needs to play outside!

That is the Wisconsin River a couple blocks from my house. I still ventured out in the cold to go to Green Bay TU’s annual banquet. They have the biggest chapter banquet in our state, and their banquet committee is filled with exceptional volunteers. I was even lucky enough to win an air compressor! Brian was absolutely thrilled.

I braved the cold to tie flies with our chapter at one of our free fly tying workshops. We had a great time! We encourage kids to come, and our UWSP Fly Fishing club came out to help, too.


Just when I thought I’d had enough ice, I had a photo shoot with some iced coffee. 🙂

I thought briefly about running outside, but then I saw this…

…so I stayed inside, and made some spicy soup.

I love poached eggs.

The weather was scheduled to warm up, so I went outside to play, and my next post will feature a cute snowy shoot with a pup.

Thanks for reading!

Miles this year: 120


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Valentine’s weekend! <3

We started celebrating Valentine’s Day a couple days early by heading down to Chicago to hear one of my favorites, Jason Isbell, play at the Symphony Center. 

It was everything I dreamed it could be. I still don’t exactly understand why I love his music so much- I really can’t relate to most of his subjects. I’ve never been an addict, I’ve never had to cope with the loss of a family member while out on tour, I’ve never served in the military, nor done codeine (I’m allergic!), nor has a shotgun wedding ever occurred to me. Maybe that’s actually why I’m drawn to it- it’s exposing me to another world.

Anyway, we loved the concert, and we crashed hard for the night. Parking in the city always amazes me- we don’t even have parking meters here in Point, so paying $38 for three hours of ramp parking feels just crazy.

The next morning, we headed over to Calumet to trade in all our old camera gear. A couple years ago, we switched completely from Canon to Nikon, but we still had our old camera bodies and lenses sitting around. We also traded in my baby, my first real pro camera, my Nikon D3- affectionately named Shelley. I am upgrading my gear to the Nikon D4, but it was still really hard to leave my cameras behind. There were lots of memories in those cameras- both mine, and those of our clients. I held it together in the store…

…But lost it when we got to the parking lot. I keep reminding myself that the cameras are just a tool, but what can I say? I’m a softie. Anyway, a few pounds lighter and a few thousand dollars richer, we headed home to prepare for my mom’s Valentine’s Day wedding!

It was a very sweet day- I headed to the salon with my mom to get her hair done, then we went to her house to get ready.

My mom has two signs in her house that absolutely crack me up every time I see them, so here they are for your giggling pleasure.

I dont think I’ve ever done my mom’s makeup before, so it was really fun!

The ceremony was at St. Therese, where my Grampie built the altar. It was a sweet and short ceremony.

Everyone in attendance came up and stood around them on the altar, so it was very intimate.

The small reception was held at Bill’s favorite pizza restaurant, and they reserved the back room for us. Their big reception will be this summer.

It was wonderful to see everyone, and it makes me so happy to see my mom in love. Congratulations, Mr. and Mrs. Olson!

We stopped for a quick coffee at Starbucks (love these hearts!!)…

…had a small photo shoot with some brownies…

…and stayed in, cooking steak and shrimp for dinner. We cooked them on the big salt block that B gave me for Christmas, and they cooked perfectly! I made our traditional brownie waffles for dessert, and we crashed hard at 8:30 pm. What a wild life I lead.

Oh, and B surprised me with these.

I’m lucky. ❤

Thanks for reading!

Miles this year: 112

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I love Thanksgiving. It’s the one time of year that I transform my home into a gourmet restaurant, bake beautiful pastries, and use chargers.



