Hi, I'm Shirley --a food photographer who loves to cook
and write about how to live with style in small spaces.
Where am I?
You'll find me relaxing or writing while on my porch, in the kitchen conjuring up a dish, or shooting food in the little studio of my small space apartment in Wilmington, NC.
My mantra: Simplicity plus fresh Ingredients makes great flavors.
You'll find here recipes that are great for healthy eating, and you'll also find recipes that are downright decadent for the food sinners of us!
Many recipes I learned as an "assistant" in my grandmother's kitchen. She was a southern woman who had moved to the north looking for work and a better life.
I love updating her old recipes, re-creating classic American dishes with new flavors; and creating dishes that reflect foods I've enjoyed from other cultures and those I discovered through my travels--albeit with an American slant.
And yes, I do test, re-test and re-test old and new recipes. Cooking and presenting food for family and friends is quite different from offering a dish on a food blog! Moreover, there is always room for improvement.
Down The Rabbit Hole
Learning how to share my recipes heightened my interest of food as art--its beautiful forms, textures, colors and light glowing through and around it. That interest opened a door leading me to food photography--and a new exciting world of food as art.
You'll find my work at anns-liee.portfolio box.
Live With Style in Small Spaces
Having upsized, then downsized more times then I care to remember, I'm, alas, once again downsizing. What I've learned is that I don't have to live like a monk or a hoarder in a small space. I'm passionate about making my small space a home through comforting, stylish decorating. I spent five years working on one home decorating project with an decorating associate from Calico Corners, a fabric and home decor national chain store. Having spent so much time there, after retirement, I had even worked for this fabulous store. Thus, I'm always interested in how other people creatively live in small spaces, and how they make small spaces beautiful places to call home. That brings me to sharing what I discovered with you.
Go forth and be bold!
I'm single and retired--sort of retired. Well, not quite retired. LOL.
My dog's name is "Susan," a Portuguese water dog. (I had Susan before the Obama's got Bo!) To become a speech pathologist was how I started undergrad. But I kept taking classes in literature--American lit, African-American lit, English lit, Women’s' lit, Latino lit--any genre in literature. So, I graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree and a minor in English. I had no idea what I was going to do but I was intellectually happy and could discuss the literary merits of Chaucer and Shakespeare.
My careers have spanned from working as a clerk, then a secretary; a tutor in English as a Peace Corps volunteer in beach lovely The Gambia, West Africa; a teacher in English as a Second Language in beautiful Costa Rico and Washington D.C.; an employee relations specialist; and finally a manager in human resources software development.
I've traveled quite a bit throughout the U.S., the Caribbean, parts of West Africa and Europe. My favorite places to be are the Caribbean, France, and Northern Virginia.
If I had to list all the activities and programs for which I've volunteered, I would have to add another page.
I love to read (almost anything, especially historical fiction, science fiction, and fictions that asks questions about the nature of life).
If in a restaurant and I had to choose between tiramisu and crème brûlée
for a dessert, I'd skip the bread, the salad and the entree,
order both desserts and a coffee.
Life's just to short for indecisions.
Finally, for me, learning something new is always exciting and challenging.