Tuesday, November 29, 2011

maternity photos

This past weekend was filled with ups and downs. Marc and I moved ... but luckily we made it through the stresses of moving. On a positive note ... I shot my first maternity shots and absolutely loved every minute of photographing a mommy and daddy to be. Each shot radiated love and I could not help but smile and hope that ... one day, I too would be the one with a cute little bump. I have limited internet this week so this may be my only post for the week. I will be back at it next week and until then ... I will read all of your blogs at my favorite coffee shop.

Also, Congrats to Lynsey!! Email me your address so I can send you your gorgeous cowl. Again, thank you to Dennice for creating such a beautiful cowl. Bisous!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

new things ... running and cameras

I got a new camera and the world has opened up again. It feels as if I picked up a camera for the first time ... an adrenaline rush comes over me, my heart starts racing, and then click ... magic.

We spent this past weekend in Davis where we ran the Davis Turkey Trot. This race we decided to run the 10k as we are training for a marathon (which happens to be in a little less than 3 months). It was our first race without music and I must say ... I am hooked. I was more aware of my breathing, I worked on the mental part of my running, chatted with other fellow runners, and finished strong. I love when the smallest things make huge impacts. And so, ... for today I challenge you to embrace something new, ditch the music and run.

new things:
running: without music
over the weekend: photographed family photos for the sweetest family
made: cinnamon bread
don't forget: to enter the giveaway ... click here.
what: are you making for Thanksgiving or what will you be doing??

Thursday, November 17, 2011

the "why thank you" giveaway ... just for you

a sky blue cowl just for you

the "why thank you" giveaway 

Being that Thanksgiving is next week ... I thought it would be only fitting to host a giveaway to say ... Thank You. Sometimes it feels like Thanksgiving gets pushed aside during this time of year and Christmas becomes the main focus. However, here on Coeur de La ... I will focus on giving thanks.
Thank you Coeur de La readers for continually inspiring me, making me laugh with your comments, and keeping me motivated. I am overjoyed for this "why thank you giveaway" as Dennice from Fringe created this lovely sky blue cowl just for one lucky Coeur de La follower.  I stumbled upon Dennice's blog a year ago and was enchanted by her work. Her cowls are perfect for an afternoon walk, a trek through the woods, an evening out with friends or an afternoon sipping coffee.

A little about Dennice to get things started:

Our lovely Caroline asked me to write about what inspires me.  Inspiration can be quite intangible, hard to pin down, difficult to put into words, but I shall try.  Inspiration comes to me in many forms, and they vary from day to day, depending on my mood. Two of my main inspirations are nature and music although many, many things inspire me.  Ideas come to me while I’m sleeping, or driving down the road, or cooking.  I can be in the middle of a conversation with someone and an idea will hit me, and my surroundings will sort of fade away for a bit.  My husband will say, “You’ve got that glazed look on your face again”…which means I’m in the midst of an idea.  It’s a common occurrence around here!  I always carry a pad of paper and pencil with me.  Classic movies are a big influence to me as well.  The beauty of classic films is a bit of an obsession with me, particularly the black and white films. They provide endless inspiration for me and bring me joy.

The history of the El Grande:
I first created the El Grande in 2008.  It was a completely new concept: the huge, over sized cowl.  As is often the case with my new designs, I wasn’t certain anyone would appreciate it, but within days of the first El Grande Cowl unveiling, I had many orders and requests.  So rewarding and exhilarating! 
This is the first time I’ve offered the El Grande in a giveaway.  
I’m so excited to offer this cowl, and you should know that the gorgeous sky blue color was chosen by our beautiful host, Caroline.  
Thank you, Caroline, you’re a peach!

the "Why Thank You" Giveaway Details:
1. Be a follower of Coeur de La
2. Stop by Dennice's shop and leave a comment telling me your favorite item
3. Leave a comment telling me what you are thankful for
4. Leave a comment telling me what inspires you
The Giveaway ends next Wednesday, November 23
Good Luck and Bisous!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

fishing trips and practical jokes

 Commonwealth goodness
a ©latte ... condensed milk and espresso

 my kind of comfort food ... a grilled cheese and tomato soup
 taking a moment

We are back from Michigan. Marc's grandfather passed away last week ... so the trip was one of: reflecting, family, and remembering. We shared stories of Marc's grandpa's fishing trips, his love for woodworking, his love for the outdoors, practical jokes, and people. We took comfort in these stories as it reminded us that he lived a long life ... and a good one.

It also happens that Marc's mom's side of the family lives in Michigan as well. So, we were able to visit with them and talk about our much anticipated family trip to France. And, we did happen to stumble upon a coffee shop that had me dreaming about Portland. On a lull from picking up family from the airport, Marc and I grabbed a cappuccino and a latte from Commonwealth. There we sat in Commonwealth eating our grilled cheese and savoring the last spoonfuls of tomato soup, reflecting on family, friends, and loved ones. I believe, through stories a loved one is never lost. Enjoy today, live for each moment, and cherish those you love.

taking in: each and every moment
drinking: tea ... a simple yet sweet black tea
thinking: that I want to make apple butter
wondering: why is it Christmas at Starbucks
lets: celebrate Thanksgiving
thanks: I am thankful for the inspiration and love that my readers have given me.

