September 26, 2015


Presque Isle with Canon

Since we've been living in Pittsburgh, we have been planning weekend trips to places in the Mid-Atlantic that we've always wanted to see that are now just a drive away.

We had the opportunity to visit Washington D.C. this summer and are planning to see Baltimore, New York and Philadelphia within the year – but before we begin taking road trips further east we had to make a trip north to The Great Lakes!

This week, we headed to Presque Isle State Park which arches into Lake Erie, the fourth largest Great Lake. Though Presque Isle is close to home – less than a two hour drive – it feels like a world away, and is filled with beautiful sandy beaches and coastline.

Olive, a true Pacific Northwest pup, was so excited to stretch her legs on the beach when we arrived, and couldn't wait to get her paws wet in the lake before going to play fetch with her dad on the beach.

I had a great time documenting our visit to Presque Isle and Lake Erie with my new Canon Camera lens: the EF 85mm f/1.8 USM.

This fixed lens has quickly become my favorite, because it has the ability to create incredible photojournalistic images with a sharp focus and background blur! It is the perfect portrait photography lens and I can't wait to continue shooting to see what else I can produce with it.

After we had spent the morning exploring the isle, a storm blew in off Lake Erie with hard rain and wind, so it was time for us to call it a day. 

We would like to visit Erie again soon, but have heard how the lake freezes and how cold the winters are there, so we may wait until summer comes around again before we make our next trip.

Stay tuned for our next voyage!

September 20, 2015


Fall Apple Picking in the Midwest

Fall officially arrives this week, but we have been seeing its signs for the last month. The color of our trees are changing, leaves have started to fall to the ground and we've been enjoying drinking hot coffee or apple cider in the morning.

Fall has always been my favorite season and I appreciated having these things when I was living in the Midwest, but I didn't realize how much I took it all for granted until I had spent 10 years living in the Southwest and on the West Coast.

Now that we're living in the Mid-Atlantic it was time to experience these fall traditions again, so I joined my family in the Midwest this week for some fall festivities that included apple picking.

We had an incredible time visiting Stuckey Farms, which is a working orchard that features 27 different varieties of apples from over 4,000 trees. 

You can take a free wagon ride through the orchard, pick your own apples, see cider being pressed, then browse through their Country Market that is full of in-season produce!

They also have 15 acres of Halloween pumpkins.

We left with some apples, cider and great memories, and I am looking forward to coming up with some fall recipes before our next visit to an apple picking farm.

Connect with me on Facebook or Instagram if you have any fall apple recipes to share!

September 12, 2015


Fall at The Frick

Since we moved to Pittsburgh and began frequenting the largest park in the city, Frick Park, we have been wanting to visit the park's namesake: The Frick Art and Historical Center.

We live next to the park and walk there with Olive every day, but wanted to wait for summer to come to an end and fall to begin to really explore its 600 acres and the art and historical center.

The park and center were once owned by Henry Clay Frick, industrialist and art collector, as a part of his family's Pittsburgh estate. The family donated the park to the city in the early 1900s and Henry's daughter, Helen Clay Frick, then opened the estate to the public and transformed it into the center that it is today.

We had a great time visiting The Frick, which features early Renaissance and eighteenth-century French paintings, a carriage and car museum and my sustainable husband's favorite – a historic greenhouse.

The grounds also feature a cafe that serves scones and tea, so we're looking forward to visiting again in October when we can enjoy a brisk brunch on their patio.

It was an incredible way to spend a day, and we can't wait to go back again!

Are you ready for fall? 

What's your favorite season? 

Share your thoughts with us in the comments below!

September 5, 2015


The Beginner's Guide to Pittsburgh | Part 3

It seems like you all (yinz?) are enjoying following along with us as we explore Pittsburgh, so welcome to The Beginner's Guide to Pittsburgh | Part 3!

(You can find The Beginner's Guide to Pittsburgh and The Beginner's Guide to Pittsburgh | Part 2 here).

We are so glad to be able to share these experiences with you!

This time, we're covering Oakland: the academic and cultural center of Pittsburgh.

Go: Oakland

Instantly one of our favorite neighborhoods, Oakland is one of the oldest centers of the city that perfectly combines history with class.

The neighborhood is known as the place to be for anything cultural, academic or medical – it is the home to world-class Carnegie Museums, prestigious universities like Carnegie Mellon and the University of Pittsburgh, and some of the best hospitals in the U.S.

The intersection of all these interests makes Oakland one of the most interesting neighborhoods in Pittsburgh: you can enjoy any of the international eateries near the universities, visit the Carnegie Museums of Art and Natural History, then take a stroll through any of Oakland's parks and gardens in one day.

See: The University of Pittsburgh

The University of Pittsburgh is one of the most beautiful campuses that I've had the opportunity to visit. It's architecture is stunning! Particularly that of the Cathedral of Learning, a university landmark.

The cathedral is a Gothic Revival skyscraper – built in the 1900's –  that is home to university colleges, the Nationality Rooms and our personal favorite: The Cathedral Commons Room, which, my fellow Harry Potter fans, will make you feel like you stepped right into Hogwarts. 

I wish my photos did it justice!

Eat: Asia Tea House

There are so many incredible restaurants to dine at in Oakland, but we picked the Asia Tea House for one reason: it's great location.

Less than a half mile from the Cathedral of Learning, it is a perfect place to sit out in the sun and take in the scenery, and it serves a great bubble tea!

We are looking forward to continuing to explore Pittsburgh and are planning to venture out of the city this weekend to take advantage of the holiday weekend.

Have any suggestions about what we should visit next?

Connect with me on Facebook or Instagram! I'm always open to suggestions and would love to see where you're adventuring in the Mid-Atlantic.
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