I feel like I should have titled this post – What I did on my summer vacation.

Even though we just moved, I can easily say this workshop was the highlight of my summer. Right after we got the keys to our house, the movers dropped all the boxes off & a week later I was sending my kids to my sister in law’s house while I boarded a plane to Santa Fe.

It was at this point a photography workshop seemed like a particularly selfish, stupid decision. But the tickets were already booked, so I went with it.

I arrived in New Mexico alone. I make this point, because any mother will tell you, being alone is a very bizarre feeling. Personally, when I finally get an opportunity to be ALONE I always have grand ideas of what I’ll do. I’ll take long walks. I’ll leisurely stroll & do some shopping. I’ll drink wine & … whatever else you do when you drink wine alone in public.

The truth is, whenever I am finally ALONE I actually don’t know what to do. I end up sitting in my car listening to audio books or standing awkwardly on a street corner because I’m not sure what direction I should head. I buy an expensive, fresh pressed juice because I can’t think of anything else to do & then realize, I’m actually pretty full so I drink half & throw the rest away.

And these are all things I actually did in New Mexico when I was finally ALONE for the first time in… a really long time. (PS, if you need a good audio book, this one is the funniest thing I’ve read/heard ever. Ever). 

New Mexico, my food photografy workshop

The photography workshop was hosted by Eva Kosmas Flores & Carey Nershi, with a special guest appearance by Maggie Pate. Eva & Carey (& sometimes Maggie) do other workshops & if you love anything about travel, food or photography you should take one.

We stayed in an 18th century, historic adobe hacienda. It was stunning on all accounts & each room was perfectly outfitted with it’s own fireplace (none of which we actually needed to use, but still).

This looks like a scene from an Anthropologie layout but it’s the actual table we ate at every day.

It’s hard for me to talk about the workshop without frankly, gushing so much over Eva, Carey & Maggie. That sounds weird, but I’m sure the other attendees felt the same way so it’s a shared experience.

Eva, Carey & their amazing helpers, Beryl & Megan, made sure everything we needed was taken care of. They prepared all of our food & took recipe inspiration from local flavors, cooking a lot of amazing recipes from The Border Cookbook. We also got to dine on beautiful pottery pieces from both Hanselmann Pottery & Earth Fire Pottery. At the end of the workshop we were invited to choose pieces to purchase, which, of course everyone did, especially after seeing how beautiful and functional all the pieces were.

A highlight of the workshop was when Maggie showed us how to use natural indigo to die yarn & muslin. This was something I was really eager to do & after we all got to bond over our beautiful, stained hands.

The yarn we used to create our own weavings that we turned into wall hangings. I don’t want to brag, but I have to say, my wall hanging came out pretty amazing!

Towards the end of our trip we took an outing to Taos Pueblo. Taos Pueblo is a small town that’s composed of entirely adobe structures.  While there, we took a guided tour & learned that the Pueblo has been inhabited by the native people for over 1,000 years (& remains inhabited today). It has a rich history of both the native people & the Spanish who continued to try & dominate the land.

By the end of the trip, I admit, I was quite sad to leave. There’s something so magical about traveling & the way it influences my photography is unlike anything else. Seeing new places, meeting new people & photographing everything along the way is so soul filling. I was fortunate to take two photography trips this year & honestly, I can’t wait to plan my next one. Where should I go? Want to join me?