Wednesday, July 27, 2011

the cat days of summer

Another week down, this time with many pinks and reds, two kitties, and two Elsa pictures. Let the round-up commence.

That Saturday's photo subject was our dessert: a strawberry and cream trifle recipe that I found online back in February or March when I was looking for things to serve in our little Weck jars. It took a few months for strawberry season to come around, but we were finally able to make these. Actually, Steve made all the components—sponge cake with meyer lemon zest, vanilla creme fraiche whipped cream, and strawberries macerated in a little meyer lemon juice—and I assembled them in the containers. Since we only have two of the Weck jars, I used juice glasses for the other two servings. Of course, those were the ones that turned out to be the most photogenic. These turned out to be really good, and we made them again the last Saturday. I took the lead on the sponge cake this time, and we did a full batch for eight people.

197/365 strawberry & cream trifles

Sunday was the day of Elsa's first real bath, and I went downstairs to take pictures of it. Elsa seemed to be busy trying to figure out what was going on at first, but she eventually decided that she didn't like it and screamed through the rest. A while later, I went back downstairs to get some pictures of Elsa in her co-sleeper, next to Dan and Carmen's bed. (She was much happier by then.) She has her own little corner with a mobile and everything, but she'll be outgrowing it soon and graduating to the crib for sleeping at night.

198/365 elsa's corner

On Monday as I was getting ready to shower before work, I heard a cat crying. I looked out the bathroom window and managed to locate the source across the street: a kitty was meowing outside a door and looking like it really wanted to go inside. Clearly, it had gotten out by mistake. Since it was still there after I dried my hair, I went outside to check things out. I petted her a little, took a couple pictures, and then tried ringing the doorbell. No was home, though, and the cat wasn't wearing a collar or a tag with a number of an owner to call. I couldn't do much else, so I just had go back home and hope that the cat's owner would return soon. The cat appeared to be smart enough to stay close, and Aroara, one of the friendlier neighborhood cats, seemed to be hanging around and keeping an eye on her.

199/365 poor sad kitty

Tuesday's picture was pretty low-effort, since I was busy trying to find places for us to stay in each of the cities we're visiting in Europe. (Cinque Terre and Rome were the most challenging.) It was a good day to just go outside after work and take a picture of the flowering plant that Carmen had gotten the previous Friday. Not a particularly exciting shot for day 200, but I do kind of like it.

200/365 pretty flowers

The second cat picture for the week was taken on Wednesday evening. We went to SouthEnd for burgers and walked back on the side of the street where we usually see kitties. Aroara magically appeared, looking for attention, and she stayed still long enough for me to get a shot of her that was in focus.

201/365 the cat with the rhinestone collar

I had an early dentist appointment on Thursday, which put me near Union Square with freshly cleaned teeth just before 10am. There was some sort of art show going on, similar to the people who set up shop near the Ferry Building. Most of the "art" made me cringe, but I did like the colors of the paintings in the picture below, especially outside and against the blue sky. After crossing through Union Square, I went to the Merrell store (behind that purple painting) and bought a pair of shoes I had been meaning to get for the Europe trip.

202/365 union square

The next morning, Carmen called me to see if I could keep an eye on Elsa while she ran a quick errand. Elsa was sleeping the whole time in her bouncy seat, so it was easy babysitting. I was risking waking her up, but I snapped a few pictures anyway. I took a few more that night, since it was pizza night with the in-laws; this had the best light, though.

203/365 sleeping baby

That's all for week 29! Only lots more to go...

Saturday, July 16, 2011

the slump

Last week felt extra challenging and long—maybe because I was busy at work and had very little ambition go looking for pictures on the side. The weekend wasn't too difficult, but it wasn't very prolific either.

