Since it's been forever since my last post, an Instagram review of the last three months is in order. 

So it's obvious that the majority of my time was spent around dogs, Trill, and succulents.
But there were a few stand out moments.

+ We took a long awaited trip to Rockport, Massachusetts. I couldn't believe how comfortable we were from the moment we stepped out of the car. It was home, with the exception of the ocean and the reminder that we were somewhere special.
+ Mike and I also got engaged! ::enter tween squeal here:: 


In Shop News

Starting Thanksgiving through Cyber Monday, I am having a 30% off sale in my ETSY SHOP
And SOCIETY6 is offering free shipping on all items now through Cyber Monday
It's a good time to be shopping for yourself, and your loved ones that's for sure!




I did something totally out of my comfort zone, and I'm all giddy inside because I really freaking love the result. I'm taking a cue from Susannah Conway this month and doing the shit that I want to do. Regardless of what others think, or whatever the manifested fear driven devil on my shoulder may whisper into my ear. It's going to be really uncomfortable, and I can already feel myself compelled to run away, but I have to push through.

It's fitting that today starts the annual August Break that Susannah Conway started to give photographers and bloggers an opportunity to break away from the pressures of our hypersocial-sensitive minds. Every day she encourages us to take photographs of what we love and blog about it. No pressure, no judgement. And if you're stuck one day, there's a helpful photo prompt list to jumpstart your creativity. I'll be sharing my photographs at the end of every week, and I would love to see what any of you may be sharing.

Below is a free, printable calendar that I created to get you through this last Summer month. Click the image to download!

 photo AugustCalendar_TinaCrespoFreebie.jpg



Technically, it's Sunday. 
I love this little monster so much, I could eat her. 
It's good to be home.

+ note: I completely didn't know that Lillies were toxic to cats! They have since been taken outside, and no kitties were harmed.



The heat wave you all keep hearing about on the East Coast is real and we are all super cranky about it. I can't emphasis how much I loathe humid, sticky, thick air. I'm guaranteed to get migraines (in this case, every single day for the past five days), and it seems that I've picked up nice little jawn of food poisoning along the way. While I'm slowly making my way out of the darken rooms I've spent the majority of my week in, let's enjoy some (non-migraine) snippets from my recent vacation in Florida. Plus succulents. Succulents make everything better.

If you've noticed the blog has it's own little makeover, if you will. I am enjoying the minimalism that is the base of this template, mixed with simple links and golden social media icons. Plus super effing big photos! It doesn't hurt to mention that this template was purchased at PinkandLola on Etsy. She has other great items and all you have to do is download the file. Easy, I like that. What do you think?

I've been granted a VSCO Grid so that link is now available, too! If you have a grid of your own, leave the link in the comments I'd love to visit!



My thoughts on food this Summer is easy. Keep it simple, light, and refreshing. I don't want to spend any more time melting in the kitchen than I have to.

But before all that, it's great to have a go-to recipe that works with just about anything, can easily be put together, and is ridiculously tasty. Four ingredients. That's all you need.

Summer Salsa with Mango 
1 ripe mango, cut into bite size chunks
Juice from 1 lime + the zest
1 small white onion diced
A handful of fresh cilantro, roughly chopped

Each ingredient can be added in the amount that suits your taste. Simply toss all together in a bowl and chill until ready to use. It is addicting. I don't think I'll ever go back to a jar salsa again. If you like a little extra heat, add some Chalula sauce.

Also - having a problem chopping up that mango? You are not alone, I have destroyed many mangos in my time. Until I found this great video showing you how to cut a mango properly.


(Late) Spring Cleaning Inspires Sale

tina crespo, photo, fine art, sale, etsy, salt water cure

We have one closet in our apartment. It was a staircase that was floored off where it meets the second floor of this big, old house we live in. The stairs are still intact, and painted a glossy red that baffles me. This closet is a constant reminder that you better be damn good at Tetris. Or it wins.

