It was quite fitting that the night before we told my parents we were engaged, I’d been scanning my parents old wedding negatives. I also recently bought a copy of Adobe CS 5.5 Design Premium, so, empowered with the force of photoshop and some actions (occasionally) from the Pioneer Woman, I’ve fixed up some of the photos and will show them to you here. Captions will be above the photo.

I’ve grown up looking at these photos in an album that is made with the same fabric as mom’s dress. And yet, it surprises me when I talk to my parents, or look at these details and see how things were different than I have imagined them.

I don’t know how long my parents were officially engaged, but I think it was less than a year. Instead of an engagement ring, after the mutual decision that they would get married, dad gave mom a carved wooden bird. Thus explaining why the bird lives in her dresser. (That puzzled me as a kid.) My parents wanted matching PLAIN wedding bands, which at the time involved going to a jeweler in Toronto. Which I kindof think of as being similar to going to Cleveland for a jeweler because the jewelers in Columbus and Toledo don’t have plain wedding bands. Which these days, is a crazy thought.

Mom and her family.

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Closeups of mom with her family.

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My parents with my dad’s parents. Sadly this negative was a little scratched on Noni and Nono’s faces. I tried to save it, but there’s still some scratch visible… I have very few pictures of my grandfather (Nono) and this one makes me smile.

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Dad with his family. My uncle Dave is looking surprisingly serious, given his usual jovial state.

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Mom and dad talking in the background while relatives (including my paternal grandparents) sit in the background and mom’s parents talk in the foreground.

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These pictures (including the next three) were all taken in the yard of the house where my mom grew up. The house where my grandparents lived until the mid-nineties. I’m guessing they were taken before the service, but I don’t know. My mom’s brother and a next-door neighbor/family friend were the photographers. While not all the pictures are great, there are enough that are exactly what you want from wedding photos.


One of my favorite photos. My dad’s brother (best man), mom’s sister (maid of honor) and my parents. Everyone looks so happy.

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I guess this picture is probably when I noticed my mom’s distinct lack of flowers. Which is amusing to me because everyone else has flowers. Mom’s not a flower type of person (I don’t know that we’ve ever had florist-flowers in our house, just wildflowers or garden flowers. In fact the one time I can remember my dad giving my mom something flower related was when he got her a lilac tree one year in Alaska.

Formal portrait.

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Dad looking the same, with mom giggling.

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Mom made her wedding dress, with the help of, I believe, my grandma. According to my grandma, there was some serious procrastination and the dress was finished less than 48 hours before the wedding. Unlike many wedding dresses, which sit preserved on a shelf, mom’s dress lived in our dress up box. It was next to the Japanese kimono and the Egyptian slippers. I think the shoes may have been in there too. For those of you missing the obvious, no, I will not be wearing my mother’s dress. I outgrew it when I was about 11.

I have never heard of a wedding with a bassoon & clarinet duet. I am intrigued. Luckily my parents have an audiocassette of the wedding, so I could listen (or share it with you all!) if I wanted. Apparently I am the only person in our house to ever have listened to the tape. I found it when I was about 12 and listened to it until it got boring. (Poor quality didn’t help relieve the boring factor.)

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My parents were apparently trendy before the trend. They basically had a cocktail hour between the service and reception. Only the cocktail hour involved no cocktails or any sorts of alcohol (unless you brought a flask) and there were no appetizers. So a more correct term would be mingling hour. But that sounds less trendy.

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I assume that the mingling was prior to going in the church hall for the reception. But I can’t tell you because I haven’t checked with my mother.

I had it in my head that my parents had a cookies and punch reception. People made cookies and there was a fantastic orange and cranberry punch. (I know it’s fantastic because I have the recipe and I keep thinking I should make it more often.) So you can imagine my surprise when I came across this picture this morning. Apparently there were salads, deli meats, cheeses, and bread as well as veggies. (And, presumably elsewhere, punch and cookies,)

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My parents reception had no dancing. There was a group singing of “Consider Yourself at Home” from Oliver (performed by mom’s side of the family, as per tradition.) But I believe most of the reception was people giving speeches and involving gifts somehow. Including, for some reason, hiking boots. (Sadly there is no audio of the reception.)

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Oh look! They’re getting a colander.

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And the colander is on dad’s head.

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(I sent this post to my mom for her to verify facts. She adds, “There are a few corrections to be made (for example, I believe that my mom made all the cookies over several months, and froze them until the wedding). It was a HOT day.”)

Walk around the Neighborhood

In order to take a break from my thesis proposal writing this afternoon, I went on a walk. It wasn’t going to be a long walk, but it was nice out (a far cry from the thunderstorms that had been predicted). So I walked further than planned. 

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Flowers in the woods which go by many names. Lamprocapnos spectabilis (formerly Dicentra spectabilis); also known as old-fashioned bleeding-heartVenus’s carLady in a bath,Dutchman’s trousers, or Lyre-flower. (Wikipedia)

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 Hard to tell that this isn’t just a forest, but an urban forest. 

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The lilacs were out along the graveyard fence. Light pink, fuschia, and white. 

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One of the houses down the road has a Little Free Library. Sadly there aren’t any books I’m interested in reading right now, but I keep checking.  