Friday, November 11, 2011

today is a good day

Sweet smells of cinnamon and sugar swirl around in my kitchen. Banana walnut muffins bake in my oven, while I mix a cream cheese topping. Afterwards, I eagerly take a peek of the dozen muffins. On this ordinary fall afternoon, the muffins are rising and browning perfectly. But, what is definitely not ordinary are the muffins. Two bites and my day is better. Washing the muffin down with a fresh cup of  black coffee, I sit back in my chair and take it all in ... today is a good day. Happy Friday! And, sometimes, you just need to bake muffins. Bisous.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

baking, cake, and apple pie

Cake. Have you read Becca's site Cake? If you haven't ... make your way over to Cake for some honest to goodness inspiration. And, being that I love a good slice of cake, birthdays, and other happy occasions, I am thrilled to announce I am now a contributing writer for Cake. If you like apple pie or just want to see what I've been up to ... head on over to cake for a bit of baking inspiration. My first post is up and I can't wait for you to read it. Bisous.

my favorite kind: carrot cake with a cream cheese frosting
least favorite kind: ok, don't get mad ... chocolate
always a birthday cake request: my aunt's grasshopper cake
for a snack: my grandma's wine cake ... so moist and always made to perfection

Monday, November 7, 2011

balloons and surprises

Who doesn't love a good surprise or pulling off a surprise!!?? This weekend we threw a surprise party for my sister that involved ... blowing up 72 balloons, making two dozen red velvet cupcakes, pulling off a balloon banner that put the happy in birthday, making and enjoying sushi rolls that would knock your socks off, and a night filled with laughter, cheer, and celebrating. My sister was beyond surprised and the party was a complete success. Happy Monday! Bisous.

this and that:
the how-to for the balloon banner can be found: here. 
DesignMom is the coolest!
this week: a giveaway especially for Coeur de La readers
loving this site: Cake.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

when it rains grab ...

It's raining here and I love listening to the pitter patter of raindrops outside. November is here! There are few things that I love more than going to coffee with friends. The effortless conversations, the smiles, the laughter, and sometimes silence because nothing needs to be said ... I love that. When the weather gets colder I find myself craving more coffee and savoring precious moments with good friends. Whether you drink tea, hot chocolate or coffee ... we can all appreciate an outing with good friends. This weekend if you do one thing make a date to spend time with a friend. Bisous and Happy Weekend!

when it rains
read: your favorite blogs
buy: rain boots for adventuring
bake: anything
go: running don't let the rain stop your fun
drink: coffee, tea, or hot chocolate with friends
next week on Coeur de La: a giveaway just for you

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

a good breakfast.

I love breakfasts that keep me full and happy but ...full for me doesn't mean that stick to your belly kind of full. Full for me ... means that I feel refreshed, light, and satisfied. And lately, because my schedule is all over the place ... and I am doing more yoga, and training for a marathon, I need breakfast to be a routine. When I have a filling breakfast I am happier, kinder, and work harder. So, as you can tell, I am an advocate for having breakfast, and not just any kind of breakfast, but a good breakfast. What about you ... what do you enjoy having for breakfast?

My favorite breakfast smoothie
Banana Cinnamon Breakfast Smoothie
 (inspired by my friend Emmy)
1 banana
a sprinkle or two of cinnamon ... more if you prefer
greek yogurt ... as much as you would like
1/2 cup of almond milk
two or three ice cubes

blend all ingredients in a blender until smooth
pour into your favorite glass and sip slowly or take it on the go


Tuesday, November 1, 2011

good food and good times in ... L.A.

Our trip to L.A. was filled with coffee, home brew, great weather, and more coffee. Our mornings were filled with breakfasts at home ... poached eggs and french toast ... while our days included lots and lots of coffee. One morning we strolled down Abbot Kinney, grabbing cappuccinos at Ingelligentsia where we savored each and every last sip. We even had our very own barista (everyone gets their own ... don't let me fool you into thinking we are that special) who poured a perfectly balanced cappuccino. Afterwards we made our way to Gjelina where I dove right in and ordered their beet pasta and washed it down with a pilsner infused with ginger and lime. The courtyard in back ... was the perfect place to sit on a warm October day ... ohhh sweet California. The next day we made our way to Silver Lake where we visited Lamill Coffee Boutique for tableside pour overs and creme brulee cappuccinos and later grabbed iced coffees at the Silver Lake Intelligentsia. Our last evening was spent drinking cherry New Glarus (only found in Wisconsin, our friends are die hards) oceanside while I did yoga poses in the warm California sun and admired the sunset. L.A. surpassed my expectations and I can't help but dream about the warm weather, the abundant amount of coffee, and our friends that spoiled us with home brew and good food. Happy Tuesday! Bisous.

L.A places to go
Intelligentsia (in Silver Lake or on Abbot Kinney)
Lamilll Coffee Boutique ... order your own pour over brought to your table
Gjelina (Abbot Kinney)
Pizzeria Mozza ... order the caprese salad, the mozzarella tastes like a dessert
Food Trucks ... they are everywhere you just have to know where to find them
Sweet Lady Jane ... share a slice of cake with four of your friends ... seriously ... SHARE