Saturday's selection was from a walk to Fiore Caffe with Steve, Dan, and Bruce to get coffee after our takeout lunch downstairs. (Carmen was napping, and Bonnie stayed to watch the baby.) I didn't need any more caffeine that afternoon, but I went along to see if anything would inspire a picture of the day. I ended up taking a total of four frames, all of the same thing: the sign and flowers at the entrance of the coffee shop. I suppose the "buon appetito" on the sign is pertinent anyway, since Steve started trying to learn Italian with Rosetta Stone this week. He's been muttering to his iPad/computer in the other room every night.

190/365 buon appetito

On Sunday, we made a return to cooking something new for lunch, after a few weeks of more erratically timed efforts. This dish was another from the pasta post on What Katie Ate: a combination panzanella and caprese salad. The flavors of the bread, roasted tomatoes, roasted red peppers, capers, buffalo mozzarella, and basil were enjoyable, but we quickly realized that the mixing method was probably not the best. Clearly, Katie Quinn Davies had not tossed her salad with both the dressing and the mozzarella in it before taking her picture, because our cheese turned an unattractive pink color. Luckily, we had some extra that I was able to place on top when I adjusted the plating for the picture. The bread also got pretty soggy, soaking up too much of the dressing. I think I'd leave the vinaigrette off altogether if I could do the picture over again. Then, I'd just toss the salad with the dressing right before serving.

191/365 panzanella/caprese salad

Monday's picture was sort of a misfit in the week's shots. After the nice warm pictures with reds and oranges the two days before, my picture of the Barbie-colored passiflora in the park was a bit jarring. That said, I still preferred it to the picture of the red flowers and green leaf in front of the fence, which was my other option. I'm sure these things don't matter to anyone but me, but it does make for prettier monthly mosaics. It also makes Blurb book layouts easier when my pictures from consecutive days of the project work well together.

192/365 barbie flower

Coming from the hot pink of the passiflora, I had hopes of smoothing the weird juxtaposition using Tuesday's picture. The only problem was that I had no ideas for pictures on Tuesday. The obvious solution was to go somewhere for dinner and hope that something presented itself. Steve and I decided that we were overdue for some sushi anyway, so we went to Hamano in Noe Valley. I took the requisite pictures of our meal, but after posting 22 pictures from very similar sushi dinners over the last 4 years, I didn't find the results particularly exciting. So it was a good thing that Ambiance—a store we passed on the way to and from dinner—had an interesting window display. There were several vintage mannequin busts modeling hats, which reminded me a little of Thoroughly Modern Millie, the show I've been music directing. Another bonus: the reds and pinks tied in slightly with the previous day's flower picture.

193/365 thoroughly modern

After coming home from work on Wednesday with only a few mediocre pictures of a random plant outside, I remembered that Steve had recently bought a thyme plant. I'm not crazy about the line from the window in the background of the picture, but I was too lazy to do much about it. (Kind of like I was too lazy do anything more exciting to find a photo subject than walk into our utility/sun room.)

194/365 thymely

Thursday was yet another day of coming home and trying to think of something interesting to photograph to get me out of my perceived slump. Steve was heading to the grocery store in the San Francisco Centre on the way home, so I suggested that he get a couple of Beard Papa cream puffs for our dessert. (Read: for me to photograph.) I went rather simple for the picture, but I got a great idea while editing it. You know what would go well with cream puffs? Strawberries! Like a fancy strawberry shortcake-type pairing. Steve obliged and got us some to eat with the puffs. I didn't bother reshooting to include the cut-up strawberries, but trust me, it was good.

195/365 behold, the beard papa

Friday (yesterday) was pizza day with Dan, Carmen, Bruce, and Bonnie. And you know what? I hadn't taken one baby or baby-related picture in a whole week. I was due for one, darn it. So I went downstairs after work and found Bonnie watching Elsa, while Carmen and Bruce were off getting a planter from Flora Grubb. I was going to just take some Elsa pictures, but then I saw her new Little Marc Jacobs mouse shoes sitting on a shelf. Carmen had lusted after them for quite sometime, even before Elsa was born, and her friend Marion had generously bought them for her. They're in no way practical for the amount of money they cost, but they're ridiculously adorable. They'll no doubt make a good keepsake too; they remind me a little of bronzed baby shoes.