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My favorite local house. It’s on two lots and one lot is building-free with a pond and gorgeous landscaping.  

Birthday Baking

Unlike the previous two Novembers, this November I am not addicted to blogging. But I try to get on here once a week or more, anyways, so here are some random pictures from this weekend.

For B’s birthday, I decided to make lasagna. From scratch. (Except for the sauce.) Here you see the spinach pasta noodles drying.

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Butternut Squash Sauce + Pasta.

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Covered with cottage cheese and caramelized onions.

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And more pasta.

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Mozzarella with raw red peppers.

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More layers followed. Mmmm. Lasagna Innards.

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Add some browned butter and sage leaves and bake. We’re still eating the leftovers.

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The next day I had a kitchen helper, S.

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We made this Fruit Pizza. Can you find the hidden message?

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Photos across time

Last year I got a negative & slide scanner for Christmas. Unfortunately, my negatives were living in Kentucky and I was living in Minnesota. Until a few weeks ago, when Mom came to visit with a shipment! I have most of my pictures from age 17 to 20 now (then I went digital). Here is a sampling.

Mom brought slides from her year in Switzerland and Germany. Here’s a picture. IMAG0021

I love how older photos just ooze datedness.


ME! Age 2 or so, which means we are at the Madison zoo? Or the Columbus zoo? Anyways, I’m sure I didn’t care because I had a stroller and yogurt.


If my hair could still look like this, that would be awesome. Also, I appear to picked up a love of reading early on. Where reading means making a mess and looking at pictures.


I can only assume that this is me after being chastised for making a mess. Or maybe mom wouldn’t read Goodnight Moon to me for the thousandth time. Either way, it was obviously quite upsetting. This was also during a phase where mom didn’t cut the feet off my sweet pjs. I want some of those pjs now. No drafts!


Dad had to help me pet a goat. Obviously they are scary. And bigger than me. (But I’m taller! HAHAH!)


My little cousin L. She’s now in high school!


L and I make wontons. She was an excellent helper then and can only assume she is even better now.


One of my many senior portraits. I should obviously do a whole series on these.


The Glasgow Highland Games during sophomore? year of college. We dressed up. Obviously I didn’t get the whole “in costume” thing, because while I do have a jug of root beer, I am wearing a GIGANTIC sports watch as well as tevas and SOCKS. Classy!


One of my favorite pix ever of me and my little bro. Obviously it could be cleaned up but there’s no time today. At the time he was less than a semester into going to high school in Canada, 1000 miles from home, and living with strangers. While it was hard on the family, I can’t believe that he survived (and thrived) away from home at such a young age. This guy also ran a marathon this morning and beat his goal. I was proud of him then and I still am today.


That is all for now, but there is lots more where this came from.

For my Parents

My  mom sent me an incredibly sappy (and wonderful) email today for my birthday. It made me think of these pictures. These may be repeats, but I like them, so you get to see them again. Thanks mom!


With mom


Bedtime is singing time!

My dad sent me an email with the subject: “happy happy happy” and the body: “BIRTHDAY!!!! Love, Dad” He claims it is a party email. It didn’t make me think of these pictures, but I am an equal opportunity child. So he gets pictures too! Except they are family pictures, because I don’t have any old pictures of just the two of us, which is sad, because there is a great one of the two of us when I was a baby. Apparently most of the time when he was home and I was a baby, I slept. So I was scared of him. I blame it on the beard 🙂 </ramble>


First (and only?) Family Portrait


Family Hiking

And for my awesome little bro, here’s a picture for you.


Chillin’. Alaska Grown.

And some pictures of just me. Because I’m selfish that way.


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Off to go hiking with Teddy, raisins, and a box of tofu or cranberry juice concentrate. Because everyone hikes in their pjs, right?

Post-Marathon Blues

No permissions today either, but I made Ben dinner, so I figure we’re even. Ben ran Grandma’s marathon in 2006 and didn’t shave from February through June in preparation. Then he sprayed blue hair spray on his beard to make it blue. All in all it wasn’t a look he needs to recreate anytime soon… John and Chris didn’t take NEARLY as drastic measures.


Reid asked for more pictures of other people…and I think he meant people he knew, but hey. I’m ditching my clause about asking for permission unless the pictures are super embarassing. Jeff was VERY excited about graduating (or graduation rehearsal at least) and Rachel and Gina were supporting him in the excitement) while Sarah just thought he was crazy.

Early Morning/Wet Hair Katie: Part 3

For the Epic Conclusion of this series, we have this stunning self-portrait, with Andy Exley in the background, taken in the middle of the fifth day on the Steven’s Canyon trip when I got desperate and decided to jump into the pothole to swim/wash my hair. This is trust or foolishness, you know that right? Putting a picture of this on the interwebs. That is how much I care about you all and your well being/happiness.

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7am, the day after we hiked out of Steven’s Canyon: In which I am exhausted, sore, ready for some breakfast, and about to open my eyes for the first time that morning. (Picture by Ben).

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Thus begins the series: This was in Switzerland on a goat farm and I’ll admit I do not look nearly enthusiastic enough about the fresh butter and cheeses as well as the bread, yogurt, museli, coffee, tea, and cocoa that were our breakfast, but I attribute it to the wet hair. (Picture by Rachel M.)