Quito Travel Guide

Quito Travel Guide

Quito is often used as a quick stop on the way to the Galápagos Islands, but it’s an underrated destination itself. I read the New York Times’ piece “36 Hours in Quito,” and I was instantly hooked on the idea of traveling to the Ecuadorean capital. There are inexpensive, direct flights from Atlanta, everything is cheap, there is great hiking nearby, and Ecuador produces CHOCOLATE.

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Maui Travel Guide

I once wondered if the long travel days to get to the Hawaiian islands were really worth it. I’m now lucky enough to know that they are, in fact, worth it. The lush island of Maui offers a diversity of experiences that will suit the tastes of many different travelers. Adventure seekers can find strenuous hikes, cliffs to jump, and massive waves to surf. Sun worshipers can soak up the Hawaiian rays from a number of postcard-worthy beaches. Wildlife lovers can see whales, sea turtles, dolphins, and tropical fish galore from a boat, paddle board, or up close with snorkeling or diving gear.

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Year in Review

In spite of the personal, national, and global turmoil, there was still a lot of good in 2016. It was one hell of a travel year for us, including awe-inspiring hikes, beautiful golf courses, and some incredible meals. We were overwhelmed with love and support from friends and family. I continued to find my way professionally as a photographer, cooking class teacher, and blogger. And I launched this new blog! Those are the parts I want to focus on and remember, so I’ve put together this “year in review” to record some of the highlights. I mostly did this for myself as a practice in gratitude, but I’ll also consider it my Christmas card substitute. Lord knows I don’t have my life together enough to get real ones in the mail.

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Brioche Cinnamon Rolls with Brown Butter Icing

Cinnamon rolls on Christmas morning (or any morning, for that matter) are a nostalgic endeavor for me. From my childhood through my college years, it was usually a can of store-bought rolls with the little cup of icing. It wasn’t until my young adult years that I discovered the magic of homemade cinnamon rolls.

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Homemade Vanilla Extract

All vanilla extracts are NOT created equally. Once you taste the pure flavor of good vanilla, it’s hard to turn back. Unfortunately, a small bottle of artisanal extract can run upwards of $10. So, make it yourself! It’s as easy as vanilla beans + vodka.

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How to Build a Better Cheese Board

There are few better ways to get a dinner party off to a good start than with a cheese board. Since guests rarely arrive at the same time, it’s nice to have something for guests to eat right away. Fortunately, a beautiful spread of cheese doesn’t take a ton of prep like a lot of bite-sized appetizers do.

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Whole Grain Flatbread Crackers

Sure, you could just buy some, but these flatbreads are totally worth the little bit of extra time. They’ll save you some pennies, and you’ll be *so proud* to tell your friends that they’re homemade.

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Magnolia Leaf Thanksgiving Centerpiece

One of my favorite parts of teaching entertaining classes is showing people how to set and decorate the table. A lot of people are intimidated by it, but doesn’t have to be a difficult or expensive affair. With Thanksgiving later this week, I thought it’d be a good time to share a few of my favorite pointers:

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Gramma’s Banana Bread with Pecans

Banana bread was one of my very favorite snacks as a child–preferably straight out of the oven with a slathering of cream cheese. I actually thought it was my mom’s recipe until I received a box of recipes as a wedding gift from her mom, my Gramma Tina.

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  1. Market to Italian Table

    June 20 @ 6:00 pm - 8:30 pm EDT