196/365 mouse shoes

So ends week 28 of Project 365 and week 2 (out of 5) of camp for Thoroughly Modern Millie. I'm hoping the next three weeks of busyness with work will feel less slump-ish in terms of photos than this one did, but I probably shouldn't hold my breath.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

halfway through

Catching up to last week, Saturday was the halfway point in Project 365. When I got up that morning, I had no idea what I would shoot for the day. I like to make these milestone pictures have some sort of reference to the occasion, but I had no clever ideas to incorporate the number 183 (the day number) or the concept of one half. It was Elsa's one week birthday, so I thought about taking a picture of her... But 1) that has nothing to do with being halfway through, unless I could somehow make a closeup work of half of her face, and 2) the day before was a picture of Elsa.

By lunch time, an idea was formulating: I would walk to Noe Valley and buy a cupcake from Noe Valley Bakery to photograph. I had purchased a few cupcakes and fruit tarts from there for Carmen the previous Tuesday, and the Boston cream pie cupcakes had called to me then. (I resisted that day.) This time, I bought my cupcake and took it home to photograph with a birthday candle stuck in it. While the resulting picture doesn't reflect the numbers 183 or 1/2, it is festive. And it works for Elsa's one week birthday too. I did take some pictures of her that day as well, but I was glad that I didn't need to use any of them as the official picture.

183/365 celebratory cupcake

An Elsa picture was inevitable for Sunday, however. I did a photo shoot with her that afternoon to get some options for her birth announcements. Carmen brought her upstairs, and I set up their large bean bag in the box window of my bedroom. Covered with some fabric, it worked great as a background and baby holder. It was a nice warm day too—perfect for taking pictures of a nearly naked sleeping baby. (We weren't brave/crazy enough to do it without the diaper.) Carmen helped pose Elsa, and I snapped away. She flinched at the sound of the shutter occasionally, but she mostly stayed asleep. At 8 days old, she didn't curl up quite as tightly as she did the previous week. I still got some good sleepy newborn shots, though.

We had to take a break midway through so that Carmen could change and dress Elsa (and soothe her again). When they came back upstairs, Elsa decided to stay awake, so I was able to get some pictures of her with eyes open while she was wearing her summery outfit. The shot below was one of my favorites.

184/365 all about elsa

For July 4th, Steve cooked and we had Rob & Traci, Bruce & Bonnie, and Dan & Carmen (and Elsa & Enzo) over for dinner. It our first holiday with the baby, and she spent most of the time either in her bouncy seat on our large coffee table or in her co-sleeper on our bed. Enzo (the dog) even went to check on her once while she was sleeping. Very cute.

Dinner was a Mario Batali stuffed pork loin recipe, served with Thomas Keller's macaroni gratin from the Bouchon Cookbook. And for dessert, Steve made horchata ice cream, inspired by some we had at Topolobampo in Chicago. We had to do some creative thinking to determine what we should serve with it, but we ended up with pieces of mango, some store-bought ginger snaps, and some chocolate ganache that Steve made. Not too shabby, and Steve's plating made it worthy of being made picture of the day.

185/365 ad lib dessert

On Tuesday, it was back to work after the long weekend. I put my camera in my bag, just in case, and ended up taking the winning picture not far from the house. Steve and I had passed this color copy of a New Yorker cover tacked to a tree on Saturday, and it was still there. I'm not quite sure why someone put it up, other than the fact they found it amusing, but I did what I had not taken the time to do on Saturday and took a picture of it.

186/365 the new yorker

Wednesday's picture took care of itself pretty easily too. Steve and I went to see Billy Elliot at the Orpheum, so we went for dinner at Zero Zero before that. We were seated at the table upstairs by the window, where we sat the first time we ate there. And this time, it actually stayed light out long enough to make it a good spot for pictures. (It's one of the darkest seats in the winter, since it doesn't have its own light overhead.) We got the arancini that we always get, a pasta dish, a pizza, and some ricotta doughnuts with berry compote for dessert. All of those pictures are on Flickr, of course. But for the picture of the day, I chose a shot I took of Steve's cocktail, the Smokey Local, with the bokeh of the downstairs bar in the background. For me, the cocktails at Zero Zero are just as much of a draw as the food, and it's fun to have a fancy after-work drink with dinner.

