An Entrance to August

August 31, 2012 § 2 Comments

August’s word for my monthly photo theme took awhile to settle on. As I moved to a new city, I kept thinking about transitions, new places, city landscapes, and road trip vacations. My sister eventually suggested “entrance,” and since then, I admit, I’ve thought more about doors and windows than I ever have before. This wasn’t helped by the fact that I have at least a dozen new keys to my apartment building and that my bedroom (technically a living room) didn’t have a door on it for weeks.

So there are door pictures in this collection, though I’m sure the “Doors of [insert any big city]” has already been done several times over. But I have also thought about entrance as in where things came from and where they are going, things emerging (out of Niagara Falls mist or the countryside) and things on their way (to an oven or table).

Here are this month’s highlights.

Check out the rest of this month’s photos here or look back through the year here.


That’s Amore: Nectarine-tomato pizza

August 29, 2012 § 1 Comment

Today I passed a roadside stand selling boxes of mangos for $3. Last night, my roommate brought home perfectly ripe peaches to share, and apples are just beginning to make their fall debut. I love this part of the season and this recipe from the “So Hungry” blog looked too good not to share. Definitely on my to-do list this week. -Abi

So hungry I could blog

by Caitlin Saniga

  • pizza dough
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • 1 teaspoon red wine vinegar
  • 1/8 teaspoon garlic salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper
  • 20-30 basil leaves
  • 2 nectarines, pitted and sliced into 1/2-inch crescents
  • 2 small roma tomatoes, sliced into 1/2-inch crescents
  • 2 ounces (or more!) fresh mozzarella cheese, cut into cubes

Place the pizza dough in a well-oiled mixing bowl, and cover with a towel. Place the bowl in a warm (or room-temperature) spot, and let sit for an hour.

While the dough is rising, whisk together the oil, honey, vinegar, garlic salt and pepper.

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees.

When the dough is ready, roll it out on a floured surface. Transfer the dough to a greased (or floured) baking sheet.

Brush the vinaigrette over the dough. Cover the top of the dough with basil leaves. Next, arrange the slices of nectarine and tomatoes over the…

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The Truth about Poetry

August 28, 2012 § 1 Comment

I wrote a guest post over at The Well, a blog for women in the academy and professions, on why to pursue the study of poetry and writing. Read it here.

Sometimes Heroism

August 24, 2012 § Leave a comment

Today’s good words come from the acknowledgements for Leif Enger’s novel So Brave, Young, and Handsome. Even thanking someone else, his words strike home:

Sometimes heroism is nothing more than patience, curiosity, and a refusal to panic.

Reflect, dear readers.


Taking a break

August 22, 2012 § 1 Comment

Part of me slowing down will be taking a writing break from the blog for a couple of weeks. Abi will continue to share and I will return in September. Enjoy the last few posts of the summer.

Love, Pakou

Giving Galettes a Try

August 20, 2012 § 7 Comments

Last winter as I sat chatting about books and writing and life in my friend’s cozy kitchen, I watched her hands (always busy) smooth out a dessert with pie crust and apples, my offers of help shrugged away with an “almost done” look. It was simple and delicious and in the oven before I realized what was happening. As with most of her meals, I tucked the idea away to try later, though “later” so often gets away from one.

But the other day as I stared at some questionable-looking blueberries and a rapidly fading apple in my fridge – neither of which eating raw appealed to me – I remembered my friend’s galette and whipped out the rolling pin.

The dough is easy – just a simple pie dough recipe: 2 1/2 c flour, 1 stick of butter, a dash of salt, and 6 T water. I rolled the dough, sprinkling it with a bit of sugar, and chopped up the apple into thin slices to layer with blueberries in the center, leaving an inch from the edge.


I scattered a few chunks of butter over it to melt in and sprinkled it all with cinnamon, cloves, and ginger. Then I folded the edges over the fruit as far as they would go and baked it for 20 min at 400 degrees. It was delicious and roommate-approved.

The following day, an unplanned trip to the farmer’s market left me wondering what to do with all that veggie goodness.

The galette was so good, I decided to make a savory one. This time I chopped the zucchini into thin slices, along with tomatoes, onions and garlic cloves. I tossed it all with a bit of olive oil, apple cider vinegar, basil, thyme, salt, and pepper before spreading it over the rolled out dough.

After baking for 15 min, I took the galette out and topped with shredded cheese (I only had cheddar on hand, but crumbled feta would have been perfect), before baking another 5 min. So good!

What recipes have inspired you to get creative?

Weekend Do: Slowing down edition

August 17, 2012 § 1 Comment

I have been forced to slow down.

via Heather Lea Zweig pinterest

I have been experiencing what I thought was an allergic reaction to a lip balm I was using, but it actually may have been a symptom of a major imbalance in my body. Also, a lower back pain has been such a nuisance these past few days. It takes me a while to sit and raise from a seat, but I can’t sit for very long. In trying to figure out this imbalance the natural way, I’m going on the Candida Diet to help flush out the “bad/extra” in my body. Hopefully, in time, my body will return to a healthier state.

1. Do listen. Take some time, away from distractions, to observe how you are doing mentally, physically, and spiritually. At the beginning of a yoga class last week, my instructor quoted Red Hawk from his book Self Observation:

We are so conditioned to believe that when we see a problem that we must immediately fix it, one of the most difficult things to do in this work is to observe without interference neither judging nor changing what is observed, lay down your sword and cease fighting weary traveller, the fight is a trap.

via Elizabeth Weinberg

2. Do ground yourself. I find that I can be really focused when I’m sewing. I’m surprised at how many hours I will work on a project, even if I have to start over three times to get it right. After working on a sewing or craft project, I feel so good (singing does this to me too). In the midst of frustration and failure, I’m still able to find joy in this part of who I am. What activity grounds you? Do it. Who grounds you? Go and be with them.

via shipbuilding

3. Do celebrate. Celebrate the home you have, the love you feel, the ability to freely move, and the creativity that is in you.

via awelltraveledwoman

Happy Weekend!

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