Hi, I'm Amanda. Welcome!
I started this blog about a year ago when my husband and I moved to the gorgeous subtropical island of Okinawa, Japan. I first began Marshalls Abroad as a daily form of communication for our family & friends back home. Japan is such a remarkable country that photos often share the many places we get to see far better than words do. It has also been a total joy to befriend bloggers and visitors from all over the world. Thank you for taking the time to stop by and for continually leaving such encouraging words!

We love to travel together. We've been to 24 different countries... and counting!

This blog has really become a place for me to share my passion for cooking and photography,  along with the creativity and inspiration running through my mind.
My darling husband, travel, simplicity, beautiful cultures, peonies, gardenias, the ocean, strong marriages, academics, and Christ's Grace inspire me.  After quitting my full-time job as a journalist in Washington, DC to move out here with my love, I found myself excited and impassioned about cooking. It is an art form that I have always enjoyed, but didn't fully realize or focus on before moving to Okinawa. 
It has been so much fun to have the time to create fresh, healthy and beautiful meals... and to take a ridiculous amount of photos!

I grew up with literally the best cook in the world -- my Mama! It is true that I am biased, but any of our friends could tell you the same as they beg for seconds and thirds. My Mom gave of herself through every meal she made us -- from Mediterranean pastas and breads to roast lamb and vegetables, to grilled fish or tri-tip -- we ate so well in our house! But it didn't stop there. She taught me not only how to cook, but the importance of fresh, healthy ingredients to create simple and masterful meals, as well as the necessity of sitting down together each day as a family over delicious, natural, whole food. I also had the amazing opportunity to study abroad in Italy for a year and was blessed to learn how to cook Italian cuisine in Rome and Padova.  I shopped daily for fresh ingredients in the piazza markets and grew in love and knowledge of wine. It took all of about two seconds to fall in love with pesto, parm, real pizza, cappuccino, tomatoes, and gelato of course. Living on Okinawa, which boasts of one of the healthiest diets in the entire world, my love for cooking has been further heightened and has given both Cam and I an appreciation for local cuisine. Okinawans seasonally eat what they farm on island and what they catch in the sea.

 Cooking is truly a beautiful art that we all have the ability to possess and share. I believe that no meal ever has to be boring. From the textures of vegetables, to richness in meats, to the colors of fruit, the options of natural foods are as vast as the possibilities of what can be put on the table each day. I am also an interior design-wannabe and absolutely love a simple, beautiful home and table and watching how it can transform a meal to bless those who are gathered to eat. 
My hope is to spark in you what my Mom, Italy and Okinawa have sparked in me.
Thank you so much for reading!
I hope you enjoy the travels, Okinawan life and dishes I create in our tiny kitchen as much as we do!

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