187/365 the smokey local

Thursday was not so easy, and I resigned myself to using another baby photo. At least it had been three days since the previous one. Don't misunderstand—I like taking pictures of her; I just knew it would be tough to top the photo shoot pictures when I wasn't shooting in very interesting light. Anyway, I switched it up a little and used a picture with Elsa and her daddy this time. We joined everyone for dinner that night, and I got my baby fix.

188/365 daddy's girl

I was faced with the same dilemma on Friday, having taken no pictures before or during rehearsal that day. When I got home, the in-laws were working outside with Dan, preparing some trim to attach to the walls in Dan and Carmen's kitchen. The power saw was plugged in, trailing an extension cord out the door of their unit, and I had my camera out, looking for photo subjects. When Dan suggested that I take a picture of Enzo poking his nose out the door, I decided that was a good idea. And that became my picture for the day.

189/365 restricted area

Well, with the exception of that intimidatingly long Alinea post that I still need to write, I am now caught up with my blogging. Huzzah.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

introducing elsa

At long last, here is week 26: the week the baby was born. When last I wrote, I had gotten to the part where it was Friday night, and Dan and Carmen were at the hospital. Things were progressing pretty slowly, so we were still waiting for news for quite a while on Saturday afternoon. I spent the time doing some hardcore cleaning in the bathroom, washing a week's worth of sanding dust off of every flat surface. It wasn't particularly fun, but it kept me busy, and it definitely needed to be done.

Then, Dan called just before dinnertime to say that Elsa Louise had arrived. (And we were finally able to use her name in front of Steve's parents!) Elsa was born at 4:40pm, weighed 7lbs 13oz, and was 19.5 inches long. Carmen ended up having a C-section, so we waited until the next day to go visit them at the hospital. That meant no baby picture for the picture of the day; I had to settle for a shot of the card that we had gotten for them.

176/365 arrival of the baby

Sunday was the day that we actually got to meet Elsa, but we had to wait until after dinner to go to the hospital. To keep myself busy this time, I made a sign for Elsa's grand homecoming. I knew that they would be in the hospital for a few days yet, but I also knew that I would be busy with work by then. Cutting out and gluing down little circles, letters, and a stork picture was a better way to spend a Sunday afternoon than a weeknight.

When the appointed time came, we drove ourselves and the parents over to CPMC. We had to wait a little longer in the family lounge while Carmen and the baby finished a feeding, but after that, we got our first look at Elsa. We took turns holding her while she slept: Bonnie first, then Bruce, then me, then Steve, then back to Dan. Elsa made little uncomfortable faces with each of us at first, but she quickly settled back to sleep. Despite the less than optimal light in the hospital room at 8pm, I took lots of pictures. It was a difficult choice for picture of the day, so I went with the first picture I took of Elsa, when Carmen was holding her. (Or at least, the best shot of a few nearly identical ones.)

177/365 introducing elsa

The next day was Monday, and I had to go to work. It was the start of audition week for the summer show, Thoroughly Modern Millie. I figured that we wouldn't be going to the hospital that evening, which meant I needed to find something other than the baby to photograph. I hadn't taken a picture of my (relatively) new *emera circle tote yet, so I got it ready to go and took a quick shot of it in the hallway. Bruce and Bonnie painted the trim in there that day while I was at work, so it was a somewhat fitting picture in that respect too.

178/365 time to go to work

We made one last trip to the hospital on Tuesday evening to see Elsa before they all came home the next day. Again, she slept for most of the visit, but they unswaddled her for a while before we left. That woke her up enough that we saw her open her eyes a little more than we had the first day. Still, one of the sleepy pictures was my favorite.