I had an ear infection, so I was feeling less than stellar, though I was on antibiotics and the good cough syrup. I was in no condition to run the turkey trot, though, so I was bummed. I moped around the house all morning, and was making breakfast when the runners ran right past my kitchen window. I focused on trying to relax, though we both worked all morning to clean the house and prepare it for dinner. I’d just finished hanging our rugs outside and mopping the floors, so we hopped in the shower. I came out, threw on leggings and a dress, and I heard a knock at the door. Brian was in the shower, so I answered, and it was my mother-in-law, an hour early! The floor was still wet and I was definitely not ready to receive. We made it work, though- and it was a very natural celebration. Natural is code for no-makeup-no-hair-no-nice-outfit, but casual can be good. I was so frazzled from starting the day like that, and I forgot to take a picture of the finished table! 😦 major bummer. Picture a big white tablecloth, gold chargers, white servingware, and glass candleholders with cranberries and white candles. Oh, and white cloth napkins. The food went over very well- Brian helped me with the turkey, and we had Grandma’s stuffing, Mom’s mashed potatoes, creamed corn, maple roasted Brussels sprouts, homemade cranberry sauce, gravy, Jean’s squash bake, a green salad, fresh rolls, and of course, my pie. I went with individual pies this year, and served them with cinnamon honey ice cream. Delicious! I also took my annual thanksgiving photo with Grampie…

I went shopping on Black Friday with Amy, per our tradition, and then headed over to the country to celebrate Thanksgiving with my inlaws. Saturday was with the Oberstadts, and I scored the best recipe for heavenly hash. Once I try it out, I’ll post it for you 🙂
I baked Saturday night for Thanksgiving with Brian’s brothers and their families. My famous pumpkin pie!


We went to bed early so I could rest- my ear infection was bothering me, and I was hoping to run the Noodleini. That story is up next! 🙂

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We have a new driveway!!

After six years in our home, and getting stuck in our muddy driveway every spring, we finally decided to fix our driveway. We opted for gravel, and filled in the space underneath our shed, widened the whole driveway, and put in a brick border. We did so much manual labor! Digging out the space for the gravel was only the beginning.









And, finally, after!

Brian was such a trooper. We spent hours out there working to shovel that gravel where it needed to go. Since we have guy wires over every border of our property, the big dump truck wouldn’t fit, so the gravel had to come in two loads. So. Much. Shoveling.
Now, we wait. I can’t wait to see what happens this spring!
I ran with Carmel…

…had coffee with my running girls…

…Carmel and I ran through some burr bushes…

…put in some time at the track…

…made a ridiculously delicious breakfast in my new doughnut pan…


…and finished off our week meeting Lindsey and Derek at the Wausau Country Club to look over their ceremony and reception sites. They gave us golf carts! 🙂



Oh, and friends.

I’m feeling very thankful for my friends and family, and want to take this moment to remind you all to hug the people close to you. I love you guys! Thanks for reading.

Miles this year: 451.1

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Beer, fish, cold water, apple pie, and Megan and Jim :)

Hey, friends.
Last month, B and I headed over to Pigeon River Brewing Co with our friends, Mary and Joe. They were featured in the last Hoopla magazine.

It’s a small brewery in Marion, Wi, run by a couple guys and their families.




I’m always happy to see small, local businesses growing. Farmers turned brewers? Awesome. They’ve still got the bulk tank out back!
We got back from that midweek trip just in time for me to pack to head down to the Trout Unlimited annual meeting. This year, it was held down in Middleton, so I was able to drive there easily! I was asked to present about Stream Girls.
Chris Wood gave the state of TU address, filling us all in on what’s happened in the past year.

My friend, Jon Christiansen, also gave his presentation, as chairman of the board.

The Administrator of the EPA, Gina McCarthy, gave a very interesting presentation. I’d never taken photos at an event with Secret Service before!


As always, there was fly tying, and an awards ceremony. 🙂


As if it’s any surprise, I made a lot of new friends and got to visit with some that I hadn’t seen in a while! Have I mentioned that I love the company of fishermen and fisherwomen? I even got to sneak out early for a little run with Franklin.


I am happy to be a part of this organization!
Fall makes me want to bake and cuddle in with sweaters and soup! I picked up some beautiful apples and made a pie. 🙂 there is just something about homemade crust!



Abbie almost had a taste! 🙂 darn cute dog.
A beautiful Sunday morning arrived, perfect for Megan and Jim’s engagement session.

I’ve known Megan since junior high- we played in band together! 🙂






Love these two! Jim just became a marathoner at the Fox Cities marathon in September. 🙂 They fit together so perfectly, and they just made my job easy… Their love for each other shines through in these photos. We can’t wait until your May wedding, friends!
Sunday night was teaching ballroom dance lessons with Dale. I had a cold, so I was kind of crabby. Dale recommended that I supplement with Vitamin B… Vitamin BEAR!



