DSC_0014

5 December 2012

Advent Tree

The season of Advent is in full swing and, as you may have noticed, I have taken a little break from blogging. While I was busy working (struggling) through a fun-but-non-blog-related writing project and planning some spring travel, the days became increasingly shorter, passed a little too quickly, and the holidays arrived. In the spirit of Advent, my thoughts seem to have moved more inward, deep and reflective, and have left me feeling less interested in the computer and more inspired by creating things with my hands. So during this time, I have been cooking… and crafting. It all started with the Elves’ Faire at the kids’ über crafty school and the requirement to provide 12-24 handmade items for the event. Once the initial pressure dissipated, I became inspired and began crafting. And I’m still going.

CONTINUE READING…

kinfolk3

2 November 2012

Kinfolk Magazine

“Invest in the human family. Invest in people. Build a little community of those you love and who love you.” - Mitch Albom, Tuesdays With Morrie

Apparently I am behind. It has taken me just a little over a year, but I have finally discovered the gorgeous publication, and concept, that is Kinfolk magazine. I had heard the project mentioned from time to time through various outlets, but didn’t seek it out until recently. And I have devoured it.

Kinfolk is a quarterly publication produced by a community of artists dedicated to the art of small gatherings. Its contents evoke the communal table in your local restaurant, or a Martha Stewart dinner party that has been dismantled to its most basic and essential elements, with only the unfussy remaining. CONTINUE READING…

cornbread

18 October 2012

Yogurt Cornbread + October Recipes

“Fall is here, hear the yell, back to school, ring the bell
brand new shoes, walking blues, climb the fence, book and pens
I can tell that we are gonna be friends”     - White Stripes, 2002

I happened upon the most beautiful bag of fresh stone-ground cornmeal a few weeks ago from our CSA, its color and texture inspiring me to reacquaint myself with an old friend – cornbread. Southerners take such pride in their cornbread that there is actually an annual festival centered around this granular soul food with a cook-off, 5k road race, and pageant for Little Miss Cornbread. Seriously.

CONTINUE READING…

DSC_0026

5 October 2012

Nashville, Tennessee (Viva Nashvegas!)

“Help me Merle, I’m breakin’ out in a Nashville rash… I’m too country now for country, ain’t that just like Johnny Cash.”    - Dale Watson

“So, what do you recommend for lunch?” our San Francisco based friends innocently inquired on their recent visit to Nashville. Donning a blank stare and a long pause, I was stumped. Befuddled. Stupefied. Anesthetized. How can it be this difficult to come up with a good lunch recommendation?

When I left Nashville in my early 20s, I never thought that I would return. Good bye and good riddance.  Of course I’d return to visit family and friends… but, I would never move back. However, as life would have it, I did move back. Three different times I have done this dance with the city of my birth, an on again off again relationship. But almost 4 years ago when we packed the Penske and left the beauty of Northern New Mexico, bound once again for a return to Nashville, it felt different. There were no tears shed while crossing the Mississippi. And this time, having never remained anywhere more than four years, I’m showing no symptoms of the four year itch, to move again, to get out of Dodge. I actually enjoy being here. Nashville has grown on me… or maybe I’ve just grown (up) on Nashville.

CONTINUE READING…

negroni3

7 September 2012

September Recipes + Grapefruit Negroni

It’s shoulder season! A term borrowed from the travel industry, shoulder season typically refers to the time between the peak crowds of summer and winter, and tends to be a great time for travel and finding solitude in the outdoors. In Taos, shoulder season meant depths of mud (Spring) and roasted green chiles (Fall). In Paris, shoulder season allows you to linger in the outdoor cafes without the summer crowds. And in the South Pacific, fall shoulder season produces some of the best diving with crystal clear water before cyclone season begins. Here in Nashville, even though we are fortunate to enjoy a year round “peak” season in terms of tourism, when September rolls in, to me, it’s shoulder season. The weather still feels a lot like summer. The farmers markets are abuzz, but the bounty of summer produce is dwindling. The pools have closed and the firefly’s glow has diminished. It’s transition time- the gateway to the best season in the South, fall.

CONTINUE READING…

tomato

29 August 2012

Recipe : Panzanella

“Your flight has been terminated and will not be landing in Roma,” the Alitalia pilot announced in his broken English.

Were we crashing? Hijacked? Returning to Paris?

Dazed by the announcement, I stared at the untouched food on the tray table in front of me, my brain reeling with ever frightening possibilities. After a poorly timed pause, the pilot concluded in a curt tone, “We will be landing in Firenze and the flight will not continue to Roma. Alitalia is now on strike. Prepare for landing.”

CONTINUE READING…

IMG_0611

17 August 2012

Marin County, California

It probably wasnt the safest decision, but as I drove across the Golden Gate Bridge last Thursday, it was too gorgeous not to capture.  The orange art deco suspension bridge against a bright blue sky, the windows down and the waters of the Pacific crashing below – I couldn’t let the moment pass undocumented.

CONTINUE READING…