179/365 the tiny one

On Wednesday, the morning of Elsa's homecoming, I went downstairs to tape the sign on the door and take a few pictures of the nursery as a whole. (I had only taken detail shots before that.) Since I had to be at work when Dan and Carmen brought the baby home, I figured my picture of the day would be the sign on the door. I had trouble framing the shot liked I wanted it, so I ended up using one of the nursery pictures instead. The only downside with the one below is that Elsa's name wasn't filled in on the decal banner above the crib yet. Carmen and I did that that evening after I got home from work and went downstairs.

180/365 the nursery

By Thursday, I was feeling like I needed another non-baby-related picture. Luckily, I saw these potted plants in the parking lot before I left for work that day. With the texture of the concrete wall behind them, I thought it had a (very slight) rustic Italian feel. Better than the rest of the parking lot, at least.

181/365 potted plants

And back to the baby for Friday's picture. Since I had the day off, I went with Dan and Carmen on their first car outing with Elsa since bringing her home from the hospital. They needed a couple things from Flax (the art supplies store), and I wanted to look at frames for the wedding pictures we're finally putting up in our hallway. So I got a picture of Elsa in her car seat—something I missed the day she came home from CPMC.

182/365 ready for adventure

That Thursday was the end of June, so here's another mosaic (already). It was a very colorful and baby-oriented month.


Wednesday, July 6, 2011

waiting game

Dan and Carmen's baby was due during week 25, and we spent a lot of that time wondering when Carmen would go into labor. Meanwhile, I used the time to get some of the necessary "before" pictures while it was still possible.

That Saturday, we went out to lunch (Vietnamese) with the parents and Dan and Carmen. (It was my first pho.) In the afternoon, I stopped downstairs and took pictures of the take-home dress that Carmen had made for the baby. She had it paired with some ruffle-bottomed pants, a cardigan with antique baby pins, and some monster socks. Unfortunately, when it was actually time to bring the baby home from the hospital a week and a half later, Carmen discovered that the outfit was too big for baby. A sleeper had to suffice. It will be a little while before she's big enough to wear this.

169/365 baby fashion

Another thing I wanted to do before the baby came was to get a good picture of Dan and Carmen together. I had a few shots from the shower, but I wanted some that didn't include the baby tiara and "baby daddy" ribbon. So we did some pictures in the alley and the park before they went out to the pinball place with Bruce and Bonnie that afternoon. It also happened to be Fathers Day, so Steve made us all dinner that night: prime rib, mashed potatoes & parsnips, roasted carrots, mushrooms, and some honey roasted peaches with mascarpone. I didn't take pictures of any of it, but the peach dessert deserves a shot one of these days.

170/365 parents-to-be

It was hot on Monday, but Bruce and Bonnie came to work on the house for a few hours that day. By dinner time, I had decided that something cold sounded good. And since I had no pictures for the day yet, something new and cold sounded even better. We settled on a cold avocado soup from Gerald Hirigoyen's Pintxos and a couple dessert soups—strawberry soup and white chocolate with mango & coconut—from Tartelette. The avocado soup wasn't quite right, but the dessert soups were good together. Nice use for our little bottles too.

171/365 dessert soups

Since Tuesday was the summer solstice, I suggested a walk up to Bernal Hill, like Steve and I did two years before. It was another warm day, so no work on the house. Bruce and Bonnie just came for a dinner of leftover roast beef—in sandwich form—and joined us for the walk. When we reached the top, the sun was starting to get lower, the fog was rolling in, and it was getting chillier. If you were to zoom in on the picture below, you could see our house. (It's near the lower right corner.)

172/365 solstice

It was supposed to be warm again on Wednesday, prompting Bruce and Bonnie to stay in Pacifica for the day. It never did get hot, but the day off from work on the hallway gave me a chance to do some more planning for our Europe trip. Since I had gotten our plane tickets and figured out our general itinerary already, it was time to start looking at what to do and where to stay in Barcelona—our first stop.

