November 3, 2015

Bloggers From Omaha – Kathleen Hammack

Kim’s note: This is the 10th installment in a series introducing different voices from around Omaha. Each week Whenever I can, I’ll introduce a different Omaha blogger, what his or her blog is all about, and since I love getting recommendations as much as I love giving them, I’ve asked each person to share some Omaha tips. I met today’s featured blogger at a cookbook launch and was impressed with her photography and the concept behind her blog. I think you will be too! Hope you enjoy getting to know Omaha bloggers!

Thinking Smaller

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Name: Kathleen Hammack

Blog: Thinking Smaller

Where to find her: Instagram; FacebookPinterest; and Google+

Describe your blog in five words: Behind the scenes visual storytelling.

Photo courtesy Kathleen Hammack

Photo courtesy Kathleen Hammack

What are the two most popular posts on your blog? What makes them so good?

1. Finding Metta

2. Concrete, Wood & Steel

Honestly, I write about and photograph things that I’m genuinely curious about. I think people are interested in the stories behind small businesses. It’s inspiring for people to see that small businesses can happen anywhere -studios, co-working spaces, your kitchen, your basement. Sharing process photos is something I added a few months into the blog. Just meeting people at markets and shows was not enough for me. I wanted to know more about their creative processes, what inspires them and what’s next for their businesses.

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In Kathleen’s blog, Thinking Smaller, she often shares process photos, providing insight to the creative process of local artists, craftsmen and others. Photo courtesy Kathleen Hammack

What social media channel are you on the most and why? Instagram. I love the visual aspect of it and I’ve connected with some great folks. I always enjoy seeing little snippets of what people are eating, creating and doing.

You get one hour to spend on writing, where you do go in Omaha? Actually, I do all my writing from home, usually in the evening. I can be pretty easily distracted so I like to sit down and focus.

If friends visit from out of town, what three places would you take them to? My mind immediately goes to food so I would have to say Dante for pizza, Avoli for pasta and eCreamery for ice cream. During the warmer months, hitting up the zoo and farmers markets are musts.

What’s your favorite free thing to do in Omaha? I like to spend a lot of time outside so I visit a lot of parks – Walnut Creek is a favorite spot. I also have to say that the Art Works space in the Joslyn Art Museum is great for kids.

More about Kathleen

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Kathleen Hammack, the writer behind the blog Thinking Smaller. Photo courtesy Kathleen Hammack

Kathleen was born and raised in Iowa and currently lives in Omaha, Neb., with her husband and three children. She received her BA in Sociology from Iowa State University and an MSW from Portland State University. Prior to starting a family, Kathleen worked in healthcare management as a medical social worker. She is constantly inspired by food, travel, natural light and people who are passionate about what they do.

October 27, 2015

Bloggers From Omaha No. 9 – Kitty & Kevin

Kim’s note: This is the ninth installment in a series introducing different voices from around Omaha. Each week Whenever I can, I’ll introduce a different Omaha blogger, what his or her blog is all about, and since I love getting recommendations as much as I love giving them, I’ve asked each person to share some Omaha tips. Today’s blogger, Kitty, writes a lot about tackling student loans and traveling smart (she’s in Brazil right now…). But, I also know her through her photography side gig. So, I’ll vouch for both her writing and mad photo skills. Hope you enjoy getting to know Omaha bloggers!

 

Kitty & Kevin

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Name: Kitty

Blog:Kitty & Kevin

Find her on: Facebook

 

Describe your blog in five words.

Smart Financial Decisions after college

Kitty and Kevin on one of their many adventures abroad.

Kitty and Kevin on one of their many adventures abroad. Photo courtesy Kitty & Kevin

 

What are the two most popular posts on your blog? What makes them so good?

One of our most popular posts is “Debt Free” which is when we celebrated with our readers the day we paid off the last cent of our $100,000 of student loan debt. Many of our readers are going through similar struggles, we support each other, and it is popular because they celebrated with us!

Omaha blogger Kitty and her husband Kevin write about paying off loans and traveling smart.