It worked, and I made it through my group lessons. Don’t worry, I gave hand sanitizer to my students and used it myself! 🙂
More to come. Oh, so much more, but I’m heading out to brave the cold for a beautiful winter photo session!

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Missing Misty and Thanksgiving, with Noodleini 2012 race recap

Hello, blogosphere. Things have been wonderful over here in our little home. We’re starting to get in the holiday spirit, which makes everything seem more cozy and makes me more sentimental.
On that note, I’d like to dedicate this post to our favorite old dog, Misty.
We had to put Misty to sleep a few weeks ago, and our home hasn’t been the same since.

We loved Misty with all that we had, and we cuddled her extra lovingly during the last few days. I took my “office” downstairs and worked next to her for a few days, and I cried many tears into her black fur. Even in her old age of thirteen years, she only had a few grey hairs.


On my last morning with her, I brewed coffee as usual, and I wanted to capture the moment- one that shows how much I loved having Misty in my life, especially the “coffee talk.”

We love you, Misty. We take comfort in knowing she is somewhere better, living a pain-free life and playing with all the beloved pets that are already there.
Aw, man. I’m crying already. Let’s move on to happier thoughts, yes?
This past week was one of my favorites- THANKSGIVING! For the fourth year, I hosted dinner at my house for my mom and grandparents, and my mother-in-law and her boyfriend. Thanksgiving at our house has come a long way- the first year, we had just finished screwing in the drywall, we hadn’t even taped or mudded yet… And now, our home is almost finished, and beautiful! As usual, Grammie carved the turkey.


My grandparents are awesome, and awesomely funny, too!


I made my signature pies…

…and homemade whipped cream, too! I forgot to take pictures of everything else- but I served a salad with dried cranberries, walnuts, and blue cheese, fresh biscuits, classic dressing, a quinoa dressing, fresh cranberry sauce, whipped potatoes, turkey and gravy, squash casserole, and steamed carrots. Thanks to all the ladies, for bringing contributions to dinner! We ate on time, and the turkey was the best yet!
I had barely finished digesting when my long-time BFF Amy and I headed to Appleton for some Black Friday shopping. We left at 9 pm and came home around 6 am. It was entirely successful, and Brian and I spent the remainder of Friday cuddling and relaxing. We went for a walk with Abbie to the grocery store, and it was a chilly reminder of what weather is to come.
Saturday early afternoon was Thanksgiving with the Wiskowski clan. I didn’t take any pictures- I was too busy greeting everyone! We had a record-breaking crew of 54 folks this year… That’s my kind of Thanksgiving! We left a little early to head over to Brian’s grandpa’s 80th birthday party at the Car Show building in Iola. Everyone came from near and far for this event…

Happy birthday, Marlin!!



We left that party to head to Waupaca’s Ale House to capture some images from the Sweet Lips Comedy tour for the January issue of Hoopla. This particular show was focused on deer hunting, and those guys are hilarious!






After a long day, we slept soundly until that alarm went off early Sunday, at 4:45, and we headed out to DePere for the Noodleini 15K. I love that race. Last year, I ran it with 8:48 splits, and I was so proud. This year, the Noodleini was my longest run since Cape Cod, and I was hoping to finish strong, but didn’t anticipate that I could match last year’s effort. It was a cold and icy morning, with a chilly wind.

Those 9.3 miles really did fly by, but I was much slower than last year. I kept thinking about how disappointed I was last year when I didn’t place in my division, and that really weighed me down, mentally. I did run a good race, solid effort, and came in strong, happy, and very ready to be done.


My final time ended up being 1:28:36, 9:30 average pace.

In a twist of fate, my time last year would have won me first place this year. Of course, we were all slower because of the weather, but here I am, trying not to beat myself up over it. Next year. I’ll catch those girls next year.
We headed out immediately since I was pretty cold, and I hopped right in a hot shower at my mother-in-law’s house. It was wonderful, and I emerged from the shower, warmed up and salt-free, just in time for an asparagus frittata. I’m a lucky girl! After lunch, we went out to the back woods to pick out our Christmas tree.

