the map

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Every so often I post a picture that includes the wall beyond our table and someone asks what is that? That, I say, is the map. And I always promise to tell the story of of the map, someday.

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what to do with preserved lemons, part 2

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Hello from here. (Cold, cold, cold.) I’m going to try to finally wash my windows today, as the world has lost some of its usual sparkle.

I’m mired down in January already, just when I’d really decided, last month, that I unapologetically love winter. But last month there were bonfires and birthdays and cocktails and lights. I walked the puppy down to the river twice a day without fail, stomping over the snow and breathing in the cold air like it was addictive as tobacco. January came and the world froze and the news turned horrible and I was sick in bed for a whole week. Freida and I go out in 5-minute bursts until she starts to shake and I start to cough, and then we come back in and she presses her wet nose against the window again to watch for the dog next door who stands in the corner of the yard to taunt her. No wonder the windows are so dirty. I’m finding these little bits here and there, though. Sadie practicing Chariots of Fire on the trumpet. Joey putting kitchen mixes on my phone for me to find when I need them. I’m teaching my sister how to drive. Waking up in the cold morning with Freida under the covers, pressed against my feet.

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in the new year

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I want to tell you a little bit about Freida.

I’ve never had a dog, and I’ve never really wanted one. I like cats because they’re soft and beautiful and independent and smell faintly of hay.

But over the last few years, I started to change without even realizing it. I’d ask people on the street about their dogs. I’d say hello to the dogs at the farmers’ market, whereas before I’d just asked their owners to stop them from peeing on the market table sign. And sometimes, late at night, I’d lurk on petfinder.com, reading about different breeds.  Continue reading

christmas fruit

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When I was 18, I spent Christmas with my aunt and uncle in San Francisco. I’d just dropped out of college after one semester, and a few days before the holiday I flew across the country with the intention of staying in their basement for a while. Eventually I’d end up working in few restaurants, wandering through the every inch of Golden Gate Park, and seeing a lot of movies by myself at the dollar theater. But first, there was Christmas.

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gifty

DSC_0313It’s time for the annual-ish gifty book list!

For those who love to have books on the shelf, and (despite this screen through which we’re communicating at present) I imagine most of us here fit in that category, there is usually a nice long holiday wish list of cookbooks that hit the stores like a title wave through the fall. I’ve seen so many good books this year, and I’ve cooked from a bunch of them, too. But I wanted to narrow it all down here for a tiny list, hand-tailored to those people in your life who might appreciate a good book. So here we have it: Six books for giving.

And on more thing– if you’re looking for a book for someone in particular and none of these recommendations speak to you, leave a little description of them in the comments, and I (and/ or one of you who might be reading along) will think of something. There’s a gifty book out there for everyone. I’m sure of it.

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