Welcome to Mind Your Bees and Trees. We are Amanda and Kristen and we have been best friends for 27 years. We have always had a great passion for anything food and finally decided to start a blog together as one way to keep us connected while living so far apart.
To say that we did everything together as kids is an understatement. Starting at a very young age, we would sleep over at one another’s house—sometimes making it through the night and sometimes needing to call our parents to come get us in the middle of the night—but always having a blast together. We didn’t attend the same school until we got to high school so when we weren’t in school, we wanted to spend every waking moment together. We would think of any excuse in the book to convince our parents to let us spend just one more night together. We shared everything we had and always wanted to dress as twins and have our moms tell other people that we were sisters.
Thinking back on our childhood, we have shared so many great memories and many of them revolve around food. Our friendship created a bond not just between the two of us, but one that united our families as well. Our families celebrated every holiday together; we threw elaborate birthday parties with extraordinary cakes; we went on family vacations together and spent many evenings gathered around the dinner table at one of our houses, laughing and enjoying a delicious meal as one big family. As we got older, we even used food to ‘bribe’ our parents. When we were about 11 and 12 years old, we made a three-course meal for our parents to ask them if Kristen could go on vacation with Amanda’s family to Florida! To our delight, it worked J.
Our passion for cooking and baking stemmed from watching our moms and grandmothers in the kitchen. We always wanted to be part of the action. We wanted to measure, mix, and stir whatever we could get our hands on. We spent hours in the kitchen with our moms, making cookies, decorating gingerbread houses and “yummy cookies”, and even experimenting on our own, making what we called “yucky stuff” by combining everything and anything we could find in the refrigerator and cupboards. Those experiments quickly ended one day when Kristen’s mom said we had to drink our “yucky stuff”—it was fun to mix everything together, but it was no fun to eat it! Our kitchen experiments were more and more successful the older we got, but we were never very good at cleaning up after ourselves and to this day when we cook together we can hear our moms saying, “Oh girlies, come back to the kitchen please” because there was always something we forgot to do.
To this day we still think of ourselves as sisters and have maintained our friendship despite the thousands of miles that separate us. Kristen is now living in Japan and after not seeing each other for three years; Amanda was able to visit her for five weeks. During that time together, we cooked and baked up a storm. We also spent a lot of time talking about healthy, mindful, and wholesome eating. We are both very conscientious about consuming food in its most natural state and grown locally, but we both think we could do a better job with eating this way. Therefore we decided to start this blog to chronicle our journey together as we strive to eat more wholesome and unrefined foods. The title of our blog—Mind Your Bees and Trees—reflects our belief that eating this way means being more mindful, not just of the foods we consume, but also of the way we take care of our bodies and the environment. We hope you enjoy reading our blog as much as we enjoy writing it, and allow it to be a resource to you as you become more mindful of the bees and trees in your life.