Kitchen Magic

Handfuls of flour.
Sprinkle of salt.
Shower of yeast.
Liquid to combine
and bloom.

Hands to prod
and stretch.

Flow of energy
stimulating growth.

Time and air
and a bit of fairy dust

giving lift and rise.
Heat the final step.
Crackle of crust
encasing tender crumb.
So much from so little.

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Expanded Palate


A basket of produce sits on the counter.
Butternut squash, rutabaga, acorn squash, apples.
Comfort food that sings of Autumn in New England.
Nestled alongside is ginger root.
Once foreign; now common.
Tastes expanded. Cultures linked.

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Good To Be Home


I keep this little drawing on my desktop. The kids are growing up so fast that I like to hold onto the memory of the inventive spelling of their kindergarten days. I also like the sentiment.

It mirrors how I feel today. Really happy to be home. Might have something to do with the head cold that travelled with me from Iceland, but at base point, I’m a homebody. I like my nest.

Travel certainly has points in its favor. It provides experiences and memories that linger long after the bags are unpacked. The places that we have been fortunate enough to visit have been wonderful. It’s the actual travel part that is often tedious and exhausting.

Okay, I’m showing my age. There was once a young me who flew into the Munich airport alone on my way to Austria to meet friends for a week of skiing. I walked up to a counter and asked if I could leave my skis and boots in their back room for the night. I also asked for a recommendation for a local bed and breakfast. Hard for me to imagine flying into a foreign city without a reservation at this point in my life. But it all worked out then, and most probably would again. People are invariably kind and accommodating.

But for now, it’s good to be home.



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Color Splash

splashes of color
   precede the dark of winter
 autumn’s vibrant  gift

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Home from Iceland

Land of waterfalls and lava and black sand beaches. Unfortunately for us, also the land of wind swept pouring rain for part of the trip. Even a gore tex rain jacket was no match for the rain that slid down the jacket and soaked my jeans.

Having said that, standing in the area between the North American and European plates, aware that they are separating one centimeter a year, and gazing over a landscape that once teamed with ancient people gathering for a yearly conference made the rain a mere hindrance. Soaked jeans and socks did send us back into Reykjavic to change instead of forging on to see a famous geyser.

Our tour of the south coast the next day brought us to the Seljalandsfoss waterfall where you can follow a path behind the waterfall. I use the term “path” pretty loosely. It’s an amazing experience, but also rocky and slippery. Makes sense. It’s behind a waterfall. Hiking boots would have improved my traction, but there were helping hands to reach out to assist my climb. One of those things that you’re happy you did in retrospect, but at the time, you’re questioning your decision.

Iceland is vast and largely empty. Except for the sheep. The sheep graze on open fields and seem oblivious to the tour buses that snake past on roads carved out to accommodate the hoards of tourists that are relatively new to area that once belonged to farmers and sheep alone. You drive past lava fields for miles on the way to the next amazing destination. This is turning into a travelogue which was not my intent. Travel books describe the glaciers, volcanoes, rock formations, black sand beaches far better than I can. And I haven’t even mentioned the Blue Lagoon. We forged in spite of the wind driven cold rain that soaked our heads. The water in the lagoon was as warm as promised, but the surrounding elements caused us to retreat inside much more quickly than we otherwise might have.

I like the legends. At the Black Sand Beach, there are two awesome land formations that rise out of the water. Legend has it that they were two trolls that lingered too long into daylight and were turned to stone in place. Easy to suspend your disbelief while standing on the wind swept beach backed by cliffs and gazing out into the never-ending sea.

Happily, we had a few days favored by sun to wander around Reykjavik and explore the museums and to view the world from the top of the justly famous Hallgrimskirkja Cathedral. And to frequent the restaurants. Seafood and lamb rule, and are uniformly well prepared and wonderful. Also expensive. Actually very expensive. Once I figured out the conversion rate, I was a bit startled by the cost, but at least the quality was there.

This is rambling on way too long, but I have to mention the airport. The experience deserves its own blog entry. Picture wind driven rain (I seem to use that expression a lot!) Then picture planes originally schedules to depart for Boston, New York, and Chicago at adjacent gates within fifteen minutes of one another. Enter a weather delay. The Chicago people were instructed to move to another gate. We were all standing so close to one another that they had to form a single person line that snaked through the existing throng.

Once we were cleared to enter the plane, the real fun began. We boarded a bus that took us to the plane, and were required to climb the stairs on to the plane. The heavy plastic sides that were put up didn’t quite block the wind and rain. People were surprisingly good humored about the whole experience. What else was there to do? By that point, we were all just happy to be leaving. I did hear a lot of muttering that there had better be lots of alcohol on board.

Weather did impact our trip, but it was still full of amazing experiences and sights, and I’m grateful that we were able to take advantage of the opportunity to be there with friends who knew the area well. Grateful that we went and very grateful to be home.


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Hitching a Ride


Repotted houseplants
moved back inside
from their summer
 on the deck.
One sprightly impatient
hopped aboard 
and nestled in.
Happily sharing
a sunny window,
it blinked hello
and bloomed

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Foot Rest


Love to watch dogs communicate. Spent some time watching this little guy adopt a “wake me when it’s over” attitude at last Saturday’s annual Blessing of the Animals at the Waquoit Congregational Church. He might be feigning indifference, but his face is firmly positioned on his owner’s foot. He’s in a strange place surrounded by unfamiliar animals and people. That foot belongs to his person. This fuzzy little guy is sticking close to his source of comfort and security. He’s also making sure that if he dozes off, that foot isn’t going anywhere without him!

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