Monthly Archives: January 2012

In the Kitchen | Martha Stewart’s Spicy Cheese Biscuits

Marlin’s been sick with a terrible headache since last night, so this morning I decided we’d stay home and I’d make one of his favorite breakfasts.

This is my favorite recipe from my copy of Martha Stewart’s Baking Handbook. It’s her spicy cheese biscuits and they are perfect for breakfast, brunch or a side for dinner. Or for curing headaches (hopefully). They’re quick, easy, and they’ll keep really well in the freezer if you want to make extra. Let me just save you the time. You’ll want to make extra.

Ashley Terry 2012

The spicy secret of this is the smoky sweet paprika mixed with the dry ingredients and sprinkled over the top just before baking. If you wanted to get really brave, you could add a little cayenne pepper, but I prefer the paprika. Also, the red flakes add a beautiful pop of color!

Ashley Terry 2012

My favorite part? The cheese of course! The recipe calls for gruyere, a yellow Swiss cheese, but you can use whatever you have on hand, cubed or shredded so it mixes in well. This morning I used a mix of a sharp cheddar and my personal favorite, pepper jack, which goes well with the spicy flavor profile.

Ashley Terry 2012

The recipe also calls for heavy cream, which works beautifully. I don’t always keep cream around, so in a pinch I’ll use plain soy milk. The catch is to use less than the amount of cream the recipe lists, because the soy milk is thinner than cream, so if you use the same amount, your mix will be too watery. I used just under a cup here, where it asks for 1 1/2 cups of cream.

Ashley Terry 2012

Bake at 375 for 15-20 minutes or just until they’re golden brown on the edges and cooked all the way through.

Ashley Terry 2012

These biscuits are heavenly all by themselves, straight out of the oven while they’re still hot and steamy when you open them. But the possibilities of sides you could put with them are endless.

Hopefully they’ll put a smile on Marlin’s face and have him feeling better soon. Happy Sunday! Now go make these!

Ashley Terry 2012

 

 

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Filed under Recipes, Uncategorized

The Inevitable…and why I need more skinny jeans

The past week or so has been pretty exciting. Ever since I decided it was time to tell the world that I want to be a wedding photographer (did you hear, by the way?), it’s practically been spilling off my tongue to anyone who will listen. I’m amazed at the change in where I am now from where I was the day before I told my secret. Since the new year, I’ve joined three online networking groups for photographers. I’ve met six or seven new photographers in Austin and I’ve got a coffee date this week to meet another new friend. I’ve been offered the opportunity to shadow/second shoot for one (yes, I will be following up with you! We’ve got to make that happen!). I have an invitation to coffee with my own wedding photographer, Leah, who thankfully has been nothing but supportive and encouraging. I have business cards.

Yes, I’ve come a long way from the girl who two weeks ago spent night after night studying the sites of wedding photographers wishing that I could do what they do. I’m at the very beginning. I’ve got a long, long, way to go, but I’m on my way.

More proof? I’m headed to WPPI and Showit United next month in crazy Las Vegas, and I’ve learned some of the most valuable events and meet-ups aren’t on the calendar, but typically happen at a moments notice and if you’re not on Twitter or Facebook, you’re going to be out of the loop. Well hey, if I’m going to make the trek all the way to sin city and invest the time, I do not want to miss out. So I did the inevitable…I traded in my archaic, dusty but trusty old cell phone for one of these things.

Ashley Terry 2012

Not really by choice, mind you, but for the $0.99 deal AT&T was offering, I couldn’t pass it up. And I have to admit…it’s kind of neat. Don’t tell my husband I said that. This now makes a MacBook and two iPhones in our house. Are we hipster enough to own this many Apple products? I think I should go invest in a few more pair of skinny jeans, just to be safe.

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Bookshelf | Pray Big: The Power of Pinpoint Prayers, by Will Davis, Jr.

It’s Sunday morning and the house is still quiet. It’s just Dugan (my 8 year-old terrier mutt) and me on the couch, trying not to wake the others up. In a couple of hours we’ll be running around, finishing breakfast and heading out to church, so I wanted to take some time now and tell you about the book I’ve just finished…literally. Like five minutes ago.

Courtesy Guideposts.com

I bought a copy of Pray Big for myself after buying several copies for Christmas gifts last year. I’ve never really been interested in books about prayer, because I’ve always wondered what makes someone else an authority on prayer and why I should listen to them. After all, prayer is a personal thing between my God and me, right? I’ve never seen the need for any involvement from someone else there. Who says there is a right way or a wrong way to pray? Anyway, you get the idea.

