NJ Food Photographer | The Swiss Pastry Shoppe | Union County, NJ | Cookies!!!

I started this blog post writing about Seasonal Mood Disorder and how I hate the cold and darkness coming early, but what’s the point. HA! If that doesn’t show you how I feel about the cold Winter months, I don’t know what would.

So instead I’m going to jump right into it! I try to find things to boost my spirits in these times. Between COVID and the cold, I look for things that bring me joy. Sometimes it means looking forward to the next Holiday. Sometimes it is thinking about ways to help others. Sometimes it’s just taking a mental health day and resting and taking it easy. Sometimes all of those things come out to be the same thing.

I started the New Year jumping back into my keto diet. And yes, it was difficult to get back into the swing of it. Sometimes we do hard things, ya know? But I also still have 2 little boys and a love for food photography. And I don’t have that much love for actually cooking or baking things myself. This month I chose to purchase some baked goods from a local bakery, The Swiss Pastry Shoppe. This Scotch Plains bakery has been family owned and operated for the last THIRTY YEARS! Wow! And when you go inside and smell the delicious fresh baked aromas, you can understand why.

They have everything from fresh baked bagels to decadent blueberry tart pies. And I’m not kidding, the smells in here dance upon your old factory senses like a beautiful ballet. It took everything in me not to cheat my diet and buy one of everything. It also feels a bit like walking back in time. In fact, it actually reminds me of the bakery that Mr Rogers used to visit on his show. It’s nothing fancy, just the essentials needed to make delicious treats. And I mean…they are truly DEE-LISH-US.

This Valentine’s Day, consider supporting small businesses in your area. Small businesses are essential to our communities and with the big mega stores and Supermarkets, and now COVID, our small businesses need our support. Go to your local florist for those roses! Get those chocolates from the local bakery! Get a stuffed animal from that adorable little toy store! Plan ahead, place your order, and help our small businesses!

So anyway, here are some pics I took of the pretty little cookies I got for the kids. For my food photography loop this month and also because they were perfect for the Valentine’s Day theme I was going for.

NJ | NYC Food Photographer

I have found myself in a very uncomfortable place.  A place of uncertainty, unknown, and often…a place of fear.  I was let go from my corporate job in November.  Since then, I have been searching for a new job.  A steady job.  A job with security, benefits, “knowns”.  Because, well, that’s all I have EVER known.  You grow up, you get a job, you get a paycheck and you get health insurance.  You get 2 weeks of vacation.  You get “x” number of sick days, “y” number of personal days.  You get “holidays”, whatever that corporation decides and dictates those “holidays” are.  My inbox notifications are going off every 30 minutes with job alerts to which I look through and apply steadily, often leaving me more exhausted and worried.

I know that I bring up my “single-mom-ness” often, but it has been an integral (and possibly the most challenging) part of my life.  Balancing corporate jobs and single-mom-ness to 2 school aged children has been a source of stress for as long as I can remember.  Having to care for sick kids, calls from school, sports, extracurricular activities, parent conferences, volunteer requests, etc. has been incredibly hard on me.  I do not have another adult to coparent with.  I know that I’m not unique, that my situation is not unique.  But guys, it is HARD.

Everyday I have an internal battle.  I tell fear to STFU.  I push myself to be positive, put one foot in front of the other, take baby steps towards living the life of my dreams without really knowing WHAT that life looks like.  Knowing that FEAR IS A LIAR and that I am SO WORTHY of living the life of my dreams.

So today I focused on Food Photography.  It is one of my passions.  I love photographing food.  I love trying to tell a story, create a feeling, playing with light and shadow.  I have a tendency to try to capture the “essence” or “soul” of everything I shoot and that can be said for the food & beverages that are my subjects.

Maybe someday…no… I KNOW THAT SOMEDAY I will be a known name in the Industry.  My images will grace the pages of the best Food and Restaurant magazines around the world.  I will earn a fantastic living doing photography and having fun.  It will afford me a flexible schedule and allow me time to be with my children when they need me.  I will be able to be PRESENT when I am with them and involved in their school and sports.  Photography is my passion and I will never give up on this dream of mine to have a creative career, doing what I love, and living in abundance.  I am a magnet for money and it comes easily and naturally to me.  And so I will meditate on that feeling.  The feeling that I have already BECOME this person and have everything I could ever want or dream of.  Thoughts become Things.

OK, well now that I got that off my chest, here are a couple of images I shot today.  I am working on building my F&B portfolio one day at a time.  If you know anyone in the Industry <<wink, wink>>… 🙂

The images below are of my Keto (or bulletproof) Coffee.  I have been on the keto diet since September and have lost almost 20 pounds.  It is hard to believe that I HAD 20 pounds to lose and even harder to believe that I still haven’t reached my goal weight.  But keto has been a major lifestyle change for me.  These keto coffees have gotten me through many mornings and honestly I find to be rather delicious.  I don’t have a link to a recipe.  All I really do is put some coffee (been loving Starbuck’s Pike Place lately), butter, coconut oil and a little salt (sometimes a little splash of vanilla extract) into my Nutri Bullet and mix.  It comes out frothy and delicious and helps to curb your hunger.  Some people claim that it gives them energy and focus.  I can’t say either way.  But I can say it’s delish!

Are any of you on the Keto Diet?  Do you have any staple Keto menu items that you can’t live without?  I’d love to hear what they are!

Thank you Universe, for always giving me what I need and the opportunity to grow and trust.  Thank you, Thank you, Thank you.

And so it is.




The Studio

1728 E 2nd Street

Scotch Plains, NJ 07076


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