Omaha blogger Kitty and her husband Kevin write about paying off loans and traveling smart. Photo courtesy Kitty & Kevin

Our other very popular post is “Traveling Cheap” where we give a brief overview of a few of our tips and tricks to traveling around the world without breaking the bank.  Having so much student loan debt right when you start your career is awful…you have a serious weight on your shoulders in an already stressful time. This is a glimpse into how we made sure to still love our lives in our 20s, yet still make smart financial decisions for the future. After that post, we continued to share a lot more about how we travel inexpensively!

 

What social media channel are you on the most and why?

Personally? Instagram and Facebook. As for the blog, I really only post to Facebook! It’s a way for readers to keep up to date on our posts, without having to go check every day.

 

You get one hour to spend on writing, where in Omaha do you go?

Today I’d say Caffeine Dreams…tomorrow maybe it would be something different!

 

If friends visit from out of town, what three places would you take them to?

In the summer I’d pick (In no particular order):

1. Old Market/Gene Leahy Mall–I’m never too old for the slides

2. Depending on the day, a free evening event: Jazz on the Green, Music and Movies, Shakespeare in the Park, Monday Night at the Movies

3. The Zoo…because who doesn’t love monkeys!

 

What’s your favorite free thing to do in Omaha?

Oh man…this is tough. Since we made a point to leave cheaply, we’ve exhausted and researched so many of these (in large part thanks to this blog!) For Kevin, he would say it is Joslyn Art Museum. For me (Kitty), I’d probably say my favorite is Jazz on the Green. As a couple we love walking around the Farmers Market in the summers in the old market.

 

More about Kitty & Kevin

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Photo by Brian Wright

Kitty & Kevin is a blog written by (surprise!) a husband and wife team, Kitty and Kevin! For the last two years, our focus has been helping other 20-somethings that are drowning in student loan debt, learn to be financially responsible while still enjoying life. You’ll read about our travels (places like Brazil, Egypt, and Ireland in 2015…as well as many U.S. cities) and how we were able to travel smart and still pay off $100,000 of student loan debt by our second wedding anniversary.

October 20, 2015

Bloggers From Omaha No. 8 – Jamie Gates

Kim’s note: This is the eighth installment in a series introducing different voices from around Omaha. Each week Whenever I can, I’ll introduce a different Omaha blogger, what his or her blog is all about, and since I love getting recommendations as much as I love giving them, I’ve asked each person to share some Omaha tips. Today’s blogger, Jamie, has recipes that are going to make you very popular – your kids will thank you! Hope you enjoy getting to know Omaha bloggers!

The Kitchenarium

Kitchenarium

Name: Jamie Gates

BlogThe Kitchenarium

Find @thekitchenarium atTwitterFacebookPinterest, Instagram and Snapchat

 

Describe your blog in five words. Family friendly recipes for everyone.

 

What are the two most popular posts on your blog? 

Food that's almost too cute to eat. Almost. I'd eat them. Photo courtesy Jamie Gates

Food that’s almost too cute to eat. Almost. I’d eat them. Photo courtesy Jamie Gates

What makes them so good?

People love cute food. Maybe they don’t necessarily make it but they pin it hoping to make it someday.

Bakery muffins are so good because they are huge and sky high. People want to be able to replicate that at home.

 

Jamie's sky-high Jumbo Bakery Muffins. Photo courtesy Jamie Gates

Jamie’s sky-high Jumbo Bakery Muffins. Photo courtesy Jamie Gates

What social media channel are you on the most and why?

It is a close tie between Instagram and Snapchat. I love the beautiful pictures on Instagram but the real life stories I follow on Snapchat make me feel sane. Big time food bloggers burn their dinner too.

 

You get one hour to spend on writing, where in Omaha do you go?

Any time I’ve written outside of my house I’ve gone to Aromas in Benson. It is nice to have a space to focus on my work without it competing with my children’s attention too.

 

If friends visit from out of town, what three places would you take them to?

You mean somewhere that isn’t the zoo? Blue Sushi and Sake for their lunch special, Drover for Whiskey Steak, and Hitchcock Nature Center for a hike.

 

What’s your favorite free thing to do in Omaha?

Going to the library. I love all the libraries in town and make it a point to visit a different one each time.

