I struggle to find the words to really express what this blog means to me. More often than not I employ sarcasm, rough attempts at humor and literary slight of hand and try to divert emotion away from the depth of love I have of for this itty bitty slice of the internet that I call all mine. So many times a week, you all allow me into your rss feeds, your e-mail, your Facebook, and your instagrams talking about food. Sooo much fooodddd! And I am so beyond, incomprehensibly thankful for that.

And in between all of the recipes, dirty dishes, leftovers, food pawn-offs to everyone under the sun, and trying to hit the gym so the snoball cake doesn’t effect my popcorn-like exploding deriere, it can be struggle to make all of the facets of life coalesce and meld together.

A couple of weeks ago, I treked to the snowy hills of Park City for the Inspired Retreat thrown by Carrian of Oh Sweet Basil. As much as it was a reason to get together to talk blog stuff – it was a reason to discuss the things we miss out on at other conferences – being women with busy lives, balancing it all and finding the continued inspiration in our lives every day. It was just what the Blog Doctor ordered.

Us Baker’s Dozen of bloggsers – CarrianLaurenAnnalise, MeganDeb,  MeaganAlyssaBeckyNikkiBarbara,AshleyKristy – all gathered together at Deer Valley in Park City for a weekend full of inspiration, laughter, adventure and fun!


At our digs for the weekend – in Deer Valley – we set up in a gorgeous lodge surrounded by powdery snow and glistening sunshine. The matching glasses of vino on the balcony looked mighty amazing!


Our lodge was decorated door to door with Christmas spirit by Rod Works. That was the sure sign the holidays were totally in full swing! I’m trying to harness my I Dream of Jeannie blinking powers to magically decorate my apartment with everything there. So rustic, and country crafty – totally my speed.RodWorks Decorations

After our first night of girly bonding post dinner at Mariposa, we jumped into our comfy Plum Pretty Sugar pajama pants and devoured Cookie Chips. The next morning we woke up well rested for some breakfast before hitting the slopes with Skis on the Run, who came and outfitted us all with primo gear!


Photo by Lauren

I took my first ski lesson and had an absolute blast!! Deborah and I had a great instructor who loved talking food with us. She was a hoot and a half. And best part? I didn’t fall once!


 For lunch we came back to get warmed up at the lodge with a grilled cheese bar and homemade soups!! Star Fine FoodsHamiliton Beach and Pacific Foods got us all taken care of with panini presses and olive oils and stuff for our delicious soups – tomato and homemade chicken noodle if you wanted to know! So amazing!


After an afternoon of rest, inspiration and relaxation (which included a glass of wine, uncovering the snowed in hot tub and me sitting in it for 30 minutes with frozen hair) I was reinvigorated. Dinner that night was in Park City at Riverhorse on Main. Me, Meagan, Lauren and Annalise all ordered different drinks, and all different entrees so we could try a little bit of everything. The split-and-switch  at restaurants is the best course of action if you want to try a little bit of everything.


From Grier Mountain

The next morning, after an amazing dinner – it was almost time to pack up and go home. But I was so excited about my new found skiing prowess that I went back up the mountain with Lauren and Annalise for Round 2!! I practiced a little more and then made a final run on the big kid slopes. There was NOTHING blue about the run I made, at least the first part of it haha. And that’s when I made my first fall. But they were so patient – I got back up and made it all the way down!


The weekend was full of us girls sharing ideas, talking about the balancing all of the aspects of our lives, trying new ideas and helping one another in new endeavors with us each being each other’s best cheerleaders. It was just what we all needed.


Then it was back home. I can’t wait to go back to Deer Valley – I had so much fun being a ski bum, I think I found a new winter hobby!


They are so many sponsors that I have to thank profusely for their support and for making this weekend possible :: Deer Valley, Red Maple Run, Grace and LaceBrin and BellReal SaltNature Box, Beauty Box 5, Rod Works, Vintage Silverware, Krusteaz,Lole, Anolon, Star Fine FoodsReal Foods MarketCharming Beard CoffeeSkis on the RunGold Medal FlourWushthof KnivesHamiliton BeachPacific FoodsHeber Valley Cheese, and Whole Foods Park City.