173/365 spain-ly 2011

Thursday was June 23, Carmen's due date. No sign of the baby, though. After washing the walls in the hallway, Bonnie and I cleaned up and went over to Hayes Valley. I didn't find many things to photograph, but we did see a little stuffed bunny at one of the stores. We convinced ourselves that the baby needed it, and I decided that it would make a good picture for the day. Carmen was kind enough to model it on her "shelf" when we arrived home.

174/365 due date

Then, we got a text on Friday morning, saying that Carmen's water had broken. After a trip to the hospital to get checked out, she and Dan spent most of the day at home, waiting until 6pm to go back. (Bruce, Bonnie, and I primed everything in the hallway while we were waiting for further news.) Around 8:30pm, we went to visit Carmen and Dan at the hospital, even though it looked like the baby would not be making an appearance that evening. In any case, I shot a few pictures in the labor/delivery room, including the empty baby bed, and we wished Carmen luck before heading home.

175/365 no baby yet

In the next post: a baby!

Saturday, July 2, 2011

keeping busy

With the arrival of Steve's parents on June 8th, things got busier. We started off the new week that Saturday with a visit to the Ferry Building farmers market—one of the more memorable things we did with Bruce and Bonnie the year before. Like last time, the four of us went over to the Ferry Building around 10:30am and waded through the crowds to buy some things for our lunch, which we ate at home. Unlike last time, I actually remembered to take a picture of our spread before we started eating. We had goat cheese, white cheddar (not pictured), meat sticks, bread, pate, roasted almonds, Queen Anne and Bing cherries, strawberries, nectarines, and pluots. I love this kind of meal, especially when the fruit is good like this. And I don't hate our kitchen table in this shot as much as I usually do! (I wish I could nudge the container of strawberries down a bit, though.)

162/365 indoor picnic

I took more food pictures on Sunday at lunch, but it was just Steve and me that day. At my request, Steve made an Indian Carrot Salad from Jamie at Home. It was certainly pretty, but the recipe could have used some adjustments. The "spicy" ground lamb wasn't very spicy or particularly Indian-flavored; it needed some more spices and some onions or something to round out the flavors. The salad was also kind of difficult to eat, with the long slices raw of carrots. Despite those things, it wasn't a complete failure. It just wasn't as good as the Roast Carrot Salad or the Lamb Kofta Kebabs.

163/365 indian carrot salad

On Monday, Bruce and Bonnie started to help me with the sanding and plaster repair work in the hallway. It was the last main part of the house that still hadn't been painted. (The entry stairway, utility room, and half bath are a bit lower on the to-do list.) I had done some sanding around a few of the doors earlier in the year, but I had run out of steam pretty quickly. Anyway, Bruce got to work fixing the many cracks in the plaster walls, while Bonnie and I sanded more of the door trim. Since my day was filled with dust, I didn't take any (acceptable) pictures until after dinner. We all went to SouthEnd for burgers, and we saw a few of the neighborhood cats on the way back.

164/365 kitty-palooza

Steve and I had tickets to see Tales of the City at ACT on Tuesday night, so we went out to dinner at Fifth Floor before the show. I had been wanting to try the place, since it had gotten good reviews after switching chefs. The new chef used to be at Chez Papa Resto, and we had liked his food there. It turned out, we liked his food even more at Fifth Floor. The menu was divided into options for three courses; so we shared two first courses, one second, one third, and a dessert. (That was more than enough.) Everything was fabulous, but the beet salad with its various flavors and temperatures was one of my favorites. For dessert, the almond beignets with cherry jam were a very close second, but the beet salad was more colorful and innovative.

