musings about food, travel, creativity and life


In the Kitchen

Saying  “A woman’s place is in the kitchen” might cause a stir.  But I just finished a book called A Woman’s Place (2019) that addresses that concept in a unique, positive, and assertive way. “Yes,” the authors say, a woman’s place is in the kitchen–as […]

The Joy of Reading

I just finished two fun summer reads, both of which are self-help books, of sorts–surprise! One is the book I checked out from The Community Library last week, Outer Order, Inner Calm by Gretchen Rubin. The second is a short on-line free guide called 50 […]

On the Road to Inspiration

Libraries inspire me. I love reading, doing research in quiet nooks, finding unexpected intriguing books, and am married to a former school librarian!  Luckily, we are currently in Ketchum, Idaho, which has a remarkable Community Library. ( So many elements make this a special place. […]

A Different Way to Travel

A Different Way to Travel

I’ve just started taking a trip around the world. And I’m doing it relatively inexpensively and definitely easily–by reading a book called The Atlas of Happiness: The Global Secrets of How to be Happy, by Helen Russell. The author, a British journalist, now living in […]

Leave It To Wisconsin

Madison inspires me. I love the university vibe, even though it is mellower in the summer–and hotter and muggier. Bicyclists are out in full force; music and food festivals abound; sailboats, kayaks and rowing shells sweep by on Lake Mendota. And–one of the best and […]

That First Cup

My favorite morning beverage is a caffè latte with homemade almond milk. After I assemble my first cup, I travel out to our porch, take in the valley view, settle on the green love seat that was my mom and dad’s and take that first […]

Treats Along the Way

  We just returned from a trip to Ashland, Oregon. The four days were filled with many gifts, including these edible delights prepared by friends and local establishments….   *Sweet Potato Enchiladas from the Oh, How She Glows Cookbook, a vegan cookbook by Angela Liddon, […]

Comfort Reading

Comfort Reading

It’s been a cloudier-than-normal week in Carmel Valley. I have done some outdoor physical things, but I’ve also done a lot of indoor reading. One book I am enjoying is called Eat This Poem, by Nicole Gulotta, “a literary feast of recipes inspired by poetry.” […]

A New Way to Travel

Sometimes it’s nice to have a foreign trip in the hopper.  Sometimes it’s nice to stay home. Right now, we are home and California-oriented.  What this home orientation is allowing is a series of unexpected gifts. Deepened friendships–with people and nearby places; home projects finally […]

“A Short Stack, Please”

A few months ago, I was in the Phoenix Gift Shop near the Nepenthe Restaurant in Big Sur and I saw a delightful series of colorful little cookbooks.  Each volume focused on a different ingredient or food, was curated by a well known food personality, […]

Food for the Soul

Food for the Soul

It must have been the visit to my hometown of San Francisco that has made me so nostalgic for “all things Italian.”  I thought a lot about my parents who were my first “bring joy to the table” mentors.    Both of them had a zest […]

What Can I Bring?

What Can I Bring?

  We’ve just been invited to a potluck and we’re on the list for a main course.  I don’t know yet what I’ll bring, but I do know which cookbook I’m going to use.  Appropriately, it is called Bring It!:Tried and True Recipes for Potlucks […]

Living in a Library–Well, Almost

Living in a Library–Well, Almost

What better place for a former librarian and his mate to spend a few days than the Library Hotel in New York City (  Located one and a half blocks from the New York City Library Main Branch, each of the 10 guestroom-floors is devoted […]

Familiar Pieces of Home

Here we are in Madison, Wisconsin, where the temperature may reach 30 today, if we are lucky. I love coming to Wisconsin when the temperatures start dipping. “Really?” some Wisconsinites ask, as they board their planes for warmer climes? Yes. Really. First of all, it […]

Good Books, Good Friends

A sign over-the-door saying “Joy” welcomed me to our book club meeting this week–how perfect! First, it was a glorious clear blue valley day. Second, the women in my book club always read thought-provoking  books.  And third, the book I was going to share was Joyful: […]