March 31, 2010

Training my eye

copyright Laura K. Peters 2010

copyright Laura K. Peters 2010

copyright Laura K. Peters 2010

copyright Laura K. Peters 2010

Last month I took pictures of alphabet letters outdoors, to create the last name of Ben's cousin. It was a fun challenge, because I had seen these projects done before, but had not taken the time to look for letters myself before. For awhile, now, I won't be able to look in nature and in my environment without finding letters. These were some of my favorites, due to the clarity of the letters and black and white contrast.

March 29, 2010

Spring is here!

May Museum Photography Greeting Cards

Hallelujah! Spring (and spring weather) is here! I am staying fairly busy with freelance projects, which is enjoyable. Just finished up logos for two non-profit organizations. They were fun challenges.

Also ordered a big batch of extra May Museum photo cards to assemble for selling. I think it is a very appropriate time, as I took these pictures in the Spring for my Senior Thesis and seeing pics of one of my favorite serene places brings back good memories. And a new season brings promises of new hopes and new dreams. Sappy? Maybe. But I'm very optimistic and idealistic right now.

March 15, 2010

Is it weird to see me in the kitchen?

I wanted to try out a new dessert recipe to take to friends' after dinner; but I knew I wouldn't have a lot of time, so I flipped through a book I received at one of my bridal showers, entitled: Half-Baked Gourmet (Partly Homemade Totally Delicious) Desserts by Tamara Holt.

I found several recipes that sounded delicious--but they all required to be baked/prepared, and then served right away. Finally, I found what I needed.

Cranberry-Ginger Oatmeal Cookies sounded the like perfect cookie to try, because it basically is fixing a cookie mix from the store, but adding delicious bits and pieces to make it special: dried cranberries, white chocolate chips, and the kicker: crystallized ginger.

picture found after Google-Image search

This was such an interesting ingredient I had never used before. I found a container of crystallized ginger in the spices, and though it was fairly expensive, I was determined to test the recipe.

The consistency was soft, not hard like rocks, as I had anticipated. I chopped it up easily to add to the cookies. Surprisingly, I used up half of the container to fill the 3 tablespoons needed for the batch of cookies.

Cookies were not going to cut it. Though the recipe seemed exotic enough for my regular dessert tastes (chocolate in any form is usually enough to satisfy me), it was too plain. So I did some searching online to see what could be paired with ginger.

I found this suggestion for serving ginger cookies with pears and champagne gelatto. The blogger said it would be fine to substitute champagne for amaretto. So, we were on the search at a Super Target for amaretto ice cream. Though we could not find any, we did find pear ice cream with caramel swirl and cinnamon.

Combined with pear halves and the ice cream, the cookies (heated up just a touch in the microwave) were a hit. I added a bit more pear syrup than planned, so it was a fairly soupy dessert, but the flavors were great. I definitely will be adding the cookies to a list of favorite non-chocolate desserts.

March 8, 2010

Seeing clearly

Spring is here!...almost, maybe. Last week was a huge week, as most of our mountainous snow melted, leaving us some actual grass for a lawn.

Tuesday we drove to Lincoln on Ben's day off, mostly to look at housing together. Driving on the way there, I was not in the best mood--I was just so sick of the winter. I stared at the snow outside the car windows and contemplated the subject of my next post for this blog. I planned to write about how, even though I can generally find beauty in the detail of anything around me, the snow was just UGLY. That was the best word that I could muster to describe what I seeing: the bland and desolate land, the lack of color, the omission of hope of spring.

As I was was trying to desperately to find a better descriptor than "ugly," I found myself enjoying the drive, and actually finding a "secret beauty," as I named my senior thesis show. I chuckled to myself, and nestled into my seat more with a little bit of hope.

I found the above-pictured stained glass earrings in Lincoln at the Burkholder Project for "First Friday." The artist was selling them in a gift shop, and showed Ben how she cuts glass. Ben joined me that night and I cannot wait to experience this every month--or at least have the opportunity to join in on the fun!

We first went to the Sheldon Museum; then we migrated from one spot to the next, to visit galleries that participated in "First Friday." Held once a month, it is a chance for people to mingle at open receptions and view some incredible art. It was a wonderful evening, one to repeat for sure--and hopefully spring will bring some lovely weather to make the evenings even more enjoyable!

March 4, 2010

Today was a good day

I spent pretty much the whole day in Lincoln. What a beautiful day! And the day altogether gave me a boost of confidence. I visited several places and talked to several different people. While I didn't necessarily get any leads, I left Lincoln with a new optimistic attitude. Though places aren't really hiring right now and the economy is dismal, I have realized the variety of my interests and how many different opportunities I have because of that diversity--more than I previously thought, anyway.

Potential freelance jobs: getting some design work for my alma mater; providing greeting cards for the Sheldon Museum; moving announcements for a roomie; joining a young professionals group in Lincoln (not a job, but interest)

Actual freelance work progress: finishing up alphabet photography; starting sketches on a church pantry logo