Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Cooking in Cortona

One of the really fun things we did at the Cortona workshops was a cooking demo and dinner following with my dear Cortonese friends, Denyse and Ivan. We traveled up an extremely curvey mountain road to arrive, I was green by the time I got there, but Denyse told me to eat bread to settle my stomach and I was fine.
Denyse and Ivan making pasta
Pomodori (tomatoes) for the pasta sauce
Brad (Sally Jean's husband)showed unbelievable fluidity when jumping into the cooking, he that went back and forth
between cooking like a pro and then taking amazing photographs of the food. I set about copying his photo techniques and got some good ones.
Brad at work

My Brad-inspired arty food shots
Ivan takes out the fresh focaccia we made with flour, egg, olive oil and rosemary. To die for!
I love it when Denyse laughs!
Cindy and Milliande, having a great time, they don't eat wheat, so
they were out of luck on this meal. They made the most of it with their parsley platters:)
Thanks you guys, youwere such good sports!
To say the least, we had a great time, and one of the best meals I have ever eaten! Stay tuned for shots from the following week's cooking class.

Thank you Mike!

Mike Jennings (BoneFolder) very graciously photoshopped my Michael and Sally photo, its a keeper! No more guy standing on Michael's head! Check out his blog, workshops, company at the link above, its really cool! -stace-

Monday, October 13, 2008

Just One More

Just one more little photo and post, I can't stop...Sally, Michael, Stace, Bonnie and Brad (Sally's hub)
around the kitchen table at Casa San Marco in Cortona. Cheryl was here too, but she took the picture. It was such a laid back relaxing evening. See Bonnie? There WAS a photo of the two of us after all!
Thats it, I need to STOP now!

The Pressure is On!

Thanks Michael for mentioning our blog! Now the pressure is on to get with it!
So where to start?

Well, I'll go to recent history. A couple of years ago, Rob and I started Arcangelo Productions, a company we created to host week long artist retreats in Cortona, Italy and Bali. Our list of fab instructors have so far have included:
Michael de Meng, Sally Jean Alexander, Nina Bagley, Traci Bautista and Jane Rosemont.

Last month, we had both Sally Jean and Michael back for a second time in Cortona, along with our good friend and talented photographer/instructor, Jane. It was a fantastic 3 weeks with everyone, I had a such a great time!

The quintessential Italian shot, beautiful signora, leaning out the kitchen window in Tuscany. (Sally Jean)

Michael and Sally, 2nd time in Cortona in the main piazza. I just noticed the guy on top of Michael's head, if I knew Photoshop, I could remove him...After I finish bugging Michael with endless, "how do you do this...?'' re. blogging, maybe he can teach me Photoshop?

And finally, Michael (again?) and my pal, Jane, who has the most amazing eyebrows and red with pink streaked hair EVER!

And lastly, my favorite view and photo of all: The Church of San Francesco in Cortona with the Val di Chiana and Montepulciano beyond.

I love this church and have 500,000 photos of it stashed away, so you'll mostly see various versions of it snuck in my future posts as I go along.

Well folks, I thought I could post and paste many more photos this evening but this little one took about 2 hours to figure out, so its late and time to sign off. I will write of further Cortona adventures tomorrow...

Buon notte! -stace-

Saturday, October 11, 2008

and then some...

And as a special thank you to my pal Michael, I am posting this photo of him, I have been waiting to use this for 2 years since his and our first workshop in Cortona together. At one of our group dinners, he was introduced to the wicked "green stuff", more commonly know as Liquore di Alloro, a homemade, heavy duty, 40% alcohol after dinner drink, made by Trattoria Dardano, in Cortona. It is known to have slightly hallucinogenic qualities. As I remember, he experienced a particularly fine teaching day the next morning.

Stace's Prima Posta

All right, I need to do MY first post since I'm the one that was yattering to get this blog set up in the first place...I showed my dear husband Rob, how I had set up the banner and he went in and beat me to it...he was off and running!!!
I am so thrilled to have figured out how to set up this blog, I have been wanting to create a blog forever and was highly motivated after we spent a great week with our good friends, Michael and Judy, who were in Portland for Art and Soul. I credit them for pushing us to get this going,

Grazie mille guys!


just another interesting part of going to Paris......looks vaguely familiar to me....

I have so so many photos as Stacey never stops clicking .....I could post them all at once, but I don't want to flood the Blogoshere and shut the whole thing down...slowly......I am having fun with this.....

ok. ok. so you want to see the rest of they are in front of some glass pyramid, but I was too busy chasing flying Euros to notice much of anything.

So, you guessed somehow. Yes, we were in Paris this summer exactly at the peak of the Euro....lunch sitting on the curb for $100. That was fun, but you only go around a million times in these many lives we have.

This time we did not visit any museums and just enjoyed being in the City of Lights playing in the many parks and outdoor cafe's...... Paris......

la prima posta

....and, so here we are complete Blog-o-phites. My name is Rob and I share my life with my wife, Stacey, who is my everything.....We live in Portland, Oregon with our two sons Jesse (17) and Corey (13).

We divide out time between Portland, OR, Cortona Italy, and Bali. I feel blessed to be able to spend my time in these magical places.

For many years we owned Urbino which was an eclectic lifestyle retail store located on N.W. 23rd Ave. here in Portland. We traveled extensively on buying trips for the store which lent us an excuse to see many areas of the world.

We spent a lot of time in Italy which became a second home to us. In 2001 we jumped off the proverbial cliff and moved our whole family to Cortona, Italy for a year of living Under the Tuscan Sun (nice name for a book). I use the phrase as Cortona is the locale for the book and movie.

I have lots of stories of what our life there was like and how it changed all of us........I plan on posting them, if anyone is interested?