Graffiti, Street Art, Tagging….Downtown Phoenix Flavor

With my nifty iphone camera and the adaptor lenses I got for Christmas, I have been all about the digital photography lately! This weekend I challenged myself to go to my favorite place in Phoenix, Downtown, to explore and play around with my camera.

I was very inspired! I loved so much of what I saw! There was the Phoenix Public Market with so many local vendors selling what they do best. I wanted to buy so much stuff! I am going to go back with my grocery list and stock up on all sorts of goodies! Like these treats….

Caramel Apples on a Stick

I visited so many places that I always drive by and think “man, I wish I could come out here when I had more time!” I spent 3 hours wandering the streets of downtown, walking more than 4 miles. It was glorious!

I want to focus on some of the incredible murals and graffiti I saw. Maybe graffiti suggests it is not art and that it was done maliciously….I could call it tagging but that implies gang activities. Street art, or murals will do.

**All the photos taken are my own. I have not digitally enhanced or edited any of them. I couldn’t bring myself to change someone elses art so I have left the pictures as I took them.

This first piece looked like a mess to me, until I took the picture and realized that it did have shape and form!

Ba Bomb!

Some of the art I saw seemed little more than colors splashed onto a building….

When I got a chance to look closer and admire the work, you can tell that people are taking a stand via this art, and are expressing themselves.

The Dia De Los Muertos art was beautiful, so much color and hispanic flavor!

Some pieces I wont try to understand….but I can appreciate that someone put time energy and money behind them. Other pieces were just fun and carefree…

My favorite pieces were the murals that invoked music, they made my heart and soul sing.

I applaud all these artists and the work they have done. It is truly breathtaking the see how these murals were built upon the history and rough foundations of downtown Phoenix.


Sunday Morning Smiles

Ahhh Sunday mornings are so refreshing. Soft, warm, lazy Sunday mornings. The only thing that manages to put a damper on this day of the week is the impending Monday that follows….

I love spending a lazy Sunday morning cooking a big breakfast for my fiancé and I. A warm cup of coffee, catching up on the blogs I follow, hiking, and getting some quality snuggle time in with my four-legged friend….


My favorite blog out there is written by Chrissy Teigen – super model, chef, comedian. I love her and highly recommend her blog to anyone who doesn’t get offended easily, likes food and likes laughing. If you don’t meet that criteria I have ZERO idea why you are following me. In all reality, you aren’t following me….you probably found this blog by mistake. I judge you not. Chrissy’s blog is Follow her, she is a MUCH better blogger than I am.

Regardless, I find a lot of cooking inspiration from Chrissy’s blog. She posted a great breakfast recipe that I have been working to perfect on my own…

Hammy Breakfast Cups:
It’s easy, don’t try to complicate it. Get a ramekin or a muffin tin and make sure to spray it with nonstick. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

The filling is up to you, this is where I get creative….
Below I made 3 differ kinds:
Southwest – sautéed peppers, onions, mushrooms (avocado to top)
Italian – fresh chopped tomatoes, pesto sauce, mozzarella cheese
Sausage – sausage, mushrooms

Line your ramekin or muffin tin with fresh cut deli ham. Load in a scoop of your stuffing, crack an egg on top and place in the oven. Bake for 20 minutes. 15 minutes pop any bubbles the eggs have made. At 20 minutes sprinkle cheese on top and put back in the oven for 2-5 more minutes.


The egg should not be slimy (this is a technical term) so you can leave it in the oven longer if you need.



Enjoy! I would love to hear from you if you try this! Well, mostly I would be interested to hear from anyone. Just to reaffirm that this blog has actually made it onto the web and people are able access it if they feel like wasting 20 minutes of their lives.

Happy Sunday!!

Let them rot

A test of a people is how it behaves toward the old. It is easy to love children. Even tyrants and dictators make a point of being fond of children. But the affection and care for the old, the incurable, the helpless are the true gold mines of a culture.” – Abraham Heschel

I find my heart has no boundaries for the elderly. Those people that have grown slow, weary, confused. The pillars of our community are those that have stood up to the times before us. My heart aches for their shame, their losses (physical, mental, and emotional), the way society can be so cruel to them. How they are forgotten, our patience lost for them.

Today I was in the dollar store and I saw an elderly gentleman attempting to count out .45 cents from his hand of change. The teller was snapping at him, repeating “.45 cents sir!” The lady was badgering and berating him so thoroughly, even I was disconcerted and wouldnt have been able to count the change. Eventually she just grabbed the changed she needed from his hand. Offering no help with his bags, and brushing him off as nothing more than an inconvenient and slow customer. I was shocked, heartbroken and absolutely disgusted. The lack of compassion was beyond anything I had ever seen.

Who are these people that can show so little respect to those members of our society who have grown feeble and slow? How do we get to the point in our lives where we have such an incredible lack of feeling for another human being?