More about Jamie

Jamie Gates, the voice behind The Kitchenarium

Jamie Gates, the voice behind The Kitchenarium

I’m a wife, mother, friend, coffee drinker, cookie baker, and frequent dinner party host. I spend my days washing dishes and folding laundry, and my evenings are full of soccer, ballet, and swimming lessons. I am a PTA mom who will happily bake the teachers dozens and dozens of cookies or cupcakes. I am most comfortable in the kitchen being host to family and friends. Good food, cold drinks, and endless laughter fill my heart with joy. Entertaining is my niche and I hope to inspire you to break bread with your family, friends, and neighbors.

October 13, 2015

Bloggers From Omaha No. 7 – Lisa & Tim Trudell

Kim’s note: This is the seventh installment in a series introducing different voices from around Omaha. Each week Whenever I can, I’ll introduce a different Omaha blogger, what his or her blog is all about, and since I love getting recommendations as much as I love giving them, I’ve asked each person to share some Omaha tips. Today you get a duo – Lisa and Tim Trudell. Follow their blog and you just might discover the destination of your next trip. Hope you enjoy getting to know Omaha bloggers!

The Walking Tourists

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Name: Lisa and Tim Trudell

Blog: The Walking Tourists

Find them on: Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest

Describe your blog in five words. Nature, History, Food, Photography, Travel

Photo courtesy The Walking Tourists

Photo courtesy The Walking Tourists

What are the two most popular posts on your blog? What makes them so good?

Lincoln’s new Railyard District offers fun dining, entertainment

The Railyard is the shiny new entertainment and dining area in Lincoln that people want to know more about. When people are going to Lincoln for concerts, Husker games, and many other events, they want to know what there is to check out and most importantly where to grab a bite to eat.

‘Halloween Haunt’ scares up good time at KC’s Worlds of Fun

The Halloween Haunt at Kansas City’s Worlds of Fun is a very popular attraction for those seeking frights and thrills. We got to check this out for the first time with Nicole (of Mom Saves Money) and her husband, Pete. We enjoyed the many roller coasters and got in some chills after dark when the scary characters came out and we clung onto each other as we made our way through a haunted house.

 

What social media channel are you on the most and why?

Head to Instagram to follow The Walking Tourists' account if you love destination photos like this. Photo courtesy The Walking Tourists

Head to Instagram to follow The Walking Tourists’ account if you love destination photos like this. Photo courtesy The Walking Tourists

We are mostly on Facebook because I feel that most of our fans are also there. Although I am loving Instagram for sharing our adventures through photos there.

 

You get one hour to spend on writing, where in Omaha do you go?

Aroma Bliss is a great location downtown to get ambiance and great cup of coffee and a tasty pastry treat.

 

If friends visit from out of town, what three places would you take them to?

Bison at the Simmons Conservation Park and Wildlife Safari. Photo courtesy The Walking Tourists

Bison at the Simmons Conservation Park and Wildlife Safari. Photo courtesy The Walking Tourists

Zoo and Wildlife Park

Bob Kerrey Bridge for a nice walk and view of downtown

Old Market with stops at Hollywood Candy, Passageway Gallery

It’s so hard to choose as Omaha has so much to offer.

 

What’s your favorite free thing to do in Omaha?

Walking the Old Market to the Bob Kerrey Bridge. There is so much to see and do on a nice day in the downtown area and most of it is FREE.

 

More about Lisa & Tim

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We love traveling – locally, regionally, nationally and internationally (not as often as we would like). We originally started the site to share our experiences with friends and family.

Whether it’s across the world or in our own backyard in Omaha, Nebraska, we are lovers of all things food, travel, and adventure! We visit various cities in search of new experiences and undiscovered treasures. Lisa Trudell was in the travel industry for over 16 years now working for both a hotel company and later as a travel agent. Tim Trudell is the photographer of the couple taking photos of fabulous places, people, and events. We have traveled for business, for sporting events, extended family trips and of course for fun. The reason for the walking tourists just indicates that we like to take our time walking to most local destinations once there to be able to discover the little things along the way.

October 6, 2015

Bloggers From Omaha No. 6 – Erin Mohring

Kim’s note: This is the sixth installment in a series introducing different voices from around Omaha. Each week Whenever I can, I’ll introduce a different Omaha blogger, what his or her blog is all about, and since I love getting recommendations as much as I love giving them, I’ve asked each person to share some Omaha tips. Erin Mohring’s blog is more than a lifestyle blog – you’re going to leave her page feeling inspired and probably ready to invest in some stylish clothes. Hope you enjoy getting to know all these bloggers from Omaha!

