Wednesday, 16 January 2013 | 29 comments
i. It is garden-planning season around here. We went a little crazy poring over seed catalogues and, in the recent thaw we had, are doing some initial digging around to make new beds. This year, I will have a bed just for my lettuces and leafy greens, which are some of my favorite things to grow. This is because they’re easy, except where slugs are involved, and because I get to have that kindergarten-wonder moment almost every day when I go out to the garden or Ben brings in lettuce for a salad. Our friend Connie likes to say that this part of the year is best for gardeners: no drought, no pests, no weeds, no deer. And in your mind, the garden is always beautiful and successful. (I believe the subtext there is, “So enjoy it while you can.”) » Read more «
Wednesday, 15 August 2012 | 23 comments
It’s been awhile since I’ve been back to east Africa. It’s a place that once wholly captured me. I thought I would never come back. Last night, instead of packing, I found myself sorting through my photos from a few years ago to give you a taste (if you’ve never been to Kenya or Tanzania or Uganda)–of how diverse and gorgeous it is.
Monday, 23 April 2012 | 60 comments
I’ve been on a memoir kick. My extended commute gives me ample time to read, and without realizing it, books by extraordinary women have floated to the top of the pile. First, it was Madeleine L’Engle’s A Circle of Quiet (any other Wrinkle in Time fans out there?); then, Tina Fey’s Bossypants (I cannot get over how fiercely funny and smart this book was); and most recently, Julia Child’s My Life in France.I don’t know about you, but when I picture Julia Child, I picture either the dual tomes of Mastering the Art of French Cooking, or a tall-but-hunched-over, older lady on PBS. I’ve always understood that she’s legendary, and even perhaps understood why, but never did I imagine I’d be so captivated by a recounting of her life. » Read more «
Tuesday, 3 January 2012 | 6 comments
Happy New Year! At midnight, a big group of friends ran with us outside, around the new house, banging pots and pans with wooden spoons, and whooping and hollering. It felt good. I can only hope your 2012 was rung in as exuberantly. I’m hanging out over with Kelsey of the blog Happyolks with a recipe for goat cheese toasts with yellow split pea spread this week, with some thoughts about gathering. Go check it out, if you’re so inclined.
Friday, 16 December 2011 | 10 comments
Do you make rules for yourself? I started to write this post, and then realized that I might sound a little crazy, talking about lists of rules I self-enforce. I don’t mean self-denial or masochism. They’re silly rules, but they’re useful. For instance, there is a growing list of publications I’m no longer allowed to read on the train home, because I am statistically more likely to stop at the grocery store and impulse-buy ingredients for recipes that I need to have if I read them. No looking at the Anthropologie catalogue, ever (for similar reasons). No drinking an entire bottle of red wine by myself on a Sunday. I’m joking about the last one. Sort of.Similarly, there is a list of states in which I should not allow myself to go to a farmer’s market. There was that time I was starved for color during a week of grey days and bought radishes just because they were so rosy. Or the time I got peach-drunk on the promise of summer and brought home a bushel of peaches. Then, when summer was waning, I became a bit obsessive about wringing the last drops out of the season, and bought every single forlorn, split tomato from a farmstand. I am a woman that needs a little structure, if nothing else, for the sake of my budget. » Read more «