Since it’s hunting season, we took precautions to be visible… 🙂



We found one…

…and it looks great in our living room! I’ll put up photos of the tree soon 🙂
Thanks for sticking with me on my blogging hiatus. I’m happy to be back!

Miles this year: 627.2

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Moving the shed!

Oh, the excitement! As I mentioned earlier this week, we prepped the back yard for moving the shed. On Saturday evening, some friends came over to help!




We did it! Thanks, Ben, Mary, and Joe, for helping us lift, and thanks to Katie for taking pictures. I do love documenting our home remodeling project. Luckily for us, they stayed for a cookout and bonfire.


Katie and Ben ❤


Mary and Joe ❤


Christy and Devon ❤


Logan and Heidi <3……. Oh wait. I wanted to give Logan a kiss, but he was having none of that nonsense. Thanks to Nic for bringing our cutest dinner guest. 🙂
I have to mention the wild goose chase that happened when Abbie took a leap of faith through the backdoor when Logan had it open. We were all scrambling around the neighborhood, trying to catch her. What a little stinker!


…but I can’t stay mad at that cute little face.
On Sunday afternoon, I planted all the lilies that I’d pulled out of the back corner of our property, and I planted some more herbs in my herb planters.


We also got to eat lunch outside! I made a pretty darn delicious chicken salad, and Brian had a brat and a hamburger. Goodbye, comfort foods of winter, and hello, summer favorites!


I took advantage of the beautiful weather and rode my cruiser to teach dance lessons this week.


Have I mentioned that I seriously love teaching those lessons?! I’m still learning to be a teacher, so I’m more of a demonstrator, problem solver, and solid partner- but I help Dale however I can.
I started off today by resigning myself to the idea of having a cold. I’ve been pretending to be well for a few days, but my cold has officially made itself known. 😦 ::sniffle:: After a rushed morning of photo business and banking, I had a couple hours of solid rehearsal with Dale tonight. I love that feeling of progress. 🙂
I’ll leave you with a quote that I found when reading O magazine (Thanks, mom! I love hand-me-down magazines!!!). I don’t personally care for some of Kanye’s more public moments of unprofessionalism, but the man does seem to know how to be successful in his business!


I better get to bed- two photo shoots tomorrow will keep me busy!

Miles this year: 144

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A lazy Sunday.

Last night was almost like something out of a dream. I was able to play marimba for a couple hours. Up until now, I was mostly working on technique exercises and starting to get my chops back. My favorite projects on marimba have been taking pop music or musical theater tunes and arranging them for marimba and voice. I’ve had a few of Adele’s songs on my mind lately, so I headed over to my favorite local music store, Mitchell Piano Works, and picked up some music. They were sold out of Adele, so they are keeping her books on hold for me in the next order, but I picked up my very own copy of The Last Five Years. (That takes me back to when I first borrowed Joe Stillwell’s copy, somewhere around 2007!) I’ve found that Jason Robert Brown’s instrumentation really lends itself for marimba.
I came home and did a little transcribing of the Adele stuff that’s been in my head. I forgot how difficult it is! 🙂 I practiced marimba until I got my signature marimba blisters. They’re like an old friend, returning for a visit. 🙂
This morning, I woke up and wanted to make Brian a delicious breakfast. I had two ripe bananas, so I began my recipe search and found this one:
1 cup uncooked rolled oats
1 cup whole wheat flour
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 egg
2 cups milk
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 bananas, mashed

Place the rolled oats into the jar of a blender and blend until the texture resembles coarse flour. Whisk together the blended oats, whole wheat flour, all-purpose flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a bowl; set aside.
Whisk together the egg, milk, vegetable oil, and vanilla. Stir in the mashed banana. Pour the egg mixture into the flour mixture and stir just until moistened. Let the batter stand for 5 minutes.
Heat a lightly oiled griddle over medium-high heat. Drop batter by large spoonfuls onto the griddle, and cook until bubbles form and the edges are dry, about 2 minutes. Flip, and cook until browned on the other side. Repeat with remaining batter.

I think this is his favorite pancake recipe that I’ve experimented with at this point. I’m keeping this one!


Later today, we’re meeting with our friends Bobbi and Kenny to sign some paperwork and shoot some engagement photos. I love it when our friends get married! 🙂

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