I once witnessed an older man trip over his own foot while he was searching for his wife. THe sound of his head hitting the pavement is seared into my brain. Whats worse than that resounding thud is the overwhelming look of shame that came over him at having witnesses to his tumble. My heart shattered.

The Dalai Lama once said “All major religious traditions carry basically the same message, that is love, compassion and forgiveness the important thing is they should be part of our daily lives”

Let them rot, those horrible individuals who cast our elderly aside. Let those people who show so little patience and compassion towards our old members of society one day understand that they crucify people for living life.

We all grow old. We will all become slow, confused, tired, incapable, inept….we will all eventually be the members of society that need help in not falling behind or risk being forgotten. I pray peace upon our eldery and hope those careless and heartless people out there rot.


Yes, i want to lose 10 pounds, get in shape, be happier, try new things. Its the beginning of a new year. 2012 is limitless, ripe with opportunity, open for the taking.

I am resolute in accomplishing my goals this year.

– I want to write more than 200 blog entries (i better get more focused. Because as of now i just read others’ blogs and lament about how much better they are and ignore my own!)
– I want to have the most amazing wedding and honeymoon ever!
– I want to master 50 new DIY crafts that i can gift
– I want to seriously have a talk about babies

Its the year of 50s….
I am challenging myself to 50 lists of 50 new things:
– 50 new DIY projects
– 50 new ways to tell my fiance i love him
– try 50 new fruits/veggies
– challenge myself to try 50 new exercises

My first new fruit is the Ataulfo Mango

Ataulfo mangos are golden yellow and generally weigh between 6 and 10 ounces, with a somewhat sigmoid (oblong) shape [5] and a gold-blushed yellow skin.[2] Their buttery flesh is not fibrous, and they have a thin pit.[5][1] Their flesh is a deep yellow and high in sugar (15 grams per 100-gram serving), with a rich, spicy flavor.[5][1] They are rich in vitamin C and dietary fibre.[2]

– wiki


Winner Winner Chicken Dinner

…the title is misleading, and the display in the picture leaves a little to be desired but….. Yes, there IS chicken in this meal however, I am focusing more on the yummy roasted veggies!

I was craving warm veggies but I was not really in the mood to steam them and eat them the same old way. Alternately I was not excited to spend an hour and a half cooking after a long day….Now, I love cooking and find it therapeutic, but it had been a long day.

I found a recipe that was super simple and came out delicious!

You will need:

Broccoli, cauliflower, mushrooms and red onion


Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Minced garlic



salt and pepper


Preheat oven to 425 degrees while you cut your veggies to the size you prefer….

Drizzle with olive oil, and seasonings. Toss until all the veggies are coated then transfer them to an oven-safe dish.

Cook your bacon (add as much or as little as you like) and combine it with the veggies.

Bake for 30 minutes. Stir occassionally adding a little butter here and there to keep the veggies from drying out.

I threw in a Potato (pre-bioled) and chicken breast (coated with rosemary, garlic salt and paprika) to bake for the last 15-20 minutes. It was a warm healthy meal that took little or no time! I also didnt have to go out to get any ingredients!



So my schedule didnt work… I failed again at blogging when I thought I would have time.

BUT I have discovered the iPhone camera and I have much to share!! While I assume this will not make up for my lack of writing, I hope it helps to placate, as I have been deeply enmeshed in a another crafty outlet…..

I have fallen in LOVE with Instagram for those of you who use an iphone…you know what I am talking about. For those of you who are just now reading about this (like  I mentioned….I pretend like I have oodles of followers…) it is an application to post photography/pictures.

Photography is something I have NEVER been good at, but I have a great passion for it. I love the way artists can manipulate the light and camera angles….It is one of my favorite forms of art. I love the concept of being able to express yourself through a still frame. I am not talented, but I love trying to be! This application is a great way to get inspiration and see what others think is beautiful. I also enjoy the blog as it teaches me basics and how to apply them! I feel like I am accomplishing something great when I am able to manipulate a picture into something artsy.

Love, Love, Love this! Below are some of my own contributions….

Feel free to follow me on Instagram! A. Petra

Melts in your mouth, not in your hand


Ima Upgrade Ya

I got a new phone. I have entered the world of Apple.


The last time I regularly operated a Mac product it looked like this….

YOu have to understand. My mom was an old school programmer. One of the first of her kind. Im talking floppy discs, dos and IBM. This means that Apple and Mac in general were the devil to our family. We did not stray from IBM then Microsoft.


…here she is. She’s a beauty. And like beauty, she is a snotty, challenging, temperamental female. She is most definitely a “She”. It was no accident that Siri is a woman. If you are nice, think about what you say before you say it, have realistic requests and spoiler her rotten with pretty clothes and new makeup then she purrs. But do not approach her with your ignorance. She will slap you in the face with a brief retort then give you the silent treatment.

She is a haughty bitch. Yet, she is good at what she does so you cant really complain.

Needless to say, I have enjoyed the upgrade and hope that it will help elevate my blogging abilities!