Home with the Boys

Omaha 5K Whole Fam

Blogger Erin Mohring, the voice behind Home With The Boys, and the boys. Photo courtesy Erin Mohring

Name: Erin Mohring

Blog: Home with the Boys

Find @homewiththeboys on: Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, Periscope and Facebook

 

Describe your blog in five words: Faith, family, fashion, food, fun!

Photo courtesy Erin Mohring

Photo courtesy Erin Mohring

What are the two most popular posts on your blog? What makes them so good? I have a couple of posts about Advent reading with the Jesus Storybook Bible that get traffic all the time. I think people are drawn to a simple way to share the real reason for Christmas with their kids using a bible they might already have in their home!

I also have people constantly viewing my tutorial for big, beautiful paper snowflakes! I guess Christmas and winter are popular topics with my audience!

 

What social media channel are you on the most and why? Instagram has my heart. I love capturing moments, sharing them, and enjoying the images others share! I am visual person and love photography, so Instagram is my first love.

 

You get one hour to spend on writing, where in Omaha do you go? Stories Coffeehouse! The atmosphere is amazing and so are the lattes. Try the salted caramel or s’mores latte.

 

If friends visit from out of town, what three places would you take them to? Henry Doorly Zoo, Old Market, eCreamery

 

What’s your favorite free thing to do in Omaha? Joslyn Art Museum has something for everyone! The ArtWorks section is amazing for the kids! Our whole family loves going there often.

Art Works Collage

Photos by Erin Mohring

More about Erin

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Erin finds joy in her life as a Jesus-follower, wife, mama to three handsome guys, writer at Home with the Boys, and co-founder of Raising Boys Ministries. You will also find her writing monthly for Tommy Nelson, sharing her thoughts in ParentLife magazine, and speaking at women’s events. She has a passion for healthy living, running, fashion, sports, and encouraging families to form strong bonds based on faith!

September 29, 2015

Bloggers From Omaha No. 5 – Janelle Shank

Kim’s note: This is the fifth installment in a series introducing different voices from around Omaha. Each week Whenever I can, I’ll introduce a different Omaha blogger, what his or her blog is all about, and since I love getting recommendations as much as I love giving them, I’ve asked each person to share some Omaha tips. Janelle Shank is a marvel in the kitchen, and if her dishes taste half as good as they look in her photos, she’s one of the best food bloggers around. Hope you enjoy getting to know all these bloggers from Omaha!

 

Bakes In Slippers

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Name: Janelle Shank

Blog: Bakes In Slippers

Find @bakesinslippers on: Pinterest, Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and Snapchat

 

 

Describe your blog in five words. Simple, yet delicious homemade food.

 

Janelle's dutch oven bread

Janelle’s dutch oven bread. Photo courtesy Janelle Shank

 

What are the two most popular posts on your blog? What makes them so good?

Cranberry Sauce – it can be made in the slow cooker and is just a holiday tradition.

Chocolate Chip Brownies with Sea Salt – I mean come on it’s chocolate, brownies, chocolate chips and sea salt (perfection!)

 

What social media channel are you on the most and why? Instagram – I love the visual beauty of it. You can feel invited into someone’s home or world with just a picture.

Simple Chocolate Cake from the Omaha blog, Bakes in Slippers.

Simple Chocolate Cake from the Omaha blog, Bakes in Slippers. Photo courtesy Janelle Shank

 

You get one hour to spend on writing, where in Omaha do you go? If not at home, I am very basic and would hit a Panera. I love the people watching aspect of it.

If friends visit from out of town, what three places would you take them to? The Zoo of course, JCoco for dinner, and Stella’s for burgers.

What’s your favorite free thing to do in Omaha? Walk around downtown and taking pictures. Living downtown makes it easy, you meet and see so many types of people.

 

More about Janelle

Janelle went to culinary school and graduated with her baking and pastry certificate, quickly realizing that everyday professional baking wasn’t for her. Soon an interest in recipe development, food photography, and food writing lead to the decision to start Bakes in Slippers. Janelle’s approach to food is simple, not overly complicated, but always completely delicious. You don’t have to churn your own butter or grind your own spices to get amazing results.