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Blog — "travel"

A Wood-Fired Pizza Feast in Indiana

Heidi Shenk "food" "travel"

Driving to Wyoming and back is no small feat when you live in Maryland or anywhere on the East Coast for that matter. Our final stops on our vacation were Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks, but we decided to take our time getting there so that we wouldn't burn out before we got there. Our trip started with a short drive to Cleveland to stay overnight at Andrew's parents' house, drop Lilah off for the next two weeks, and to pop in for his cousin's wedding ceremony. After the ceremony (which ended up being a full Greek Orthodox mass-- that was a new one for both of us!), we took off to Indiana to visit my parents.

A visit with my parents in the summer now seems synonymous with relaxing time with good food. As you may know, my mom is a baker and uses a wood-fired oven that my dad built at her bakery for a large portion of the breads that she bakes. She also offers other delicious food items from time to time that are produced in her wood-fired oven. My parents loved the oven at the bakery so much, that my dad decided to build a second one in their back yard a couple years ago. This means that if the weather is nice, there is surely to be a wood-fired oven feast to be had while visiting.

This time, we enjoyed wood-fired pizza and a fresh salad full of veggies from my mom's garden. My grandmother came to join us in our feast as well. To be honest, there is little that compares to food that comes out of a wood-fired oven-- the flavors are just amazing! It was nice to split up our drive west relaxing on the patio, meeting my parents' new dog Stella, seeing my grandmother, and eating amazing food.

Food has always played an important role in my family, and this visit was no different. These sorts of visits are always something to look forward to.

After our quick, two night stay in Indiana, we hit the road again and made our way to South Dakota. Stay tuned for photos from the next part of our trip!

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Road Trip!

Heidi Shenk "travel"

If you've wondered why I've been gone a bit more than I usually tend to be these last few days, it's because I've been getting things together for our massive road trip. Today is officially my last day of blogging until we return in several weeks. We were up late last night running errands to pick up a few extra camping supplies that we had run out of, get some of the non-perishable food that we wanted for our trip, and go through our camping gear to make sure everything was there.


This is not my first big road trip. In my lifetime, I've gone on many two, and even three, week trips with my parents. Out to the Grand Canyon and up through the Rocky Mountains, to Glacier National Park and on to Seattle and down Highway 1 to California, up through Canada and around the Gaspe Peninsula to name just a few. I've been lucky to take the trip we're taking these next two weeks twice already-- out through the Badlands in South Dakota, on to Yellowstone in Wyoming and down to The Grand Tetons.

However, this trip is a first for Andrew. While he has been to Colorado and to the Southwest once or twice, we has never actually gone on a road trip like this. Being one of five kids growing up, road trips were not such an easy option. Imagine traveling across the country in a mini van with five kids crammed in the back and then trying to set up a campsite while trying to wrangle those same five kids. I don't blame his parents for not wanting to do that. This is the kind of trip Andrew has wanted to do for a long time, and when he asked me which parks he should see, there was no hesitation in stating that this was the route we should take.

So we head off tomorrow afternoon. Our plan is to stop tomorrow night in Cleveland at Andrew's parents' house where we will drop off Lilah for free pet sitting (They are amazing for doing this! And Lilah loves staying with them-- think big yard to run in, another dog to play with, and all sorts of adventures) and maybe go to a wedding ceremony on Saturday. Then on to Indiana to my parents' house for two days before we head off to the parks.

I will not be blogging while I'm on the trip. I love being able to disconnect completely when I'm on vacation (I may have an Instagram here or there if I remember! So be sure to follow @heidishenk), but I have some amazing ladies filling in for me while I'm gone. Be sure to give them some love and to check out each of their blogs as well-- they are all fabulous!

But for now, it's road trip mix making time. Time to get some of those playlists together on the iPod. Have you been on a road trip like this before? What are your all time favorite road trip songs?

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Weekend Ski Trip? and the Time I Thought I Was Hermann Maier

Heidi Shenk "skiing" "snow" "travel"

It's Friday which means time for another weekend adventure! This time we're headed to western Maryland for the weekend to go skiing. We're going with a group of friends and staying together at a house we rented for the weekend. The only problem (hence the title "Weekend Ski Trip?" with the question mark) is the weather. With a ridiculously warm winter we're a bit worried that snow will be an issue. And while it's supposed to snow there tonight, the forecast for Sunday and Monday is sunny and 52 degrees!

And even if there is snow, we're expecting horrible, icy snow. Or we're expecting to be pelted in the face with the snow-makers the whole time we're skiing. Neither which I am looking forward to. And I was spoiled with the powdery, fluffy stuff from early on, thus quickly coming to hate the East Coast ice. The second time I ever went skiing, I was tackling this mountain, above treeline, at Arapahoe Basin in Colorado.

Not to worry, you must be thinking, she must be a stellar athlete with natural skiing abilities. Don't let the photo fool you, as probably a mere three minutes later, I sustained the worst ski crash I've ever experienced. Let's just say, I flew sideways through the air much like Hermann Maier did in the 1998 Nagano Winter Olympics.


Hermann and I had a similar, yet different crash. Hermann flew sideways through the air. I flew sideways through the air. Hermann's skis popped off like they're supposed to. My right ski didn't, twisting my knee with my foot (still in ski) next my head. Hermann flew through two snow fences. I was stopped by a snow fence on which the other side was a steep side of a mountain. Hermann was hospitalized and severely injured. I landed on my left hip and had a contusion the diameter of a volleyball on my outer thigh and hip. Hermann didn't ski for quite a while after his crash. I skied down the rest of the mountain without another crash. And somehow, despite my entire body aching worse than I can remember in a long time, I went skiing again the next day.

Ok. So maybe it really wasn't like Hermann Maier's crash, but in my head it played out that way. But I really did fly sideways through the air, really, I did. You can just ask Andrew who saw it all go down and had to take his skis off to hike back up the mountain and help me get out of my tangled mess.

Crazy? I blame Andrew and my sister's boyfriend at the time. I believe their last words (both as experienced skiers) were, "Don't worry, you'll be fine up there. You're super athletic and shouldn't have a problem."

So tomorrow I will go skiing down the icy mountain like a granny. Make fun of me all you want, but my normal, go get 'em attitude toward sports changes slightly with skiing. Instead, my main objective is to have fun, but leave the mountain for the day without a single crash. So far, since my wipe out at A-Basin, I've done pretty well with a few bumps and bruises. And so far I'm undefeated against Maryland's mountains.

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Travel Colors

Heidi Shenk "design" "stationery" "travel"

You know those stationery sets that I've been talking about? Well, I have a little sneak peek for you. Each design is based off of a color pallet that has a bit of meaning behind it. All of the colors are pulled directly from my own photography from my personal travels all over the world and Baltimore. While I am waiting to reveal these designs to you until they've been printed and listed, I'll let you see what sorts of colors I've been playing with over the last few weeks.


Sherwood Garden

Rocky Mountains


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