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Unexpectedly So…

Getty Villa - L.A

Just looking at this picture, I’d say it looked I just took a trip to my beloved Provence. But I did not. This was taken at the Getty Villa in California last week, in between two workshops.

Getty Villa - L.A

If I did not know any better I’d think these were shot right outside the window of the house where I grew up. Cherry blossoms. Figs just starting to budd. Olive trees. Cypresses. Sun and warmth. The ocean in the distance. Still at the Getty Villa.

Getty Villa - L.A

More cherry tree blossoms. Just because I can’t get enough. Because I even love baking with their extract. Because I grew up surrounded by them. In another South. Feeling dangerously like home. Mine. Back home across the other ocean.

Monkey Tree - Vashon

Lunch at the Monkey Tree on Vashon Island, Washington where I stayed with Shauna, Danny and Lu for a couple of days. Giggled with Lu reading books after books. Baked gluten free goodies and ate with friends. Family now.

Monkey Tree - Vashon

Warmth and comfort. Blackboard specials and used wood. Worn. Shared. Felt a community coming together in a great little quaint spot around a good bowl of soup and a crusty loaf of bread.

Monkey Tree - Vashon

On top of the piano at The Monkey Tree. Where things that don’t belong suddenly start to make sense.

Monkey Tree -  Vashon

If I did not know any better, I’d say I were in North Carolina for a couple of days. This cafe. The trees. The fields. The houses and the greens. I could get used to this. There are piers, docks and seagulls. I’m thinking this is so easily familiar…

Monkey Tree - Vashon

Oh Vashon! Temptress… I could easily forget I can’t have any of these. Not with friends who are constantly searching a way to make great foods just a tad bit differently. That’s all. We tried and experimented. The process. The friendship.

Snowy Lucy

And this little one. Who steals my heart each and everytime. And the snow. Big fluffy watery flakes of snow that made the moment just that much more magical.

Thank you dear friends…

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Jessica @ How Sweet March 10, 2010 um 11:36 am

Simply beautiful!

linda March 10, 2010 um 12:42 pm

what a lovely post & your photographs (& lighting) are awesome!
you seem to be having such wonderful experiences…
thanks for sharing…look forward to workshop posts ( i can live vicariously through them!)
have fun!

Divina Pe March 10, 2010 um 1:01 pm

The pictures are beautiful as always. Love looking at them.

WendyinKK March 10, 2010 um 1:16 pm

The flowers are really pretty.
I can never find these at the tropics.

Thanks for sharing all the wonderful pictures.

Sunshinemom March 10, 2010 um 2:10 pm

Excellent write up!

Johanna March 10, 2010 um 2:24 pm

Your pictures are wonderful… And the cherry blossoms! They haven't burst into bloom yet here in Sweden.

La Tartine Gourmande March 10, 2010 um 3:16 pm

It's a nice collection of emotions in print. Makes me want to travel to the West to feel it too! Lovely.

Mallory Elise March 10, 2010 um 3:16 pm

oh how beautiful. isn't the west coast the best coast ๐Ÿ˜‰ and next is seattle! you will love it so much, i miss it. i can't wait for your post!

Maria March 10, 2010 um 3:54 pm

Thanks for sharing! Glad you had a nice time.

Rachael Hutchings March 10, 2010 um 3:57 pm

I'm so glad that you have been able to find bits of "home" here in the West! I'm even more glad that you were able to come and visit–what a pleasure it was to have you here!

Jen March 10, 2010 um 3:57 pm

Little Lu looks like a little girl now! It's amazing how much she's grown in 6 months!

beautiful, beautiful post!

Carrie Nicole March 10, 2010 um 3:59 pm

Yay! Can't wait to meet you today for the workshop ๐Ÿ™‚ I love that picture of Lu, amazing. She's the cutest thing. Thank you for visiting us, we're all going to be better for the experience ๐Ÿ™‚ xoxo

Rocky Mountain Woman March 10, 2010 um 4:20 pm

Oh my, can't wait for spring…

Fresh Local and Best March 10, 2010 um 4:26 pm

I adore the pictures of the Getty Villa, it is very much so reminiscent of Provence. I especially love the picture of the fig tree budding, it's so graceful, emanating warm feelings of its potential.

m March 10, 2010 um 5:07 pm

It looks so cozy. :] Have fun!

Nina Timm March 10, 2010 um 5:16 pm

Beauty is truly in the eye of the beholder….some people would drive right pass that and never even see it!!! You captured it beautifully!!!

Nads' Bakery March 10, 2010 um 5:41 pm

Your photos always leave me amazed.

Amie March 10, 2010 um 6:15 pm

The Getty Villa is so gorgeous. We went there on a beautiful day last summer and I felt like we were back in Italy again, just for a few hours. Ahh, I need to travel again!

Thanks for the bloggin, I love reading about your adventures!

Cindy March 10, 2010 um 6:51 pm

Love the photos and beautifully written post.


Joy March 10, 2010 um 6:59 pm

You images are beautiful. I love them.

Joy March 10, 2010 um 6:59 pm

You images are beautiful. I love them.

Jolette March 10, 2010 um 7:16 pm

I could just die of happiness in a cafรฉ like that! The blossoms are really beautiful – fantastic photography.

[email protected] March 10, 2010 um 7:47 pm

Beautiful pictures (as usual)! Enjoy the West Coast and people you meet there.

Janna March 10, 2010 um 8:15 pm

The photo of Lu is so sweetly stunning.

antonia March 10, 2010 um 9:08 pm

Estoy enamorada de tu blog. Las fotos son maravillosas. Enhorabuena, de verdad, gracias

Kate at Serendipity March 10, 2010 um 9:21 pm

Your photos of this trip are gorgeous. You're staying in a special corner of heaven, I think. Imagine growing up in a place like that!