I almost feel like this book knew who I was and that I needed to read it. It was determined to put itself in my path at some point. Why? Because I’ve been praying for years, but I’ve never allowed myself to pray for anything really specific. I always thought, I’m lucky enough to be talking to God as it is. I’m not going to push it. He knows what’s best, so I’ll just pray those generic thoughts like “Lord, please be with my Dad today,” or “Lord, let your will be done,” or “God, please bless Laura today.” That’s all fine, but looking back, I know that God is already doing those things, whether I ask Him or not. He is always with my Dad. His will is always supreme, and He is already blessing Laura, long before I think to ask. I always worried that praying for specific things was selfish, that it meant I thought I knew better than God does. What I learned is that Jesus Himself taught us how to pray, and when He prayed, He didn’t use those vague phrases we all know. He just opened up and had a good heart to heart with his Father. He talked to God as if He were sitting right next to Him, and He said what was on His mind. If He wanted God to do something, He simply asked for it.

I love what Will says here: “If you were really sure that God hears and answers your prayers, would it change the way you pray? What are you praying for today that will require a miraculous answer from God? What are you asking for that only God can do? You chose worry over prayer, stress over hope, and defeat over victory because you believed God simply wouldn’t respond to something so trivial.” Hello, Ashley!

I could go on and on, but I really suggest getting a copy for yourself and seeing what God has to teach you from it. My communion with Him, the way I spend my time with the Creator of the universe, is forever changed. The way I pray for my friends and family and for the world will never be the same. I just can’t wait to see what God will do!

Happy Sunday to you all! Here’s hoping for lots of rest and replenishment; what Sundays are made for.

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Random & Not So Random

In completely random news today, Marlin and I decided that Thursday nights are going to be our new date night, so this will be the last time I post on a Thursday night for a while. This means I have to get myself in gear and make it happen in the early mornings. Anyone know a good drill sergeant to keep me on track?

In not-so-random news today, look who’s got her very first set of photography business cards!

Ashley Terry 2012

I’m so excited I wanted to give one to the woman at the furniture store tonight…and to our waiter at Chili’s (thank you again for the gift card, White Family)! I put one aside to keep for sentimental value and I really want to frame another set, but, alas, they must go out into the world and help me meet some brides!

For anyone out there looking for business cards, I used Moo, which is a company I’ve never heard of, but they totally rocked my socks off. Your first 50 cards are free. They have beautiful templates to choose from or you can design your own (see cards above). You can choose to print on recycled paper (um, hello, I was sold right there). And to top it off, these babies weren’t due to arrive in my mailbox for another two weeks and they showed up today! For that, Moo now has my undying devotion. I have no time to waste, people!

So, who wants a business card? Don’t be surprised if you see them floating around all over town. I may just climb to the roof of the Austonian and  toss them out by the handful.

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Why you need to say it out loud.

A few days ago I proclaimed to the World Wide Web and the whole wide world that I want to be a wedding photographer. It sounded as crazy in my head as it does when I sit here typing it, and that’s precisely why I waited so long to admit it.

But the craziest things have started to happen. Out of the blue, I got the sweetest note of encouragement from a photographer that I adore on my blog. I’m getting congratulatory notes from photographers in the online forum I’m part of. I got connected with another group that’s meeting up this week for an industry web conference (I’m bringing the veggie tray, ’cause I’m cool like that). And I’m connecting with new photographers on Facebook and Twitter, starting conversations with people who have been where I am and are headed where I want to be.

Did you get that? I told the world my big, crazy, audacious, outrageous plan and it totally laughed at me welcomed me with open arms. Now, I’m not naive enough to believe that everyone out there is happy about my plans, but I won’t spend much time listening to them anyway.

What dreams do you have for 2012 (and beyond) that you’re afraid to say out loud? What happens may just surprise you.

Ashley Terry 2012

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Filed under Personal, The Business

January Goals

Yesterday I wrote the rent check for our apartment and oh my goodness, do you realize it’s actually 2012? January is here, 2011 is gone, and time keeps flying by so it’s time to get busy on the goals! A few days ago I posted about sharing my professional goals, so I want to do that each month for 2012. Partly to keep myself accountable (hold me accountable, Internet!), but also to share my journey and hopefully to learn from any of you who are kind enough to leave some feedback on my crazy aspirations.

Ready? Here we go!

1. I’ll write a rough draft of the first six devotional topics for the book I’m writing this year (i.e.those crazy aspirations)

2. Get my first wedding on the calendar!

This is a big one, y’all. I don’t know who they are yet, but I have a feeling my first wedding couple will be friends I’ll be forever grateful for. We’ve all got to start somewhere, right? I can’t wait to meet you, whoever you are!

3. Build out a basic outline for the magazine (yes, magazine!) I’m planning.

Maybe I should rename this post from “January Goals” to “My Crazy Aspirations.” This will include ideas for a title (I’ve been racking my brain on this for months, but the right thing just hasn’t come to me yet), basic concept and reader profile, and a decision on the publication platform I’ll be using (I’m thinking we’ll start with digital editions to begin with).

So there it is! Now you know how truly crazy I am, and I have an idea of how challenging 2012 will be. I couldn’t be more excited!

Ashley Terry 2012

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Filed under The Business, Weddings