165/365 fifth floor beets

We had another night out on Wednesday, when we went to see Stephen Sondheim's Company at the Embarcadero movie theater. This was the production with Neil Patrick Harris, Stephen Colbert, Patti LuPone, Christina Hendricks, etc., along with the NY Philharmonic. It was great, and it was nice to see a really well written—and well acted—musical. (I felt that Tales of the City the night before was in need of some more work.) Since movies aren't very good for photo ops, I took a picture of dinner again. Or rather, I took a picture of waiting for dinner to arrive. We ate at Mijita in the Ferry Building and sat outside, watching the people and the ferries.

166/365 el venado

We were back to work on the house for a full day on Thursday, having taken Tuesday off and only working in the morning on Wednesday. Before the parents arrived for the day, I took a picture of the hallway from the top of the stairs. We'll call it a "before" picture, even though some work had already been done. As you can see, that's a lot of doorways to sand, and 1.5 doorways on each side aren't even visible in the foreground here.

167/365 before

Friday's picture also ended up being taken before the parents arrived for the day. (This time, they came just for the afternoon to work.) Steve had made some pickles out of the little multicolored farmers market carrots, so I just got those out and shot some of the purple ones. We ended up eating them with roast beef sandwiches the next week, but they would have been good with our farmers market picnic the previous Saturday.

168/365 carrot pickles

End of week 24. Moving right along...

Friday, July 1, 2011

arrival of the in-laws

Time to continue with the 365 pictures (and dispense with the introductory paragraph).

Despite photographing our lunch of cauliflower soup on Saturday, June 4, I didn't really have anything I wanted to use for the picture of the day. To remedy that, I joined Steve for the walk to the butcher shop that afternoon. But rather than going inside with him, I continued down Church St., where the fruit outside the corner store drew my eye. It was more colorful than the cauliflower soup, at least.

155/365 fruit stand

Sunday was a day of meetings and a few early auditions for the summer show. When I got home, I took pictures of the dinner that Steve made for us: Fettucine with Dried Tomatoes, Cream and Prawns from What Katie Ate. We really liked it, and I managed to style it such that I was happy with the picture. I think the recipe is a keeper!

156/365 shrimpy pasta

On Monday, I was feeling like it was time to actually read through my Thoroughly Modern Millie script, since we would be starting auditions and rehearsals three weeks later. Rather than sitting on my own couch, I went to Fiore Caffe and found a spot to drink my mocha and read my script in style. I also snapped a couple pictures when the opportunity presented itself. The owner of the laptop in the picture below had gotten up to use the bathroom, opening up my view of the entrance and the chalk open/closed sign.

157/365 fiore caffe

We had a few more early auditions on Tuesday afternoon—kids who would be missing the actual audition week. I took the long way around the block to the car to see about getting a picture before I left, and I passed these fuzzy purple flowers next to the park. Mission accomplished.

158/365 the fuzzy purple ones

Then, the parents arrived in town on Wednesday. And by "town," I mean the RV park in Pacifica. Steve's parents had left home in their RV not long after taking us to the airport, and it took them about a week and a half to get here. As we do every year, we went down to see them at their RV that evening with Dan and Carmen. I made sure we left early enough to get there while it was still light out, and I snuck out for a picture of the coastline shortly after we arrived. Unfortunately, the place seems to be crumbling into the ocean; they keep moving the lines back.

159/365 sharp dropoff

The next day, Carmen and I had a little photo shoot. We wanted to get a few more belly shots before her due date, and Carmen had some ideas she wanted to try. When we went into the nursery, I saw Gloria the Goose on the rocking chair and decided that that would be a cute picture with the jingly bunny in there too. I took a few pictures of Carmen with the bunny after that, but I only decided to post a few pictures from that day. (The ones of Carmen and the bunny didn't make the cut.)

160/365 some bunny

For Friday, I thought Bonnie might like to join me for a walk down to Bi-Rite Market when they came into SF for the afternoon/evening. On the way, I took a picture of some horsetails in front of the new-ish condo buildings on Guerrero. We saw horsetails on my family's farm when we were in IL, but these reminded me of the ones that used to be in front of Stem, not far from Bi-Rite (next to the creamery).

161/365 horsetails

And that was week 23. On to writing the next!