Thank you for taking us along with you.

Anonymous March 10, 2010 um 10:29 pm

Lovely as always, so fun to see the connections develop in folks from BlogherFood.
Can't wait till you get the gluten-free puff pastry done.
The only thing my daughter Fiona truly misses being a gluten free kid is croissants.
I can now let her know it is in the works.

Barbara March 10, 2010 um 10:44 pm

I'm loving these photos of your travels Helene. I think I love travel more than food. Knowing I'll not get to visit as planned makes your impressions very special for me.

Pastrychefgrl March 10, 2010 um 10:51 pm

I just love your photography I am so jealous I hope to get a good camera and take some as beautiful as yours! Keep up the great work hope you had lots of fun in California!

Phuoc'n Delicious March 10, 2010 um 11:24 pm

Beautiful pictures as always. I love the last picture the most, she looks like she's having alot of fun in the snow.

juliana alonso dorola March 11, 2010 um 3:30 am

lovelly post and lovelly pictures!
im planning a road trip to the west coast with my best friend, i hope i can take great and amazing pictures like you do!

Every Little Counts March 11, 2010 um 5:36 am

oh, the getty villa is one of my favorite places in LA!

Vakker Pike March 11, 2010 um 1:26 pm

Hey Helene,

There's something in the way you express your experiences that I enjoy a lot.
It doesn't matter wether its written or its an image, there are always lots of feelings in it. I love it.
In this case, seeing the pictures I almost even felt nostalgic about France! And as Johanna said, the fact that here in Sweden (how trascendental is this blog ahh?) we're still surrounded by snow, these pictures are good for the soul… Congrats, what you have there its really a natural talent combined with the french touch (perfect!).

ChichaJo March 11, 2010 um 3:04 pm

Beautiful photos and a beautiful recounting!

Patty March 11, 2010 um 6:59 pm

Those pictures are amazing, you have a very good eye. Keep up the good work!

Kate @ Savour Fare March 11, 2010 um 7:43 pm

The first time I visited Provence (and the Alpes Maritimes) it felt like home. I'm glad you felt at home in Southern California!

The Short (dis)Order Cook March 11, 2010 um 9:51 pm

What beautiful photos! So lucky to grow up in a place that's similar to that, and then have what sounds like a beautiful vacation as a grown up. I'm hungry and I'm bitten by a travel bug!

Rambling Tart March 11, 2010 um 10:25 pm

Exquisite! What a lovely vicarious journey you've taken us on. I feel like I've had a little holiday. ๐Ÿ™‚ Beautiful.

Cookie baker Lynn March 11, 2010 um 11:07 pm

Such lovely photos. It looks like you find something to remind you of home wherever you go. So wherever you go, you're always a little bit home.

Mark @ Cafe Campana March 12, 2010 um 5:10 am

What beautiful photos. Sometimes I think that photos make a real life situation look better than real. The cherry blossom is really nice.

Lisa! March 12, 2010 um 2:43 pm

That first image is my favorite place in California. I took a class at the Getty Villa once, for six Saturdays. I could get there an hour before the public- quiet and serene.

Dana March 12, 2010 um 7:56 pm

I'm so glad you had some time on our coast and especially on that magical island with those wonderful people. It was amazing to see you in action and to get a Helene hug.

Lindsey @ pickyeatings March 12, 2010 um 9:35 pm

Cherry blossoms are one of my favorite things on earth, and you have done a lovely job of capturing them on film.

Sari @ Cook Your Dream March 12, 2010 um 10:31 pm

Beautiful photos! I can't wait for buds and blossom in London. Glad you had a nice time.

vanessa March 13, 2010 um 8:50 am

You know, here, in Provence, it's still freezing outside which is completelly unusual for this time of the year.
Mimosas are still blooming (it's usually in January) and Almond trees jus start…

Beautifull pictures, on dirait le Sud..

Anonymous March 13, 2010 um 9:09 am

beautiful pictures! i love them

my little expat kitchen March 13, 2010 um 11:31 am

Such lovely photographs!

Elizabeth March 14, 2010 um 6:52 am

Who knew the Getty had such stunning landscaping! Thank you for sharing a little piece of your weekend with us!

marla {family fresh cooking} March 14, 2010 um 2:26 pm

Thanks for sharing those beautiful photos with us. I love seeing the studies of the greens, browns and everything in between. You are a great creative inspiration. That little girl is darling! Glad to see your time away was so wonderful.

marla {family fresh cooking} March 14, 2010 um 2:26 pm

Thanks for sharing those beautiful photos with us. I love seeing the studies of the greens, browns and everything in between. You are a great creative inspiration. That little girl is darling! Glad to see your time away was so wonderful.

Unknown March 14, 2010 um 6:32 pm

Great photography as always! I would have said Italy at first glance – beautiful locale. Thanks for sharing your visit and experience with us.

Joel delon March 21, 2010 um 5:19 pm

Madame compliments votre blog est une supreme gourmandise ! Bien Cordialement du languedoc (sud de France)

Cindy March 25, 2010 um 12:51 am

Really great photos!

jessica | destined to design March 28, 2010 um 3:50 pm

Beautiful photos – the Getty Villa is such a lovely escape.

cassandra March 28, 2010 um 6:43 pm

wow … two of my favorite places in such a beautiful post!! this makes me homesick for LA, but at least I'm back in Seattle now to take advantage of beautiful places to get lost like the Vashon (and all the rest of the islands around here!)

Daniella May 4, 2010 um 3:29 pm

Ohhh Malibu… I took the same picture of the Getty Villa a few weeks ago, wish I was back. Lovely post!

Susan October 20, 2011 um 9:25 pm

A little late on this but great pictures! Wish it was spring, going into summer, but its already winter here and getting our first snow fall!

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