Archives

A Winter Garden: Welcoming Grace

The hum of the twenty-year old refrigerator finally shuts off, the cottage goes blessedly silent, and I feel my body relax. In the quiet of a rainy morning, I hear only the irregular staccato cadence of water falling from eaves, boughs, and leaves, rain tapping on the kitchen skylight, and a murmur that one might

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Winter Solstice Magic: Darkness and Light

Nightly I stand outside my little cottage in the darkness, wearing my navy blue, Carmel tourist hoodie and a favorite scarf wrapped around my neck. Listening. Feeling. Rumbling in the distance, the voice of the sea echoes from a half mile away. Like a broken pearl, the waxing moon is held in the sky by the dark,

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Tasting the Holidays: Simple Gifts of Goodness

Orange mandarins with their leaves attached always remind me of Christmas. I recall them bulking up my holiday stocking on Christmas morning when I would find it propped on a chair, filled with little wrapped presents and chocolate. I would set the fruits in a pile on the floor next to my haul of gifts,

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The Art of Slow Food: Duck à la Marlena

It was perhaps a bit extravagant. Certainly it brings new meaning to the term and culinary movement of “slow food.” Setting out to make a 9-day duck dish isn’t your everyday undertaking. It seems something fit for a holiday, and in our rushed and harried world, perhaps not even then. Overnight marks the upper limit

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A Bowl of Quinces, A Feast of Gratitude

They look something like small, golden apples with a whisper-thin coat of fuzz. On the table by the windows, the bowl of homely little fruits is so fragrant that I can smell their perfume three feet away where I sit with my morning tea. At Thanksgiving dinner, they were placed attractively on weathered sycamore leaves

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