It's just the beginning of the organizing and cleaning that comes with the change in the season. With the possibility of owning our first house in the near future, it's a bittersweet job that needs to be done. I love this apartment. I love the memories we've made here, and what it means to us.

But I've taken an emotional turn! Seasonal cleaning means two things.

The annual rewatching of Carnivale.
A 40% off all prints sale in my Etsy Store.

If you haven't watched Carnivale, I suggest you do! It's by far my favorite HBO production, and even though the cancellation is still a fresh wound (...some 8 years later), it doesn't seem to matter that we never got to see it play out to the end. Ok. That's a lie. What happened to Sophie?!

The shop sale ends May 28!


The Month of May

May in Philadelphia has started off chilly, with bursts of bright sun and I am absolutely loving it. I hope it lasts through the whole month, and June warms up slowly. Considering that isn't the style of weather the Northeast is accustomed to, this may just be wishful thinking.

I know I'm 5 days late, but wanted to celebrate the season change with a free desktop calendar!
Choose the size that best fits your screen, and download!



Flora in black & white

It's rare that I shoot in black and white. I never feel like I get it right. But this past weekend, when an early Season thunderstorm approached, it seemed appropriate. Now seeing these photographs a few days later, I don't remember the color of the flowers, but the feeling of that afternoon with its sporadic strong breeze, and the light drops of water on my neck is what sticks with me. 


Dessert Confession

Let it be known. I am a dessert addict. It's a problem, especially if you have Pinterest account and there is a steady flow of delicious, oozy chocolate cakes, or mini cakes with salted caramel, or double lemon cheesecakes staring you in the face. Factor in the whole eating right, making healthy food decisions, and the need to feel better (i.e. cutting out white sugar). So, you can no longer go to favorite food blogs, or pin your own favorite desserts in fear that you wake up in the middle of the night, and start baking.

It's been exactly 2 months since I've had a real dessert. I do feel much better, and I am making healthier choices. But I miss the whole routine of finding a recipe, tweaking it to your liking, buying the perfect ingredients, and settling into the kitchen to create something beautiful and delicious. I've been told "Just make the dessert, but not eat it! Simple!".

Are you serious?

Now that I feel I can eat just one piece and be satisfied (instead of, ya know, three slices.) it was time to get back in the kitchen. We had some friends over for dinner, and it seemed the perfect opportunity to feed my baking needs, and send the leftovers home with others.

Enter: Blackberry & Pecan Crumb Cake

Crumb cakes in general are amazing, but often can be too dry or not have a special ingredient that gives it a leg up on the other crumb cakes. Blackberries, with their jewel-like features can be so comforting and elegant. You can also substitute raspberries, or dried fruit like apricots. They will all taste amazing.

By adding chopped pecans and brown sugar to the crumb itself, it gives the cake a nutty and sweet crunch that is unexpected.

Blackberry & Pecan Crumb Cake

 crumb topping
1/2 cup pecans
1/3 cup brown sugar, firmly packed
1/4 cup flour
2 tablespoons cold unsalted butter

1/2 cup ( 1 stick) unsalted butter, cut into pieces
2 cups flour
1 cup granulated sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
2 eggs
1 cup buttermilk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 1/2 cups fresh blackberries

Heat oven to 350˚F. To make the crumb topping, you can use a food processor to pulse the ingredients together, or chop the pecans finely and add all ingredients to a stand mixer. The crumb topping should be a crumbly mixer, with the butter completely incorporated. Set aside.

Butter an 8-inch square baking pan. In your food processor, or stand mixer, add the butter, flour, granulated sugar, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon. In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, buttermilk, and vanilla. Add the flour mixture and mix just until combined.

Transfer cake batter to the prepared pan. Press blackberries into the batter, it's okay if they overlap. Sprinkle the crumb mixture over the blackberries until covered. Bake until a toothpick inserted comes out clean, about 55-60 minutes. Let cool completely in the pan before serving.