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From the category archives:


On being vegetarian. Sort of.

by Emma on June 14, 2012

in Personal

I get asked fairly often why I don’t eat meat. I always feel a little bit on the spot in those moments because I want to be honest and open with folks but I also don’t think that I have all the answers or that my way is the right way. Usually people are just curious so I don’t know why I get so nervous about it. If I heard someone made a point not to eat flowering plants I’d be curious why… it’s just interesting.

I became a vegetarian sometime in February/March of 2007 (the semester I graduated college). It was something I had been thinking about for a while and I had set a date for myself. :) I remember my very last meat meal; I had chinese chicken on a pretty awkward second date (there was not a third). And I think, at first, the most difficult part to me was having to request special things at events, or dinners with friends. I’m an extremely no-you-pick-the-resturant kind of girl. So having to go out of my way to fulfill my new-found vegetarian principles was a little hard for me.

The reason I became a vegetarian in the first place was because I learned about factory farming and how cruelly the gross majority of animals are raised and slaughtered for commercial consumption. It was quite a shock to me at first. My grandparents were cattle farmers so I grew up spending lots of summer hours at their ranch. I knew my grandfather’s cows were meat cows, they would one day be slaughtered for eating. I got that. But on my grandfather’s farm they had tons of land to roam on and I knew how much care and concern my grandparents had for their animals. I thought all meat you bought at the grocery store had a story like that behind it. It doesn’t. If you’re interested in learning more there are tons of books and website out there, I highly recommend Eating Animals or the Butcher and the Vegetarian. I was first exposed to this truth through an environmental ethics class I took as an undergrad (I was a philosophy major).

For a couple of years I was vegetarian with only a few minor slip ups here and there. Then for about six months I went vegan. Then back to vegetarian. Then about 2 years ago I ate meat probably about 2-3 times a month. Weird stage, for me. Now I’m a pescatarian (I eat seafood, eggs and dairy) who will once in a blue moon eat a special meat dish (like turkey at Thanksgiving) and who owns one purse with fur. I do feel a little guilty about the fur purse. But I also love that purse. I don’t think my situation or choices are perfect, far from it. But I do like the idea that for the vast majority of my meals I’m choosing to not promote or support a business model that is cruel and unsustainable. And I feel good about that. xo. Emma


Late May 2012…

by Emma on May 31, 2012

in Personal

Dear Diary,

Just kidding. I don’t have a diary.

Dude, life has been crazy lately. It’s been busy, full, stressful, wonderful, magical, annoying and probably most of all… memorable. At work we are putting the final touches on our first book (weird, right?!) It’s summer and I want to get into cooking more fresh meals with my CSA goodies. It’s my first time getting a share (well, a half-share) from a  local farm and it’s sort of mysterious process to me still. Veggies just show up at your house… awesome. Also, I went camping. Between that and Hawaii I almost have a tan now. Oh yeah.

What I’m thinking lately is that this season is sort of full of beginnings. It feels like the ball is rolling on a few things in my life and it’s both scary and exciting. Life isn’t perfect, and probably never will be, but boy am I feeling lucky lately. xo. Emma


Food Photography, Then and Now

by Emma on May 22, 2012

in Personal

Recently I’ve been going through my blog archives as I prep for a big… um… let’s call it a makeover (announcement to come in another week or two). I also think that it’s really hard to be on the internet during the spring/summer. Don’t get me wrong, I love me some internet; but I’d rather be outside. So I think summer is a good time to take a look and refocus one’s efforts.

I was thinking about deleting a lot of my old archives. Or, at least, replacing the pictures as I try some old/favorite recipes. But, I don’t know, is it really so shameful to not be terribly good at something when you first start? I think that’s the whole fear of trying new things; you think you won’t be good at it and you’ll look silly.

And the truth is: you probably won’t be good at it. And you might look a little silly. (Or maybe it’s just me.)

But is that really so bad! I have loved messing around in the kitchen for years now. I am a much better cook today than I was 4 years ago, and I hope I can say the same 4 years from now. I am also way better at food styling and photography. If you don’t believe me take a look at these gems:

Yeah. Really makes your mouth water, huh? As much as it pains me to leave photos like these in the archives I think I will for a least a little while longer. Because, well, it keeps me humble. It reminds me to keep going and to work hard. And it makes me less fearful to try new things (because the future is bound to be awesome but you gotta get through the present to get there).

I’m still learning a lot about photography. And cooking. And blogging. But I’ve loved every step of the journey so far. xo. Emma


Two weeks and counting…

by Emma on April 19, 2012

in Craft,Personal

It’s been two weeks since my sister left town with the Sucre tour… and man am I missing her. While she’s off having adventures in California, Arizona and now Texas; I’m at home. Living it up. But missing her pretty bad. Here’s what I’ve been up to lately: got some yellow put into the tips of my hair (that washed out pretty fast!), seeing some progress with my little herbs, learned to use the industrial sewing machine, a coffee date to catch up with my cousin and the big adventure has been building my back yard fire pit (project #18 of my 2012 craft challenge!). I have also been baking, working, watching copious amounts of The Walking Dead (getting caught up) but mostly missing my sister. Mostly.

Love you Elsie. Come home soon. (Jeremy—you’re pretty cool too.)

xo. Emma